Secret caves and valium naps. That’s all you need to know.
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This is Joy & Claire Episode 123: A Valium Nap
Episode Date: April 21, 2022
Transcription Completed: May 16, 2022
Audio Length: 51:42 minutes
Joy: Hey guys, this is Joy.
Claire: And this is Claire.
Joy: Welcome to another week of the show, and happy Easter. Did you have a great Easter?
Claire: Happy Easter.
Joy: It’s tomorrow. We’re recording this on the day before Easter, but we hope you had a good time. What do you do with the kids?
Claire: They love Easter. If anybody is new to the show, I have a six-year-old and a three-year-old. It’s really prime egg-hunting ages. Last year, I feel like might have been the real prime – five and two. They love finding eggs. And actually, I think that we are going to be able to keep this ball rolling for a long time and just make the eggs harder and harder to find.
Joy: For sure.
Claire: Last year, Evie was still in the phase where if the egg was in the middle of the lawn, she maybe would find it.
Joy: So great.
Claire: We told Miles last year – he was such a great sport. Miles is such a good big brother. He was such a good sport. We were like, alright Miles, if you walk outside and you immediately see the eggs, leave those for Evie.
Joy: Yeah, right.
Claire: There are some that are just laying in the grass.
Joy: Right. There might as well be a neon sign. Just leave those for Evie.
Claire: Like, “Egg here.” Very Wile E. Coyote. So they love, love, love, love to look for eggs. I don’t know what it is about it. We just fill our eggs with three little M&Ms or two little Cadbury mini eggs. Which by the way, our family has been going through a bag of mini eggs a day.
Joy: That’s the best.
Claire: For like two weeks. They’re so good.
Joy: Are you a Cadbury egg person?
Claire: Not a big Cadbury egg person. I don’t want a cream-filled chocolate situation.
Joy: I think most people don’t love a cream-filled.
Claire: I don’t mind it It’s just the Cadbury egg, the ratio of cream to chocolate is way too high. I don’t mind it in a chocolate box scenario where it’s just a little dollop of cream.
Joy: Little dollop. Or like a cream-filled donut, sure.
Claire: Right. But if I’m eating what is basically –
Joy: A sliver of chocolate with a boat-load –
Claire: That’s too much.
Joy: Too much.
Claire: The ratios are off.
Joy: Okay. Anyway, sorry to interrupt.
Claire: No, you’re not interrupting. These are important details. And then some of the eggs, we’ll put a couple quarters in or something. For Miles, we don’t give him an allowance, but sometimes if he does a big chore, like if he cleans all the toys in the whole basement or whatever, we will give him some money, and we use Monopoly money. So he has a bunch of Monopoly money, and then he pays us his Monopoly money and we pay for something on our credit card. Because you don’t pay with cash really – I mean, you can.
Joy: But do you really want to trust him with some cash?
Claire: That’s the other thing, right? So we use Monopoly money, and it’s worked great. He has a wallet. My dad gave him a wallet for Christmas last year.
Joy: Of course John Hay gave him a wallet.
Claire: Of course he did.
Joy: Next is a money clip, and then next is a sweater vest.
Claire: Okay here’s the thing, you have to know. Obviously my dad uses a money clip because on brand. Except that what he prefers – his absolute preferred thing to hold is money is, you know at the grocery store the fat rubber bands that hold the asparagus.
Claire: That specific type of rubber band. Because it’s small that he doesn’t have to wrap it more than once, but he likes not having to undo the whole thing to take out the money.
Joy: But he keeps it folded in half, right?
Claire: Yes, it’s folded in half with the rubber band.
Joy: Does he like to keep a good wad of cash?
Claire: Yes. You got my dad’s number, that’s him. And over the years between all of his kids and his wife and all these things, we probably gifted him a dozen really nice money clips. Because you know every time you see it, if you’ve forgotten that this is his preference, you’re like, “Oh shoot, his money clip.” It’s one of those things that you squirrel away in your brain. Like, oh, my dad is using a rubber band. It must mean that the money clip broke. I’m going to get him a money clip. Then you get it for him and he’s like, “Oh.” He has his bureau as he calls it, his dresser, completely full of unused money clips because he wants to use a rubber band.
Joy: Is your dad from the East Coast?
Claire: Yeah, he’s from Long Island.
Joy: Okay. I was going to say, bureau is very East Coast. And then I just thought of my grandmother who used to call a chest of drawers “chesta drawers” for a dresser. It’s the best.
Claire: Yeah, bureau. My dad is from Long Island. He’s a funny guy.
Joy: So money and Miles.
Claire: Thank you, yes, I was almost there. We put Monopoly money in Easter eggs sometimes too.
Joy: That’s really cute.
Claire: So yeah. And then we’ll go to my dad’s house, and we’ll eat mac and cheese and hot dogs with the kids. Yeah, it’s pretty fun. And then also later today, I’m going to the flooring store. I’ll tell you why I’m going to the flooring store, but first I have to tell you about the flooring store. So in Boulder, there’s this flooring store called Atlas Flooring. It’s this giant warehouse. If you’re familiar with Boulder, it’s on 28th right when Broadway meets back up with 28th on your way out to Lion’s. By Gateway Fun Park, which is the go carts and mini golf place. This place has been there since dirt.
Joy: I love those places.
Claire: The guy who owns it, his name is Leister. He’s retired now, but his son, whose name I don’t know. I don’t think it’s Leister.
Joy: Leister, Jr.
