Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Ever Growing To-Do List of Fun

We leave for Cincinnati in the morning. I love going on trips. I do not, however, enjoy preparing for them. It seems that I'm always a victim of "the best laid plans". I always say, "oh, I'm going to pack the day before, get the oil changed, leave on time, etc." I've never managed any of those things yet. Today, once again, I'm hoping to do better. Casey and I are going to try to knock out just a few things during lunch today. My goal: have the car washed and vacuumed. We'll pretty much be forced to leave on time, since we have special dinner reservations tomorrow night. No lollygagging this time. We've got such fun things planned to do, while we're there. We are going to the farmer's market, the aquarium, and of course the Moody Blues concert. It's shaping up to be a whirlwind weekend, with little time left for rest.

When we get back, I won't even have time for post trip depression. Casey and I are going to spend the better part of Halloween winterizing the house. I'd like to NOT spend my entire life savings paying heating bills this winter. Afterwards, we'll settle in for all of the trick-or-treaters, while preventing either Bear or Fergie from dashing out the door. That's one of the only things that I DON'T enjoy about Halloween. It's such a bark fest, when the knocking starts. I didn't happen to get their pictures made last night. I was so busy with my trip list. I'll just have to post their pictures, when I get back next week.

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Tuesday is going to be a really fun day as well. November 1st is the DVD release of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. You all know how much I've been looking forward to this. I can't wait to see all of the bonus features, especially the deleted scenes. A lot of those were actually in the novel, but cut from the movie for some reason. My personal opinion is; they should have left them in. It really does help tie the whole story together. Many fans have complained about the weak plot line, but haven't read the novels. I've read all of the prequal novels, along with the expanded universe novels in between them. They really do add so much more to the story. I'll probably have my own copy in my hot little hands by lunchtime on Tuesday. That night, I'll be attending a DVD release party. A small group from the 501st Legion, Southern Outpost , the Rebel Legion , and Nashville After Darth members are celebrating the event by making it a Toys for Tots event. Casey and I have several friends in these groups, so we'll be at the event. If you donate a toy, you can have your picture made with Jedi, Stormtroopers, Boba Fett, and many other Star Wars characters. So for any of you that are Star Wars fans and are close to the Cool Springs Mall area Toys R Us, come on out and join the fun! I'm sure that I'll have a slew of pictures to post from that event. It's going to be such fun.

I'm going to have so much fun in the next week, that there'll be no living with me for quite some time. I'm going to do my best to get a couple of AudioBlogger posts done, while I'm gone. Every one have a great weekend and a good week. I'll be back next Wednesday!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Bow Wow Boo To You!

I'm still coming down of this past weekend's high. The week has been pretty usual. I'm getting myself packed and ready to head out to Cincinnati to visit one of my best friend's Melissa. It's going to be like a double bonus trip. I get to see one of my best friends, plus see the Moody Blues do another show! I can hardly wait. Tomorrow is my last day to work, until next Wednesday.

Since I've been so busy running around this week, I haven't made the dogs official Halloween picture yet. I'm going to do my best to pull it off tonight. They have the cutest little hat this year!! Keep your fingers crossed that they'll cooperate. So until tomorrow, I'll leave you with some very cute Halloween pooches. I posted these last year. But they are so cute, I have to share again. Everyone have a great afternoon!

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Boo!!...from 2 of my crew to you...(Bear and Shiloh, Halloween 2004)

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

A Wonderful Evening!

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Of course, I had a fabulous weekend! The Moody Bluegrass show at the Ryman Auditorium was nothing short of spectacular! When I bought tickets several months ago, I had no idea that I was in for such a treat. No seat is bad at the Ryman. Mom and I had tickets in the balcony section, dead center, in the front. I couldn't have asked for a better perspective. I've attended Moody Blues concerts for most of my life, but nothing compared to this. The show opened with bluegrass artist Clair Lynch. I'd never heard any of her work, but immediately I was impressed. I'm going to pick up a couple of her CDs soon. Her voice was absolutely beautiful, as well as her performace. She sang about 6 songs, before turning the show over to all of the fabulous musicians that participated on the Moody Bluegrass project. A man, I forget his name, introduced the artists and each song. He also told the songwriting story of every Moody Blues song and what band member wrote it. Every song on the CD was performed live, which was quite an impressive list. As the first half of the show began, I noticed some people just finding their seats to my left. With quite a start, I realized that it was Graeme Edge, the Moodies drummer, and his wife. They had come up to watch the first half of the show from our perspective! It was really a lot of fun to watch him, while the Moodies songs were performed. It was so interesting to see his reaction, and his appreciation. It was such a kick to know that he was just a row from me. The first half concluded, and Graeme and his entourage made their way backstage. I walked around and stretched my legs a bit. The seats in the Ryman are old church pews, and the legs and hips can get stiff after a while.

