Category Archives: Family

Rip Princess Minnie

It’s with a heavy heart that I post this.  Today we said our final good-bye to Minnie, aka Princess Minnie, aka Princess Crustybutt, aka Minnie – Queen Bitch Of The Barn.

She came into our lives as a six month old Boxer pup that needed a home and she was adorable.  Six months old, a whopping 30lbs of tiny Boxer goodness.   She has always had impeccable manners and came to us fully house trained, like an insta-dog. She fit in well with the pack and really cemented my love of Boxers.   Those awful Boxer habits that the breed frequently has that you either love or hate?  You know the ones I’m talking about – the energy of a perpetual toddler, the unexpected cunt punts, the general bounciness…well, Minnie was always more on the dignified side so she was good at ‘converting’ people to the Boxer side

Minnie
Minnie
This is my good side.
This is my good side.

 

We were really lucky to have Julie Austin come and take photos a few years back and this is one of my favorite photos of Minnie.

Minnie
Minnie

 

Of course, Minnie was a grand dame, like her name sake, Minerva McGonagall.  This poster was used for a charity cabaret show benefiting some orphaned bear cubs and this is by our good friend, MTP Sudios.   Over $6,000 was raised by this show!

Hottie and Minnie
Hottie and Minnie

 

Always one to extend an altruistic paw, Minnie also appeared in a benefit calendar.  Sure, sure…..it was supposed to be a Pit Bull calendar but she was an honorary Pit Bull just by association.  🙂

Minnie & Hottie
Minnie & Hottie
Pretty Pink Princess
Minnie’s Walker Bait collar by Ella’s Lead

 

In September of 2015 Minnie was diagnosed with large cell lymphoma.   Well, shit.   We started chemotherapy and she was never sick a day, she really sailed through the treatment like a champ.  Here she is getting a cheeseburger after her first treatment.

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givemethecheeseburger

Sadly , after three chemotherapy treatments she stopped responding to the treatment.  We decided to discontinue the chemotherapy and continue with comfort care and she was a happy girl for four more months.   She got to continue to go to work with me at Trupanion:

Minnie and Mama Roo hard at work.
Minnie and Mama Roo hard at work.

And she went for a scenic drive on the Mountain Loop Highway:

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We had a brief affair with a cone due to an indolent ulcer but Minnie is a lady and took it with aplomb:

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Minnie let us know that it was time to say good-bye today.  With lots of tears, and a couple of cheeseburgers we ushered our girl from this life to the next.   This is the final picture that we got of our beautiful girl…..just as beautiful as the day we brought her home.   Keep the other dogs in line up there, girl….we’ll see you on the other side.

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First Carves Of The Season!

Jack O Lanterns.  Pumpkin Carving.  Grinning  Jacks.  I don’t care what you call them, I just love doing it each year!   This year we picked up over a 1,000lbs of pumpkins and I’m not even kidding.  They made us drive over to the truck scale and weigh everything.  lol  The folks at Schuh Farm were awesome as always, and gave me a generous discount because I’m a pumpkin junkie.

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And here they are, all lined up on the porch, just waiting to be sacrificed:

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I picked the pumpkin with the super long stem because he had a little spot that I was worried might turn into rot.

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Carve #1 Business Cat

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Carve #2-a classic grinning jack, Demi

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Carve #3-Another jack, the puking pumpkin (sans guts!)

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And all three all lit up on the porch:

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August Animal Care, Job Change and Cute Photos!

Hello Hotties!

I’ve got some exciting news for you all (and myself!).   Starting September 4th I will become a staff member at August Animal Care, providing care of all sorts of critters in the greater Seattle area.   August Animal Care has been around since 2005 and was founded by the most fabulous photographer, Julie Austin.   She has taken some seriously amazing photos of me and the kids and I’ll share some here.   Big B was a particular favorite and when I’m missing him I really enjoy looking at the photos of us together.

