Tuesday, July 31, 2012

My name is Coco. I'm a Runner and An Escape Artist.

Last Wednesday night I get a call about dinner time from the woman who does the boarding job on Wednesday nights.
She tells me that a dog was GONE.
Escaped out of the yard.
She's assuming that the dog, Coco went up and over the 6 ft fence.
She's called Animal Control and I tell her to call Doc, the vet and owner of the clinic. In the meantime I quickly call my niece Lily. She said she would come with me. So Lily and Jimmy (my terrier mix) and I head over.
Coco is not much of a people-dog but might come to another dog. I'm sick with the fear that this 10 yr old dog will be dead on the street that's one block from the clinic. It's the busiest street in all of the 4 cities.
There is always fast and heavy traffic. This area of town is full of new businesses and just a few blocks from the Interstate and yet it is also surrounded by cornfields and sections of woods. I tried to get there as fast as possible but it probably took us almost 30 minutes.
I swear we hit every red light. We were coming up the main 4 lane One-Way street and I don't know why but I turned and cut across, so that we could come up a different road. Just as we were almost to that busy street, out of the cornfields to the left SPRINGS the dog Coco and darts across the road!
If I would have been 5 seconds faster, I would have hit her.
I screamed "Crap!" and do a U-turn.
We jump out of the van and I yell "Coco" and as she flies across the field, 2 other cars pull up. Coco looks at me for a spilt second and continues to run. I turn and yell to Lily "RUN!" and she takes off over the cut cornfield.
A lady from one of the cars said they been after the dog since seeing her cross another busy street blocks away. The other couple saw her as she sprinted across the parking lot of a restaurant they were leaving.
I'm hearing this as I'm jumping back into the van and then I floor it down the side road. I stop ahead of them, but Coco veers up into the woods.
I yell to Lily to get back in the van and we head back out onto the busy road. The van roars down the street and we swerve into the parking lot on the other side of the woods.
No Coco.
I back out of there and then see a dirt/grass road leading into the woods and next to the railroad tracks, and we pull in. We jump out and are hurrying down the tracks going deep into the woods screaming COCO!
We can hear others yelling Coco from the parking lot. Eventually I tell Lily to go on and I turn and climb up through some brush so that me & Jimmy are back up in the cornfields again, just in case she's circled around.
and that is something that I never do, but I was.
Finally I stop. Jimmy is panting heavily. Sweat is pouring into my eyes. I'm blinded.
I turn back and run some more.
I call for Lily, Nothing.
So now I'm screaming out for both Coco and Lily. I climb (fall) down a hill and I'm back by the tracks on the road. There's that woman again, talking to a cop in a police car. He wants to know what's going on. He just had a report of 2 stolen cars and he saw my van and her car behind it.
We tell him about the dog and he says he'll keep his eyes open.
The woman tells me that her husband is down in the creek-bed looking too. We start down the tracks. The woman said she changed her shoes into tennis shoes (she's dressed nice) and she starts to loudly whistle.
FINALLY... we see Lily and she's got Coco.
Apparently the tracks come to a place that go over the creek and Coco was there and had hesitated. She would have to make her way across just on the tracks.
 Lily said she talked to her and said
"Come on, let's go home. Ya wanna a treat?"
She said Coco looked at her and then turned and looked down at the side of the ditch below, just above the creek. Coco was about to jump when Lily dove on top of her and wrestled her down.
So, we all walk back towards the van and here comes this woman's husband in dress slacks and pressed dress shirt. He had been down in the water. I keep thanking them for helping.
They said they had to, that they are "dog people".
Then we load everyone into my van and head for the clinic. My Boarding Person is there at the door talking to the Animal Emergency Center on her cell, in case Coco has been hit on the road and found.
When she sees me slide open the van door and sees Coco laying on Blue's pillow, she starts sobbing.
So, that's how we spent last Wednesday night.
Lily is a hero.
At work the next day, one of the receptionist says to me.
"Oh yeah, apparently she broke out of her Gorilla Crate at home and that's why she's here, since they can't contain her while they are gone".
To say I was pissed is putting it VERY lightly.
The receptionist couldn't understand why I was mad. I told her that she needs to share info like that. That's something we need to know. My Boarding Person would never have let her down in the fenced area by herself if she had known.
The receptionist still couldn't get the correlation between breaking out of a strong crate at home and kenneling with us. I explained why to her and I'm sure that it will never happen again.
Later, I Googled Coco's owners address on Mapquest.
If you follow the railroad tracks down through the woods and past the cemetery for about a mile, it comes out on the street where Coco lives.
I showed Lily and her eyes got wide and she looked at me and said
"She was headed home".

