Another Camping Season Ends…

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It’s so sad when camping season ends. Our seasonal site out at Hecla closed up mid Septemeber but I had one more weekend booked out at Kiche Manitou. This was the lastest in the year that I’ve ever booked….thanksgiving weekend. Of course here in the middle of the Prairies you take the risk that thanksgiving weekend could bring snow…..it will most definitely bring nights that drop to zero or below zero.

We were extremely lucky, all the rain that was forecasted totally missed us! The days were gorgeous. We had temps in the low to mid teens and sunshine to brighten our days! We started every morning with hours of hiking. Long walks through the prairie desert, wandering trails through the forest, exploring gravel roads, it was perfect.

Then we would come back to the site, get the fire roaring and toasty and then curl up on the lounge chair with books and tea and a big cozy wool blanket and spend the rest of the day chillin.

The nights were chilly but that’s where a kick ass cozy sleeping bag is your most valuable piece of camping equipment! We all got under that and stayed toasty!

 

The other great thing about fall camping is….no bugs!

We took a chance with a late fall camp, in a canvas walled tent trailer with no heat source, and we got super lucky!

One of our best camping trips.

Can’t wait till next season!

Until then we will make the most of the next few months…just 7 months to go…..

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Making the Most

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Look at this guy….he’s pretty pumped about getting going.

Let’s go Momma…..

 

I said….Let’s GO!

On Thursdays after work we’re pretty anxious to GTFO (get the f**k out) of town. Our Hecla time is ending soon. I have done my best to make the most of this camping season….having a seasonal site has been awesome. We have one more weekend left and so far the weather network is saying rain rain rain…I hope that changes by the time Wednesday night rolls around.

It’s perfect. Every weekend that we’re there, weather permitting, I get us up and we take a nice long hike/walk, this past weekend was gorgeous…and we started every morning with an hour  & 1/2 to 2 hour long hike walk. It may be the same few hiking trails and the same shoreline but it never gets old. Always new smells for the fur littles to investigate, and new rocks for me to hunt for along the shore. It makes us all happy!

I know the dogs love these little ventures. They run, they dig, they chew sticks, they chase each other….you know…dog stuff! Stuff they need to do but don’t get from a regular walk around the block or even through the park. I mean look at this little face…..

He loves the play, the freedom. He’s having so much fun. I swear he’s smiling!

I love when he’s just able to be a dog. No issues. No scars. No past.

Just a dog having all the fun! It makes my heart happy! ❤️

Back on Track…Maybe Sort of?

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In the last 18 months I have gained 40 pounds. I’m not proud of that, and I stopped being angry about it, it is what it is. You see the funny thing about battling depression is that it makes you not care about stuff that you really should care about….like your health and well being. There have been many days where the ONLY thing I care about are my dogs.

And that’s what made me smarten up in the last month…because I noticed that Wheaton was looking (and feeling) heavier. Apparently my health can go to shit and I can eat crap and pack on fat like a bear preparing for hibernation….but I cannot, and will not, let my dogs’ health and fitness decline because of the neglect to my own health.
So. No more chips. No more fast food 3 (5) times a week. No more bread/toast as a meal. No more ooey gooey cheese on…well everything. No more chocolate bar as an evening snack (or two). No more crap. We need to step up our walk routine again. We use to do 3 walks a day, at a minimum of 20 minutes per walk. Now it’s “ok, you peed, let’s just go home”.


It’s hard. I’m exhausted by life most of the time. What I was putting into my body as “fuel” has a lot to do with feeding that exhaustion. Of course I know better. Duh. I’m not new to this concept. I do it like a life cycle every year or two. But this time, this time was the worst. The highest weight I’ve ever been, and absolutely the worst I’ve ever felt physically. The deepest rut I’ve ever been in.

So. Deep. So. Dark. Man, it sucks.

Oh yeah, I live with anxiety too. So while I’m dealing with the depression and I don’t want to function in the outside world, I’m also dealing with the anxiety about NOT functioning…but the outside world makes me more anxious.

How’s that for a kick in the face? Like a snake enjoying a great meal, of its own tail.

