Friday, July 20, 2018

Morning Walks

We're in the thick (heat) of summer and that means one thing especially for us . . . MORNING WALKS!  Since Mommy isn't in school, she has all day to devote to us.  Well, maybe not all day or every day, but most days!  We've settled into a routine.  Ruger is walked first and Dixie and I go together afterwards.

Ruger LOVES his morning walks.  As soon as his collar goes on, he runs to the back door.  When the door opens for him, he runs to the gate.  He was doing well at not having to stop and mark his territory until Mommy opened her mouth to brag about that.  Now, he likes to stop often for potty breaks!  [Insert eye roll from Mommy here]  

Ruger does a pretty good job of heeling most mornings.   

On Wednesdays, Mommy volunteers with the summer program at church, so she bravely walks all three of us together.  THAT'S when Ruger's heeling skill is gone with the wind!  We love to play Musical Leashes when the three of us walk together.  We also play Follow the Leader with Dixie usually playing the part of Leader.  To be honest, Mommy says we actually walk really well together.  We do tend to get a little discombobulated when one of us has to stop for a break, but we're usually back in sync pretty soon once we resume walking.  

We do have to be a teensy bit careful during those breaks.  Ruger recently sprinkled on Dixie!  He says he was just trying to help her stay cool in the heat.  Dixie's not convinced . . . 

Occasionally we can convince Mommy to let us play in the playa lake.  She is very hesitant to let all three of us off our leashes at the same time.  But we have so much FUN!!!

And we all return when called . . . eventually!

We hope you're having a great summer too!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Summer Vacation - Galveston Harbor

The story of our parents' dawg-less and endless vacation continues . . .

Before traveling anywhere, Mommy does TONS of research on the location.  She searches out the best tourist attractions and restaurants.  Frequently, she has each day planned down to the minute.  For you organized people, this is admirable.  For people like Daddy, this is annoying.  He doesn't remember Mommy mentioning the next two attractions ahead of time, but she did!  (At least she told us about them.)

Mommy wanted to visit the retired jackup drilling rig named the Ocean Star operated by the Offshore Energy Center.  The legs of the rig have been shortened so it can be easily accessed from the pier.  There are three floors (Daddy wants us to point out that stairs are required once again) inside this rig which house a museum and education center devoted to the offshore oil and gas industry.  There are so many exhibits to see.  There's also a fifteen minute film which is very informational about the types of oil rigs and how oil is located and drilled.  Both parents found this fascinating.  

These are working oil rigs across the harbor . . . 

As fascinating as the oil rig was, what entertained our parents even more were the pelicans outside the rig.  Mommy and Daddy had both been trying to take pictures of pelicans all week as they flew over the beach.  They came in small groups of 3-5 or sometimes large groups of 20!  Just a little trivial bit of knowledge for you . . . a group of pelicans can be called a "pod", "scoop", or "squadron"!  For some reason, our parents LOVE pelicans!  Not as much as they love us, of course.  At least we hope not!  Which would you rather have curl up next to you????

Another idea Mommy found worth doing in Galveston was a dolphin sightseeing tour.  Trips left Pier 21 every hour on the hour.  The tour doesn't guarantee a sighting of course, but they usually have one.  The problem with this tour was that by the time you saw a dolphin it was GONE!  There was no time to take pictures!  

At first glance, you might think that dorsal fin belonged to a shark, but it's too curved.  At one point, the dolphins disappeared beneath the surface and everyone on board was scanning the water's surface frantically looking for them again.  One popped up right beside Mommy!  She was thrilled, but it was gone before she could aim her camera!  Drat!

There were other things to see in the Galveston Harbor besides dolphins.  Giant cargo ships were docked to load and unload.  Sailboats were cruising around and pelicans were flying!

FINALLY!  Mommy got a great picture of a flying pelican!  She was thrilled even if she didn't get that great shot of a dolphin!

The dolphin cruise was on Friday afternoon and our parents came home Saturday.  They briefly considered hopping on one of these Carnival cruise ships docked in the harbor to extend their vacation . . . sigh . . . perhaps another day!  Or perhaps NOT!  We bet dawgs aren't allowed there either!  Hmpf!

Just so you know, Daddy only made two requests while on vacation: relaxation and fishing!  We've already said this vacation was the most relaxing one they've had in a while.  And they did go to one of the piers to fish one afternoon.  Unfortunately, Daddy caught nothing!  On the other hand, Mommy did a lot of reading!

This concludes the never ending, dawg-less vacation picture tour had by our parents without a care in the world for us! 
Dixie, Jenna & Ruger

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Summer Vacation - JSC

The story of our parents' dawg-less vacation continues . . .

Besides working on her tan (which really isn't the same as it used to be with all the sun block required today), Mommy REALLY wanted to go to the Johnson Space Center in Houston!  It was a little over an hour from the beach.  To understand Mommy's desire to go here, you need to understand why . . . Mommy REALLY wanted to be an astronaut when she was growing up.  All the way through high school.  And then something changed and Mommy became an English teacher instead.  Even Mommy isn't sure when or why her heart changed.  (Her students could probably tell you she just isn't into science!  THAT could be the problem!  Ha!)

Mommy said her breath was literally taken away as Daddy drove around the corner into the parking lot and she spotted the Space Shuttle Independence on top of the Boeing 747!  She was soooo excited!

Once inside the Space Center, she and Daddy walked around and checked out many exhibits.  One of the most interesting displays was the Wall of Astronauts that featured the crew picture from every NASA mission flown including those going to the International Space Station. It took a while, but they found the Challenger crew and the Columbia crew pictures, both marked with a black ribbon.

