Monday Musings ~ Memorial Day 2023

Monday smile

Memorial DayToday may be the last Monday of the week (and month) but it’s also the day we celebrate Memorial Day in the U.S. (we encourage you to click on the link for historical background on how Memorial Day came into being). Today is also special for another reason around the Ranch.

Today is my youngest granddaughter’s birthday. It’s hard to believe this young, gifted woman turns 15 today. It seems like just yesterday when she was just a wee tyke who charmed everyone she encountered. Where did the time gone? Happy birthday, sweetie.  From a little cutie to a talented, incredibly caring and beautiful young woman, you continue to impress all who know you.  Love you, L.



The Head Ranch Wrangler will be leaving for Hawaii in a couple of days to celebrate the wedding of my oldest granddaughter to the love of her life so posts/comments may be sporadic but I will do my best to visit your websites as WiFi and time permits.

All of us at the Ranch wish each and everyone a safe and happy Memorial Day Monday and hope you spend a moment thanking those who paid the ultimate price so that you can remain free.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

…and the numbers are in

OES Banner
Welcome to the 2023 Spring Fling
Bubble machine
Somebody gonna turn this thing on?

We added up the numbers and were blown away by the generosity of so many who bid on gift baskets donated by a wide array of companies and organizations as well as silent auction bids made by attendees, and from donations received online at our website for those unable to attend in person. Are you ready for this? I nearly fainted when I heard the total. We raised just shy of $2,800! That’s  $1,000 over the previous picnic held back in 2021.

Thirty-nine people showed up in person to celebrate a fabulous day in a gorgeous setting in Elizabeth, Colorado along with a fair number of dogs who chased one other (and bubbles) while others nanny-sat people who attended. We are so incredibly grateful to everyone who made this event such a rousing success. Among the many dogs attending was Conner’, the 2021 AKC winner of the Herding Group (click on the link to watch his Herding Group win at Westminster) who is still a total charmer and had a great time watching over uprights and a couple of babies who attended with their parents. There were even a few ‘honorary’ sheepdogs checking out the festivities including a Portuguese Water Dog and a mixed-breed Saint Bernard, brindle-colored pup who first checked each other out before checking out the ‘pawsome’ gift baskets.

Everyone welcomed

Norman helped at the check in table and supervised the ‘Game of Bones’ game.

Game of Bones

Norman at the picnic

I’m not sure Norman realized Conner was waiting for his bidding paddle. He’s apparently not fazed by celebrities, even the nice ones.

Conner waiting at check-in table
Do you know who I am? 


Here are some of the donated gift baskets that attendees could bid on in the silent auction.

Gift Baskets for OES picnic

OES picnic

Some took a more clever viewing approach by going below the tables jumping the line to check out the baskets.

OES picnic

While others simply backed into their seats to view the tables from a distance.

The crowd visited with one another and then listened to a message by the Board president who welcomed attendees and shared the rescue’s vision as it gears up to fulfill its mission.

OES picnic

The local VFW served up BBQ that was a tasty hit with attendees. Does anyone know why food cooked outdoors always seems to taste better?


Another volunteer supporter made adorable desserts to follow lunch. Everyone absolutely loved those OES cookies.OES picnic desserts

After the event ended, the Board and its ‘advisors’ met to review how things went.

OES Board meeting

It’s a ruff life being an advisor.

Tuckered out OES

Everyone agreed the event was a great success even before the numbers were compiled. Thanks to the hard work of so many people and supporting companies, our rescue will soon be able to begin to provide Old English Sheepdogs with a second chance at a great ‘fur-ever’ home. Thank you for your support-we very much appreciate it.


Live, love bark! 🐾

Monday Musings ~ May 8, 2023

A happy Monday to you! A full weekend whizzed by and we’re ready to start the week with a smile.

Many of you may know that I’m a HUGE hockey fan and while my team was eliminated in the first round, I’m still following the Stanley Cup playoffs. A couple teams look quite impressive so when I came across today’s smile, it was easy to decide what today’s smile would be.


Here’s hoping your week goes well and no time is spent in the penalty box.

