Saturday, July 31, 2010

Till The Day I Die!

Today was a great day until six-fifteen this evening. I have been crying my eyes out since then and I am so upset and depressed right now, because my heart has been broken again and I am getting really tired of that and don't know how much more I can bare. I am crying as I try to type this short blog tonight.

Today, of course, was our Open House and we had several visitors come out to take tours and I got a lot of paperwork done and books ready to be mailed out on Monday.

This afternoon around four-fifteen Matt and Lisa, our great volunteers, came out and I had a really fun visit with them before they took off with Tone to help him with some ranch chores.

While they were gone I let our four old dogs, Little Girl fourteen years old, Thunder fourteen years old, Hank thirteen years old and Toto fourteen,too go outside to take care of their business and then I let them back inside the trailer except for Thunder, because she couldn't figure out how to get up the ramp for the final three steps it took to get inside our trailer, that we had made for her last week.

I tried to help her several times walk up the plank to get inside our trailer, but she kept falling off of it or falling down and it was really hot outside. I felt helpless.

At six-fifteen I saw Tony down at the barn with Matt and Lisa and hollered and waved for him to come up to the trailer to help Thunder get inside our trailer. One minute later Tony was outside on the porch, as Lisa and Matt drove away, trying to help Thunder, but she couldn't walk up the ramp without falling down. So T. picked her up and carried her inside.

When Thunder came inside she went straight for  the water bowl and then she fell and collapsed beside it and bit her tongue when she tried to drink some water. I started crying as drops of blood from her tongue fell onto the floor as she struggled to get up and that is when I knew it was time for us to put her to rest and it literally broke my heart, because I love her so much, because she is  one of the greatest dogs that I have ever shared my life with. She was a perfect dog and full of love and has never done one thing bad. To me she is a true angel that was sent to me from up above and I have loved her as much as any family member I have.

After Tony carried her over to her quilt to rest, he and I wiped up the drops of blood on the floor and then I went and sat down beside her on the floor trying to get her to lick some ice cubes. I cried as I petted her and Tony cried, because we knew it was time to do the humane thing.

Tonight our hearts have been broken again, because tomorrow morning we have to take Thunder, our  great dog and one of our best friends, to Hoegemeyers and have her put to rest and we don't want to do it, because we love her as much as she has loved us. "I'm going to ask Luck-A-Luck to catch her," I said to Tony as I cried. "At least they will be together at the Rainbow Bridge waiting for us when it is our time."

I want to thank Matt and Lisa for coming out this afternoon and helping Tony. I love y'all and really enjoyed seeing y'all. And Thunder, please know that I will love you till the day I die and please come running to me as fast as you can when I get to that Rainbow Bridge. You were a perfect dog and I am going to miss you so much. Please kiss Lucky for me and tell him that I love him and miss him, too.

Y'all have a great evening and please give your fur friends a hug and thank them and tell them that you love them, because they are your greatest gifts you will ever have. It's all about unconditional love and they know it and love you no matter what you do. Bless all of the animals who share their lives with us.

Friday, July 30, 2010

How About La Toya Jackson!

Today has been a good one. This morning I got up really early. After doing my morning chores I walked eight miles with Leslie before Tony returned home from the Old Timer in Medina.

At nine-thirty I put on my blue jean overalls and then I went outside to do some grass cutting. While I was in our backyard cutting down the grass with the weed eater, June and her sister Ellen showed up to walk our dogs! Ten minutes later Jim, another one of our great dog walking volunteers, showed up! I knew immediately that it was going to be a great day.

A little while later when I was in an alley mowing I saw Ellen and June walking in with Honey and Dusty, so I cut off the mower and went to greet them and visit with them. After we said our howdies to each other June told me that she was using a training technique on Honey, that she had seen on the Dog Whisperer. "Nancy, Honey is a great dog, but she is horrible on a leash which makes it hard for her to adopt out. This morning when I put the collar up higher on her neck she started walking great. She has quit pulling me and she has started paying attention to me. She has really improved." Then June showed me how good Honey was behaving on the leash and I was impressed.

Then Ellen gave me an hilarious update on Jermaine Jackson, the super shy dog that she adopted from us recently. Then we started talking about Jermaine's littermate, Dusty and how none of us including Tony could remember if her name was Dusty or Sandy. "I think you should rename her," June suggested. "Every time I go into her pen to take her for a walk I can't remember if her name is Dusty or Sandy." And we agreed with June that we all had that problem. Here's a picture of Dusty aka Sandy aka Dusty, but unfortunately it is not a very good picture of her, because she looks sad in this one, but actually she is a sweet, loving dog. She's camera shy and this was the best that I could do.

"How about LaToya?" Ellen said. We all burst out laughing. "Why not? She's Jermaine's sister and she's another one of them who has never had a costume malfunction."

"Tony!" I hollered at T. a few pens down. "We've just renamed Dusty! Her new name is La Toya!" Tone laughed and then he went back to picking up poop in Randy Travis', Moe Bandy's and Mandy's pen.

This afternoon Kinky called me from San Francisco. He sounded great and he told me that he was enjoying his West Coast tour and the L.A. Times had just written a nice article about him. Then we caught up with each others news. Then I went back outside and did some more mowing.

I want to thank June, Ellen and Jim for coming out today to walk our dogs. I loved it, but our dogs loved it more! Thank y'all so much!

Y'all have a great evening!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Toaster Murderer!

Today has been great! This morning I had Tony wake me at five o'clock so I would have time to do my chores and walk six miles with Leslie before calling Harley at The Rose 99.9 at seven forty-five to talk to him about our rescue ranch.

Harley Belew was really funny this morning and Harley's Pet of the Week was Kirby. Kirby is the sweetest 2 1/2 year old dog and he needs to get adopted, because he has been here too long! He is great with kids, other dogs and walking on a leash. In other words he is a perfect dog for you!

Near the end of Utopia's segment sponsored by Randy & Lisa's Save Inn Restaurant Harley told me an hilarious story that he was embarrassed about. He had a toaster that always burned the toast no matter what setting it was on, so one day when it had burned the toast he took it outside to his driveway and began slinging it in the air above his head. When he finally had in going in really fast circles he slammed it down onto the pavement. I burst out laughing and said, "You murdered your toaster?" Then Harley started laughing, too.

"I know Tony is a good guy and one of the most laid back people that I know. He would never harm a toaster..."

After I got off of the phone with Harley I ran and jumped into the bathtub making a big splash, because I only had forty-five minutes left before T. and I had to take off to the Medina Community Library, so I could speak to the kids, for forty minutes, about our rescue ranch, for their Kids Summer Celebration program .

Talk about having a blast! I had so much fun! As T. parked Buttermilk at the library's front door Susan Weeks came out to greet us wearing a big grin on her face. Then we followed her through the library to the beautiful back patio outside, so I could set up my stuff at the table before the kids arrived.

After I had the pictures, the "In Dog We Trust" bumper stickers, my notes and the 2010 newsletters arranged on the table, Susan took me inside and introduced me to everyone. Then we went across the street to get some coffee and water for me.

When we returned to the library I was nicely surprised to see my brother-in-law Sam and his beautiful wife, Stacie and their good looking, eleven-year-old son, Zachary, had come to hear me talk. After I introduced Susan to them they went and found seats near Tony and thats when I got stage fright.

When Susan introduced me to the audience and they applauded—that's when all of the notes that I had made went down the drain and my mind went into overdrive and I literally talked for over an hour and fifteen minutes instead of the forty minutes that they had requested for me to talk.

I had so much fun answering questions from the children and telling one rescue story after another the time flew by so fast. I passed out pictures and told stories about Hank, Mr. Rogers & Miss Dee, Beckham, our soccer playing wild hog and I think the kids enjoyed it. Here are a couple of pictures that Tony took of me speaking.

And here are two very short videos of me talking. The first one is me telling Betty Boop's story about her being so overweight, because the man told me that all they did was sit on the couch, eat snacks and watch TV. And the next short video clip is me telling the kids about burying my dog Yoda, the love of my life. And getting Tony and Ben to bury her with an outdoor solar squirrel mounted into the cement covered grave, that I affectionately call The Eternal Squirrel.

