Rylie

Rylie
Rylie

Heidi (in front) - The Staff to Rylie

Heidi (in front) - The Staff to Rylie
Heidi (in front) - The Staff to Rylie

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Christmas

It has been five years since I've been able to have a real Christmas tree in my home, so I enjoyed my little Charlie Brown tree. It had some bald spots and lacked symmetry, but somehow, that just made it more endearing.

My Little Tree

Now if this isn't a recipe for disaster, I don't know what is: A dog, a Christmas tree, and a balloon. Miraculously, Rylie managed to play with this balloon in and around the Christmas tree for quite some time, and never popped it. Nor did he knock over the tree, or disturb any ornaments. He seems to know to grab on with his teeth near the knot, so he doesn't pop it. He loves to play with balloons!

On Christmas he enjoyed tearing up every bit of wrapping paper that Cammie and Doug handed him. Cammie also gave him a little stuffed toy that squeaks, and he has been playing with that a lot. He really likes it.


We had a near-disaster on Christmas Eve, when Rylie got into the bowl of Hershey's kisses that were on the end table and left over from the party. Normally, he wouldn't be able to get to them, but I had pushed the ottoman next to the end table to make room for all of the guests, and forgot about the kisses being there. Shame on me! I left the house for a half hour, and when I got back, Rylie had eaten an unknown quantity of them, foil and all.

My regular vet office was closed, so I called the animal hospital. They asked his weight and figured out how many ounces of chocolate he probably consumed, and said it most likely was not enough to harm him. They said I could watch him to see if he acted excited, or his heartbeat got fast, or he vomited, and said if anything like that happened, I should bring him in. I watched him carefully, but he was fine. That was pretty scary though, since chocolate can be toxic for dogs. I learned my lesson: no more chocolate anywhere that little rascal might be able to get to.

Rylie's Notes:

Merry Christmas to me! I saw a gift, and I went for it.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Comcast/Xfinity is Like a Bad Boyfriend

They don't appreciate you or treat you right while they have you, but once you kick them to the curb, they are desperate to have you back.

I switched to AT&T U-verse. So far, so good. Much better customer service than Comcast.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Pre-Christmas Party

What fun I've been having! I had a small party the weekend before Christmas to celebrate the holidays, my friend Cheryl's birthday, and my new place. I cooked lasagna, and there was plenty of Christmas cheer. We played a game called Apples to Apples after the birthday cake, and had a lot of laughs.


Mari, Doug and Cheryl


Robert, Nancy, and Steve


Cammie, Me, Robert and Nancy


Cammie, Robert, Nancy, Doug and Donna


Donna, Cheryl, Julie and Steve


Steve, Tricia, Julie, Nancy and Robert


I'm really enjoying being in my new place, and was so happy to be out of the motorhome for the holidays. My walls are still pretty bare and I haven't found any curtains that I like yet. I also need some more furniture, but it will all come in time.

The motorhome is still down at the Lazy Daze Mother Ship, but the repairs from the tree damage are all done. I will pick it up after the New Year holiday. I'm trying to decide whether to sell it, or whether it's worth paying the money to store and insure it if I'm not going to use it that much.

My work project with PG&E has been extended until August, so I'm happy about that. Our team has been cut to half the size it was, and I was the newest member to the team, so I was lucky to make the cut.

I've been neglecting my blog post duties, but the holidays are a busy time. I'll post a few Christmas photos next time, and tell you what that rascal, Rylie, has been up to.

Rylie's Notes:

I don't see why The Staff feels the need to tattle on me. I'm sure she can come up with other topics to blog about.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Shot by the Dog

A man was duck hunting in Utah, when he stepped out of his boat to move some decoys. He left his gun and his dog in the boat. I guess the dog wasn't too happy with his companion, because he shot him in the keester. This is a true story that I heard about on NPR while I was driving to work. It can't be easy for a dog to pull the trigger on a shotgun, and especially to hit the desired target.

Rylie seems to be pretty happy with his new home. He has been racing around like a puppy dog. Unfortunately, his hips can't handle that behavior any more, and his legs shake after playing like that. Poor guy. I'm still trying to find the right dose of Metacam to keep him comfortable without damaging his organs. I would like to find a good alternative to the Metacam, since I don't want to give him something that might cause organ damage. What does everyone else use? The good news is that he has started using the doggy stairs to get up on the bed, but not all of the time. He doesn't seem to like them much.

