Monday, August 30, 2010

The Mark Of Zero!

Today has been a lot of fun. This morning I got up early, fed the dogs, made breakfast and then I watched the show that Tony, Toby Keith and I did yesterday afternoon with Kim Williamson at KVHC. I really enjoyed the show even though I looked fat. Toby and Tone were great even though neither one of them said a word, because I talked too much as usual. If you want to watch the show please click on the links below. Thank you, Kim, Brian and Roland! We love y'all and are looking forward to doing more shows in the future! KVHC Rocks!

Part 1   and   Part 2 & 3

After watching the KVHC morning show, I decided not to walk and my excuse is I wanted to finish getting our front porch painted or at least some of it before it got too hot. So, I put on my painting clothes, an old pair of navy colored sweat pants and an old t-shirt and my retired Pepto Bismol colored Crocs, then I grabbed the Bose iDock and went outside with it—I was ready to sling some paint.

As my favorite music played I slapped paint on the boards and accidentally got it all over myself. An hour into my paint-the-porch project the dogs started barking, so I put the paintbrush into a plastic cup filled with water to soak and put the lid back on the paint can and then with the help of the bench by the window—I was able to stand up. 

Tone came driving up in Kermit and happily hollered, "Nance, Lisa and Mark are here!" Then I saw Lisa's black SUV down by the entrance—slowly heading toward our trailer. T. and I couldn't wait to see Lisa and to finally meet her mystery man—Mark From Mississippi. The minute I saw Mark I was impressed with him and instantly liked him and Lisa was literally glowing with happiness. We're talkin' true love for these two.

After howdys, handshakes and hugs we went into Outer Space and had a really fun visit with them. I couldn't quit smiling as Lisa and Mark took turns bragging on each other's accomplishments. They were definitely long lost lovers who have finally found each other. I love it.

When I asked them what signs they were Mark told me that he was a Virgo and Lisa is a Leo. "Wow!" I exclaimed, with excitement. "That is a great combination! Leo is Fire - Positive - Masculine - Fixed. And Mark, you're Earth - Negative - Feminine - Mutable. I am so happy for y'all!" Mark and Lisa smiled. 

A few minutes later T. suggested that he take Lisa and Mark to feed and water the cows and I call Kinky to see if it was okay for us to come over. I went inside the trailer and called Kinky and then I came back outside and said, "Kinky said for us to come on over." Before they took off in Kermit we decided to meet over at the Lodge in twenty minutes.

Fifteen minutes later I was in Kinky's kitchen sampling some nuts that a friend had given to him, while he talked on his phone in his office. When he returned to the kitchen, while he was pouring himself some Kona coffee I said, "Kinky, I love these nuts and can't quit eating them. The chocolate covered pecans, the white chocolate covered pecans and the cinnamon and sugar coated pecans are the best."

As we munched on the delicious pecans we heard Kermit coming our way. Two minutes later Kinky gave Lisa a hug in the kitchen and then she introduced Mark to Kinky. After shaking hands with Mark we visited for few minutes and then Kinky challenged Tony to a game of pool.

While the Hummingbird Man and the Medina Bulldog took turns missing their balls on the pool table, Lisa, Mark and I were in the kitchen drinking some of Kinky's coffee. "Y'all have got to try these nuts that a friend of Kinky's gave to him. The chocolate covered, white chocolate covered and cinnamon and sugar coated pecans are my favorites. Here, y'all have got to try them. It says here that they are made by the Southern Select Nut Company in Wharton, Texas," I said, as Mark and Lisa sampled them. Nodding their heads in agreement. "I am going to their web site when I get home and order some of these for T. and me." Then we went into the big room to watch the pool tournament.

Three minutes later the game was over. Hummingbird Man - 0, Medina Bulldog - 1. "Okay, Mark. You get to play Tony, but you have to have a nickname first," I said. Mark smiled at me and then he started racking up the balls. Then I jokingly said, "How about 'The Mark of Zorro' if you win, or 'The Mark of Zero' if you lose?" Lisa and Mark laughed.

Mark was a good pool player, but T. got lucky at the end. Medina Bulldog - 1, The Mark of Zero - 0. After the game was over Tone puffed up a little from beating Kink and Mark and then we went outside to the Friedman Family Bone Orchard, so Kinky could show them the Blue Plumbago that he had recently planted on Mr. Magoo's grave. "Over there is Sam's grave," Kinky said, as he pointed towards it. "Lady, my cat, is buried there. Sam is buried there, Fly is over here and that's Gooie's grave." Then we started talking about the beautiful plants in the Bone Orchard.

Before leaving the Lodge—I shot Lisa, Mark and Kinky.

When we arrived back at the rescue ranch we invited the Lovebirds to have lunch with us and they accepted. Our meal was filled with fun stories and laughter and the food wasn't bad at all.

Y'all have a great evening!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tony Said Not A Word!

Today has been a great day. This morning I got up really early and fed the dogs, walked four miles, and had breakfast ready when Tony came home from the Old Timer. After I cleaned up the breakfast dishes I decided that I wanted to go for a five mile bike ride before it got too hot.

"Tony!" I half-hollered down the hall. "Nellybelle and I are going for a ride. We will be back in a little while. Bye!"

"Wait, Nance," T. said, as he walked down the hallway toward the big room. "Where are y'all going?"

"We're going down the road to 16 then turn around and come back. It's only five miles."

"Will you take a walkie talkie with you, so I won't worry?" Tony asked. I nodded yes and then he went into my office where we keep our walkie talkies. When he came back into the big room I was plugging my earphones into my iPod. "They're dead," he declared. "I just plugged them in to recharge. Please be careful," he said, as we walked out of the trailer. When we reached the front yard gate he went to get Nellybelle for me out of the barn, as I selected my "walking playlist," which is loaded with real up tempo music.

When he and Nell-belle arrived, he had put a bottle of water in the cup holder for me. Then he helped me put my camera in my leather handlebar bag and kissed me on the forehead. When we took off I turned on my iPod and "Magic Bus" by the Who began playing loudly in my ears. As I pedaled past the dog pens I could barely hear the dogs barking at us.

I didn't pedal far, because I had to stop at the Echo Hill Ranch cattle guard to walk Nelly over it. A half mile down the road, as Sister Sledge began singing, "We Are Family" a little fox crossed the road about five hundred feet ahead of us. Then I saw some young deer chasing after each other in our neighbor's pasture. Then I had to stop and push Nellybelle up a steep hill, because I was out of breath.

Before taking off, again I drank some water. The rest of the journey was uneventful, but fun. When we returned to the rescue ranch T. whistled loudly at me as we zoomed past Hank's and Nellybelle's pen, so I stopped Nelly. "How far did you go?" Tony asked.

"All the way to 16. We're talkin' five miles. I really love Nellybelle, Tony." After I told him about seeing the fox and the deer I pedaled down to the trailer and put her kick stand down and then I came into the trailer.

After I had cooled off and drank some water I decided to walk two more miles with Leslie. Five minutes before I was done T. walked inside the trailer and shook his head. "Nance, don't overdo it, now."

"I'm not. I'm finishing up two miles to make my daily total of six miles. Then I will fix us lunch."

At one forty-five we took off for KVHC in Kerrville with Toby Keith sitting in the back seat. When we arrived at the television station Brian and Kim Williamson came outside and greeted us and then they invited us inside the station. As the camera crew was setting up the cameras Kim asked me to tell her Toby Keith's story.

"It's a sad one, Kim. A little over two years ago this really nice woman came out to our ranch for a tour and she brought her two dogs, Toby and Baby, a merle colored Sheltie, with her for us to meet. After a nice visit with the lady, she told us that she was putting our rescue ranch in her will and leaving her entire estate to us if we would take Baby and Toby and find them good homes in the event of her death."

"Well, a couple of weeks later this attorney calls to tell me that this sweet woman, who I had really liked, had taken her own life ten days earlier and they had just found her body, and the lawyer wanted to know if we would take her dogs. Two days later, Tony and I picked up Toby and Baby from a vet clinic in Junction, Texas and brought them home to the rescue ranch."

"Three or four months later a young couple came out with their young children and adopted Baby and Toby after hearing their sad story. But, before they adopted Toby and Baby they told us that they would adopt the two dogs on one condition—that we would board them for four days during the Christmas holidays, so they could go out of town to visit family. We told them that we would and they drove off with Baby and Toby."

