Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dogs Catching up and Catching On

Look at that deer!  Oh, she looks calm and peaceful now but she's part of a herd that harasses me and Caesar!  I find tracks in the snow right down our driveway!  The other day, she charged at me.  Well, I'd gotten out and tracked her down but she ran right up to me.  I high tailed it out of there!  But these are some of our neighbors.
     My mom's been so busy she hasn't let me on the computer lately.  So let me tell you that we're moved in, sort of.  Boxes are still in various places my mom says they shouldn't be.  But I'm really liking my new bed and Caesar has a new bed too.  We sleep right next to our mom and dad.
      And get this:  PB, the cat, has become an indoor cat!  He used the litter box for the first time this week and my mom danced around the sun room.  'Course, he'd peed on the guest bed when my "sister" Katy and her husband were here from Florida.  And he peed on my mom and dad's bed and my dad caught him in the act!  Mom says it's lucky he's still alive.
      But she went to Pet Express, got a litter box and special litter and he's been using it!  I'm glad because he's my pal and he's always wanted to live inside with us.  Now he is.
       We've also been seeing more visitors.  The cable guy has come, the garbage truck, the mail man comes right up to the door and rings the bell!  Today UPS came right up to our door!  My mom is" agog with convenience" she says.  I'm also having some ear problems and the trip to the vet was only 15 minutes instead of an hour so that's good too.
       I've met a couple of the neighbors and their dogs.  They're nice people.  Today when my mom took a box of goodies (she makes home made cracker jacks) to a neighbor, they gave us a plate of cookies.  My dad had one; my uncle Ellis (here helping hook up the ice maker) ate one and I.....ate all the rest before they noticed!  Wow, I love Christmas, don't you?  I hope you have a merry one.  My friends Rex, Charlie and Toby will be here on Saturday.  That makes five dogs under one roof.  I can hardly wait.  Woof!  Woof!  Bo

PB, newly-reformed and now, an indoor cat!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Off to Aurora!

Today I learned that "toss it" means something different to humans than I thought it did.  When my dad says "Let's toss it!" to me, he's throwing a favorite toy for me to go catch.  But around here it means "put it in a sack and out of sight."
     So far, they haven't gone through my toy basket and tossed anything.  I'd better start hiding my favorites just in case.  Sometimes my mom washes my favorites and that's almost as bad as not having it at all.  Almost.
      But I adapt.  That's what a dog does.
      This afternoon, though, things have changed a bit.  No more packing (we ran out of boxes my mom says) and we're off to Aurora, (my favorite thing!).  We get to run in a big yard while my mom talks with people at the museum there.  I've been visiting that museum since I was a puppy.  Well, I don't get to go inside but I know all the people there, Jan, Elizabeth, Patrick, Annette, and Pam (but she retired!).  Lots of board members, too.  They're all good to me.  I haven't seen them since May for Emma's Day.  Tomorrow, my mom will be at the Kraus House which is also known as Emma's house greeting people for the holiday tour.  You all come!  Maybe I'll get to meet you!
       Have a great weekend!  Woof!  Woof!  Bo

Friday, November 12, 2010

Veterans Day the day after

I tried to get up here early but my mom's office looked like an explosion of boxes and books and things she said "were going to the Salvation Army."  I figured I'd stay out of the way...I didn't want to be one of those things that got packed!
                My mom said it was Veterans Day yesterday when humans celebrate the end of a long a terrible time of war.  It's different from Memorial Day when we remember fallen soldiers and friends who have gone.  (My friend Hershey passed on to that big rainbow bridge just last week.  His parents have a hole in their heart).  Mom says Memorial Day is a more somber time but Veterans Day is a time to sing because there was peace in the land.  Mom says there isn't peace in the land today but it's still a good thing to sing for and we can remember veterans, too.  My dad is a veteran.  He was in the Navy.  He looks pretty good for someone who turned 80, I think!  He took me pheasant hunting just last week.  It was cool.  
                We didn't see any parades or anything.  We were packing.  Mom gave Caesar and me new hoofs to chew on so we'd get out of the way. 
                Mom and Matt are sorting books and coughing from the dust on the Zane Grey novels or the books on writing or the books marked "I haven't read these yet."  She said when her aunt moved that she had boxes labeled "Books I have only read once."  There's hardly a place to lay down in that room.  Caesar can fit under her desk but not me!
                My dad's back is hurting him quite a bit so he's resting but that doesn't stop my mom from packing stuff around him.  There's hardly room on the bed for me to lay down either! 
                My friend Simon came to visit, too.  He brought his mom and they've been packing and packing.  Simon is Ceasar's brother.  They're little and I watch over them.
                Oh, now my mom's sat down and she looks sad.  She's looking at a picture of her dad, she said, one taken when he was a young man standing beside his airplane.  He learned to fly when she was little.  Then she found a picture of him shortly before he died and she read a card she'd saved sent to her by her "groupies" she called them because they called themselves that.  She says she's not making any headway in her office even with the dozens of books marked "Powell's" which I guess is someplace in Portland. Her friend Nancy is going to take books there and get cards so mom can buy more books once we're "moved."
                Moved.  That's the word describing all this chaos and emotion with tears and yes, a little shouting too, and then hugs and apologies and my mom and dad hold each other and say, "It'll be all right.  It's a transition."  I'm not sure what a transition is but it sure seems to be making them behave in strange ways.  Why, my mom isn't even getting up early to write!  She writes when she "takes a packing break."  I wonder how long this will go on....
                Have any of you been in a transition?  How does it end?????   Bo, Woof, Woof.  (See, even I'm confused.  I think I'm supposed to Woof, Woof before I sign my name!)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Something's Going On

