Monday, August 30, 2010

Iditarod Mushers @ Alaska State Fair (Palmer)

Iditarod Champions Lance Mackey, Martin Buser, Dick Mackey, and Mitch Seavey will be on hand with Dee Dee Jonrowe, Ramey Smyth, Dallas Seavey and Hugh Neff

All will be at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer Alaska this Saturday (September 4th), from 1:30 to 5 pm to spend time with Iditarod Race Fans of all ages. This is a great opportunity for you to get up close and personal with these athletes as they share their stories of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. The event takes place at the Borealis Plaza Tent on the green trail at the Alaska State Fair!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

More Orser-Kim Drama

The figure skating community was rocked when news broke out yesterday that Brian Orser had been fired by his star skater, Yuna Kim. Details are, at best, confusing with several stories popping up depending on which media spin you are reading. Orser's camp & IMG make it out to be all Kim's mother's and agent's decision. Korean press are villifying the once highly praised coach saying he's blowing things out of proportion, that it was a mutual decision, or even that it's his fault. The only one not talking, it seems, is Kim - though she apparently tweeted for a "B" to stop telling the lie. At this time the tweet no longer appears but several bloggers and webzines already glomped onto the quote.

One thing is certain, no one is coming out of this without hurt feelings. Orser's shock and disappointment is evident in all of his interviews, and the twittering earlier from Kim suggests the same on her part. What's also evident is that the diehard Kim fans are frothing at the mouth and are horribly cruel once again. Fans need to calm down, this thing happens all the time. Coaches and skaters get hurt because the decision is so much out of their hands. It is shocking - much in the same way Kwan left Carrol shocking - but it is not the end of the world and there's no reason to villify anyone.

Friday, August 20, 2010

30 Days of Me - Day Four

Day Four: Favorite Book
I think Christians cheat a lot because they think they have to say "The Bible." Certainly, it should be number one for communication with our Heavenly Father, but I think to just call it a book when we know it's much more is misleading. Whenever I try to be 'religious' and answer with the 'christian' answer I go into detail and say my favorite book(s) of the Bible. (Job, Romans, and Revelations for those who are curious.)

However, I enjoy other books as well. I'm not sure I can say I have a favorite book as there are many I've read cover to cover multiple times. There's Winterdance by Gary Paulsen which is probably my favorite book that focusses on the Iditarod. I also like his junior novel The Hatchet, I read that quite often in grade school. Rifles for Watie was the junior novel that got me hooked on the Civil War, and The War With Grandpa pretty much sums up favorite book of childhood. Thank you, Battle of the Books!

I'm a huge fan of autobiographies, Scott Hamilton's Landing it and Kurt Browning's Forcing the Edge were two books I just finished rereading, and Jeff King's Cold Hands, Warm Heart was also great. And don't even get me started on the Star Wars collection I have!

I mainly stick with autobiographies, biographies, and historical fiction (mainly Civil War and Alaskana). And I guess I don't have just one favorite. *shrugs*

Thursday, August 19, 2010

30 Days of Me - Day Three

Day Three: Favorite TV Show
This would probably be M*A*S*H. Yes, it's anti-war, anti-republican, anti-Christianity... or at least modern American "Christianity"... but it's hysterical and it speaks more truth than we all care to admit. The casting was spot on, and even when, mid series, some of the core cast left (Good-bye Ferret Face) we got some fantastic replacements.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

30 Days of Me: Day Two

There are no words, right now, on Senator Stevens Memorial. I am deeply honored to have shared in the memorial. More will follow when I get my thoughts in order. So, for tonight, I will continue the 30 Days of Me.

Day Two: Favorite Movie
This is just as difficult as the favorite song question. However I guess Disney's Sleeping Beauty should get the nod. I've loved that movie longer than I can remember. I don't know why it's my favorite, it's so girly - which I am not - but I love the entire film. It's got a great villain, wonderful music and animation, and it never ceases to crack me up. Merryweather is a fairy I can identify with.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Senator Ted Stevens' Memorial

I have the honor of being part of the some 200 volunteers at teh Anchorage Baptist Temple tomorrow. I went to the meeting tonight and then went out to the street to see the motorcade pull up. I took pictures (202 in total) which I will edit.

