a second look, dogs, finding my way, grief, healing, life goes on, loneliness, memories, perseverance, pets, photography, simple things, solitude

It’s not about the bees…

It’s not about the flowers either.  It’s about the dogs.  About how living alone, but with dogs, isn’t really living alone alone at all.  You talk to them, or I did anyhow.  And because of them you go out for a walk and find things like a cactus covered in gorgeous white flowers.  And you wonder how it is that you only just noticed them now that you are interested in photography, because you also walked the same route with the dogs for years before that was true.  Walking them also led to fun exchanges with people on the street, like the guy in the convertible who stopped to say, “I didn’t think you were allowed to have livestock in Spring Hill.”  He was referring to the fact that these dogs weren’t the daintiest of God’s creatures, all 250 pounds of them.  And then there’s the breathing.  They were out of the house for a month after my husband died, my son having taken them over while Charley was in the hospital.  I kept the house dark and quiet during that time.  It wasn’t a choice, I needed the solitude.  I don’t know how long that would have lasted if not for the dogs.  When I did bring them home to my quiet house I found myself listening to them breathe.  It was as if the house had come back to life, the house was breathing, and maybe I also took a breath.

I probably wasn’t trying to hold two leashes while I took these pictures with my iPhone 7+.  I used to drop the leashes and step on them if I could, but if not I’d let them go because they waited patiently for me to finish.  Nope, I wasn’t ever alone when they were part of my life.  I miss them.


cats, dogs, family, fun, lizards, perseverance, pets, photography, road trip, travel

I’ve gone to the… cats!

We always had pets when my kids were growing up.  The most at one time was three cats and two dogs.  (I think my mother thought we were nuts.)  I can’t remember where the parakeet and/or the Siberian hamster fit into the animal timeline.  So it shouldn’t surprise me that my daughter’s household is teeming with pets.

Like Scooter, shown above.  He keeps a low profile and you would hardly know he is there.  But very lovable.  He and Lucy, are a bit of a matched set, wouldn’t you say?  She it a mini-Labradoodle, and very lovable.  She even slept with me last night.  Maybe she was just being a good watchdog and keeping an eye on me.9-23lovelyLucyAnd then there is Georgie, who, despite the fact that he only has his two lower fangs, and he was de-clawed (except for one claw) when they rescued him, is quite the hunter.  He loves to toy with his catches also, which he brings home regularly.  I’d  hate to think what he’d bring home if he had all of his equipment.9-23Georgie

But I had forgotten how much fun it can be to try to get work done on the computer with a cat like Henry around.  I had my laptop, my iPad, my old, damaged phone, and my new iPhone out on the little table while the two phones transferred data with no help from me whatsoever.  Henry tried to be helpful, or possibly not so helpful, but he didn’t seem to cause any issues either.  He is the kitty you can count on to be right in the thick of things, when he isn’t playing hide and seek in the cupboards and drawers, and needing to be extricated.  I don’t see pets in my future, especially not while I’m wandering the county, but I can visit my kids if I feel the need to pet something.  9-23helpfulHenry9-23Henryinthecabinet29-23Henryinthecabinet

My son’s menagerie includes two dogs, and two bearded dragons.  I drew the line on pets when he was little.  All pets in my house had to be furry, and even though it may have qualified I said no to the ferret also.  He’s making up for that now.

'scene' along the way, dogs, fun, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, road trip

Pups in the air…

Pups in the air is a group that puts on shows with their amazing frisbee-catching dogs. They were entertaining the crowd at the Quechee balloon festival, along with musical performers, helping to fill the 12 hour gap between balloon launches.  First up was this 11 year old border collie.  It’s amazing how focused these dogs were on their handlers.  I’m not sure they even knew the crowd was there.  All they wanted was to catch that frisbee.pupsintheair4Pupsintheair5

Must you be a black and white border collie to belong to this group?  Nope.  There was this little Jack Russel terrier too.  She was a mighty fast dog.jackrussel

This youthful black and white border collie was only one year old, but his enthusiasm and energy showed.pupsintheair6dogcatch1.jpg06_15_19dogcatch

I’ve had dogs all my life, but only one of them would focus in on you and try with all his might to figure out what it was that you wanted him to do.  That was Tag, a mutt of indeterminate breeding but a herding dog in there somewhere.  I was quite young and enjoyed teaching him to do tricks, hitch him to wagons, fun stuff for me and I think he liked it too.  The neighbors hired me to train their dog to do tricks also, but that dog was supremely uninterested in learning anything, at least from me.  Tag used to jump through the hula hoop for me but after a little of that I thought it would be more exciting if I could figure out how to make it a flaming hoop for him to jump through.  The problem was that I could never figure out how I would hold the flaming hoop for him to jump through.  I’m thinking that that was a good thing for both of us…

a second look, blessings, dogs, dragons, family, leap of faith, life goes on, live and learn, perseverance, photography, road trip


