Articles

Feathers, Fur, & Other Things

Last week I watched a flock of blue jays flutter through our yard on their way to who knows where. I think that’s the first time I’ve ever seen a blue jay, much less several of them. They reminded me of our finches, always moving, always bobbing, always looking around and flitting somewhere else. Very busy little birds, and oh-so-pretty. I think they know it, too.

I also watched squirrels playing in the neighbor’s trees (mostly making sure Murphy didn’t get too energetic and decide to jump the fence while they taunted him from above). They’re so cute, scurrying around the branches, stopping for a quick wrestling match, chasing each other around and then practically flying to the next tree. Cheeky little things love to sit up in the trees or on the power lines and chatter at the dogs, lecturing them for barking and holding their ground (so to speak) against the big, apparently not-so-scary monsters below.

Another bushy-tailed dude was hiding wares in the front yard, digging holes and covering them back up, most likely to forget what he put where over the winter. And a large, well-insulated bunny was mocking the tiny yapper-dogs in one of the neighbor’s yards, sitting there under the lilac bushes not 10 feet away from pups that are smaller than he is. I can’t imagine he was enjoying the noise he created (I know I sure wasn’t), but he did seem kind of proud of the ruckus, and completely unwilling to give up his cozy spot.

I haven’t seen our wild turkeys around lately, but that probably makes sense given the season. Not that you could legally shoot one in the city limits (I don’t think, anyways), but still…probably best to stay hidden this time of year.

All this was an entertaining and, contradictory as it seems, almost relaxing backdrop for a busy and very “people-filled” work week. It was also the week in which my grandpa was hospitalized and died after a two year (or so) decline in both physical and mental capabilities. He lived a long life (he was in his late eighties) – a good, simple, rural life, and while it’s never fun to say goodbye to someone like that, I’m glad the end was relatively quick and that he didn’t suffer. The funeral is next Saturday, and after that, I’ll share a little more about his life and how it affected mine. I’m certainly a better person for having had him in my life, especially during my younger, more formative years.

Coincidentally, the day my mom called to tell me Gramps was in the hospital on end-of-life care was the day I sent the first cookbook I ever had home with a co-worker for his daughter. She wants to learn how to cook, and neither of her parents like cooking all that much, but they are always very supportive of their girls. That cookbook was a Christmas present to me in 1983 (I was 8yrs old) from my grandparents, so underneath their signature to me, I added my own wishes and the date for my co-worker’s daughter. Hopefully someday she’ll pass it along as well, either to her own kids or some other youngster who wants to learn to cook.

This week will be another busy, disjointed one, with work Mon – Weds, and Thanksgiving with my in-laws on Thursday, and then one more undoubtedly very calm day at work before the funeral on Saturday. I’ve always liked working the Friday after Thanksgiving. I’m not a shopper, and I like being in the office when things are quiet, most everyone else is gone and I can just focus and work at my own pace without being interrupted every half hour or less. In my younger years, it was also a good excuse to escape the family for awhile – my introverted self needed the time alone to recharge between the large family gatherings that holidays tend to require (some years multiple families on the same day – we’ve since put a stop to that, for the most part). That will be the case this year too, it would seem.

Whether you’re celebrating here in the states or just heading into another normal week everywhere else – here’s to thankful hearts, good memories, lasting legacies, and peaceful endings.

Old Stuff, Basketballs & Book-Moving Report

Last week was kind of crazy, and this past weekend even moreso. My tattoo touch-up on Thursday initiated a thrift store stop that I normally wouldn’t have made and a dog-walk at a non-normal time, both of which ended up with odd outcomes. Funny how small decisions can make such a big impact, isn’t it?

At the thrift shop, I bought some clothes to rough-up for the skeleton bride in our 13th Anniversary Halloween display (which is why I stopped in, so mission accomplished). I also bought a few pieces of clothing for myself, and then looked around the shop as one does. One thing I saw was an older sewing machine – like, much older. I was curious at the time, but I don’t sew, and couldn’t really get to the cabinet for a good view, and figured I didn’t have room for something like that anyway. So I left.

Later that afternoon, I took the dogs for an early walk (since I was home early), and we walked by a couple sitting out on the curb enjoying the fall day. They had a leather basketball with them (one belonging to one of their kids, playing nearby), and Murphy decided to start playing with it. I warned them that he’d ruin it, but they kept rolling it back to him, because they found his antics most entertaining. They couldn’t believe it when he punctured the outside leather and was able to pick it up and carry it…

We chatted for a bit, and since the ball was all slobbery by that time, they told me he should just take it home. I really didn’t have a good way to carry it, but Murphy would not leave it at that point, so I tucked it under my recently tattooed arm, and prayed we didn’t run into any loose dogs on the way back, since I couldn’t easily control both leashes with one hand (we didn’t, thank goodness).

