Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Stills Black & White or Sepia

This reminded me of one of those really old photos where nobody smiles because they had to keep still for so long in order to get the correct exposure.

I chose this one because I really like Fred's sweet face. :-)

I just bought this plant yesterday to put into my rock garden.
Super Macro!

This flat must have at least 20 different varieties in it! I can't decide whether or not to separate it or plant it as is. So it sits on patio...

Saturday, June 25, 2011

We've Got Action!

On your mark!
Get Set...
I'm Flying!!!! Wee Hoo!!!

I love the way his shadow turned out underneath him. I only wish I could’ve been at a different angle, he really got some good “air”. If you click on the pictures you will be able to get a larger view. (You probably already knew that, I just figured that out) :-)

This may sound funny, but I just learned that my camera can shoot continuous frames. Now I need to remember what settings I used, it gets confusing. I’ve only had this camera since 2003.

 It’s like I have a new toy! How fun is that?!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Thumbs up

I Did It!

Originally I was going to post this as a "Wordless Wednesday" but as you probably know by now, I have to jabber.
 It was such a nice day yesterday, 78 and sunny, it really doesn't get much better than that. I decided to head out to the front yard and do some more weed "management" there were quite a few I missed the last time. I decided to bring my camera and Fred out to the front also. I thought I'd give him another shot at being in the front without a leash. Much to my delight, he immediately started dashing all around the yard, really fast! So I grabbed my camera and tried to get some action shots. So without further ado, here it is...
Dang! Missed him...

TADA!!! Too bad it's not all of him, but hey, at least he's in the picture.

If you look real close you can see Fred's front feet are off the ground. Note the tongue curled up too, I have no idea how he can breathe when his tongue is up on his noes like that, but I guess he manages. After about 20 or more shots of basically nothing, I went to work, all the time keeping one eye on Fred, listening to his collar jingle and talking to him so he knew I knew what he was doing. Well, naturally in my concentration "coma" I lost track of him. Well crap! The neighbors' gates were closed, he's nowhere to be found in the cul-de-sac, I couldn't here his jingling collar either. I really looked pretty shabby  wasn't dressed for a neighbor visit,  but off I went in search of Fred. Swearing under my breath and trying to sound "perky" at the same time, while I was whistling and calling for him. Anyway, the neighbor boy caught him just as he was making a beeline for someone elses back yard, new neighbors, I haven't introduced myself yet and I really didn't want to at that time. Long story short, I managed to "herd" him home, but it took a while, one of my neighbors had just arrived home and of course, Fred had to go and say hi, I smiled and finally got him home, Hrmph! That's the end of that! I am going to have to get a long leash now if I want him in the front while I do chores.

I also couldn't resist a shot of my first rose of the season. They are really late this year.
If it wasn't for the shadow, it would've been a real nice photo. Oh well, I still think it's pretty. This rose is called a Double Delight and it smells wonderful! For reasons I'll never understand, it has survived 18 years in my "care".

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Sunday Stills-The Birds And The Bees

As I was reading my moring paper I saw this little guy out of the corner of my eye.
He stops by pretty regularly to bathe and sometimes even takes a nap. I should give him a name...
He's quite a character.

He was very itchy today, there was a lot of scratching going on. When all of the sudden out of nowhere...Zooom!

This obnoxious bird buzzed him, out of the blue (on the left side there). The squirel didn't know what hit him, he was confused.
What the heck was that?
Hey! Quit that!

Where'd it go? What's happening??

Now cut that out!! What is the matter with you???!!

I am actually a bit proud of this photo, my first real action shot that "kind of" turned out OK. :-)

Back to the bath...
Sheesh! I need a nap.

And just like that, it was over.

This activity actually went on for quite some time even before I managed to grab my camera, there must have been some baby birds nearby, unfortunately I don't know where they were.

Oh Great! Look what the cat dragged home! Thanks Buddy!  Ugh...

