Tag Archives: ivan

with so much love


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Ivan my love 8

it was 15 years ago today that ivan and i made the trip down 2nd avenue from the humane society to e. 55th street, where we lived for his first two years.  it didn’t take long for me to realize he was my family. we were inseparable and i loved him with all my heart. almost every memory i have of the last 15 years includes ivan.  we moved to california together, drove across the entire usa together, lived in westfield, nj, on the 5th floor of a walk-up on 83rd street, shared the tiniest apartment ever on east 73rd street, moved to bedminster, nj and back to the city again.

on march 20th of this year, at 11:36 am,  ivan went to heaven and my heart broke in half.

ivan cutest dog ever oct 2012 (9)


ivan snow dog a

Memories of Ivan

ivan

ivan

 2013

my best friend forever
& ever no matter what.

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i always have, and always will, love you billions times infinity boo. xo

the same time


a day, a week, a month ~ it can seem like forever ~ almost never ending, and it can seem like just yesterday ~ both perceptions happening simultaneously.

how does that work?

ivan exploring bedminster  (2)

 “Time moves in one direction, memory in another.”
 ~ William Gibson

 

fire-ballon48

 

 

 

getting ready


you know when it rains it pours.  it’s pouring on east 52nd street today even though it’s 79 degrees and sunny outside.

i’m getting   trying to get my apartment ready for a visitor who is arriving tomorrow for one week.   the rain began last night when i attempted to connect a digital converter to the tv so that my guest can watch at least the basic channels. no can do.

ivan has developed a leak.  a big leak.  he is 98 in people years and i guess these things happen – but still . . .  i have ordered doggie diapers with money i don’t have, and should receive the diapers on saturday.  in the mean time, i have throw rugs on top of blankets covering every square inch of floor space to protect the rugs and flooring. all of these rugs and blankets need to be washed everyday at $7.00 per load.

then the dishwasher overflowed and flooded the entire kitchen.  there was so much water, i had to use my bath towels to stop it from running out into the living room.  since i now have massive amounts of laundry to do, i took the shower curtain & liner down and threw it in the laundry bag along with all of the pee soaked floor rugs.

upon returning home from my early walk with ivan, there was an irate tenant in the lobby who looked me right in the eyes and yelled, “i hate this building!”  when i asked what was going on, she replied, “i have a huge meeting at work today and the water is coming out black. i can’t shower and i have to go out and look for a place to brush my teeth!”

it is now 12:49 in the afternoon and i have not yet brushed my teeth, showered or begun the 5 loads of laundry i have contained in a hefty bag, growing mildew, in my living room.  i cannot clean the bathroom or the kitchen until i have clean water. 

“hi, welcome to my dirty apartment.  i hope you won’t need to shower this week because the shower curtain and bath towels are in that bag over there.  cooking and television will not be available options during your stay either.  please come in . . . .”

Brainslug

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Reality is the leading cause of stress among those in touch with it.
 ~ Lily Tomlin 

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lessons from the country


#1.  wear boots in grass

as i stood barefoot in the grass today, a snake slithered right past my foot.  ivan was close by relieving himself.  he was a bit startled as the snake approached him.  he didn’t notice the snake but seemed to be some what alarmed by my blood curdling scream as the snake made it’s way toward him.  i may have scared the snake as well because i don’t even think he noticed ivan was peeing on him as he slithered right through ivan’s legs.

#2. i don’t ever want to be a cow

fly cow

hillsdale ny cow herd (15)

seriously, could you stand this for even 10 minutes?

hillsdale ny cow herd (17)

these cows are having a serious meeting.  presumably about the fly situation. 

cow herd 54

“Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.”
~ Auguste Rodin 

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hiding out


ivan and i have been hiding out at my friend susan’s secret retreat up in the middle of nothing but trees and animals.  we’ve been here for 5 days and so far we’ve made a lot of new friends.  here are just a few:

rte 21 pigs columbia county (2) sheep grazing (3)
pigs in mud (6)daisy flower horses (13)lone deer in spencertown (2)hillsdale cows (7)horse in field spencertown (2).

ivan has taken the opportunity to teach his new friend his favorite sport,  grass rolling.  here he is doing a demonstration:

ivan happy boy (8) and here is the student doing an excellent grass roll:

daisy flower horses (28)

a good time was had by all.

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“I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.”
e. e. cummings

best friends holding hands


 ♥

best friends

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies.
~ Aristotle

where the heart is . . .


we’re home!

