Saturday, August 21, 2010

Sink Hole'd

This week a contractor came to fill in our sink hole and finish off the fence. They are installing 2 gates-one on the side of the house to finish off the fence, one in a back corner where the fence was damaged by a fallen tree, which will give us access to the ravine/sometimes creek that we own part of, which we have named "Kitty ravine" after the feral cats that use it as a kitty highway. The gates won't be ready until at least Monday though.

I didn't think to take a picture of the hole, but it was anywhere from 1 to 3 feet deep at various points. To the left is a picture of it filled in with rocks. They took some old fencing that we found behind the shed and attached it to the bottom of the fence and laid it across the bottom of the sinkhole so that it formed a wall/floor. Then they filled that with these giant rocks pictured here. Then they covered the rocks with landscaping cloth and attached that to the fence, and covered the landscaping cloth with about 6 inches of dirt, which I promptly planted a bunch of grass in so that the dirt stays together. Sometime soon we'll go find a nursery and find a bush that has nice deep roots to plant at the edge of the fence there to keep the side of the hill more firmly together, and to prevent the dogs from digging at the edge of the fence.

In other news, we're pretty much settled in, everything's unpacked, we've started to get our bearings and know where stuff is. We've been slowly checking out various restaurants in the area, some of which have been quite excellent. I had new faculty orientation all week this week and met some pretty cool other new faculty members. We start classes on Monday. I'm excited! :) Although not fully prepared for all my classes next week- I still have to finish off my Wednesday Lecture (But Monday and Tuesday's are done).

Also I made grits:

Max is still settling in and still having accidents in the house unfortunately, although we are having longer and longer stretches of days between accidents. This morning we checked out the local dog park which is pretty awesome- the enclosed area is huge and half of it is woods. The people there were also pretty friendly. The only annoying part is that the park it's in is closed to traffic on weekends, so it's a bit of a hike to get there from the parking lot.

Barkley and Max are still trying to figure out who is going to be alpha dog. I think Max might be winning, although Barkley is not willing to concede just yet.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

A new addition to our family!

Is that Barkley looking into a funhouse mirror?

Nope, it's our new dog max! Max is an 8 month old Treeing Walker Coonhound (possibly a mix) that we adopted this morning. He is very skinny and came to us with 3 or 4 dog bites- he was staying in a house with 10 dogs, and apparently the other dogs (pointers) were beating him up a bit. He was also completely covered in red mud when we first met him- he's already had 2 baths this morning and doesn't seem to be terrified of water the way Barkley is, which is awesome. He's also a lot more chill than Barkley- in fact we've had no problems at all with him, but had a few problems when Barkley kept trying to hump him in the face. :) But we crated Barkley for a bit and now they are getting along and happily chewing on toys together. :)

This is Max's story as told by his foster mom:

I work at a Veterinary ER clinic in town. When Max came to us, he was the runt puppy in a litter of Walker Coonhounds. So runtish, that he weighed 2lbs at 6 weeks and his littermates topped the scales at 9lbs. We thought for sure he wouldn't make it, but I decided to try and foster him to get better. He did. I typically have all dogs neutered before going out to their new homes, but a gal I worked with had this great friend that was dying for a puppy. They swore they would have him neutered when he got old enough, and they had 3 young kids and 2 cats (which were indeed already altered), so I relented. When max was 10 weeks old, and 10lbs, he went to his new home. That lasted until about 2 months ago, when I caught wind that the fabulous family had been evicted, leaving poor Max alone inside. He was returned to me, intact, of course. They did love him but apparently ran thin on funds and then separated, so Max was more burden than he was worth. (lesson learned for me, though). Anyway, he is socialized with children - all 3 of theirs were very young, less than 6. He was around cats there and hes around our cats here. He does very well in the house - has had zero accidents while here, but he's always supervised. He is crate trained, and thats where he sleeps at night and stays when we're gone. He is socialized with other dogs - we have 10. He is a submissive boy, and definitely not a fight starter. His only behavioral problem that I know of is baying at the neighbors. When they are doing something noisy, he's all coonhound. FOR SURE. That said, I do believe he's mixed with either a beagle or some other stumpy creature. His color is lemon/white, which isnt standard for Walker Hounds, and his size is much smaller than a normal walker. Max is about 8 months old, so he wont be growing any more. He's topped out at about 40lbs. Id imagine he might fill in with a couple more pounds, but I'd be shocked if he reaches 50lbs. We just had him neutered, so he's ready to go!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Participate in a research study!

Received via email:

My name is Sruly Bomzer and I am a 5th year doctoral candidate in the CW Post Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program. I am currently in the initial stages of collecting data for my dissertation, which involves examining common childhood experiences of Jews raised in the Orthodox tradition (regardless of current affiliation). This study has been approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of CW Post, and is being supervised by Jill Rathus, Ph.D. I am writing to you to request your help in disseminating the online survey that is my primary means of collecting data. The survey, available here (, is completely anonymous and takes no longer than 10-15 minutes to complete. I have followed your blog and believe that your readership represents an ideal sample of participants. Because this project is not funded, I cannot offer you any compensation, however any effort you could spare to inform you readers of my study would be greatly appreciated. If you have any questions regarding this research, feel free to contact me at

Thank You,

Sruly Bomzer