Saturday, February 25, 2017

A Weekend Getaway

A work-schedule change for me this past week had me working every day as our winter without winter continued.  Temperatures were about 15 degrees above average with plenty of sunshine.

The long, hectic week may have added some stress; but it was all worth it, as I was off for a short trip by myself for some much needed solitude.  I am a bit of an introvert by nature and there are times when  I really just need some time by myself. A big part of me feels guilty for feeling this way. But thankfully after 35 years of marriage Carl understands and knows that it's just who I am.

To make it easier for Carl, I've taken four of the dogs with me, who have been great traveling companions. Once our trip began, and I found that rhythm of the open road, I could feel myself start to relax -- Of course having good music to listen to helps and added to a sense of freedom that I needed and hadn’t felt in awhile.

Our destination was beautiful, eastern Tennessee.
I've not visited here in about 3 years, so we were past due. I've rented a dog-friendly cabin on a llama farm of long time friends for a couple of days.
I may have come to get away from people, but today I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with our friends over lunch.  After some shopping, the rest of the day has been spent relaxing and taking pictures of the dogs.
Todd is of course having a wonderful time!  He is constant motion running and barking at everything.
 His terrier battery is fully charged, and there is plenty of reserved power!
Charlie is enjoying himself by relaxing,
For Jake and Josh their inner puppies have emerged and the years have melted away as they have forgotten all about their arthritis, just for a few moments to bark at the horses, donkeys and the llamas too.
Its been a good day for all of us! 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Quiet and Uneventful

It has been a quiet week, despite my working on my day off.
On Sunday night a friend asked on her Facebook page if anyone had a heat lamp she could borrow. She had been waiting all day for the arrival of a lamb to a first time mother.  The lamb was born without a problem, But there was an unexpected arrival of a second that was breach and not breathing.  My friend was able to stabilize the lamb, but felt that the "life force" of this little one wasn't very strong. With cool temps and high winds, my friend wanted to keep this new family warm; which was why she was asking her local friends for a heat lamp to use overnight.  I just happen to have one, and since she lives nearby, I took it over to my friend. I've never seen brand-new lambs, and she let me peak in on the new family.    
By the next day, both lambs were doing equally well and were nursing.

At home, the dogs have had another pretty good week that was uneventful.  We were asked to take a new senior boy for the rescue.  But, believe it or not, I had to say no.  One reason is because Eva has just come into season, and it's probably not a good idea to bring in any new additions for a few weeks. The rescue agrees.  
Todd agrees too.  He doesn't like the idea of sharing his bone with any newcomer,
or his ball....Even if he's not playing with it...
Todd and Eva will just have to be content with one another..... At least for now.

Sunday, February 12, 2017


It's Sunday, and we are ending what was a good but very busy last week at our house.
For a co-worker, I baked her favorite, a coca-cola cake for her birthday. It's one of my favorite cakes as well.  It has a boiled frosting that sets up like fudge on top of a warm cake. Talk about heaven.  And if you need a reason to make a cake, it can be made using just one bowl, one small saucepan and a measuring cup. An easy clean-up is always a big selling point for me when baking!  Click here for the recipe....
This past week we said good-bye to not one, but both of our foster cats for the SPCA.  Both Mo and Lucille found their forever homes.  They will be missed!  For the first time in over a year, we are foster-catless.  But the "cat-coordinator" assured me that with kitten season approaching, soon enough there will be other felines that need a place to go, and a Scottie to chase them.
~Mo, at Christmas~
On the canine side, Max continues to recover.  We're now at the point in his recovery where we are able to extend the distance of his short walks.  He couldn't be happier about it.  Under that silly-fluffy-dog-exterior (that really needs to be groomed!) is a stubborn boy that has become quite the escape artist and he lets us know pretty clearly that he's tired of being confined.
~Max, plotting his next escape?~
After three weeks, Bella went back to her home.  Her owners, Dick and Judy thoroughly enjoyed their cruise of the Panama Canal. But both were happy to be reunited with their girl!
When foster dogs that have been adopted come to stay with us, I never take money from the family for their stay.  But both Dick and Judy were insistent that there be some sort of payment. So, on Bella's return-road-trip home, Eva came along.  I wanted them to meet her and ask that they make a donation to the rescue for her vet care.  Of course they enjoyed meeting Eva and I was really pleased when they told me they'd sent in a check for $750. to be earmarked for her continued care.  
Eva, my co-pilot
With twelve-less-legs at our house, the week ended with a string of warm days that have given us plenty of outside time to stretch...
shake out some of the cobwebs...
 let the sun get in our eyes...
and just sit for a few minutes...
before moving onto whatever comes next.  
Dare I ask what comes next?