Just got the email with a list of the Dignitaries who will be present:
Representing the United States Senate
The Hon. Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
The Hon. Daniel Inouye
The Hon. Mitch McConnell
The Hon. Orrin Hatch
The Hon. Thad Cochran
The Hon. Chris Dodd
The Hon. Arlen Specter
The Hon. Kit Bond
The Hon. Bob Bennett
The Hon. Pat Roberts
The Hon. Lisa Murkowski
The Hon. Mark Begich
David Schiappa, Secretary to the Minority
Terrance Gainer, Sergeant at Arms
The Hon. Howard Baker
The Hon. Norm Coleman
The Hon. Alfonse D'Amato
The Hon. Dennis DeConcini
The Hon. Pete Domenici
The Hon. Larry Pressler
The Hon. Fritz Hollings
The Hon. Nancy Kassebaum
The Hon. Mack Mattingly
The Hon. Frank Murkowski
The Hon. John Sununu
Elizabeth Letchworth, United States Secretary for the Majority and Minority, Ret.
Walter Stewart, Secretary of the Senate, Ret.
Representing the United States Armed Forces

General James E. Cartwright, USMC, Vice Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff
General Norton A. Schwartz, USAF, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force
General Douglas M. Fraser, USAF, Commander, U.S. Southern Command
Lieutenant General Dana T. Atkins, USAF, Commander, Alaskan Command
Lieutenant General Charles H. Jacoby, USA, Director of Strategic Plans and Policy (J5), Joint Staff
Lieutenant General Daniel Darnell, USAF, Deputy Commander, U.S. Pacific Command
Rear Admiral Christopher C. Colvin, USCG, Commander, 17th District, U.S. Coast Guard
Major General Thomas H. Katkus, The Adjutant General for the State of Alaska, Commander of the Alaska National Guard, Commissioner of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Brigadier General Raymond P. Palumbo, Commanding General, U.S. Army Alaska

Due to the vice president being present we are having to dance to the Secret Service's tune (not surprising) it makes ABT look like it's being selective in what's going on but at this point they have no control over who goes where. It's all in the deal of National Security. But it's still really cool that he's hear. Biden was good friends with Stevens, so it's no surprise he's here to pay his respects. He will be speaking, Lisa Murkowski will be reading a poem... and I forgot the rest of the speakers. Prevo, an Arch Bishop and a few others are also speaking.

I'm there from 11:30am to whenever.

Monday, August 16, 2010

30 Days of Me - Day One: Favorite Song

So I'm jumping on the bandwagon. Derek and Amanda George have started it on their blog, and I thought it was a fun idea. It's neat to read their answers and get to know them, so I figured, what the heck let me do it too!

Day One is Favorite Song...
This is always so difficult because there are so many that really speak to me or touch me in some way. So many songs bring back a memory or a feeling, and I revisit often. Some are just funny, and some are perfect for what mood I am in. That's the great thing about the power of music. It's amazing the emotions and memories music provokes. I don't think I feel this way just because I grew up as a band geek - though I'm sure that has something to do with it.

I guess the song that I've been blasting lately would be Darryl Worley's new single "Keep the Change." I love that he has the guts to not only write the song but stand up and sing it. I am hoping to hear him sing it at the Palmer Fair on the 31.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Welcome Home, BJ!

Well, we brought him home last night. I spent the night hanging out and bonding with him while Judy and Gaylord ran errands that had been preplanned. He is settling in extremely well and aside from a small bit of jealousy from the girls he's fitting in with no problems at all. He's gotten the lay of the land fairly well in the 24+ hours he's been here, just a few bumps into things. He's extremely independant, so much so that it's a little dangerous. Stairs are not scary to him and since he can't see we have to keep the door going out to the garage closed, which means Yuka and Cookie can't go in and out as they please until he quiets down. (he likes to wander for a while after we get home).

He's very vocal, and will talk back. He also barks when he's excited. Yuka helped him discover that barking is okay in this house, but he takes advantage of that allowance ha ha! He is a very happy little guy considering everything that's going on with his body right now.