We will have an update on yesterday’s sheepdog fundraiser including photos later this week. All and all, it was a great event and we’re still compiling the numbers. Special thanks to everyone who supported us, whether in person or in spirit. Happy Monday!

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Nature Friday ~ March 31, 2023

Happy Fri-Yay, uprights and welcome to the last day of March. Elsa and Norman here to share some scenes from daily walks this week. As always, we’re joining the fur-pups at Adventures of the LLB Gang.

Elsa: It was one of ‘those’ weeks where we had lots going on. Me chasing squirrels away from the trash bins, Mom and Norman hanging out with folks at hospital and miles and miles of combing the neighborhood for photo ops.

Norman: You’re so right, little sister, it WAS a busy week. I was completely swarmed at hospital and visited with lots of people. This is my new friend, Katharine, isn’t she beautiful? She wanted so much to take me home with her and Mum was almost afraid she might have to wrestle me away from her but we promised to visit her whenever we go back. And I even met a newborn baby going home with his parents though Mum didn’t capture that moment. She said something about patient privacy. Not sure about that but did enjoy my time with Katharine. Babies smell so different from grownups; Mum says they don’t always smell good but I like that little boy and gave him a very soft kiss on his nose. Don’t tell anyone, I’m not supposed to do that but I just couldn’t resist.

Pet Therapy

Elsa: Umm, brother….not to be a stickler about things but you do realize that pic has nothing to do with nature, right?

Norman: Of course I do, but you originally brought up the fact that I made new friends when I visited Lutheran. I’m just showing folks some of what I do.

Elsa: Whatever. Come on, let’s share some photos of nature, shall we?

Norman: {harumpf} Okay, happy to share. Mum went to her happy place-Sloan’s Lake as couple of days ago. She really enjoys checking out all the birds at the lake and was surprised all the ice has melted since it is still below freezing at night. The day was filled with swirly clouds and shimmering water.

Sloan's Lake

Elsa: The clouds changed from puffy to swirly the whole day and provided nice views. It’s been windy most of the week and Mom says today is another red flag day with high winds forecasted today. You think the wind will bother all of our sinuses again?

Norman: No doubt. There has been some sneezing in all of us. It was interesting walking around the lake where every place Mum stopped to take a photo, had a different look in the sky. At times, it was barely cloudy, then the wind would pick up and then all sorts of different clouds would provide amazing beauty. Nature sure is ever changing, isn’t it?

Elsa: You can say that again. Makes me wonder how all those Canadian Geese and other birds deal with the wind. There sure were a lot of them at the lake but sadly no new goslings. Hopefully soon. They’re pretty cute as babies then they grow up to be aggressive toward us dogs.


Norman: No floofy babies, but loads of big geese, that’s for sure. And Mum was rather surprised they let her get as close as she did at times. Maybe they’re becoming more used to all the people who take advantage of the path around the lake.

Canadian Geese

Elsa: Close indeed…but they were not very happy about it judging by all the squawking they did whenever she tried to move in closer. I heard more than a few them yawp “yeah, we’re outta here.”

Norman: They are impressive birds for sure, especially when they take off. Mum also followed a couple of the Double-Crested Cormorants who hang out at Sloan’s Lake as well. She followed one guy from one side of the lake to the other and giggled as he ‘snorkeled’ his way across the lake.

Cormorant bird

Elsa: I thought he was a weirdo. He’d float along and then suddenly dive into the water and come up about 15-20 feet away. What’s with that whole submarining thing anyway? Why not just paddle their feet like the geese do?


Norman: Well I’m no bird expert but suspect they’re fishing for crayfish when they dive like that. Did you know that these Double-Crested Cormorants are the only Cormorant species to nest in the Western interior? There are a large flock of them nesting over in Denver’s City Park on Duck Island but it always makes Mum happy when they hang out at Sloan’s Lake. Maybe the fishing is better here and they’re trying to move into our neighborhood along with everyone else.