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Refried Beans for Supper!

I'm trying to tell the dogs it's not canned dog food.
I'm trying to tell myself the same thing.
I used to eat it with an obscene amount of Colby cheese mixed it.
Then I'd shred some on top.
Maybe put a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream on that.
And drizzle salsa over it.
Years ago I worked part-time at a Mexican restaurant.
Their beans were the BEST.
One night I saw one of the cooks preparing a big batch.
She was ladling in Lard.
I can't believe the stuff I used to eat without thinking about it.
and now...

I'm heating up Fat Free Refried Beans in the microwave
and just drizzling salsa on it.
It might not be as tasty but I couldn't go back to the other.
I couldn't enjoy it now, knowing what I do.

Saturday, July 28, 2012


The trouble with my old dogs is that I'm always staring at them to see if they are breathing. Even if I haven't totally admitted it to myself consciously,
I know that the days they have left with me are numbered.
My senior citizens are Rosie and Griffin. I try to conveniently forget their ages but Rosie is...13?
and Griff? Who knows! When I found him, the vet I took him to said he was probably 3, maybe older
and that was 12/13 years ago?
Rosie always walks around the perimeter of a room, weaving under things and staying out of the line of traffic or maybe she's just staying out of the path of the lumbering giant.
(Blue never tiptoes around anyone. He will be sleeping and then when he gets up he just stomps off to wherever, sending little dogs scurrying out of his way.)
Many times I find Rosie sleeping in a corner, I will continually glance over at her and watch to see if I can see her chest rise and fall.
I can't resist saying her name and she'll open her eyes and look at me as if she's saying -
"Quit bugging me!"

Then there's Griffin.
Griff just lays down wherever.
Sometimes he's bent up against a wall in a weird uncomfortable looking angle
but most times he's laying in the middle of the kitchen.
I'm so used to just stepping over him.
Now even Blue steps over him.
The other day I looked down at him and nudged him with my toe.
I paused and stared.
I took the side of my foot and lightly put it against his side and pushed.
I slowly glided him a few inches across the floor.
I stopped.
He didn't move.
It felt like an invisible hand was squeezing my throat.
Then my thoughts went to Lily, my niece. She has grown up with him.
She adores him. I dreaded making that horrible phone call to her.
She would be heartbroken.
I slowly bent over to pick him up.
As I touched him, he jerked awake and waddled quickly away across the kitchen floor.
"Damn you Griffin!" I yelled after him.
He ignored me and went to lay on his bed in the laundry room.
Yeah, that's the worst part of having old dogs.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Health Update Part Two or I Need a New Doctor

Went to the doctors the other evening to see where I am at with my bloodwork and all.
My blood pressure was really down.( I never realized it was up.)
My BMI (body mass index) has dropped (obviously)
but apparently I'm still "pre-diabetic" my number was 5.8.
I asked what the normal range is and he said 5.6 or 5.7
.............(My sister is checking into that for me.)
He asked about my diet and made some faces when I said that I sometimes have lunch meat and pretzels for lunch.
He said lunch meat wasn't good for me and I said I DON'T have THAT all the time, it's just an example.
Sometimes I have soup.
He asked how many pretzels I'm eating.
I said a handful. I didn't say several handfuls throughout the day.
He asked what kind of lunch meat and I said - thin sliced turkey 98% fat free.
He said "Oh! well, that's OK then".
I said that I eat frozen cherries and fat free whipped cream when I'm craving sweets.
I swear he curled his lip.
I said "Well, I've lost quite a bit of weight" and he seemed startled and looked at my file again.
I said - "THAT shows 24lbs HERE on YOUR scale but at WORK the scale said 29 lbs."
He asked where I worked.
He asked if I was active and I said Yes. and he just looked at me.
I told him I put one of those pedometers on one time and was told that I needed to accumulate 10,000. steps for the day.
I said I forget to put it on for the first hour that I was at work, but by the end of the day I almost hit 15,000.
I said I planned on walking more once it cools off a bit.
My cholesterol is still high - 211
He said it HAD been down to 169, I said I KNOW. but that was when I was on the statin.
He asked when I quit taking it and I said "March 5th the day I left here from my last visit...
I couldn't handle the side-effects".
He said that diet CAN lower it and to keep working on it.
I said that I WOULD. There is no doubt about doing it.
He asked if I drank. I said not really especially since I'm trying to lose weight.
He said that I should drink a glass of red wine at night to lower the #'s
but not to become an alcoholic.
I said that I preferred Vodka.
He said "That's fine too, just don't become an alcoholic.
But red wine would be better".