After walking around for a while, Mommy and Daddy decided to take the tram tour.  They had to decide which tour to take.  One tour took you to Mission Control (at least a 45 minute wait) and the other took you to see the astronaut training center (at least a 30 minute wait).  Mommy asked the young man at the line which he suggested.  He asked, "Are you into history or the future?"  It was such a difficult decision for Mommy.  Daddy didn't care in the least; this was Mommy's choice.  Mommy said in the end history will always win (she minored in history . . . starting to become clear why this astronaut thing didn't pan out for her, huh??).  So they queued up for Mission Control and waited in the hot Texas heat for more than 45 minutes!

Every single Apollo Mission was controlled from this building.  Our parents had to climb 87 steps to see where history was made.  Mommy said it was well worth it . . . Daddy won't give his opinion!

Do you see that speaker sitting on that old computer?  THAT'S where all the famous space phrases were heard here on Earth first!

"That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." said by Neil Armstrong of Apollo 11 as he set foot on the moon.

"Okay, Houston, we've had a problem here," said first by Jack Swigert and a similar phrase by Jim Lovell as Apollo 13 realizes they have a major issue and may not make it back to Earth.

The shorter, present tense, "Houston, we have a problem" was never actually uttered by the astronauts!

This grove of trees is one of two planted to honor the memory of the astronauts from the Space Shuttles Challenger and Columbia disasters.

At Rocket Park, you can see this rocket above and Saturn V below.  The building Saturn V is located in was actually built AROUND the rocket!  It's HUGE!!!

When walking into the Space Center, Mommy didn't notice anything except the size of the Space Shuttle Independence, but as the tram was pulling away from the main building, she noticed you could go INSIDE both the plane and the shuttle!!!  There were some serious squeals over that discovery with Daddy reminding her she'd been in a 747 before.  She informed him right quick that she could skip the plane, but she was GOING inside the shuttle with or without him!

Going into the shuttle required more step climbing!  The first floor took you to the 747; a second and third floor took you to two different levels of the shuttle.  Our parents ended up going to all three floors just to take a break from the stair climbing!

Wonder what it's like to sleep standing up zipped into a sleeping bag to prevent you from floating all over the shuttle???

Mommy said the inside of the shuttle was much smaller than she expected.

Mommy says the day at Johnson Space Center was hot but wonderful.  Daddy says the day was a love gift to Mommy!  Either way, we think you should check it out if you're ever in the Houston area.  And go early, so hopefully you won't have to wait in a long line for the tram!  

On a personal note, remember there were plenty of dawgs sent into outer space throughout history.  Maybe we can sign up for mission???

Dixie, Jenna & Ruger

Paws Script: Happy birthday, Daddy!  We woof you!

Pooch Paws Script: Have you ever seen a billboard sign warning you against Zika???  This was a first for our parents and there were several signs between the coast and Houston! (Mommy only saw one mosquito on the whole trip and not until the last day.  Whew!)

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Summer Vacation - Galveston

Our parents recently did the unthinkable!  They left us for ten days to take a vacation to the beach!  Can you believe it????  They weren't gone the full ten days, but due to the kennel's hours, they had to take us the night before and pick us up the day after their return.  Served them right to see the $$bill$$ when they picked us up!

Our parents traveled to Galveston, Texas, for their vacation.  They hadn't been to the beach together in a looong time (about eighteen years).  Mommy had never been to the Gulf of Mexico.  It was a full week of mostly relaxing days.  That's a welcome change from their vacations in recent years (or so Daddy says).

Mommy only had three items on her agenda for the week in addition to working on her tan.  (For those of you who don't know Mommy personally, that's very little; she usually tries to cram in at least three items a DAY!)  She wanted to go to the Johnson Space Center in nearby Houston, tour a retired oil rig, and possibly take a dolphin sightseeing boat ride.  She managed to convince Daddy to do all three.

We'll start with her first item: working on her tan.  They stayed on the lower half of the island away from the tourists.  It was wonderful (or so they tell us, remember we weren't there!).  Most mornings, they had the beach all to themselves!

Mommy took a picture of this sign since she'd never seen a seaweed warning before.  And there was a lot of seaweed each morning.  The sign suggests searching for seahorses, but they never found any and they searched and searched and searched some more.  Daddy said they probably had hidden cameras somewhere on the beach to see how many idiots read the sign and then looked at the seaweed!  The only item on this sign they found were sea beans.  Those are pretty cool!

Don't you think this jellyfish should have survived until at least Halloween???

Just two of many handfuls of seashells they brought home.

Daddy tried out the boogie board . . . Mommy did too.  Daddy was better than Mommy.

One of Mommy's favorite pictures from the week taken on a seashell and seahorse hunt.

Daddy tried to re-enact Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds.  He insisted on feeding the birds Pringles potato chips over Mommy's head.  Mommy was not thrilled.  She was afraid of getting pecked to death or having a bird caught up in her curls!

From the balcony of their room, our parents had a great view of the setting sun each night.  Mommy enjoyed running outside to watch it. 

We'll be back to show you more of their overly long vacation (in our opinion) later.  Our parents say they highly recommend this beach as long as you stay away from the main drag.

Dixie, Jenna & Ruger

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy Fourth of July

Happy Birthday, America!!!

Sweet Land of Liberty

We thought you'd like to see how much has changed in a year.  Here's last year's Fourth of July pictures.  Same dawgs, same bandanas, but something isn't the same . . . can't quite put our paw on it.  Can you?

We were a little distracted by the trash collection on the other side of the fence!

This next picture pretty much sums up how Dixie felt about a new addition to the family.  But being the sweet girl she is, she's adjusted as well as can be expected.  Ruger is the one Mommy can count on to look at the camera then and now!  Good boy, Ruger!

And this is why Dixie isn't always thrilled with her brother.  Now he's got twenty pounds on her!

Enjoy your holiday week! 
🌟Dixie, Jenna & Ruger🌟