Friday with Melvin: Her.

Hayyyyyyyyyyyy.  Melvin man here.  I’ve been pretty busy itching lately, the chillies make mold and then me has the need to scratch, scratch, scratch.  Anywho…

I don’t remember much about my life before Her.  I think I lived outside.  I know I scratched a lot.  The first week I was at her house I was surprised she let me stay inside, all day.  I even got a bed.  We spent a lot of time at the vet that week, ‘figuring things out’.  At one point she got the broom out and I thought “oh no!! not her too” and I fell to the ground in fear ready for the pain and I even pee’d a little.  But no pain came.  She threw the broom in the basement and came back and brought me to a calmer place.  She did the same thing when I’d freak out and try to death the hangers.  Eventually, she would give me a treat each time the broom or hanger came out.  Now, I nap through those things.  I guess looking back, she was training me to feel love.  That was nice of her.

Fast forward today and I think she can read my mind!  I love that about her. Like now, with the chillies, she knows I’m going to be itchy.  How in the world…?  And the other day I had an ear ouchie and she took one look at me and knew (she said it was the blood but I don’t know what that means and I think she’s being modest).  One of my favorite things about her is when we are at the vet and she has the money dispenser out and she says ‘you need to get a job’ to me. HAHAHAHAHAHHA, dogs can’t work silly!!  She’s funny.

Bottom line.  I love her. I love her.  I LOVE HER.  I must be near her.  I must bark if the brown truck man comes because I am afraid he will put her in a box and take her with him (can you tell the brown truck man comes a lot).  I like the big bed, cause she is there. If she says ‘be right back’ I go with her, seconds feel like years to me!

I love her, even though I can tell she is planning something…

Happy Anniversary, me.

Five years ago today, uninvited blood clots filled my lungs (I like to start posts with a bang!) and I was not really expected to make it (spoiler alert — I survived!). Every day since, I have celebrated living.  I find the happy.

There’s a saying that God doesn’t give you want you want, he gives you what you need.  In the same way I needed Max to teach me unconditional love, Melvin entered my life at precisely the right time.  I needed him and his wacky, exuberant approach to life to move me forward.

Life can be messy, complicated and hard.  Say ‘screw that’ and seek the joy, find it wherever you can and celebrate the hell out of it!  Melvin style!  And then surround yourself with the BEST parents, most awesome siblings and when possible, people with the last name Costa!

Very Wordy Wednesday: MIA

Where has the time gone?!  Life has been a tad crazy lately. Work is way too busy, football season kicked into high gear (although someone forgot to tell the Redskins), I have a west coast trip coming up and then general life rigmarole!

Saturday morning, the one day I had to get about a gazillion things done before life got really cray-cray, Melvin decided we should bond more, at the vet.  My poor baby woke up with a pool of blood under his head (and of course my first oh so logical thought was that someone murdered him.  Even thought he was moving around just fine.).  Four hours spent at the vet and all was fine.  He had a cyst on his ear flap that we were watching.  It was a benign growth that we were just keeping an eye on.  During the night, it “hollowed out” and the vet’s exact quote was “people are always shocked at how much blood can come from one of those buggers”.  To this I say, damn straight.  They shaved his ear, cauterized the spot and sent us on our way.

That is how parenting goes. It does not matter if your child has two legs or four, when they need medical attention, you drop everything and go and them being fine makes undone errands seem A-OK.

Some photos of the patient…

Friday with Melvin: She’s flying a kite

Yo, yo, yo — it’s Melvin time! It’s Friday and you know what that means? No really, do you?  I have no idea what Friday means, I’m a dog and all the days are the same to me.

We live in the northeast so it’s what She refers to as fake fall.  It’s still hot but some hours are cool.  Apparently the real fall, the one She loves, occurs when She can put her boots on and not sweat to death.  Whatevs.  Fall is a bit rough on me cause I’m allergic to mold so I’m a bit itchy at the moment.

Anywho, She is home today because she wants to fly a broncho kite-is.  I don’t know what kind of kite that is but She has a weird voice and is making a honking noise at night and it’s been keeping me up.

So we are sitting outside on this lovely fake fall day and She is working and I am figuring out where to lay my beautiful body down.

This spot is cool but I think this view is what prison must feel like…

I guess this is marginally better but it still feels like punishment…

Oh yeah, this is how Melvin rolls…

Happy fake fall peeps!


This week marks the four-year anniversary of becoming a one dog household.  I’m so happy to be in a place where thoughts of Max make me smile and where the weight of missing him versus having had him are perfectly balanced and thus I am balanced also. He is my angel dog, my heart dog, the dog that taught me how to love unconditionally.

