Monday, June 29, 2009

The One with the Cali Hug

Last night mom and papa went into town to watch a local baseball game. I heard it was great fun! And we got a few nibbles of left over popcorn when they returned.

Not much happening here today though! It was HOT - I loved it. The two leggers ran some errands mid-day and papa did his part for the neighborhood when they noticed our missing road sign suddenly reappeared next to the sign.

Other than that, it's been quiet. Papa worked on - you guessed it - the Argosy and mom did some chores around the house. They floated in the pool to cool off during breaks. Not a bad Monday! I love having my two-leggers around... so does Cali! She was giving out Cali hugs all weekend. She even pushed mom to the floor in her excitement to give her a hug! (Technically this counts as a picture of mom, as requested!)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The One with the Public Service Announcement

I try to keep my nose out of controversy but I couldn't resist sharing a link to Patricia McConnell's blog post in response to Merial teaming up with a certain controversial animal trainer. My readers know that mom and I stand behind Ms. McConnell and her colleagues on this issue and we know there is some disagreement among animal lovers but, if nothing else, this does open dialogue!

As a side note, mom is current reading McConnell's book titled "The Other End of the Leash." She recommends it!

Ms. McConnell lives on a farm in the midwest and her blog always has lovely photos.

Cali wishes we too had sheep.

I guess that's a post for another day. Right, papa? Papa?? Hello...?
He has selective hearing.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The One with Country Fun

Today was a quiet day here in the country. The day started with the now routine task of changing the sheets, which turn pink and chalky overnight these days, much like the goop mom has on her poison ivy rash. We did a few chores and were then visited by the Crazy Cat Lady. She generously brought over fresh eggs and blueberries straight from her garden! Miss Phoenix is a fan of blueberries but mom only gives her one or two at a time. Come to think of it, I'm not sure of a food Phoenix won't eat! Cali and I have more selective palates... mostly.

The grass in the daisy field is as tall as me now! I love charging through it. I often run through it like a deer would with high jumps. Mom missed it in this video but you still see how much I enjoy feeling the grass on my back.

Click play arrow to view movie.

The tick check after these play times are intense. Mom netted a total of three ticks yesterday - just from me! The wildflowers are in full bloom around here, both in upper field by the sheds and by the green house.

Disclaimer: I have it on good authority that
behind the flowers (choking out the flowers
I should say), is a blackberry bush -
not the dreaded ivy.

Well, time to turn in for the night. Papa comes home tomorrow! I wonder what treats he will bring for us this time....

I will close today's post with this: we have baby birds under our deck! Momma bird built the nest in a very protected place so it's difficult to get a good photo - maybe as the babies get bigger it will be easier.

Click picture to enlarge.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The One with all the Pills

Wow! It's Friday already... we traveled home yesterday. I'm pleased to report that Phoenix made it to NJ and back without getting carsick! :: applause :: Though she was helped with pharmaceuticals. We hope to ween her off soon. Cali loved the ride, of course. She loves to see knew things and the chance to meet people. I hate both of those things. Luckily we didn't meet anyone but I was nervous. Whenever papa would get out of the car, I would cry and whine until he returned. I figured if he got lost, he could follow the sound of my voice to fine his way back to the truck!

It must have worked because we arrived safely at home yesterday afternoon.

The two leggers unloaded the camper and then immediately jumped in the pool. Mom was hoping it would help ease her poison ivy woes. It did not.

This morning she woke up with twice the rash. No fault of the pool but still alarming. She headed to the doctor's office today, causing the doctor to gasp and promptly call in a prescription. At least she was able to identify how and likely why it's spreading so much! She came home with pills (though she's afraid to take them), creams, soaps, oatmeal baths - tons of stuff. Cross your paws for her! (I'm sick of hearing her whine about her itchy spots!)

Papa went back to work today. We miss him - it's nice having him around every day. Alas, I do like food in tummy and a roof over my head so I guess he does have to go to work now and then.

Before he left though, he gave us a lesson on TweetDeck!

Yes, you do see THREE computers in this picture.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The One with Ivy

Today can be summed up in two words for mom: Poison Ivy. She thinks she picked it up when walking Cali at Yocco's. She's an itchy mess!
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For papa and Rodger, it was back to the pond for fishing and continuing work on the Argosy!

