Who We Are

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Tuesday Miscellany

Greetings to all, it's me, Maggie.  I was going to give this the post the title "Photos Mom Finally Downloaded From the iPhone" but that seemed a tad lengthy.  Let it suffice to say, we have some assorted photos for you and Mom finally synched her iPhone.  Here's what I've been up to the past few days!

Did you know I am Super Puppy?!?

"There's no need to fear!  Super Puppy is here!"

It's true! I fly to the rescue, wherever my services are needed!!

"The iMac doesn't like talking to this thing.
Turn it off, restart the computer, then turn the printer back on.
That ought to do it, Mom."

Cammie and I explored the lower deck while Mom hung up a lovely wind chime:


The German Shepherd next door was out.

"I wonder if that cat is out, too."
"I kinda like Fluffy Black Cat, Cammie..."

Since the KSU wildcats were in a big football bowl game, Mom thought I should try posing with something purple.  Some neighbors gave us a fruit basket for Christmas and there was a huge purple bow on it.  It was really pretty.   Mom thought I'd pose with it tied to my collar. I had other thoughts.

"I don't want to wear a BOW!!!"
"Ha roo roo roo!!!  Go, Maggie, GO!"

At least Aunt Cammie thought it was funny. Mom told Cam she wasn't being too helpful.

"Oh.  You want me to help?  OK..."

Aunt Cam was a tremendous help to me!

"Thanks, Aunt Cammie!"
"I'll always have your six, little one!"

I don't think Cam unwrapping the bow from around me was what Mom had in mind, but it was precisely the help I needed!

Speaking of Cammie helping, some of my toys had to have surgery this week. Cam inspected all of them after they were stitched up.

"Excellent work, Dr. Mom!"

You can see Fishy's incision if you look closely.  He had a partial fin-ectomy, but he'll be just fine, according to the sturgeon.  I mean "surgeon".  Ha roo roo roo!

In news totally unrelated to my toys being de-stuffed, I'm wearing one of Zim's old Lupine collars:

How do I look?

Other totally unrelated news is that we're testing Lupine's "guaranteed even if chewed" policy. I have no idea what that means. Has anyone seen my lavender-colored Surf Dog Lupine leash, by the way? Just wondering.

Aunt Cam and I played with our Beyond Tough toys together for a while yesterday, since mine was out of ICU:


It's been a fun, productive couple of days!  I hope yours are going just as well!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Monday, December 30, 2013

What Do You Get ...

Hello, everyone!  It's me, Cammie!  What do you get when you have a ton of snow, then several days of thaw-freeze and thaw-freeze and thaw-freeze?  A layer of icy, frozen snow on top of all the snow! And if you're real careful not to bust through that top layer ...

"♩'... It's a marshmallow world in the winter
when the snow comes to cover the ground
 It's the time for play, it's a whipped cream day 
I wait for it the whole year round... '♩

... you can go snow skating!


PS:  OK, it's sort of like crunchy, stale marshmallows at this point, but it's a marshmallow world none-the-less!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Serene Scenery Sunday

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me, Zim, here with Serene Scenery Sunday.  Ready to find some inner tranquility?  Some soothing peacefulness?  Let's enter the Zen of Zim Zone, shall we?

"I feel wonderful already, Zimmie!"
"We're in the Zone, Cam!"

In our own neighborhood, Cam and I helped Mom spot a birdie she's been trying to photograph. Here he is:

Blue Jay, blue sky!

A common enough bird, but they've been very elusive lately. Mom was thrilled to get a shot of him!

Mom also headed out to Tuttle Creek State Park this past week. Here are the best of the best for you!

A very well-camouflaged Great Blue Heron:


Here's another one, up the bank a bit:


Mom did some special effects setting on the camera on that one. She did the same effect of this shot of the river:


Doesn't that make it look cold and wonderful?!!? Here's one more shot using that camera setting:


It's the very rare Headless American White Pelican! Ha roo roo roo!

I think they were cold.

There were a lot of gulls hanging around, posing for Mom and her friend. Here's my favorite shot:


He looks like one totally cool bird. I wish I had been there to meet him!

You know who I thought was there?!? Our kit-cat friend Isabella! Look:


I know her mom has relatives in Kansas, so I thought maybe they were all here for a visit! That kit-cat didn't come over to say "hi" or anything, though, so there's no way it was Isabella. We sent her a FaceBook message and asked her if perhaps she has relatives here, too; you just never know!

This is Mom's favorite photo from the day at Tuttle:

Eastern Bluebird

Very serene, don't you think? And here's what makes me serene:

"Halt!  Who goes there?!?!"

That's right, my littlest kid sister, hard at work in our really cool snow fort! She is a NATURAL! I couldn't be prouder of her!

If you'd like to see more of mom's photos from her latest jaunt to Tuttle Creek State Park, please click here.

That's a wrap for this week. I hope you feel totally serene now! Have a great Sunday!

Play bows,

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Toy Time!

Greetings to all, it's me, Maggie!  I thought you might like to see what I've been playing with lately, when I'm not out enjoying our snow. Now that I'm getting my big girl teeth, I like to chew ALL the time, as opposed to before when I wanted to chew when I wasn't napping. Hmm. I guess it's just that I'm not napping as much. At any rate ...

"Ready to take a look?"

Let's see what's in the toy box!


I like that ball a lot. It's squishy, yet sturdy, and squeaks louder than you can imagine. It's great!

"It requires two hands.  Errr... paws."

Quite durable. It's by Mighty Balls dog toys.

