Pepper’s winter sweater

So, before Christmas 2015 I saw this in the local Target ad.

target dog sweater.jpg

And my first thought was that dog looks like Pepper (our ‘red’ Golden Retriever).  I knew Pepper needed a sweater to keep her warmer when she slept out in the dog house so I went looking the next time I was in the local Target store.

Target was out of the dog sweater that was shown in the ad, but I was able to get Pepper a sweater.

Here she is modeling it.  She definitely doesn’t look as happy as the dog in the ad, but she didn’t complain when we went to put it on her before bedtime.  And I am happy to say that it lasted through the winter and will definitely get more use this coming winter.

pPepper sweater

Pepper modeling her winter sweater

Do you dress up your pet?

Later – H

Happy 4th of July!

I hope all of you (in the United States at least) had a great 4th of July.  We worked around the yard (fixing sprinklers, etc), taking Pepper (the Golden Retriever) for a swim in the river, eating BBQ’ed ribs and squash and went to see fireworks.  The sad part is the fireworks started a small brush fire.

Hoping we have as much fun during the rest of the weekend.

Later – H

Pepper (the Golden Retriever) Subway art

Hi, all.  Well, I am late, but here is the photo of the Subway art (see previous post on how I created it) I created using words that describe Pepper (the Golden Retriever).

Pepper golden retriever, subway art

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the last couple of weeks taking Pepper to water I realize I should make this again and make the word ‘Swimming’ HUGE!!!

This last weekend we took her to a lake.  The husband planned on shore fishing also.  Well, he did catch three trout, but he would have caught his limit if Pepper hadn’t decided she had to continually swim (and sometimes got into his line – oops).

What is amazing to me is Pepper swims after floating toys, but also will just run back and forth in the shallow water AND will also just start randomly swimming into deeper water (luckily she doesn’t like us getting too far away so if we don’t call her she will turn around and look for us).

Pepper officially turns two years old on Tuesday (1 July) so I will definitely be posting some new photos.

Later – H

Happy Father’s day and Subway art

First I want to wish all the Fathers a Happy Father’s Day!   We hope to spend the day going to church, going out to lunch and then spending the afternoon with Pepper (the Golden Retriever) and family – either hiking or taking her swimming

So, for a present I decided I wanted to make the husband a Subway Art using some of words of his favorite things.  First I was looking at making a Canvas Artwork, but ran into problems getting the words to fit correctly on PicMonkey ( http://www.picmonkey.com/  ).  I use this site to add the Watermark (blog name) to the photos I own and post.

So, then I started doing some Google searching to figure out how else I could make a Subway art.  I found a few references to Wordle ( http://www.wordle.net/ ).  It is a pretty easy site to use (I do suggest you read their FAQs before you start out).  I did save my word list in a document first so it was pretty easy to modify.

I was able to make and print out my personalized Subway art (in black and white) this morning – now I need to put it into a frame so I can give it to him.

Sorry for no pictures this time, but they are currently in the new phone (which I have to figure out to get them posted).  I figured it was better to send out the idea now in case you wanted to make one and post photos next week.

And you add a comment if you get this?  I tried to email a couple of posts to myself to I could forward them to a friend and I realized I never got them.  Not sure if it is our email account with the problem or if the posts are hiding from people.  thanks!

Later – H

Target pick up in store

Did you know that you can place an online Target order and pick it up at your local store?  I didn’t until this afternoon.   (Also, since I was able to order online I went through a reward site also – every little bit helps.)

The husband had asked for new Norelco Shaver Replacement heads as a Father’s Day present, etc.

Well, I went searching and found that Target had them listed for good price and had an instant $5 coupon.  They were not available to order online, but they said they could be picked up in the store.  So, I ordered them at 1:15 PM (received the order email at 1:22 PM) and at 1:34 PM I got a text message that it was ready to be picked up!

Note:  It appears their standard hold time is 2 days after you place the order.  I wish that was a little longer since we have to go to the next town to go to Target.

Luckily, we were going to that town today since Pepper (the Golden Retriever) was going to Social Hour this afternoon.  I popped into the Guest Services area of Target afterwards and picked up my package.

Since I like a smooth-faced husband I gave the replacement heads to him tonight.  Maybe by Father’s Day he will be smoother 🙂

Note:  I wasn’t given anything for this post.  I was just very impressed to see that I can now order online and pickup in the store and how fast it was available.

Pepper (golden retriever) is 17 months old

Pepper the ‘red’ Golden Retriever is now 17 months old.

Pepper, golden retriever

She went for her vet checkup in October.  The vet was very happy with her weight – 60.3 lbs.  So, she might be one of the smallest Golden Retrievers (I got my wish for one on the smaller side).  I just checked and the average Golden Retriever weights between 65 and 75 lbs.  Porsche, our first Golden Retriever that my husband bought me for our first Christmas (years ago) got to be over 90 lbs at one time so I am definitely happy with the size of Pepper.

