Everyday Adventures in Havachon Heaven

The Good, Crazy, & Adorable Life of One Havachon Puppy

This Olympian Should Win A Medal In Humanity

I’m not a sports lover, so I’m not one for watching the Olympics (don’t throw rotten fruit at me!!); in recent years I’ve become disgusted by the inhumanity some countries embrace just to make their streets look better for the cameras and tourists, not to mention attracting new business.

From China bulldozing generations-old family huts and leaving poverty-stricken families homeless – their main goal for doing this, of course, was to make things look good for reporters’ and tourists’ cameras – to Russia euthanizing thousands of homeless stray dogs with pesticides, the greed and ugliness behind the spectacle turns my stomach and turns me off. What seems to have started out all those years ago as a true athletic competition in the spirit of good sportsmanship seems to have turned a very ugly corner.

But there are bright spots – people with hearts who won’t ignore these atrocities, like the Russian billionaire who created a makeshift shelter to save those poor strays, many of which were just puppies.

And US Olympian Gus Kenworthy, a silver medalist who makes me proud to have him represent our country for far more than just his medals. Kenworthy was arranging for puppy vaccinations and trying to bring at least four puppies he found in Sochi back home with him.

One guy making a difference. Imagine that multiplied by hundreds. If only.

Gus Kenworthy takes home more than a gold medal in my opinion – he gets an unprecedented platinum medal for heart, humanity, and kindness. And that may be an understatement.

It's not those animals' faults that they're strays....

It’s not those animals’ faults that they’re strays….

We’re part of the Thursday Barks & Bytes blog hop, hosted by 2 Brown Dawgs and Heart Like a Dog.

2 Brown Dawgs

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Daisy, the Ice Princess

And so it came about a week ago, just as predicted – a snow storm followed by an ice storm. I think the winter of 2014 is making up for all those years that we haven’t had a proper winter!

MORE snow?? Wow, we've had more snow this year than I've seen in my entire 3 years! :)

MORE snow is on its way?? Wow, we’ve had more snow this year than I’ve seen in my entire 3 years!

Daisy was kept very busy inside, sounding off her doggy-alarm every time a chunk of ice or snow fell off the roof and smashed onto the ground. To be fair, the ice and snow are so heavy that they did sound like they were ripping off part of the house.

AND NOW WE’RE GETTING ANOTHER SNOW/ICE STORM TODAY INTO TOMORROW – our sixth this winter! Right on top of the many, many inches of snow still on the ground! This is the storm that crippled Atlanta, Georgia yesterday. With the high winds we’re getting, they’re saying this may actually be classified as a blizzard.  I’m not surprised, there are near-white-out conditions outside right now (as you can see by the lack of clarity in the photo). Here’s what I woke up to, and we have a l-o-n-g way yet to go (possibly 14″!).

Just the start of the latest snowstorm in a record-breaking snow season!

Just the start of the latest snowstorm in a record-breaking snow season!

So what’s the best thing for a chilly puppy to do after using up so much energy protecting us from all that falling ice and running through the snow outside?

Find the puppy!

Find the puppy!

We’re in Thursday Barks and Bytes hosted by 2 Brown Dawgs and Heart Like A Dog. Grab the badge and join the fun!

2 Brown Dawgs

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Here We Go Again…..

The last batch of snow is still on the ground, and yesterday we got another big blast! Another foot of snow came down – it snowed for 12 hours straight, from around 5 AM through 5 PM. But it was a gorgeous snowfall – tons of flakes gently making their way straight down with no wind. Just making everything look beautiful.

I love that very special quiet that comes with a good snowfall, and how pristine everything looks. No cars moving, no outdoor garden equipment blaring, and everything is unified by a sparkling blanket of white. It’s exquisite.

Early morning light kissing the snow-topped trees in our back yard. Just breathtaking!

Early morning light kissing the snow-topped trees in our back yard. Just breathtaking!

Even our house was decorated in a sparkling icy fringe:

Mother Nature graced our home with crystal icicles.

Mother Nature graced our home with crystal icicles.

