Sunday, December 28, 2008

Steel and Flames

Have to share the photos I took of Kohlman today. I had him and Butters all groomed up intending to get photos of them and when I went outside it had began to snow. So I ended up putting them on the front porch for the photos. They turned out very nice.

Kohlman is an easy dog to shoot. He baits and holds a pose so well. I think he got that from his sire,, CH. Denian Deuce's are Wild, the dog I showed last year to number 5 sheltie for owner Karen Ferraro. Deuce would bait and hold his stack till given a signal and sometimes hold it so long that he would finally just bark at me as if to say,, "come on,, give it up!". What a show dog.
Kohlman has that certain something about him. He is as stunning in person as in his photos. On top of that, he has a remarkable temperament. Pretty much bomb proof. What a dog. I can't wait to show him.
He was awarded best expression and best outline and best rear at the Tom Coen virtues match this last August. He is pictured here at 13 months old. I would say he is coat factored!!
Enjoy the photos of Akadia Chandelle Steel and Flames.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas, Snow and Puppies

Christmas went over with no major special or disappointing items. We got up to a lot of snow,, 7 inches overnight. The roads headed into town were horrible and not passable without a four wheel drive. We made tracks into my sister's house to meet with the family.
Once there we were greeted by the menagerie of kittens she has been fostering. If you look back in November's posts at the "Taking Moments" post, you can read about them more. This Christmas was fun for them. My sister left all the wrapping paper and boxes down for them to play in and it was GREAT fun watching them. Here are a couple of shots of them after they were all wore out.

The snow was pretty bad and has hit such a point that the fence is almost buried now. The fence is 5 ft tall and the dogs are going right over it. Thankfully,, this is an internal fence and not border fence.
Found time today to take pictures of the Ch. Price and Ch. Jewelee babies. They will be 3 wks old on Sunday.
Brown leg girl:

Star girl:
Tiny girl:

White head girl:

Gorgeous boy:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Strange events

Derek and I were deep into getting our Christmas tree up and strung with lights. I had chicken wings and french fries in the oven and Bell, Nicky, Boots, Nanette and Chip were all present to help us in this task of tree decorating.
All of a sudden the dogs in back started barking. This got Nicky going and Derek was annoyed. I told him there must be a good reason that Sarg,, the german shepherd was barking like crazy. I looked out the door and he was going beserk at the window well. I ran out in my socks and peered there and saw a tan cat. Well,, Sarg was about to kill this cat. It was scared to daylights. I grabbed Sarg and pulled him off and then proceeded to pull him to the door. The shelties, I figured, would not hurt the cat. Sarg was yelling the whole way ( a GS thing) and I opened the back door and screamed for Derek. He came and got Sarg and I raced for a flash light. I went back outside and found the cat again, still in the window well. He hissed at me and was so frightened. I then realized that I was going to have to get all the shelties in the house in order to get the cat calmed down. I was still in my socks,, with no coat too. I ran to the door and Derek and I got the shelties in. I quickly put on boots and a coat. I then returned to the cat. I knelt there in the snow for a good 15 minutes talking to him and trying to work up the courage to reach out to him. Being a groomer,,, I have been bit by cats before and it is NOT GOOD!
I finally reached out and he did too. He sniffed my fingers and then I heard him purr.
I then carefully and slowly reached further to pet him. He liked it and didn't bite. YEAH!
Ok,, back into the house to get a towel to pick him up with.
Back to the cat I put the towel over him and picked him up. He relaxed in my arms and I took him to the fence and put him over it. He immediately jumped back over and ran to the window well again.
I haven't ever seen this cat down in the big shop. I would occasionally see him this last fall but he never came close to being touched. So I wasn't sure if he knew about the water, food and heat down in the shop. There is a cat sized hole in the door for the kitties to come and go.
So I yelled for Derek again. I asked him to meet me around at the backyard and get the cat over the fence and we would take him down to the shop.
He came around grabbed the cat. I went through the house and out the front to meet him. The cat had jumped away from Derek but ran right to me. I picked him up again and then we headed to the shop.
When we got there,, Farrah was there,, as usual, and he was glad to see her. I put him down at the bowls. The water was out so Derek ran and got some more. The poor kitty sat there and drank and drank. He was very dehydrated. Enough so, that he didn't even care about the food. We made sure he was ok then Derek and I returned to the house and our tree.
In thinking about this cat, it is pretty amazing that he lived through the ordeal of Sarg. Sarg hates cats,, but really there was no other way for the cat to let us know he needed help. If he had been out in front of our house I wouldn't have seen him. I wouldn't have heard him,, his little voice all quieted by his lack of water. The only way,, was to get the dogs barking so that we would go see what was going on.
I do believe that some things happen for reasons. I can't help but think that on this Christmas Eve,, that God helped this kitty be realized by us and we were able to help him.
After inspecting him, he has frost bit ears,, now turning black. Probably from the past few days of really cold weather. He is skinny,, but otherwise alright.
I hope he stays in the shop. He will get what he needs there as long and I can provide for him.
Merry Christmas little had an angel protecting you tonight.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Rays of light

click on photos to see full size

Today when I got home, we got a rare glimpse of the sun. It shone through the clouds and made a beautiful ray extending right up to the sky, all gold and stunning.