I want to thank Susan Weeks and everyone at the Medina Community Library for inviting me to be a guest speaker at their kids summer program. I had so much fun! And I apologize for talking too much and I wish that we could have stayed and eaten lunch with y'all, but we had to get back to the rescue ranch. The Medina Community Library Really Rocks Big Time!

This afternoon at 4:05 a UPS truck delivered my Thetford Porta Potti, custom made in The Netherlands and I was thrilled with my new throne for the Space Ship!

T. laughed when he saw how small it was and he teased me about it probably never going to be used, as I ignored him and thought about how I was going to build the platform (pedestal) that I am going to make for it, so it will meet my required fifteen inches height. 

Late this afternoon Kinky called me from San Francisco to check on us. He told me that the shows have been sellouts and standing room only and he sounded happy. When I told him about my Thetford Porta Potti arriving today he laughed and then he quickly changed the subject.

Y'all have a great eveing!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Today has been good even though it was another twelve hour day for me. After walking six miles with Leslie Sansone I spent the early morning working on the newsletter—addressing, stuffing, stamping and sealing envelopes. Then I started picking out the pictures that I needed to get printed for the stories that I'll be telling, at the speaking engagement that I will be doing tomorrow morning, at the Medina Library for their kids summer library program. After picking out fifteen stories to tell with pictures, I burned the pictures to a CD so I could print them out at H.E.B. or Walmart, so I could save money on the ink.

After lunch Buttermilk took Tone and me to Kerrville to run some errands. Our first stop was at H.E.B. to get groceries and print the pictures, but when we walked into H.E.B. their photo center had disappeared, so I figured I'd just get them printed at Walmart.

After paying for our groceries we went down the street to Copies Plus to pick up more newsletters for me to mail out. While we were visiting with Trisha and Marcie, Trisha gladly printed the fifteen color 8 X10's for me and they came out looking great.

Our last stop was at Walmart to buy dog food for our rescued dogs. Then we headed home, which was good, because when we got home the sky had turned into ugly shades of dark blue.  No sooner had we gotten inside the trailer with our groceries, pictures and newsletters it started raining cats and dogs outside, so we quickly unplugged everything in the trailer and then we put up our groceries.

For nearly two hours while it stormed outside, I sat at the kitchen table and worked on my speech that I am going to give in the morning to the kids. I am really honored and excited about having been asked to talk to the children about our rescue ranch, but of course I am also nervous, because I want to make sure that I do a really good job. I hope the kids will enjoy it and learn something about animal rescue and that I don't come off looking like a complete idiot.

When it quit raining I had my notes for the speech prepared and the pictures organized, so all I have to do in the morning is get up early so I can do my chores, wash my hair and do the Harley Show at 7:45. Then I will head to the Medina Libary at 8:45 so I can talk to the children at 9:30. Please wish me luck.

Yesterday Megan, who works at Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic, called me because she needs to find a home for her little Yorkie, Gizmo and I told her that I would try to help her. Gizmo is a 3 year old neutered male that loves to play with kids, gets along great with other animals, but occasionally will chase a cat but never does any harm to them. If you can help Gizmo please contact meghan at: Here are a couple pictures of this cute little guy.

Y'all have a great evening!

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Cowboy Steak House!

Today has been a good day and I accomplished much. I spent most of my day inside the trailer stuffing envelopes with our 2010 Newsletter. And by the end of the day I went and mailed out over two hundred of them.

This afternoon Kinky called me from Vancouver, British Columbia, to check on me and Tony and the dogs. The reason that he is in Canada right now is because he is doing his 1st West Coast Performance Tour in over twenty years with Little Jewford and Washington Ratso. The "Go West Young Kinky Tour of 2010" starts tonight at the Biltmore Cabaret in Vancouver and then it moves south to Seattle for a performance tomorrow night at the Triple Door.  Here is a list of his back-to-back up-coming performances.


July 26              VancouverBC               Biltmore Cabaret
July 27              SeattleWA                  Triple Door
July 28              Portland, OR                 Roseland Theater
July 30              San FranciscoCA         Great American Music Hall
July 31              Los AngelesCA            McCabe's (2 shows)
Aug. 1               San DiegoCA               Belly Up (with Mojo Nixon),
Aug. 2               Hermosa BeachCA      Saint Rocke
Aug. 3               BakersfieldCA              Fishlips
Aug. 4               Santa CruzCA             Moe's Alley
Aug. 5               SebastopolCA             North Bay Live at Studio E
Aug. 6               Winters, CA                  Palms Playhouse
Aug. 7               Santa Ynez, CA            Maverick Saloon

After reading the long list of where they will be performing exhausts me, because I can't imagine ever going on the road period and for that long with all of the traveling involved. No thanks—I'm a stay-cation type of a person. Going to Kerrville is enough traveling for me. Heck, if I go as far away as Fredericksburg, which is only forty-four miles away, I call it a vacation if I don't get lost and it doesn't stress me out over the heavy traffic and I always can't wait to get back home. Pure and simple—I'm a homebody and Kinky has gypsy in his blood.

Well, that's about it for today. I had a peaceful productive day and tomorrow I plan to work on the newsletter, again. My friend Lori Graham of the famous NoMads and Cowboy Steak House in Kerrville just called me and left a message for me to call her.

Y'all have a great evening! I'm fixin' to call Lori.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

My Birthday Present!

Today has been great! This morning Tony and I got up real early and he treated me to breakfast at Randy & Lisa's Save Inn Restaurant. As always their friendly waitress knew what we wanted to eat, so she turned our order in real quick for us. Then I told T. about wanting to put a new toilet in the Space Ship and we discussed toilets throughout our delicious breakfast.

After breakfast Buttermilk took us across the street to Home Depot so we could look at commodes. Within ten minutes I learned a load of information about toilets and their high prices. I needed a really small one to fit in the small space in the Space Ship's bathroom, but unfortunately they didn't carry one small enough, so we came home.

While Tony did his chores outside I got on the internet and checked out RV and eco-friendly toilets. The eco- friendly toilets were really cool, but not friendly price wise. The cheapest one I found was over a thousand dollars and that was way too expensive for me, so I checked out over a hundred other RV toilets and finally found one that I could afford. I purchased the Thetford Porta Potti 135 RV for $81.10! Then I went outside and jogged (yes, I am now jogging instead of skipping) to the dog pen that T. was cleaning up dog poop in.

"Tony, I am so excited! I just bought a Thetford Porta Potti 135 RV for the Space Ship and it is really cool! And it only cost me $81.10!" Tony smiled and then he laughed as he dumped the full pooper scooper into the bucket.

"Nance, you're the only person that I know who would ever get excited about getting a porta-potty. Tell me about it."

"There were several models to choose from. The more expensive ones had five gallon holding tanks, with five gallon water tanks and since I can't lift five gallons very easily, I decided on the Thetford Porta Potti 135 RV, because it has two and a half gallon tanks and I can handle that."

"How big is it?" Tony asked, as he walked into Ben Stiller's and Gracies's pen to clean it.

"It is fifteen inches long and thirteen inches wide and twelve inches high and it only weighs about eight pounds. It said it was sized for adults." Tony burst out laughing as he shoveled more poop into the bucket. "What's so funny, T.?"

"Twelve inches is sure low to the ground, Nance. Are you sure you can get up from it?" Then he started laughing, again. "I can see it now. You'll holler, 'Tony! Can you come in here and help me get up?'" Then I started laughing, because I hadn't thought of that and I knew that he was probably right.

"Well, then I'll just build a little pedestal for my porta-potty to rest on, Tony. Or you could build my porta-potty pedestal for my birthday present!" I said. Then I frowned. "I can't believe that I am fixin' to be fifty-nine years old. Tony I'm really getting old." Then I went back to our trailer and measured the height of our toilet in the master bedroom's bathroom—we're talkin' 15 inches tall. I figure that Tone can use some 2" x 4"s to get it up to code to meet my regulation standards.