As I mentioned in a previous post, Daisy is staying outside longer and longer now that she’s wrapped up in her warm red puffy coat. Well, guess what? She’s starting to like the snow again! She seems to have a pattern. First she’s on Border Patrol all the way around the yard:

I must make sure our borders are secure from intruders! Oh wait, what's this? Deer tracks? Cool!

I must make sure our borders are secure from intruders! Oh wait, what’s this? Deer tracks? Cool!

Then she takes DD on a wild run, zigzagging to and fro across the yard:

Race ya back to the house!

Race ya back to the house!

Haha beat ya!

Haha beat ya!

Now that’s the kind of snow fun I love to see a dog have! 😀 I can’t wait to introduce her to snowballs…. Tonight we’re supposed to get more snow – anywhere from 6 to 16 inches, depending on how the storm moves. Tomorrow it gets a bit scary, though, because the storm is supposed to turn into an ice storm, making driving extremely dangerous. They’re already telling us to stay home and off the streets. I don’t mind more snow, but ice storms are another thing!

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Thursday Barks and Bytes: Warm Winter Havachon

We were shocked to discover that Daisy outgrew her winter coat! Naturally, we only found this out during the first snowstorm, so we needed a new one right away. DD and I couldn’t run out that day, so DH went on the errand.

You know what happens when you send a man out to get a girly coat? You tell him to look for something pink and cute, and he comes home with rugged red. “At least it’s not blue….red is closer to pink than blue is” – that’s DH’s male logic (sorry Will!)

I look like a log in this thing!

I look like a log in this thing!

But I have to say, this puffy red coat is really nice, and it’s rated for temps as low as five degrees….who knew we’d be at -15 this year?! It’s got a cool little pocket on the back that snaps closed, and the hood, which is nice and tight to the head, can also be snapped back off the head onto the coat to keep it off the dog’s head. And there’s a drawstring at the tail end of the coat for those blustery days too.

Ack! This hood is inescapable!

Ack! This hood is inescapable!

He also got some nice boots that go all the way up the legs, which we really needed, but unfortunately he got mediums and we needed smalls. So we made due with last year’s little booties for the time being.

....I really hate boots....

….I really hate boots….

I refuse to put my bad leg down with these things on!

I refuse to put my bad leg down with these things on! (This is not a happy Havachon moment!)

The Bulldog Stance - waiting to be de-booted.

The Bulldog Stance – waiting to be de-booted.

Daisy may not appreciate being dressed in a coat and boots, but we did notice that she stays outside longer now that she’s toasty warm in her new coat and her feet are protected from the snow. And that’s a good thing!

We’re happy to be part of the new Thursday Barks and Bytes, hosted by our friends 2 Brown Dawgs and Heart Like A Dog!

B&B3b_Fotor

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“I Don’t Like Snow!”

Hi everyone! We’re finally getting back to normal around here. The holidays were crazy hectic, and not always in a good way. DD started things off with a bad head cold, followed by me getting the flu while traveling (I’m still down and out a bit), DH is now coming down with “something”, and Daisy’s tummy has been doing some nasty things for the past two weeks.

Today we’re in the grip of those frigid temps that are plaguing much of the country. Our actual temperature this morning is 3 degrees, but the wind chill makes it feel like -17! YIKES! I guess if I have to be stuck inside anyway, this is a good time for it happen. 🙂

Meanwhile, we got about 8 inches of snow the other day, and Daisy didn’t want any part of it. We had her trained so well to be an indoor/outdoor dog – she’d do her “thing” outside when we took her out on normal days, but she knew to “take care of business” on the wee-wee pad inside when the weather was really bad.

Well, not anymore. This trip seems to have completely destroyed her cross-training. Now she only wants to go outside, and if she refuses to go because of the weather, she leaves us “presents” anywhere except on the wee-wee pad. We’re trying to retrain her for indoors again, but it’s not working.

Anyway, here’s what happened after the snowfall the other day. One valiant attempt that lasted all of half a minute, and it was all over. It took longer to suit her up!

I don't want to go in the snow!

I don’t want to go in the snow!

Oh okay, I'll give it a try.

Oh okay, I’ll give it a try.