Sloan's Lake

Elsa: I’m guessing there are enough of the really tall trees they like to nest in. But did you notice how the water was so rippled as you move toward the south side of the park? You can always tell when the wind starts whipping up by the way the waves move across the lake.

Norman:  Mum took these all images between 4 and 5 PM and was mesmerized by the sun moving in and out of the clouds which made for beautiful sparkling reflections on the water.


Elsa: Well brother, looks like another pawsome walk around the lake this week. We always enjoy those ‘heart of the city’  adventures. There’s always something interesting to check out even though there are so many people around. Mom swears she’s going to go to a lake outside the neighborhood where there aren’t as many people so she doesn’t get run over by a bicycler or stroller.

Norman: We’ll see if she finds time to go outside the city limits. It’ll mean a car ride and that should prove interesting with both of us in her car. She says I take up a lot of real estate in the back seat.

Elsa: Hahaha, yeah, I think that’s a nice way of saying you ‘got a big butt’ dude. You know we both like riding in the car. So brother, got any big plans for the weekend or are you still rejuvenating after those busy hospital visits? The weather should be pleasant (the wind should move out by tonight) so maybe we’ll get to check out some new sights. I’ve got my paws crossed. Whatever you do, we hope you take in some of nature’s finer views and have a great time.

Norman: Right-o, little one. Oh, before we go, we want to thank everyone who left such nice comments about our blog-aversary this week. It really touched Mum’s heart. You guys are the best.

Nature Friday

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Monday Musings ~ March 27, 2023

Nine years ago yesterday this blog was born. In dog years that makes this space over 60 years old! Considering I knew nothing about blogging, let alone anything about WordPress,  the mere acknowledgment of the date seems beyond wild to me. It would be another week before the first post was published but I still remember the hyperventilating before I hit the publish button for the first time and the dozens of draft versions for subsequent posts that continues to date. Who knew absurd silliness needed so much massaging? I never expected anyone beyond maybe a couple of family members who would ever bother to check it out found myself blown away by the number of folks who began to follow us. Some 1415 posts later and I continue to be humbled by everyone who drops by, reads our silliness and leaves thoughtful, kind and inspiring comments. Let me just say, this is one extraordinary and amazing community of incredible people for which I thank my lucky stars for each and everyday for all of you. We don’t know where the blog will go in the future, but I recently renewed the blog for at least another two years and hope you’ll continue to follow along to see where our adventures take us. We love having you come along our walks and pray we continue to earn your support as we move ahead. From the bottom of my heart, thank you so very much for sticking with us.

And because it’s a Monday, it’s time for a smile to start out the week. This morning we woke up to another snow storm and it won’t be very warm today when Norman and I head out to Lutheran to brighten the day for staff and patients at Lutheran, but I do know there will be some treats for him though not any ‘leftovers’ like today’s smile.

Monday Musings

Thank you again for your ongoing support and I sincerely hope today brings you plenty of treats and smiles.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Big News Monday

NormanNorman here with some {imitating Ed Sullivan} reeelly, reeelly big news. Mum has been dizzily working on a project that I’m happy to share with you now. Last August a group of committed volunteers who had worked in various capacities with the Old English Sheepdog rescue from where I came [you can read about my story here] got together once it became apparent that old rescue was going close. They realized there was still a need to help dogs like me and decided then and there to form their own sheepdog rescue. Enter…{trumpets blowing} the all new organization, Rocky Mountain Old English Sheepdog Rescue.


While there are no dogs in the new rescue yet (we’re still setting up infrastructure, getting insurance, obtaining bookkeeping assistance, writing policies, etc. that are still being formulated), but the website has gone live, though there will be limited activity until we’re further along while things are getting set up. Mum said they’re taking it one day at a time and are doing everything by the book. It took some effort just getting the non-profit status approved with the IRS but it’s official now and allows the rescue to set up and participate in fundraising events. But I’m very chuffed there will still be a place where sheepies like me will get a second chance at a fur-ever home.

We hope you’ll send us ‘pawsitive’ thoughts as we continue to move forward for all the red tape required. Who knew there was so much involved with creating a dog rescue?

