Hello fellow bloggers!
My oh my does time fly.. It’s like I blinked and my summer is nearly over with, and I have a 5 1/2 month old trotting beside me and hogging my bed. I’ve been so wrapped up in life since July hit that I feel as though my mind is just now catching up to reality.
Mason has started his new job at Procter & Gamble. He hates the 50 minute commute but loves the people he works with. He’s still applying and interviewing for new jobs since this job isn’t as many hours as he’d like and it doesn’t offer any benefits unfortunately.. He’s been living down in Kettering for about three weeks now without Brinley and I. It’s been hard honestly- I’m sure more so for him than us (meaning Brinley and I). Mason has never been “on his own”. College sure- but he was always a 20 minute drive from home and had friend connections. It’s literally his first time cooking for himself and spending time alone. He seems to be doing alright, but I know he can’t wait until August 20th (after Brin gets neutered- yikes!) when Brinley and I head down there for good. For now, it’s weekend visits and phone calls.
We’ve had a series of bad luck, as I’ve been calling it. Friday the 31st, Mason hit a deer in his brand new car… On top of that, we had just went hiking the night before, and he left his wallet in MY car by mistake, and I was 40 minutes from where he was by the time the troopers showed up. Everything ended up alright, but that doesn’t take away the pain and anxiety of the hundred frantic phone calls we made back and forth before then. The following day, August 1st, was our five year dating anniversary (whoo!).
I, of course, wanted to spend my morning with my two boys, Mason and Brinley, hiking the trails near Mason’s family home. We turned around three times after leaving the driveway because we’d forgotten things. Mason was driving my car, having tried to leave twice before, we headed down the same road towards the trails. Brinley was on my lap, and Mason and I were having a conversation about getting him a doggy seat belt since we take him in the car so often and an accident could happen any minute leaving him in danger of being injured. At that exact moment, we came over the crest of a tiny hill, and a deer, gunning full blast, flew in front of my car and BAM. TWO DAYS IN A ROW HITTING DEER. I thought Mason was going to lose his mind. We were all okay, thank God, but my car was not. $2,897 later, the damages are fixed… ouch. Mason’s car is still waiting to be fixed. Let’s hope the price is lower on his vehicle..
The deer that collided with each of our cars were “two strikes”, and the universe must have decided that it was only fair to stay true to the old saying that everything comes in threes. I got down to our apartment in Kettering on Thursday night last week, having taken off Friday at work, just to find out at 11:30 at night as we were crawling into our brand new bed that the roof had leaked ALL DAY and completely drenched the mattress. I almost lost my mind at that point. I’ve been dealing with the apartment complex and my insurance guys all week trying to sort that mess out. Meanwhile, poor Mason has been sleeping on the couch..
Aside from all the surprises and our wallets being completely drained, I’m happy to say that Brinley has been wonderful.
He’s five and a half months old now, and just as ornery as ever. He’s been losing teeth left and right, and I’ve been a little bummed because he’s nearly swallowed every last one of them. I ended up getting a hold of his very last front tooth (a canine) because, while we were playing, I accidentally squeezed his head against my arm and the couch while sitting on the floor with him and knocked it out. WHOOPS! I felt horrible of course, but it was an honest accident. Losing teeth grosses me out if you want to know the truth, so the fact that I knocked it out made my stomach a little queasy. I was thrilled to have salvaged one of his puppy teeth though (as ridiculous and crazy as that sounds)! I have an entire scrapbook for him, and like a first child almost, I want to write down and keep everything. This week I’ve actually found two more of his back teeth which really surprises me since he’s usually keen on swallowing everything and anything on the floor. They must have come out without him noticing while we were playing tug with one of his elongated stuffed toys.
I also had to break down and buy him a larger collar (which about broke my heart because I want my baby to stay a baby forever haha). I’m glad that I did though since the puppy collar not only couldn’t expand any longer, but the new collar suits his neck much better. I didn’t realize how out of place his tiny collar was until putting a larger one on him. He looks rather handsome if I do say so myself!
As far as his behavior goes, I’ve created a swimming monster. I’ve transformed him into a regular water dog. I wanted so much for him to swim and to love water that I’ve made every effort this summer to introduce him into the water and get him comfortable. He’s now at the point where he will not only retrieve in the water (throwing sticks, balls, etc. into the water and him bringing them back), I can’t keep him out of it! Mason’s family home has a creek that runs through the property, and it never fails that as soon as I open the door to let Brinley out, he’s in the deep end of the creek going for a swim and chasing floating leaves.. As happy and pleased as I am to see that he loves the water and wants to swim, opening the door to a stinky, wet puppy every day is not what I would call amusing.
I’m happy to say that his patience has gotten a lot better over the last month or so. Brinley and I took a trip to The Ohio State Fair this past weekend, and he did incredible. He had to stay in one spot in the dairy barn at my mom’s string (a string is what we call the cattle we have there to show), and he did so well. He laid down without a peep and was so good when kids and people wanted to come up and pet him. He still gets, what I like to call, the wigglies when he’s excited, but all in all, he didn’t jump on anyone or nip anyone. That doesn’t mean he didn’t try to get his little mouth on anyone..
The mouthing is slowing down, but it’s definitely not 100% yet. He’s also the most stubborn little puppy I know. He could be trotting away from me towards another dog or person and stop to look at me when I call for him, but he will usually keep going anyways. That’s honestly the only thing that really frustrates me at this point. He’s otherwise a very easy puppy, but when he gets his mind on something, he chooses not to listen. I’ve got an assortment of long training leashes that I’ve been using to try to practice with him. I’m not sure what else to do really?? I just have been in situations a few times where we’ll be the only ones in the park, and he stays right with me, but if another person enters the park, I immediately lose his attention. I get nervous right away that he’s going to beam over there like a flash, and I’m more afraid that whoever or whatever he goes for some day won’t be dog friendly- or even worse, that he’ll try to cross a road some day. That’s another thing I really, really want to work on is having him sit and wait at road crossings.. Will I ever get there?? Idk.. but that doesn’t mean that I won’t try.
This weekend is actually quite exciting for us! It will not only be my 23rd birthday on Friday, but Dog Day at the pool I work for is this Sunday!! I’m much more excited for Dog Day of course, but who can deny a piece of cake (or two) on a birthday once a year?! Dog Day is actually called “Paws In The Park Pawty”, and it’s hosted by our local Humane Society, but we’ve always called them Dog Days for the seven years that I’ve worked this summer job. Even though Brinley can swim, I took the liberty of buying him a life-jacket. He’s never had to swim very long distances, and I’m just not comfortable with the idea that he could be paddling in the middle of the pool and get tired. I am thrilled to have him wear the life-jacket obviously because he looks absolutely adorable. Brinley, on the other hand, flopped down on the ground like a protesting child the first time I tried it on him. I’m hoping he’ll forget all about the jacket when his paws hit the water. I guess I’ll find out on Sunday!
Well, sadly my summer is coming to a close, and I start my three year PhD program on August 31st. I’m going to go ahead and assume that I’m going to feel overwhelmed and very busy, and I may not write posts as often as I’d like; however, I will do my best to keep in touch and write about Brinley as often as I can. In the meantime, I’m sure Brinley will continue to hog the entire bed during afternoon naps and continue to try and try again to sneak a paper towel out of the trash can.. I’ve also recently created an Instagram account (@brinleythedalmatian) that is meant solely for posting pictures of my growing boy if anyone would be interested in keeping in touch with us that way through this next busy school year.
Thanks for reading and all the best,
Kassi and Brinley