"During the holidays when they called to tell us they were bringing the dogs out to be boarded, Tony and I moved the dogs that were in Baby's and Toby's old pen to another pen, so Toby and Baby would feel more at home."

"When the family arrived in their big pickup Baby and Toby jumped out of the windows before they could park the truck and the dogs ran into their old pen! It was hilarious! The minute they were inside the pen they started rolling in the dirt and sniffing the trees and seemed really happy to be back home."

"I'm almost finished with the story, Kim. I promise. Well, a year or so later the man called to tell me that because of the economy he and his family had lost their house and they were moving to East Texas where they had found jobs. Then he asks me if we can take Toby back, because they couldn't afford to keep him. After I tell him yes, I asked him if he could meet us somewhere between Medina and Kerrville to get Toby and he tells me that he can't, because they had left Kerrville and were nearly to their destination! Then he tells me that we can go by their house and pick Toby up."

"I asked him if he was in their backyard and the man tells me no. He told me they left Toby sitting on the front porch steps and then he gives me the direction to their house. Tony and I then jumped into Buttermilk and took off to get Toby."

"When we got to the vacant house—Toby was sitting on the porch all alone and he looked sad. Tony then gets out of Buttermilk and says, 'Come on, Toby. Load up.' And Toby came running and jumped into Buttermilk!"

"Kim, Toby Keith is one fine dog. He is about four or five years old, great with children, dogs and cats and is extremely well trained. We really love this dog and he deserves to have one of the best forever homes..." Kim looked exhausted when I had finished talking and she went to get us and Toby some water.

When the camera crew was ready to shoot us, Kim sat down in her chair and then I sat down on the couch with Mr. Toby Keith resting his head on my leg. "Tony," Kim said, "why don't you do the show with us?" Tony shook his head no.

"No," T. said. "Nancy is good in front of a camera and I'm not good at talking."

"Oh, come on Tone," I said. "It will be fun and you won't have to say a thing. Please?" Tony looked trapped and then he walked over to the couch and sat down beside Toby and me. "Tony, please smile—you look miserable," I said.

As Kim put a wire on me she asked Tony if he wanted to be wired too, with a mike—T. shook his head sideways. Then the sound man told me that my necklace (The beautiful one that Karen Cares made for me a few years ago. The turquoise one with the cowboy hat—that I love and had worn for luck.) was interfering with the sound on my mike, so I reluctantly took it off and took a deep breath and said a silent prayer, before the lights came on and the cameras started rolling.

Thirty minutes later the show was over and I had a blast. Even T. told me on our way home that he enjoyed doing it, too, even though Tony said not a word. Kim and I talked about Toby Keith, David Beckham the soccer playing wild hog who was adopted and now lives at Trails End Guest House, and then I read a short story from my new book.

Before leaving the station Brian and Kim told me that the show will air tomorrow morning at 7:30 and my interview will be in the last thirty minutes of the hour long show. And it will air a few more times tomorrow and can be seen on the internet at

"Just log onto KVHC and go to the little tv near the bottom of the page that says, 'Watch Me' " Kim said.
"We will send you the video clips of the show so you can upload them to YouTube."

If y'all know anyone that might be interested in adopting Toby Keith please ask them to call us, because he is one super, great dog! We love you, Toby Keith!

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Me In The Middle!

Today was a fun day and we had a lot of visitors come out to see our ranch. Unfortunately, no one adopted one of our dogs, but we enjoyed giving them tours and meeting the people.

This afternoon while I was on the phone having a fun visit with my friend, Reverend Analea Rawson, the minister of the Unity Church of Austin, I had to get off of the phone, because Kim Williamson and her husband Brian of the popular Kerrville television station KVHC 15 arrived to tape me in advance with some of our dogs for the show that I will be doing about my new book.

Tomorrow afternoon at the television station is when Kim will interview me. The show will air on Monday at 7:30 AM and then a few more times during the day. They told me that it will be on the internet also, so anyone who wants to watch me make a fool out of myself on TV please check out: and click on the the little yellow TV near the bottom of the screen.

As always I am a little bit nervous about being on TV, especially since the last time that I was on KVHC, with Sponge Bob Diaper Pants—I was covered in poop and we stunk to high heaven. But I think that I will be okay this time, since Tone will be there in the audience and I will have one of our dogs sitting beside me.

When I got off of the phone with Analea I went into Outer Space to join Kim, Brian and Tony. We had a fun visit and then we took off for the pens, so Kim could shoot me with some of our dogs, because they want to show some of the footage while Kim is interviewing me.

Our first stop was at Nellybelle's and Hank's pen and here is a short video clip that T. took of Kim shooting Hank and me. We then went to several more dog pens and I introduced the dogs and talked about them as Kim took videos.

When we were done with the taping Tony took this picture of Brian, me in the middle and Kim.

After T. took this picture of us Kim asked me if I was hot, since it was ninety-five degrees outside. "Yes, I am burning up, Kim. I purposefully wore this dark navy, long sleeved t-shirt, so I wouldn't look fat in front of the camera." Kim and Brian laughed. "I'm serious, y'all."

Before leaving Kim and Brian wanted to meet our pigs. While we introduced them to them and Kim shot them—Lois Lane, who is staying in the front yard of my writing cabin, which is next door to the pigpen started barking at us and that is when I pulled a fast one on T. "Kim, why don't you shoot Tony talking about Lois Lane? He is Lois Lane's Super Man."

With Kim's camera focused on Tony as he changed out the water in Lois' water bucket and talked about her—I turned on my camera and shot him, too! Here is a short video clip of Tone with Lois.

After we said goodbye to Kim and Brian and they drove away we came inside the trailer and that is when I turned into Nervous Nancy. "Tony, what do you think I should wear tomorrow? I love my overalls, but they make me look fat. I could wear my new cotton candy, pink colored Crocs with my jeans or..."

"I don't know. Which dog do you want to take to the station?"

"I don't know," I said, as I refilled our dog's water bowl. "Ben Stiller would be a good one, but he will be taller than me if he sits next to me on the couch. Maybe I should wear dark clothes like I did today, so I don't look fat. My muffin top could blend in nicely with Ben's black coat?"

Fifteen minutes later our conversation was over and T. was back in his office—harvesting a crop. As I type this I still don't know what to wear or which dog to bring with me to the station tomorrow and I just remembered that Mercury is still in retrograde, so I am sure that if anything can go wrong tomorrow—it will.

I am fixin' to pop some popcorn and sit down and watch, "Dan In Real Life" or "Something's Gotta Give." I love both of those movies.

P.S. Mark—Welcome to Texas! We can't wait to meet you!

Y'all have a great evening!

Happy Birthday Maribeth Couch! We Love You!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Eat More Fiber!

Today was about as exciting as watching wet paint dry. This morning after I walked six miles I went over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky.

When I arrived at the Lodge a white van was parked near the gate. When I went into the kitchen Kinky introduced me to—Chris the plumber. "I've got plumbing problems," Kinky said, as he poured himself some coffee.

"Eat more fiber," I said, followed by a laugh. Then Chris told us that he was going to run a snake through the pipes and he asked us to listen if we could hear it inside the house. Then Chris went outside and turned on the snake.

Kinky and I started laughing as we heard the snake below our feet crawling toward his bathroom. We watched Chris from the kitchen window, because he was only two feet away from where we were sitting inside. Kinky and I then started wisecracking and making jokes about plumbing problems. We were laughing hysterically when Chris came inside and went to the bathroom to check the level of the water in the toilet. "How high's the water, Mama?" I whispered, which made us laugh even harder.

When Chris came out of the bathroom he was frowning and said, "It has come up about four inches and it looks like you're going to need to get your septic pumped out. Do you know where the septic tank is, Mr. Friedman?"

Kinky pointed outside and then we went outside. "It's only about ten feet from the Lodge and if I remember correctly I think it is in this area." Chris then started stomping in circles around the designated area. Kinky and I looked at each other and tried not to laugh.

"I'm stomping real hard and listening, because if I find the tank the sound will change," Chris explained. Then Kinky started stomping around in his blue Crocs behind Chris. We all started laughing and that's when I came home.

This evening Tony replaced the step railing going up to our front porch. When I saw the unpainted board I decided to paint it and the steps, but this time instead of using an oil base paint, which took forever to dry the last time I painted the porch a few years ago—I used exterior latex acrylic flat paint and it dried real fast since it was ninety-nine degrees outside. Here are the before and after pictures of my paint-the- porch-project.

