Shepherd-Hound mix, born April 2005 in North Carolina. I made the trip north to a rescue league and was adopted by Ginger and Cali when I was 10 weeks old. I was a the size of a fountain soda cup at the time but I'm now a leggy, 60 pounds!
Today summed up in one word! According to our wind gauge, the gusts topped 60.2 MPH this morning! The power went out for about two hours shortly after that gust. Mom has a battery backup to keep the modem and router running (heaven forbid we go without the internet for too long) but cable was knocked out too. I'm happy to report we made it through 120 minutes without technology. Not exactly a blackout but the title fit perfectly.
A couple of my loyal readers have noticed that my tradition is to use Friends episode titles as my blog titles. Or to keep it as close as possible. It's my way paying homage to one of mom's favorite shows of all time. Plus " . . . it is a bit of a challenge!" (Bonus points granted if you can name the episode in which Chandler says those words!)
During the "blackout," we played keep-away with my new bees. Phoenix is quite a competitor though. She steals it from Cali every time - not that Cali puts up much resistance. For being so tough, Phoenix is afraid of... wind. Yep. Wind. Poor thing sticks to us like glue outside when it's windy. It's okay. That's what big sisters are for, right?
Wind has made her nervous since she first came to us two years ago. Two years ago today, as a matter of fact. The crazy cat lady convinced mom and papa to bring her home after she was hanging around a neighbor's house for a couple of days. Phoenix, then only six months old, had to spend ten days at the animal shelter to make sure she wasn't being looked for by her original two-leggers. Mom was VERY nervous for those ten days and wished she just kept her here and never notified anyone. But it was the right thing to do. And it turned out of the best! No one claimed her, which was meant to be because we couldn't imagine our family without her. It's hard to believe it was only two years ago.
Nothing much to report! My pack is sleeping quietly now. Earlier today, Ginger went to Dr. Mitchell's office to recheck her thyroid levels. They had trouble finding a good vein from which to draw blood but she was a trooper. Dr. Mitchell is the BEST at drawing Ginger's blood but those Shar Pei's have some rolly-pollie veins so sometimes it's difficult. I probably mentioned this but we have the best vet ever. Obviously. We travel 90 minutes each way to visit her. And that's a huge compliment from me - I'm cautious of everyone.
Mom suspects the values are still low, which she predicts is the cause of her recent focal seizure activity. We'll know in a couple of days. If it's low, Dr. Mitchell will increase the thyroid medication. If it's normal, she'll give Ginger an additional medication to help control the seizures. In addition, she now has a ten day supply of antibiotics to clear up her tooth infection. Her breath leaves something to be desired but she can't help it! The infection is likely the cause of her runny nose so we'd knock out two problems with one pill - well two pills, twice a day. That brings her total to 13 pills per day for medication and supplements, plus a powdery substance on her food for her joints at night. She's living the high life for sure!
Normally Cali or I go with her to the office for moral support. (Phoenix is still working on overcoming her car sickness.) For today's visit, Ginger was on her own because mom had to take the pickup truck and it would be cramped. I know she missed us but I bet she liked the extra attention!
We sure missed her! Isn't her post-visit bandanna from the vet cute?
Mom missed most of the homecoming but this is some of it on tape. We sure love our Ginger-bear!
Papa has to get up at 2:45 tomorrow morning so he's already turned in for the night. But, tomorrow is his Friday and he'll get home early! Then he'll be off until next year! One of mom's favorite shows, The Big Bang Theory, is coming on soon so I'll be signing off to tune in - sure beats Sunrise Earth!
Today was a balmy 73°!! Mesa and Molly were in Arizona wearing sweaters because they could see their breath all day! What a switch, huh?
We spent a lot of the day taking long walks and chasing each other outside. It was great to get a break from the winter weather. Mom didn't get much accomplished on her to do list but how often is it so beautiful on December 27? Mom and papa sat outside on the deck when he got home from work and have the windows open for a nice breeze as I type this at 7:30. I love it!
Phoenix is currently zonked out on the couch but a couple of days ago the weather was too cold to play outside so the slightest thing would entertain her. Please don't try this at home!
I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas! We had a wonderful couple of days. Papa was feeling 100% so the eating commenced as scheduled. They have a traditional Italian feast of seven fishes. (Yes, that is grammatically correct much to mom's dismay.) It's spread out over several small meals so that they don't burst. They finished up the night with a slice of pizza, mom used to have pizza every Christmas Eve, and, of course, brownies.
The two-leggers and my sisters slept in on Christmas Day. I was chomping at the bit and bumping mom's hand for what seemed like hours before she got up and started the day. After breakfast, we opened some presents. We got GREAT gifts. I took photos and video of what I could. The yummy treats and bones didn't make it to photos though. When bones are in play, I have to be on my game. My sisters don't hesitate to scoop up my goodies!
This my new toy from my cousins and Dr. Aunt Katie. For brainiacs only: BEES in a hive!
