Why LC Loves Halloween

We made the command decision to not take LC trick or treating this year.  We don’t get home from work until after 6 and we start bedtime routine slightly after 7, so there is little wiggle room in there.  Add to that these hours are really the fabled “witching” hour for LC and it just seemed liked a bad idea to drag her house to house, forcing her to interact with strangers, to bring home candy that we weren’t going to let her eat anyway.

A’s office does a trick or treat event each year, so we decided we’d just hit that up in the afternoon.  She could get dressed up and we could show her off and take photos, without interrupting the evening routine too much.  LC had a fantastic time, though she soon realized that the real appeal of Dada’s office is not the candy or the nice people who think your kitty cat costume is too cute.  It is the fact that Dada’s office allows dogs.  LC literally raced through the halls looking for “more dog-goo”.  She rejected candy and the advances of strangers, but was willing to pet any dog she came across.  Another thrill was that almost every dog was in costume, though I think the Boston Terrier dressed as a velociraptor may have confused LC a bit.

So perhaps we’re setting LC up for failure in that she thinks Halloween is a day to get dressed up and pet dogs, but if she enjoyed it, who are we to mess with it?  After all, a future as an AKC Junior Handler is much more desirable than one as cavity ridden obese child obsessed with candy, right?**

Here’s LC as a kitty cat, hanging with her BFF Cal.

LC’s Halloween with Cal 

** I’m not saying taking your kid trick or treating will turn them into a cavity ridden obese child.  I’m just saying if LC is going to come out of Halloween being really into something, it is desirable that it be petting dogs and not eating lots o’candy.

Holiday Favorites

Having a child about to enjoy her first holiday really makes you think about what is important about the holiday and what you want to be sure they experience.  Of course, there is the whole true meaning of the holiday, reason for the season, etc.  That’s important and as this photo of LC playing with her Little People Nativity set shows, we take that part seriously.  (So seriously that the Angel Gabriel is riding a camel on top on the stable. And she may be pounding one of the Wise Men into the ground.  Alas.)photo (1)

But I’m talking about the other holiday stuff.  "Jingle Bells. You know, Santa Claus and ho-ho-ho, and mistletoe and presents to pretty girls.”  So what are some of my favorites I want to share with LC this year?

Tradition:  decorating the tree.  LC sat by us while we did this and did try to eat the Duke basketball ornament, but I’m not sure the specialness of my favorite tradition was truly appreciated.  For now I will just be happy that she has not attempted to take down the tree or eat any lights.

Christmas song*:  I am excited to take LC to midnight mass and listen to the carols at our church.  There is always something so warm and cozy about Christmas night mass and the carols.  I love O Come All Ye Faithful.  Sure, part of my excitement is that I expect that LC will sleep through the entire mass for the first time in a long while, but I know how special sharing this with her and A will be this year.

Ballet:  Ok, so there is probably really only one Christmas ballet, but I cannot wait to bring LC.  (I may have tried to get A to let me take LC to the Nutcracker this year, but he suggested that the $60 tickets might be wasted at this point in her life)  My mom used to take me to the Nutcracker every year.  Last year when we found out we were having a girl, A asked me what I was most looking forward to and it was taking her to the Nutcracker.

Food:  Egg nog.  In many forms.  A wise man once said, ‘Tis the season. . .We only get thirty sweet noggy days. Then the government takes it away again.”  In my coffee, in my cookies, straight up.  A hates it, so I don’t even have to share.  I guess LC needs to wait to enjoy this benefit of the holiday season, but for now she’ll have to take my word for it.

Photos: Exploitative photos of Cal and B-Cat at the holidays have already brought a great deal of joy to us.  We will not let a baby slow us down.


* Maybe my favorite Christmas song is Please Be Home for Christmas by the Eagles.  Ok, it’s not even that.  It’s Christmas Wrapping by the Waitresses.  O Come All Ye Faithful is a close third though.

A Dog and His Tree


A Perfect Thanksgiving

There were no holiday themed place settings or tablecloths.

In fact, there was no tablecloth at all. 


There was no silver or fancy dresses, just a mismatch of serving plates and some comfy yoga pants.

There was turkey.


Babies who love turkey, and

 DSC03572beagles who would really, really, really like some turkey.


And it was perfect.  I couldn’t ask for anything more.


Happy Thanksgiving from the Two Washingtons family!

Agile Pets

Cal is a very agile dog.  He has been doing agility for over a year now and has moved up to the highest level of classes offered at the Seattle Humane Society.  He excels at many obstacles, especially that weave poles.  His weaknesses on the courses are 90% of the time due to handler error, with the exception of the turkey incident from last weekend.


However, having spent all this time and energy with Cal, I just learned that we may be neglecting another agile pet.  Cat agility is apparently not just a thing, but becoming popular. This article, which is very enjoyable, pointed to many exciting YouTube videos, which I will share with you now.

