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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wednesday with Mom!

Black Jack: Nothing like snuggling into my soft warm blankets on these cold mornings...
12/30/09 It has taken both of us some time to get re-acclimated to the old routine but think we're getting' there. Mom got her walk yesterday during a brief sunny spell.
Since I was so very good in a more confined space during our time at Robyn's, Mom got this brilliant idea that an even smaller 'wandering area' here at home might be helpful to me. Just like all her other 'experiments' I didn't much like it at first, but in the long run it seems to be making life easier for both of us.
Man, it was a cold dreary day. Mom got to go out for coffee with her friend even though she had just switched me to a different bed and I'd not gone out since the wee hours. Even so, I slept the whole time she was gone. I love just lying around snuggled up in my blankets these days. No accidents--I'm getting the hang of being as good about going as soon as Mom puts me out like I did when we were gone

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas holiday with Mom!

12/23-29/09 One morning Mom mistook my tossing as a need to go out to go to the bathroom, but in the cold, blowing snow I decided I'd rather go right back to bed, since I only wanted to change positions in the first place. The trip to Kingman to visit auntie Robyn was great for me although Mom got to employ her driving skills a couple of times. Not much to report during our visit other than that I was a 'perfect gentleman', doing no "no-no's" in the house and sleeping lots so Mom could really enjoy her vacation. She got to go shopping a couple of times and went to two family gatherings. The journey home was a 'sleepy drive' with clouds making the snow around us mesmerizing. Mom is appreciating the great car she has because it seems to be takin' a beatin' but keeps on tickin' well.
12/29/09 Today my dear friend Day was here again to massage Mom who needed it after no holiday exercising, too much good food and carrying me around much of the time. Day picked up that I am simply happily 'chillin' here with Mom. She told me I could choose what my 'next world' will look like and chuckled when I told her good food is the best thing I could think of... 'Course Mom already knew that. Maybe the 'beyond' will be a great place to go afterall.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Week end/trip with Mom!

12/18/09 Mom enjoyed breakfast out with friends and I didn't even miss her--slept through the whole thing. Her head was stuffy and hurt so we didn't take our walks. Instead she was able to figure out some computer stuff--time consuming but challenging and therefore rewarding in the end. Pretty good night...Mom didn't refill my bowl after dinner so I dreamt of breakfast.
12/19/09 And as usual I only ate enough to tide me over for a while. I got to be outside in the sunshine for a long while several times today. Mom took a walk and then the clouds rolled in, so she chose to busy herself with packing for our Christmas holiday trip instead of taking me for my walk. But I certainly can make do with just the fresh air and sunshine. Then of course I wander around at dinner/bedtime.
12/20/09 I planned to post in the morning but even that was impossible since the day was way too busy for me to even get near the computer. Mom never finds it easy to fit all my paraphernalia PLUS Christmas presents into her little sports car for the trip to visit Auntie Robyn, Jim & of course Sugar. I keep trying to figure out how I can help her really truly relax for just a while.
12/21/09 So the trip was a bit of a challenge for Mom but very peaceful for me as you can see by the photo today. I used to have a touch of car sickness which I grew out of, thank goodness since Mom always liked to travel so much. Not without hearing or even seeing very well I no longer have to worry about a thing.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Thursday with Mom!

12/17/09 What a glorious day for a walk! I'm SO glad Mom decided to do what's in her heart and take me for one. It felt like spring again. If I never get another walk this one will be the one to remember. You see, Mom has been getting lots of advice from her friends about my on-going care. Yes, she complains sometimes but I would, too. Well meaning suggestions would have her NOT taking me for my walks since they are so time consuming for Mom along with the fact that they are keeping me healthy and strong. Were she to eliminate exercising me I might just require even more care rather than shortening the time it takes me to decide to leave. But the bigger reason I like that Mom takes me for walks is that it makes her feel good to think she has done something to make my life more pleasant.
In addition my Mom is such a kind, caring human that she sees my love for her as a precious thing--much like the love between an aging spouse or parent, even sibling. She just doesn't understand how that love could be destroyed in the name of convenience. I see that white/silver/gold shimmering light of an angel when she has these thoughts.
Exercising sure whets a guy's appetite, too. I think I ate a whole can of food today. And since Mom buys me nothing but the best (over $2 a can) this is yet another way she says "I really love you".
I had a 'perfect' night, never having to go outside once--too bad Mom tossed and turned almost all night long. Oh, well, so much for being "good"...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tuesday & Wednesday with Mom!

