Plants & Pups

Plants and pups

plants and pups

I took an unplanned break from the blog last week for a few reasons, though this one factored heavily in the “unplanned” part. The break was nice, far nicer than I anticipated. I didn’t miss blogging, but I told myself that on Monday I would write again.

I woke up on Monday to an alert on my phone; someone called me an idiot on Instagram. It was a simple misunderstanding. The person jumped to a conclusion and misread something I wrote. It happens, especially when the hollow cavity where one’s brain should be is matched in size only by a gaping maw that spews drivel, bless her heart.

Plants and pups collage

I did a few projects while I was away. I repotted my fiddle leaf fig and philodendron. Both plants were long overdue for a new home and, thanks to a good soak, the philodendron is already perkier than it is in that picture. All I have left to do is trim the brown edges off a few leaves on the fiddle leaf fig and give it a sponge bath. I live in a dry climate, and I’m not as good as I should be at misting the tree to increase humidity.

I bought the dogs a new orthopedic bed on super sale at PetSmart. I also moved their food and water dishes inside, since Buster is not eating. :( He’ll eat if I or the boys feed him by hand, but other than that, he’s boycotting his kibble. He’s lost far too much weight. We hear on Tuesday (today!) if he has lymphoma or if he is fighting a very bad infection. I don’t think he has an infection. His vet said that at this point, he needs nourishment, so we received the go-ahead to feed him whatever he will eat–within reason. Buster wouldn’t touch white rice, normally his favorite, but he did gobble up a whole can of Taste of the Wild canned food. I mean, he gobbled it up. The boys and I were so happy that we gave him a round of applause with the enthusiasm of a mother at a college graduation.

My last little victory was figuring out what to do with all the boys’ craft and school projects I actually want to keep. Those I put on top of our bookcase in that empty space I always assumed I would fill with more shelves. Instead of buying more shelves, I’m going to try purging some more books.

Jules Kendall writes about books, family, and easygoing simplicity.


  1. Fee says

    Wondered where you had got to as you hadn’t posted for a few days and did wonder whether one of the family was sick or whether your dog wasn’t well. Sorry to hear that Buster isn’t 100% and also that you had to deal with that idiotic comment (especially on a Monday morning, who needs that to start the week off with?!) I can see why it must have put you off from blogging for a while, even though it sounded like a misunderstanding it still must have felt like a personal attack and I can imagine it is something that you can’t get out of your head for a while. At least you know that you have more supporters than those who voice off without thinking!

    Good Luck with Buster’s prognosis, keeping fingers crossed.

    • says

      Oh, the comment didn’t put me off blogging. Sorry if I made it seem that way. I explained why I wanted a break on Facebook, which is what I linked to in the beginning of the post. The fact that I might have hurt someone’s feelings (completely unintentional on my part!) and the string of negative emails I got last week brought me down, but I was already down–probably because of Buster. It’s just a sad time, and my husband travels so much, that I’m having trouble keeping all my balls in the air.

      Thanks so much for your thoughts on Buster. :)

  2. sarah G says

    Glad to see you back – I haven’t commented before but wanted to tell you that this is one of my favourite blogs because of the way you make the mundane every stuff so interesting. So sorry about your dog. My 12 year old cat has suspected lymphoma and other than oral steroids we are letting nature take its course. The kids (9 and 6) are finding it particularly hard :(

    • says

      Thanks, Sarah. That means a lot since one of the emails I got last week complained that I only talk about the mundane because I’m a strange, boring person.

      And I’m so sorry to hear about your cat. If Buster has lymphoma, we’ll most likely take the same course, which is why I’m sad. He’s 13, so…

  3. Susan G says

    The bed looks great! We had an old memory foam bed pad that had started to split, so we put big pieces in the dogs’ beds and they seem to like it. Like the boys’ projects on top of the shelves – I have a few of those projects I just don’t want to get rid of and that’s the same spot they occupy at our house. Keeping Buster in my heart today. Please let us know when you are able.

  4. says

    I know there are plenty of people who will criticize this statement (suggestion) as extravagant, but in terms of finding something Buster will eat … and also be very healthy for him, have you tried salmon? Our Beaver loved salmon, especially when (we think) his stomach wasn’t totally happy, either due to his medicine cocktail or other. Salmon is very easy to digest. We also topped it with some pesto and our pup loved that too. Yes, salmon isn’t cheap, but in the context of medicinal therapies, the budget doesn’t mind. Good thoughts for Buster as always.

