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81 general / Re: Visitor's dogs redux
« Last post by AliciaLynette on Today at 01:56:35 PM »
Frankly, I think she's banking on you being unable to say no.  I would call her, and say something like

"After the way you pressured us into hosting Jakey at the last music practice, and your cavalier attitude to his chasing my cat after I had warned you that I was worried it would be an issue, I have to tell you that Jakey is no longer welcome at our house for any reason."

Don't wait until she attempts to bring him again, just let her know asap so that any temper tantrum/pushback from her can be done without you feeling pressured to give in 'this last time'.
Time For a Coffee Break! / Re: What was the best day of your life?
« Last post by FauxFoodist on Today at 01:53:08 PM »
Mine might seem silly to some - but I'm kind of young, not married and no kids. So here's one of the best days of my life for me.

I HATED high school. I went through the same school district for 12 years and I could not wait to get the heck out of there. I got accepted into my first choice college and I was just so beyond DONE with high school and my home town. So I attended graduation, which was great. Went to all the Senior activities, which were fun. My graduation party was the day after graduation, and that night after my party I went to bed super early, exhausted.

I woke up at about 7:30AM the next day. No one else was up in my house. It was a gorgeous day. Graduation, high school, and that part of my life were behind me forever. I had the whole summer in front of me to do what I wanted and moving off to college at the end of the summer.

That morning - quiet and alone - was the best day of my life. It was the most amazing feeling I have ever had. Relief, happiness, pride, excitement. To this day I remember that morning crystal clear, it was phenomenal, and I will never forget how I felt. Pure happiness.

I just have to say, this is great! I love the way you describe your emotions, and I can see why that day would have felt almost magical.

I am going to ponder this question before I respond, and this is a fantastic thread topic!

Okay, I do have to say that there were two best moments in this regard:

The day I got moved from the hellish 3rd grade class with the awful teacher to the gifted 3rd grade class with the nice teacher (I remember the day my principal called my dad, told him I tested very high on the IQ test and said they wanted to move me to the other class and asked if I wanted to be moved the next day or the end of the week -- I said the next day because I absolutely hated the class I was in; my classmates were awful, as was my teacher, a woman who once asked if I had medical issues because I, an 8-year-old, kept needing to go to the restroom shortly after class started).

The day I moved to the other half of my office away from my bullying coworkers and bullying former supervisor (I got a new supervisor also).

In both cases, my life immediately took a turn for the better -- it wasn't all roses afterwards, but I definitely was in a better state as a result of being removed from those situations.

Oh, and one more -- when I found out I got into the magnet program for the school I had been bussed to (my school I mention above I hated as a lot of the kids I knew at this point -- 5th grade -- were awful cliquish snobs).  We all got bussed from our school high in our expensive neighborhood down to the more mixed finances neighborhood.  That school had a magnet program so I applied for the next year.  I was so happy to never go back to that awful home-area elementary school.  I thrived in the magnet program where we were assessed on our academics, not by the clothes we wore and the color of our skin (why, yes, awful elementary was mostly ethnicity not mine; magnet program, OTOH, was quite diverse).  Now that I think about it, all but one of my FB friends from elementary school were from the magnet program school.  Only one is from awful elementary school (and that was because we had a common mutual friend -- the only class I'd had with him was the better 3rd grade class; when we were bussed in 5th grade, he was in mutual friend's class)
Veggie trays often don't get touched at my work either.  They're more for snacking at a party than putting on your plate for lunch at a potluck, and I think that's the problem with them.
Depending on where you live they may have to still give you at least the purchase price of the voucher. 

In Minnesota those groupon things are always valid for the purchase price.  So like if it was $10 for $30 worth of food, even if the deal expired you still get the $10 worth of food.  Might want to check on that.
85 general / Visitor's dogs redux
« Last post by NutellaNut on Today at 01:45:21 PM »
I need help in building backbone and creating phrasing regarding a friend's dog.  I have read the earlier huuuuge thread about visitors' dogs, and I do know that I have the right to tell my friend, "No."  But recent events make it clear I need help in thinking on my feet and being firm.  I really love my friend, and she is awesome in many ways, so please don't suggest I drop her - I just need a little bolstering in my methods regarding the below situation.

Sorry this is so long, I have been stewing on it several days and I tend to be wordy.

BG:  My friend Sally has a dog, Jakey.  He is a sweet dog that she dotes on.  She and her husband work long hours and Jakey has to spend all that time in a crate as he has anxiety issues.  He also is very dog-aggressive and generally poorly socialized.  She has tried in the past to train him and socialize him better but there has been little improvement.

