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Dissociative Identity Disorder Blog

Updated! Please see Ann's Blog Roll in right sidebar by scrolling down for links to other People (approximately 100 bloggers) like us who currently (within 1 year) write about their Dissociative Identity in open Blogs. For additional support for Multiplicity our email is and our Twitter account (@aynetal3), which lists approximately 300 Multiples. Keep looking for others - they are OUT there!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Really Getting into the Mind Map AND New Grandma in the house!

Friday, October 17, 2014 @ 9:10 AM

Just another cute shot of our dog – this one was taken AFTER Lady and Max left – Dakota was pretty tired!

Good Morning, this is us.  It’s a Friday which seems a good day to write, and it seems like it’s been a while.  Hmm, let me check.  Yeeks!  We posted an article on the 8th and then a real one on the 5th.  SOOOO it seems like it’s been a GREAT while!  The one on the 8th was about the medications, and the one on the 5th was the last day we had all the dogs here for the week.  I’m not sure how well we’re going to do tracing back time.  It’s about two weeks for those not wanting to calculate.  Maybe we can be helped with an out from FB?

Let’s see first thing is that Austin is coming over tonight –

This is a little catch-up as to how he’s looking!  Laura said he’s about 7’ tall.  We’re figuring this is a bit of an exaggeration, but he certainly does look like he’s got long legs!

As a side note Thom has called from Japan again and seems to be doing well.  There’s of course a girl in the picture and he’s getting back into physical shape.  He seems to have let that go.  And, he’s coming into his annual review.  I think if he does good in this one – he’ll be good to go for an entire lifetime of security working for the government.  He did really well at 6 months and they’ve given him more work on an especially large project of moving one air base to his – think Okinawa?  I’m not sure now, but he’s doing exemplar J  That’s our Thom report.

Rich will be picking up Austin about 3:30 pm so we’re thinking they’ll be back here about 5 pm and I saw that Rich put out hamburgers.  SO all that’s good.  PLUS, I think he’s stopping off before picking up Austin to doing some grocery shopping.  I can never sing the praises of Rich well enough.  He’s my SUPER FRIEND!!!

Mike will be coming on Sunday to pick up Austin.  I wish we’d have something special to do with him, but not figuring on anything at the moment.  Hmm, just looking at the movies.  Only two we would see with him might be too light for him.  One would be the Book of Life and the other would be Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.  I wonder if either of those would interest him.  I’d prefer the second one, but we’ll have to run it past Rich first and then Austin.  It would be something to do on Saturday.  All the others are way too dark for me, or too mushy for the guys.

So that’s THIS Weekend!

Last weekend, we had the girls and their two dogs.  Those are always great weekends too.  We didn’t do anything, but Rich has been fishing the last two weekends, and Maury took our car again.  We’re going to need talking to him about the amount of gas he’s spending since it’s going on our card.  I agreed to having him fill it up before he left, because I’d run it down, but then after that, Rich said he filled it up again and there was $25 and then $31? Put in it … I did get it back with a full tank, but Rich is saying its too much.  I don’t know if those are the charges – then $25 was not filling it up because it was way low and $31 is fair – I don’t want to check the miles, but we will talk about it.

The girls did great though.  We did claim our space in front of the computer and for a little bit we were into watching Utopia – and saw the Utopia wedding with Isa.  It was nice, but during the rest of the weekend and since, it has seemed like too much noise.  That could change of course with the parts – just Isa had the TV on and it was … too much.  Ame was in their room a good amount of the time, but there wasn’t much left for her out here, so we could understand.  AND, we did get some reading time in with Isa – and there were showers and such.  I think it was a pretty normal weekend, but next weekend when they are back, I’m going to recommend Isa put in reading time on both days since they are here for the majority of Saturdays.  Last time she got 50% of her book done – we coaxed her with popcorn and a comfy setting, so we’ll see this time if she can do 50% on each day and get a whole book read.  She’s reading stories about fairies J

The dogs always get along well.  They seemed to play as normal and then fall to sleep wherever.  We’d gotten so many pictures the week before, we didn’t capture too much this weekend, but they are adoring to watch!

We had left the “Talking About Medicines Month” Article in the blog so that’s not new, but it was interesting to get a heads up on doing the article.  We’re out of practice writing so it took the majority of the day.  We are really bad about editing and editing.  We read it over by taking turns and it seems like everyone has a problem with something, and then we let it sit and our minds refresh and then there’s more editing. 

I know that there was a good part telling who we were, but I think for this time period of our life it was natural.  All of our emphasis has been going to figuring out stuff on the mind map – and we want it to stand for our “job,” so we wanted to explain it well – and then pivot that the medicines we took helped us to be able to do something like that – even though it sounds like we take a lot of medicine.  We can’t keep up the work all the time, but when we are working it’s something we’re proud of.  We’ll go into that more in a few moments.

Ok, ok … here is the BIG NEWS!  Cari and Joe DELIVERED!!!!  Alexander Terry Garvey was born on October 12, 2014 at 8 pounds 3.5 ounces and 19.5” tall.  YAY!!!  Cari and Joe had a lot of responses when they announced on Facebook – in the hundreds!  We got a chance to see and hold the new baby on Wednesday.  Rich and us brought Chinese dinner over there and we held the baby while Cari was eating … I think the kids needed a good meal because the first night home was rough.  It takes a lot to settle in with a new baby in the house.  Just so grateful that everything is ok and my oh my is he not the most wonderful!

