Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Look At What I Found!

Greetings to all!  It's me, Maggie.  The other day, Cam and I took Mom and Dad walking out at Tuttle Creek State Park.  I saw something just awesome and just had to show you!  Take a look:

IMG_2435MagsStick
"I found a stick!"

YES! It's a STICK! Isn't it a great one?!? This park really has the very best sticks. Back in October, I found a big stick out here and it reminded me of our very good friend Goose.  I don't think anyone appreciates a good stick quite as much as he does!

IMG_2432MaggieStick
"This stick's for you, Goose!"

I thought good thoughts about Goose while I carried my stick around. I love having special things that remind me of my friends!  I left my stick at the park so other pups can enjoy it, too.

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Monday, December 29, 2014

Go Nuts!

Greetings to all!  It's me, Maggie -- sometimes referred to as The World's Most Interesting Siberian.  I just wanted to say ...

IMG_3263MaggieGoughNuts
"I don't always play with two toys at once ..."

IMG_3275MaggieGoughNuts
"... but when I do, I go nuts!"

IMG_3274MaggieGoughNuts
"Ha roo roo roo!"

IMG_3269MagsGoughNuts
"Get it, Cam?  I 'go nuts' and these are my GoughNuts toys!"

Have a great Monday, everyone!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Serene Scenery Sunday

Hello, everyone.  It's me, Cammie, here with some wonderful photos guaranteed to help you feel serene.  They're all from our Christmas morning hike out at Tuttle Creek State Park.  Ready to get walking?  Let's head down the path between Willow Lake and the River Pond!

The first thing we saw was a Great Blue Heron, just at the shoreline of the lake!

IMG_2241GreatBlueHeron

In the middle of the lake, there were a bunch of gooses honking. I mean, they were LOUD and they were HONKING. I remained silent, but something they were honking about hit Mags the wrong way and she "woo woo woo"ed at them. Yes, Mom likes us to be very quiet while we're birding and we normally are ... BUT, hey. The geese had it coming and if Maggie hadn't responded to them, Mom wouldn't have gotten this shot:

IMG_2243GreatBlueHeronAndMallards
Great Blue Heron and fleeing Mallards

I think Mom should have thanked Maggie rather than tell her "Shh!", but that's just me. Maggie is still learning.

You can barely see the geese on the lake, but I shot them a dirty look as we walked by them.

IMG_3343CamWillowLake
"This is for getting my little sister shushed!"

I don't talk to birdies, but I do stare.  Quite effectively!

Anyway... on to more serene things. We hit the Eagle Pass Trail and walked to the end of that and back. Maggie found a really interesting tree:

IMG_3352MagsCamEaglePassTrail
"Oooh!  Check this out, Cam!"
"Great find, Peep!"

There are so many smells on that trail! And things to see! And things to hear! And things to snarf!!! (Bipeds, disregard that last one.) Mags and I just love it out there!

Here's Maggie, looking for birdies:

IMG_2310MagsEaglePassTrail
"I see one, Mom!"

Mom followed Maggie's gaze and saw this guy:

IMG_2321MaleMallard
Mallard

Way to go, Mags!

High above us, we spotted this Red Tailed Hawk:

IMG_2345RedTailedHawk

On the River Pond, we saw this Great Blue Heron communing with some gooses:

IMG_2260GreatBlueHeronAndGeese
"OK, everybody gather 'round.  Today's sermon comes from the book of Luke ..."

We thought that was a nice, serene scene! I'm not sure if that's the same heron we saw earlier, but I know those aren't the same geese. They were nice, QUIET, serene geese! No need for anyone to "woo woo woo" at them.

IMG_2312CamEaglePassTrail
"No need to talk to these gooses, right, Mags?  Good girl!"

That's it for this week's Serene Scenery Sunday.  Thanks for coming to the lake with us!  We hope you feel nice and serene after our hike!

Cammie!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Trip To Tuttle

Greetings to all, it's me - Maggie!  I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas and a most joyous Boxing Day.  We sure did!

