Saturday, December 19, 2009

Tea Time

Nebraska, here we come! Today is a day of packing, eating (gotta get rid of those leftovers, HA!), laundry, cleaning, and all the fun that goes into preparing for a full day on the road, followed by a week in the good ol' hometown, and another full day on the road.

Before we go, a few final photos. These evoke cozy and home and winter, all of which I love.


Tea has usurped coffee as J's hot beverage of choice these days. Personally, I enjoy a little of each. At any rate, the little Bugga just must do as the big people do (as evidenced by one of my earlier posts this week).


Though to be fair, J does not lick the outside of the cups. Bug put his own spin on tea enjoyment there. ;)


Lots to do, lots to do. Here's wishing everyone an amazing holiday season this year, and to all our NE peeps, we'll see you soon! =)

Friday, December 18, 2009


It's Friday, and lookeeeee, I'm capping off a week full of blog posts. Who knows what bug jumped in my hair to cause this, but it's been fun. ;)

Anyway, as we approach our departure from MN heading toward our childhood home of NE, I am thinking of family. And how it is most certainly not always defined by blood or genetics or a tree. I only have a brother, and I love him, but I was also blessed to have grown up with another family full of girls (and one lonely little guy, HA) and they have been like sisters to me. A blessing indeed!

We even had those classic sister moments of fighting, hair pulling, pranks and nastiness, but there was also just a lot of love and I know my relationship with that family has shaped me just as surely as my own true family did.

I'm not a person who collects friends, I value real and genuine and once I know and love someone, they are pretty much on the same ranks as family in my book, because it just doesn't happen everyday. And here is what happens when women I've considered sisters (even though they had enough in their own family, they didn't need one more!) grow up and have littles of their own...

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Little girls...

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I may not be as close with their Mommas as I once was, but seeing these little faces quite nearly brings a tear to my eye. I can't wait to see them again.

And this time, I need to catch their Mommas with my lens too. =)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Do you ever let something pass you by, not giving it a thought, only to find yourself in wide-eyed discovery by the same thing at another moment?

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And so it is with this picture. I was reviewing some old photos and for some reason, this photo I previously didn't even remember existing suddenly jumped out and slapped me in the face. Not even 100% sure what it is about it that now strikes me. It's my "kids"...they were probably looking out for Papa to get home...together.

That must be it. That together part. Something so simple about their sharing: of space, of moments, of pleasure in each other's company. I sit in awe of those two so often. Or rather, in brief moments when I am not overtaken by chaos, frustration, demands, etc. {Oh I exaggerate!}
If I weren't so danged in love with Pai's eyes in my current banner, I would make this my new banner in a heartbeat. ;)


Three little ladies are here to tell you...


that regardless of what the calendar may say, WINTER is here. ;)

And while Sula was enjoying herself... (I think she was trying to build a snow fort.)


Paisley was doing this.


HA! Poor Paisley, gingerly trying to remove the cold from her delicate paws. =) I love it.

And a short Sally update. If the pictures don't make it clear, she has been fully integrated into our crazy little household and has been for a while. She is doing remarkably well with everyone. She and Sula play pretty rough, but it is still just that: play. She is more respectful of Paisley, and of Mel when he was still here. She is wonderful with Grady too, and the cats. Yup, she's the whole package, the whole itty-bitty-teeny-tiny-pocket-pittie package. ;)

ps~Am I on a roll or what?! Three days in a row, craziness. I know, I am so inconsistent and unpredictable, what can I say?!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

HIS Camera

I love this little boy. I've upgraded him from toddler to little boy now.


Except when I call him my baby, that is. ;)


But do babies really have imaginations like this?!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Missing Mel

Today I reminisce about a boy I miss. Mel. No, he didn't get adopted, but he did move on to another foster home. There was a...let's say "unfortunate incident" with one of the resident cats. =( Sad, yes. But everyone is okay. It was a bit of a wake-up call though that we needed to lessen our foster load and no matter how much we adored Melly, the one who couldn't co-exist with the cats had to be moved. (He and the cats have been living separately pretty much the entire time Mel was here, but there were some Houdini crate-escaping moves by Mel that led to the "unfortunate incident.")

This is the first time we've had to part with a foster before their adoption (aside from Sula's pups, of course) and it was HARD. ={

So here are some of the last photos we took while he was with us. All the reports from his new foster home have been wonderful, which makes me miss him a little less, just to know he is loved and fitting in so well in another home.

This series cracks me up. It was unintentional, yet it totally captured the essence of Mel.

