Friday, March 30, 2012

Mumbling Mona (video)

I think I've told you all that Bella's a bit on the vocal side, yes? (Yes, Leslie, many times already, thanks.) Ah yes, well, here's a little demo of her voicing her opinion.

Tell me she doesn't sound like she's trying to say something important here. Like "Get that camera out of my face already", maybe?

Happy Friday, all!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Sunday, March 25, 2012

A good dog

Thanks for accompanying me on this journey back in time. As our "14 Years in 14 Days" series comes to a close, I realize I still have a million stories to tell about my handsome boy, Beau. But I've had fun reminiscing with you. Maybe we'll do it again sometime. In the meantime, here's a few last words...

As I've mentioned previously, Beau kept me busy in the health department. Starting with ACL surgery before he was 2, he was in the vet's office so often, most of the staff knew me by my voice alone over the phone and absolutely all adored Beau for his good nature and gentle demeanor even when he wasn't feeling his best.

Things started to get more serious though, when he had his first grand mal seizure in 1996 shortly after I moved to New Hampshire.

Seizures are a great leveler. My big, bold boy who always stood ready to protect his family suddenly became a needful pup again writhing helplessly in my arms. But we were lucky and his epilepsy was mild. While the seizures were not, they only happened once every 3 months for most of his life and we opted not to put him on medication.

He finally went on phenobarbital when he was 10 and the seizures had started to cluster. It worked like a charm. After a short period of adjustment and ataxia, he never had another seizure in all his remaining days.

We had a cancer scare around the same time which was removed and found to be malignant but non-metastatic (non-spreading). We had frantic rides to emergency clinics due to bee stings and "broken" tails. And there were certainly plenty of bloody noses, abscesses, ear infections and upset tummies. Beau even "lost his marbles" once (canine vestibular disease), which proved harmless and actually somewhat entertaining as he stumbled around looking for all the world like a drunken sailor.

The biggest scare he gave us, however, and one that comes with a story about the magnificent empathy of dogs, is when he developed pneumonia from the laryngeal paralysis we didn't know he had.

One morning while I was working from home, Beau began having trouble breathing and started spewing up a white foamy liquid. I called the vet and then Jan who rushed home to help bring Beau in for an emergency appointment where we were given 3 devastating options: take Beau home and watch him die slowly over the next few hours, allow them to put him down right then and there in the office, or try to get him to Tufts Emergency Animal Hospital 30 minutes away and see if they could do anything for him. We opted for a white-knuckled ride down Rte. 495 and through some sleepy New England towns to Tufts.

When we arrived, we witnessed an amazing scene as technicians and orderlies moved our now 95-pound dog from the back of my car onto an awaiting gurney and rushed him in to the facility complete with crashing doors and doctors shouting orders. I could only stand in the middle of the waiting room watching Beau watch me as they wheeled him away.

When the doors slammed shut behind him, I finally lost it.

There in the middle of a waiting room full of clients, staff and pets, I buried my head in my arms and fell apart crying right there in front of everybody. It only took a moment for me to realize I was making everyone uncomfortable as they began to study the floor and shuffle their feet or rummage through their bags. I took a seat in the corner hoping to make less of a spectacle of myself.

As I sat there sniffling, the most extraordinary thing happened: the biggest Rottweiler I have ever seen (at 160+ lbs, he was both big and overweight) did something none of the humans in the room found themselves able to do, he acknowledged my grief.

Obviously not feeling well himself, he slowly stood and crossed the room to come stand in front of me. And then he gently laid his head on my lap.

I laid my head on his, stroking his ears and we remained like that for several minutes. I don't know if the room really did fall into a hush but my little corner of the world did. I will forever remain in awe of Moose, a stranger's dog who offered me comfort in one of my darkest hours.

Beau came back home to us 8 days later after life-saving surgery and was with us for just over another year. We helped him cross over to The Bridge on May 18th, 2008. After a traumatic morning, he passed quietly in my arms in his favorite spot on the front lawn over-looking all his domain. He lived a long and wonderful life immersed in love and was a joy to all who knew him. He will be ever missed.

A dog's time with us is all too short.