As far as all my hot flashes go and all the other joys of menopause....yeah, that was just shrugged off and I was told that I could be having symptoms for YEARS.
What a waste of time.
I go back in 6 months after I get a blood test ran again.
So, I will go just to get the #'s again (they don't charge me)
I go to a clinic that helps out people who are employed but who do not have Health Insurance.
I wish I had health insurance, I've checked it out but I'm not able to afford any of the premiums.
I'm really living paycheck to paycheck. But a lot of people are in the same boat as I am.
So I go to the clinic and I'm able to get very basic medical work and prescriptions are available,
but I don't want to take any medications.
I'm not really sure what I would do if they discovered something major but then again I doubt they will.
I mean discover it, not that I would never ever get anything major.
I guess ya get what you pay for, or what you don't pay for, which is nothing.
I could just have taken the blood test and shown it to my sister and gotten more detailed information.
So, that's my update.

But some day I will need a new doctor.
and maybe a plastic surgeon to tighten up my skin after the fat is gone
and put my boobs back up where they belong.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012


So I stopped eating junk on Monday night March 5th 2012
after my visit to the doctor.
I had been feeling like crap. My joints were aching.
I was always feeling tired and dizzy.
I read up on the statin I was taking and all these problems can many times be the side effects.
That and the fact that I had gained so much weight and am now menopausal.
My "numbers" were not good. And it showed that I was
So I came home that night and grabbed a big trash bag.
I filled it with almost everything in my frig and in the cupboards.
Since then I haven't cheated once. I'm not eating any saturated or trans fat and NO cholesterol except for the cholesterol found in fish and chicken.
I'm not on a diet, die-it....
I'm eating to live.
So last Tuesday morning before my birthday I had my blood drawn for tests.
The next day, being my birthday I went to lunch with my sister and one of my nieces. Since I had done the blood tests, I decided to order whatever I wanted.
I had chicken salad on rye and bean salad and a bite of my niece's muffin. When I went home, I only had berries and non-fat yogurt for dinner.
Then the next day I realized that I still had a gift certificate to Starbucks so at lunch time I went and got a
Large Mocha Frappuccino.
It was very good but as I was finishing it I thought...
What The HELL am I doing?!!!!
That was Thursday.
Saturday I worked in the morning. It was crazy busy. I had a full boarding kennel. Lots of dogs were going home and more coming in. I had to do a lot of rearranging and squeeze in one more dog that wasn't on the schedule.
I had to keep running up front to get the incoming dogs and I would pass the employee lounge.
I could see the box of donuts sitting in there, on the counter.
When I got to the front office, all the girls were munching on donuts and rolls.
After the clinic closed and when I was by myself finishing up,
I had to walk through the lounge to the restroom.
On my way back out my eyes were drawn to the box.
I went up to the box and opened it.
I looked at the frosted little things.
I closed the box.
Nope, not doing it.
I have my doctors appointment in a few days, I'm excited to see what my "numbers" are.
I'm feeling much better though I am exhausted.
But I think that exhaustion is due to the fact that I am not getting enough sleep
and I am working in 100 plus degree heat every day.
Wish me Luck!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