The idea though that I was suddenly putting my dog in an unhealthy lifestyle really upset me. Me, eh, whatever; fat, sore, depressed, anxious, exhausted…actually having chest pains and not being able to walk a flight of stairs….meh…. But my dog puts on weight and gets even close to borderline edge of being too heavy for his actual size….HOLD ON! STOP! Smarten up!!!!


Whatever it takes right. Whatever puts you back on track. Something was necessary to kick my own ass back on track and the deterioration of my health wasn’t enough this time….but my dog was. It’s not even that Wheaton is fat, he’s not. His silhouette still follows the rib cage and curves in before the hips…just like it’s suppose to but he has filled out more and I don’t want it to get to the point where he is too heavy. So I need to make changes to myself now to make sure he stays fit.
The problem is I have to get myself back to the level where I can do more to help him. It’s been a tough month trying to break these bad habits. I’m still exhausted even with fueling my body better. The depression doesn’t go away. The anxiety doesn’t go away. Although they do subside once my body gets use to the healthier diet and lifestyle again. My hormones have always been messed up and things don’t function right, my pituitary glad has never sent the right signals out to the rest of my body in 44 years. My metabolism’s spirit animal is the sloth. My body really likes to store fat, it doesn’t let go of it easily. It’s going to be strict discipline and hard work. It’s going to be a fight against what I really feel like doing….I really just want to crawl into a cozy blanket on the couch and shut out everything. I want to “hermit” away. And the fur babies will just as gladly curl up on the couch with me…they love a cuddle more than a walk. Well, Wheaton probably enjoys the walks more I guess…but he does whatever Daisy does….and she definitely would choose a cuddle over anything else!!
I do however pride myself in giving my dogs the best in life and the idea that I am dropping the ball for them, well, that’s just a low I don’t want to be at, ever.
By doing better for my dogs, I will actually do better for my SELF.
I can live with that.

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Things and Stuff…

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Wow. It’s been a month since my last post about Wheaton’s injured toe, which is all better and the toenail is growing in again!

img_7588We’ve pretty much managed to get out to the camper every weekend except 2…..one was the weekend my sister could have gone into labour, and the other was just after she really did go into labour! I’m a full on auntie now!

And now back to camping.

imageThe dogs and I are LOVING the seasonal camping experience…except when the noisy neighbours don’t obey the “quiet hours between 11pm & 9am”. It’s so nice to know that the camper is there waiting for us every weekend. Work has been really stressful for the last while and the only thing saving my mental health is getting out to the camper. I relax, I sleep, we go for long walks/hikes, I read my book, I colour, I suntan and the dogs even convince me to nap….for fun…not that falling asleep on the couch from pure exhaustion at 8pm stuff that happens during the week.

This morning we went for a 2 hour hike/walk. It was early and there’s not much going on around here on a Friday morning so the dogs were off leash. Their mileage for the hike was probably double because of all the back and forth running they did! Each time we came to a clearing where there was some grass they just went wild chasing each other around! They have so much fun it makes me laugh to watch them! They look like they’re smiling when they run around like that. We were all tired, hungry and thirsty by the time we got back to the camper. It was the perfect way to start the morning. If it’s not raining tomorrow morning there’s a trail I want to do that we’ve never done, but we’ll have to drive there. For that one we’ll take some bells with us cause there’s bound to be wildlife and it’s better if they can hear us coming!

So yes, life has been busy…and fairly overwhelming….and because of that I have a tremendous amount of gratitude for this little camper set up. It doesn’t look like much but it is our oasis. It is the one true place where I am happy….and being happy is something to strive for because the happier I am, the happier my dogs will be!

And it really is all about the dogs!

The Wounded Wheatie

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Last weekend we had a little paw accident. In his awkward chaotic leap from the entranceway, while at Uncle Michael and Uncle Rob’s trailer, Wheaton’s nail must have got caught. So he made the leap but left behind the nail. Ouch right!!!! I mean when I saw the nail fall off in my hand I cringed. All I could think of was how much it hurts just to rip my fingernail down to bleeding. Poor dude didn’t whimper or yelp, he just held his foot up for me to help him.

