Bath Time

The lack of updates -

Well the secret is out. My wife is currently pregnant and that makes updating this blog difficult. We still have all three dogs: Michelle, Ickey, and Heidi. Besides slacking with the blogging, we have also been slacking with the dogs’ grooming.

Yesterday, our Friends from Golden Life with Dogs dropped by to say “hello.” They have been blogging daily for almost two years. After seeing Ickey’s unflattering picture on their blog, we decided that today was bath time.

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Bath time consists of paint buckets, gallon-sized shampoo, and little plastic Asian stools.

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“Close your eyes Ickey else the shampoo would get into your eyes and then you will cry.”

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“Now open them real wide and say hello to the world!”

Idea behind Goldens.com

The idea behind Goldens.com was to tell a simple story about a unique moment in time where my wife and I found something other than sadness when our golden retriever, P, passed away.

The gist of the story goes something like this —

During our grieving period, a good friend of ours, a former neighbor, who has two golden retrievers, found two golden retrievers, Ickey and Michelle, living in a backyard. He lived in a guard gated golf course so it was rather strange that there would be two abandoned goldens living in his neighborhood.

He contacted us about Ickey and Michelle. My wife was struggling at the time with the loss of P so I thought that taking care of the two goldens would be good distraction for her.

I convinced my wife that we should go look at the two abandoned golden retrievers. When we arrived at the house with the abandoned goldens, we bumped into a nice couple with a young boy. They were the next door neighbors, who informed us that they been looking after Ickey and Michelle by giving them food and water. Unfortunately, they couldn’t foster or adopt them because they already have a dog and having three dogs is too many.

We decided to foster Ickey and Michelle since the house that they were living in was in foreclosure.

A couple of days later, we went to the vet to pickup P’s ashes. We chatted with a nurse who loved P. She told us that she cried when she saw P’s name on the ashes.

We started talking and we told her about how we are currently fostering two golden retrievers that were abandoned in a golf course. We talked about how the two goldens couldn’t be separated.

The nurse said, “That story seems awfully familiar” and calls her mom.

As it turns out, the Nurse’s mom babysits for the nice couple with the young boy. She also been giving Ickey and Michelle food and water.

After this incident, we decided to adopt Ickey and Michelle. In ours minds, while P is gone, he is still looking after Ickey and Michelle.

Road Trip to California

I was three before I went on my first road trip.  I think the delay is caused by the fact that I used to throw up in the car. Daddy drove. Mama sat in the backseat, alert and armed with plastic bags. Acceleration. Deceleration. <barf>

I don’t think Mama ever missed with the plastic bags because I don’t remember seeing any stains on the backseat. This is surprising because Mama always missed when she threw her socks into the laundry basket.  Daddy joked about how I should ask Mama to teach me to play basketball. Imagine that — a golden retriever playing basketball.

p- russian river

I guess when I was three, I learned that I could minimum the effects of the car movements by sitting between Mama and the backseat. In other words, I would sandwich myself in between Mama and the seat. After a couple of hours, Mama would get mad because her back would start hurting. Mama didn’t have the heart to rest against me. Mama tried to remedy the situation by scooting over. But I would just turnaround and re-sandwich myself back in.

As for the front passenger seat, it was vacant but Mama  couldn’t find it in her to move up because in Mama’s mind, “someone had to be in the back to protect me.”

Well back to my trip report.

This wasn’t a trip to visit family. Oh No. Rather, it was a trip to celebrate Daddy and Mama’s wedding anniversary.  A 5 day trip in a place that could be done in 2 days or maybe even 1 afternoon. But, at the time, Daddy had lots of free time so a 5 day trip it was. This was before Daddy entered law school.

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On this trip, we met a friend…

Highway Robbery

p- pooh bearMy beloved pooh bear. Mama got you from the Disney Outlet store at the Las Vegas Premium Outlets. Daddy would buy clothes for himself. Mama would buy me toys.

Of course, Daddy wasn’t buying clothes at the Disney store. I meant he was buying clothes at the mall. I can see how that can be confusing since they do sell clothing at the Disney store. One time Daddy and Mama went into a Disney store and Daddy told the salesperson that he wanted to buy a “Lion King Painting.” The salesperson blushed because she thought Daddy wanted to buy a pair of “Lion King Panties.” It was a good thing that Mama was there.

I loved my pooh bear. I played with it almost everyday.  I would wrestle with Pooh and take off his shirt. Mama would put it back on and I would take it off again.

When it got quite worn, Mama wanted to buy me a new pooh bear for Christmas.  But around this time, Mama had shielded herself from the outside world. Malls were no longer her thing. So when she wanted to buy me a new pooh, she went on eBay.

p- engineer pooh

A quick search and a new pooh bear was found. Engineer Pooh. Mama thought that I would have lots of fun trying to take off his bandanna and overalls.

When it arrived… it was half the size of the original pooh. Mama was furious. Not only was it smaller than what she had in mind, the overalls were also sewed into the body. In Mama’s mind, Christmas was ruined for her baby. She was not going to let that happen. No way. Mama hopped right onto the keyboard and wrote a lengthy email to the eBay seller. Couple more rounds of emails and bam… we got a free Engineer Pooh.