This afternoon while we built another ramp for the three steps that lead into our trailer for Thunder, because she is really having trouble climbing those steps, June, our friend and super great volunteer, came out with her friends to show them our rescue ranch and I feel terrible about not meeting her friends. I was so busy looking for roofing nails to nail the outdoor carpet down and getting the ramp ready for Thunder—they left before I could go greet them. I'm so sorry, June! Thank you for coming out and please apologize to them for me and bring them back out. We can have a fun visit in Outer Space or the Space Ship.

I spent the rest of my day painting the nine metal screened-frames-window-covers blue for the Space Ship. And, I feel like a new person, again and I am so glad that I took today off, because I really needed a break from the rescue ranch. Tomorrow it is back to business as usual and I hope to mail out 200 more newsletters before the day is done.

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

By Dawns Early Light!

Today has been a great day even though I was tired all day, because I didn't get much sleep last night. After I posted my blog last night Mama and I bid Tony farewell and then went out to the Space Ship for our girls night out.

As my favorite music played I read my new Susan Wittig Albert mystery, sitting on the left side of the breakfast nook while Mama slept like a log on my bed and everything seemed fine until my back started aching, because I had no back support.

I moved over to the box seat that I had built for storage, but that wasn't any better and that is when I decided I needed to buy a good chair or else renovate the "big room." Then near dark Tony showed up with a tray of sliced Ciabatta bread and Havarti cheese for us. While he and I ate and shared the delicious bread with Mama I told him about needing to buy a chair or maybe having to renovate the Space Ship and he was all for it. Thirty minutes later he went back to the trailer and Mama went back to bed and I read for about an hour before turning out the lights and going to bed.

I don't know if any of you have ever slept with a Great Pyrenees in your bed, but I have and I love it. Because Mama is so big, I feel like I'm sleeping with a person—a real hairy person with white hair like mine. When I got into bed Mama did what she always does when we sleep together. She snuggles up close to me and then puts her arm (front leg) around me and holds on to me.  I think that is so sweet and I always look forward to it.

But last night was an exception, because Mama had some serious gas problems and she nearly blew me away. It seems like all night long I was either awake trying to figure out what to do with the big room or Mama's gas leak. Do I buy a chair or call BP? The last thing I remember before falling to sleep was I decided to forget calling BP for any help—Mama's gas will pass.

By dawns early light there was a light tap on the trailer door and Mama leaped over me to the floor and rushed to the door. "Morning, Nance. I brought you some coffee. What is that smell?"

"Mama," I said. "Could you please put her in the yard for me. Somethings wrong with her stomach and she's been real gaseous for some reason." After Tony put Mama in the yard. I told him about my stinkin' girls night out and he laughed all the way to the trailer as he carried my stuff back inside our trailer. Then he paid off his five dollar bet that he had made with me and then I made us breakfast before he went outside to do his chores and before I walked six miles with Leslie Sansone.

Today we had two different sets of women come out for tours of the rescue ranch and we really liked them and enjoyed showing them the ranch and visiting with them. Before the last set of women left we went into the Space Ship so I could show it off to them. Thank goodness T. had left the doors open on it so it could air out, because one of the nice women said, "It smells so good in here. I love the smell of wood." I looked at Tone and he shot me a wink and then he thanked them before I could. It made me chuckle.

While they were admiring the Space Ship I told them about it not being comfortable to sit in because there was no place to sit for back support. "Turn that into a couch and get some big pillows to lean against the wall and build another box seat and put it between those two and then you will also have an extra bed," she suggested. My jaw dropped even though I realized that I was suddenly wearing a big grin on my face.

"I love your idea!" I said. "And that is exactly what I am going to do! Thank you so much. You just solved my problem and have made my day."

Tonight I am going to bed early, because I am taking tomorrow off and do a little building. It will be good for my soul and I'm charging the cordless drills' batteries now!

Y'all have a great evening!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Girls Night Out!

This morning after I walked six miles I went on Utopia's Facebook site and posted a link to our 2010 newsletter, then I spent the rest of my day stuffing envelopes and addressing them, so Tony can mail them out in the morning when he goes to Medina to drink coffee with his friends.

Todays newsletter paperwork has worn me out, because this is what I have to do for each newsletter before it goes out: First, I have to staple the two pages together, fold the newsletter twice, insert a remittance envelope inside the newsletter, place the newsletter inside the envelope, address the envelope, put a stamp on it and then seal the envelope and I did that over 200 times today. It does not take a rocket scientist to complete this simple task, but it is extremely time consuming, but it is well worth it, because along with Kinky's help that is how we raise the funds to keep on rescuin' on, so I am not complaining. I'm just tired tonight.

 An hour ago when I went with Tony to feed the cows I had a bright idea as I watched him feeding them. When he got into Buttermilk I started laughing and he asked me why I was laughing. "Tone, I just realized that I need a girls night out. And I'm going to do it tonight!" Tony frowned as we drove away from the cows. "Seriously T., these twelve hour days for the past month with no time off is really starting to take a toll on me. All I do is walk, work and sleep seven days a week." 

"I work seven days a week with no time off, too, Nance, and I am not complaining," Tone said, before getting out of Buttermilk so he could open the gate, so we could leave the cow pasture. On our way back to the rescue ranch there was complete silence. When we got out of Buttermilk to go inside the trailer he said, "I don't know what a girl's night out is exactly and you have never done this before, Nance. I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to like this. What are you going to do?  Go to a bar in Bandera or Kerrville?"

I could tell that T. was really bothered about me doing a girls night out tonight, so I said, "Tony, I love you! And I am not going to some bar anywhere. Good grief!"

"Well, what are you going to do then?"

"I'm going to spend the night in the Space Ship with Mama and read! It will be like taking an overnight camping trip with her. I'm not leaving the ranch. I'm just taking a break from the rescue ranch tonight. No telephone, TV or computer—nothing, but peace and quiet for me and Mama." Tony started laughing.

"I bet y'all come inside before daylight. You'll get scared." 

I made a five dollar bet with T. that I wouldn't, because Mama, my rescued Great Pyrenees would be with me and after we shook hands on it I said, "I am going to start packing and after I write tonight's blog we're going outside to the Space Ship."

It is now seven fory-five and Tony just took my overnight suitcase and box of fine wine outside to the Space Ship for me, but he has one more trip to make—my iPod and Bose iDock then I'm out of here!

Y'all have a great evening and sweet dreams! See you in the morning! 

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Happy Belated (on the 20th) Birthday, Sage Ferrero! You Truly Rock!

The reason that I haven't posted a blog for the last two days is because I have been swamped with our newsletter and lawn care. As of this moment the rescue ranch's dog pens and lawn looks beautiful and I am caught up writing thank you letters and mailing out our donated books to our super supporters.

I have not been on the computer today until now, because I had so much to do today and I want to wish the coolest woman in Kerrville, Sage Ferrero, a Happy Belated Birthday. Her birthday was on July 20th and I didn't know it. I believe that Sage is ten years younger than me, but seriously she could pass for a woman in her twenties and what I love about her is that she always radiates good vibes. So, Happy Birthday to you, Sage! You Truly Rock!

After breakfast this morning I only walked six miles, because I needed to get more newsletters out. So,  after I stuffed over a hundred envelopes ready to be mailed out, I went outside to take a break from my paperwork, so I could visit with our dogs, because they "power" me up and make me feel good. Besides writing, being outside with our rescue dogs and talking to them is my favorite thing to do.

As I walked down the front porch steps, I grinned at what I saw—Lisa's SUV and Jim's truck were parked near the barn, which meant our great volunteers Lisa, Matt, Meghann and Jim were here! As Jim came walking in with Blackie and Alfie after taking them for a walk, I caught up with him and we had a fun, but short visit, because he couldn't wait to go walk some more of our dogs. Thank you, Jim!

Then I got to visit with Lisa, Matt and Meghann and catch up with all of their good news.  I found out that Lisa is still madly in love with Mark in Mississippi and her face was glowing or should I say blushing as Matt and Meghann teased her relentlessly about him. "Mark is all she ever talks about," Matt joked. "We're talkin' true love. It's Mark this or Mark that. That's all that she talks about."