On Christmas Eve morning, we all went out to the lake together, like we did last week!  It was great fun; I thought I'd share some of those photos with you!

Our first stop in Tuttle Creek State Park was the River Pond/Willow Lake area.  We walked down the path between those two bodies of water and had a look around.

IMG_3294MagsRiverPond
"Look, Cam!  Gooses on the River Pond!"

IMG_3291CamRiverPondGeese
"DINNER!"

It was mostly Canada Geese, with some Cackling Geese sprinkled in there.  Oh.  And two Mergansers crashed the party!

IMG_2062CanadaGeeseCommonMergansers
"Honk!  Who invited the Mergansers?!?  Honk!"
"Whee!!!  INCOMING!!!"

I don't know about you, but those Merganser guys seem like a lot of fun!

Oh, and Mom apologizes for how dark and dreary everything looks, but it was that kind of a day!  Anyway -- on to Eagle Pass Trail!  Here's Cam!

IMG_3295CamEaglePassTrail
"Such a cool trail!"

We hiked for a little while, then I said to Cam ...

IMG_3303MagsEaglePassTrail
"Hey, Cam!  Watch this!"

She watched while I shifted gears!!!

IMG_3296MagsCamEaglePassTrail
"POWER DRIVE MODE!!!"
"Whoa!  Go, Maggie!"

It was great!

Once we got over by the Bald Eagle's nest, I was nice and quiet.  Got to respect their turf and all.

IMG_3301MagsEaglePassTrail
Being quiet and respectful by the Eagle's nest.

Mom took a shot of those signs I'm looking at back in April.  You can see them here.

Speaking of the eagles ... after our hike, we drove over by the Big Blue River and saw this guy:

IMG_2214BaldEagleAboutToLaunch
Bald Eagle - ready to launch!

Isn't he cool?  Mom took a bunch of photos of him, but that one is our fave.  To see more, and to see more of the other birdies we saw that day, you can click here to see our Flickr album.  After that, it was time to head home.

We're still doing that "Cam in the back, me in the front" thing in the SUV.  I love it!  I don't think Cam minds too much.

IMG_3310CamRAV4
"This is soooo comfy!"

She and Mom seem to like that whole "snuggle as you go" thing.  Whatever.  I have important things to do in the vehicle!

IMG_3313MagsRAV4
"OK, Dad.  Turn right up here."

I do get the occasional ear scratchie as thanks for my hard work!  Oh.  And fear not!  All four of us are safely buckled in with our seat belts!

Thanks for going out to Tuttle with us!  We went again on Christmas Day - we'll show you those pix tomorrow!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Friday, December 26, 2014

Boxing Day!!!

Greetings to all!  It's me, Maggie!  Today is the day I've been waiting for - it's BOXING DAY!!!

IMG_3359MagInABoxCam
"A most joyous Boxing Day to all of you!"
"Yes, to all -- Boxers and non-Boxers - Happy Boxing Day!"

Cam may not be quite as into boxing as I am, but she's always there to support me!

IMG_3362MagInABoxCam
"I wish you'd get in here with me, Cam!  Or Mom could get you a box of your own!"
"Not gonna happen, Peep."

I saw someone outside and thought maybe someone was stopping by to wish us a joyous Boxing Day!

IMG_3361MagInABoxCam
"Look, Cam!  I think someone's coming!"
"Maybe they can get in the box with you, Mags."

It was a false alarm.  I'm pretty sure this is the day people go visiting, to wish everyone more boxes and stuff.  Mom moved my box over by the door, so I would be in a better position to greet guests.

IMG_3356MagInABox
"How do I look, Mom?"

Seriously. Isn't this the day when people stop by to box?

IMG_3357CamMagInABox
"Is anyone going to straighten her out about this, or should I?"
"Hello?"

No one has shown up yet, but it's still early.

IMG_3355MagInABox
"I can wait.  No problem."