 

This happened on the Saturday night so I had to do my best doctoring with my camper first aid kit. He walked around with gauze and a ziploc baggy boot to keep it dry. He didn’t seem too bothered. I guess, in the grand scheme of his past life, this was a minor pain? I was taking it hard.

First thing Monday morning I popped into our vet clinic to get them to check it and make sure it wasn’t getting infected. They cleaned it up and shaved all the fur around his toe. As in the above pictures. He pooped on the vet technician. He fear farts…and sometimes when he’s really nervous he drops a little warning turd. So, $146 later, his toe was cleaned and checked and wrapped again. I had done well.  The vet said it was clean and dry and the nail bed was still intact….his nail will grow out again. Phew.

For the next week or two he needs to soak his little paw in a warm Epsom salt “bath” for 5-10 minutes and then I need to apply some antibacterial cream and wrap it up with gauze and bandages. Yes. Soak his foot for 10 minutes. I thought that was gonna be a wet mess but turns out….Sir enjoys a warm foot soak at the end of a long day. Who knew??

 

Now we are back out at the trailer, I’m not going to unwrap and wrap his paw every day out here just because it’s not exactly sanitary so the less chance of dirt and debris getting in around that nail wound the better.

imageHe does like to milk his walking wounded scenario! I know he can manage just fine cause when it’s time to eat he runs to the food bowl without the slightest limp!!! But after, he’s all hopping and limping!! My little drama king! No worries, he still gets treats for the performance! And some extra cuddles and kisses. Even Daisy felt sympathetic and gave up the dog bed so he could stretch out! What a good big sister!!

Poor Wheatie, all this fuss…………it’s exhausting.

 

 

 

Sometimes Love is So Much…

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Honest, sometimes I look over at my littles and I feel an overwhelming love wash over me. Their little faces, their little paws and noses and their wiggly bums and wagging tails. Their soft pink bellies and their floppy velvety ears. They have these beautiful brown eyes that light up when I touch the treat jar! I love when they snuggle up to me and start falling asleep…and then they let out a little sigh. Because they are safe, and they know it. Protected. Loved.


They are my life, my loves, my babies. I am their protector, their provider, their Momma.

It is my main goal to make them happy, to keep them healthy. And to make sure they have the best life possible. Everything folks do for their children.

How is it any different for the furry ones?

It’s not. Period.

imageSometimes it’s just so much that I have to share with all of you. Please, hug your fur littles. Love them unconditionally, you are all they have. Honour that love. Be worthy of that love. Our time with them is far too short, make the absolute best of that time.

2 Little Dogs and a Camper

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Well, we are officially seasonal campers now. The camper is all set up and we are settled into our home away from home.

The routine is outlined…as often as possible I will frantically pack up Thursday after work and we will get out to the camper. I don’t hurry well. My anxiety tends to over take and I get really stressed….but once I am on the road I settle knowing that we are headed to the camper, you know, to rest and relax! Exactly what I need. I’m sure the process will get better once the routine gets more established. The first weekend to set up was May long weekend and the first Thursday after work departure was just last week. A little better planning and we’ll have this routine going smoothly.

Wheatie travelThis is the look that says it all…are we there yet. No dogs are more chill in the car than my dogs. Buckled in, all cozy, ready to….zzzzzzzzzzz

Wake us when we get there Momma.

Actually they know when we get there, as soon as the car slows down they wake up and Wheatie looks out the window. Then he gives a little whine and looks at me. I unroll the window and he sticks his nose out and gives a sniff…he turns back and looks at me….

“Hey, Momma, we’re at the camping place!”

We’ve got two weekends under our seasonal belt now. Both have been cold and rainy. Like see your breath in the air cold. So cold that Wheatie was under the sleeping bag with Daisy & me. I had to coax him under…but once he felt how warm and cozy it was under that big fluffy sleeping bag…he wasn’t going anywhere!

