Under a Year to Retire

Well, it’s August. I started to work at my current job on August 1, 1988. Wow, so long ago… and I can potentially retire at 25 years. Yesterday was my 24th year at my job. I started working in the welfare office, and now I’m a programmer… after going to school and getting a degree, but since I work for the same government, I get to keep all my seniority, leave benefits, and pension benefits.

Jet, Tatum, Quinn
Jet, Tatum, Quinn

The dogs, I think, will be exceptionally happy to have me home all the time! Above is a picture of three… Jet, Tatum and Quinn. Quinn doesn’t have a very good stay yet, gonna have to work on that for Camp. As we are heading to Camp Winnaribbun on August 25th, for a week of fun in the trees and on the beach! Though I will probably cry a lot, since I’ll miss Levi, and this will be the first trip without him. For some reason, my brain has flashes of planning for him… how he’ll do no the drive, how he’ll be with Quinn… weird stuff, just for a fraction of a second, then I have to catch myself and realize Levi is not going.

I still can’t take his name and put it on the Memory List in my right menu bar. It’s been four months since he died… and, actually, tomorrow, August 3, is one year since Lucy died. Ugh. I miss her very much, still. I miss Levi too. I still try not to think about them very much, as thinking about them just hurts. The below picture is me and my husband, with Lucy, Levi and Angel. All three are gone now. I miss them all. *sigh* (Okay, I moved him in the menu bar… and of course, now I’m balling like a baby again.)

Lucy, Levi, Angel
Lucy, Levi, Angel

But I do love my current family. They are wonderful, and they make me smile. So, one year to retire, then I can play with them every day!

A Trip to the Desert

It’s strange, still, to only have five dogs now. It’s actually been strange to have had only six. Since Angel passed on in May 2010, I still kept trying to count for seven dogs. I hadn’t gotten used to six. And now I’m going to have to count for five dogs only.

Yeah, my husband and I would count dogs to make sure we had them all around. Home safe. Not getting out or running amok.

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I think I am coming to terms with losing Lucy. I’m still very sad, and last night cried again in bed before I went to sleep. I miss her so much. I wish that I could have put her in a bed, given her meds, and kept her around like I would have kept a person around. But dogs don’t work that way… and seriously, it’d be nice if we could put people out of their misery, too. Lucy was miserable. It was her time to go. I just still miss her so much.

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Today we took a trip to the desert to let the dogs run. It was a short trip. Long drive, about 45 minutes, and it was too hot to let the dogs run for too long. But they did have fun.   Levi isn’t very strong anymore and can’t go very far. I sure hope he’s okay when we go to camp.  I will take it slow for him, give him what he needs, and sit around on the beach of Lake Tahoe all day if we need too.  Which, really, won’t make me sad at all, sitting on the beach all day!

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I am trying out a new gallery, too, so above are the thumbnails. Though I’m not quite so sure how it works, yet, and I may just add the images individually too.

Bad Things and Good Things

Lucy, Levi and Angel 2002
I’m being all sentimental lately. Freaked out, entirely, that time is going by so fast and my dogs are dying. And, it looks like, the cat too. Littles. She’s in kidney failure and we will probably put her down next week, but we can only deal with one animal’s death at a time.

Lucy’s death day is Wednesday. I made the appointment. At this moment I’m not crying, but in five minutes I might be again. I’ve been going through old pictures looking at Lucy, Levi and Angel. Angel left us in May 2010. I am so upset that time goes by so fast. The next thing I know, 10 years will have passed and Lucy will have been gone for 10 years… just like Kip has been gone for 11 years now. Oh my, not good things to think about, eh? I remember thinking, years ago, as I lay on my bed one day, that I had all three young healthy dogs… Lucy, Levi and Angel. And now Angel is gone, Lucy is going, and Levi better be around for a couple more years or I’ll have a nervous breakdown.

About the picture, our front room no longer looks like that. That was when we had carpet (see the stains, lol), and the couch upstairs. Now we have tile and the couch and TV are downstairs. Though we might move them back up again so Levi doesn’t have to do the stairs. He’s getting too old for stairs and it seems to bother him sometimes. Levi is 11.5.