My DH and I host outdoor parties in the summer, with 30 or more people.  Several families bring their dogs, we cook out, swim, and so on.  In the past Jakey has been overwhelmed by the numbers, crowding, and the other dogs.  A couple of scuffles (with no actual injuries) happened, and we had to tell Sally that she can't bring him to parties any more, it just was too hard on Jakey, the other dogs, and everyone.  She seemed OK with this.  Jakey did still come a couple of times to my house when it was a much smaller gathering, with no others dogs.

Since then, Sally was walking Jakey with a friend and friend's small dog, trying to work on socializing him (for which I commend her, really I do!).  Unfortunately, at some point Jakey attacked the other dog and injured him a lot, to the point where his survival wasn't certain.  The dog did survive, but I'm sure the vet bills where astronomical.  Sally seemed a little nonchalant about it (as did her friend, the owner of the dog), but I know she knew I was horrified for the little dog.  She also said, in our discussion, something like, "I guess I can be glad that Jakey is other dog-aggressive, and not child-aggressive, because people won't sue over dogs like they would children."  And that statement bothered me a fair bit.

BG2:  I adore my cats, they are a huge part of my life and hold space in my heart larger than many people.  One of my biggest flaws is irrational anxiety about my cats.  It's something I'm working on, but I still worry when we're away, have to locate them as safe before we travel, that sort of thing.  When we hold parties, I lock them upstairs in my bedroom so I can have peace of mind that they aren't trying to bolt outside, or cowering in the basement, or stressed by dogs a few feet away. 

So, recently, Sally was due to come to my house for a music practice, which had been organized for more than a month.  She called the night before, and told me that she had just found out that her husband had an activity the same night, so could she bring Jakey to music practice, because otherwise he would be locked up for more than 12 hours?  I paused for a looooong moment, my brain stuttering, and said, "I, uh, don't know....I think that might be an issue...uh, I think DH will have a problem with that."  She was taken aback and said, "Why?" 

"Uh, because of the dog bite, we'd have to worry about the cats.  Even if we lock them up, if one of them gets loose, he might go after them, you know..."

This went back and forth a couple of times, and she asked to then change the night of the music practice.  We've done that far too many times in recent months and the night she proposed wouldn't work well for two of the others, so I said no.  She wanted to cancel practice but I am tired of doing that (often at her behest).  So she went back to Jakey coming, and I said I would ask my DH and call her back.

TO BE CLEAR:  Jakey has never tried to bite a cat, and really, I think he wouldn't try to hurt them -- more just want to very actively investigate them.  But my anxiety can't accept that premise.

Ultimately, my DH and I decided to say OK, he would help me corral the cats before Jakey arrived.  I really wanted her to come to practice and that seemed to be the only way.  It didn't work out very well, though - one of my cats wouldn't cooperate, and so I couldn't lock him up, and spent a very stressful 45 minutes trying to do so.  Sally kept Jakey on the leash, but just put the loop of the leash under her chair leg. Halfway through practice, the cat predictably ran from under the sofa, the dog tried to chase him, the cat tried to run to the bedroom but the door was shut, so then he ran downstairs and banged himself on the door down there.  I had to take time to find him in the clutter of the basement and make sure he was okay, and I was stressed for the rest of practice.

When Sally left later that night, she said, "I didn't realize you would be so stressed about Jakey.  Why are you so worried about him?"  I said, "Because of the dog he bit, it just makes me more nervous about the cats..." and she was bemused.  "What dog?  He didn't bite a dog, he never got in a fight here..."  I said, "Not here -- your friend's dog, the one you were walking with and that almost died!"  She said, "Oh, that -- now I understand what you meant.  I thought you were saying he bit a dog here at your house." 

Sooooo, now I need to figure out how to handle future requests.  I would hope that she now knows not to ask, seeing how stressed I was, and that Jakey did chase the cat, and so on --- but I would have thought that a reasonable person would have picked up on my extreme reluctance and hesitation when she initially asked, too, and yet, she persisted.  My plan so far:

1.  Now that I know about her husband's regular activity on a particular night, we won't schedule against that, and said so at the practice.  But that doesn't take care of any other unexpected nights where they both might be away from the house.

2.  I will ask another member of the music group if we can have practice at his place if this becomes an issue again (he has cats, but is generally much less nervous about it than I am).  Or is that just passing off my problem to someone else?