Funny but my reaction to my son moving back to Florida is to thank goodness he’s come ‘home’, even though his growing up years were in MD.  But he did live here quite a while, but when  job offer he couldn’t refuse came through just when my husband died I insisted that he take it.  I was nothing but happy for him to get recognition for his talents at work, but when the news recently came through that the pieces had fallen into place for him to come back to FL I was a very happy mom.  So far it’s my son and the dogs who are here, the rest of the family to follow when school is out.  Oh, and the bearded dragons are here too, Krunch and Kona, who are a couple.  Charley and I once spent a very entertaining few days ‘egg sitting’ for them, moving the aquarium around to better keep the eggs the right temperature, and then laughing hilariously at their antics as they hatched.  They are cute when they are little, really they are.  Mike always used to insist that whatever critter was displayed in the front window of the local pet shop was just the pet he always wanted.  My answer to that was that we had a multitude of pets at home so I didn’t feel sorry for him if I said no.  Plus I held the line at furry, I needed my pets to be furry, so the snakes and bearded dragons had to wait until he was grown.  So when his son wanted a bearded dragon my son was all for it, and he picked one out for himself too.  That they would be running a bearded dragon farm wasn’t part of the plan.  Or I don’t think it was.5-2-19homecoming15-2-19homecominggooddogs5-2-19homecomingnojumping5-2-19homecomingsquirrels

They are settling in well.  The dogs are surprising me, though there was a fence-jumping incident..  A neighbor kid came out to his pool and his own dog barked, so he told his dog to go lay down, and Mike’s dog Smokey did just that.  Flash just watched the show, but no barking.  Not at the squirrels scampering in the big oak tree overlapping the yard, and not at the voices on the other side of the fence as they did yard work.  Yes, they are settling in well.

Could it be better timing for this homecoming?  Well, yes, for I’ll be leaving soon.  Snowbird season is here.  I’ve been distracted, and thinking of all the things I have to do to get ready, but so far it’s only a mental exercise.  Today I mentioned my van/RV combo on an online RV group and the page totally blew up!  Not the right combo they insisted, the RV is too heavy for the Pacifica.  Watching the messages come in was like watching fireworks go off, and my plan blew up also.  Luckily the dealership totally stepped up to the plate, so nothing has changed except that I’ll be enjoying a cozier space than I originally thought I would.  A little disappointing I’ll admit, I really thought I’d like that Murphy bed, but I have these pillows that will look so cute in there…


blessings, coping, death, dogs, finding my way, life goes on, perseverance, photography, road trip

Facing facts…

When I was still in Florida and anticipating all the fun things I’d take pictures of when I headed north, snowy landscapes were tops on the list.  Snowier and more majestic in my mind than this is, but this is the most snow I’ve seen in years so I can’t really complain.

And when I was still in Florida I was worried about Ozzie.  He had been having elderly dog issues for a while, and when I heard that he was the last of his litter still alive I knew that his days were numbered.  But what you know in your head doesn’t always mean that your heart is ready to face facts.  He was the perfect dog to help me with all the changes in my life in the last few years.  Loveably there, but undemanding.  I really wasn’t alone, there was someone to take care of, two someones really with Zoe, but we lost her in April.  In a sense they reeled me in.  I could enjoy imagining myself having all sorts of adventures, going places, doing things, and I’d tell myself that it would be so wonderful, but I need to be home for the dogs.  And before that it was the husband, the kids, the business, and I think I patted myself on the back for taking care of them, for putting them first.  But the time had come to face facts.  Ozzie’s ability to get around got the best of him the other day, and I’m sad to say that he is no longer with me.  I hope I can find my way without him…02-12-19snowy2


dogs, finding my way, moon, nature, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, road trip, sky, technology, travel, weather

I’ve gone to the dogs…

Seriously, Ozzie has taken over my life.  He has always liked going out frequently, and I am required to accompany him outside.  Oh, I can sit in the Adirondack chair with my coffee and he’s happy, it’s not that I have to pay attention to him.  I just need to be there.  Which was okay in the Adirondack chair in FL, but out on the deck on Cape Cod when it’s 7 degrees outside isn’t quite the same.  He likes to sniff the air and make sure that all is well.  It’s his breed, English mastiff, bred not for fighting or attacking anyone, their job was to hold off intruders.  So if you approach the house he’ll look ferocious, and bark, and charge toward you until you stop.  That’s all he wants, just stand there so his human can take over. Or go away.  I have no idea what would happen if you didn’t stop, no one has ever done that before.  But on these cold clear mornings I see the moon and stars through the trees and think it would make a nice picture.  Nicer than this one though.  But my camera was there so I tried it, why not?  It was a crescent moon, and if it wasn’t so cold I’d have gotten out the tripod to make up for the long exposure in the dark.  I’ll try harder next time.  And Ozzie, well, he’s resting up until the next time he feels the need to do a security check…img_6852