Friday, December 27, 2013

Pink Skull Embroidery

Noah from Skull-A-Day is having a 'Laughing Skull Stencil' contest for a signed copy of his SKULLS book, which is now out of print. I saw the post yesterday. I've been mostly off the computer prior to Christmas so I had to do some quick thinking of what I wanted to do. I wanted something different than cutting the stencil and spraying or dabbing some paint into it. So, finally I made a decision, pulled some fabric and some floss out and started stitching away tonight. The deadline is at midnight. I didn't know if I'd make it in time, but I did. The drawing of the winner is random, using the stencil was just the way to get into the contest. 5 hours of stitching and this is the result. It measures 3-3/4" high.

I found Noah's book a few years ago at the bookstore, which lead me to his blog, and I've been a follower ever since. It would be cool to win his signed copy, sort of a full circle kinda thing.

Now I'm going to go enjoy some tea and sweet potato pie.


A Christmas Miracle, Otis Goes To His New Home

Otis has found his forever home, and what a lucky boy he is.

Yesterday at 1:30 I received a phone call, "Hi, I'm interested in Otis." At first, I felt elated, then I worried it wouldn't be the right fit, but as I talk with Derek, it feels right. I could hear his fiance in the background, "oooohhhh, I want Otis." They were serious -- they asked if they could come down from Massachusetts in a few hours. Just before hanging up, knowing they'd be coming to meet Otis, I could hear Kellie in the background squeal with delight.

How awesome is that??

They showed up at 6pm. Otis greeted them heartily, he was so happy to see them. They sat down, he was right up on their laps. He would come over to me now and again if I moved or went into the other room, he's very bonded with me, but I knew it was right. He knew it was right. This couple is so sweet. Derek is this big hulking guy with the sweetest disposition, a very soft heart. He fell in love immediately and knew he wanted to take Otis home. Kelly was quieter, but so sure, too, that he was the one.

I thought he might end up with me forever, but in my heart, I knew I just had to be patient. I was just worried because the longer he was with me, the more attached he would become and might have had difficulty transitioning to a new life. He was surrendered to rescue when he was one and half years old, then adopted, then surrendered to us again at 3 1/2 years old, then he was with me for 10 months...He's bounced around. You know what, though? It didn't effect his spirit. He is such an awesome boy. I will miss his happy growly sounds, when his face is in my hands or in a blanket or towel. I will miss him jumping up on the bed in the morning after R. has gotten up and I continue to lay there. I will miss him cuddling up to me when hanging out on the sofa or in R.'s 'man chair.' I will especially miss how he looked at me with such love and trust. We had our own mental connection.

But, I am sooooo happy for him.

Per the usual when an adopter goes home with a dog, I told Derek and Kellie that I would be in touch in about a week to see how things are going.

Derek called me this morning. He wanted me to know how perfect it was, that Otis fit right in, slept with them last night and that he just loves him. He knew I had him for a long time and that the attachment was there, he wanted me to know that all was good for each one of them. How sweet and considerate was that? The couple is going to be married in October, Derek asked if I would dog sit since Otis knows me and they don't really have anyone else to take him and they don't want to put him in a kennel. So, this is not the end of my relationship with Otis.

Now Little Bug is alone, and that concerns me a little. Hanzie and Otis gave her a sense of safety -- now she will have to learn to rely on her own strengths and self-soothing ways. I bet she'll end up relishing the single dog life.  

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas and Finding Santa(s) ...

I don't know where these past 3 weeks went. I was finishing up jobs, trying to get some organizing done around here, started painting my bathroom and doing a little bit of shopping. Because I do 98% of my shopping at secondhand stores, I get to pick up some vintage Santa's along the way to add to my Mr. Santa Salt Shaker.

I have a bunch of mini and regular sized hot chocolate Santa head mugs that I didn't pull down from storage, I was off track with Christmas this year and almost didn't even get any kind of tree up. But I did find a stashed bag of mini mugs that were an 'end of the clean up from last year' that never made it into the main boxes. Lucky for me, I found a few other Santa's at the thrift store to add to my collection, so I gathered them under the tree.

And the tree? I did climb up to the top shelf of the garage and get the box it's stored in. I pulled out the top half, took a bunch of the recently found vintage ornaments that were supposed to be for wreath craft day, and pulled out a tree topper that was earmarked for ebay. Voila! My small tree looking festive with Santa's showing off underneath.

I hope that you all are enjoying the holiday season and

have a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas Craft Day

What a week so far. I've been wanting to tell you about my craft day on Saturday at my house.

It was planned over a month ago. Initially it was to make ornament wreaths much like GeorgiaPeachez, but after realizing that I would never find that many vintage ornaments in became, 'make a wreath of your choice,' day. Then, as I talked to the 12 friends invited, it became 'make whatever you want but it has to be Christmas, dammit' day.

Slowly, these women had better things to do and they dropped off the list like flies caught on sticky tape.

Damn them.

But my stress level lowered with each one gone. Hmmmmm.

This day was created because my good friend Lois wanted to make an ornament wreath. "Perfect!" I said, "we've been wanting to have craft day so let's make a plan." I sent out emails and updated emails and another updated email. Guess what? Lois couldn't make it....and not only that, she made an Autumn ornament wreath in the meantime and the thrill was gone for her. Then she had the audacity to say....I almost can't repeat it....she said, and I quote, "I think this type of wreath might be too kitschy for me." WHAAAAAAATTTT? How dare she?! Blasphemy!

and Damn Her!