Cammie and Doug moved into their house in Brentwood shortly after I moved into my place. It's very nice--and big! They seem to be really happy.

I'm finishing up my course in the next couple of weeks, and waiting to hear what my next assignment will be. It looks like I'll have some time off around the holidays, since things get pretty quiet around the office at that time.

Rylie's Notes:

I bet I know what happened when that dog shot his staff. The dog was probably saying, "That'll teach him to give me dry kibble to eat after I fetch fresh duck for his dinner."

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Delicious food, and good company. I am grateful.

Rylie's Notes:

What food? I didn't see anything special in my dish today.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Move

I'm in! I moved into my new place this weekend, and I have to say, I'm so happy to be out of the motorhome. That place was getting smaller by the minute. After 5 years, I was really ready to have some more space and a home base again. Maybe if I had slide-outs, I wouldn't feel so cramped.

I had to buy some furniture for the new place, so I bought something to sit on, something to eat on, and something to sleep on. That takes care of the basics. Then I bought a flat screen TV that will be mounted above the fireplace. I figure the rest of it will come little by little.

I really like my new place! It's a townhouse, with 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, and a garage. I've been having fun playing with my dishwasher and the washer and dryer in my unit. I haven't had a dishwasher for 10 years (my old house didn't have one), and I'm so happy that I don't have to use a public laundry room or go to the laundromat anymore. Yippee!

Yesterday I got up at O dark 30 to drive the motorhome down to the Lazy Daze mother ship in LA so that they can do the repairs from the tree damage. When I got on the 210 down by LA, there was a huge traffic snarl, because they had closed off 2 of the 3 lanes. I saw some TV vans, and figured something major had happened on the freeway. When I got to where the action was, I saw a blond woman standing in the middle of the freeway in boots and a short skirt, being filmed. Nothing else going on. Then I realized, they must have been filming a movie. For crying out loud! Are they allowed to close off the freeway IN THE MIDDLE OF THE DAY to film a movie???? I thought they had to do that stuff in the middle of the night, so as not to cause a major traffic snafu like I experienced. Sheesh!

Rylie spent the night with Cammie and Doug while I went down to LA, because I had to fly back last night. He seems to like our new place, although I think he is a little insecure. He follows me from room to room as I go about unpacking and settling in. I guess he is used to being able to see me everywhere I go in the motorhome.

I met one of my next door neighbors, who seems very nice. She has a cat--named Riley!

Rylie's Notes:

Lots of new smells, and I like it! There is a lot to keep track of here, though. A cat next door, dogs all around, ducks in the pond, and there is a squirrel nest in the tree outside the window. I've got my work cut out for me. I think I should get a pay raise. Maybe an extra chicken strip, or a few more liver treats.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

The Oven

Now my oven isn't working. Why? I can't wait to move.

Rylie's Notes:

There are plenty of things that can be eaten without the oven.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloweeny!


Time for my favorite holiday again, and I went to a costume party. There was lots of dancing, tons of food, and fun costume-watching.

Mari and Me



Michael and Mari


Cheryl



I brought Rylie to the vet for some x-rays, and the news was not good. It turns out he has severe hip displaysia, which I guess is not very common in small dogs. He will need to take anti-inflammatory medication. Poor little guy. He is such a stoic, so it's hard to tell when he is hurting.

I'm not doing much better. My hip has been bothering me too, and then I injured my rotator cuff. I can barely lift my arm. What a pair.

In other news, I bought some furniture for my new place. I can't wait to move. Just three weeks to go!

Rylie's Notes:

It's my favorite time of year: squirrel season. The squirrels are out in full force, totally preoccupied with gathering up food to stock the pantry. They are so busy worrying about their next meal, they don't notice Super Squirrel Stalker sneaking up on them. I haven't caught one yet, but give me time. Give me time...



Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Jeannie!

Jeannie met the big 5-0, so of course we had to celebrate. The party theme was "hot and spicy," and it was supposed to be girls only, but one of the boyfriends snuck in. Jeannie's cousins threw the party, and cooked a delicious New Orleans-style meal of gumbo and shrimp etouffee.