Blood work came back perfectly fine, so that means Thursday of next week he will go in for surgery. It's been decided that the eye needs to come out. It's better to take it out while he's already under for his teeth. Pugs are difficult surgery wise due to their blunt noses. I'm so disappointed that the eye can't be saved, yes I know he can only see shadows, but his eye is so cute. A pug with no eyes just seems creepy to me, but I'm sure his personality will still shine through, though I worry about how he will learn to get around as he seems to still use what little sight he has to his advantage. Still, I trust Dr. Rapp to make the right decision.

I will be so glad to have him come home with a better smelling mouth. If there was ONE complaint I had about this dog it is his breath. The infection is so bad in his little mouth that his breath is just toxic. UGH! So awful. Add to it that I was squished between him and Yuka (who has nasty gas!) all last night and it's amazing I lived. The smell was so bad I swear it was the reason I had a headache!

BJ does well enough with the crate training, he just doesn't like not having that human contact, but it's safer for him I think. He spends the day while we're at work in the kennel and then is free to roam (within reason) when someone is home. Gaylord typically comes home for lunch and so he was able to take BJ out to go potty and then BJ got to hang with the gang while Gaylord ate. But he does protest for a bit when he first goes in. Tonight after we found out he likes toys we decided to put a toy in with him to see if maybe the chewing on something will be comforting to him.

Yes, that's right, BJ likes to play with dog toys! Who knew?! It's obvious he's played with toys in teh past, and loves to play tug with them. Have to be gentle with his sore mouth. It's really boggling that no one is looking for this little guy because he has so much life in him. Aside from his dry eye and his stinky mouth there is nothing wrong with him. The vet and shelter have not heard anything and I still haven't seen a thing online or around the area that suggests a little dog was lost. It warmed my heart to hear him growl and tear into the toy, but it also broke my heart. Is someone missing this little guy terribly? Why was he outside alone for what the Dr. guesses was more than just a night? Why wasn't he better taken care of? It's obvious he was loved at some point in his life, what happened to change it all?

Whether or not we are his forever home or not we're committed to this little guy. Legally he's pretty much ours, but that doesn't mean someone isn't looking for him. It's just so hard to understand. Whenever Yuka is out of my sight for a little while I panic. My biggest fear is her getting lost and not knowing where to go, and me not knowing where she is. I would die inside if something were to happen to her like that. I just don't understand why it's so hard for others to feel that way.
Anyway I'm rambling, but I figured you'd want a little update. Yuka tried playing with him last night, but ignored him tonight until he would bark. Go figure. Cookie is having issues sharing Judy. But over all BJ has pretty much become part of the family. Even Gaylord is hooked (didn't take much time at all lol).

Tomorrow Haille comes to spend the night, let's add yet another element to our madness! LOL

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Arctic Pug Pirate to Make Berth at home with us!

Time's up for the owners, Bubba Jack will be up for adoption as of tomorrow, and we have first rights of refusal meaning... tomorrow evening after work he's coming home!

Tonight we went to PetCo to get essentials, a crate for when we're gone during the day (with his poor eyesight we figure until he gets used to the house it's safest for him to be crate trained), a food dish (it's so cute), and a harness and leash. Cha-ching! But he's worth it (besides Judy paid for it lol).

The report from Dr. Rapp for today was extremely positive. He is not showing any signs of his one eye bothering him like originally thought. He can't see very well if at all with it (probably just shadows if he can) so he will be coming home with eye drops for us to administer (Judy will have to do that because that sort of thing creeps me out lol). He's becoming more active and responsive. Dr. Rapp was more candid with Judy today on the phone and said that they were actually afraid the dog was not going to make it on Monday. He just slept so much.

Dr. Rapp is convinced that he was not just out overnight, but that he'd been through a lot more. He's extremely excited that BJ found his way into our arms and our hearts! He wanted to have BJ a full 72 hours so Judy told him we'd pick him up tomorrow night. I will meet here there after work.

Will definitely give you an update tomorrow. I take Yuka in tomorrow morning for her rabies shots and will update her license and everything. So will get an update on BJ and will share before heading to work at noon.

In other news - I booked my RT airfare for the DisneyLAND trip next year! yay!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Update on "BJ"

Judy called the vet today during lunch to see how our little guy is doing. (Little BIG guy, really, he's definitely bigger than Yuka). She got a glowing report, the meds are working - in what manner we aren't sure, she didn't get specifications - he was a little more active today, and it was completely positive.