    • says

      Haha! Budget? Have no fear of hearing criticism from me. I went to the store yesterday and bought organic chicken, which I plan to poach for him and feed by hand. I’m ridiculous! :)

  5. Trisha says

    For every crabby, rude, obnoxious email, tweet, Instagram, FB, and blog comment that you get, there are dozens (if not hundreds) of us who read your writings and identify with them, like them, laugh over them, cry over them with you. Most people are great about complaining but not so good at sharing compliments. So on behalf of those dozens (if not hundreds, or even thousands), keep up the good work. Hang in there with the kids and pets and traveling husband and keep sharing with us, the silent majority.

    • Barbara says

      In total agreement. Rarely comment, but enjoy your take on the mundane. Miss you when you’re absent, Jules. Prayers for Buster.

  6. says

    Oh Jules, I hear ya. It is some peoples self appointed mission in life to tell everyone else how they are doing EVERYTHING wrong, from the way they eat thier pizza to the curtains they chose. Why do they think they are sooo right? I always tell myself this…if everyone was exactly like me and did everything the way I do it, how boring would life be! But again…I preach to you, my proverbial choir. I love your blog, and your sweet little life, and I want to go yell snotty things back to your social media jerks. Have a wonderful day despite it all.

  7. Jenn says

    There was one well crafted sentence in this post that really woke me up this morning!

    I’m not on Facebook, but I think I get the drift. It must be hard to put yourself out there and get that kind of negativity in return. I enjoy your blog and reading the comments, in part, because of the lack of drama and negativity from you and your readers.

    Poor Buster, so glad he ate something!

    • says

      I was raised by very impulsive, dramatic parents. Everything was–and remains–a soap opera. They are the worst kind of dramatic/impulsive people in that they have no idea they are dramatic and impulsive. They think it’s everyone else! I vowed I would not be that way when I grew up. Granted, I went the other extreme. Except when I’m with them! That’s pretty much the only time I’m prone to drama.

      This is not to say that I don’t love my parents and appreciate everything they did for me and my brothers growing up. There are many children who had it much, much worse. We’re just very different.

  8. says

    I’m glad you got the respite you needed. I’m keeping Buster in my heart and waiting to hear the update. Thirteen years is a long time to be a part of your lives and this journey you’re starting is not going to be an easy one. In our house, our pets are treated with as much extravagance for medical complications as humans are. Actually, I’d wager we take BETTER care of them than we do of ourselves!
    I’m so glad Buster ate the canned food! I hope he keeps eating it.

  9. Kate says

    You are purging books?!? I don’t know if we can be interweb friends anymore :)

    Hoping for a better week and a better feeling Buster. And no more social media drama.

  10. Missie says

    I love your blog and if I didn’t, I would just stop reading it. I would never even think of telling you anything negative. Mean people suck. I like your everyday mom/wife/cool chick prospective on things. There are some blogs that make me feel way too inferior because I can’t possibly make the gourmet meals, decorate the house, not yell at the kids and keep the husband happy all at once! You do school projects, have a sick dog/kid, struggle with eating and are at times unorganized. You’re awesome.

    Last year, I gave up Facebook for Lent. I took the app off my phone and stayed away online. It was the best thing ever. Too much negativity and it was becoming a bit consuming. I still don’t understand why spouses feel the need to wish each other a happy anniversary or whatever via FB. I think I need to give it up again.

    • says

      YES. If there is anything that makes me side-eye more than the “I love you so very much, my husband of 11 years who is the very best hubby in the universe because you are awesome,” it’s the other extreme: the people who totally rail on their spouses for everyone to read.

      I gave up blogs for Lent a couple of years ago, and it was AWESOME. I’m debating if I should give up the entire internet for Lent this year. Everyone could use a technology fast, right?

  11. says

    I think people being mean in social media is just about the dumbest, most unproductive thing ever. And I just can’t believe that these jackholes would be mean to you, of all people.

    I heard that March 7th is National Unplug Day, or some such thing. And I’m looking forward to it so much I’m wondering if I need an internet fast, too.

  12. Amanda says

    When our dog went on a hunger strike, we started mixing an egg yolk in with his food- He’d wolf it down at lightening speeds with the yolk.

    I’m so sorry about Buster. I know it’s the worst feeling knowing something is wrong but you can’t figure out what exactly or how to help because, you know- They can’t talk. Wishing you all the best.

  13. Lisa in Seattle says

    It’s technically too late for valentines, but pretend it’s not so I can point you to this sentiment (the second one down) from author and artist Ursula Vernon. Pretend we all sent it to you.

    I am so sorry to hear about Buster’s prognosis. It’s been a very tough week for companion animals among my electric friends. This is the time to share simple, gentle pleasures with him – a favorite treat, some quiet minutes sitting in the sun just smelling what there is to be smelled. I have been there too many times, truly, and my heart goes out to you and your family.

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