Black Jack:: What is it that keeps me dreaming about better days instead of going there...sort of like many humans do living their lives.
12/15/09 WELL, I sure didn't need my walk was grooming day. I've been wearing clothes so much to keep warm that when they bathed me and put the dryer on me it felt very strange. Then they even made me lie on my side while they worked on me and I really hate not having control enough to stand on my own four feet. I do understand that they are doing it to help make the experience more bearable for me. But as always when it's all over and done, I sure do feel better. All the rest of the day, however, I paced finally settling down pretty swiftly to a night that was only interrupted twice.
12/16/09 Not too much to report as I've got Mom pretty well trained to my schedule by now >chuckle<. It was only sunny off and on so her intentions to hang laundry outside in preparation for our holiday trip were dashed. It's always interesting to see how she fits laundry day into all her computer work that usually lasts toward lunch time without extra activities. I was happy to see her get out there and take her walk as she always feels better afterward. As I sleep more and more I just have to wonder what it is that keeps me dreaming about better days instead of going there... I understand many humans do the same thing living their lives. Sadly for Mom I seem to be needing to get up more times during the night... what can I do about that... always wanting to make life easier for her, not more difficult.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Monday with Mom!

Black Jack:: Isn't this just the spirit of Christmas...ho, ho ho!?
12/14/09 The sun was shining even though there was frost on my artificial grass when Mom put me outside this morning. Once during the day Mom left me long enough to really enjoy basking in it...almost forgot why I was out there it felt so good. Mom was busy very again today but finished her second big project (a carved wooden pet urn, like only she can do) so that made her feel really good. She even got out in the sunshine for her walk. Then, having gotten so much done, she was really tired. I’m so glad I cooperated and didn't cause her any extra work like scrubbing the floor. I didn't feel like eating until late and Mom didn't refill my bowl. I think she wants me to begin eating earlier in the day. I think I might be hungry tomorrow morning. But we sure did sleep long and well all night long.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Week end with Mom!

Black Jack:: Wonder what would happen if humans would feel and act like it's Christmas all year long? Seems like a strange custom to save it for only one day...
12/11/09 I was sawin' logs when Mom just had to get me going so she could go out with her friend this morning. She gradually got me used to the cold though, so it was okay. Mom got to take her walk but I didn't--instead she worked on her special gift project.
12/12/09 Mom needed to get me up before I was ready since I'd gone out very early in the morning. Seems she was going out yet again to be with another friend. She was gone longer than usual and so I was beginning to wonder where she was by the time she got home. Luckily she was just in time to get me outside before an accident so we were both happy. Mom was especially happy since she came home with presents for people. Seems strange to me that humans save one day a year to be really nice to one another by giving. Wonder what would happen if they would feel and act this way all year long?
12/13/09 Over this long, busy and very interesting week end, Mom listened to some suggestions from several friends that they feel might help me leave and Mom take better care of herself. I just may not get so many walks and may need to work my schedule into Mom's better. Regardless of what may come, I sense a brighter, stronger color around Mom now--a strength and determination replacing that rather discouraging feelings that have been apparent for a long while. I believe this change may have some thing to do with a conference call Mom had with Auntie Robyn & Jim about what might be next. I see that Mom certainly is preparing herself for me to leave, even if it will be hard for her to be without me.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Wednesday & Thursday with Mom!

Black Jack:: It's about time to put on our Santa suits again!
12/9/09 Just trying to stay warm today... With clouds blocking the sun it feels much colder than it probably is. Neither of us had our walk today. Mom is also trying to stay warm and when her art room warmed up with what sun there was, she finally did some carving on an urn for a change. It's good to see her enjoy her creative gift, but only when she is moved to do it. I know when the love between animals and their humans is involved she is more inclined to get absorbed in her projects.
12/10/09 There was a walk in the clouds and a walk in the sunshine today. Mom chose to bundle up and do the former making my walk much more pleasant. One smell I want to take with me is the crisp dry leaves that people had raked into piles. It reminds me of times gone by. All that exercise and fresh air sure work up this old man's appetite. I finally really chowed down today. In the evening Mom worked on a special surprise Christmas present. She doesn't get too many decorations out any more since we are the only ones here. We had an awesome night...I almost slept the whole night long.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Monday & Tuesday with Mom!

