Memory Items

 

Memory Pillows on a chair.My weeks before Christmas were busy with projects.  In this case, I was making Memory Bears and Memory Pillows for a woman whose husband had passed.

Memory items are typically made of the deceased person’s clothes. I can make them into teddy bears (similar to the one below) or pillows.  With the pillows, I try to incorporate pockets, buttons and sometimes collars from the shirts used.  With the bears, I often use the buttons from the shirts as the bears’ eyes.  Some bears get bow ties.  Some get long trailing ribbons.

The lady who ordered these gave them to her grandchildren for Christmas.  She told them that whenever they wanted to hug Grandpa, they could hug their teddy bears.

Camouflage stuffed bear.

Of course, the challenge was making sure that my playful pups didn’t think any of those stuffed animals were for them!

Peek-a-boo!

You sure that’s not for me, Mom?

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Don’t forget to order your copy of PoopiterPoopiter  “illustrates” the first year that Bitey Dog and his pesky little brother spend getting to know each other.  A fun read for any dog lover!

Bitey Dog and Toby in POOPITER

 

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Sleeping in Stereo

Normally Toby likes sleeping in his kennel.  He even has a performance he puts on when he wants to go in at night.  For some reason, last night was an exception.  He cried and whined as soon as the lights were turned out.  I opened his door to see what he wanted.  He didn’t go to his dish.  He didn’t go to the door.  Instead, he ran to the bedroom where Geordie was sleeping in the laundry.

Toby isn’t usually allowed in the bedroom because he is still young enough to be a destructive force of nature, but last night I made an exception.  While Toby fussed and investigated all the corners, I decided to leave for a few minutes and let him figure things out on his own.  When I came back, I found this:

Cairn terrier sleeping on bedroom floor.He had found some lap blankets and made a little bed for himself.

Geordie was less than thrilled to have The Usurper in his own private room.  (Geordie and I have arguments over whose room it really is.)  He huffed and puffed and made discontented noises all night to let me know he was not happy.

Life’s the same

We’re sleeping in stereo

Life’s the same

Except for the toots.

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Don’t forget, if you still have any Amazon gift cards from the holidays, a copy of Poopiter would make a great gift for yourself!

 

Bitey Dog and Toby in POOPITER

The Sideways Tree, Revisited

What is left of the sideways tree

Whenever we have a dry day, I try to go down to the sideways tree to help it sneak back into the woods.  This is my progress so far.  At the point you can see here, the trunk split into four branches that grew basically vertically.  I got all of them cut off and moved near the trunk in the wooded area.

I have also been digging up branches that have been buried under very tall grass. In this picture the grass has fallen over, but it is mature enough to have gone to seed.  What amazes me is that the grass I cut in December is already turning green and growing.

This is what the tree looked like in late Summer before I started helping it.

Tree growing although it has been knocked over. I really enjoy bringing order from chaos, but no good deed goes unpunished.  Our dead tree friend is covered with fungi which cause me to have an allergy attack every time I work around them.

Orange fungus on tree trunk

These orange fellows bring some color to the day, but I am hesitant to handle them.

White fungus on tree trunk.

These white “clam shells” are everywhere, so it is hard to avoid brushing against them.

Blue green fungus

The color is a little off on this picture, but this fungus has a blue-green cast.

Hand used to determind scale of tree trunk

This can give you an idea of the diameter of the trunk of the tree.  Its not huge, but it is surprisingly heavy.

 

Deer butt running away

As I was taking pictures, three deer crashed the party.  You can see one of them as she runs away.

Toby likes to come with me when I work down here.  He digs holes or eats dirt and grass.  It is little puppy heaven.

  Bored terrier lies next to his tennis ball.

Aw, can’t we go to the tree today?

If Toby is upset about no longer being able to pee on the top of the tree, he hasn’t said anything.  Perhaps I should check my slippers before putting them on just to be on the safe side….

And So It Begins

For the final act of 2018, Toby managed to get into the bathroom and grab not just the end of the toilet paper but the whole roll.  “Gnaw, gnaw, gnaw” went the Toby.

And how did 2019 begin?  With Toby throwing up in his bed at 4:00 a.m. “Yark, yark, yark,” went the Toby.  But, dog puke is auspicious, isn’t it?

And so begins our new year….

Spitting Cottonballs

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Did you get an Amazon gift card for Christmas?  Then consider ordering a copy of Poopiter for yourself!

Bitey Dog and Toby in POOPITER

Poopiter tells the illustrated tales of my boys during their first year together.  Sure to bring a smile to your face!

 

Shiny Happy Puppies Wearing Bands

Shiny reflective gear on walker and pups.