In the sky just out from the sun was the neatest thing. It was like a sideways rainbow created by the crystals of snow in the air as the sun hit them. The wind was blowing and swirling the crystals around making for a sparkling blanket along the top of the snow and in the air. It remained there for about 20 minutes,, long enough for me to run and get my camera. I am sure there is a technical term for this,, when I talk to dad next,, I bet he knows. At the moment it was happening it really made me feel like something special must be happening somewhere,, it was like a spiritual thing almost. Very special....

It was a bad day for weather. I left for work this morning and promptly got stuck in my own yard. 3 or so feet of snow and even my suburban in 4 low was having a bit of a time. We hired out at the grooming shop a gentleman to plow the snow. Our customers couldn't even get in to drop off their dogs.

In the photos here you will see how the snow is all the way up to the top of the fence on one side. The side that is lower is where the dogs pack it down and we have shoveled. The wood fence we have is a 4 foot divider fence and the other chainlink fence is a 5 ft one we keep there to prevent the dogs from going out to the big yard in the winter. Boots discovered how to walk right over it this morning. He thought he was very clever!

Jewelee's puppies are sure getting cute. They are up on their feet and marching around and we are hearing the occasional bark burst out from them. I have one tiny girl that, so far, seems to have a lot of personality. The boy is stunning,, very rich color and pretty face. There are two girls that are quite nice,, one I call "Star" and the other is "Brown leg girl". There is another girl,, "white head girl" that is in the middle. She might end up small,, but right now you can't tell much. I hope to get photos soon for everyone to see. They are very pretty puppies.. I am pleased.

Monday, December 22, 2008

A day of solitude

<<< there is Nicky,, the best dog in the whole world!!

I had the whole day to myself to do what I wanted. Usually days like this for me are very unproductive. I get caught up easily in the fact that I have the "whole" day to do with what I want and it usually ends up that I don't do anything but take a lot of naps. Oh brother!

Well, today did kinda start out that way. I made my way to the couch and laid there for a couple of tv shows. I then got the buzz to go check on the ferals down in the shop. This led to over an hour outside shoveling snow and enjoying the horrible weather.

I eventually moved into the house, took a shower, made some breakfast, vacuumed the floors, shampooed the carpets, finished my Christmas cards, made two ads for publish, and then loaded the dishwasher and wiped down all the counters. I finished the day with making a potato soup for dinner.

My day of solitude sure turned into a lot being done. I feel good about it. Lately I have had more energy then normal. I am liking it.

So there you go,, a pretty boring post about the doings of my day. Hope you had a good day folks. The weather here is pretty much a blizzard and all the roads are closed. I like it though.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Beginning to look a lot like Christmas

It was a very snowy day here. Last night it was down to minus 7 when I went to bed. I borrowed a heating pad (outdoor) from my friend Debbie and put it down in our shop for the feral kitties. Farrah was there and she was most appreciative. I took her a huge bowl of water that plugs in so it won't freeze. She drank a lot and then settled down on the heating pad. The other kitties are too wild so they watched from afar. I checked on them today and all were good and had eaten most of the food I had put down for them.

I took Nicky, Boots and Chip out for a romp in the snow. They raced around and Chip bounced around till his feet were all stuck with snow between his toes. He would lay down and bite it out before off again he would be. He is the best follower. He is always under foot and follows me all over the yard and into the large shop. He makes tracks through the shop as I check on the kitties.

Nicky showed him how to run from the front yard to the back and back again but Chip never went far from me even though Nicky was looking to show him around. Chip would come back and check with me before going off again with his new idol.

We spent about an hour outside before I thought he might be getting too cold,, although he never showed it.

The snow has began again tonight with a huge storm expected. The drift in the back yard is up to the 5 ft fence already. Oh,, how fun.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Princess Squishy

About a month or so after we moved into our house where we live now, Derek came up from the shop and into the house. He asked me to come out to the garage. I went,, wondering what part or tool that he was going to bore me with this time. When I got out the house door to the connected garage, there sat the cutest little calico kitten. Big eyes,, scared and all hunched up, obviously cold. I picked her up and she purred and made bread with her front paws on my arm.

Since we already had 5 indoor cats,, I told Derek that she would have to live in the garage. Not too bad since we heat the garage for the dogs and keep it about 60 degrees all the time.

Well time went on and "garage kitty" began to develop a personality. I would go out in the evening to feed dogs and she would play hide and seek with me,, chasing me and sneaking up on me and attacking me. I would hunch down and sneak up on her and do the same then we would finish with time to cuddle before I brought the dogs in for the night.

She gained great delight from laying on top of the wire crates and pawing at the dogs heads and bugging them till they barked at her. She would also run the full length of the garage in front of the crates, back and forth getting them all barking at her from time to time.

As she got older, it was time to get her spayed and I decided to get her front claws declawed since she was to be out with the dogs. I took her in and had the deeds done. When I got home with her a few days later,, she was a changed kitty. She didn't like me anymore. Just me holding her or petting her would bring on growls and looks of hate from her once cute loving face. I was so hurt.
Months went by and she still hadn't warmed up to me but the one thing she did seem to be happy with was coming into the house for short visits to see the other kitties.