Black Jack:: Here's a new geriatric wrinkle...falling asleep in one's food bowl. Can you imagine how much face cleanin' this took?!
12/7/09 Cold, dreary days don't usually glean much excitement to write about. But boy the rain and wind kicked into full gear overnight. Mom was more relaxed about the length of time it took me to settle in, once again trying everything. She put me in her bed at one point, I think more for herself than for me. I do believe she was looking for comfort from the storm. It's tough for her to be the only one responsible for seeing that nothing blows away or is damaged, so her night was short and fitful.
12/8/09 Then the sun came out. Very brisk but not too much wind for my walk. Decided I didn't want to do the whole thing at one time, though. She tugged on me enough to show me the way that the coat I had on kept opening so she had to re-do the velcro. Think she's decided to see to it that I do more during the day than just sleep so that maybe I'll be more tired at night when she likes to sleep. I do try to be good...
Mom was more relaxed about the time it took me to settle in and then it was a very good night since there was no wind to keep Mom worried. She was even able to let go of one more incident of computer frustration and the resulting feeling of isolation from her 'virtual family'.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Week end with Mom!

Black Jack: Morning cuddles--great for our cold, rainy weather.
12/5/09 I tried so hard to not have to get out of my warm bed this morning. But Mom let me sleep in her arms until the urge was too strong to ignore. Think she feels like she can anticipate better when I need to go that way.
Man, Mom has me so bundled up against the cold that I walk sort of like a little piggy. And it's probably pretty funny from some perspective to see how I certainly can't get up when I roll over. But I don't feel too badly, since after my walk Mom went for hers and she looked almost as roly poly as I do!
Poor Mom, all squeaky clean and cozy, having to scrub the kitchen floor. Seems she took pity on me from the cold again too soon--before the urge hit. AND Mom relaxed a bit too well just before bedtime, so the kitchen floor is gradually shining from all the scrubbing...
12/6/09 Not much to report today except that I watched Mom busy herself with some holiday stuff and cooking her granola... more time to 'be'... UNTIL night came, that is--what a change for lovely peaceful colors to dark stormy ones. Mom stayed up later than usual with a project and I think she was trying to outsmart my behaviors. Normally I relieve myself around 8 and then again a couple of hours later (normally AFTER I've been tucked into bed). She observed the 8 pm pee and so after 10 she took me out and waited...and waited...and waited. I just didn’t feel like going, no matter how hard I tried. She put me in the kitchen where I went sound asleep. In order to know if I need care in the night, she puts me in the bedroom where I immediately acted as if I wanted to get out of bed. So she tried outside then the kitchen but nothing seemed to work until about midnight. I must report that Mom 'lost her cool' over having to put her full attention on trying to figure out what I want/need for 2 whole hours of her sleeping time. I think she was especially upset because she thought maybe we could actually avoid having to go out in the middle of the night. I know her love for me never waivers but she really hates what my age is doing to me...

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Friday with Mom!

12/4/09 Boy, I'm not liking this cold weather--other than the extra cuddling I'm getting from Mom, that is. She went out to enjoy the company of one of her friends today, but wasn't gone very long. I was snuggled into my bed with my undershirt and a coat on. I had just gotten up when she returned.
It was another day of frustrations for Mom, but she rallied with a special Christmas project and some potentially good news about what could be next for her. She kept an eye on me all the while so we didn't have any accidents at all.
Mom was told it's supposed to get warmer and rain lots in a few days--I'll let you know which I like more, the cold or the rain. I know Mom isn't fond of being cold, thus our staying in all day long today--other than freezing outside for bathroom duty, that is.
I pulled an all nighter--that is I actually slept all night long. And who would want to climb out of a warm bed to go out in the freezing cold and squat? In fact Mom had to put an extra blanket on me in the middle of the night so my bed was extra cozy then.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wednesday & Thursday with Mom!

Black Jack: How do you like my new winter 'undershirt'?
12/2/09 In an attempt to figure out what makes me so restless at night, Mom turned off the heat in my bed, so I was sort of chilly when I woke up. Of course Mom snuggled me awake and put me back in a warm cozy bed where I stayed once again until she got back with groceries. Once today Mom was working so hard she couldn't get away before the urge hit me to pee on the floor. So she didn't get mad at me at all. I still had to wait outside in the cold until the mopped floor dried, though. And speaking of cold, here in Arizona it's so cold Mom & I sometimes feel like we won't ever get warm again. Makes one want to go to bed already--at least when it's heated for me like Mom does. It was a very good night with several hours on undisturbed sleep for Mom.
12/3/09 Once again I was snuggled awake. Yesterday Mom finally found an old sweater that I had refused to wear for a long time. She feels, rightly so, that it will be more comfortable for every day wear than the shirts. I wouldn't wear it when my eyesight was going because I didn't want anyone touching my legs. But now I am resigned to letting Mom carefully, gently handle me. So not I have an 'undershirt' to wear.
Mom took her walk...beautiful day, but then the wind came up. And that wind was so cold, Mom opted to make the walk short which suited me since I don't really like the icy (for AZ) wind blowing up my shirt. Besides I was pretty stuff legged and wobbly, so Mom got all the messages loud and clear. Mom almost forgot to eat before the computer fixer/friend came. Tony was awesome...not just because he helped Mom with her computer but because he seemed to really care about me--and we all know 'dog people' are really cool.
We got a full 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep last night before I had to go out--think Mom might just celebrate!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Monday & Tuesday with Mom!

