Canine, Family

Eulogy for a Dog

Breagha (‘Beautiful’) was not a normal dog. She was people-smart. If one of the little dogs needed to go outside they told her and she told me. They are as lost now as we; Daisy won’t even go to the side yard, sticking as close to the back door as possible. She keeps watching for Bree to come out so she’ll feel safe. Bree was her rock.

I could tell Bree something once or twice and she got it. She knew many, many words. Training was a breeze and though we didn’t keep up with it, she remembered even unto old age. A thinker, sometimes she over-thought things.

She saved my life when the electric blanket I was using started to catch fire, barking at it to alert me.

We started each day with a hug, her ears going back while sidling up to me for the ritual.

After I showered each day and started to blow dry my hair, she would come in the bathroom. I’d turn the dryer on cool and run it over her, saying “Aren’t you a purty girl?” and she’d grin and preen for me.

At first I was heartbroken to see her nowhere and now, still bereft, I see her everywhere. Don’t know what’s worse.

It’s probably the last time I’ll say/write this: Her sire, CH Deep River Bow and Arrow, was the #1 Smooth Collie in the US, all systems, in 2008.

I love this dog. And I will miss her until I die. There was so much more to her, so much she gave us, just loving us and being part of our lives. Suffice it to say that she was a good dog and she will be missed. Goodbye, Big Love.

Canine, Family

The Chair

Now that I’m over the shock of losing Breagha (though stuck in a stultifying haze; I dropped my house key somewhere between here and the grocery store. How?!) all the funny things she used to do are coming back.

She loved this chair, but always looked so awkward on it. Possibly the only time she looked so, as she had a natural grace. Bree never even went through that gangly puppy phase.

Poor Tammi made me mistake of sitting in “the chair”

The chair fell apart and we removed it to the curb. She was not happy, taking up residence in “the comfy chair” for the duration.

Canine, Family

Take The Sky

Breagha, aka Younghaven Take The Sky, has passed on to her next great adventure.

She was the most intelligent, obstinate, opinionated dog I ever knew, but she was my friend.

I hope your travels take you far, sweet girl. But not so far that we can’t catch up. Dad and I miss you terribly.


The Refrigerator Scandal

A cautionary tale.

On July 8th of this year I ordered a new refrigerator from Home Depot to be delivered and installed in my home.  

As was appropriate, a date was set for delivery. I kept checking the web site and saw that the date changed. This happened TWO more times. I was not called or emailed anything; I had to haunt the site to keep apprised of my numerous delivery dates.  

Finally, I called Tuesday, July 23rd and a woman told me that this time it was really happening! “It was back ordered, but they have yours” she said. Saturday, July 27th my fridge would be delivered!   The appointment slot was between 2:30 and 6:30.

Saturday the old fridge was emptied (again) and everything chucked into coolers. I checked the website with a doggedness born of disappointment – but fearful of it being changed again as the day wore on I called once again… and was told that it was back ordered.   The fourth time was not the charm. As a matter of fact, one person I spoke with reported that the delivery guys wouldn’t even answer their phone. Nice.

HD lost a customer because of either their ineptitude or that of their contracted delivery company.

We heard good things about Brandsmart, so I ordered the same fridge from them and it was installed two days later. How hard was that, really?

This is the fridge we bought.

I love it!! Thank you Brandsmart!

I received nothing for this post; just the pleasure of calling HD out.


What Ifs

…or Nature vs Nurture vs the insanity in our own heads.

I’ve no grand revelations. Not even inspirations. But my brain is full of What Ifs. Those lead to more What Ifs and triggered nightmares. Last night I was in high school and missed one class. Okay, I skipped. Then I found out that my father had come to that class, in full uniform. I had missed him.

And that’s what I did. Missed the auld man… for 61 years.

While we -the husband and I- were there, talking to Dad… still surreal… Mike kept remarking how we are so alike, father and daughter. In some very basic ways, we are. I understand and appreciate nature.