Beau taught me, in both his life and death, to pay attention, to see and remember life as it spins too quickly by. To appreciate those who are with you now and recall fondly those who are no longer. To take lots of pictures, give innumerable hugs, to play with your dog and never give up on the ones you love.

Beau was a good dog.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Saturday's Dog: And the wins just keep on coming...

So I've hit a bit of a slump in scheduling photo sessions of dogs to feature here on our "Saturday's Dog" section. Lucky for me, though, the dogs we've featured previously here have been batting 1000!

Today I'm excited to tell you about 2 long-term shelter/rescue dogs who finally went home to be with their very own forever families. Let's here it for Missy, who spent a year in foster care with North East All Retriever Rescue and Ed, who spent almost as long at the Buddy Dog Humane Society shelter.


Please join me in wishing them lots of hugs and snuggles with the new families.

PS - I'm trying to coordinate some time with another rescue/shelter since the one I was originally working with seems to have their own photographer doing photo sessions now. It may be quiet or just not as personal here on Saturdays for a few weeks but I promise, as soon as I have a new place to go, I'm going to head over there, get some pictures of some awesome dogs and share them here with everybody to help them find their own forever homes.

Thanks for all the tweets and shares about all these guys. It makes a difference.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Not quite perfect

In an effort to make Bella feel better about herself, since she is, of course, the star of this show and riddled with a ridiculous lack of self-confidence, I thought I should follow up my Opposites distract list of Beau and Bella comparisons with a few wherein Bella actually comes out on top. For example:

The shedding situation:
I don't shed. I 'accessorize'.
Labrador Retrievers shed. A lot. And always. (Don't let anyone kid you with that "twice a year coat blow" thing - it's not semi-annual, it's eternal.) Their outer coat is stiff like little sewing needles that weave their way into any penetrable fabric. Their undercoat is soft and fluffy. It accumulates like tumbleweeds in various corners of a home, yard, garden, vehicle and neighboring town. Beau is responsible for the early demise of more than one vacuum cleaner.

Bella doesn't quite win this one outright but she definitely scores higher marks. She sheds less, has far less undercoat and her top coat is somewhat shorter and therefore less likely to get stuck in things. That said, while Bella "appears" black, her fur is only black-tipped and is brown underneath so what shedding she does do shows up on everything you wear whether it's light or dark.

The drool experience:
Bella will drool on occassion if we're having something especially enticing for dinner. But it's a very thin and watery drool that leaves just a little puddle of drops where she's been waiting while we eat.

Beau had shoe-lace drool. As well as watery drool. Oceans of it. Think "Turner and Hooch" drool. I never left home without a towel.

The lap-dog phenomenon:
Leslie, Beau and Frodo
Most of us get a kick out of big dogs who think they're lap dogs but honestly, 115-pounds of bone-crushing, nerve-damaging dog leveled directly on your legs can become a bit of a nuisance. To be fair, once he realized he was too big to fit in my lap, Beau at least conceded to only needing to have part of him on me at any given time.

Bella has no interest in sitting in my lap. (Heck, she has only minimal interest in sitting on the couch with me and I'm pretty sure whether I'm there or not doesn't really factor into her decision.) But at just 55+ pounds, would it really be an issue if she did? She has recently shown interest, however, in lap-dogging during such "scary" events as windy days. I don't know, should I be worried?

The velcro-dog thing:
We seldom trip over Bella in the kitchen because she patiently waits in her place on the steps while we cook.

Beau had to be right next to me - always, even when cooking. He was tripped over often. And he was unspeakably lucky given my reputation with knives.

More ME, please!
Bella gives kisses, Beau did not (well, in 14 years, I think I got 3). Of course, given Bella's penchant for eating things like slugs and other unmentionables, I'm honestly not sure which one wins this contest.

Oh who am I kidding - I LOVE getting kisses! :)

And then there's this:
Beau's command list:
Sit, stay, drop it, get him (Translation: "Go get the cat out of the garbage, please.")

Bella's command list:
Sit, stay, down, wait, off, up, hug, snugs, peek-a-boo, leave it, drop it (sometimes), trade, come, front, foot, other foot, both, one foot*, two feet*, jump, speak, quiet, touch, say hi, show me, bring it (sort of), look, go to mat, finish, tunnel, kisses, high five, there (Translation: "I want you to go sit there"), to me, in, finish your dinner... And she trims her own nails.

