Share Your World – 2015 Week #7

Somehow, this prompt slipped by me. I don’t know how that happened, but I don’t think I got the usual email notification. When Draliman’s showed up, I realized I needed to get on the ball and respond! Can’t miss one of these!

Is the paper money in your possession right now organized sequentially according to denomination and with the bills right side up and facing the same way?

I don’t have any paper money in my wallet or anywhere else right now. It isn’t so rare that I just don’t have any folding money. I rarely need it, so I don’t think about it.

What is your favorite type of dog?  (can be anything from a specific breed, a stuffed animal or character in a movie)


I like small to medium-sized terriers, and that’s probably why I always seem to have a couple of them. A Scottie and a Norwich. Bonnie and Nan.

Bonnie, Nan & Garry

Other dogs too, but they are definitely our favorites. And they know it. They score very high on the quirky, funny, smart doggy scale!


If money was not an issue, would you go on a cruise?  If so where would you go?

I would love another cruise. We’ve been on two, to the eastern and western Caribbean. It has been about 10 years. I’d love to do the Alaskan cruise … or if money is really no object, a transatlantic cruise … in warm weather.

Would you dare to sleep in haunted house overnight?

I owned a haunted house. They haunted. We slept anyway. They weren’t hostile and neither were we.


Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: My Favorite Things, Chorus

When the dog bites, 
When the bee stings, 
When I’m feeling sad, 
I simply remember my favorite things, 
and then I don’t feel so bad.

Danger Dogs

Bish and Nan Biscuit Time

Bonnie morning



And when I’m feeling sad …

Free and easy carousel

Because a carousel always cheers me up!


We have four dogs, one of whom has a drinking problem. It’s not medical. We’ve checked it out with any number of veterinarians and there is nothing physically wrong with Bishop. He merely drinks a lot of water. Actually, he probably drinks a normal amount of water, but he drinks it all at once. When he begins drinking, he goes on for what seems forever.

Three amigos
Three amigos looking down on “owner”

Not surprisingly, when he has to pee, he releases an ocean. It’s absolutely tidal.

Now, the mystery.

Bishop Almost Christmas

With four dogs, we have two water bowls. A big blue-green plastic one that’s bigger than some dogs, and a somewhat smaller stainless steel bowl. They sit side by side on the floor in the kitchen. The stainless bowl used to be on the left, the plastic bowl on the right. For reasons of convenience (mine), I switched them a while ago, so now the big plastic bowl is on the left, and the stainless steel bowl on the right. No big deal, right?


Bishop used to drink entirely from the stainless steel bowl. We assumed he preferred the taste of water from the steel bowl, but when I switched the position of the bowls, Bishop began drinking exclusively from the plastic bowl. Apparently he will only drink from the left-hand bowl.

I was just in the kitchen and Bishop was standing over the empty plastic bowl, obviously sad because there was no water. Directly next to it, the stainless bowl was full. But he wouldn’t drink from it. He will only drink from the bowl on the left.

All the other dogs will drink from either bowl, apparently without preference.

Ideas anyone?


Race the Clock – Here’s the title of your post: “An Offer I Couldn’t Refuse.”

I woke up with a splitting headache. Got dressed anyway because we have a few errands to run today, and it’s a short day. Tonight is Anton’s concert in Worcester.

three dogs

Garry brother Anton is conducting the St. Olaf Choir at Mechanics Hall. It’s the first time in 20 years at this venue. We’re going with friends who are taking us out for a long deferred dinner — a ‘thank you’ for stuff Garry has done with him on video projects.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGarry and I have been fighting “the thing that’s going around that isn’t the flu but acts like the flu and take two weeks to finally let go.” Mornings have required a bit more determination than merely rolling out of bed. To be fair, at our age, mornings are generally a bit challenging.

Garry was on his feet a few minutes before me, and turned on the coffee pot. I got dressed. By the time I came out to the kitchen, all the dogs were hopping up and down. “Hi Mom! How about a few biscuits?” One Greenie per pup. One crunchy per pup. “You don’t think that’s enough? Well, sorry kids. That’s it for now. Disgruntled dogs wander off.  If I gave them 20 biscuits each, it would still not be enough. It is never enough.

Garry, by now, is back in the kitchen. He has done his first-thing-in-the-morning ablutions. He looks very clean and smells delicious. Or maybe that’s the coffee. While I’m trying to decide if I want cookies with my coffee or I should toast an English muffin, Garry looks at me. I see love in his eyes.

“Hey, stranger. Do you come here often?” I grin, waiting for it.  And there it is! “Would you like a cup of coffee?” he asks.

My heart pounds in happy anticipation. That is the offer I will not, cannot refuse.

“Yes,” thank you, you handsome devil,” I reply. And my beloved made me a cup of coffee.

What a guy! They just don’t make’em like that anymore.

Nan in the morning

Bonnie morning



Two Right Feet - What are the things you need to do within 30 minutes of waking up to ensure your day gets off on the right foot? What happened the last time you didn’t do one of these things?

I didn’t have a good night. I’ve got some kind of … what … virus? Whatever it is, I feel like the Marne in September 1914. If the Germans are a viral infection and I am six French field armies and the British Expeditionary Force. I will ultimately win this encounter, but there will be casualties. Many.

Nan and Bishop

These days, I take my victories where I find them.