So, Murphy got himself a basketball simply by amusing a couple while we were out walking. Silly dog.

That night, I thought about that sewing machine I’d seen earlier. I have sort of a “thing” with manual machinery…I am fascinated by it. I love that it requires no electricity to work, and that ultimately, one can figure out how it works and repair it to keep running indefinitely given enough time. Understand, I love electricity and how much it enriches our lives, but there’s just something about a hand/foot driven machine that is incredibly cool and inspiring to me.

In any case, while searching images for a machine like the one I’d seen in the thrift shop, I fell down the internet rabbit hole of vintage sewing machines – treadle machines, to be specific. And while I couldn’t remember the one I’d seen having a hand wheel of any sort, I became completely entranced with the history of sewing machines and treadle machine restoration and use. I read and watched videos and learned everything I could in a small amount of time about them.

I mentioned to my husband the next night that I’d become fascinated with them, and not half an hour later, he showed me an ad on Craigslist for an old treadle sewing machine that someone locally was selling. Taking that as implied approval of the purchase, I emailed the lady to see if it was still available, and then proceeded to look up that particular sewing machine and read everything I could find about it, including a scan of the original instruction manual.

This is probably as good a place as any to mention that while he was looking through the antiques section on Craigslist, he also found and pointed out to me an old LC typewriter that was available for sale. I love antique typewriters, and emailed that guy to see if it was available too.

After that, my husband quit telling me about cool stuff on Craigslist. 🙂

In any case, long story shorter, that treadle sewing machine (a “Free No 5” model) is now in my living room waiting to be restored with some sewing machine oil and elbow grease, and yes, it does work. The typewriter is also in my living room (the counterpart to my old portable Royal typewriter) where I can stare lovingly at it every day (it works too, but the spacebar is cracked/needs replacing, and it could use a new ribbon).

Then there are new bookshelves, too. Saturday morning, I started cleaning off the bookshelves in my office and piled all the books in stacks on my living room floor. All except my antique/vintage books, which went on the dining room table, and my stamp collection, which got piled in my writing chair.

Sunday I took the bookcases out of the office and put them in the driveway, and hubby installed the new bookcases he built in the office. They are big and bold and amazing…I love them so much. They still need trim, which will happen next weekend, and also drawers for the bottom cabinets, which will happen as he has time. But I put most of the books back Sunday night, and just need to move the antiques/vintage volumes back sometime this week. No, I didn’t inventory anything. No time! Will that project ever get done? Maybe, maybe not. Not in the near future, for sure.

So…crazy busy four days or so, but filled with so much groovy-ness that I don’t even mind being way behind on pretty much everything. I’ll catch up next weekend. And then start on the Halloween decorations…

Back with a New Groove

I have to say…last week was one of the best “staycations” I’ve ever had. I didn’t over-schedule myself, but I structured my days and the week as a whole, got a lot done, never felt any real “pressure” as far as time/deadlines go, and at the end I was relaxed and had a new, much better perspective on life in general.

I did a lot of thinking, planning and preparations for working on and sticking to my resolutions for the year. I did some cleaning that I never have time to do all at once on the weekends, which feels good because now I have a good chance at being able to maintain those areas of the house in less time. Without that extra prep time, it would have taken me quite a bit longer on the weekends for awhile just to catch up to a place where I could maintain, so I’m really glad I could get that done.

I also finished a project that’s been on my dining room table since October – a miniature haunted dollhouse that comes in 5 mailings with each mailing having not only pieces to the dollhouse, but also more clues to the mystery. That was a wonderful way to spend my birthday, even though I did give myself a serious kink in the neck working on it all day (still not healed, but worth the discomfort). It’s still on the table in need of finish work and a permanent home, but I have that all worked out too, I just need to take a Saturday afternoon and get it done.

I had several really good writing sessions, after the dogs had been walked (thank goodness for warmer weather!) and the house was completely still. By that time, I’d been away from work long enough that my head was clear and creative again, underscoring just how much of a drain my job is on my mental energy. It’s a good job, don’t get me wrong, and I love doing it, but it does seriously limit my creativity. I started thinking about some ways I could deal with that and make sure that I have time to rest mentally between the time I get off work, and the time I need to write. I have some things to try this week, so we’ll see how that goes.

Motivation has been an issue for me lately too, with the writing, I mean. So when several good book sales payments hit my account, I splurged and bought access to a “Motivation” lecture by Dean Wesley Smith. I’d watched the first video on YouTube (it’s free there), and decided that whenever I had a hard time sitting down and writing last week, I’d watch one of the videos in that lecture series to hopefully “motivate me”.

The first time I decided to watch, I got as far as video number three, and had an epiphany that forced me to stop right there and re-evaluate my writing time. For the curious, you can read about how I did that on my writing blog later this week. Suffice it to say, it involves some important realizations on my part, and some serious routine/chore shuffling. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the videos.