'Nuff said?

As has been noted with the many stories shared in the previous comments by folks who have had similarly dissimilar dogs in their lives, love is a funny and wonderful thing that comes in all shapes and sizes. And I'm honored to have been given the opportunity to share mine with so many wonderful animals - these two crazy kids not least among them.

* These are related to touching an object such as a tip-py board and teeter-totter.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Wordless Wednesday 32 - Beau and Frodo, BFFs (video)

This video was taken in 1995 so it's not exactly HD quality. But it is cute. And I promise, this one won't make you cry. :)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Opposites distract

When we got Bella, we knew we wanted a dog that wouldn't be a constant reminder of Beau. It wouldn't be fair to any dog we brought into the house for us to have expectations of behavior based on appearance and breed stereotypes. So to help in that endeavor, instead of an extra-large, yellow male Lab, we chose a (supposed to be) medium-sized, black mixed-breed female.

We were perhaps a bit naive to think our assumptions for her character wouldn't still be colored by our life with Beau or that we wouldn't make comparisons between the two dogs regardless of how different we wanted them to be. And oh, they are different. Allow me to offer some highlights:



Mellow couch potato, not your typical Lab. Enough energy to keep up with you but not so much as to wear you down. Boundless energy. If Bella's energy had a breed, I'd suggest Border Collie and Basenji with a side of Jack Russell.
Protects wildlife. (See baby bunny story.) Gentle and trustworthy with cats and children. Would eat wildlife if she could catch it and someday will manage to climb a tree in her efforts to catch marauding squirrels. (Let's not talk about cats or children...)
Obedient but not much of a 'thinker'. Upon finding himself tangled with his leash among the trees, Beau would sit down and wait patiently for us to come get him out.Obedience is not her forte but Bella could rival Decartes in the 'I think' arena. She can untangle herself from the most complicated web of long-leads and shrubbery while solving the mysteries of the cosmos and be home in time for dinner.
The strong, silent type. When Beau growled, you knew something was very, very wrong.Bella never. shuts. up. She whines, she whimpers, she mumbles, she moans. And oh yes, she barks. She has an opinion about everything and isn't afraid to express it.
The UPS guys used to leave dog biscuits for Beau on our package deliveries during the Christmas season. The UPS guys throw our packages up on the porch from about 15 feet away if at all possible. (While she acts and sounds like Cujo, little do they know a well-placed "boo" would send her running for cover.)
Stoic: I once watched Beau run full speed and headlong into a boulder, bounce off, shake his head and continue chasing his tennis ball with nary a pause. Drama queen: Bella bumped her shoulder on the bedpost once when she wasn't paying attention. From the blood-curdling scream and the limping, I thought she had broken a leg. (She hadn't.)
Physical health issues. Mental health issues.
Regularly checked-in when walking off-leash. Check-in? What's a check-in? Wait, what's this "off-leash" business, sparky?
Constant companion. Eternally independent.
Loved to lie in the sun while I worked in the garden. Loves to get into endless mischief while I try to work in the garden.
Loved going to the vet's office. Loves leaving the vet's office.
Would sit for hours getting brushed. Hasn't sat still for hours - ever.
Loved everybody, got along with everyone. Afraid of everybody, gets along with few.
Sweet, goofy and the love of my life. Sweet, goofy and the love of our lives.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

More Saturday's dog celebrations!

Well, Happy St. Paddy's Day, boys and girls! I hope everyone has been enjoying their holiday. (I'm not exactly Irish but I live in Massachusetts so it's kind of honorary.)

Today I thought I'd share some good news today about 2 "Saturday's dogs" who've had a little 'luck of the Irish' directed their way - they've been adopted! Althea and Sasha, 2 dogs featured here in January 2012 have both gone to their forever homes and we couldn't be happier for them!


Thanks for spreading the word about these two active and clever girls. We knew they'd find a wonderful family to call their own and we wish them all the best in their new lives!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday 31 - 14 years in 4 minutes (slideshow)

Continuing my "Beau" series, this one's a bit personal so I'll understand if only my family sits through the whole thing. Still, the blog started out as "a journal of sorts" so I had to put it up here. Please pardon my indulgence. Thanks.