Ivan Aug 2012 (1)

and resting comfortably. Ivan Aug 2012 (3)

the wildlife in the apartment isn’t quite the same as in the woods upstate, but it also doesn’t move around when you’re trying photograph it.

ivan cutest dog ever oct 2012 (9)

“True humility is contentment.”
~ Henri Frederic Amiel 

13 years


it was 13 years ago today that ivan said goodbye to his friends at the humane society on 59th st. and headed 4 blocks south  for his new home at 340 e. 55th street.  he was wearing a little yellow rain coat that the staff gave to him as a farewell gift.  i remember our walk down second avenue like it was yesterday. while holding his leash in my right hand, bursting full of puppiness, ivan sped down the avenue while i tried to keep up, schlepping his crate stuffed full of his belongings in my left hand.  the entire way home i kept thinking  “wow, you’re mine.  you’re going to live with me.  i have a dog.  you’re mine.”

funny how i thought he belonged to me.  it didn’t take long for me to realize that he didn’t belong to me at all, but i belonged to him. he stole my heart and now owns it completely.

ivan, december 8th 1999

he was the cutest thing i ever saw.

ivan’s first day at home

and he still is!  happy day boo!

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ivan, december 2010

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ivan, e. 52nd street, 2012

ivan, e. 52nd street, 2012

“Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.”
Helen Keller

the inept society


i know they are doing the best they can.

they are probably over worked and under staffed.

their work environment is crowded, loud and stinks like dog pee – so instead of ranting, getting over emotional, screaming at the top of my lungs and possibly hurting someone, i will simply state the facts.

ivan has cushings disease.  in april the vet said he could wait until symptoms worsened before having to go on meds.

symptoms: panting, excessive hunger, excessive thirst, excessive peeing, among other things.

by excessive, i mean he needed to pee a river every two hours – until it became every hour and 15 minutes – or less.

monday:  ivan gets blood test at humane society. he is there from 8:30 am until 6:00 pm.

i am told results may be in on tuesday, if not, call on wednesday.  i am rationing ivan’s water and he is panting a lot.

tuesday:  ivan peed in the lobby on his way to get out the front door as fast as he could.

wednesday:  after calling 3x and being put on hold for so long i had to hang up due to fear of going over my allotted  at&t  minutes for the month, i finally waited it out and around 5:00 pm i got through.  i left  a message for the doctor.  he did not return my call.  ivan peed in the elevator just  1.5  hours after he had last been out.

thursday:  called 8 times during the day and got a busy signal each time.  ivan peed in the kitchen 1 hour after we had been out.  it is his very first  “accident”  since i got him in 1999.  i am no longer giving him water, only ice cubes.  he goes to his water bowl every 15 minutes or so to check the water status.  ivan woke me at 4:00 am to take him out.

friday:  i called at 9:30 am and the line was busy.  i decided to walk to the humane society and wait for the doctor in person.  after waiting over an hour, i had to rush back home to let ivan out.  i did not see the doctor but felt confident that the receptionist would not forget to tell him i had been there looking for meds.  ivan peed on the carpet in the hallway while waiting for the elevator.

saturday:  i was put on hold 4x by the inept humane society receptionist and hung up each time after five minutes.  at 3:30 I called back and held for 19 minutes and 50 seconds before the receptionist answered.

receptionist:  “thank you for holding, how may i help you?”

me:  “this is my 18th time trying to get through to doctor rubenstein, who promised to have test results for me on wednesday, and i’ve just been on hold for 19 minutes and 50 seconds!”

receptionist:  “that’s actually not bad, our average hold time is over 30 minutes!  and dr. rubinstein doesn’t work weekends.”

Ivan Thanksgiving 2008 026 (2)

it has been challenging to remain zen in the city . . .

Difficulties increase the nearer we approach the goal”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe     

boo bear


although he doesn’t look a day over 62, ivan is celebrating his 91st birthday today.  that’s 13 in people years.  in the 12 years and 8 months he’s lived with me he’s never said a word , yet i could write an entire book about him.

on december 8, 1999, i adopted ivan. when we got home, we both looked at each other & thought, “what do we do now?”


we went to the park on on 58th street & sutton place and bonded in an instant.  i think it was the most fun he ever had in his first 4  months.

after all that playing, i put him down for a nap.

 i can clearly remember not being able to take my eyes off him and i just stared at him asleep on the bed – until it was time to play some more.

as you can see, he’s exceptionally debonair,

incredibly modest about his good looks,


and not a bit fussy about what he wears.

(unless i dress him up in something ridiculous)


he plays well with others,

he’s adventurous & athletically gifted,

a compassionate listener,


and he loves a good party.

but most of all, he’s the best thing that ever happened to me.

happy birthday, my love!