                She started talking to the pear tree, something about how she'd miss it and remembering out loud when she first noticed it, sitting on the porch swing.  She usually talks to me, my mom does, but today, it was the tree.
                Some pretty strange things have been going on around here.  There are boxes everywhere and I smell a inky smell when she writes on the boxes.  When she types on the computer, I don't smell a thing.
  I try to stay out of the way so Caesar, PeeBee and I sit on the river deck and look out (PeeBee's is on my back, of course, his favorite thing).  Every now and then she walks out and stands there staring then she reaches down and scratches my head and says "It's going to be all right, Bo.  It will."  I don't know if she's making a promise to me or to herself.
                This past week we drove to a place with juniper trees and sagebrush and my dad pushed a button on the car's visor and a huge door opened up to this massive kennel.  Or at least, I thought it was a kennel because it was all cement.  But he drove the car in there!  Mom said it would be nice to have a garage so  guess that's what it is. 
                Up a few steps and we were in a big empty house with wood floors (my favorite thing!) and into a room where the sun flowed in like water onto cool tiles, warming them up.  I could lay on my belly and look out onto a big green lawn on both sides of that room.  Caesar can see outside from those sunny room doors and he stands barely six inches from his belly to the floor. I can see without having to put my paws up on the sills.  What a place!
                My mom and dad walked around, picked up some papers, turned up the heat, walked around some more, opened curtains then brought the suitcase inside along with two sleeping bags and a pretty pitiful pad that looked like the egg cartons my mom throws away. Still, when they put those sleeping bags together and went to bed on that pad, they were at the same level as Caesar and me and we curled our backs to them, wondering, what they were doing taking us to this place of new scents, different floors, low windows to the outside and a big deck without the view of the river but of craggy trees, sage, bunch grasses and air missing river and wheat but scents of something new.  High desert, my mom called it.  Mountains, my dad said. " Coming back," they both said and they sounded happy but they both had tears in their eyes too.
                It's all very strange.  I can't wait to tell PeeBee when we get back home.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Letting a Cat Post

Dear Mrs. Kirkpatrick,

I was trying to comment to Bo’s blog but I don’t think it worked—probably my typing.  It’s hard with such short toes. 

Would you please tell him that I really liked his telling about cat cafes.  Cool.  As he knows, we have a sort of “moveable feast” here:  I ask for food, one or the other of Them brings the dish out, I eat—that’s the Best part—, then They pick it up Old Yellow or Mean Black, the scroungy cats down the hill, don’t get my food.  Makes a guy dizzy.  Please give my best to Bo and Caesar, even if they are dogs.

Yours very truly,

Duddie The Cat

Ok, so I let a cat post today.  Sorry his picture didn't come through but what can I say...maybe cats should be read and not seen.  Woof!  Woof!  Bo

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Greece, Cats and Dogs

cats leaving the Dutch restaurant on Crete so my mom and dad can sit down and eat
dog resting on marble in Athens....what a cool place to get a belly scratch

