I finally used my FoodSaver machine and I can’t lie, it was super fun. My mom had one in the ’80s and it hasn’t really changed lol. I managed to seal some bulk ground beef from Costco and some mixed food for the dogs. My mind is racing and thinking about all the things I can seal.
I did make a video of the process so you can watch and listen to my ramblings.
As an artist it is difficult to explain what a creative block feels like. Last year was probably one of the toughest years I’ve had to pull myself through. Health took the forefront and now I can hardly remember 2021 at all! I was losing my vision and that was depressing.
Of course, my doctors have it all sorted out and I feel like I’m patched up and ready to rock. I’m sure artists can relate that during times like this creativity is almost non existent and THAT is tragic. I was blessed enough to have family and dear friends who helped me mentally and emotionally. I feel like I am 100% back to the real me.
Getting back to my creativity has filled my heart with happiness. My family filled my workspace with cabinets and storage, everything is within reach.
I guess the purpose of this post is if you ever get into a funk the easiest thing is to seclude yourself so please reach out to someone. Take care of your mental health it is just as important as your physical health. Find a good listener someone who you know will make you smile. If you know someone is having a difficult time have patience, be kind and listen. Listening to someone can make a world of a difference.
After 6 months of waiting and 2 years of maturity Babbette has officially come into season, or “heat”. We are ready for our first pregnancy and prepping for puppies.
Since the pandemic has brought an influx of puppy buyers and sellers, it wasn’t something any of us could have predicted. We had veterinarians in check but over the last year their hearts have changed. After contacting a few veterinarians they have all said they will no longer be helping with breeders. This is not unwarranted and I can accept their opinions. Some are wondering why I choose to breed standard poodles especially at this time. My short answer is because people need help. As a person with disabilities of now 2 incurable diseases which are highly debilitating, dogs have always been my therapy as well as my assistants. Babbette assists me with standing, sitting and even helps me off the floor should I fall or seize. Tootsie would stay by my side and lay on the floor when I have seizures. These are small duties I feel that humans don’t have patience for.
Since I was very young I have always observed the relationship between dogs and their humans. Service and therapy dogs usually cause scrutiny not only from the non disabled but also from the disabled. I never understood why we as a society make it so difficult for us to be more accepting regardless of our opinions. I shake my head at tons of stories about dog discrimination knowing that only a couple hundred years ago we were all going into shops and markets with our canine companions pulling carts full our groceries home with us. I see paintings of dogs and cats laying by the family fireplace. I see dogs leading the blind and helping with opening doors and drawers. Those scenarios are why I breed my dogs.
I’ve done my share of rescuing dogs from shelters and from other owners and one thing ran true through each rescue story I have heard. They had behavioural problems, separation anxiety, among more. I will take examples of my own personal experiences. I rescued. a stunningly beautiful large Doberman Pinscher named Judge. The Doberman, to me, is the Cadillac of all dogs, my dream dog.. I called the owner and made a trip an hour and a half away to get him. They were a young family with 1 preschool son and another baby on the way. Before anything I wanted to take him for a walk. Now picture this, I am 5’2″ so this dog was basically like a miniature horse to me. He ran right up to me and his owner said “Wow he really likes you”. I walked him up the street and he looked at me with the softest sweetest eyes and we fell in love so to speak. The owner had his mother and he said Judge’s mother wasn’t getting along with him in her old age. For $500, I got this magnificent animal, his crate and bowls. One may read this and think what a beautiful story, but there are kinks to this story. We opened his cage up because in my experience dogs enjoy having a “den”. My heart sank when I saw parts of his cage had bent bars about the size of his muzzle. He had pressure points on his elbows and one on his rib. This is usually from laying on a hard surface for a long time and him trying to get out probably due to seperation anxiety. He was slightly underweight, I figured more because of crappy dog food.
I changed his diet and closed the cage and he would never be inside that thing again. He had bad habits like counter surfing and any plate unattended would be fair game to him. BUT he helped me balance myself, we would go for walks and I can’t express it in words, he just knew what to do without me asking nor extra training. As soon as I put his service vest on he was WORKING. He was focused and proud. He sat by me after seizures and he helped me to stand. He was 11 years old when he left us for Rainbow Bridge. He spent half his life in a cage and the other half with my family who loved, cherished and still miss him to this day.
