Purple is a Must

We took the puppy to the UConn campus today to meet James for lunch. She was very well behaved and did a very good job given her age and all the many distractions, especially Yara’s presence.

The rest of the day was spent mostly running various errands. We had the Prius serviced, which took a surprisingly short time. Then made some rounds at several pet stores looking for a new purple head collar for Yara since hers is breaking.1 Petco was our first stop and they didn’t really have any head collars left in stock, but we browsed through the toys and I got Yara a new Wubba and also picked up a Snugga, which was a new find for me. I’m sad that the Snugga doesn’t squeak, though.2 We also went to Petsmart, which had every other color of collars EXCEPT for purple. Seriously, they even had PINK. The heck? We finally found one at our third stop — Pet Supplies “Plus” — but it has a thinner nose piece than the one I’ve been using, which bothers me to an extent. We don’t use the Gentle Leader much so I’m hoping it won’t matter, but I figure I’ll look online and locally and see if I can find another with a thicker strap. For now it will have to do. Oh, we also stopped at one other pet store just to check their stock of head collars — and use the bathroom — called Pet’s Store Next Door, which Raechel used to work at years ago. They didn’t have any purple head collars either, but we didn’t bother to check if they had a thicker strap or not.

Anyway, we also picked up a few groceries and dropped off some mail and got some ice cream at Coldstone. And finally back at the house we fed Yara and Yancy dinner and had the doggies play a bit. I played fetch with Nerys and she was surprisingly focused for a three-month-old puppy. She almost always brought the toy back straight away and when she didn’t she still came back to me eagerly when I called her. She was very, very cute. All three dogs played for a bit and then eventually we put Nerys in her crate and left Yara and Yancy out to play; they were abundantly cute (apologies for the darkness, since the lighting wasn’t so great for video capturing):

If you haven’t yet checked them out, there are literally hundreds of photos here on Flickr with more to come I’m sure. Night all!


1. Fidelco doesn’t have any other color but black and it seems that, at least here in CT, most everyone recognizes us by Yara’s distinct purple Gentle Leader.
2. Later, we found out that there are also Wubba Friends, which are plush animal Wubbas that DO squeak. Raechel ended up getting one for each of us.

“It’s still my birthday!”

As previously mentioned, today’s my birthday. Last year, after Raechel, James and I had spent the day at Sturbridge Village we’d made plans to go to Mystic Aquarium for this year’s trip. And so that was how the majority of our day was spent after all the assorted dog things were taken care of and I’d opened my presents1.

Yara very intently watching the sea lion show

After getting our passes, we decided to check out a bit of the indoor aquarium before heading off to the sea lion show. It never ceases to amaze me how diverse aquatic life is, even just the number of different fish there are. At the sea lion show we were asked to sit a few rows back. I couldn’t see too much during the show, but James basically videoed the entire show.2 (We just got through looking at the videos and photos he took and I’m very thankfully for the digital age.) On the other hand, Yara definitely could see everything and was very much interested. In fact, there was a part where the largest sea lion, Cocoa, came up onto the walkway in front of the bleachers and went passed most of the crowd and Yara was a bit taken aback. Otherwise she very contentedly watched; while, Yancy basically slept through the whole thing. At least until Surfer, the second largest sea lion, started barking a lot.

Yancy checking out a tank of burrfish

Both of the dogs were somewhat curious at the different tanks of fish and other aquatic life. Though, in Yara’s case children were of a much more important interest. She did jump up and put her feet on the wall over top of a sea lion tank. James kept trying to get her down and she very insistently kept hopping back up and putting her paws on the top of the wall.

