Friday, December 31, 2010

Here Comes 2011!

Here's wishing you, and yours the very Happiest of New Years! I wish you peace, health and happiness in the coming year, and the time to enjoy it.

Have fun, stay safe and I'll catch you in 2011!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Lunch to Remember

I had the honor of having lunch with someone very special today. I got to spend some time with Robert, Harry's Dad of The Adventure's of Harry. Robert and I have been in contact since last February when Harry's Mom, Dena, was taken from this earth way too early because of breast cancer.

Dena and I had met through our blogs and our dogs, and she'd even become a member of my Golden Retriever Meetup group! She'd enjoyed seeing the pictures of all of the meetups here in San Diego, having had lived in San Diego previously, and had hoped to one day come an event. Unfortunately, she never got that chance, and we never got to meet in person.

But whether we'd met in person or not, I consider Dena my friend and an undeniable source of strength and encouragement for me. When I walked those 60+ miles on the 3 Day, I walked with 2 pictures of her with me. When I thought I couldn't make it up Torrey Pines hill, I told myself that Dena would be proud of me if I didn't stop.

I didn't.

When it was raining down buckets all day that Saturday, I didn't think of stopping, not once, because I kept reminding myself that walking in the rain was nothing compared to what Dena had gone through during her struggle.

When we finished on day 3, I took my shoes off and raised them up to the heavens and thought to myself, "look Dena, I finished. Me, and my pink shoes walked every step for you." I don't know if I could have finished those 3 days without Dena, and I'd never even met her.

That's just the impact that some people have on your life. Dena has had that impact on my life. I can only imagine the impact she has had on her husband Robert.

I was so excited and nervous at the same time to finally be meeting him. I knew it would be an emotional time for me, but I promised myself I would try my best not to get weepy. I did pretty good. We knew each other immediately from our pictures, and we had a lovely conversation. I was just so happy to finally meet this wonderful, warm, charming, caring man, who loved my friend Dena so much. It made my heart happy, and ache at the same time. Happy to feel that connection directly to her through him, and ache for his loss. He deserved so much more time with her.

Our time together today went quickly, and Robert heads home to the Boston area tomorrow. I am hoping that this will be the first of many lunches, BBQs, etc. that we get to share in the years to come.

No matter what, I will cherish the time we had today, and I thank Dena for sharing her wonderful family with me. I truly feel honored.

Possibly my new favorite

You all know how much I love politics, right? Ha!


The kids are on the way to Magic Mountain today, and along the way Pickle spotted this bumper sticker. She knew I would appreciate it. Yup, that's exactly what I think of politicians.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wordless (not even close!) Wednesday

Christmas Photos, 2010 - some of my favorites from Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Christmas Eve dinner at G-Ma and G-Pa's - a traditional German meal, complete with sausage and home made sauerkraut.
G-ma and Bear.
G-Pa got two pairs of nearly identical jammies. One from us, and one from my brother in Texas. We both must know his taste pretty well.
Bear, AJ and Pickle - Christmas Eve.
Me and the Hubby.
G-Ma sporting her new Dooney Bourke purse.
Our table set of Christmas day dinner.
Christmas morning - ready to start opening presents.
Harley was mesmerized by this ornament!
And she had to be right in the middle of everything.
She didn't mind all of the action around her.
Jill thought the turkey smelled pretty good.
Kona thought maybe this present was for him...
Later in the day he was worn out.
Pickle loved her new guitar.
That turkey looked pretty good, and tasted even better.
We had a great meal, with some wonderful friends.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Monday, December 27, 2010

Bogie Gets a Brother!

Remember a few days ago when I told you that my brother got a new boxer puppy? Remember that I told you that he wasn't quite a Christmas puppy because he wasn't delivered on Christmas Eve?


Well...guess who got his wish for a little brother of his own! Meet "Raider" - as in the Texas Tech Red Raiders! Raider is a 6 week old red and white Boston Terrier.

Raider came home on Christmas Eve to meet his new brother Bogie, and the rest of the family. Needless to say, it's been a crazy couple of days at my brother's house. Having two puppies in the house, from two different litters, who'd never met before is going to take some adjusting. They sure are precious, aren't they?
Bogie weighs in at 6 lbs. right now, and Raider is just under 4lbs. They are beginning to adjust to their new environment, and each other.

Just like everything in life, it will take some time, some patience and a sense of humor. (Some good rug cleaner couldn't hurt either.) Until everyone finds their way and understands their place, they are just going to take things one step at a time, and catch up on their rest when they can. After all, it's like having twins in the house!

Snowfight

An oldie but a goodie...courtesy of Budweiser, 2005.

video

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Card Lane

Every town has one it seems - a neighborhood that goes all out with Christmas decorations. Here in San Diego, we have several, and one of our favorites is "Christmas Card Lane." It's located just about 5 miles north of us, and it is 3 blocks full of home-made giant Christmas cards (most of them start out as 4x8 sheets of plywood) and houses decorated to the hilt!