I was on my own and at this point, I didn't even want to make a stupid wreath anymore. (Lois? you know I still love you.)

My BIG Christmas Craft day became small Christmas craft day and you know what? we had a lot of fun. We were silly, laughed a lot and helped each other with ideas. And, wreaths were made after all. My friend of 20 years, Toni, came and brought her sister with her, who's up from Florida for a few weeks and loves to be crafty. I think Toni stayed committed because she already bought some materials and didn't want them to go to waste. ;-)

She made this very sweet wreath....

 and her sister Shirley made this one for her music loving sister-in-law....

and me? well, I decided to make a Christmas ornament tree. I wrestled with a cardboard box to make a cone shape. (you know what the rule is when cutting with a razor blade or any such type of cutting instrument to cut away from you, right? well, I ignored it, and sliced the side of my waist as I pulled the razor down toward me to cut the cardboard -- DODO head -- it was not serious enough to require stitches, that really would have sucked and messed up craft day.) Then I circled the form with tinsel garland (found at the thrift store) and...well...that's as far as I got.

I couldn't commit to the ornaments I have on hand (which are also from the thrift store -- I totally cleaned them out the other day.) The ornaments are just plain Jane in jewel colors, very 1980's, NOT my color choice at all, so the decorating part of the tree is on hold...but I have a plan. The question is, will it get done by Christmas?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Otis is a Funny Guy

The other day Otis had a visitor. Over the phone, it sounded like it could be a good match. I spoke with the daughter and she is a HUGE dog advocate/lover and she was helping her parents find another Schnauzer. I found out they were older but still active and their dog that passed was similar to Otis in nature. That is a very important piece of information -- experience. The Daughter lived only 3 miles away and was around often. I asked all the appropriate questions, all the answers were the right ones. BUT the picture in my head is not who I met. Don't get me wrong, very nice people that dote on their dogs. But, you can kind of tell Mom might not be ready when she comes in with a thick photo album of the dog she lost in May. She talked about her dog and asked all kinds of questions about .... BUG!! She wanted Little Bug I could tell. She didn't make much effort toward Otis and either Otis picked up on it or he really wasn't interested either.

Although the dog would be walked regularly, it sounds like it's Dad that keeps it on a regular 2 hours schedule, and she was not 'active' as I think of active. I have friends in their 70's and 80's that are out and about, etc., are full of energy, going to the gym and living life. So my view of the description is different than theirs. A higher energy than I realized this woman had. Yes, he is dedicated to walks every two hours -- but he didn't make it to the interview because he was still sleeping when they left (around 8:45am.)

I think the daughter is more interested in finding them a dog than it seems they really are. Otis loved her. From what I understand, she's one of those people that dogs go to that would never go to anyone. She's got the dog Kvorka. (Seinfeld, a concept introduced to me by Angela because I seem to have the 'older-men-are-attracted-to-me Kvorka) It's always been that way since I was very small. Anyway, I digress.

OTIS! he is too funny. If you watch your dog and learn to read him/her, they can be quite interesting. Otis went outside when they were here. It was a beautiful day and the back door was open. They had showered Otis and Bug with treats and then Otis was off. Now, you have to understand, Otis goes outside to pee, he doesn't hang out there roaming around. It's not his thing. He likes to be around me. I noticed he hadn't come in yet after a few minutes and I looked outside. He was just wandering around but the look on his face was different. Nonplussed, disinterested. He came back in after a few minutes and looked up at me with a very simple face, almost blank but his eyes told me, "Mom, we're not a match. I'm really not interested in going home with her." The Mom might have unknowingly felt the energy because she said, "I'm not sure if I'll take him."

Her daughter encouraged her to sit down and engage Otis, get to know him a little. She did sit, Otis went over to her, engaged her a little, and jumped off. Mom asked me if I would keep him if he didn't get adopted. I said, "I would not put him down, he will stay with me if no one wants him." and then I added, "but he's not going home with you. You are not connecting with him and are much more interested in Bug." I added that I wouldn't send a dog home with someone just for the sake of finding said dog a new home. She seemed a bit relieved. She agreed she was more interested in Bug. The daughter, on the other hand, Otis jumped on her while she sat on the floor and smothered her with kisses and happiness. Otis doesn't give kisses. The funny thing is...after that day, he started giving them to me once in awhile.

He's a funny guy. A smart guy and a great dog that on paper or with words his 2 faults might turn you away, but when you meet him, you generally want to take him home.

He thinks he is home.

ps: Cindi? don't even say it!! LOL

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Silhouette of Crazy Barking Dogs

Whenever I go outside whether it be day or night, Mr. Otis and Little Bug make their way to the window barking their heads off. In the daylight, it's cute (and annoying at the same time) because Otis's little head is peering over the top of the frame, as you've seen from this side.

Well, my neighbor gets such a kick out of it especially when it happens at night. Ed (he lives across the street) was going into his house when I was coming out of mine and he looked back to see these two crazy dogs because they were barking their heads off. He loves this silhouette, so he ran into his house for his camera, came out and took these shots.