Claire: Yeah. Back to John Hay – this whole episode is all about John Hay. My dad used this flooring store when he did the cave. Have I talked about the cave recently?
Claire: Oh no. Oh no. Okay. Hold on tight, guys, because this episode just got a little weird.
Joy: Buckle up.
Claire: Buckle up. Here we go with John Hay. So in the 80’s my dad saw the movie The Morning After, one of the very first post-nuclear apocalypse type of movies. It really freaked him out – because that’s the type of person he is. At the time, he had a lot of extra money. This was sort of right after the Celestial Seasonings era. So he had a lot of extra money. So he bought a cave on a couple hundred acres in the middle of nowhere in Arkansas, this little town called Parthenon. The next closest town is Jasper, which is also still a tiny town. It’s in northwest Arkansas. He dug out the cave, so he was going to turn it into like a bomb shelter.
Joy: Oh wow, he was real in deep.
Claire: He was worried. So after a couple years, it became clear, maybe the threat of nuclear war is slightly less immanent than he thought.
Joy: Was he just going to go down there and come out and be the only person?
Claire: Yeah. He was going to invite his friends. It’s a big cave.
Joy: [laughing] I’m not laughing at him. I’m amused at how great this is.
Claire: It’s amusing. It’s amusing. To this day, he has a box full of hazmat suits in our garage. He was trying to give them to Brandon at the beginning of COVID.
Claire: We were like, yeah, sure.
Joy: At this point, we’ll take them.
Claire: Honestly. We’re talking Outbreak-style hazmat suits.
Joy: For sure.
Claire: They’ve been in a box in his garage since the 80’s, so who knows.
Joy: They’re probably cracked and –
Claire: They probably would not meet OSHA standards. He had this cave. And after a couple of years, it was like, okay, maybe complete nuclear fallout is less likely than we thought. So he turned it into a luxury home.
Claire: We’ll put the link in the notes. It’s called Beckham Creek Cave, and you can rent it. So we owned it. He did the whole thing. The reason that I bring this up is because these people in north Boulder did the flooring for the cave in Arkansas. He brought them in to do the flooring. Because it’s such in the middle of nowhere that you might as well bring in someone from Boulder just as much as you should have brought someone in from Little Rock. At that point, it didn’t really matter. You’re flying someone in. So these people, to this day, obviously remember this project because it was so unique and random.
Joy: That’s so cool.
Claire: We owned this cave for a long – well actually, if you want the whole story because it’s actually pretty interesting. After he completely redid it, he was on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
Joy: Shut up!
Joy: Robin Leach?
Claire: Like real live late 80’s Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
Joy: How have you never told me this? I was obsessed.
Claire: I am positive I have told you this.
Claire: Oh, I haven’t?
Joy: You know me and my palace intrigue.
Claire: You’re so right.
Joy: Did he meet Robin Leach?
Claire: Yeah. He came to a cave. It’s like a whole thing. They interviewed my mom when she was pregnant with us.
Joy: I don’t even –
Claire: Joy is at a loss for words.
Joy: I used to watch that show. I was obsessed with that show.
Claire: You would have been like eight years old when this happened.
Joy: Oh my gosh, but still, I loved that show. [announcer voice] “Lifestyles of the rich and famous.”
Claire: Exactly. So then after a couple years, he decided to sell it. He was like, okay, this is a lot to keep up. Because it is a live cave. If you are not familiar with what that means, that means it’s dripping all the time. So there is just dehumidifiers in every room. Guys, there are bedrooms in here. There is a kitchen. It is a fully-functioning house that is also in a live cave. And then in the back, you open this door and you go back to another two miles of just cave. You could just go caving when you were bored.
Joy: How have they never shot a movie in there?
Claire: Because people don’t know about it probably. So he decides to sell it. The person he sells it to is going to turn it into a brothel.
Joy: He full on knew, “Hey John Hay” –
Claire: No. I’m sure that he didn’t know before – I don’t know, maybe he did. Maybe he was like, “I don’t care, do whatever you want with it.”
Joy: Just sell it.
Claire: I just don’t want it anymore. But then the guy who bought it ended up not being able to get funding or his vision could not come to fruition. So he ended up having to put it back up for auction. So my dad went to the auction thinking, “I just want to make sure that this is all taken care of” and make sure that this is run correctly. And then he ended up buying it back at the auction. Then we owned it for the majority of my childhood. When my parents got divorced when I was nine or ten, they sold it. I’ve been there many, many times, slept in it, hung out. The area that it’s in was pretty wild and a lot of rattlesnakes and tics and things, things that you associate with northwest Arkansas – or at least what I associate with northwest Arkansas. So yeah, that’s the story about the cave.
Joy: That is fascinating.
Claire: And by way of the story that I’m going to this flooring place, but I call my dad because I’m like, “Can you go with me?” Because I need to get a deal on some flooring. I need you to go with me. It’s like when you need your dad to go with you to the mechanic.
Joy: Or when you’re buying a car, yeah.
Claire: Yeah, you take your dad. So randomly, I’m like, “Can you go to the flooring store with me?”
Joy: That’s amazing. I would always do that with my dad for anything mechanical with my car because he’s a mechanic. The second they would talk to my dad, they were like, “Oh, he knows what he’s talking about.”
Claire: We can’t –
Joy: Yeah, we can’t pull one over on him. So you’re going to this flooring store. What are you doing again?
Claire: We’re buying a new house.
