Posts Tagged ‘Harvey’

I am writing this to remind myself that God does, sometimes, work miracles for our fur friends/babies/whatever you want to call our pets and farm animals. I’ve seen it. I’ve experienced it. I am hoping and praying for it tonight as my dog, Harvey, is very, very, lethargic and ill.

I saw God work a miracle when my little Arab/Appy horse, Whisper, inhaled a blackberry vine. The piece of vine was embedded so deep inside her nostril that the vet could not reach it and remove it. He gave me two options: we could send her to OSU Vet college, have them put her under, and cut open her face to remove the bramble. Or, we could leave it in place and worry that it would work its way further up her nostril, eventually killing her. Whisper somehow managed to sneeze the offending briar out in the next few days.

The biggest miracle that I have personally seen was the llama that died. My friend lived around the corner on a rural road. She called me in a panic: Joey, the llama, had tangled in his lead rope and managed to strangle himself. Would I come over, lay hands on him, and believe with her that Joey would live? Her kids were hysterical and the vet was forty minutes out.

I don’t even particularly like llamas. But I loaded up my kids and hurried over to my friend’s house, where I found an impossible scene: Joey’s neck was twisted in the wrong direction and he was definitely VERY still. I won’t swear that he was dead, but if he wasn’t, he was damn close. And his neck was – well, necks shouldn’t turn like that, even on a llama. He wasn’t breathing, and his eyes were glassy.

But we laid hands on him and prayed. And prayed. And suddenly, Joey inhaled. And his eyes opened up. And he turned his neck around, and we were able to get the lead off of his trachea. He was standing by the time the vet arrived, but his tongue was still quite blue. The vet didn’t quite believe he’d been out as long as my friend said he’d been out, but I don’t doubt her word: it took her time to call me, the vet, and for me to get there. Joey wasn’t breathing when I got there. The vet arrived twenty minutes after I did.

Sadly, a few weeks later, fueled by this coup, the same friend called me to come pray for a Freisian horse that was in distress at a vet clinic in Estacada. The owner had poured thousands of dollars into this horse and just couldn’t have it die. It died. I accepted that. I figured we were over-confident in OUR ability to pray things back into life, and maybe my heart wasn’t as much into the praying the horse back (because I didn’t know the owner, its history, or its intended future, but I did know that Joey was loved by four small children).

Heck, it’s the same with praying for human friends or acquaintances. Sometimes, you just *know* the prayer will be answered, and the person dies. Sometimes, you doubt the very prayer you just said, and a year later, the woman comes to find you to tell you she gave birth to a healthy baby, and thank you for praying she could conceive. It’s a mystery.

I don’t know why God chose to give Joey the llama a second chance. Or why God chose me to pray for the woman who wanted to get pregnant, but couldn’t. I only know God chose to answer those prayers.

I’m hoping God chooses to grant Harvey a longer life, and not at a huge financial expense for us. You can hate me, but there’s a limit to how much I will spend on a pet. I have ten grandchildren – finances are directed toward them, first. But – Harvey is my heart and soul tonight. I hope my readers understand. And pray/send positive thoughts for him. I need my Harvemeister.


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Updates on “Panic”

I have already updated the status of my dog, Harvey, on several social media sites (he has his own FB page: https://www.facebook.com/Harveyalbertpresley/), but I feel the need to follow-up here, too. He’s Okay. He has doggy bronchitis and he is on antibiotics. We didn’t do an x-ray of his heart, because it didn’t seem necessary. His heart sounds good and healthy. He’s been on antibiotics for two days now, and his coughing has noticeably slowed down. He does, however, need to lose the ten pounds he gained since I broke my foot last June, therefore, he is on reduced caloric intake.

I am working hard on photos for the applications I need to make for two art shows this summer. The photos are the hardest part: I need them to look professional. Unfortunately, I could not take anything outside and photograph in the shade this weekend: we’re in a monsoon. I do have some good photos, but I would like more to choose from, and of different media and size art work. I think I have a work-around: take the art to work with an easel & take photos during my lunch hour in the large conference room. Lots of natural lighting & no need for a flash.