I was asked to write bios for the website so I thought I would share them here.  Why is it so hard to write about yourself?  lol  Anyhoo, here is what I came up with for my ‘long’ bio:

A Seattle native, Jeanine has spent most of her life caring for animals in the great Pacific Northwest.   She got her start in animal husbandry in 1990 and has garnered experience in everything from exotic animal care, wildlife rescue, veterinary assistance to dog rescue and spent the last six years managing the highest rated kennel facility in western Washington.  With a knack for taking care of animals that require a higher level of care, she enjoys taking the time and using her experience to tend to special needs animals including dogs with mobility issues or chronic diseases, diabetic cats and exotic animals including parrots, reptiles and fresh and salt water fish tanks and everything in between.   Jeanine also has vast amounts of experience with dog aggressive dogs and dogs on a ‘crate and rotate’ system or dogs with less than stellar social skills.   She worked personally with several Hurricane Katrina dogs that needed particularly difficult rehab and treatment.  Jeanine is so skilled with dogs that have special medical needs that the director of Clackamas County Dog Services calls her personally when they get a sick or injured dog in the shelter that requires extensive medical rehab.  In other words, she’s a sucker for a hard luck case.

For the past ten years Jeanine has also been performing as beloved local burlesque performer, Hottie McNaughty-The Rhinestone Housewife.  Known for her irreverent and cheeky style, Hottie approaches everything with a wink, a smile and a joie de vivre that has made her popular with local and international audiences around the world.   Always using her powers for good, Hottie has produced several benefit shows including Bearly Naked Cabaret benefiting PAWS and Animal House benefiting Clackamas County Dog Services.  She also produced Toys For Ta-Ta’s (I, II & III) and Beach Blanket Bimbos both of which benefited needy local children.   Hottie has also appeared in several benefit calendars with her canine companions, Buford T. Justice, Doogie Howser and Minerva McGonagall and is a popular local model.

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Minnie.  "Oh my dog, the camera is going to eat my soul!"
Minnie. “Oh my dog, the camera is going to eat my soul!”
Joxer The Mighty Master Of Mayhem
Joxer The Mighty Master Of Mayhem
Huh?  Dash doing what he does best....looking cute.
Huh? Dash doing what he does best….looking cute.
Patrick Star.
Patrick Star.

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Auntie Kendra and Sir Fergus
Auntie Kendra and Sir Fergus
Fergus never let life get him down.
Fergus never let life get him down.

You can find Julie Austin’s photography page here:  http://jaustinphotography.com/

And you can find August Animal Care’s page here:  http://augustanimalcare.com/

RIP Sir Fergus Of Bravo

It is with a heavy heart that we announce we had to say good-bye to Fergus on August 1st.   Fergus was struggling with heart failure and had also recently been diagnosed with renal failure.  The two are difficult to treat together at best and Fergus fought hard until he was just too tired.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with his story, you can read about Fergus here:

https://hottiemcnaughty.com/2012/03/30/sir-fergus-of-bravo/

And also an update post here:

https://hottiemcnaughty.com/2012/06/03/sir-fergus-of-bravo-update/

We only had a year and a half with Fergus but it feels like we had him forever.  He came into our lives right after we lost Big B and I think we crossed paths because we both needed each other.  It’s almost as if Big B sent him to me in my time of need and grief.   He fit into our home so perfectly it’s hard to believe we didn’t have him forever.    A couple of weeks ago, we had some photos done by Julie Austin and Fergus charmed her and everyone he met.  Always one to roll over for a belly rub he broke down stereotypes and preconceptions of everyone he met.  He did good work but it was time to rest.  RIP Sir Fergus Of Bravo, thank you for letting us love you and loving us back.

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I would like to thank Clackamas County Dog Services for trusting us with his care, Evergreen Holistic Veterinary Care for always being there for us and Julie Austin for the fantastic photos.

Mount Rainier/Cedar Creek Treehouse

So this weekend Chris and I drove down to Mount Rainier National Park and stayed at the Cedar Creek Treehouse, a tree house that’s 50 feet up in a tree.  It was awesome!  The tree house itself is three levels.  There’s a sitting/patio area that has a hammock and is open for the most part.   The next level is the main living area that had a little table and chairs, a sink with a gas stove and a sun room and a bathroom of sorts.   The top level is the sleeping loft and it featured sky lights that let you star gaze as much as you want.    And yes, the trunk of the tree is the center feature of all the rooms!