 There you have it!  I haven't blogged for a month because my parents were in Greece and what do they bring back?  A photograph of a dog and cats!
      The dog is alive.  My parents are eating at an outdoor restaurant and this dog greets everyone walking down the street by rolling over and asking for a belly rub.  I didn't ask my mom if she rubbed his belly...I mean, that would be disloyal if she did, wouldn't it?  He looks pretty happy and I bet that marble was really cool.
     I was sure happy when they got home.  Caesar stayed with his brother while they were gone and I stayed with Matt and Melissa and their three dogs, Rex, Toby and Charlie. They're real good to me but being home is just better.
    Now about the cat picture.  My mom took lots of cat pictures because cats were everywhere on Crete, an island in the Aegean Sea where they spent a week in a little village.  They liked the restaurant owned by a Dutch family and these are the chairs outside where the cats have full control.  I guess there are "Cat Cafes" around the village where the cats are fed.  Visitors to Crete are asked to please not feed the cats so they'll always go to their own cat cafe.  That way, local people collect them if they're sick and take them to a vet and they have them neutered.  (Been there, done that!)  Cats lounge in window sills, sleep on chairs and my mom said every morning when they got up, there'd be a cat looking in the window at them.
     I picked this picture hoping you can see the cat under the chair AND the one leaving the other chair.  What a great place to visit, really, with cats and dogs all around. Plus my parents must have done a lot of eating because most of the photographs are of cats in restaurants!  You can see yet another shot if you subscribe to my mom's Story Sparks newsletter (see and pictures of Greece too on her words of encouragement blog on her website.
     PB, my yellow tabby buddy who sleeps on my back when I rest on the deck, missed mom and dad too but at least I could play with him when we stayed at the ranch.  Otherwise, I was in Wasco where Matt and Melissa live. They have a nice place but no fenced in yard so I have to go out on a leash when I'm there. Vacations are nice for some people but they're not too cool for me.  I like my family close at hand.  So glad they're back!  Hope your family is only a lap away.  Woof!  Woof!  Bo

Friday, September 17, 2010

Friends and vacations

Well here are two of my pals that I've never met.  They're like "pen" pals only their pens are crates they might sleep in at night.  Here's the thing:  they're the buddies of friends of my mom.  Barkley, on the left, lives in Wisconsin and Bart, on the right, lives in Washington state.  Don't you love their eyes?  I mean, a dog can tell by the eyes if the dog they meet and sniff will be a friend or foe.  Both of these would be friends.  We were all going to meet this fall along with Coco from Canada (I'm hoping for a photograph of her soon!) when people took some vacation time...well, maybe I was only going to get to meet the people and not their buddies.  But plans change.  That happens in a dog's world too and you just have to be flexible or as my mom would say, "you have to be able to change directions quickly without a lot of friction"  just like a coping saw.

My parents are taking another vacation!  They're off to Greece for three weeks with out either me or Caesar!!!!  I supposed they'll bring back some silly dog thing, a toy the shape of the Acropolis or Delphi or something when all I really want is them back.  But they deserve a good vacation too.  It's celebrating my dad's 80th birthday.  I hope he has lots more years to play with me.  Caesar will visit his brothers in Salem and I'll be here with my pals Toby, Charley and Rex.  They like being able to crawl all over me...but they have to push PB, the cat, off my back to get on top.  And they do!

I hope you play hard, eat well and sleep often.  Maybe that's what I hope for my parents on their vacation, too.  Be well.  Woof!  Woof!  Bo

Monday, August 30, 2010

My Dad's photograph and My latest dog connections

  My dad won a blue ribbon at the Sherman County Fair.  No, it wasn't a picture of me.  Here it is.  My mom used it in her Story Sparks newsletter (you can sign up at too but that was before we knew it had won the blue ribbon.  My dad's a modest guy and didn't want my mom to bother entering it.  But see, it's a perfect shot with those clouds and the harvested wheat field and windmills.  The area in the front is called a scab patch.  It can't be farmed but let me tell you, it harbors great things like pheasants and little lizards and mice and all kinds of intriguing things.
    My mom left me at home for a week with my dad while she had book signings and events on the Oregon Coast.  That was kind of hard, to see her drive off with Caesar and not me.  But my dad's back was hurting him so I kept him company at home.
    One of the places my mom stayed on the coast was near Tillamook on the Trask River.  One of the first books my mom read when she knew she was moving to Oregon from Wisconsin umpteen years ago was a historical novel called Trask.  So she thought it was fun to see where that story was set.  She stayed with a writer and artist friend who had two dogs, too. Molly and Hobi.  My mom thought Hobi was a great name as she had already had a dog in her work in progress (that what she calls a book she's writing) named Hobi but she spelled it Ho-Bee instead.  Here's Hobi's picture.  Maybe one day I'll get to meet her.  Molly wasn't interest in a portrait shot. Both dogs are rescue dogs which I think is a wonderful thing.  Not that they had to BE rescued but that there are people willing to be kind and patient and let the bad things that happened to them go away.  My mom says memories aren't meant to hold us hostage but to transform us in the present.  I like that and I'm real glad she knows people who take in rescue dogs.  Maybe one day she'll take on in, too.
       And how can I forget to introduce you to Jasmine.  She's a Samoyed who belongs to my mom and dad's faux niece and nephew.  They call them faux because they're not really their niece and nephew but Cindi's mom and dad are like my dad's brother and sister-in-law and Carol is one of my mom's best friends.  Cindi and Joe live in Redmond.  It's hard to believe, but I outweigh Jasmine by about 30 pounds.  She's all hair!  But like me, she easily accommodates, and is submissive.  Who needs a fight?  No shots of me in this one but Caesar is looking good!  You can just see the edge of Joe in the corner.  They're good guys and I loved the chipmunks in their yard!  Jasmine has to be "furminated" every now and then because she has so much hair and and Cindi says the groomer comes out wearing goggles and coveralls, like something from ET because of all that wonderful hair.  I don't shed but Caesar does.  It's good that we're all different, isn't it?
     That's my latest dog update.  Remember, it's a dog's world, really.  Life is good.  I hope yours is too.  Woof!  Woof!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Poetry, a pinch of God

