5 Things I Loved About Last Week #celebratelu 9/6/14

celebrate link up

Ruth Ayres hosts a weekly celebration at her blog. I appreciate this invitation to look for the positives in my week.


1. Fantasy football! I love my work fantasy football league. I like talking football in the halls, I like overhearing football talk coming from other people’s offices, and most of all, I like winning. The Sunnydale Slayers (that’s me!) may have gotten a B for their draft grade from Yahoo and be projected to place 11th in my 16-team league, but this reigning champion (who has never finished lower than 3rd place) has every intention of repeating. My fantasy football draft went exactly according to plan. I’ve got the strongest team at the position that matters most: running back. Let the winning–nay, the crushing domination–begin!


2. Big Dopey lives to nap another day! Puck has a pica problem that nearly killed him in his youth after he swallowed a very long string that got tangled in his intestines. He has tried to off himself countless times in the years since by consuming “substances largely non-nutritive” (a wonderful phrase from Wikipedia’s definition of pica). He has an special affection for broom bristles and tufts of hair belonging to other cats. He seems to be one of the dumber creatures ever to live, yet he never forgets where he last sighted a broom. He long ago used up all of his nine lives. Now, my husband says, Puck is borrowing lives from other cats. This week, he once again overconsumed cat hair and got his system blocked up. Yet another $100 trip to the vet and he’s feeling himself again–which means he will be spending 22 hours a day sleeping, 1 hour a day searching for expensive mobile devices to knock off surfaces in an effort to get our attention and get us to feed him, and 1 hour a day maniacally searching for those “non-nutritive” substances to consume. His pica problem requires constant vigilance on everyone’s part to ensure that he doesn’t kill himself. He is on various special foods and medicines, one of which requires a special trip to a vet over 60 miles away, and also needs five or six trips to the local vet every year to get enemas. He’s getting elderly–somewhere between 12 and 14 now–and at some point, there will be no more lives from other cats for him to borrow. But I am glad that he is feeling spry again. I will be the first to admit that he is mostly an incredibly unrewarding cat, and yet I can’t help being very fond of him.


3. Cuddle time with the elderly dog! Roxy is wondering why I’m taking a photo of her when I could be snuggling with her. I read every word of Ken Foster’s great book about pit bulls with my own pit bull absolutely plastered to me.

4. A chill in the air! Fall is my favorite season, and I’m always excited when there’s finally a chill in the air. The temperature was all over the place this week–one night dipping into the 40s but the next day soaring to 100. Cool fall weather is predicted for most of next week, however, and I’ve already pulled out the flannel PJs and sweaters.

5. Planning for several literacy events in September! I’ve made arrangements to take several students to the Plum Creek Literacy Festival at the end of the month. Donalyn Miller! Rosemary Wells! Jack Gantos! Steve Jenkins! Floyd Cooper! And many more. Although the event is in Nebraska, it’s not exactly local. These Plains states are gigantic. But the road trip across the state should be full of good conversation with my two favorite world-changers, Kelsey and Maggie. Then I’m currently reading The Maze Runner for a YA Book Club Kelsey, Maggie, and I have started on our campus. Kelsey selected our first book, and I think it was a good choice, as many students have told me they’re reading it and plan to attend. I’m hoping we can actually make a go of a monthly YA Book Club. And thanks to my mom for purchasing two copies of The Maze Runner for me to loan. They were snapped up immediately in my British Lit class this week. #bookpusher4life! And then I discovered that my favorite new independent bookstore also has a book club, and they read good books! September’s selection is Kevin Powers’s novel about Iraq, The Yellow Birds, a book I wanted to read so badly that I bought it in hardcover. And it’s been sitting on my shelf unread ever since. The book club has inspired me to dust it off, however, and it is very good.






11 responses to “5 Things I Loved About Last Week #celebratelu 9/6/14”

  1. Deb Day (@mrsday75) Avatar

    Sounds like a joyful week. I love that you are in a fantasy football league (I’ve never quite figured them out). I’m with you on fall. Although I love summer, fall has such a special feel to it. I’m ready for all it brings. Have a great week!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      We’re having a few more days in the 90s right now–looking forward to the days in the 50s that are promised for later in the week!

  2. carriegelson Avatar

    I too love the chill in the air that fall brings. It is wonderfully energizing! These animals of yours are quite amusing. Always bring a smile.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I think I’d be both bored and sad with no pets! They’re always doing something to engage my attention. You’re so right about that chill in the air–energizing is the perfect word for it!

  3. LInda Baie (@LBaie) Avatar

    You must be a great football guru to do fantasy football. We only do the baseball one in the spring at my work. Good luck. Your cat reminded me of a son’s dog, now gone, who ate sticks all.the.time! They had to be on the lookout in their yard constantly because he would need vet care after so many, like your cat. Strange habits, sometimes! Sounds like a good week with pets and books, Elisabeth!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Thanks, Linda. Roxy is a huge grass eater–gorges til she pukes every time she’s off leash. It’s bizarre behavior. Sometimes my husband and I wonder if there’s something wrong with us to have attracted so much crazy into our lives, LOL. But perhaps it’s just that we’re so calm and well-adjusted that it’s soothing for crazy children and animals to be around us!!

  4. Terje Avatar

    Your cat is a character. You clearly enjoy being with your pets and writing about them. Your last two celebrations remind me of a bookmark: Fall into a good book. Happy reading!

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Thanks, Terje! Making time for reading has become a non-negotiable for me.

  5. Elizabeth Avatar

    Hee hee — I very much enjoy Puck from afar! I think Posy might have a touch of pica: she ate yarn once and it had to be surgically removed from her stomach, and she will also eat the stuffing from a dog toy….

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      Puck wanders all over the house looking for tufts of other cats’ hair to eat. SIGH. It does mean that we keep the house pretty clean, which I do appreciate. (A clean house=soothed nerves for me.) He will eat anything that resembles string–rubber bands, hair ties, bread ties, yarn, thread, etc. We have to be vigilant. The kids are surprisingly good about keeping an eye out and “saving Puck’s life” as they call it on a regular basis by finding loose threads on clothes, etc. and throwing them away. Puck really doesn’t have any extra lives to spare at this point. Ryan thought that perhaps last week should be The End with no more emergency vet trips, but I just couldn’t do it. He’s an otherwise healthy cat and a great delight to me for reasons I don’t entirely understand. (Because he is so unrewarding. But there is something appealing about his very blankness and oblivion.)

  6. […] celebration of old dogs, old cats, and fantasy […]

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