After painting the steps and the rail I decided that the whole front porch could use a fresh new coat of paint, so I painted until I ran out paint. The next time we go to Kerrville I will pick up another bucket of paint and hopefully I will have the porch completely painted within the next few days.

Y'all have a great evening!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Flying Colors!

Today has been quiet and I walked six miles this morning. Then I spent a little over an hour doing some paperwork and then I took the rest of the day off—sort of.

After I fixed us a spinach, mushroon and garlic DiGiorno pizza for our lunch I decided to play beauty shop with Toto, but he didn't want to play with me, so I made him. In an hours time I had given him a bath in the kitchen sink, filed his nails down with that handheld battery operated Pedi-Paws and then I trimmed off an inch of his curly hair.

Before Tony picked him up from the towel-covered kitchen table where I had clipped him, we told him how handsome he looked and he wagged his tail as T. put him down on the floor. Toto pranced around the big room showing off his new doo to our other dogs as Hazel quickly sucked up his clipped curls.

This afternoon Tone told me that he had forgotten to renew his driver's license, so we jumped inside Buttermilk and headed to Kerrville. Remembering my negative experience that I had renewing my driver's license this past October and having to get bifocals I said, "I bet that you flunk the eye exam and have to get bifocals like I did." Tony laughed.

"Bet you five dollars I don't.," Tony said, as we descended the pass. "Nance, I can see better than you and my glasses are old..."

When we arrived at the driver license place there were four pickups parked in the parking lot. "Good luck, Tony. I hope that it doesn't take real long for you to take the test and flunk, so we will have time to go to Walmart and get you bifocals." When T. opened the door for me and we walked inside the lobby three men and a woman about my age stood silently in line wearing frowns on their faces,  I guess because the vibes weren't real good in there or because they knew that they were fixin' to have to go get bifocals at Walmart.

When T. got in line behind the well dressed, frumpy woman wearing white linen slacks, I sat down on the bench and began reading the many signs that covered the walls while eavesdropping. In twenty minutes when it was the woman's turn—I was surprised that all three men ahead of her had passed their eye exams and weren't going to Walmart as I had predicted.

When the officer asked the lady to take the eye exam and read line five—she flunked the test like I did, which sort of made me smile even though I felt sorry for her, too. While she continued to flunk the eye exam over and over, again, just like I had, I'm thinking, "You should never take a test or sign a contract when Mercury is in retrograde. Poor thing. If only she knew."

"I give up," she finally sighed, as she pulled some cheap looking cheaters out of her purse and put them on. "Can I try one more time, please?" The officer nodded her head yes, as if she was used to this happening on a daily basis. The woman then loudly read line five and line six—just for kicks! She had passed and was thrilled and so was I! In fact, I almost clapped my hands for her, but I didn't want to get arrested for being disorderly or embarrass her.

"Next." Tony walked up to the counter, removed his cowboy hat and then he handed the young officer his old driver's license. After he filled out some paperwork she asked T. to take the eye exam and I held my breath. She had Tone read line four, line six and then tell her what colors he saw and he passed with flying colors!

I was beaming like a proud mother when she finger-printed his thumbs and then snapped a picture of him. "That'll be twenty five dollars, please." After T. paid her for his license-to-drive, he put on his cowboy hat and we proudly marched out of the government building.

"You owe me five bucks, Nance," Tony said. "I told you that I would pass." When we got inside Buttermilk I pulled my wallet our of my purse and handed him five—one dollar bills. Then we came home. I'm so proud of Tony and you can see why!

Y'all have a great evening!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Cadillac Tour!

Last night I didn't post a blog because we had a few thunderstorms, so we had everything unplugged, so I went to bed early—in hopes of catching up on some much needed sleep, but that didn't happen.

Around eleven-fifteen a loud clap of thunder woke me up and everyone else in the house. Mama, Abbie and Thunder started barking and then Hank, Little Girl and Toto chimed in, because they dislike thunderstorms as much as I do. Then it started lightning and it rained so hard that it almost sounded like it was hailing instead of raining.

After T. and I had settled down our fur family we all went back to bed as the monster thunderstorm outside banged and lit up the sky for over an hour. When the storm had passed I fell asleep, but not for long.

"Wake up, Nance," Tony said, as he crawled out of bed and turned on the lamp beside our bed.

"What is it?" I asked, before realizing exactly what it was.

"Thunder is sick. She had an accident on the quilt and she can't quit pooping..." Tone said, as he carried Thunder outside to the front yard. I climbed out of bed and grabbed the soiled quilts on the floor and went outside with them, so T. could turn a hose on them to wash them off before I put them into Queen Bee, so I could wash them.

By three o'clock in the morning Thunder's storm was over and she, Little Girl, Hank and Abbie were resting peaceably on their cleaned quilts on the floor, as T. and I fell asleep with Mama and Toto snoring loudly between us.

Morning came early for Tony and me. We were up by five-thirty. While I fed our dogs—Tony made a fresh pot of coffee for us. We were thrilled to see Thunder eat all of her scrambled eggs that I especially made for her and she seemed to be back to normal, because last night I was scared that her organs were shutting down and the end was near.

When the sun finally came up this morning, Tony took off for the Old Timer and I started walking with Leslie. When he returned home I had walked eight miles with Sansone and had breakfast ready to serve.

Late this afternoon I went over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky and his guests from Santa Ynez, California. After a fun visit with Karen and her adult children Kira and Alex, Kinky suggested that we come over to the rescue ranch, so we could give them a tour of it.

After Tony, Kinky and I had introduced them to all of our super dogs, Alex stayed behind to visit with Pearl and then with Nellybelle, because he is thinking of adopting one of them! "Alex, if you decide to adopt one of them we can fly your new forever friend out to California!" I said, before joining Karen, Tone, Kinky and Kira for a visit over by the barn.

When Alex joined us, Kinky suggested that we finish it off with the "Cadillac Tour" to show them the Space Ship and then go into Outer Space for a fun visit and that is exactly what we did. To say the least, they loved the Space Ship, Outer Space and our dogs—and we had a blast.

Today has been a good day. I am glad that Thunder is still with us and sleeping next to my chair as I type these words. I am one lucky person.

Y'all have a great evening!

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Temple In Austin!

This morning after I walked six miles, I did some paperwork and then I went over to the Lodge to see Kinky. While we were in his kitchen discussing a little business the phone rang and he left and went to his office to take the call.

A couple of minutes later he returned to the kitchen. "Nance, did I tell you about what happened to me yesterday? I can't remember if I told you or not."

"Nope. We talked yesterday morning before we took Buttermilk to Kerrville and that's it," I said, as he poured himself another cup of kona coffee.

"Late yesterday afternoon, I was sitting in my chair over by the fireplace reading that book about Winston Churchill. The television was off and Brownie was sleeping in the chair next to me when I heard the strangest sound right next to my head. I figured it was just Brownie having a dream and kicking in his chair, so I ignored it and continued to read. Then I heard the soft thumping sound, again and it sounded like a squirrel running around on top of the roof. It sounded like this. " Kink set his coffee cup down on the table and then he started tapping his fingers really fast on the table to show me.

"What was it?"

Kinky smiled at me and then he took a puff on his cigar. "When I turned my head to look—it was an eight inch long black centipede with a red head and it was only inches away from my head. Near my temple! It was..."

"OMG!" I declared, as goose bumps covered my arms and made my spine and the back of my neck shiver. "Kinky, it could have killed you! Good grief! This makes me sick." Kinky started laughing at me and then he took another sip of coffee.

"Nance, they can't kill you. Their bite is similar to that of a scorpion..."

"Yeah, but if it had bit you on your temple—you might be resting in a box, in a temple in Austin, Texas right now and..."

Kinky started laughing, again. "I have to admit that it did scare me when I first saw it so close to my face, but I did the right thing. Once I had regained my composure, I managed to get it into a wastepaper  basket and I carried it down by the parking ring and set it free."

"That's great, Kinky," I said, a little sarcastically. "It will probably take him two days or less to get back up to the Lodge, so he can thank you for saving his life, along with his one hundred hairy legs—and I'm sure that he will want to give you a little thank you gift for being so kind to him." Kinky started laughing as he refilled his coffee mug. "Kinky, that's the only thing I hate about Texas summers are the snakes and the spiders. They scare me to death and give me the creeps."