Nope, that's it! I refuse! Take me back in where it's warm and dry!

Nope, that’s it! I refuse! Take me back in where it’s warm and dry!

 

 

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Removing the Threat

Well it’s done. The dreaded deed of removing four beautiful old trees from our property that were threatening our house during storms is over.

Not really something you want to see in your backyard....

Not really something you want to see in your backyard….

I loved those trees. I’m more of a cabin-in-the-woods kind of gal than a toes-in-the-sand beach person, so these huge trees were things of beauty to me.

They brought wonderful songbirds right up to my back windows.

They gave us a lot of shade to cool the house and sit under during the summer.

They dropped vibrant yellow leaves in the fall that floated to the ground like lightweight snowflakes.

They formed a gorgeous white canopy during snowfalls.

But over the past few years, I noticed peeling bark and more bare branches appearing. The arborist said their type only lives for a certain number of decades, then they start dying and pose a real threat to anything around them. So it was time.

But it still wasn’t easy. Although there was a certain amount of entertainment in the process….

Look at this crazy guy! He stretched himself out into an inverted cross shape while being pulled to the top of the tree!

Look at this crazy guy! He stretched himself out into a full inverted cross shape while being pulled to the top of the tree!

Daisy, however, had a field day with all the activity out there. Though I must say, she wasn’t half as noisy as she used to be just a year ago! She was actually a very good girl.

Oh, she was curious….

What's going on out there? Who are all those men? And what are all those noisy metal monsters doing in my backyard??

What’s going on out there? Who are all those men? And what are all those noisy metal monsters doing in my backyard??

But she got used to the noise pretty quickly and only barked, bfff’d, and growled occasionally. I think keeping the back blinds closed helped because she couldn’t see all the constant movement.

So now the front half of our yard is wide open. No more birdies chirping by the house, but the trade-off is that during a harsh rain/wind storm yesterday, I had no reason to fear anymore. 🙂 But it did come at a dear cost. At least the back half still has some nice trees, and I’m hanging on to them as long as possible.

 

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Monday Mischief: Snow Shocker!!

What happened??? Up until now, Daisy has always LOVED playing in the snow as much as we do. Now, suddenly, she doesn’t like it at all! Doesn’t that go completely against the Doggy Handbook??

We’ve been anxiously waiting for a good snowfall this winter. We had a lot of little teasers – little dustings of flurries – but a couple of weeks ago we were finally braced for a full-blown snowstorm.

And we got it. A wonderful, sparkling, frosty 8 inches of it. 🙂

snow 2.13

We couldn’t wait to take Daisy out into the snow to play. We got all our gear ready….

Big bear, medium bear, and baby bear gloves ;)

Big bear, medium bear, and baby bear gloves 😉

She seemed mesmerized by the deep white stuff lying outside the door, and she got all excited when her harness and leash made their appearance.

The harness is one thing, but this is going too far!

The harness is one thing, but this is going too far!

But once DD carried her outside and put her down in the snow, she just stood there in her little winter coat, frozen in place. Then, to our surprise, she turned around and pulled toward the door.

Hey, it's cold out here! Someone let me IN!!

Hey, it’s cold out here! Someone let me IN!!

Maybe if I face this way, they'll open that door....

Maybe if I face this way, they’ll open that door….

Weird. So DD picked her up and brought her further into the yard, then put her down and started running with her.

Daisy snow run a

Daisy went part way out, then stopped abruptly, turned, and raced back toward the door. She wanted no part of that icy winter wonderland.

I've had enough of this! I wanna sit by the fire!

I’ve had enough of this! I wanna sit by the fire!

So where’s the mischief? Well, I guess there really isn’t any on Daisy’s part, but if I had to point a finger, I’d say it’s those mischievous little ice balls that collect all over Daisy’s tummy and between her pads. Because this…..

....ouchies....

….ouchies….

….inevitably leads to this….

....and now I had to suffer through a bath AND a brushing....

….and now I had to suffer through a bath AND a brushing….

….which led to this….

I refuse to show my face in this thing.

….and then this….

I blame YOU for all this!!

I blame YOU for all this!!

