November 30, 2017
A few people have asked if Heidi is okay since they don't see many pictures of her on the blog. Weather dictates most of Heidi's actions. She has always been like that even when Winston was around. She has always been somewhat of a 'loner'. Readers that don't know ask about her bare skin around her feet and ankles but compared to early 2015 that looks fantastic. She is actually doing very well. She goes outside 3x per day at a minimum and is sleeping most of her other time.
All of that nice weather I've been bragging about has left again. At least it's not cold and the rain is suppose to stop by 1pm today. That will give me some time to work on a computer mistake I made yesterday. Nothing drastic, nothing that crashes my computer. We took off this morning in what looked like rain but looking through my binoculars standing in the kitchen, I did not see any rain coming down through the Sycamore tree. They hounds of course were happy ... they don't care about weather, they just want to walk.
November 29, 2017
With Heidi preparing for the expectation of the 'heat wave' blowing away today, she is back into her winter hibernation mode. She never even moved when I walked in to take her photo. With Stella interested in other things, it was really just Sadie and I doing the walk this morning ... at a faster pace.
The routine right after they have lunch never changes. All three hounds check out the yard without going into the field wanting to take off for a walk. With the recent heat wave here in the Midwest, the moles in the backyard have been very active. Here you can see the hounds smell them but luckily do not try to dig them up. Their noses tell them the moles are there.
November 28, 2017
I cannot remember the last time the hounds and I completed our morning walk before 8am but I know for a fact it has never happened in the months between November to March. Therefore I am declaring history was made today as we stepped into the field at 7:26am with the temps at 49°. Sadie was going wild tracking scent and moving faster than my camera could catch. I ended up with not one clear picture of her until we got to the first corner.
Maybe it's the 'heat wave' but we were out for the first walk of the day at 7:26am and back before 8:00am. That is definite history at least in the fall/winter months. Yet, I cannot remember the last time we were finished this early.
November 27, 2017
Even though it will be in the high 50's by late afternoon that does not meat that Heidi is changing her recent routine. She is outside first thing in the morning with the bloodhounds while I pour the breakfast kibble. As soon as she eats its back to 'her' sleeping bag and she will stay there most of the morning until lunch is served around 11am, adjusted for DST. Her routine will not change much this winter.
November 26, 2017
Though no fault of their own, all the hounds had a 'day off' yesterday. I'll not go into great detail but around midnight Friday night I started getting really sick. That led to a sleepless night where I seriously considered a trip to the emergency room 12 miles away. I staggered to the couch around noon on Saturday because there was no way I missing the best weekend of college football games this season. It was finally around 5pm Saturday I felt some improvement thanks to some hot peppermint tea and some rice for food.
Once I saw that Stella was going to hang back and not walk with Sadie and I, the afternoon walk was changed. With the neighbor mowing his law I thought the sound of his mower might lead Stella over to his yard, do Sadie and I cut our walk short and stood by the deer path waiting for Stella to walk toward the woods behind the neighbor's house. She didn't disappoint us and arrived soon after we got there.
November 24, 2017
At first I thought it was the rare mixture of sugar and fat from my huge meal yesterday, topped off with some pumpkin pie topped with ground pecans and a bit of brown sugar. Then this morning I thought it might have been that plate full of left overs I had around 11:30pm while watching some ballgames, that may have been the source of me feeling "under the weather" today. About the time I survived all of that, I received a package that sent my blood pressure over the edge. This rough day actually started sometime around 2am that led to a sleepless night.
November 23, 2017
I hope today finds your table full of food and a house full of family and friends. I've decided to cook this year so I have started the small turkey and have everything else ready to cook in a few hours after the turkey is near completion. It looks like an early afternoon meal in front of the tv watching NFL football. I can remember doing that 50 some years ago while my sister and I had the chickenpox. Three games back to back today as is the tradition on this holiday. Yesterday afternoon Heidi once again checked for warm weather but turned right around and headed inside.
