Livin’ Like Boomer

Some of you may remember I wrote a few weeks back about how I was experiencing a significant case of the doldrums.  Well, that was in October and here it is, almost December, and I’m still feeling rather blasé.

Perhaps part of the reason my ho-hum-edness is lately so apparent is that we’ve added a new member to our family and he’s anything but ho-hum.

Boomer is an 11 month old Bassett Hound my family and I recently adopted from the pound, but the first thing you need to know about Boomer is that I’ve come to think of him as the anti-Bassett Hound.

You see, every Bassett Hound I’ve ever known is of the typical Bassett variety.



Likes to take good long naps.


You know, a canine version of me.

Of all the Bassett Hound pound puppies in the world up for adoption, I somehow ended up with the one who goes against every stereotype of his breed.

According to the vet, Boomer is the perfect weight, which in my opinion is not such a perfect weight because he is able to squeeze thru the cat door and in between the slats of the picket fence (or under the chain link fence if he so desires.)

Boomer is not lazy.  Not even close.  In a way, he kind of reminds me of a basketball that is being dribbled…he is in a perpetual state of motion, and usually that motion is of the up and down variety.

If you move, he will chase you.

Whether you are a cat or a tennis ball or the Roomba is beside the point.

As far as taking naps, Boomer probably does enjoy a good long nap…just not at the same time that I want to enjoy a long nap.  Lying down in my bed is all the invitation Boomer needs to dive bomb my face with sloppy wet dog kisses while simultaneously sniffing me with his cold wet nose.  (It’s especially fun when he does this to me when I am in the middle of a deep sleep.  I’ve aged at least 20 years from Boomer scaring me to death with his 2 am dive bombings.)

With this being said, I have to say that Boomer does have some of the other traits that are characteristic of Bassett Houndshe is certainly loveable and sweet and friendly.  He is good natured and sociable.  He’s gentle and loving with children.

One of the best things about Boomer is the rock star welcome I receive every time I walk in the front door.  Even if I’ve only been gone for 30 seconds walking to the mailbox, he barks his happy bark and jumps up and down trying to kiss me before taking off in a frenzied run throughout the house announcing my arrival.

I’m thinking that if my son and husband welcomed me home in a similar fashion, I’d be one very happy girl.

The thing that I love the most about Boomer, though, and the thing that I most want to emulate in my own life, is how ecstatically happy Boomer is with everything.  To look at his face, you might think he’s sad but you would be wrong.

Boomer is in love with life, and his four legged, 36 pound frame can barely contain his joy.

My Bible verse this morning immediately brought Boomer to mind:  “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!” (Psalm 118:24)  Truly, Boomer is rejoicing with every wag of his tail and chase of his tennis ball.  Even though he’s had a rough time of it in his first 11 months, being a pound puppy and all, today he is happy to enjoy the blessings he has been given:  a little boy to call his own, a backyard with rabbits to chase, a peanut butter stuffed Kong, and a squeaky stuffing-less squirrel to play with.

I’m inspired to want to live like Boomer today and every day.  Instead of dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, I want to just live in the moments I am given this day, remembering that it is a gift from the Lord.

He deserves my thanks and praise for each day that I am given.

While I don’t have a cute little tail to wag like Boomer, or big soft ears perfect for flapping in the wind as I run, I am nevertheless filled with the joy that comes from knowing exactly who made this day.

My heart is light with the knowledge that I am carefully being held in the palm of His hand not just today but every day.

Thanks be to God for the little anti-Bassett Hound Boomer who came to remind me to rejoice and be glad in this day and every day!

Wacky News Wednesday: Stumpy The Turtle Carjacked in Colorado

Missing:  Stumpy The Turtle

A car thief in Englewood, Colorado definitely got more than he bargained for early yesterday when he stole a running Chevy Suburban from a Wal-Mart parking lot.  You see, the reason the car was left running while the owner, Wildman Phil, went inside to grab some supplies is the occupants of the vehicle needed the heater running because they are cold-blooded.

Yes, you read that right.  The vehicle’s occupants included a menagerie of cold-blooded reptiles.  To be specific, we’re talking about a three-legged, 50 pound tortoise named ‘Stumpy’, a 13 foot long Burmese python, a rattlesnake, 5 non-poisonous snakes, three scorpions, five lizards, a gecko, and a tarantula.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say these creatures aren’t going to be very happy when they discover Wildman Phil’s no longer in the picture.

Adding to the fun of this story, at least in my mind, is the fact that Wildman Phil says the animals are kept in solid gray Rubbermaid tubs.  What this means is, the car thief isn’t going to know exactly what he’s gotten himself into until he pops the top off of one of those Rubbermaid tubs.