It does make me laugh because it is innocent and cute but the barking drives me crazy and the fact that they scratch the heck out of my sofa and window sill -- but that's what paint is for, right?? Oh, and Bug can't really see anything but shadows but that's enough for her.

Crazy kids!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A Horse Named Bear

My friend's beautiful horse passed away this past summer, I think he was 28. I used to give him biscuit horse treats when I'd go over. I love this photo of him.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Ralph Lauren Promotes Adoption of Shelter Dogs

Have you seen the new ad for Ralph Lauren 'The Dog Walk'? It came to my attention because of a FREEKIBBLE question the other day. I like the music, and, of course, the dogs. Granted, it's really an ad for RL handbags and shoes, but it also includes leashes and dog apparel. "From October 15 to November 15, 10% of the purchase price of select accessories and dog apparel featured in the film will be donated to the ASPCA." I'm particularly fond of 'Lady' the little black and white girl on the park bench and then there she is again at a distance in a dog that part, she gives a little bark we cannot hear, but look how her mouth makes that cute little hole. Yes, it's pretty obvious that I'm partial because she looks a bit like my Buggy Boo, although it looks like she might have a some Shih Tzu in her. Also, you HAVE to watch the 'behind the scenes' clip. You are going to want to eat that first little face up!! and the Doxies -- OMG!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Can You Say AMAZING!!??

Holy crap this guy is good.

I did a general search for paper mache artists and Dan's link was at the top of the linky dink page. Look at this jaw dropping work.

PAPER People. PAPER....OK, and some cloth.

I'm so amazed I'm speechless. I've been busy working, shifting things 'round the house, having a huge ass tag sale...I needed some really good eye candy...and I got it.

OK, now I have to go continue reading more of his blog.


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Hey Mom! I Can See Outside!

A few weeks ago Otis discovered that if he stands tippy-toe on the top of the sofa and puts his front paws in a death grip on the top rail of the window pane, he can see the outside world.

And proceed to bark at it.

Meanwhile the top wood edge of the sofa gets scratched to bits. He also discovered that if he just sits on the sofa and looks out the frosted part of the window, he can see movement, so he sits there in wait.

Damn Dogs.


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Vintage MCM Coffee Table

I've been keeping an eye out for a vintage coffee table the past couple years. I like the Castro Convertible that I have but I'm thinking it's a bit too wide, I especially think that when I clock my knee on the sharp corner.

Finally, while looking for hutch tops on Craigslist, there it was, in an ad for a hutch top, looking dingy and forgotten. I called, it was still available, I went.

It's been traveling around in my storage mobile (aka, my Rav4) for a couple weeks now and I had to get it out of there for sanity purposes. So I pulled it into the living room, used some Restor-a-finish on it, and voila! .... but I wasn't feeling it. Maybe because I am used to the yellow/beige of the CC, maybe because I am used to the size of the CC, but I couldn't make myself feel that it was working.

It looks good to me in the photo, but when looking at the whole room, it's off balance. It feels heavy to the right side with the majority of the furniture there. I put the first one back. Maybe I'll just take something else out of the room to 'lighten' it up. Or maybe I'll keep looking and try this again.

Of course, this is not a new occurrence in my house. Thank goodness I get things at thrift stores, Craigslist and tag sales, and therefore, don't spend hundreds of dollars. I change my mind so much. Although I am a very visual person, I have to see items in my space to 'feel' if it's right....and I ain't feeling it. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Jan Hopkins -- An Artist of the Amazing Kind

Can you believe this is made out of grapefruit and orange peels, with other compostable stuff thrown in? The detail and craftsmanship is amazing. See more of her art here. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Yes, Otis Is Still Here

I've not written a lot about Otis. He just became part of the scenery around here. Good natured, well behaved, a bit silly, happy and oh yeah, he still likes to try to eat other dogs upon initial meet-ups. Hmmmm, can't have everything, right?

Otis has been with me since March. I was thinking he might never get adopted. Although I had some inquiries and conversations with those interested...they just weren't the right fit for him. Three of the applications I received were from young couples, all were very interested. Sounds great, right? Well, Otis can't be placed with young children. I was told by each couple that they don't have children. I surmised that they probably would one day before Otis died and then he'd end up back here with me. I don't get it that they didn't get it. But after talking with them, it made sense, although they were disappointed.

I had some good news that Otis would be meeting his possible new owners on Thursday. I was so excited for him. But, I received a phone call this morning that said differently. The couple that was coming, have decided that it might not be the right fit. There's reasons I won't go into, but I was disappointed, and the husband of the couple, was as well. I've always said, 'when it's right it will happen.' and the same goes here, but it is disappointing. Better to find out now.

I've been waiting for the day that Otis would be adopted so that Hanzie could get a break for awhile from having foster dogs here. Otis especially, has been his nemesis. I found it hard to wrap my head around the fact that Hanz should die right before Otis was adopted. It made no sense to me. But apparently the picture is bigger than I can predict. So, Otis will be here until another day when it is right for him to go to a new home. 

Friday, September 27, 2013

Thank You

I received many kind words and warm thoughts about the passing of Hanzie, through my blog, my facebook page, personal phone calls, and text messages. 