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” 
― Lao Tzu

3 day mission


there are 3 days left until my birthday. the start of a brand new year.  since i didn’t keep any of my new year’s promises, i decided to do it a little differently this time.  over the next 3 days i will give away 50 things, list 50 things in my life i am grateful for, give 50 sincere compliments and meditate for 50 minutes each day.  i’ll keep track of it all and post it in 3 days –  here is the start of the list of things for which i am grateful:

  
my wonderful parents   the peeps in the front row & the rest of the family!
  
boo-bear,  being born in america, living in the city & my car.  that’s five – 45 more coming up – but first i’m going to take ivan out for a spin around the block & dole out some compliments!

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.”
 ~ Steve Jobs 

 

curious


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“My favorite thing is saying something true, she said, but I’m a lot older than you & don’t have to worry so much about my reputation.”
– Storypeople

he thinks it’s free snow cones


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“To appreciate the beauty of a snow flake, it is necessary to stand out in the cold.”
– unknown

merry christmas eve


“How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?”

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“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow,
stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”
— Dr. Seuss

commitment


honoring my commitment not to complain about the cold this year, i will find 10 good reasons to be grateful that it is 18 degrees outside.

1. ivan gets to wear his blue coat in which he looks especially handsome. 

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2. hats, scarves, gloves, boots, sunglasses & long johns make everyone look 3 sizes bigger and unrecognizable therefore there is no worry that anyone will stop to chat –  limiting the concern over actually freezing to death.

3.  i am grateful to not live in fairbanks, alaska where it is currently minus 26 degrees –  although that has less to do with the weather than the danger of running into sarah palin.  i would rather live on the psych ward in bellevue.

4.  i am very grateful to work from home and not have to endure the butt freeze so many people have at this moment warming up their cars – or the meltdown you get going down into the subway as the temp rises and you’re wearing everything wearable that you own.

5. i am grateful to know it probably won’t get any colder.

6. i am grateful for the heat & hot water and imagine there are entire buildings full of people who are right now cursing out their super because the boiler is broken.

7. i am grateful i am not a super.

8. i am grateful that i found these awesome boots online last night and hopeful that they will ship today and arrive before the temp drops 1 more degree.

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9.  i am grateful for ‘amazon prime’ so that i can have everything i want delivered in 2 days without freezing to death.

10. i am grateful i am not a ups delivery person, garbage man, traffic cop, construction worker, dog walker or a street vendor  (regardless of the outside temperature).

i did it.  now that’s the power of positive thinking.  it’s going to be a good day.

:)

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“Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate. So practice happy thinking every day. Cultivate the merry heart, develop the happiness habit, and life will become a continual feast.”
– Norman Vincent Peale

11 years today!


it was 11 years ago today that ivan said goodbye to his friends at the humane society on 59th st. and headed 4 blocks south  for his new home at 340 e. 55th street.  he was wearing a little yellow rain coat that the staff gave to him as a farewell gift.  i remember our walk down second avenue like it was yesterday. while holding his leash in my right hand, bursting full of puppiness, ivan sped down the avenue while i tried to keep up, schlepping his crate stuffed full of his belongings in my left hand.  the entire way home i kept thinking  “wow, you’re mine.  you’re going to live with me.  i have a dog.  you’re mine.”

funny how i thought he belonged to me.  it didn’t take long for me to realize that he didn’t belong to me at all, but i belonged to him. he stole my heart and now owns it completely.

ivan, december 8th 1999

he was the cutest thing i ever saw.

ivan’s first day at home

and he still is!  happy birthday, my love!

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ivan, december 2010

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“Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.”
Helen Keller

still so handsome!


ivan;  derived from Greek ioannes. ivan was the name of six russian rulers, including the 15th-century ivan III the great and 16th-century ivan IV the terrible, the first tsar of russia as well as the name of nine emperors of bulgaria, none of which compare to the greatness of today’s birthday boy!

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have you ever seen anything cuter?  thanks for the happiness you bring me every day – i love you, ivan! happy birthday to you !!

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“If you don’t own a dog, at least one, there is not necessarily anything wrong with you, but there may be something wrong with your life.”
Roger Caras

43 & windy


i had to wear my down jacket to walk ivan this morning.  it’s the middle of may.  this is just wrong.

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“California sunlight – sweet Calcutta rain – Honolulu starbright – the song remains the same.”
 Led Zeppelin

jan haus


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next sunday i’m going with ivan.

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“If in our daily life we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it. This is the most basic kind of peace work.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

attention


if you ask someone a question it is respectful to listen to the answer. the whole answer – not just the first part and then draw the conclusion on your own while you shift your attention to something else.  if you must type, watch tv or read your e-mail while in a conversation with someone, consider calling back later.

ivans nose

“Genius is nothing but continued attention.”
 – Claude Adrien Helvetius