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.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The BEST dog in the whole world

Ok,, I have to explain that cute blue puppy on the top of the page. That is my "Nicky", also known as "Super Man", and "the best dog in the whole world".

Nicky is about the most precious thing to me in my life. He is my very best friend.
One thing about him is that he never lets me down. He knows me and my attitudes and always comes and makes sure that I'm ok. He sits at the back door while I am gone to shows, making me sad, but taking him to shows is impossible.
As much as I love Nicky, I realize that he has some personality quirks not so enduring to others like they are to me. For one,, he doesn't like new people,, particularly loud people and he will growl and make a lot of ruckus about them.
The other thing is that Nicky doesn't like crates. I can't crate him to travel or he barks non stop till I let him out. At home, he is not crated except at night or if I leave but not at all when I am home or he will bark and bark and not stop. He also has to sleep in my room.
When he was a puppy I tried to put him and his brother in the guest bedroom right across the hall from my bedroom. Nicky would carry on for hours till I brought his crate to my room. Before long, both boys where in my room permanently. He has separation issues, probley. I don't know.
The one thing I do know is that I love Nicky for just what he is. I don't show him,, because I could never stand criticism of him. I never glued his ears because I hated how it made him look and I just don't mess with much about him. It doesn't matter. He is loved so much just the way he is.
Nicky was a bottle raised baby. I fed him every 2 hours and took him everywhere with his little rice bag all heated up. Even though it was hard some nights when I didn't think he would make it,, I kept going because something about this little light made me so happy. Maybe midlife crisis for a childless lady?? I don't know. I just loved him and he was just a source of joy for me.
I named him Akadia Resonating Light because he is a constant light for me in my life.
Its funny, but every time I have had a very special dog get to old age, the good Lord has placed a new one there to help me. When April passed, I had Kizzy,, when Kizzy passed, I had Nicky. I can't imagine there ever being anther to make the day Nicky passes easier. Maybe at that point,,,,,, I will get out of dogs.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Weird day

Today was my birthday and it was weird. Overall,, it was really quite a good day but for some reason,, I felt as though I was watching it from the outside looking in.
Do you ever have days like that? Its like I was watching my own life from a different perspective. Not "really",, I am not totally crazy, but its a sort of sensation a person gets.

I have to say that it was such a nice day, in that I felt a lot of love from the folks I hold dear. As we get older we realize that gifts aren't the important part as much as acknowledgement. I felt really acknowledged today and I so thank my family and friends for that. I did get some neat things too. One of which I am wearing now. A kewl night gown with pink elephants on it. Nice! I also scored a giant bottle of pickles. My favorite!
Now I sit here and it just seemed so surreal.
My poor old dog Hailey, who will be 15 in two months, is having a hard day. She could hardly stand tonight. I syringed some water to her and petted her for a long time. After that she felt better and walked all about and went to the water bucket and drank a bunch. I think she needed her own acknowledgement, to be honest. She really perked up after that. I know that in the hustle and bustle of things that I don't spend a lot of time with her,, actually hardly any time, since she sleeps so much. As I was standing there thinking about her tonight. I could see how she was just feeling so down. I spent 10 minutes telling her how much she meant to me and syringing her water through an AI tube (all you dog breeders out there know), I petted her head like I haven't done in a long time. She gave me such a look of thanks and then it was like she was brand new.
I think animals and humans alike just need acknowledgement sometimes to make it over a hill in life. I know I certainly do,, and Hailey sure did. From now on,, I hope to help acknowledge the folks around me more.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I love fall! I got up this morning and looked outside from the bedroom window and there it was... gloomy and grey. I can't help it though,, I like it. Something about a fall day that sets my heart to ease and makes me just slow down. To me,, it is a bit of reverence that comes with seeing everything go into the dormant stage, knowing that it will renew once again in the spring. I love the colors of fall,, all orange, red and yellow. Its the time of year that I find myself outside more,, perhaps because it isn't hot and it isn't too cold yet. In the hustle and bustle of life where everyone is go, go, go,, fall seems to make you calm down, slow down and perhaps through a bit of depression,, appreciate.
I love how furry every animal gets. The horses get rich with color when the winter coats come in and even the cows get cleaner looking and their colors come out. Speaking of cows. The neighbor filled the back field up with his this weekend. Boy was that a hay day for my dogs. They barked till they were hoarse and then barked more. The cows would come right up to the back fence and just stand there.. Dogs barking and bouncing against the fence like crazy. The cows didn't care.
There were some neat ones in the bunch.. Speckley and spotty ones that looked as though they might have texas longhorn in them. They were my favorite. There were some boring ones too, but even as drawn as my dogs were to them,, I have to admit that I spent a good amount of time just watching them eat and mosey around. They are gone now,, back to watching for the eagles, and ferrel cats again.
Side note: This photo I took 2 years ago up by Heise Hot springs, ID. This is looking down at the snake river from the highway.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Even though

Even though the title is Akadia shelties,, I probley should have titled it Shelties and CATS!.

We do love our cats,, all 6 of them and the interaction we have with them is next to what you might view as parent and child.

Each one has such a unique personality. Today it was a funny day with Russ tribbling (thats what I call the little stuttered meow that cats do) to Derek. Derek had walked into the kitchen to find Russ on the counter (oh,,ya,, big deal!). Russ looked at him,, Derek looks back and says "RUSS!",, Russ looks back and kindly tribbles a reply. He didn't move,, mind you. Just tribbled. Then in a look of defeat Derek put his arms up in the air and said "RUSS!" again. Still no movement,, just a light little cute tribble from Russy. Then slowly,, he sauntered off the counter to the floor where he marched up to Derek and rubbed on his leg. "Your no threat Derek".. hee hee.


Ok,, so I keep reading other folks blogs and thinking that I should take the plunge and join in. I am not sure how often I will post,, although I might be surprised since it is winter and there isn't much else to do.
It is nice to think that there is a place to set into print some of my crazy thoughts for others to view and confirm my slanted grasp on life..