Soon,, the visits turned into nights and days and then a full fledged house cat.

A year and a half went by and still she hated me. I would pick her up,, hold her loosely and pet her lightly as to not disrupt her or upset her and she would tolerate just short times of this before she would growl, spit and race off.
One night I was again holding her (I don't give up easily) and I noticed a horrible smell coming from her mouth. I opened it up and looked at her teeth to see them all inflamed and full of puss and terribly infected. Poor "garage cat" was in horrible pain.

I made an appointment right away and took her in. Come to find out, she has a really rare disease that causes her body to reject her teeth roots. The only choice was to pull all her teeth.

So we did.

A month went by and it was like she was brand new. Like the kitten I had before her spay and declaw. Loving, tolerant and affectionate. Oh goody.

Since we had moved her into the house,, we renamed her Garage',, with the french twist. I mostly call her "Gigi" and "Princess Squishy" since she has the squishiest belly you will ever feel. She is a delight now,,, almost 5 years later. She enters any room she is in with a tribble of meows,, announcing herself. She also loves to rub on Derek's stinky feet. She is a full timer on the bed as well.

My Miss Princess Squishy...

Friday, December 19, 2008


I have had a mix of opinions about the Blog. Some folk's first reaction is disdain or silliness at the thought, others are very supportive and nice.
I guess I have always considered myself somewhat of an open book. I don't hide much,, at least I try not to, really feeling that I don't have anything to hide. If asked or slightly provoked,, I will share on just about any subject out there. I have always been hard to embarrass and easy to embarrass others even though I am a pretty shy person. So the blog has come as a nice avenue for me to just write and share, hoping that some will be entertained or bothered by my muses.
I love reading other blogs and seeing who has been to mine and how many "hits" it has got.
Since dad has been in the hospital it has kinda been sad for me not to have him be able to read the blog. He really enjoyed it and I hope he will soon be able to read it again.
There is something about knowing that others are interested in what you are doing that gives life a little extra to look forward to. I may not always answer my phone because I am not in the mood to talk but I can still sit down and communicate through writing.
I also think it is good for a person to write and just put to words the thoughts that enter our minds. It's stimulating and important to keep such skills,, I believe.
So,, even though there are some sour puss' out there that sneer and snort at my blog.. heck with them. I know there are a bunch of others out there too that like it, and read it and support it. Thanks you guys. I will try to keep it going,, entertaining, thought provoking and maybe even boring sometimes for ya!!.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Chips aHOY!!

I made a trek down to Utah yesterday to my good friend Tricia's house. I brought along Fiora, since she has her sister and I was also there to see Tricia's beautiful litter by BISS CH. Sea Haven Chasing Moonbeams ROM, CC, AOM.

Since the litter was born I have been watching one of the puppies with perked interest. A little biblack boy with all the frosting. Each picture I would get of him made him appear so adorable and right.

Well,, I wasn't disappointed. Its been a long time since a puppy has just made me smile so much. He is a charmer,, full of life and interest in all that is around him.

A few years ago, I showed his grandsire,, CH. Lacewood The Star Maker to his Championship (all but 5 pts) for Tricia. It was then that I fell in love with that dog and have always wanted a puppy coming from him that I could name "Chip", for the California Highway Patrol (black and whites). This name came to me while in the ring one time with Star Maker.

This year,, I was able to again handle a stunning dog for Tricia to her Championship (in 10 shows) . That was BISS CH. Lacewood Bi Starlight who is a daughter of The Star Maker and also the dam of this darling little puppy,, "Chip",, that I brought home.

I can't thank Tricia enough for letting me be a part of this little guy's life. He is a great source of a lot of smiles for me!

If all goes well,, he will be named Lacewood The Star Trooper. Mr.. Chip to his followers..

Derek was the first to get his picture with him. Boots jumped in there too.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Cookies! and Puppies!

Beginning to prepare a bit for the holiday. A bit out of time for me since I usually begin sooner. Every year I try to do something special for my vet and the receptionists and techs. This year I have made them Sheltie cookies.

Of course this is somewhat out of sorts since none of them have shelties but I can always feed them some little ginger shelties...right?

Played catch up today and got some rest. Picked up our Christmas tree and dorked around a bit.

Also got some baby pictures of my new litter. Born a week ago. Sired by CH. Akadia Just Priceless and out of BIS CH. Iona I Can Shine. They are pretty puppies. There are 4 girls and a boy.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The weight of the world