With that said we went outside to the Friedman Family Bone Orchard, so Kinky could water his plants and show me the beautiful Blue Plumbago plant that he purchased and planted on top of Gooie's grave. Then I came home and fixed lunch for Tony and me and then Buttermilk took us to Kerrville to run several errands.

Y'all have a great evening!

Nellybelle & Me!

I have named my new bicycle Nelllybelle since I received a comment from my good friend, Eileen. It is a perfect name for her and I love her.

Last night it was too hot and Tony and I were too tired to test drive our new two-wheelers, so early this morning after breakfast, before I walked with Leslie Sansone and T. did his chores, we went for a ride.

Tone and I were thrilled that I didn't have a wreck and fall of Nelly and this afternoon I plan to program the digital speedometer / odometer, so I can rack up the miles on her. Here is a short, 25 second video that Tony took of me pedal-pushing her down our country road. I can't wait to introduce Nellybelle to Kinky!

Y'all have a great day! I will write more tonight.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Staying Alive!

Yesterday we had a nice surprise. Matt came out with his parents, Paul & Gail and his sister Emily. I had a fun visit with Paul and Gail as we walked around the rescue ranch while Matt introduced Emily to all of our dogs. After that we went over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky.

As Kinky, Paul and Matt discussed politics, I told Gail and Emily about the grave robbing squirrel that had stolen one of Mr. Magoo's stuffed toys the other day. As we gazed up into the tree trying to locate the hidden, blue stuffed toy Gail said, "I see it!" After she pointed at it—I finally saw it—nestled high up on an oak wilt covered branch. Unfortunately, I did not have my camera with me, but I promise to take a picture of it the next time I visit the Lodge.

Last night I didn't write a blog because we went out to eat with Paul, Gail, Emily, Matt and Lisa and Tony and I had a wonderful time until it was time for us to leave. As T. unlocked Buttermilk's door I thought he said the most unusual thing, "I hope Buttermilk starts."

"Tony, don't say things like that," I said, wondering why he would project something like that. "Of course, Buttermilk will start," I said, not knowing that I had just told a lie. Tony turned the ignition switch and nothing happened.

After a couple of more tries Tone said, "Buttermilk is dead, again."

Trying to stay positive, I corrected him and said, "No, she's not dead. She's just having another near death experience." Then we jumped out of Buttermilk to go find our friends for help. When I told Lisa about needing some jumper cables she took off to round some up. Then we found Paul and his family and asked them if they could help us.

Five minutes later, Paul's Aggie-colored, maroon Suburban brought Buttermilk back to life and we were thrilled. After we thanked everyone for helping us we drove straight home.

This morning when I got up T. told me that Buttermilk had died, again. As you know, I hate it when things die, but I was starting to get a little tired of Buttermilk's many so-called-passings this past week, so I picked up the phone and punched in Walmart's number. "Is y'all's Automotive Repair department opened today? We need to buy a battery and get it installed." After the woman told me it was open I called the Wolfmuellers at home. "Hi, Jon, this is Nancy."

"I know. What's going on?"

After I told Jon about Buttermilk and her trouble staying alive, I said, "We're fixin' to leave for Walmart to get a new battery and I was wondering if y'all were going to be around just in case we need for y'all to rescue us, again." After Jon told me that they were staying home today and would be glad to rescue us—we took off for Kerrville.

"Yes, we can install a new battery, but you need to know that it will probably take a couple of hours," the Walmart mechanic told us outside in the parking lot. Tony told him that it was not a problem and then we went inside to buy a Buttermilk battery.

While we stood in line waiting for our turn I suggested that T. call Sandy and Jon and invite them to have lunch with us since we owed them a dinner for rescuing us last week. T. borrowed my cell phone and went over by the bicycles and called them while I kept our place in line.

As I waited I saw a beautiful bicycle that Tony was standing by and it got me to thinking. "Jon and Sandy have already eaten lunch, Nance. They invited us over to their house and Jon is on his way here to pick us up. They are so nice."

"I know. I love Sandy and Jon. We really do need to take them out to dinner for all of their help. I want to go check out a bicycle and will be right back," I said, before taking off.

Five minutes later Jon showed up in Sandy's cool Toyota and we took off for their house which was just a few blocks away. "Y'all are welcome to borrow one of our cars if you want to go eat," Jon said. By the time we pulled into their driveway we had decided to take them up on their kind and generous offer and borrowed their car, so we could go get something to eat nearby, because Tony was starving to death, again.

We went to a restaurant six blocks away from their home. During lunch I did most of the talking like I always do. "You know why all of this is happening, Tony?" He shook his head no as he tossed some tossed salad, smothered in Ranch dressing, into his mouth. "Mercury is in retrograde and it is full moon time. It's like a double whammy and..."

On our way back to Wolfmuelllers we decided to swing by the Walmart parking lot to see if Buttermilk was still parked outside or was inside the garage. When we saw her inside the garage I said, "Tony, it is not going to take long now. Let's stop, because I want to go buy a bicycle."

Twenty minutes later, after paying for the newly installed battery, Tony and I left Walmart—pushing our new bikes! Tony bought my bike for my upcoming birthday in October and I bought his for his Christmas present. After loading them into the back of Buttermilk, I followed him a couple of blocks to Sandy's and Jon's house.

When we pulled into their driveway they came outside to greet us. "We bought bikes! Come and look at them. I love mine," I said. They started laughing as they followed us to Buttermilk.

Y'all bought bikes?" Jon said. "Why?"

"In case Buttermilk drops dead, again," I said. "We will have wheels to get us home. Isn't my bike beautiful! I love her, but I haven't named her, yet." As the Wolfmuellers inspected our bicycles they agreed with me that mine was way too cute. "I love the painted on flowers, the green wheels, the front bar leather bag, cup holder and and the wooden back seat and I bought a horn and a speedometer for her," I bragged, as I honked the horn and showed them the digital odometer / speedometer. "Tony's a 26 inch mountain bike and mine is 24 inches."

"I have to ride a 24 inch bike, too, since I am short like you," Sandy said, as she admired my pretty, pastel colored, yellow—bike with no name.

"I wish they had had one in pink, but they didn't," I said. "My bike is simple with foot brakes. It's like the kind we had when we were kids, but Tony's has hand brakes and is an eighteen speed, which is way too complicated for me."

Since it was hotter than hot outside, we went into their house and had a fun visit filled with laughter. We talked about not wearing those goofy-looking helmets when we rode our bikes as kids, the latest iPhone apps, eBay, their cats, Tony & Nancy, that they adopted from us over twelve years ago, squirrels, bird seed and what kind of blinds that I should get for the Space Ship.

When we got back to the ranch Tony took my bike inside the trailer and installed the horn and the mile-marker for me and we plan to take them for a spin this evening after it cools off and I can't wait. Hopefully, I will have a name for her by tomorrow.

Before I end tonight's post I want to do a BIG shout out to our great friends. Thank you, Paul & Gail, Emily, Matt, Lisa and Sandy & Jon! Y'all are so special to us and we are so lucky to have you as our friends. I love y'all!

Y'all have a great evening!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

We Saw A Grave Robber In Action!

This morning I got up really early so I could feed the dogs, start a load of laundry in Queen Bee and vacuumed the trailer before calling Harley Belew at seven forty-five to do The Harley Show on the Rose 99.9.

The Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch segment was fun and Harley had me laughing from the git-go. Harley's Pet Of The Week today was  Lois Lane, the beautiful, sweet two year old Pit mix. "Harley, she is one great dog and some one needs to come out here and adopt her. I love this dog..."

After breakfast I walked eight miles with Leslie Sansone, while Tony did his chores outside. I am a few miles behind schedule, so I plan to walk eight miles a day for the next four days to get caught up and be ahead of schedule.

Around one-thirty while Tone was in Kerrtown to get Van Morrison, our white 1998 Ford Club Wagon van inspected at Balsers, a nice, young couple showed up to take a tour of our rescue ranch. After I introduced myself and met Margot and Kevin from Koyote Ranch, Kevin said, "I like your pink overalls."

"Thank you, Kevin. I do too," I said. (Today, after a couple of weird dreams from last night, I decided it would be a totally pink day for me, so I wore my baby pink T-shirt that matched my Pepto Bismol colored overalls with my pink Justin Gypsy boots and my pink cap that says Cousin Nancy on it—the one that Tone had made for me a while back.) "Let me give y'all a tour of our rescue ranch."

