Monday, August 31, 2009

Something to Sing About

Ha roo, pups and kit-cats. It's me, Zim. My sisters, brother and I did some plotting blog planning over the weekend ... and in deciding what we'd post about this week, we realized we fell horribly behind on thanking some really cool friends for some awards! Let's remedy that now, OK?

First up, our lovely friend Stella gave us this award:

It translates to "Your blog is a dream!" Isn't that really sweet? (I hope it's a good dream. Ha roo roo roo!) We're supposed to give you seven beauty tips and pass the award along to seven friends. We'll take care of both of those at the end of the post!

Stella also presented us with this award:

It's an award for rescued pups! Isn't that cool? Thank you, Stella! We did rescue Mom and Dad, so this is indeed fitting!

Those very cool New York Bull Terriers, Woodrow, Sweetie and MJ gave us this award:

It's the "Awesome Paws-Some Award" and coming from such awesome Bullies, it just means a ton to us! Thanks, you guys! (And please, everypup and everycat, join us in saying special prayers for Woody!)

We just LOVE making new friends, so we were delighted when Mack and Sally Ann stopped by the blog. To make things even better, they gave us a special award! Check this out:


Just their way to say "thank you". How nice is that!??! Thank you so much - we're so happy to count you as our friends!

Now... the four of us put a little video together for you. It's us saying "thank you, cool friends!" for the awards and answering that list of beauty tips and passing the awards along. I hope you enjoy:

video

(Stormy is in there, she just was behind Mom.)

(Oh... and that blue thing is what our supper-dupper is stored in.)

Thanks again!

Play bows,
Zim

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Serene Scenery Sunday

Tail wags, dear readers. It's me, Stormy. I thought I'd take Serene Scenery Sunday myself this week - just to be certain there aren't any small 's' storm pix involved. Ahem. Not all of us find small 's' storms as intriguing as Ammy and our mom do! How about we stick to a tour of the Ao4 Gardens instead?

We have some pretty cool ornamental and native grasses in the garden. Here are a couple Feather Reed Grass plantings:

Feather Reed Grass

Here are the tops of the Pampas Grass:

Pampas Grass

The grass part itself is over seven feet tall right now! (That's over 2 meters!) Isn't it cool?

This is called either a Porcupine Grass or a Zebra Grass:

Zebra/Porcupine Grass

Dave and I go with the "Zebra" name - in keeping with our black and white thing. Ha roo roo roo!

Here is the soft top of a little Dwarf Fountain Grass:

Dwarf Fountain Grass

They are sweet little grasses that are about a foot high.

Remember
the Smoke Tree Mom and Dad had to cut down because of one of those small 's' storms? Check it out now!

Smoke Tree

It's making a great come-back!

Here's a close-up of some Purple Emperor Sedum:

Purple Emperor Sedum

Isn't the bee cool? Zim liked that part.

The petunias up on the deck are still going strong:

Petunias

And you may remember what else is up by the deck - the tomatoes! I'm happy to report Mom and Dad ate one tomato from the upside-down thing already and Mom expects to pick five more today! Do you remember the late entry in the tomato field? The
Husky Red Cherry Tomato plant? Check it out now:

Husky Red Tomatoes

Yep. The tomatoes are really helping us catch that whole "serene" thing around here.

Have a wonderful Sunday.

Tail wags,
Storms

PS: These photos are all in our FlickR album. Please click here if you would like a larger view.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Photo Finish ...Saturday

Since we were tied up making our "Oops, I Ate It" confessions, we missed Photo Finish Friday. Please accept this cool action shot Mom took of us (and PhotoShopped some cool effects on!) as a late entry!