Am I bad person for laughing hysterically as I imagine the look of horror on the car thief’s face as the rattlesnake lunges out of the tub at him?

Probably; although, I will say if you’re dumb enough to steal a Suburban with logos on it that clearly indicate that it belongs to a man who exhibits exotic animals for a living, karma may end up not being on your side.

As for Wildman Phil, he says he could care less about any of the things in the car, or even the car itself.   He is first and foremost concerned with the well-being of the animals he has grown to know and love.  “They’re not just props, they’re live animals. They know me. I know them,” Wildman Phil said. “It’s pretty tough. I don’t care, keep the Suburban, keep the stuff in it. I just want to get the animals back and have them live through this.”

Englewood Police in Colorado say they are looking for a blue 1999 GMC Suburban with Arizona License Plate “TEDDIJO.” There are several logos on the back of the van indicating that the van belongs to Wildman Phil.  If you happen to see the vehicle, give the Englewood Police a call at 303-761-7410.

Wacky News Wednesday: PooPrints Doggie DNA Edition

On a quiet cul de sac in Austin, Texas sits a small condominium complex known as “The Pointe.”  In this place, you will find beautiful homes with well-manicured lawns owned primarily by retired individuals;  yet behind this peaceful façade, something sinister and, well, stinky, is going on.

Someone hasn’t been picking up their pooch’s poopies in The Pointe’s common areas.

Granted, with all the problems in the world today from feeding the hungry and helping the homeless to ending war and finding peace, the issue of finding an unattended pile of doggie doodie seems, at least to me, kind of minor.

To the members of The Pointe’s Homeowners Association, however, this is not a matter to be taken lying down.

Enter the doggie doodie DNA company, PooPrints.  (Who even knew such a company existed?!)

For $30.00, PooPrints will take a painless DNA sample of each dog that lives at The Pointe (think a cheek swab with a Q-tip), provide the dog with a registration tag, and enter the dog’s DNA profile and registration tag information into a database.  Then, when piles of poo are found at The Pointe it can be analyzed to determine with 99.999% accuracy just exactly who has been a bad, bad dog.

Of course, the pet parents at The Pointe are not happy about this undignified intrusion into their dog’s dirty business.  Steve Round, who has lived at The Pointe for over seven years, had this to say about the Homeowners Association’s plans to create DNA poop profiles of The Pointe’s pooches:  “”It just seems everything is getting more and more micromanaged.  When you start regulating people’s dog poop, well, I think that is as far down the line as you can get. I don’t know, maybe they’ll start regulating our poop next.”

I know I speak on behalf of us all when I say that I truly hope that day never comes.

(Side Note:  Am I the only one who thinks this story would make a brilliant Maury Povich episode?  Way better than ‘Who’s Your Daddy?’  Can you even imagine some of the titles for a show matching up dogs with their poop via DNA results?  I can, and I’m not definitely not going there…)

The Hippo Camping Inside My Brain

Tonight I was driving along in my car listening to the radio and the announcer started talking about a very interesting topic:  the hippo camping inside our brains.  Did you know that by taking a walk every day, you can make the hippo camping inside your brain grow larger in just a year?

Yeah, me either.

As I listened to the radio announcer talk about the hippo camping inside my brain, I became enthralled with this new information.  Apparently, the reason we start to have more and more “senior moments” as we get older is because this hippo in our brains gets a little smaller every year as we age.

Personally, I had always heard that elephants have really great memories, not hippos, but maybe I was wrong…maybe my hippo is already starting to shrink?  Egads, I need to get out and take a walk!

Anyway, the entire time I was at the store I was thinking about this hippo that is camping inside my brain.  I envisioned my hippo as being kind of like Gloria from the movie Madagascar–sassy yet sweet, bold but beautiful.  You know, sort of like me only not really.

When I got home, I decided I wanted to find out more about the hippo camping inside my brain so I did what any normal person with a computer and an internet connection would do–I Googled it.

Nothing came up.

I tried it again.  Nothing.

Then, I just tried “hippo brain” and the following search term appeared:  hippocampus.  Not ‘hippo camping inside my brain’.  Hippocampus.

Interestingly enough, the hippocampus is the part of the brain that is involved in memory forming, organizing, and storing.  Apparently, mine is either completely defective or is shrinking at a shocking rate. (Not more than 5 years ago, I passed college Biology with straight A’s.  Somehow, I’m pretty certain we covered the brain.)

All this thinking about the hippo camping inside my brain, and the hippocampus, eventually led me to think about God.

Can you imagine what His hippocampus must be like?

On one hand, He personally knows each and every one of us, and never for one second will ever forget us.

Not ever, not even one of us.

He created each one of us with a design so unique that it has never been nor never will be duplicated again.  He remembers every little detail, delights in every little nuance of His creation no matter how obscure, like the freckle on my left cheek and my aversion to meat on the bone..