We stopped at Crystal Mountain and rode the gondola on the wait to the tree house.

Riding the gondola up to the top of the mountain.
Riding the gondola up to the top of the mountain.
Mt. Rainier
Mt. Rainier
Chris trying to fall off a cliff.
Chris trying to fall off a cliff.

When I told the owner of the local coffee shop that I go to where we were heading she asked me to take the cow from her lobby and get some photos.   Well, here we all are, stuck in traffic.  They are repaving the mountain road and it was one lane in many places.

Ms. Cow going walkabout.
Ms. Cow going walkabout.
On the road.
On the road.
Our little bat visitor.  He left the next morning.
Our little bat visitor. He left the next morning.
The underside of the Rainbow Bridge.
The underside of the Rainbow Bridge.
The actual tree house that we stayed in.
The actual tree house that we stayed in.
In the observatory with the tree house in the background.
In the observatory with the tree house in the background.
Chris and I on the Rainbow Bridge.
Chris and I on the Rainbow Bridge.

On Saturday we took a little hike to Bench Lake.  There was lots of alpine meadows and cool looking trees along the way.

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My froggy friend that I found.
My froggy friend that I found.

Even though it’s 85 degrees, you’ll sometimes find big piles of snow!

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Narada Falls
Narada Falls
Cow and flashlight keeping an eye on the camp fire building.
Cow and flashlight keeping an eye on the camp fire building.
I thought this one looked like a phoenix.
I thought this one looked like a phoenix.
Toasting marshmallows.
Toasting marshmallows.
Scary face in the fire!
Scary face in the fire!

If you are at all interested in checking out Cedar Creek Treehouse here is their site:

http://www.cedarcreektreehouse.com/

Remodeling Progress

We have been super busy remodeling the house.  We ripped up the floors in the living room, dining room and hallway as well as repainted most of the walls and ceiling (two walls will have to wait until the tiling is done) replaced the fireplace and tons of fixtures as well as added a ceiling fan to the dining room.

The tile that we have in the kitchen will extend all through the house which will be nice.  We chose two brown colors that will be placed in a checker board pattern as well as around the new gas fireplace.  We also had a chance to finally put up the floor to ceiling bookshelves that we had made to match the kitchen cabinets.   Yay for book and DVD storage!   As well as other things that I’d like to keep safe from prying kitty paws.

New ceiling fan in the living room.
Bookshelves and unfinished floor.
New ceiling fan in the dining room.
New wall lights in the dining room.
Unfinished floor in the dining room.
Unfinished floor and fixtures in hallway.
Unfinished floor in living room.
New fireplace.

Sir Fergus Of Bravo Update!

It’s been a while since we’ve had an update on Fergus.  I can say he’s doing so amazingly well that I can’t even believe it.   He’s settled right into our household like he’s been here for years.  His eye is looking so much better, his fur is literally soft and supple and his mobility has greatly improved.   For those not familiar, you can check out his original story here:

https://hottiemcnaughty.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/sir-fergus-of-bravo/

He’s had two acupuncture/chiropractic treatments and it seems to be working really well.   He absolutely LOVES his doctor for that, Kelli Taylor and gets so excited when he sees her.    In fact he was feeling a little too frisky after his last treatment and decided to jump over the baby gate!   He tweaked his freshly adjusted back a little bit so we had to delay his hydrotherapy a bit but he’s feeling better today.  We’ve had to start giving him daily eye drops as his right eye doesn’t produce any tears but Dr. Brad thinks he’ll do just fine.

I’ve got some updated photos of Sir Fergus for you to enjoy!

With his improved mobility, for the first time ever Fergus was able to lay on his back and actually roll all the way over from one side to the other.  Imagine how good that had have felt after being to stiff and sore for so long?

Sometimes it’s hard to get photos of Fergus because he’s infatuated with the flashy light!   Haha.

Big thanks to Clackamas County Dog Services, Dog Rescue Around Washington, Evergreen Holistic Veterinary Care, Dr. Brad Evergreen, Dr. Kelli Taylor, Mindful Healing Veterinary Care and everyone who helped Fergus in his journey back to feeling good.

