Tar and Abby

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Dog with a job

Can track fleeing bad guys and smile at a ten year old - what a dog!
Newest police dog in town - Axel.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Carpet for black labs

Talking to my SIL last night. She's looking at new carpet and taking suggestions and ideas from all.
I sent her this picture. Did I mention they have a black labby? We put this on the stairs and then had runners made of it as Tar could not handle hardwood floors. Really don't have to id them but that is Abby, petite but mighty, on the left and Tar, big and doofus-y, the right.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Case of the Purloined Tomatoes

I noticed my tomato plants looking a little abused lately. And then I caught Abby stealing the little green tomatoes right off the plant. She would get up on her hind legs and snitch them.
The mug shot. Who me??

Friday, July 27, 2012

omg! Tim Gunn Barbies!

Tim Gunn has introduced a line of Barbies!!

Barbies have a checkered past around here.
There was the Barbies in Bondage period - Barbie wrapped in rubber bands, hanging from a chair awaiting rescue by Ken.
The Barbies in Space incident - The neighborhood tribe launched Barbie into space attached to a rocket - really hard on the hair.
Finally Barbie ended her time as a resident in the Haunted Dollhouse we built - in several pieces but with her trademark smile firmly held on her decapitated head.

More pictures and info here.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

the boats

have arrived. They are very noisy and very fast. They skip over the water and when they come right at you (in a turn) you want to run for your life!!

They actually fiddle with the level of the river by releasing more, or less, water from the dams to get the right amount.

why can't I find an illustration for this?

Small town next to us -
"A Benton City man apparently upset with deputies
rode around town on his bicycle with a running chainsaw, 
threatening to kill someone, authorities said."

Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2012/07/26/2033357/benton-city-man-threatens-people.html#storylink=cpy

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

More headaches for Abby

The big hydroplanes are racing on the river this week. And the airshow that goes up and down the river is back in town. The big fighter jets usually come rocketing right over our house when they make their turns. Abby, who is already keeping track of all the helicopters needed for cherry harvest, is going to have her work cut out for her trying to track the jets.

Mad Scientists are at it again...

The Mad Scientists are at it again...

"Three area utilities plan to start a pilot project in September to show how utilities might be able to store electricity when it's cheap and then release it back to the grid when it's in demand.
The project will help guide research that could make day-to-day storage of electricity by utilities practical, saving customers money and making better use of wind and solar power sources.
Benton PUD is an original participant in the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration Project led by Battelle and paid for in part by the Department of Energy."

full story here

Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2012/07/25/2031901/3-tri-city-utilities-to-start.html#storylink=cpy

Monday, July 23, 2012

plant vs dog

The sunflowers in the pots *up* on the table are blooming. Taunting Abby every blooming day. The second sunflower head she snapped off (in this blurry photo) has grown two new buds attempting to bloom. Has Abby noticed? Will they survive? Can Abby successfully turn her attention back from Wildlife Management to Head Gardener duties?

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Coroner's Lunch by Colin Cotterill

Oh! The joy in finding a new author and a new series - I loves this author and protagonist!
Dr. Siri, our hero, is a 73-yr-old former surgeon/drafted coroner in 70s Laos. He is assisted by his side kicks - the sweetly engaging Geung (a young man with Down's Syndrome) and bright and under the radar nurse Dtui. Other characters join the series as it progresses. Along with Dr. Siri's adventures it gives a glimpse into life in Laos after the Vietnam war and an overview of the history of that war we did not hear at the time (or at least I didn't being in high school at the time and generally clueless...)