     My mom read an article in the Eugene Register Guard the other day and it included a poem by Alicia Suskin Ostriker, a poet from New Jersey.  How someone from the east coast can capture my life in the West is just one miracle of literature, I guess.  She wrote a poem that includes a dog's point of view.  The poem, The Blessing of the Old Woman, the Tulip, and the Dog made my mom smile.  Here's the part she said made her think of me:

    "To be blessed
    said the dog
    is to have a  pinch
    of God
    inside you
    and all the other
    dogs can smell it"

  See, we were given these great noses...I think mine is rather attractive, don't you?  We sniff history with our noses and check other dogs out and assess everything:  "Can I eat it?  Will it hurt me?"  The two big questions of life.
    Anyway, I sniffed out a problem in the yard the other day.  I had all three little dogs in my life hanging around, running up and down the yard, barking and laughing  (that's Caesar, Charlie and Toby) when I realized the danger.  Not far from where I'm laying in this picture, I smelled then heard then saw the rattlesnake, all coiled and ready to strike.
      Well, I knew enough not to try to jab at it, not to get to close.  I barked but it didn't slink away.  It stayed to mark its territory I guess but not in my back yard!!!   I started to bark my steady, warning, get-your-butt-out-here-now!- sort of bark.  And before long, Matt, my brother, came out with the pistol and took care of the snake.  The little dogs all danced around me, happy, happy and Matt and his wife Melissa gave me lots of pats and hugs for being the guardian dog that I am.  I knew they'd tell my mom and dad when they got home and they gave me even more hugs and pats.  I had a pinch of God in side me that day and all the other little dogs could smell it!
    I hope you have a pinch of God in your day too!  Keep sniffing!  Woolf!  Woolf!  Bo

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Humming birds and Bat man

Look close.  That' a hummingbird being held by my cousin Norm as he's known to his friends.  He's in Minnesota and his family has a greenhouse.  This hummingbird flew into it when the door was open and got caught in a spider web.  Norm and his mom helped him out and he was a bit dazed but before long he headed off into the Minnesota summer.  Kinda of a cute photograph don't you think?  That big bat man shadow behind him makes him look like he's being protected.  Norm is interested in law enforcement so being protective is something fitting for him too.
     Norm has three dogs when he comes home to visit his family.  Hairy, Josa and Gertie.  His family are Packer fans though they live in Minnesota.  Last year with all the hoopla about Bret Favre becoming a Viking, they taught Josa a trick.  They'd say, "Would you rather be a dead or a Viking?" and Josa would roll over and play dead!
     I don't know any tricks at all.  Oh, I can tug on a toy with Caesar at the other end.  Not much of a trick in that.  I can carry around the green garden pitcher that is now mine because of the holes I chewed in the spout.  When my mom waters the plants with the new watering can she lets me drink from the spout.  I like that but it isn't much of a trick.
    My most favorite thing to do though is play in the river.  I jump in there four, five, six times a day when it's 105 degrees here as it was last week.  Oh, and this week, before the cows got here, I jumped in their watering trough.  I guess that's a trick getting in and out of it.  We long-haired dogs in hot weather need water to relax in.  I bet those of you with swimming pools know just what I mean!
    Anyway, I hope you're staying cool this summer.  Don't get caught in any spider webs unless you've got a big friend to help you out.  Woof!  Woof!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Friends and rattlesnakes