So maybe it’s not such a mystery after all as to why Daisy no longer wants to romp in the snow. 😉

We’re part of the Monday Mischief Blog Hop! Grab the button, follow the link, and meet other fun new furry friends!

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Monday Mischief: Nor’easter Double Whammy

Well, Mother Nature was the undisputed mischief maker again last week – just a couple of days after we finally got power back in our area after Hurricane Sandy, we got hit with a nor’easter that dumped 7 inches of heavy snow on us.

And then had the nerve to throw us into freezing darkness yet again with another blackout.

Close call outside our living room window.

The snow was so heavy that the branches of the huge trees around our house were weighed down to the ground and formed a white curtain around us. Some of those branches were broken at the trunk.

Two 50 year old trees behind our house met when their limbs were weighed down to the ground. Those long limbs are usually 20 feet off the ground. It almost looked like they were holding hands for strength….or blocking our view to the devastation we didn’t know was happening in the back end of the yard.

We’ve had blizzards that have covered us with almost 3 feet of snow. And they were beautiful. But never have they carried the destructive power of this snow.

Downed 60-foot tree next to our bedroom window. We were surrounded!

We lost more trees and large limbs because the trees were already compromised by the hurricane just a week before.

Large low branch broken off another 50 year old tree….and aimed right at the bedroom window!

And, frighteningly, the snow weighed down the tarp on our broken roof enough to cause more damage – the bedroom ceiling is now even more cracked and has bowed further inward. Needless to say, my stress level is pretty darned high right now.

The roofer can’t come until the day after Thanksgiving. Once he assesses the damage, he has to order the materials to rebuild the trusses, roofing materials, soffits, etc. After that we need to replace the shingles that broke off and find someone to fix the ceiling. I have no idea how long this will take, but my guess is that we won’t be done until after the first of the year sometime – well into winter.

Speechless. That used to be a tall tree….

We love snow. Usually we can’t get enough of it. But this year – just this once – we’d like it to hold off until those of us with roof damage have been made whole again. As much as I love snow, I prefer it to be outside of my house and not sleeping in the bedroom with us!

Note to Mother Nature: If we send you some really good dark chocolate, could you smile on us for just a little while? 😉

Oh come on – give me some snow I can PLAY in!

We’re part of the Monday Mischief Blog Hop!

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But They Promised Us SNOW!!

What a frustrating winter! Yesterday they promised us snow, so we happily waited for this:

But instead, we had gray skies and this:

Whoever heard of daffodils blooming in FEBRUARY – in the northeast! And look at the height of the full-sized daffodil stalks behind the minis – they should only just be breaking through the ground!

We love winter, we love snow. We really missed them this year. All we got was this little 1-2 inch tease in early January that melted in two days:

A small smattering of snow

But then, at the end of the day, this unseasonably warm weather graces us with this stunningly rich treasure, and all’s right with the world again:

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The Little Birdie Who Thought He Could

We finally had our first winter snow this past weekend! We were so thrilled, even though it was only about 3 inches deep.

Of course, it was rained away two days later. 😦 But while it was here, we LOVED it!

After a snow, our Bird Diner is always busy, both at the feeder itself and underneath, where messy pickers fling seeds.

All plumped up for winter!

And there’s just something about the bland atmosphere that makes bird colors POP

One little chickadee thought he could pay us a visit. I guess he needs to see a Bird Optometrist for a pair of tiny glasses, because he flew into our sliding glass door HARD, leaving behind a tiny little feather and knocking himself into a stupor:

He sat like that for more than 15 minutes, beak open, not moving a muscle. I started wondering if he’d killed himself and frozen in place!

Wow! That was some landing!

He was near the house, where it’s a little bit more protected from predators like hawks, but there are a couple of huge cats that roam the neighborhood, and they’d just love to happen upon a stunned bird. So Daisy and I kept watch just in case.

Are you okay, little one?

Fortunately they didn’t come around, and this little guy finally started moving his head in tiny little increments, as if he was testing to see if he could manage it.

Half an hour later, he was turning his head normally and he moved really close to the house until he was ready to fly away. A happy ending!

🙂     😀     🙂

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