Happy Boxing Day, everyone!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Christmas 2014

"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord."
Luke 2:10-11 (KJV)

IMG_2612MagsCamChristmasCardPerfect

From all of us at Ao4 Headquarters to all of you - Merry Christmas!!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

More Miscellany

Hello, everyone.  It's me, Cammie.  Yesterday Maggie shared some of the miscellaneous photos in our queue, and today I have some more.  The theme today, in keeping with  Santa watching  the spirit of Christmas, is being helpful!

Like most of you, we help a lot on our walks! I mean, Mom and Dad get a lot of exercise by walking us, which is downright helpful in and of itself, but we also guard them against anything that might harm them!

IMG_2694Cam
"SQUIRREL!!!"

We all know the evil squirrels are capable of! Am I right?

Mags and I also do an awful lot to help out around Ao4 Headquarters. Here we are in the kitchen. We are right there to help while Mom prepares meals!

IMG_2792MagsCamConference
"You don't want us to move or anything, do you?"
"Can you go around?  We're in conference."

By encouraging Mom to step over us, she gets more exercise!

Sometimes she moves around way too much, though. Maggie excels at holding her down.

IMG_3034MagsMyFoot
"Stay right here, Mom."

I'm very good at taste-testing certain food items -- you know, for quality control!

IMG_2697CammieNose
"I smell a pear!"

Is there any food more wonderful than pears?  I don't think so.  ... except for maybe cantaloupe ...

Here's a picture of Maggie looking all schmoopy:

IMG_2699Mags

That ought to win her some points with Santa!  Now - until he gets here - be good, everyone!

IMG_2880CamMagsWhoUs
"Santa's watching, you know!"
"Hey!  We're being good -- REALLY!!!"

Merry Christmas Eve!!!

Cammie!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Tuesday Miscellany

Greetings to all!  It's me - Maggie.  Cam and I have a bunch of miscellaneous photos that we want to share with you before the year's end, so I thought I'd start in on them today.  This collection is all photos of us relaxing in the living room after dinner, so I apologize for the lighting and poor photo quality.

Here's a shot of Cam and me relaxing on one of our beds in there:

IMG_1233MagsCamPlotting
"OK, so then we can---oh.  Hi, Mom. We were just ... um ..."
"Zzzz..."

I don't know why Mom always accuses us of plotting. Can you believe that? Like the two of us would EVER do anything untoward!

IMG_2767MagsCamSnuggle
"Who, us?!?"
"Trust us; we're Siberian Huskies!"

Mom almost always believes Cam for some reason.  She's really got the whole "innocent look" down pat.  Anyway ...

We also like to hang out on the bed by the fireplace in the evenings. And relax.

IMG_2715CamMagsFireplace
"Just going to take a little na--"
"Gotcher footy-foot, Cam!  Ha roo roo roo!!!"

Seriously.  Sometimes this place needs a good livening up!  And trust me - I'm just the pup for the job!

Mom couldn't explain this next photo of me not sitting on the ottoman to her FB peeps:

IMG_3148MagsOttoman
Me, doing the pose that Betty Grable biped tried to do

Obviously, I was conferring with my dad.

IMG_2776MagsOttoman
"Yeah, Dad!  So all FOUR of us should go to the lake!  How cool does THAT sound?"  

Lately, just so my mom doesn't feel left out or like I don't consult her on major decisions, too, I've been doing this:

IMG_3250CamMagFootstool
"I have nothing to do with this.  Really."
"Hey, Mom.  What's cookin'?"

That wooden footstool isn't quite as comfy as the ottoman, but at least it gives me the high ground.

That's it for today. Stay good, everyone!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Monday, December 22, 2014

The Benefit of Photos

Hello, everyone!  It's me, Cammie.  Sometimes having a mom who takes a bazillion photos a day is a bit tiresome.  I know a lot of you are with me on this one - right?  Having to pose, always looking for birdies, stopping to shoot wildflowers ... very draining.  I am here to tell you, however, that it also has its rewards!

