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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Exciting Announcement!

Many, many thanks to Jeff and Vaughan at Halogen Web Studios for their excellent service, product, advice, design, and most of all, patience. This has been a long process but was very much worth it! We're so happy with the website. Please check it out and let us know what you think.

North Woods Garden Update

My container garden. I won't make the mistake of calling it my "pot" garden any longer. That gets a few eyebrows lifting.

Container garden - citronella, lemongrass, romaine lettuce, fancy lettuce, lemon thyme, mint, rosemary, sage and lavender.

Stair step container garden - lettuce, carrots, beets and zucchini all the way on top.

Four kinds of organic, heirloom tomatoes in the foreground, along with my Aussie sidekick.

It's looking like summer!

Straw bale garden is planted!

View to the west

Straw bale garden - peas, beans, zucchini, melon, potatoes and broccoli or  maybe it's kale. I can't quite tell and forgot to label the seeds when I planted them inside.

Kennel Helpers: A brushing extravaganza!

Q checks out the person in the bug net. It was buggy that day!

Oken, Aise and Illy go in for smooches.
Fillin' up the big water tubs

It's that time of year again: shedding season! We were fortunate to have two eager kennel helpers over the weekend who really dug into that chore and managed to "harvest" a 5 gallon bucket of the fluffy stuff. When the bulk of shedding season is complete, our harvest will be shipped off to our friend in New Jersey who will spin it into yarn, she calls "sled dog chengora", and make hats, scarves and mittens out of it.

Our helpers were also here digging into the details of caring for all 32 dogs during our absence. We need to be away from the kennel for a while this summer and these are two of the people who will be caring for our furry family. A lot goes into a life with 32 dogs and they got to experience a weekend of the routine. I'm fairly sure they left us tired but fulfilled. I sure do appreciate the great care they showed for our dogs during their stay and I know I'll feel more comfortable leaving the homestead knowing they'll be here, keeping things ticking along.

Our Lovely Sweet Pea

Sweet Pea smiling next to her great great grand nephew, B'Zhoo in the front right of the photo

Sweet Pea doing one of the things she loves: trying to get the peanut butter out of the Kong!

Our lovely Sweet Pea will be 12 years old this year. She decided that this past winter, she would rather not run in the main team and pull a sled any longer but did decide it was alright to go on a very short puppy run on a nice sunny day. She loves puppies and if it involves puppies, she's there!

While brushing her over the weekend, we discovered a large, hard mass behind her right rib cage. A vet visit was immediately scheduled for the next day. We're very sad to say that Sweet Pea was diagnosed with an aggressive sarcoma (cancer). Of course, they were willing to operate to try to remove the mass, however, we were told it was very unlikely that, due to its placement, they would be able to remove it all which really got us no further forward. In fact, we thought this would be cruel to put Sweet Pea, at her age, through such a surgery, knowing the outcome would likely not give her a better quality of life. We chose to take her home, continue to give her love, care and support along with lots more of everything she loves until the day she tells us she's no longer happy and pain free. And when that day comes, we'll allow her to leave this earth in a gentle and peaceful way, knowing that she was indeed very loved.

Life with dogs brings so much happiness. We can't let the pain of their passing sour us from loving another furry soul. And we can't let the news of the near end of a life keep us in a place of sadness. We aren't dwelling on the sadness. Life is too short for sadness. Sweet Pea and I plan to celebrate each day.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

More Spring Firsts

Marsh Marigolds

May 28th - Marsh Marigolds and Dandelions popped out 
May 29th - Skeeters chased me in the house at 6PM
May 30th - Black flies appeared
May 30th - The dogs' ears were treated with black fly ointment for the first time this season
June 3rd - Straw bale garden planted except for broccoli. Now if I could only figure out which seedlings are the broccoli. Note to self - Label them!
June 3rd - The dogs were noticeably bothered by the mosquitoes from about 6PM-dusk.
June 4th - First dragonfly spotted!
June 4th - Skeeters so bad that I could not safely open the doors between 6PM and 9:30PM and then they went to bed in the trees.