After the tour we went into Outer Space and I had a fun visit with these two nice people and then T. showed up. As Tony visited with Margot and Kevin I came inside and called Kink to see if I could bring them over, because I wanted him to meet them. "Sure," Kinky said. "Give me ten minutes, Nance."

Nine minutes later Kinky was outside shaking hands with Margot and Kevin and then he invited us inside the Lodge for a fun visit. Before leaving the Lodge, Kinky gave them a tour of the Lodge and a couple of autographed books and then we left.

Early this evening I went over to the Lodge to visit with Marcie. Right as we were walking out of the Annex the weirdest thing happened. "OMG, Nance," Marcie said. "Look!" I looked in the direction that Marcie was pointing.

"Gosh, I wish I had my camera with me right now," I sighed. "I can't believe this! This is unbelievable." We stared in silence as we watched an obese squirrel jump into a tree about twenty-five feet away from us—carrying in his mouth one of Mr. Magoo's old, blue stuffed toys that Kinky had placed on top of Gooie's grave. And, the fake-furred toy dog was much larger than the squirrel thief.

When we stepped outside the Annex the squirrel quickly ran up the tree with his stolen toy in mouth, so Marcie and I walked over to the tree and watched the grave-robbing-squirrel climb higher and higher up into the tree until we could no longer see it.

Marcie and I then went over to Mr. Magoo's grave and checked it out. "Look, Nance, he took it from there," Marcie said, as she pointed her finger to the empty space where the blue stuffed toy had been minutes ago. "Do you think the squirrel thinks the Eternal Squirrel is real?"

"I doubt it, Marce. It doesn't look real enough and besides it lights up every night..."

After Buttermilk crossed the river to take me home, T. drove up in Kermit. "I'm fixin' to go take some pictures, Nance."

"Tone, you are not going to believe what has just happened! Marcie and I just watched a giant squirrel take one of Gooie's stuffed toys and climb up in a tree with it. The toy was bigger than the squirrel! I'm sick that I didn't have my camera with me." T. smiled.

"I'm sure it had to be a mama squirrel that stole it for her nest that she is building..."

Y'all have a great evening!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Beer Sounds Better!

The reason that I didn't post a blog last night was because I got a lot of work done and nothing much happened, except for going to the Post Office in Medina to mail Karin, my new German fan, a Cousin Nancy care package. And the other reason that I didn't post one was because I watched "Meet The Fockers," again. I love that movie with Ben Stiller and Streisand and I usually watch it once a year.

This morning I hit the floor running—back and forth to the bathroom, because I ate something yesterday that caused me to have a case of projectile diarrhea or as we like to say in Texas—the runs, so I didn't walk with Leslie since I was getting plenty of exercise hurdling over and maneuvering around my dogs, as I rapidly skipped to get to the ladies room in time.

This morning after taking a few Pepto Bismol chewable tablets and feeling much better, Tony and I went over to the Lodge to visit with Kinky and Marcie. We talked about Kris Kristofferson's new album as we listened to it. It is recordings of some of his early studio recording sessions that have never been released and it is fantastic! And Kinky wrote some of the liner notes for the CD.

After Kris sang "Me & Bobby McGee" Kinky challenged Tony to a pool game. It was a short game. Hummingbird Man - 1, Medina Bulldog - 0.  A few minutes after Tone had lost the game he said, "Come on, Nance. We've got to go home. I'm starving." Again? I thought to myself.

At little past four thirty, in the heat of the day, Tony and I went outside, so we could greet our veterinarian, Dr. Craig Janssen, because he was coming out to give rabies shots to twenty-one of our dogs.

When he arrived he introduced us to Megan, his vet tech assistant, that was going to help him. After a few funny comments about the lovely 102 degree temperature we went to work. We started with Marlin first, on the west side. With my clipboard in hand, we went from pen to pen as I told Tony who needed a shot and who didn't. It went like clockwork as Tony would leash a dog and then Craig would give them their shot and then move on to the next dog.

Forty minutes later, after we had come full circle around the rescue ranch—we were done and soaking wet from sweating so much. "Would you like some water before y'all leave?" Tony asked.

"A beer sounds better," Craig said. Megan nodded her head in agreement, so we went into Outer Space and drank a beer with them before they headed back to Hoegemeyers Animal Clinic.

Y'all have a great evening!

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Mexican Food Miracle!

Whew! Today has been interesting to say the least, so to set the mood before telling you about it, I have turned on my Himalayan Salt Lamp and cranked up my iPod and Neil Young is singing "Harvest Moon" one of my all time favorite songs.

This morning I didn't walk because I had too much paperwork to do. I spent four hours writing thank you letters to many of our supporters who made a $50.00 or more donation to the rescue ranch and then I packed mailers with a signed copy of Max Swafford's The Kinky File to send to them as a free thank you gift for helping us.

By twelve thirty I was exhausted and ready for Tony to drive me to Medina to mail out the books with  enclosed thank you letters. After writing the Post Master a check for eighty-eight dollars and twenty cents I climbed back into Buttermilk and she took us to Bandera so I could make a deposit at the bank.

Then we got on Highway 173 headed for Kerrville, because we needed to go to H-E-B to buy dog food for our rescue dogs and that's when things started getting interesting.

"Tony, can we stop by the Camp Verde Store before going into Kerrville," I asked. "I need to buy a new pair of Crocs, because I've worn out my old, pink pair. The bottoms are smooth." T. nodded his head yes.

Four miles later and twelve miles from Kerrtown, Tony pulled off of the highway and parked Buttermilk across the street from the coolest store on 173. After Tone had done "The Procedure" which consists of rolling down his window, unlocking the doors and opening his door from the outside and then rolling the window back up—we got out of Buttermilk and then went into the store that has a little bit of everything.

As always it was full of tourists and the friendliest staff helping people check out or find something. When a smiling sales clerk asked me if she could help us, I told her no thank you, because I knew where their Crocs were.

When we went into the Croc room and saw the many colorful Crocs displayed on an entire wall it made me smile, because Crocs have good vibes and that's why people buy them—the knock offs don't have good vibes. Tony was getting antsy even though it only took me fifteen minutes to decide on which pair to buy.

When we went to the check out counter, as I was pulling our my checkbook the young woman said, "Oh dear. You don't want to buy these Crocs, because they are mismatched— one shoe is bigger than the other one. Let me help you find a matched pair." Right then I should have taken it as an omen, but I didn't and we followed her back to the Croc room.

Ten minutes later as T. paced back and forth and grumbled about "starving to death" the helpful clerk told me that she couldn't find a matched size for the pair I had wanted and then she started pulling Crocs in my size off of the wall, so I could make a decision on which ones to purchase. "I don't like the orange or the yellow ones," I said. "Do you have my size in the pink or turquoise?" She looked and looked, but they had none in those colors that were a size small.

Seven minutes later, as Tony grimaced and rubbed his stomach to show me that he was going into "starvation mode," I thanked the super nice, young woman and told her that I really wanted pink Crocs and would come back when their new stock came in.

As we crossed the street to Buttermilk Tony said, "Let's go to The Save Inn right now. I am feeling weak, Nance."

I ignored him and said, "I love this giant, camel metal sculpture. Isn't it cool!" Tone ignored me and climbed into Buttermilk, turned the ignition switch and nothing happened. Then he did it again and again and again and nothing happened. "Looks like Buttermilk's died, again." I said, as I pulled my cell phone from my purse. "Who can we call to help us?"

Tony who was now knockin' on death's door managed to do "The Procedure" and then he got out of Buttermilk and opened her hood and stared at the engine. Then he picked up a big rock and started banging on the battery as tourists getting in and out of their cars watched us. "Nance, it's her battery cables. One is loose and I don't have any tools in the car. I need a wrench." Then he said a couple of cuss words to Buttermilk. "Call Jon. Maybe he can help us out." I called Jon and told him about the predicament we were in and he told me that he was on his way to help. Then I went into the store and asked a clerk if we could borrow a small wrench from them.

One minute later, she returned with a small, pretty, blue wrench and handed it to me. "It's pretty hot outside. Would y'all like some tea or lemonade? It's on the house." I thanked her for the kind offer, but told her no thank you and then went outside to give my starving husband the cute, little wrench. Unfortunately, the wrench didn't help, because the threads on the screw were stripped, so I went back across the street and returned the wrench.