I just crossed the finish line of a work marathon, but my presentation went very well. I've been working hard, so now it's play time!

I will be moving in about a month, and also bringing the motorhome down to the Lazy Daze mother ship for repairs from the tree damage. I'll take a few days off. I can't wait to move!

Rylie's Notes:

I finally had the moment I was waiting for: a squirrel on the ground, oblivious to my presence. But The Staff wouldn't let me near it. Then I discovered why. It was dead. Where's the challenge in that?





Sunday, October 02, 2011

A Good Day


I had a really nice day today. It started with a pretty hike in the Briones Regional Park, where I took these photos. After that I met Cammie for lunch, and we went to see the movie "Contagion." It was good, but I came out of there not wanting to touch anything. It was pretty realistic.




Rylie is so stoic, that I often don't know when he is injured. I brought him to the vet to investigate a lump on the front of his ankle. They did a biopsy but couldn't find anything, so they decided it was a bad sprain or a very inflammed joint. Poor little guy. I got some good glucosamine and an anti-inflammatory, plus I bought some doggy stairs, since he isn't supposed to jump up on the bed or the couch. I've tried getting him used to the steps with treats and praise, but he still keeps jumping around them. Hopefully he'll get used to it. The vet also said he should lose weight, so I'm supplementing some of his food and treats with green beans, at the vet's suggestion. He seems to like the green beans, but he's not happy about getting less of the good stuff.

Rylie's Notes:

I almost had them. I walked out the door the other morning with The Staff on the leash, and there they were, right outside the door. Two cats: one calico, and one tabby. I think they might have been drinking from my outside water dish. I tried to charge them, but they didn't even run. Silly cats. Obviously they don't know how this works. Dogs chase, and cats run. Do I have to train everyone?

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A New Place

I've had some fun lately. I went to the Walnut Creek Wine Walk, which I did last year, and it was a fun time. Wine tasting and appetizer tasting all over town. Yum! I also did a double loop at the Lafayette Reservoir and had dinner with some friends, went shopping with Cammie, and went to the Lafayette Art & Wine Festival. I also heard a great blues guitarist at a garden concert at the Benicia Historical Museum. It was a beautiful night for it, and the music was wonderful.

That's not all. I found a place to live. Rylie and I will be moving to a townhouse at the end of November. I'm excited!

Rylie's Notes:

Finally! I'll be getting out of this little tin can. The Staff tells me there are lots of squirrels at the new place. It will be nice to get away from all of these cats. They won't even run when I fake-charge them. Cats are no fun at all.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Bing

Don't you just LOVE the photos they have on Bing.com?

Monday, September 05, 2011

Is $50 Million Really Necessary?

I heard on NPR the other day that the CEO of some big company -- maybe GM, or General Mills, I can't remember -- makes $50 million a year. I know that many other CEOs make similar salaries, and I just had to ask myself, "Is that really necessary, or even earned?"

What could a CEO possibly do to be worth that much money? They aren't saving lives; teaching children to be kind, responsible citizens with integrity; discovering the cure for cancer, or any of the other really important work of the world. Why do they get paid so much? The same with celebrities.

If these companies took half of the fat salaries that they pay their CEOs and celebrities and put it toward creating jobs and increasing salaries for hard-working employees at their companies, just think what an impact that would make on the lives of many, many people in desperate straits. It would also improve the economy, since these people would be able to have homes and spend money again.

Instead, they give ridiculous salaries to a few individuals so that they can have multiple, over-priced homes, cars, boats, and all of the other trappings they buy to impress. I think we should limit the salaries that CEOs and celebrities make. Notice I said make, not earn. There ought to be a law, I tell ya!

Okay, that's my soap box rant for today. I don't have much else to report. I've had some dinners with family and friends, but I've been pretty busy with work lately. We have some crazy deadlines, but I really like the people that I'm working with. We have a great team.

Rylie and I have been battling fleas lately. I have had him on a flea prevention product, which I hate to do because I think they could be dangerous for pets, but he still got fleas. I have a terrible reaction to flea bites, so I have been continuously vacuuming, washing bedding, rugs, dog, and everything else. Still, we're both scratching. I hate fleas. I don't want to use a flea bomb, but if this keeps up, I may have to. I wish there was a natural solution to fleas that isn't a harmful chemical and that really works.

