Sunday, October 19, 2014

A Fair Trade

It was in the high 40's when we woke up this morning.
For the first time in a long time, I was legitimately cold. Actually shivering. It was a welcome moment. Another reminder of how I love the fall and the promise of nights beneath heavy blankets with Todd or Charlie warming my feet.  
The weekend was spent mostly at home finishing up chores around the house and getting things stored and ready for winter.  I decided to tackle a flower bed that went untouched this year. The neglect started when the Phoebes built their nest nearby, and I didn't want to disturb them when they were giving parenthood a second try.  Then the black snakes, that I know are harmless were seen a few times around the porch and I just didn't want to chance an encounter with them, so I let it be.
The roots of the weeds were pretty deep and I was finding that with cold hands and a bit of arthritis, I was having trouble pulling them out. So I did the only thing I could do; I went and got Carl and asked him to pull them for me while I took the dogs for a walk and took some photos.
I thought it was a fair trade, and the dogs enjoyed it too.  

Friday, October 17, 2014

Safe at Home

~Over the hedge first thing this morning~
Our week ends with weather that could not be any more beautiful with bright sun and perfect fall temperatures. When I got home from work we enjoyed some outside time. Cissy (below) seemed lost in thought as she just sat and enjoyed the last rays of sun in the cool grass.
Cricket ends her week finally feeling pretty good.  I didn't mention it, but she was a little sick last weekend, causing her appetite to be a bit off this week. Because of her kidney issues when she doesn't eat, it concerns me.  Her eating habits can best be compared to a cats because she's so finicky, and because if I mix cat food with her kibble, she'll usually eat. So, that's what I've been doing. I don't really like her eating canned cat food, but if she'll eat, I'm all for it.  But I decided to enlist the help of one of the girls at the shop where I buy the dog's food to try to find something a bit more nutritious for her and not meant for cats.  We found something that at least for tonight fooled this little girl who gobbled down every single bite of her dinner for the first time in about a week.
Finally, this takes me to Charlie.  I really appreciated all for your thoughts and view points on what happened with him last weekend in the grocery store parking lot.  I did call our local sheriff's office about it on Monday. They'd not had any reports from anyone else about this type of thing happening. But the Deputy agreed that it could have possibly been an attempt to maybe steal Charlie from my van or to get money from me for him. And just as some of you suggested, the Deputy also recommended that I leave him at home instead of in my van unattended.  So safely at home is where my blue-eyed boy will stay for now.
Wherever you 'stay' this weekend, I hope it's an enjoyable one!  
~Todd and his Shadow~

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Seven Years

~Golden Pines in late 2007~
Today we are marking a little anniversary at Golden Pines.  It was seven years ago today that we moved to what we would later call "Golden Pines."
~Home Sweet Home!~
Its been an eventful and full seven years especially when I consider all that's happened in that time.  The other day I started to count all the dogs we've lost in the past 7 years.  I stopped when I got to 20 -- But that number is balanced by about the same number of dogs that have found their way to us, starting with Daisy, and pausing for Beau who came in September.  It reminds me that we bought this house with the hopes of giving a home to senior dogs like them.
~Part of the Gang in 2007, Charlie, Max, Rudi, Cubby and Cowboy~ 
Some people think we are crazy.  But the dogs have become a center pieces in our lives and have shepherded me through a sea of change of triumph and heart-break.  I feel more capable of handling life, thanks to them. My dogs center me, make me laugh, and re-teach me every day to love unconditionally. They remind me that during our short walk together on this earth to live in the moment and embrace life.

I don't think that we are crazy, I think we are truly blessed.  
~Sheba, Charlie and Josh the only three left of our original crew~ 
Here's to the next 7 years!  

Sunday, October 12, 2014

He's Mine, Legally

~Charlie in August~
With cooler temperatures I can now take a dog along with me when I run a few errands.  On Saturday I took Charlie. When I came out of the grocery store standing by my van was a man talking to Charlie who was sitting in the drivers seat. As I approached my van, he asked me where I'd gotten Charlie. As I opened the door to roll down the window for the two to meet, I briefly explained to him that Charlie had come from a shelter about 8 years ago when I was helping Old English Sheepdog Rescue. He told me that he and his family had a dog that looked like Charlie, named Sammy, and that they had lost him. He asked me my name and again where I'd gotten Charlie. When I told him the name of the shelter, he told me that he'd lived with his family in that town (that's not far from us) during that time. I told him that it was a pretty slim chance that Charlie was his dog, and I asked if his dog had a single blue eye.  He couldn't really recall if he did or not, but he *thought so.*  I said to him that Charlie's eye was a pretty unusual characteristic and I asked how he would not be able to remember that detail about him.  He ignored my comment, and was pretty adamant that Charlie looked a lot like the dog he'd lost, and said that he thought he was.
~A first photo of Charlie in 2005~  
I will admit that (for once) I didn't know exactly what to say.  I did think to say that I had Charlie legally-- He'd done all his time in the shelter that was required by law, no one came and Charlie was then made available for adoption.  I added that I'd met Charlie on his last day when he was turned over to Sheep Dog rescue. Ignoring what I'd said, he again asked me for my name, and I said to him that I wouldn't give it to him because there was no reason. By this time I was shaking a bit, and I told him that even if Charlie was his dog, he was mine, legally and had been for more than 8 years.
~Charlie in 2006~
He didn't even acknowledge what I'd said and instead again asked for my name.  I tried to remain polite even though I felt like he was bullying me a little, and all I felt I could do was to say that I wouldn't give it to him and repeated that Charlie was legally my dog. I added that if he was the dog he lost all those years ago, that he could feel good knowing that Charlie had a good home with us. I thanked him for the little chat, and told him I was going to leave. As I got into my van and started it, he didn't move for a moment, but stepped back and I drove off.

I find the whole encounter with this man really unsettling, bizarre, and a few other things.  I also realize that he could have taken down my license plate, so I'll admit to having been slightly concerned that I may not have heard the last of him. However today, I think it is. Just in case it's not, I found the paperwork that I have from the shelter when I got Charlie. Proof that Charlie is indeed mine, legally.
~Rerun of a photo from Thursday~