Don’t wake the beast

I've been playing with my camera settings.  The dogs make good subjects. Hello Princess Cailey.Whatcha doin'?Why don't you jump into bed with us while daddy's sleeping?  It's so much comfier.And what have we here?  Why hello drama queen.  Do you think this is dramatic enough to gain access to the bed?You're getting closer.There's my drama queen.  This looks just pathetic enough.Ah! Heaven.  You love cuddling up in bed, don't ya Bubba?Careful, muffins.  You don't want to wake the beast that will kick you out of bed.The beast!  Sure, he looks all cute and innocent now.Uh oh!  Now you did it.See what you did?  Now you're banished back to the floor until the beast falls asleep again. … [Read more...]

5 puppy training tips

One of my best friend just got her first puppy!  And there's nothing that I love more than giving puppy advice.  Or talking about puppies.  Or holding puppies.  Or smelling their delicious mocha smell.  Ok, I've obviously lost track of where I was going here.Anyways, this isn't really a top 5 but I figure I'd throw 5 puppy tips out there to new puppy owners or just anyone who's interested.  Over the past 5 years I've read about 5 million books, articles, and posts about dog training and participated in many puppy and dog behavior classes.  This doesn't make me a professional or an expert, but I'd like to think I'm a pretty dang good dog trainer, especially when I pay attention to my own advice. So without further background chat from me,5 puppy training tips that I've learned over the years:1.  A mistake that your dog makes is always your fault and never your dog's fault.  Especially when it comes to potty training your puppy.  Dogs are not humans, they are not babies (I know - hard to tell that from my dogs, right?).  They don't go out of their way to make your life miserable.  They're dogs.  So when you don't notice that your puppy had to go and couldn't hold it anymore, it's not his fault.  It's yours.  When you leave something of interest on the floor and your puppy chews it up, that's your fault too.   But don't be too hard on yourself.  They're just puppies after all.  … [Read more...]

Travis the Diva

While I was making the Cream Cheese Brownies, the pups were sitting around, waiting for me to take a break and play with them.Once I put the brownies in the oven, Travis brought me a toy to play with.It's that little rope toy that he looks disinterested in.  It's a game we play.  He pretends not to want it until I pick it up.  Then he pounces.  Until this one moment when Cailey pounced faster.I wasn't expecting this so I didn't change the setting on my camera.  Anyways, Cailey just stole Travis' toy.Travis doesn't understand how or why this happened.I don't know if you see it, but he's really upset.  And Travis is kind of a diva, so he does what he does best.  He takes the dramatic route.This is Travis' dramatic exit.  He will lay down next to what he really wants, letting out an almost silent little whine to let you know he's really upset.When you do nothing about it, he will lift his head up a bit to make sure that you are paying attention, then put it back down and let out a slightly louder whine.  Just to remind you how upset he really is.When you still do nothing, he will just let our a very loud sigh.  Drama queen.And what about Cailey in all this?  Cailey's just calmly chewing her prize. … [Read more...]

Cream Cheese Brownies

This recipe is from a Betty Crocker cookbook that Jon's mom gave him when he moved out for the first time.  I'm not sure he's ever used it, but I live by it.  And this is my favorite recipe - Cream Cheese Brownies. Funny story: when Jon's mom was pregnant with him she craved cream cheese brownies.  In fact, one night she made Jon's dad get up in the middle of the night and go out to get the ingredients to make cream cheese brownies.  When he came back, she was asleep.  I think it was meant to be - my love for these cream cheese brownies.  Like my love for the goon sitting next to me, eating Ramen Noodles. Anyways, back to the cream cheese brownies.  Start by heating the oven to 350 degrees and greasing a 13 x 9 x 2 pan on the bottom and sides with some shortening. I actually have no idea how big this pan is, but it looks just right. Another fun fact - baking is the only time that I follow recipes.  I can't stick to any recipe when I cook, but something about baking scares me. Here is what we'll need for the brownies: 1 cup butter or stick margarine (I use the 65% vegetable oil instead; you know, because THAT will save me from the high cholesterol that follows) 4 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate Cream Cheese Filling 2 cups sugar 2 teaspoons vanilla 4 large eggs 1.5 cups all-purpose flour 0.5 teaspoon salt 1 cup coarsely chopped nuts Cream Cheese Filling: 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened (I actually usually just buy a 16-ounce … [Read more...]

Jasmine – continued again

Jasmine grew like a weed.  She made us proud with the dog she was becoming.  Even at 6 months old, she graduated puppy class and became my protector.She was a cute little puppy, still, full of excess skin.  But when put into a situation where she was alone with me, she turned into a protective guard.  One night I went to pick Jon up at the rental car place late at night after he came back from a business trip and I decided to bring my little Jasmine with me.  She was barely 5 months old.  We pulled in to the empty parking lot and I turned off the engine when Jon called and said he would be about 10 minutes late.  I turned the music on and looked at my little puppy.  My little puppy was just over 45 pounds at this point.  Jasmine was staring at the cars that would pass by us and she let our this really low growl.  Even I was scared!   Jasmine was protecting me.  She acted like a total mush around Jon and I, but when Jon wasn't around, Jasmine took it upon herself to protect me, a weak human.  I gushed over her.  I was always gushing over her.  My amazing puppy.And then it happened.Jasmine was just over 6 months old and healing up fast from her spay.  We decided to get her extra claw removed while she was under and were currently undergoing some extra treatment for her skin thing that was making it all dry and marked up.  We were positive that Jasmine was worth every effort and every penny … [Read more...]