The second half got underway, with no less perfection. I thought one of the best performances of the night was by Jan Harvey. She did a version of It's Up to You, written by my favorite Justin Hayward. The next performance that stood out in my memory was Nights In White Satin, by Justin again, sung by John Cowan. It just blew the roof off of the place! Both of these songs received long, standing ovations. After many more songs, the moment that I'd been waiting for arrived. The Moody Blues finally took the stage, along with the bluegrass musicians. John Lodge came on first. He sang Send Me No Wine, which is from their On The Threshold of A Dream album. I never thought I'd EVER get to hear it live!! It was wonderful. Justin Hayward, my personal fav, was up next. He sangIt's Cold Outside of Your Heart from their album The Present.. Again, something I NEVER thought I'd hear live. Last and certainly not least, Graeme Edge took the stage. He performed his poem Higher and Higher from To Our Children's Children's Children. He's such a fun guy. He just banged on that tambourine and did his little dancy jig. He danced all the way across the stage and disappeared for just a moment. When he came back out, he had cloggers with him. The audience really whooped it up for that. All too soon, it was time for the finale. All of the performers, along with the Moody Blues came out on stage for a closing jam. They had more than 3 encores! Then it was over. Just a memory, but what a wonderful memory it is!

I did leave with a souvenir. It's a cute little Moody Bluegrass purse.

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The front has the Moody Bluegrass design.
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The back is of the Moody Bluegrass album on vinyl.

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A closeup of the back

To hear samples of the Moodies songs, click the album titles above. To hear samples of Moody Bluegrass, click HERE. To hear 3 full cuts from the Moody Bluegrass album, click HERE.

Everyone have a great day!

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Family, Good Friends, and Good Music

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Tomorrow marks the Moody Bluegrass concert at the Ryman auditorium. I've been looking forward to it for a while now. So, I'm headed into Nashville early tomorrow afternoon with my Mom and brother. We are meeting up with some friends to have a visit and hopefully have a good meal, before the concert begins. The weather has taken chilly turn over night. I need to drag out the winter clothes tonight, so I won't freeze to death tomorrow. It's been over a year, since I've seen the Moody Blues perform. I've had my tickets for a while now, but realized this morning, rather startled, that I hadn't printed them out yet. I just kept thinking, "print the tickets, print the tickets, print the tickets". I can't believe that I'd forgotten to do that already. I would have been highly peeved to have arrived at the Ryman tomorrow night without them.

The Ryman is a great place to see a live show. It's very small and intimate, and it has great acoustics. It was originally an old church and the home of the Grand Ole' Opry. I count myself one of the lucky folks that have seen the Ryman from the other side. You see, I've performed on that very stage myself. When I worked in Nashville, several years back, I was a member of the Nashville Symphony Chorus. I've sung with choral groups all of my life. I've been able to sing with a group anywhere, but the Ryman is the only place that I've ever had a bad case of stage fright. It was so interesting. It didn't hit me, until we were onstage in the middle of our first number. You see, the audience is just right there in your face at the Ryman. They are so close, it feels like you can reach out and pat everyone on the head! It took me several numbers to get over that feeling, but once I did WOW! It was the most rewarding place that I've ever performed. I just kept thinking about how many great singers and songwriters had stood on the very spot that I was standing on right then. It was one of the most memorable performances that I've ever done. I feel very fortunate to have had that opportunity. So tomorrow night, I'll be thinking about that; wondering if the performers and the Moody Blues have ever felt that way. Maybe I can even do an AudioBlogger post sometime tomorrow night. I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Meeting the Chihs and Other Fun Frolicking

