Monday, October 31, 2011

Why Do Dogs Whine?

Why do dogs whine?  I am pretty sure my golden retriever whines because he knows that it drives us crazy.  He whines for treats.  He whines if we don't feed him enough.  He whines when he wants to go on the morning walk and thinks we are going to sleep in instead.  He whines every Saturday morning until he sees us getting ready to go out to breakfast....taking him along of course. He whines to go outside, then whines again to come back in!

If I get high blood pressure, it will because of my dog's whining.  But, sometimes, I think he might be in pain or has a stomach ache, and I think I should feel sorry for him.

When my children used to whine, I knew exactly what to do and I would never have allowed that type of behavior, so why is it different with my dog?  Am I getting soft...or lazy?

All I know, is that I could use the Dog Whisperer right now.  I don't know how much more whining we can take around here!
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Friday, April 17, 2009

Farewell, McShane

Last night, the eldest dog member who attends our neighborhood nightly dog get-togethers, was put to sleep. For the past several months his health had been deteriorating quickly. His back paws curved under from arthritis and it was hard for him to hold up his backside. He had his days and nights mixed up and had numerous other problems. His Owners took great care of him and haven't had a full night's sleep in almost a year. But you would never know that he was hurting during the 30 minutes each night as we get all our dogs together to fetch tennis balls, Frisbees and run around on our "dog park" (golf course).

Mac was our elderly leader. All the younger pups greatly respected him and stayed out of his way. When he would start to collapse, Tucker, Petey and Wrigley would run over to check on him, then go back to playing. Mac shot them a look that said, " I can handle myself just fine, thank you." And besides, Mac was way too busy seeking dog treats from all the humans. His favorite treats came from Gretchen, but would beg from all us as he made his way to Gretchen.

We will miss this special dog. He reminded us to be our best each day, no matter what is ailing us or what predicament we have gotten ourselves into. Just like Mac, everyday, we must remember to pull ourselves up and search for what 'treat' we desire in this life.
Thanks, Mac.

Here is his final night for a "Cheers to Mac" with his dog and people friends who loved him so very much:


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wrigley and the Concrete Easter Bunny

Poor ole Wrigley. What, with another holiday and holiday decorations, comes new fears and anxiety for our golden retriever puppy.

I placed this concrete bunny out on the ledge by the pool the other day. At first, Wrigley was scared of it. He growled at it and barked loudly to let the rabbit know who's boss around here.

Then, he got up close and noticed the little Easter basket sitting next to the big bunny.

I had placed two concrete lemons in the basket, mainly to keep the basket grounded and not swimming in the pool. But Wrigley, being the eternal optimist, wanted to investigate further to see if they were edible.

But his big ole block head got caught in the handle and he was not able to get his mouth on the lemons.

Wrigley and the Easter Bunny are now good friends. He likes to sit up there on the pool's ledge in the early mornings and soak up the sun together with his new friend.

Just wait to see what I have planned for the backyard for the Fourth of July! I think Wrigley will get a 'big bang' out of it!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

First Baseball Crush of the Year

Spring training games are underway and I already have my first crush of the year. Yes guys, that's what we do at the who we will be following just a little closer than the other players.

His name is Michael Eugene Fontenot and never mind that he was born just days after I graduated from college! That's irrelevant. He plays for the Chicago Cubs, the best team this year! He's from Slidell, Louisiana and went to LSU for college. He's about my son Jon's height and my husband's weight so it all feels familiar. I think it's kind of cool that while he bats left, he throws with his right hand. And he apparently likes playing on Fridays, because yesterday he homered, tripled and drove in four runs to boot. Not bad.

You want a picture? Okay, here he is (on the left) messing around with Zambrano before the game:

Isn't he cute? And guess what his salary was in 2008? $405,000. I think he deserves a raise, for goodness sakes. Don't worry, I've got your back, Mike. I'll talk to the Chicago Cubs management for you.
See you next game...