The rest of the time seems to be an effort on working through the Mind map as stated above.  We had an eagerness to get back into doing something with the Google search and we had several appointments with Dr. Marvin where it was included.  Basically, with all the steps we do getting it in Pinterest, Learnist and more, we are not able to keep up with the mind map which is our primary.  So Dr. Marvin got us to let go of some of the details to get something down.  He stated we could go back and do something with SOME of the data later.  I know he’s right, but the obsessiveness in us has a hard time letting it go.  I think also because when people have commented it has been through Pinterest or Learnist so we don’t want to let that go – or the fact that it pushes the subject of “Multiple News” up to the forefront from many directions on Google.  Life’s about balance, though and we’re trying.

With this in mind, we have actually made it through several days of entry.  We’re just going for the initial posting though s it goes under the section for Google where evertything we pick falls in a category, like this …

Just click on picture to expand.  There are a LOT of sub-categories under this, but we’re not tying it into the other part of our project directly yet.  Maybe we’ll do that after some of the bulk information is added all around, though that might take a while.  We talked to Dr. Marvin about it and told him we decided to try and pull back from some of the “getting things out there,” because our data banks are so large and so few of the issues are covered yet.

Getting information in there for Google though was a big deal, and we’re going to have to plan on time to get in EACH day’s information along with a couple steps into the past.  One of the things we decided was that the work is so intense that we can switch up so we’re doing different things in the map – and no one thing gets overwhelming.

Another area now being covered by the map – is Multiple and dissociative books through Amazon.  Here, we’ll show you how that one is working out.

The first picture breaks down the books we’re looking at by Category, and then the books are broken down by 5 year increments of time, and then each individual book has certain information – from Amazon on what the book is about with three separate links back to Amazon.  It’s really their business if someone wants to buy a book.  We just want people to find the books more easily.  AND, really important is that anything within the description area (white) can be resource able – so that if I want to look up countertransference – AND it’s a big enough deal to include in description of book we’ll have access to it there and from any other source we’re using.  I’m really happy with this section.  Through DID we found about 250 books – not all of which are really in that category, but close and then under MPD, we’ve got in another 200 books. 

We were going along thinking that was a pretty big deal and added more legitimacy to the project, and then we were telling that and something to Astraea – maybe that we’d gotten all her material in there, but anyway, we asked if she had any other references.  She showed us to one, which was like GREAT!  A Database.  Unfortunately, it was an older one from 1975-2005.  We will still sort through their books to find journals to link-up.

From there we found another site that lists free journals and that one has holes too, but we’re going to go through it … any resource is a good resource.

BUT THEN!!!  We rediscover  We hadn’t realized the government was putting out a data base – though it made perfectly good sense …. Why shouldn’t resources be made available to the public.  We’ve just started the first 60 articles (some not chosen) out of 3166. It means that there are about 64 pages (50 entries each page) that we’ll have to go through.  We’re only on page 2, but we told Dr. Marvin it is REALLY doable.  The abstracts we’re looking at are immediate – Oct 2014 TO 1969.  It’s WONDERFUL.

But, then Dr. Marvin asked us if we were going to use the one less medical, but still psychology – which was Psychnet/Psychinfo.  So he sent us a link that we looked at last night when we got home.  We discovered it is put out by APA (American Psychological Association) and that they make it available only to their members.  Because I don’t have a Masters or Doctors in psychology, nor am I an active student, I can’t get membership … they did say you could look at it through registering, but I couldn’t see how to register without becoming a member.  It did say if you registered you could do 24 hours of having the service for $11.95. 

We sent a note to Dr Marvin and asked if he could help, but that we knew it could be a matter of ethics if he can’t get me a list of abstracts.  We haven’t heard back from him yet.

Oh My this IS wonderful … we were checking the email and we found that we had a copy of Psychiatric Times … I don’t know which of us discovered this previously, but it was probably a lead from Dr. Marvin.  I just checked and they had 43 links to DID and then under DID they had articles from 2014 back to 1996, and there seems to be about 75 articles and they are complete!  WOOHOO!!! Another resource.  I’m sure there will be many more to add. 

The main reason we work through the mind map is that we want to have a resource that can be accessed by professional minds or just the regular common person and they can all look at what individuals who ARE Multiple are thinking and the regular thinking people can have an idea as to what the professional people are doing.  The resource in itself – especially for the professional is just pointing a finger back to the original jumping off point.  We’re just using abstracts or beginning paragraphs.  We don’t want to steal the material, we just want to be invited to the parade!  If you had something “wrong” with you, or maybe something “novel” about yourself, why should it be locked away where only a few privileged can sort through THEIR details.  They get their information from us Jane and John Doe, but we can’t see the results of the work? 

To me this is one of the most criminal acts in our currect day situation.  Keeping information from people to keep them uneducated, and then while we are going through the throws of it, this institution is deciding whether or not you are valid – meaning are we or are we not real.  It’s like either we’re Multiples or have very active imaginations.  We also know that if we don’t have the money or insurance to seek help, we can’t even get the attention of people who do believe in us.  Then they – meaning psychiatrists and therapists write about our stories and again get paid for “treating us” whether or not they believe there is validity.

We found that a lot while we were looking at APA yesterday.  We couldn’t find ANYTHING on Multiplicity – where it was even stated as that or DID in the Title or Abstract.  We found only 2 resources and the first TOP resource was from a guy named Nicholas P. Spanos PhD who wrote Multiple Identities and False Memories: A Sociocognitive Perspective (1996).  Why would a book from 1996 even be LISTED as their top resource, unless that’s about the time that APA discontinued an interest.  