I hadn't realized how many people knew Hanzie, and those that knew him best, had a story to tell and it usually included some laughter. He could be a little character. 

It is quieter around here without him -- and I mean that literally. But also, quieter in that his presence is not there when I look on the sofa, or the dog bed, or outside where he'd like to lay in the warmth of the sun. 

I don't fully understand why it happened, but do we ever? One minute he was barking and running around and then not too long after, he was gone. 

I think I've stopped questioning myself and what I could have done differently. I think we all do that when a loved one passes, whether it be a human or an animal friend. The task is to get through it. 

A friend wrote these words to me that she remembered a saying she saw...."Don't cry because it's over, Smile because it happened." I feel my smile beginning to return. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A Very Sad Day...Saying Goodbye to Hanzie

A very sad day today. My silly Hanzie boy had his last morning with me. At around 10 a.m. I had to let him go.

April 12, 2004 - September 24, 2013
For the nine years that I have had him, he was notorious for eating things other than just food. I called him 'my little man with an iron stomach.' He'd dine on paper, cardboard, plastic, mushrooms in the backyard and apparently something like string, yarn or dental floss. And this was his demise. It perforated his bowel. An emergency vet visit this morning, he went into septic shock, and there was no hope for him. I had to say good-bye. Not easy. My happy-but-whiney little boy that never had to go to the vet for anything other than a teeth cleaning, made his last visit.

He would be so happy to see people, giving them his smile and teeth chatter that those who didn't know him thought he wanted to bite them. It was his happy face. He loved to be hugged and touched, that was heaven to him.

I rescued Hanzie when he was 5 months old. He spent over 9 years with me, graciously accepting each and every foster dog that came in, (around 85+) even if he wasn't keen on all of them. He would protect Little Bug if he needed to, but I always referred to him as a lover, not a fighter. He talked to me regularly, usually to tell me he was hungry, or to give him attention instead of whichever other dog I was petting at the time, and sometimes just because he was so excited. He was so polite when it came to feeding or treat time. He would patiently sit at a sit/stay until I gave him the word 'eat.' Sometimes his little tongue would stick out a bit and he'd drool from desire. He loved to eat, any amount was never enough, he was always hungry.

This photo of him is one of the last that I've taken, a few weeks ago. He was the only dog with me while on vacation at our campsite. He was such a good boy and often went to his favorite spot...his crate in the back of the car. He would just sit and watch the world go by and when the sun would hit, he lay in it in all it's glory. He loved being at camp, meeting and greeting, taking walks and wandering around in the wooded areas near our site. But his favorite place of all time was in a vehicle, it didn't matter who's or where it was.

He spent most of yesterday in the truck while I was going in and out of the house all day. When left in the house, he would get anxious and barky when I'd go outside, so in the truck he went. He was thrilled. He got to bark at passers by and just lay and take naps, then when I took him inside, he had a big dinner. It is hard to believe that today, he is gone.

I will miss my silly little boy. Rest in peace my sweet Hanzie.  

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Flea Market Sunday

Sunday morning we went to the flea market, no camp this weekend so I was able to go shopping. I found some goodies. Of course.

This poster (and a bunch of other things) were free. I thought the poster was pretty cool and I also found a planter, plus R's daughter found something she liked...a nice younger couple was giving a bunch of stuff and selling some stuff, too. Even though it was free, we gave them some money anyway. Everyone needs a few extra bucks.

I like this swimming rabbit...

At other vendors I found a MIB Salton 'Cosmopolitan' Casserole and hot plate. A MIB Ace Stapler and a very cool floor standing fan that is square in shape. This thing blows some good wind! It's pretty cool, just needs some cleaning up.

It was a beautiful sunny day, too! 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Heyyyy! My Photo is on Skull-A-Day

SKULL-A-DAY has Sunday Simulacra where they post found 'skulls' on their site. I couldn't NOT send them this photo of a log waiting to be burned while at the fire at camp.

A few years ago at the bookstore I found a book "Skulls" and loved it. When I got home I had to check out the website. Noah's book has 365 days of skulls and his website has skulls, skulls and more skulls...artist's skulls, reader's skulls, found skulls...

It's skullilicious!!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A Gift, A Gift, A Very Cutie Gift

Finally!! I'm telling you about my Schnauzer gift. I meant to post many weeks ago after receiving it, but busy-ness and laziness got in the way.

Look at this little guy!!

The sweet and talented Suzy from GeorgiaPeachez sent this to me. She said while thrifting one day she came across it and knew it had to go home with her, to be sent to me. How nice is that? To be in someone's thoughts that you've never personally met and only know through blogging. 

The funny thing was (and still is) is that I had (and still have) a small collection of things on my desk that are meant for her. When I received her email asking for my mailing location, it couldn't have been timed better because I needed hers, too. The difference? She is not a procrastinator and sent it out immediately. Me? Wellllllllll..... 

...but I do have an excuse, I'm going through some more stuff and the pile is getting a little bigger. Plus, I had work and the 5 weeks of vacation that got in the way, and, and, and....

Thank you Suzy!! He's an adorable addition to my Dog/Schnauzer collection. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Hanzie's Favorite Spot At Camp

He stands at the back of my car barking at me to open the door so he can jump into his crate.