The BSB site rebuild is pretty well finished, the two February releases formatted and nearly ready to go, and a new blog posting schedule started over there on Mondays. My Friday night “office hours” are still going swimmingly. Hooray for that!

In other news, yes, I will finally be posting to the dog blog again next week. It’s the pictures that get me. That blog kind of needs them, and it’s extra time/effort to get pics, and then edit/upload them along with the post. But I think I’ve finally got that sorted out. Hopefully.

I’m kind of mystified at the fact that since January 1, a bunch of people have “liked” the Nail Art Tuesday Facebook page. Where did they all come from? Did they not notice that before last week, I hadn’t posted there for a couple of years? Is there a serious nail art trend happening right now that I’m just not aware of?

Regardless, it made me consider whether it might be worth posting to my Nail Art blog again. Not full “this is what I did and how I did it” tutorials like I used to do, but quick, weekly pics of my manicures wouldn’t kill me. Nor would bi-weekly pics of my pedicures, and occasional photos of my other body mods. Of course that would require changing the name of the blog to Nail & Body Art Tuesdays, I suppose. Doesn’t really have the same “ring” does it? But I have been getting more interested in expanding my jewelry collection since getting those new piercings last month, and there are two more piercings I’d like to get next weekend, if possible, which will give me even more jewelry options. It would be fun to have a spot to share those with people interested in that sort of thing…

I haven’t decided one way or another on that yet. No hurry, really. This week’s manicure went a little sideways anyways, so nothing postworthy just yet. People are still “liking” my Tea on Tap page too, but I don’t drink enough of a variety anymore to bring that back, and while I would love to do some gong-fu brewing, I’d have to really schedule that into a weekend slot, and I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Bummer, but until I retire, I have limited hours to work with. Such is life.

I tell you what…I already have so much to do in my retirement years that I’d probably better plan on not dying until I hit at least 100. It’s gonna take me that long to get through my “to do” list! 🙂

So…great vacation, new perspective, and I’m ready to get back into the normal swing of things.

And away we go…

Well Alrighty Then

It’s hard to know what to say after a week like last week. Here in the US, we elected a new president, and the results were rather…unexpected (even for the winner, methinks). There’s always some grumbling and complaining after an election, but this time, things are worse. Much worse. Which leads to a whole lot of ugliness that begets a whole lot more thinking and internal processing (or external, judging by my Facebook feed, but that tends to muddle things even more, from the looks of it. I’m not brave enough to check Twitter, which I hear is worse).

Humans can be incredibly cruel to each other. More cruel, I’d argue, than at least some of the fictional killers I’ve written about. But we also tend to be our own worst enemy (individually speaking), and therein lies the rub.

However, there are still plenty of good, decent, kind people out there, and I personally know several. So that gives me hope.

In any case, last week wasn’t really a great week for getting stuff done. In addition to all the election madness, I only worked two days, and while they were quite a bit more productive than my days off, it was still less than I’d wanted to accomplish.

Here’s hoping this week I can find a better groove. Though I will say that the Shinedown/Sixx:AM concert we went to last Weds night was stellar…

I am hopelessly behind on my NaNo novel, and the reason is pretty simple – I’m not making it a priority. And in order to make it a priority, I have to de-prioritize something else, and at present, I really just don’t want to. I need sleep, I still need a tiny bit of reading time, I need to exercise and cook dinner, I need to work (obviously)…and there are only so many hours in the day. Plus I have a novel to proof-read before publication (not mine – another BSB author) and get it off to the format-er, hopefully next week. And then there’s my children’s book that just needs to be edited, formatted, and covered before I release it…

So…there’s really no way I can “win” NaNo this year…and that’s okay. Priorities are made for a reason, and this year, mine just have to be different. I’m still writing regularly again, and that’s really the most important part. I’m keeping my normal writing time, so it’s not like I’m not writing, just…not pushing to get a certain amount of words done quickly.

After dealing with some back and ankle issues last week, I really need to re-prioritize my morning yoga too .I’ve been slacking on that, and it’s painfully (in the literal sense) obvious.

This week, it’s all back to normal – normal schedule, normal routine. I’m going to be cutting out a lot of my “idle” online time (ie, time scrolling aimlessly through social media feeds) because it’s time I could spend actually being productive (or resting, which is important too), and also because it’s hard on my eyes. I need to get back to scheduling days too…on paper, I mean. I’ve fallen away from that, and I really do think it helps.

So…lots of focus on getting myself back to where I need to be, mentally and physically this week. That’s never a bad place to start.

And I need to make Murphy-dog a coat, too. We’re expecting snow on Wednesday, and I, for one, am ready. 🙂

Gone to the Dogs: LeashCandy.dog!