We did get a couple of breaks in today.

Papa showed mom the Rockaway River.

And we got to see a lot of deer and a pair of ducks!

(Clicking on pictures will enlarge them.)

After dinner we had a good romp in the grass. Little Phoenix tucks and rolls a lot but she instigates these rounds of play so she must love it! Even though she plays hard with us big dogs, mom says we can't be too rough. She is small after all and with such a long back mom worries. (Mom worry?!? That's unheard of... hahaha) If you watch closely, I give her a couple of kisses to reassure her that I'm just noisy when I play - not mad!

Click play arrow to view video.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The One with the Lioness

I am writing to you from ... :: drum roll :: ... a lovely campsite in Jersey!

It's an interesting coincidence - we happened to run into papa's parents here! They live in the house! Last night the two leggers all went out to dinner to celebrate Father's Day. That was just as well, we pups were exhausted from the excitement of travel!

On the way here, we passed through Pennsylvania, which meant a stop at Yocco's of course!

Today the day started with a few casts of the rod.

After a hearty breakfast of fresh eggs (courtesy of the Crazy Cat Lady - thank you!) and some bacon, potatoes and toast, papa and Rodger have been diligently working on the Argosy - buffing and polishing all day! (Though mom did allow a brief break for some delicious Jersey cold cut sandwiches.) The camper is really looking shiny. I can admire my reflection with ease now.

Mom had to work in the morning but took us on a few walks during her breaks. There are SO many smells here.

Mom said there's even a bear that lives here! She's relieved that we haven't seen her yet but I wouldn't mind catching a glimpse of her and the cub. The two-leggers "joke" that the bear might kidnap Cali thinking she's one of them!

I DID get to meet Ginger's friend The Lioness! Cali met her as a puppy but they didn't seem to remember each other.

Little Phoenix has been a bit nervous! You can't tell from the shaky video but her hair stands on end around the statue! Watch how she gives it a wide birth when she walks around it...

Click play arrow to view video.

In the evening papa grilled up his famous steaks, which we brought from our butcher shop back home.

I'm still waiting for the leftovers!

We rounded out the night with some fishing at the campsite's secluded pond.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

The One Where We Thank Dads

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I am blessed to have three two-leggers to honor on Father's Day. First I have Papa Michael and Papa Rodger.

As you know, I often quote Mark Twain on special occasions. This is no exception.

In Old Times on the Mississippi, Mr. Twain wrote, "When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years."

Now, I don't think my two-leggers agree wholeheartedly with this beginning of this statement but they do relate to suddenly realizing how wise their fathers are about many things. I think what's amusing about Twain's comment is that most two-leggers do come to realize how much their fathers have taught them. I know my two-leggers are grateful for their fathers' guidance and love.

I, too, am grateful for their affection. Not to mention, the many pizza crusts that often make their way from the desert to the country.

I also want to thank my own papa. I believe we have of a psychic connection of sorts! When I was just a wee pup, I was crated when left unsupervised. And rightly so! You see, one afternoon, papa was getting ready for work and noticing this, I settled down in my crate. Since I was such a good, quiet girl, he forgot to close the crate door. Well, now free to explore and being the brainy one, I knew that I could slip through the banister, hop to the step and trot on downstairs to where mom keeps the food. I :: ahem :: overindulged. I then dragged myself back up the stairs and squeezed my swollen belly through the railing as mom came home from work. She soon discovered my bulging, painful stomach and panicked! As she was getting her keys to take me to the emergency hospital, papa called from the plane to "check in" because he had a funny feeling. Not once before or since has he felt a need to call from the air. I stand firm it's because of our special connection! (Side note: All turned out well after a night at the hospital. And mom puppy-proofed her food storage system since she realized the baby gate is not sufficient with me around the house!)

Because of this special bond with papa and so many reasons, I sure love my papa! My sisters and I are very lucky dogs!

I'll close with this family riddle of sorts, which I found on the internet. I know at least one of these dads will appreciate it!

Family Loop

Many, many years ago
When I was twenty three,
I got married to a widow,
Pretty as could be.