Most times the crate door can be left open but when there's other dogs around it's best to close it. He doesn't care either way. It's his safe haven. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

On My What Pretty Teeth You Have

While in Nantucket staying with Chuck and Carol, and Bella, their Black Lab I sit for,

she wanted to play...

I'm home from camp to pick up Maddie, the Bichon I dog sit for...

she'll be coming back to camp with us while her parents are off sitting on a sunny beach somewhere sipping cocktails.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Oreo Sugar High

I was in Nantucket all last week, home for a couple days, then off to camp. Grocery shopping needed to be done. These were on the end of the aisle screaming my name. I usually only have them in Nantucket, Chuck likes to snack on them, too, but he doesn't buy Double Stuf, which makes for a very sad story. I made up for it, I ate around 9 in the car on the way to my house, which is about 7 minutes from the store. I think I'll be having a sugar crash in about a minute. I've not really been eating this type of stuff (Ha! no pun intended!) but they were on sale. 

Screaming at me to buy them. 

So I did. 

They were yummy. 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Bye Bye Louie

Sweety boy Louie left tonight to go to his new home in New Hampshire. He'll be hanging out with about 150 goats...oh, and his human companions, too.

Louie learned to walk on wood floors while here, learned to walk on tile floors at a friend's house, and was getting a tiny bit more comfortable on car rides. He wasn't interested in wandering too far from my sight, and returned with a call. He's one of those dogs that is just JOY.

He greeted women like they were his long lost loves. He will love being with his new main companion, a gentle and kind woman that will take such good care of him and when she's not available, her sweet daughter will fill in.

Bye bye Louie, you are an awesome boy that it was a pleasure taking care of. 

Friday, August 2, 2013


About tick borne diseases?

Yesterday while at the vet with Little Bug I learned a few things about tick borne diseases. They can be in the dogs body for two months, but more likely a few days before manifesting itself. Most of the time, it's in the body and if the dog has a really healthy immune system, it will go away over a course of a few months and one would never know it was there.

My vet told me that she's had dogs come in for Lyme testing and it came back negative. Two weeks later the dog comes back and they test because of the systems and it's positive. It probably had the disease at the initial testing, but it was not seen. BUT, during that time an increased amount of activity, like ball throwing, had occurred. Because tick borne diseases are in the joints, the increased running and jumping will, for lack of better words, "open itself up to show itself."

When she said that, a bell went off in my head. Little Bug LOVES to retrieve a tennis ball. Monday night R. had thrown it for her to chase... A LOT. He actually made the comment Tuesday after seeing her left leg lifted that "maybe she pulled something because of how much ball we played last night." Add to it that she came to camp with us this past weekend and traipses around in the wooded areas.

I'm not saying that's what triggered the Lyme and Anaplasmosis to show themselves...but it could have is a bit coincidental that she started showing signs early afternoon on Tuesday.

I also learned that the first couple of days of it showing itself, the hocks are swollen and fever rises, which when it starts to come down, the dogs are a little more mobile because it's not quite as painful.

Little Bug was hungry during these couple of days (a true Schnauzer through and through) and was pooping and peeing, which to me are good signs, as I was worried it was something kidney related. She wasn't interested in drinking, though. It was important to keep her hydrated, and although I didn't feed her all day Thursday in case the vet wanted to do a blood panel (which she did--liver and kidney are in excellent condition) The vet mentioned tuna juice as a trick to get her to drink, I thought about the tuna juice trick since I had some in the fridge but I hadn't actively put it to use. I did try apple juice, which normally she would lap up, but she didn't want it.

When we got home I fed her (her dry food is always soaked in liquid until very soft) and gave her tuna juice flavored water. She was happy to have both, and wanted more.

She is on Doxycycline for 4 weeks, and is restricted to low activity so that her joints can heal. I was also reminded of the importance of B vitamins to add to my dogs' diets, like Nutritional Yeast, to keep a healthy system that will knock out tick illnesses. And, to apply a preventative. I'm opposed to chemicals like Frontline and Advantix, but will start to use Eucalyptus oil mixed with water, as I have in the past. There are also herbal remedies that you can pick up pre-made to use in place of the chemical laden ones.

Buggy will miss her ball. We will have to hide it. It's the first thing she brings to R. when he gets home from work. We'll find some fun for her in other ways. 

Little Bug and Lyme

Tuesday afternoon Bug had been holding up her left leg while walking around. Wednesday morning, more of the same, and very little activity. Wednesday afternoon, I carried her outside to do her duties, she did try to walk a little, but it was using her front legs, both legs were now not working. She'd end up just plopping down as her legs gave out. She'd look at me with that cute little face as if to say, "Mommy, I can't do it." I carried her inside and made her comfortable. Yesterday morning, she wouldn't even pee, even with my help of holding her up. I called the vet for an appointment. 

This was her in the morning until about noon...

then I took her out again and she did her duties and walked a few steps, wobbling and using mostly her front legs -- and she plopped down again. 

Around here I give a two day 'let's wait and see' before calling the vet, but she was getting worse not better. Since it started in the legs, I thought "maybe it's Lyme." I called, Angela, she said, "maybe it's Lyme" (after we decided it wasn't a luxating patella, a pulled muscle, or an upset belly.) I texted Shelly, "sounds like Lyme." The vet appointment was for 3:15. 