Now we're talking about how this is going to work when he comes home - if he comes home, his owner still may come around and claim him - as far as where and how we will 'crate' him and if he's house broken.

Not a huge amount of info, but anything positive is huge!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Bubba Jack the One-Eyed Arctic Pug Pirate

This morning we met one sad little pup out in the street. He was a one eyed black pug who seemed very very lost. Judy discovered him as she was heading out to work and immediately dropped everything and snatched him up. The poor thing was soaked to the bone. We tried calling MaryJo, who is part of the pug rescue group up here, but I apparently only had her home phone saved in my cell phone. No answer and no way to leave a message. So, we called Cornerstone Animal Hospital - which is where we take Cookie and Yuka for everything. They suggested we bring him in and see if he'd been chipped. So after a couple of calls to our offices we were on the road. I had the little guy in my truck (where the photo was taken) and Judy followed in the Saturn as we were both going to have to get to work no matter what was decided.

Once at the clinic we learned that he was not chipped and that they enouraged us to leave him there and they would contact the Animal Shelter. I didn't like that idea, but went along with it as there seemed to be little else we could do. I couldn't get in touch with the pug rescue, and we didn't know enough about the dog to stay home with him with the two dogs at home. So with reassurance from Angela (one of the techs/receptionists) we left him in their capable hands.

Judy was attached from the first second of laying eyes on him - even if he is a pug she just adores that little guy - and we both felt bad for leaving him. Over the course of the day we messaged back and forth and ended up naming him Bubba Jack the One-Eyed Arctic Pirate Pug... or Pug Pirate, depending on who you ask. When we took him to the vet we were calling him Bubba. Then Judy thought later that morning we should name him Jack (as in Jack Sparrow... for the pirate in him) and that's when we took off with the long name. We'll call him BJ for short!

I was also in contact with Mary Jo to see if the shelter or pug rescue had gotten him yet, she hadn't heard anything. She suggested that we give a call to check on him and possibly snatch him up after work. Well, Judy was one step ahead of her and called at 4pm over to the shelter. They didn't have any pugs at all, so she called Cornerstone. They had done a check up on BJ and decided they weren't going to release him to anyone just yet. So, off we both went to the clinic to talk with Dr. Rapp and get an idea of what we were looking at.

According to Dr. Rapp it looks like BJ's one eye is also bad. It's what they call dry eye and at this point he's not sure that the eye is worth keeping. They have some meds for him and drops to try and get any tears at all to come out, and may go from there. His teeth are also in horrible shape and once the antibiotics kick in they're going to look at extracting quite a few. He ate quite a bit today, but spent most of his time sleeping. Dr. Rapp assumes he's feeling pretty lousy due to his teeth and his eye, but expects a different dog to come out once the meds kick in and we get some of the bad stuff out.

Judy then asked him what he was going to do Re: Rescue/Shelter. He said at this point he wanted the dog to stay there at the Clinic. BJ needs some care now, not later, and it's not fair to tax the rescue - we agreed. He said he's willing to keep BJ until the time lapses for the Shelter to find the dog's family - he believes it's three days till release, and he has filed a report with the shelter - and then he says we have the right of first refusal. This was all Judy needed to hear. Obviously we want to make a good fit, so it's not a done deal until he's actually in teh house and we see how he takes to Cookie and Yuka (and vice versa). It's also possible that he will need to have eye surgery to remove his remaining eye. As it stands he can't see through it, and it's giving him more pain than anything else. If it's not able to be saved (which is what they're trying to do now) then they will remove it once they're sure he can make it through surgery. He also will lose the teeth then, it sounds like.

We are totally committed to seeing the best outcome for Bubba Jack. It took a bit of convincing on Judy's part, but Gaylord hasn't said "No." But, really, it's not his decision anyway, we have already made up our minds! Please keep this pug and the situation in your prayers. We want a happy ending for this little guy, no matter what that is.

Sorry the photo isn't better, took it on my camera phone while waiting to go into the clinic. Low light, crappy camera = crappy photo. He's a whole lot cuter in person.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Double Digits Dance!

Erin and I have 98 days until our road trip begins on November 7! I cannot wait. So excited.

And, since our main destination (Walt Disney World's Coronado Springs Resort) had a birthday yesterday I leave you with this video.