Bye the time I got home yesterday, I'd talked myself out of going to see the 3 little chihuahuas immediately. I felt if I waited a couple of days, it would give time for interest to grow and lead to them getting really good homes. I set out as soon as I got home walking Bear. It was still a little warm, but I figured it just might get rid of some of that excess energy he's had lately. We had finished our walk, and I had just sat down to nurse a glass of cold ice water. Then "knock, knock, knock"! It was my neighbor, Tammy, from across the street. She had heard about the little chihuahuas and was interested in meeting them. Tammy and her husband had a chihuahua named Cricket until last spring. He passed away at the ripe old age of 18! So my plan was trashed right then and there. I threw on my kennel clothes, grabbed Mom, and we were off. They were just the cutest little things. There was the one white one with the eye problem, one chocolate colored one, and one black and tan. They were a little shy and nervous, because they had not been at the shelter long. Anyway, I'm so in love with them. I'm trying to have LOTS of willpower though. It would really be nice if they could find loving homes with families to dote on them. I think Tammy is really interested in adopting one. That will be nice, since I will be able to visit it everyday. I have no idea how they came to be at our shelter. I'm still trying to get the full story on what happened. I just hope that everything works out for the best for the little guys.

On the way home yesterday, Casey and I stopped and picked up some of our Star Wars stuff that we had on lay-a-way. You all know that we are just big nerds. In our batch of stuff was the electronic lightsaber that I'd picked out. I've had this thing for lightsabers, since I was just a kid. I've had several versions over the course of my lifetime, but none as cool as this one. My choice is the Star Wars Revenge of the Sith Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader Electronic Lightsaber. It lights up, makes all the sound effects, and changes from blue to red. Really cool! Anyway after I got back from the shelter, I got to play with it! It was just so cool. I kept turning it on and off just to hear the ignition sound. Casey and I had the lights off in the living room, so we could see the total effect. As a kid, I would have given both of my arms to have had a lightsaber as cool as this. I would still like the Force FX version by Master Replicas though. They just look so real, but are a lot more pricey. Who knows? Maybe Santa will be good to me this year. I just had to go next door and show my Mom. She is well aware of my love for lightsabers. On the way over, I had quite a bit of fun trying it out in the side yard. The kids across the street absolutely loved it though. I guess that I am just a big kid at heart. Grown up toys are just so boring!! I think it's sad that we somehow lose our ability to play as we age. It has been really nice to be reminded lately. My poor living room looks like a kid's Christmas morning just exploded all over it. We have action figures, ships, and of course my prize lightsaber. Now I'm just wondering who I can persuade to be my dueling partner. Everyone have a great afternoon!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Willpower...Need More Willpower

No, I'm not talking about trying to diet this time either. I was notified yesterday that our shelter has taken in 3 very tiny chihuahuas. Now, I have a very soft, warm-fuzzy spot for chihuahuas. I was into them long before the Taco Bell chihuahua was hip or the star trend of carrying them around in your overly expensive purse. You all know that I have Slate, my long haired chihuahua. I also had one of the tan chihuahuas. So, they can charm me in a minute with their oh so cute brown bug eyes. Anyway, my neighbor and my mother (she had a chihuahua of her own for years) are both interested in meeting the 3 little amigos. They have 1 black one, 1 black and white one, and one tan. The little black and white is only 5 months old, and has a really bad eye infection right now (I can SO sympathize). It's so bad, that they might have to remove his eye. I feel so sorry for the poor little thing. I'm already in love with all of them, and I haven't even laid eyes on them yet. I need LOTS of willpower, or I fear that I'll be adding to my brood!! Hopefully, I'll be able to settle for fuzzy friends and lots of good pictures!!

Seeing Double?

Saw a neat little story on the local news this morning. Five Toes, the cat, can lick two ice cream cones at the same time. That's right, Five Toes has two tongues. He's the only known cat in the world that is on record for having two tongues.

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To see more pictures and read the full story click HERE. By the way Five Toes got his name, because he has five toes on each paw. This little cat has become something of a celebrity. He even has his own blog. It lists his appearances, and you can even buy a Five Toes t-shirt. Check it out HERE.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

"No, Sit...Good Husband!"