From The New York Times:
"If Cotterill, a British social services worker who has lived in Laos, had done nothing more than treat us to Siri's views on the dramatic, even comic crises that mark periods of government upheaval, his debut mystery would still be fascinating. But the multiple cases spread out on Siri's examining table -- including the assassination of a delegation of visiting Vietnamese, the murder of a high-ranking party official's wife and the presence of spies on Siri's own turf -- are not cozy entertainments, but substantial crimes that take us into the thick of political intrigue."

b&n page here

Friday, July 20, 2012

another storm, two more fires

 So far - nothing is coming close to the fire that burned 190,000 acres when the Ponder children were in middle school. Keeping our fingers crossed. Abby very busy supervising all the storms. Another one expected today. I heard the last time this weather happened was in the early 40s and sparked over 500 fires across the state. The east side of the state if fairly dry compared to the westside (Seattle) and much of it looks like this - sagebrush or wheat fields.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Tar's favorite snack

Tar loves oven mitts. He lays in wait, sneaking up to the counter, snags one and takes off out the deck door. The remains are found, on the lawn, little scraps of the purloined mitt. This is the third set I've bought since he and Abby arrived. We always vow to always put them away and we have yet to achieve that goal so Tar keeps enjoying his favorite snack. There are six mitts to a purchase so you get an idea of his consumption rate.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

pond confession

This aquatic plant is Watermilfoil. Underwater plants are good for ponds. They provide shade for the fish, protection from herons and kingfishers and food for the fish. EXCEPT... when the plant is watermilfoil - I have found out. Other underwater plants I've put in were all snarfed up by the fish so I was on the lookout for some more. I found a few sprigs of this plant by the Columbia River. I'll try this. BIG, BIG MISTAKE. Fish don't eat this. It is a noxious weed everywhere. It grows and grows and grows. It is damn hard to get out as it roots in the bottom and is brittle and prolific. It can grow from any little piece that is left behind. Today I noticed maple seeds sprouting and growing in it!!

So you can't pull it out very easily and it will always come back. This fellow, an aquatic weevil is being studied as a solution, it drills into stems and lays its eggs. But you just can't order up an army of them. And I have this fear SE WA may disappear as we know it if I did. I'm not keen on any herbicides I've seen. The sites I've investigated don't have enough information. Dogs, birds and various visitors (skunks/raccoons) drink out of the pond.

Beware of what you wish for.... even Abby can't conquer this.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Abby and the thunders

Another huge storm and more promised this week. I can't tell you how unusual this is for our area. Usually we get two - one in May and one in August. The August one was always on the city wide swim meet - you could set your watch by it.
Anyway - first sign of thunder and Abby is outside, on alert, on the deck. Pouring rain comes and she is just inside with her nose out the door. BIG HUGE BOOM and she retreats to Abby's chair and barks. She loves her master's voice.

Monday, July 16, 2012

halp me!

 Note captured owl in man's right hand.
I be a burrowing owl.

"U.S. Fish and Wildlife is working with the Burrowing Owl Society of British Columbia to send up to 24 burrowing owls from the Umatilla Army Depot to B.C. for captive breeding."

They are all over the place around here. They move into ground squirrel dens, which are also all over the place. Often see them sitting by their burrows being more active in the day compared to other owls. Supervising the humans. Abby approves.

Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2012/07/15/2021343/bringing-burrowing-owls-back-to.html#wgt=rcntmulti#storylink=cpy

Sunday, July 15, 2012

See a Sasquatch - report it!

Wildlife agency is hosting a reporting site for folks traveling our biggest mountain pass - I-90 from Ellensburg to Seattle.
Folks have reported deer, elk, moose, cougars, bears and.... Sasquatch.
(I loves my fellow citizens with a sense of humor :-)
All in an effort to better protect and track wildlife on, and near, the highways.

Like this little fellow -

who ran up to a state patrolman when his mother was hit by a car. He is safe now in an animal shelter.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

lightning "tornado"

Picture from our paper. 4am this morning. The actual storm lasted from 2.30am to 7am and there is another coming. GB is in an evening wedding today - outdoors!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Action Jackson, Dog of Adventure

The only dog who could possibly compete with Abby for All Around Dog Dominance. Action Jackson lives with Shamu at the Karmic Kitchen. On the occasion of Abby being awarded the coveted
by Making Space with fitting tribute:
"I have to give the award to Abby.  Abby is a black labrador retriever of my cyber-acquaintance whose human goes by the blog handle of the dogs’ mother.  Abby fully intends to take over the world just as soon as she is let out of the yard.  After that she will invent warp drive and go off to give the Borg something to cry about.  She is a dog of determination.  A canine of singular purpose.  A critter who, upon discovering any shenanigans in her realm, would have no compunction whatsoever in insisting “I want to wear your head as a hat.”  Now, being a lab of fastidious habits, she would probably reverse that order almost immediately, but not before striking fear into the hearts of her opponents.  Because we must have discipline. So – to Abby, Ruler of the Universe, goes the I Want To Wear Your Head As A Hat award."