Garden Stuff (& day 47!)

If you know me at all, you know that I *hate* yard work.  I can and will do laundry all day long but I just can’t get down with the yard stuff.    I’m dedicating the whole weekend to getting it done.   Here’s the shameful before photo:

And to console myself, I cut some lilacs and popped them into a vase:

Getting there!

Kiddie Pool Time!

I pulled out the kiddie pool for the dogs for the first time this year today.   Well, only Patrick and Dash really like to splash around in it but the other dogs will drink out of it.  Haha!   Bib B used to enjoy it but Minnie and Joxer are less than impressed.

Minnie
Dash the Wonder Puppy
Dash
Dash
Patrick the old man.
Patrick

While the Boxers were out acting dumb, Fergus enjoyed some nice, warm filtered sunlight.

Sir Fergus Of Bravo
Fergus doing his zebra impression.

Julie Austin Doggie Photo Shoot

Several weeks ago Julie Austin came over to get home photos of Big B and I.   She was also kind enough to take pics of rest of my motley crew.   These were all taken in my front and back yards with natural light.   You should check out the photos on Julie’s site…they are amazing!

http://www.jaustinphotography.com/

Buford T. Justice
Puppy dog ear!

Joxer The Mighty Master Of Mayhem
Joxer The Mighty Master Of Mayhem
Huh? Dash doing what he does best....looking cute.
Minnie. "Oh my dog, the camera is going to eat my soul!"
Minnie
Patrick Star.

Buford T. Justice And Adenocarcinoma

I think I’ve avoided posting this because I’m just not wanting to deal with it.   I’m angry and adrift and yes, a bit depressed but mostly I’m deeply and profoundly sad.   Fuck cancer.  Big B has been my best friend since the day he entered our lives.  He’s been my protector, my doughnut and coffee buddy, my dress up model and napping compatriot.

Big B had a stumbling episode and was non weight bearing on his front right leg two weeks ago so I brought him in to work and we took x rays and did labs and a thorough exam. We knew he had some arthritis in his shoulder and neck and found some more in his elbows. He had a really infected anal gland so we emptied and infused them. While Dr. Evergreen was expressing his anal gland he found a small lump either inside the gland or duct. He was able to express it a little bit and it seemed quite a bit smaller.

A week later Big B still seemed a little bit sore but we upped his Tramadol to keep him comfortable and checked his anal gland again. At that time the lump was the size of a pea and had doubled in size from the last time we checked it. Dr. Evergreen recommended a visit to the surgeon that we love (Dr. Fry) to see what he thought about removing it. I couldn’t really put my finger on it but Big B had just seemed ‘off’ to me. Dr. Fry got us in right away and he recommended aspirating the lump before surgery. This could tell us if it’s cancer or not and determine how aggressive he would need to be with the excision of the entire anal gland.

Unfortunately the lump came back as adenocarcinoma which is nasty. Both Dr’s recommended chest films and an ultrasound before we do surgery to make sure it hadn’t spread to Buford’s organs before we put him through a really nasty surgical procdure. We got the worst possible news that we could get, the chest films showed changes in his lungs and the ultrasound showed nodules in his liver and kidneys. Dr. Evergreen thinks we have maybe four weeks but possibly closer to two weeks for Big B.

There is a great holistic vet in NY who has compounded some Chinese herbs to help support his system and keep him feeling good for as long as possible.   He started those last night and they seem to be helping.   Monday was a rough day and he felt like crap but I heard Big B get up this morning and head down the hallway to check on me about 5am.    That’s something he’s always done….check on mom before she gets up and make sure everything is as it should be before the start of the day.

In the mean time Big B and I will be spending lots of time together and getting a ton of donuts.

Snowmageddon January, 2012

Ok, so normally I don’t sweat  the snow too much.  I grew up in New Hampshire and learned how to drive in the stuff.   We’ve have gotten a *lot* of snow for the Seattle area.   It’s been snowing off and on since Saturday afternoon but we got dumped on today and are supposed to get more tonight.

Ten inches so far on my front porch!

 

The view fron my front porch.

 

The snow might be a little much for the Christmas tree!