...I was really bumming out. The next day would be my birthday and I was turning 49.
I felt depressed because that would be my last year in my forties.
As always, it was Hot outside. I hate having my birthday in the middle of Summer.
Being female, it's upsetting to try to style your hair only to have it frizz.
It's hard to dress up and be comfortable.
I always wished I had been born in October.
But six years ago I didn't need to worry about that.
I had no big plans.
I was working at the old boarding facility back then, separate from the vet clinic, so I'd be there alone.
Basically I was feeling pretty sorry for myself.
Then not much past midnight, on my actual birthday, my little dog Ruby woke me up.
She was barking furiously.
I sat up quickly and looked outside my window.
All I could see was ORANGE. All I could hear, besides Ruby, was the roar of fire.
It was my neighbor's garage on fire.
(I have posted some of this before, but that's what old people do, right? I mean repeat themselves? anyway...)
Our houses are very close. It's possibly only 3 feet away and their garage is right out their back door.
The whole thing was engulfed and her new car was ignited.
I always hated the aluminum siding on my house but in this case, I think it saved my house.
Her house's vinyl melted and the entire back had started to burn.
The ivy on my home was fried to a crisp and my Weeping Willow, whose upper branches always brushed my window had caught fire too.
The tree is what Ruby and I had seen blazing orange out my window and then looking down, the huge roaring ball of flames was the garage.
I sprung out of bed, pulled on some shorts, slipped on my flip flops and ran down the steps with the dogs.
I grabbed the phone to call 911 and the woman on the other end of the line told me that
"They are all ready there!"
So I leashed up Blue and tucked Ruby under on arm and Claude under the other and yelled to Griffin, my old Shih-tzu to follow.
At the door to my porch, a woman was pounding. I opened it up to see fire trucks, police cars and several neighbors standing outside in the darkness. I asked her to grab my dog Griffin and she said she lived down the block and would put him in her yard. I started towards my car in the driveway when Blue broke free. I apparently hadn't clipped his collar correctly and he ran to a fireman. A woman from the crowd ran over and grabbed him and brought him to me. I loaded the two little ones into my car as a policeman asked if everyone was out.
Back then, I only had 4 dogs. But my cats were inside still.
We turned and ran back in. I've always told myself that I don't have favorites but as soon as I stepped inside I screamed "Harry!" and off the banister he flew, into my arms. I ran out with him, shoved him in the car window and turned and ran back in and got Levi, Ghost, Fagan and Ivy. Then I ran back upstairs into my spare bedroom to get Kanga. She's my cat with no front legs, she could have never gotten out. The neighbor girl had called one of my nieces for me, so my sister and 2 of my nieces had arrived by then. The policeman asked me if I needed anything else out of my home and I said no, "I have everything".
I look back now and think about how I hadn't even grabbed my purse.
I was lucky. They got the fire out before it actually got to my house.

I sit here now and look at old Griffin, he was old then, now he's ancient.
and I have rescued a few more dogs.

Levi, Ivy and Fagan are all in Heaven now.
Kanga is back living at the clinic.
My neighbor has a new garage,a new car, new landscaping and a new kitchen.
I'm still doing the boarding thing but now it's at the clinic and it's an all new facility.

 So when I went to work that day, I was very tired but happy that I had a home and that my furry loved ones were safe.
I didn't even think about being 49.
So, tomorrow I will be grateful for all that I have and try not to think about the number 55.
When I don't even really feel 35.
But I have this damn neck that looks crepey when I turn my head a certain  way and jut out my chin.
I wonder how much longer I have until it's actually wrinkly?
I finally have my hair completely grown out to it's natural color.
It's not as grey as I thought it would be.
There's kind of a streak of it in the front and then grey highlights....
I think I will color it again.
I can't have grey hair AND a crinkled neck.
and maybe a tattoo?.....

Sunday, July 15, 2012

marsh-Mellie Update

or as I am calling her now - Poptart. Poppy for short. (Though it's not really short but...)
Yeah, Poptart.
I figured since I could easily have her for another 13 years, I'll name her what I want.
I saw that name once and mentally filed it away as a great name for a little teeny dog and "wa-la", Mellie lands in my life.
Louie had a different name when he came to me too. He was also 3 years old and I figured he needed a new name for his new life.
I didn't changed Rosie's name. She was elderly and had it her whole life and...well, she's Rosie.
Anyway -
I hadn't written an update because I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I knew it would, I could feel it in the air and then Friday night I got the call.
Mellie's mom wanted to know how she was doing........... if she was OK.
She said she had waited, afraid to know and finally called on Friday because then if things weren't going well, she could get her back and then spend the weekend with her.

So I let her know that Mellie had a couple of accidents but that she figured out the potty pad in the laundry room.
I told her how she would stand outside and not move at first but then she finally figured out what the others were doing and did her business too.
I told her how I hadn't thought she could handle the stairs but she surprised me by running up them the other day to join me while I was getting ready for work.
I told her that she was eating fine.
I told her how I laughed when she was up on the sofa,scampering around and "smiling" at me and being playful until Button joined her and then she stopped
and pretended that she wasn't doing anything at all.
I told her that it would just take a little bit more time for her to get used to the dogs since she hadn't been around any before.
I reminded her to email me so that I would have her email address and she said she had been waiting... and she would, on Saturday.
I told her that I would send photos.
She said she was happy that it was working out and just wanted to check.
I couldn't really tell by her voice if she was really happy or not.
I do think she misses her and wants her to have more attention than what she was getting, but I feel like there's more to the story....