Joy: Okay. I was like, why are we getting new flooring?
Claire: Because we’re buying a new house. Over the past couple of months, we had been going through this design, which is called a feasibility study, which is step zero of remodeling your house. We’ve been working with this amazing interior designer. If you’re in Denver and you’re looking for a remodel, it’s called TVL Designs. I was going to say “T” as in something, but then I panicked because I can never think of words for that.
Joy: “T” as in Tom.
Claire: I would have been like, “T” as in tyrannosaurus. My brain serves only the most random words in that scenario.
Joy: I used to work for a call center, and I always had to spell things out.
Claire: I just need to learn the real phonetic alphabet. My brain serves – “T” as in tyrannosaurus, “V” as in vaudeville. Why would I think of the word vaudeville ever?
Joy: I just think of the Friends episode where Joey only gets the “V” dictionary. He wants to be smart, and this guy stops by their apartment and sells him an encyclopedia – not a dictionary But he could only afford one letter, so he buys “V.” Everybody is at the coffee house talking about the topics. He’s lost and he doesn’t get it. He was so prepared to be involved in a conversation. Anyway, it’s just really funny.
Claire: That’s pretty much what my brain turns to. Anyway, TVL Designs. They’re really great. We were working with them. We live in this early 1970’s rectangle that everyone has probably been in a thousand times. You walk in and you’re in the living room. The kitchen is right behind the living room. You go down the hall, and those are the bedrooms. End of house. We also happen to have a basement you get into through the kitchen. Which is an exact floor plan replica of the upstairs. We don’t have a dining room, and that has been my pain point ever since we had Evie. All we have is this bar, and only three people can sit there.
Joy: Everyone just sits there, yeah.
Claire: And that’s it. So with Maxine living here, we have five people who live here, and only three people can sit down for dinner. It’s just annoying. There really is nowhere to put a table. Because of the way that our bar is situated and just how big everything is. Or how small it is, I should say. So we were going to remodel and redo our kitchen so that we can create space for an eat-in kitchen. As we were going through this process, we went through a refi. Closed on our refi, and then right in that same time frame our builder came, and it just became clear that we’re not going to get what we want for the budget that we have. Which is so common in a remodel, right? But really, our problem is that in our neighborhood, we are already one of the larger and most updated houses in our neighborhood because we have a basement and we have a two-car garage. Most of the other houses in our neighborhood have converted the garage into a master suite because they don’t have a basement. So if we were to increase our budget, we would price ourselves out of the neighborhood. Everyone always says you don’t want to be the nicest house on the block, and we are already almost there. If we were to remodel, we would really push ourselves out of being able to get the value back on our house if we were ever to want to move. We started looking at houses, just sort of like, let’s move forward with the remodel. It will be fine. In the meantime, let’s just look. If there’s something that pops up, then we’ll go see it and just play it by ear and take it one step at a time. And then of course as soon as we started looking, we found something, and we went and saw it, and we put in an offer on it, and they accepted our offer. Which I just want to name how freaking nuts it is that we got our first offer. It was the first house we saw, first offer that we put in.
Joy: Yeah, nuts.
Claire: Like, nuts. Knocking on wood. This doesn’t happen in this day and age.
Claire: A lot of times, you send a love letter and blah blah blah. They didn’t let us do any of that. They just wanted numbers, and we still got it, which is great. And this house that we currently live in was also that way. It was our first offer.
Joy: That’s crazy.
Claire: I don’t think I’m ever allowed to move again because I am two for two. People listening right now are having rage strokes because they have been trying to put in offers on houses for years and have not gotten there.
Joy: I hear so many stories and a lot of people that I work with, we have a little Colorado group because we are all over the place at Headspace. But people will be like, “I’m moving to Colorado. Does anybody have advice about neighborhoods because I’m looking here and there’s nothing. I’m looking here and there’s nothing.” It’s like, I don’t know what to tell you. Everywhere seems to be like that. It’s so crazy. And it’s been like this probably for over a year since the pandemic hit. You have to put in over the asking price.
Claire: We did go in over. I feel like we had a fairly competitive offer, but nine times out of ten, the people that I hear from are beat out by cash offers. You can’t beat a cash offer. I guess the neighborhood that we’re going to – so it’s still in Longmont. It’s maybe a mile from where we currently live, but a little bit more central, and it’s a big house. But that neighborhood is not quite flippable yet in the sense that it would have been unusual for us to be up against a cash offer for this type of house because this isn’t the type of neighborhood – that’s the problem with Denver is that every single neighborhood, if you are trying to buy a house that is affordable beaches it’s older and not updated, someone else is trying to flip that house.
Claire: And that is not the case in Longmont. A normal human can just move into an older, non-updated house and just live there in this perfectly good but not current house. Versus in Denver, every single house is an opportunity for a flip.
Joy: Our neighborhood, we moved here 13-14 years ago. And everyone in this neighborhood, the houses are flipping. They’re changing. We always talk about that. We’re like, oh my gosh, we could make so much money if we sold our house. But we’re like, where would we go? We love it here, and we love our house. So we’re just going to stay, but it’s really odd to watch. Our neighborhood really wasn’t that 13-14 years ago, and it’s just really blown up. Yeah, Denver is really hard. We were talking about this other day, Scott and I were. There’s just no way. We were 30 years old when we bought this house. Now, no way we could do it. He’s like, “We would find a way.” I’m like, no.
