Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Blonde Sisterhood

A hectic and tiring week has come to an end.  Sam is doing really well.  Yesterday he was rolling in the cool grass and later he was counter-surfing--All good signs!  After a long conversation with a friend, who I consider an expert on natural and holistic treatment for dogs, my optimism and focus has returned.  In the past I've had pretty good success in using Chinese herbs and I have no reason to not hope for this same success in using them for Sam too.  He'll begin taking them today.
On the flip-side, the unwanted affection and attention of Casanova Lucas for the fair and lovely Annie has finally waned. Persuading Lucas that Annie was not the girl for him, happened in the most unusual way.  Annie, unable to convince him herself that his advances were unwanted not just by her, but by all of us, we had an  intervention.  The intervention was not something that Carl or I did, but something Sheba did.  Sheba as you recall is our youngest Golden, and she is not afraid to stand up for herself or even start a fight. On Wednesday, for some reason anytime that Lucas got near Annie, Sheba began getting into the middle of the two, would growl at Lucas, and with that, Lucas would walk away from both of them.  This is something I've never seen Sheba do, and I can only conclude that 'the blonde-sisterhood' is just standing up for one another and sticking together!
~Sheba and Annie, the Blonde Sisterhood~

Flowers for Leontien

Leontien,  your friends, two and four legged at Golden Pines dedicate our first blooms of the season to you.  We send you comforting hugs and healing energy!  

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What's Ahead for Sam

The overall news for Sam today was unfortunately not all good.  He had 8 teeth that needed to be removed. And what the vet and I thought was swelling from a root abscess because of a bad tooth and a blocked salivary gland is actually a mass, and given that he's a Golden it is probably cancer.  My vet and I discussed treatment options, but I was so stunned by what she was telling me, I just couldn't make a decision.  However I did decide to not do one of the options and that was to do surgery to remove the mass.  Because of its size, surgery would probably entail removing a good portion of Sam's jaw and at his age (about 13) I just won't put him through that.   

To be told that cancer is going to take yet another one of our dogs that has been so healthy has me feeling really defeated.  When Sam needed to have his teeth cleaned and the 'bad ones' removed, something about it had me a bit uneasy.  But I held onto the thought that it would all be routine and that everything would heal, and Sam would be fine.  So instead of being able to put all this behind us, I'm feeling the return of a familiar ache in my heart when I think of what's ahead for Sam.    

Monday, April 23, 2012

A New Addition--A Girl Named Annie

When it rains, it really does pour...Along with Sam's surgery coming up on Wednesday, on Sunday we welcomed a new addition, a 13 year old girl named Annie.  Her owner, who is named Steve, lost his wife about 5 years ago, lives alone and has stage 4 pancreatic cancer.  As his health has deteriorated, he has found it harder and harder to care for Annie and so he made the difficult choice to give her up.  And, as heartbreaking as it is to think about, Steve wanted to make sure Annie had a home prior to his passing away.  It was a sad meeting and I hope in our conversation I was able to assure him that Annie would have a good home.  I also told Steve that he could contact me anytime to find out how Annie was doing.    

~Annie and Our Gang waiting for dinner~
Annie is a lovely, confident and well cared for treasured Golden.  Steve and his wife got her, and her partner who was named Sid (who passed away last year) when they were about 8 weeks old.  Annie is pretty well mannered, and hopes for a bite of whatever it is  you're having, and she loves to sleep on the bed.  She met our gang, who are pros at meeting new dogs, with no problems, and fits right in.  The only problem is Lucas.  He has dusted off every single one of his hormones and will not, and I mean will not leave her alone!  Annie seems to take it all in stride.  But I have to be honest and say that his amorous behavior is causing a lot of stress for everyone because of his barking, panting and pacing and he will not listen to any of our corrections--And we have tried every one that we can think of.

