The puppy is peeing on the carpet. I take her on so many walks every day, I always think there's no way she'll have any pee left, but I turn my back for a second and she squats. "But you just went?!" It's crazy-making. I know she's just a baby and her muscles are still developing and she lacks, well, restraint, but I also don't want my house smelling like a urinal. I Google-d different training methods, read what Cesar Millan had to say, read what his critics had to say, but the most promising suggestion (I think) came from a friend. I bought a bell from a craft store, threaded it to make a sort of necklace, and hung it on the door. Whenever I see the puppy squat or see a fresh wet spot, I immediately take her to the bell and move her paw to ring it before taking her out. I hope this works. When my buddy died, I said I'd never get another dog. A month later... here I am. But bad pee habits or no, I'm glad I didn't stick to my words. This girl is bringing me so much joy, she's high-energy and that energy is addictive, and I'm so happy to have her a part of our home.
Since my husband is in Europe for work for a few weeks, I figured this would be a good time to write. I will be working on the Rattle novel primarily, which is taking a different feel than I originally intended, but I've been wanting to write another essay lately--I wrote one after my last dog passed away, and it reawakened my love of the form.
I was talking to a (different) friend--we were basically daydreaming out loud after a long day--and she said, partially joking, that she wanted to move to ABQ and start a hot air balloon business. She told me about the Balloon Fiesta that is going on there now. I need to add that to my bucket list, I said, and when I said it I realized that I didn't have one. My friend is a writer as well, and this short conversation prompted us to come up with a creative nonfiction prompt we both committed to complete:
The piece revolves around bucket lists, so it begins with making one. The piece will be lyrical, sectional: a short piece of writing for each list entry. The challenge is twofold: to come up with the list and to connect it in a unique way.
I bring this prompt up because so far this is the hardest writing assignment challenge I have ever had. I have bucket list block. The balloon fiesta looks pretty badass, so that's one. The rest of the list is empty. If I can manage to complete it, I'll post next week.
In writing news, I wrote a very, very short on the theme Rescued piece for Flash Frontier (there are a lot of wonderful, short pieces here). I'm pretty happy with it. Also, my husband's art is featured at the top of the site.
I also had a short piece accepted to Litro Online about my buddy. This is the first nonfiction piece in a long time, so I'm thrilled to share it. One of the most personal pieces I've ever written. It should be out in November.
Have a beautiful week, folks.
***12/22 Update: The bell worked like a charm. Took about two weeks of consistent reminders, and we have new problems now, but we haven't had an accident in a long time.