Claire: Yeah, right. I don’t know how people are. And the only way that we ended up being able to do it is we had just closed on our refinance because we thought we were going to remodel, so we had this chunk of cash. We had been working with our lender, so we got to use the same lender, so we were able to close really quickly because he already had our stuff. We literally closed the day before on a refi, and so the starts really aligned so we could just move so quickly. Let me tell you, that’s also kind of nerve-racking. We got our inspection on Friday, and we have to submit any of our inspection objections by Monday. I am a fast decision-maker, and I even feel like this is a lot to process in one weekend.
Joy: Yeah, for sure.
Claire: I also hate inspections because it comes back with everything. This is what your realtor is for, but when you’re looking at it as a normal person, you’re like, how much of this is like, “Oh yeah, this shows up on every inspection report” and how much of this is like, “Oh, you should be worried.”
Claire: You’re looking at it and you’re like, I don’t know, is it normal to have a half-inch crack in the concrete in your driveway? I feel like it is. I don’t know.
Joy: We got that.
Claire: Right. Luckily that’s what you have a realtor for.
Joy: Luckily that’s what the realtors are for, yeah.
Claire: So yeah, we’re moving. All things go according to plan and our inspection ends up being not concerning, we’re going to be closing the first week of May.
Joy: Oh my gosh, that happened so fast.
Joy: Is Brandon a quick decision-maker?
Claire: No, absolutely not.
Joy: So how does he…?
Claire: Yeah. I make this analogy sometimes when I’m really busy. Have you ever been skiing?
Joy: Oh yeah.
Claire: You know if you’re skiing – I’m sorry to anyone who can’t relate to this. Maybe you can help me think of a less esoteric example. You start going a little bit too fast, and you know that if you can just maintain it you can get to the bottom. But if you try to turn, you’re going to fall?
Claire: That is how he feels this whole process. Just sort of white knuckling through it of okay, keep going, keep going, because if you try to speed check you’re going to go over. But he’s pretty good. So here’s the other thing and here’s why I think that the process is going a little bit better. This house is the exact same house – the floor plan is 100% the same as the house that Brandon grew up in. The exact same house. Whatever this floor plan is, it must have been really popular in the early 70’s. Most of Longmont, except for west Longmont, was built in the 70’s and 80’s. There are some very, very minor differences because Brandon’s family built that house, so they picked all the customizations. Like the bay windows and that type of thing. This house doesn’t have that, and the basement was finished in a slightly-different layout. But it is the exact same house Which in a way is a little weird, but it also is nice. We know that this is a really functional floor plan because we go over there all the time. I think that helped him make the decision because he was like, “Oh, this is really familiar.” Which is kind of cute.
Joy: It’s like, I’m okay. I got this.
Claire: Right. This is my house.
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Claire: What’s your favorite Mellow flavor? The lavender berry?
Joy: The lavender.
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Claire: It’s not gross.
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Claire: Okay, I have literally talked this entire podcast, so let’s reverse to, I want to hear – do you guys do anything for Easter? We just blew right past you on the Easter story.
Joy: No, we don’t. Not this year. Normally we either spend time with my parents or we’ll be going to see family or Scott’s family. But this year, we haven’t planned anything because of Joe, the puppy. But yeah, we’re just going to hang out with some puppy raiser friends with the puppies and let the puppies play. It’s really cute because one of our puppy raiser friends – and I know I’ve mentioned this a million times, but when you’re a volunteer for Canine Companions, you have hundreds of friends in Canine Companions. Like, Insta friends. But we have this close-knit group since I got JT that we’ve been a close-knit community. We call ourselves the village. We don’t really refer to that often, but it’s a joke because it takes a village to raise a puppy. We are spending Easter with – one of our village members got a puppy two weeks after we got Joe, so it’s kind of cute that we’re raising at the same exact time at pretty much the same age. Their puppy’s name is Olympic. Olympic. So we’re going to be hanging out with them tomorrow for Easter and just let the puppies tire themselves out. Which is mostly what you do as a puppy raiser You try to plan dates with people you can bring the dog and get them tired. If anyone in the Denver area would like to get together with their dogs.
Claire: I would like to get together with my dog. Okay, the number one question we get right now is people asking Joy whether she has puppy training resources or recommendations. So what do you got for us, Joy?
Joy: Yeah. This is a question I get all the time around raising dogs or raising puppies. I hate to be a broken record, but there’s not magic optimal way to train your dog, other than just go to an obedience class. Sign up for an obedience class. In person is great. If you have a puppy, it’s great to socialize them around other dogs as early as possible. Safely, when they are all vaccinated. But if you can sign up for an obedience class, just a basic obedience class, that is really all you need to get started. And then be consistent. The other thing that I notice is you go to an obedience class, but you’re not consistent with upkeep and training. So that’s really all you need to do. Dogs need consistency. They need to know what their expectations are at home. For example, we crate train from day one. If you start letting the dog sleep in your bed, they are going to prefer that immediately. Your dog wants to be with you all the time, so if you put your dog in your bed on night one because it’s crying, guess what? It just learned that behavior. So anyway, go to obedience class. I really like Chelsea on Instagram at @rockemdogtraining. She is wonderful. She is a previous Canine Companions trainer, like an actual on-staff trainer who would do the professional training for the advanced, what Cadet is doing right now. She has some really good resources. If you ever want to do a one on one, she does do virtual training sessions if you want to do that. But I always say, just keep it simple. There is no one way to train your dog other than be consistent and go to obedience class and learn the basics. So that is all I’m going to say about that.