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Opening Day for Spring Training is Just Around the Corner

I have just spent the remaining morning hours plastering my office walls with the schedules of spring training games around the Phoenix area. I am feeling all giddy and even though we never really had much of a winter to talk about, I have a severe case of spring fever. Spring training fever, that is.

My love for spring training season for baseball began many years ago in Vero Beach, Florida. I was living in Rochester, Minnesota at the time and had recently given birth to my first son, Andy. By March, I was so sick of below zero temperatures I yearned for the sun and a sidewalk that didn't need shoveling. Luckily for me, my parents and Grandmother "Mommom" had rented a place on the beach in Vero Beach, Florida for the month of March. They invited me or (maybe I begged them to invite me), I don't really recall. It does not matter now, as of course, I packed our bags and we headed down to the warm Florida sunshine. If I did nothing for the whole duration of the trip but lay out and swim in the ocean I would have been a happy camper. But this was not the plan my family members had in mind. Several afternoons a week, everyone would leave the beach, shower and put on a brightly-colored pair of shorts or skirt, a t-shirt top and a comfortable pair of flats. We drove inland to the spring training facility for the Los Angeles Dodgers. At the time, it was known as the top facility of its kind in the nation. And thousands of people would attend every game no matter who they were playing.

My parents lived in the Chicago area and liked the Cubs and Mommom was from Wilmington, Delaware and had been a Phillies fan all her life. Still, the Dodgers were in town, so that's who we watched in the spring. I liked the Cubs and baseball was just "okay" until I started attending these middle-of-the-day games in Vero Beach. It was fun to get a hot dog and a beer or soda and watch these amazing athletes run around the bases. No seat was bad and most made you feel like you were very close to these stars. We used to laugh at the kids (all ages!) trying to get their autographs. We were still facing the sun, and back then, working on your tan was very important. Going back to Minnesota not looking like a ghost was right up there with relaxing and seeing my family.

I grew to enjoy these games more and more. And my family continued to spend their springs in Vero Beach. Sometimes a big group of friends would all go to the games, resulting in lots of laughter and stories. A spring training game is one place where all ages can sit together and enjoy each other's company.

My parents moved to Vero Beach permanently and always supported the Dodgers. Years passed by and now Mommom and my Dad have passed away. My Mom still lives in Vero Beach with her husband, Ed. And sadly, the LA Dodgers have left the City that loved and supported them for so many years. They think they have moved to "greener pastures", to perhaps the next newest and best stadium, in Arizona. But I know they left behind so many wonderful fans with wonderful memories of watching a day game in Dodger Stadium. Vero Beach is left trying to pay for an empty stadium with no team to fill it. Vacationers are left with one less activity to fill their days. Do you think the Dodgers' management understand just how sad this move is to so many people? I kind of doubt it.

Today, I am sitting and mapping out which games I will attend. I thank my Mom, Dad and Mommom for giving me this happy memory and this love for spring training games. I am fortunate to be married to a man who loves baseball even more than I do. I just hope he can sneak out of the office once or twice to enjoy his beloved Cubs or the Giants that play in Scottsdale. Yes, spring training fever is raging and I know just the cure........

Monday, February 16, 2009

Chicago Cubs Move to Scottsdale for Spring Training (One Can Hope!)

Word on the street is that the Chicago Cubs may not want to stay in their spring training home in Mesa, AZ. It's not that they don't fill the stadium for every single spring training game, but let's face it. Mesa? Not exactly a fun town. We all drive over there and curse on our way back (probably because we had to stay sober for the long drive home!).

So, I would like to propose my town for their new home that's truly worthy of hosting the Chicago Cubs:


We have the best looking fans, the best restaurants and hotels around us. Just ask San Francisco. I know every town wants you and we all need the added revenue you bring. It would be hard to move, I am sure. Folks in Vero Beach will forever be mad at the LA Dodgers for up and moving to Arizona. They really had something special down there in Florida. Quite unlike Mesa.

Here's hoping that if the rumor is true that you take a look at Scottsdale. I will personally give you a tour!