Thursday, March 20, 2008

Chien Bizarre

If you're in Memphis and need a dog-sitter, try this service. I can personally vouch for her services!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Spring Snow

I'm late blogging about this, but I was so busy enjoying the weather, and then recuperating from the cold/sinus infection/walking pneumonia thing I got as a result of the weather that I just haven't made time until now. Last Friday, after a few warm days, I was sent home from the Major Military Installation where I work as an Anonymous Paper Shuffler on account of...snow!

This was a particularly lovely snowfall--big crunchy flakes that were moist enough to compact well. While it was cold outside, the ground wasn't cold enough for it freeze into ice. The roads stayed passable, the power remained on and we hunkered down in Midtown for a nice dinner of homemade soup, good bread, broiled tomatoes and warm rum drinks. The Brother of the House made an appearance, and we even took Britta to the local branch of the National Chain Demon Video Rental Retailer to help us select some entertainment.

The snow continued into the night until about six inches had fallen. Outside the world was hushed and beautiful. The backyard was coated with a thick, soft layer of white. The next morning we set out for a local park to play before it all melted away.

Britta enjoyed romping in her first snow. As it was nearly up to her shoulders, we had to pick her up frequently, but she chased snowballs and helped Dear Daughter and the Norwegian sculpt a larger-than-life "maxi-Dachshund" that earned them all a spot on the local news broadcast. Dear Daughter, the original snow-bunny, played until her cheeks were rosy and her shoes were sodden.

By day's end, the snow was gone, and with it, the last hurrah of winter. It's 60 degrees today and the sun is shining. Spring really seems to have sprung at last. The snow was a delightful treat and a happy way to mark the end of the season.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Seeing Double

Why no, as a matter of fact, Britta does NOT like to share her basket and blanky, even with a still and quiet look-alike.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Well Baby Checkup

Like all good parents, we realized this week it was time for Baby Britta to visit her physician. The ever-efficient Norwegian made an appointment for her at a local veterinary practice, and we collected Dear Daughter and Best Friend and, of course, Baby Britta.

Cute puppies create quite a stir wherever they go, and Britta was certainly no exception. The staff carried her about and made a nice fuss over her. Dad took care of the paperwork:

Dear Daughter and Best Friend kept Britta entertained and calm while we waited:

Her Serene Highness, Britta Leafslayer listens for her name to be called:

A proud, but somewhat nervous dad checks out the exam table:

Treats make shots and exams a little easier to tolerate:

All went well and we were reassured of what we already felt: we have a wonderful, healthy and happy puppy. We celebrated by sneaking her into a local grocery store where she so charmed staff and shoppers alike that no one thought to point out the various ordinances we were flagrantly violating by bringing her in!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Signs of Spring, Part 2

Ever the chaotic-neutral month, March is already throwing us curve balls. Saturday and Sunday were sunny, bright and warm, with temperatures in the mid-70s. They were glorious days that make you glad to be alive.

Today is grey and cold, barely above freezing with stinging flurries of snow and ice. Go figure.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Signs of Spring

The first two days of March were warm and bright, so naturally those of us here at Chez Redblur spent as much time as possible outdoors. Even the animals got into the act. It was necessary to spend some time on Saturday on errands, odious tasks and being away from home (my trivia team failed to place, but I had an excellent time and ate the best piece of wedding cake ever; the headlights on the Stealth Outback both went out, but I was saved by the Norwegian; Dear Daughter went to a party and seemed to have a good time).

Sunday dawned bright and glorious--perfect for Laetare Sunday, or Mothering Sunday, as I was raised to think of it. The mid-Lent lightening was both literal and figurative, as we saw temperatures in the high 70s, lots of sunshine and plenty of good times. We had a brunch at church (wherein Mme. Redblur ate the equivalent weight of her left leg in bacon) and were rejoined by a dear friend who recently received a heart transplant. A scant five weeks post-surgery he was at church looking healthy and well, albeit behind a mask and latex gloves. He will have to continue taking infection precautions for a while yet, and of course, will be on anti-rejection drugs, but thus far, he is doing so well, for which we are truly grateful.

Sunday afternoon was spent clearing up some of fall and winter out of the backyard. I am so grateful to be back in my own house with its little yard. Scattered throughout the back we found all kinds of signs of the changing seasons.

Behold the first solar Dachshund of the year:

Glorious daffodils. The smaller ones were here when we moved in, but the giant pale ones are an heirloom legacy from a great (but tiny) lady I once knew and loved dearly:

Bunnies on the grass, alas. Actually, Alix loves being outdoors. She has her own playpen for the backyard.

All of winter's deadfall burning in the grill, to be later spread on the compost heap (after cooling, naturally).

My forsythias, which came to us from a yard in Belle Meade, are blooming. My tenant managed to kill my other bush, but this one has survived a year of neglect and is bravely putting forth blooms. I always thought these looked like banana peels:

Baby irises peeping their way through the leaves in the very back of the yard by the fence. This area of the yard is fondly known as the "Pet Cemetery." The late, great Peaches, the Mousy-Faced Hamster Girl is interred here, as is at least one cat belonging to the previous owner. I have to be careful not to hit the bricks marking their final resting places when I mow.

Lastly, the dear, kind Norwegian Bachelor Farmer tilled up my garden while I ran the lawnmower. This was no easy task, and for nearly four hours he bravely piloted my dad's small tiller through the Bermuda grass and weeds. We're both excited at the prospect of tomatoes, eggplant, onions and herbs growing in the backyard. We still have a way to go to get the garden completely ready, but he certainly made a good start of it.