Claire: The other thing when we had just gotten River that I really learned from you was about keeping the training sessions really short. Even just two minutes, especially for a puppy, is not only worth it, but kind of optimal.
Joy: It’s optimal.
Claire: Don’t think that you have to be doing this for 30 minutes at a time. In fact, that’s probably just going to frustrate your dog. You do have to dedicate a lot of time but not all at once.
Claire: If you are waiting for your coffee maker to go, use that time to just do one or two little things. Or if you are waiting for your curling iron to heat up, use that time. Those little moments really add up throughout the day. I think that is intimidating to a lot of people to think, I just don’t have time to do this whole training session. It doesn’t have to be a whole training session. It can literally be one or two minutes at a time. Every one little command that they nail, it can be one time to get them to sit while you are turning around waiting for your –
Joy: It’s amazing how fast they learn too, if you think about it. The unintentional training that happens with dogs is unbelievable. So right now I use the lick mat, which I am a huge fan of. They are just little textured mats that if you put pumpkin or baby food, or I put some cream cheese in there every once in a while. You just have to be careful with their stomachs when they’re little, so you have to play around with little bits so their stomach doesn’t get upset. The lick mat, he has now associated the sound of a knife being pulled out of the drawer to getting the lick mat. So that is just kind of that classic conditioning. And I did not even intend to do that. So if you think about training a dog, all you need to do is have some treats handy. If you want something to stick, you just have to reward it and it’s done. So yes, short training sessions. I think what people are probably more curious about is, how do you train a service dog? Yes, there are specific things that I have to follow for Canine Companions, but that doesn’t apply to a pet dog. The basics are really all you need to know.
Claire: And honestly right now, you are doing the type of stuff that you would do with a pet dog too. Manners.
Joy: Totally. Socialization. Sitting outside.
Claire: You don’t get into those more specific behaviors for another couple weeks or even months.
Joy: Yeah, or even months, yeah. Right now it’s just getting them comfortable in the home, getting them used to crate training, getting them used to grooming and being touched, getting them used to being outside and noises. I even just watch his behavior. We take very short walks with him because he is still a baby and he gets overwhelmed. You can see him when we take him on leash outside. When we get too far from the home, he starts looking around. It’s really cute. It’s almost like you can see his little mind being like, “The world is too big. I’m too far from home.”
Claire: Aw, Joe.
Joy: The world is too big. And he’s looking around. It’s almost like you can see his little wheels turning. It’s really cute. So then we go back home, and he races home. It’s really cute. It’s almost like it’s pulling teeth to get him to walk away from the house, but getting him back to the house, he bolts. That to me says he’s not ready yet for going on long walks. You really have to pay attention to the dog. If I start pulling him – I cannot stand when people pull their dogs on a leash. You shouldn’t have to pull your dog. That’s just them telling you they’re not comfortable with something. So anyway, he races back to the house. So I’m really paying attention to his behavior and his comfort level. Sometimes he’ll even sit outside on the lawn. I’ll just put a blanket down. I’ll tether him because we don’t have a fence. He just sits outside and listens. You want to get him listening to traffic, listening to cars going by. These are very, very basic things to socialize your dog. I think that people overestimate the things that they have to do or that there is some secret to it. It’s really not. So I’m sure there is intrigue of what goes into training a service dog. I could start a whole new podcast about that, and it’s just not necessary because it’s a specific dog – he was bred and born to be a service dog. Pet dogs are going to have different requirements, not going to be as strict. So I would say, keep it simple and keep it consistent.
Claire: Another thing that I learned a lot from you when we first got River was – We previously had adopted an older dog that came with huge behavior issues. She was two years old when we adopted her. So with her, we had been taught you have to be consistent one thousand percent of the time because you are trying to untrain something out of her. That set me up to feel a ton of pressure with a puppy that I had to be one thousand percent consistent. The thing that you helped me learn and I learned through learning more about puppy training specifically was that, yeah, it’s important to be consistent and it’s important to have that routine. But I you are distracted one time or give an inconsistent cue a couple of times, their brains are still –
Joy: Yeah. Puppies are still developing.
Claire: You’re not going to mess it up. Because you’re learning too, and that’s okay, and you just have to strive for that consistency. That really helped me relax too because we had previously been in a situation where we were trying to teach a dog how to get away from these well-established, problematic behaviors, and that was a completely different process. Versus with a puppy you do have a little bit of wiggle room to work with. You don’t have to be perfect.
Claire: You just have to be as consistent as you can be.
Joy: Yeah. And if you have a puppy and you are new to puppy raising, just having a puppy, know that your dog changes every single week. You are going to have a new dog every single week. I already notice the difference in Joe, and he’ll be three months on Sunday, on Easter. It’s really, really important to know that because people will get frustrated, like, “Oh my gosh, this is so much work.” Every single week will be better, I promise. There is a trick that Canine Companions uses called “two minutes to win it.” That is a type of training where, like you said earlier, the shorter the better. The reason why you want to do short bursts of training is they just respond better to short training sessions. Also, you’re not tired and the dog is not tired. The second the dog starts getting frustrated or distracted, it’s like, oh we’re not in the zone. Like the other day, I was taking Joe out to do a little mini walk, and he wasn’t having it. He was pulling on his leash like he just didn’t want to walk, and I was trying to lure him with treats. I wasn’t going to make him do it. Whether he’s tired, whether he’s hungry, whether he’s just overwhelmed, I’m not going to force this training session. So you kind of have to even just read the dog’s energy. Or my energy. If I start to get frustrated, this is not going to end well, so you just have to call it a day. But yeah, “two minutes to win it” is kind of the way that we think about it in Canine Companions. No matter what you’re trying to train, do it for a quick two minutes, let it go. Do it one in the morning, one in the afternoon, one in the evening, and then you’re good.