Here’s where the nurture comes in… I’m so different than my half siblings… in so many ways. That has more to do with different mothers; it’s also nurture. What if I’d grown up in his house, with my siblings? Instead of socially awkward I might be adept at interacting with others. Like them, I might have had a wonderful career instead of jobs.

My folks lived through the depression and not in a graceful, Waltons sort of way. Needless to say, it had a profound effect on them and I think they were just happy to keep me fed. College was not mentioned. What I would do after high school? Must have been my responsibility, but I had no idea.

Perhaps I would have turned out the same person if he had raised me, but I keep asking myself “What If?”


…and no pictures!

That’s how I like to write post titles now, as if the reader has caught me at the end of a sentence. …start talking that way too? ANYhow, we’re back, the man and moi, from Texas. Where I took only one photograph, of the United terminal at IAH. I not only forgot my camera, we were in such a hurry for those four days that there wasn’t much on my mind other than our objectives.

The day before we left Badger was carted to the “Spa” while Bree and Daisy went to the Vet to stay in a “luxury suite”. Too bad for them; we saw it. Mike said it reminded him of a prison cell. Daisy had just undergone oral surgery and since both she and Bree are elderly, the vet seemed the logical, if costly choice. (No worries; everyone has been fetched and at last the pack is complete.)

‘Oh, it’s a big pretty white plane with red stripes, curtains at the windows, wheels, and it just looks like a big Tylenol.’

We flew First class. Yep, Florida crackers go big! When booking I saw that the prices for the First class seats were only $200 different from Business class and of course Mike suggested we go for it. Bucket List item achieved. The differences: We didn’t have to wait a half hour in line with the masses to check our suitcase, just rolled right up to a kiosk and someone helped us immediately. This is where I started to become impressed. Our checked bag was first on and first off and sported a pepper red label marked “Priority”. Nice, right? Also, the walking nightmare (TSA) was a dream, as we again skirted the quivering mob of commoners and walked right through. If you think I’m exaggerating, you haven’t traveled lately. The seats were slightly larger, but my butt still ached thirty minutes in. The food was lovely, though I didn’t eat. I actually didn’t eat while there except for two Kind bars and a small mahi mahi.

The first day we hung with Mike’s sister Deb (one of my best friends). The next morning we rose semi-early for the drive to Galveston to meet my biological father. The man – at 86 – is busier than a centipede at a toe counting contest! Among his numerous other endeavors, he is in charge of the crews who work on the restoration of the vessels at Seawolf Park. The USS Cavalla, an old diesel sub, and an Edsall class Destroyer Escort, the USS Stewart. An all volunteer force, they meet twice a year. He’s not the only Master Chief in attendance, but everyone defers to Mac, in pretty much everything.

We went to dinner at Gaido’s that evening and spent the night at Harbor House, where the myopic managers are apparently too busy to check and see if the rooms are being cleaned – thoroughly. Yeah, I’ve got this thing about mold… and dust. A little dust is understandable, but if it looks as though something hasn’t been touched since the hotel was constructed… no. I wanted to start cleaning, but was exhausted from both meeting my dad and crawling all over the ship.

The next day we went back to the Stewart to visit with Mac, but left in time to return to Houston so I could surprise Anthony (another best friend) on his birthday. One of my favorite moments from the trip!

On the way in – actually, running north on 610 Loop in pouring rain – the driver’s side window wiper blade flew off. Such fun! If I hadn’t had Mike with me to provide some guidance? Whew. At one point I’d made it off onto the feeder and Mike wanted me to get back on 249… I said “Honey, there are just a few times when Texans need to use the feeder road. One is if you’re drunk. Another is if you have a flat. And one is if your damned wiper blade just blew off in the pouring rain!”. We stayed on the feeder.

The next morning we boarded the plane for home. It was a short visit, but memorable… and overwhelming… and an entire dictionary full of adjectives, sorry. The thing was so quick I almost haven’t processed the fact that I sat talking in a room with my DAD!