Luv and play bows,
Dave and Zim

Friday, August 28, 2009

Oops, I Ate It, Part IV

Tail wags, readers! It's me, Stormy - Supreme Commander of the Army of Four. Have you been enjoying the tails my pack-mates have told about their food-stealing exploits? (Or lacking thereof?) Have you noticed a pattern at all? I adopted - I mean gave birth to - Ammy when she was about four months old. She has never stolen food. I adop - gave birth to Zim when he was about a year and a half old. He only munches on fresh herbs. I allowed Dave to join the pack when he was four years old - and he's the surfer extraordinaire. Is all of that a coincidence? I think not. The key? Training and leadership!

Yep! Teaching my puppies and setting an example for them to follow! See... some people food is OK for us puppers, but some isn't really good for us - so we should only take that which the bipeds offer us!

What?

Excuse me a moment, please. Yes, Mom? Yes... umm humm... right... right... oh... THAT?!?! I don't really think we need to ... OK, fine. I'll come clean.

I don't think my pack-mates have heard this one before; it happened way before they joined the family. Let me set the stage. As many of you know, our great sisters, Jesse and Lucky, did much to teach Mom and Dad the ways of the Siberian. They had many, many (but not enough) wonderful years together, and they trained Booter, our great brother, a Lab/Aussie mix. When I joined the family, Boots was an only pup and had been for about a year. In that period of time, Mom and Dad forgot some of the lessons Jesse and Lucky had taught them.

I was about a year and a half old when I joined the family. I was pretty well-mannered - and understood "house rules". Several months after my adoption, when we lived on Fort Riley, Mom was getting ready to host a rather important meeting at our house. I won't bore you with the "who's who" details of the invitation list, but she wanted everything perfect and really wanted to make a certain recipe that called for soft Ladyfingers. (Amber, Marvin, and the rest of you punsters - I mean the sponge-cake like pastry, not what you're thinking!) Mom and Dad looked all over town for the soft kind - but could only find the crunchy ones, which wouldn't work. Just when she was about to give in and try to make some from scratch, Dad found some out here in Manhattan. Mom had to line a spring-form pan with them, carefully cutting them to size, and fitting them in like perfect puzzle pieces. She got everything just right and set the pan aside to make the filling.

At some point, she stepped outside to talk with some of our neighbors. After a few minutes, apparently the ol' lightbulb in her head came on and she said, "I left a two-year old Siberian Husky in the house and there's food on the counter!" The neighbors, all of whom were owned by small pups, didn't quite understand what the problem was, but Mom raced back inside the house.

Booter was lounging in one of his favorite spots and I was laying by the doorway, smiling ear to pointy ear. She looked on the counter - and all the filling ingredients were right where she left them. Hey! It was chocolate! I know better than to eat chocolate! Puh-lease!

Mom was very pleased... until she couldn't find her spring-form pan. She looked all around ... then saw it right there - on the floor by our water bowls. Upright - and clean as a whistle. I wonder how that could have happened!?!

Ha roo roo roo! Booter... it was soooo good!

Everything was fine until she checked my muzzle and whiskers for powdered sugar. (Our great sisters taught her too well!) Well, hey. A Sibe's gotta do what a Sibe's gotta do. Besides, I was extremely neat about it - wouldn't want to mess the house up before the big bash. And all those specially cut sponge-cakes were quite tasty!

And as a side note, to anyone who feels bad that I ate the last Ladyfingers in town - Dad isn't known as the Super Shopper for nothing - he had bought extra! Apparently he learned a few things from Jess and Luck, too!

And that is my confession! Ha roo!

Tail wags,
Storms

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Oops, I Ate It, Part III

Woo, everypup and everycat. It's me - Dave. Before I get started, Storm said I should offer a bit of an explanation about yesterday's Wordless Wednesday, or Oops, I Ate It, Part II. You know -- Ammy's turn to confess about her food-stealing exploits. Ammy didn't have anything to say because ... she's never taken any food that wasn't offered to her! Amazing, isn't it? Mom says Ammy's a real good girl that way.

