Who We Are

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Serene Sunday

Greetings to all!  It's me, Mags.  Today we had a walk so awesome, so long, that it's going to take a couple days to fill you in!  We went on what we thought would be a regular Anneberg Park walk, BUT not only did we cross Ragnar's favorite bridge, we went WAY up into the hills.  It. Was. Awesome!  I'll try to just stick to the highlights. 

First, we got to go on Hudson Avenue to get there -- that's where that stone wall is that I showed you the other day! I hopped right up:

"Hey, Ragnar!  Check it out!"
"You look so cool, Mags!"

Mom tried to get a shot of my dismount, but she missed.

"Here I come, Raggi!"

So much fun!

Anneberg was pretty empty, except for a few runners.

"This is so awesome!"
"I don't even think we're getting muddy today!"

Not to ruin the serenity, but we got so muddy yesterday, we both had to get showers when we got home.  That's OK - it was totally worth it.  In a few days, I'll tell you about the mud I jumped in.  So much fun!

As soon as we rounded this one curve on the Anneberg Perimeter Trail, Raggi pulled to go toward the bridge.  He LOVES going over that thing!

"Mom and Dad said, 'Yes,' Ragnar!  Oooh.  I hear geese under the bridge!"
"BRIDGE!  We get to cross the BRIDGE!!!"

In case you're wondering, here's what it looks like on the other side of the bridge:

"Happy, Ragnar?"
"So happy, Mags!"

Beyond that there is a housing development.  We've done some exploring in there, but today, we went all the way through it and came to this path:

"WOW!  How cool is this?!?!"
"Boldly going where no Ao4 Sibes have gone before!"

Dad had discovered the path last week and thought that when we were in the mood for a really long walk (it ended up being 7.38 miles), we could take that path!  We did -- and we'll share those pix with you starting tomorrow!

Thanks for coming on our cool adventure with us -- please tune in for more tomorrow.  I hope you're feeling the serenity!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Trying Out The Treadmill

Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  The other morning, after our walk and after Mom did her workout, I thought I'd give the treadmill a try.  You know, Maggie tried it a little while ago and I like to try everything she tries ... so I thought the time had come.

I went into the workout room and hopped right up.  Being the wonderful big sister that she is, Mags came in to check on me.

"Hey! How's it going in here?  Breaking into a pant yet?"
"No.  I'm not really feeling it."

"I'm pretty sure you have to have a quilt tutorial or some music playing on the iPad."
"Oh.  Oh, right.  I forgot."

Mom put some music on for me, but still ... nothing.

"Also, I think you're on it backwards."
"OK.  Lemme turn around."

"This is a breeze, Mags."
"Dang.  We must be SUPER fit!  Mom's usually a sweaty mess by now!"

I might try it again, but really, it wasn't much of a workout.  I prefer really long walks or doing zoomies with Maggie.


Friday, February 26, 2021

Beam Me Up!

Greetings to all! It's me, Mags! Yesterday, we had all kinds of exciting things happen! We walked to Anneberg Park, which we haven't done in quite a while, we got to see those DEER that Ragnar told you about, and we got to take a different way home. (Something about the road dirt we got all over our feety-feet that you can probably see in the last shot of us from yesterday ... whatever.) Oh.  And getting our feet washed when we got home ... but that's not really a highlight, if you ask me.  Anyway, since we took a different way back, I decided to make things even more interesting!

"This is so cool!  It's like I'm doing agility or something!"

Ao4 legend has it that great-brother Zim used to always jump up on this wall when he walked this route -  and he'd strut down it like he was on a balance beam. All I know is Zimmie was MIGHTY fun, and so was jumping up on the wall. I might have to make a habit of it! 

Yours sincerely, 
Margaret Thatcher

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Breaking News!

Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  We were going to post about something altogether different today, but WOW, did we have some excitement on our walk this morning!  Mags said it qualifies as BREAKING NEWS!!!!!!

We were heading to Anneberg Park, and were going through one of our neighboring subdivisions when this guy stopped his truck right by us. We thought maybe he was just going to chit-chat about me and Maggie like some people do, but NO! He told us there were FIVE DEER in the next yard over!


They were right in that tree line - can you see them?!?  Mom zoomed in with her iPhone for these shots:


Look all the way to the right, between two trees!  You can see deer #5!!!

Mom got a bit closer, while Dad held both leashes.  She shot this short video:

To play on YouTube, please click here.

We sure wanted to go play with those deer!  They were mighty fast, though!  Mags and I did our best to try to catch up with them.

"Let's hurry!  Maybe we can catch them!"
"I'm so excited, Mags!!"