Claire: Yay puppies. I just need to see Joe so bad.
Joy: He is so cute. He is such a good dog.
Claire: I am coming to your house this week whether you want me to or not.
Joy: It’s interesting because we think a lot about Cadet – which by the way, we should hear very soon when she is going to graduate. Fingers crossed she graduates. But we compare, because you can’t not compare your first puppy raising experience, and he’s just so different. He is easy to settle. Cadet was really high energy. He’s so funny. Cadet used to just bolt out of the crate when we’d open it. We laugh so hard. This was like three in the morning this morning when we had to take him out to pee. I hear Scott open the crate, and Joe just falls and turns over on his back. Joe is too big for us to pick up now. He’s just heavy. It’s kind of like doing a sandbag lift or whatever. So Scott was really trying to get him to come out. Scott’s like, “I had to sit there are rub his belly for like seven minutes before he would get out of his crate.” [laughing]
Claire: Joe is not a morning person.
Joy: No. And he’s just a cute little lump, sack of potatoes. Him and JT, the first three weeks were rough and now they’ve hit their stride. Him and JT are playing. After breakfast and after dinner is the prime play time. They play for like an hour. JT is finally getting used to it. It’s really cute. He’s such a sweet dog.
Claire: He’s just such a roly poly.
Joy: He is. He’s a roly poly. He wants to be a lap dog. He always wants to crawl on my lap. He’s so cute.
Claire: Aw, Joe.
Claire: Oh my goodness.
Joy: Okay, so tell us about Lasik.
Claire: Yes, I got Lasik. [laughing] So today is Saturday. I got Lasik on Thursday kind of midday. I have been wearing glasses and contacts since I was nine, so for 25 years I had run-of-the-mill nearsightedness with a tiny bit of astigmatism. If you are a contact lens wearer and are curious, my prescription was like a -5 in both eyes. Not really, really – -4 is kind of the threshold for being considered very nearsighted. So -5 I am very, very nearsighted plus. If I didn’t have my contacts or glasses in, I couldn’t function. It wasn’t one of those types of things like, “Oh, I forgot my glasses.” I physically could not forget my glasses because I couldn’t see.
Joy: Got it, yeah.
Claire: I’ve been thinking about Lasik for a long time, but you’re not supposed to get Lasik until a couple years after your last pregnancy because your eyes can change during pregnancy. And you’re not supposed to get Lasik before you get pregnant if you’re planning to get pregnant for the same reason. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s one of those things where if you want to really have the best chance at having consistent results, that’s what they recommend. I finally got it. It was fantastic. It was very weird. So I showed up. They checked my eyes. They gave me Valium and put me in front of a TV that was playing dog videos. Which I don’t know who came up with that idea, but it was sheer just brilliance.
Joy: That is brilliance.
Claire: Waiting for the Valium to kick in while I watched this corgi wearing a mermaid tail.
Joy: Aw. That is so cool.
Joy: They should do that at the dentist.
Claire: Yes, they should do it everywhere.
Claire: I don’t know why we aren’t watching more dog videos in waiting rooms.
Claire: Forget the news.
Joy: And no one wants to read magazines.
Claire: No. We want dog videos.
Joy: Put on some dog videos.
Claire: These nurses are geniuses. So if you are someone who is in charge of a waiting room ambiance, might I suggest putting on dog videos.
Claire: Immediately. So they brought me back. They measured my eyes. I’m full-on on Valium at this point. They put some numbing eye drops in my eyes, and then they got started. It was a very weird experience. I’m not going to detail it too much here because I know that sometimes that really freaks people out to hear about eye things. But suffice to say that they did one eye at a time. I got both eyes done. You don’t have to get both eyes done at once, but they recommend that you do unless there is some issue with one of your eyes that they are trying to work around. They cover up one eye with an eye patch while they work on the other eye so that you’re not seeing what’s going on out of your other eye. That actually was really helpful. There’s one part at the beginning that’s a little bit uncomfortable but doesn’t hurt. The rest of it, you’re not feeling anything at all. You’re just kind of seeing weird lights. Because there’s a spotlight right above your eye. The procedure is a laser procedure. You’re seeing these warbly lights. It looks like you’re looking at a strobe light from under the water. Which is pretty much exactly what you are doing because your eyeball is basically a grape, in the sense that it’s full of water.
Joy: I don’t know why that just sounds funny. Your eyeball is like a grape. It’s full of water.
Claire: It basically is. That is pretty much what you’re working with when you’re talking about an eyeball.
Joy: Our bodies are so weird. This I kind of freaking me out.
Claire: But the whole thing from start to finish, the actual procedure, couldn’t have taken more than ten minutes.
Joy: That is wild to me.
Claire: I know. The procedure itself takes maybe 2-3 minutes. And then they watch, and you just lay there for another two minutes while they make sure nothing weird is going to happen. Then they switch to the next eye. It takes 2-3 minutes and then they watch it for another two minutes to make sure nothing weird is going to happen. Then you’re done and you get to go home.