The boys in the video are 2 of my nephews, David and Jared. Both are now in their 20s.

The vast majority of the pictures were taken by my Dad. During the first year of Beau's life, my Dad took monthly pictures of us together in (close to) the same positions. It is impossible to express how much that has meant to me.

Trying something new with the video. Let me know if it doesn't work for anyone.

Monday, March 12, 2012

14 years in 14 days

March 14, 1994.

Beau was an accident.

His mom, a yellow Lab, was scheduled to be spayed when his dad, a yellow Lab down the road from mom, got loose and had a brief, but undoutedly passionate, affair with Beau's mom. 9 weeks later, 9 healthy, bouncing, chubby Lab puppies made their way into the world and one of those, into my heart.

I was 30 years old, managing a small birding supply shop while doing field work for grad school and suffering from a very serious case of puppy pangs. My boyfriend at the time worked with one of the human elements in this Labrador love story and it was decided I would get one of the puppies. I knew weeks in advance of Beau's pending arrival. Before he came home to me, he had a name (Beaucephus), a bed, bowls and food secured and waiting for him.

I did not get to pick him out. That honor went to said boyfriend and, for all his faults, Paul picked me out a very good dog (a dog who then proceeded to puke on him (twice) on the ride home - I think now Beau was voicing an opinion but I digress...) He was waiting for me one day when I came home from work - this chubby little bundle of feet and belly. It was love at first sight.

Beau was a very lucky puppy.

He went with me everywhere, including work where he met lots and lots of different people. When he wasn't with me, Beau spent his time with my father who was also baby-sitting my sister's oldest two boys - just babies themselves. Beau grew up on a 6-acre lot of woods and streams, boulders and nearby fields. He met cows, went swimming and played with my family's other dogs. He had, in essence, the perfect puppyhood. And it showed in his character throughout his life.

I could spend days telling you his stories - he was such an incredible companion and we were young together sharing adventures. But I'll give you just a few that speak to what a remarkable dog he was and how and why he became my "heart" dog.

The worst thing Beau ever did: He ate a kid's blueberry muffin when we were camping. Of course, the kid left his the muffin on a rock with an unleashed dog running around the campground, so you know...

The bravest thing Beau ever did: While hiking with some young girls (I have a history of taking young girls under my wing as was done for me), one of the girls got ahead of us and apparently found herself on someone's private property. Someone who didn't want anyone to know what he was growing in his backyard.

The guy came tearing after the girl (what he was planning to do to her, I don't even want to imagine) but found himself staring into the face of a 115-pound, all-muscle, fearlessly, frighteningly growling dog. I apologized for our mistake in trespassing and calmly headed the girls off in a new direction while Beau stood between us and the seething, screaming man. When we were safely away, I gave a whistle and Beau trotted back to us. (Maybe he gave that guy one more glance over his shoulder just to be safe.)

Beau's biggest flaw: His health. In his 14 years with me, Beau had Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) surgery on both back legs, arthritis, epilepsy, cancer, canine vestibular disease, and laryngeal paralysis. He also went deaf. But he was happy.

100 pounds of love: Beau loved people. But Beau loved me most of all. I didn't see this happen but a friend told me about it after a party Jan and I had when we bought our house. Apparently, Beau was getting loved on by all the guests, soaking it up until I came around the corner of the yard. According to Ann, suddenly the guests no longer registered as Beau saw me and took off in my direction. As she put it "100 pounds of love" came barreling my way with no regard to anything in his way - guests and furniture included. I had been out of his sight for 10 minutes but when he saw me, his whole world lit up and even my friends could see that I was the light in his life. As he was in my mine.

Beau had a cat, Frodo. Frodo loved Beau.
The sweetest thing Beau ever did: One summer day while I was lounging in the backyard, Beau turned himself into a bit of a pest. He kept coming to me and nuzzling me, whimpering and walking away from me. He would walk over and over again to the same spot, coming back to me to nuzzle my hand. (I swear sometimes I feel like I'm in a Lassie movie...) Finally figuring out that he really was playing Lassie, I got up and followed him over to what he wanted to show me.