I always worry about forgetting the dogs too much after they die. But yesterday I realized that, even if my memory is poor and I don’t remember all the little details, I will never forget them with my heart. And I’ll always remember how they feel inside me. As they will always be with me in a way. Even as they take a big chunk of my heart with them.

I don’t usually combine different topics in one post but I have to temper Lucy’s pending death with a good note about Jet and agility. I looked him up on the AKC website today, and his AX and AXJ show, and so do his MACH points. Yay! I love that the AKC lets us see those online for free. I’ll post the pictures here below. My first MACH points with any dog, ever.

Below is a picture of our front room after we remodeled it, but there’s nice pictures up now. I just wanted a pic of the 3 smooth blue collies, and my husband is there too. Lucy is, of course, on the table. She always stood on the table to block our view of the TV when she wanted attention. LOL

Lucy on the Table

And here is Jet’s AX and AXJ. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention, as it’s kinda a side note that I hope will happen in December 2012. But as it stands now, Jet has qualified for the AKC Agility Invitationals. So as long as 5 other Danish-Swedish Farmdogs don’t start doing AKC Agility and beat us out, we should be able to go. I sure hope so. But… I do want to go and be competitive, and not just go because we are the only dog of our breed who qualified. Though if that’s how we get in, I’ll take it, and I won’t complain! LOL

Jet's AKC Titles To Date

Jet’s qualification to the AKC Agility Invitationals:

Danish-Swedish Farmdog AKC Agility Invitationals
Jet AKC Invitationals

Remembering Angel

Sweet Angel
Well, it’s been one year since Angel died and left us. Yes, it still makes me cry. I miss her very much. I think she had a good life with us, even though she came to us with a broken leg, fresh out of the shelter, too skinny and feeling bad.

Over the years we got her healthy, maybe a bit chubby, and gave her lots of love. I remember chasing her around the house when she had a sock. She ran slowly, but the look of sheer joy on her face was priceless. I miss chasing her around the house. I miss holding her and loving her and being with her. It’s weird to think that she no longer exists in this world. Sometimes I count the dogs and I know that one is missing. Sometimes I expect to see her, feel her, know she’s around.

This is a cute, typical picture of her, up top. She could never curl up on her own, her body wasn’t built very well. But she loved to snuggle in beds, and some other terror collie (Tatum, lol) chewed a nice hole in that couch. Angel liked to take advantage of it until we took the couch to the dumb.

I miss you Angel. Someday I hope to see you again. Until then, I hope you are cruising around whatever existence you are in, enjoying yourself completely. I love you Angel.

Lovely Angel

Are Rescue Dogs Grateful?

Angel and Chase
Angel and Chase
Someone mentioned to me the other day how rescue dogs always seem so grateful for their new families and homes. That they so appreciate having a great place to live, fun things to do, and a family to love them.

But when I think about my rescue dogs, grateful isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. In fact, I don’t think my rescue dogs are grateful at all. First off, I think grateful is a human emotion, not a canine one. Though I guess maybe Angel could have been grateful. To me, though, she just seemed more relieved to have a safe place to live finally.

Tatum… she isn’t grateful at all. LOL. She’s our princess, and it seems to me that she thinks she deserves every second of her pampered life. In fact, I would interpret her behavior as being entitled. She has a lot of confidence at home, and thinks she deserves the best treats, the best sleeping spots, and when other dogs get close to her when she is resting, they get an earful of growl. It’s like she’s saying “he’s touching me, stop touching me!” I need to get some pictures of her with her teeth showing, or some art prints of her, she is such a goof.

Chase and Muffit are just happy to do whatever. They love to run and expend their energy. But they don’t coddle or fuss over us either. They don’t seem to exhibit any behavior that I would label as gratefulness. But they are both Border Collies, so maybe that has a lot to do with it too. *shrug*

So anyway, do your rescue dogs seem to be grateful? Mine don’t. But I’d rather have it that way. I want my dogs to be as confident as possible. Strong either with me around, or on their own. Secure in themselves. That’s the kind of life I try to give them.