I am working on a list of things I need to set up a NICE display, from the pop-up (I can borrow a 10×10′ one) to tables and frames and pegboard. I haven’t done an art show since the 1970’s, and that wasn’t juried. I sold three art pieces, all to the same person. One was a commissioned piece that I painted after the show. I probably have photos of those pieces in my 35mm files (pre DSLR days), but they aren’t relevant to the now.

I know I can do this, and I appreciate the Facebook comments and encouragements. I actually have a very strong ego, and while I am momentarily intimidated by something, I can usually plow through (after venting, of course). As an introvert, venting by writing is the way I roll. Being able to vent publicly  on a blog is sort of a plus: you find out there are people just like you out there. 🙂

I do want to paint more than just the minis I am currently working on (see my website), but I have to concentrate on this summer and the art shows, and the very limited amount of time I have to paint (especially with summer coming, and my other passion – gardening – competing for my weekend and evening time).

Several people have asked me to join their cause. I need to state this now: my cause is animals. I am not an “animal rights” person, because animals are considerably more complicated than that. They don’t afford rights to each other, and neither should I afford ‘rights’ to animals. However, I am a conservationist. I am not anti-hunting, but I am anti-trophy hunting: if you are not hunting to feed your family – get a good camera and take photographs. We are in an extinction crisis.

I told my husband that I am learning more about Class-Family-Genus-Whatever than I ever learned in science (I flunked biology in high school, dashing my dreams of becoming a veterinarian). I told him how I cannot believe how many antelope species there are, how some animals seem to cross Family boundaries, and then there are rodents. He said (casually), “I am surprised you haven’t gotten into lagomorphs.”

For the first time in my life, I actually understood that. I replied that, “Oh, yes. I have discovered lagomorphs.” Hares and rabbits are fascinating.

Taking a deep breath. I have a lot of work to do this week: photos, applications, lists of things I need, setting up the Etsy shop, business cards. And that’s outside of the 40 hour work week and house work and car maintenance and relationship maintenance.

P.S. _ I get that this blog does not follow traditional news: WWWWW and H


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It was a beautiful day. I’m on the healing side of some major dental work, so staying home and playing in the garden – oh, yeah. The weather was nice enough that I could afford several leisurely hours of work – nothing intense – without having to wear rubber boots and a raincoat.


My Lenten Rose is just beautiful this year! *Also known as an hellebore. I’d love to have more in the back corner (I planted three: one survived).


This Grecian windflower (interestingly, it is in the same class of plants as the hellebore: ranunculaceae) is one of my early Spring favorites. I planted a bunch of them the first fall we had Murphy and he dug up (and ate) most of them. This one struggles up early every Spring.


This is one of our “problem” plants. It is a native Black Hawthorne. Don dug it out of a pasture where it had been run over by a Caterpillar several years in a row. He still struggles to keep it dwarfed, but it has a mighty strong will to grow into a tree. He had to cut all of the upright shoots and shake out the dead leaves caught in the middle.

Looks easy, but there is something you need to know about Black Hawthornes, and that is this: they have needle-sharp thorns. These aren’t thorns like a rose bush or even a Himalayan blackberry has. The thorns on the Hawthorne are about an inch in length, thin, and stiff as needles. They are NASTY.

For that reason, the little birds love the Hawthorne.


This is another problem area: the south fence. I’m working on it. I planted a native Black-cap raspberry which took off last summer (speaking of thorns!!). The old canes are festooned in greenery right now and will soon bear blossoms. I hope to have a good harvest of my favorite raspberry. The new canes have not come out yet, but when they do, I will train them to grow the other direction, over the old clothesline frame. In the fall, after the harvest, I’ll cut the old canes off (I wear welding gloves for this work – they’re stickier than those afore-mentioned Himalayan blackberries and while they’re not as deadly as the Hawthorne, they grab everything and poke).

I’d like to kill those mutant Oregon grapes. I wanted little native ones and ended up with invasive trees. At least I know the werewolves won’t trespass!

The dogs are pretty good about staying to the grassy area now.

Now that I have the raspberry established, I need to work on what grows underneath it: I have sun-loving plants in there and it simply does not get enough sun. I’m thinking native plants, but not quite sure WHAT. More hellebores? I want color. Flowers.


This continues to be a work in progress: my corner garden. I got an arbor for the honeysuckle. My husband says I put it up crooked, but he didn’t exactly offer to help me put it up (he did, however, assemble it for me).