Whee!  The boys and I got lucky.  Our Christmas presents arrived early!  They received reflective leashes and collars, and I got a reflective harness to go with my bands and my flashlight.

I hadn’t realized how much we would enjoy night walking, but it is wonderful!  I love the peacefulness and the quiet.  People in the area go all out for the holidays and decorate with tons of lights and lawn ornaments.  You really get to appreciate them as you stroll by in the dark.

It is great no longer being restricted to daylight hours to get our exercise.  If I had known how much fun we’d have, I would have asked Santa for reflectors much sooner!

 

 

The Sideways Tree

Tree growing although it has been knocked over.

It’s hard to judge from the photo just how big this gentle giant is.  He is huge!

If you could peek through the trees a few feet, you would be able to watch the Keystone Pipeline being put in.  Workers pushed over the trees in this wooded area  to make a place for the pipes.  Part of me would like to blame the workers for knocking over healthy wood, but these trees were nearly all past their prime and should have been thinned  long ago.  Over the years when the pups and I have walked by, I was struck by how many trees were still upright simply because they had died leaning against a fellow tree.

One day during a bad storm, this giant of a tree was knocked over.  Even though he was down, he continued growing and put out a full display of leaves that first year.  By the second year, his spirit flagged.  As you can see in the photo, his leaves were thin, and he looked tired.

At the end of the Summer, he finally gave up and died.  He had had enough.  What is sad to me is that he has had to lie there for all of those years while the township mowed around him.  Again, my photography isn’t good, but there is an island of unreasonably tall grass as large as the outline of the tree.

Toby and I walked past the tree last week.  I brushed against a branch, and it was so brittle it easily snapped off.  Inspired, I broke off more and more.  On several more days (sans Toby) I went back to the park and broke off all the branches that would snap.  I even dug through the snow to reach the ones buried under the 30″ tall grass.

This is fun for me.  I like the work, and I like making that public area look better.  I am planning to sneak back with a saw and keep hacking the tree into pieces that I can drag into the woods.  I am wondering how long I can do this before someone decides to yell at me.  You know, because after nearly 3 years of ignoring the problem, the township is suddenly going to develop an interest in it.

I hope that the parts of the tree I have returned to the woods will decompose and become fertile ground for new life.   Season by season we can watch that stand return to its former glory.

Terrier pups waits next to his tennis ball.

I can’t believe you are getting rid of my chance to pee on the top of a giant tree!

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Christmas is right around the corner.  Order your copy of Poopiter for yourself or for someone you love!

Bitey Dog and Toby in POOPITER

Poopiter is available at Amazon.

 

The Closet (The Coat)

I had though that the season change was off to an auspicious start when I was able to repair a purse for under $0.50.  Surely this was a sign of good things to come!  Not.

A quick perusal of other Winter gear showed a coat with definite cold spots.  OK, it is at least 12 or 13 years old.  Surely I could at least think about possibly finding a new one?  Maybe one with a hood?

Thinking is about as far as you can go these days about new things.  With all of the talk I hear about the flourishing economy and American-made pride, I thought I would be overwhelmed with great choices.  Choices yes, but certainly not great ones.

Anyone who lives up north knows the value of a warm coat.  Sadly now I do too.  It is approximately a mortgage payment.  I had always been lucky enough to find something at an outlet store, but there don’t seem to be any around here anymore.

A check online showed that not only are coats super expensive, but for some reason every manufacturer has decided that current coats must a) be very form-fitting and b) have a zippered turtleneck.  Models demonstrate the coats’ attributes while wearing stilettos and nothing else.  Really?  Are we supposed to be wearing our down coats over cocktail dresses?  What happened to dressing in layers?  How are you supposed to fit a wool sweater under one of those?  I find this level of stupidity very frustrating.

And then there’s zippered turtlenecks.  That is all you can find.  I loathe zippered turtlenecks.  They catch on your hair.  They catch on your earrings.  They constantly poke you in the face.  Seriously?  No one could think to buck the trend and place a zipper to the collar bone then a snap-closed insulated collar?  Even if I could afford a coat I would either have to hate it as-is or commit surgery and void its warranty.

So, my unfortunate puppies are closet orphans for another week as I try to once again fix what I have.  Toby enjoys going through my fabric bin with me and pulling out different insulators trying to find something to help.  If I can’t find anything, maybe I’ll just stuff him in there.  After all, my boys are always bragging about how warm their fur is.

Cairn terrier pup standing in snow.

My fur is warm.  N’yah, n’yah, n’yah!

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Don’t forget to pick up your copy of Poopiter!

  Bitey Dog and Toby in POOPITER

Available at Amazon.  Makes a great holiday gift!