I think everyone that has lived has had moments in life when you feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.
For me,, it comes when I am confronted with sickness and death. The sadness I feel is one that makes me ache in my soul. I feel it internally and harbor it there. I've had times when I literally felt that my heart hurt,, just from the sadness. Nothing seems to help till I can go through my mourning and slowly process it. Probley the moments I remember most for feeling that way have been when I have lost something dear to me and when I see injustice occur. The longest I have ever felt this way has been with Bo going missing out of my yard,, almost 2 yrs ago. I still mourn that situation badly and think of it daily.
With all that has happened with Dad lately,, I have been feeling a lot of that weight. At first,, it was almost panic that hit me that I could lose dad. "Not now" I kept thinking. "I just can't lose him now". After the initial shock of what was happening subsided and the process of leaving to be with him got underway, some really amazing and miraculous things started happening. It was on my journey home yesterday that I realized how this incredibly sad time for me has made me stronger and more aware then ever.
Firstly, I found that my network of friends rushed to my side. Each one providing such good support and contributing in their own special way. Tricia said words of comfort to me that I swear God placed on her lips Himself,, knowing that was what I needed to hear.
Debbie stepped in and made a road trip for me to retrieve 2 returned dogs and then came out to my house daily to exercise my house dogs.
Tammy rushed right in,, no questions asked, and took my "in labor" bitch and whelped the litter and kept momma and babies for me while I was gone.
Then,, there was the prayer chain of friends offering special prayers and blessings. We joked to Dad that he had every denomination out there praying for him.
My email was full of comforting words and acknowledgements.
Secondly,, in this time when we are at our worst financially (we've had to close our business due to the economy) and I didn't know where a spare penny would come from,, I was able to sell one of the adult dogs I had available to a wonderful home where he will be adored. This provided a great deal of the money needed to go see dad.
And lastly,, a spirit of comfort from God. For once in my life, I am at more peace with the future then I have been in some time. I know that His will is to be done regardless of our intervention and I am ok with that. Dad was ok with that and even in the time of great sadness, facing his own death,, he was given comfort as well. We took the time in slowly and made each moment count. Remembering the past and looking to the future, as it is to be.
I came home last night and just sat in amazement of what I viewed as the weight of the world on me,, not being "me" at all.
The good Lord has provided for me time and time again and here is, perhaps, one of the most special times of all. He placed people, friends and family in all the right spots of my situation to help with what was happening. Like a well orchestrated baseball team. Each playing there base and catching the ball every time it was hit to them.
To say I feel humbled,, would be appropriate.

Dad woke up from his bypass surgery. That was a huge relief and big concern. Now,, a tough road ahead. The surgery showed severe damage from previous heart attacks (that Dad thought was indigestion) and even with the new arteries,, his heart is only able to work at 10 percent capacity.
Dad has had a hard life. Polio as a kid of 7,, Muscular dystrophy, post polio syndrome, and now the heart problem. He has spent most of his life in full leg braces and for the last 10 years, in a wheel chair. I don't tell you this for sympathy, but to show what a fighter my dad is. They told him he would never walk. He played football and basketball,, for a while, till his legs broke. Several surgeries to his knees later,and they told him he would be in a wheelchair most of his life.. didn't happen till 10 yrs ago. All the while remaining positive and loving life. I NEVER heard my dad complain,, even when I knew he was in great pain. So if ever a person could pull through,, dad will.
Keep the prayers coming and I promise to be more positive in my next post.
God Bless you all and THANK YOU!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Update on dad

Update on my dad..
He will undergo bypass surgery on Wednesday morning.
Kind of the only option. The doctors told him that if he didn't that he would only have about a month to live. Surgery is risky,, but dad has a fighting spirit.
Keep him in your prayers.
I'll be back from Kentucky on Thursday

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A very bad day.

Had a very bad day yesterday. My dad had a heart attack. So I am headed tomorrow to Kentucky to be with him.
I will post more once I get home and I apologize to folks if I won't be able to answer my email.
thanks you all,, and say some prayers for my dad.

Last minute pictures of the sunset tonight. God was being very kind tonight with His colors.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Computer sick again

Came home today to the power out. 5 hours later,, it was restored but I ended up spending 3 1/2 of those hours in the dark.
I lit a fire in the fireplace and a few candles and laid out on the couch wrapped in a blanket.
Amazing how quiet the house is without the hum of the refrigerator, computer and furnace running.
Nicky took every opportunity to bark at each sound he heard. Jewelee is mad because she has to be in so much. We are on puppy watch with her first due date on Friday.
Derek brought up a camping lamp from the garage and I sat and looked at old Sheltie Special magazines from the 70's, to pass the time.
So,, after the power came back on, I powered up my PC and waited for it to start. It never did. I turned it off, back on, off, back on. It will power up and then just shut off.
I think the power outage zapped it, and we just got it back from being repaired. Thank goodness I have my laptop!.
So, amongst the other things that have gone wrong lately,, now my computer is dead again. Darn it.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


The sanctity of sleep.
I sit here watching my cat Russ, curled into a circle,,little nose tucked into his belly and his tail carefully wrapped around his bum. His eyes are closed so tight. He is in a very happy place right now.
On the floor is Bell,, stretched out on her side,, snoring and on the chair is Nanette,, sleeping upside down, feet in the air but weak at the joints with total relaxation.
Animals really know how to enjoy the comforts around them. The positions, the deepness of their sleep,, just makes me envious.
You know when your a kid,, you can sleep like that. Any position, anywhere and you never wake up all screwed up by how you've slept.
Now, all I have to do is lay wrong and my body screams at me all day long for the damage I did to it,, just sleeping.
Where along the way did it become possible to screw up sleeping so badly that your body hurts for it the next day?
Every once in a while,, perhaps with the help of some Kahlua and coke or a nice Tylenol P.M. I get the opportunity to find that place of total relaxation. The one where your floating and your body feels like mush. Love it..
Oh the sanctity of sleep. Reminds me of one of my favorite poems:

The Sacrament of Sleep

Thank God for sleep!
And , when you cannot sleep,
Still thank Him that you live
To lie awake.

