I haven't written in a while because, I guess, I kind of felt like nothing really has gone on. However, when I think about it, there's a lot going on and I probably should have written sooner. In a nut shell:
I have one essay left to finish the diploma part of my MSc. Then, the dissertation researching/writing begins. I'm very excited about this portion of the course. I've already had four people express interest in being interviewed which is good since I only need between ten and twelve.
Mr. K is in his last week of classes before he is off for the summer. After that he has just eight short months before his under Grad is complete and then he'll be off to London to complete a Master's degree in some kind of computer/robotics/Psychology degree. We'll be separated for those eight months which stinks, but you gotta do what you gotta do to advance your lives together. I tease him that he'll take over the world with his robotic army, but seriously, it sounds really interesting and is definitely right up his alley. I'm excited for him.
The dogs are all good, of course. Nala continues to amaze me with her working. We had a visit from the guide dog organisation to make sure we are okay and the instructor seemed happy with our progress. I think he might be a bit annoyed that she's not really sitting at curbs any longer, but there were a few things going on that day. Usually she sits at curbs and so I'm not entirely sure why she was picking and choosing which ones to sit at when the instructor was here. Also, she doesn't blow curbs and so I don't really reinforce the curb sitting. It makes me nervous when we are in the city centre and there are hundreds of people milling around; especially women with pointy high heels on. When she's sitting at the curb it is so easy for someone to stomp her tail. Then who knows if she'll stop at curbs at all after something like that. Also, that constant sitting and getting up on concrete is not good for her joints. So, her not sitting consistently at curbs is my fault, but her working hasn't suffered for it. Plus, if we work new routes, I have her sit at the curbs the first couple of times we do it to keep her focused and thinking about what she's doing. I suppose I can justify it all I want, but at the end of the day, as long as she's still working then that's all that matters.
The little ones are good too. Hermione and Otis went for two walks yesterday and are both pretty worn out today. Hermione, who is probably the most mischievous in the house, is the best behaved outside. The whole time we were out walking, we only had to call her back to us once. She sticks by you and never really strays; even when the other dogs are venturing off. I appreciate that about her. Otis, on the other hand, must visit everyone and investigate everything. Yesterday, he went off to eat mud out of his favourite mud hole in the park, but his efforts were thwarted because the weather has actually been beautiful here and the hole was dried up. Nala had gone with him to roll in it, but she came back clean, for that moment anyway. Roscoe was so tired from his outing yesterday that he didn't even want to get off the couch at bed time to go outside for his last bathroom break. He's the old man of the group at six years young.
It's so funny seeing the difference between Roscoe and the others. He can run hard with the rest of them, but that one run is good for him, whereas, the other three could keep going until they dropped. You can see a bit of an energy level difference between Nala and Hermione as well. Nala is about eight months older and I'm not sure if the breed difference or the age difference mellows her out faster. However, both girls are high energy and always ready to go. That said, I've seen Hermione's energy levels settle a bit as of late. She calms down faster and doesn't seem to need as much constant stimulation. She's still a nut though. Just this morning she brought a stick into the flat which I missed because I was half asleep. She chewed it apart on the couch and left a giant mess. Cleaning up stick before coffee is a problem. :P
I also bathed three out of the four dogs this week. We really should invest in doggie shampoo companies. Hermione was showered on Friday because I took her jogging with me and it was drizzling out. Not only was she wet, but she was covered in mud. I planned on that bath as I knew what the weather was like before we left the flat, but the other two were not planned.
We were nearly home from the park yesterday when Nala went face first into a stagnant puddle that resides under one of the over passes we walk under. She was covered and smelled horrible. Roscoe followed suit and although he did not nose dive in like Nala, he was wet and stinky from the belly down. Both dogs were subjected to showers when we got back home. Mr. K and I had dinner plans and so that meant Nala stayed home since she was still soaking wet when we left.
One good thing from that experience was that it made me realise how bonded to me Nala is already. When we got back from dinner I fed and relieved everyone and then sat on the couch. Nala was stuck to me like glue and wouldn't leave my side for the rest of the night. I wouldn't say leaving your guide dog all of the time is good, but there are some benefits to leaving them every once in a while.
As for kitty breeding, I've been doing more research and have been chatting away with a really great breeder. She focuses on a different breed, but the general information she has to share is great. She's even offered for Mr. K and I to come along and show one of her cats at a show for practice before we get our own. It's such a thoughtful offer. The breeder we've talked to about being our mentor had back surgery last Monday and so I'm waiting for her to heal up before having any long winded conversations with her. It's something Mr. K and I are both excited about though. So, hopefully it all works out. We've also been pushing through the paper work to move in June.
Other than that, I've been enjoying the sunshine that we've been getting. It's kind of a miracle how mild it's been. Last night when I took the dogs out for bed time bathroom break, I was wearing just a hoodie over a t-shirt. I don't remember ever being able to go out at night here without a coat. I don't know if it will last, but I sure hope it does. On that note, more coffee and then walkies for the babies. I'm also off to the pool today for a good workout.