As we sat on a retaining wall in the shade waiting for Jon to arrive, Tony grumbled as his stomach grumbled louder. "Tony, I know why this has happened! Mercury is in retrograde, again." T. said nothing. And then Jon Wolfmueller pulled up and parked next to Buttermilk.

"I brought my tools and jumper cables," Jon said, wearing a big smile on his face. After Tony and him talked about the cables Jon suggested that we try to jump start Buttermilk. After the men hooked up the battery cables, Jon started his engine and gave life to Buttermilk!

"Buttermilk lives once, again!" I said. "Jon, thank you so much for rescuing us. You're our Croc-idile Dundee." Then I told him about stopping at the store to purchase Crocs. "Seriously, Jon, we want to take you out to lunch or dinner for helping us. Sandy can't go because she didn't help." We all started laughing as T. and Jon removed the jumper cables. "Jon, this happened because Mercury is in retrograde, again..."

Jon rolled his eyes and then he and Tony started laughing as we climbed into our vehicles. Jon followed us all of the way to Balser's Northside Automotive and then he took off for Wolfmueller Books.

While the nice mechanic repaired Buttermilk, Tony and I sat next door at Acapulco Mexican Food Restaurant eating a very late lunch that literally saved Tone's life. Thank goodness for the Mexican food miracle!

An hour later we were back at the ranch and I was reading the sweetest, five page, fan mail letter that came today from a woman in Germany. Karin P. wrote to tell me that she loved reading my blog and my first book and that she is a Libra like me and nearly the same age as me. She also told me that she loves Kinky and found me when she went to his home page. She said that her husband Jusgen is going to buy my second book for her birthday present on October 4th.

After reading her sweet and humorous letter I felt honored and I have decided to mail her a free signed copy of my book tomorrow—for her birthday. Her letter has made my day. Thank you, Karin! With Mercury in retrograde I hope it gets there before your fifty-fourth birthday.

At ten minutes past six this evening the phone rang—it was Jon. "Hi, Jon!"

"Hi, Nancy. I was calling to make sure y'all made it home."

"No, Jon," I joked. "We're still in Kerrville and haven't gotten home, yet, but thanks for checking." He burst out laughing. "Here's your sign. I'm sorry, Jon. I couldn't resist it."

"I told Sandy what you said about wanting to take me out to lunch or dinner to thank me, but she wasn't invited because you said that she didn't help. Anyway, she wants to go and says she helped by holding down the fort at the bookstore." He and I started laughing.

"Okay. Well, tell Sandy that she can go, but we're not paying for her dessert, because she helped some, but not as much as you did." Jon repeated my words back to Sandy and I could hear her laughing in the background. "Bye."

Y'all have a great eveing!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I like Ikey!

Today we had several visitors out here, but the last ones that came out around three o'clock made my day. Brentley and his wife Anna and their adorable children Michaela and Rockwell came from Austin to adopt Princess Leia.

When the kids first set eyes on our little princess they fell in love with her and could not wait to go into her pen so they could meet her. As they petted her and she gave them kisses they asked their parents if they could buy her. Brentley and Anna laughed and told them yes and the kids were thrilled, but not as much as Princess Leia was.

After Brentley signed the adoption papers Tony put a pretty lavender leash on her and then they put her in their car and followed us over to Kinky's Lodge. As soon as Tony parked Kermit and they got out of their car Michaela was holding Princess Leia's leash and told us, "Her new name is Ikey and we love her." Then Kinky came out of the Lodge and greeted Brentley and his sweet family.

"Hello, Princess Leia," He said, as he stooped down to pet her.

"Her new name is Ikey," I said.

"Ikey?" Kinky said, wearing a smile. "I like Ikey." Then we all went inside the Lodge for a short visit. Before leaving I shot them.

After the nice family drove away with our precious cargo on board I said, "That adoption just made my day. That little dog has definitely found her a fantastic forever home." Everyone agreed with me. "Kinky, I love it when a dog gets returned to us, because they always end up finding their real forever home within two weeks or less. It's amazing and it happens every time."

P.S. I want to wish Brian and Rose a happy two year anniversary. We love y'all!

Y'all have a great evening!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Lois Lane Rocks!

This morning I didn't walk because I had a lot of paperwork to take care of, so instead of walking early, I went outside and handed out treats to the dogs and they ate them up, while Jim walked our dogs. Thank you, Jim.

Around eleven-thirty Lois Lane showed up at the rescue ranch. We weren't surprised because we had been expecting her. Ten days ago, Lori, an outstanding member of the famous Kerrtown agility team—The NoMads and Cowboy Steak House, found her on her ranch—Lois had been dumped by some creep who I hope gets what he deserves in life.

After Lori rescued her, she took L.L. to her vet and got her spayed, wormed, put on heart worm preventative and given all of her shots. Then she took her home to recuperate. This morning after Lori removed Ms. Lane's stitches she brought her to us, so we can adopt her out to a great home.

The minute we met this beautiful, awesome dog we fell in love with her. Since we are over-full out here at this time, we put this sweetheart of a dog in the front yard of my writing cabin and she had no complaints. All she wanted to do was run around the big yard, kiss us and play in the plastic pool that we had set up for her.

As Lori, Tone and I visited inside the yard we watched in amazement as T. tossed a  big rock into her blue pool and she jumped into the water and put her head under water so she could find the rock. It was totally awesome watching her fetch rocks out of the wading pool. Here is a short video clip that I took this evening of her retrieving rocks. Lois Lane Rocks!

Before Lori left she gave us two fifty pound sacks of dog food which was great, because we were out after Tone fed this morning and we had planned to go to Kerrville to buy some dog food later today. Thank you, Lori! You saved us a lot of money and a trip.

This evening Rick called me from Port Aransas and we had a fun visit.  He told me that he really enjoyed Cindy's, Nita's and my visit and he watched the video of us on his Triump and thought it was funny. Before we hung up, Rick jokingly said, "Cousin Nancy, since y'all didn't steal anything—y'all are welcome to come back anytime."

P.S. I have great news! Kinky will be back at the ranch tomorrow and I can't wait to see him, because he has been gone for over a month. I know that he is going to fall in love with Lois Lane, too!

Y'all have a great evening!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Date Night!

Today was a a quiet day and exactly what I needed. I feel like I got over a million things done, but it still seems like I have a million more things to do before I get completely caught up.

It is nearly seven-twenty and I am going to relax and watch the movie Date Night with Tony.

Y'all have a great evening!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cousin Nancy Rides Again!

I had so much fun on my mini-vacation to Port Aransas with Cindy and Nita. And, as always it was great seeing Rick, "The Friendly Lighthouse Keeper" and Leisa. To put our trip in a nutshell—we had a blast!

After we left the lighthouse and had our feet planted firmly on the ground in Port Aransas, we loaded up our baggage. Then I asked Rick if he would give me a ride on his pretty, new Triumph 900 motorcycle before we left, because I wanted to be able to brag that I rode a motorcycle at the ripe old age of fifty-eight years old. "It's a Bucket List deal, Rick," I said, followed by laughter.

Rick laughed and smiled and then he said, "I'd love to take you for a spin, Cousin Nancy. Let's go! Hop on!" I handed my camera over to Nita, so she could video tape my latest bucket-list-event for me, but the next part about hopping on wasn't quite as easy for me as I had anticipated and I am blaming it on Mercury fixin' to be in retrograde, but it was probably because I am only five-foot-two and just plain old. My mind said yes, but my legs said, "No way! You've got to be kidding." Here is a short video clip of me trying to triumph over the Triumph. After Rick took me for a quick spin, we thanked him for the fun time and then he and us drove off in opposite directions.

We were only three blocks away from the ferryboat  when we tried to leave Port Aransas around nine forty-five, but my sister Cindy, like me got lost right in front of the ferry entrance. We kept missing the turn lane to get onto the ferry and we kept having to circle the big parking lot before we could try again. I am sure that the ferry attendants were laughing their heads off at us and thinking that we were just some misguided old ladies, as they watched our three unsuccessful attempts to get into the ferry lane, as the three of us laughed hysterically at ourselves inside Cindy's car—teasing Nita the Navigator.