There he sits...


With all this activity around him...


There's my Melly, holdin' steady. :)


With his boy. Time for kisses.


Mel definitely tops the list when it comes to awesome-ness around Grady. He remained gentle and sweet no matter what the boy was up to, and never seemed annoyed or even particularly startled by anything that Bugga dished up.

I fondly remember one night, in particular, when both Mel and Grady got scolded--for separate infractions of course--and Mel quietly approached a fit-throwing Grady and reached up and kissed him so gently as if to say "I feel you, pal, I hate it when Momma and Papa act like that." ;)

I love how my shutter was obviously set to Mel-speed for these shots, and not Bugga-speed. =)


Grady was "being a dog" alongside Mel. Mel loves to lay on his back, sometimes he wiggles around like he's itching a scratch, other times he would just lay there with his legs folded gently and dangling over his big barrel chest. Golly, I miss me some Mel. ={

Anyway, you'd think it wouldn't be so darned hard to get 4 dogs to sit and look cute, in the same direction...but man oh man, it is! So I thought, hey, it was a fail, why not butcher it further with some flickr fun. ;)


{Sally looks gooood in a top hat, if you ask me. Pai had to settle for a Rudolf-nose. HA!}

This was their last day all together. Having 4 adult dogs in the house was surprisingly easy aside from technicalities like the difficulty of cuddling with all 4 simultaneously. I never did figure that one out, and that makes me sad. It's like a brain-teaser puzzle I couldn't solve and it's driving me crazy, I'm sure there's a way! =) Oh well.

Here's wishing Mel all the best, we love you still boy and we'll surely see each other again!

Monday, November 30, 2009

A day in the life...

* with largely unrelated photos. Like for real, these photos have barely anything to do with the written words accompanying them. ;)


Wake up.


Hear my insanely adorable kiddo get up, go potty, get his underwear, return to his room, get into his newly renovated closet where everything he needs is in his reach and talk himself through getting dressed.


Laugh at his sweetness when he finally comes to my room and announces "I got clothes on Momma!"


Feed son. Feed cats. Feed dogs. Feed self.


Watch from kitchen window as a squirrel approaches a bowl of acorns that has been sitting on top of our covered wood stove on the patio for months (why?! Who knows...).


Watch as bowl falls and shatters on the patio.


Think coffee. Think pie. Then think pie is almost gone. Better make another pie.


Marvel at kiddo's beautiful imagination. Marvel at the relative peace of a house with a kiddo, 4 dogs, and 2 cats. Relative peace. ;)


Read books with kiddo, smile as he recites book titles.


Move furniture around in preparation for Christmas decorating.


Lunch. Just for humans. Silly doggies...lunch is for humans.


Finally get coats on son, self, and 2 doggies (2 other doggies having quiet time) and head out to clean up shattered glass on patio.


Sally shows fear of stepping out onto metal steps; lift her up, put her down on steps and ignore odd noise as she takes off across yard.


Clean up glass.


Watch kiddo, and 2 doggies play and run in yard.


Grow a brain and finally notice the bloody stump on Sally's back left leg where a nail once was.


Run to metal steps, immediately find entire nail. Eeewwwwww. {Feel free to leave a comment thanking me for saving you any photographic evidence. ;) }


Take Sally inside for an abbreviated bath, which she hates as much as a full bath. Go figure. Clean wound. Giggle at her apparent consternation over the cleaning, but not so much over the wound itself.


Kiss her snout and forehead repeatedly. Watch her forget the cleaning too. =)


Put Sally to quiet time, release other 2 doggies. Watch 3 doggies and kiddo play in yard.


Bring them all in...thinking about coffee and pie again...and watch kiddo pretend he is a dog. {Don't worry, he alternately pretends he is a frog, or has a camera, or that he went to a museum.}


Blog about it. ;p


Exciting business right?!

**Okay, this represents only about half a day, and I'm sure I left out a bunch of minutiae, which I'm sure you all don't miss. At any rate...exciting?! Maybe it's all relative...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A little push...

Oh my goodness...hey, I'm still here. Hard to believe I know. I just go missing and pop back in every now and again. Bad bloggy manners, I tell ya. ;)

Anyway, I got a shout out on a blog-friend's blog today and I gotta say, it was just the kick in the pants I needed to get something new up here.

Hmmm, and now where to begin?! Oh it is so tough. Well, here is Sally:


She has been here a week. These things I know about Sally...