We also got a package from our Aunt Shelli. Well, technically, it was for Mom, but we knew Aunt Shelli would have something in there for us, too! Zim helped Mom unpack.

"It's from Aunt Shelli alright!  And there are things in here for us Sibes!"

I could have helped with that part! It's not like I'd chew the box up and swallow a bunch of cardboard or anything! (I have no knowledge of the chewed lower right-hand corner, nor of the wet marks at the bottom of said box.)

Moving right along, not only did Aunt Shelli send us some treats, but she sent fun toys, too! Cammie immediately made off with this one:

"I LOVE this toy!  Thank you, Aunt Shelli!"

Because Aunt Shelli and my mom refer to me for some strange reason as "The Energizer Bunny" (?), she also sent us a bun-bun! It was yellow and squishy and squeaked and was just so incredibly fun!!!


Oh. Yes. I did use the past tense there, didn't I? Someone committed bun-o-cide, but I can't comment.  The case is still under investigation.  The Case of the Shredded Bunny.  I'll let you know if I hear anything further.

Like Cammie, I also like the ball of rings:


It's very fun to chew on and to chase! For some reason, we don't have access to that one all the time. Nor to my Mighty Ball. Apparently, there are toys we can leave out and toys we can't. I have no idea why.

"No comment."

I also have no idea what happened to my Freeze'N Chew toy.

Most of our Kong toys are available to us whenever we want them.  Here I am, with my Kong ball:


It's very fun!  We have quite a variety of sizes and shapes.  Here's a look at some of them:

Me, with some of my favorite toys
Top to bottom:  Zim, the bone, my iPad, me with the dumbbell, the regular Kong, and the dental stick

For some reason, the black ones are holding up better than the red ones. I think my tire is missing from that shot and my Kong ball.  Sometimes Mom puts treats in the Kong toys and sometimes she doesn't. We also sometimes get poultry-flavored toothpaste in them! I like chewing on them whichever way! I just like to chew.

That's what we've been playing with lately!  What about you?  Do you have any favorite toys?

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Friday, December 27, 2013

Photo Finish Friday

Hello, everyone!  Cammie here, with some miscellaneous photos from the past week.  Most of our activity centered around our wonderful snow!

I'm still convinced that there is someone under the bushes by our front door:

"I know you're in there!"

So every chance I get, I do something about it:


It always pays to check.

Zim has given Maggie a lot of lessons about building a really cool snow fort this week:

"That's it, kid!  Dig, dig, dig!!!"

It's very exhausting work, teaching our little one:


Yes. Yes, that is my new bed. We have a time-sharing schedule; no problem.

Maggie is really into the snow:


She especially likes crunching it:

"Chomp!  Chomp!  Chomp!  Oh, this feels so good!"

Mom is careful to not let her eat too much, and certainly not any where the snow plow guy has spread chemicals. I think it feels especially good to Maggie since she's teething! Can you see some of her big-girl teeth in that photo above? She's growing up so fast!

That's about it from here. Before I go, though ...

"What was that!??!"

I think we'd best go check those bushes again!


Thursday, December 26, 2013


Hello, everyone.  It's me - Cammie.  I don't know about all of you ...


... but all of us here at Ao4 Headquarters ...


... are pretty wiped out from all the Christmas celebrations.


We're getting caught up on our rest today; we hope you can do the same!


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas 2013

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the LORD."
(Luke 2:11)

From all of us here at Ao4 Headquarters, we'd like to wish all of you and your families a very merry Christmas!


Cammie, Zim, Maggie
and our mom and dad

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tranquil Tuesday

Hello, everyone!  It's me, Cammie, here with more photos to help you relax!  Let's take a look at the beautiful birds and serene scenery from Mom's most recent birding venture at Tuttle Creek State Park!

Mom went with our friend Beth and her very handsome Border Collies.  They were able to get very, very close to some Bald Eagles!  Take a look at these shots:



Here's a Juvenile Bald Eagle:


They also saw tiny birdies like this duo:

An Eastern Bluebird and a little Finch

Here's a shot of just the Bluebird:


He was all puffed up, trying to keep warm!

As I mentioned, Seamus and Moss got to go! Here is Moss on the trail along the river!


Here is a Hooded Merganser:


With as cold as it was, you'd think he'd put his hood up!

Here is a male Common Merganser swimming along ...


... being photo-bombed by a female!

In another part of the park, they saw these Mallards swimming past a Great Blue Heron:

"Howdy, guys!  Ma'am!"
"How's the fishing over here?"

Mom also saw a Red-bellied Woodpecker:

"Please!  No pictures!"

She said he must be part Siberian. Ha roowooroo! (She saw her first one recently, when she was out photographing Cedar Waxwings! You can see it at this link.)

There were also a lot of Canada Geese hanging out:

Ice-skating goose, joining his friends

Behind the geese, you can see some American White Pelicans, and some ducks of some sort mixed in back there.

There was another Bald Eagle over near where the geese were:


... AND this cute little Coot!

American Coot

Do you like his feet? Mom always thought they were a type of duck, but Beth taught her something new -- they're actually related to the Sandhill Crane, not ducks! Isn't that amazing?!?

"Heeeeere, fishy, fishy, fishy!!!"


We hope you enjoyed this break from the hustle and bustle of Christmas.  Remember to take time to relax!

Merry Christmas Eve!


PS:  If you'd like to see a TON more Bald Eagle photos and more from Mom's birding trip, please click here to see our set on Flickr.