Rabu, 27 April 2011

Final 2010 Performance Standings for Beagles

So the final 2010 nation-wide beagle performance results are in and Brew placed 4th with 86 points.  Not bad since we didn't even attend that many shows.

Selasa, 26 April 2011

A Week-ette of Flowery Observations

Kate "Flowers in Her Hair"
Having spent the day in St. Louis, enjoyed a sumptuous meal on The Hill, some friends agreed with my suggestion of strolling around a couple of blocks before heading home. Our last stop was for gelato so we really should have kept walking some more. But the next to the last stop was this amazingly eclectic open-space conglomerate of artists' work areas. For two of it this was the place where ideas are born. The other two were, shall we say, tolerant of our excitement? Ah, but it was fun!
As we piled into the car and headed for the highway we passed the animal shelter, which was not on our list of places to go. But, we came close to stopping to see it for it looked oddly splendid! Knowing there's much to be done back in our area we drove on, somewhat reluctantly. I'd anticipate a return trip to visit and see how things are done there; if any ideas can be brought back and considered in our area.
Back in my own backyard, an acknowledged haven of all things, ranging from healthy weeds, long grass, wet everything, to get out and shoot photos, I opted for the last item. Here's what I'm lookin' at today.
This is actually a groundcover but by getting down into its depths I can get a pretty close shot, filled with light and detail. Loved the buds on the left - tells me there's more to come after these falter.
Irises make beautiful subjects, especially when it's possible to get the rain hanging on and the teensy details showing up. I think there's another shot you'll like, the one beneath this is a small, low to the ground iris with totally different petal structure. It too has the lasting drops of moisture from last night's rain. There's something to be said for all the storms. Gorgeous flowers abound.
I don't know what the delicate yellow blossom is but it is one of my favorites, residing near the driveway and flourishing early in the spring, before daylilies and hostas take over; this plants leaves turn darker in time.

Sabtu, 23 April 2011

O'Riley and me

O'Riley and I were on our way to the vet's office as I had just picked him up from the person relinquishing him. Odd and interesting story but not one I'm going to tell here. Best news is that he was HW negative, got his shots, appears to be older than we were told, and three days after joining me he is on his way to a new home. A big shout out of thanks to the best vet and staff in the area! Go Rochester!

Before we actually left the "city" we headed southeast on one of the main arteries, and it happens to be one that offers a sampling of all types of lifestyles here. We cruised past this setting and I was fortunate enough to have my camera with me on this particular day. Turning onto a side street I was able to dash out and snap some photos while O'Riley waited patiently in the crate, in the car.

Ironic, someone tore down a church during Holy Week. Left the organ in place, as you can see. I talked to a neighbor a bit. My senses were exploding. I could almost hear the notes being struck and the voices rising from the brick and mortar shambles. "Christ the Lord Is Risen Today", "He Lives", and "Just a Little Walk With Jesus". Off to the right, out of view and behind the tree, is the sign with the message "God Bless America".

Can I get an Amen?

Minggu, 17 April 2011

A Day in the Country

Green Grass
Green Tree
Green Barn
My husband's new vehicle has a built-in GPS. Before going any further with this be aware that I'm deadset against them as they are just another means of replacing thinking with some technical gadget. I LIKE figuring out the map, etc. At the same time, if they can provide up to the minute info, well, it helps.

Regardless, we were invited to some wonderful friends' house for lunch today. They finished a home project (which looks great) and were willing to show it off AND cook out. We could not resist. We also would get to see their 3 dogs and meet the cat! It's about 40 miles from here, hard to say, you'll see.

From my 'Blue' Period
 We started out the back country road by my choice. Part way there I found a barn to photograph and we stopped. With this car it's impossible to program the GPS while the car is moving. The passenger must "sit on her hands" apparently. While I was clicking away he put in our destination.

Back on the road we were promptly routed to the interstate. FREAKIN' NO!!!! We ended up going AROUND the town and having to cut back over and then make two phone calls. Thankfully we were given a business to look for as the place to make the final turn because the system wasn't going to tell us to make it.
I'm guessing we actually drove about 75 miles as we were an hour and a half in getting there, counting my 5 minutes of a "photo shoot".

Going home was just as grand. Push HOME. Yeah, right. I'd re-set the program to "shortest route" to avoid the interstate and we had good directions. Our first turn was a wrong one. I suggested and received a turnaround, no problem. When the second one was missed I gave up and decided to enjoy the ride in the country and ask to stop whenever I wanted to do just that.