*She's just a wee peanut of a thing, at around 35 lbs
*She's fascinated by her mirror reflection in the windows at night
*She's awesome in her crate
*She's better with the cats than poor Mel (seriously Mel, it is time to make friends with those furballs!)
*She's got some of the greatest, most comical, entertaining zoomies
*She is smart; I would swear her little brain must be exploding with how quickly she is taking things in, overcoming fears, and getting used to no-doubt brand spanking new stimuli (key among them, a toddler!)
*She is a bust dog

Our rescue brought 8 dogs from this summer's huge bust into our program. Sally was the lone adult we were able to carve out room for, the rest are pups ranging from 2 months to 5 months. Sally is no bigger than the 5 month olds. ;)

Despite what I know about Sally, there is so much more I don't know. We can make a lot of conjecture about her early life based on the dogfighting bust, but the fact of the matter is that I don't know--I don't know if she was fought, I don't know if she lived on a chain in the woods or in someone's basement, or even if she might have lived a life not all that different from her life now. I have no idea what her early socialization was like, if she knows how to play with other dogs, or how she'll react to people of different sizes, shapes, and ethnicities. Her initial responses to Grady paint a picture of a dog who had never seen a young child; but she is coming along remarkably well to life with a toddler around just the same.

The truth is that I like to think of her largely like I do any of the dogs we bring home--I use caution, I watch closely, and I give them every chance to show me their best. I know it is prudent to understand her background and what that may mean for her behaviors. I also know that I don't want her past--a past she never chose, a past she was unfairly born into--to define her. I refuse to let her past dictate what she is capable of or what her limitations are, when she is right here, willing and able to show me herself.

Because I feel slightly remiss if I post without a picture of the Bugga, if nothing else for Memaw and Papaw...


There, I feel better. ;)

It's Thanksgiving week! I adore Thanksgiving. What are you thankful for these days?

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Haul

Again, here's our little Halloween Doggie.

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Yes, you can bet there was barking. He seems to know what to do, even though he lives with some of the more quiet dogs I've had the pleasure of knowing, judging by the cacophony of non-stop doggie racket from neighboring dogs. Speaking of which, today it would seem they are all on high-alert, making me a tad nervous. Until I remind myself how crazy it is to take my cues from dogs I don't know and often can't even see. ;)

20091031 Halloween finals-38 is what his Halloween haul consisted of, this his first year of costume-ness. ;P

2 suckers
3 apples (if we count one each for Momma and Papa too)
2 cloth bags (again, if we count Momma's too)
5 candy-corn print pencils (what fun!)
2 plastic green footballs (instant love, you'll see)
2 organic lip balms (um, yeah...awesome)
2 activity/coloring books

Not bad, considering the boy didn't actually trick-or-treat. Forsaking that traditional activity, Bug got all dogged-up and we took him to the Arboretum.

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No haunted houses, ghosts or goblins, or funky stick-your-hand-in-and-be-grossed-out-by-common-household-goods displays (do people still do those?! I might be behind the times here)...we have years ahead of us for him to take in such spooky fun.

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For this year, it was just about getting out of the house, enjoying time together, and since the weather was fair, being outside and enjoying all that Fall has to offer. And enjoy, we did!

A doggie in the making...

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I love the "tongue of concentration" here. I display this trait a lot too, and had my face been visible, I wonder if we both would have been showing our sincere concentration via our tongues hanging out of our mouths. ;)

A different view.

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Notice Mr. Random-head-in-the-shot. This photo reminds me of photobomb. Albeit a much less funny--actually not funny at all--version.

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{My all-time favorite photobomb here. I laugh maniacally every time. It feels darn near sinful, but I can't help it, that face zeroes in on my funny-bone like some kind of short-range comedy missile. I now return to my post about...hmmm, what was this about again?!}

Alert doggie. HA!

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Get it?! The ear being up...okay, we were laughing at the time. Hard to believe there wasn't copious amounts of sugar involved, huh?!

The sky in this shot turned out so interesting. That is not post-processing people!

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Just part of the pack...

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And again.

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We found this fun outdoor play area, and we had it all to ourselves. Bug wanted to walk along this fallen tree and to keep my nerves in tact--because some of it was mighty high off the ground--we compromised and held hands.

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And J snapped away.

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Which was fun, because I am rarely in the photos it seems, and I am trying to remedy that a bit.

This concludes our Halloween coverage.

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This last photo is blurry and totally not great, but there's something about how he has his hood down and his little ears flopping, and his cute hat and mittens. Seems a fitting goodbye to Halloween for this year I guess. =)

Until next time, Happy Monday and Welcome to November.