What I’m most surprised at this week is the four-year part.  Not in regards to it feeling like four years, anyone who’s lost someone (two-legged or four) knows it always feels like just yesterday plus a lifetime since you saw them last.  What surprises me is after four years, I’m still a one-dog household.  Part of that is Melvin and all the issues we have overcome. But those obstacles (and money) aside, the real reason is that I’m pretty content with just Melvin.

I want two dogs.  I’m constantly searching for the next dog.  In the same breath, I don’t feel a void having only one. The other over-riding issue is that generally speaking, I’m allergic to chaos.  I proclaim to chaos, “you cannot stay here, be gone!”.  I do calm and even though things regularly get out of hand the way life tends to do, I get us back to tranquil. Anyone who knows me well will tell you, I’m the Zen in the room.  You can bring the crazy but be prepared for me to simma ya down now. Thus some days,  two dogs feels outside of my comfort zone. Like bedlam would win, that maybe I can’t rule that roost. And the only real issue that remains after admitting that is: I want another dog.

Maybe I should get treatment for my split personality first.



When I saw Melvin on his rescue site, it was the deepest of all loves at first sight.  I knew instantly, even though the rescue site didn’t really believe in all that instantaneous stuff. When I met him, done and doner.

To be fair, he was probably not all that adorable to other eyeballs.  His hair was wiry and tended to fall out in clumps. His skin was the brightest pink I have ever seen skin be.  He had scabs…even to this day people ask, do you shave his stomach?  No, he lost that hair and it never returned.

Fast forward to today and apparently I need to get insurance on him (a la the way Jennifer Lopez insures her butt).  First the blog following (the best of all the bests), then the calendar (holy wowzers are you freaking kidding?),  and now he is featured on the home page of our dog walking service!

Woofies is not just any dog care service, they are one of the best-of-the-best in all of the universe! Washington, DC metro! They are huggers (dog and people). They know dogs and they understand pet owners.  I mean they really know and understand. I couldn’t do dog parenting without them, they are more of life partner than a service. Oh yeah, that’s right, I’d marry them!  Check. Woofies. Out!

Melvin’s fort.

You asked for a visual yesterday, so here it is.  Melvin has a teepee.  When I was decorating the loft there was a sad corner, full of void. I have not done a ton up in the loft (yet), but that corner was loudly empty and needed attention.  I tried a dog bed but I needed something with height. Next logical choice, a teepee of course.

Big dog. Little pillow.

I have mentioned before that although I joke this is Melvin’s house and although he has full run of the house and can pretty much lay around wherever he wants, I want my home to read mostly as a human’s house.  Dog beds lying around make me want to straighten up, like it seems like they need put away.  Melvin has a bed in the bedroom, in his teepee in the loft and in the office for when the cleaning lady is there or in the case someone dog un-friendly comes over.  Other than that, I don’t want more beds. I mean, I only have one bed.

So, for some time, I’ve been looking for a stylish floor pillow.  Thinner, geometrical print, something that looks like it belongs.  I thought I’d found one that would work.  I was wrong.

Why are you outside without me.

When I go outside, Melvin wants to come with.  I can leave for ten seconds or ten hours and his greeting will be the same amount of excitement each time I come back through the door.

If I go into the yard, because the sprinkler system sprung a leak and I’m helping the technician dude figure out why our yard is a swamp, he will watch from a half up/half down on the purple chair out the window.  And apparently he’ll stick his tongue out as punishment for not being invited out to the “party”.

Monday with Melvin. Goose patrol.

Close to our house, some man-made a lake. Around the lake is a path and She really loves  taking me for walks around the lake the man-made. I mean, it’s ok.  It can get a little hotsy on my paws so sometimes I walk on the grass next to the path which can be challenging since one side is a steep hill going down and the other side is a steep hill going up. I usually go to the up-side cause I’m a positive minded dog (but also because at the bottom of the other side is water and me no likey the wet stuff).  So I strut along the lake with Her.  At some point I must take a break from my walking to yield my mighty warrior alter-ego and lunge toward the geese that swim in the lake the man-made.  I doubt that lake creator wanted the geese there, I mean they are a noisy bunch of squawkers and they poop on every surface around the lake including the path and I try to roll in the poop and wait…the man who made the lake is genius.  Anyway, back to the part where I fake full lunge toward the geese in-the-water-that-I-would-never-in-one-million-years-go-into and they scram swim in fear to other side of the lake. Until of course I get to that side and remind them who the boss is (again).