It's so heartwarming to be met by two adorable puppy smiles when visitors arrive.
Marley and Jasper love to sit at the front door and wait for Daddy to come home from work. They can hear his car coming from down the street at the traffic lights long before we know he is coming. Dogs have such good hearing and memories for knowing how their owners cars sound.
At other times they wait where they're not supposed to be (on top of the armchair) for the children to come home from school.
Caught in the Act!
What a cheeky face!
So come on in and have a cuddle!
A story from many years ago when I was growing up. We had a Labrador x Samoyed named Andy. He was terrified of thunder storms and one time he ran away and we lost him for a whole weekend. Finally after the long weekend a woman who lived 5kms away from us rang to tell us she had found Andy covered in mud (so he looked brown instead of the pure white dog that he was) shaking and shivering in a ditch down by the creek behind her home where she regularly walked her own dogs. He wouldn't follow her so she went home to drop off her dogs and got her car. She said as soon as he saw her car he came running up and jumped in the back seat without her even calling him. We found out that she had the exact same model Silver Ford that my father owned - even had the same sounding engine. He must have thought it was our car.
We're busy enjoying the lovely cool Autumn and playing in the Sunshine. I thought I'd just post a photo for the day that will hopefully bring a smile to your face. It's one from last year of Marley and Jasper playing tug of war with a stick.
Today after a long and winding drive through the country we headed to the mountains and then ventured on a rainforest walk.
It was dark beneath the canopy of towering palms and ferns...
...and the tree trunks that seemed to soar to endless heights.
Over many years strangler vines grow upwards around a towering tree and eventually killing it's host.
How lovely the dappled light that filtered to the forest floor.
We were so excited to catch this Golden Orb Spider busy in her web...
...and then to notice her hungrily munching on an earlier catch - a poor humble bee had flown into her sticky snare....as had many other unsuspecting flying insects that you can see stored for a late night snack!
We enjoyed our day and the lovely views of the mountains below.
The distant landscape was breathtaking albeit a little hazy at times.
But most of all how energizing to breathe in the fresh country air...no pollution...no car fumes...the haze you see is nothing but pure clean country fog on a crisp cool Autumn day.
Driving home we leave behind familiar country icons
...and often seen native birds...
....the rustic farmyard fences all weathered from years in the hot tropical sun but still sturdy and keeping the farmers barnyard animals safely inside.
It was such a refreshing way to spend my first day out of the house after such a long time recovering...the virus lingers on even now...what horrible things can await us in the air...how I long for a time when sickness would be no more...!
So remember what a lovely day we all had at the Lake and Dog Park last Saturday? Well, here’s why I haven’t written since then.
After we got home and Daddy took the children fishing for that lovely big fish, I bathed the puppies.
Soon after writing that blog I started to feel really unwell, like a head cold coming on. It felt like a head cold for the next few days and then by Monday night I was coughing badly and couldn’t sleep for the next two nights.
On Wednesday morning just as Daddy was heading out to work and I got up to get kids ready for school I looked in the mirror and got the shock of my life – my face had swollen up like a balloon and I had two huge tennis ball size lumps either side of my face just under my ears.
Went to the doctor and they thought maybe I had the mumps or a viral infection. Put me on anti-biotics and paracetamol but by Thursday morning it had worsened. Now my whole neck was swollen too down to my shoulders and across.
I was lethargic and my throat was constricting and although I could breathe easily I found it almost impossible to swallow.....I won’t bore you too much with all the details. We rang the ambulance and I was taken into hospital where I spent the last two days recovering.
Blood tests still haven’t returned but after some hydro-cortisone the swelling went down and this morning I felt almost back to normal apart from my cough which is hanging on and so they sent me home.
After talking things over with Daddy we have a sneaking suspicion that "red stuff" seeping into the lake must have been red algae and the dogs swam in it and brought it home on their fur. So when I washed them...who knows...maybe I breathed a bit of it in and caught some sort of bacterial infection.
So our lovely dog park afternoon became one scarey nightmare and I don’t know....what do you think...just in case it was that...I don’t think it’s a good idea to take the dogs swimming there anymore.
As for that lovely big fish???
Well...we did cook it but only Daddy ate it. I had two bites and it tasted like mud! It was a mullet after all and they are bottom dwelling mud suckers so their flesh is not very tasty. So I don’t think it was the fish, but again we won’t be eating anything from there again. I think we’ll stick to the fresh ocean catches.
