waste not.

Note: I'm about to say "poop" a lot. Just embrace it. It's a funny word.

One thing that I never anticipated about dog ownership was how much you have to think about poop. Not poop itself, but the last time poop happened. In addition to the regular clock that tells you when you have to go to work or meet a friend for lunch, you have to keep track of the last time the dog pooped. You've got a poop clock, which probably will need to be reset before you go to work or meet a friend for lunch.

You do also have to deal with the poop itself. Remix does a lot of her business in the back yard. I'm sure a lot of poop has happened back there. Luckily, there is a thriving circle of life back there, because I don't have to see very much of it. As soon as she lets it go, a bunch of wee beasties are there to, well, whatever they do with it.

We also take her on walks around the neighborhood. And there you have the need for poop bags, a first-world invention if I've ever heard of one. People do not like for your dog to poop on their lawns. I guess verdent lawns are not the home to the kind of wee beasties that get rid of dog poop. I have a yard full of dirt and leaves. Whatever lives in the leaves loves poop, but whatever lives in the grass does not. So the owners of lawns get mad at your dog, when they are the ones who ruined their own poop-recycling environment.

Thus the need for poop bags.

At first, we used plastic grocery bags. These worked pretty well, except that sometimes there were holes in them, but you didn't realize it until it was too late. Newspaper or produce bags worked better (less likely to have holes, better shape for the purpose), but they were harder to come by. I used to grab an extra produce bag or two every single time I went to the grocery store. It was kinda stealing. But we were bagging poop every day, sometimes twice a day.

I am perfectly aware that you can buy poop bags by the hundred. But if you thought that I wouldn't try to get out of buying something, then you haven't been paying attention.

I mentioned my woes to my mother. She laughed at me, because they could hardly be called woes.

But the next time I saw Mama, she gave me two large bags full of newspaper bags. She gets two papers every single day, which is two poop bags. She was thrilled to do this, because she personally was overrun with newspaper bags, perfectly good plastic bags, that she had no purpose for. But now! She could give them to me. They were no longer going to waste, they were containing waste. She even told one of her friends about it, who also started donating newspaper bags to the cause.

I'm sure you can see the connection between the mother who refuses to throw anything out and the daughter who refuses to buy special plastic bags.

The problem was that we no longer had a problem - we'd found another solution to all the poop. When we walk Remix, we just direct her to poop in one of the many wooded areas that are scattered around the neighborhood. These areas are owned by the same people who own lawns, but for some reason, it's okay to poop in the woods; even bears do it. Plus, those wee beasties take care of it right away.

So now I have lots and lots of poop bags, with no need for them. I use them when I need them, and I recyle the rest. I'm happy, lawn-owners are happy, my mama's frugal heart is happy.

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