This is an Overview of the book

Multiple personality—the mysterious capture of the body by alien, unseen personalities, or "alters"—is the stuff of courtroom drama and the basis of riveting accounts like Sybil. It's also a staple in horror movies, and that, according to Nicholas Spanos, is where it should stay.

In Multiple Identities and False Memories, Spanos, one of the world's leading experts in the study of hypnosis, delivers a blistering rebuttal to long-held assumptions about multiple personality disorder (MPD) or dissociative identity disorder (DID).

Written in a forceful, unapologetic style, and bolstered by a thorough examination of the relevant science, this book argues that MDP, or DID, is not a legitimate psychiatric disorder but a cultural construct, one with roots in earlier beliefs about demonic possession and upheld today by misguided psychotherapists and their patients.

Multiple Identities is a vivid, scholarly statement on a subject that fascinates psychology professionals, sociologists, cultural critics, and lay readers alike.

This softcover edition is a re-release of the 1996 hardcover edition. 

Back again …  APA states it has 59 results for DID, but this is their top 10

·         1.Multiple Identities and False Memories: A Sociocognitive Perspective
This book forcefully argues that multiple personality disorder, or dissociative identity disorder, is not a true psychiatric disorder, but a cultural construct.
Book/Monograph (August 2001)
·         2.Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Girls and Women
These guidelines address psychological practice with women and girls of diverse ethnicities, social classes, sexual orientations, and life experiences who have encountered changes in education, health, work, reproductive and caregiving roles, and personal relationships.
Guidelines (December 2007)
·         3.Glossary of Psychological Terms
A glossary giving definitions of common psychological terminology.
Web Page
·         4.Course Adoption Books on Personality and Social Psychology
Provides a list of APA books in the personality and social psychology subject area available for course adoption.
Web Page
·         5.Casebook of Clinical Hypnosis
Anyone who wishes to learn about clinical hypnosis and expand their repertoire of clinical interventions will have much to gain from the case explorations contained in this volume.
Book/Monograph (June 1996)
·         6.Sample Academic Calendars for High School Psychology Courses
The sample pacing calendars provide teachers with examples of actual calendars from other psychology teachers like advanced placement classes, international baccalaureate classes, and regular classes, and courses can be one semester or year-long, block or regular schedule.
Web Page
·         7.Popular Books on Psychology 
Listing of popular books on psychology, covering methods, biopsychological, developmental, cognitive, and individual and group psychology.
Web Page
·         8.Coalition to Protect Research: Vote No on Neugebauer
Continue to support the scientific review process and vote no on any amendment that seeks to rescind funding from peer-reviewed research.
Web Page
·         9.Self-Injury
Dr. Wendy Lader demonstrates her brief analytic approach to working with clients who purposefully injure themselves.
Video (September 2006)
·         10.Executive Summary: Report of the APA Task Force on Trafficking of Women and Girls
This report, developed by the Task Force on Trafficking of Women and Girls, is a review including definitions, nature, prevalence, psychological, physical and social effects.
Summary (January 2014)

There is nothing really ON Dissociative Identity Disorder

AHHH found a few more things … by typing in the word “dissociative” I get 120 listings and they seem to be a little better.  And, then typing in dissociation, we get 195 listings, but if we type in TRAUMA, we get 2851 listings, so that seems to be what the association is doing – This is all at the APA American PSCHOLOGICAL Association.  I think we’re going to have to do a lot more with trauma, then initially expected, but it doesn’t have to be done right away – just putting it on our to-do list.

Anyway in the meantime I thought to look over at APA as to American PSYCHIATRIC Association – notice the difference between “psychological” and “psychiatric.”  Haven’t spent a lot of time over there, but when we put in our DID sort preference we got out about 17 listings which were mostly defunct or either copies of syllabus or newsearch programs for either way early or up to 2012 for their official meetings – it comes off as 300 some page manuals as to presentations being made for psychiatry conferences.  THIS also though could be useful in that it seems like new research being done – and it’s in the form of a PDF so it can be used with our Adobe “Find” function.  There’s not a lot though being done.  More again though is being done in trauma.  I don’t think that is going to go badly for DID or dissociative symptoms, but obviously there is tons to learn.

I hadn’t caught before the new part where they are saying either dissociation – like a verb – or dissociative disorder (without the identity).  Then it’s more like dissociative fugue, or dissociative NOS (Not otherwise specified), dissociative amnesia, dissociative spectrum, dissociative reaction or dissociative symptoms.  So like DID is part of that, but more interest in the process … think they are backing off the heat as to DID which of course our main interest.

Oh Lord is there so much to do … there’s good information that can be gained from those sites … Hmm, one more …


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The American Recall Center - Talk About Your Medicines Month with Ann Garvey

I/we have gladly agreed to do a blog post for Judy Cohen, Outreach Coordinator for the American Recall Center for “Talk about Your Medicines” Month.   The American Recall Center will also be participating in posting a blog entry talking about Medicines.  They will be discussing the drug Xarelto which among other things prevents heart attacks and strokes.  Unfortunately, the drug Xarelto has also been linked to cause internal bleeding.  The American Recall Center can be found at

As to our own entry, I have to admit, I don’t usually talk about medicine because the combination of medicines one might take is very unique for each individual and their various conditions of body and mind health and wellness.  But, I earnestly believe in transparency; in making our shared worlds better understood with the promise of higher social and intellectual engagement.

As to an introduction to me/us, we’re originally from Minnesota, but have lived in the Chicago area for about 34 years. We have been in a steady relationship with our boyfriend for twenty years, and we have three adult sons and as of October 12, 2014, we now have four grandchildren.  *Big Smile!!!*  We have a BA in Psychology from St. Mary’s University of MN and we’ve worked toward our Masters from two online Universities in both Educational Psychology and Adult Education specializing in e-learning, technology and design.  We’ve written a published book, “Ann’s Multiple World of Personality: Regular No Cream or Sugar,” (2010) and we have continued to write at least one blog for a life-span of 11 years. 