We did get a couple nice mornings where we were able to use our path down to the shore and walk along the rocks to the dog beach. The dogs rip around in the sand and chase each other. Then we walk the beach to the hiking trail. We get to the end and take the road back to the marina and then the trail back to the campground. It’s a nice hour long walk & hike. A great way to start our morning. As the Summer comes, and the weather warms (and dries) up, we will have many more of our morning shoreline walks.

We’ve also had only a couple dry evenings to be able to enjoy a campfire. We’ll get more of those too! All in all, a cold wet start but I’m happy with it all. The site itself couldn’t be more perfect. Now if all the other campers would just go away…..that was the best thing about getting there on Thursday evening…hardly anyone else around! I’m a quiet camper. I wish everyone else was too! 🙂

 

The Whhhheatie Whhhhhine 

Wheaton has started a new thing….a whine. He does this while in the car. I think he has it figured out that on the way home from work we go to the park….he’s loving the park. It’s kind of adorable. It’s a quiet little whimper. When we get to the park and I start to drive slow, he knows. Then he lets out his little whine….just one. I look back and he’s already waiting to be unbuckled from his seat belt harness…..he turns and stands up with his front paws against the back of the backseat. I know right! Adorable. It’s his communication.

I park the car…..and he is giddy to get out and sniff the park! “Let’s go Momma!!! Let’s go!!! I’ve got things to sniff…and pee on!”

I love his furry little head!

Every single day I am grateful for Daisy & Wheaton.

Bog Dogs

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We have Bailey the Min Pin mix this weekend. It’s Sunday so we headed to Birdshill Park this morning…..for a mucky hike through the Cedar Bog trail! img_7202-2

It started off well. All feet/paws were dry. So far so good….but I know this trail….they don’t call it Cedar BOG for no reason.


And then we got to the bog part. There was no way around. I scooped a fur little under each arm and Bailey was on her own.

First obstacle done. Couple more soggy situations…..and then I put the little white flurries down to maneuver around some puddles on their own. Aaaaand then we came around another bend and it was bog everywhere……

I scooped the littles up again and Bailey and I had no choice but to trudge straight through. Bailey loved it!! I’m glad I carried Daisy and Wheaton because in some places they would have been swimming, not puddle jumping. Haha.

Once one foot has been suctioned into the muddy bog….you might as well just commit and giver!! It was fun.

The dogs were pooped out. It was a great morning.

Just Say No….it’s O.K. 

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A very dear friend asked me to dog sit. It was going to be for a week. It was going to include a weekend. The second weekend of camping season to be exact. I was torn. On one hand these people are such good friends…..on the other hand camping is my time. 

Now, some of you are asking….”why not just take their dog camping with you?”

Well….it’s not just any dog…..it’s the wiener. Zoe the wirey wiener. Very high energy and very much not liked by Daisy. That much energy and crazy just doesn’t seem to be what I want in my camper. Plus I don’t trust the little wiener so I don’t want her getting loose out at the campground! 

So I said no. I’m not good at saying no. I gave them the info for two very good “dog hotels”. I apologised. They totally understood but I still felt bad. Correction. The people pleaser in me felt bad. The me who works hard for those quiet days off, that will be spent in our camper just chillin with the fur littles, didn’t feel bad at all. 

A few times a little internal voice popped up and said, “are you sure you can’t just do your friends a favour?” but another voice over ruled……that was the voice of my soul. That’s the voice I need to listen to.  

Plus, nothing against that crazy wiener, but I think Daisy and Wheaton would appreciate my “no”. 

In the end, you can’t please all of the people all of the time. 

When it comes to camping….I was blessed enough to get a great placement in the draw. Then I was super blessed to get my first choice site! To be honest…I don’t want to be at home one single weekend!! I know things are gonna come up….my sister is due to birth my nephew sometime in the first half of July so there’s a good chance baby is gonna override some camping but that’s really the only concrete reason I would give up my precious coveted camping time. 


2 weeks and 2 days. Corny the Camper is ready. I’ve got my gear checked. Lists are made. Hell, I have all but packed my backpack and cooler! 

As always, I leave you with love and kindness.