Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems. ~Rainer Maria Rilke

Monday, November 25, 2019

Here it is.... the "sad dog being abused by his humans" story. I want to preface this by saying that no dogs were harmed physically.
This is Dexter in his new harness. Dexter is growing out of the carrier that we take him to the vet in and it was just time for him to learn about collars and harnesses. Is that too much to ask of a small puppy? ... to just try out the new vest harness and see how it fits? This only took about 15 minutes but you would have thought that he was being horrifically tormented for hours.
I saw a video of a dog that was introduced to a harness for the first time. You hand a biscuit to the dog through the opening that goes around the dogs neck and while he's eating the biscuit you slip the harness over the dog's head and snap the rest around his belly. It looked easy and the dog just took the biscuit, put his head through the opening... and DONE. I really suspect this was not the first time they put the harness on. That dog sat there, took the biscuit and without any running, hiding or evasive tactics, that dog sat there and let the person put the harness on. First time my a$$. Not so with Dexter. He didn't even want the biscuit. This, in fact, is not how it goes when you have a smart puppy. Dexter would not take the bate.
We both had to hold him and try again. We finally got it on him OMG! He turned in circles for a few minutes, bucked like a wild horse and finally sat dead still... not moving at all.

 Abby came over to comfort him and he softened a bit but he didn't move... he just looked pathetic.
He played this like John Barrymore. in one of those old silent films.... and out of the corner of his eyes dribbled distrust and fear. I could hardly stand it. 

I think we have been put on notice that this little boy is not going to put up with being restrained. We took the vest off and talked about it.

Steve sat with him explaining why this seeming abuse has a purpose. Going for walks, going to the river and parks... fun stuff that requires a leash and some restriction. This time he took another biscuit and now he's sleeping in the bedroom with one eye open.
This may take a while... but we will try again. We will also let him wear a small collar to get use to having something around his neck.
We love his wild little puppy butt.... but he WILL wear a harness and life will be filled with all kinds of fun... and trips. ... and rivers... and parks. He will find that this is not a bad thing. Abby too. The adventures begin..

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

There was a walnut orchard behind my house when I was a kid. It was paradise for the kids on our block. I remember climbing and playing in the tree branches... and in the spring running around in the endless mustard grass that turned the orchard into a yellow maze of fun for all of us.
We would play hide and seek in the tall grass and I remember lying very still, looking up at the blue sky, though yellow flowers and green stems, hoping that no one would find me... that my hiding place would be safe from whoever was IT. I remember breathing in the mustard fragrance... thick, strong and wild. Sometimes I would be found and tagged... "You're it." someone would yell and then I would have to hunt for the other's hiding in their own 'safe places'. It was a wonderful game we played. An innocent game that keeps us busy for hours but close to home. Then toward dinner... one by one... we would here our parents call us in. The days were long and we were young. It was a good place to grow up.
The orchard became houses and they built a school at the end of the street called Strandwood. The town became incorporated, roads widened, Grayson Creek became concrete and controlled so it wouldn't flood every Winter. We all grew up.
They named a park after my best friend's grandfather and a lot of us moved away. The last farm became a mall, The drugstore at Pleasant Hill and Gregory La. that my dad worked at as an extra job, became a produce market and the barber shop disappeared. The town is different but the same. The roads have the same names, but there's a downtown now with theaters, Peet's and all the stores that you can imagine.
I love the little town I remember with its drive-in movie and muddy creeks... with walnut orchards and miles of Mustard grass.
I have photos of smiling faces that are faded with age now, but I know that I had the best of times there... where the backyard led to an orchard though a gate my dad built, just for us. I played all day with my friends... playing hide and seek until dark...and life was good.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Our Corgi puppy Abigail (mostly called Abby) was outside with me last night around sunset and I was pretending to "get" her and grabbed her as she ran by me. We were having such fun. Then she disappeared. I walked over to the deck stairs and saw her. She was standing completely still at the top of the steps. I think she thought she was hiding. She didn't move. I took this shot of her playing hide and seek with me. What a character. I love this puppy.

Monday, February 11, 2019

My robe hangs in the garden,
dripping like a tree.
One day I'll step
out of my body
exactly like this.
It's easy to die.
Just give your breath
back to the trees
and the wind.
-  Peter Levitt, 100 Butterflies 

 It snowed yesterday. 
It was too much for the geranium.
The cold... the snow... 
Too much.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

The most extraordinary thing happen this afternoon. We had a rain storm that was, as they say, a gully washer. It rained so hard that new small "creeks" formed on the road and down the hillside. We also had a thunderstorm that rattled and rolled across the foothills and scared every animal far and wide.... including us. Surprisingly... it all settled down and for a very short time a sliver of sun hit the ridges on the other side of highways 49. Then I noticed something ...