The sky today. It was so beautiful out. Did I mention that?


The female hummingbird (Anna’s, I think), was perched in the Camellia. She air-lifted just as I snapped the pick (she’s smack dab in the center – click on the photo for a larger view).


I can’t keep my hummingbird feeders full right now. I just refilled yesterday.


This is my newest hummer feeder (and a Goodwill find). The birds love it.


This is killing me: the anticipation of the first peony bloom! I *think* it will be this tree peony, but the buds are swelling everywhere in the yard. I’m so excited!


Hostas poking up through the rhododendron detritus.


The variegated hostas are already up.

There are so many more green things growing and blossoms swelling. Tulips are opening and the lilacs are starting to hint. The apple tree is just beginning to put forth buds. I counted three buds on my Oriental poppy. I planted pansies. I planted nasturtiums. The first rhodie is abloom.

The Camellia is fading.

013Sir Harvey Albert Presley is ready for his first hair cut of the season. (Isn’t he handsome?)



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I woke up this morning at 7:00, er- 8:00, AM. I hate Daylight Savings Time. I’ll spend the next six months trying to get my body to adjust to it, and then we’ll go back to regular time, and for what? So those darn farmers can have enough light in the day to grow crops. They can’t just get up with the sun, you know. The clocks have to change, too.

It was a beautiful day out. Another beautiful day. This is going down as one of those winters that wasn’t.

Why, just yesterday, I talked to my oldest in Alaska and she told me that they were having to truck in snow for the ceremonial start to the Iditarod. This is the second time in the history of the race that the real start has been moved further north from Anchorage, to Fairbanks.

Last year, Juneau was snowed in for months. This year, they truck in snow for the biggest race in Alaska.

By the way, the Iditarod is huge in Alaska. It’s largely ignored here in the Lower 48 (except by people like me, which is why my daughter thought to even mention it. She knows I am a fan of the endurance mushing race).

All that to say this: she ended our conversation with, “I think it is Spring here. We never had Winter.”


I did not take this photo today. But I summoned it out of the archives because today was Bird Bath Day. I didn’t have my camera handy for all the birds who claimed a turn at the bath. There were at least four Dark-Eyed Juncos.


(Obviously this photo wasn’t from today, either. The sun was out and not a rain cloud in the sky, much less a rain drop). I saw a robin in the bath and a Spotted Towhee and a Brewer’s Blackbird.


The Brewers Blackbirds were sitting in the neighbor’s tree, singing. They sound so pretty. I think one of these birds (the lower one) is actually a European Starling.


I love this photo of the Fox Sparrow in the Hawthorne, in part because the Camellia in the background looks like an Easter Egg tree.

I didn’t do much in the yard today. There’s not much to do in March when the weeds are slow and the established perennials are just poking up through the soil. We haven’t passed the Last Frost date, so I don’t want to plant anything. Actually, TRUTHFULLY, I didn’t WANT to do much today.

Harvey, on the other hand, was a very busy bee.


He went hunting.


He went digging.

Yes, our dogs dig holes in our back yard. But so does the Mole.


“Dey’s moles in dere. I can hear dem walkin'”

That’s a paraphrase of a quote my toddler son made one morning when we were commuting down the freeway. We were passed by a van with penguins painted on the side. My son said, “Dey’s penguins in dere.” I asked, “So how do you know that?” “I can hear dem walkin’.”


This is pure, unfiltered joy.




Sadly, this sort of enthusiasm leads to this (and this is the CLEANED UP version).


Yes, I have resorted to Dog Shaming after a day of Hole Digging.

Why? Why?

Because this is how it really looks:


Just click on that baby and take a look. Or cue Kenny Loggins. There’s not a dog in our life that is gonna catch that Mole.


Burr hurr aye.

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I need to write, but there is so much I cannot write about at the moment. Life is quite complex. I can blog about Harvey, the Wonder Setter.

Harvey has been a really wonderful dog of late. A surprising dog.

He is not our Alpha dog – that title belongs to Murphy, but every once in awhile, Harvey does something that trumps the pecking order and surprises the humans. Once, he nailed Murphy in a spat over some left-over gravy. I guess you don’t get between Harvey and gravy. He has the waist-line to prove it. (Do dogs have waist-lines?)

