Thursday, October 4, 2012

Where We've Been

It's been a little slow around Life With Desmond in the past two months, so I thought I'd take a minute to fill you all in on what's been going on with us.

For one, I recently switched jobs after six years in the same position at the same company. My new job came with a promotion and a raise--and a lot more responsibility and time commitment with higher expectations.

In my previous job, I was an overtime-eligible (essentially hourly) copy editor in the same building that houses Penn Station. My commute was probably the easiest commute someone who lives in Long Island and works in Manhattan can have.

In my new job, I'm a salaried manager of a team of writers, as well as an editor, across town from Penn Station. This means I'm at work or working from home far more than I was before and about a half hour has been tacked on to my commute.

I've worked late or from home plenty of nights and weekends already, which comes with the territory. I'm not upset about it, but this is having a pretty big effect on my life as a dog momma, a wife, and a blogger. The adjustment period is taking longer than I expected it to, and now we also have to take some extra time to deal with Desmond's health issues (which I've been Facebooking about).

There's been less time to work on training and reactivity counterconditioning with Desmond and, of course, less time for blogging.

Aside from the new job, we also took a quick trip to Nashville in the middle of everything. Perhaps you saw some pix on Instagram. Like these:

Why Nashville? We had a Southwest voucher that was expiring, so we tried to find a destination of theirs that would be covered or mostly covered by the amount of the voucher. In addition, the location of choice needed to have availability at a timeshare. It came down to Nashville and New Orleans, and Nashville won.

We kept the trip pretty low-key and spent our time walking around the different neighborhoods in the city (Nashville is so much bigger and more spread out than we realized), eating amazing food, and enjoying tasty adult beverages. Skipping much of the touristy stuff is our usual M.O., so we did not go anywhere near the Opry and its related sites, but we did pop into a honky tonk bar to listen to some bands and we did see the Parthenon in the park (although we did not go into the museum). We also went to a music festival, a craft fair of sorts, a showing of Shakespeare in the park, and the civil war town of Franklin while we were there. Oh, and we took advantage of restaurant week, as well as visited as many food trucks as we could (the food truck scene in Nashville is booming).

What's that? You heard about a celebrity sighting in Nashville that same weekend?

Well, we did see Jack White on two different occasions, but you must be talking about the meeting of the minds that went down at Jackson's Bar & Bistro between Miss Lauren Elizabeth and I (OK, and Joey).

Yup, I got to meet Claire's momma, Lauren (of Life With Claire). We had a very lovely and long conversation that kept Lauren up past her "have work tomorrow" bedtime, and I could have kept that going for quite a while if we were able to. She is truly an outstanding individual. We were so excited to spend time together that neither one of us remembered to take a picture together. Two dummies. That's what we are. :-/

Then again, there are rumors that I may be hauling my butt down to Blog Paws next year, so maybe, hopefully, she can do the same and we can have a do-over (and also maybe this time our other Life With girl, Katie, can join us).

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

At home, my last series of mentor training classes started up again (at which I'm assisting as an instructor, in small doses), and I've been trying to set up my shelter practicum volunteer work since the end of August. This has proved ridiculously difficult--because Ruff House Rescue was forced to shut its doors right before I was ready to begin volunteering. (A crappy situation, to be sure, but they are still managing rescues and adoptions, with the help of other rescue organizations and a network of foster homes. They simply don't have a facility at the moment.)

My availability has been an issue, but I am now working with Last Hope Animal Rescue. With any luck, I'll be able to blog more about that soon. In any case, volunteering and the training externship are officially taking up my Saturdays.

All of these things together are not leaving me much time to fit in errands/chores, socializing, blogging, etc. Such is life, right?

I have big plans in my head to carve out time on Sundays to at least get some posts set up, but I've learned not to make any blog promises. :-) For whatever it's worth, I am still reading lots of doggie blogs during my commute and have recently been cracking up over the human shaming series.

Some giveaways are coming up here in the next few weeks (one starts tomorrow!). Those are posts I will definitely get up, so be on the lookout for 'em!
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