Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Homework Distraction

I probably shouldn't keep posting photos of my now confirmed two Barred fledglings given the US Fish and Wildlife July 2013 plan to shoot Barred owls to try and recover the Spotted owl population (I am not a fan).

As it turns out I have two of these lovelies. Perhaps the other one was sleeping in this morning.

They make the same fledgling call, although at slightly different pitches. Mama wasn't too far away. I could find her easy because of all the birds yelling at her.

Barred Owl

Today's homework break is brought to you by the Barred Owl.

While working on my homework, I could tell the birds were in a frenzy about something, and more importantly, there was a new sound in the group. Bless the internet because I now know it is a Barred Owl fledgling call.

So turns out I have at least one owl baby. I was suspecting this most likely feral cat I have caught sight of twice now for taking out my baby bunnies and leaving their parts all over the yard, but I think it is a growing owl doing the damage.

Imagine my surprise while trying to hunt down a good photo angle on the fledgling when I looked up and saw this:

She was pretty much in a tree right above me. I was initially thinking nest mate, but now I am thinking parent. She was too willing to be right next to me and watching me.

I REALLY want this video to imbed. If not, please follow the YouTube link for "What goes on when you are not there!"

It is images edited from a remote wildlife camera in Kananaskis Country (Alberta). It will just make you happy for the day.

And if that didn't cheer you up, I bet this story will: Cranky Houston cat becomes Internet sensation in wedding photo. Any of us that are slave to our cat's eating schedule can fully relate.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Cucumber Flower

Today's midterm was in taxation and I took the entire thing with constant helicopter air traffic which made a stressful exam even more tense.

We have a fire going on Mt. Si. right now that has been going since Friday. The helicopter is pulling water from the river across the street from me and going back and forth to dump loads. The fire is close enough to make the air quality bad and for me to be a little uneasy, but I also know the chances of it getting close or me having to evacuate are next to none.

This flowers are on one of my cucumbers. Pretty!

I have two more solid weeks of homework with everything coming due as of August 11th and I have finals week after that. Counting down is literally getting me through the quarter.

My sister gave Nim this toy bee. It has a very loud squeaker for such a small toy. Have a great night!

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Dogs of Old Dog Haven

This is the first time I have ever reposted photos already used on my blog, but the occasion calls for it. I was contacted by the human that shares her home and heart with this pup:

Turns out, this precious boy, is actually a precious girl. :) She is a black lab/Shar-Pei mix by the name of Littlefoot. She is a Final Refuge dog with Old Dog Haven. During the parade she was being walked by an adoring fan who had come from out of state to be a part of this walk. Littlefoot may have actually wandered away in search of her main human.

But the even more funny part of this entire story is that around the house Littlefoot is constantly carrying a toy. Constantly. Even when she goes potty and napping! My regular readers have seen the photos of Nim sleeping with toy in his mouth...and yes, he totally has been guilt of holding the toy while peeing.

I wonder if there was some unspoken communication between Littlefoot and Nim when she ran smack into him with his toy firmly in mouth.

The Husky (not a Malamute) photographed with Littlefoot is named Kenai, and also female.

If you look on the Scrub-A-Mutt Facebook page you will see these two pups in a photo with a third dog. I don't know who is who. But someone is named Wylie and someone is named Walter. :)

I hope you enjoyed a bit of back story on one of my favorite dogs at the walk.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Old Dog Haven Walk for Old Dogs

Today was the Old Dog Haven Walk For Old Dogs and what a wonderful event. This year was far heavier attended than last year (I would say visually it appeared at least double if not three times what I experienced last year).

I won't write much, enjoy the photo avalanche...

This year Nim brought his friend Jackson (Dalmatian):

And Maggie (mini-Aussie):

I don't know how to fully explain what this event is like. This has a different energy of any dog event I ever participated in and I just love being there.