In other news, after much deliberation, Mum shuttered her e-commerce shop over the weekend. The amount of work (and expense) to maintain it wasn’t even close to making it profitable to justify maintaining it. She has decided to just make cards for friends and family and no longer will offer them or (dog related items) for sale in the e-shop. It wasn’t an easy decision to come to but after careful consideration, Mum realized it makes sense. She wanted me to express our gratitude to everyone who has supported the shop over the years and also to those who provided encouragement. We feel truly blessed for your kindness and generous support.

And with those announcements, we hope you have a truly pawsome week.


Live, love, bark! 🐾

Wordy Wednesday ~ June 8, 2022

We’re departing from our usual wordless format in favour of a pictorial recollection from the weekend fundraiser held at the Park Meadows location of Orvis who offered gift wrapping to their customers for a donation to the OES Rescue. We are always grateful for their support but to visit directly with customers at an event is extra special. Because of Norman’s pet therapy experience, he was the weekend’s ambassador showing the general public how great rescued dogs can be, given a chance.

Welcoming us to the store was a sandwich board showing current conditions at favorite regional fishing spots, and sporting an adorable OES face. After a quick set up of the wrapping table and after meeting the staff who showered Norman with affection. Customers began arriving shortly thereafter and we enjoyed chatting with them. My good friend and fellow volunteer, Anastacia (who arranged for this event), and I wrapped gifts while chatting with folks while Norman did his thing.


For those unfamiliar with Orvis, it’s an American family-owned retail and mail-order business specializing in fly fishing, hunting and sporting goods. Founded in Manchester, Vermont, back in 1856 by Charles F. Orvis to sell fishing tackle, it is the nation’s oldest mail-order retailer and this location is a dog friendly retailer at a large mall.

One of the first visitors was a woman who instantly fell in love with Norman and said she would return with her daughter and granddaughter. Shortly thereafter, this little cutie marched in and strolled up to meet Norman.

Her mom and grandmother chatted with us for several minutes and all enjoyed their time with Norman. His soft fur and patient disposition never disappoint.

Norman is nothing if not an equal-opportunity therapist…he enjoys youngsters as well as older folks alike.


Norman easily size people up and seems to know who will offer an ear rub and those who will offer a nice belly rub as well.


Norman spent the entire day meeting and greeting customers. Most didn’t want gift wrapping but still left a donation nonetheless for which we were most thankful. To reward Norman for all his hard work, he got to pick out a toy from  numerous offerings. You may recall the customer who liked Norman so much at Orvis’ Christmas event, she purchased one that he still adores to this day.

Oh…the choices

The elephant had been intriguing to Norman back in December, but he barely acknowledged it this time.

Hmm…this one has possibilities

He thoroughly checked all the offerings.


In the end, Norman put his paw of approval on the sloth, a choice that was most unexpected.


This was THE one.

My favorite!

It was a long day yet Norman performed like the consummate professional he is. He was one happy but tuckered out boy.


Next week Orvis will host another event where a different pup and volunteer will help out Anastacia. It should be a good one for the rescue too since Orvis is running a big promotion to coincide with Father’s Day weekend. While Norman and I won’t be there, we are excited at the potential for another very successful day.

Hope you’ve enjoyed seeing a few pics from our day at Orvis. We want to thank Orvis and their gracious staff for their ongoing support of our rescue.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Purple Day ~ 2022

Purple Day

This weekend we are honored to join Fur Angel Gibson from the FiveSibes blog and fellow epi-warrior, Olivia at Knotty Toys for Good Dogs for the 2022 edition acknowledging Purple Day for Epilepsy (with apologies for being a day late of the actual date, March 26-I got my dates mixed up).

The Ninja rocking her purple bandana

You may recall, the Ranch’s resident Ninja (aka Elsa) was diagnosed with idiopathic epilepsy a couple of weeks following her adoption. You can read part of her story here.

We are so grateful for all the info Gibson and Olivia have shared on their respective blogs about epilepsy and remain appreciative for their leadership in sharing information and resources. Please visit the Purple Day website for additional information about epilepsy. Elsa is living proof dogs who have been diagnosed with this condition can live relatively normal and productive lives.

