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Life of (with) Pi

We’ve traced the barks.  They’re coming from inside the house!!!!

This is not going to become a blog about a dog but I feel I must explain.

I really lucked out with Pi (somehow it auto-corrected last time – his real name is Pi).

The shelter said he was untrained but either they were wrong or he’s the most considerate animal ever.  He doesn’t beg for food, he doesn’t eat stuff off the floor, he doesn’t chew on furniture.  He just crawls in your lap and curls up in a little ball and naps.

In short, he’s kind of a dream.

There is just one small problem.

Poor little guy has some very understandable abandonment and separation anxieties.  And he wants to be near me all the time.


It’s like having a small, adorable stalker (who snores)

He follows me everywhere:

At my desk right now

Doing laundry

Any bathroom activity, including showering – he just pushes the door open and waits.

(which  I guess is only fair  since I watch him when he does his business)

And if I stand still too long when doing photos for this blog post?

This is fine.  I’m totally down with being unquestioningly adored (it just feels right!).

But I can’t leave the house.

If I leave the house (or even the room and he can’t follow) my sweet, placid, trouble free dog goes full blown Glenn Close at her bunny boiling, I-WILL-NOT-BE-IGNORED-DAVID!!!!!! Fatal Attraction peak.

It’s heartbreaking, a little scary and VERY limiting.

So, since I can’t even go to the garage for more than a few minutes I don’t have anything very detailed to share this week.

I did get a few “almost-done” things “totally-done.”

Finished up my biggest sign yet. It’s for a local teacher’s classroom.

This sucker is one foot high and about 4 ft long when laid out.

I’m also gearing up for the one of my favorite shows -the Jackalope Artisan Fair is in Pasadena next weekend.  I want to have some new trays and since I liked the how the Camera Shop sign came out I thought I’d try it in tray form.  I did the same process as before and  just used a bunch of cut-to-fit, painted pieces of thin scrap wood.

I put together a vintage bicycle tray that I thought might be a fun gift for someone.

And finished up my latest HOME sign for a customer in Fort Worth Texas

I’m hopeful that, this week, I’ll be able to convince Ms. Close that it will all be all right and that I guarantee I will return every time (we actually are making progress).

Until then it’s build up for Jackalope and, possibly some very scratched up doors.

About cheltenhamroad

I’ve been surrounded by amazingly creative people my whole life. My mom can, and does, make anything. The family has on occasion speculated that she just whipped up my dad one day when she discovered some left over fabric and stuffing. My three sisters have mad skills ranging from needlework to cooking to out and out ART. My father’s desk when I was growing up had a model train set going around it, oh, and he made that desk-from scratch. I’m the youngest and, as you can imagine, it’s a hard series of acts to follow. Truth be told, I’ve spent many, many years suppressing the creative instincts I learned at home. But I realized (rather late in life) that few things bring me more joy than making and creating. For the longest time when I went to stores I didn’t think, “I want that” I thought, “I can make that.” And, with a deep breath and a leap, I’ve started on a very new, kinda scary path. I’ve given up my steady, dependable (dull!) corporate life to spend my days happily humming away in my garage designing, creating, painting, decoupaging and sawing and, since this blog will be an honest take on things, there is also a fair amount of tripping, spilling and swearing. Through this blog I hope to share with you the struggles and (hopefully) triumphs of a very non-businessy business person. I also hope to make this blog a resource for people who like to work with their hands and who are, like me, always looking at things and thinking “I could make that!” I’ve lived many places since I left Cheltenham Road; I currently live in Los Angeles California. So, with this preamble- Welcome to Cheltenham Road! Please come on over and make yourself comfortable – the place is always open.

22 responses »

  1. He is adorable. As you probably know… the best way to deal with the separation anxiety is to gradually increase your time away from him. Even if you have to stand outside the door for five minutes and then come in and pet him and leave again in an hour or two. Lots of work but will pay off. Your new creations are beautiful!