Daddy remarked, “Why that is highway robbery.” Daddy grew up around the time when the internet was labeled the “information superhighway. The posting didn’t mention the size of the pooh so it’s not really the seller’s fault. Daddy added, “This isn’t Engineer Pooh. This is Train Robber Pooh.”

p- train robber pooh

We played with Train Robber Pooh a handful of times then it just rested in the back of my toy box. Mama didn’t want me to play with him since he might teach me bad things. It is still in a pristine condition.

Toys

Mama’s friend asked me once, “is this one of your favorite toys?”

P- babies group shot

In my Russian voice, I replied, “Does it still have its eyes? Are the ears still intact? Da? Does it have cloth patches? Nyet? then the answer is No.”

p- sewing toys

Daddy should have never let me watch the Wire with him.

P- playing with gaters

Trolls Under the Bridge

Scylla and Charybdis are no match for my puppy powers. I slay thee with my sweet smile and bright eyes.

P- smiling at the beach

Trolls, on the other hand, are no laughing matter. One time, Daddy, Mama and I were walking along the trails. It is literally called “The Trails.” An evening walk. Perhaps that was our mistake.

It was warm that evening so Daddy took off his sweater and wrapped it around his waist. As we walked, we chatted about worldly things – if a golden gets a skin graft from a Dalmatian, would he get spots or would it turn golden?  Is the euro debt crisis over or is this just the beginning?  Should the Rule against perpetuities be abolished?

Halfway through our walk, Daddy got a little chilly. To his surprise, Daddy noticed that the sweater around his waist was gone. Ah… Diabolical … A quick look to the right and a lingering look to the left — yet there was no sign of Daddy’s sweater. Instead, there was only a bridge; an innocent looking bridge that we walked by many times without giving it a second glance.

Daddy didn’t notice the bridge. Instead, we turned around to see if we could find the sweater. Mama suspected that it must have fell and it was now lying on the floor. Although we searched diligently, we saw nothing except a lady with a baby stroller.

I couldn’t look into the stroller basket because I was too short.

Did she take Daddy’s sweater? But why? It was not a name brand sweater. Worth $20 at most.  Would she bring a baby stroller just on the off chance that Daddy would drop his sweater? Highly unlikely.

No. It must be something else.  More sinister.   More conniving.  ”We must search the bridge,” I told Daddy and Mama. But all they heard was, “hhhrm hhrrm hrrm hrrm.”

Sometimes I wish they taught me sign language.

Prep Talk with Bruce

After living with us for one year, Bruce finally found a forever home. Before he left, we sat him down and gave him a little prep talk:

So you be a good boy now. Remember not to scare your new forever family away. If your ears hurt, don’t scratch them with your paws, it would only hurt more.

Your new family seems really nice. I think you will like your new family. You will be an only dog. I know that you don’t really like other dogs.

If you get bored at your new home, play with your tomato. We knew that you liked this toy so Beanpole got you a new one. It’s more plushy than the one at home. Ickey and Michelle would be jealous if they saw you with this toy.

if you get hungry, we packed some teddy grahams. We put it in your teddy graham jar. Do you remember this jar?

If you get sad or lonely, knock over your teddy graham jar and pretend that it was filled with water. Try to remember that day when you knocked over the bucket, which was filled with water, at our house. Remember how mad beanpole was when she had to mop up all the water. You were smiling the whole time.

We will always love you. You will not be returned to a shelter. If it doesn’t work out, you will come back and live with us. So don’t be afraid.

Ickey Goes to a Birthday Party!

Ickey has a big crush on our friend’s beagle Lucy. Sadly, Lucy seems to be more in love with daddy. At her last birthday party, there was a photo of Lucy cuddling up next to daddy. Ickey was completely heartbroken and kept crying out “How could you?!?” It was not a good moment.

This year, for Lucy’s 7th birthday party, we helped Ickey pick out a very special gift, hoping to turn the tide of love in his favor. He bought her a Chewy Vuitton designer bag – complete with a squeaker inside!

On the day of the party, Ickey took extra care dressing, combing his hair into a smooth shine, clipping his toenails neat, and wearing his special red bandana. He was dressed to impress, and looked very handsome indeed.

When he arrived at Lucy’s party, he only had eyes for her. She looked lovely as usual in a leopard print scarf that completed her black and tan coloring beautifully. Lucy, like her mom, was always impeccably dressed.

Ickey Goes To A Party!

Ickey Goes To A Party!

The pretty birthday girl herself - it's no wonder Ickey is head over paws about her.

The pretty birthday girl herself – it’s no wonder Ickey is head over paws about her.

Ickey found that he was a giant among all the much smaller dogs at the party, but that didn’t bother him at all. He likes everyone, and we call him our gentle giant. When a 5 pound pup growled at him, Ickey just laid down and played dead.

Lucy’s mom throws the best doggie parties. There were bully sticks for snacking on, a sweet potato and salmon homemade birthday cake, and ice cubes with treats frozen in the middle as an after dinner treat. For entertainment, there was a play tunnel, lots of toys, and doggie bubbles – special bubbles that don’t pop and that stay in the air much longer.

Let the begging begin...

Let the begging begin…

Whatcha eating? Ickey, a shameless begger.

Whatcha eating? Ickey, a shameless begger.

Ice cube treats on a warm summer night - the perfect way to end a lovely dinner party.

Ice cube treats on a warm summer night – the perfect way to end a lovely dinner party.

It was a night to remember, and Ickey had so much fun. Happy Birthday sweet Lucy!