This may be old news, but it's still worth sharing with all of you. It seems that the BBC has issued a formal apology over one of their recent programs. Complaints poured into the network after they aired the series Bring Your Husband To Heel. The series employed professional dog trainer, Annie Clayton, to help frustrated wives communicate with their husbands using dog training techniques. Only at the end of the training exercises were the husbands told they had had dog training used on their psyche. The outcry of sexist and discriminatory programming had the BBC under fire. Many men's groups were outraged saying that if this type of programming had targeted women, it would never have aired. More links to the story HERE, HERE, and HERE.

I've trained dogs for nearly a year now. Ladies, let me tell you, I've had absolutely NO LUCK with it on one particular man. Maybe I just need to get a louder clicker!!

The Eyes Have It!

An infection again, that is. It seems that I am in the middle of battling the same eye infection that I had last year. It also seems, that flare ups with this particular infection are common. Oh joy! So now I have medicine to use 4 times a day, and I have to have weekly checks to make sure that my ocular pressure isn't too high. I guess that explains the general not feeling well for the past week and the horrible headaches. Anyway, I'm functioning. That's about all I can say.

Casey and I had a rather nice weekend. We took a nice long drive on Saturday and did a little shopping. Since we had been out all day on Saturday, we mostly just vegged out on Sunday. We spent most of the day watching the DVD of Firefly. A friend of our has loaned us her DVDs, since we liked Serenity so much. We are not finished yet, but I'm really enjoying the episodes so far. In my opinion, I think the series is even better than the movie. I really wish there would be enough interest to pick the series back up. I feel like that you really get to know the characters better in the series than in the movie. Anyway, we were very entertained on Sunday.

Not much else going on with us, except the animals have all been quite "looney", so to speak, for the last week. They seem all nervous and are pacing. Maybe it really does have something to do with the full moon. We've been ready to drug Bear he's been so hyper. Even nightly walking doesn't seem to be helping him. He hasn't been this way, since he was a puppy. I'm definitely ready for this phase to be over. Anyone have suggestions?

Friday, October 14, 2005

Moody Blues Holiday

Most of you that read here regularly know that I'm a Moody Blues fanatic! Well, today is some what of a holiday for us Moodies fans. Today is lead singer, Justin Hayward's birthday. It's a day where fans near and far pause for just a moment to make birthday wishes! Justin Hayward joined the Moody Blues in 1966 and has been the lead singer ever since. He has been my hero, since I was 6 years old! After many years of attending concerts, buying albums, CDs, and DVDs, I finally got to meet my hero. He was one of the nicest people that I have ever met, and was truly warm and genuine. It is a day that I'll never forget.

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Meeting Justin Hayward at Borders in Atlanta, February 1997.
On October 23, 2005, I'll get to spend a little more time sharing space with the band and my personal hero. They are performing a show right in Nashville called Moody Bluegrass . It was kind of an odd idea when all of us Moodies fans first heard about it. Moody Bluegrass is a Nashville tribute to the music of the Moody Blues. No one could figure out how the prog rock of the Moody Blues would translate into bluegrass music. Well they did a wonderful job, and the result is an award nominated album. Several bluegrass muscians and the Moody Blues will take the stage at the historic Ryman Auditorium for a salute to this project, and I've got my tickets to be there. I can hardly wait. If you'd like to hear a little for yourself, you can go to the Moody Bluegrass site and read all about the project and have a listen.


Thanks so much for the music!

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Justin Hayward then.

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Justin Hayward now.

October: Adopt A Shelter Dog Month

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I can't believe that I've forgotten to mention this! October is Adopt A Shelter Dog Month. If you have been considering or are interested in adopting a companion animal, please think about adopting a shelter animal. There are literally millions of great pets just waiting for a loving home. All of my animals are rescues, and let me tell you, they are the best friends that I've ever had. If you are interested in mutts, shelters and rescues have them. If you are interested in a pure breed, shelters and rescues have them. If you are interested in a furry feline friend, shelters and rescues have them.

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Me and my rescued Schipperke, Bear, at the Blessing of the Animals.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Blah, Blah, Blah

Have you ever had that couple of days where you just feel all BLAH!! I've had those this week. I've just felt so uninspired. I think it may be caused by the seasons changing. Even though fall is a beautiful time of year, it's never been my favorite. I've always really liked spring and summer. There's just not much going on right now. I guess I'm just in between excitement. This weekend is fall break on campus, so I actually get a Saturday and Sunday off. The next two weekends after that will be jam packed. Back to back weekends of Moody Blues concerts. I'm really looking forward to it. I guess that I should be thankful for the peace and quiet, while it lasts. I'm sure afterwards, I'll look back and wish for all of this time that I've spent resting. Work has been good, but really uneventful. That's always good, I suppose. Maybe I'll be more inspired tomorrow and actually have a decent post. Anyway, I hope everyone has a great day!

