Monday, October 4, 2010


I am still alive!  There have been some very big changes in my life over the past month and it is about time I did a post.  I am now living by myself and am down to *just* two dogs.  Marley and Rafferty.  Dante has decided to live in luxury with my parents and keep my mom company.  Hugo left with his dad for a different life path and Becky has headed to her very awesome high school raiser.  It feels so weird to only have two dogs after always having 3-4 for the last 3.5 years.   

What does this mean?  Well for starters I am no longer involved in training Hugo for Search and Rescue.   He has started down a great path and I wish him well!  I still plan to stay involved with SAR work, though I may take the winter off.   Marley and I are hoping to start tracking training this month.  Marley may not be the ideal tracking dog, but we will have fun and see where it goes.  Rafferty has 2 months left with me and then he heads off to college for his formal training.  I know he will have fun and be amazing at whatever career he chooses!  I do plan on getting another puppy when Rafferty leaves.

As for me I am taking this time to find myself and delight in the simple joys of life.  Work continues to be challenging and fulfilling, my place out in the country is perfect for me right now, and I have re-discovered and made some amazing new friendships.   I traveled to the GDB homecoming event last weekend and was once again reminded just how amazing these partnerships every step of the way.  I will have a bigger post (with pictures) for the Homecoming event and Becky's new raiser.  

Always remember

Don't wait for the storm to pass....learn  to dance in the rain.

Rafferty with his shiny black coat and golden eyes pants after a hike.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

All the Colors of the Rainbow

Rafferty, Snickers, and Becky sit in front of a stone wall.  They go in order from darkest to, chocolate, and yellow.
Rafferty gives me pleading eyes as I take yet more pictures.  Rafferty, Snickers, and Becky all sit in a line.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Becky Update

While scrolling through old posts I realized I have not said much about Becky lately.  She is such a good girl and has been a blast to raise so far.  Of course, like every other puppy, she has taught me new things and made me happy to have a girl pup around again.  She turns 6 months in just 2 weeks, two days after our big evaluation with our CFR.  Becky is still slated to be transferred to the high school raising program at the end of September.  She is fun, resilient, and smart: this girl has a bright future ahead of her.

Some pictures from the past 3.5 months...

[Baby Becky, about 11-12 weeks old, hangs out in her crate, preferring to be under her mat rather than on it.]
[Barley legal Becky hanging out at the Farmers market.]

[Becky doing her frog legs sit]

[First Trax ride and Becky is stoked!]

[Becky tried after a big outing]

[Becky hanging out at the car dealership waiting for my car to be fixed.]

[Becky being such a good girl on an outing!]

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Rafferty

My baby boy!
First Bath!
Recovering from his neuter.  Just waking up!
Checking out the snow.
In Oregon for Millie's graduation.
A more rustic bath!
In San Francisco!

Friday, August 13, 2010

New Puppies!

Yesterday the very wonderful Guide Dogs for the Blind Puppy Truck made a stop in Salt Lake to hand out puppies to their new raisers. Our club has been pretty small for most of the year, but with two new pups we are starting to grow again in size.  Two wonderful raisers who had taken breaks after their last dogs got to find out their new pups names!


Rhyme (Simon/Melody)


Crosby (Jay/Noleta)

And of course my post wouldn't be complete without a quick peak at the newest celebrity in town.  Introducing.....


He is being raised by Megan!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Muir Woods

This is probably my favorite picture from Muir Woods.  We went there on the Friday before Funday.  Rafferty and I were just walking along through the mid-afternoon shadows when we came across this perfect beam of light.  It highlighted the fence and trees surrounding it, giving Rafferty a unique light in which to pose.  I love the curve of his neck and how he is turned:  he has such a regal expression on his face.  Oh how I love my boy!  The news that he will be staying with me until at least December was met with cheers of joy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Dog Days of Summer

Here are some thoughts on summer as told by my dogs...

1. Relax and just enjoy the sun on your face.

Marley sits in the shade with his face in the sun.  He is panting and has his eyes halfway closed
2. Make time to hang out with old and new friends.

Paris, Becky, and Rafferty sit in front of an old wooden cabin.  Paris and becky have their tongues out while Rafferty has his mouth closed.
3. Turn bath time into fun time.

