Sunday, June 13, 2010

It's Their Doody

Last month at our school's carnival we won a puppy. This was quite a surprise, since we never win anything at the carnival. I don't, at least -- occasionally the kids do. Every year I toss in my tickets for jewelry, or overnight hotel stays, or restaurant gift certificates and ... nothin'.

This year, though, we won and won big. Since there were a few animals up for prize drawing -- a puppy, a hamster, and a frog -- the Carnival Chairs decided they would protect themselves a little bit by making sure that the winning ticket for an animal had an adult's name on it. Well-played on the part of the chairs, in my opinion. Nothing worse than having little Johnny win a pet that Mommy didn't agree to.

So we bought our tickets and I took 10 of them, wrote my name on them and tossed them in for the dog. At 33 cents each that is $3.33 more than our first dog, Daisy, cost us. Anyway I put them in there thinking, "At least I can tell the kids I tried," and then I moved on to a cute looking duffel bag I thought I had a better chance of winning.

You can imagine my surprise when my friend came out to tell me my ticket had been drawn. "Are you sure you want the dog?" she asked. It helps having friends on the Prize Drawing Committee. Friends don't let friends win dogs they may not really want.
But I told her yes, we did want this little LabraGoldenDoodle. It's quite a mouthful so let me break it down for any cat lovers who are reading this: the mom is a black Lab, and the dad is a Golden Doodle. A Golden Doodle is half Golden Retreiver and half Poodle. I don't know why they don't call it a Golden Poodle because that makes a little more sense but to quote some 'tweens I know, "Whatev."

I kind of felt like I was on a game show after that ("But Wait! There's more!") because we didn't just get the puppy, we got chew toys, treats, a gift certificate to PetSmart and ... drumroll ... a month's subscription to a service called "Doody Calls."

Doody Calls is a backyard pooper scooper service.

Let's let that marinate for a second.

Now, our backyard isn't all that big so I feel kind of funny calling these people and having them take 3 minutes out of their busy lives to walk around our yard and scoop the poop. On the other hand, we do have two dogs now, and it is kind of hot out there ... I just wonder if they will scoop the poop out of the garage while they are at it, because our sweet Angel Belle goes in there sometimes.

I'll have to find out. When I call them, I'll definitely have to wear the Doody Calls T-shirts they provided in our gift basket.

And I'll need to be using one of these for my coffee:

Because nothing says "Good Morning!" like a mug like that. Cheers!

Friday, June 11, 2010

This Little Sign of Mine

This morning I received two urgent calls from a friend, one on my home phone and one on my cell phone, to tell me that our elementary school parking lot was being torn up and I better get up there quick to claim a little piece of property that has been near and dear to my heart this year.

I didn't receive either of her messages so Susie came and tracked me down at our neighborhood pool. I am extremely grateful because my little sign and I have been through a lot together this spring:

You see, I "won" a parking place at our school at an event we had last Fall. My husband likes to say I bought it, I like to say I won it. It really doesn't matter, because now its former home on this lightpost

is now gone. Patrick, the nice fellow in the photo, was kind enough to take the sign off for me when none of the 3 screwdrivers I brought with me were right for the job. We are having a new school built and for the most part it is really exciting, except for the fact that I seemed to have lost a parking space for the time being.

The reserved parking spot has been cause for unanticipated angst on my part. When I won it, I foresaw glorious days of me sailing into the lot at 1:59 p.m. for a 2 p.m. event and having a guaranteed space. I would arrive, cool and together, while others were glistening with sweat from hiking in from the back part of the lot, or further down the street.

What I did not foresee was all the people who would park there anyway, "just for a minute." So then I started arriving at 1:30 p.m. for the 2 p.m. event, just to make sure I got my own space. Not only was I early for everything under the sun, I was also irritated at this unexpected turn of events.

To be clear, I hold no grudges -- I totally get it. Crowded lot + empty space = no brainer. People honestly think that if you are not parked there at that moment, that there is no possible way you will arrive while they are in the spot. They mean no harm.

But what I learned about myself is that it's not worth it. Having a spot with my name on it is not worth me getting bugged about. Frankly, I'd rather be the one who has to park half a mile away and is still smiling than the one who is getting in a wad about a sign.

So you won't catch me "winning" this particular item again. But that is okay, because at our last school event our family won something we will have a lot longer than a parking space:

And Angel Belle can join the rest of us in our new Elliott Family Parking space -- on the driveway -- any time she wants!