I got back home late this afternoon and I am pretty pooped. After returning many phone calls, e-mails and taking a short nap with my dogs—I am fixin' to go to bed.

P.S. June and Dean, I hope y'all had great birthdays.

Y'all have a great evening!

Happy Birthday Dean Brown!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Not Much!

Today has been a quiet day. This morning I walked eight miles inside while Tony did his chores outside. Since I am leaving Tony tomorrow and won't be back until Wednesday afternoon, I've packed my bag and spent a few hours doing some paperwork, so I won't feel guilty on my mini-vacation.

So there is not much to tell, except I have enjoyed the quiet time today.

Y'all have a great evening!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I Am Fixin' To Leave Tony!

Last night, even though Matt and Meghann couldn't make it, we had such a great time with Lisa at La Fours Restaurant. Buttermilk pulled into their parking lot at six o'clock sharp. When we went inside Lisa waved to us from a nearby table as she talked to Mark in Mississippi, on her cell phone.

After howdys and hugs Lisa handed me her cell phone to talk to Mark. Mark and I visited for a few minutes and then I handed the phone back to Lisa, so she could say goodbye to him. When she hung up I said, "Lisa, you ought to see yourself—you're glowing and beaming with happiness. We're talkin' true love and by the sound of Mark's voice—I like him. He's a good guy."

Tony started teasing Lisa and they were started laughing. Then Tony waved at me and I waved back to him even though I didn't understand why he was waving to me since we were sitting right next to each other. "Turn around, Nance," T. said. I turned around in my seat and started laughing.

"Hi, Eileen!" I said. "Good grief, Eileen, I can't believe that I didn't see you sitting right behind me."

"I can," Tone joked. "Nancy is blind as a bat even when she's wearing her glasses." Then Lisa, Tony and I had a fun visit with Eileen and we got to meet her husband and their friends. After we placed our order with the friendly waitress, Eileen told us that they were leaving and she said goodbye to us.

As we talked and ate our meal, two different sets of people came up to our table and wished Tony a happy birthday. "We read it on your blog and Facebook, Cousin Nancy," each set of nice people told us.

After dinner we were outside saying goodbye to Lisa when another couple walked up that I didn't recognize and they wished T. a happy birthday, too. I wish Matt and Meghann could have come, because we had so much fun.

This morning Princess Leia was returned to us, because the woman told us that she had wanted a dog, but realized she didn't, because she had too much going on. When Tony and I took our adorable, little princess to her old pen—she could not have been happier to be back home. She ran and jumped and played with us and didn't seem to care when the woman and her children drove away. Welcome Home, Princess Leia!

This afternoon some really nice women came out with their children to see they rescue ranch. One lady was a Girl Scout leader and the other was a Boy Scout leader. The Girl Scout leader told me they were at the Medina Community Library when I talked to the children about our rescue ranch. And, she told me that she and her kids had checked out my books and have already read both of my books. Then I gave them a tour of the rescue ranch.

I really enjoyed visiting with the women and their kids and before they left they told me that they were going to get their scouts involved with our rescue ranch! "I would love it," I said, "and it would be great for our dogs as well as the scouts."

Well, it looks like I am fixin' to leave Tony on Monday and we're not getting a divorce. I talked to my sister Cindy, late this afternoon and then I talked to Ronnie's sweet wife Nita and then I called Rick "The Friendly Lighthouse Keeper."

Cindy, Nita and I are going down to Port Aransas early Tuesday morning for a shorter-than-short mini-vacation to visit Rick and Leisa at the lighthouse. Because of my schedule we are only going to spend the night on the island and then leave Wednesday morning. I am pretty excited about it, but not T.
"Nance, I am going to be worried the whole time that you are gone and I am going to miss you, too."

"I'm going to miss you, too, but I'll be back Wednesday afternoon. So don't worry."

"What if you get lost, again? You got lost the last time you went alone up to Dripping Springs. Remember?"

"Don't worry, Tony. I will take Garmina with me and I won't get lost. I promise you and..."

Y'all have a great evening! Happy Birthday Leisa!

Happy Birthday Lisa Free!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Tony's Birthday Stunk!

This morning after I fed the dogs I went on my computer and posted a happy birthday to Tony on my blog and on Utopia's Facebook. When he got back from drinking coffee with the old timers at the Old Timer in Medina, he was wearing a big grin on his face. "Happy Birthday, Tony!" I said. "Did they sing Happy Birthday to you this morning."

"Thanks, Nance. Everyone wished me a happy birthday and Fourth Coates and Todd Marx sang happy birthday to me. And, Fourth told me to tell you that your new book is fit for royalty."

"What do you mean? Fit for royalty?" Tony started laughing.

"He reads it every time that he sits on his throne." Then we both started laughing.

"Please tell Fourth that Kinky told me that my books and his books are called dumper books. You can read a full story or chapter every time that nature calls."

After breakfast Tony went outside to do his chores and I walked six more miles with Leslie. Then I cleaned up and went outside to greet Ellen and Eileen and thank them for coming out to walk our dogs. When I got down to the dog pens they were inside Maggie's pen with LaToya taking off the dogs leashes after they had taken them for a walk.

I had a fun visit with Ellen and Eileen as always. Ellen gave me an update on Jermaine Jackson and she told me that he just keeps improving with each day and Eileen bragged that Callie Dean is the smartest dog that she has ever had and how much she loved her. Then she told me that she was going to talk to her sister, Dean and find out who it was in South Carolina that said they knew me. Then we went over to Layla's and Little Girl's pen, so they take them for a walk.

Eileen put a leash on Little Girl first and Layla was playing with Ellen and wouldn't let her leash her, so I went into the pen and caught Layla for Ellen. As we walked out of the pen I told them I was going to walk to the gate with them, so I could visit with them a little longer.

Halfway to the gate entrance we had a surprise visit from Rufus and Roxanne, who ran up to greet us and the dogs. They had escaped from the front yard of my writing cabin and they wanted to visit with us.
As the playful dogs ran circles around us I hollered, "Tony! Tony! We need you!" Then I took off for Kermit to fetch a leash. And then I returned to the party of six and slipped a leash over Roxanne's head and headed in Tony's direction.

When he met up with me he took Roxie's leash from me and then he called for Rufus to follow, as he led them to their new pen. We watched and in seconds T. had them in their pen and he was petting them. After I walked to the gate with the girls, I turned around and went over to Mr. Rogers and Miss Dee's pen to talk to Tony while he fed them.

When I was done talking, Lucy started barking wildly from the "big pen" that was about thirty feet away. I couldn't see anything, because of the barn, but Tony did. T. mumbled a cuss word and shook his head sideways.

"What is it, Tony? Then I smelled a skunk.

"Lucy 's treed a skunk. Can you see the skunk up in that tree? Whewwwwww!"

"No, but I can sure smell it. I'll go get some leashes, so we can get the dogs out of there, so the skunk can leave their pen. Poor skunk. It's not his fault." Then I went back to Kermit and grabbed two leashes and returned to the stink-zone.

After Mr. Rogers and Miss Dee had eaten, T. left their pen and we took off for Lucy's and Ashley Judd's pen to rescue the skunk. Tony put a leash on Ashley first and then he had to holler at Lucy to get her attention—she came running to him and he leashed her. Then he told me to go down to the tree near the end of their pen and wait with them.

As I watched Tony pitching rocks near the skunk in the tree, trying to make it get out of the tree, I saw Eileen and Ellen returning from their walk. "Ellen! Eileen! There's a skunk in the tree and Tony's trying to save it!"

"We thought we smelled a skunk," Ellen said, as Layla and Little Girl walked beside them. "Good luck!"

A few minutes later, as Tone tossed rocks into the tree to scare the skunk out of the tree, I waved goodbye to Eileen and Ellen as they drove away. A couple of minutes later Tony quit throwing rocks and took off towards the area where we keep our fencing materials. "I'll be right back," he hollered.

Thirty-seven bad smells later, Tony came out of the bushes carrying a long pole that we use for the top railing on our fences. I guessed that it had to be twenty feet long. It made me laugh, because he looked like a cowboy fixin' to pole vault a barn. "Cowboy Up!" I hollered, jokingly. Tony didn't laugh.

Lucy, Ashley Judd and I watched in the shade, as Tony stood as far away as possible from the skunk—trying to poke the overweight skunk to get out of the tree. Five seconds later the skunk filled the air with his or her's "Eau de Toilet" foul fragrance and climbed down the tree. And, I held my breath hoping the skunk wouldn't head in our direction and kill us and also because of the foul odor.