A wet Marley runs down a path bordered by sagebrush with a spray of sunlit water droplets surrounding him.
4. Be enthusiastic

 Becky runs through the dirt.  All 4 feet are in the air and she has a crazy look on her face
5. Share your stuff.

 Hugo stands at the edge of a pond with a yellow frisbee in his mouth as he waits for Paris to get out of the water.
6. Go for a swim.

 Paris swims in the pond.  Just her head and upper back is visible in the water
7. Take a nap in the shade.

Hugo lays in the shade, frisbee between his paws, with his eyes closed.
8. Try your hardest to get dirty!

Marley runs through the dirt with water and mud up in the air.
9. Take a walk and enjoy the great outdoors.

Backlit by the sun Paris wanders through a field of soft wild grasses.
10. Do something you enjoy with a friend.

 Two dogs swim with a ray of sun lighting the otherwise dark water.

My New Place

Well the last two months have just been a whorl-wind.  First we had two back-to-back trips, one to Colorado, the other to Yellowstone for Search and Rescue Training.  Next it was time to get ready to move.  My work just opened a new rescue facility where all of our animals will be housed initially and where the dogs will stay at night.  I lucked out and got one of the caretaker apartments...but that meant trying to move while also opening a brand new facility and still keeping the adoption center running!  Needless to say, it has been a fast ride!
[A large, red and stone, barn-type building with wooden decks sits in front of dusky mountains.  It is surrounded by sage-brush]
We are now all moved in and enjoying the peace and quiet after having lived in town for many years.  The property sits on 100+ acres, so Marley is in his element.  With so much room to run and no where to really run to he and Hugo are having a blast!

We live in a one bedroom apartment over the 16,000 square foot Ranch.  My favorite part so far is being able to use one of the 3! dog baths!!!  Makes grooming go sooo much quicker with 4 dogs! 
[A far away view of the Ranch building.  Many acres of sagebrush surround the building.]
 The views are pretty amazing: "Million Dollar Views" as they are commonly called here.  But it is pretty isolated.  My commute is much longer now.  No more  quick runs to the grocery store!  All in all it has been really fun so far and I hope it continues to be!
[A dirt road winds its way through sagebrush with sunlit hills in the background.]
[Shadowy/blue mountains sit in the distance under a light purple and pink cloudy sky.]
[The sun sets behind a hill turning it to black.  The clouds are a darker purple and touched with pink.]
[A dirt road winds through sagebrush under a light blue sky.  The  distant Wasatch mountains are dusky in the evening light.]
Even some of the weeds out here are pretty!  
[A thistle blossom goes from green on the outside to crimson and then white in the very center.]

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Update #1

Well my goal of posting everyday in March has kinda gone out the window.  We have had some busy and fun weekends the last three weeks.  Here is the first of many updates!

 [Hugo pulls up on the rope on his orange toy as it floats in the water]

Two weekends ago we headed out to Colorado to spend the weekend at a friend's Ranch.  Marley and Hugo were the lucky pair who got to come along.  A couple of days spent romping in the pond, running with all the other dogs, and watching all the horses, donkeys, and assorted other farm animals left them nice and tired.  Here are some of the pictures from the trip!

[Marley doing his best stare down as he waits for Hugo to come close enough to pounce on]
[Hugo swims through the water with his eyes bright and full of excitement as he carries his orange Ruff Wear toy]
[Marley stands in the water while looking into the distance.  Water streams off his coat]
[A close up shot of Hugo swimming back after retrieving his orange toy.  His eyes are partway shut and there is water on his face]
[A close up shot of Marley looking pensively off into the distance.  The wind ruffles the hair on his ears]
[Howdy, a black and white Border Collie, lays down in the grass staring at what he is getting ready to herd next.  In the case it was the group of running children.  His ears are perked and he is practicing the 'border collie' eye]

Friday, May 14, 2010

Funny Friday

What's that you say mom...time for fun? With a tub, some water, and shampoo....?
 Rafferty sits in an old claw footed tub in a field.  He is cocking his head as if wondering a question.
Ug, well I am pretty sure that means a bath...which is so NOT fun.

Rafertty sitting in the same tub, but this time his head is lowered and he has his eyes narrowed as if annoyed.
Silly people and their fancy dinners.  I thought that dead squirell smelled just fine to me!