Category Archives: Bean


Dave and I had an odd conversation today.

Dave: Did you feed Lucy?  Her bowl is empty.

Me: Yeah I fed her and I left the food outside.  That’s probably why she wanted to go out as soon as we got home.

Dave:  She was out with the food the whole time we were gone…

Me: I know, but she came in, got all excited when she saw us and then went straight back out, probably to eat her food.

Dave: Remember how Bean used to do that?

Me: No.  He never did that.

Dave: Yeah, we’d feed him and he’d wait till we got home to eat, just in case.  Like, “Oh they came back!  I don’t need to save this food anymore!”

Me:  Nope, that’s what Lucy does.  That is what I was just describing.

Dave: Really?

Me: Yes, Bean ate all his food within two minutes of being served.

Dave:  Oh yeah.

So if I had been blogging during all of Bean’s life, I could link to the time he ate an entire chicken, the time he ate a bag of chocolate chips, the many dog food buffets, the time he got really fat, and the cookie story.  OK, I can link to the cookie story, and in reading it, I was reminded of the time Bean and Killian stole 20 pieces of fried chicken off the stove, ate what they could and stashed the rest behind the refrigerator.  That must have been what Dave was thinking of.


>Marking His Territory

>Is everyone sick of the whole thing where I talk about how Jack is possessed by Bean? Are you like, “We know, we know. Your baby barks. Quit beating it with a dead horse (as my friend Holly was known to say)”?

Well I have just one more story.

Today I was trying to change a diaper when I realized I did not have a diaper within arms reach. Because I was in the living room. I said, “Luke, please run and grab a diaper. Jack, don’t pee.”

But then Jack got a glint in his eye, and a set in his jaw, and there was a little something about his stance, so I said, “LUKE! Please hurry with that diaper! Jack, don’t pee, don’t pee, don’t pee!”

Luke sauntered in with the diaper some time after Jack had taken 3 steps back and peed on the tiny 5×8 rug, the only area on the main floor where the wood floor is covered.

I was shaking my fist at the heavens. No! No! No!

Luke said, resignedly, “Mom, Jack only peed there because that is where Bean used to pee.”

(In other news, it may be time for potty training.)


>I have had a few posts about how Bean is sort of still with us, because Jack acts like Bean all the time. He rummages through peoples bags looking for crackers, hides food behind the curtain, ransacks the lazy susan, barks at squirrels, eats crumbs off the floor, etc. But lately I started thinking that since Jack was there when Bean died, that maybe something supernatural occurred. Instead of thinking that it is as if Bean is still with us, I am thinking that Bean really is still with us. I think I could re-remake the Shaggy D.A. into a movie with a baby that’s really a dog. (The concept needs some work.)

I suppose most of those things listed above are normal baby activities, except for the barking at squirrels. At this age, Luke could copy every animal sound I made, and perform them on demand. Lion=roar, Cow=moo, etc. Now Jack hears a bird in the wilderness, or a train miles away, or a siren, or the dishwasher running and can imitate it perfectly. But after 3 days with his Aunt Suzy and Grandmom and kitty cat Cleo, he would still not meow. But he would chase the cat and bark at her.

But what I think really clinched it for me with this whole Bean possession thing, is that today while I was making dinner, Jack got hungry and impatient and so he crawled under his high chair and started whining.

>Who Needs A Puppy?


Jack keeps getting into the lazy susan, he never met a food scrap he didn’t like, he’s been known to did through guests purses to sneak snacks, and well, he barks at squirrels. Or gwirls, as he calls them. So we miss Bean, but sometimes we think he may be trying to speak to us through Jack.

Yesterday at breakfast there was a lot of barking (uf, uf) and pointing at the gwirls outside, so I had to get out the camera, even though Jack was covered in food. Too cute.

Then I tried to get him to film some of his other tricks. Jack loves to pretend to talk on the phone, and he loves to imitate sounds. The other day, he was making a weird sound while we were walking into the house and I stopped to listen. I determined he was imitating a train way off in the distance. Here, Dave is dialing the phone and he imitates that, then as soon as it rings, he has to pretend to answer. If you’ve been pranked by a baby recently from my cell phone, it may have been Jack. In other news, my cell phone no longer works.