On the side of the house, in the middle of the English Ivy, Beau stood quietly looking from me back to something on the ground. Then he laid down next to it. When I walked over, I saw a tiny baby rabbit in what looked to be a damaged nest covered in flies and in dire condition. Beau was standing guard over it.

Sadly, the little rabbit didn't make it (we tried but couldn't get it the help it needed in time) but we did bring it in the house and try to keep it alive until we could get it to a wildlife rehabilitator. Throughout the night, Beau kept a constant vigil on the delicate little creature and for years afterwards, was very cautious about walking in the ivy always on the lookout for future baby bunnies.

Beau would have been 18 years old on Wednesday.

He was my pride and joy, "my east and west, my working week and my Sunday rest".* He was Bella's predecessor, the first dog of my adulthood, the one who let me learn from my mistakes. He made me grow up and reminded me of the joy in youthful exuberance.

For the next 14 days, my posts will be devoted to my boy, Beau. Don't worry, I can't possibly post every day. ;) I hope I can do him justice.

*W.H. Auden - Funderal Blues

(You guys know you can click on the pictures for the full-size version, right? Well, if not, you do now. ;)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Saturday's dog: Laini, the Basenji

Would you look at this pretty dog?

Laini is a 6-year old, female Basenji available for adoption in Arizona through Basenji Rescue and Transport. She's good with cats and kids. She's good with big dogs but has reportedly been snarky with small dogs. (She, like most Basenjis, apparently doesn't realize she is one.)

If you (or someone you know) have always wanted a Basenji but were afraid of the demands the breed may put upon you, Laini just might be your girl. She's described as well-mannered and of mild temperament. A true cuddle bug, she likes to lie with her head on your lap and sleep "under the covers with her human". (Can you even stand it?)

Adopting through BRAT, "adopters receive a dog that has been spayed or neutered..., fully vaccinated and tested for heartworm and strip-tested for Fanconi (negative unless otherwise noted), and temperament evaluated. In addition, BRAT provides free lifetime post-adoption counseling to help deal with behavioral issues. Finally, we provide a free lifetime identification tag connected to our "lost dog" toll free number." Pretty impressive support system there, yes?

If you're interested in adopting Laini, hop over to the B.R.A.T. website for more information about her.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Monday, March 5, 2012

Thank you very much - again

This post is (very long! and) embarrassingly overdue. Some very fine bloggers have chosen to recognize us here at Bringing up Bella by presenting us with some awards and I have been remiss in thanking them for the honor. (On the bright side, at least they're all from 2012.)

As usual, because I'm so paranoid about breaking rules, I tried to investigate the origins of each of these awards to understand the true intent and am left even more insecure than ever. Blog awards do seem to suffer from a good game of "telephone" where the conversation changes over time due to the interpretation of the individuals involved.

So, while I'm including "the rules" as best I've come to understand them, I'd really just like folks to enjoy the nomination as a token of my admiration and appreciation for their hard work without feeling the pressure to comply with "the rules". This goes double for those folks who've received the awards previously.

Additionally, I have set only 1 rule for myself: I can't nominate anyone I've ever nominated before. To be honest, this rule only exists because if I continued with my previous rule of only nominating folks who've never been nominated by anyone before, I'd never get this thing published. ;)

The first award received this year was the Pawsome Blogger award given to us by the remarkably kind Dachshund Nola.

Speaking of Pawsome bloggers, Nola is one of the most dedicated, friendly and supportive bloggers in the pet blogging community and we are truly honored by her generosity.

The rules for this one are pretty minimal: "Nominate 8 blogs that bring me fun, love, laughs and furiendship". I can work with that.

What follows is a list of blogs that make me smile, chuckle and even laugh right out loud sometimes.
Basset Momma
Fabulous Flo
Little Dogs on Long Leashes
Mango and Dexter's Great Adventures
My Brown Newfies
My Tail Hurts from Wagging So Much
Snoopy's Dogblog
The Spoiled Doxie

Coming on the heels of that award, we were delighted, and humbled, to be presented The Kreativ Blogger award by the gracious Pamela over at Something Wagging This Way Comes. And I do mean humbled as Pamela chose to forward this award to blogs she considers to be "visually creative" (i.e. - we gots good pictures - my dad would be proud.)