I also asked about whether he thought Pepper would grow much hair for winter (her kennel is still in our garage).  He figures Pepper will always have a light coat (good in the sense she won’t have as much hair to shed, bad that she will get cold sleeping outside).  So, I am guessing my car will be staying outside all of this winter (unless I can convince her to sleep in the Crate in the Laundry room – will let you know if that works out).

Later – H

Dogs (pets) and smoke

Since we are currently living with Unhealthy Air caused by the smoke from the Yosemite Rim Fire I thought it would be a good idea to share some information I recently learned.

I have been trying to keep Pepper (the Golden Retriever) inside the house as much as possible, but she is getting majorly bored (picture a sleeping dog most of the time).

So, I have started letting her outside for a while at a time.  We usually have walkers and dog walkers that come by the house in the morning and some of them give her ‘cookies’ (dog biscuits).  I usually get notified when they are going by since Pepper likes to bark at them (I think that is the ‘Hey, where is my cookie?’ call).  With all the smoke there are definitely less walkers.

Pepper, Golden Retriever,

I have noticed that Pepper will play with LONG sticks

or will lay on the grass and just chew on something (some favorites – rocks, old plastic plant pots, etc).

She doesn’t seem to want to run around a lot.

That is a good thing since dogs can get breathing problems if they run around a lot in the smoke (I guess if the dog decides to run around it is OK, but they shouldn’t be ‘forced’ to by being taken for a run or long walk).

Hoping we get a change in the wind pattern soon so Pepper and the family can go for a walk outside.

Later – H

 

What are you grateful for?

I read this post by Making Lemonade (blog):

http://makinglemonadeblog.com/gratitude-outer-banks-vacation/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MakingLemonade+%28Making+Lemonade%29

Where she states everything she is currently grateful for and asks what we are grateful for.  Wow, not something I have thought about lately.  So, I decided to make a list of my top 5:

a) Family – I am grateful for the immediate family I have.  I love how creative and smart they are and that we have fun doing simple things – hiking, kayaking, fishing, playing with Pepper the Golden Retriever, snowshoeing, etc.

b) Pepper – I am grateful for the Golden Retriever we have even though in the beginning we were afraid she would not make it home after 8 days at the vet at 8 weeks old (they think she had Parvo).  The first time I took her to the local vet (after we brought her home the second time) the vet implied we had gotten the runt of the litter (no, she was the same size as her brother and sister when we picked her up, but was down to 5 lbs 8 oz after being in the vet that long) and potentially had a heart murmur/defect (when she went to the vet last month I was told she was really healthy and had a strong heart – Thank God).  Some people say Pepper acts very ‘human like’.  I have to agree since at times it is like she understands everything we say (whether she decides to obey is a different story).

c) Where we live – I never thought that we would still be living in the desert 20+ years after moving here, but this place has grown on me.  Do I always love the wind?  No, but it does cool us off.  One thing I could do without is all of the dust that gets into the house (but you have to expect that in the desert).  One good thing about living here is how close we are to the Sierra Nevada Mountains which has all the hiking, fishing, kayaking and snow sports we like to do.

d) Extended ‘family’ – My extended ‘family’ consists of blood / married into family and some friends that feel like family.  I love that we can get together after being apart for a while and pick up where we left off.

e) Church – I am grateful for the church family we found.  It is definitely not the closest church we could go to, but it fits our family and has for many years.

What are the top 5 things you are grateful for?

Later – H

I love a vacuum – Dyson DC41 Animal

If you haven’t figured out by my blog title I am an Engineer (Electrical) by degree and sometimes I can act like a nerd (did I really just admit that?).

Pepper (the now one year old Golden Retriever) decided in late April/May to lose most of her winter coat (and I mean tons of hair) in a few weeks. Considering she is only allowed in our great room / kitchen you would think our old vacuum cleaner would be able to handle it.

dyson, review

Well, it didn’t – we could still see fur on the carpet after vacuuming and it was starting to overheat every time I went to use it.

At that time Target, Kohl’s, etc were running big sales (think Mother’s Day presents) on the Dyson vacuum cleaners.  I have always thought that the Dyson Vacuum was a pretty neat design (engineer coming out in me), but I had never considered buying one due to the cost.  But, when I found out that they were highly rated for pet hair, on super sale, etc I seriously started looking at them.

I had to order the unit online and when the Dyson DC41 Animal showed up it was pretty easy to put together and start using.

I go so MUCH dirt, sand, dog hair out the first time I used it I had to get out the scale and weigh it (yes, I weighed it) – 12+ ounces of ‘stuff’ came out of my carpet!  (I told you I have some nerd tendencies in me.)

dyson, fur, dirt, sand, review

Dirt, fur and sand that the Dyson DC41 picked up the first time

I am happy to report that the amount of dirt, sand, pet hair definitely went down after the first few uses, but I usually have to empty the canister twice between vacuuming the whole house.

