Last night I didn't sleep well, because thoughts about all the details of my next day kept floating over me. I 've been trying to clean up the dog house, I mean, my apartment, for my mom's visit after Thanksgiving. I had cleaned the downstairs the night before, but by the next morning, the dog toys and chewed pieces of things were all over the floor again.

And then, I found a flea on Mickey's foot. I've flea shampooed her to the point she could have brain damage, bathed her in dishsoap, given her $51 Frontline, flea bombed my house, sprinkled magic white flea powder on all the floors, cleaned the bedding, have trash-bagged laundry, misted the furniture and curtains, sprayed the backyard with flea killer, and low and behold, a stinking flea! I actually caught it, and then the little sucker (literally) jumped off into oblivion somewhere to multiply, I assume.

I'm afraid my car might have fleas. I haven't seen one yet, but I know it's probably out there lurking. And I'll probably take them on my Thanksgiving road trip--spreading fleas throughout the Confederacy.

My boss told me that when he was young there dog had fleas, and when they returned from vacation, fleas coated their legs when they walked in the house. That thought has really freaked me out.

Mickey and I took our last long neighborhood walk today. I walk her about a mile down to a park and let her run around a tennis court on some mornings. She is a dog that just needs to run. I let her run with her leash attached for a minute, and she totally flopped and ate it on the grass because her feet ran faster than her body. She's a bit goofy.

Then, on the walk back home, I finally let her go sniff noses with the Airedale and Border Collie that always go nuts when we walk by their fence. When we got close to the driveway gate, the Airedale started attacking its Border Collie sister, then they chilled. The fence has a corner with some spacing in it, and Mickey kept looking back with her ear perked and the Border Collie with the blue eyes looked at her wistfully as if to say, "Please, get me away from this crazy dog! I want to be with you!"

I think that Border Collies feel a connection and immediately like each other. Last week, Mickey met a Border Collie at the dog park, and I promise, they both did a brief syncronized swimming routine. They both ran around the blue dog pond, and then made eye contact at each other at across the pond, swam to the middle, and did a turn facing each other. Mickey is the Esther Williams of the dog park, but I never expected her to have a routine down with another dog.

Today work ends early, so I'll rush around doing some errands, pack up the car, and head out to our first stop in Jackson, Mississippi. Then, Thanksgiving Day, we'll head out to Louisville and go meet Marissa, Emily, and Paws.

I'm going to try to document as much as I can of the adventure, so stay tuned.

Thanks so much for reading my blog. And have a safe and thankful Thanksgiving. God bless.

Maybe I've told this story before, but I'm telling it again.

For about a year, I had been hankering for dog. I had dogsat everyone else's dog in town -- co-workers and friends and a few strangers -- so I decided it was time to get my own dog. My childhood pet that lived at my parent's house died about nine years ago, and I missed having a dog.

I started checking out dogs online, and even had a one-on-one meeting with some, but none seemed to fit what I was looking for. I wanted a dog small enough to live with in my tiny two bedroom/one bath, but big enough to do dog things like run at the park. And I wanted one that didn't have a weird underbite or strange skin condition--like some of the dogs had. Also, the dog needed to be non-barky and genuinely happy.

Some things happened in life which left me a bit sad--a young co-worker was killed in a car wreck, my best Houston-based friend moved to New Jersey, and then, one Sunday morning, I got the news that my nieces' beloved dog, Sparky, had been hit by a car. On the day that day, I decided, I'm getting a happy dog--today.

I went to a local pet adoption center and met one dog that was especially friendly with a great waggy-wag tail. I took the dog for an attempted walk, and she actually obeyed the command to stop. She did freak me out a bit when she peed on the concrete, but I was told she was recently potty-trained. She was a big bigger than what I was looking for, but I didn't want to see that happy dog go back into her crate, and then maybe meet her maker before her time, so I took her home.

My house was totally not ready for a dog, but I did the best I could and made a quick stop to PetCo to begin my journey of spending half my paycheck there.

I didn't let my nieces know for a week that I had gotten a dog because I didn't want to remind them about dogs since their own dog had died. A few weeks passed, and then my sister's family began to search for a new pup to befriend their remaining dog, Paws, who was lonely since Sparky was gone.

In three different scenarios, the new dog adoption fell through, so my sister asked me what I thought about the girls taking my new dog since Mickey had turned out to be quite a bit too much for my apartment and lifestyle. So I said okay, but I wanted to wait until Thanksgiving to drive her to Kentucky. I was worried about her flying in the dungeon of the plane. And I thought that would give me significant time to get over my doggie-fever.

So, on Wednesday, Mickey the Dog and I will begin our journey to her new home and my old home. I am so excited to see the look on my nieces' face when I bring them Mickey. I'm not excited to see my own face as I drive 15 hours with a dog.

Mickey and I have had some sweet times, but I know that God has positioned me to be more devoted to the high school students and friends around me, than my dog. I will miss her waggy-wag tail and her hugs terribly, but I am so excited that she will have a real yard to run in and a new dog pal and some sweet dog-loving girls to keep her busy.

The deal is also that I get her back when they go to college. So, by then, hopefully she will be old and lazy like I will be at that time, too. What is a bit frustrating is that it kind of feels a bit like my dog is getting married before me. Oh well. May she and Paws live Happily Ever After.

I don't have TOM's shoes yet, but I will get some soon.

When I was blessed by going to Africa, it struck me for the first time that people didn't have shoes! I have tons of shoes. Shoes to go with particular outfits. Shoes that sparkle, and shoes that I got for their squishyness.

Also, if you know the founder of TOM's shoes, please give him my number and tell him that I think he is super amazing and super cute.

Oh, and buy some TOM's shoes, or tell me about yours.

Halloween came and went. I succeeded in squeezing into my cheerleading uniform circa 1993. It felt so good to be in my uniform again and brought back a lot of memories.

I bet that's what the superhero felt like on the Incredibles when he put back on his super suit. My body was a bit sad, because wearing the uniform made it wish to do backflips and toe touches, but knew if it was attempted, I would have to visit the ER.

I tried to vamp up my outfit a bit instead of just being a 34 year old that wanted to wear her cheerleader uniform, so I attempted to make a vampire bite on my neck. One of the teeth marks kept rubbing off, so then I kept getting questions about the love bite on my neck--not the look I was going for!

The gent pictured with me is Tom the Sheik. He's just Halloween eye candy for my blog--not a beau. The dude claims to have eight wives! I know better than that!