Goodbye, Millie Dog

Millie Ballard: born January 1, 1994, died August 16, 2009. She was our sweetheart, our “Millie Dog”, “Millie Girl”. She lived a long life for a chocolate lab, especially considering all the health issues she had when she was younger. A friend from work said her daughter in Virginia had a litter of lab puppies, and she was driving down to pick up a couple to bring back – did I want one? Michael didn’t know we were getting a dog (his first EVER) until I got the call that they were home and said, “Honey, let’s drive over and pick up our puppy!” She loved Michael immediately, rode home snuggled up next to him inside his coat. Bringing Millie home is Aaron’s first real memory. He was only two. They grew up together, and Millie loved going camping, swimming in whatever body of water presented itself, and running races with me. She was much more competitive than I was! Then at Aaron’s seventh birthday party Millie tore her ACL chasing a cat up the stairs. Jack was born a few weeks later and Millie greeted him at the door and stole the pacifier right out of his mouth! One week later she had orthopedic surgery and I carried her out for potty breaks and did physcial therapy three times a day with her while I was on maternity leave with Jack. Then three weeks later Jack had surgery and things got really complicated! Millie eventually bounced back, but she was never quite as active as before. A few years ago we added Saminda (Sam) to the family. Our two chocolate lab girls got along well, and Sam has kept Millie entertained throughout her last years. Her last few days were peaceful and painfree, and she was surrounded by family and friends when she passed away. She added so much to our lives, and we are glad to have had her with us for so long. We love you, Millie!

If I Had the Chutzpah . . . Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop

4.) List ten things you would say to ten different people in your life…if you had the chutzpah.

OOH, should I wait until I’m off the steroids to do this one? Nah, let’s give it a shot! Like most of Mama Kat’s other workshop followers, I’ll keep who the ten people are to myself and just post the comments.
1) Get off the phone! And just because you drive a Lexus doesn’t mean you don’t have to stop at stop signs and red lights.
2) U-Scan is for people who know how to use it. If you have tried three times and couldn’t figure it out without a cashier’s help go stand in the regular checkout lane. You’ve been retired for 20 years anyway, what’s your hurry?
3) You look like a thirty-year-old tramp. Wash your face and put on some clothes that fit you. And twelve-year-olds should NOT have fake nails and bleached hair.
4) You are beautiful, smart, compassionate, and dedicated. You are a wonderful parent. Don’t let that loser you married make you doubt yourself.
5) I love you more than life itself, but I can’t stand to see you throwing away wonderful opportunities. Open your eyes, cut your hair, pull up your pants, and take advantage of your youth, health, talent, and intelligence.
6) Yes, I do think you are a whiner.
7) You inspire me. The things you have accomplished in your life (both large and small) make me want to be more – do more. Being your friend makes me a better person.
8) If you will just shut up talking about it and get to work you’ll have it done in less time than it takes to complain about it and try to find an excuse not to do it.
9) You are the reason our healthcare system is so screwed up. Stop smoking, lose some weight, eat some vegetables, take your meds, get a little exercise, stop whining, and don’t demand open-heart surgery and dialysis for your demented 95-year-old mother. Oh, yeah, and try working for a living – it’s quite a concept.
10) Thank you for posting those great stories about your life on your blog. You have no idea how many people’s days you brighten with a little laughter – thanks for sharing!

Happy news for owners of old dogs!

I have found something wonderful, and I want to share it. My first-born chocolate lab, Millie, is fourteen years old. She gets around well and seems generally happy and comfortable, but she . . . well, she leaks. Her bladder is old and feels it’s done all it needs to do and doesn’t want to do any more. Now Millie has always been a house dog. She used to run with me (back when I ran) and loved any chance to take a swim, but mostly now she goes outside for potty breaks and spends the rest of the time in her favorite chair (a hideous old recliner) or on the sofa. We keep everything covered so the “leakage” doesn’t ruin the furniture, but sometimes the floor takes a hit. We have all hardwood floors and tile, so it’s not a huge problem unless someone starts mopping up the puddles with the good towels. I won’t name any names, but my husband has sinus issues and assumes since he can’t smell no one else can either. He always washed them promptly, but it didn’t make any difference. I noticed all our towels smelled musty and nasty, but thought it was just my imagination. I have the nose of a bloodhound. But then my oldest son said he thought the towels all smelled like Millie. AHA! I told my husband to please not ever use towels to wipe up puddles anymore and started watching the sales ads for good buys on bath towels. Then today I was at Kroger and this practically jumped into my cart:

I had never seen this before, but I thought it was worth a shot. The directions on the back give different amounts to use IN ADDITION TO YOUR REGULAR DETERGENT for different strengths of odors. I went straight for the big guns and used two capfuls. Believe it or not, towels that had been washed multiple times before without getting rid of the scent are now fresh-smelling – YIPPEE!! This will now be a staple in my laundry room. Just think what it can do for the dirty clothes that have been in my 17-year-old’s car trunk for six months!

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