Joy: Oh my gosh. For everybody who is a Sex and the City fan, when Miranda gets Lasik and she’s telling Steve, “Flip my eye,” and then he gets grossed out. So you guys know. That is a shout out to Sex and the City when Miranda gets Lasik and she goes, “Flip my eye.” They just flip it open.
Claire: They do flip it open. So then you have these goggles. I have to sleep in these goggles every night for a week. That’s the most annoying part of the whole thing. Immediately my vision was better.
Joy: That’s crazy.
Claire: During the procedure when they flipped my eye back, I could see the lights. They were clear to me. I was just like, oh my gosh. The rest of the day, I got to go home and take a Valium nap. Which ten out of ten.
Joy: Oh, ten out of ten.
Claire: Really, 11 out of ten. I would do the whole thing again just for that Valium nap. It was so good.
Joy: Valium nap. I’m going to just go and Valium nap. I’m going to call the episode “A Valium Nap.”
Claire: Please do. Then yeah, so it’s been not quite two full days at this point. My eyes feel a little dry, which is very normal. They just sort of feel like I’ve been out in the wind. Which it’s also very windy, so it could be that. But my vision was immediately clear. The rest of the night, my eyes didn’t really want to open. They just felt a little harassed, which they were. Then yesterday I woke up and I could see.
Joy: I will not get over how fast it goes. I won’t get over that.
Claire: The harder part about it is I have to do these eye drops, and the eye drops sting a little bit. It is what it is. And then the hardest part about it that because my eyes are just a little bit dry, I want to rub them. But I cannot touch them. So that’s tough. But you just use eye drops.
Joy: So you said you do have to sleep with those glasses.
Claire: Yeah, I have to sleep with the goggles. It’s to keep you from rubbing your eyes while you’re asleep.
Joy: And if you rub your eyes, what happens? Will the eyeball flip open?
Claire: It could. Yeah, it could.
Joy: Is it still healing? Is that why?
Joy: The laser cut is healing.
Claire: Yeah, the laser cut is healing. Without going into gross details, basically there is a part of the eye that is still healing.
Joy: Yeah, it was harassed.
Claire: It heals on its own very quickly, but you can’t rub it around because it could mess with the healing. If you have more specific questions, I would be happy to answer them. This is something that I’ve been wanting to do for years and years and years, and I’m so glad that I finally did it. It is expensive. I paid about $4200 total. So in case anyone out there is wondering how much Lasik costs.
Joy: Does insurance not pay for it?
Claire: Some insurances will pay for part of it. My specific vision insurance did not, but you can use HSA on it, which I did. There are less expensive places than where I went. If you are in Colorado and you are curious, I went to the Eye Care Center of Northern Colorado and I saw Dr. Aimee Verner. The reason that I saw her is because Brandon – as we all know, he is a surgical nurse. At his previous position where he was working in a hospital, they would sometimes have eye cases. This is the eye surgeon who would work out of that hospital. So he would work with her and liked her and felt like she did really good work. Like I said, this was maybe not the cheapest place to go, but because I had a personal recommendation on the surgeon, I decided that was very much worth it. Not to say that other places aren’t also high quality.
Joy: Of course.
Claire: Like you hear those radio ads where it’s just a Lasik center and all they do all day is Lasik. It was so funny, I mean, those radio ads are so prevalent that actually Miles the next day he goes, “Are you feeling better?” I’m like, “Yeah, I’m feeling better.” He goes, “Yeah. Because on the radio it says that people who get Lasik can resume their normal activities the next day.”
Claire: I was like, oh my gosh, you’re just such a little parrot. “They can resume their normal activities the next day.”
Joy: You’re hired, Miles. You’re going to be our new ad, reading copy.
Claire: Right? Oh my gosh. So funny.
Joy: That’s so funny. What did you do when he said that? Did you just immediately start laughing?
Claire: Yeah. I was like, “Yeah, that’s right.” He’s been saying the funniest things. He’s in the phase like that where he’s getting better at using – like when he hears us say something, My mom drove him to school yesterday. You aren’t really supposed to drive for the first 24 hours because your eyes are really light sensitive.
Claire: My mom drove him to school. They were driving down the main street, and Miles goes, “I think I’ve been here before.” And my mom is like, “Yeah, you have.” And he goes, “Yeah, I have. Trust me, I’ve been here before.”
Joy: Just a reflection of everything you say, and you don’t realize you say it.
Claire: The other day too, I was trying to get him to do something. He goes, “Mom, I don’t think that would benefit me right now.” I was like, oh, okay.
Joy: Oh my gosh, that’s so funny.
Claire: I don’t think that would benefit me right now. Those are all my updates. This episode was a Claire update episode.
Joy: You have a lot of updates. That’s great. You have a lot of updates. I do want to put a plug in for the Kettlebells & Cocktails podcast. We were on an episode – I think it’s coming out in the next couple of weeks – where Niki Brazier interviewed us. I really liked that episode. It was so funny. Sometimes when we do interviews, I’m like, wow, I didn’t realize I felt like that. There’s things that come out of my mouth where I’m like, no one has ever asked us this question. I really never thought I would have said that, but I think it’s a good episode.
Claire: I think people assume that we don’t want to be on people’s podcast because we podcast so much, but we love getting interviewed. It does give us a chance to talk about some things we don’t necessarily think about. And also, we really appreciate how hard it can be to get guests on a smaller podcast. So if you are someone who is listening and you have a podcast – and I’m assuming you want us to come on your podcast – and you would like to have us –
Joy: [forcefully] You will have us.