11/30/09 Got to awaken being cuddled in my warm blanket. Later, Mom gave me a good massage. It felt good to get the fancy shirt off for a bit since I wear it all the time now. Originally it was to keep the sun off, now to help keep me warm. Then she put a clean shirt back on--I really, really get them dirty with my sloppy eating. Guess I need a bib like a baby!
Today was the day for Day to come and give Mom her massage. I love Day and really appreciate seeing her--especially today. She always helps Mom get messages from me. Today I made it clear that I'm no longer feeling much of anything. Day thought I was being stubborn staying this long, but that's just not in my nature. I'm the easy going type. So together they figured out that I just love Mom so fiercely that I simply don't want to leave her. Apparently one CAN love another too much since I know I'd be more free and happy on the other side. Hey, just figured out that if I'm numb in body as well as mind, maybe that's why my legs wobble and don't support me very well. Guess one would say the colors are a now a dim white, silver, gold glimmering light of angels. Perhaps they will shimmer more brightly soon.
The night was awful. I kept thinking about what Day had helped me realize and was only happy after Mom put me in bed with her. Sadly this left Mom with a sleepless night, too.
12/1/09 I was really tired today of course and so after 'duty call' Mom put me back in my 'kitchen bed' where I stayed until she got home from a short trip! Of course Mom was really, really tired, too but she had to go. Strangely she had the energy to take her walk and then take me, too. Since she could do this for us/me I did my walk well even finding some sniffs. Our night started like last night, but Mom made it clear she wasn't going to be able to do the 'no sleep' thing again, so I finally got nested and we did well.Mo

Monday, November 30, 2009

Week end with Mom!

Black Jack: Found a new corner and position for sleeping...

11/28/09 Mom sure had a hard day dealing not only with a couple of things with her new computer that just wouldn't work, but also not feeling well at all.. At least I behaved very well and we had a good night's sleep.

11/29/09 Today was a different story altogether. Seems Mom really is learning some good coping skills. She put aside the computer problems since she has things she really wants to do instead of the continual frustrating trying which has seemed to be how her life has been spent mostly. She figured out an alternative temporary solution to yesterdays' problem. This seems to have made all the difference.

We took our walks, mine before the cold wind came up. I wonder if I'll get raindrops on my head when I go out for bedtime potty call like I did last night--I don't much like that! No wetness, but pretty darn cold for Arizona.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving holiday with Mom!

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Black Jack: And this is how I spent my Thanksgiving...also planning to do lots more of it!

11/25/09 Yes, after only one time outside and the heat turned on in my bed it was a beautiful night--the white, silver, gold of angels is back. AND it lasted all day long.

11/26/09 I spent most of my day basking in the sunshine. Mom went to a friend's house for turkey dinner. I was pretty darn lonely when she got back, but she gave me some 'real' turkey so all was well

11/27/09 Today Mom left and brought back a new computer so my blogging was put on hold even longer. But she knows how important it is to me to share with you, so I think we're back in good shape now. I know it gave Mom a real headache getting things all set up but boy she sure is good at this stuff--even if she has to learn some of it the hard way. We're both hoping you had a great Thanksgiving with lots of love around you!

Thursday, November 26, 2009


All I want to say today is that I'm grateful for my long, happy life AND that Mom chose ME! I'm a really lucky guy!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday with Mom!

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­11/25/09 Lately Mom has started my days by snuggling me in her arms. Her robe is so soft and cuddly I love it since the house is chilly enough that I shiver in the mornings. Besides that the mornings are cold for going to the bathroom. So to gradually awaken, feel the urge and acclimate myself to a new day is greatly appreciated. Bet there are lots of people/animals who would like this kind of pampering...

