The Looong Holiday Post

Well, it’s about the middle of January and I still haven’t written my tradditional holiday epic. It’s a doozer, like always.

First, updates about stuff I mentioned before. Mr. Postman never brought that last parcel. Oh well, if all works out, Steve can ask them to resend it and we’ll be able to give it to its intended recipient next time he comes to see us.

I got away to catch the greyhound bright and early, although I think I looked pretty funny dragging two suitcases down the hall. Little me, big suitcases. I don’t know what it is about me, but I always end up leaving in a panic no matter how hard I try to get things done. But all my luggage and I got on the bus, met up with my sister and company and got home without incident. The only thing of note was at the Greyhound station, I heard an announcement to the effect of “Attention all passengers. There are some items which are considered restricted and must be packed with your luggage and not carried onboard. Please consult the list or speak to a customer service agent.” I bet this is all because of the Tim McLean incident. I would have loved to have seen that list.

The holidays always go so fast. Without fail, I want to see more people than I possibly can. Oh well, we do what we can.

It was a nice quiet Christmas, and I definitely got some cool stuff. The funniest moment in the present-giving happened between my mom, my sister and I. I had gotten my sister “Half Broke Horses” by Jeannette Walls. I had spent a bunch of time telling mom about the book and praying she hadn’t already read it. My sister opened it and said she had not read it. Then, out of the corner of my ear, I heard her say to my brother “pay attention.” Then my mom opened my sister’s gift to her. And what was it? The same book! We all had a really good laugh. Here I was unintentionally building up the gift my sister had got for my mom!

I can’t say the same for Steve’s Christmas. As he said, in pretty quick succession, 2 of his family members had to make 3 ER visits and another one got a flu. Thankfully, none of them had anything life-threatening wrong with them. But that’s way too many visits to the ER and way too much illness over the holidays.

We went over to my aunt’s place to see my dad’s side of the family, and those cute little twins I talk about so much. They’re just so adorable. Two things they did that cracked me up: One of them was fascinated with Trixie and kept petting her and trying to get her to lick him. I took her harness off so he could. At one point he just stuck his finger right in her ear. She didn’t even flinch. I told him that he probably shouldn’t do that with most dogs and got him to pet the rest of her. It was fun.

The other thing he did was he decided he was going to make me a drawing, but it had to be out of glitter glue. He then told me that it was a potato, but it was raised up so I could feel it. Aww. How thoughtful! I could have just hugged him. I hardly ever see him, but he somehow got the blindness concept, at least for that moment.

Trix settled in as usual at mom’s house. The only weird thing that happened that I’m still trying to figure out is one day, she decided that the two sets of open stairs at mom’s house were just not climbable. She has never had a problem with them before, and then one day, she started scrambling up the front stairs. I first thought her paws were still wet and she slipped once, but I wiped her paws really carefully the next time. She still scrambled up.

Later, She went down the two open back stairs to get a drink of her water. Then, she stood at the bottom of those two stairs and looked up at us as if to say “Please, please help me. I can’t do this.” One morning she stood down there for 15 minutes! I thought maybe she just wanted to be down there, but then mom saw her looking up at us forlornly.

At first mom and I thought she had developed a fear of open stairs. So I started standing at the top of the stairs and calling her up while holding a treat. She would still scramble up the stairs. She would always go down them fine, but up was where the problem lay. So, the treating thing wasn’t working. I tried it a few times, and at one point she wouldn’t go back down. She couldn’t figure out what the meaning of this was.

So, I started heeling her up the stairs on leash. I thought if I could show her again that they were cool, maybe we could stop the scrambling. That proved to be a bit more dangerous than I had planned, because she would still scramble, throwing me off balance, and then getting her down to do it again was kinda tricky too. But that seemed to be getting the message through a bit. Mom wanted to carry her up and down the stairs but I thought that was probably not a good option. She may need to guide me up open stairs at some point. We need to solve the problem, not skirt it.

Then we went to our buddy’s place that we like to go visit, and he gave her a shoulder rub, and she yeeped! She yeeped at a shoulder rub? This got me worried that there was something physically wrong. But to make things even more perplexing, the next day, as magically as her aversion to open stairs had appeared, it went away!

So, my only theory is that she had pulled something ever so slightly and now it had worked itself out. But if it was something physically wrong with her, why wouldn’t it hurt to go up the closed stairs? She had no problem with those. Trix, you puzzle me sometimes.

