Because I married a caring man…

Because I married a caring man, I am sent inside to take off my heels while he walks the dog after work.

Because I married a caring man, I am allowed to sleep until my alarm goes off, even though he has to get ready for work as quietly as possible.

Because I married a caring man, I have a visitor for lunch on his day off. (This may also be because my building is a Pokestop, but we’ll let that pass.)

Because I married a caring man, we swerve for birds. (We are those people.)

Because I married a caring man, we’re getting another dog.

…Wait…. what?

Yes. You read that right. We’re getting another dog. I will admit I have not been on board with this over the past week, but this is me making an honest effort to get on the puppy train.

Yes! A puppy! We’re getting a puppy. Her name is Lucy (I named her, that’s something, right?) and she is approximately nine(ish) weeks old. She and her four siblings (no, we’re not bringing home the rest of them) came into the Mister’s clinic about a month ago after they were found abandoned at the local farmer’s market.

The Mister had been one of their primary caregivers for all these weeks, and had taken a shine to a particular favorite: a black lab-ish female with a white chest and two white toes on one foot.

This is Lucy.

Lucy is one of four remaining puppies after the first got sick and died. In an effort to save the rest of the litter, the siblings were split up last weekend and sent home with the clinic technicians. The Mister’s favorite quickly started to show symptoms. Bad symptoms.

This is the kind of disease that is highly fatal (but thankfully not transmissible to Meera), so the only options were to attempt to treat her (with small chance of success) and bring her home, or go ahead and put her down.

We made our decision Sunday night. Things did not look good for our little visitor.

But, because I married a caring man, Lucy’s 11th hour came and she was pardoned. A phone call to my office said, “I just can’t do it. I’m going to try and treat her.”

Surprisingly, our little friend has rallied throughout the week and is expected to go home early next. Home. To our apartment. With us.

Like I said, I admittedly have not been on the puppy train this week. I might not be on the puppy train next week either. But, because I married a caring man, I’m actually surprised this is the first time this has happened. So I’m making an effort to get on board. It’s not like this is the first dog we’ve ever trained, and it won’t be the last. We move into our house in just over a month and will have a yard and a lot more room then, so it’s not the end of the world.

And who knows, maybe this little black wiggly ball of fluff will worm her way into my heart like she’s done with the Mister. Meera already likes her, anyway.

[No pictures yet, but updates will come next week, I’m sure.]

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Top Ten Thursday – It Is Finished

All the questions have been answered and the bubbles darkened. Study rooms have been cleared of debris and the students who aren’t rushing to catch flights home are curled up in darkened bedrooms sleeping off three weeks’ worth of stress and sleep deprivation. We have survived our first four months on this floating rock. Finals are over, and whatever will be, will be. The only thing left to do is wait anxiously for grades to be posted this weekend.

Well, that and become parents. (Puppy-parents, that is.)

This first island break is going to be an interesting one, I’m sure. First of all, we’re moving out of our tiny dorm room (thank heavens!) and into a much larger apartment with a set of roommates. Secondly, we’re bringing home not only our puppy, Meera (we decided to keep her island name), but we’re also taking in two additional dogs for the duration of the break.

The August break is two weeks long, starting today and going until classes start again on the first Monday in September. Students are required to move out of the dormitories by this Saturday, but our new apartment won’t be cleaned and ready for us to move in until the end of next week. So another student/VIP pair has graciously allowed us to stay in their home while they are gone for the break. In exchange, we’re dog-sitting their sweet island puppy, Kylie. A third dog, Roy, got added to the deal somewhere along the way and will be staying with us as well. Kylie and Roy are already good friends, so we’re hoping Meera will get along with both of them too.

Our apartment will be ready for us by the second week, and we hope to take all three dogs to our new place, rather than leaving Kylie and Roy alone in the other house for a week. (Of course we would go over each day to feed and walk them, but it just seems unfair to expect them to sleep contentedly for seven days straight.) It’ll be an action-packed two weeks, I’m sure, but at least we’ll be making a little bit of money and keeping ourselves busy while the majority of our friends are off-island.