'Twas the night before Christmas, when all thru the room,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a vacuum; The stockings were hung by the fish tank with care, In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there; Ginger and Cali were nestled all snug in their beds, While visions of Greenies danced in their heads; And Phoenix and I snuggled tight by the tree, Had just settled down to catch a few z's.
When out on the deck there arose such a clatter, I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter. Away to the door I flew like a flash, Pushed open the blinds and gulped down a gasp.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear, But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer, With a little old driver, so lively and quick, I knew it must be St. Nick.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work, And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk, He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle, And away they all flew like the down of a thistle. But I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all and to all dogs a good life!"
Papa is on the mend! He still feels iffy but he's doing better. He stayed home to babysit us while mom ran out to brave the Christmas Eve Eve crowds at the grocery store. (Hmmm... was this all a ploy to avoid shopping??)
She (dare I say it so close to Christmas?) whined about the crowds and the cold (it was 27 degrees while she was running errands) but WE, while I sympathize with her complaints about crowds, have bigger issues to complain about today. Papa made us watch the most boring TV programs, such as Sunrise Earth and Christmas Unwrapped: The History of Christmas - A Fascinating Story of the Bawdy Roman Saturnalia. I always thought fascinating meant interesting or captivating. As evidenced by this program, I am mistaken.
Something that IS interesting? Today the Crazy Cat Lady stopped by with a BEAUTIFUL Christmas centerpiece for mom and papa.
AND - best of all - she brought delicious smelling gifts for us! Mom said we have to wait a couple more days to open the presents but we've all snuck over to take a deep whiff of all the goodies in our stockings.
Ginger was scheduled to go to the vet today but was pardoned. Mom had to take papa to the doctor instead! He has a stomach virus. (Mom insists it has nothing to do with my previous post!!) He's feeling pretty lousy though. He spent three hours at the doctor getting checked and receiving fluids. Poor papa. He got home from California last night, had a bite to eat and within minutes was . . . under the weather. We're taking turns playing nursemaid. The feast countdown may change. Mom doesn't want to go forward until he's feeling 100%. Stay tuned . . .
I have some startling news. Mom is in the kitchen and she's.... cooking. Yes. It's true. I will preface this by saying that she has a box of Macaroni and Cheese on standby in case things go terribly wrong, which wouldn't be the first time! I sympathize... it must be tough cooking for such a great chef. Don't get me wrong - she has made a handful of successful dinners... the random teriyaki chicken dinner (which is on tonight's menu), an Easter dinner or two and the Thanksgiving dinner with all of the fixings of 2002. Yeah, the non-cook preparing holiday feasts. Nothing like a little pressure, huh? I notice that Ginger, who is fresh from the bath, has a little honey drizzled on her head... I guess she's not the neatest cook. Papa should be home shortly. I better go see if she needs help!
Saturday has arrived. Papa is on the best coast so things here are uneventful. Mom's out running some errands and my pack is snoozing by the Christmas tree. Only a few days until the big feast. This time of year mom always gets a little more homesick than usual. She turned on the webcam at the AZ house and was greeted by the infamous Santa - on a lamp.The sight of the roaming Santa made mom chuckle, so I'm happy for that but I really don't get it!
Ginger and Phoenix have been best buddies today. I've caught them cuddling several times! Phoenix loves to be warm and Ginger loves to lean on us or against the two-leggers so it's a perfect match. Every time I move to get the camera for evidence, they move too so I've given up on the photo op! This was the best I could do...
RAINING. Yuck! No snow at all so far. This is crazy! Snowflakes are on the calendar for Monday, according to weather.com. I'll believe it when I see it! Then again, mom said it will snow because of some guy named Murphy. Apparently Murphy has a law that since Ginger is going to the vet on Monday, over an hour away, it will snow. That seems like a very specific rule to me.
The Christmas tunes have been playing all day and what perfect background music! My Arizona relatives sent a bunch of presents which arrived today. Phoenix practically climbed into the box and Ginger was investigating everything mom pulled out but Cali had the best idea. She started taking gifts out when mom went to answer the phone. Unfortunately, we didn't have time to open any before she got back but we watched her put them in our stockings so we made some plans for later.
We also got holiday cards from my cousins... aren't they cute? I could just carry them around in my pocket! If I had pockets, that is.
Mom was off today so didn't do much besides make another "list" and play with her new Tobi garment steamer. It was a gift for her birthday and she just now had time to take it out of the box. She steamed everything so I think she likes it!
Papa has been working like a busy bee downstairs. The electricity was completed and he's moved on to plumbing. His least favorite part!
Today has been a S L O W day. Mom is working from home and dad is downstairs rerunning the electricity in the new bathroom. I've been trying to catch a snooze but can't get any alone time.
Is she kidding me with this?
Just when I got a little elbow room, that squirrel shows his little face, twitches that arrogant tail and wakes us all up!
Finally I got some rest in an unlikely place - Phoenix's tiny bed in the kitchen... As of this posting, mom is now officially on winter break. She doesn't have to go back to the office until next year! We're going to be so spoiled. Papa isn't as fortunate with his job but he said he will be here when Santa Claus comes. I wonder when that will be - my stocking is pitifully bare. I'll keep you updated on that.