On the other hand, He’s also really forgetful…especially when it comes to sin that has been covered by the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ.  Once it has been forgiven, it’s forgotten.  Forever.  You know, as far as the east is from the west kind of thing.  He’s not going to bring it up again next week when you get in a fight.

Once God has forgotten about it, it’s like me remembering the hippocampus from biology class.

It’s not happening.

As for the hippo camping inside my brain…well, I probably won’t be forgetting her any time soon.

Survival of the Coldest: Woman, cat vs. refrigerator edition

It’s Wednesday, dear readers, and do you know what I love to write about the most on Wednesday?

               The weird, wacky, and unusually wild news of the world. 
               I’m always on the hunt for the most absurd news stories I can find. Lately it seems like I’ve been able to find stories along these lines more easily than usual.  Today in about five minutes time, I found a plethora of wacky and weird news stories to tide me over. 
              One of the stories was about a 59 year old woman from Tulsa, Oklahoma who had been missing for 5 days.  She was found, alive, on September 12, 2012, inside her apartment…tucked away inside a chest type deep freezer. 
             The woman’s son, Jermal Stewart, told police officers that it appeared that she took shelter inside the deep freeze during a wave of severe storms that whipped through Tulsa last week.  Once she was inside the deep freeze, however, she was unable to get out…and so there she remained for 5 days until her son found her. 
              Thankfully, she is responding well to treatment for frostbite at a Tulsa area hospital and is doing well at this time.
               After reading this story, I couldn’t help but remember a time several years ago when I was still living in Elkhart,Indiana.  I had a fluffy yellow and white cat named Max (not to be confused with my nephew, Max) that I had rescued froma dumpster outside my apartment as a kitten.
             I had never been a cat person, ever.  I still to this day do not consider myself a cat person.  I don’t like cats, but one of my weaknesses is that I have a soft heart for animals, especially the sick and stray ones in the middle of a frigid Indiana winter.  Max was one of those lucky animals I took mercy on, and I ended up liking him, even though he was a cat.
              Max was loud and obnoxious and basically did whatever he wanted to do whenever he wanted to do it.  He wasn’t a lap cat, which I totally appreciated.  I could travel without having to worry about him at all.  All Max needed was a big bowl full of cat food and a sink full of water and he’d be fine on his own for several days. 
               One strange fixation Max always had was with cupboards and, well, basically anything with a door.  He was always getting himself shut in the bathroom cabinet and under the kitchen sink. Once, he jumped into the oven when I wasn’t looking and was pretty darn lucky he didn’t end up getting preheated.
               With this knowledge in mind, I wasn’t that worried when I returned home one day and Max was nowhere to be found.  I looked everywhere, but to no avail.  Two days passed, and he still hadn’t turned up.  I was quite certain that Max was gone for good.  The only logical explanation I could come up with was that perhaps he had dashed out the door and ran off into the oblivion. 
                I remember walking around the neighborhood Kroger store picking up a few groceries that evening and I saw a bag of cat food with a picture of a cat that looked like Max.  I cried the entire way home from the store that night.  I wasn’t sure what was more shocking, the fact that I was upset over losing a stupid cat or the fact that the stupid cat had ran away in the first place.
              My house was still dark as I meandered my way to the refrigerator to put away the gallon of milk I had bought at the store.  I opened the refrigerator door, heard a yowl that made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end, and saw out of the corner of my eye an orange ball of fur leap directly at my head from off the meat and cheese shelf.
              I screamed and fell backwards, not entirely sure what was happening in the moment.
              The gallon of milk hit the floor and exploded. 
               When all was said and done, I was lying flat on my back in the middle of my kitchen floor in a pool of fat free milk with a half frozen cat clinging to my head for dear life.
               Needless to say, I had found Max.  He had spent almost three days inside the fridge, but aside from being cold, hungry and mad at the world, he was fine.
               All of these years, I’ve been perplexed by how Max managed to survive for three days in the fridge without any food, water or fresh air.  You see, I’m still kind of traumatized by that one episode of Punky Brewster I saw as a little girl when her best friend, Cherie, gets locked in an old unplugged refrigerator in the backyard.  Cherie was in that fridge for all of 10 minutes and almost died (okay, so it seemed thatway to me as a 10 year old).  I still don’t know how Max managed to survive; I also don’t have a clue how Theresa Christian of Tulsa managed to survive five days in the deep freezer. 
             I have to admit that this story really has no point to it, although I guess I could say that the moral of this story is, don’t play hide and seek in the refrigerator.  Oh, and don’t seek shelter from the storm inside a deep freezer.  You’re probably better off taking your chances with the storm than getting friendly with the frozen vegetables in the freezer.