Dave 1

Can you believe that? Well, I'm a real good boy! In fact, I'm really helpful. I can get my own snack if Mom's tied up with other stuff. I've told this story before, but it was a long time ago, and Storm said it was worth telling again. I'm cutting and pasting. If you'd like to read the original post, please click here.
It all happened shortly after I got here. Remember, I was probably 4 years old at the time and really a pretty good guy. My dad was at work, and Mom was taking us on morning walks. She took me and Stormy first - woo. We had a nice time and then got home and mom asked, "Will you two be OK while I walk Am and Zim?"Stormy gave her "the look" - you know, like "Why wouldn't I be OK? Don't you trust me?" and I gave Mom my "Yes, Mom" look.

Mom took Am and Zimmie on their walk. And I think it was a long walk, 'cuz I remember getting pretty snack-y while they were gone. So ... well ... I decided to get my own snack. That's simple enough, right?

When Mom and the redheads came back, me and Storm were nice and quiet. Storm was by the stove napping like she likes to do. Mom looked around and saw me in the doorway between the kitchen and living room. As she told Holly's mom, there I was
"with what remained of the bunch of bananas that had been on TOP of the fridge!" (I think she means the magic cold box. And yes, they were on TOP of it. Were.) We all know bananas are an approved snack for us, so I was just being helpful! I gave her a friendly greeting, "Hi Mom! How was your walk with the redheads? I got my own snack, OK?" I don't know what the big deal was.
Isn't that helpful? Let me see...

Dave 2

...what else have I surfed? Food-wise. Oh, yeah. Here's another good one. Although I didn't actually eat anything, it was food and I did steal it. Or "borrow" it. The full version is here, but here's the shorter one:
So... Mom was making a few batches [of Springerle], so she could share with the neighbors, and ran short on cake flour. Dad was out somewhere, so Mom pushed everything to the back of the counter, then went to the store. She and Dad got home at the same time, came into the house, and were catching up on the events of their days. It went something like this:

"You left everything on the counter!?" Dad commented.

"Yes," said Mom, looking around. "Dave was a good boy." (I used to do a wee bit of counter-surfing, you know.) "It looks like nothing's been touched."

"Where is he?" Dad wondered.

Then they looked and saw me laying right there in the living room, near the entry to the kitchen, looking totally innocent, snuggly and sleepy-eyed. I sent them a mind-meld message, "I'm right here, Mom and Dad! Just snoozing with my head on a nice, fluffy, white pillow!"

"Awwww..." Mom began. "Look at how ..." And that's about when she realized we don't HAVE any nice, fluffy, white pillows.... and that I was camouflaging a bag of powdered sugar I'd taken off the counter. Woo.
Dave 3

Ah... the good old days! I don't surf any more, but woo, the memories!

Please tune in tomorrow; Stormy said there's a Part IV!

Luv,
Dave

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

...or "Oops, I Ate It, Part II".

Love,
Ammy

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Oops, I Ate It, Part I

Ha roo, pups and kit-cats! Zim here, with our first installment of the "Oops, I Ate It" tag. Lots of our friends are coming clean about little incidences of helping themselves to food, so we thought we'd play. Today's my turn.

The rules of the tag say, "when accepting this award you must blog about the food you have stolen when your humans weren't watching. If you have never stolen any food, you must be a very good pup or kitty. You can accept this yummy tray of cookies as your reward!!! Next add the logo of this award to your blog (optional), then nominate at least 5 other furry blogs and let them know by leaving them a message on their blogs." Here's the cool tray of cookies:

So... you're probably thinking that since I was a wild man when I first joined the family I must have stolen all kinds of treats, right?

How could you accuse me like that?

Sure, there was a little incident with some ruby red slippers... Mom's friend's hands (relax, they were fabric - see item 2 here)... a couple other things... but none of those are food! I'm just not that into food.

The most I do is munch down on the herbs Mom tries to grow on the deck. If she didn't want me to eat them, she'd hang them upside-down like she did with the tomatoes. Don't you think? I wonder why she isn't growing any this year?