Heidi checked out the early morning weather and decided it wasn't for her. But with fresh deer tracks where their hoofs were just a few hours old, the bloodhounds spent plenty of time collecting all the information they could.
November 22, 2017
With yesterday's temperature close to 50°, Heidi not only made an appearance outside but did a lap around the house after her lunch. By the time she reached the carport it was time to go back inside as she was shivering. She had a surprise later though ... during a break from working in my car I took her outside so I could cut her toenails. I cut them back further than I ever had, until I saw a lot of quick instead of just a little. She was rewarded with some dog treats immediately after that.
It's the coldest day of this winter, not 2017. We stepped outside in 25° and the bloodhounds were energized. Stella continued her new routine of getting way ahead of us while Sadie chased her down and kept her under control for me.
November 21, 2017
My Z4 parts were due to arrive via USP sometime Monday. Usually they stop here in late afternoon so I knew I had time to make a run to the recycling center and the post office. With the shipment weighing only 24 pounds and plastic parts I figured they would not need my help carrying the large box to the door. Heidi came outside after lunch to check the weather and to see if she would stay out longer than just dumping her tanks. She didn't see any parts delivery either.
Nothing was more evident about basset hounds being different from bloodhounds than this morning. The word 'hounds' is about the only thing they have in common. With a wind chill of 35° this morning Heidi wasn't moving from her Marmot sleeping bag while Sadie and Stella walked, wrestled and then wanted a ride.
November 20, 2017
We started the daily morning walk in cold crisp air, somewhere around 35° and cold wind blowing. It wasn't long after starting the walk that I found I was missing my left hand glove. I was pretty sure it was back at the house or in the backyard. I usually don't put them on until after I take the first two pictures from the house and start the Garmin timer for the walk. Stella took off like the last few days, getting way ahead of Sadie and I.
I found out soon after starting the morning walk that I was missing a glove. I suspected it was back at the house but just in case, the hounds and I retraced our path when we returned. All I told them we needed to find the glove, they seemed to understand. Sadie seemed to think folding her ears might help finding the glove. Before that it was a normal sunny cold morning walk.
November 19, 2017
It's always good to have the weather so close to view with just a click of a button or an icon on my phone or computer. It tells me what I need to be wearing on the morning hound walks, whether it's 80° or 25°. Again this morning Stella beat all of us into the field and wanted to beat Sadie to their first stop of the day. Sadie has to be running pretty fast to have both rear paws in the air at the same time.
During our Sunday morning walk with a wind chill factor around 25°, I noticed they were tracking a lot but didn't notice any extra energy really. Until those last steps right before we go inside ... Stella started wrestling with Sadie. After her 'mystery' sickness last winter, that is a great thing to see.
November 18, 2017
If I had known it would not be raining this morning I might have delayed my final phase or raking leaves yesterday. It was suppose to be raining along with high winds but it was only windy this morning. The winds were strong enough that all the leaves in the yard would have blown away toward the north. That made no difference to the hounds though ... weather never changes what they do when they are in the field walking. It was an nice warm 64° this morning ... a nice change after freezing yesterday.
Drastic changes in weather here and it will not end until later this afternoon. Freezing cold yesterday but 64° this morning. By 5pm these 25-30 mph winds will blow in the cold to 48°. Still that does not matter to the bloodhounds, they walk, they search and identify scent even in the high winds.
November 17, 2017
The first reminder that I did not turn the heat on before going to bed, hit me soon after I made my first step onto the floor. It was cold inside the house, like 58° cold. As I let the hounds outside for their first trip of the day, everything looked like it had a layer of snow but luckily that was only heavy frost. The hounds were happy to come back inside for their breakfast kibble and a quick nap before their first walk of the day. It was colder of course outside.
