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Kansas City MO 64131





Cindy Maddera

My heart is sad for Las Vegas. I have so many crazy happy memories of that place. I was married there! I got my first tattoo in Vegas. Chris and I shared a 99 cent half pound hot dog. We drank a fishbowl sized alcoholic beverage that smoked with dry ice. We played bingo with a bunch of old ladies and had a wonderful time. I'm just sick about the mass shooting that took place there last night and like many of us, I'm shocked and saddened that this is now a common occurrence in this country. We've made zero headway in preventing mass shootings. Shame on us and this government. But that is all I'm going to say about any of it. Instead, I'll turn my focus and maybe your's to something lighter and joyful. Something to take our minds off of tragedy. 

Josephine's toys consists of stuffed animals that the Cabbage has won from a crane game, a female park ranger doll (also stolen from the Cabbage) and some small stuffed animals I got as swag from a science conference. She does have a fox and a little tube shaped dog that are actual pet store dog toys, but Josephine prefers the stuffed animals she's stolen from the Cabbage. I feel real bad for the park ranger doll. She's currently laying naked somewhere in the backyard. Josephine was real attached to a blob shaped stuffed creature that was supposed to represent an antibody. Antibody Annie was one of the swag items I brought home from ASCB last year. She had red troll doll like hair that Josephine would groom. Eventually Antibody Annie lost both of her arms and then last week I stepped out into the living room to see her bleeding stuffing out all over the living room floor. 

We had a small funeral for Antibody Annie. It was not the first stuffed animal funeral that we've had to have this year. Josephine's lost a few toys. One of those toys, we just blatantly took away from her. The little red tube dog has a squeaker and Josephine would sit just out of reach and just chew on the squeaker. Squeak squeak squeak. She really liked to do this while we were trying to watch something on TV. Michael tried to dismantle the squeaker, but it still squeaks. The odd thing is, she has other toys with squeakers, but that is the only one she does this with. It is not even her go-to toy. She would much rather have you throw her knobby ball that has unpredictable landings. That poor ball is barely hanging on. It got run over by the lawn mower and has a big crack down one side. I tried finding a replacement and the closest thing I found was a spiky ball. She will roll her eyes and go after it if you throw it, but it's not her favorite. This is unfortunate, because knobby ball is not going to last much longer. 

I was in Target on Saturday and I remembered Josephine's most recent loss. I thought that maybe it was time I bought her a new toy. Our target didn't have a large selection to choose from, but I did find this really cute alligator. The tag advertised that it squeaked at a level only dogs could hear and I was all "SOLD!" When I got home, I removed the tags and then handed it over to Josephine. She has a tendency to take all of her toys outside and then bring them back in once they've been rain soaked and crusty with dirt. So before I let go, I looked at her and said "let's keep this one inside." She went straight to her dog door with it. I then watched from the kitchen window as she took the alligator on a tour of the back yard. She shook him around just behind the house. Then she walked him over to the back corner where she sometimes watches the cat. Josephine introduced the alligator to the chickens and then she showed him the fire pit before bringing the alligator back inside.

We've named him Alfred and the two of them have been inseparable ever since. Actually, I've never seen her take to a toy as much as she has with Alfred. It's really very sweet.