Rather than being slow and tedious, Mom & I decided to call my walks as well as most of my other activities in these 'twilight years' "gentle". It seems a nicer approach to my being ness now. However when nighttime came, the beautiful orange, rose and silver of this realization turned to the red, black of a warrior after Mom got to scrub the kitchen floor for a second time right at bedtime. My pretty colors will come back.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Long week end with Mom!

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Black Jack: I'm practicing for eating some of Mom's leftover Turkey!

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­11/24/09 Sheesh! Apparently in ALL of Mom's recent computer problems, my notes from the week end got deleted. Well, not too much to isn't exciting in the same way at age 90 as it was when I was a kid.

The other night I accidentally got the tip of one of Mom's fingers in my teeth again. It wasn't quite as bad for her as last time since I think she has become faster. She just hates to see me struggling to find, then pick up and keep those cookie morsels in my mouth.

Yesterday's walk found me wobbling like crazy...actually I had my food on my mind. Then again it's hard to walk in a straight line when you can't even see the line anymore.

I'm getting ready for Thanksgiving because I know Mom will share some of her leftovers from going to her 'coffee buddy's' house. Hopefully I'll be able to keep THAT in my mouth and get it chewed.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Friday with Mom!

Black Jack: It's good to be alive! In light of two of my animal friends passing yesterday, I'm so grateful to have had the long life I' have been blessed with--and helping keep Mom on track >he he<.

11/20/09 Oh, my, I sure am letting more poo's slip... I've been doing that almost every morning and Mom seems to handle the stinky bed better than the wet bed. Of course wet smells bad to her, too. When she chose to take me for my walk before she did her own, I let a few slip as soon as she put me down. And I couldn't really decide whether I wanted to continue the walk or not, so I got only about 1/2 a walk today. But the day was awesome so it was good to be outside even for a bit. It's good to be alive! Especially since Mom got word today that Nikki pass as well as another friend's dear cat.

Mom tried everything to make me happy in the evening. She fed me, took me out (I fell asleep outside in the cold), put me in bed, held me, but all I could think of was my bedtime cookie. I finally did eat more of my dinner.

Only up a few times during the night--no accidents for a while.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thursday with Mom!

Okay, so if Mom's too busy tocover me up I'll just get my nose under those covers and do it myself!
11/19/09 I slept really late today after being up at 5 a.m. to do my 'duties'. I almost didn't do my blog today since Mom has been having so much computer trouble. But better late than never, I guess. We both got our walks. Mine was in partial sunshine so again really comfortable. Mom got interrupted with a business call and so her walk was later than she planned. It was getting cold and a bit more 'dusk' than she likes to be out. And to top it off, I just couldn't hold it until she got back.
I ate everything in front of me and was looking for more. Mom about gave it to me, too but knew I'd had enough. Think I'm glad. Then as Mom was finally getting some relaxation time, attention on something other than me, I had to go again. She really doesn't like having two mishaps in the same day. She reacts to just one and so you might say she over reacts when I do two or more. At least I messed up a spot that hadn't needed scrubbing for a while (other than my foot prints...).

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wednesday with Mom!

11/18/09 Today at breakfast I notice Mom had scrubbed the whole wall behind where I eat and then covered it with a plastic. I guess it must bother her to look at my brown food smears all over the white wall.
Another sunshiney day, so both Mom and I got our walks. I was so ready by the time Mom got off the phone to Susan. Seems Nikki may get to come home today--whew! Our humans sure do wrap their lives around us. The walk was awesome--I felt as if I could go forever. Of course I knew food was waiting at home, too. The shade was almost too cool while the sun warmed me just right.
Supper was yummy.
Mom provided a warmed bed for me. I remember that she did that a few winters for Katie & me and I sure do like it. Makes the bed a bit less soft (heating pad beneath me), but the snuggly warmth is worth it. Last year she used an electric blanket, but this year I think she's afraid I might do my business on it, so a heating pad would be better. Well, guess what! it was a bit too warm. Winter isn't quite here yet. I was able to sleep more comfortably when she turned it back off leaving my coat and blanket on me instead.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Monday & Tuesday with Mom!