Rylie's Notes:

Those little biting weasels drive me nuts. If only they were big enough to get my teeth around...

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Setting Your Intentions

I find it interesting that when I set my intentions, things seem to happen to bring about what I want. I think it's really important to not only set your intentions, but to verbalize them, or put them in writing. After I wrote that I wanted to settle down in the Bay Area and have a home base again, I got a call from a recruiter out of the blue for this job. When I decided I wanted to buy a house back in 2001, I found a house that I wanted the first day I went out looking, and beat out the offers of 4 other people to get it. When I decided that I wanted to sell my house back in 2006 so that I could start traveling, I sold it in 3 weeks.

Setting your intentions, law of attraction, prayer -- whatever you want to call it -- it's important to verbalize, write, and concentrate on what you want. That's why I am now letting the universe know that I am ready to have another place to live. I'm not sure yet if I will rent or buy, but I'm ready for some more space. This tin can is feeling pretty small lately, and it's difficult to work at home when I have to use my dining table as my desk and I have no room to put anything.

This week I was able to work at home every day except Tuesday, which was nice. I am more productive when I work at home, and more comfortable. The work stations at the office are not very ergonomically correct. I have some really nice people on my team, and I'm enjoying my job.

I had a walk around the reservoir this weekend with some friends and a picnic afterwards, had dinner with a friend and ran into another old friend at the restaurant, saw The Help, which was really good and surprisingly true to the book, and had breakfast with Cammie and Doug. It was a fun weekend.

I got a new shipment of bully sticks for Rylie, and this was the first time he has not finished a bully stick all in one sitting. I was wondering if there was something wrong with him, or the bully stick. He always scarfs everything down right away like it's his last meal. But this time he ate part of it, and then tried to bury the rest of it in the comforter on the bed. I got a kick out of watching him try to push the comforter around with his nose, then finally grab it with his teeth so that he could move it better.

Rylie's Notes:

There's nothing wrong with me or the bully stick. I'm just an international dog of mystery, and I have a few surprises. I like to keep The Staff guessing.




Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Bunco Queen

After receiving invitations to join them for months but always being out of the area, I was finally able to join the bunco group. This was my first time playing bunco, and I had fun! Not only did I have the most wins, but I tied for the most buncos too. Beginner's luck, I guess. I brought home one of the jackpots. I like bunco! It's a fun group, so I'm sure I'll be going again.

In other news, I had to defrost my refrigerator - again. I just did it two months ago! But I discovered why. It turns out there is a tear in the rubber door gasket. I have no idea what is involved with getting that replaced. Can I replace just the gasket, or do I need a whole new door? I will have to investigate.

I've been working pretty hard, getting up to speed on the new job. I finally got my work laptop. It turns out that someone forgot to order it, then the IT department missed the order. I have also been doing my curriculum development work on the side, so I'm busy, busy, busy! I feel lucky to have more work than I can handle, in this economy. I know so many people who are out of work, and have been for a long time. It's scary out there.

Rylie's Notes:

The Staff had to ruin a perfectly good weekend by giving me a bath. What's so great about being clean? It just makes me want to roll around in something stinky.




Sunday, August 14, 2011

My Lucky Day

If a tree falls in an RV park and everyone is asleep, does it make any sound? Yes - A lot of sound! I learned this first-hand last night. Rylie heard it first, and tried to warn me by barking. It was 2:00 a.m. and I was in the middle of a deep sleep, so at first I thought he was just barking because a cat or some other animal got close to the motorhome. I didn't hear anything at first, and he does this on rare occasions.

But then I heard what I later discovered to be the very loud sound of splitting wood, as two large branches in the pine tree overhead split off from the tree and fell over my motorhome, rocking it wildly. I thought we might be having an earthquake. Lucky for us, the branch ends hit the ground first, and prevented the larger ends of the two branches from hitting the motorhome. The larger of the two was about two feet in diameter, and they were suspended over my motorhome from the smaller ends on the ground. If those large ends had hit my motorhome, we would have been killed, or badly hurt.
We couldn't get out the entry door because of the branches, so we had to exit through the driver's side door.