It’s funny the things Trix does consistently at my parents’ place that she never does here. For example, she goes back to the bedroom and puts herself to bed at about 10 each night. What’s more, if I don’t come to bed within the half hour, she comes out to get me, then walks back there again as if to say, “you! Bed, now.” She also wants to keep tabs on the pack at home. If she hears the door, she runs out and walks between us as if to do a head count.

We fixed her doggy wagon when it came to exchanging gifts, and it was completely by accident. Every Christmas, without fail, Trix has run out and tried to run around with wrapping paper or tape or something. But this year, because we exchanged gifts so late, she put herself to bed! So, she would only come out on her mission to collect me for bed, and then leave. Sweet! I’m not saying that I would rearrange my schedule to do that again, but it was cool.

I really hope that Trixie’s raisers like what I got them this year. It wasn’t much, but I hope they liked it. All I did was get my mom to take some holiday pictures of Trix, some inside the house and some outside, and send them in a card. I hope they didn’t think I cheaped out on them. But I think the most important thing I can give them are pictures of Trix as she gets older so they know she is well-cared-for.

As for Trix, she got a new bed for Christmas. that beloved bed that Trix’s raisers got her is showing signs of wear. I haven’t had the heart to throw it out yet, but I know I have to soon. So, my folks went out and got a new one. She seems to enjoy laying in it. She looks so cute when she’s all nestled in there.

Before I knew it, it was time to head back here. As much as it’s nice to go home and see everybody, it’s so nice to get back to my own home too. I think we wore poor mom out, but that may have been due in part to whatever cold was refusing to leave her alone.

New Years was quiet again this year, and for the foreseeable future, I think that’s how we prefer them. It’s just too hard to come back and then throw a giant party.

Then…oh then! Poor Steve got struck with a flu the likes of which I have never seen. It was so bad that we decided to get him to the ER because he was beyond average flu guy sick and it was getting kinda scary. I mean, when the huppy’s mom came to get us, she described him as yellow. By the way, thank you, huppy’s mom, for your oodles and piles and heaps of help. It is super mucho appreciated. Then, after things were looking more hopeful, the lady in the ER described the way he looked when he arrived as “gross.” Um, eek?

Thankfully, after waiting for what seemed like aeons, they saw him and started giving him fluids by IV. That seemed to pep him up from almost dead to just awfully sick. I never knew awfully sick was an improvement, but Steve that day proved that it could be seen as one.

And here’s a little note to someone I’ll only know as lipstick girl. You need to get your priorities straight.

  1. You don’t come to the emergency room just for the hell of it. If you need a little something checked out, go to your family doctor or a walk-in clinic. The ER the day after New Years is not the prime day to get a little something looked into.
  2. Yes, you can live without your lipstick. It is not going to kill you to not have your lipstick.
  3. and finally,

  4. When sitting by a guy who can barely stand, please refrain from constantly whining about the wait to see the doctor and how badly you want to go home. There’s the door, you know. Just let triage know you’re leaving. You made me want to give you a reason to be in the ER.

But, I do have to thank lipstick girl for giving me practice in exercising restraint. At least she was useful for something.

But this flu is a humdinger. I thought that other flu was bad. It didn’t take either of us to the ER, so this flu wins hands down. Also, poor Steve is still recovering from it, although I think we’re close to saying he’s completely cured. Very, very close.

I was holding off to write the holiday post until the huppy got his Christmas gift, but I think maybe this thing is becoming a monster without adding that in. Maybe his reaction to it will deserve a post of its own. If it doesn’t, I could probably make a whole post about huppy updates. He’s the cutest little guy.

What can I say about 2010? Hmmm. Not a whole heap. The most significant event was my sister getting married, which definitely is pretty significant. But for me personally, things have pretty much stayed the same. The one thing I regret is not working harder to figure out what training I would need to do this web accessibility stuff on a more serious basis. Hopefully this time next year I won’t be saying the same thing.

What I wish for 2011 is that all this bad news slows down. This first week and a half or so of January has been so full of bad news that it gets a little overwhelming. Please, universe, level out. This is just too much, too much bad stuff.

So I hope everybody had a good Christmas, or at least a relatively peaceful one. More importantly, I hope everyone’s year is, or soon becomes, a good one. There’s still a whole lot of it to go, I hope it turns around!

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