 Abby, in turn, forwards the award to Action Jackson.
Action Jackson is not only a handsome fellow but lets nothing, as we understand it, stand between him and the capture, possible ingestion, and certainly imprisonment of all squirrel kind. And bunnies. Action Jackson is a rescue dog which makes him extra loveable. Able to leap large fences at a single bound and known to fly (not documented yet) Action Jackson is a dog worthy of Abby's singular devotion to Dominance of all furry kind, helicopters, flying boats and Tar. If Abby wasn't spayed she'd have his puppies. There is no higher honor. xoxoxo

strange things along the river

While I was driving home yesterday, along the river, I spotted this fellow. A flying dinghy. Will wonders never cease... short video here.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

it happened again!

But not to us...
Neighbor had The Skunk come in the doggy door!
When their dog objected the skunk went off! In the house!!
They had this big truck with a huge yellow hose going into their house for two days
getting rid of the skunk explosion.
Thus endeth the casual discussion we've had on and off about installing a doggy door.
(Or in Tar's case - a small pony door.)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

update! the people speaketh!

The paper published this picture and accompanying story about how it is illegal and damned dangerous to jump from the bridges crossing our very big and swift Columbia River.
Enough people complained about yesterday's picture, including comments from the sheriff's office and the search and rescue people, detailing how dangerous it is. The river is not a swimming pool and the bridges are not diving boards.

Monday, July 9, 2012

wait until your mother sees this...

Kind of astonished the paper put out this picture. What a dumb thing to do. But what worries me is how many other kids might try this. Is illegal to jump from the big bridges. This is a highly dangerous river. We had two drownings since July started.
Having been young and stupid myself - I attempted to swim out to a tower, and I was a super strong swimmer (lifeguard). When I got near to the tower, omg!, the current was SO strong. If you got swept to the tower it would kill you. I made it back to shore, about a mile from where I started.
Life jackets, don't over load the damn boat and don't jump off the damn bridges.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

escaped cows and cowboys

Wildlife on the highways. Recently we had an escaped kangaroo. Now we've got escaped cows.
Poor bovines were riding in a trailer and the whole thing turned over. Cows everywhere. Nearby ranch owners saddled up their horses and helped round up the cows.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

A doggy's work is never done

Abby supervising the installation of the molding. Then she had to supervise all the illegal fireworks going off in the neighborhood. Right now she is out supervising The Squirrel.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The ultimate firework

Peter Higgs first theorized the existence of the Higgs boson in 1964 and it looks like they may have found it! Here he is pictured at the overnight news conference. He is in his 80s and what a thrill for him.

"We have a discovery," Heuer said at the seminar. "We have observed a new particle consistent with a Higgs boson."
At the meeting were four theorists who helped develop the Higgs theory in the 1960s, including Peter Higgs himself, who could be seen wiping away tears as the announcement was made.
Although preliminary, the results show a so-called five-sigma of significance, which means that there is only a one in a million chance that the Higgs-like signal the teams observed is a statistical fluke."

full article here

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Is Miss Marple far behind?

JK Rowling's first book for adults due in September.
"The novel is set in the fictional English town of Pagford
and deals with the unexplained death of a village resident."

Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2012/07/03/2008978/publisher-heres-cover-of-new-jk.html#wgt=rcntnews#storylink=cpy"

Monday, July 2, 2012

Sunday, July 1, 2012

We haz zombies!

Daughter and Emergency Back-up Daughter #2 have zombie-fied the old jeep.