Sassycub

We were at my Mom’s last night, celebrating her 74th birthday. She showed me a couple pictures of me, when I was just a baby cub, that I couldn’t resist sharing.

Elementary school …. 5? 6?

High school – 16? 17?

What a blast from the past. And what a difference 3 decades can make, eh?

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From Respite to Routine

We (begrudgingly) returned from a glorious week on the cape to the routine and rut of our daily life. The only high point was reuniting with the dogs. It is rare for me to feel this way. No matter how much I enjoy a vacation or trip, I am always, eventually, eager to return to my own home, surrounded by my stuff, and sleep in my own bed. Alas, I was very sad to leave the cape this time, more than usual. It felt like leaving home. This feeling has encouraged us to look into the possibility of owning a little condo of our own and moving there, full time, in retirement. It once seemed out of our reach, but I’m not sure that’s true any more. We shall see. It’s exciting to consider, at least.

Here are a few hi-lites of our trip:

We spent some time on the beach, and I captured this picture of our right foot prints in the sand (mine, Jim’s, and Jeffrey’s.)

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We enjoyed a two woman town-hall appearance by Kathy Najimy and Debra Messing, a fund raiser for Sandy Hook Promise.

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I got this great shot of the Pilgrims’ Monument, while strolling along the Provincetown harbor Boardwalk:

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Although there were other interesting sights along the boardwalk, as well:

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These gentlemen were waiting outside of T-dance to promote their show, AirOtic (which we did not get a chance to see.)

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I tried to get a shot of the great view from one of our favorite restaurants, Fanizzi’s by the Sea, with a “Bayside dining room that boasts 180 degree views through three walls of windows that look upon Cape Cod Bay, Provincetown Harbor, North Truro, and Truro.”

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I didn’t get more pictures because we were too busy enjoying ourselves and trying to really be in the moment, as opposed to trying to record every moment. We enjoyed an afternoon of piano and song by Todd Alsup at the Crown & Anchor (where we spotted – but did not bother – Ms. Sandra Bernhard having a casual repast with an acquaintance,) an afternoon sand dune tour, a couple of nice walks out to the breakers and around town, several delicious meals and cocktails at some of our favorite restaurants, an afternoon Tea Dance at the Boatslip, and a small excursion to Wellfleet to revisit a cute seafood and live music venue we discovered last year. There was also a visit with mututal friends, including a visit at their home by the water in Easthampton. A great trip, for sure. I can’t wait to return in October, which will be our first trip with the dogs.

Speaking of which, guess who got a new puppy lounge for the back yard, courtesy of one of Jeffrey’s co-workers (whose dog would not use it)? You guessed it:

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At least THEY’RE happy we’re home.

 

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What a difference a dog makes

Today is my last day of training class (YAY!!!!) and, as soon as I get home, we hit the road for the cape. The hardest (emotional) part of any trip, for me. is dropping our dogs off at the kennel, which we’ll do on the way out of town tonight.

To facilitate ease and expediency of departure, we packed the car last night and prepped the “Doggy Duffle” to leave at the Kennel with the dogs (food, treats, toys, blanket and bed.) Our dogs know exactly what all this activity means and react in two very different ways.

Harvey gets nervous and clingy, and refuses to leave our sides (or laps) for fear we’ll leave him. This morning, he was planted firmly on my lap while I had coffee, and gave me “the look” when I attempted to get up:

Rita, on the other hand, gets distant and punishes us by withholding her affection. While usually a lapdog, curled up next to one of us on the sofa any time we’re home, this morning she chose the dog bed over us:

If only we could explain to them what’s going on, how much we will miss them, and that we hate leaving them behind as much, if not more, than they hate us leaving them.

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Happy National Spider-Man Day

August 1st is National Spider-Man Day!

Spider-Man was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko (both writers and artists) and first appeared in Amazing Fantasy #15 in August 1962.

Besides appearing in multiple comic titles, non-stop, since 1962, he has appeared on TV in both animated and live action series, in multiple Big screen movies, on Broadway, and even inspired a record album:

He is one of the most famous, recognizable super-heroes in the world. While he is well known for uttering this phrase:

….the iconic phrase more famously associated to his character, first shown in narrative print in the same debut issue (although later retconned to have been said to him by his Uncle Ben) is:

Would that we all took these words to heart.

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Derailed Train(ing)

This morning is day 5 of a 7 day training course (plus bookend half days for orientation and “graduation.”) Were allegedly being taught new skills to plan projects and lead teams, but it is basically the same concepts I’ve read or learned about my whole career, repackaged with new terminology and made overly-complex to make it seem fresh and novel. Honestly, I’ve found it a complete waste of time. I dislike the instructors immensely, as a lot of time is wasted sharing personal anecdotes about their families (to the detriment of our class schedule, causing us to get out late) and the drive to and from is during peak traffic times, so it is a very stressful for me, as I hate driving.

Regardless, I’m cooperating, participating, and trying to get out of it what I can (so far, nothing, aside from a new binder and free water.) The only silver lining is that it gets me out of the office for a few days, and it’ll probably look good on my resume, even though I doubt I’ll be moving any higher (or will want to) with only 7 years left in my career.