White Phase

Traditional Red
See if YOUR GPS can find this!

In the end I got what I wanted :-) And, inside one of these barns was a fabulous surprise.

But I'm still going to find a way to shut that GPS O-F-F.

Minggu, 10 April 2011

Mac & Zac Visit

Abba's puppies Mac and Zac came for a visit today. First off was a walk and then back to the house for some play time. All had a great time even the humans. It always amazing me how much I can see Abba in all of her puppies - in their looks and in the way they move.

You can see videos at this link

Sabtu, 09 April 2011

Beagles have fun in the snow

Yesterday, Kevin and I took the beagles for a walk in the snow.

No comments about my running, I was trying to keep the ropes untangled and not trip over them.

Kamis, 07 April 2011

This One's a Straggler

Ever decide you're just an idiot, I mean IDIOT? I have my moments.

Such was the case when I ended up with olive oil based dressing on my age'd Air Force Academy sweatshirt. It is doomed to die a very slow death but as it does I want it to look frayed not abused.
Off I went to dab away at it, fully aware of the absorbancy rate in cotton sweatshirts opposed to my lackluster movement to get a rag.

Well, next it was time for Shout! I knew there was some around somewhere. I'd seen it. Perhaps I'd even used it on something that went into the laundry a few years ago. It may have been something we moved here seventeen years ago but I just saw it...over there! Yes. Squirted on the Shout! and proceeded to the next activity.

What, please tell? This is far too exciting, right? It was time for me to go on my dog-walking-rounds and I'd planned on wearing that otherwise distinguished and seasoned (no pun intended) sweatshirt as it is all-around good for that sort of work. Alas, the oil seemed to be winning. There was less of it showing but how to be certain and still leave in time?

Only one thing would do. I got the hair dryer out and while wearing the sweatshirt (throughout all this) I applied the dryer to the fabric. It was slow going so I moved it closer. Ah, there, almost done.

I'd stopped, and why? Well, I scorched the spot that had been oiled, then Shout!ed, and now semi-dried.
Pitiful. Off it came and a replacement, less remarkable in many ways. Into the Maytag the AFA sweatshirt went.

Luck would have it, the scorch came out but there must have been too much shouting for that area is just a bit lighter than the rest of the shirt. It'll all blend in time. And, I'm admitting it's just more character to it.

But it could have been as much a disaster as the time I thought I'd dry my gym shoes in the oven. Uh-huh.

As a footnote, or epilogue - you decide - this whole event merely proved to me I am my mother's daughter. I set the table for dinner on a tablecloth she'd had. It had a scorch mark on it.

California, here I come

One of my "pet sit" clients is a wonderful mixed breed in a community 25 miles from the center of town and so I have learned to diversify my route, driving the country roads as often as I can. Today was such a day, at least coming back from my visit.

There I am, windows cracked, audio story rolling, stuffing store bought popcorn into my mouth (afraid so) and before me I see what I believe is an oversized wooden wagon being pulled by a bicycle. At the T in the road they went one way and I the other but not before I caught a glimpse of the message on the wagon rear. At least I caught the word "homeless". For another purpose I had my camera with me and was able to remove it from the case, with minimum popcorn spillage, and snap a shot of the wagon.

On I drove. Then I realized I could not let this pass. For one thing, I wanted a better photograph and was daring enough to approach them and get it.

I turned around. I drove. I drove further. I decided they'd pulled off into one of the elaborate homes built in the area and were about to break and enter. Then, over the ribbon of road I saw them. How the heck did they get so far so fast? By then they'd passed all the huge homes, without stopping I must add.

Well, it was not a bicycle. It would have had to be Sampson or Goliath or some comparable bohemeth in order to accomplish that. It was a motorcycle of sorts. I'm not sure what sort other than old. And, I did catch up to them.

We talked. How friendly they were! They are taking the back roads to California. It's him, her, and their female dog, now with her 4 pups. Ah, the dog connection.

Everything they own, right there, piled on top of the wagon. Him riding the motorcycle and pulling the wagon. He estimates 7 or 8 weeks more of this off-highway course. And, they were so cheerful!

Of course, he was in fatigues. Most likely a Vietnam Vet who never mainstreamed once he got back. But when I handed him money and said, "Get yourselves and the dogs something to eat." and he said, "Oh, they always come first." the worlds of differences between their lives and mine vanished.

I can't tell you what to do for others.
I can't tell you what to think of them.
It's tough enough to keep myself straightened out.
I can only hope you know how it is for you.