A nostalgia photo: me with the keys to the only car I've ever chosen for myself, March 2008.
It's been an eventful week. Dorothy's at a drama day camp, we had a nice visit from Aunt Stephanie, and, unfortunately, we had a car accident. Belle seems to like riding in the car so I'd taken her with me to pick Dorothy up from camp. We were almost home when the light turned green for me at an intersection and I drove forward. Unfortunately, Mr. Wears-the-Same-Color-as-His-Sports-Car-With-Vanity-Plates thought that his red stoplight did not apply to him and he zoomed through it--and right into my car. I honked/swerved/braked and all of that, but the impact (to my front passenger side) was still pretty fierce. My back got quite a jolt and the pup hit the floor. Thankfully, the kids seem to have come through the crash just fine, safely secured in their correctly-installed car seats and Worth still rear-facing. The pup picked herself back up with no ill effects, and I'm hoping my sore back is a temporary issue. My car, however, is not so fine. The impact sent us on a little half-spin that seems to have made one of my rear wheels tilt toward the center. Not good. I drove the vehicle the remaining blocks to my house at about 5 mph, with my father-in-law carefully following behind, but the conditions deteriorated such over the course of the short drive home that I'm quite worried about what's going to happen to my beloved car. It shakes and trembles, screeches and takes jolty little nose-dives to the left without any input from the driver. I'm trying to remember how grateful I am that all my humans (and one canine) are still in one piece, but I'm also pretty upset about the car.
My mother has been sweet to loan me hers until we can come up with a better interim solution, but it's a lousy feeling to be without my wheels. My car has the hitch, so there will be no camper-towing for a while. I'm also almost ridiculously fond of my car (I get gently made fun of for this sometimes) and it makes me sad to be without it. My car is just such a great fit for my life--there is a perfect spot or feature for all of my little people, gadgets, or travel-related needs. It's not too big and not too small. Up off the ground but not towering. I spent many hours researching and reviewing cars after my old Civic was crashed (along with, unfortunately, my right arm) back in Dorothy's infancy, and I've always felt that though nothing can make up for a right arm that never got back full range of motion and always knows when it rains, getting to pick just the right vehicle for me while my husband was still in law school was a nice consolation prize. My fingers are crossed that the damage isn't as bad as it seems, and that maybe I'll be back on my own wheels soon.
Ok, enough of my whining. Belle needed a special comfy place and I've made her a dog bed. I used two standard-size pillows that I hooked together with snaps along one long side of each. This way the pillows can be detached for easy machine-washing. Otherwise I think a well-padded dog bed for a pooch the size that Belle will be would not fit in the washing machine. The bed is located in the hallway right outside the bedrooms of our human family members. I used leftover bird fabric from the curtains in my bedroom, machine basted to an old flannel sheet for added body and sturdiness. The bottom is just cut from a thrifted sheet, with overlapping edges for easy removal. Belle seemed to know exactly who the bed was for and plopped right down. I'll have to take regular photos of her on it as she grows, to record her growth as her puppyhood speeds by. She's a sweet little dog.
I've been reading up on puppy training since we're such dog novices. I love this book, written by a group of Eastern Orthodox monks who raise and train dogs to support their community. I hadn't expected to enjoy reading about puppy training, but was pleasantly surprised when I fell quite engrossed by this bit of puppy prose. They take their dogs very seriously--I sometimes wonder if some of their very serious anecdotes and advice are a bit tongue-in-cheek?--and present all of their information and recommendations thoughtfully and thoroughly. I recommend it to anyone sharing a home with a puppy.