Sunday in the Park with Cal

LC’s schedule has been changing a bit as of late, which has adjusted our weekend schedule.  It does allow us more time for things like early morning trips to the dog park.  This morning we headed over to Magnuson Off Leash Park to let everyone enjoy the sun, the chilly temps and some fellow Seattle dog lovers.


First things first.  Nothing happens before Momma gets her coffee. (Embargo lifted on November 20)


Beautiful view on our way to the park (Lake Washington and the Cascades)


It was very chilly this morning, we had to snuggle for warmth.


A and Cal find a friend and head off on the trail.


Puppy fun for all!


Cal takes a break for ear scratches.


All this excitement can really take it out of you.

Have you seen this dog?

Cal wanted


Cal the beagle, wanted for attacking innocent rattles, recycling bins, dirty diapers and the occasional shoe insole.  Has a weakness for sucky kitties and babies with messy faces.  Prefers his burgers medium rare.  Enjoys snuggling under the blankets.  Afraid of orange cats.

  Responds to the name Calhoun, Cal, Cal Bear, Calhounicus, Calhouny and/or Buddy.  If you see this beagle, do not approach unless prepared for tail wagging, kisses and potential jumping.

Retreat from Reality

We headed north to Anacortes this weekend for a short retreat. Our big vacations came in our return East at the start of the summer and will come again with a trip back to Maui this fall, but I really needed time to get away from the normal demands of the weekend. I love spending the weekends with our family, but it usually involves a great deal of errands and vacuuming and the like. A weekend where I would not have to vacuum anything sounded pretty great.

We arrived in Anacortes on Friday evening and stayed at a hotel by the ferry terminal. It had a beautiful view and Cal enjoyed barking at the deer outside our room.

Saturday we took our time and then explored the town of Anacortes. We went to the Cap Sante overlook point – Cal showed us all how to scamper up the rocks. We had lunch in town and then headed to Washington Park to hang out on the beach.

Sunday we headed south and hiked around Deception Point park. The sun never quite made it out, but we had a great time exploring the shore and watching the fishermen bring in large salmon right on the beach.

The weekend was over too soon, but it was as advertised – completely free of vacuuming.

More Project365. 

 38: Nothing says professional like spit up on your shoes. 
39: Even dogs like the South Lake Union taco truck. 

40:  Not bad, but not a chocolate chip cookie either. 

41: Sippy cup! High chair! 

42:  Baby or puppy, who can tell?

43:  Another crazy Friday night in our house.  (BL Lime = Awesome)

44: Our trap worked, we caught a baby. 

45: Only the best for our family. 

46:  You’d think drinking water would be easier. 

This Many Paws Old

Today was Cal’s third birthday.  I think it is pretty clear how crazy we are about Cal (and B-Cat) so we wanted to ensure he had a proper beagle birthday.

We started the day at Norm’s Ale House for breakfast.  Norm’s allows dogs inside the restaurant, which was really exciting.  I think everyone had a good time – Cal enjoyed the “doggie bowl” which included a medium rare hamburger,  A watched the women’s World Cup (as did LC who seems very interested in soccer) and I had a delightful mimosa.  Cal was also able to meet some of the other dogs hanging out at Norm’s.

Here’s Cal enjoying his doggie bowl. 

After breakfast, we went on a hike around Discovery Park with some friends.  Cal had a great time leading us down the trail all the way to the beach.  

It was a great weekend and one that I think celebrated Cal’s third birthday in true style.  
More Project365 photos from the week. 

06: My iPad arrived.  It is pretty glorious.

07: B-cat in the crib with Jacques the Peacock

08: LC likes to be hands free while sleeping these days. 

09: Sitting in a high chair like a big girl! (With Froggie of course)

10:  If Cal ever opens a bar, I imagine he will call it something like this. 

Dogs Even More Awesome Than Cal

In a lot of ways Cal is the most awesome dog ever.  He cuddles.  He is incredibly trainable for a beagle.  He loves LC.  He has very expressive eyebrows.  He plays well with others.  Overall he’s just a really great dog. 

But then the story about a dog being along with the Navy SEAL patrol that killed Osama Bin Laden came out.  Cal won’t even sleep on the couch by himself if we are all in bed on the other floor.  War dogs are definitely a different breed.  (And I don’t just mean that they aren’t beagles.)  I mean, check it out.

This picture makes me tear up for many reasons.  1) I hope the puppy isn’t scared.  2) He trusts his handler so much that he will jump out of a helicopter with him.  3) I hope the puppy doesn’t get hurt. 

For more great war dog pics, take a look at this photo essay.  And don’t worry, I know Cal will totally agree that these dogs are super awesome.  (Though Cal on the A-Frame at agility class pretending to be Snoopy is definitely a close second in awesomeness.)