On the bright side, Friday is my last day of training, then we are heading out, right after class/work, for vacation. (This trip was planned way before I knew I’d get tickets to SD Comic-Con, which is the only reason I have vacations so closely scheduled.) We are spending 7 days in Provincetown with the BF and his hubby.

I have been looking forward to this trip since it was planned. Long time blog-followers will know Ptown is my favorite vacation place. It is the most LGBT+ visible and welcoming place I’ve ever been, and it is our ideal vacation spot. All shops, restaurants, and most beaches, are walkable from anywhere you stay. It is like a home away from home for us, and I never tire of it. We have several plans (sunset schooner cruise, beach picnic, Piano Bar night with a local performer favorite, sand dune tour, Broadway night, and a 2 woman show with Debra Messing and Kathy Najimy) while still leaving lots of down time for leisurely walks, reading, resting, shopping, meals at our favorite restaurants, Tea Dance, card games, napping, and cocktails.

It will be the perfect way to celebrate completing this awful training course.

Woohoo!

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Sentimental Surprise

I received a couple of surprise gifts in the mail recently:

A photo:

and a photo book:

Both were sent to my by Ron over at Retired in Delaware. Ron was responsible for the blogger gathering that these photos memorialize. It was a great weekend and I made many new friends, most of whom I’ve seen subsequently (although not nearly often enough) and remained in contact with via blogs, texts, emails, and/or Facebook.

I have 3 framed photos in my bedroom, a constant reminder of this great blogger bonding weekend:

I’m thrilled to have even more images from this gathering. Thanks so much, Ron!

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7 Years with Miss Rita Mae

Today marks the 7th Anniversary of the day we brought Rita Mae home to join our family. Since we left for Sandy Eggo on her birthday this year (she just turned 9 on July 17th – she was 2 when we rescued/adopted her) we tried to make today extra special by staying home, giving her extra love and attention, and making sure we had some extra special dog treats with which to spoil her. (Unlike the way we spoil her every other day, am I right?) To help celebrate the day, here’s a small selection of my favorite pictures of my girl through the years she’s been with us.

2012

I still have the on-line ad from her foster agency from 2012, where she was given the name “Issy” for identification purposes (since she had been abandoned and they didn’t know her real name):

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She is the same color and similar breed (Jack Russel Terrier mix) to our first dog, Clyde (Rat Terrier mix) which might have been part of what drew me to her. This was her in the office as we were filling out adoption papers:

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And here she is feeling safe in Jeffrey’s arms.

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2013

We bought her a dress for a holiday party we were having.

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And helped her bring out her bookish side.

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She showed us one of her favorite poses at the vet’s.

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And she filled us with pride graduating from her puppy behavior class,

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2014

We discovered her true inner superhero as Rita the Wonder Dog

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And really began to spread her wings…er…ears.

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2015

Rita finds her inner Edie Bouvier Beale (with a cameo from little bro Harvey)

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She also continued to find new and intriguing places to chill out around the house.

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2016

Rita makes a new friend – Baymax from Big Hero 6.

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And continued to accessorize her wonder costume.

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2017

Rita Mae loves to lick as she shows me here, while prancing on the backyard stone wall.

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And never says no to lounging in the sun on the back porch.

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2018

Rita joins in the holiday festivities.

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Rita tries her hand (or paw) at opera.

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Apparently it’s true: nobody likes a critic.

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My rhinestone cowgirl!

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2019

Rita enjoying her favorite pastime…napping on her blanket.

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7 years later, Rita Mae is still my little girl, my precious and perfect puppy princess.

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We love you Rita Mae! Happy Adoption Day.

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Fearsome Fur Friends

We both woke up earlier than necessary this morning (5:30 am) so we got up showered, dressed, had breakfast at the hotel, and are now just killing time until we grab an Uber to the airport for our 11:05am flight home.

While it was a great trip, even better than expected, we are ready to be in our own space and stomping ground again. We won’t get to see our dogs tonight, as we will get home just before midnight (we are flying into Boston, then have a 3 hour drive home) so the Kennel they’re staying at will be closed until the morning. (Major Bummer.)

Speaking of dogs, it was a special treat to get to meet Fearsome’s four pawed family. I grabbed a few pictures, but they aren’t great…the dogs were all scampering about excitedly, and I wanted to spend time actually petting and cuddling them, not trying to get the perfect pics. Plus, there were 6 pups, plus 1 visiting, and I cannot remember all the names or who was who (I was as excited as the pups to meet them), but I know there was Abner, Gilda, Patsy (whom I’m convinced wanted to come home with me), Betty and 3 others. (Feel free to school me on proper names in the comments, Fearsome.)

Here are the quick pics I could grab:

It was definitely a high point of the trip!!!!

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Sayonara, San Diego!

The sun has set on our final day in San Diego. This picture was taken from the Coranado bridge, as Fearsome took us on one last tourist trip, after a wonderful Italian dinner together.

More to say and share but, for now, I’ll say good-bye and thank you to Fearsome for being an amazing guide, cool con partner, and true blogger buddy.

It’s been a great trip, indeed!

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Con-spirators

In line with Fearsome and the hubby! Woohoo! Let the games begin!

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