After Matt gave me a big bear hug and Lisa had quit blushing he told me that he is working really hard and he likes his job. Then I decided that it was Matt's turn to blush, so I said, "Where's your cowboy hat? And what's that growing on the bottom of your chin?"

"My hat's in Lisa's car and I thought I'd try a new look," Matt said, as he rubbed the stubby hair on his chinny- chin-chin. Then Meghann told me about liking her job, but being really busy and wishing that she could come out more. Then they took off to go help Tony with his chores, so I came back to the trailer and returned several phone calls before cooking lunch for T. and me.

After lunch Tone and I took off for Kerrville in Buttermilk to run some errands. Our last stop was at Wolfmueller's Books to say hi to our good friends, Sandy and Jon. We had a fun, but brief visit with them as we sat and watched it raining outside. Then Buttermilk took us home.

After returning a few urgent phone calls from people wanting to bring us their dogs. I listened to Kinky's message, "Nance, I'm in the L.A. airport waiting for a plane to Vancouver. Call me." So, I called him.

"...Kink, we just got our Texas Monthly August issue today and I love that picture of you holding those two phones. People are going to love your column about giving advice to Rick Perry and Bill White. It is absolutely hilarious! I love it!" We talked for a few more minutes about the rescue ranch and then he had to go catch his plane to Canada to kick-start his West Coast Tour with Little Jewford and Washington Ratso.

Y'all have a great evening!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Martians And Ghosts!

This morning at eight-thirty Tony and I took off for Kerrville in Buttermilk. Our friend Beth had invited us to join her and her friends for breakfast. When we were coming down the pass we saw our friends and great volunteers, Meghann and Matt, so Tony pulled Buttermilk off to the side of the road as Meghann pulled over and stopped. They were headed to the rescue ranch, so T. gave them our electronic gate clicker so they could get in the rescue ranch to do the rest of Tony's chores. Thank you, Meghann and Matt!

We arrived on time at nine o'clock sharp. When we walked inside the restaurant Kinky stood up and greeted us at their table by the door. Kinky was sitting at the end of the table so I sat down next to him and Tony sat down next to me. I was as snug as a bug or so I thought. Max and his wife Norma who were sitting across the table from us introduced themselves and then Kathy introduced herself when Beth arrived and there wasn't a chair for her to sit on, so she pulled up a chair next to Tony, then Kinky helped me scoot closer to him and then T. scooted closer to me to make room for Beth. And now I know what it is like to be a sardine in a can.

After the waitress took everyone's order, but mine because I had already drank my smoothie, she poured T. and me some coffee and then she went away to go turn in their orders and that is when the fun started. "I don't know if I have lost my mind or what," Kinky said. "because I am reading a nine hundred page book about Winston Churchill and I can't put it down. Can you believe it is over nine-hundred pages?"

"How much does it weigh?" I asked. Everyone started laughing.

"A lot," Kinky said. "Did you know that Winston, as a boy spent most of his youth in fancy boarding schools and the woman that he loved, but wouldn't marry him said after his death, 'When I met Winston it only took me minutes to see all of his faults and I have spent a lifetime discovering his many virtues.'"

After Kinky gave us his 'book report' we talked about religion. When the waitress served Norma and Max their waffles, Beth's cheese omelet, Tony's huevos rancheros and Kinky's huevos rancheros, we started discussing Mel Gibson's mess, which is exactly what T.'s and Kink's eggs looked like on their plates. The eggs were real runny and mixed with salsa and the refried beans and hashbrowns that surrounded them were like a food fortress—keeping their egg mixture from sloshing around on their plates.

As I sipped my coffee and watched Kinky and Tony trying to soak up their eggs with flour tortillas Norma talked about her religious beliefs and then the Beatles. Then she started talking about martians and ghosts that she has seen, etc. which I found to be extremely interesting since I believe in all of that kind of stuff and have seen many ghosts and because we have a part-time poltergeist that likes to hang out in our trailer.

Our breakfast was so much fun, but it ended when the huevos finally disappeared, so we went outside and said our goodbyes to Beth and her interesting friends. Then we disappeared and headed back to the rescue ranch, while Kinky went off to run some errands before leaving tomorrow morning for his fifteen cities West Coast Tour with Little Jewford and Washington Ratso.

On our way home after I asked Tony if his breakfast was any good he said, "It was okay, Nance, but not as good as Randy and Lisa's Save Inn Restaurant. They know how to make huevos rancheros better than anyone in town." Then we talked about how nice it was for Matt and Meghann to have come out to do Tony's chores, so he could go to breakfast with us. And then a minute later we waved at Meghann and Matt as they passed by us headed for Kerrville.

When we got home I got on the internet and checked out our site and I was thrilled to see that Pat Symchych, our talented web master, had already posted our 2010 newsletter! "Tony!" I half-hollered down the hallway. "Our newsletter is up on our site! Check it out! It looks great!"

Around two o'clock after doing a bunch of paperwork I went over to the Lodge to see Kinky, because I needed for him to autograph 100 copies of his book, Heroes Of A Texas Childhood and sign 100 of Max Swafford's book, The Kinky File that we are giving away free for a $50.00 or more donation to the rescue ranch. I have also donated 100 copies of my new book, Meanwhile Back At The Rescue Ranch too, but I didn't need for him to sign those.

I hope that all of y'all who read my blog will check out our 2010 Newsletter that wound up giving me the dreaded Carpel Tunnel Syndrome. And I hope that y'all will make a donation to our rescue ranch so we can keep on rescuin' on and that is why I write this daily blog. Thank y'all in advance for your support. My wrist is hurting, so I am done for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Because, I'm The Winner!

Today has been good. This morning after I walked eight miles I went outside and push mowed our front yard, backyard, side yard, Layla's and Little Girl's pen, Dusty's pen and two alley ways and it took me two hours and fifty-five minutes.

When I came inside the trailer my clothes were soaking wet from all of the sweating I did outside. After taking a shower I cooked lunch for Tony and me. After lunch I cleaned up the kitchen and decided to take a short nap with my dogs.

Even though I never actually fell asleep I enjoyed having my best friends sleeping around me.

This afternoon around four o'clock Kinky called to invite us over to the Lodge for a visit. Tone couldn't go because he was too busy plowing some imagery field on his computer and time was of the essence, so Buttermilk took me over to the Lodge.

Kinky and I had a good visit inside the Lodge and then outside by the Friedman Family Bone Orchard. Then he challenged me to a shoot a game of pool with him.  I don't know what was going on, but for some reason it took us forever to sink the first ball. I ended up sinking the first ball and it was a solid. Kinky and I took turns missing our balls and the game seemed like it was never going to end.

Then Kinky got lucky and sank all of his balls with my two balls left on table. Then his lucky streak went away and neither one of us could sink the balls in the pockets for over three minutes. Finally, Kinky had a straight shot on the eight ball and he called the pocket and then he hit the cue ball really hard and I knew that I was fixin' to be a loser, again, but I wasn't, because the eight ball dropped into the pocket that Kinky had called and then the cue ball fell into a side pocket! "You win again, Nance." Then we started laughing about how I had won the game.

"Well, Kink," I said, as I walked toward the kitchen. "I'm gonna leave now, because I'm the winner." We started laughing and then Kinky started singing that funny, country song. "Kinky, I can't remember who sang that song."

"Bobby Bare sang "The Winner." Shel Silverstein wrote it for him back in 1976."

"That's right. I love Bobby Bare and his music, but that song, "The Winner" is my favorite. I think I'm going to go home and download it from iTunes."

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Today has been a good one. This morning I walked six miles with Leslie Sansone and I am now proud to say that I have walked 1,004 miles since January 1st and I only have to walk 821 more miles to walk before New Year's Eve! And my wrist has finally stopped aching and I didn't wear my support glove.

Around eleven-fifteen this morning, the nicest couple came out with their cute, little son and they adopted Nellybelle. We had a fun visit with them and were thrilled that they were going to take Nellybelle. After the adoption form was signed Nelly B. jump into the back seat of their pickup and then she stuck her head out the window holding her nose high up in the air as they drove away. "Did you notice how fast she jumped into their truck?" Tony asked. "I think she couldn't wait to get out of here," Tony said, with a laugh. "I'm going to miss Nellybelle."