Greetings, loyal readers! In the words of my mom's dad... this is the best Monday I've had all week! Papa has been working downstairs in the bathroom - the wall came down. (For some reason I hear President Reagan.) Anyway, it was awesome!
Mom is jealous of all the space that bathroom will have now. Next on the task list: electricity! I'll probably stay safely on the couch - just in case. Hehe... Can I get a high five?!
Today has had some ups and downs. The morning began with some quality time with papa, including my favorite game. The phone rang on and off all day though, which I hate. I try to tell people when mom and papa are out but they keep calling!! Sometimes I can get little Phoenix to join in with me. Even so, folks still don't understand what I'm saying. Most say it just sounds like I'm singing. Two-leggers...
When they got home from their errands this morning, Phoenix took a nap with papa before he had to leave for the west coast.
Ginger's day has been up and down too. She's had some minor episodes these last couple of weeks - such as fly snapping and ataxia - which have increased in frequency. Happily, nothing serious has happened since mom and Dr. Mitchell increased her medication this fall. She's due for bloodwork on the 22nd so we might have to move that up in the schedule. Mom thinks it's that pesky thyroid again. Ginger's a tough girl so I'm not overly worried but we all get upset when she's acting strangely. Especially Cali. She'll wake up from a nap under the bed to run to Ginger's side if she hears any distress. And Ginger knows it. As I type this, Ginger is happily rubbing her face all over Cali's chest because she knows she can. They've been best friends since Cali was a baby.
A couple of days have past since my last post. We've had some demolition here! Exciting! Papa is tearing out the bathroom downstairs. I took a lot of before photos because the previous owners had - shall we say - a different style or maybe too many half-completed styles in one tiny room! I'll show the before pictures when the room is complete but for now here is a video of the work in progress! I love demo days! And the word is papa will be taking an entire wall down during this project. Can't wait for that!
The two-leggers headed out to a restaurant in town tonight. The new owners have completed some extensive work inside and purchased fancy signs for the exterior. Mom and papa were a little hesitant but gave it a try.
They arrived home a short time ago and, well, let's just say papa is currently cooking up something delicious! I guess it didn't go well for them but you know what that means for us.... left-overs!
Bad news.... papa's parents can't make it down to visit us this month after all. Rodger needs to rest up! I'm holding out hope for a visit soon though.
In the meantime, things here have been quiet. Mom only has three or four more office days until she's off until next year!! Papa was on the west coast last night. I think I heard mom grumbling during our walk after dinner yesterday about how warm it was there. To compare, according to Weather Underground, it was 26 degrees here with a steady wind speed of 18 MPH at 6:00 when we went out for our last walk. Where papa was? 55 with calm wind. I have to admit, even I was jealous! But snow is in the forecast for us later in the week and I do love a good romp in the snow! We didn't get any snow last winter. Here are some pictures from my first major snow storm!
Good news! Papa's dad arrived home last night. It must have been good to sleep in his own bed! I had to stay overnight at the hospital twice when I was a pup. Once to be spayed and another time because - well, let's just say I overindulged on the secret food supply when I escaped from my crate. Not really the same thing for papa's dad, I guess. But I sure hated it, as I'm sure he did! Luckily, Rodger will have a Merry Christmas at home. He doesn't have to go back to the hospital until January for more work. So I think we'll see both of papa's parents in a couple of weeks as scheduled!
Ginger and Cali are keeping an eye out for them. Haha.. I shouldn't say "keeping an eye out" to Ginger, my blind, one-eyed sister. Cali is keeping watch. Ginger is listening very closely.
Papa's dad is heading down to the hospital today. He is having a procedure tomorrow. We'll all be saying extra prayers for him for the next couple of days. Even though I'll be as shy as a mouse when he arrives, we're excited for his visit in a couple of weeks. -- Hey, maybe he'll bring a couple of those giant squirrels that hang around his house. That would be fun! -- In the meantime, I'm going to get started on those prayers for a safe hospital stay and a speedy recovery.
It has been a busy day! Mom left for work early so I had to watch the squirrel from behind glass until Stacey came to feed us. He, of course, was gone by then. He must be watching me too.
After Stacey's visit, I worked hard to convince Phoenix that the ornaments on the tree are not toys for us. That took quite some time. By then it was mid-day and that blasted squirrel was back to tease me! Argh!
Luckily mom and papa arrived just in time for dinner. When Ginger gets hungry she sure gets antsy so I was contemplating feeding her myself. (As mom has discovered, I can easily get past the baby gate to go downstairs where she keeps the extra food bins.)
Papa was away last night so having him home is always fun. We ran outside a bit and then we each got a taste of ham for dessert. The thing is, after a long day babysitting my sisters and watching for the secret spy squirrel, a puppy gets tired! Unfortunately, papa was not tired. I've heard driving around the neighborhood makes little two-leggers sleepy but that would involve leaving my home turf plus papa's not so little. After some thinking, I tried something else. It worked! Take a look.