11/16/09 Today seemed like a 'crisis day' for Mom. She was able to get me outside, fed and back to bed before she had to leave. We both did get our walks later in the day, since she wasn't able to work at her computer because she had taken it to the 'computer doctor'. It was an amazingly 'perfect' fall day again. No worries the rest of the day and maybe just a bit more attention from Mom since the computer was missing.
11/17/09 What wild and crazy days! Mom had to go get her computer this morning. Then she left me outside way too long and even though it is fall the Arizona sunshine is a bit too warm to be out in it too long--at least for me.
I think something is wrong at my friend Susan's house across the street. Mom is going over there a couple of times a day. I have a sad feeling it might be because of Nikki, Susan's little white dog. If that's the case, Mom is caring for Susan's birds which I know she isn't comfortable with. But Susan cares for me when Mom has to be gone very long so it's 'the neighborly thing to do'. Even though Nikki seems a bit obnoxious to me at my age, and she pees with excitement every time she sees us, she's just a youngster and I sure hope she gets better soon. Now that the computer wildness has settled down again this extra responsibility won't feel quite so daunting to Mom.
At least we are having very good nights sleeping which I'm sure helps.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Week end with Mom!

11/14/09 Okay, so I was shivering a bit today...Mom put a fleece-lined denim coat that once belonged to Katie on me for my walk. I didn't realize how much bigger she must have been than I was. Mom thought my balking at taking a walk might have been that I could barely waddle in that coat--that is until she got me to my backyard where I had to poo. Seems these days I only want to do my jobs in my own back yard. It even took me days to figure out that I could go in Auntie Robyn's yard when we visit her. Strange perhaps, when most of us dogs like to go anywhere and frequently, but for whatever reason it seems to be a strong preference for me now.
Yahoo! It was a dry night with sounds sleep other than getting Mom up only once for a potty call.
11/15/09 Today looked like it might just be another too quiet day. But Mom fed me fresh food that I ate while she walked and then she came home and took me for my walk. It was one of those almost perfect Arizona days with the sun warming my skin and the crisp breeze blowing through what is left of my hair. There weren't too many headlines to sniff out in our quiet neighorhood--either that or my 'sniffer' isn't up to snuff.
One more really good night, only going outside once then sleeping as late as Mom needed me to.

11/16/09 Today seemed like a 'crisis day' for Mom. She was able to get me outside, fed and back to bed before she had to leave.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Thursday & Friday with Mom!

I remember when I could stand on my own two back feet and beg like the best of them. And just look at that silky black coat! We old guys sometimes just get wobbly legs and thinning hair...
11/12/09 Not much to report on this cloudy, blustery Arizona day. All went pretty well. Mom got out of the house for a bit and brought a few groceries back, along with some more ear medicine. I sure hope like she does that since it helps me not be so restless, for both our sakes. Well, it didn't work this night...not sure what the problem was. Had to go out a couple of times and then tossed and turned but at least it wasn't the ear.
11/13/09 This was a dreary, drizzly day and I really don't much like water drops falling on my head when I'm trying to go to the bathroom. Just imagine! So I held it as long as I could. Mostly slept today...then couldn't hold it any longer and again it was at bedtime of course. Mom was even more unhappy with my weak bladder when I did it again immediately after I'd been outside in the cold drizzle for so long a time Mom's sympathy won out. Guess she needs to be tougher, sad to say.
It seems to Mom like one day is just another version of the last sometimes. And indeed they may be, but in every tiny moment there are things to cherish and be grateful for--like remembering good times as in the picture. Mom often feels she needs something to look forward to in order to be enthusiastic. I sure hope she works more on being in the present moments as she knows she must.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Tuesday & Wednesday with Mom!

Black Jack: What a difference a decade makes--especially in a dog's life, eh?!
11/10/09 It was hard for Mom after Robyn left, mostly because the house got really quiet. She went for her walk but felt sorta down the rest of the day. It could have had something to do with my restlessness all night long, however. It was good that she finally rested in the afternoon. I thought for a while that I'd get to go for my walk but it got too cold and dark too soon. Mom asked me to forgive her for just not feeling like it, and I always have and always will of course.
Interesting how very much it affects Mom when someone she loves is hurting in any way... These humans sure do live complicated lives. At the end of the day I was restless again and for about 2 hours Mom tried everything she knew to do, finally putting some medicine in my ear. Maybe she'll get some more so she can do that more often...and get to sleep more.
11/11/09 I find that I'm not feeling like posting my blog entries quite as often these days because one day seems to meld into the next. I'm so glad I don't let that get to me like Mom does. Seems that if she doesn't have some thing to look forward to, she gets a little down. Now that sure isn't living in this very special moment of now like we dogs do, is it? I do believe that is one of the many reasons I'm sticking be sure she 'gets' it.
Both of us got our walks today--gorgeous weather. I don't much like the loose, crunchy leaves under my feet but Mom really does, going out of her way to scrunch them.
Kitchen floor sure smelled good today--TWO scrubbings!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Very long week end with Mom!