We hope to get to explore and appreciate the island a bit more while the Mister’s not in classes as well. We already have reservations to go to Lobster Fest at Reggae Beach this coming Friday night, and we also hope to explore some of the less-popular beaches and possibly visit some of the tourist attractions in the area. I would love to stay overnight on both Nevis and Statia at some point, but that might not be possibly this time since we’ll have all the dogs to feed.  

Nevis is the island immediately to the south of St. Kitts and is part of the Federation of St. Christopher and Nevis (obviously). We’ve been told that we must visit the old sugarcane plantations and the natural healing hot springs, as well as the island’s botanical gardens. All the taxi drivers and tour guides will tell you that Alexander Hamilton – on US $10 bills – was born on Nevis and his grandfather is buried on St. Kitts not far from Ross University. Nevis is also a popular destination for celebrities.

Statia, however, is often forgotten. Eustatius (nicknamed Statia) is a tiny island just to the north of St. Kitts. According to the tourism website, the island is largely undeveloped and is a very good example of how Caribbean island life was before everything started to be so commercialized. There is a botanical garden, a bird sanctuary, lots of beautiful hiking trails and picturesque old Caribbean villages with their local art and traditions. I definitely want this to be an item on our island bucket list.

So, because it’s Thursday and I’m expected to have a Top Ten list (something I forgot about until just now), here are a few items on my island life bucket list.

1. Spend a night or two in a plantation bed and breakfast on Nevis

2. Visit Statia

3. Watch the baby sea turtles return to the sea

4. Go ziplining through the rain forest

5. Ride the Scenic Railway

6. See a pelican catch a fish in its mouth

7. Successfully go snorkeling

8. Teach my dog to swim in the ocean

9. Hike to the crater (which is realistically probably not going to happen, since I am anti-sweat and anti-mud. Lol)

10. Visit and photograph all the accessible beaches on the island

Do you have any advice on caring for three puppies at once? What would you add to my bucket list?

…And then there were three!

I am proud, excited, thrilled, pleased, honored and absolutely, positively delighted to announce to the blog-reading world that the Mister and I are soon expecting a new addition to our little family!

gray and white puppy

Our new baby!

This is Meera. She is about seven weeks old right now, is passing her sister (Annabelle) in her house training skills and loves plush toys, rawhide bones, cuddling and having her belly rubbed. She’s a gray/silver and white color combination with a gray mark just above her nose, which she likes to stick into your face to get to know you better.

This sweet little girl actually made her mark on the Mister several days before we officially adopted her. . . and almost gave him a heart attack in the process. Our appointment to meet the puppies was this past Saturday, but I had mentioned the plan to a friend earlier in the week, who congratulated me on “our new baby.” This same friend later saw the Mister with a group of his study partners and proceeded to congratulate him on “becoming a daddy!”

Needless to say, there was a stir in the crowd and a panic on the Mister’s face before she clarified she meant the new puppy. I wish I had been there to see it! The story retelling is hilarious, especially when those who were present gather around to act out the Mister’s reaction.

While Meera is obviously not a human baby, she is what’s locally known as a “coconut retriever” – a breed of dog composed of so many breeds that nobody really knows how else to describe them. (Aka – a mutt – but coconut retriever sounds so much cooler.)

She is currently staying with her foster family through the S.A.F.E. St. Kitts Rescue Program until we move out of on-campus housing in late August and can finally take her home with us. I’m so excited! I want to be collecting up toys, treats and supplies now, but the Mister is making me wait until closer to time. (Meanie.)

We have debated back and forth about whether or not to keep her name or teach her a new one. According to Wikipedia, “Meera” is short for “Meerabai” (think Simba’s mother on The Lion King) and is the name of a mystical Hindu princess. Sometimes I want to keep it and sometimes I don’t; it tends to makes me think of a country boy saying “mirror.” My other top suggestion is Molly (sounds close and might not be heard to reteach to her).

puppy in her bed

So much cuteness! She looks sad here, but she’s actually watching her sister play with her toys.

What do you think? Cast your vote for the puppy’s name or leave us a new suggestion in the comments! I’ll be sure to let you know our final choice, as I’m sure she’ll be the topic of many a blog post to come.