Ha roo roo roo!

Tune in tomorrow for Part II!

Play bows,
Zim

Monday, August 24, 2009

Who's Up For Some Fun?

Tail wags, readers. It's me, Stormy. I know a lot of you have the Monday Blues today, so I thought I'd share something that made us here at Ao4 HQs chuckle. It starts with something called The Squirrelizer ... and it goes something like this.

I wonder what Zim would do if he met up with a squirrel on one of his cool adventures?

Whoa! Hey Squirrel! Wanna be friends?!

Yep. If Zim met a squirrel, he'd want to make friends with it. And would.

What about Dave? What if Dave saw a squirrel while he was out playing LabraDave games?

Hey! What the ...

Yes, Dave would have to give chase.

Me? I like to protect little puppies...

This is my friend. Anyone who wants him has to come through me!

...even squirrel puppies!

And Ammy? Well...


Ha roo roo roo! Seriously, she'd do it without even knowing she had done it. It's part of the whole "Siberian Husky - Prey Drive" thing. Instincts - very strong in our little Yammer.

Now... isn't that better than singing the Monday Blues? To have some Squirrelizer fun of your own, please click here!

Tail wags,
Storms

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Serene Scenery Sunday

Hi everypuppy and everycat! It's me - Amber, here with Serene Scenery Sunday! I collected some very peaceful pictures for you this week; shall we get started?

Here's some of that "Snow-on-the-Mountain" stuff. Zimmie found this at the Kansas Ocean.

DSCN1314

Here's another look:

DSCN1322

Isn't it pretty? If only it was real snow... on a real mountain! And here's an interesting tree:

DSCN1323

Didn't Zim find some serene things there? How about a little closer to home? What's out in front of Ao4 Headquarters?

DSCN1334
Uh-oh.

Adrill and Theplumbers are back. Again. Zim's happy... Mom and Dad, not so much. Let's move along.

How about some cool small 's' storm pix?

DSCN1377

Nothing like a good thunderstorm right at sunset!

DSCN1388

Aren't the pictures cool?

DSCN1027
Oooooh!

But... I did say "
thunderstorm", didn't I? Mom is trying to improve her photo skills and worked at capturing some lightning. Here's a pretty cool bolt:

DSCN1395

And here's some lightning firing up the storm cloud!

DSCN1407

Aren't those pictures just ... umm... excuse me a minute, please.

Yes, Stormy? Yes... yes, I posted some of the small 's' storm pix ... What's that? Not everyone thinks small 's' storms are serene? OK... I'll stop there. Sorry, Storm.

For more storm photos in this series, please see our FlickR album for today's post.

DSCN1028

Have a serene Sunday, everyone!
Love,
Ammy

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Let Me Call You Sweetheart...

"Let me call you Sweetheart...
I'm in luv.... with... you...."

Oh, woo. Hi everypup and everycat. It's me - Dave. Check out my new Sweetheart!

Isn't it beautiful? It's a mini watermelon called a Sweetheart. Dad got it at our new Hy-Vee just for ME! (Of course, I'm choosing to share with him and Mom and my sisters and brother.)

Look at this:

Have you ever seen a more perfect melon? Not much rind, not many seeds... and ripe to perfection! Can't you almost taste it?

Come to Davy, Sweetheart!

Woo!

Luv,
Dave

Friday, August 21, 2009

Photo Finish Friday

Ha roo, pups and cool cats, Zim here. Did all of you catch Ammy's "Spa Day" post? If you did, you may have seen her link to the Senior Care Program at our vet's. Pretty thorough, don't you think? Trust me, it is - I had my first one yesterday! I won't bore you with the details, I'll just share this with you for Photo Finish Friday:

Kayla and me!
(Click here for a larger photo, if you'd like!)