Here's a little something for all of the Star Wars fans out there. It's another one of those little videos I made at HorrorFest last weekend. I like to call it the "Dancing Boba's". You'll need Quicktime to view the video. Click HERE to watch.

Pets Go Under the Knife for Beauty

I have always known that lots of pets undergo certain types of cosmetic surgery for necessity. I've heard of dental procedures and skin fold procedures, but now it seems that pet owners are willing to shell out the moola to make their pets more attractive as well. As long as my pets are all happy and healthy, that's all I really care about. I would NEVER consider a medical procedure just so they would "look" better. It certainly makes me wonder. To read more about cosmetic surgeries for pets click HERE.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


What an incredible story!! A sixth month old, St. Bernard puppy swallowed a 13 inch knife and lived to bark the tale. I've heard of puppies and dogs eating some strange stuff, but this one takes the cake! Maybe I'll relocate all of my cutlery tonight. Take a look at the x-ray:

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I guess you just never know, do you? To read the full account, click HERE. Talk about giving a pet owner a heart attack!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Weekends Sure Do Fly By

The weekend was fun but quick. They always seem that way don't they? Casey and I went out to the HorrorFest on Sunday. It wasn't a really big show, but they did have some good Star Wars stuff. We picked up some loose figures and some cards and were on our way. We took advantage of the afternoon in Nashville to do some "running around". We went from the Rivergate area (which is way north Nashville) to Antioch (which is way south Nashville). We made "fun" stops, looking for figures that we were lacking. Anway, we finally made it back to our stomping grounds and stopped to eat at our favorite Chinese Restaurant. It's really cheap, and has the best food! After we got home I tried to watch a little television, but I was so exhausted that I just fell out on the couch. Oh well....hope everyone had a good weekend!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Spinning Bear

For those of you who would like to see a little movie of Bear chasing the flashlight, I've now got a way that you can do that. You'll need Quicktime to view the clip. You can download it, or just watch it. This link will be good for 7 days! Enjoy! For Spinning Bear, click HERE.

Look Who Came To Visit!

It has been such a drab and dreary day. Imagine my suprise, when my one of my student worker's brought her new foster dog to visit me at work today!! It's really made for a bright spot so far. The dog's name is Apache, and she is a Malmute mix. Apache is only 4 months old, but she sure is a sweetie!! I whipped out my trusty camera, as usual, and got a few good pictures of her.

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I'm not sure what Casey and I will get up to this weekend. This cool, grey weather just makes me want to stay on the couch, with a blanket, and a cup of hot tea! Tomorrow, we are heading to Nashville to the HorrorFest. We are going out to meet some of our friends that belong to the Star Wars 501st Legion and the Rebel Legion. I'm looking forward to meeting lots of new friends, and having lots of great picture opportunities. We may or may not get to the drive in tonight. I haven't checked to see what they have playing yet. Since we'll be out all day tomorrow, we may just stay in tonight and veg.

Hope the weekend is treating everyone well! Maybe some of you will have a nice, furry visitor brighten your day too!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Chasing the Light

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It's finally something like fall around the Richardson household. I can finally feel a little bit of chill in the air today. Casey even made us chili to have for lunch. All week the temps have been in the mid 80's, but today we are only going to sit around 61! I suppose that it's time. It's nearly the middle of October. All of our leaves are still green, and there are just now hints that they will change at all. Even thought fall is not my favorite time of year, I still enjoy the change of season. Summer has had us in a long lasting grip this year.