And pray Him, of His grace,
When He sees fit, sweet sleep to give,
That you may rise, with new-born eyes,
To look once more into His shining face.

In sleep-limbs all loose-laxed- and slipt the chains-
We draw sweet-close to Him from whom our breath
Has life. In His sole hands we leave the reins,
In fullest trust Him for life or death.

This sleep in life close kinsman is to death;
And, as from sleep we wake to greet the day,
So, too, from death we shall with joy awake
To greet the glories of The Great Essay.

To His belov'd new life in sleep He gives,
And, unto all, awakening from sleep,
Each day is resurrection-a new birth
To nearer heaven and recreated earth-
To all Life's possibilities-of good
Or ill-with joys and woes endued-
Till that last, shortest sleep of all,
And that first great awakening from Life's thrall.

Thank God for sleep!
And when you cannot sleep,
Still thank Him for the grace
That lets you live
To feel the comfort of His soft embrace.

John Oxenham

Monday, December 1, 2008

My fault

Took Nicky into the shop today and gave him a bath. He hung out with me while I ran some errands and went and visited my friend Debbie.
He was a very good boy but I could tell by the end that he really wanted to get home. On the last road to my house he put his feet on the console and looked right at me and nudged my arm. I got home and he bounced from side to side on the back seat at the noise of the other dogs barking my arrival.
I got into the house and we sat down to watch Ellen. I got hungry and went to the kitchen and got some leftover turkey and a drink of sweet tea.
I went back to the living room and set my drink on the ottoman since I don't have a table handy to where I was sitting on the couch. This is a typical place for me to set my drinks and kinda stupid of me.
I had Nicky, Bell, Butters and Boots all standing around me watching me eat my turkey and waiting for hand outs. Well Nicky got tired of standing at the back of the crowd so he leaped up onto the ottoman, knocking my drink all over me and the two remotes I had sitting there. Well my reaction was "No!,, bad Nicky".
Now,, Nicky is the most spoiled dog ever and he has never had any real reprimands in his life but just the mere reaction of my voice to the action sure got the message through. He went and stood behind the chair on the right of me.
I realized how I had yelled and looked to see where he was and saw him peeking around the chair to see if I was still mad. Just the sight of him peeking at me made me instantly feel guilty. So I said "it's alright,, I know it was an accident" and out he ran and right up to me. He plopped down beside me and we got on with watching Ellen.
It was my fault. I shouldn't have put my glass there.
I sure love that little dog. He is just the best!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

An icky day

An icky day. Its very misty and foggy outside so I put my boots on, wrapped myself in a beach towel (over my coat) and went out to spend time with the dogs playing.

Now,, you might wonder about the beach towel. Well,, my dogs like to jump on me,, and they jump on me a lot. So I take a large beach towel and wrap it around my legs and coat (mid body) and clip it with a spring clamp. The protects my clothes and keeps me relatively clean. I look like and idiot out there but at least I don't come back into the house with muddy foot prints all over me.

Anyway, the dogs loved the romp.. They got nice and dirty and played and played till their tongues hung out.
Sarg is our rescue German shepherd. I got him from the pound over a year ago now. I was at the pound twice a week for over a year when Bo went missing. During my visits I brought home a dog and a cat and paid for the adoption fee monthly for any adult cat. We like to have at least one large dog around. Conan, our border collie is still hanging out, at over 12 now. So we actually have 2 large dogs,, but Conan isn't much threat.

Sarg has turned into a great dog. He was estimated to be about 9 yrs old when I got him. He is gentle with the shelties, puppies and adults alike. He lets the puppies crawl all over him and lick his face. The only thing he really protects is his toy, but he mostly just stands over it.

I got one picture of Camille. She is one of the two Tibetan Spaniels that we have. She has been shown and just needs her majors to finish. Majors in Tibbies are very hard to find though. Our other Tibbie is a Champion. They mix well with the shelties as they are very hardy and agile. They like the cold weather and love to run with the other dogs. Camille is a sweety. Pictured here all wet and dirty, just like she loves to be.

After the romp in the yard I put everyone up for a nap and they all got a chewy. Usually they are outside all day except the house dogs so this is a rare treat for them. They were loving it.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


Had a moment today after work to take a few photos of Fiora. I started out on this venture alone but all she would do is sit and look straight at me. Derek got home about 3 hours after I did so as soon as he got here I rushed out and asked him to help before the sun went down. I got a couple that are pretty good. She is much prettier in person, believe it or not.

Sired by CH. Macdega Notorious and out of CH. Imagine Dangerous Curves.

Ironically, I gave her dam a best in sweepstakes win several years ago. I just loved her. When I found out that Jan Williams had leased her and bred her to Nathan,, I just had to have one of the babies.