  2. Senor Squirrel, the internet is a WONDERFUL place to find information and then cull out what you want. I also am a huge fan of the dog trainer, Cesar Milan. I guess some people don’t like some of his techniques, but like any advice, the listener/learner can choose what to take on.
    That said, Pi is adorable. I love all animals and have found, as I have aged, that I prefer the mellowness of cats compared to dogs. Not saying I don’t like dogs, but they have their challenges and seperation anxiety is one of them. Also, frankly, they are idiots when it comes to bathroom learning, compared to cats.However, one of my cats is the destroyer of funiture, even though he has access to many different types of scratching posts. But I digress…pups are like children and they can be trained, the challenge is on you to be consistent. Good luck, I know you both will work this out.

    • oh trust me I’ve been scouring the net about everything from training to eating. Honestly, I wish I knew more about his past because I haven’t needed to “train” him about anything. He doesn’t even beg food. And you’ll like him, he’s SUPER mellow. cat-like mellow.

  3. Jo Ann Bastanjoo

    I agree that gradual separations and rewarded returns are the way to go. Just vocal rewards count–doesn’t always have to be a treat. If all else fails, call in a trainer. We confined our Sophie in a large wire pen initially when we were gone. That was soon taken down and now she does fine. We always “tell” her where we are going and how long we’ll be gone and to be a good girl! LOL, but it seems to work! Good Luck with the training–it’s all a part of getting to know one another.

  4. With my seperation anxious dog, I put her in her travel crate whenever I was gone and that seemed to comfort her rather than being alone in the big scary house. She goes to sleep and we come home to a rested rather than anxious dog.

  5. Ok, honestly, I didn’t see this post before commenting on the last one. Poor Pi, bless his little heart. Can you take him on a leash and just let him tag along with you? I have not had a dog in my adult years (more of a cat person), so I have no training advice, but I feel bad for the sweetie. As you can tell, I probably wouldn’t be the best “new parent.” Good luck! Oh, and that Los Angeles sign is awesome!

  6. Jo Ann Bastanjoo

    I should also have added that patience is totally worth it and will be rewarded! And if Pi gets along with people and if the shows you go to allow dogs, he will be a great companion and will draw folks to your booth! It’s not exploitation if he enjoys the outing!

  7. He sounds adorable. But don’t forget what happened to Tom Hanks house when he left Houch alone.

  8. I just want to hug Pi.

    Fabulous job on the signs and trays as always.


  9. My daughter’s dog that just passed away a few months ago was like that. He had been abandoned when we got him, and always had separation issues. He just wanted to be with people constantly.

    I love all your new projects, as always.

    • Aw I’m sorry about your daughter’s dog. Your heart really goes out to those little guys. My friend had an enormous golden retriever that had been abandoned and anytime you sat down in a room Lucky would come up, sit next to you and just put one paw on your knee – just to make sure you stayed. Killed me every time.

  10. Can’t wait to meet him! I hear there’s a dog-friendly Starbucks not far from you…

  11. I LOVE PI! He’s a cutie!! There’s nothing like a dog . . . I’ve had one of my own since I was 25 and always will 😀

  12. And then there’s the other type of dog… the rescue that came to live with me. He showed up wearing a bowler, ascot and smoking a briar pipe. He carefully inspected the house making demands while I trailed behind taking notes on the clipboard and making promises that things would change to his liking immediately. He spotted the dog bed, raised an eyebrow and looked down his nose at me. Message received. A mound of additional pillows were added to my side of the bed… or shall I say his side of the bed where I am permitted to curl up at night. He agreed to give this relationship a test drive as long as I understood that if it didn’t work out he’d do his best to find a suitable home for me. Good news. He kept me.

  13. He’s so adorable!!! I hope things get easier with the shadowing. I’m sure he’ll get more comfortable and reassured over time.

    Not that you need any more busyness (or business?) but are you taking any custom orders right now? Our friends just because citizens and I’d love to get them a USA-themed “HOME” sign, if that’s even a thing.


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