On this morning's walk in freezing temps, Stella ran out front so far away I couldn't see her. Then I saw something a little bigger than a dead weed or dead hay ... plus it moved. So when I yelled Stella's name, it startled her ... she thought she was well hidden.
November 16, 2017
With a full day of rain on Wednesday the plan was to let the leaves that had fallen to dry out until Friday when the whole yard would be raked a final time. The rain that stared in the middle of the night on Wednesday morning, took most of the remaining leaves from the trees near the yard. So as we started our day out with our normal walk, there was nothing planned but a few household tasks.
With two walks today not only were Sadie and Stella's noses getting a work out but their ears were flexing in positions I had never seen before. Take a look and see of you can see some of the weird positions the camera caught their ears in.
November 15, 2017
As you can tell by Stella napping in the yard on Monday afternoon it was a really productive day. I have a 5"x8" notebook in front of my keyboard where I write notes about everything from computer codes, troubleshooting notes, shopping lists, data stats ... basically everything but not every day. So for the first time on Sunday night I wrote down some things I wanted to get done on Monday. I was leaving the electric world of reminders on my iPhone for a good old fashion written list. With the help of Stella's and Sadie's supervision I got everything done on the list except one thing.
November 14, 2017
When the FJ is moved out away from the small shed, it's a day full of plans while the weather is good. We took an early walk over frosted grass, so I am waiting a little bit for the sun to warm up the roof, give me fewer chances of sliding on slick shingles and possibly falling. It's days like these where I have a hard time deciding when to blog or not to blog. So I'll post what I have but it's really too early to have much action here in 'the tropics'.
I knew that once the hounds walked through the area that I saw the two deer last night around 6pm, they would be more than curious. They were more excited than the pictures capture and acted like the deer had been their just minutes prior instead of 15 hours.
November 13, 2017
It was just before 6pm and much darker than any of these photos show. In fact I could barely make out what it was with my eyes. I had just started to step away from the computer, and was about to close the blinds, when I noticed a dark shadow that looked bigger than dead ragweed in the field. So I tip toed to my camera while Sadie and Stella were sleeping. Not until I zoomed in on that shadow at 200mm did I see this ....
Even on the days we start our day later than normal, I am still up at the normal time first thing in the morning to let the three hounds outside while I pour out their breakfast kibble. Today was one of those days I headed back to bed as they ate breakfast. I knew the reason that I could not sleep last night, forcing myself to try to sleep a little after 3:30am. So the photo shoot didn't start today until after 12 noon.
While they hounds were sleeping around 6pm, they had visitors ... and close to 'their yard' too. It was darker than the pictures show. I needed a tripod for clearer photos but didn't have time to get it. There only two of them, taking their time for an early evening meal.
With the late start we had today, both bloodhounds were high energy by the time we stepped out into the field for the first time. Once they realized the daily morning walk was starting, they both took off sprinting, starting a morning of tracking scents ranging from deer to rabbits. Heidi did her tracking from the couch, 41° isn't hot enough for her.
November 12, 2017
For our 2nd active blog, Sadie, Heidi and Stella are coming back to Wordpress to blog mostly photos and a paragraph of content as an intro to those pictures everyday. You can still read about our daily lives in detail at Hounds and Other Stuff.
This blog is under construction, being built around all the college football and college basketball games.
There was a small 'pocket' of no rain if we hurried this morning. With Stella sprinting out into the field to get started, Sadie hung back to see if I was going to give the official okay that the morning walk would take place. The rain was so light I couldn't hear it hitting my jacket but could see a few drops where the rain had hit my sleeve. I decided to take that chance.
November 11, 2017
Although as the title says, the hounds are sleeping right now as I type this morning post. Heidi is back on the couch, Sadie in the 'big chair' and Stella right next to my desk chair. The photo above was from last night around midnight as I was watching a football game. Heidi decided she'd share one of her new blankets. They are not a noisy crowd when awake but they are extremely quiet when they sleep.