"Me too," I said, "but not as much as Hank is. Look at him, Tone. He seems sad. It's okay, Hank. We'll get you a new roommate." After petting Hank for a few minutes, we came back to the trailer so I could cook lunch for us, because Tony was starving. But, that didn't happen. After I called Kinky to tell him the good news about Nellybelle being adopted, which thrilled him to no end.

T. hollered from his office, "Nance, someone is here. I'll go see who it is." When he left the trailer I turned off the stovetop and went outside to see who had arrived.

We met the sweetest woman and her two precious, little girls. After a short visit she told us that she was wanting to adopt a small dog for her daughters. In two-part-harmony we said, "Princess Leia." And the woman gave us a funny look and sort of chuckled. Then T. and I took turns telling her about our little, cute princess, as we walked to her puppy pen.

The second the little girls saw Princess Leia they took turns begging their mom to adopt her. "We want her! Please Mom!" The small redheaded girl said. Then the child turned to me as the other one went to begging her mother and said, "We want to adopt her. Can we have her?"

I hate it when kids do that to me, so I smiled at the woman and said, "That's up to your mom." After five minutes of the little girls begging and pleading the woman told us that they wanted to adopt her, so I took off for the trailer to get the adoption papers for Princess Leia.

Ten minutes later, the bubbly little girls were buckled up in the back seat with Princess Leia happily sitting between them. After we thanked the kind woman for coming out and adopting Princess Leia they drove off with precious cargo that used to be ours. Then Tony and I went back to the trailer and I made us lunch.

Around four o'clock the phone rang—it was Kinky. "Nance, I've got a letter for the rescue ranch that came in my mail from Karen Strawn. Do you know her?"

"Karen Strong? I don't recognize the name, Kinky. It doesn't ring a bell. Where is it from?"

"Okinawa, Japan."

"Japan? Kinky, I don't know anyone in Japan," I said. "Hmmmm..."

"Do you want to come over to the Lodge?"

Three minutes later I was standing in Kinky's kitchen reading out-loud to Kink, the sweetest letter from Karen Strawn. Because I am hard of hearing I thought Kinky had said her name was Strong, but it was  definitely Strawn.

"Dear Nancy,
I just finished reading your first book The Road to Utopia. Your use of details such as specific dates and times puts me there with you. I especially liked the..." 

"I love it, Nance," Kinky said. "You've got fans from all around the world reading your books and writing to you! And your first book is still being sold at the Austin Airport and it has been for over four years now. That's not bad for a first time author."

As Kinky puffed away on his cigar I continued to read Karen's letter out loud. Right after I had finished reading it the phone rang. Kinky looked at the Caller ID and saw that it was Tony so he picked up his phone and said in a mocking voice, "This is Cousin Nancy..." Then he started laughing. "Nance, it's for you. It's Tone." Then he handed me the phone.

"Hi, T."

"Nellybelle is coming back," Tony said. "They feel terrible about returning her. She told me that Nelly is real upset and unhappy and whining, because she misses Hank and the rescue ranch. They will be here in about forty minutes." Ten minutes later I left the Lodge and returned to the rescue ranch.

Thirty minutes later we went outside to greet the nice people who had given Nellybelle the opportunity to have a great forever home. After they had apologized and apologized to us for having to return Nell Bell to us I thanked them for giving her a try and then I apologized to them for it not working out, as we watched her and Hank happily sniffing each other's butts in their pen with their tails wagging wildly.

After we said goodbye to the kind couple they drove away and then we went to work. I helped Tony dip Little Girl for ticks and fleas and then we dipped her roommate, Layla. Then I took Layla for a long walk as Tony dipped Bob Dylan and Rockette.

Layla and I had a fun walk-and-talk and she was great on the leash. After I returned her to her pen and gave her a treat I helped T. spray flea and tick insecticide in Dylan's and Rockette's pen. Then he mowed the grass down in their pen while I mowed Hank's and Nellybelle's pen and then Blackie's and Alfie's pen.

As I was pushing the lawnmower out of Blackie's and Alfie's pen Tony drove up in Kermit. "Thanks, Nance. The pens look great. My back is killing me. Let's call it a day. Okay?" And we did.

P.S. Karen Strawn—I can't wait to meet you in August! And thank you for the kind note and book markers that your third grade class made. I love them.

Y'all have a great evening!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Knock Knock!

Continued from yesterday....

An hour after Carol and James left, we left too. We went to Copies Plus in Kerrville to get the newsletter printed. When we walked inside Copies Plus we were greeted by Trisha's friendly employee, Marcie, because Trisha had gone to run some errands.

When it was our turn to be waited on Marcie gave us a quote and then she happily went to work printing our newsletter. After 100 had been printed we took off, because we were in a hurry to get back to the rescue ranch and that's when we almost died, again.

As we approached a red light it turned green about 500 feet before we reached it and that's when some kids in a beat up car ran a red light and nearly collided with us! The second we saw them about to plow into Buttermilk's front door ~ Tone swerved into the right lane and then a giant red pickup beside us backed off to let us slip into the lane. I can't repeat what T. said next, because he was madder than a wet hen and he had every right to be. "Tony! We almost got killed, again! Thank goodness I knocked for angels."

Tony gave me a funny look. "What are you talking about, Nance? Knocking for angels?" Then I gave Tone a funny look too and explained.

"Tony, I've been doing it for over eight years. Good grief, Tone. Cindy told me about it when she and I went to San Antonio in her car, to be in that Martin Luther King march, back in 2002. I can't believe that you have never noticed me knocking. I do it every time I that I get into a car."

Tony was smiling and shaking his head sideways as we turned onto Highway 16 to head home. "What do you do?"

"The minute that I get into a car I always knock twice on the window and say..."

"Knock knock?" Tony quickly quipped, as he burst into laughter. "I'm sorry, Nance. I couldn't resist. What do you say?" I said nothing for two full minutes, which of course, drove him crazy like I intended it to.

"What I say is, 'Knock for angels, Mom and Dad, family and friends and Buttermilk or whatever the car's name is that I am riding in. Then I say something like this, 'We have to go to Kerrville to run some errands, and I need for you to protect us and keep us safe, and get us back to the rescue ranch safely. And I need a few of you spirits to stay at the rescue ranch and watch after our dogs.'"

As we passed by the last Mini-Mart Tony said, "That's a mouthful."

"I'm not finished," I said. "Then I say, 'I thank you and I love you.'" T. smiled. "And it works, too!" I said, and then I rambled on and on about it, reminding him of all of the near death experiences we have had, until we made it back to the rescue ranch safely. "See, T. it works. You need to start knocking for angels every time you take off."

Around six o'clock Tony and I went over to the Lodge to help Kinky pack and load fifteen boxes of his books that we were going to ship out this morning to the West Coast for his upcoming tour. As we packed and repacked boxes Kinky jokingly remarked, "Where's Will when I need him? He's always gone when I need his help." We laughed.

After counting the fifteen boxes full of books, and making sure the number count was correct, Kinky and Tony one-by-one began loading the heavy boxes into the back compartment of Buttermilk as I held the door open for them. When T. and Kink went back inside to get the last three boxes Will walked up and I said loud enough for them to hear me, "Hi, Will!" And then we all started laughing. Then we filled Will in on our private joke and teased him as he loaded the last box into Buttermilk. Then we went back inside the Lodge for a fun visit.

"I'm temporarily renaming Buttermilk. I am going to call her, The Book Mobile," I said. "She's loaded up with Kinky's books and I have two big boxes of my books inside there, too." Before the Book Mobile took us safely home Kinky, Tone and I decided that we would meet in Kerrville at the UPS Store at nine-thirty this morning, so we could help Kinky ship off the fifteen boxes of his books.

This morning when we arrived on time at the UPS Store, Kinky, Dylan & Sage Ferrero were standing outside by Mr. Green Jeans, waiting for us. After greetings Kinky told us that he had recruited them to help us. Twenty minutes later we left the shipping store empty handed, and then Kinky told us that he wanted to treat all of us to breakfast for helping him.