After registration the event kicked off with a 1/2 mile "parade" of dogs. We ALL walk together. That is a lot of senior dogs in one cluster on their own agenda. :)

Nim showed them how he likes to walk in a crowd firmly attached to his rope toy for some chewing and tugging while processing a dog pack of that size.

I hunted far and wide to get a photo of this guy (above). He reminded me too much of Rusty. During the parade he just started walking away from his owner who was cleaning up poo. Finally he ran smack into Nim and I. I don't even know that he could see all that well, but I am sure if he could, he probably wondered where he could get a toy like Nim's.

The Malamute was there last year. Similar to Nim, I think he is a "younger" supporter.

This girl had a very youthful energy to her with a fully white muzzle.

The walk also included "Olympiad Games." Nim was too young for them. I think all these guys below had just participated in the "longest nap" competition.

There laid there for quite awhile.

There were also chariot races. I hope contestant 7 won something for so happily owning his chariot.

The park is wide open and has many "outs" but you do have to be spotting yourself 360 degrees. This is not an event for the average dog reactive dog. To be mingling in the crowd basically means constant dog on dog interaction.

These seniors are big on the butt sniffing approach which is my opinion is far preferable to the rushing in full face.

They also simply don't care who they stare at or walk up to and have total selective listening when it comes to any sort of command.

I only captured a tiny sliver of all the personalities, struggles, and spunk in this group.

Truly an honor. I plan on supporting this event again next year. Because Nim is still so young, and was only 2 when we attended last year, it was interesting for me to see some of his maturity between the two years (rope toy aside).

Nim was pooped. It is funny how reflective he always seems after big experiences like these.

Precious boy.

Have a good night.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Rally-free, Lower Hylebos Nature Park, and Elk

It is Friday! And I won't even list the lame events of this homework/exam/quiz week...let's just say 4 weeks down, 4 more to go.

Nicer News from the week

Is anyone else watching Panda Cam at the Atlanta Zoo? I like to keep it on and refresh every so often while doing homework...mostly there is a lot of sleeping going on. And yes, I am subscribed to the Cub Confidential Newsletter. Those panda babies might be louder than elk babies.

The baby bunny moved in a roommate this week. The attraction seems to be the fallen plums. This Rhodendron they are all calling home is next to the window where Pascal lives. This week the chipmunk kept trying to run up the window next to Pascal's cage. I am assuming it wasn't a social call. Pascal basically slept through it.

Emile has taken to morning writhing and kicking sessions with the snuggle. He loves that darn thing.

While this is sad news, I do hope you will take the time to visit Schoep and John's Facebook page. Schoep made it just passed his 20th birthday. Amazing. I had mentioned them several months ago when the photo circulated of them in Lake Superior.

Friday Events

Today Nim and I performed for our first video submission for our Rally-Free novice leg! The sport is still trying to grow, so they have video submission options for trialing which I love. Rally-Free takes freestyle elements and puts on them on signs. It is genius actually. For someone like me that can't naturally troubleshoot how to perform freestyle with my dog I have come a long way in how to train it thanks to this new sport.

Enjoy our video submission:

There are some oops...but I am proud of him. Our first run did not go well (note that link isn't posted) so I really had to bring the baby celebration talk up a notch, which as you can see he loves. Sign. No shame.

Anyway, I am hoping we qualify, we will see. I totally manhandled him for one sign which is a huge no-no in traditional rally-obedience. Not sure for rally-free.
After we completed our runs we were heading home and I decided to follow a sign for Lower Hylebos Nature Park.

This is a strange area, and from what I am reading up on, I don't think I was at the prettier end. I was down in Fife. The West Hylebos Creek area is in Federal Way and I think has had a lot of work done.

Still, it gave us a little walk with some different smells and a lot bird chatter.

There is a lot of these platforms along one path (you actually can't see the creek at all except for one end with a bridge). Maybe the area floods and the platforms are for that? You can't see anything from them so I am not sure. I appreciate the restoration efforts in a very industrial area.