>In Some Ways, Bean is Still With Us: Part 2

>This morning I was groggily preparing breakfast for Jack after quite a night. (I went to bed late, and then was paged at 12:45, and 3:45, and Jack was up to be nursed at 5am and then up for the day at 7:30.) I was starting my work day, and cooking something for Jack and I left the cabinet open, and Jack helped himself to a tube of graham crackers. I didn’t think he could open them, and he was having a great time walking around crinkling. With all the crinkling, I knew where he was without having to watch him, so it seemed like a great way to keep him occupied for 3 minutes. Then for some reason, I walked down the hallway and back. When I got back, Jack had half a graham cracker in each hand and the balance in his mouth. He was smiling and saying, “Nom! Nom nom nom!” Cracker crumbs were tumbling down his pjs and all over the floor.

Cute, funny, not all that harmful. I plopped him into his highchair and gave him the rest of his breakfast. But where were the rest of the graham crackers? Where was the bag? I walked around looking to no avail. Then Luke woke up and asked what I was doing. I said, “I think Jack hid a bag of graham crackers somewhere so he could snack whenever he wanted.” In their short time together, Bean really did some serious knowledge transfer.

Ten minutes later Luke was yelling, “I hear crinkling! Jack is feeding himself a snack!” And Jack was indeed, behind the curtains in the dining room, helping himself to a cracker.

>Gingerbread House


From December

Last weekend was the Annual Gingerbread House Making Party at my over-achieving friend’s house. The house plans were designed by an architect friend and I really want him to publish a book of gingerbread house plans before next Christmas so that I can purchase it.

I have arrows pointed to all the outdoor equipment that Luke built for his house. Starting on the left and going clockwise, we have an orange gumdrop snowboarder, a police car (already partially consumed by Dave), an orange gumdrop scooter, and finally a sled.

I made Dave redecorate 3 times because I hadn’t taken a picture yet and he kept eating all the gumdrops. But now that the picture has been taken, the house can be eaten! In the past I have made everyone wait until after Christmas, until it’s good and stale. Then I say, “I’ll leave this out for one day and we can eat as much as we want and then I’ll get rid of the rest.” Then we forget and go somewhere and leave the gingerbread house on the counter and Bean eats the whole thing. So this year, we aren’t waiting. In fact, the awning has already been consumed. Yum!

One more view of the scooter/snow jet ski and a shot of the peppermint ATV:

From December

>In Some Ways, Bean is Still With Us

>I was comparing present-wrapping back-ache stories with my mom on Sunday. She stands at the table to wrap and a friend asked, “Why not sit down?” She was flummoxed. Why not sit down indeed? Well, because she is too short to sit down and wrap presents. She wouldn’t be able to see over the present to the scissors and tape. I sit down to wrap, but I do my wrapping on the floor, which causes it’s own problems. OK, it causes the same problems which is why my back was hurting too,

I have a touch of the shortness myself, so I can’t imagine sitting at the table to wrap presents either. And really, it’s that time of year when every surface in my house is covered with cookies, or cookie making ingredients, or cards, stamps and address lists, or let’s be honest, dinner from two nights ago that hasn’t been cleaned up all the way.

So this year, as always, I sat down on the floor of my bedroom and surrounded myself with presents, wrapping paper, tape, scissors and old cards that I cut up to use as gift tags.

And I was thinking about what a hassle it used to be at this time of year with Bean. You never knew if a present would be safe under the tree, because what if it was a food item? Did I want the present unwrapped and eaten by Bean? Not really. (The Christmas Poop Story is a story for another day. 13 years is not enough time for that to be funny yet.) And he liked to help wrap presents. And by help, I mean he liked to be in the middle of whatever I was doing. If I rolled out some wrapping paper, he liked to lay down on it. If I was about to wrap a sweater, he would lay down on it. And so on. So pretty much every present I wrapped had some amount of dog hair attached to the tape, if not all over the present itself.

So, as I was wrapping presents this year, I was missing Bean, my wrapping buddy. The way I missed him was to repeatedly say to myself, wow, it is so nice that there isn’t dog hair everywhere. OK, I wasn’t really missing Bean, but I was thinking about him a lot. Then I ran out of the new wrapping paper and had to scrounge around for some leftover from years passed. And when I rolled out the paper, what did I see? Dog hair.

And here is Bean helping us unwrap presents last year:

From New Album 1/10/08 2:53 PM

Miss you Bean!

Bonus picture (I can’t tell you how many times Jack made that exact face today):

“Oh, don’t mind me. I am just resting my head in the general vicinity of the candy that is coming out of your stocking. “

From New Album 1/10/08 2:53 PM

>Pre/Post Mad Men Musings

Welcome to the, “I’m Back! And I’m going to start posting again! And using a lot of extra punctuation, (mainly parenthess!) post!”

