Thursday, August 30, 2007

Dial Up Blogging

We are spending the Labor Day holiday at Edgar's Acres, where it is a lovely 65 degrees and sunny. It is also where I only have dial up, which means it is hard to add photos to the blog. I'll be taking pictures, and will try to get them posted.

One advantage to dial up, however, is I knit. Yes, I have a "dial up" knitting project. Hopefully, I'll be able to post a picture of that as well.

Today I am mowing the lawn, picking strawberries, corn and broccoli, and then knitting in the afternoon. I'll be making more strawberry jam Frank, and freezing the corn and broccoli.

I have a couple of tomatoes that are ripening. Maybe we will have some red ones before we leave on Tuesday.

TTFN (as Tigger would say).

Monday, August 27, 2007

Enough for Three Batches of Strawberry Jam

The last time we went to Edgar's Acres, I picked strawberries. This is the first year we have grown strawberries. I wasn't real excited about growing strawberries because I had spent many a summer when I was a kid picking berries to earn money. It was hot, sticky and dirty work. We got up at 4:00 a.m. to meet the bus at 5:00, so we could start picking at 6:00. We were done at 2:00 in the afternoon. (The fields where I picked are now the home to the apartment complex where Frank and John lived last year.)

Well, I'm converted into loving strawberries again. These berries are so sweet and juicy, and I don't have to make a goal of ten flats a day picking them. I picked enough for David and I to have some with ice cream for dessert when we were at Edgar's Acres, and brought home enough to make three batches of freezer jam. Hear that Frank, three batches of freezer strawberry jam.

I also harvested the rest of our onions, garlic, and some broccoli. The tomato plants were loaded and I am hoping we will have some red ones when we go back over this weekend.

I am also keeping an eye on my artichoke plant. I am letting one go to flower. They are supposed to be beautiful flowers.

This is what it looked like the last time we were there.

I am excited to see what it looks like when we get there on Thursday.

I picked Viola's carrots. Fred (one of our neighbors in Sequim) told me that Viola's favorite vegetable was carrots, especially carrots right out the garden. I grew these for her.

We will be harvesting and freezing our corn. We had a couple of ears last time and they were so sweet and tender. The rest of the corn should be ready this weekend.

See the tomato plant in the middle of the garden (with the three poles)? That plant is loaded. I hope it's loaded with RED tomatoes. It has been colder than usual this summer so who know. If we have red tomatoes, our dinner for Thursday night will probably be fresh red potatoes, tomatoes, brocolli and corn. Who could ask for anything more!

Did I mention I hope we have red tomatoes? Oh yeah, several times.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Bichons, OHS Stockings and Baby Sweaters

This weekend was the 4th Annual Bichon Bash for the Northwest Region. It was hosted by Kristine and her family in Arlington, Washington this year. It was a blast. Try to imagine 48 bichons running free having the time of their lives. Even little Johnny was there running all over the place. Folks found it hard to believe that he had his heart surgery just four weeks ago. He and Louie were a pair, running and playing with all of the other bichons. A.J. spent most of the day either in a lap or a comfortable chair. He loves going to the Bashes, just doesn't get fully involved. Edgar had a good time too but had to stay on his leash because we had some fluffs that didn't care for big dogs (their loss).
We raised over $1700 for Small Paws Rescue, which is amazing for the size of the turnout for this event.

The weather held out for us. At exactly 6:00 p.m., the last guests left when the skies opened up and it poured for 90 minutes.

Two of the ladies that attended the Bichon Bash are also Operation Holiday Stocking supporters. Bonnie M. has crocheted stockings the last two years, but this year she is KNITTING stockings . She brought seven beautiful stockings and says there are more to come. Bonnie, they are beautiful. Bonnie is another SPR volunteer who has been involved with OHS from the beginning. She has also been a lot of support in the project. And, to top it off, for three years Bonnie hosted the Bichon Bash as her home in Sequim. Thanks Bonnie!
Diana brought her stockings too. She has knit 22 stockings and she too said there are more to come. She also bought some stockings last January that are felt with quilted figures on them. On the way to and from the Bash I finished another baby sweater and started on a baby hat. You be the judge here. Is this baby sweater knitting a compulsion or a passion?
I still want to knit some more! Aren't they cute?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Our Newest Baby

We flunked Fostering 101 again. Johnny, the little pup we picked up three weeks ago because he needed heart surgery to repair the Grade 6 PDA heart murmur, is back with us.