Banner3

Murphy sez: Hey – did ya see the new web site J set up for us? It’s still pretty basic, but I think we can work with it. Takes awhile to settle into a new home, eh Mica? J says it took you over six months to settle in here, and it’s been awhile for me too (but she says I’m more flexible, which I think is a good thing except on hard floors).

Mica sez: LeashCandy.dog? Why the heck did she call it that? And what’s “leash candy” anyway? I liked our old “Gone to the Dogs” moniker, personally. Though the .dog extension is pretty cool, on account of…we’re both dogs. And it’s our site. But still…that name…

MurphyDiscussion

Murphy sez: You gotta lighten up, bro. GoneWithTheDogs.com was taken, and J didn’t really think about putting the .dog extension on it, she just went looking for other names. And she remembered hearing someone refer to a good-looking dog as “leash candy” once, and thought about how everyone always stops to tell us how handsome and cute we are, and how much we love the attention. So she got us the LeashCandy.dog domain, and I think it’s pretty cool.

Mica sez: I don’t know, man. It seems a little cheerleader-ish for us. But we are darn handsome, that’s for sure. You’re right about everyone stopping or staring. Well, everyone who isn’t on their phone, anyway. I mean, the other night no less than three people stopped to smile and say hi and pet us on our walk. And the night after that the lady who visited us and J was saying how beautiful our coats are…

Murphy sez: See? That’s why the tagline is, “It’s not just a look, it’s an attitude.” I have my scarred up legs and you’ve got that seriously graying muzzle, but no one cares. They see us walkin’, ears up, tails swinging, smooth, shiny coats and alert eyes, and they want to love on us. Leash candy, man. I’m tellin’ ya – we can work with that.

MicaLook

Mica sez: So I guess we need to tell people to head over to the new site, eh? What about our subscribers? Do they need to resubscribe, or is J gonna take care of that?

Murphy sez: J’s got it handled. She’ll move the people who only subscribe to our posts over there automa-gically. But anyone who’s subscribed to *all* of the posts here at her blog, and want to get our posts at LeashCandy.dog will need to go over and sign up for that one too. But sign-ups won’t be available until later today.

MurphyNewBone

Mica sez: And we’re just gonna keep posting on Fridays over there, right? So no more posts here on Fridays? Seems like that’s gonna leave a hole…

Murphy sez: Don’t you worry, Mica. J’s workin’ on it. And we’ll definitely keep our normal schedule at the new blog, and maybe even have some new posts at different times during the week later on. But for now – definitely Fridays. I like Fridays, don’t you, Mica?

MicaNewBone

Mica sez: Sure, I guess. Not as much as I like Saturdays, when we get new bully sticks or bones to chew on. Or Mondays, when J and B go back to work and let us sleep. But Fridays are okay. Today’s gonna be really good, if B finally comes home. He’s been gone since last Friday – and he’s gonna get a *major* sniff-down when he finally shows back up!

Murphy sez: You got that right. I mean, at least he left us with J – she feeds and walks us, so that’s important. But it’s never a good thing when a pack member goes missing, and I can’t believe J’s been so calm about it. B had better show up today – the place just isn’t the same without him (and we’re severely lacking in treats here, despite J’s effort to keep things normal)!

Mica sez: I’m sure he’ll be home as soon as he can. I mean, we’re leash candy, right? Who could resist these faces?

There is no squirrel apocalypse coming, Murph.  Yes there is, Mica!

There is no squirrel apocalypse coming, Murph.
Yes there is, Mica!

Gone to the Dogs: Two-Wheeled Sneaky-People

Sun-tannin' on a lunch break...

                             Sun-tannin’ on a lunch break…

Murphy sez: There sure are a lot of sneaky people riding those two-wheeled contraptions around lately, don’t you think, Mica? Seems like they come out of nowhere on our walks, and mostly from behind us. What’s up with that? Are they trying to scare us? ‘Cause it’s working. You’ve been pretty skittish lately when we’re out…

Mica sez: I just wish I could hear them coming, ya know? It’s kind of freaky to be walkin’ along, minding my own business, and then boom! Out of nowhere, there’s someone right beside me! On wheels! They’re like ghosts, I tell ya. It’s not natural. It really shouldn’t be allowed.

Murphy sez: I don’t think they mean us any harm. I mean, most of them seem nice. They smile, and sometimes they say hi. But it is a bit unsettling. I prefer those to the noisy kind though. Especially those little tiny ones with super-loud high-pitched engines. Too much like a dirt-bike to me. I was ready to chase that one dude down the other night. He really got on my nerves. If I hadn’t been on a leash…

Mica sez: Yeah, I noticed. J had to stop us twice so you’d quit pulling so hard on your prong collar. Lucky for her you had that on too, or she might have ended up face-first on the pavement. You get excited about the strangest things, Murph. That guy didn’t seem any creepier than anyone else to me. Just noisy.