Breakfast was so much fun. Sage and I talked non-stop about the history and importance of mice to mankind, and then she told us about her & Dylan's plan for the predicted 2012 Zombie invasion, which I hadn't heard anything about. Then we started talking about Mel Gibson's mess that he has gotten himself into, again. "Well, if you ask me, it sounds like Mr. Mel Gibson has finally crucified himself," I said. "I truly feel sorry for him. It sounds like he is a really sick man. You know, mentally ill and all." Then Kinky told us that he was going to be on Imus tomorrow morning and we talked about that.

After breakfast Tony and I went to Wolfmueller's Books for a fun, but short visit with Sandy and Jon. Then we came home. I spent the rest of my day addressing and packing envelopes for T. to mail out tomorrow morning. I hope everyone likes my newsletter.

Y'all have a great evening!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Buttermilk's Temporary New Name or Where's Will?

It is eight-fifteen and I have so much to write about I have made myself a list so I won't forget and leave something out and I am allowing my wrist only one hour to type on the keyboard, because it seems to be getting better and not hurting as much. Here goes.

Today has been as fun as it was scary and I am not kidding one bit. This morning I woke up early and by nine-thirty I had walked another eight miles and I only have two more miles to go before I reach the 1,000 miles marker!

I spent most of my morning returning numerous phone calls, e-mails and addressing the envelopes for the  2010 newsletter. Around eleven-thirty I was starting to get a little weary and was thinking about taking a break when our good friend Carol called to see if it was okay for her and James to come over for a visit.

Fifteen minutes later she and James were sitting in Outer Space with Tone and me discussing how to freeze peaches, because they had brought us a bag full from Fredericksburg, which is famous for their delicious peaches. Then we talked about their fun trip to Ruidoso, New Mexico and how much we loved Ruidoso. Our next topic was about them selling their load of telephone poles to a friend of ours over in Utopia. Next we talked about photography. As Tony showed off his new lens to James, Carol told me that she had entered Lorri Park's picture of James with his horses in a local photo contest and it placed in the finals and it might make it into the contest's annual calendar!

After they told us about how much fun they have been having with their chickens and horses. Everyday they go out on their deck near the lake to eat watermelon. They told us that one day while eating watermelon the chickens showed up and started pecking at the seeds and then a few days later their horses joined in the fun—eating the rinds. "It's like a big party! It is so funny," Carol said. "Every time James and I go out on the deck with watermelon the horses and chickens show up."

When my back started to hurt from so much laughing, our fun visit peaked on the last topic—lawn mowers. Carol and James have purchased a new fancy riding lawnmower and the four us spent over fifteen minutes talking about which ones have the best seat, etc. and we laughed as we traded some of our funny lawnmower stories.

"Y'all, the first time that Nance ever mowed on our riding lawnmower—she forgot to lower the blades and didn't cut a single blade of grass! I kept waving to her trying to get her to stop, and she'd just wave back and keep on going. It was hilarious!"

"Carol did the same thing, too!" James said, as we laughed and Carol's face turned as red as one of Tony's prized organic, heirloom tomatoes. When it was time for them to leave we didn't want them to leave, but they did anyway.

I have three more things on my list to share with you, but there I have less than three minutes left before I  put my laptop to sleep for the night. Tomorrow night I will tell you about:

1. Our near death experience in Kerrville
2. What Kinky, Tony and I did this evening without Will.
3. Buttermilk's new temporary name.

Y'all have a great evening!

To Be Continued... (Sorry, Mari.)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Wristy Business!

I apologize for not posting a blog since Saturday, but I do have a good reason. I have been taking care of business and have just finished the newsletter as of late this afternoon with my wrist snug in a glove, because I now have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

The glove has helped some, but it has been h - e— double-you-know-what trying to type fast and correctly, because my fingers are held so close together. Okay, I am done complaining.

The good news is that I walked eight miles early this morning with Leslie Sansone and I have finally finished writing and editing the newsletter and all I have to do is print it out and send it out which I figure should take me three to four days tops.

This afternoon while I was wrist-wrestling on my computer a woman called and I let Carlton take the message for twenty seconds before I got up and grabbed the receiver and said, "Hello, this is Nancy."

The woman was crying. She told me that she was friends with Lisa and then she told me about her great, Great Pyrenees that was three years old that she could no longer keep, because she was being forced into moving into an apartment in San Marcus, because of the economy. As she weeped she said, "I am the kind of person who has always believed that when you get a dog you take care of it and keep it for life. I love my dog so much! And she doesn't deserve to be euthanized..."

 I felt so sorry for her I teared up and then I remembered the couple in Medina that was wanting to adopt a Great Pyrenees a few weeks ago, so I told her about them. "Let me find their phone number and call them and then I will call you back. Keep your fingers crossed."

I called the couple and spoke to the woman. "We found a three-month old Pyrenees mix last week and she is adorable. We love her so much and she's..." I felt sick for Lisa's friend's dog. When the sweet woman stopped to take a breath I told her all about the Great Pyrenees and the woman not wanting to euthanize her. Then there was silence on the line between here and Medina. "Oh, no!" She said. "Let me talk to my husband and call you back."

I then went outside to be with Mama, our nine-year old, rescued Great Pyrenees mix. The second that I walked back inside the phone rang—it was the woman from Medina. "Nancy, we will take her. When I told my husband about the dog having to be put down he teared up and told me, 'What's one more? We can take her. Please ask Mary Jo to give us a call."

"Mary Jo, this is Nancy. The people have already found a Great Pyrenees pup," I said.

Then Mary Jo cut me off before I could finish my sentence and said, Oh no!" Then she started crying.

So, I cut her off and said, "But they will take her and they are very nice people. I know your dog will have a good home with them." Then we both started crying as she thanked me for helping her with her dog.

This is about all that I can type tonight under my self-imposed "Wrist Watch Curfew." I need to give it a rest.

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Wristful Thinking!

Today has been good even though I overslept this morning and I didn't have the time to walk with Leslie Sansone, because I needed to finish up the newsletter. After Tone went outside to do his chores I got creative concerning my wrist. Instead of tying the dinner knife to my wrist with my pink bandana, I used a flat carpenter's pencil and it worked beautifully. I could not move my wrist and I was feeling no pain.

When Tony came inside for lunch he started laughing and said, "I like your pencil. Why aren't you wearing the knife."

"Because it hurt, Tony. It was sharp."

Around two o'clock Tony came inside to tell me that Daniel and Shannon were here to adopt Gus and then he went back outside to talk to them. A minute later I went outside to greet them and to get them to sign Gus' adoption papers. After howdies and handshakes Daniel told me that he was reading my new book and he loved it. Then I went to talking too much about Gus before I realized I needed to explain why I was wearing a large, red pencil tied to my wrist by a pink bandana, so I told them why I was wearing it. While we talked about Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Shannon filled out the adoption form.

Shannon and Daniel and their young son, Jackson, were thrilled about adopting Gus and so was Gus. Tony and I think the world of Jan and Todd and their family and we know that Gus is going to have a great life with his new family.

Late this afternoon Buttermilk took us to Kerrville to run a couple of errands. Our first stop was at Walgreens so I could buy a wrist stabilizer and that took about five minutes. Then we went to H.E.B. to buy dog food for our rescued dogs and then we came home.

I like my Mueller Carpal Tunnel Wrist Stabilizer and am wearing it as I type this. I just wish they made them in pink. Well, that is about it for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Wrist Watch!

This morning went weird on me after I fed the dogs, fixed breakfast, washed a load of laundry and walked eight more miles. As it softly rained outside I sat down at the kitchen table and typed out a few stories for our upcoming newsletter or maybe I should say—I tried to type out some stories? And it didn't help that my left wrist was a little sore.

As I typed along and moved one story with a picture from one page to another page, etc.—our friendly poltergeist showed up. Suddenly out of nowhere the fonts would change in the middle part of my story, or the plain text would turn into bold text or all caps. It was very frustrating to me to say the least.