Marley and Jasper were very happy to see my home again today too. After being locked outside for the past two days while the family were sitting in the hospital with me. They’ve been following me around all afternoon and have both been vying for a place on my lap.
But as my laptop is there right now...not much room for puppy love! Will have to make up for it after this.
This afternoon we all went for a walk down to the lake. Not a real lake....well...it’s real enough, but it’s man made. Over here they build many housing estates around man made lakes. They’re lovely and usually have paths to walk around or to ride your bicycle or take your dog for a walk.
We took Marley and Jasper with us. Daddy wanted to scout out the lake for any good fishing spots.
He’s taken the children back fishing now while I stayed home and bathed our two very dirty boys.
The dogs were so excited and for the first time ever they both willingly jumped into the lake and swam. We had them on their extendable leads and they swam to the extent they could, but if we had let them go they would have kept swimming out into the middle of the lake. The water was clean but around the entrance where fresh water meets salt water the soil is a dark orange/red colour and the dogs were orange from head to toe
The lake is salt water. It streams in from the ocean but is protected against any large fish or sharks coming in. I have seen stingrays in there years ago so some must slip in and then grow and not be able to swim out again. Marley and Jasper got so very dirty that we decided seeing that they would need a bath anyway, to take them to a nearby dog park afterwards on the way home so they could run around.
What funny boys we have
There were so many dogs there today
It was a lovely crisp Autumn day. Whenever we take them walking on their leads they are straining to get as far away as possible from us, but as soon as we let them off the lead they fret and won’t go more than a few feet away from me.
I found it hard to take photos of Marley because he spent most of the hour we were there right between my legs.
And when he could have been playing with the other dogs he was up on the bench like a human!
Just take a look at the look on his face
“Mummy come back....don’t leave me!”
The children had more fun running around with the other dogs than Marley and Jasper did.
Here’s Banjo the Jack Russell Terrier who likes to play soccer with his big pink ball.
And this big fellow named Hammer who kept wanting to drink our puppies water.
Jasper was very cautious meeting new friends. Especially dogs as big as Hammer!
He spent a lot of the time sitting with Daddy and I under the rotunda and just wimpering.
We kept telling them both “Go and Play!”...but they wouldn’t leave us and just watched from the side lines.
The dog park has two sections. It’s all fully enclosed and safe and has drinking troughs scattered about.
The larger section is for bigger dogs and is about one acre in size. Then off to one side there is a smaller park for little dogs. We took the boys to the larger park first because we thought they’d love to run and run and run...but it just made them fret seeing all that competition and the big dogs.
Then we took them into the smaller dog park and they seemed a bit happier.
THE FOLLOWING IMAGES MAY OFFEND SOME VIEWERS...
By the time we went into the smaller dog park Marley was a slobbering mess!
I don't often get to photograph him in such a dirty state....and just as well.
Don’t you think it’s funny how people name their dogs.
Banjo with his pink ball was owned by a young woman in her 30s who seemed to be very easygoing.
Then there was McDougall and Molly the Toy Poodles all dressed up in their little coats, owned by an elderly Scottish lady.
She explained to me that there are four types of poodles, Standard, Mini, Toy and then there’s the Tea Cup Poodles. I’ve never heard of that one. They’re very tiny apparently. What a gorgeous name
"Tea Cup Poodle"
I must look them up.
Later in came another lady in her 30s – very stylish, fully done up with her make up, hair, nails, perfume, even high heels...at the dog park!
She was very friendly and called everyone “Daarling...and...Gorgeous.” In her arms she held a white ball of fluff who she called "Blossom"
he he he....had to laugh, because she just looks like a Blossom don’t you think. She’s a Bichon Frise.
Where we live we seem to have an endless supply of white fluff ball dogs
Here’s the "Fluff Ball" convention
Maltese x Lhasa Apso, Maltese x Shih Tsu, Lhasa x Shih Tsu, Bichon Frise...they all look very similar to me, but so many of them!!!
Hmm....gets me thinking...what do Marley and Jaspers' names tell about our family.
...and once again after a long adventurous afternoon we headed home all tuckered out and dirty.
PS. Daddy and the kids just got home. They caught five Bream, one Butterfly fish and two mullets.
Here's a lovely big 48cm Mullet for dinner tomorrow night...mmm!