Lyme and Anaplasmosis, two tick borne diseases. 

I learned a few things, too, in talking to the vet, which I'll put in a 'Did You Know' post, because I didn't know. 

She's on meds for 4 weeks...and very little activity. 

This is her today...immobile but alert.

She walked a little last night, but this morning, it wasn't happening. Her spirit is better and her face is brighter. My Little Bug will be OK...and, now, so will my heart. 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Hanzie and Bug Chillin'

On the way to camp. 

Hanz was so happy. I've been leaving them behind and every Friday they know we're off to camp, because the bags get packed and lined up by the door. Hanz cries really loud when I close the door behind me. Heartbreaking. Well, this time, there was no crying. He's a happy camper. (no pun intended) :)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Coffee and Eggs...A New Way

You know how I've talked about loving coffee and finding the right tools to brew with and the flavors, frothiness, etc? Well, I get emails from Mark's Daily Apple, a Paleo/Primal/Hunter/Gatherer based diet and exercise life blog. A recent post was on how to make, with eggs....very similar to the way the guy from Bulletproof Coffee makes his.

I made MDA's Primal Egg Coffee. I was hesitant about putting in a 1/4 tsp. of salt. I've accidentally put salt in coffee before and it's just not good. But, I like to stay pretty true to a recipe first time around and he convinced me it would be a good thing. Well, it's not as bad as my previous experience, but I would leave it out next time, or put in just a pinch. When I take a sip, the froth holds the saltyness and I'm not crazy about it even though it's not super salty. I also added a tsp. of coconut oil and a couple shakes of cinnamon. I put the eggs in my VitaMix and whirred them on the lowest setting and started drizzling my coffee from the Bialetti into it and added the sugar/salt. I put the cover on and blended it at higher power until it got frothy. It's very much like a Latte, and it's filling. I couldn't finish it. It's been about 45 minutes now and I'm starting to feel hunger again. I'll go have the rest now.

If you try this, let me know how you like it.

PS: often times people are concerned about consuming raw eggs -- I've been doing it for years in my smoothies and haven't had a problem but I like to use local, or store bought organic, eggs.

In the comments section of MDA's Coffee post, a woman mentioned how her grandma used to make something similar to this but instead of coffee she whirred the eggs and put powdered cocoa and some sugar in it. I must try that next. Chocolate? Hit me up baby!!

It's cooler today and I'm getting Central Air on Monday -- go figure.

Have a great day and enjoy the more agreeable temperatures if it's been insanely hot where you live.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A Tisket a Tasket a Vintage Laundry Basket

Along with the store display rack I told you about yesterday...I pulled this out of the dumpster, too...

A vintage laundry cart. A friend thought maybe it was originally used at a laundry-mat. 

It would be cool to use it as a towel holder in a bathroom, or for something in a kitchen. I'll be using it for its intended use for now, as I was looking for something that could replace the wicker chair that I would pull over to the clothesline and place my basket full of clothes onto. 

It pays to visit friends you haven't seen in a long time. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Sweety Ginger and A LeRoi Store Display Rack

I had to go to a friend's house to drop Ginger off for a weekend of dog sitting, after she spent a night at my house. Her mom had to go to Florida for a funeral so Terri and I juggled Ginger. She is such a sweet girl. 13 years old. Came up from Kentucky after her elderly owner died. 

Before taking her over there, I had talked to Terri about this and that and she said she was cleaning out her house that she is selling, and that she was filling a dumpster in her driveway. She said it was mostly collected wood pieces and other debris. I jokingly told her to put a tarp over the top of it so that I wasn't tempted to dumpster dive. When I got there a tarp was covering it, but she assured me it was because of the pending rain, not because I might want something out of the dumpster. So I lifted the corner and peeked in, and saw this rack placed atop other debris. Yes. Of course. It was to be mine. 

I didn't find much information on what might have been displayed on a rack like this. What I did find was that it was for packages of children's socks. There was one image I found of a very thin almost paper size package that was children's socks. From what I could tell, it's the only thing LeRoi sold. But, I could be wrong. 

Against this wall I've had a dresser, a small display cabinet there and I have a metal cabinet in the garden with a glass front I was going to put here....most recently I was planning to put a tall, simple cabinet with doors on this wall. Boring, but I need the storage space for Pyrex bowls, casseroles and other kitchen things.  This rack sticks out further than I would want because of the closeness to the corner of the dining table, due to the additional 3" of space behind it, because of the baseboard heat unit (which still needs it's cover.) It's a little wider than I wanted, too, but it's more interesting than a cabinet. I don't really want to have stuff out in the open -- I'm actually trying to rid myself of some visual clutter  -- so I may look for some baskets or containers that things can be placed into. I'm also of thinking of mounting it on the wall so it sits back a little but have to figure out what to do below it so it doesn't look awkward, you know, like a rack with legs is hung on a wall. Then again, does it really matter? 

Friday, July 19, 2013


...that a lot of research and studies have been done on the benefits of coconut oil for dementia and especially alzheimer patients?

I've been consuming coconut oil for a quite awhile now and last year a friend told me about a friend that has a father with alzheimer's and she's been stuffing him with A LOT of coconut oil and his alzheimer's has improved. He is able to remember better and make more sense. Granted, he still has the disease but his decline is being slowed and he is finding joy in life again.