After completing our degree in psychology, we worked for twelve years in the field of Adult Intellectual Disabilities doing direct client moderating, programming, staff training, groups, and specializing in adult day-training accreditation.  Over the last three years, we have been on disability and have a service dog to help especially with anxiety.  For a hobby, we quilt and practice our “domestic Goddess” skills.  The household domestic skill-building keeps us grounded while satisfying our partner who still asks, “What do you do?!” 

In an effort to qualify our work and self-worth in doing the work, we'll update you on our created project that has developed over the last two years.  We've  been working on several social networking “news" networks concerning Multiples (Dissociative Identity Disorder - DID).  “The Multiplicity Project,” is in part the work that involves our mind map process.  The actual system of building a “mind map” is hosted by an online software company called, “The Brain.”  Click on the image below images for several pages out of thousands.

Our “Multiples’ mind map” is an attempt to curate relevant, ongoing and contemporary online searches of peoples' perspectives and views concerning the subject of Multiplicity.  The Brain software, in general, offers people a way to “organize and find everything the way 'you' think.” Our mind map in particular, assists first in ordering how our system “as being a Multiple” works.  Our current mind map offers an expanded view of how we work with our personal and professional actions and projects, responsibilities, goals, vision, values, and Life Learning/Sharing practices.  This method has developed from a sketch of David Allen’s work (2011).  He wrote, “Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity.”  

Secondarily, we utilize a very valuable book to the project.  Paul Dell and John O’Neil contribute to and edit a book called, “Dissociation and the Dissociative Disorders:  DSM-V and Beyond (2009).”  We are at the beginning stages of trying to comprehend the work, but it includes a collection 46 chapters by 65 of the world's leading experts in the field of Multiplicity.  It is more orientated from the perspective of the medical community, but it is a gem in that it provides an all-around analysis of what has been compiled in the professional field.  It is a goal that we will one day be able to tie together the experiences of real Multiples with the knowledge bank of studied professionals to better understand the dynamics of Multiplicity in a more holistic and integrative manner and as a contribution to the Multiple community.

Next, in the area of life prioritizing, the Multiple Project helps to drill down into other Multiples' experiences, or the experience of people who know or think they know about what Multiplicity is or means and this is the content that becomes (in light of Multiplicity) our current and especially online human-social condition.  We include definitions that occur within the field, make connections to Multiples who blog or Twitter, and trace thoughts of people affected by Multiplicity within mainstream culture, daily living, psychology, regulated practices, social interactions and other worldly domains. 

Lastly, the Multiple Project helps people understand the Multiples’ perspective in trying to understand better their own dissociation, individuation, integration, along with learning from their behaviors, thoughts and feelings. 

The interactive Multiples' mind map is at its primary stage, but can be found at  We are also a member of an online Multiples’ group, “Plural Activism” and utilize a plethora of information collected over a decade from a leader in the Multiple community by the name “Astraea” who hosts a web site for Multiples and others interested in Multiplicity.  Our regular blog site links to our collective social networks being used to collect Multiple "news" and can be found at

Given all of the above “tidbits” into our being, we have several diagnosis or conditions that affect the way we work, why we work, and how we work which gets us back to the subject at hand, the medicines that we take that support our life-giving. 

Firstly, we have dissociative identity (DID), severe depression, post-traumatic stress (PTSD) and tendencies involving anxiety and obsessiveness.  We have had the same psychiatrist prescribing psychiatric medicine for fifteen years, Dr. Robert Marvin, from University of Illinois – Chicago.  The medicines we are taking have been very stable and fine-tuned over time.  There is one caveat in that there is no medicine known to treat DID though there are medications that help some of the parts’ symptoms especially in calming and in helping us process more steadily and function more routinely. 

Secondly, in addition to mental illness, we have the physical conditions of degenerative arthritis in our back, stenosis and several disk problems making mobility very difficult.  We have diabetes 2, tendency toward ulcers, hypothyroidism and neuropathy, in part because we are morbidly obese.  We’ve been through gastric bypass surgery though we remain, as a whole, generously overweight.  We are seen for our medical conditions over the twelve years by Dr. Maria Albright, Family Medicine also from the University of Illinois – Chicago.

The following is a list of medicines we take other than over-the-counter arthritis pain medication and Vitamins B12, D, Calcium and a Multi-vitamin for women over 50.     

·         Risperdone
·         Bupropion
·         Escitalopram
·         Buspirone
·         Methylphenidate
·         Metformin
·         Glyburide
·         Pataoprazole
·         Levothyroxine

In general, people in Multiple circles can sometimes be very contentious as to taking psychiatric medicine as well as seeing therapists or being followed-up with therapy.  The people who are against medical models of medicine state that they don’t want to be controlled by substances or “professionals,” and see medicinal intervention as a personal threat to their freedoms, especially mental acuity.  In a sense, they don’t want to be “tamed to feel docile and imprisoned within themselves” much like the “character victims” in the movie, “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975).” It is also true that people can be Multiple and knowingly believe that they don’t have a medical condition that needs treatment "as to 'just' being a Multiple." Multiplicity does not equate disability or being disabled. 