11/7/09 Mom was busy doing laundry and getting ready for Auntie Robyn to visit, so I didn't eat much and just went back to bed after morning 'duties. Only chowed down late in the afternoon. By then Mom had lost her steam and didn't really feel all that great--think it may have had something to do with the wind coming up.
11/8/09 Both of us were up early and boy, that dusk time of day is cold! So shocking it's hard to do my business and shiver at the same time. Sometimes Mom and I get our communication wires crossed. I made sure I stayed really 'laid back' so Mom and Auntie Robyn could talk and watch tv together most of the day after she arrived. Robyn seemed to really need to talk lots with Mom. I believe it had something to do with Jim's family and his not getting to come. I have to give Mom credit for fixing me more food when I finished up. I made sure to stand right by her legs so she wouldn't miss the clue that I was still hungry when I finished my first dish of food.
11/9/09 Whew! Mom and Auntie Robyn sure stayed busy during this day. They were in and out all day long--eating, shopping and bunches of talking! I was a very good boy...only having a couple of accidents before bedtime last night.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Thursday & Friday with Mom!

11/5/09 Today Mom seemed warmed by good wishes and excited to go for a birthday celebration breakfast with her friend. No walks... Later in the day another friend stopped by and she petted me. I barely knew she was there but sensed that she loves me like almost everyone else who has ever met me.

We didn't get our walks but it's okay once in a while to just lay around...just ask me.

11/6/09 This day I did get my walk--later in the day again. The air wasn't filled with smoke and it was really comfortable. A neighbor stopped to chat with Mom and gently petted me, too. I think people don't know what to expect of such an old guy. In fact sometimes I think they feel as if I might break or something. But that's sure not the case--just ask Mom. I'm pretty tough even if I act like I'm in a different world and stumble a lot.

Boy trying to enjoy my bedtime treat sure is a lot of work these days! And this has added another wrinkle to all Mom's already numerous care giving duties. In trying to get those darn cookies to stay in my mouth, I have to chase them all over the kitchen floor with my mouth. This causes lots of saliva to be left behind to be cleaned up. In addition, my wobbly legs don't let me change positions on my soft plush bed by myself, so in the night, Mom has to get up and help me so I quit thrashing around in my crate.

Then top this off with both nights ending in another kitchen floor scrubbing and I'm glad Mom was still in 'birthday mode'. She seems to get really agitated when I pee right next to the floor boards--must be something about how the urine soaks into the wall. Glad she has some chemical to take the odor away or she would be even more upset.

Oh well, tomorrow will be a better day.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Wednesday with Mom!

11/4/09 Today Mom got to go on her walk before she had to talk on the phone with Auntie Robyn & Jim about business. I didn't feel like eating and couldn't decide if I wanted to sleep, be outside or in my kitchen area. Mom tried everything to make me happy except for going back to the kind of food I really like. She tries to vary my diet and I just don't care. Find what works and stick with it I say! I was finally able to get that point across and enjoyed my really good food in the afternoon. I was still up wandering in the kitchen (also had an accident) when she got back with bags of food again today.
My walk was in the late afternoon again, but grateful to get to do it. I have a harder time when the sun isn't bright knowing what direction to go, but Mom guides me pretty well. It sure can be confusing, though.
A good portion of today I spent sitting in the middle of the hard, cold kitchen floor hanging my head--almost tipped over sleeping in that position a few times. But I just jumped right back out of my bed when Mom put me there. So I guess there's nothing left for her to do but be okay with my choice. Maybe she can call it my "meditation time".
Mom was restless most of the night--I think the smoke in the air was bothering her because I think I sensed her coughing once.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Monday & Tuesday with Mom!

Grooming day yesterday! This is how I used to look on grooming day--now I just get a short cut for my comfort and Mom's convenience.
11/2/09 It was a late walk but only for me... Mom is still processing 'being'. My ear area is bothering me again even when Mom keeps it clean. So it took a while for me to settle down for the night, but then all was well.
11/3/09 No big problems this morning--my ear/jaw area seems to be a bit better. Didn't really feel like eating the food with extra vitamins in it. I really don't know why Mom must keep putting stuff in my food. Guess she wants to keep me as healthy as possible. The beginning of Mom's birthday outings began today with her going out to eat.
Then this was grooming day. Boy, I sure don't like it, but feel so much better when it's all over. Today wasn't quite as bad as other times since I seemed to be really tired--so tired I even fell asleep on the table at one point when there was a lull in the clipping and scissoring. Carla is really as gentle and careful as she can be and I don't make it easy for her with my thrashing around wanting to stand on at least two of my wobbly feet. She told Mom that my problem isn't my teeth but something to do with my ear. Good thing because it would be impossible to fix a tooth problem for me now.
I had to be reminded with some kitchen time that sleeping in my bedroom bed is just fine...then a very good night again.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Week end with Mom!

