Posted 12/6/13 as “Bustin’ Out!”

It’s cold outside!  Did anyone else know?  It’s cold outside!  And there’s snow e-v-e-r-y-where!

I’ve been worrying about Parker getting older.  What birthday is it that’s coming up?  (I’m trying to forget for a little while longer, and today he made that a little easier.  He asked to go outside early, then he wanted to go out with Jade, who wanted to STAY out.  I thought he was beginning to have difficulty with temperature from getting a bath, but today, he was comfortable and happy outside in the snow at 16 F.

I went back inside and left the big dogs to enjoy the snow.  After a while, I went out to find Parker sitting and looking into the distance, with Jade lying in a regal pose near him.  I brought them in and let Banner have a turn.  She dances, spins, zips and takes off again.  Isn’t this marvelous stuff?

Then everyone had breakfast and took a morning nap.  Later they had lunch, and Jade began asking to go outside again.  One of the hydrants was frozen, the one where the bulls are, so Jade went out with me while I carried water to the bulls.  She was having such a good time!  I started kicking around an empty plastic water bottle for her, one that Banner was reusing before it went to the recycling center.  The bottle was nearly invisible in the snow.  We dallied a while longer as I brought the trash bin up from the road and she visited with the cat.  Parker heard us having fun and wanted to come outside too.  I kicked some snow up toward him, and he tried to catch it.  This is one of his favorite snow games.  He tries to catch as much as he can before it falls.

It’s been a very pleasant day.  With the bad weather coming, and some doubts about the accuracy of the snowfall prediction, I set up “camp” at the house so I could work at home.  Yesterday I made stew, good for lunch today and for lunches and dinners this weekend.  I put a jigsaw puzzle on the table and put the edge pieces together.  I had some hot chocolate, with mini-marshmallows.  And, yes, it was a workday, and I did that too.  ; )

This evening, I went to check the amount of hay in the cows’ feeders, and went to the mailbox.  Jade, of course, is outside at every opportunity.  We played more with the bottle, and I hesitated as I saw the puppy in her leaping up in the air on all four feet and coming toward me.  Oh boy!  When she was 60 lbs. that was impressive.  She sensed my hesitation and landed around me, dancing and playing more in the snow.  Parker again heard the fun and wanted to come outside.  Banner had to wait for her turn.  With a little too much enthusiasm in the air, I didn’t want to take a chance on her getting hurt.  After more play, I left to carry wood inside, to fill the carrier for the night.  Then I vacuumed the rugs and the firewood debris.  The big dogs had stayed outside, but Banner needed a turn.  I stepped out without gloves and threw one last snowball for each dog.  Brrr!  I’m sure there are places where you can’t do this without risking frostbite.  Parker came in and began playing with the Dragon, a green stuffed toy with a noisemaker that rumbles when you move the toy.  (This was a gift from a Newf friend.)  Jade came, somewhat reluctantly.  (She can’t understand why we don’t stay out longer.)  After Banner came back in, she decided that she needed the Dragon, so Parker picked up the Sing-along toy, the blue one that sings “Skinnama-rinky-dinky-dink, skinnama-rinky-do, I love you”.  Jade laid down and began cleaning the packed snow from her feet.

I’m somewhat of a cold-weather curmudgeon, but the happiness that these dogs feel turns a day of planned hibernation into a day of fun.  I find myself singing and whistling happy winter songs.  What!?  Then it hit me!  What a wonderful pleasant day it was!  How happy Parker was, and then I realized that it this more than a marvelous snow day, it was Happy Friday!

Happy Friday to all, and to all a good night!

Late Winter 2013

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