Murphy sez: He could have been a perfectly nice guy, for all I know. But I hate his bike, and want it to die. Which is different from the kid we see on the other street sometimes. I don’t care if he’s on a skateboard or a normal ol’ bicycle – I hate that guy. If I ever get a hold of him, it’s not gonna be pretty.

Mica sez: Aw, you shouldn’t hate people, Murph. What did he do to you, anyway?

Murphy sez: Some things are best left unsaid, Mica. That dude had just better stay on his side of the street, is all.

Say, speaking of people being out of place, do you think that old golden retriever got home okay?

Mica sez: If J remembered the right yard to tell the nice lady who picked him up, I bet he did. Didn’t see him there tonight, but hopefully she got him home. She seemed nice – that lady who had him in her car. Paw-bumps to her for helping the old guy get out of traffic and un-lost!

Murphy sez: If he’d been wearing a collar and ID, it would have been lots easier. She wouldn’t have even had to ask J if she knew where the dog lived. But so many dogs around here don’t even have collars. Why don’t people keep ID on their dogs, Mica?

Pretty tag collar!

                                    Pretty tag collar!

Mica sez: I guess some people just like a challenge, Murph. Even with a microchip, it’s a heck of a lot easier to just make a phone call or knock on a door than it is to find a microchip reader and get scanned. Maybe we can think of something to do to raise awareness of how important it is for us four-leggers (and tripods!) to have ID on us at all times. Wanna do a contest this fall, Murph?

Murphy sez: That’s a great idea! We’ll have to talk to J about it and see what she says. Maybe she’ll buy us some swag to give away. Collars and ID tags would be cool, right? Like…a collar and leash wardrobe?

Mica sez: Yep – and I know just the thing for ID, actually. But I think we should try it out first, right? It’s the responsible thing to do. We’d better go find J and tell her our plan. There’s some stuff we need her to order. Hey, do you think we should ask for our own web site?

Murphy sez: Yeah! That would be totally cool.Maybe we could be famous! And it’s probably time for some treats too, right? I mean, it’s always treat-time somewhere…

BoneTired

Gone to the Dogs: Booms & Greens

WhatFireworks

                               Fireworks? What fireworks?

Mica sez: I don’t know how you do it, Murph. You slept through most of the excitement last weekend. Didn’t you hear those pops and bangs going off outside? I swear, we were under attack, and you slept through nearly the whole thing!

Murphy sez: I dunno. I mean, I did wake up for those big booms – those were kinda freaky, and shook the windows. But there were loud ‘splosions on TV too, so the rest just kinda blended in with those, I guess. I have good anti-anxiety spray too, remember? In fact, I’m pretty sure J rubbed some on your ears so you could calm down too.

Mica sez: That stuff is awesome. I was like, totally chill after that, dude. Well, mostly anyways. I don’t know what those loud bombs are, but I want them to all go away. Forever. It’s bad enough that the neighbors won’t stop slamming their car doors, but all these little pops and crackles are just too much! And J says there will be more tonight due to some relay thing they’re having down the street. It’s enough to make a dog go mad…

Murphy sez: Maybe these won’t be so bad. And there’s always my happy juice to get you through. You just need to relax, man. Be chill. Chew on a bone. It’s all good. Hopefully the weather will be good enough to walk, and you can get some exercise. You get kinda pouty without your walks, Mica.

Hedgehog

Mica sez: I have a lot of energy to burn! I mean, we pretty much sleep all day, so we gotta get some exercise at night, right? You never seem all that enthusiastic to go though. What’s that all about?

Murphy sez: I’m pretty happy just to knock around the house and yard. All that walkin’ is hard work, and wears me out. It’s kinda stressful too, with all the traffic going by and people passing on the sidewalk or in the street. I don’t know how you deal with all that and then come home and stay up for several more hours chewing and playing. I’m out for the night the second we get home, pretty much. ‘Cept I do wake up for pineapple. Because yum.

Mica sez: I sleep all day, so I’m up all night! You’re more of a day-dog though. When the folks are home during the day, you’re up until 3pm or so, and then you’re snoozin’. I’m a night dog – I sleep all day, and I’m ready to play at night. Guess we have different preferences just like humans do, eh Murph?

MicaEars

Murphy sez: I guess so. I don’t mind sleeping in though either. As long as we get our breakfast early. Mmm…breakfast. Do you think J’s gonna make more treats soon? ‘Cause I noticed we’re getting low, and the green beans are completely depleted from the freezer. It’s kind of an emergency – frozen peas just aren’t as good. Maybe we should remind J to go to the store after work?