I saw Nathan for the first time at the national this year and was really awe-struck by him. He was like looking at my vision of the standard,, right there in front of me.

So, as you can imagine,, "Fiora" is quite special to me. She is pictured at 21 wks,, not quite 5 months old.

Friday, November 28, 2008

The calm "after" the storm

Well, Thanksgiving went over well. We ended up with 9 in attendance and with way too much food.
It was nice to see all the family and watch everyone visiting with one another. I was surprised by the amount of folks that came to the kitchen to hang out while I was preparing things. It was nice.
The turkey came out perfect and the stuffing was great,, if I do say so myself. I added green onions and cranberries to it this year and it had a nice little zing. I made a new dish of sweet potatoes with a butter, brown sugar, and toasted pecan sauce. I topped them with the usual marshmallows but had an added touch of caramel to the top of that before serving. Oh my gosh was that good! That was probley my favorite.
I thought I had gone and burnt my special artichoke dip, but I got to it in the nick of time. It is made with marinated artichokes all diced up. Add mayonnaise, onion, and Parmesan cheese and bake. Wow,, that is a good one too.
The whole family got a kick out of watching Farrah (the feral cat) hunting the back field. I felt bad for her having to hunt on Thanksgiving so I went out when folks weren't watching and filled her bowls up with a nice topping of some turkey and drippings. When I came back into the house I saw her making her way across the field toward the house. She must have heard me out there and was wasting no time coming to get her meal. Good kitty.
Yesterday was sunny and beautiful, we lucked out. This morning it is all foggy and overcast but still quite settling as it makes for a hush when it is foggy. Even the dogs seem quieter in the fog. I like it.
Well, since Derek is off today we are headed into the museum for a visit. No shopping for us today,,, too poor! Good day to you-all.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Spent the afternoon preparing for the Thanksgiving dinner that I will host for my family on Thursday. There will be 10 of us with one friend in attendance.
I like to host the big get-togethers. It sure makes me clean my house!
A common remark to me about these big dinners is that folks just think about how much work it is. True,, it is a lot of work, but, to be honest, I don't really think about that. I get a bit of a rush out of hosting actually. I just like it.
When I was a kid almost every holiday was spent at my grand parents house. Now,, they didn't have the largest house. Basically one bedroom on the main floor and two up stairs in an attic sort of arrangement. They raised all 6 of their kids in that house. Pretty remarkable to think about. Grandma would make the best meals. The livingroom would be turned into a dining room with a grand table stretching from the davenport to the tv. Those were the best of memories for me. The smells as you came in the door of food preparation already stirring the senses. Grandma greeting you with a kiss and grandpa sitting in his chair by the big picture window,, waving a sweet greeting. My favorite food that grandma made was probley her potatoes and peas in white sauce and her homemade dinner rolls. Wow,, she was the best cook.
The thing is,, even though the food was great,, the fact that the whole family gathered there was even more remarkable. It was something you could count on. In this day and age, I see that as a fleeting thing. Perhaps that is why I get a rush out of hosting my own family holiday get-togethers. Now my family consists of my two brothers and thier wives. My sister and her daughters and my mom. Dad has moved to Kentucky.
Its nice to have anyone that can come and one thing I am always happy for is another to join us. So throughout the years I have had many good friends join us also.
With that said,, I guess I better get to bed. Tomorrow I will go to work, bath Jewelee and shave her belly in preparation for her litter (due Dec 5th) and then come home and get to work on all the fixin's for Thursday.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Farrah's kitties

Farrah is our resident feral cat. She is a torti colored cat with long hair and a nick out of one of her ears.

I watch her daily hunting the back field and in the evenings she makes her way to my house for her bowl of water and supply of cat food that I provide for her. In the last month or so I have built a bond with her that has now led me to be able to pet her and I picked her up twice now. She is still very nervous about it, but allows me.

Last week she followed me into the kennel to get her food. She marched right in and followed me around till I had her food then she followed me back outside.

It is my hope to be able to catch her and get her spayed and perhaps give her a part time home in the kennel this winter. It gets so cold that I am afraid she will freeze so if I can't bring her in then I will rig up some shelter for her with a heating pad in it.

This fall Farrah got pregnant. I hadn't seen her kittens till just recently as they have grown old enough to venture to my house to get the food and water I put out. They are VERY wild and at the sight of me they race off. There are 4 of them. Two orange ones and two grey ones. Three long haired and one short. They are so very cute and fluffy. I am not sure I will ever be able to tame them.

Today, it was a nice crisp fall day and the sun was out. The kittens gathered by the trees out back and were racing around, playing and jumping and climbing the trees. I was able to get some photos of the orange fluffy one through the house windows.

They are really fun to watch. I really wish I could do more to get them spayed and neutered and I will continue to work on them. Meanwhile, I will get Farrah spayed and continue to feed her and her kittens and the other two ferals that come around.

Oh the joys of living in the country next to a dairy.. never at a loss for wild cats!