I told Dave that I sort of feel as if I have been a zombie for the last month and I am finally back to being myself again. (ie: Toast as a side dish.) This weekend I was cleaning closets and organizing rooms and crossing things off my to do list – and this is a to do list that is so old and neglected that it has stuff on it from early September. (Sorry Katie – I never bought that baptism gift!) (Dave pointed out that I stopped looking at my to do list right around the time my blog output completely dropped off to hardly anything.) I don’t know if it was beginning of school stress, end of Bean’s life stress, or the changing seasons, but I have shed my zombie inclinations, just in time for Halloween! (Braaaains!)

Speaking of Bean, Dave and I were at a party on Friday and I was overheard saying, “Oh, plans for tomorrow? I am taking the boys to get a flu shot and then we are picking up the dog’s ashes.”

Another mom said, “Um, you might want to throw in a trip to the ice cream store or something.”

Good advice. We had a nice weekend, and the weather was perfect for a little backyard ceremony.

In other news: Jack is looking like he wants to start walking. Perfect timing because the memory on my camera is full and I can’t find the card thingy. (When Luke was about to start walking there was a smudge on my camera (birthday cake from his party) and I freaked out and ran to the camera store. They dipped a Q tip in windex and wiped off the lens.)

Moving on… ***Mad Men Spoiler*** Who watches? And do we think Don is the father of Betty’s baby? I think not. Thoughts? Just six short months until next season.

>The Cookie Story

We are still missing Bean, but we’ve been enjoying our Bean memories. And when I got home from Costco on Saturday it was quite the novelty to be able to set the bags down on the kitchen floor instead of needing to make sure they were all out of reach on the counter while I emptied them. And I put chocolate chips on the bottom shelf of the pantry. That felt so decadent. Almost as decadent as leaving a pancake on the counter when we were rushing out the door to soccer. After the chocolate chip incident, the brown sugar incident, the whole wheat flour incident, and the corn starch (?) incident, I learned to keep nothing but canned goods on the bottom two shelves of the food cabinet. And still I have found canned goods slobbered on and hidden behind the toilet. Let’s just say Bean was highly motivated by food, and keeping food out of his reach was quite a task. And now I bring you, upon request, the cookie story.

It was an icy, blah, no good day at Keystone and Dave and I just decided to call it quits and head home. Unfortunately we were delayed in making it home when he caught an edge on a catwalk and landed shoulder-first on the ice. One separated shoulder and a week later, and we were entertaining a good college friend, Brian, back at Casa de Meta. Brian was in town for some space alien conference or another, and his experience with dogs is mostly limited to the under 10 pound category. And I don’t think his miniature poodles (Senior Carnitas and Mr. Excitypants) could ever prepare him for the food obsession that we faced on a daily basis with our Bean.

What does Dave’s separated shoulder have to do with anything? Well, I’ll tell you. My dear sister took pity on poor Dave and sent him a care package. Dave and I were at work when it arrived and Brian had not yet left for the airport. Being the wonderful and considerate house guest that he always is, he brought in the package and put it… somewhere. I can only imagine it was somewhere like on the counter? On the dining room table? On the floor? Somewhere other than on top of our locked refrigerator.

So I arrived home from work and it was eerily quiet. For years (at least 13 of the almost 15) I was greeted at the door with lots of barking and Bean jumped up and down on his hind legs begging to be fed his dinner. We kept the food in the front hall closet at our old house (with a warning on the door that to leave it open was to provide a dog food buffet) so I would usually feed Bean before I did anything else. But on this particular day, silence. I am sure I hung up my coat, and walked into the kitchen, looked around and then peaked down the hallway. And there was Bean, walking slowly, slowly towards me. Head down, tail between his legs. He could have been the poster child for puppy eyes the way he slowly looked down and raised just his sad eyes.

Knowing this look, I started to search for the reason. I found an empty tupperware under the table, and a torn cardboard box behind the arm chair. In the box was a lovely note from my caring sister about cookies. Cookies! Gone! (Shaking fist at the heavens.) When I called Beth to thank her and to tattle on Bean she mentioned there was a box of thin mints in there too. I hadn’t even seen one single green piece of girl scout colored cookie box anywhere so I renewed my search and found an intact box of thin mints behind the couch.

Bean – couldn’t resist the cookies, and knew to hide the evidence. But that guilty look gave him away every time.

Photo Credit: Martha Stewart