Friday, February 28, 2014

Random 5 Friday 02/28/14

Ah, the last day of February 2014!  And time for another Random  5 Friday entry.  Linking up with Nancy at A Rural Journal for R5F as usual.
Oriental Iris

1.  While it is cold here again this week, I do see signs of warmer weather on the way.  The daffodils we planted from my Mom's house, are well on their way to blooming.  The mock cherry bush is in full bloom.  There are three surviving grape hyacinth blooming this year!  And the oriental iris corms I buried too deeply seem to have overcome that difficulty and at least 3 came up.  I love iris!
Daffodils and Grape Hyacinths

2.  Monkey1 and I are going today to get our hair cut.  I really need it too!  I feel like Shaggy, from Scooby Do, with my hair long enough to obscure my glasses!  Monkey1 has very difficult to manage wild hair.  This will be her first professional hair cut, all the others having been at the cheapo discount places.  I am hoping for good results for her.

3.  Readers, do any of you shop at Krogers?  If so, do you use their discount card?  You know, the one they scan at checkout, (or you input the alternate ID#) and you get some discounts on items for using it?  It's not a credit card or a payment method, it's just how they track what you buy to do their direct mailings of coupons with.  Anyway, they now have a Community Rewards Program, whereby documented charitable organizations can apply, and then Krogers donates money to those groups, based on who chooses them to link to their Kroger Card.  It's pretty simple to add a charity to your card and it costs YOU nothing!

Bear with me, I'm getting to my point... the Rhodesian Ridgeback dog rescue we volunteer with, is in fact a 501c3 charitable organization.  Krogers has accepted them into their Community Rewards Program.  Please consider adding Texas Independent Ridgeback Rescue (Kroger #37500) to your Kroger Card.  Again, you pay nothing, Krogers just donates some percentage of total purchases on linked Kroger Cards to TIRR.  It would help them out tremendously.  Rescue is expensive work--the vet bills alone are astronomical.  If any of you choose to link them, I thank you so much, and please, share this with your dog-loving friends! 

**Well it turns out that Krogers only allows for you to choose one charity at a time on their Community Rewards Program.  And then they said you needed to be regional to the charity...??  Ok, well please try to add TIRR anyway, and if any readers are in Texas, then it ought to work, since TIRR is in Texas.

4.  Tonight DH and I get a rare treat--a date night!  Yes, it is G-movie night at church, and all the Monkeys are going....for 3 whole hours.  Hmmm....the possibilities!

5.  This is Old Dog younger days.  He assumed the mantel of Old Dog upon the passing of my Charlie last April.  Cody is a Ridgeback, that much we are certain of.  What else is in there genetically, well, I guess that's between God and Cody, as he is a Ridgeback of Uncertain Parentage.  (I suspect a brindle Blackmouth Cur in the woodpile)  This picture below was taken when he was around 5yrs old, in his prime.  Nowadays, he wears white spectacles around his big ol' yellow eyes, and on his once-black muzzle.  His hips are a little stiff, you can see it in his gait, but he is not in pain.  He is also not Boss Dog.  That is Shiloh's job now.  Cody was always the beta dog, never the alpha.  He loves his packmate best, Monkey3, who lets him sleep in comfort on her bed each night.   Perhaps it is time to tell some of Cody's stories here, while he is still here to enjoy them with us.
Old younger days.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Monday, February 24, 2014

Kipling, on dogs... for Brigid.

Today my friend, Brigid, lost her 4-legged friend, Barkley to an aggressive bone cancer.  11 months ago, I was in the same situation, losing my dog Charlie.  I know how raw that wound is...still is....

For Barkley.  For Brigid.  For Partner in Grime.


Rudyard Kipling

There is sorrow enough in the natural way
From men and women to fill our day;
But when we are certain of sorrow in store,
Why do we always arrange for more?
Brothers and sisters I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.

Buy a pup and your money will buy
Love unflinching that cannot lie--
Perfect passion and worship fed
By a kick in the ribs or a pat on the head.
Nevertheless it is hardly fair
To risk your heart for a dog to tear.

When the fourteen years that nature permits
Are closing in asthma or tumors or fits
And the vet's unspoken prescription runs
To lethal chambers, or loaded guns.
Then you will find--its your own affair
But--you've given your heart to a dog to tear.

When the body that lived at your single will
When the whimper of welcome is stilled (how still!)
When the spirit that answered your every mood
Is gone--wherever it goes--for good,
You still discover how much you care
And will give your heart to a dog to tear.