Do you remember a couple weeks ago when Maggie told you about the camera bag Mom won from the fine folks at Adobe Photoshop Elements?  Right.  The one that came in the Maggie-sized box!  Well, those lovely bipeds asked for submissions of photos of pets -- and Mom sent one of those bazillion pix of Maggie and me in.  Guess what?  We scored a Bark Box for our efforts!!!

Here's Mags, checking it out:

IMG_1740MagsBarkBox
"Ooooh!  A stuffed reindeer!  I could rip this apart in..."

For some reason, Mom didn't let Mags play with the reindeer -- but I got to!  Mom and Maggie played with other toys while I spent some quality time with the reindeer.  There were other things in the box, too -- and we got to pose with AND enjoy these treats:

IMG_1747CamMagsBarkBoxTreats
Me and Mags - and some super yummy treats!

You can see the bag had been opened. They are so good!

The bandana Maggie is wearing was in the box, too. Mom put it on me first, but Mags kept grabbing me by the neck and just ACCIDENTALLY getting the bandana ... so Mom decided to prevent it from being  ripped to shreds  damaged and let Mags wear it.  Fine by me. As long as she keeps those Elvis cookies coming. How about another pose, Mom?

IMG_1743CamMagsSitzbank
Another pose ...

And another treat!

See? There are side benefits to this whole "photography" thing!

Cammie!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Serene Scenery Sunday

Hello, everyone.  It's me, Cammie, here to tell you about a couple trips to Tuttle Creek State Park.  No, not just Mom, not just Mom and Dad, not just Mom and one of us girls ... the whole family went!!!  And not just once, but twice!!!  Oh, what a great weekend it has been!

Yesterday, we all loaded up into the RAV4 and hit the road.  As usual, I rode shotgun while Dad drove:

IMG_3160CamRAV4
"Can I do the gear shift while you put the clutch in?"

Maggie and Mom rode in the back.

IMG_3161MagsRAV4
"I can't see as well back here.  Does Dad know where we're going?"

Dad did know where we were going (though he didn't let me do the gear shift thingie) and before we knew it, we were at Tuttle Creek! We drove around and made some stops for Mom to take pictures of different birdies, then we all got out and took a little walk!

IMG_3163CamMagsWillowLake
"Look, Maggie!  That's Willow Lake!"
"I've never been to this part of the park!  BIRDIE!!!"

It was so wonderfully peaceful walking around the lake - and sunny, too!  Our first sunny day in forever!  All four of us had a lovely time. 

When we got back to the SUV, Mom and Dad had us Sibes switch places! I wasn't sure about that at first, but ...

IMG_3177MagsCamRAV4
"Wait a minute ..."
"Oh, my!  It's nice and roomy back here!"

I mean, it's nothing at all like riding shotgun.  There are so many responsibilities up front - you have to watch the driver to make sure he/she knows what he/she is doing, help navigate, watch for birdies ... it's a lot of work!  But in the backseat, you can lay down and ...

IMG_3181CamRAV4
"Oh, yeah, Mom.  Right there!"

Snuggle City, the whole way home!  I loved it!

So today, it was all murky and overcast, but we decided to go out again.  The Bald Eagles are coming back for the Winter and Mom is just all kinds of excited about it.  (We'll eventually share some of those shots.)  We drove all over the park so she could take some photos, then got out and had a nice walk!

IMG_3206CamTuttle
"I hear a bunch of honking.
That doesn't seem too serene. I thought we were getting away from the hustle and bustle!"  

IMG_3204MagsMikeGeese
"Oh, Cam!  Look!  It's gooses!!!  Look, Dad!  Gooses!"

Then there's a chance I crept up behind Mags and goosed her ... and ...

IMG_3207CamMagsTuttle
"BOOM!"
"HA ROO!!!"

It was great!

Shortly after that, we got back into the RAV and headed home.

IMG_3224CamRAV4
"Maggie can have shotgun all she likes.  This is how I want to travel from now on!"

I hope you feel as serene as we do after our trips to the park!

Cammie!