Elsa ‘reading’ the”What’s Wrong with Gibson” book

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Nature Friday ~ February 4, 2022

Welcome to February’s first Nature Friday edition, where we join our pals Rosy, Sunny and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard. Rosy and gang recently relocated to the Land of enchantment so make you you click on the link to check out their adventures.

Originally I had planned on doing a post about the big storm that hit the Mile High City this week, bringing windchill temps down to sub-zero levels. And then I heard a most remarkable story on the radio this morning about a nature story of sorts from the Western Slope and decided to rewrite it.

It all started the day after Christmas. Returning to their Grand Junction home from Denver, Charles Reigies, girlfriend Hannah Poscente and their dog, Mia hit a spot of black ice near Gypsum, CO late at night and crashed. When Charles came to, Hannah was injured, Mia had disappeared and their Jeep was on its side. Hannah was rushed to the hospital by ambulance with a broken neck. Charles searched for Mia until the tow truck arrived. He wasn’t able to find Mia in the snow but that’s not where this story ends.

When Hannah was released from hospital the next day, she reactivated her Facebook page and joined various lost pet sites hoping for a miracle.

Lost Dog
Photo Courtesy of Hannah Poscente’s Facebook page

At the time, this was one of the first snowstorms to hit the region and cold temps moved in. Hannah’s post were liked and shared and thus the ‘village’ began the implausible quest of Charles and Hannah finding their beloved pet.

Enter Janet Cross, who lived near the crash site, and heard about it. She set up a trail camera near the accident. When reviewing footage, she realized Mia (like many pets do when separated from their family) returned to the area twice a day. Mia was skinny, temps were freezing, but she was alive. There were other sightings among various people but living 2 hours away from the crash made it difficult for Charles and Hannah to follow up quickly on them. But Janet didn’t giving up. She obtained a trap from animal control and checked it every hour. She refused to give up on finding Mia and continued to help reunite the family.

The deer fence the vehicle crashed into was rebuilt making Mia’s reunion even more challenging. Mia was not seen for 8 days. Then a miracle happened. Janet received a call from someone who lived 10 miles from the crash site indicating that Mia had been spotted so Janet repositioned the trap near that area. Mia was initialled scared off but after receiving a message about  being sighted, Hannah and a friend returned to the area to continue the search. Still in a neck brace, Hannah decided to go out and look again while the friend took a meeting on her phone. Snow and sagebrush camouflaged the surrounding landscape but Hannah continued walking along the train tracks. Mia was there! And she didn’t scare off, instead she came walking toward her person. Hannah recorded the reunion with her cell phone.

Photo courtesy of Hannah Poscente

Mia was so excited to see her mom, she began jumping all over her and the video cut off. The same scene was repeated when Hannah returned to her Grand Junction home with Mia with Charles being knocked down by his happy pup. This improbable rescue ended one month and one day after Mia was lost. “She’s still got a lot of weight to put back on,” said Charles, patting Mia, her ribs showing, “but the vet says she’s doing good, all things considered.” No one will know what Mia endured while lost and her story continues to be shared on Facebook, often with the title “Never Give Up Hope.” And what about Angel Janet, the caring soul who made it her mission to help out? “She fought traffic and predators and snow and wind,” Janet said, “and I mean, she made it.”

Courtesy of Stina Sieg, CPR News

{sniffle} I hope you can now see why this week’s nature post needed to be rewritten and how it really does take a village sometimes.


While today’s post was about a shy dog whose adventures in nature we’ll never know the details about, here are a few photos of the Ranch Hands who finally were able to take a brief walkabout yesterday afternoon when temps finally reached 25Fº. The snow was still deep enough to require boots (much to their chagrin) with warm jackets but the Vitamin D outing was much needed by all 3 of us. For those still in the grips of Mother Nature’s cruel hands, we hope you stay safe, warm and cozy.

Ranch Hands
How are we supposed to walk in these stupid boots?
Ahhhhhhh! This is how you spell relief.
Hurry up, bozo. I have snow drifts to enjoy.

