Sunday, September 30, 2012

"Rude" awaking

What better way is there to wake up on a lazy Sunday morning than taking the full brunt of an exuberant early morning snuggle from Casey?  Besides, waiting about an hour for grandson Ezra and daughter-in-law Ernie to stir was plenty...and all our big kid needed to jumpstart the day.

We try to warn guests to close the door if they plan to sleep in, but family, fair game on sleepovers, always know what's coming - 55-lb Border Collie love bombs for wakeup calls.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Peace in his time

During an early, oh-dark-thirty start to this day, Casey rose like a trooper to keep me company. And this picture of total tranquility is obviously a keeper. I almost hate to get up to refill my coffee mug.

Last call

When it's time to hit the sack Casey doesn't waste anytime letting us know that he wants outside just one more time before turning in. And early or late, the kid is in for the night, with an iron bladder to be proud of.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Weekend guests

Friends from eastern Washington's Wenatchee Valley ended up spending the weekend with us to escape hazardous air due to thick smoke from wild fires, burning out of control now for weeks.

Visits from Peggy and Gerry certainly aren't new, but this time Casey and Stella shared their home sweet home with our guests' 4-year-old Irish Setter, Devon, and 1 1/2-year old Cairn Terrier, Lizabeth. While Stella coped the only way she knew how, taking refuge under our bed for two days. Casey on the other hand spent the whole time just trying to fit in.

Peggy on Whatcom Falls trail with the pack
Luckily there was no dominance issues, with Casey seemingly in awe all weekend with each dog's constant state of overdrive, until our friends drove out of sight.

And Stella, well, she knows all about staying out of sight for as long as it takes. 

Just how exhausting can it be anyway, trying to fit in or hunker down all weekend? Maybe the rehab going on above will give you an idea.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

A watched vine...

Finally! A day or two before fall and the tomatoes are bursting out all over. Our master gardener is almost giddy.

We were almost despondent though. Well, at least Victoria's was, Casey didn't seem to care. It seemed for a few weeks that we were going to have a repeat of last year's mediocre to piddling crop.

This year's bounty seems almost nuclear in size and number. But these big beefs are organic, really.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

New favorite weekend photo...and plush toy

Casey with a stuffed, plush beluga whale, found in the back of a closet, that's been successful at evading kids and pets for over 30 years.


Monday, September 17, 2012

Glimpses of fall

Summer is starting to resemble a distant memory from the looks of a Fairhaven leg of an interurban trail, strewn with its first layer of autumn color and filtered light.

Today's trailhead scenery rivaled some of the backroads of Maryland, near Boonsboro and the Appalachian Trail, that we were lucky enough to visit a few times before moving back home - to God's country.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Time out for a toss

This guy is so ready for a toss. He knows we've got an hour or so of good sunlight left and won't let up - and he couldn't care less if you're in the middle of watching the Notre Dame/Michigan State football game and the Irish are on the verge of going 3 and 0 for the first time in a decade. 

Casey, like most Border Collies, has set his priorities. Besides, he knows that halftime is coming up.


So, can you tell that Casey knows that Joe, son number one, is a dog person? 

Like today, there's wearing emotions on your sleeve, and then there's just plain gaga.

Any time our oldest stops by it just makes Case's day, letting out some joyful noise when he sees his car pull up outside. Now if Joe's also willing to give him a rubdown, his emotions go into uninhibited overdrive.

But isn't this a bit much?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Full stop, four-point affection

Casey's not going to be denied if he's set on being affectionate. And if the object of his affection is in a prone position trying to take a nap, so much the better.

It's nothing for him to execute a four-point landing on a couple of inches of leftover couch space if he wants a hug - all 55+ pounds of him ending up in Vic's arms this afternoon.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Check out Jim Page's set closing number at the Tumbleweed Music Festival on Labor Day weekend. Except for a jiggly camera at the opening and briefly near the end, you'll thoroughly enjoy this 2012 revision of a Guthrie standard by our favorite Seattle troubadour. And it seems appropriate for 9/11 too.

Monday rehab

By the end of the day, or at least every other Monday when the grandkids stop by after school, this is a common sight by nighttime. Casey and Stella have been on the move all day. Can't you tell? 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Sun dance

If there is any chance at all for solar stimulation in the sun room, Stella's there, taking full advantage of any shortlived UV glint between showers. And the only thing missing from these nap contortions is a dance pole for kitties.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Friday, September 7, 2012

Airing it out

What a great couple of days the kid had last weekend, basically having free run of an apple orchard. How many opportunities does a townie collie get to let loose and go full-throttle? Casey really took advantage of it last weekend in Wenatchee. 

And when his free-rein outing was over the only thing left to do was check his bod for fleas and ticks, more of a problem east of the mountains than in Bellingham, according to our hosts Peggy and Gerry. Once when their wonderful Irish Setter Devin took off for a day he was covered with ticks and it took a few days to clear them up.

Somehow today Casey got the all clear, passing Vic's nook and cranny inspection with flying colors.

Peace dog and political junkie

I'm sure Casey wasn't the first to get an eyeful of our Veterans For Peace friends' Prius bumper sticker peace gallery last Saturday. Peggy and Gerry proudly and bravely display their anti-war politics all around town - and the town is very, very conservative Wenatchee, Washington.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Morning orchard stroll

Just a quick look back to see where I was on a walk through an apple orchard in Eastern Washington. Besides goldens and red delicious, our friends Peggy and Gerry have been growing cherries, pears, you name it, for over 20 years, and we spent most of last weekend with them in Wenatchee and Richland, Washington.