She had originally dropped Mellie off at my work and given her to my niece to bring to me since I wasn't working that day.
She was pretty upset I guess, so in an effort to comfort her, my niece told her about Button and my little Claude.
She told her that they were the same size as her and how she would have someone to play with.
Now she's under the impression that I have just those 2 dogs.
I really really HATE to lie.
So I stuck with the story, but I feel the guilt of omission.
I didn't really lie, well, OK...sort of. I mean I DO have those 2 little ones.
I just didn't mention the others.
If she asked, I would have told her but...well, she never asked to begin with, so I just let it be.

So I didn't tell her how she's fine around everyone, even Blue.
That she weaves her way around him and the others and then stares at me to pick her up.
I didn't tell her that she GOBBLES down her food.
That I don't have to do all the elaborate preparations as instructed, such as skimming the top part of the canned food off
or making sure the wet and dry are separated.
I just fork some over her dry and she hurries and eats it.
I didn't mention how when I gave her a bath, her backbone was so visible that I weighed her.
She's 4.5 lbs.
I didn't say that I plan on getting a little more meat on her bones and then I will get her groomed.
I don't want to cut her hair off yet, she probably needs it to stay warm.
I didn't say that I'm calling her "Poppy" and "Poptart".

That's the update.
I think she's doing very well for only being here for less than 2 weeks.
So, she said she'd email and maybe someday she could visit her at my work.
But I'm hoping she doesn't really want to visit her, I don't want Mellie/Poppy to be confused.
I know if I gave away my dog, I don't think my heart could stand to see her again,
but people handle things differently.
Maybe I don't need to worry....I'm still waiting for her email.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


This is what I see in my mind when I drive up to my house.
This Spring I loved pulling up in the drive and seeing my daisies.
It's SO HOT that all I do is water.
Too hot to sit outside and weed.
Besides, I have so many other things that I could do with my time and unfortunately most of my time is spent at my job.
It doesn't seem like I have enough SPARE time to get all the necessary things done, let alone the things I WANT to do.
I've talked before about my addiction to flowers...
which would be alright I suppose if I wanted a cottage garden.
Something like this is NICE -
but THIS just strangles me. -
In my fantasy, I'd want this-
but then my house would need to look more like that one, I would think.

So, yesterday I went to Lowes to look at landscaping timbers, pavers, that sort of thing.
I came home with a van full of clearance flowers.
I told myself that I could put them down on the back hill...
after I clear it.
I'm thinking it would be nice to have a garden shed down there, so I Googled those today.
Suddenly I realized that these "sheds" were closer to my homes "style" than most houses are.
Then I found this-
I have a gravel driveway...
I think this could work!
 I might have hit on a happy medium between the two styles!
Of course that means more time outside....
but someday I will be done. Really, I will.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


I don't even know what the heat index is right now.
How HOT is it where you are at?
I had to work this morning in this weather and I thought I was going to throw up.
Just too damn HOT.
Last year about this time, I said I was going to get a pool for this Summer...
and I didn't.
REALLY regretting it.
But NEXT year, when I have a privacy fence around the whole yard...
I will. (I really hope I will.)
Found this on YouTube.
Gawd, I really WANT a pool!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Sunday, July 1, 2012