Virgin coconut oil handmade in small batches, Gold Label by Tropical Traditions, has the most antioxidants than other coconut oils that I've seen for sale. It also has a coconut flavor, which refined does not. Good to know when you're making those grain free brownies and it calls for coconut oil, I do not care for the taste that comes from the oil, for me it messes up the chocolate-ness.

R's mom's brain has been changing over the last year and we weren't sure what it was. She wasn't reading anymore, she would get frustrated with words, she was anxious a lot, not sleeping, not being with friends as much, etc. We thought she just got freaked out by the big storms two Falls ago because she was without power for 8 days, and it stayed with her. They may have been a trigger. She even knew she was different and was very frustrated with it. Finally, after hearing from so many people that she should could have had a mini stroke (TSI) we finally got a CT scan for her. Yup, that's exactly what she had! Now she is on a memory med, blood pressure medication 'cuz it had skyrocketed (she's always had very low bp) and an aspirin a day. In case you don't know already, the blood pressure medication was not only to bring the bp down, but also to keep it a lower rate because a high blood pressure can cause strokes to happen.

And as of yesterday, she started taking coconut oil. She doesn't mix it with anything, just fills her spoon and swallows it down. No problems. Thank goodness. One thing I can say is that she's pretty cooperative when it comes to stuff that R. tells her she has to do.

Whether you're looking into coconut oil for yourself (because it's healthy) or a loved one, find the one that best suits your needs and pocketbook. I order from Tropical Traditions in gallons and I take advantage of their sales because this girl is not made of money and it can get costly. The cost per ounce when on sale comes out to be about 39 cents compared to other products that I've found were 49 cents and higher if you purchased by the 15/16 oz. jar. What's nice is there is a 2+ year shelf life so no worrying about spoilage. I also use it as a skin moisturizer. It's natural, absorbs fairly quickly and leaves you feeling soft.

I've heard people worry about the fat content. We need fat for our brains, joints, eat quality fat and get rid of all the other crap and no one has to worry. That's like when someone I'm talking to about nuts makes a face and says, "but aren't they full of fat?" Really? like that donut you just shoved in your face isn't? and it has nothing good for you in it? "uh, oh yeah."

Sorry, beginning to rant so I must go.

oh, and, am I supposed to say that I have no affiliation to Tropical Traditions and that they haven't paid me to put them in this post? geez, I wish they had. LOL Ha Ha

Have a great day!!!!!!

stay cool if you can, this heat is making us all crazzzzzzzy!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Why Hello Louie!

Louie is a 4 year old Schnauzer (I can't say 'Miniature' Schnauzer because he's 34 pounds, which, technically puts him over the weight of the standard weight measurements for a Miniature.)

Best of all is that he is a sweety. A gentle boy with eyes that melt you.

He is Parti Color in grey and white.

Louie came to me because his parents are moving to Florida and the place they are moving into does not accept dogs.

I was told that he knows many commands and does them without repeatedly asking him to do it. I have not tested him on this, yet, as he is still in a traumatic/perplexed state of mind. Plus, he won't walk on my wood floors. The idea of it scares him silly, so he stays on his large dog bed. I did put it close to the door where there is also a runner for him to step on but there is one corner of wood floor that he 'might' step on so, therefore, he backs off from going outside. Boy he can hold his pee for a very long time. So yesterday I pulled out a couple of bath mats and covered more of the floor with them and this has helped him make his way to the door to go out. This strikes me as odd because he came from a home where he would walk on tile. But he just looks at the floor and gets nervous.

I'm hoping that some gentle coaxing/training will eventually help. In the meantime, he'll get food rewards when he puts all four paws on the floor. I've started to pick him up, which makes him nervous, and place him in the middle of the floor and feed him some very tasty treats. Then I make a path of treats toward his bed. He very carefully makes his way until the last few steps where he scrambles to safety. I'm hoping that by watching the freedom of the other dogs he will learn that all will be OK. Sometimes other dogs are the best teachers.

Now that I've added Louie to the mix, I have to keep an eye on Otis causing a fight and it also changes Hanz's and Bug's personalities. Add to it that now Bug is feeling like she needs to remind Hanz that she is dominant by mounting him. He never questions her dominancy but she's feeling insecure apparently. But, they're also playing tug-toy more...well, it starts out with play and gets a little more aggressive as it goes along so I have to keep them in check.

Add to it, this heat, and it is definitely the Dog Days of Summer!!

Hope you're able to keep cool!!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Masey (aka Mercy) Got a Haircut

Masey's new owner has emailed me to keep me updated on her progress. She already has learned to ring the bell hanging on the door, to go outside. She's a smartie. She also got her hair cut and is sportin' the Schnauzer look -- quite cutely, I might add.

I wish they lived closer, I just want to hug that little munchkin! and be around her infectious puppy happiness. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

And Off She Goes!!

When the stars are aligned, things happen. 

Mercy came into my care on Wednesday, I received an email from a couple on Thursday, she went home on Friday. It just all fit. The couple was actually writing to ask me to keep them in mind for a Schnauzer between the ages of 1 and 2 for next summer. They had recently lost their two Schnauzers within four months of each other and their hearts were hurting and felt they weren't ready, yet, to bring another one into their home. 