We had Johnny with us for 2.5 days and that was enough to win our hearts. We put him on the plane on Friday a.m. to Houston for his surgery at Texas A&M. It was so hard to say good bye to him. I was surprised. We have fostered so many dogs, some of them real sweeties, but I've never felt like part of my heart left with them like I did Johnny.

On the next Monday Johnny went into congestive heart failure and almost left our world. Many, many prayers were sent out for this little boy. On Tuesday, they performed surgery to repair the heart murmur, and within three days he was sent to his foster home.

He was with his foster mom, Patty for almost two weeks. She is such a wonderful foster mom and took such good care of him.

Throughout Johnny's stay at Texas A&M I was in constant touch with Small Paws to see how Johnny was doing. Robin finally asked me "Sue, do you want Johnny to come home to you?" She knew. To make a long story short, Johnny came home to us last Thursday after a long day on the airplane.

The change in this little pup is astounding. Before he would try to run three steps and then have to lay down because he was exhausted and was having trouble breathing. Now he is into everything and blitzing to his HEART'S content. Before his heart was pounding to get out of his chest, now it beats with harmony with Johnny's activities. Before he had trouble breathing because his heart was enlarged and pushing against his lungs. Now he has LUNG POWER. Before he would just lay at my feet while I was on the computer, now he keeps getting under my desk to chew on the wires (he is learning, however, the wires are an absolute no). Before he was a very sick little puppy. Now he is into everything and everywhere. Many prayers have been answered.

We went to Edgar's Acres this weekend and Edgar, Louie and A.J. showed Johnny every square inch of the fenced 3/4 acre. Johnny got dirty, found a bunch of burrs to be pulled from his coat, played, slept, and discovered many new things. We have him wearing little shirts to cover the incision area. This is to keep him from scratching it while it finishes healing. I bought a package of three newborn t-shirts, and did laundry for him twice. He kept going outside to play and coming in wet and dirty.

A big thank you to Small Paws Rescue for caring so much to heal a little pup's heart. Johnny is heart murmur baby No. 52, and he is grateful.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

I'm Still Around ...

When our sons moved out permanently, I thought I would be sitting around with tons of spare time on my hands. No more cooking for an Army, etc., just me and David and the doggies relaxing.

Somehow I've managed to fill every second it seems.

I have a wonderful husband with whom I am having a great time with doing stuff together.

I work full time as a trademark paralegal.

I volunteer my time on a daily basis to Small Paws Rescue.

I check in with Mom each Sunday at 7:00 p.m.

I handle all of Mom's finances for her.

I knit. I garden.

I pay our bills and keep the household running.

We have Wednesday night Date Night where David and I hook up with friends.

I cook for us and for family and friends when they are around.

I play with our doggies and our kitty. I take care of them.

In other words, I live a wonderful, blessed life.

Sure, every second seems to be accounted for, but in a wonderful way.

Right now I am obsessed with baby sweaters. I can't stop knitting them. I am on baby sweater No. 6. I'd include pictures but Mr. Camera is being fussy right now. Why am I so obsessed? Who knows, and really who cares. Maybe because the Heartbeat Sweater is WAY TOO BIG and I'm not ready to deal with it? Maybe because these little baby sweaters are too cute? Probably a combination of both, coupled with the fact that there seems to be a boom on babies being born lately. Plus, baby sweaters will fit a baby somewhere and sometime.

We are getting fired up for Operation Holiday Stockings 2007. I've heard from several knitters and they've been knitting. I also heard from one of our volunteers who crochets and she's been busy. As long as we have soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, we will be doing stockings for the holidays.

Little Johnny is coming back to us today. I'll include pictures of him too when Mr. Camera decides to cooperate. Guess I need to add a new digital camera to my wish list for Christmas, along with the soil thermometer.