We never did catch up with them; Mom and Dad seemed to be dilly-dallying. I'm not sure why.  Mom also seemed to keep saying something about being thankful for a "good grip" and "strong leashes and harnesses".  Whatever.  All I know is it was AWESOME!

This has been a BREAKING NEWS REPORT from Ao4 Headquarters!


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Photos On The Trail

Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  This morning, we had lots and lots of sunshine on our trail walk.  When we started our climb to The Top Of The World, Mom thought she had the perfect shot lined up -- Mags and I paused and looked at her, the sun was beaming down on us ... and just when she was ready to click ...

"Hey, what's over there??"
"Somebody's off to our south ..."
"You GUYS!"
"Yeah, they're walking the other way, though."
"Oh, come on, you two!"

And just as Mom called an "I give up" ...

"Our work here's done, Mags."
"Awesome job, Ragnar!"

What a great, great walk!

(Oh, c'mon.  She got a nice action shot!)


Monday, February 22, 2021

Our Happy Place

Greetings to all!  It's me, Mags.  We all have a "happy place", right?  Ragnar and I have definitely decided ours is on the trails around The Top Of The World!  Check this photo from this morning's walk:

"Is this great or WHAT, Raggi?!?"
"This is the BEST, Mags!"

 Up at the top, I was kind of in my Zen Zone:

Me, looking serious, but SO much at peace!

And Ragnar was so happy up there, he was prancing around like a show puppy!

Ragnar, strutting his stuff!

We had the best time this morning!  Where is your happy place?

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Sunday Stare-Down

 Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  Maggie and I are doing this today:


Mom will figure out what we want shortly. 


Saturday, February 20, 2021


 Greetings to all!  It's me, Mags!  FINALLY!  Finally this morning, we were able to go on one of our "normal" walks!  It was AWESOME!  We got to walk the whole Hudson Trail, then up to The Top Of The World.

Here we are, starting down the trail; it was still snowy there, which was lovely!

"Ah!  This is great, isn't it, Ragnar?!?"
"Perfect, Mags!"

It was in the low 20s when we headed out, but a lot of our snow disappeared yesterday.  Out on the open trail, there was even less snow:

"It feels so good to be out on a long walk again!"
"I wish there was more snow, though!"

I did, too, but whatcha gonna do?  We stepped in as much snow as we could.

Here we are up at The Top Of The World:

Raggi and me

Once back down on the lower trails, we opted to take one of the eastern legs of the trail.  There was a nice, shaded area there where the snow hadn't disappeared, which made Ragnar and me very happy!  AND ...

"Mags!  I see something up there!"

You can even tell by his ear radar that he had spotted something interesting, can't you?!?  

"What is it, Raggi!?!"
"Not sure yet!  It's something, though!"

Whatever it was (bunny?  deer?  coyote?  birdie?) ran off before we could find it.

"It's the leashes, Raggi.  Without the leashes, we would have had it!"
"What would we do with it if we caught it?"

He had a good point there.  I have no idea.  Play with it?  I have no idea!  We did meet two really handsome boys on the trail - a Great Pyrenees named Grover and a Great Pyrenees/Border Collie mix named Sam.  They were very nice and it was fun to make new friends!

Thanks for coming with us!  It was so great to finally get out on a "real" walk today!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Friday, February 19, 2021

Happy Friday!

Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  I just wanted to wish all of you a happy Friday!

... unless you're somewhere like Australia where Maggie's mentor Mr. Teddy Westlife lives and it's already Saturday. Then I wish you a happy Saturday!  This is making my head spin.  Maybe I should just say ...

"Sköl, everybody!"


Thursday, February 18, 2021

Nothing To See Here

 Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.  Last night, I had another great lesson from Maggie.  It's a little something she calls the "Nothing To See Here Look".  It's a lot like the "Innocent Look", but a tad bit more involved.

See ... Dad was downstairs in the office doing a Zoom meeting and Mom ... well, she was just a little bit too interested in our after dinner plans ...

"And then ... oh.  Can I help you?"
"She's right behind me, isn't she, Mags?"
"Everything OK in here?"

"Just giving Raggi a singing lesson!  Ha roooooo!"

No, really.  I don't sing.  Except sometimes in my sleep or when Mom's been gone and I hear her come in.  I'm a very quiet guy.  (And don't tell her I said this, but Maggie talks enough for both of us.  Shh!)

We thought Mom went back in to fold laundry, so ...

"UGH!  You got me!"

Ha!  I had her!  But not for long!


Maggie may have run right into Mom's legs at one point -- that would be when we realized she had been standing there watching us and filming us (in really bad lighting; sorry for the poor quality).  THAT is when Maggie showed me her patented "Nothing To See Here Look".  Check it out:


She encouraged me to try, so ...

