Tag Archive | border collie

Doggy Dilemmas – LIVER!

It’s only the best for my boys! One of their fav treats is LIVER! We like to buy Stewart’s brand Beef Liver. The boys know the difference between a plain ‘ol treat and a LIVER! These are freeze dried LIVERS! (Yes, my dogs won’t let me just write ‘liver.’ It must be ‘LIVER!’) LIVER! is the only ingredient, and they are made in the great state of Ohio. I had been buying them at Pets-mart, however noticed Amazon had them also… for half the price and free shipping. Brick and mortar looses again.

I did read many of the newer reviews that stated the recent batches were either dust (all the pieces crushed) or the tub was rancid. I’ll be sure to examine my first delivery of them. I’ve been buying these for years with no issues whatsoever. I’m glad for the warning, however I’m still gonna buy them. We do normally have a bit of dust in the bottom, I get it. They are freeze dried. We actually started buying the chicken LIVERS! first. Now those were all dust and the largest pieces were the size of the small piece in my hand in the pix. We much prefer the beef ones, they are larger and less dust. When the tub gets down to dust, we just mix it into their dinners. No waste.

I discovered in the most recent tub that we had received a coupon to mail in for free chicken breast treats. I’m a sucker for anything free, so I brought it inside to fill out and get into the afternoon mail. Something distracted me, as something always does, and I walked away from the coffee table. As a human with limited smelling capacity, I had not noticed how fragrant the coupon was from sitting in the tub of LIVERS! I returned to notice Oreo taking a bite out of the coupon. NOOOO! If you want more, you must not eat this one, silly boy!!!

    

Previous Dilemma’s in a Dog’s Life 1 2345 67.

© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl

New Doggy Bling

Last week, we ordered new collars for the boys. They were from Four Black Paws. These are beautifully, hand-made and well constructed. We got cute hearts for Oreo and a grayscale pattern for Breck. Oreo needs a thicker collar at 1″ wide, whereas Breck doesn’t need a thick collar, and we got him the 3/4 inch size. Both were size large.

The super cool part about these collars, is that their names and contact phone numbers are etched onto the clasp. No more jingle, jingle.

     

So cute!!

© Ilex ~ Midwestern Plant Girl

Illinois State Beach Park ~ What a View!!

Last weekend we went to Adeline Jay Geo-Karis Illinois State Beach Park to camp. We got right in since many folks weren’t thinking about swimming in May… at least not here. Lake Michigan doesn’t get warm enough for swimming until early July. We did walk by the beach and I could walk with my toes in the water, for a short time. No more of me was going in! Brrr.

This is a IDNR (Illinois Deptment of Natural Resources) park, one of the most protected areas in Illinois. I love coming here, as there is such a diversity of plants, animals, birds and insects. We also had a great view of the dormant Zion nuclear plant. Awesome…?

General Information and History

This area is 4,160 acres and has a recorded 650 plus different plant species. Long recognized for its unique geological features, native flora and unmatched beauty, the Lake Michigan dunes area originally was, in the 1700s, part of the “Three Fires” of the Algonquin Nation: the Potawatomi, Chippewa and Ottawa.

This area was slated to be a preserve as early as 1888, when Robert Douglas, a Waukegan nurseryman, and Jens Jensen, a famous landscape architect (If you live/visit Chicago, you’ve seen a lot of his work), worked together to make the area a regional park. With the threat of industry progressing from the south and sand mining ravaging nearby dunes, legislative efforts to save the area finally began in the 1920s.

In 1948, the state obtained the first parcels of what is now known as Illinois Beach State Park. The Illinois Dunes Preservation Society was established in 1950 to protect the area. Through its efforts and the determinations of the Department of Conservation, in 1964 the area south of Beach Road was dedicated as the first Illinois Nature Preserve.

This area is unique, as it is a sand dune area and the rest of Illinois is nothing like it. I was on the hunt for Opuntia – Prickly pear & Juniperus horizontalis – Trailing juniper, both of these are native to this area. In 1804, explorers Lewis and Clark noted that trailing juniper “would make a handsome edging to the borders of a garden”.

Our bedroom is in the back of the camper and furnished with a large window to gaze out of. You can barely see it to the right of the photo, however there is a small window right where my head is. I can’t tell you how nice it is to have a window less than 3″ inches from your face. The fresh, night air is wonderful to sleep by.

The real view, not through the window. Lake Michigan.

     

We were back to balancing rocks. Here’s a simple one that took a bit of patience.  ||  I don’t think anyone was home.

This is the coolest thing. It’s an ice fishing house, that’s also a travel trailer! It’s on hydraulics and lowers to the ground / ice for fishing. So neat.