Most nights these days, I walk Bear after dark. I've tried putting his Spotlight tag on his new collar/leash combination, but it seems to bother him. I guess it bonking him in the head is what he doesn't care for. I've decided to take it off for now. Even though we live in a fairly quiet neighborhood, cars still fly up and down the streets. I've been nearly hit serveral times by passing cars. I came up with a new plan, so I could walk at night. I decided to get a MagLite Flashlight to carry with me as I walk. I figured I could turn it on and hopefully the passing cars could see us. They are very heavy as well. I got the big one and figured if anyone bothers me, I can just slam them with it too. I got one yesterday. Last night, Casey put the batteries in and tested it out. We both had completely forgotten that flashlights drive Bear absolutely nuts! I've seen a lot of cats that chase lights like that, but I've never seen a dog more obesessed with it than Bear. He was just crazy chasing it all over the house. He especially likes to turn around and around and chase it in a circle. Then, he walks all over the house running into things like a drunkard. He never seems to tire of it. We played with him for a long time, and we gave up before he did. I guess that I'll have to make sure that I don't point it towards the pavement, while we are walking. We'll just end up going in circles if I do. I may have to rethink this plan. Maybe I'll try the reflective leash and collar. But the way people drive down my street, it may be too late by the time they spot us coming from behind. Anyone have any more suggestions? My camera makes little Quicktime videos. So, Casey and I made one of Bear in his famous "spin" chasing the light. I'm not all that web saavy. So if anyone knows how I can post the video clip here, please leave me a comment. I'd love to share it with everyone.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Taking A Chance On the Numbers

Casey and I have been known to play the lottery, every now and again. With the Powerball jackpot reaching astronomical figures, we'll make sure that we play again this week. I know that the odds are staggering. But since Tennessee's lottery money goes for college scholarships, it's not really like I'm wasting my money. It's more like I'm ensuring my own job security at my university. I don't spend a lot of time thinking about what I'd do with that much money. But today, I feel lucky. I feel like coming up with a list of things I'd like to spend that enormous wealth buying. I don't consider either Casey or myself selfish people. We have a habit of spreading our good fortune. We realize that we are truly blessed, and we like to share. So, here's what I've come up with so far:

1. The first thing I'd do is I'd give at least a million to my local humane association. We are used to operating in an old run down building that was once a car garage. It tends to flood every time it rains. I'd buy them a nice, big piece of property to turn into a sactuary. With the money, they could actually hire people to work for them. Sometimes it's really hard to operate as entirely volunteer.

2. I'd buy my mother a new house. My mother was older, when I was born. She's retired and lives on a fixed income. She has some health problems that really strains her budget. I'd make sure that she was set for the rest of her life, so she wouldn't have to do without the things that she needed.

3. Casey and I would go out and buy the most pet friendly house that we could find. We'd need a wonderful fenced in back yard, complete with doggie doors. We'd also need a huge basement to serve as the fish and reptile room. It would also have a special pantry for pet food and a special storage place for pet related items. I suppose that we would actually have to build our own for those kind of specifications.

4. I'd spend a lot of money pampering my pets (as if they aren't spoiled rotten already.) They would have the best of everything: an unlimited supply of greenies. I think I can see them salivating from here. All the toys they wanted. I'd also have all the time I needed to spend with them.

5. I'd really want Casey to have a nice car. Ever since we started dating nearly 15 years ago, Casey has been content to drive whatever. It's never really mattered to him that much as long as it got him where he was going. Believe me, he's really driven some doozies. Right now, he's driving a 1990 Ford Festiva, which we lovingly refer to as the "Roller Skate". I think he deserves the high style vehicle.

6. This is the car that I'd want.

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I just read about it yesterday on Modern Pooch. It's the WOW by Honda. It stands for Wonderful Open Hearted Wagon: completely pet friendly! To read more about the WOW and it's features click HERE and THIS ONE TOO!

7. I would want to make sure that my friends all had what they needed. I have the most wonderful friends, and I'd just like to pay them back for all that they've done for me over the years.

8. I think that I would like to take a Disney vacation cruise. I've never been on a cruise, and a Disney cruise just sounds like the most fun. That's really all that I can think of, right off the top of my head. If you won that gargantuan Powerball jackpot, what would you do with it? Everyone have a great day!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Pets Glued to the Tube?