Mica sez: Or we could just wait until grocery day on Sunday. I mean, I like frozen beans as much as the next dog, but peas are good too. Sweeter, anyway. Just harder to eat, with our big mouths. Still, good for treats! I bet she is gonna make treats tomorrow. Hopefully she’ll let us lick out the bowls…

Murphy sez: Maybe she should just let us pick our own treats out of the freezer. I mean, there’s lots of good stuff in there. Some pork chops, and steaks, and I’m sure I smelled bacon…

Mmm...treat dough leftovers...

                                Mmm…treat dough leftovers…

Mica sez: Now you’re making me hungry, Murph. Knock it off! It’s kind of a long time until dinner. Maybe I’ll go snack on some of J’s roses. Those are pretty good, if you haven’t tried them. I don’t think J likes me eating them, but I don’t know why. They’re healthy! And they make my breath smell good. You should try one. Just leave some for me.

Murphy sez: Nah, I’m more of a greens kind of guy. But I could go for some grass about now. Mmm…dewy grass. Definitely time for a snack…

SleepyMurphy


Tune in next week for more Murphy & Mica! Or subscribe to get us in your inbox – use the subscription link in the right sidebar and pick “Gone to the Dogs”. Like these posts? Consider a donation to our favorite charities – the shelters that helped us when we needed it most! 

Murphy’s shelter: Donate to The Rimrock Humane Society
Mica’s shelter: Donate to Help for Homeless Pets

Walk for HHP or your local shelter with the Walk for a Dog app!

Gone to the Dogs: Life’s Little Pleasures

MurphAndHedgeHog

Murphy sez: Hey Mica, that new hedgehog we got is as big as my head. Do you think I should chew his nose off first, or his toes?

Mica sez: I don’t know about you, but I’m going for the stomach. That’s where those weird chattery sounds come from. Not quite a squirrel, but not like a squeak either. What is that, anyways? And are hedgehogs normally that big? I can barely get my mouth around it…

Murphy sez: It sure is fun getting mail, isn’t it? I had that giraffe’s ears and tail off quicker than J could eat dinner. Though she’s slow, so that doesn’t mean much. But still. Got a hole in him already too. I don’t get why J doesn’t want me to eat the stuffing though. Isn’t that what it’s there for?

Mica sez: Yeah, I don’t think so. I don’t know how you can eat that stuff anyways – it’s pretty dry. I just leave it on the floor. Like dry, warm snow. My stomach had enough problems this week, but it’s all J’s fault. Not sure why she thought she could get away without making treats last weekend, but all that freeze-dried meat is kinda rough on the digestive system after awhile. We didn’t even get to walk on Wednesday night ‘cause I was sick! Geez.

Murphy sez: I don’t know why you have such a sensitive tummy, Mica. I can eat anything just fine. Even those bones I found in the street on Tuesday night. It was kind of embarrassing when J pulled them right back out of my throat when we got back on the sidewalk. Sheesh. I was just cleaning up a little. Didn’t even get enough of a taste to tell if it was rabbit or chicken. Huh.

PupJoy_June16

Mica sez: You know you’re not supposed to just eat stuff off the street, Murph. We’re not that desperate, and you never know what you might catch. J says we’re not supposed to eat anything without her permission. But somehow I doubt you’ll remember that the next time a stranger tries to give you treats…

Murphy sez: Stranger, schmanger. If those little girls riding their bikes by last night and callin’ us cute wanted to give me treats, that’s fine by me. I’ll risk it. I’m tough. And so is my tummy!

Hey, what do you think J meant when she held up that bottle out of our Pupjoy box, and said she was gonna take us out on the patio this weekend and make us smell like u-calypt-us and lav-en-dar? Was that cologne? ‘Cause I don’t think I need cologne…

Mica sez: I think she might have been talkin’ about baths, Murph. Honest to goodness baths with water and everything. Which means she’s lost her mind, and we’re gonna have to fight for our lives. Maybe she’ll forget. Or get too busy. I hope she gets too busy.

Murphy sez: Hey – we still don’t really have many pictures for the post this week – and they’re mostly me. What gives? I thought we talked to J about that?

MurphStretch

Mica sez: I think she’s workin’ on it. There’s this thing called Pawscam coming out – it’s new. Cameras for our collars, Murph. She’s gonna order them next week (they go on sale July 5th), and they should be here in September. Then we’ll get to take the pictures – even on our walks! Fun, right?

Murphy sez: But September’s a long ways away – she just needs to get her butt into gear and take more pictures. Or we’ll give *her* a bath. Sheesh.

Mica sez: Yeah, yeah…you’re right. I guess I could cooperate a little more. I don’t really like that flashy thing pointed at my face, but…

Murphy sez: Our fans need us, Mica. Ya gotta cooperate.

Mica sez: Shush, you whipper-snapper. Just ‘cause you got another link added to your prong collar for walks, and you get to leave your legging off for longer times now doesn’t mean you’re all that. Just you wait until I start getting video of you rolling around on the floor like a total weirdo. Then these guys will know what you’re really like.