Personally, I/we find that if we’re not on “our medicine,” we are less likely to be working our personal or professional goals and objectives and we feel “warbly” in our ability to be logical and communicative no matter which internal age group we are speaking from.  We do find there is a better chance at age regression when we are upset or emotional without medicine, as well as feeling less able to socialize and to leave our home environment.  Our depression is especially horrific in that it seems within 24 hours of being off anti-depressants we get very suicidal, which then prioritizes (for both ourselves and our team) the need to be working on emergency stabilization procedures rather than all the other things we could be doing that we consider as positively enabling through our projects and responsibilities.

Once our “system” (Multiplyingly speaking) is down, it takes a lot of patient energy to get everyone back to where we were before we lost our balance - especially in good faith and trust in ourselves as a system.  Not surprisingly, the medicine works best with "talking therapy" in that the brain and body absolutely need biological balancing, but one still needs a qualified human interaction to responsibly sort-out life processes and consequences (accountability), especially after being overwhelmed in one's journey (like being propelled forward through life and it's multitude of complications).  We can wholeheartedly say that having help is good; receiving professional help from people trained to care and think toward our humanity in an “other world” is ideal!

To summarize, we take medicine because we want to be our better selves.  Taking medicine does not make our “conditions” go away.  It doesn’t change the status of being a Multiple.  It does allow us better passage of mind and body to do the things that are important to us that are of our choosing and not that which is controlled by biological imbalances.  We may not have an ideal life though we’ll often argue that point; and, we may now be on disability, but being “disabled” does not keep us from wanting to achieve and contribute back to society.  We like to be proficient and able, which is more likely to happen with a good medicinal balance.  We’re not concerned with the need to be on medicine the rest of our life, because we know we could choose to step away from it at any given moment of time.  In stepping away from medicine, we’d have to be spending more of our time stabilizing on the day to day art of activities like taking showers, washing clothes, or simply getting off the couch.

As “one collective person” and which includes our support team of medical allies, friends and family – we’ve contributed input as to our ability to be in better self- or other-caring relationships and be able to produce more capably with medication.  It is because we choose a life of its highest quality that we choose that which assists us in best balancing our life.  The key is in not just living or getting by, but in making sense of one's life and being able to safely contribute to its purpose and the purposes of others.  For us this includes our work in being a thought leader through Multiplicity.  I believe in who we are and in what we do.

Ann M. Garvey,
October 8, 2014


Sunday, October 5, 2014

Friday - Last day of the week stayover with Maury's Dogs

Friday, October 03, 2014 @ 4:15 am

Good morning, Ahh that’s better … little too early in the day for 12 pitch on our type.  OK ok.  We’re ok, you’re ok … oh and we’re singing nursery rhymes in our head, and NO we don’t know how that happened.  When we were waking up this morning, we realized that we were writing a blog entry, or at least had been doing it in our sleep.  I don’t recall that happening before.  It’s ok.  Rich warned us before getting to the computer that the Internet was down.  It’s raining, so we’re not totally surprised, but would have preferred to see what I like to see right away.  Again, we were mentally set to blog so it isn’t a large problem, but really does hold me at my word. 

I got up about twenty minutes ago and did a few doggy things.  Rich let me know he was going soon and when I asked, he didn’t mind the company.  Actually, there is quite a bit of company in that we’ve been watching Maury’s dogs now for five days while he was out of town.  It’s been a good week with them here, though is actually some work involved.  But, it hasn’t been impossible.  We’re still having trouble with training Dakota, but he does understand the concept of outside … just that if we don’t come up with the idea first of getting him out there, he is willing to leave me a little surprise.  It’s annoying. 

With Maury’s dogs here, we’ve initialed a treat system so that if all THREE dogs go to the bathroom both ways in one outing – THEN I will treat.  I don’t think they understand my system and I really don’t want Dakota getting used to treats every time he does something that I expect of him, but for the time being – with ALL the possible trips out to the bathroom, we are exceedingly happy when they can all do what I want them to and another part of the treat system is that I can get the doggy treats, turn around and play the game, “Who’s sitting?”  Hehehe they are all getting REALLY smart about that.  It’s at a point of being more normal than not to turn around and EVERY one is already sitting.  Those are the dogs that get their milk bone first.  Good system.  We’re still having problems with Lady at the back door, but that’s gotten better too.  She is the one that gets over-excited at being able to go outside, and she has the toughest time waiting for her leash to be put on.  I’m pretty sure we’ve talked about the cable leash system, but as to the reminder, we have three out back and they DO get tangled, but again the situation isn’t impossible.

I like the bathroom system in most respect because it is something fairly easy for me to do if we keep on top of things.  Basically, the leads are long enough so that when I’m not using them all three are ready right outside by hanging them onto the porch rail – at an arm’s length WITHOUT getting caught up with the door.  Then I am able to pull them inside, and the order is always Lady, then Max, and then I have to call Dakota over because he’s a couple steps in back of the other two, and then when all three are hooked, we open the door and let them out to do what they can.  I haven’t come close to losing a dog yet!  Good system!  They like to stand at the top of the stairs and look out over their terrain first, but usually it’s not too long before they all head down the stairs, and they KNOW it’s to do their business.  We’ve been very good about picking up the litter so that stuff doesn’t get traipsed through the house and they seem happy with it too.  It must be natural for dogs, but they all seem to use the farthest length of their lead before dropping their poops.  SOOOO they like a nice neat work area J

Good boys and girls!  Usually, it is Max that lets me know when the group should be going out, and no … NOONE likes to go out by himself, though Dakota will soon be looking for his own spots to pee.  His tendency with his cousins is to follow them so that where they go, he goes.  I think it’s something to do with marking where if they go, and THEN he goes, he’s remarking the territory as still his.  We’re allowing that as new host rules.  AND, he’s for the most part been a very good host.  He shares his toys nicely and allows me to pet other dogs.  The easiest is sharing his petting time with Max, who likes to be pet in excess LIKE Dakota.  Lady tries to get in there sometimes, but it’s been a little tougher though I have gotten down the pet where two are being petted with the same hand at the same time … That’s not as enjoyable for me though.  Works in a pinch!