That is my interpretation of this weeks Sunday Stills Challenge "The Birds and The Bees"

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Another Day at The Dog Park

I received and invitation in my in box announcing a new outdoor meet-up at a park that Fred and I had never been to. I decided to take Fred to the new dog park before the "event". I thought maybe, if I show him the park, let him get to know the sights and smells before we actually attend the organized meet-up, he would be a bit more comfortable. Fred had a difficult time at the last meet-up we attended. Click here for the post on that one. All good intentions, and he was great! There were all sorts of dogs running around, Huge dogs, little itty bitty dogs, a little butt sniff here a little butt sniff there, great, no big deal. It's actually really nice, there is a big area to walk on that is shaped like a big curvy oval with trees and benches, the walking path has gravel on it so it's not very muddy, and the inner part is grass where people can play Frisbee and fetch with their dogs. It probably takes about 45 minute or so to walk the whole track, which we did and a little more.

So, a couple of days ago we went to the "organized" event  for small dogs of all types, not just Boston’s like the last time. This was the group that had the indoor meet-up with all the barkers, (referring to the previous post again).
We pulled up and parked, and Fred was beside himself he was so excited, I had high hopes this time.
This is Fred being "beside himself"

There was an area fenced off just for small dogs, it's not very big, but it's fine.  Anyhoo...we walked into the enclosure, camera around my neck, with great confidence once again. I'm smiling and really hoping Fred could make friends and play, and I look down and Fred, and once again...he's drooling profusely, all foamy and stringing off his lips. YUCK!
What am I supposed to do Mama?

I didn't bring anything to wipe his face with, it was pretty gross. People started giving us a very wide berth, actually they looked terrified.
Anxious folks, check out the guy in the white... he's concerned. Freddy had thoughts of saying hi to them but decided against it.

I'm apologizing, trying to calm the masses, some people actually scooped their little dogs up into their arms.  I continue wandering about, smiling (trying anyway) acting like everythings just fine, I made a feeble attempt to throw a stick for Fred and he just stared at me with his drooling face, he actually looked like a walrus. At this point, I'm humiliated and embarrassed.

Then, this one nice lady came over to me and we chatted a bit about Fred and his "situation", and she shared with me a dental appointment that she had been to a while back. She had said that the dentist noticed that she, herself, had quite healthy salivary glands (there was a little more detail, but you get the gist of it). I'm sure that somewhere in there she was trying to make me feel better about my slobbering dog, bless her heart, but I was having a hard time engaging myself in this particular conversation. I waited for an awkward pause, and excused myself. 
I took Fred out of the enclosure, wiped off his face with my jacket and we walked on the big path for a while. Immediately he was fine just walking with me, no leash, sniffing around, reading the paper, the usual. 
On the outside, looking in. No drool.

So after a little while, I decided to go back into the enclosure to give it another shot. Right away, he started acting strange again. Out of sorts is the best way I can explain it, not wanting to really engage himself.
Note, guy in white coat, still concerned...
Hi, I'm Fred
He made a few feeble attempts to say hi to one little dog, but was rejected, he just stood there looking forlorn and lost in a way. 
Poor guy
Not too long after that, I called it quits.  Fred was glad to get out of there.
"Put the camera down and drive for cripes sake!"
"Boy, I'm glad that's over with! Take me home."

I'm not sure if I want to go to an organized meet-up anymore. The parks that we go to aren't really that close and Fred obviously hates it. I think I may have lost the window for Fred to be able to socialize in situations like that, I think maybe he's just a one on one type of a dog. Or maybe he just didn't like the enclosed area, it really wasn't that small, who knows. At least he didn't try to pee on anyone this time, I think that would've put the guy in the white shirt over the edge.
We will still go out and about to the parks and things. I guess my hopes of connecting with other dog people in that type of an organized situation are dashed. That's OK too.

It's just me and you Freddy!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday Stills

This one's for you Val. I hope you're back in the saddle soon!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Awwww Jeeez Fred....Really?

That's what I said at 2:00 AM yesterday.
Saturday was just a fantastic day. My dear sister came over and mowed my lawn, I washed a couple windows. Did some serious weed control (war) in the grass. Inventoried my poor waterlogged plants around the yard. The weathers been pretty tough on them, but it looks like everything has survived.