Murphy sez: A cute and funny cuddle-bug, you mean? Nothin’ wrong with that, Mica. Maybe they’ll give me more treats…

Mica_Murphy


Tune in next week for more Murphy & Mica! Or subscribe to get us in your inbox – use the subscription link in the right sidebar and pick “Gone to the Dogs”. Like these posts? Consider a donation to our favorite charities – the shelters that helped us when we needed it most! 

Murphy’s shelter: Donate to The Rimrock Humane Society
Mica’s shelter: Donate to Help for Homeless Pets

Walk for HHP or your local shelter with the Walk for a Dog app!

Gone to the Dogs: Dog Days of Summer

MicaAhhWeeds

Murphy sez: Sure has been kinda quiet around here lately, hasn’t it Mica? Aside from the squirrels, I mean. They’ve been kinda active. It’s been hot though, and aside from sleepin’ in the sun when J will let me and doin’ our nightly neighborhood patrols, there’s not much to do except chew on bones and sleep. I like bones though, and I like sleep…

Mica sez: But not crickets or ravens, eh Murph? That cricket in the back garden is sure a loud little thing. And you won’t even go out while he’s chirpin’! Then again, you don’t like the dark either, so maybe the cricket just makes it worse. He really is loud. When the back door’s open, you can hear that little fellow anywhere in the house.

Murphy sez: I’m not sure what he looks like, but I don’t want to get anywhere near that cricket. I think if I see him, I’ll eat him. That oughta shut him up. If J would let me catch those pesky squirrels and the mourning doves that seem to be everywhere, she wouldn’t hardly have to feed me. Win-win, right Mica?

Mica sez: Yeah…I feel the same way about ducks. But J must have her reasons. She’s probably afraid you’ll catch something from those wild animals. I notice you didn’t mention the crows though. Then again, we don’t normally see crows on our walks, so maybe you forgot about ‘em?

Murphy sez: Hard to forget about those big black birds, but no, I don’t see those outside. J decided to watch Game of Thrones, and they use ravens (of all things) to communicate! Can you imagine? They sound horrible, and I really don’t like them at all. But I don’t really like the sound of people yelling and swords clashing either. Don’t know what she sees in that show, but we’re only on the first season. At least she watches some on her laptop with her headphones. I think she should do that more often.

Murphy_Tongue

Mica sez: You know they’re planning to watch a movie with a lot of explosions in it on the fourth of July, right? It’s to cover up the ‘splosions here in town, but it’s still gonna be kind of loud. Or really loud. But no ravens, I don’t think. And no swords either. So you might get lucky with that one.

Murphy sez: Game of NOISE, they should call it. Sheesh. Kinda like all the car doors that will be slamming outside with the neighbor’s garage sale this weekend. I suppose you’ll be barking at that, like you did with the kid who wasn’t tall enough to read the “Please do not knock” sign on the door earlier this week. That one gave B a good scare, ‘cause J wasn’t home yet, and I had ta make sure you behaved myself. That was a little tense, but I’m glad you decided not to fight me on it this time.

Mica sez: Yeah, yeah. I backed down and let you have all the fun so B could safely open the door. The kid still had to wait for J to get his ball out of the backyard later, ‘cause B was a bit frazzled and annoyed by that point, but no one got hurt, so that’s the important part.

Murphy sez: You think J will take that sign off the door now? I mean, we did the right thing, and didn’t kill each other…

Mica sez: Somehow I don’t think that sign’s coming down for awhile. J says it’s actually kind of handy to keep the riff-raff away. Except it would be nice for the mail man to be able to knock again. On account of he’s bringing our new Pupjoy delivery sometime this week…

Murphy sez: Yay for new toys! I saw they brought some home from Costco last night too. Wonder when we’ll get those? This weekend? I just tossed another dragon behind B’s chair. Do you think we’ll get bully sticks Saturday morning too? Or bones this week? Saturday mornings are so fun. I can’t wait!

Mica sez: It is pretty fun getting something new to chew on, isn’t it Murph?

Murphy sez: Hey Mica – where are the pictures we’re supposed to put in this post? I think we’re about done, but I don’t see any ill-u-stra-shuns to add.

Mica sez: J was totally slacking this week, so we’ll have to throw in a few old ones. But she’s working on a way we might be able to take our own pictures and videos, so that would be cool, right? Maybe in a few weeks. We’ll just have to remind her next week. We need new pics for the blog, J!

Murphy sez: Oh man…I am all over that. Just gimme a camera!

DogBacks


Tune in next week for more Murphy & Mica! Or subscribe to get us in your inbox – use the subscription link in the right sidebar and pick “Gone to the Dogs”. Like these posts? Consider a donation to our favorite charities – the shelters that helped us when we needed it most! 

Murphy’s shelter: Donate to The Rimrock Humane Society
Mica’s shelter: Donate to Help for Homeless Pets

Walk for HHP or your local shelter with the Walk for a Dog app!