Toward the southeast, a rainbow was forming. It was just a flag of color that looked like it was coming right out of my neighbor's pasture... like one of his cows was turning into a magical unicorn.

At the same time, from the north end of this rancher's property... right over his house, another rainbow started. Another cow exploded. It was as if something very special was going to happen... you know... one of those magical experiences that changes your whole life. I expected small spaceships to arise from both of these colorful spots.
Then it kind of did. The color grew and lengthened. I tried to find a place to take pictures that would do this whole transformation justice but I wasn't far enough away. I had to split the images up because I could not capture the whole scope of this.
A huge rainbow grew before my eyes. It rose over south Jackson and came together high in the air.

From north to south, this rainbow arched over our hills like a beautiful luminous ribbon of color and at the top, right in the middle, was a star like light.

Maybe the rainbow was going through a cloud or something but I think this is what they call a sundog. It wasn't very strong and didn't show up in my photo very well but it was there at the very top of the rainbow.

This was such a pretty rainbow but a little off its feed because the idea that a rainbow is a sign of the rain ending was not true... it rained again later and it's suppose to rain for days.., but while it lasted it was lovely.
I should check with my neighbor and see if there's a pot of gold at each end of the rainbow where it first appeared. We live in Gold country and you never know what might be laying on the ground over there besides cow patties.
Here are more photos of the rainbow. What a cool experience. What a magical happening.

 Do you see the violet color?

 Do you see the second rainbow forming on the right?

Oh my...

Monday, January 28, 2019

“You know, rust is just oxidation. The same chemical process as fire.

 Oxygen interacts with steel, electrons drift from one element to the other.

 So really, rust is a slow fire.

 Isn't that weird?

 Water causes something to burn.”
Leah Raeder, Cam Girl

Sunday, January 27, 2019

I have made a pact with a blogging friend to be more diligent about posting  on my blog. She has set the bar and both of us will work hard to post more often.
It's been over a year now since my last writing. Disgraceful. I promise to do better. I love blogging but Facebook has taken over my time and energy. It started slowly and then I wasn't posting blog posts at all. Beware the FB takeover.
This is Carl. He is still with us in his 11th year. He moves slower now and naps hard...

We lost our other Corgi, Cutter, last year to cancer and the sadness was overwhelming. He was a dear member of the family. We mourned for months... the sadness still lingers...
So, as with all dog lovers, and the fact that Carl was wasting away with a kind of canine melancholy”, we called the breeder and and found out that she had a litter of Corgi puppies. We drove down to the valley one day and met the charming little girl that we named Abby. She is the love of our lives and has given Carl a new reason to get up in the morning.
Abigail Elizabeth Windsor ( in honor of the Queen's Corgis) is five months old now...
 She is a beautiful female Pembroke Corgi.

 Carl is overwhelmed with this little spitfire puppy but he's warming up to her and she defers to him on all things... so far.

 He is constantly correcting her behavior. She is constantly testing his patience.

 She loves her toys and the living room looks like we have a small child living with us. I guess we kind of do.

One of her favorite games is pushing toys under furniture and then waiting for us to get them out. This goes on all day... unless she gets tired and goes to sleep. She is very smart and we laugh and call her a puppy of the "Me too." movement. She truly has a mind of her own and a typical Corgi attitude. We love her... Carl is working on a new perspective. He's warming up to her.... slowly.

In March I will have a knee replacement so that I can be all I can be in my 70's. I'm hoping for a new lease on life and renewed energy. Old knees just give out at some point and need to be fixed. Not looking forward to this operation but I know that it will improve the quality of my life. 
Well... here's to being a more faithful blogger and reconnecting with everyone. It's a new year and we can all hopefully receive some blessings and fortitude for the long haul.
Have a wonderful Sunday...

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Long summer... lot's of fires in Napa, Santa Rosa and surrounding areas
 Horrible destruction of homes... lost human lives and dead animals.
 Now the fires ravaged Los Angeles and Santa Barbara County..
 and continue to burn. 
So, as we head toward Christmas and a New Year...
 lets be thankful for the gifts that we have in our lives.
It's hard to see the blessings when so many suffer around us,
 but do what you can do and try to make someone's life easier.
 Put up that Christmas tree
 and decorate the heck out of it.
 Life is short and we don't know what is around the corner...
 so be happy and live in the moment. 
It's all we have. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Don't you marvel at how nature works... 
how it all seems to find a way to be a part of this world. 
How it pushes it's way through obstacles
 and leaves without the fears that we, the humans, seem to get caught up in.
How it makes allowances 
How it knows things. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017