"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."
Mahatma Gandhi

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

VAMPIRESTAT.COM?????

Fellow Bloggers---I have a burning question.  Every once in a while I take a look at my stats and referring sites just for fun.  

I'm getting a lot of traffic from referring site Vampirestat.com.  I visited the site and I have no idea what it is.  I'm also getting visits from another site which I will not list because when I went there I saw things I don't want to see.  What is this?

It seems to me that this has been happening since I joined Bloglovin or joined Google+?  Can I undo Google+?

I'm afraid to unjoin anything, afraid that my blog will disappear.  

Update:  I decided that all these weird referrals started when I joined Google+, so I unjoined and apparently I'm still here.  I don't even know what Google+ is anyhow.  LOL.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

AND FROM OUR INTREPID TRAVELERS

OLD FAITHFUL!

Before heading north to Canada, Paul's caravan made a stop at Yellowstone, and took in one of the iconic sights of North America.  Most pictures of Old Faithful are as this one, with that stark landscape.  In spite of that, it must be a wonder to behold, and you just can't skip it if you are in the park.  It's the stuff of legends.  

DOGS AT THE LAKE


David and I are starting to think the dogs love the lake house more than we do.... doesn't seem possible, but it may be true.  Yesterday I captured evidence of this hypothesis and share it here with you to see if you think we may be right
video
Cassy and Bella having a blast.  


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Misty starring in her own show.  

Obviously they are loving the great outdoors and are proving that a tired dog is a good dog.  Miniature schnauzers are world-class barkers, but after a day at the lake, Cassy and Bella couldn't bark if they had to.  

They are a lot of work, they do cramp our style some times.  However, we draw great satisfaction from knowing that these three dogs in the movies may not be alive today if it weren't for us.  

Cassy (the black and tan) is unstable, having been abused in her first home.  She is much too smart, and that wisdom brings worries and obsessions along with it.  Landing in our home likely saved her from a life of being misunderstood and tortured.  

Bella is partially blind, having been born with faulty tear ducts that went untreated for her first 3 years of life.  She is a good dog, simple and uncomplicated.  She is easy to live with and asks for nothing.  But, she gets it all anyways.  

Misty the toy poodle was a mistake of a show breeder's efforts to get a long-legged litter for the show ring, where long legged toy poodles are adored.  It's not nice to mess with Mother Nature... she and her litter mate were born with significant orthopedic deformities of the hind legs.  Three surgeries around her first birthday got her sound and stable enough to live with little discomfort, but compromised.  Yup, she's long-legged all right, but she cannot jump, climb stairs, or do the acrobatics that one expects of a toy poodle.  What she lacks physically she makes up for spiritually, as she is an ocean of comfort and joy.  

THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

Our traveling man, Paul, has checked in with a photo from the Canadian Rockies.  The group made it to Banff safely, where they will hike and climb for a few days before moving on to other adventures.  They are on the road until June 12, and so have many sights to see.  
Paul reported that the Canadian Rockies are way too beautiful and the colors of the bodies of water are crazy.  I look forward to more photos!  Arm chair travel is not as much fun as the real thing, but is pretty darn good.  

What Paul said about the Rockies and the water touched a chord in my traveling heart, the part of me that knows that the statement "you've seen one, you've seen them all" is very false.  I believe that Paul has now seen the Rockies from one end to the other, South to North.  That he recognizes and appreciates the variations on the same theme causes me to say "Yes! He's got it!"

You've never seen them all, and you never will.  But, if you keep your mind open and your feet moving, you will see a lot of them.  And, as you absorb each variation on the same theme, the beauty and splendor of each, you will learn more than any book could ever teach you.  

Thursday, May 16, 2013

SUNSETS

Our 25-year-old son Paul is an avid and amazing outdoorsman, going on great adventures in the wilderness  whenever he can.  We are so very proud of him and his many accomplishments and endeavors in the great outdoors.  We raised our kids to be comfortable in the outdoors, to rise to the challenges there, and to love the natural beauty that surrounds us every day.  Paul has surpassed our expectations in both his love of the outdoors and his achievements there.  


Paul on a climb... mustn't be up too high as I'm not seeing a helmet anywhere in this photo. 
So, it should not have been a surprise to me when he called a few weeks back and told me there was a great adventure coming up.  He told me rather off-handedly "We're driving to Banff" (he has a great group of like-minded friends).  I had to stop and think for a moment, as the only Banff I know is in Alberta, Canada, A STINKING LONG DRIVE.  So, I had to think "is there a Banff in the Smokey Mountains, or the Catskills?" I asked him "Canada?" He chuckled "yes."  Of course!  I told him that I applaud his spirit of adventure.  

And off they went and they are covering some serious miles, with their angels on their shoulders, I assume.  After hitting the road on May 12, today they are in Montana headed north into Canada.  There are 3 separate cars, all pointed in the same direction.  

Along the way they are hiking and climbing, hitting as many National and State Parks as they can.  They are all experienced outdoorsmen and women who enjoy a challenge.  I do not worry about them in the wilderness, as Paul and a few of the others are Wilderness First Responders... they are the individuals the Rangers would send out to rescue them if they needed to be rescued.  

They arrived in the BadLands National Park in South Dakota just at sunset.  As explained by Wikipedia, Badlands are "a type of dry terrain where softer sedimentary rocks and clay-rich soils have been extensively eroded by wind and water."  

And, this is what they look like at sunset:  



Absolutely fabulous!  I remember that one of the trips my dear dad dragged my mom on was to the Badlands and in the same trip Mount Rushmore.  He spent days photographing in the Badlands and was fascinated by the landscapes there.  I imagine he's smiling down on Paul and his friends.  

I've requested a "sunset a day" journal but haven't received any more (yet).  I imagine that getting to Montana and onto Canada has taken precedence over my request for sunsets.  Hopefully they'll slow down a bit and share a few more sights with us.  It's an amazing world we live in.