Claire: If you would like to have us as guests on your podcast, even if you only have two episodes and only ten people listen, we were there not that long ago. It feels like sometimes we are still there.
Claire: So please, please, please never feel like you can’t reach out. Reach out. It might take us a while to get something scheduled because our lives are a little bit nuts, but we love to be on other people’s podcasts.
Joy: It’s so fun.
Claire: We particularly love to be on smaller podcasts. Talk to us about anything you want. We love to answer questions because we don’t get interviewed all that often.
Joy: Yeah. It’s different for us to podcast because we are thinking about content for our listeners. But when someone interviews us, we just get to talk and we don’t have to think about what we’re staying that much. We do. You know what I’m saying? It’s just easier to have a conversation.
Claire: You’re probably listening and are like, “Wait, this podcast is you thinking about what you’re going to say?”
Joy: But it really is more intentional. You’re thinking about the quality of your podcast and what content you want to put out that week. For someone just interviewing you, all you have to do is answer a question and you can sit back and relax. It’s nice to have someone else run the show. That’s why we love being interviewed. We’re happy to do it.
Claire: Love doing it. And it was so fun to talk with Niki who is one of our faves.
Claire: We will let you guys know when that episode comes out. If you haven’t listened to that podcast, it’s also with John Wooley. He is the CrossFit meme guy. They are so great. Both of them are so wonderful and so kind. I know they cover a range of – they are still very much in the CrossFit space, so if you’ve been jonesing for a new CrossFit podcast, check them out.
Joy: Check them out.
Claire: Check them out. And if you haven’t listened to our episode with the Real Food Dieticians, I just made the Greek chicken meatballs from their cookbook. Really, get that cookbook. My friend Heather – hi, Heather.
Joy: Hi, Heather.
Claire: Texted me and she is from Minnesota also, and she was like, “I am now going to refer to that cookbook as the “healthy Minnesotan.”
Joy: The healthy Minnesotan.
Claire: Healthy Minnesotan.
Joy: I love that.
Claire: Our episode with Kelly, I’m kind of thinking I should just hire Kelly to teach me how to run. No pressure, Kelly.
Joy: No pressure, Kelly. I love that episode too.
Claire: For the first time ever, that episode made me feel like running was approachable.
Joy: Yes. It has made me think so differently around when I’m training for this 10-miler, not putting a lot of pressure on myself on most of the runs that I’m doing. It’s just like, oh, I don’t have to worry about this. I don’t have to go out and run at a tempo pace every day. If I’m not feeling it, I can back off. If you haven’t listened to that episode, it’s really great. I know it probably turned a lot of people off when they saw the title. Like, “Running? Where are you guys going with this?” But yeah, it’s great.
Claire: As you guys know, I’m a lifelong non-runner. It kind of made me reconsider my beliefs I have about whether or not I could one day go for a run and not just dread it.
Joy: And you even texted me that Vale link. You were like, “This race looks fun.” We were like, “Are we going to do this?”
Claire: Are we doing this? Is this happening?
Joy: Everybody, let’s go to Vale. Let’s do a meetup in the summer and do that run.
Claire: Vale in the summer is my favorite.
Joy: It’s so beautiful.
Claire: And then JK who has been heckling me about becoming a morning person.
Joy: Oh, a lot of people are like, “Claire, we are so proud of you.”
Claire: That’s the thing. That is also a deeply-held belief about myself, that I’m not a morning person. And yet, here I am getting up at 4:30 4+ days a week to go to the Y. So JK who was heckling me, he was like, “You’re a morning person now. Stop telling me that you’re not.” Said that he’s joining a running program. He’s like, “I’m not a runner, but I’m going to join a running program. Just the way that you’re not a morning person, but you keep waking up each morning.” I’m like, yep. Being in denial really helps manage your expectations.
Joy: It does.
Claire: It’s great. Highly recommend. Alright guys, well thank you so much for joining us for another week of This is Joy and Claire. You can find us on Instagram @joyandclaire_. You can email us firstname.lastname@example.org. Send us your puppy questions. Send us your Lasik questions. Send us your podcast, if you want to send your podcast. You can also go to joyandclaire.com. It is under construction now, but very, very soon it is going to be a brand new beautiful, beautiful website. We are working with Rachel from Reach Creative who was recommended to us by our favorite, Laura Ligos, the Sassy Dietician. So if you are also in the market for a website facelift, she is so great. We have really enjoyed working with her. Don’t forget to support our sponsor Ned, helloned.com/JOY or discount code JOY. Check out the Dream Set and get yourselves some amazing hotel and/or not hotel sleep. It’s going to be great. You’re going to sleep so wonderfully.
Joy: All of our listeners are going to be so well rested. We’re going to take on the world. We’re going to find that cave.
Claire: We’re just going to party in the cave. I mean, guys, literally this has been my secret to getting up at 4:30 in the morning is that I get really good sleep because I can fall asleep so quickly with all of my Ned accessories.
Joy: Thank you, Ned.
Claire: Thank you, Ned. And thank you guys for listening. We’re so grateful that you are sticking with us through all of our random ramblings.
Joy: Please don’t change.
Claire: Stay cool. Never change.
Joy: Stay cool. See you next summer.
Claire: Bye. [laughing]
Joy: Oh no, it’s “See you next year. Have a good summer.”
Claire: See you next year. Have a good summer.
Joy: Whatever, I messed that up.
Joy and Claire: [laughing]
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