This widow had a grown-up daughter
With flowing hair of red.
My father fell in love with her,
And soon the two were wed.

This made my dad my son-in-law
And changed my very life.
Now my daughter was my mother,
For she was my father's wife.

To complicate the matters worse,
Although it brought me joy,
I soon became the father
Of a bouncing baby boy.

My little baby then became
A brother-in-law to dad.
And so became my uncle,
Though it made me very sad.

For if he was my uncle,
Then that also made him brother
To the widow's grown-up-daughter
Who, of course, was my step-mother.

Father's wife then had a son,
Who kept them on the run.
And he became my grandson,
For he was my daughter's son.

My wife is now my mother's mother
And it makes me blue.
Because, although she is my wife,
She's my grandma too.

If my wife is my grandmother,
Then I am her grandchild.
And every time I think of it,
It simply drives me wild.

For now I have become
The strangest case you ever saw.
As the husband of my grandmother,
I am my own grandpa!

Author Unknown

Saturday, June 20, 2009

The One with Alvin

It is confirmed! We are going on a trip in the Airstream. Where we are going is still a mystery but we all jumped in the big truck and mom drove from it's spot on the hill to it's position in front of the camper. Looks like we're getting close to the day of departure!

We spent the day divided between watching our Arizona family on the web cameras and supervising mom's chores. She said she has to get everything out of the way so she can run errands and organize the camper tomorrow. Mom took some time looking around the Argosy making notes, while Cali and Phoenix sniffed around to make sure everything was just right. I smartly sat outside - it was 90 degrees in there!
Between this heat and rain, the weeds are overtaking us once more.

I have exciting news, while I was waiting for my crew to finish up in there, I noticed that we not only have my "friend" the squirrel dining on the plums but also a tiny chipmunk. Unfortunately, mom spotted him just before I did and distracted me from investigating. I think little Alvin may live in the cedar next to the plum tree. I will certainly keep you posted on future developments.

Like my nemesis, I have questions for Alvin too! For example, does he know what happened to chipmunks between the 1980s and present day. Evidently, they used to be significantly taller - up to a grown man's knee. Now? Barely the size of my paw!

Friday, June 19, 2009

The One with the Nemesis

He's been here all day. My nemesis. Evidently the plums are ripe. First he was here to eat all of the cherries and now he's working on the plums. That means he is just beyond the deck stairs all day. It's torture!! Mom was working and on the phone almost all day, papa was at work... and we were stuck behind glass watching him dine on fresh fruit all day. When we did get outside time, I sure did my best to spot him!

To make up for the lack of attention during the day, mom let us play in the tall grass at the top of the hill. It is so much fun! It's well worth the extensive tick checks post-play. Phoenix likes to pretend she's in the movie Field of Dreams.

Click play arrow to view movie.

It's a beautiful time here at the park!

Something I noticed while playing outside - the Argosy is in the usual pre-travel position.

I also heard papa say that I could check a few states off on my Where Have I Visited Map in my sidebar. The mystery continues . . .

As far as the trailer is concerned, the stripping is complete! Now it's on to polishing!

Meanwhile, mom replaced my crate pad today. I took some time investigating it before giving it my stamp of approval.

Even Phoenix checked it out...

Mom's tried this once before with a different cushion, one similar to my lovely, fluffy nighttime bed, and I refused to go into my crate. And I LOVE relaxing in my crate periodically during the day, if I'm not lounging on the couch or the two-leggers' bed. This time I gave her the okay since this time it's exactly like the original pad but she's still hanging on to my old, ratty bed in case I change my mind, as I've been known to do! I guess she doesn't understand I like one type of bed for sleeping and a different type of bed for relaxing. The old one was just fine in my opinion but it was a little worn down - okay a lot worn down. I'd pretty much flattened the padding from overuse and it has a small whole in the middle from a couple of puppies who will remain nameless but are probably familiar with two Arizona towns.

Speaking of Phoenix and Mesa, we'll all be together again in 26 days! I'm a wee bit excited about the visit! On that note, I think I'll turn in for the night so that I can say 25 days until I see Dr. Aunt Katie and her barnacle.
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