We had the chance to go for our annual stroll through the neighborhood this past Wednesday. The rain had finally stopped (at least temporarily) and the evening was cool, crisp, and perfect for some Christmas cheer! It's always fun to see what new things these neighbors come up with each year, and of course to see the old favorites as well.


Here are a few of my favorites from the evening.











The pups had a great time, and really enjoyed the fresh air and scenery!

(This last picture is a result of me playing around with the panoramic setting on the new little Sony camera Hubby got me for my birthday. It's pretty slick!)

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Eve!

From our family to yours, here's wishing you the happiest of holidays.
Stay safe, enjoy yourself, and please take a moment out of your day to think about those who are far away from home, protecting our freedom.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

"Bogie"

I have a new "nephew." His name is Bogie. Bogie is a Boxer puppy and is the newest member of my brother's family.
Bogie is almost a Christmas puppy...but his is not. Christmas puppies like their pictures being taken in a Santa hat and sleigh, right?
Not Bogie, he wasn't thrilled about any of this stuff...these pictures were taken before he got to his new home with my brother's family.
Do you know what Bogie wants for Christmas? A brother!

Stay tuned! Nephew #2 arrives home tomorrow night!

Christmas Lights Display

No, folks, sorry to disappoint you, but this is not my house! Check it out though, it is and amazing display, with over 45,000 lights! I bet the power company LOVES this family!

Best Christmas Lights Display (HD):

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

What's in a name anyway...




"What's her name?"

A common question. Each and every time I take Kona out on a therapy visit, I get asked the same question. "What's her name?" "His name is Kona," I say with a smile. "Oh, she's a boy?" they ask. "Yes, he's a boy...." and on and on it goes.

The other day, while I was at a senior care facility with my Love on a Leash team mate Marilyn and her boy Brutus, we had to giggle a bit. A lot of the folks we visit with are hard of hearing. That is certainly no surprise. They always ask what our dogs names are, and of course we tell them. Here is how the conversations went the other day.

Marilyn: Hi, would you like a visit with the dogs today?

Mr. A: Sure, what's your dog's name?

Marilyn: His name is Brutus.

Mr. A: Rita?

Marilyn: No, not Rita, his name is Brutus.

Mr. A: Oh! Her name is Theresa!

Marilyn: No, his name is. Brutus. Like Popeye and Brutus.
Mr. A: Oh! Brutus!
Marilyn: Yes! His name is Brutus.

Mr. A: And what's your dog's name?

Me: This is Kona.
Mr. A: Kona?
Me: Yes, Kona. (I smile, and wink at Marilyn)
Mr. A: Nice dogs....
Next room.
Mr. B. : Oh, pretty dogs, what are their names?

Marilyn: This is Brutus and this is Kona.

Mr. B: Theresa?

Marilyn: No, this is Brutus. Like Popeye and Brutus.

Mr. B: Well, hello there Popeye.

Marilyn just smiled. On to the next room...same story.

Mr. C: What's your dog's name?

Me: This is Kona. He's a 3 year old Golden Retriever.

Mr. C: Conan? Like the Barbarian?

Me: No sir, Kona, K-O-N-A.

Mr. C: Like Conan O'brian?

Me: No sir, Kona, like Kona Hawaii, or Kona coffee.

Mr. C: I like don't coffee.

Me: Have a nice day sir, see you next time.

Next room.

Mrs. D: OH! Such pretty doggies! Let me see them! What are their names?

Marilyn: This is Kona and this is Brutus.

Mrs. D: They are so beautiful!

Both of us: Thank you! We sure think so!

Mrs. D: Their fur is so nice and soft.

Marilyn: They are pretty aren't they, like Ebony and Ivory?

Mrs. D: Which one is which?

Marilyn: Oh, no, that's not their names....

Mrs. D to her roommate: Look at these beautiful dogs! They are named Ebony and Ivory! Aren't they pretty!

On to the next room...

Mr. E.: What's your dog's name?

Me. His name is Kona.

Mr. E: His name is Kona?

Me: Yes, that's right, Kona.

We chat for a couple of minutes, and as we leave I hear Mr. E say to his roommate, "Who the hell would name their dog Coma?"

Yup, Merry Christmas, with love from Theresa and Coma.

Firework

While I am not normally a huge Katy Perry fan, I really enjoy the message this video sends. Be yourself, and celebrate who you are. (And the girl jumping into the pool? That'd be a younger me.)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Visits and more visits!

In the last 5 days, Kona and I have been on 4 therapy visits. Whew! No wonder I am running around, trying to get so much done with so little time! Every visit is worth it though, so no complaints...

Because of privacy issues, a lot of the facilities we visit don't allow pictures of the dogs with the patients. I like to try to at least get a picture of the dogs here and there though, so here are just a couple of pictures I've taken in the last couple of days.

They are all just such sweet, loving beings!

Here we have Kona, Happy, and Brutus.
Here is the crew from today. Don't the first three from left to right look like they could be related? It's Scootch, Kona, and Happy, then Bunny and Riley. They brought a lot of holiday cheer to the VA today!
And of course I needed a close up of my goof-ball. He is such a ham!