calming the nervous system

livingroom-deeDog obedience classes, they say for good reason, are really ‘human companion classes’. Most of what we learn is how WE should behave so that the dog understands us and feels safe. Often the instruction applies across the board. My recent favorite: “Be Follow-Worthy”.

How is one ‘follow-worthy’?  “Keep your chest open. Face forward. Pay attention.”

That sounds like life advice, pure and simple. But not so simple, right? All those Buddhist and New Age books on my shelf basically saying that: pay attention.
christmascactus-cafecurtainAlso this: guard dogs must not be allowed to patrol inside the house. When a huge barking episode happens, it can take the dog’s nervous system up to 24 hours to recover. Unfortunately for now, that means keeping the curtains closed. Today I don’t mind so much because (hold your hats!): it’s snowing!! But when the light is rich and warm, it IS a sacrifice.

Another one. More food for thought.

cabin-quilt-pattern-deemallonOn a complete other note, as you know, I am making a log cabin quilt for C, and piecing up small ‘refuse’ scraps as I go —  which are already adding up to another quilt. Meanwhile, in my head (and now on paper and computer), I design yet a third. It was good to enjoy Photoshop Elements 11 for a change!!


Using the bucket feature, I was able to fill in the patchwork areas to define cabins, trees, and moons. Then for variations, I slid the color bar around and also, for a couple, used filters (sometimes more than one). I liked watching the shapes become more and more abstract.

cutoutfilterfrescofilter notepaper purples seafoamochreLook how the upper right moon turned into a star!

Doodling calms the nervous system, too.

7 thoughts on “calming the nervous system

  1. Patricia

    looks like way too much fun…photoshop…and interesting comment about barking dogs and recovery time. Hope barks hysterically at every thing moving. hmmmm.

    1. deemallon

      I wouldn’t mind if Finn barked so much if he weren’t so very, very nervous when we are outside. It helps to know that maybe his nervous system (until this week) wasn’t even getting to a baseline. Is Hope a sociable dog on the leash?

  2. Diane Hartmus

    I sympathize on keeping the curtains closed. Our cat, adopted last year, climbs screens. Nothing we tried would stop her. As most of my windows have interior screens, I have had to remove them and can no longer open the windows when the weather gets warm. I miss that so much. (but will never declaw her!)

      1. Diane Hartmus

        She is an indoor cat and full of mischief. Yes–what we do. She has pretty much totally rearranged every room in my house. Can’t leave anything on a counter–she pushes it off, apparently just to watch it fall (think a kid in the “learning about gravity” stage). No more fresh flowers or plants–she knocks them over and/or eats them. Had to hang our Christmas ornaments from garland hung above our windows this year (she climbs the Christmas tree)….no drapes, she climbs them. The list goes on.
        But we love her. It is a testament to the power of love I suppose.
        Finn is very cute–I love reading about your “adventures” in training. He is a lucky dog to have found you and Ken.

        1. deemallon

          wow, that’s quite a list of accommodations… ours is pretty long right now too… nothing on mudroom hooks, all food immediately away AS WELL AS the knives used to serve, shoes HAVE TO be put away, lower level book cases blocked (he must like the glue in the spines!)….

  3. saskia

    imagine the immaculate homes we’ld all live in without them…….nope, can’t be done, once they’re in, they’re in!
    a good lesson in ‘letting go’, a,lot like raising the boys, although I do believe our Django is making a much bigger effort at trying to please us – albeit in his canine manner of offering chewed up bits of whatever –


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