Adventures in Babysitting

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to stay with my friend Lola while her Pop was out of town. We had a great time!

The week before, Lola had earned her AKC Canine Good Citizen and Novice Trick Dog certifications – Yay, Lola!

Lola: Canine Good Citizen and Novice Trick Dog
Checking out dinner prep to see if it’s how Pop does it.
Are you EVER going to get up?!?
Town Lake, on guard for squirrels.

A good time was had by all.

Back from the Dead

Three years ago, when the neighbors put in their pool, something went awry with my yard; all the grass eventually died. After several attempts to spot treat, I went ahead and had the whole thing re-sodded in March. Finally, it’s coming back into its own.

I’m also happy with what’s going on in the front.

I stripped the deck, got a new rug, and fixed the outdoor lights. Now if I could only get rid of the mosquitos.

Mabel and Fannie are quite happy with their resurrected yard.

Fannie and Mable – Finally, grass!

Happy Ending

I’ve been following the story of Molly, who was rescued by the South Texas Aussie Rescue (STAR).  Molly had been left outside by her former owners for god knows how long.  When she was saved by STAR, her hair was so matted, she had to be shaved.  She had been so neglected, she’d developed heartworms.  And the only reason her former owners had essentially dumped her was because she had a small problem with incontinence which has been completely fixed by a small daily pill.

Miraculously, Molly survived the heartworm treatment and is on her way to a full recovery.  Last week, Molly was adopted from STAR and is living with a family that will make sure she has the best life possible.  So bravo, Molly and her family!  And to her former owner, there’s a special place waiting for you in hell, buddy.



Molly, A beautiful Aussie rescued by South Texas Aussie Rescue



Molly, happy and healthy going to her new life



Willow Girl

This is my friend, Willow.  I’ve posted about her before.  She’s my drinking buddy at the Draught House.

Willow by the fire – Christmas 2017

I stayed with her on Halloween while her human companion, my friend Jason, was out of town for a hearing.  We had a great time handing out candy to the little kids and then just chilling to some Debussy.

Willow on Halloween
Ghosts and ghouls chased away, Willow and I listening to Pelleas et Melisande

I love watching her when her Pop is out of town with a trial or hearing.  We had a great time at Town Lake in July.  It was hotter’n hell, but she was a super trooper.

Willow at Town Lake (July 2017)

Willow and me at Town Lake – July 2017

Willow Post-Town Lake (July 2017)

Post Town Lake – Pooped but a happy camper

Sometimes on Friday evenings, after particularly long weeks, Willow, Jason, and I hang out on his back porch with some great fortifying wine and bemoan how bad our jobs are sometimes.  Willow gets tons of scratches, and the week seems to end on a high note.

Willow on the porch
Willow on the Porch, waiting for scratches

Willow is a great car dog.  Her grandfolks live in Houston and sometimes she travels with them for visits.

Willow ready to go
Willow, ready to get the show on the road



Willow and Grandpop

All fastened in, keeping Grandpop company

We found out last week that she is very sick.  I’m heart-broken; my friend Jason is bereft.  We’re going to make her remaining days comfortable and happy.  A sweet, sweet soul.

Willow and her monkey
Willow and her monkey



Testing, Testing

I got a new camera for the trip to Perú in September and have been playing around.

Fannie and Mabel

Fannie (left) and Mable watching intently


Mabel waiting for popcorn


Fannie, sure that the camera is going to take her soul…


Buddha statutes and portulaca


An interesting coleus

New Front Door

Our new front door


This weekend has been gray and dreary – typical Winter – but not cold enough for my liking.  In mid-December, though, it got quite cold for a few days – upper 20s.  Cold enough that most of my perennials died off.  And last week, it got down to 18 degrees for a couple of nights, killing off the rest.

I took that as my cue to start afresh in 2017.  I pulled out everything from all the beds except the major architectural plants.  I’ll start amending the soil (or at least trying – it’s probably a lost cause at this point) and hopefully replanting in April after the live oak leaf drop/pollen explosion is done with.  But here’s the current state affairs…a bit bleak.



The Back Yard – 15 January 2017



The East Bed – waiting for vines and ground cover



The North Bed – A clean slate






Mable – a bit blurry – she never sits still



The Naked Elm Tree



The Holly Tree