According to a recent article on MSNBC, pets are now interested in t.v. programming. Scientists have gathered a test group of pets to see what their t.v. watching habits are and how long they watch. So far they've discovered that dogs usually like to watch programs about other dogs, while cats like fast movement on the screen. Apparently, even the networks are getting in on this craze early. Animal Planet is busy working on it's very own pet program, and pet marketing companies are offering t.v. time snacks and other items for our furry friends. I just wonder how long it will take for them to start doing studies on how excessive time spent by pets in front of the t.v. is damaging?! Will it stunt their mental growth? Cause problems in their social lives later on down the road? Should I, as an active pet parent, screen the programs and limit watching time? I've noticed my cats watching. I even have a picture of Mon Amie from the time she sat for hours in front of the t.v. watching. The dogs will watch every once in a while, but they would much rather go out for a walk or play ball. What about your pets? Anyone have thoughts on this topic? To read the full article at MSNBC, click HERE.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Blessing of the Animals

Bear and I had a terrific time at the Blessing of the Animals. Despite really hot weather (it was close to 90 degrees on October 1st!), the animals all behaved nicely. They had a lovely little service for us out in the church parking lot. There was a pretty little decorated arch with flowers and a nice statue of St. Francis. Most of the pets that were there were dogs, but there were a few cats, a turtle and a rabbit that all came for the blessing. Afterwards, they put big bowls of dog treats out in the middle of the parking lot, so the dogs could help themselves. It truly was a little piece of heaven for them. All of the church members that were present were exceptionally nice and welcoming. I really like the priest there too. This was my first year to attend, but I'll definitely mark my calendar for next year. I'm posting a few pictures here. These were taken by my friend Josh, who was there with his dog too. To see more pictures of the day in my flikr album click HERE. I'll be adding some more later this week and posting them on my photoblog as well. Everyone have a great day!

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Bear in attendance at Blessing of the Animals.

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Opening of the service.

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During the service.
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Blessing of the animals.

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More animal blessings.

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Lots of treats!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

We Are Blessed

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Today, Bear and I are attending a Blessing of the Animals. The Episcopal Church in Shelbyville is holding our local service. I'm so excited. Many pet owners around the world take their pets for a special blessing usually held the first weekend in October, when St. Francis Assisi's feast day occurs. The blessing usually goes something like this:

“Blessed are you, Lord God, maker of all living creatures. You called forth fish in the sea, birds in the air and animals on the land. You inspired St. Francis to call all of them his brothers and sisters. We ask you to bless this pet. By the power of your love, enable it to live according to your plan. May we always praise you for all your beauty in creation. Blessed are you, Lord our God, in all your creatures! Amen.”

I'll be sure to give you all a full report. For more information on Blessing of the Animals or St. Francis of Assisi, click HERE

The rest of the weekend seems like it will be typical. Casey and I will probably go to the drive-in tonight. I'm not sure what else we'll get into. Everyone have a great weekend!

Pen To Paper

Thursday night, my friend Kim and I made our way to Davis Kidd Booksellers in Nashville. We were on our way to meet Diana Gabaldon, author of the Outlander series. You all know that I just love this series of books, so I was very excited. The sixth book in the series was just released last Tuesday (A Breath of Snow and Ashes). Casey volunteered to drive us, since there is a Wild Oats Grocery next door. He figured he could peruse, while we rubbed elbows. We got there in time to grab a light dinner at Ruby Tuesday's. We settled for just the salad bar. We figured this would be the quickest meal by far. We drove the block down to the bookstore and arrived with about 15 minutes to spare. There were several groups of people already there, but nothing we couldn't deal with. We went upstairs and grabbed us a spot. Diana came out and spoke with the group for nearly an hour. She is such an interesting lady. She told us about how she originally came up with the idea of writing Outlander. She had seen a handsome man in a kilt on an old Dr. Who show! What a scream!! Anyway, she also told us about her writing process everyday and some upcoming ideas that she has for future novels. Diana then opened the floor to questions. She was so gracious to answer every question in detail. After she was finished, she started to sign novels for everyone. The wait wasn't bad at all, and soon Kim and I were proud owners of autographed copies of A Breath of Snow and Ashes. Diana was extremely warm and friendly in person and took the time to personally speak with everyone. Kim and I had taken other books out of the series to have signed, which she more than graciously did. She even stopped long enough for us to have our picture taken with her. What a great night! Afterwards, we stopped over at Carrabba's to have a bite of dessert. I had the Tiramisu and Kim had the Sogno di Ciccooata or the "Chocolate Dream". We went home satisfied and well stuffed Diana Gabaldon fans.

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During the discussion.

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Waiting to have our books signed.

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With "Herself". L to R: Kim, Diana Gabaldon, and me.