Sunday, November 23, 2008


"Butters" at 4.5 months

Most folks that know me know that I don't really care for tri-colors. Of course I love all shelties and really don't care what color they are when it comes to quality and temperament, but, for me, the tri is one of the colors that appeals to me least. So throughout the years I have owned very few. I had a nice tri years ago that I sold to Kensil's shelties. He was CH. Emeraude Take Notice, a CH. Banchory Never Say Never son. He is behind some of my dogs now.

Another tri, came as a gift. Can CH. Weathermans Christmas Spirit who has 7 pts and a major now. I have also bred to many tris, when needed.

So this last spring, a friend of mine bred to the dog I was showing last year. CH. Denian's Deuces are Wild (number 5 sheltie for 2007). The resulting litter produced a tri color boy puppy that I really fell for. Kinda different for me. When I went to meet my friend,, Barbara Ray, to look at the puppies once again, I liked his brother better though. So I asked her if she minded if I took the brother to grow out instead of the puppy I had originally fell for. Something about the head piece that reminded me so much of his sire. A look.

Anyway,, when I got the puppy home he was so chubby. He just rolled and rolled everywhere. So I started calling him the little butter ball. Both my husband and I are fans of Southpark and there is a character on there called Butters. So we both felt it was only appropriate that we call the butterball puppy,,, "Butters".

I have caught more torment over this puppy's name. It is just funny. Now that he is 7 or so months old, I could never see him as anything other then "Butters". He knows it and I love the name. Barbara Ray's kennel name is Salt City so the will be Salt City South Park.

I was really proud of him. In August I went to the Tom Coen seminar. "Butters" was a hit and came home with best profile and best muzzle from the virtues seminar. So far,, he is holding his promise and I am very excited about him. Even if he is one of those "tri-colored" dogs!


Friday, November 21, 2008

Ice Cream bowls

Ice cream has always been my personal pitfall and thanks to my dad,, a night time snack. It started when I was little and has become a habit that I found really hard to give up. Even after finding out I have a real intolerance to lactose. I just take my pills so that I don't get a stomach ache and have my ice cream.

So here is the deal. My dogs, of course, expect ice cream when I have ice cream. It mostly began when Nicky and Bo were puppies. I would get 3 small dishes and in two I would put one scoop and in the third two scoops. Off to the living room I would go and the boys would patiently wait as I put their bowls down for them and then I would sit with mine. Nicky would always eats his fast and look to see if Bo had any left. Bo being Bo, he would, and Nicky would try to help himself to his. Bo never bothered with trying to stop him and was satisfied with what he got. Then both boys would relentlessly lick the bowls all over the living room floor as they would skid with each lick. I have found bowls under much of the furniture from these snack times.

Well, since Bo went missing I haven't done the thing with each having their own bowls. Bell is a house dog now along with Boots and Nicky and Butters. The thing is with these dogs is they are all like Nicky. They eat it so fast and look to see if the others have any that they don't enjoy it. So now we do the thing with them all waiting for my bowl once I finish mine and they all try to lick it clean as fast as possible. Butters rarely gets in on the venture since Bell, Boots and Nicky are such pushy dogs.

Its funny to see them all. They know when I get my ice cream at night to watch me closely for when the last bite is left in the bowl that they will get their chance at the sweet tastes left for them to lick. Occasionally just Nicky and I will have a sit and have our own bowls without the others. I like to think that maybe Bo is there with us, in spirit, sharing that time. I sure miss you Bo.

Ice cream bowls.......

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bi blacks,, a love affair.

Top: Fiora, Middle: Sunebank Thriller, Bottom: CH. Akadia Totally Intoxicating (Stinky)

Took my Ch. Stinky into work today to have a bath. She is getting her teeth cleaned tomorrow in preparation for her specials career next year. I am particularly excited about showing her as she is one of my very favorites and she is biblack!

My favoritism for biblacks started with a love affair for Ch. Harvest Hills Shoeshine Boy back in the 80's. He was just the epitome of biblack perfection in my eyes. I remember having his picture up on the wall in the bedroom in several places and I would look at it and study it for hours,, daydreaming of the day I would have my own biblack. I was in my teens then.

One of the things that I was drawn to about Shoe was his stunning profile in head. Now, since I only saw his photos and not him, I can't be sure if it was as perfect in person as in his photos. The pictures showed lovely head planes topped off with a really strong underjaw and finish. Something about this profile,, in black, set off with the white made me stumble in awe.
Now,, years later,, I still strive for that profile. I love my biblacks and have a bit of a reputation for them. In the 80's I had bought a really nice biblack male from Sunebank shelties. His name was Sunebank Thriller and he is in just about all my pedigrees now. He came pretty close to what, in my minds eye, I viewed Shoe to be. Jack's head was so smooth, clean, lean and displayed the incredible finish.

Currently my goal has been to get the soft expression of the other colors to come through on the biblacks. I think that is a hard-to-get virtue in black. I have a puppy now,, by Ch. Macdega Notorious that I see coming close to that goal. Her name is Mistybrooks Fiora.

Well,, here's to the future of these little black dogs. Its going to be an exciting year with Ch. Stinky I hope.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Grady's wish

Part of owning and breeding shelties is the great enrichment that we get from the folks that own the dogs we breed. Time and time again I get wonderful letters telling stories of the little dogs that I have placed. I can never get enough of that. I just love hearing about them.