Sadly, I don't think it's fair to Annie or Lucas if he can't get his hormones in check.  If he cannot in a couple of days, I will have to ask the rescue to find another home for her.  I hope this doesn't happen because I am totally smitten with a beautiful blonde Golden named Annie who when I look at, reminds me of my beloved girl Kasey--And whose eyes I look into and want to get to know better.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Hole Digging Scottie Knows

Sam's visit to the vet went as expected; it is just as I thought, a root abscess.  Surgery to remove 1-2 teeth is scheduled for Wednesday.  He'll also have his teeth cleaned and any others removed that could become problems down the road for him.  Sam is about 13 years old, and for the 3 years that we've had him, he's always been healthy.  Knowing this, I'm optimistic that the surgery can be done safely, but I have to be honest in that I'm worried.  Worried because there is another lump in the very back of his mouth.  After an aspirate was done I'm hopeful that it's what my vet says it might be, which is just a blocked salivary gland and not something really serious.

With the confirmation that Sam needs surgery, I was feeling a bit down.  When we got home it helped to sit on the porch and soak up the warmth of afternoon sun with the dogs and recharge my batteries. There's nothing like the peace of the outdoors and the sound of ripping paper to clear your mind.  That and...
Later being given a half eaten 1-dollar bill.  The 10 dollars that was with it is nowhere to be found.  
I'm sure Charlie hasn't seen it.  
But why do I have a feeling that my muddy-faced, hole digging Scottie may know where it is?  

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday's Hope

Aside from the space-shuttle Discovery coming to our area, the week has been an uneventful one.  Fog has started our day, but it's forecast to be a beautiful day ahead. The weekend is supposed to bring much needed showers and cooler temperatures.  This means that our grass which really needs to be mowed, won't.
For about a week now, the Eastern Phoebe that has built its nest above our garage door is sitting tightly on 5 eggs that as of yesterday, have yet to hatch.  She has gotten so used to our coming and going that she never leaves the nest when we exit the garage, or stand under the nest.
I have taken today off work because our boy Sam needs to be taken to the vet. Seemingly overnight, a hard lump appeared on the left side of his muzzle.  I think it may be a root abscess, because the tooth beneath it appears to be in good condition--However having just gone through all the dental work with Lucas, I think my opinion of  'good condition' has changed.  But I'm hoping it's nothing (too) serious.
I'm hoping you've had a good week and enjoy your day!  

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Special Event

Today we had a special event as the space shuttle Discovery made its final flight piggybacked atop a modified Boeing 747 jet.  It flew from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to my neck of the woods, Washington, D.C.  (picture below was posted on Facebook) 
Practically everyone scanned the sky to catch a glimpse of the rare sight, as the jet looped around the entire Capital area before landing at nearby Dulles Airport.  The retired shuttle will get a new home at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum.
My co-workers and I watched the 'live feed' of Discovery's landing and couldn't help but be filled with emotion as we saw it touch down for the last time.  While I watched it, I couldn't help but remember many years ago when my family was living in Germany, my class at school took a trip to watch the very first 747 take off.  It was the biggest plane at the time and I remember being in awe of its size and thinking of all the lucky passengers that were on the plane. Needless to say, I was once again in awe as I saw the 'special passenger' that same model plane carried today.    

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Wishing for a Slower Pace

Finally, it's Sunday!  The three evenings of meetings, getting home late and working every day is (almost) a distant memory!  
Taking Lucas to his final dental appointment is also checked off last weeks list!  The dentist is really happy with how well he has healed, and we said our good-byes and thank-you's to Dr. Chamberlain!
Squeezed into our Saturday was a 2 hour drive (each way) down the 'Capital Beltway' to attend an adoption day held by the rescue, in hopes of meeting Lucas's forever family.
Unfortunately, not a single person was interested in the 13 year old dog with no teeth who kept barking to try and call attention to himself.  It seemed that everyone we met only wanted to adopt the younger dogs...sigh.....
But Lucas and I tried...He was exhausted afterwards!
While it wasn't good news for Lucas, it was for me because the adoption day was held very close to the Krispy Kreme--I enjoyed a couple of freshly made donuts that helped to revive my optimism.  (How many times have I mentioned to you that they are my favorites?)
This coming week is supposed to be a slower paced one...At least that's what I'm wishing for! 
THANK YOU for stopping by and keeping up with us!!  I'm sorry this past week didn't allow me a lot of time to read your blogs.  I'm really looking forward to catching up with you and what's happening in your neck of the woods!    

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Staying Out of Politics!