Lucy stood up and started barking at the skunk at the other end of her pen as Tony ran off as fast his cowboy boots would let him! "Run, Tony! Run!" I screamed, jokingly. The skunk must have understood Lucy's words, because he looked at us, lifted his tail to leave his calling card and then he took a sharp right and waddled toward the fence and then he went through it into the woods. He was free! Our first skunk rescue! Yes, it was a stinky job, but someone had to do it and Tony did it on his fifty-sixth birthday! Yeah, Tony! You're now our official Skunk Whisperer!

"You can let the dogs go!" Tony said, as he walked into the pen. Lucy ran to Tony the second I unleashed her and Ashley decided to stay put, in the shade. And fortunately, Tony didn't get skunked. Here are a few pictures that T. took of the skunk during the ordeal:

When we came inside I checked my e-mail and discovered that Eileen had sent me an e-mail before she came out this morning. "I want you and Tony to see how big Callie has grown! She is a wonderful girl and so smart...I try to keep her busy learning new things! Otherwise, my house would be a real chewed up mess!!!"

Tony and I love the pictures of Callie Dean and can't believe that she went from this to this.

P.S. I wrote this after lunch and scheduled it to post at seven o'clock, because Tony and I are in Kerrville at La Fours restaurant celebrating his and Lisa's (tomorrow is her birthday) with Matt and Meghann. We should be home in any minute.

Y'all have a great evening! And, Happy Birthday, Tony! I love you—you little stinker!

Happy Birthday Tony! I Love You!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

How About It!

Continued from Monday's post:

When Tony and I walked into Wolfmueller's Books we were instantly greeted by Sandy and Jon. Kathleen, a mutual friend of ours was there, too, so we started visiting and the laughing commenced immediately. Fifteen minutes later after Kathleen had told us a couple of hilarious stories about a friend of hers, I told T. that we needed to leave, because my back was aching from laughing so much.

Our next stop was at Copies Plus, so Tony could pick up a book on photography that Trisha was going to loan to him. Trisha and Marcie greeted us as we walked inside and then Trisha started laughing. "Tony I forgot to bring your book," Trish confessed. "I found it and put it on the table so I wouldn't forget it and I forgot it. If y'all have some more errands to run I can run home and get it for you?" We told Trish that we would be back in about an hour and took off for Walmart to buy more dog food for our rescued dogs.

An hour later Marcie greeted us as we walked back inside Copies Plus. Then Trisha came out of a room with a big, blue book, the new manual of PHOTOGRAPHY  by John Hedgecoe. "You will love this book, Tony," she said as she handed it to him. "Nancy, I'm nearly finished mounting your poster that you ordered and it turned out great!" Then she left the work area, so we visited with Marcie.

A few minutes later Trisha returned to the main work area holding up the poster I had ordered and I loved it! It's a picture of the front cover of my new book, Meanwhile Back At The Rescue Ranch: The Dog Days of Cousin Nancy. I had ordered the poster, because I wanted to hang it in the Space Ship.

As I was paying Trisha for the poster a familiar looking woman walked into the store and greeted all of us. When she saw my poster laying on the countertop she walked over to it to get a better look at it. "I love the cover of your new book, Cousin Nancy. Do you remember me?" I nodded my head, even though I couldn't figure out who she was. "I'm Kim Williamson from the television station Kerrville 15. I interviewed you years ago."

"Yes, I remember, Kim," I said. "I really enjoyed being on your show even though Sponge Bob Diaper Pants nearly ruined it." I looked at Trisha and Marcie. "Sponge Bob was a giant thirty-pound Lab puppy and he had an accident in his crate and he was covered in poop and it was raining and we were running late. When I did the interview he laid across my lap peacefully sleeping and smelled to high heaven. I was wearing pink overalls and a white shirt and after the show was over I realized that I was covered in poop and looked like I had been in a mud wrestling event and had lost. I wrote about it in my first book. I think I titled the story, Oh, Crappy Day."

"I would love to do a show on you and your new book. How about it?" Kim asked. As Kim and I discussed doing the show Tony went outside to get a book for her from our newly named  96' Explorer—Buttermilk, the Book Mobile. After I signed the book to her, she handed me a couple of business cards and then Tony and I left Copies Plus and headed home in the book mobile.

When we got home I returned a couple of phone calls and then I checked my e-mail. After answering eighteen new e-mails a new e-mail popped into my mailbox and it was from my dear friend, 'Erb, who lives in Massachusetts with his beautiful wife, Karen. She's the woman who has made me those two beautiful necklaces that everyone compliments me on.

As I read 'Erb's note I burst out laughing when he told me that every time that he reads the name of my small publishing press, Undepressable Press, it immediately reminds him of Nat King Cole's song, "Unforgettable" and it makes him want to dance. He said that if you substitute the word unforgettable to undepressable it works with the lyrics. When I showed Tony 'Erbs note he started laughing and I am still laughing about it.

After I got off of the computer I went inside the Space Ship and hung my poster up on the wall.

Tuesday afternoon I had a nice surprise. Our good friends, neighbors and volunteers, Charlie Cooper and his ninety-year-old father, Mr. Cooper came out to bring me some gifts. Unfortunately, Tony was gone fishing and Ellen, Charlie's better half, (Just kidding, Charlie. Not really.) was down at the Coast visiting family.

When they arrived we into the Space Ship so I could show it off. Then Charlie told me that he and Ellen had a gift that they wanted to give to me—a 1958 Roy Roger & Dale Evans lunch box with the thermos!

After telling Charlie that I loved it we started visiting. Charlie told me about his and Ellen's fun trip to Terlingua, Texas with their grandson, Catfish. Then he reached into his pocket and gave me several beautiful rocks that they had found. "I love the rocks, Charlie. I'm going to keep them in the Space Ship and tell everyone that they are Moon Rocks!"

Then we visited with Mr. Cooper, who I adore and think the world of, and listened to his interesting stories about his incredible life. When it was time for them to leave, because they needed to go to Kerrville to get supplies, Charlie gave me a small cactus that that they had found and I thought it was dead. After I thanked him for giving me the dead cactus, Charlie laughed and said, "It's not dead, Nancy. They call it a living rock and it grows outward instead of upward. This cactus is approximately thirty years old, too. They grow about an inch every ten years..." After they drove away I went into Outer Space and planted it in a pot.

When T. came home forty minutes later, he was sick that he had missed them.

Yesterday, I discovered that eBay has a great deal for raising funds through eBay Giving Works, so I spent much of my day registering Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch to be on their charitable list. The way it works is if you choose to sell something on eBay but want to make a donation to our rescue ranch, you go to eBay Giving Works' Utopia's site to sell the item and it is that simple. And you can choose what percentage of your sale that you want to donate to Utopia. They have made it very simple. And, I have put a link to it on the side bar, so you can check it out.

After we were officially registered on eBay Giving Works, I went on Utopia Facebook to announce it and to let everyone know about David Woo's print of Kinky and our pig that is for sale. This is what I posted:

"David Woo is an outstanding photographer from Dallas who shot Kinky with one of our pigs a few years ago, for his and Richard Pruitt's star-studded coffee table book Top Dogs And Their Pets. . 

David has generously donated 10 - 19"X13" black and white prints, signed and numbered by him and Kinky for us to auction off to raise money for our rescue ranch! David told me that the posters should be sold for a minimum of $250.00 each, but since we're trying to raise money for the rescue ranch now, we've decided to cut the number in half and sell them for $125.00 each. So hurry! We only have ten prints to sell with 100% of the proceeds going to the Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch and its tax deductible.

To purchase one of these prints please go to Utopia's donation page on eBay Giving Works. I can only post one poster at a time to sell, so when one sells I will post another one up as soon as possible. Thank you for helping us help them!"

This morning I was flabbergasted when I saw the number of people who have already signed up to sell their items and give a percentage of their sell to Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch! And, I want to thank them for their generosity and support.

This morning Meghann and Matt came out and helped Tony with his chores, while Jim walked our dogs for us. Thank you, Meghann, Matt and Jim for all that you do for our ranch. We love y'all.

I feel good that I am finally caught up with my blog and the latest news. 

(P.S. Tomorrow is Tony's Birthday!)

Y'all have a great evening!