Years ago, I worked with a gal that was to later become my best friend. Nancy and I spent a great deal of time together and I have always felt that we had incredible kinship of souls. She had started out in dogs by getting a dog to raise to be a guide dog. This golden retriever, Santana, was the light of Nancy's life and when she flunked out of guide dog school and was offered back to Nancy, she jumped at the chance.

Along the way to getting to know Nancy, I had this adorable blue sheltie named Grady. Grady wasn't as happy with me as he always seemed to be with Nancy and since he wasn't big enough to show, I hoped by letting him stay with her for a while that he would win her over. It worked. Hook, line and sinker!!

Nancy has since moved away,, to Portland to work (ironically) at the Guide dogs for the Blind. She has kept Grady all these years. He is over 12 now and has put her through some real ups and downs. Recently though,, Grady was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his mouth. He went through surgery to remove it and is doing so well. Worried for Grady, Nancy took him to an animal communicator who told her some things about him that she had wondered about. One of the things mentioned was that before he transitions that he wants to chase sheep.

Ok,, well, today I get home to an email titled "Grady's wish". My heart dropped,, all I could think was "oh no". So I reluctantly open the email to a beautiful photo of "G",, and his wish. The sheep. Geez....... I don't know why I thought it would be a bad thing. It did make me swell up with tears though.

It's just beautiful!. Thank you Nancy for being so much to Grady and being so much to me in fulfilling every wish, want or need for him. What else could I ever hope for in a person that would own of my shelties. Thanks for being my friend.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Show News

Today at the Shetland Sheepdog Club of North Alabama, Akadia Killians Irish Red was Reserve Winners dog under judge Wendy Mount.

"Brew" is owned by Nanette Johnson and co-owned and bred by Akadia. Sired by Ch. Sunebank Caerleon Just Right ex BIS Ch. Iona I Can Shine.

Congrats to Nanette and Brew. He has 11 pts, 1 major (I think) at just over 1 yr of age.

"Brew's" dam, BIS CH. Iona I Can Shine is pregnant now with a litter sired by CH. Akadia Just Priceless

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Taking moments

Yesterday after work I headed to do some errands. At the end of the errands I remembered that my sister, Pearl, had told me about all of the kittens she is fostering and that if I wanted to come by and see them that I could. So I decided to.

I got to Pearl's house and it was evident that she wasn't home so I headed in anyway to see. I entered through the garage and apon coming in I saw a few kittens on the step. I closed the door behind me and made a few steps across the room toward a crate on the floor. All of a sudden out of this crate came one after another of these little siamese mixed kittens. Each one would step out,, stretch, yawn and then come right over to me till I had 5 little ones at my feet all looking up at me. Blue eyes a blinking. I said to them "Hi guys,, are you the welcome committee?".

Then I heard noises. My sister has shelves that run the length of the ceiling in her garage that are connected to a work bench below. She has boxes up on those shelves. So up pops all of these multi-colored faces of kittens,, again, one by one each they made their way out of the boxes in the shelves down the work bench and right up to me. By now,, I am just smiling. All in all, I think there was about 17 kittens all at my feet staring up at me. All different ages, colors and personalities but all extremely friendly and happy to see me. I picked each one up and snuggled it and pressed them to my face to get the feel of their fur.

I decided that I would just sit down on the steps leading into her house and watch these babies. They were so fun. They would race across the room and chase toys that were there, attack each other, pounce, leap, and wrestle. All like they were giving me a personal show for my visit. I ended up with one on my lap patting at one in my armpit. One under my coat and one on the outside of my coat attacking the one on the inside, and then rotating ones on my lap for short visits of loving and pets.

I spent about an hour with them and with a huge smile on my face. All so well socialized and loving,, I was so impressed.
That hour did more for my psych then anything has in some time. I left there feeling so good. Taking a moment for myself to enjoy those babies and their show. Aw,, it was delightful.

Pearl took some to the adoption drive today. Not sure if any were adopted but whoever ends up with one of these babies will be a lucky person.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Show News

Happy to report that the CH. Akadia Just Priceless daughter,, HiValley the Price Is Right was WB and BOW at the Alabama specialty today for a 4 pt major. Judge was Jan Haderlie. "Plinko" is proudly owned by Carol Howell.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Mona,, or Monicity, is my little gray kitty. She is about the weirdest little animal I have. I can't quite figure her out. One minute she is all lovey dovey and the next,, nonchalant and uninterested. She has never endeared herself to anyone until recently. She has become my computer kitty. She sits on the chair next to me all the while I am in the computer room. Every once in a while she will get up and paw my side or get on my lap but never for long. She hates to be held, hugged or carried anywhere and will scream the most pitiful meow.

She's kind of an ungrateful thing. I found her and her littermates (Russ is one of them) living in the goat pen. Her mother, a feral, had be ran over on the road. The kittens were so cold and dehydrated when I found them that they laid limp in your hand. Out of the 4 we saved 3 and I kept 2. So you see,,, Mona should be the most grateful kitty ever,, but she isn't. Cat rules of life I guess,, never show your servants that you need them...

Ungrateful little shit. I love her.