We have recently been spotting rats in and around the crawl space of our home. These are the common brown rats, not the big Norway rats that freak me out. We’ve lived in homes where the big Norway rats have come in. Rats are a common problem in the Portland metro area, so close to major shipping lines and major rivers. I even quit feeding the birds so as to not be also feeding the rats.

July 4th, both dogs were on high alert and it was not due to the fireworks. Murphy charged the fence line a couple of times, but there was never anything there. Harvey was always close on Murphy’s heels. We suspected they were bird-watching (there’s always a number of fledglings around and about). They calmed down and took up positions on the edge of the lawn, with a view of the greater portion of the yard, heads up, ears perked forward. Then -they both leapt up and ran toward the shed.

Murphy caught it – a rat. Harvey bulled right in and snatched the rat from Murphy’s teeth. He gave it several fatal neck-breaking tosses before dropping it onto the lawn. He stood guard over it, not permitting Murphy close. Harvey pulled the Alpha Dog card on the rat-catching debut.

Hopefully, that was the one and only rat we have to deal with.

Two nights ago, Harvey took a sudden dive through the little wire decorative fence I have around the island garden (specifically to keep dogs out). I mean: he dove. His whole fat body snaked through the widest opening in the wire (and nearly pulled it down in the process). He snaked – literally – into my big aster, under the wire cage that holds up the faded peonies, under the cage for the aster, and under the low limbs of the tree peony. I was flabbergasted. WHAT THE HECK!

Only moment earlier, a Spotted Towhee had hopped through there and a Song Sparrow had eyed the bird bath. Now, my ninety-pound English Setter was making like a Dachshund without directions. He carved a cave of dying peony branches and aster branches before coming out on the other side.

I yelled at him. My FLOWERS! Granted, they’re not blooming right now, but those asters are my entire September’s worth of bloom!

He heeled and lay down by my feet, but he remained on high alert.

I saw it then: a flash of mouse-brown fur. Rat? or Mouse? Harvey tensed, but he knew he was In Trouble. Hanta Virus tip-toed carefully out into full view, big brown eyes and soft mouse ears on the Big White Dog. Harvey trembled, but he was In Trouble. And Hanta Virus sensed it. She boldly pranced toward our deck stairs.

Harvey couldn’t stand it anymore and broke his hold, dashing in for the – miss! Hanta Virus made it to the safety of the underside of the decking.

Darn! I shouldn’t have yelled at the dog.

Good dog.

Another thing I can blog on: the weather, We’ve been having what I call “Real Summer”. That means, temps above 84 degrees Farenheit. All of Portland is sweltering and complaining (including my Dear Husband). I took my sweater off after lunch today.

It’s too hot to sit upstairs at my computer when we have lovely summer conditions in the metro area. I’d rather be sitting outside in the shade, swatting mosquitoes, than to be sitting up here. If you’re going to have summer, have it OUTSIDE. Therefore, while the rest of the city hides in air-conditioned places (or, in my husband’s case, up in the cool woods) – I am sitting outside in the sun, wishing I was ten, again, and that the Winnemucca Municipal Swim Pool was open. (We’d buy maple bars at Hooft’s Bakery after swimming, and then walk home on the 110-degree pavement. Barefoot, of course. If it got too hot, you walked in the gutters because the concrete was cooler there. You ran across the railroad tracks because the creosote heated up hotter than asphalt.)

Yet another thing I can blog about: my next few weekends are busy, busy, busy. I am going to go help my friend sell her wares at the Canterbury Renaissance Faire in Silverton this weekend (I’ll post links later, when I blog about the faire). I’ve been working on costumes for both days. I should buy a good sewing machine but that would mean I am turning into my mother and I actually like sewing).

The weekend following, is Faerieworlds. My costume this year is very simple. I just want to enjoy the venue and watch my son-in-love with my youngest (they aren’t married, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love this man who loves my girl). It is his first time to Faerieworlds and Chrystal is planning their costumes. Can’t wait!

AND – in August – we are having a yard sale. That should be an epic event.  More on that later.

In the meantime – I miss blogging. Summertime is not a good time to try to write in a stuffy bungalow loft (which is really nothing more than a glorified attic). Can you say “sweaty”?


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