We've sorrow enough in the natural way
When it comes to burying Christian clay.
Our loves are not given, but only lent,
At compound interest of cent per cent.
Though it is not always the case, I believe,
That the longer we've kept 'em the more do we grieve;
For when debts are payable, right or wrong,
A short time loan is as bad as a long--
So why in Heaven (before we are there)
Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear?

Monday Musings 02/24/14

Well, another weekend come and gone.  This was a working weekend for us, as we went out to TIRR dog rescue.  After a lovely dinner out, Friday night, we got up early Saturday and began to disassemble one of two monster piles of dead wood.  Previously, whenever dead trees had been cut down, the wood was simply piled up into these huge brush piles.

After beating the 6" wood chipper into submission, we began to make headway on the pile.  The Monkeys brought wood to the big people who fed the chipper.  Roy ran the big tractor and would shove the pile around to free up logs and knock out any unwelcome wildlife out of the heap.  DH alternately ran a chainsaw or the chipper, and I ran the chipper or hauled wood to feed it.

Somebody loves his Stihl!
By day's end, the pile was GONE!  Roy was surprised, as were we all.  I didn't think we could get through it all in a single day, especially with the finicky chipper.  But we succeeded, and the dogs have a safer pen to run in.   Later on this year, we will go after the Mother of All Woodpiles, and also cut out more of the dead trees from the property.  This will require the BIG wood chipper, an industrial grade 12" heavy duty thing.  But with it in place and enough boots on the ground, we can get rid of the last big brush pile, and chip the newly cut trees at the same time! 

This is Tucker.
Of course, a trip to the dog ranch entailed spending some time with the hounds.  We even tested one older dog, Tucker, with our existing 2, for compatibility.  While the dogs got along ok in the neutral pen, both DH and I agreed that our old dog Cody was going to be low dog in the pack, and it would not end up as a good match at our home.  So I guess we will bide our time until the right dog and/or the right situation presents itself.

He's a big boy!
In the meantime, there are lots of things going on this week.  Lots of errands to run, and cleaning to do, as most of it did not get done this past weekend.  DH gets wired for sound again on the upcoming weekend, for his 'insurance approved' sleep study as we try to get to the bottom of his perplexing medical issue.  If he can manage to sleep for the sleep study, perhaps we will learn what is going on.

Finally, I wish you all a wonderful, spring-is-coming-despite-polar-vortexes week!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Random 5 Friday 02/21/14

Linking up with Nancy over at A Rural Journal for this week's installment of Random 5 Friday.

1.  The weather here this week has been divine!  Warm, sunny and decidedly unwinterly.  DH has been riding in to the garage for work much of this week, which has been great for him.  I am so happy he is riding again.

2.  We have had so much fun with the borrowed Catrike, that we will be getting our own later this weekend.  (see the previous post if you don't know what I 'm talking about.)

3.  We have a busy weekend planned, with lots of heavy work, all of it much needed, and designed to help out some friends of ours.  I was even kind to DH, and did NOT ask our friends to have the adorable and utterly adoptable puppy brought over to prod DH some more.  He knows I want another dog.  And I will grudgingly admit that our old dog Cody might not appreciate a new intruder.

4.  Monkey1 has caught the writing bug.  She has the desire to be a published author one day.  Until recently, her writing was clearly not ready for prime time...but suddenly it seems a switch was flipped in her brain, and interesting text began to pour out.  I'm not sure how or why, but I am pleased, especially for her.

5.  Wow....what a difference hormones can make, when they are the ones you have been missing!  Ladies, look into Smoky Mountain Naturals, for quality OTC easy-to-use creams to help regulate your body.  The difference they make it truly noticeable.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

A new friend in the stable...

No it's really not a case of gear lust, I promise!  Really.

With DH's ongoing balance issues, we have been borrowing the Catrike Speed of a local friend of ours.  We figured it would enable DH to ride without worrying about falling over.  It works well in that aspect.  What we didn't count on, was how much fun it is to ride!  Yeah....not good, at least not for the budget!

It also seems that one particular 4 legged Diva who shall remain nameless, but whose name rhymes with Shiloh, is becoming rather fond of the trike too!  She gets to RUN rather than walk, for a couple miles every other day with it.  This suits her quite well, as she is a leggy thing, and loves to run.  For her, the lope doesn't even start until you hit a steady 11mph, so we tend, on the MUP, to stay at a trot for her(sub-10mph).  Easier on her, and better for her conditioning at this point.

