Hi, remember when I used to actually post on this blog every once in a blue moon? Me neither. I have been flying by the seat of my pants for the past 1 1/2 months and finally started to catch up on sleep this weekend.
So what have we been doing?
Gambit, being the annoyingly smart dog he is – those of you with genius dogs will understand how this can be wonderful and difficult all at once – heard that I wanted to crate train him before we started fostering again and showed some initiative in crate training himself.
Eddie wasn’t too sure about having someone else sleep in his crate. He’d prefer to share it instead.
Gambit did not find being laid on in the back of a crate by a dog 20 lb heavier than himself to be a relaxing experience, so everyone got orders to exit the crate as soon as I snapped a picture.
We kept looking for Jillie and attempting to feed her on the rare occasion that she appeared. After she was almost caught after a couple weeks of capture attempts, she became even more wary of humans. Unfortunately, most of the woods in which she was living were torn down this summer. We saw her a couple days before we moved and left a note about her and the business card for her rescue taped to our mailbox cluster, but I haven’t heard of her being caught yet.
In a quick turn of events, Eddie got adopted a couple days before he was supposed to go to his foster-to-adopt situation. He is now the only pet of someone who loves black labs and has had a couple in the past. I haven’t gotten any updates, so hopefully he is settling in well! There were a couple other dogs in the waiting room during our meet and greet. After a little squeak and a couple treats falling from the sky, Eddie rocked the situation just like he had been for the past couple months. It is amazing what kind of progress can be made once you stumble upon the method that just clicks for a dog!
We attempted to get in some extra lake time before moving, and for the most part failed miserably.
We did get to stay at a fantastic lake house on another nearby lake for graduation weekend. It was absolutely gorgeous and I could definitely see returning to that lake to vacation!
There were ducks that kept swimming past the dock, driving Gambit bonkers. He wanted to go after them so badly, but he isn’t willing to swim out very deep and is absolutely unwilling to dock dive. When our hound mix refused to dive after the ducks, I realized that absolutely nothing could motivate him to learn to jump off a dock!
My husband graduated, and the ceremony went way over. They had a set end time, but in August they aren’t working against the clock before the next ceremony begins and it was the President’s last graduation before returning to teaching.
We celebrated by having lunch at our favorite bar and finally carving our names into a table there. I’m pretty certain you’re not supposed to leave Clemson without having your name on a table, bench, wall, or picture frame at this place.
We did manage to get a moving trailer and apartment on short notice, although once we that happened, everything kinda stopped coming together. Still, we are thankful for all the things that came together just in the nick of time!
Essentially, the last few days of packing & cleaning went poorly. I-81, our usual “faster” route, had a 20+ vehicle accident in the opposite direction that resulted in stopped traffic in our direction due to rubbernecking and re-routing. It also had another multiple car accident in the morning in our direction, and as soon as that was cleared, another accident happened a couple miles away. This was the only way Gambit was willing to eat on the road, since we didn’t make it up to PA in time for a late dinner:
We managed to sign a lease on a nice little townhouse, but our belongings sat in a freight hub an hour away for 3 days before finally being delivered. We were very fortunate that none of our dishes and other breakables were damaged, with the exception of a single 1/4″ hairline crack on the bottom of one, but unfortunately the furniture was not so lucky. Once our belongings arrived, I pretty much hit the ground running and right now we are still not entirely unpacked and organized. It is amazing how two different homes can have such different needs in terms of furnishings, lighting, organization, and even the need to switch from nails to 3M sticky hooks!
After 4 trips to PennDOT and a new birth certificate for my husband, we are legally PA residents. FYI for Marylanders, there are some birth registrations that were accepted as recently as 2 years ago that can no longer be used. The PennDOT workers couldn’t figure out which years it spanned, but apparently this differs for Baltimore County, Baltimore City, and other jurisdictions, and the words “on file” are really important. Maryland was also nice enough to not publish any of this information anywhere, so those impacted get to find out when they apply for a driver’s license, passport, or marriage license. Sweet deal.
Gambit and Eddie handled the packing like pros, except for one point at which Gambit decided he wasn’t getting enough attention and laid down right on top of my lap and the packing paper.
Moving into a new place full of boxes with no stable routine was really stressful for him, although he started to relax a bit once we made a push to get the bulk of the kitchen unpacked. In the last week, he’s finally started settling into a routine – it was difficult to do at first due to the hastiness of our move. Nellie came over and refused to play with any toys because she knew they were Gambit’s – ironically, Gambit eats all of her toys when he gains access to them.
Since moving, Gambit has discovered the thrill of hunting crickets and grasshoppers. Most mornings, he goes out on his tie out to hunt hopping insects while I make my coffee.
I am loving the mountain views on my commute, and thankfully we are used to the smell of manure, because we are downwind of a cow farm. I’m absolutely thrilled to have good pizza and subs, family restaurants, produce stands, antique stores, and hills. It’s amazing how delicious cheap, basic restaurant comfort food can be.
We’re only a couple miles from a fantastic creamery with the absolute best ice cream in flavors like peanut butter overload, turtle, coffee crunch, and black raspberry.
My husband is getting the itch to foster again. I’m trying to err on the side of caution – while he has free time now, I don’t, and I feel like if we get a foster, he’ll promptly get a job offer and we’ll have no time for training. Hopefully we can start back up sooner rather than later.
For now, I am just whining about the cold all the time. Mornings are cold, evenings are cold, 2 pm is warm. It’s September, which in South Carolina terms means 80-90 degrees, and hot from sunrise to sunset – I would tell you about after sunset, but my Palmetto bug phobia prevents that. Thanks to sales, we are already prepping for winter with new jackets for myself and Gambit.
This winter, my cold hating dog will be sporting this down vest that covers his entire chest:
Really, do out of state moves always feel this insane?