Have a great weekend.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Thankful Thursday ~ December 30, 2021

Normally I don’t post in the Thankful Thursday blog hop but simply couldn’t NOT participate this week. If COVID and current events have taught me anything, it’s to embrace gratitude wholeheartedly and don’t procrastinate letting people know how much you care.

Earlier this week while I was reflecting about the Christmas holiday, the mailman delivered a small package. What’s this I wondered, since I knew I hadn’t ordered anything? Thinking it was simply some end of the year appeal for a donation from a group I’d supported before, I figured it was some mailing labels or greeting cards. To my surprise, it turned out to be far more.


Back when I began blogging, many bloggers I followed were influencers with various companies promoting their products. I had hoped to join those ranks but by the time I had any measurable number of followers, many of those companies changed their policies and stopped working with bloggers. Chewy was one of them. I was disappointed but then again, hadn’t really lost anything and just continued to do what I’d been doing-posting about the resident Knucklehead and his hospital adventures.

People seemed to enjoy the posts, the blog grew and readers fell in love with Sam whose legendary knuckle-headed adventures seemed to touch hearts on our little acre of the Internet. When Norman joined this merry band, his adorable face and sweet nature seemed to appeal to readers as well (for which I’m also grateful). Oh sure, there was a story or two about the Ninja, but Elsa’s presence here has been fairly minuscule. Her puppy mill background doesn’t exactly lend itself to sharing heartfelt stories beyond the numerous episodes of her inexplicably chewing up eyeglasses (I think she’s up to 6 or 7 pairs of reading glasses now) and assorted ‘stuffie’ assassinations. I adore this complicated girl but she’s not exactly the kind of dog people understand or favor. Coupled with her ongoing battle with epilepsy, her “still waters run deep” personality is tough to share in a post. Then this arrived.


The inside massage took my breath away and my emotions got the better of me. Around Thanksgiving I placed an autoship order for food and pet supplies. I received an email indicating an earlier-than-expected delivery date and couldn’t have been more thrilled, given supply chain issues these days. Now understand, I place orders about every 3 weeks for food for the Ranch’s ‘livestock.’ I live in an older, very well known neighborhood and rarely have problems with deliveries. Delivery companies know the area well. Amazon, FedEx and UPS trucks are plentiful, delivering packages all day long and yet for some reason, UPS managed to bungle delivering this one. After two emails indicating they had ‘tried’ to deliver said order (which they had not), the following Wednesday UPS sent a notice that “because delivery had not been made, they were returning the box to sender.” What the bloody heck?!?! We were down to the bottom of the food bag so I called Chewy’s explaining the online exchanges I had with UPS (all efforts to reach a live UPS representative were fruitless) and the kind, patient and very pleasant service rep at Chewy assured me a new order would be sent out with priority status. I was extremely grateful and assured both Ranch Hands no one would go hungry. The order arrived a day and half later and all was good at the Ranch. I softly said a prayer of thanks; the dogs had full bellies and all was well in Ranchland so my focus, like most people’s turned toward getting ready for the upcoming Christmas holiday. In other words, I moved on. Supply chain issues has become the new buzzword these days with delays being routinely expected especially during the holidays.


This 6″ x 6″ canvas was lovingly packed with the sweet card and brought tears to my eyes. I. Was. Simply. Stunned. The image from Elsa’s profile was a favorite of mine. As a black dog, she’s hard to capture photographically without looking like a dark blob. As she’s too reluctant to pose, when she does (or when I get lucky like here), it seemed like the obvious choice to use it as a profile pic but I never expected anything like this treasured gift.


Meaningful words of gratitude seem so inadequate. All I can offer is a heartfelt “THANK YOU” from the bottom of my heart. This little piece of art means so much and I’ll cherish this sweet gesture forever. Say what you will about large, unfeeling corporations, but this kind gesture shows not all companies treat their customers so cavalierly. Let me just say I think, Chewy is ‘picture perfect.’

Live, love, bark!  🐾