Which in no way means my morning will progress any differently than usual. Life is a checklist. Don’t argue, just do it. And the dogs run the place and wrote the checklist.


The worst part of the process is the beginning. Getting out of bed. Getting dressed. I can’t do life from the bed, not even on a bad day. I get to stay only if I am too ill to get up. Any other time, I have to wend my weary way to the recliner in the living room, where my computer lives. With a cup of coffee. There are a few steps I need to take along the way.


Did I mention the dogs run the place? Four furry faces greet me. I tell them to go out. No biscuits until they do their business. While they’re out — all of two minutes — I press the button on the coffee machine.

The dogs do not have a water dish. They have a water trough. It’s big enough for a camel and there’s a second bowl, too. Both need washing and refilling. Sometimes, a bit of moisture remains in one of them, but usually, both are dry. I’m sure they have drinking contests during the night, because the last thing Garry or I do before bed is fill both bowls. Is there a 12-step program for this?

They get a round of Greenies. I wash some dishes. put an English muffin in to toast. The dogs are watching. They are focused. Bonnie is jumping up and down. What a thrill! Mom is IN the kitchen. Magic time!

Round 2 of Greenies. I start the computer, then back to the kitchen. The dogs are trying to convince me they’ve never had a treat and will collapse from starvation any moment. This would play better to a different audience. I’m the one who — mere moments ago — gave them two rounds of Greenies. It’s a bravura performance, but they’ll have to do it for Garry a little later. I’m not buying the act.

Nan - 14

I have a headache plus a sore throat. And a cough. I feel sorry for myself, but it could be worse. It’s not snowing or raining. They don’t mind snow, except Nan who minds everything these days. On snow days, we go through a lot of towels.

But rain is a different story. They don’t like it and make their feelings known. Beep. The piercing cry of the toaster alerts me my toasted English is ready. As is the coffee. I’m ready for coffee.

What would happen if I didn’t do this stuff? You’re kidding, right?


Share Your World – 2015 Week #2


Are you a hugger or a non-hugger?

I came late to hugging. My family is not touchy-feely. They aren’t unfriendly, just more verbal than physical.

I hug, but only people to whom I feel especially close. And with whom I am very comfortable. Come to think of it, that category doesn’t include many people. But it does include the people who are the most important to me, on whom my world hangs.

What’s your favorite ice-cream flavor?

I don’t eat ice cream much, but I enjoy an occasional frozen yogurt. Strawberry is my favorite, but any fruit flavor is good. And vanilla. If I am going to have real ice cream, a good vanilla will win every time. How boring, eh?

Do you prefer exercising your mind or your body? How frequently do you do either?

Exercise physically has been less and less of an option. I’ve been sick so much of the time, recovering from surgery, etc. Now, between the heart issues, the arthritis, and of course it’s the middle of an icy New England winter. Good this blog keeps my brain from going all soft.

Marilyn photographer

Writing is my mental exercise, photography my artistic outlet. I haven’t done much shooting lately because it has been terribly, bitterly cold. Below zero kind of cold and today it’s warmer, but sleeting. My least favorite winter weather. It has turned the dogs yard into a sheet of ice. Fortunately, the roads are clear … but even a simple walk from the house to the car would be full of peril this time of year.

Are you more of a dog person or a cat person? Why?

We used to have cats. Then we had cats and ferrets. Then we had a cat and a dog, then two dogs. Then we had two dogs, no cats. Now we have four dogs, though technically, only two of them are ours. But as I look around me, we have three small ones on the sofa and the big furry guy on the floor in front of us.

Danger Dogs

I guess it’s dogs at this point. Not because I don’t like cats. I like them fine and if I had my druthers, I’d probably have horses. But horses don’t fit well in the house and definitely don’t do well on the sofa. So dogs it is. But who knows what the future holds?


A Photo a Week Challenge: Humor

This picture comes with a back story.

We have four dogs. Technically, Garry and I have two and the other two belong to my son. Ours are the two terriers, Bonnie, the Scottie, and Nan, the Norwich. Owen has the big Australian Hairball — I mean, Shepherd — and Amber, the odd-eyed Miniature Dachshund. Amber is a Velcro dog and only puts in an upstairs appearance if there’s a biscuit in it or when dinner is served.

Bishop, on the other hand, is upstairs more than he is downstairs. He’s big, hairy, and friendly. The only dog in a houseful of bitches. (Well, they are bitches. Dogs are male, bitches are female. Get used to it.)

On this day, the two terriers had just come home from the groomer. Looking good. Time to get a few pictures before they went outside to roll in the dirt, or dig a tunnel to Australia. I had cajoled Garry into putting on a nice pair of jeans, and posing with The Girls.

Neither terrier will let me take a picture unless they are physically restrained … or sleeping. Why not? No idea. I don’t even use a flash. Nonetheless, the moment I take a camera out of the bag, they head for the doggy door and all I get is a picture of their furry butts as they make their escape.

I had them lined up. Garry was smiling. I think the girls were smiling, but it can be hard to tell. And suddenly, Bishop decided he was not going to be left out.

dogs with bishop and gar

I could have shot around him, but he clearly felt he was being unreasonably excluded. Even though Bishop is usually no more eager to be a photo subject than the other canines. This time, though, he was going to participate. One way or the other.