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Welcome to part two of our Blog-napping series.  Since last we spoke, little Ampersand, I mean Matthew (that’s right, it’s a boy!) has graced us with his presence; along with a ridiculous number of poopy diapers.  Needless to say, it’s been a hectic 7 days, but Matt is doing great and Jen and I are handling the zombie-like sleep state we remain in at this very moment.

Thanks to all for the warm wishes and thoughtful comments, and thanks to this week’s guest blogger, Jessie Bishop Powell (otherwise known as the Jester Queen).  Below is her post that is sure to tickle your funny bone, so enjoy and we’ll see you back here next week for part three!


Jessie Bishop Powell blogs as the Jester Queen at http://jesterqueen.com. She can regale you with tales of dog vomit and other bodily functions, though she’s also capable of pulling a tear jerker or two just to keep you on your toes.

As dog owners, we knew we had gone into end of life care when the vet started sending us home with nothing more than doggie antacids and anti-nausea medications. Fudge was eating well enough, and he kept down about half of any given meal. But every single night without fail, he vomited all over the carpet. We should have barred him from the living room, but we just couldn’t. He loved to sleep on the couch, he still had the oomph to get up there, and, well, the dog mattered more than the fuzzy floor covering, right? We bought him three happy months before age and illness won the battle.

In the wake of his demise, we are left with another problem at our house. Now, we’re losing the carpet. Actually, we’ve already lost the carpet, if you want to get technical. Because Fudge killed it in his dying days.

His puke was like a stain gun. Not the kind that takes stains off, either. It was yellow bile and oh dear GOD it stank. We kept the steam cleaner next to the living room and whoever got up first did some deep cleaning every morning. Mostly, we got the smell out. But the color. Oh, the color.

We spent close to a hundred dollars on professional grade floor cleaners (for that price, we could have just called in Stanley Steemer), and still the yellow spots remained. And by the time we had trampled back and forth over them a couple hundred times, they were ugly black spots.

And then, about two weeks ago, “I got it!” My husband ran into my office as excited as a school kid.

“Got what?”

“The steam cleaner. I got it to work.” I followed him out to the living room, where he demonstrated his technique. He pushed the machine forward, squirting cleanser on the worst of the black ick. “You have to tilt the handle back MEGA far before it starts sucking back in again! We’ve been spraying cleaner ON the carpet, but not picking it back off.” He dragged it backwards.

“Well, you moved the black spot.”

“No! It’s gone.”

“It’s wet.”

See, he really has figured something out about our steam cleaner. (It’s not like we have the first clue how to handle it anyway.) But, and this is the key point here, it’s too late. The carpet is dead. To misquote Monty Python, if the previous owners hadn’t nailed it to the floor, it would be pushing up the daisies. Or cluttering up a landfill.

Which brings us to the next big issue. Replacing carpet costs money. Our son is five, and he will be five for another nine months. And after that, he’ll turn six. If the dog hadn’t murdered the carpet, our youngest child was next in line to do the job, with his eight year old sister rounding out the trio of contenders. Finally, we now have a new dog with a penchant for eating everything and only sometimes fully digesting it.

The upshot? There is no point in replacing this carpet with another big rug. Less than none, actually. It would be money wasted. The house came with laminate flooring in the kitchen and hall that flank the living room, and that’s the direction we need to go when we rip out this yellow-black disaster.

Of course, that requires not only an initial outlay of money, but also a certain investment of time and organization. All of our furniture will need to move around, big inherited pieces, heavy with ancestry and construction. And we will have to stay out of the living room while the project is in progress, even though our kids spend most of their at-home time in there.

If you think this is starting to sound like a particularly bad country song, you’re right. I’ve even written the chorus:


My dog done died and my carpet’s got bile

This rug’s gone to the great barn in the sky.

And when I replace it,

I’ll have to stay gone,

Yes I’ll throw myself out of my hoooome (cue the howling of the new dog, who will probably have to spend time at the kennel)


As a last-ditch hopeless effort to revive the dead, consider this guest-post an appeal to anybody with a steam cleaner. If you want to give me one, and if it somehow actually cleans the murdered carpet, I’ll be more than happy to write a blog series about your product. Anybody?