The church that I attend is partnering with other charitable organizations to do a county wide food drive. The goal is to collect 100,000 pounds of food, which would be enough to feed our counties 'food insecure' for an entire week. I am the 'representative' from my congregation and have been given the responsibility to organize the food-drive in the part of the county that I live in.
To boost donations the local towns need to be involved.  To get the town's approvals, and their support, this has meant attending town council meetings which are being held this week--The last two nights I've attended two of them.  Suffice it to say, I've been so glad to get home at the end of both of them...And I am vowing to never, ever get involved in town politics!!
I have one more meeting to attend this week.  
I'm so very glad I have taken this afternoon off work!!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

HaPpY BiRtHdAy Todd!!!

Today we are celebrating a birthday at Golden Pines--Can you believe that Todd is already a year old?
I'm not sure where the time has gone.  
~Todd, March 2012~
Its been a busy first year for both Todd and myself!  Even though it had been many years since we had a puppy, I knew that having a one took a lot of time...
~February 2012~
And a little bit, okay a lot, of patience ...   
~January 2012~
To teach a high spirited dog like Todd the things he needs to know...
~December 2011~
Because he seemed so innocent at times....
~Our Christmas card~
Although I have to admit, there have been moments when I have been worried that I've bitten off more than I could chew...
~November 2011~
But I also have to admit that there are just going to be some things that Todd may never totally learn.
~October 2011~
Because he does his own thing and he doesn't always listen...
~September 2011~
Todd is a Scottie after all!!  
~August 2011~
But he's had some great mentors, like Mamma Reggie that we really miss and who really made a difference....
~Todd and Mamma Reggie July 2011~
Through it all Todd found his way and his place in a house full of Goldens and a Wheaten Terrier.  He has learned most, of what he is supposed to ...      
~Todd and Sammy, June 2011~
But this is only his first birthday, so there's still time.  Yes, there are some things that I would now do differently, but I would never change getting a Scottish Terrier.
Todd--May 2011
So, on Todd's very first birthday, I'd like to thank Lynn at Rocky Creek Scotties for her friendship, her advice and for bringing this most special Scottie into our lives.
~Todd, (then Jock) one week old~
Happy Birthday Todd!!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Giddiness of Spring

This is about as nice of a holiday weekend as one could ask for with a lot of sun and mild temperatures. If I needed something to complain about, (which I don't) I'll just say that we could use some rain.  The last couple of nights and in the morning hours we've enjoyed a really bright, full and beautiful moon.  In reading I found that the first full moon in April is called 'The Pink Moon.'  This name comes from the wild ground phlox, which are as you know, one of the earliest flowers of spring.
When the moon finished its show this morning, it was time for the next act, the birds.  The air has been filled with the cacophony of their singing.  I recorded the video on the front porch to give you an idea.  If you listen closely, you can even hear a rooster crowing.   (You may  have to turn it up to hear it and get the full effect).    
With the crisp temperatures, the full moon, and the birds singing, it's no wonder that a couple of the dogs, especially Toby are feeling downright giddy. On our morning walk there was a different air about him as he lagged behind and wouldn't listen when I called to him. I lost sight of him when I entered the woods to go around the barn.  Toby took that moment to go on an adventure.  Maybe he caught the scent of the turkey that has been around, or the other animals that are everywhere. Whatever the reason, needless to say, the birds weren't the only sound being heard this morning as my voice calling him seemed to echo everywhere.  Fortunately he was found, and I can thank him for getting me my exercise!    Good boy!!  

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Lessons From Wendy

I've previously mentioned how Wendy (who is more than 14 years old) had problems with arthritis this past winter.  She has still enjoyed going on walks, but she's staying closer to the house. When she does wander, getting her back to the house can take a little extra time.

Wendy has always been an independent, confident and high-spirited gal.   In the 13 years we've had her, she has never really seemed to want or need our help.  However, this seems to have changed in the past several weeks.  Wendy will now wait at the bottom of the steps and won't stop barking until we come to help her up the steps and into the house.
However nearly every single time when we start to help Wendy, she'll go up the steps herself.  She'll then look back at us as if she's saying 'never mind, I'll do it myself!'  
Todd seems to have adopted this same 'I'll do it myself' attitude.  When he wants something off the counter, like the green ball, he's decided that he'll just (try to) get it himself.  I guess he's been taking lessons from Wendy!