Lady will sometimes push her way through, but lately she’s been coming up to me and laying down when no one else is up on my lap.  And, then at those times she’s a really cozy fit!  Hmm, maybe I could show some pictures, I’ll back track and put them at the top of the page.  Just a few, right?!

There, I narrowed it down to my five favorite!  You might have noticed, we really feature the shots where all three of them are together, because it seems to represent something very important to me – in their camaraderie.  I really like how both dogs have seemed to accept Dakota into their fold.  There have been a few times that we’ve noticed Max letting Dakota get closer to him too.  That was a big goal of the week (since Monday) that they are more trustworthy of each other.  Max definitely is the lead dog where play is concerned because if the other two play too rough then it is he that will settle it down.  I would say that Lady takes the harder course with food in that she’s more needy than the other two and will if not watched carefully, take from the others – especially Dakota if she finishes before him which has been EVERY time even though they are both getting two cups.  Dakota likes to take a bite, and then puts his head up to crunch the pieces, and he will look around to see how everything else is going.  With Lady and Max – they are mostly staying close to the food with their mouths and will only periodically look up to check the others.  They don’t chew as long as Dakota will.  Lady and Dakota are pretty much even as to their playing abilities, though Lady Plays more, because she plays with both the other dogs, where again – play between Dakota and Max isn’t as normal.  They do seem to be getting in three ways with the tug of war toy so that’s cool, at least Dakota isn’t ALWAYS pushed out. I think that Lady is also the one who wants to play the longest.  There’s been a couple times where her desire to play has left me feeling a little bad for her because she will just walk around with the toy trying to put it in someone’s direction.  It’s like awe Lady!  Won’t anyone play with you?!

The guys at that time will likely either be laying down, or otherwise being petted by me.  It’s not abnormal to be petting Max and Dakota at the same time.  Thinking of it now – it’s usually Dakota with our right hand and Max toward our left.  Hmm, have to watch that and observe it its really true or just something less true.  I THINK it’s true. 

They are all letting me know that although they’ve been up with us that they didn’t really make it past the first half hour.  I hear gentle breathing noises behind me.  Sometimes though like earlier this morning, I looked around for them and found them all sleeping out in the sunroom with Dakota claiming his spot on the little couch out there.  It seems to be HIS area!

Dakota is more apt when tried to claim more of my space.  He’s worked hard for that position and I’m reminded he really does consider me his owner when it comes to lying down with me after everyone else has settled elsewhere, or when I have claimed space on the couch – WITH the dogs … yes there’s plenty of room for the four of us, well it’s always Dakota and us head to head.  I’m not sure if he’s watching out for me, or if he’s just guarding his spot, but we feel very comforted by the part that someone wants to be with us so much.  I think we share a close spot all the time and most of the time it’s because we don’t uninvited him or we’ll actually call him to be closer.  I consider it though one of the things he does for us as a service dog.  I had no idea he’d be so good with staying close to us, but it really is a treasure.

I know, I know … when is she going to get off the dog subjects? Hehehe.  Sorry, we have been around them A LOT this week and we’ve got a lot more to talk about.  We’re observers by nature, and we’ve loved watching the three of them together.  I don’t want to directly compare my kids with dogs, but it IS similar in that there are three of them and it’s what we used to do with the kids.  Pretty much you set yourself to be around, and then you observe all the relationships that are happening and how well people are getting along.  Its soooo much of a treat!  BUT, we can move on a little bit here, just to change things up and give you SOME diversity.  BUT, I’ll really have to think what else is happening.

AHA!  There you go … we can check off something new just happened.  We are using the 2013 version of Microsoft Word, and we’d seen a little notation down where the page had been numbered and we found it a special tool to help with the editing.  After we were done with the few edits – it said something like we were ok to go on – forgot the term, but it was phrased more like have a good time writing Hehehe.  Cool!  I’m pretty sure I could get a page count, but we are testing out a “BLOG POST” tab.  I couldn’t set it up formally, because we forgot a password, AND again our Internet is down, but I’m hoping for good things when it comes up again.  The real treat is if it catches the formatting as to paragraphs, and if it inserts pictures correctly without extra guidance. It looks like the only other button is one that is specifically for “PUBLISH.”  I HOPE it works!  It be a nice turn of cards.  Hmm, checked out the other layouts with “Read mode” and “Print layout” along with web layout that it’s in now.  None of those really put in page numbers.  Ahh the print layout will give me page such and such of the total.  It’s saying we’re on 10 of 10 right now, but part of that is because each of the pictures AND the title page each took a page – so in reality I’ve only written four pages, but I guess that is about normal for an hour of work?  Don’t know.

Hmm, it looks like it will give a page count on the bottom, but it won’t let me insert page numbers in a blog post.  The blog post format was something that happened back during the first stages of getting a new doc to be working on.  I don’t know if it would let me convert back, but that’s not something I want to do anyway.  I do like this print mode though as to being able to see two pages side by side, and it allows me to see the whole page.  I’m sure this feature was on the old MS Word, but I hadn’t used it before.  It’s really interesting to have access that I can SEE (print is big enough) the page before.  I usually don’t have much tying into as far as my old thoughts just written out.  Hehe maybe that would get irritating after a while.  You know, live in the present!?