What caused it? There was no wind, no lightning, and the tree was healthy. Apparently the branches just got too heavy.

Luckily, we got off with only minor damage to my awning, refrigerator vent and air conditioner cover. This is my lucky day! Check out the photos:





Below is the awning damage:


This is the air conditioner cover - only a small puncture and dent:


View of the refrigerator vent from the roof:


I was feeling so lucky after this, that I ran right out and bought a lotto ticket. After all, today is the 14th, and 14 is my lucky number.

Rylie Notes:

Once again I tried to warn The Staff but she didn't pay attention. Not only is her sense of smell pitiful, but she can't hear either.




Saturday, August 13, 2011

Life is Good

So far, things are going well with the new job, considering I still haven't gotten my company laptop or a working card key to get into the building. Sigh. These things take time. Rylie seems to be handling the new schedule okay, although I'm still getting used to it. I got to work from home on Friday, which is nice. As usual with these projects, we have a very aggressive deadline, so I'm sure I'll be very busy. I'm also learning a lot, which is always good.

I had dinner with Cammie and Doug this week, and attended a family picnic with Doug's family. Tomorrow I'm going to see The Help with a friend. It's so nice to be able to spend time with Cammie and my friends on a regular basis!

Rylie got into the sticker bushes again on our morning trot. He veered off the trail to chase a squirrel, and was immediately covered in stickers. It took awhile to get those off.

The weather has been really nice this summer -- cooler than normal. I'm enjoying being here.

Rylie's Notes:

I don't see why The Staff has to keep pulling my hair just because I have a few stickers in there. They would fall out eventually.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Dinner at Luna

Me, Julie, Cammie and Doug at Luna

Julie is on the mainland, and she came up for a quick visit. We had dinner with Cammie and Doug at Luna. Last weekend I also went for a good hike with Rylie and a couple of my pals, and then out for Vietnamese food and some dancing. Rylie did really well on the steep hills, but I sure was huffing and puffing. I hadn't been hiking for awhile.

The first week on my new job is going well, except for the part where I have to get up at O dark 30. Rylie and I just aren't used to getting up when it's still dark outside. When I wake him up to go for a quick morning walk, he looks at me like, "What the hey?" The good news is that once I get my company laptop and VPN access set up, I should be able to work at home on Mondays and Fridays.

Rylie's Notes:

The Staff has clearly lost her mind. She is getting up in the middle of the night, leaves me all day, and now we have our long walk in the evening. I am not happy with the new schedule.



Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The End of an Era

It looks like I won't be going to Washington this summer after all. I received a really good offer to do a long term instructional design project in the Bay Area, so I won't be traveling for awhile. I've been wanting to stop chasing my tail around for awhile, so I'm pretty happy about this turn of events.

This could be the end of an era. To be honest, after five years -- four more than I had initially planned on doing -- I'm getting a little tired of living in this tin can and the uncertainty of my income. I'm ready for a home base again. I know that travel will always be a big part of my life, but I would like to start doing more international travel. There are so many great places to see! I will continue the blog, for awhile anyway, unless I get too boring because I've run out of things to write about.

I have really appreciated all of you, my readers and friends, for accompanying me and Rylie on our journey. I get a kick out of seeing the locations of my readers around the country -- and world -- on Sitemeter. Traveling in this motorhome with my beloved furry sidekick has been a life-changing experience for me, and I have gained so much. I highly recommend this experience, at least for awhile. Don't be surprised if I write a book about it.

Rylie's Notes:

Uh oh. I don't like the sound of this. The Staff is going to be at work all day. This is going to put a serious crimp in my treat schedule.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Duluth Childhood Memories

I got a bit nostalgic during my recent trip to Duluth. My parents are preparing to sell the home they have lived in since 1967, and where I spent my childhood, so old memories kept popping up. My parents live on the outskirts of Duluth, up over the hill, as they say. They have 1.5 acres, but much of it is woods, so the woods were my playground.

Cheerful daisies and buttercups are everywhere:


and plenty of maple, birch, and pine trees. I used to play quite a bit on the big rock in the back yard, and apparently there is something special about it, because the geology students at UMD like to come out and look at it:


Far back in these woods a rope swing used to hang from a huge tree, so we ignored the ticks and mosquitoes and frequently made the trek. We would hop onto the big knot at the bottom and sail through the air. Across the road was an open field where we used to play baseball with the neighborhood kids. Now it's all overgrown.