I'm sure most of you know Pamela and her Golden Retriever, Honey, but if you don't, she's an incredible blogger whose posts always stir good, thoughtful conversation as she looks at life through the prism of her dog.

There are a few rules for this award:
  1. Share 7 things you don't know about me and
  2. Pass the award along to 7 other blogs.
Okay, so, 7 things you don't (or might not) know about me. (Don't you all already know more than you ever wanted to about me? You must.) However, in keeping with the spirit of things, here we go:
  1. I am a registered, card-carrying sci-fi/fantasy dork. It's true, I can recite, verbatim, "Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog" (not to mention, "The Commentary!") as well as most episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Max Headroom and Doctor Who.
  2. I totally dig musicals. (Not helping the dork-factor here, I know.)
  3. I have been known to forget to eat/sleep/bathe when something catches my obsession attention.
  4. The only magazine I actually subscribe to is Wired.
  5. I am also a registered, card-carrying klutz. Ask Jan. Or Bella. I break things (sometimes me) and tend to bleed and burn with fair regularity (especially, yet not exclusively, while cooking. I have literally burned myself mowing the lawn.)
  6. I am a voracious reader and often have upwards of 5 books going at any given time.
  7. My favorite author is Kurt Vonnegut.
And in keeping with Pamela's little "twist", I'm going to pass the award on to 7 blogs I think fit the "Kreativ" criteria. These are the blogs I go to when I want to "oooh" and "ahhhh":
Eva the Sheltie
Poochie Freak Photography
Romping and Rolling in the Rockies
Roxy The Traveling Dog
Two Dogs, One Camera, Priceless Moments.
Two Pitties in the City
Whiskered Paintings

Also in January, the lovely Dachshund Nola honored us again with the One Lovely Blog award. Nola's requirements were pretty simple: "This award is designed to recognize fellow bloggers and show appreciation for their work." From what I could discover of the history, however, the intent of this award was to recognize blogs that are "newly discovered".

So to make it interesting, I'll take Nola's recommendation of selecting 7 blogs and add the twist that they be new or at least new to me. Allow me to present:
2 Punk Dogs
Daily Dose of Jack
Enzo the Sato
I'm Kind of a Big Deal
Jowls of Fury
Tails from the Dach Side

Finally, February brought us The Versatile Blogger award from Donna of Donna and the Dogs - a blog and blogger I truly admire for her informative posts, her dedication to rescue, her love of Labs and her biting wit.

The Versatile Blogger award comes with a few rules:
  1. Thank the award giver and link back in your post. - Thank you, Donna. :)
  2. Share 7 things about yourself. - Seriously, I'm just not that interesting so how about 7 things about Bella instead?
  3. Pass this award along to as many as 15 blogs you enjoy reading and let them know about the award. (See below.)
Okay, Bella's list:
  1. Bella trims her own toenails. (Jan built her a "scratching post".)
  2. Bella has been sprayed by a skunk 3 times. At least now we keep supplies in the house.
  3. Bella looks like a black dog. Bella's hair, however, is only tipped black and is really tan underneath. So her hair shows up on all of our clothes and furniture regardless of color. Grr. Arg.
  4. Bella knows 27 "commands". (Although you don't actually "command" Bella to do anything. She's smart, not necessarily obedient.)
  5. Bella has been attending Agility for Reactive Dogs since October, 2011. She LOVES it.
  6. It took most of the summer to get Bella to step over a stick in preparation for the class.
  7. It took 5 minutes to get her to go over the A-frame. Now we can't get her off of it.
And now to recommend 15 blogs. 15 people are about to hate me with heat of 15-thousand burning suns because they all probably have this award already. Remember, if you already have the award, pay no attention to the blogger behind the curtain. Just know that I think you rock!
Brando and Bogart
Brown Dog, CBR
Cleopatra, the Border Collie
Dachshund Nola
Dakota's Den
Dip-Dip and The Bridge
Dog is God in Reverse
Donna and the Dogs
Hound Dog Mom
Jets Agenda
Kol's Notes
Kootenai's Climb
My Dogs Love Me
One Pibble's Wish
Something Wagging This Way Comes

I follow a lot of blogs and I follow them because they're all great: they inspire me, entertain me, move me and motivate me.