The model we bought also came with different attachments which I have used a few times: for cleaning couches, etc.

One feature that I didn’t realize it had has come in handy – I am able to turn off the bristles and ‘suck’ the dirt off the tile and throw rugs.

The unit also has washable filters and I just washed them out for the first time.  Besides doing that I also used the air compressor and blew out the vacuum (canister, hose, {any part that looked like it could hold dust},  etc).  I was shocked at how much dust came out (I was even filthy afterwards).

Note: I also wipe down the outside of the unit with a damp cloth after vacuuming the house since there is usually some fur ‘stuck’ (due to static cling I think) to the unit.

Since my last vacuum lasted about 10 years (I wasn’t even able to get a new HEPA filter for it anymore) I decided even though this one cost more it was worth it (especially when I saw how much dirt, sand and pet hair the old vacuum wasn’t getting out of our carpet).  I am hoping that by removing some of the dirt, etc from the carpet my allergies will not affect me as much either.

What is the latest appliance you bought that you ‘love’?

Note: I got nothing, but a cleaner house for this review  🙂

Later – H

Projects to complete this summer

Hope everyone is having a good summer.  We had some record  breaking hot days, but recently it has been nice (before it get record breaking hot again).  I recently read the post ‘Ten Things This Summer’ on the ‘A Passion for Applique’ blog:   http://apassionforapplique.blogspot.com/  and that got me thinking.  She listed the ten things (sewing projects) she wants to finish this summer.

I recently spent two days straightening, throwing out items, etc in the back room (where company stays and where my projects are stored).  It looks a lot better, but I am realizing I have a pile of unfinished projects  I want (and need) to work on.

So, other than the Challenge Wall hanging Quilt that I need to start (for the local Quilt Guild contest) I think I need to work on my unfinished project pile.   Here are the first few of the projects I want to finish this summer:

1) This hooked rug is almost done, but I needed to find a darning needle so I could finish the outside binding.  Well, in the ‘big clean’ I found a darning needle.

hook rug, DIY

I am happy to report this is now DONE and being used in front of my bathroom sink area.  (Boy that felt good.)

2) I need to finish the quilt for the couch for when Pepper (Golden Retriever) is allowed to get up on it.  I have decided I would rather stop fighting her from getting up with the family and just have a quilt I throw on before (so I don’t have to deal with her dog hairs on the couch).  I need to cut the front and back to the same size and sew them together.  I am thinking of trying some Machine Quilting at least around the outside portion of the quilt.  (Leah Day has some YouTube videos that show Machine Quilting on a regular sewing machine so I want to give it a try anyways.)

Pepper, quilt

I got the back and front sewn together (straight lines for now, maybe I will add some Machine quilting also), but I still need to trim and add a binding.   At least the way it is now it can be put on the couch when Pepper wants to jump up.  Pepper ‘photo bombed’ the photo 🙂

3) Turn up a few pairs of Jeans.  I have a few pairs that need to be turned up, but haven’t got there yet.  I found a way to turn them up and keep the original hem.  I printed out the instructions since I shared it with my 4-H Teen Sewers this last year.  I will find the original post and link to it after I get a pair turned up.

4) Scrapbook – this is a never ending project and there is no way I will ‘finish’ it this summer, BUT I do want to put in the first year photos of Pepper (the Golden Retriever) into a Project Life album.  I usually do Creative Memories albums (with embellishments, etc), but I wanted to try the Project Life concept out with Pepper’s photos.  I have the supplies, but have barely started it.

5) Potholder with Scallops – In the Spring I took a class on how to do a Scallop edged potholder.  It took all three hours to learn how to make the scalloped edge and I never got back to finishing the potholder.

6) Pocket for hanging small quilts – I made some wall hanging (quilts) years ago, but didn’t know about making rod pockets for the back.  So, I took down the quilts, washed them and have made rod pockets so I can hang them back up.  Now to get them sewn onto the back and get the quilts back up on the wall.

7) Remember the post about the Dresden Plate class I took in the Spring?  Well, I never got back to finishing the first plate.  I have decided to finish at least the first plate and turn it into a wall hanging.

8) ‘Coffee’ cup wrap.  I don’t drink coffee, but I do occasionally buy a Tea or Hot Chocolate from Starbucks.  Instead of getting the cardboard wrappers I decided to make a material one that I can leave in the car.  It shouldn’t take long to finish the one I started.

I think this is enough of a To Do List for now.  It will feel great to get these done and off my mental radar.

Photos of completed items will be posted as I get them finished.

What is on your mental To Do List that wouldn’t take long to finish (once you started)?

Later – H