One winter the next door neighbors flooded their front yard to make a skating rink. I was in heaven -- I loved to ice skate. Sometimes we got so much snow that we could climb onto their garage roof and jump into the snowbanks. After one blizzard, so much snow had piled up in front of our door that we had to jump out one of the windows to catch the school bus.

This is the spot on the deck where the bird feeder used to hang, which attracted a black bear a couple of years ago. The bear tried, unsuccessfully, to impersonate a bird, so Mom and Dad decided to take down the feeder:



My parents' house is just over the hill in the photo below. I was riding on the back of a friend's bicycle when I fell off, and the pavement scraped a big hole in my knee, plus gave me various other scrapes and bruises. The quarter-sized scar on my knee remains to this day. The lighter strip going across the road is the spot where Rylie and I met the bear on our morning walk during our previous trip:


We were walking in the spot below when the bear came out on the road. Rylie knew it was there and had warned me of its presence by stopping dead in his tracks and refusing to budge. But after waiting a bit and not hearing or seeing anything, we continued up the road. That's the closest I've ever been to a bear, and I still can remember the rush of adrenaline:


There are plenty of ferns and other greenery in the back yard -- it's wild back there!


This is the little house in the big woods where I grew up, although it looks different now, with the addition of the deck. The surprising thing about this deck, is that my Dad built it while legally blind. He compensated for his lack of sight by making measuring blocks out of wood and not using power tools:


I have to admit that it feels strange when I think of my parents selling this house. It has been a part of our family for so long, it almost feels like a member of the family.

Rylie's Notes:

That reminds me, I'm still mad at The Staff for not bringing me with her to Duluth. I like visiting The Grand-Staff. They have lots of rabbits and squirrels for chasing, interesting wildlife smells, and they give me lots of treats. It's a perfect vacation destination.



Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Duluth Photos

Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge With Boat Coming Into Harbor

As usual, my visit to Duluth was much too short and this time, bittersweet. I saw family I had not seen in decades, but unfortunately, it was at a funeral. We had to say goodbye to my Aunt Elsie, whom I admired and enjoyed so much. Aunt Elsie was widowed at a young age with 3 boys to raise. She had spunk, determination and humor, and she was a single woman RV traveler long before it was popular. Although she thought she would never remarry, she remarried when she was in her 70's, proving that it's never too late to find love again. I will miss her.

I did very little photographing on this trip, but I have a few photos. The photo below is a view of Duluth's Aerial Lift Bridge from Thompson Hill, a couple of miles from where my parents live.



Below is a view of the St. Louis River from the same location:


The next photo is a tour boat coming into the canal and harbor:


The little lighthouse at the canal entrance:


Canal Park is the area on the edge of Lake Superior where many tourists come to stay in hotels on the lake, browse the shops and restaurants, and see the aerial lift bridge. At the foot of the bridge is Grandma's, a former bordello which is now a popular saloon and restaurant. It's a Cheers-type place where I used to meet up with friends:


Duluth has a long history as a big shipping port, so there's a few big anchors laying around:


You can rent one of these contraptions to pedal around Canal Park. What is that, a quadricycle?

This is the edge of Lake Superior looking toward London Road, where a lot of the old, beautiful mansions are, including Glensheen, which you can tour. If you keep driving to the right, you'll drive up the north shore of Lake Superior, and eventually end up in Canada.


More Canal Park photos:




After 8 changes in my flight departure time, including time in the Minneapolis airport, on the runway, and in a holding pattern over San Francisco, I finally made it back to Pleasant Hill. Rylie was very happy to see me when I returned, and couldn't give me enough kisses. He watched me very intently for the next 24 hours, and even skipped his breakfast the next morning. This is highly unusual, so I guess he was a bit discombobulated. He isn't used to being separated from me, but the staff at Romp apparently loved him and took very good care of the little rascal.

Rylie's Notes:

I don't recall approving any vacation request for The Staff. I will have to determine the appropriate repercussions for unscheduled, unapproved leave of absence. I may have to remove the morning snuggle from our schedule to discourage this behavior in the future.