Bark for Peace!
musings & ramblings, mostly about dogs, from a three being, three species family

Bark for Peace!

Gingersnap Snags a (Super Terrific!) Home

November 22nd, 2008 . by lisa knaggs
The drive north from Austin took us over an hour, in part because I overshot the turnoff onto the County Road.  Clementine was moaning with stimulation over the sights and sounds of ranch living as the temperature dropped and the buildings became fewer and farther between.  When we drove onto the ranch, my first thought was, “it’s a little bit of heaven- how lovely!”
she's in the lower left corner, if you squint!

she's in the lower left corner, if you squint!

Immediately I adored Thelma- I can’t imagine anyone not feeling safe around this grounded, nurturing, wise woman who loves the land, trees, critters and the old house she rescued from demolition and is delicately restoring.  Clearly, Gingersnap loves her and looks to her for leadership and direction.

Gingersnap watches Thelma like a hawk- awesome!

Gingersnap watches Thelma like a hawk- awesome!

This lucky girl has over 300 acres to share with her people, horses, cattle, and a dear rescue Shiloh Shepherd named Bear.  They love to run and play and grin!  Gingersnap actually gets to check cows on two ranches, and go with Keith (Thelma’s husband) to sserve as Chief of Quality Control at his small animal veterinary practice.  The staff adores her- how perfect is that?

When I arrived the little pumpkin colored Miss Sassy Pants was busy playing toss and fetch with herself as she selected prime rocks from the piles Keith and his hired hand were dutifully gathering and clearing. Her assistance and antics were obviously welcomed!  Gingersnap acts like she adores Keith as much as Thelma!  And he’s crazy about her too… my cup runneth over!

What's Next Guys?  I'm here to help!

What's Next Guys? I'm here to help!

Working Girl

Working Girl

Eventually someone threw her a stick and she struck a pose for the camera!

Posing for the Camera with a stick

Posing for the Camera with a stick

While touring the ranch, I must admit I wondered if Thelma and Keith would consider adopting me! (too bad Clementine and Gingersnap act like they have to be at odds with each other- they got into a scrap which was totally my fault for not keeping them separate.  I suspect that’s some old baggage and some resource scarcity/insecurity)  The ranch has a calm and open feel and the care the family puts into tending the land and the creatures that share it with them is palpable.  There’s not a doubt in my mind- Gingersnap knows she’s loved! (and she has jobs to do and boundaries!)

Inside the home, this gorgeous mobile made of found objects caught my eye.  Thelma told me the story of her artist friend who paints on canvas finding all these bits and pieces in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  Donna was determined to work with these pieces until she could find something beautiful in and from them.  Her determination worked- the piece reflects light and exemplifies redemption.

A Room with a View, and art work from the Aftermath of Katrina

A Room with a View, and art work from the Aftermath of Katrina

So, it’s official- hearts and homes have been opened and shared and family has expanded once again!  When I got ready to go, I rubbed Gingersnap’s ears and forehead (her coat feels so healthy and soft) and reminded her to love her family well, and that I was sure they had a lot to learn together- that’s why they found each other!

Heartfelt thanks to everyone who helped nurture Gingersnap through her transition- especially Paula @ Dogboys who had a kennel waiting for me when I drove into Austin with her Labor Day weekend and offered wise counsel and training tips; Sophia & the girls- aka “Foster Camp” who kept her exercised mentally as well as physically, and loved her with all their hearts; Sarah-aka “Emergency Weekend Foster”, the wonderful folks at Lucky Mutts who helped us get the word out, and of course our dear neighbor in our former ‘hood, Auntie Deb.  We did this together! Bark for Peace! woof!woof!

A funny little expression

A funny little expression

end note: Clementine and I headed back down the County Road and as soon as I pulled onto Hwy 183 a TX State Trooper pulled me over- my right front headlight’s burned out. (ugh)

MUTTS Unite! (& let’s get one in the White House)

November 15th, 2008 . by lisa knaggs

Ya goota love that Obama admitted what we all know is true & we all share in this wacky life- we’re MUTTS!  You’ve probably seen the Facebook petition and others out there advocating for the Obamas to bring a shelter dog into the first house- join us and sign on!

Hail to the Mutts

Hail to the Mutts

Click here to sign the petition- yes we can!  http://www.presidential-pooch-pardon.com/

Oh, yeah, and HOORAY for Hybrid Vigor! woof!woof!

As usual, the dogs have got it right!

November 11th, 2008 . by blogadmin
Dog Theology

Dog Theology

HOORAY for HOPE!

November 5th, 2008 . by lisa knaggs

The images of so many diverse peoples celebrating the world over brought me to tears! What a glorious sight!

Bill Moyers did his usual lucid, wise, provocative work analysis on Fresh Air today with Terry Gross.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=96648963

I expect our work is just beginning, but today I shall delight in singing- Hooray for Hope!

It’s a Beautiful Day

November 4th, 2008 . by lisa knaggs

That’s the ringtone I have on my phone, so that when I’m flustered and frazzled and my phone rings I am reminded of what I believe, “It’s a beautiful day.” (Thanks U2)

Today is a beautiful day for many reasons.  We’ve got a soft drizzle calming the earth and of course, it’s election day.  Although, after watching Democracy Now! for the last month, I’m not giddy about my hope for “free and fair elections.”

But when I’m able to keep from sinking into bottom-dweller despair, I remember what first gave me hope about Obama’s run for the White House- the people he empowered and inspired.  We volunteered at the gate in Feb ‘07 when he spoke on the shores of Lady Bird Lake, here in Austin.  I have never seen such a diverse and glorious crowd of people.  For the first time in my life I saw that “We the people” included everyone, not just people of privilege that look like me.  And I thought- well, if he gets elected and it turns out to be more of the same, maybe we’ll learn to storm the streets and bang pots and pans like they do all over the rest of the world when injustice rules the day!

So, on this beautiful day I’d like to share something I heard last week on NPR that brought me to tears:

Rosa sat so Martin could walk

Martin walked so Obama could run

Obama ran so our children can fly.

Happy Obama Baby

Happy Obama Baby

Amen!  May it be so.

¡ Obamanos, si se puede! Bark for Peace! woof!woof!

Dealing with Stress

November 1st, 2008 . by lisa knaggs

Packing is stressful, period.  I’m probably just anthropomorphizing, but when I look at my dogs I swear they look worried I’m gonna pack them up and ship them off too!  Poor babes, no matter what they’re actually thinking, there’s no doubt they’re feeling uneasy at the very least.

Banjo stayed near all night

Banjo stayed near all night

Through the years I’ve tried to make some xtra fun things happen around packing, and that’s seemed to help the dogs not get so wigged out.  I had hoped to take us all on a long hike, but the day got hot early (“oh, bother” says Pooh) and I ended up picking up boxes, packing tape, going to storage, yada, yada, yada…

So tonight we had very special dinner!  That meant reconstituted raw red meat, organ meat & bones, with organic carrots, kelp & kefir, plus Bark for Peace! crumblies on top~ delish!

Miss Clementine, Mistress of All Things Frivolous, found herself dessert in the form of a fair-trade African percussion instrument, originally purchased from Ten Thousand Villages.  To be fair, it was in the toy bin, which was on the floor since we were packing up boxes, and it had already been designated a “dog toy” since she first sank her teeth in it the week she arrived back in 2005.

Little huntress that she is, she tore it apart and enjoyed every rip & tear!  I think they’re dealing with the stress pretty darn well, all things considered.