3.  I want to generate scripts in my head to prepare for her asking to bring Jakey again.  I guess I'm too soft in dealing with her (she has emotional difficulties I dance around a lot) and it's hard to be firm, but loving and welcoming, when I'm having to think on my feet.  I know there aren't magic words, so I'm not asking for that, just scripts to have at the ready.  Right now I'm thinking something like, "I'm sorry, I really can't have Jakey at the house -- it really sets off my own anxiety issues.  Let's see if <other music group member> can hold practice that night."  But if OMGM *doesn't* want to host Jakey, then what?  Just beginning part of that statement?  What happens when I'm trying to get Sally (who is sometimes reluctant anyway) to come to music practice, and she insists the only way is with Jakey?  There are five of us in this group, practices without one of us are not very useful.  And Sally's house cannot be used for practice.

4.  Any suggestions welcome.  Thank you for reading.

You weren't rude at all. The person who hid the bottles was, enjoy your wine!

I volunteer at our small local library. There is a limit on how many books one can borrow at a time. While I'm shelving books, I'm constantly finding books that have been hidden and it really bothers me. (Its fairly obvious that the books didn't just get pushed back accidently, there is no way that a Sue Grafton book would get accidently pushed behind reference books.)
That's the thing. It's not like they used to chat about different things, and now she only wants to talk pregnancy and baby. It's that she didn't maintain regular contact before, but now because she is suddenly incubating a grandchild, she has become worth talking to.

I understand why this upsets the OP.  It does seem like a slight.  Unfortunately, I think it's quite normal.  Until now, the OP was her son's wife and MIL likely didn't feel a huge connection to her. And not in a bad way, necessarily.  The OP said they get along well. I'm thinking it's just one of those things where the chit-chat level of comfort just isn't there because they haven't found that thing that they can share or somethng that will bond them.  And now, there is a connection. She's carrying the first grandchild and MIL is super excited and probably thinking the OP is too and would want to talk about it as much as many other new mothers do.   It's not so much that she wasn't worthy before, but that, as babies tend to do, they now have something to bring them together.

I agree. I was probably the first to bring up the "it makes me feel like the only interesting thing about is the baby" idea, but I like how bah12 has framed it. It's still going to feel, to the OP, as though the baby is the big draw, but it doesn't have to be disrespectful.

Good look, Little Girl Blue! I love how it sounds like you do understand grandma-to-be's excitement.
I want to wear a cape... :-[

I want a corset & wings - but I want *real* if I could pick between butterfly wings, gray feathers, or dragon wings...Snarky wants the gray feathers, Evil & I are both partial to the dragon wings, but butterfly wings can match the corset!  Snarky & Evil like the idea of the wings & corset complementing...they just can't decide between brocade or design stamped leather...

As to fancy clothes, this Grandma has a sewing room and can make a costume for any visiting grandkids!  As long as they don't mind if Grandma dresses fancy, too.

Grandma has several outfits of Renaissance Festival garb - and trouble getting to enough festivals to justify how many I have.  I just need to get working on doing the embroidery & ribbon trims for VorSon's robes and my simpler store bought outfit.  Maybe when I get home from DD's...
This reminds me of one food challenge on TAR.  They had to eat a thousand-year-old egg, and many of the contestants had a hard time getting it down.  A few years ago, DH (then-BF) and I attended a Chinese New Year's celebration at the home of his friend.  One of the things served was the thousand-year-old egg.  It didn't look appetizing at all, but we each took a portion.  I tried it having no idea what to expect and, other than how it looked, it didn't seem any different from regular eggs as far as taste.  In fact, I liked it and got some more (so I was surprised why the contestants were having such issue with it so I figured it was all in one's perception and expectation).  She also served taro cake with Chili XO sauce (neither of which I'd ever had).  I really liked both so I had some more of that and started buying that hot sauce (and will occasionally order taro cakes at a restaurant near our house).
Haha.... this reminds me of something that just happened last week. 

I was in Home Goods (kind of like Marshalls/Ross/TJX but without the clothes) and pawing through their condiments section.  I love trying the interesting sauces and treats there, plus I can always find inexpensive bottles of truffle oil or balsamic.  Crammed at the back of one of the shelves, I found six bottles of this mango habanero marinade they have had before that was delicious.  If you shop these kinds of discount stores, you know they get what they get and oftentimes don't get the exact same products twice. 

So I dug out all six bottles and bought them.  The cashier was kind of surly but sometimes cashiers aren't super friendly.  As I left with my stuff, I heard her say to another employee,  "THAT lady just bought all the sauce you hid."

I guess employees are not allowed to set items aside, so this was her solution?  Or maybe I was rude for buying all six... but I don't really think so.  OP was definitely not rude.  The things that are for sale....are for sale, and OP was even following the restrictions set forth by the store. 

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