  Here's my friend Hershey.  He lives in Wisconsin so we're really just computer pals.  We haven't actually met but you don't have to sniff someone to know whether they're your friends or not.  Association works and Hershey is associated with the Kralls who are long time friends of my mom and dad.  They live in Northern Wisconsin and Hershey's dad likes to hunt like my dad does.  Hersh doesn't do it much anymore.  I don't either. You can see by his white whiskers that he's older than me.  That white circle in the middle of his head...that's the flash from the camera but hey, it looks sort of cool with his white eyebrows.
    I had an adventure yesterday I didn't even know about until after it was over.  I helped my Dad and Matt put a suction line into the river (it's been in flood stage and the usual suction line wasn't available so they had to adapt).  All of a sudden my dad says, "Whoa!"  And Matt picks up a shovel and just like that he's holding a three foot long rattlesnake that had crawled right underneath me.  I guess he was looking for shade and my hairy belly provided it.
        Today my mom and dad will take Caesar to the vet.  He got something in his ear and he's acting crazy.  He crawled into the closet where my mom's shoes are (a dog could get lost in there and not come out for weeks if he had a mind to chew!) and hid there until she found him. Tthen he squealed when she picked him up and touched his ear.  So off they'll  go.  I sure hope it isn't anything too serious.  I have lots of ear problems myself and had a cheat grass break my eardrum when I was only eight weeks old.  (My mom thinks that's why I don't always come when she calls me but hey, sometimes a dog just wants to do what a dog wants to do).
   Have a good day and don't forget to tell your friends howdy.
Woof!  Woof!  Bo

Monday, May 17, 2010

Bo in Aurora

  My mom has kept me from the keyboard for months!  She's been working on her latest novel, The Daughter's Walk, and when she's not doing that, she's traveling promoting her current projects.  Lately, Caesar and I have gotten to go along.  Saturday, the day before my fourth birthday, we went to Aurora.  I love that little town.  My mom does too.  Here's a shot of us all, at the Community  cemetery in Aurora south of Portland, Oregon.
   I know, you may not like cemeteries but all that grass is cool!  And the stones....well, my mom wouldn't let me well, do my thing on the stones or trees but I did get to walk around the grassy areas.  Emma Giesy, a woman my mom wrote about in her Change and Cherish series  is buried there and visiting her grave was part of the program at Aurora.  So here we are!
    Once she finishes her revisions, I'll get back on here more and write about spring and summer on the Homestead.  Meanwhile, that's me leaning into my dad.  It's a good, good day to be a dog.  Woof!  Woof!  Bodacious Bo

Monday, March 15, 2010

Friends of many features

While my mom swam with a dolphin (you can see the two of them on my mom's blog at my dad took pictures of these parrots.  I guess they're parrots. They aren't pheasants I know that. Anyway, it's a little disconcerting to know that my parents were looking at other creatures besides Caesar and me.
   I think they thought about us though while they were in Mexico.  They brought home some doggie toys from Cabo san Jose but they looked suspiciously like something purchased at Fred Meyer right here in the states.  When they got back they were a little distressed because their car had been broken into.  Thieves stole this woman that talks to them out of a small box when they're driving.  My mom says she saved their marriage so I hope they get another woman in a box soon!
    Caesar stayed with his brother while our parents were gone.  I stayed here on the ranch with my human brother Matt and his family and their pals Rex, Toby and Charlie.  I've talked about them before.  Anyway, they were good company but I missed Caesar and my parents.
    A few days after they got back I pulled a muscle in my leg. I ran right into a post if you can believe that!  Looking up at the stars.  I wish sometimes I could talk and not just type but naturally with a pulled leg muscle I couldn't very well type even, to tell my parents what had happened.  Instead I lifted my foot, asked for help going up the stairs and in the morning when it still didn't feel good, I went up on the side of the hill and layed down.  I never go up there without PB or Caesar.  But when PB my feline pal started up the hill I let him know that napping on my back wasn't going to work this time.
    My mom called the vet, Cari Wade in Condon, OR (where my mom says three Nobel Prize winners have lived.  She says there is something in the water there so I always have a good long drink when I go to Condon -- which then also requires a good long...well, you know.)  My dad drove me and for the first time my mom didn't come along.  Something about a line that was dead? with her book?
      The vet worked her magic on me.  She seemed to know it was a pulled muscle and she gave me a shot and then she trimmed my nails.  Such a sweet human with a little human playing on the floor outside and another something, maybe a human, being packed inside her shirt where you can't see it or hear it.  Just sometimes I guess it kicks and the vet notices.
    So with a shot and a couple of days of pills I'm doing just great.
    So, do you like to go to the vet?  I really, really do.
    Anyway, I liked the picture of the birds. They acted like friends and that's a good thing.  I like birds in general. After all, I'm a bird dog so I guess enjoying this picture isn't surprising at all.
     Have a great week.  Woof!  Woof!