You're probably already familiar with many listed here but I encourage you to check out the ones that might be new to you. There is a tremendous amount of talent and good humor out there and, to my mind, these lists represent some of the best of it.

And to those who thought so well of us to include us in your lists, we really do appreciate your kind words and consideration. It is truly an honor to be in such generous company.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Tag, I'm it.

I've been tagged. Twice! So before I'm "it" yet again, I thought I should get this post written. (Even though still awaiting my attention are a few awards (thank you!) and Something Wagging's January "Train Your Dog Month" challenge - yes, I know it's already March. Working on it...)

If you haven't seen the game of blogger tag going around, here's how it works: one blogger 'tags' another just like in the children's game. The 'tagged' blogger has to answer 10 questions about themselves and then tag 8 more bloggers.

I'm going to take a tip from the kind folks who tagged us, Karen of Tricks for Treats and Julie of The Daily Dog Blog since they were each also tagged twice, and do double duty by answering the questions for both me and Bella. (If I get tagged yet again in the meantime, you might even learn something about Jan before all this is over... ;)

  1. Describe Yourself In 7 Words

    Bella: Playful, charming, sweet, smart, fearful, resilient, neurotic.
    Leslie: Neurotic, optimistic, idealistic, passionate, serious, perfectionist, dreamer.

  2. What Keeps You Up At Night

    Bella: Thunderstorms, when mom steps on me getting out of bed, unfamiliar noises.
    Leslie: My head. (Sleep? What's sleep?)

  3. Who Would You Like To Be?

    Bella: Somebody calm and confident.
    Leslie: Somebody calm and confident.

  4. What Are You Wearing Right Now?
    LOL - who wrote this questionaire?

    Bella: My collar - I don't like it when they take it off.
    Leslie: The winter "uniform": jeans, turtleneck and hoodie.

  5. What Scares You?

    Bella: Uh, scared-y dog here so, you know, everything? Okay, more specifically: thunder, wind, unexpected noises, snowblowers, the garage, things that weren't there before, the dog walk, the teeter totter, other dogs, people, bees, flies, horseflies, Bailey (the neighbor's dog), barrels, sticks, poles... Shall I go on?
    Leslie: Spiders, failure, fire, death. (What? I warned you I was a "serious" sort.)

  6. The Best and Worst of Blogging

        Best: Lots of people think I'm cute and I don't even have to get anywhere near them.
        Worst: Mom's at that darn computer all. the. time.
        Best: The community.
        Worst: Not having enough hours in a day to keep up with the community.

  7. The Last Website I Visited

    The Daily Dog Blog and Tricks for Treats, of course!

  8. What Is The One Thing I Would Change About Myself?

    Bella: I would be braver.
    Leslie: I would be kinder.

  9. Slankets Yes or No?

    Bella: Uh, what huh?
    Leslie: Uh, what huh?

    Neither Bella nor I were familiar with the whole "slanket" phenomenon before seeing these tag posts. I think we are in agreement that this isn't really our thing. :]

  10. Tell Us Something About The Dog(s)/Cat(s)/Etc That Tagged You.

    Cali, of The Daily Dog Blog, is a beautiful girl with long black hair and the most expressive brown eyes. She lives with a bunch of cats so you know she's gotta be a very good and patient girl.

    Pearl, of Tricks for Treats, is a very pretty mixed-breed rescue dog who sometimes drives her mom just a little crazy. (We can relate!) She's got tons of energy and keeps her family on their toes.

    Interestingly enough, both Pearl and Cali have allergies and both are the first dogs of their families.

And now to tag 8 others...

Like everyone else, I find this part pretty difficult. I'm not sure who all has already been tagged and I don't like to make more work for folks who are all already over-worked, stressed-out and appallingly busy.

So here's the deal: if you've already been tagged, link to your tag post in the comments so other folks can go read up on you and your tagged blogs. And if you're just too crazy busy to participate, don't stress it. This stuff's supposed to be fun, right?

So without further ado:
The Elka Almanac
Back Alley Soapbox
The Adventures of Higgins
Fido and Wino
Get out of my head!
The World According to Lexi
The emptynesters family daily
The Life of Bongo
Tag, you're it!