POST 10 It Takes a Village

Our children may have moved out long ago, but we are not truly empty-nesters. If you know us, you know how important our pets are to us. We start with Max, our massive, aging, sheepdog-lab-chow-retriever, his black coat greying, and his mighty back sagging a bit, and finish with Cinnamon, Kalise, Princess, Phoebe, our sleek kitten of many names. We have to consider them when we design the house too!  As Boris said to Natasha, “What about the Moose and Squirrel??”

We hope the move will be good for Max. We know as he continues to age that the climb up the stairs to our bedroom is becoming more of a chore. The first floor master will save his joints as much as all the  medications he is on do, and hopefully keep him comfortable for a few bonus years. And the big pond adjacent to the new house will keep him entertained with ducks and geese. We don’t plan to install an electric fence, just plant some pennants around the yard perimeter and shout “Look out” any time he gets too close. His Pavlovian training should kick in at that point, keeping him on our property. We will be sure to continue subscribing to a morning newspaper, since fetching it and bringing it to  Barb every morning leaves a big dog smile on his face. We just hope print media will continue to exist as long as our Max is around.

As for Phoebe, we know she is adaptable enough to enjoy any floor plan. But we need a place for her litter box(es). When we saw the architects drawings the other day we realized that other than the master bathroom, the bathroom spaces are a little tight, not only for a litter box, but for general use as well. Barb and I burned the midnight oil last night, imbibed some caffeine, and redesigned what I call the “core” of the house. We found a way to expand the powder room and guest bathroom, and make the office/library space a little more functional. The litter box is going to wind up in the basement, but the “Phoeber” loves racing down stairs at Mach 1, and since either Barb of I will be going to the basement exercise room daily, keeping it fresh won’t be a hardship. The only hardship is convincing the architect about the new plan!

Don’t forget to leave a comment about anything you have read. Suggestions for making our journey an even more rewarding one are always welcome.


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