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Jake and Selma Mansion - One Year Rescued!

Can you believe that we have just passed the one year mark on February 3, 2016 when we first met Jake?
~The first day we met Jake~

Some of you may remember that at the time I'd compared Jake to nearby Selma mansion (a historic property and former plantation in Loudoun County, Virginia, that is best known as the residence of Armistead Thomson Mason, a Senator from Virginia 1816 - 1817).  I'd just read an article on the abandoned mansion and was taken by its history and story.  So much so that I'd stopped by to see it myself and taken pictures. Jake was with me that day.
~Jake February 2016~
It was so sad to see this once grand home standing alone and in ruins; a victim of vandals, and so much neglect.  I really hoped that like Jake, Selma would get the chance to be rescued too.  In March it was announced that Selma had been purchased by a local couple who plan to make it their family home.

I had no idea what the next year would bring for Jake. Jake had been taken to the shelter to be euthanized by his owner because he was unable to walk. The shelter thought he had some good days left, and asked if he could be turned over to a rescue.  Thankfully, they agreed.  Our trip to the vet that day in February was when he was given the diagnosis of spondylosis.
~February 2016 - Coming home from the vet~
Fast forward through what has been a good year for Jake!  The spondylosis is progressing, and Jake sometimes needs help getting to his feet, but cold laser therapy and acupuncture really help with that. And even though he's on the lowest possible dose, the continual use of prednisone (a steroid) is taking its toll on him physically, and is causing "muscle wasting."  Unfortunately.  But it's really needed to help keep down the inflammation along his spine. Despite that, at about 13 years old now, mealtime is still Jake's favorite part of the day, and every once in awhile he gives in to the temptation to chase one of the cats. There's no doubt, that Jake is happy.

For Selma Mansion, its well thought out restoration is well underway both inside and out.  The work is being chronicled daily on a Facebook page.  No detail appears to be too small, and it appears that no expense is being spared either - You can click here to see the Facebook photos.  

So, today, as we celebrate a year with Jake, it seemed only fitting that we take a short drive over to take pictures of Selma .......

and of course Jake too.
Here's to the next year for both Jake and Selma!

Thursday, February 2, 2017


A week since my last post.  And, I am humbled by your kindness and support in the loss of Teddy.  I know he was only with us for two weeks, but his loss really affected me.  And your words soothed the sting of his loss, and helped me to feel understood in my grief. While we might not know each other personally I feel we know one another's soul - the soul that knows how it feels to lose a dog, even a "lost boy" like Teddy.
I've felt the need this past week to take a break to recharge my batteries and recover a bit of brain space….. When you feel this way, there's nothing like spending quiet and reflective time with your dogs to help get things back into perspective. This morning as the sun was coming up, I sat with Cissy and we watched the first light of the day appear from the back porch.      
Directly overhead flew a flock of geese and the sound of their feathered wings beating in rhythm filled the air.  It was almost musical. I inhaled deeply, took in the moment, and felt my breath for the first time in more than a week.
~More Geese - later in the morning~ 
Cissy and I sat there together until it was time to get the day started.  This little break has been a good thing.  I'm glad to be back, and I really look forward to catching up on what I've missed.