I really hope you are still reading! This is what happens when I don't blog until the end of the week, but I really want you to watch my video of the elk:

You can hear some babies talking, and Nim sniffing and huffing. Interesting thing I observed today, but the babies might be calling more for each other than their mothers. I noticed when the little guy went back up the trail his friend stopped yelling.

If you look closely at the above photo you can see bunny and elk, grazing together.

Have a good night and thanks for reading a long post and dealing with two videos!

It will be a homework mostly weekend, however I am looking forward to the Old Dog Haven walk on Sunday.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Day of Elk

The elk have been incredibly busy today.With the windows wide open in the heat this has been challenging for both Nim and the herd. Baby elk make a very distinctive noise when calling for their mom. They also appear to have excellent hearing and can hear Nim huffing in the house because he is so over-stimulated by them. This makes them peep more. 

The finale of the night was about 4 babies and several cows in front of windows. Nim was stone silent then. I think that was an overwhelming number. Unfortunately they were too quick for me to get a good photo of all of them. I wish they would eat things I actually need eaten. Not that I care what they eat, but they could help me with some weeding.

In garden news I grew a bean! I ate it. It probably could have been there a little longer, but good stuff.

Today I had to give the Nasturtiums some tough love. I think they are drowning my peas. I did some serious pruning and going forward will do better keeping them under control. This variety is the vine type and they are hooking on all over the peas.

I did a quick search on "eating too many nasturtiums" and I think I will be OK. It has been a few hours now and I am not sick or anything. I think they are kind of like radishes in taste personally. They are good also in preventing scurvy. :) The stems aren't bad when they are fat and watery, but the spindly, vine ones are tough to chew.

I leave you tonight with this cute little guy...

He insists on living in the fenced area with Nim. Not the smartest move. I hope he grows up soon. Baby bunnies just aren't as skilled in survival and he tends to race around in tight darting circles which works Nim into a frenzy. At least the adults just bolt straight out of the yard.

Have a good night (or good morning) depending when you read!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Saint Francis of Assisi

Hooray for Friday! I have an exam this weekend, but I am so happy this week is over.

I am going to finalize my not for profit proposal today (proposal due this weekend). What a hard project this has been for me! So many ways I want to change the world, so little money. :) I had to get hard on myself to make a decision and quit spending so many hours researching ideas I couldn't possibly financially justify.

I have gone with a quilting focused not for profit that will be to teach young people basic sewing and quilting. I am envisioning it a bit like a quilting club in that they can quilt for charity, but also more structured in that they can come in with no sewing knowledge.

Yesterday Nim got a little gift in the mail. Regardless of your religious beliefs, it is pretty hard not to love Saint Francis of Assisi...or maybe more specifically, our modern idea of who he is: "Patron Saint of Animals."

I ordered this Saint Francis ID tag for Nim from Pet Blessings. I actually had one for Odin for quite awhile although his was made from a softer metal and eventually the upper ring broke (unfortunately I think it might have been a lead based).

This one is a zinc alloy and is a very lightweight tag but still feels more sturdy than the one I had in the past. It has gone hiking "Nim style" and so far is holding strong. :) The back is engraved with his name and phone number. The turn around was really quick when I ordered it and they sent a very nice card with it.

I made Nim model it outside before beginning my nightly hour of stress weeding. My new issue right now is the plum tree. The apples aren't fruiting again this year (darn it), but the plum is off to a good start and well, Nim has discovered where they drop.

I am now aggressively weeding down that area so I can daily go out and rake plums. Thanks to Rusty this is not my first "dog scavenging plums" rodeo. If only I had the time to channel this talent for truffle-hunting. Nim could actually make me money!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Wild Daisy

I just don't know that I was even awake enough this morning to feel this happy, but Nim has enough joy apparently for everyone. :)

Another day of homework for least the summer quarter is short. Have a good day!