Hmm, that is interesting.  We just turned to the next page and instead of giving me a side by side version, it gave me like two eyes and a mouth version – ok, you’d have to be Ann to understand it, maybe I’ll give you a picture of it in a second.  Basically, though it is allowing me to see the previous two pages and it is also letting me see the third immediate page I’m typing on, except the third page is centered which is very comfortable.  I don’t think I ever liked starting a page where I have to be typing WAY to the left on a big open screen.  Hmm, this is very pleasant!

Here this is a picture of what we’re seeing.

See – two eyes and a mouth! 

Now that I’m 2/3rds a page down, we are getting the side by side version.  I’m not sure if it is because we’re far enough down, or it was natural when adding a picture.  No big deal really, but it is fun having a new Word.

Hmm, we could talk about that! Not this last weekend, but the one before that, Cari and Joe stopped out WITH Ramsey.  We had wanted them all to meet Dakota AND we’d missed Cari’s baby shower and had wanted time to present them with our few things.  But, the funny part was … and now we’re thinking we talked about this in a previous entry, but we shared our copy of Adobe with him, and he shared his copy of Microsoft 365 with us.  It was a good trade.  In the middle of things, we did see a copy of something animated, and we’re thinking that is something that happened due to the Adobe flash program.  We were soooo excited that Joe was getting the tools although we hadn’t thought of it before, it just came as a natural idea after he’d seen the programming.  Basically, he had used adobe before when he was a kid while I was in MN, and so he could go back and understand the value of the programs.  I loved sharing something of value with him – any of our kids really!  But, this time it was his turn.  AND, then as the opposite reaction – he could do the same although neither of us had thought that before either, but we’re talking about him sharing this Word and the other MS programs.  Truly a gift!

I don’t think Maury was to be left undone – though it came up in a totally different context, but he shared this week too.  When he’d dropped off the dogs on Monday, he stayed for a couple of hours, and he thought I wouldn’t know anything about it, but he showed us an app he was sharing with Ame.  And, it was?  Of all the things it could have been, he had fallen into interest – particularly when home on medical leave – the “” experience.  I just laughed and laughed and told him that Rich and we were watching it too.  Of all the reality shows out there that I’d happen to have fallen for the same one as one of my kids – it’s just a really funny feeling.  So know we’re sharing that and I’ve got 24-7 access to that – WHEN my Internet is working.

Hmm, just took a look and saw that my TweetDeck had gone out about 10 hours ago – all the way across all my lists.  I am wondering now if having left on my feed bounced me off line – SOOOO we’re going to save and shut down and reboot to see if that corrects the Internet.  It’s about 5:30 am now and it’s no longer raining, but if it was a problem with the company, thinking they are not up yet to fix it.  BUT, we better make sure it’s not just our problem – or we’ll be waiting here for something we could have corrected.  OK, brb.

Shoot, we’re back and the Internet is still down.  Fortunately, it’s a weekday – so hopefully soon someone is in the office and it will be an automatic fix.  Now that we’ve got Maury’s Utopia “fix” we would like for it to be working!

AHA!  We did a hard reset – I think that’s what it is … where you unplug the Internet cord and then plugged it in again AND WALLAH!  She’s up and running!  Have to remember to do that sooner next time!

We’re back again... it is now about 10:30 am and several things have happened.  Wow!  It’s been 5 hours since we were here!  First thing is that we got very tired and went back to sleep for quite a while.  We’ve had a couple of rounds with the dogs as to coming in and out, and they have of course been fed and we’ve talked to Linda, and then took our shower and got dressed and maybe messed around on the computer a little bit.  Oh and we talked to Maury. Ok this is important, but we turned on Utopia … a couple of the people are fishing for blue gill off the dock.  AHA!  Now people are starting to gather or wake up at the barn, because Aaron is cooking.  Boy … I could lose another whole day like this.  Probably have lost two days adding all the bit of time together.  Not sure if we want to or don’t want to get into this, but Maury gave us the tools and now we are making a choice not to turn it off.  Maybe if we can focus mostly on the writing and just leave the rest in the background.  I do feel a sense of confidence being in on what’s happening at Utopia.  I’m sure that’s how they real in the revenue *sigh*
As to Maury – we expect him in about an hour or two.  I think they are finishing up on his car, but he didn’t ask them how much.  Shoot that wasn’t a good call.  Maury just called from the garage of his girlfriend and said the battery is dead.  He couldn’t recall his place and after calling Honda we found we didn’t have their Honda Care coverage.  We gave Maury our credit card and he is going to have to call a tow truck for a jump.

Hmm, back.  It’s now about 1:30 pm and we’ve gotten a few more things done.  We still have Utopia in the background, but we went out with the dogs a couple times, picked up the poops AND brought them for another ride around the block.  They really enjoyed it, but at the end both Max and Lady were hard to manage.  Max wanted to stop and Lady wanted to pull into the yard.  We did the best we could and got them back inside.  I should have had them out yesterday, because I think today they fell through on some of the skills they’d built.  Most the dogs around the block were inside, though still barking when we passed and the one place at the opposite end of the block had their two dogs out on a post so got up and barked at us each of the three times we passed.  Dakota was great, but Max really wanted to go.  We had to stop and calm him down … for Lady today – there were times she wasn’t really pulling and that was great.  It would take regular walks to get it right.  I’m sure that Maury will have other times we can sit and we’ll try it again then.  I don’t know if he’s going to want to try it.  I was thinking that he could take Dakota the first time and then try it with his dogs.  That give him a chance to get used to the scooter and how it should be, and then he would naturally have the strength to handle his dogs pulling part.  I think it would be a good thing for him to get used to while he’s here.  The only part though is that I don’t want the dogs stopping to go to the bathroom.  We were very careful to get the dogs outside before the walk and after the walk.  I think they are doing really good.