I wrote back saying, "OK, but please keep an eye on our site....blah blah blah....and OH YEAH I have this great four month old that just came in" and ran off a list of her qualities. I, of course, added, "no pressure, just letting you know" because after emailing with her a couple times, I knew this was a perfect fit. She's home most of the day (good for training) she completely spoils her dogs, (but in a good way) her husband adores them just as much, they want to be able to travel with her (I had taken her out for the afternoon and she travels beautifully.) The two dogs they had that passed, and a third one before them, all had names that began with an 'M'. I think that was the big clencher for her, it was just meant to be to have another dog with an 'M' name. 

But, Diana was cautious. She didn't want to make a rash decision. She needed to discuss it with her husband who wouldn't be home from his business trip until around 8 pm. By this time we had exchanged 4 or 5 emails and she said she couldn't wait...she texted him her picture hoping he'd get it before he boarded the plane. I told her to take her time in thinking about it, if it was meant to be it would happen and if not, then another will come along in the future. She said she would think on it. I could tell though, she was hooked. She was nervous because they weren't looking for a puppy, weren't sure if they wanted a puppy, but how it all happened bing bang boom! it was just right. I said I'd give her the weekend. Friday morning I open my mail "can we meet her today?" The excitement jumped off the page. 

So, Friday at 3 they came by. Mercy ran to them, catapulted to them, hopped on them, wriggled around for them, she was so excited. Previous to that she was following me around like a little shadow, wanting attention or just laying by where I was, if I got up she was nipping at my heels for play....After Diana and Alan came in...I was nothing. Nada. Did not exist. 

We talked about how the name Mercy just didn't feel right. Diana had said she was playing around with some names that sounded similar but those weren't quite right either. She said she'd know it when it came to her. I said, "Mercy is a difficult name, it doesn't flow for me either, I keep wanting to call her Masey" She said, "that's it! that's the name! I knew I'd know it when I heard it." So, this little girl's name is now Masey. 

It was a match made in heaven. I only had her 2 1/2 days and she made quite a bit of noise, but I kind of miss the little bugger. Friday morning she had even made her way into Little Bug's heart and they ran around chasing each other and wrestling. That I was happy about because before that Bug was certainly giving her the 'what for' since she came.

Masey is going to have a great life. 


Thursday, June 27, 2013

Oh Mercy Mercy me

There's a new girl in town and she's wreaking havoc.

Meet Mercy....

A cute bundle that is about the size of Little Bug and she's only 4 months old. She's also full of energy and play -- and fearless. Unfortunately for her, the other 3 here have no interest in her antics. I thought for sure Bug would be right in there playing with her, but no, she stays away and when Mercy comes near, Bug yells at her. Hanz? well, he just doesn't have time for this crap and is really out of joint. I think he wishes I had rehomed him a long time ago because he's about done with this fostering thing. And then there's Otis. If Otis didn't have his basket muzzle on, he'd have eaten her by now. Of course, he's the one that she wants to play with most and she's just not paying attention to his signals. 

The dog world is interesting to watch in general, then bring a feisty, energetic, barky, happy, bouncy puppy into the pack and there's chaos and stress. But today is better than yesterday and it's actually quiet right now....hmmmm...I bet that means she's into something that she's not supposed to be....she's already had some sock fun....gotta go! 

Have a great day!!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Miniature Schnauzer Nick (aka The Nickster)

Nick is staying with me for a few days while his mom, Sue, goes traipsing around, garden about her gardening trials and tribulations here. 

He's a very good boy but feeling a bit out of his element. Right before this shot, I'm sure he was saying, "Bug and Hanz why oh why are you smelling my ears?" He tolerated it well and then they were on their way. He wasn't so excited about having a camera in his face either, hence, a slightly blurred photo...after about 30 others taken first!! LOL

Have a great day!!!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Bike Week - Laconia, NH

Well, the end of bike week, the beginning and middle was full of rain so I'm glad we planned only for the last weekend there. What a gorgeous weekend it was. We left CT shortly after the rain stopped. Here's me on Friday, posing with our we waited in Chicopee, MA for our friend Melinda to come get us and bring us to the gathering point with everyone else. (I took the wrong exit on the way there--ooops!)

We had a great time. Little time was actually spent at the 'event' and lots of time was spent riding the area, including the Kancamagus Highway. It's been a long time since riding it, and back then I was a passenger. This time I got to experience the curves and swerves with my own wheels under me. I was very thankful that traffic was light, it made it more enjoyable.

One rider of the group, a pretty cool 63 year old that I just met before the ride, sported his custom bike...

Ten of us met up to go. Spending a weekend with the group was fun and easy.

I have to give a shout out to Suzy at GeorgiaPeachez...she spent the weekend in Richmond, VA, at the Vintage Home Market selling her accumulated vintage treasures. Check it out, she had some good loot! It certainly would have been nice to check out in person -- but dangerous!

I hope you all had a great weekend, too!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

These two can often be found snuggled together whether it be on the dog bed, the sofa or the Man chair...

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Little Fairy Unicorn by SovaeArt

I've never been into unicorns, but this person's work is amazing whether it be a unicorn or other pieces, check it out here. (this work is on small scale of around 12") AMAZING skill.

This is Aura...

and Tofu the Kirin Doll...