Me, Yara and Patty by a statue of emperor penguins

Anyway, after the sea lion show, we met up with Patty and wandered around the outdoor aquariums. We saw some more sea lions and frogs and tadpoles and beluga whales. And, of course, the penguins, which pretty much made my entire birthday. Then we stopped for a snack and chatted a bit before Patty headed out. After, we went back inside to check out the rest of the tanks and then Raechel and I wandered around the gift shop. So many cute things for sale! I ended up getting myself a little perpetual motion thing that has two penguins on it and some ridiculously cute note cards with different emperors on them. Among other things, of course. :)

Penguins swimming

As we were headed out of the aquarium, Tom drove up and we all got to say a quick hi. Well, mostly Yara. But it was still very awesome to see both of Yara’s fosters again. Then we walked through the little village of shops and restaurants. We ate at one that Raechel and James were familiar with and I had a lobster grilled cheese sandwich. We also visited this cute pet shop and picked up some biscuits for all the doggies. I was very shocked and pleased that they had wheat free ones that Yara could have!

Now my feet are nice and blistered, probably from walking so much in sandals I haven’t worn in almost a year. But I still had a super fun time and am absolutely bushed. Raechel and I decided that next year we’ll take a trip to The Book Barn, which sounds very exciting. Yay for books! Anyway, as you probably gathered, there were a LOT of photos taken today! Check them out here on Flickr if you please.


1. An origami crane necklace and the entire Wolfwalker series (one of Raechel’s personal favorites).
2. Apologies that you can’t see the entire thing because Flickr truncates video playback.

“It’s my birthday!”

And I’m wearing the shirt to prove it! See:

Pink t-shirt with the words "it's my birthday" across the chest

Pandas on Parade

Today was mostly spent cooking. Raechel and I made spaghetti sauce and baked cupcakes. All the while we took breaks throughout the day to watch Avatar, which has become one of my favorite movies. While James made manicotti, Raechel and I worked on turning the cupcakes into some rather adorable panda bears. We only made eight, though, to accommodate the limited room in the cupcake carrier thing.

It was a strangely repetitive day and I am drained from it. Tomorrow is my birthday and a trip to the aquarium. Yay! For now, other assorted photos are posted on the gallery page.

Puppy Class for One

We were super busy today running here and there. First, we had puppy class and a trip to Fidelco for a shot for little Nerys. And by “puppy class,” I mean a class of just her, since she’s an only pup and rather removed from the other litters. We had initially thought it best to leave Yara back at the house, since the puppy is so very distracted, but it ended up being very chilly and overcast so we ended up taking her and leaving her in the car while we walked Nerys around for the outdoor “class.” I actually went to a similar type “class” last year for Yancy. It’s basically a quick walk around the area so Sally can observe how the puppy is doing and talk about any issues and what things the foster has exposed their puppy to.

Nerys in a crate in the back of a Fidelco vanAfter, we headed to Fidelco for Nerys’s shot and then left her in a crate at the school since we wanted to grab a quick lunch at Three Brothers. We did go inside quickly to drop off my very battered harness handle that I had replaced recently. Nerys was a bit concerned when we exited the school, but when we returned she was lying down peacefully. We ran back into the school quick to get food for Nerys and Yancy and headed back to the house to feed Nerys and Yara their respective lunches. Then Raechel and I took off for a quick trip to the library for passes to Mystic for Thursday.

Dasha, Otis, and Yara sleeping in the kitchenWe ate dinner and then headed out to grocery shop with James and Yancy. First we went to BJ’s, which I always find exhausting just because the store is just so big and filled with so very much stuff. The dogs were very good, though. And the majority of the time we spent in the store was actually taken up at the Verizon kiosk to make what probably was a simple change to Raechel and James’s account. Next, we stopped at Big Y to get a few other things we couldn’t really get at BJ’s where it was becoming very noticeable that we were all tired and cranky. Finally, finally, finally we got home and I am off to happily collapse into bed.

Oh, but first, here’s another adorable video of Nerys playing with a metal dog bowl — and Yancy and Yara watching her:

Tomorrow is cupcake fun and other cooking adventures. Until then, pictures are here on this gallery page and I’m for sleep!