We are still having problems with Dakota in the bathroom part.  We might have started that discussion before.  I’m not sure … maybe it was talked about with Linda.  Not sure.  We’ll let it pass this time.

Back to the Utopia … we really like the new guy – he’s a farmer philosopher who’s talking to the one guy that goes with Hex about the conflicts in the east … His main thing is to have real conversations instead of the small talk.  And, he added the part where people ask silly questions because they want attention and to start a dialogue.  The other guy that this one is competing with – is a ditzy woman who is a housewife a follower with no skills … and she like has other people do stuff for her.  She’s of no value in the group other than she has big artificial breasts and that might be good for one of the guys, but he would like – the contractor one, be like – ok, she’d be good once in the sack and he would then want to get out of the relationship.  Everyone likes the philosopher … he’s like been around the world, and wear’s deer skin clothing that he made himself.  I like it that he’s getting in relationships with the guys and the girls, and then as another fluke – he’s assisted in the births of several baby’s and so would be a good person to have around for Amanda who is due in about 8 weeks.

That was interesting too.  There was a meeting with Amanda and her doctor yesterday that we caught and we really enjoyed that.  The doctor did a really good evaluation and I’m glad that we had a chance to hear it.  There are other things that are going around this week like Red left and we were REALLY happy about that.  We didn’t catch the part about how it happened, but just glad for the release in conflict - No one has had an argument since.  I know this sounds silly to have a conversation on a reality show, but we really are interested in the show.  I don’t know how it is different from other reality, but I’m thinking there is less competition and only one person gets turned out a month so it’s not an every week event. I think after that event, then they take a vote between two new people like this woman and deer skin guy, but there won’t be any contest … the guys just interesting AND with skills.  He’s weird, but in a good way.  The other lady – she drives me crazy with her lack of listening skills although she seems to want to get in conversation and “help” though she complains about helping.  Maybe it’s legit, but sometimes you got to hold back.

I like this one – the guy he doesn’t talk about others except in a learning mode of how to learn from people relationships. 

We asked Maury and he accepted going out for dinner tonight.  I don’t think he had any real plans though the rest of the weekend/week sound busy.  I’m not sure where to go.  Rich left us $40 but then we remembered we had another $20 on the dryer.  I don’t want to go out too fancy for the expense, but don’t want to go to a diner either.  Maybe with the new found money, we can go the train restaurant.  I don’t think we’ve ever been there, and then we can have a couple Bloody Mary’s WOOHOO!!!!  I think we could do an earlier dinner, not sure how the later meal time is – we usually go off hours when it’s not too busy … I know we brought Dakota with us once, so maybe we could do it again … shoot forgot about that.  Still have Dakota to be concerned with.  I would want of course to bring him with, but we’re a little intimidated because he hasn’t been out in such a long time.  Plus, we’re already leaving the other two dogs behind. 

I’ll have to think about that some more. 

I did do some picking up in that I cleared the living room, did the dishes and counters and got the folded clothes put away.  The dogs had another really nice play time and they are all zonked now.  They are all out in the sunroom.  I think Maury could be by anytime now.  It’s about 2 pm.  He said that he got someone to start my car for about $65 … but, that they wouldn’t take the credit card so I think he went to the bank and got some money from his bank.  I don’t think he’s got much in there, but we’ll see.  Hmm, that’s an option too!  Maybe we’ll talk to him and let him know if he’d rather stay in for dinner and have Rich’s chili with me, then he can take the money that we would have spent on dinner.  I think that might really be the better option.  I know that Rich is going to say that the money is for me, but if I choose to give the money for one of my kids that IS my best option. 

I respect Maury is having difficulties making ends meet, but that he got in a very low cost vacation and is deepening the relationship with his friend.  Life doesn’t stop just because money is tight.  As long as he’s honest in the relationship about it.  We’ve probably spoken too much so we’re going to back out now, but I really do have a lot of pride in Maury and his brothers.  They each like us have their good and less good qualities, but for the greater part, they are my kids and I love them to pieces.  Don’t think it’s up to me to persuade them with my choices – they are very independent.

I do like that I had a chance to take Maury’s dogs while he’s been gone.  All around it has been a good experience and for not only me but all three dogs – it’s been a good choice.  They’ve each had such a good time.  Minimal damage was done and it wasn’t really hard to take care of the bathroom needs, though we wish that Dakota wouldn’t have had any accidents.  That’s not Maury’s dogs’ problem, it was mine and Dakota.  I really like Maury’s dogs and how well they play with Dakota.  They’ve really accepted each other as part of the same pack. 

There is a little extra plus in that even though we’re trying to treat the dogs all equally, there are times too when Dakota or me has asked each other for our own special time, and I think that’s helped him a lot – to think there is still an anchor on our relationship and he’s not getting lesser because he’s sharing me with others.  I can see when he gets tired and needs special time, but as well I am excited to see Maury’s dogs meet with him and how he gives them special time as his dogs.  I don’t think ANYone pets dogs as much as me, but that’s kinda my own thing … petting them gets me good solid feelings of being connected and that feels really good – without having to go way out in the stream on others.

Hmm, Dakota is up and now the other dogs are … I wonder what they are seeing.  Hmm, they are blowing it off and just changing position so definitely not Maury yet.  Whoops there’s a few barks from Lady!


After Maury and his dogs left, Dakota got moody :(