Gone to the Dogs: Yes, Indeed. We’re Walkin…

Our Walkin' Gear...

             Our Walkin’ Gear…

Murphy sez: So, that little girl who petted us the other night while we were out walkin’ was pretty cute, wasn’t she Mica? I’m glad we get to go walking earlier now. I don’t like walking after dark. And we stay on the sidewalk more, too. Easier on my feet.

Mica sez: She was pretty cute…and not much bigger than us. But I’m surprised you even noticed, Murph. You were raring to keep on truckin’. You sure have more get-up-and-go lately. Though I notice you still kinda collapse when we get home, while I’m chewin on bones and stuff.

Murphy sez: This new route we’ve got is better. I know J thinks it’s more boring, ‘cause we don’t get to see all the pretty yards and go zig-zagging through the neighborhood, but now that we stay on busy streets, we don’t see loose dogs much even if we go earlier – and the only ones we’ve seen all week have been down side-streets and across the street from us.

MurphyHead

Mica sez: People do tend to keep a better eye on their pups when there’s traffic involved, thank goodness. And it is kind of nice walking in the sunshine, when the sidewalks aren’t too hot. If we could just get people to stop breaking bottles along 17th Street, that would be nice. So much glass – gotta watch where we step! But I think we’ve both done a good job of avoiding it so far, eh Murph?

Murphy sez: Yep. The glass and the extra motorcycles are the worst part – but I’m getting used to the motorcycles. It’s mainly the dirt bikes that drive me nuts. Well, and those big rumbly ones. They should all die – so noisy! They make me anxious…and you know what happens when I’m anxious. But I have to keep walking when we’re out, so that’s good. At home that might make me think about chewing my leg…

Mica sez: I noticed. Good thing J’s on it when that biker visits the people across the street. I don’t know why they have to keep that bike running so long when they aren’t actually riding it, but it seems like forever. I don’t really bark at motorbikes though. I prefer cars and people. When we’re not walking, anyway. No need to bark when we’re out explorin’!

Murphy sez: You’re funny when we get near sprinklers. It’s like you think you’re gonna melt or something. I don’t especially like them either, but I don’t mind walking on the damp pavement, at least. And I don’t have to pee every five feet either. Geez, Mica. Do you really have ta pee on every power pole and mailbox along the way? I mean, I mark my route too, but I try to keep things in check…

Mica sez: Sprinklers are evil. And wet paws are just nasty. You’d think with your sensitive footsies there that you’d be more understanding, dude. And yes, I mark a lot. I’m older. I have to remind myself where I’ve been in case I ever need to find my way home.

MicaHead

Murphy sez: I think you just enjoy it. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but…well, it is kind of crass. Especially with people driving by and watching.

Mica sez: Nah…most of ‘em aren’t even looking at us, Murph. J says they’re looking down at their phone, or talking on it, or reaching for something else. It’s kind of a wonder they get anywhere like that. Me, I like to stop and smell the roses. That’s my distraction. Maybe take a taste or two – or I would if J would let me. Mmm…roses.

Murphy sez: J is kind of strict about that no-eating thing on our walks. I mean, there was a perfectly good biscuit on the sidewalk last night, and she told us to “leave it” and just kept walking! Wasted food, I tell you what. It’s sad.

Mica sez: Yeah, she worries too much. But we do stay safe, mostly, so maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

Murphy sez: I thought maybe she should get some pictures while we’re out walking – you know, of the stealth bunnies and any dogs we have to avoid. Maybe even people we meet…most of ‘em are very nice, and tell us all the time how pretty we are. But she says she has her hands full with both of us. We are kind of a handful, I guess. But we behave pretty well, and heel most of the time.

Mica sez: My personal favorites are the people who wonder how she can handle us all by herself. We do weigh more than she does, when you combine our weight. But the prong collars remind us we’re with her when we see a bunny or cat or anything small and fuzzy, so we don’t pull her down. The rest of the time, we’re good, and she’s pretty strong.

Murphy sez: And she’s our fearless leader – of course we walk nice for her! I did hear her mumble something about a collar cam the other day…how fun would that be? We could take the pictures while we’re walking!

Mica sez: Sounds like it could be a pain in the neck to me – have you seen the shape/size of those things? But we’ll see. J does like her gadgets. I’m game if she is…

BoneTired


Tune in next week for more Murphy & Mica! Or subscribe to get us in your inbox – use the subscription link in the right sidebar and pick “Gone to the Dogs”. Like these posts? Consider a donation to our favorite charities – the shelters that helped us when we needed it most! 

Murphy’s shelter: Donate to The Rimrock Humane Society
Mica’s shelter: Donate to Help for Homeless Pets

Walk for HHP or your local shelter with the Walk for a Dog app!