Things are going great with Ralphie. I took Monday off work so we could get acclimated and then I worked from home on Tuesday. The two of us went into the office the rest of the week and he did really well there. He and Esme got along well, as you can see from the photo.

Ralphie has been doing great with house training. He’s already had a couple accident-free days and has started to go by the door when he has to go out. And, even though he’s teething, he hasn’t tried to chew much stuff other than dog toys. He’s not overly active, either. I mean, he has some puppy energy, but it’s not overwhelming. He seems to do pretty well just going on walks and playing in the house.

Jake and I took him to the vet yesterday. Everything looked good. The vet says he’s actually more like 5 months old. So, considering that, he’s doing even better than I originally thought. He has an appointment to get neutered early next month.

The only sticking point we had this week was that he did not want to go to bed at night. He was ok if I slept in the living room, but he did not want to sleep in my bedroom (or the crate that’s in my bedroom). So, I gave up on Thursday night and let him sleep in the living room by himself. He did just fine–no accidents or chewing. He came into my bedroom at 5:30am on Friday morning, so I let him outside at that point and then we hung out in the living room until it was time to get up for work. Last night, we did the same thing, except he crawled into my bed in the middle of the night and then slept there until 7am. So, hopefully we have this figured out now, because I’d really like to get some sleep.


Since Buster is so old, I thought 2020 would be a good time to get a new dog. Then the first week of the new year, I decided that probably wasn’t the best idea. Then I went to the shelter to walk dogs and met Ralphie. So, now I have a new dog. Ralphie is a 6 month old shepherd mix (mixed with what? I’m guessing beagle; I’m planning on doing a dna test on him after I get all of the other new dog expenses taken care of, so we’ll know for sure at some point in the future) and we brought him home yesterday.

He’s doing pretty well, so far. Buster and Sylvester are tolerating him. Sylvia is not, but I guess you’ll have these things. He doesn’t seem overly energetic, but we’ll see how he is once he settles in. His current interests are drinking water, peeing, and chasing Sylvester.

powder room remodel

The old powder room

We haven’t been able to use our basement powder room for quite some time as the toilet has been leaking. The leak also ruined the laminate floor in the room, which made the fix a bigger job than just fixing the toilet.

Since I like to do home improvement stuff in the winter months and since Jake’s now using the adjoining family room as his hangout place, now seemed like a good time to tackle this project. So, last night, I disconnected all of the plumbing and removed the flooring.

On the plus side, it’s now obvious why the toilet was leaking–the offset flange that was installed was pretty much half-assed. I mean, I’m no plumber, but even I can see that it wasn’t installed properly. Plus, when Jake removed the toilet, the wax gasket wasn’t even touching the bottom of the toilet. Sigh. This is why I don’t like hiring people to do work on the house.

Anyway, after a little research, I think I can fix the problem quite easily. I just need to fill in the cement they chipped out to install the offset flange and install a flange spacer to fill the void between the flange ring and the cement floor (since the flange was installed on top of the old flooring and really should not have been). This will set me back about a week since the cement will need to cure before I can screw the flange back in, but I’m not really in a hurry, so I guess it doesn’t matter.

Jake was really pissed about this and wanted to call the original plumber to complain about it, but since it’s not going to be difficult to fix, I’d rather just do it myself so I can ensure it’s done properly this time.

first reformed

I was good with this movie until the very end, then I didn’t understand what was going on. Or maybe the whole thing was just over my head.

My rating: 2.5/5

the holidays

It was a different kind of holiday experience this year. On Christmas Eve, my family came over to have dinner with me and Jake. Jake and I did the usual gift-opening thing Christmas morning, and then he went to Brian’s later that morning, where they opened gifts. In the afternoon, they went to Brian’s parents’ and I went to my parents’ for dinner. That was really it for Christmas.

On New Year’s Eve, my parents invited me to Asiago’s for dinner, then they stopped at the house for a bit afterward. I watched a movie after they left. Jake’s plans fell through so he watched the ball drop on tv with me and I went to bed shortly after. New Year’s Day was quite typical–we put the Christmas decorations away and had our traditional pork & sauerkraut dinner, which Brian joined us for. It’s nice that we can still do some things as a family.

I’m going to forgo a year in review post this year. Will 2020 be better? Let’s hope so.