Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Blood on My Office Walls

Sad Tesla in the rain.
As I headed from my desk toward the kitchen, I noticed smattering of specks on my office floor. I asked Son #2 to fetch me a damp rag. As I swiped at the small spots, it dawned on me that these brick red speckles were dried blood. Blood!

"Remember that time Tesla was bleeding from his neck?" Son #2 asked.

"Yes, that was weeks ago and I cleaned it up." We never did figure out how the dog was injured, only that there was a little blood that dripped from a small mysterious spot on his neck. It stopped as quickly as it started.

I may be a slob when it comes to things like piles of papers and stuff, but when it comes to slime, mold or bodily fluids, I don't mess around. Sh*t gets cleaned.


So I'm wiping up the mess. What seemed like a small spatter actually covered a few square feet. Gross, right?

As I'm down on my hands and knees working my way across the floor, the floor meets the wall. And then I notice blood on the wall!

And the back of my offce door!

Just to cover my bases, I asked the boys if they'd performed any satanic rituals or slaughtered any goats in my office recently.

You never know just what crazy things teens are up to these days.

And then fit the pieces together as best I could.

There's a bed in my office/theoretical guest room. Last night I slept in the bed with the dog because he'd been interrupting our sleep for the last few nights. You see the dog is not allowed to sleep in DH's and my bed, but he sleeps next to it on the floor. Covered by a blanket.

Sometimes he gets up, oh, around 2:00 AM, takes a few steps, gives a shockingly loud whole body shake (it's loud and he doesn't even wear tags on his collar) during which his blanket comes off. If the shake doesn't wake us, the dog's reminder that his blanket is off does. It's a very gentle "woof," not a full-on bark. "Excuse me, Mom and Dad, but I can't get back to sleep without my blanket. By the way, maybe if you turned up the heat above 66 this might not be a problem."

Lately he's been waking and shaking a lot. We thought it was because he's feeling itchy in the cold, dry weather.

So last night Tesla and slept down in my office where he is allowed in the bed. DH would get a good night's sleep and, in theory I would, too, because he generally sleeps pretty soundly when he's in bed with one of us. Of course, that's soundly in the manner of toddlers in which you start out all snuggly and wake up to find his feet or butt in your face.

At any rate, Tesla slept soundly but only for a few hours. He woke at 3:00 AM and wanted to leave my office. He stood at the door, something he'll do this if he needs to pee or poop, but this rarely happens n the middle of the night anymore (thank goodness!). Experience has taught me that he might pretend he has to pee, but will really run up to our bedroom as soon as I open the door. He's done this when DH sleeps downstairs with him and I'm upstairs.

Of course, the dog running up to our bedroom in the wee hours of the morning ruins the whole "at least one of us getting a solid night's sleep" thing.

So I didn't let Tesla out. He was doing a lot of his full body shakes and from what I could tell by sound alone in the dark room, some odd head shakes as well. Nothing seizure-like. Just not his normal shake.

Dogs shake when they're itchy. They also tend to shake, especially their heads, when they have ear infections. In the space between 3:00 and 3:30 I was just lucid enough to think to check his ears. Sure enough, his right ear was full of crud.

Somewhere in his 20 or so minutes of shaking, he must have also scratched himself leaving that creepy smattering of blood, which, of course, escaped my notice in the dark room.

Today we went to the vet (we wind up at the vet every month for some reason and the reason is not, despite what some friends think, Muchausen's by Puppy) and he confirmed the ear infection. Tesla has had his first round of treatment and I'm hoping we'll all get a good night's sleep tonight. My brain's fried and really needs it.

Also, our back porch was torn down this week and the backyard is a mess. When Tesla needs to do his business, we need to leash him and take him out front. Even if that weren't the case, we're not keen on just letting him out at night these days because a neighbor's dog (two houses away!) lost a leg to a coyote a few weeks ago. Yes, the dog was in a fenced in area. (And actually it happened during daylight hours, which means maybe there's, like a rabid coyote on the prowl. Which means even though we don't walk in the woods much it the very cold weather, it might behoove me to pick up a can of mace.)

So anyway, life with Tesla is always an adventure.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

What? You Forgot to Watch/Tivo/DVR My TV Segment on STEM Gifts for Kids?

Kim Moldofsky, The Maker Mom, on WGN Morning NewsYeah, I understand. Life gets in the way and your world doesn't revolve around me and the Young Maker Teen. That's okay. You can view the WGN Morning News Segment here

Once again, I was paired with an anchor who's nearly two feet taller than me. What is it about that morning crew? I always look like a munchkin next to them. On the other hand, the height difference virtually guarantees no close-ups of my aging, increasingly wrinkled face (in HD!!) because the camera needs to be back a bit in order to capture the us both in the frame together.

So there's that.

You know what else there is? The cool, new STEM gifts I personally selected and got to show off on TV. Even better, I have a recap on my blog with links to the products.

AND, I'm giving one of each item away to a lucky Maker Mom reader in seven separate giveaways. So go be a Maker Mom reader and win a Sphero and other great STEM items that are new to the market.

Also, could you take a moment to like The Maker Mom on Facebook? At first it seemed unlikely that I'd get to 1,000 followers by the end of 2014, but now I'm only 44 likes away! I typically post at least one interesting STEM or Maker tidbit a day at 10 AM. I may post other items throughout the day as well. Join in the fun by becoming a fan!