So much fun was being had all around, that we thought it might be handy to have a trike of our own...and with some unexpectedly rapid assistance from our friend Texpug, we found one! 
This is a Catrike Expedition, the one we will be buying this weekend.  It's going to be set up for me, primarily, though there is enough boom length adjustment remaining (shortened boom) for DH to fit it well.  To swap between riders, all we have to do is swap out the pedals,extend the boom, and add about 5" of chain to the drivetrain.

The plan is for this to be used for rides with the Monkeys, some t-shirt rides (25mi +/-) with the Monkeys, running the Diva for her exercise, and other occasions as the mood strikes.  It won't replace my Giro, yet, but I suspect eventually in a few more years, I will convert over to trikes fully.  They're just fun!  Plus, you can make them into a velomobile!  Now a velomobile, that is pure gear lust!

I'll have a quick post up Friday for R5F, but then will be taking the weekend off.  Look for new stuff Monday or so.  In the meantime, stay safe, dust off that bike of yours if there isn't any snow around, and go for a ride!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Shiloh: A Photo Study, by Monkey1

 I love to ride in the van.

I am spoiled...

I am a silly thing!

But I can be serious...

...when the mood strikes me.

Doggy yoga.

I am beautiful...
...even in black and white!

Let sleeping dogs lie.

I am Shiloh.

* all photos by Monkey1

Friday, February 14, 2014

Random 5 Friday - Valentines Day 2014

Linking up with Nancy at A Rural Journal for Random 5 Friday.

1.  This weekend, Friday-Sunday, in Petsmart's National Adoption Weekend.  I think the Monkeys and I will be going out to Alliance to help our friends hold their Adoption Days rally there.  The dogs will appreciate the extra attention, and that frees up the adults to talk with potential adopters too.

2.  They keep promising a warm-up in our local weather by the weekend.  I'm not sure I believe them!  However at least we dodged the latest round of ice and snow that was predicted for Mon-Tues this week.  Others were not so lucky.

3.  I learned something today (Wednesday).  I had never before heard of this woman, Irena Sendlerowa, or her dedication to saving infants and children from the Warsaw Ghetto.  I sit here, humbled by this little old Polish lady...
There are some errors in the above photo-text.  Corrections are noted below, and come from the website.
***Numerous internet websites have posted much incorrect information. Irena was not German, She didn't know the Nazis' plans, she was not a plumbing specialist (she was a social worker), Most of the children saved were not babies, she used a tool box several times at most, the truck wasn't hers. Her legs were fractured-not broken, her arms were not broken. The dog was only used a few times, Her name was Irena not Iliana and there are several other mistakes. The Nobel Peace Prize is given for achievement during the past several years, Irena knew this and asked not to be nominated. The Nobel Committee encouraged her nomination to give her more recognition.  She was a big fan of Al Gore.

4. We had plans, DH & I to go out to dinner Friday for Valentines, since we had some gift cards for a particular restaurant.  However, we forgot to make reservations in a timely manner... Readers and friends, do you have any special plans with a special someone, for today?  (maybe I'll buy him a box of ammo...nothing says "I love you!" like a box of ammo!)

5. The Random 5 muse is not with me this week I guess.  I hate it when the blogging muse goes AWOL.  Does that ever happen to you?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Free at last!

Yes, my beloved DH, is free of his headgear!  The paste they used is sort of a cross between dry wall putty, and plumbers pipe dope, but water soluble, sort of.

He had a bit of a skin reaction to the paste too.  Left his looking like he'd been attacked by the Salt Vampire! 

Poor guy!  I had to put hydrocortisone on his spots, to try to alleviate the itch and rash the paste left behind.  We will have the results of the testing on Thursday.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Monday Musings 02/10/14

Thoughts on a cold and damp Monday...not exactly like Random 5 Friday, but kinda sorta.


Yesterday marked 5 years since my Dad was buried.  It seems a lot longer ago than that in some ways, and like it was yesterday in others.  It was hard to hold a conversation with him in the end, so deep into the dementia he was.  But we could always at least talk about the weather.

Today we get DH's fancy new headgear removed so they can analyze the data. Hopefully it will clarify the situation so the doc can formulate a treatment plan for whatever ails him.