As far back as 1982, the federal government began collecting a nuclear-waste fee, paid by electricity users through fees tacked on to their bills and earmarked to pay for disposal of the radioactive spent fuel rods. Starting in 1998, the U.S. Department of Energy was supposed to start picking up spent fuel rods and taking them for storage, according to Everett Redmond, senior director of fuel cycle and technology policy for the Nuclear Energy Institute, a power industry trade group. But there was no ready storage option to hold them. So power companies were forced to store more and more of them at their own facilities and eventually successfully sued to recover costs for this storage.  Chicago Sun-Times 2017

Someone likes to dig.

     

We keep trying to outdo each other on the rock stacking. Well played husband, well played.

© Ilex ~ Midwestern Plant Girl

Second Chances for Single Socks

cute-dog-socksIt’s hopefully coming to the end of ‘sock season’ soon and the need to wear socks will be over. I hate wearing socks. I do buy cute ones tho, usually with dogs or other cute animals or patterns on them. My husband, on the other hand, buys the same, white brand so they actually ALL match. Whenever he gets a hole in one, it’s not like the pair is trash, just the one with the hole. Easy-peasy! There’s never a single sock in his drawer.

I actually don’t seem to loose many of these cute pairs. It’s the plain Jane colored ones that go MIA. I had a pretty large pile of loners and was about to throw them out when I looked at Oreo sitting next to me. Ah Ha! I tied them all together and a new pull toy was created! Fun!

© Ilex ~ Midwestern Plant Girl

 

Where’s Your Food?

We never spent a bunch of time training our boys to do parlor tricks. They do enough cute things throughout the day to entertain us! However, sometimes it’s not so much dog training as much as human training. Their food and treats are kept in this pantry. I started to notice Breck would paw at the door while I was in sight of it. Every time he did it, he would try to eyeball me. Who was being trained here?!? I started to ask him, “Where’s your food?”  After a little while, I was able to ask him and he would paw the door. Oreo can’t be outdone. He didn’t paw the door, his answer was to point his nose at it.

     

Where’s your food???

© Ilex ~ Midwestern Plant Girl

Shut the F-ing Door! Were You Born in a Barn?!?

“Were you born in a barn?” I can still hear my Mother’s voice uttering this phrase…. After us kids were old enough to sass her with, “I don’t know. I was just being born. Where did you decide to birth me?” She changed her response to an open door with, “I didn’t marry the electric man!” or “Don’t let all the bought air out!”

Those nagging comments make their point. Shut the F-ing door! How hard is it to do? You’re forgiven for the few times your arms are full, however unless that is the reason… Shut the front door! Or back, side, garage or even the car door.

My Mother ran a tight ship that had us three children (my brother, me and the eldest child, my father) kept in line, for the most part. She grew up during the depression and was frugal. I also get the concept from a frugality standpoint… I don’t want to pay to cool/heat the world. Let alone the fact of all the critters that can get access to your domain; stink bugs, skeeters, mice, moths, wasps.. Oh My!

My boys, Breck and Oreo aren’t genius dogs, but they have their moments. Breck is smart when he wants to be, and the outcome will benefit him. Oreo tries so hard to understand what we want of him, tiny smoke rings blow out his ears. So cute. Once he does ‘get’ something, he doesn’t forget it tho.

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The kitchen door in the photo goes out to our garage, where there is a doggy door that exits to the yard. This is perfect, as if muddy paws or any other nastiness needs to be dealt with, it happens in the garage. This would also mean that the dogs would need to stay in the garage until a human has time to deal with them…. Not come in when they wanted, full of god knows what!!!

When we chose to change the locks, my husband thought this type of handle would be easier to use when your hands were full. Who knew that it also is easier for Breck to open the door also! Breck understands doors that open by swinging out, however not doors that swing in. He knows the knobs are crucial to how it works, but in his 9 years hasn’t coordinated pulling and twisting a knob together, only pushing and twisting. Click here to see his attempt to open the basement door.

Thank goodness the little one has not learned his brothers tricks. Oreo sits quietly on the step, waiting for us or his brother to be let in.

Since this has been happening, I have been trying to teach both of them, “SHUT THE DOOR” to no avail. Has anyone out there taught their dogs how? I’d love to know your secret! Until then, I will enjoy the fact that after 10 years of my Mother not being on the same plane as me, I can still hear her voice.

© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl

Skidaway State Park

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So sad.

We came here to Skidaway Island to bring the boys for a walk.

Hurricane Mathew came through and made a mess of things early last October. There is still a lot of clean up needed.
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Oreo pulling me down the trail

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Sadly, the boardwalk to the observation tower was damaged.

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Wow! Prickly pear! Very cool thing to see.

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I think these are clams.

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Trees really don’t have deep roots. With winds over 157 mph, I’m shocked more aren’t blown over.

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This is a salt marsh, a very unique area.

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© Ilex – Midwestern Plant Girl