You will hear conversations about ethical and unethical dog breeding and the pet population problem and so on, but my thought is that if temperament was focused on rather than the breed’s cosmetic value there wouldn’t be AS MANY surrendered dogs. Now, there are some not so good purebred dog breeders and I again have experience with them too. I was starting my own training with protection dogs and I decided on a Boxer. Not great for bite work but I wanted a dog who could protect as well as get along easier with children. I named her Jasmine and she was, as some say, full of piss and vinegar. At her first show, she lost her first place ribbon because she decided randomly to sit in front of me to get a reaction. The judge loved her but sitting is not part of the show game. If you have ever known a Boxer puppy you know they act like they have springs in their feet. At 6 months I had to get this lil girl in shape. I trained her basic manners like not door crashing and basically not being annoying getting up in people’s faces. I taught her to only accept treats from me and she knew commands to watch people and keep them at a distance. Everything was going well until she had a seizure. My poor dog was diagnosed with epilepsy and was prescribed phenol barbitol taking a pill twice a day. She was only 3 years old when she died. This prompted me to do a full out investigation on the breed and breeder. A friend of mine bought her sister and she died of cancer at the age of 4. These are extraordinarily young dogs with such disheartening health issues. My friend did her research and told me that their breeder would drown any white puppies that were born. Like whoa! We were both shocked and pretty disgusted. What I learned through that whole experience is priceless. I learned to not be so naive.
When anyone asks me if they should adopt or buy a purebred I ask them if they want a surprise or a predictable temperament. Research research research go to shelters, talk to breeders, go through kennel club standards. I was even pleasantly surprised that my dog breeder partner and friend gave me a temperament guarantee. She even accepted a 10 year old service dog back as the owner needed a younger dog for her needs. All pluses to me!
It all starts with day one of my dog’s cycle. I have high hopes that my puppies will bring joy, service and companionship to people who need them. Quality over quantity! My poodle gals are so smart my children say they are like humans in a dog suit…
I found this story and it made me really think about the line between morality, society and the definition of love. There were many different sides to whether the donation of a woman’s egg to another woman due the moral and ethical dilemmas each side presents. As a mother is there really an age that determines whether or not woman over 40 years of age should have children. Is there a time that we should not have children? How does this effect the donor long term? Is this selfish and or selfless? What are the potential issues and consequences that can surface in the future?
As a mother, there is nothing more beautiful to hold a wonderful new bundle of joy in my arms. The soft cooing and helpless unscripted movements of the limbs, eyes and smiles so I understand why there is that need, that feeling any woman would when holding a child of their own. However, it made me a little wary knowing that they went to extreme lengths as to put an advertisement in the newspaper and online. Was there a discussion about a monetary exchange and in what amount constitutes “selling a baby”?
There are so many angles with this story and I’d love to hear your opinions.
I let Babbette out for a quick break before bedtime and she came back in with a bee and an earwig stuck to her. I saw her biting at something on her coat then she threw a dying bee on my floor. I quickly covered it with a book and she kept trying to get to it. She was mad! Lol I’ve never seen an angry poodle before but it was cute and concerning at the same time. It was as if she was insulted that it would dare sting her. I threw it in the toilet because she wanted to get at it so badly and I did not want to risk a sting to her face. I, then, spotted an earwig on the wall where she was standing. I grabbed the same killer book and smashed it as hard as I could. After 5 seconds I took the book off only to see it fall to the floor and come running at me. Yes, I screamed and slammed the book on it again and successfully conquered the insect invasion. Babbette paced from the bee to the earwig crime scenes with disdain, as if she had my back and was ready to save me from any more insects that dare cross the threshold. She has been licking her belly so I’m pretty sure the bee won the battle before losing to the wrath of Babbette.
I had a really tough day, too. It was a day full of problem solving and frustration. I can relate to Babbette’s situation. One minute you’re minding your business while doing your business and then someone stings you for no reason as another waits for a chance. It’s unnecessary and extremely dramatic. These little hitchhikers had ill intentions while causing discomfort.
Like my Bap, I too will get over this day. I’m annoyed and irritated now but I will have a better tomorrow. I don’t know if there’s a moral of the story to this day, but I am grateful and hope this day will fade for a better memory.