I keep telling myself I will not complain about the cold weather...I know how hot it will likely be this August, when I will be praying for cold weather, and ruing my impending electrical bills.  This is the first weekend in 3 years now that we have turned on the central heat.  Even on the coldest days, 13*F, here, it stayed at or above 53*F inside the house.  But with DH being uncomfortable in his headgear, and cold with the inactivity, he wanted to be warm, so the heat got turned on.  I admit the warmth is nice...but I hate how much it costs me to run it.

This coming weekend is not only Valentines Day (Friday for any who have forgotten), but also a big Dog Adoption Weekend at Petsmart stores all over.  The dog rescue I volunteer with, TIRR, is participating all three days.  We will try to go out possibly two days, to help out.  The kids love to do it, and I love to interact with the dogs.   With more helpers to wrangle dogs, the TIRR folks have more time to talk with prospective adopters, and the dogs get more attention one-on-one.

Here's hoping everyone has a good week, a safe and healthy week, and be sure to remember to hug your loved ones and your animals too!

Friday, February 7, 2014

How we spent our Friday afternoon

So, how did  you spend your Friday afternoon?  We spent ours getting DH wired to test the new "Deathstar Inc.", (wouldn't want to annoy a certain someone's employer!) offering to compete with Google Glass!
The oh-so-happy victim.

First they shave your head bald, so the equipment will stick.  Ok, so it's not as sophisticated as Glass, but hey, you remember that Lily Tomlin skit, right?  One ringy dingy, two ringy dingy...

Really, love?  A picture of this?

All wired up and nowhere to go...
Actually this post was his idea...I'm only the enabler this time.
The Techno-Hippie Ponytail!
I wonder if he gets XM radio on that thing?  Or perhaps it's a new tinfoil hat?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Crap! It's COLD!

Yes, I know other parts of the country consider 13°F balmy t-shirt and flip flops weather, but seriously folks, this is Dallas-freaking-Texas!

Brrr....I'm gonna stay in bed where it's warm!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Where there is life, there is hope.

I know many of my readers are snow bound, tired of this winter, some struggling with personal things...loss, hurt, fear, uncertainty and more.  This post then is for you.  

“While there's life, there's hope.” 

--Marcus Tullius Cicero

Is that a hint of color amidst the fallen oak leaves I spy?
Ecclesiastes 3:1
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

Daffodils planted last fall, a gift from my Mom.
1Cor. 13:4-8a
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails.
Even in the midst of winter, this bush will always blossom.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Public Service Announcement: Winchester .22LR recall

As a service to my friends and others who may shoot .22LR ammunition, please check your supplies for the following:

Recall Notice 01/28/14

Olin Corporation, through its Winchester Division, is recalling two (2) lots of M*22™ 22 Long Rifle 40 Grain Black Copper Plated Round Nose rimfire ammunition.

Symbol Number: S22LRT
Lot Numbers: GD42L and GD52L

Winchester has determined the above lots of 22 Long Rifle rimfire ammunition may contain double powder charges.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Monday Musings...

Hello and a happy sleep deprived Monday to y'all!  Yes, sleep deprived.  It was a good thing, yesterday, that I got a long nap in the afternoon, 'cause I sure need it today to make up for all the lost sleep last night. 

At 01:00, dog wanted covered up.

At 02:15, dog wanted covered up again.

At 03:15, dog wanted out, but I made her lie back down and covered her up.

At 04:something, MonkeyBoy began to cry out loudly for help!  I popped up out of bed to assess, only to find he had puked over the side of his bed.  Oh well, better the nasty carpet, than the bed and sleeping bag!
 (thankfully no pictures of this!)

At 04:45, dog wanted out, and I let her, as DH was up in the bathroom by then and didn't hear her whine.  And yes, I was kind and covered her up again when she was done outside.  Can you say Spoiled Diva?
I knew you could say it!

After that, despite trying to fall back asleep, it didn't really happen so I just got up at about 06:15 and stole a cup of DH's Walmart coffee (blech) as I was too tired and lazy to brew my own good stuff.

And yesterday was just cold, icy and nasty.  We didn't even venture outside.  Neither DH nor I felt 100%.  Even the Super Bore Bowl was mind numbingly dull.  Everyone pretty much knew from the first botched snap on the opening play by Denver, that it was going to be ugly.  It was as if Denver spent too much time smokin' dope to be able to play.  A friend sent me this, probably from which sums things up nicely.