"Road Trip!" or maybe "Boy, What a Difference a Week can Make!"
First, I want to thank everyone for the nice and encouraging comments of last week.
I was afraid that my thought of raising Alpaca's would be dismissed as yet another one of my pipe-dreams.
Instead I received comments that urged me to investigate. So I did.
I found that there are people raising Alpacas right here in my general area.
I even found a seminar that is only an hour away!
So then I got to thinking that if I decided to actually raise Alpacas, I would need some land.
I found this:
 Most of the people I work with live out in the country. Not in the same towns but all over. Some in Iowa and some in Illinois. While it would make more sense to live in Iowa near my work, I would rather be in Illinois near my family and friends.
I have a friend that lives about a half hour from me, but it's way out there.
Somehow I have never been to her house yet.
I actually get confused as to where it's located.
So I called her and told her about this listing and she said it's near her friend who has all the horses.
She said that the road in front of the property is THE major road and everyone travels it.
I said that is GOOD right? I mean it would always be plowed!
She said, "Yes, that's true but you would end up with a lot of
"little dog road pizza's"......
I asked how much she thought it would cost to enclosed it in fencing. She said "Thousands".
So I hung up and kept Googling, then I found this listing that instead having the main photo be of the house, it showed a goat. -
Of course that caught my attention. I could have Alpacas AND a goat!
So I called up one of my nieces and asked if she would go with me on a small road trip.
It was a nice drive, we had a great talk. The drive there was longer than my drive to work, which you would have to add on top of my commute time. Hmmm....lots of traveling.
It was suggested that I could look for work closer but there is nothing closer that has such a strong successful business. If I'm working in at a vet clinic, then I'm in the one with the most clientele.
So we finally get to this little town and then turn onto the State Highway.
There are pick-up trucks spending by and I couldn't drive too slow. My niece thinks she sees the address on one of the mailboxes on the road. I pull over and turn around. There are 3 mailboxes. Where do they belong to? My niece points out a "driveway". Actually it's just dirt grooves and mud puddles through grass leading up to a house.
I have to maneuver around the puddles, who knows how deep they are.
Then I stop the van. My niece urges me on.
"No." I say. "It's not the house in the listing."
She replies that we can drive up and ask if they know where the house is located.
(She is too young to have ever seen the X-files.) so I say "No" again and "besides there's a big scruffy unhappy dog standing next to the house."
So I back up and zigzag through the puddles. We could not have been there even 5 minutes but as we pull out a car pulls in. I buzz down the window and tell the woman in the car -
 "We are looking for a property that is listed for sale." I tell her the address as she stares intently at us. No, she has no idea where it is. So I thank her and pull out on the road again.
Suddenly there is a pick-up truck close behind us.
I speed up and it drops back a bit. We come to a spot on the side of the road to turn around in. It's possible another driveway. So we pull in and turn around and I realize the truck has done the same thing. I pull out onto the road and the truck is just sitting there. I travel back from where we came and in the rear-view mirror I see it back there. It doesn't pull out. Suddenly I spy to the right a tiny little house with 2 pillars that looks like the house in the listing.
A few yards from it is another property and that has a house too. It actually looks more like a shack.
I noticed that the woman has driven away but I realize that we are right across the road from the original driveway. How could she not know where this address is? It's directly across the road!
My niece says to drive up and look.
I say "No." I would have to drive the van up through grass and dirt.
And I can see the truck still sitting there in my mirror. I said that "I'm scared".
She replies that "If you're too scared to pull into a driveway, how could you ever live out here?"
I loudly say "I will NEVER live out here" and we pull away. Now the pickup truck does too.
We travel down the road and turn onto the main highway and thankfully he doesn't follow.
So I drive my niece back home and return home myself.
I call my friend.
She laughs. She thinks maybe I stumbled upon a Meth Lab! She says they are know to be scattered around the countryside in obscure farmhouses.
WHO knew this!???
Anyway I tell her that maybe I won't be moving to the country. I just had this "dream" of being OUT.
Away from things with some Alpacas (and maybe a goat).
"Alpaca's!" she replies. "Why my neighbor has some of those!"
"They can be a lot of work!" but I tell her that I read up on them and it doesn't sound so bad.
She knows my financial situation and she says that she can't see me being comfortable with animals out in an unheated barn.
She says that she knows that they are supposed to be able to tolerate the cold but she can't see me allowing it. She also remarks that she absolutely hates nothing more than bundling up and going out in a snowstorm to care for animals.
 She says that she has a vision of me with Alpacas inside my house.
I say nothing.
I reply that "I'm thinking."
"Maybe I don't need Alpacas and maybe not so much land."
"Maybe just a little bit more than I have.
Someplace nice and green and level. For my dogs to race around on.
and some place with no snakes of course."
She tells me that EVERY place has snakes. and I tell her that I have NONE.
She bets there's a snake or two at the bottom of my yard, down the hill where it levels out and the grass is high.
I tell her "There are NOT snakes down there!"
and she says "OK"
....."do you have snakes out your way?" I ask.
She tells me the other day she came home and there was a bull snake out front, crossing the road.
What the Hell is a BULL Snake?!?!? (I've seen Googled it and it was hard to even look at the photo.)
 She says they are NOT poisonous and they usually just go the other way.
It's not like they are after you to bite you.
But I tell her I'm not worried about the BITE part, it's the "winding" part.
She says they aren't constrictors and I try to explain it's not the constricting part
She says they usually just slither away. If they don't, you can get them with a shovel.
We wrap up our conversation, I hung up and drive to Lowes.
They have trees marked down 75%. and some roses.
If I'm not moving, I need some more things for my garden.