November 10, 2017
I knew as soon as I opened the door to let the hounds out before breakfast that it had to be in the 20's. It was freezing cold. In the short few minutes they took to finish breakfast I already knew we would be 'waiting it out' to see if it would warm up outside. My trusty iPhone weather was telling me it "feels like" 21° and that was enough confirmation to me that we'd wait. Sadie didn't understand that but she waited.
November 9, 2017
I'm not sure what I would do if I didn't have Sadie getting me away from my morning coffee, out of my desk chair and out into the field every morning. She will always sit quietly at the doorway into my computer room. While sitting straight and proud, almost like a pose, she will give me her stare down letting me know that it's time for a walk. This also happens throughout the day no matter where I might be.
November 8, 2017
Sadie was beginning to wonder if we were ever going to start our day and the morning walk. A terrible night of sleep led to a late wake up time, thus the daily routine slides down a few hours. Not that it mattered, it was cold even with the late arrival. What was a slow day in 'the tropics' yesterday turned into some excitement this morning.
November 7, 2017
I noticed yesterday afternoon that Blogger Dashboard had a huge sudden spike in page views. The counter was showing the number of views to be 100's of times more than my normal count. I knew exactly what had happened, I just wondered what country it was from. With the 'new' blog being about a month old it has been indexed enough by the Google spiders so the spam/hack hits are expected. In a 24 hour period visitors from Russia outnumbered my blog visitors from the USA.
November 6, 2017
WARNING ... I started rambling unintentionally in this post. It was our normal routine after lunch is served. Even Heidi made an appearance outside long enough for me to capture a picture of her, just to let readers know that she still exists and has a pulse. She is into her winter hibernation mode earlier than I can ever remember. For Sadie and Stella I changed the camera setting back to "Auto-Area AF" for walk #2.
The rain and winds picked up around 1:30pm yesterday. When the storm windows started rattling I knew the wind speed was up higher than normal. It was a good thing that I changed the screen windows for glass windows on the outer storm windows before the storm. There was enough activity in the sky that interrupted the Directv signal and my HughesGen 5 signal. By using the WeatherBug app on my phone I was able to track the storms by radar. Sounds like we got a break again ...
November 5, 2017
As I sit here this morning the windows are open with it a degree below 70°. Strong winds are blowing from the southwest (normal direction) and I can hear wet pavement from the cars passing by on the highway. The traffic noise has never bothered me but it probably would for those of you that live away from a busy highway. For some reason there is an 'eerie' feel to today. Severe storms are forecasted for later today and tonight.
November 4, 2017
The day was so nice today that I knew we were going to get three total walks on Friday afternoon. If I didn't want to go I knew Sadie would want to. So I took the camera with me on the second walk but took only the retractable leash on the third walk. It was still somewhat cold but it felt good. As usual Sadie was thrilled getting three walks in. Heidi?? Never moved from the couch.
November 3, 2017
For the second time that I can remember these past few months, deer was so close to Sadie and Stella you would have expected their famous all out sprint after them while baying loudly. Yet, just like last time neither bloodhound noticed. Bloodhounds are bred to flush deer out of the woods and/or to find them after they are shot. It's in their DNA!!! This morning ... not a response and the deer was right there !!!!
November 2, 2017
Everything looked the same this morning. Windy, overcast skies and signs of recent rain. Yet there was a huge difference as we started our morning walk. It was a 29° difference and a coat, gloves and ski cap wasn't needed in the 62° weather. I am not sure if the hounds noticed or not, they were excited as usual that we were heading outside.
November 1, 2017
I knew if I did not decide to take this early morning walk, then Sadie would not leave the doorway to my computer room and would keep staring at me for hours on end. We woke up to rain, earlier than normal and dark inside the house. I felt energized and didn't hesitate in starting the day a few minutes after 7am. When it's cold and rainy outside, is there anything better to do with a hot cup of coffee and a brain full of words to type ... than to blog?