As I kept having to stop so I could correct the unasked-for- changes that would suddenly appear in different stories on different pages it didn't make any sense to me because I use a Mac and things like that never happen with a Mac. When it finally dawned on me that it was our poltergeist messing with me again, I got up from my computer and switched on my salt lamp to calm things down and then I smudged the trailer with some sweet sage grass that my friend Cindy had given to me before she left for New Mexico, but unfortunately it didn't seem to help much.

When I finally had typed in Kinky's message on page one and made all of the poltergeist's corrections I went back to my office and printed it out. Then I went over to the Lodge for Kinky to read, but he was on the phone so I came home and asked Tony to please read it and look for any mistakes or typos that I made. Then the phone rang—it was Kinky.

"Nance, I found a few mistakes." Then he started laughing. "In paragraph three at the end of the second sentence you need to remove the word cat. Where it says 'This project is something that Cat Cousin Nancy.' I looked at my printed out copy and circled the word Cat and then I started laughing and told Kinky about my poltergeist trouble and he started laughing, too. When he told me that the word Bridges all needed to be put in italics I checked my hardcopy, because I had made sure to use italics, but he was right because now they were all in plain text thanks to our friendly ghost.

After I removed the word Cat and italicized all of the Bridges I spent the rest of my day writing more  stories for the newsletter while the poltergeist continued to insert small, intermittent changes in the text. By six o'clock my wrist was more than aching, so I went over to the Lodge to discuss my poltergeist problem, and the newsletter with Kinky.

While I was over there our friend Dr. Hy Penn showed up and the three of us had a nice visit. At one point while Kinky was talking on the phone I said, "Hy, I need some free medical advice, because I don't have health insurance which I know all doctors hate." I showed Hy my wrist and pointed to the area where it was throbbing and told him about typing seven to eight hours for the past three days.

"You have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Nance," Hy said, wearing a smile on his face and then he told me to try to keep my typing down to a minimum for a few days and to try not to bend my wrist and rest it on something straight.

When I came home I took his free advice. While Tony was back in his office plowing an imaginary field of fruit on Facebook I grabbed a dinner knife, a plastic quick tie fastener that police use to quickly handcuff bad people or what people in the country use to temporarily fix a fence, and one of my pretty pink bandanas.

I put the knife's blunt end under my wrist and secured it using the plastic tie and then I half-hollered down the hallway for Tony to please come help me, because I could not tie the pastel pink bandana by myself. When Tony saw the knife attached to my wrist he started laughing while he tied my favorite bandana close to my elbow so it could support the sharp end of the knife. Then he went back to his office to harvest another one of his imaginary crops.

As I end tonight's blog I am proud to say that I may look stupid wearing the attached kitchen knife to my arm and wrist, but it has really worked! As long as it has taken for me to write this blog tonight I have had no pain in my wrist, but that plastic tie is startin' to cut off the circulation from my wrist to my arm. so as soon as I get offline I plan do a little reading.

P.S. I wish that I could tell you about the nice, elderly couple that came out late today to visit us, but I can't. After they introduced themselves to us they told us that they were 'swingers' and they live in a nudist camp near Austin. I'm not sure why they felt the need to tell us that, but I'm glad they showed up in clothes. Not to be risque, but I'm fixin' to take off my wrist contraption if that is any of your business.

Y'all have a great evening!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

New Project!

Today has been uneventful. I spent my day working on the newsletter or I was over at the Lodge talking to Kinky about our new project for the rescue ranch which we will announce with our newsletter.

Around seven fifteen this evening I quit working on the newsletter and was fixin' to write a blog when the phone rang—it was Kinky. "Nance, can Rambam and I come over for a short visit?"

"Sure, let me go open the gate." Three minutes later Mr. Green Jeans pulled up to the trailer with Kinky and Steve inside. We were having a fun visit in Outer Space when all of a sudden there was a loud thunder clap and it began raining really hard. So Kinky and Rambam said their goodbyes to us and raced back to Kinky's truck and drove away.

It has been storming for over two hours and fifteen minutes and since everything in the trailer has been unplugged I have spent the evening reading. It is starting to rain and thunder again so that's it for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Count Your Blessings!

This morning after I walked eight more miles I sat down at the computer and took care of a lot of paperwork and I am nearly caught up! After lunch Tony asked me to go with him to check out a water pump that wasn't working even though I know absolutely nothing about those kind of things.

As I headed for Buttermilk Tone said, "No, Nance. We have to go in Kermit because we're taking gasoline and starter fluid with us." Then we took off. Instead of going the regular route we turned left which made me frown because I knew that we would be going up and down some very steep, rocky paths. After I told him about my concerns he assured me that he would drive careful.

When we turned off of the paved road I closed my eyes and held on tight as we descended down the first steep hill and then I opened them when we went through the creek to get to the other side. When we finally arrived at our destination I stayed in Kermit as T. took off for the water pump carrying a gas can and starter fluid.

For twenty minutes I watched Tony, a few feet away trying in vain to get the pump started. He would pull the rope and get nothing and then the next time it would almost start and I could tell that he was getting frustrated. After T. said a few cuss words to the pump I went to see if I could help. "Tony, let me pull the rope for a while." Tone handed me the rope handle and I started pulling.

The second time that I yanked on the rope I slipped on the mud and lost my balance and landed on my butt. Even though I hurt we both started laughing which was good because we both needed a good laugh. Twenty minutes later right before we were fixin' to give up, Tony pulled the rope and the pump went to work—pumping water into the cows water trough!

We were thrilled as we watched the water flowing into the big, blue plastic trough up above us. Ten minutes later the water tank was full and we were headed back down the road to the rescue ranch. "Tony, I am so happy that you finally got the water pump working!" Then I started laughing. "You know it is pretty sad, Tony, when getting a pump to start working—totally makes your day." We both started laughing.

"Count your blessings," Tony said and I did exactly that.

This evening when I was on my way over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky, Buttermilk's air conditioner started making weird sounds and quit blowing air. When I told Kinky the news about the air conditioner he said, "I bet a mouse got in there. How old is Buttermilk?"

"Fourteen years. She's a '96 and the only vehicle that we can safely take to town. Trigger is a '98 and Dixon Automotive told us not to take him off of the ranch. Van Morrison is a '98, too, but he needs tires and brakes, and the Blue Marlin is a '94 and we retired him long ago for parts. They're old like us, Kink—just falling apart." Then we started laughing.

"Count your blessings, Nance," Kinky said. "Cheer up!" On my way back to the rescue ranch I counted my blessings and I'm cheered up, because I realize that I am one lucky person with so much to be thankful for!

Y'all have a great evening and count your blessings!

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Yesterday at four fifteen we arrived at The Ronderosa, Ronnie and Nita's ranch in Dripping Springs. Ronnie was outside cooking his briskets when we pulled up and we really surprised him, because I had told him earlier yesterday morning that we couldn't come to their party because we had no one to babysit the rescue ranch for us. Then Ben volunteered and we took off for some fun with family and friends.

As soon as Tone had unpacked Buttermilk, Ron, Nita and their daughters Katelynn and Callie visited with us in their kitchen and it was non-stop laughter. Then an hour later Billy Upton, a dear friend of ours, and his lovely family arrived!

Ronnie and I go way back with Billy. He was our next door neighbor in Fort Worth and he and Ronnie are a year older than me. In the summers and winters as kids, we played everyday together. We roller skated, walked on homemade stilts, played football, softball, croquet, climbed trees and rode bikes together and he and Ronnie were in the same Cub Scout troop together. In other words—we knew each other.

After high school Billy and I were in a jug band with our friends and then he went up to Crested Butte, Colorado to live—the same time that I was living up there. Through the years Ronnie and Nita have stayed in touch with Billy and the last time that I saw Billy was over fifteen years ago right after Jim died.

I had so much fun catching up with Billy and visiting with his wife, Diana and their daughter Molly. Then an hour later the party started when everyone else arrived, including my nephews Adam and Tom Roche along with their girlfriends Christie and Nicki. Here is a picture of Billy and Ronnie that Tone took.