This is a Golden Chain. I planted it 18 years ago, somehow in spite of me, it lives. I think it would look great in front of a babbling brook or something.

When I am out in the front yard, I like to let Fred outside with me, no leash. He loves it, lots of smelling and "marking" to be done. I read somewhere that when a dog is sniffing around, it's like reading a newspaper to us. Well, he had a lot of reading to do. Fred seems to prefer to only mark on his right side, so there is much sniffing and twirling involved. I can hear his little mind saying to himself as he laboriously takes care of business. "Leg lift, mine, leg lift, mine, mine, mine, mine...", and so on. He sticks by me pretty good, remarking his spots and harrasing the GINORMOUS black lab next to the chain link fence. ( I hate to think what that Lab might do if he ever got a hold of Fred).

 In my neighborhood, the yards are pretty close together and nicely kept up, and I don't want him to drop a turd in someone else's yard, he's really pretty good about it. (Good dog Fred!)
Well it was time for Sis to go. Oh, before I forget to mention, Fred adores my sister. He gets quite excited when she comes to visit. Fred had to stay with her for a few days last summer and had a blast. Well, we were chatting and trying to remember what we forgot she wanted take with her, there's always something. At some point Fred realized we weren't paying attention and decided to sneak into the back yard of the next door neighbor. Fred does have bull terrier in his breed and at times it "shines" through, he can be very stubborn and he can selectively ignore me, he hears me, he just gets busy "reading the paper",  I know he won't run away, no need to, I worry more about someone taking him. This was not the case, the neighbors yard was fenced in also. Usually when we're out front and he starts to wander, I call him and offer a good goodie, that's what I call the dog treats, and he comes running back really fast  ZOOOOM, and he gets a treat. This is a first for him to go into someones back yard, and I just caught a glimpse of his butt as he went through the nieghbors gate (it's never open). Apparently there was a lot of "news" back there. I started asking firmly for Fred to come...nothing, not even a head turn. It's hot and I'm not in the mood. No good goodies for Fred. Anyway, after much "reading" and marking and twirling, I finally herded him out of the yard, and he ran towards the house and popped up immediately into my sisters lap as she was sitting in her truck. He was so "cute", he knew I was not real happy with him, and I think he thought Sis would protect him, no such luck, Sis left and I took him and put him in the back yard and went back out in front to finish what I was doing. I realize now that we have some serious "coming when called" training to do.
No front yard reading for you mister!

Aside from that it was a really good and productive day. I was tired, but it was a "good" tired.
Fred and I went to bed at about 11:00. It's no secret, Fred sleeps in the bed, under the covers, with me. We do not touch, he has his side, I have mine and he knows it, we have an agreement and he's small enough. I know some people are cringing right now, but I like it, it's comforting for me to hear his breathing and snoring and I clean my sheets regularly. I also like to have a window open and the ceiling fan on, it's too chilly for him.
I'm sorry these are blurry, I captured them with my phone first thing in the morning. He's such a snuggler!
"I don't want to get up yet Momma, it's cold out there."

Suddenly, I was awakened by a very weird sound coming from Fred, not the usual snoring, this was different, a gag of sorts. Awwww Jeeez Fred! He threw up, under the covers, in the bed. Well crap, I was in serious sleep mode, and suddenly, I'm up, and Fred's scrambling to get out from underneath the covers. He felt bad for "soiling the den" and immediatly jumped to the floor. I asses the situation, pull off the sheets, he also got some on one pillow, off that went. Downstairs we went. Took Fred out, made my bed somewhat comfortable to sleep in. Let Fred in and went back to bed. Somehow I was able to settle down and get back to sleep, kind of, but Fred wasn't invited, so every so often I would hear a pathetic whine come out of him, he wanted in, not tonight. That went on for the rest of the night (the whining).
Fred rarely tosses his cookies and I was concerned, but yesterday he was fine, no problems. I am pretty sure he ate a peice of grass that didn't settle well.
Well, gotta go, the widows aren't going to wash themselves...ugh.
Sorry this is so long, but I'm sure you have realized by now, that's how I "roll" :-)