Cutting the Cord (in a manner of speaking)

The experience with the puppy continues to echo those of having a baby.  Just when we had dog-proofed everything at floor level he learned to put front paws up on a seat so he can get at all manner of interesting things.

He’s getting better on the lead because he has lots of practice at night when he take him down to do the necessary on the lead so he doesn’t taste test a toad (and die!).  He’s pretty good at “sit,” he sits and waits very politely when we put out his dinner and he comes when called by Anthony or I.  The boys don’t rank highly enough in the “pack” for this apparently.

Our next big hurdle is leaving him home alone.  At the end of this month he’s going to be spending school days mainly on his own.  There are some neighbours that are going to pick him up for puppy play dates or visit him especially at lunchtime but he’s going to have to get used to some solitude.

We’ve started by going out for short periods and locking him under the house.  For those not familiar with Queensland conditions and housing we have “battens” around our house which let plenty of cool breezes in.  He has a spot to relieve himself and a big water bowl.  So far we’ve been feeding him, giving him a run around and then shutting him in while we go out and so far it has been a success.  Yesterday he happily hung out under the house for over an hour.

The plan is that when he is a bit bigger and we have more fencing he will be able to come and go from under the house as he pleases.  It is actually the coolest spot to be in the hot weather and he is not visible from the street.

Our next steps in this process will be leaving him for longer periods, buying a kong and letting him learn how to use it, freezing treats and getting some more puppy toys so he has variety.  We will also be walking him every morning and going to the dog most afternoons. Ok, I’m almost a novice dog owner and definitelyImagea novice puppy owner so how do you think we’re going?

And what will happen if Bronco eats a rhinoceros beetle?

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What Works For Me in 2013

P1060860I guess it is hard for anyone to predict what will happen in 2013 but given the events of 2012 I think I can make some educated guesses!

This blog just fell over.  It wasn’t because things weren’t working for me.  It was more because too many things were working well for me at times.  That situation hasn’t changed – there are many good things happening still!

I think I still have something to offer the blog world, perhaps even to more people than the 5 people who commented in 2012 (mortified blush).  So with all the New Year musings I’ve decided to give it anoehr red hot go.

So what are the good things?

I have a shiny new job for 2013!  It started as 1 day of supply teaching in term 3, then became four weeks at the end of term 3, then became term 4 and then best of all, a contract for 2013.  I’m in the state education system, somewhere I never dreamed I’d find myself, and loving every minute of it.  There are two reasons for this.  Firstly I’m a bit older and more able to stand back and see the “big picture.”  So when a child tries to kick the computer room door in (for example) or a parent gets really cranky about something, I know that it isn’t directed at me and it isn’t “my problem” in the end. Secondly, I’ve had a lot of time away from full time teaching, done lots of different things so that now I am more certain than ever in my life that this is what i am meant to be doing.  Some time away really shows you what you appreciate.

We also have a shiny new dog!  Our much loved Vera died suddenly on October 21 last year and even though we had only been her official owners since January 2011 we were all devastated.  Much to my surprise Anthony started researching “blue cattle dogs” almost immediately and 4 weeks ago came home with “Bronco” who we are all besotted with.  After several weeks of always having someone at home with him, our new little mate has to learn about staying home on his own bit by bit beginning tomorrow.  He starts Puppy preschool next Tuesday and after his 16 week needles will be able to go out in public.

Lots of other good things continue to happen – I’m still knitting, reading and always learning. I look forward to sharing more of “what works” with you in 2013.