After we ate Ronnie and Nita's delicious feast, the guys grabbed their guitars and mandolins and everyone went into the big room to listen to some great music. My nephew Tom and his friends played first, then Ronnie, Tom, Jerry and Joel joined in and the music was absolutely incredible! Near the end of the night Joel Johnson and Jerry Hill entertained us. They play both mandolin and guitar and they took turns switching back and forth from their instruments.

When Joel started singing Billy Joe Shaver's song, Fast Train From Georgia I grabbed my camera and shot a video of them performing, but unfortunately when I watched it this afternoon I couldn't see them because of the low lighting. So, you will just have to take my word for it—they were great.

This morning at six o'clock Tony and I quietly slipped out of Ronnie's  house and jumped into Buttermilk and took off. We arrived at the rescue ranch at five minutes past eight o'clock and we were pretty tired, but we had some work to do.

After we unloaded Buttermilk we ate and drank breakfast and then we went outside to do chores. While T. fed the dogs I cleaned their pens and then an hour and twenty minutes later we returned to the trailer to clean ourselves up. After we were sparkling clean T. took off to Vanderpool for his family reunion and I stayed home. I stayed home because I had laundry to do and needed to take care of some paperwork and also because I was pooped. After I did all of my chores I took a short nap with our dogs.

This afternoon when I checked my e-mail I had three nice surprises that made me smile. My friend Rick Reichenbach the lighthouse keeper down in Port Aransas made me smile first. In his note he asked me to read yesterday's article in the Corpus Christi Caller Times about a twenty-year-old, one hundred and twenty pound injured Loggerhead Sea Turtle named Lydia Ann, II that he rescued a year ago, because she has fully recovered and this morning at ten o'clock on Independence Day she was being released back into the ocean!

I could feel the excitement and joy in Rick's note when he wrote: "Now, that's what I call Freedom!" Like Rick I love turtles and I told him that there was a story in my new book about Cindy, Tone and I rescuing four turtles from a pet store on the Fourth of July and setting them free two years ago today and I know exactly how good it feels.

My next e-mail surprise was from our dear friends, neighbors and super volunteers Charlie and Ellen Cooper. Charlie wrote that he and Ellen had a couple of gifts to bring us, because they love us and appreciate what we do for the critters. Tone and I think the world of Ellen and Charlie and we feel honored for them to count us as friends, so I wrote them back and we are hoping to see them tomorrow.

Last, but not least was the great e-mail with pictures that I received from our friends and volunteers from Port Aransas, Pete Hartje and his sweet wife Kelly Bloomfield, that made me laugh out loud. They are the couple who adopted Smilin' Jack from us back in October, that our new volunteers Lisa and Sha drove down to Port A. and hand delivered to them.

Pete is a great writer and in his hilarious note he told me that they had decided to get Smilin' Jack a Lion-cut for the summer. "We left a mane on him with big tuffs of hair on his feet and a fly-swatter tail." Here are the two pictures that they sent of Smilin' Jack with his new Doo.


Early this evening I went over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky. While we were sitting outside near the Friedman Family Bone Orchard visiting Kinky challenged me to a game of pool, so we went inside. In no time flat I accidentally sank the eight ball and he won, so I came home.

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Has Anyone Seen This Dog!

This morning I talked to Cathy and she was very distressed about her sister's lost dog. This is the e-mail that she sent to me. Some woman kidnapped their dog. Please check it out and spread the news. I hope they find their dog.

It is two o'clock and Tony and I are taking off for Dripping Springs for Ronnie and Nita's ranch party! Ben is going to spend the night and babysit our dogs. Thank you, Ben! 

Y'all a great evening like we are going to!

This is my sister's heartbreaking story w/Photos of her dog: 
We are frantically trying to call & email every shelter in the Bexar County &San Antonio area, targeting the Bulverde -  281 North corridor.  
He is neutered & chipped, vaccinations are current & he is very gentle.  We hope you can help & forward this email & link with his photos to others:
Thanks for your compassion,
(210) 827-9306
----- Original Message ----- 
      There were many drivers on 281 North last Friday who saw this happen.  Maybe afterward, someone else heard about it from the "good samaritan" who put him in her car.   Please ... help us spread the word.
(210) 854-0433

Thursday, July 1, 2010

You Know What I Mean!

Last night I got a lot of reading done, because it rained non-stop and it rained and didn't stop until six o'clock this morning when Tony woke me up so I wouldn't oversleep, so could do the Harley Show with Harley Belew at 7:45.

After I dressed in a sweat suit I fed our dogs and then I started a load of laundry and then I poured myself a cup of coffee and checked my e-mail and did some paperwork until it was time for me to call the Rose 99.9 radio station to talk to Harley about our rescue ranch.

The radio show was fun and went well. Annie Oakley was Harley's Pet of the Week. "Well Harley, she's just a little over a year old and she's a great dog. Annie is a beautiful dog and she only weighs about forty-five pounds and..."

Before we were done talking Harley mentioned Randy and Lisa's Save Inn Restaurant who sponsor our rescue ranch segment. "Harley, the Save Inn is the best restaurant in town," I said and Harley agreed with me. Then he asked me to tell him what ingredients are in their delicous Sinker Omelet, which is my favorite and what I always order. "Let's see, Harley. There are onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, cheese, sausage, ham and eggs and I cover them with their delicious homemade salsa that they make from scratch..."

After breakfast I walked four miles with Leslie Sansone, while Tony and Ben fed the dogs and cleaned their pens in the down pouring rain. After the four miles I put some sliced potatoes in a pan of water and started boiling them on the stovetop and then I proceeded to walk four more miles, again.

Around eleven o'clock when Tony and Ben came inside the trailer I visited with them while I prepared our lunch. "We're having steak, mashed potatoes, sausage, mixed vegetables and cherry tomatoes from Tony's organic garden for lunch," I said as I dropped the steaks into the skillet to cook. "Ben, our friend Tom Carpenter told me his secret to delicious steaks. All he uses is salt and pepper. He told me that people ruin steaks by putting all of the seasonings on steaks, so I am doing it Tom's way. I was going to grill them outside, but I can't because of the rain. I hope that they turn out as well as his. Seriously, his steaks were the best steaks that I have ever eaten."

"Ben, Nancy's right. Tom's steaks were the best steaks that I have ever eaten. You're going to love them," Tony said as I salted and peppered the steaks. "How much longer, Nance? I'm hungry."

As soon as we sat down to eat we all tried the steaks first and I got rave reviews from T. and Ben. "Thank y'all," I said, "I have to admit that they are good, but they're not as good as Tom's were. I wish that I could have grilled them..."

We had a fun conversation as we ate our delicious lunch. At one point during our conversation Ben told us about a friend of his that reminds him of me. "Nance, she is a lot like you and really cool. I mean she is out there and quirky like you are." We all started laughing and then I asked Ben to tell me more. He and Tony started laughing. "Well, she's into astrology, talks to trees and flowers and believes in ghosts like you do and that kind of stuff. Not that that is all that weird. I mean she is really cool, but she'll say these off of the wall things like: This morning I saw some fairies and I got to talk to them before they disappeared and she believes in poltergeists, too and reincarnation like you do. You know what I mean? Supernatural stuff, the full moon and the effects of Mercury being in retrograde. I believe in some of that stuff, but..."

"Yes, Ben, I know you do.  I would love to meet her," I said. Then I started laughing. "This is so weird that you are talking me to me about this because you're not going to believe what has just happened." Tony and Ben quit laughing and there was complete silence—waiting for me to tell them. "I just got goose bumps over this," I said. "Ben, last week after you left the strangest thing happened. You know those two Roy Roger foam coasters that I use to set my glass of water on, that I keep one by my laptop and the other one on the breakfast bar. Well, after you left last Saturday the coaster that I keep by my computer totally disappeared and now it is back as of right now! Look, there it is by my computer. It has been missing in action for over five days and now it is back. I have looked everywhere for it. I know that it has to be our poltergeist playing with me, again." Tone and Ben said nothing and then they got up and quickly went outside. As soon as they were gone I thanked our friendly poltergeist for returning the coaster and then I smudged the trailer with sweet sage.

It is starting to rain again and rain is forecasted for the entire weekend. I love it!

Y'all have a great evening.