"Yeah, Mom.  What Maggie said."

Maggie gave me extra points for throwing in a semi head tilt.  I couldn't resist.  Mom's a sucker for the head tilt!

"Nothing to see here, Mom."
"Nothing at all!"

I'm learning SO MUCH from Mags - and am having a ton of fun in the process!


Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Boredom Is Sinking In

 Greetings to all!  It's me, Mags.  This morning when we got up, the actual temperature here at Ice Station Ao4 Headquarters was -20℉  (-28.9℃).  Don't even ask about the windchill or "real feel".  Needless to say, it's "indoor games" again today.  Only I'm really starting to worry about Mom.  Is it the boredom of not going on walks?  Is the cold getting to her brain?  A crazy combo of the two?  You be the judge -- she thought it would be a good idea to play dress-up.  With me.

"Seriously?!?  Do you SEE what I have to put up with?!?  SEND HELP!"

And the next thing I knew ...

"Mom, we really need to talk about this ..."
"Hi, Maggie.  What are you and Mom doing?  Can I play?"

 It was great!!!  I needed help, and BOOM!  there was Ragnar!  What timing!  Only rather than turning the "game" over to Raggi ...

"Not what I had in mind, Mom."
"Oh, come on!  You look adorable!"
"I think blue's really my color, Mom.  Can I try a solo?"
"What do you think, Mom?  It's 'me', isn't it!?!?"
"❤️❤️Oh, Ragnar!❤️❤️"

Best.  Little.  Brother.  EVER!!!!!

But in case this continues, please send help.  Really.

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Monday, February 15, 2021

Let It Snow!

Greetings to all!  It's me, Maggie!  A few weeks ago, our wonderful Aunt Donna sent us this beautiful set of three embroidered mini quilts: 

" 'Let It Snow'.  Is that awesome, or what?!?!"

She has sent us others, too -- an Autumn set, a USA set, Christmas, and MORE!  All four of us just love them!  And since this "Let It Snow" one is new, we thought we should let Aunt Donna know ...

"It's working REALLY well!"
"Yeah!  We've got TONS of snow now!"

Now if it would just get above zero so we can go on our walks again!  Snow is GREAT; sub-zero temps aren't great for the non-Siberian members of the family.

Anyway, just a shout-out THANK YOU to Aunt Donna!  And if you'd like us to send our frigid temps and snow to you in Arizona, just say the word!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Valentine's Day

"Do you think Mom has cookies?"
"Would I be posing like this if she didn't?!?"

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!
Ragnar and Maggie 

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Beans II

Greetings to all!  It's me, Mags.  I'm titling this post "Beans II" because I've already blogged about our beans (you can read it here).  As I said before, usually I just crunch right through my "bean" (EicosaCap -- fish oil pill), but lately I've discovered that Ragnar likes them a lot more than I do.  I've been saving mine for him - I just put it on the brown side of my placemat, then when he comes over to see if I'm done, there's a little treat for him.  Like leaving a mint on a pillow, you know?  

Sometimes Mom catches us, but sometimes she's off doing frivolous things like moving the laundry around or something.  This morning, I kind of messed up.  I thought she was off getting the towels out of the dryer, so today I forgot to camouflage my bean ...

"Uh, Mags?  Did you forget something?"
"No ... I'm saving it."

Unfortunately, she had me save it until lunchtime instead of saving it for Ragnar.  I need to remember to put it on the brown part of the placemat henceforth.  Making a mental note.

 Remember - stay sneaky, or you'll get busted.

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher

Friday, February 12, 2021


 Hi everybody!  It's me, Ragnar.

"Anybody want to join me in the shower?"
"I've got a new bottle of body wash and clean, fluffy towels!"

Hey.  Maggie has her boxes -- I like to spend time in the shower!  It's OK to have different hobbies - right?!?


Thursday, February 11, 2021

Weighing In

Greetings to all!  It's me, Maggie.  Since this polar vortex has hit us, we've cut back on our walks.  Oh, we're still out there, but we certainly aren't putting in the 4-7 miles per day that we normally do.  Since our activity levels have dropped, Mom was concerned that we might start putting on weight -- so she suggested a weigh-in.  No problem - we have our own scale here at Ao4 Headquarters.

"How about I hop on first, Mom?"
"Great, Mags!"
"I'll go next, OK?"

 I thought everything would be fine, but ...

"63.14 pounds?!?"
"Wait.  WHAT?!?"
"Heh heh heh ... Maybe you should give me Maggie's cookies for a while..."

Don't worry.  I got Ragnar back for his little prank!

Yours sincerely,
Margaret Thatcher