That's me and my student Kayla. She was so wonderful - very calming and friendly and professional! I got to meet Ammy's student Sara, too. And Rachel and Dr. Nelson. Everyone was so nice to me!

Happy Photo Finish Friday!

Play bows,
Zim

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Spa Day!

Hi everypuppy and everycat! It's me - Amber! I got to go to the Spa yesterday! Or at least that's what Mom told me. I should have known something was up when I didn't get my breakfast, though. Hmm.

Anyway, I had my semi-annual Senior Care exam at the Kansas State University Vet Med Teaching Hospital. When we got into the Admissions area, I made sure everyone knew I was there so they could get everything ready. Mom said we'd wait outside for some reason, so we did some exploring for a while.

Me at the KSU Vet Med Teaching Hospital

While I was out there, I met a very nice Great Pyrenees boy - or as I told Zim later, at least a pretty good one. :)

Before too long, some very nice students came out and met us and we went back inside. Once I was in the exam room, I was quiet and cooperative -- for a Siberian Husky. My students, Sara and Jen and a couple freshman, were all very nice to me and were very good at examining me without being intrusive! They're going to be very wonderful vets! I also got to see Rachel the Vet Tech and Dr. Nelson! They did all kinds of things to me, to include a full body massage, and said I was a good girl and Mom was pleased with all the news they gave her. Yea!

Unlike my mom who starved me that morning, they gave me cookies - and even squirted CHEESE on them! Dr. Nelson did that - isn't she wonderful?!?

Jen and Sara had heard about our blog and asked if we were going to blog about my visit. Sounded like a good idea to me! I even posed with them! Here we are:

Jen, me and Sara
(If I look odd, my eyes were dilated.)

Once we got to Discharge, I made my presence known again (how else will they know whose paperwork to pull?), then we headed home.

Not really a day at the Spa, but I did get a massage, had my nails done, and had some quality girl-time. A big thank you to Sara and Jen, the freshman team, Rachel and certainly to Dr. Nelson! You all are a key part of helping us all stay in top form!

Love,
Ammy

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

New Collars!

Hi everypuppy and everycat! It's me, Ammy! Dave usually is the one to tell you about Mom's latest "doings" in the Studio, but I'm just all kinds of excited about her newest endeavor! It all started when Zimmie's Wolf Pack collar met with an untimely demise.

Mom had old Wolf Pack collars for everyone (we each have our own signature colors) ... except she didn't have a spare for Zim for some reason! Anyway, she did have his very cute Lupine one, so he's wearing that now. She kept looking at his old one and the other old ones... and kept wondering if she couldn't cut them apart and do something with the hardware.... and .... well ... LOOK!

A blue camo one and a hot pink camo one! Mom made her own limited slip collars! Ooooh, isn't the pink one pretty!?!? I asked if I could maybe wear it! What do you think?

I really like it! Dave said not all redheads can pull off wearing pink, but that it looks good on me. He's really sweet like that!

Mom wanted Zim to wear the blue camo one, but he acted sad when she tried to take his Lupine collar off - so here he is, wearing both:

He looks good, don't you think? Mom thought he looked rather unhappy there, but I think he was just looking tough. I'm not 100% sure.

We did this pose, just to show off the collars:

Dave offered to model it, too; he thought his black fur would show it off nicely:

He looks nice, don't you think? But guess who else offered to model it?!?! Stormy! Here she is:

She looks good in blue, doesn't she?

She did lots of posing for some reason. I think it's because Mom was talking about having different pink camo collars for us girls and different blue ones for the boys. I'm not sure Storm is keen on pink...... but we'll see. I do remember hearing tales about her destroying two pansy-themed collars when she first joined the family... hee hee hee!

She likes her signature red collar and says it's a powerful color... but said the blue camo might do, too.

From Army of Four Digest
Ooooh... she looks VERY powerful there, doesn't she!??! I might be the only girl in pink after all!

Love,
Ammy