10/31/09 I got to enjoy some special moments with Mom this morning, sitting in her lap in the sunshine. If I could have heard them I know Mom was thrilled to listen to the birds sing. She also loves the sunshine which can get a bit too warm with my black hair--that's why the fancy shirts even in the summertime. Usually I don't like to be held too long these days but this day it felt pretty good.
I thought I wasn't going to get my walk today, but late in the afternoon Mom took me and then went for her own. It was really a beautiful day leaning toward warm but just about right. I think this is why Mom moved us from our grassy Nebraska backyard to Arizona. And I can't say I'm unhappy (like Mom) that I don't have to try to wade or leap through that very cold white stuff in the winter. My belly used to actually drag in it and sometimes Mom couldn't even find me! Then I was covered in white balls until it melted!
11/1/09 We had a bit of a rocky start to this month of November...Mom just wasn't there when I woke WITH the urges going on! So she got to clean up not only my bed but my body as well. I then got to go back to my activity room bed to finish my morning sleep before breakfast.
Once again I thought I'd not get my walk but took a stroll late afternoon as the sun went behind the mountain which was nice for a change of pace.
Mom had yet another talk on the phone with Auntie Robyn and I think she is finally beginning to get her 'head on straight'. She says she's been feeling as if she doesn't want to do anything at all and so is planning to say no to what doesn't feel right until she figures out how to do only what she is led to do and not live only for others (except for me, of course). And we animals are here for these stubborn humans to get by our good examples that life is meant to be enjoyed not struggled through!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Thursday & Friday with Mom!

Black Jack: As you humans know it's easier to see things differently--even a puzzling celebration like Halloween and "go with the flow". SO here's another pose of me in my cowboy costume--guess I'm not really all that thrilled... But Mom & I wish you a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!Blank
10/29/09 Not really much to report today...and that's part of Mom's sadness. Sometimes she feels as if the's "lost" herself in the monotony of caring for me. She knows exactly what to do about it, but sometimes can't quite get a handle on it by herself.
Her patience did wear a bit thin when she kept taking me outside to only watch me sit in the cold and not feel the urge to relieve myself so she could get into a sound sleep. And even a dog can understand how frustrating that must be to my human. Then when she put me in the kitchen to calm down I DID feel the urge. So to top off her not so great day she got to scrub. At least she then knew she could get some uninterrupted sleep.
10/20/09 Again Mom took me out very early to watch me do nothing. But she slept nevertheless for a couple more hours. Today Mom went out with her girlfriend again. I do so love it when she goes out for a change of pace because I know how good it is for her and thus both of us. Then she spent some time talking to Auntie Robyn on the telephone. Out of that she devised a plan to help her handle the endless mundane chores in her life. She's keeping a list of all the those seemingly meaningless things to appreciate that they are really 'soul matters' in the bigger picture. She seems motivated now to do even more. Isn't it amazing how when these humans just look at things differently it makes all the difference? As she learns more and more I know I can move on one of these days.
Then Mom even went out to a movie. I was pretty lonely by the time she got back and it was a busy evening watching her play catch up, but ended up being although a late night, a good sleep.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Wednesday with Mom!

Black Jack: Couldn't wait to share my favorite 'cowboy' costume with you--hat, boots, badge and all!
10/28/09 This morning Mom left me out long enough that I felt the urge to do both of my 'jobs' outside. In fact she did that all day long since I've been taking longer and longer to 'feel the urge'. It sure was cold and windy every time. Even though Mom put an extra coat on me and the sun was shining most of the day, that wind just made if feel way too cold to be outside. Even though we live in the high desert of Arizona it tried to snow off and on all day long, too. So Mom and I stayed in the entire day. I don't think Mom feels so great cooped up like that with the clouds and all so she began feeling even worse as the day wore on, I could tell. I really don't like being exclusively an 'house dog' much either really. The night was a good one, not totally relaxed but good.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday with Mom!

10/27/09 After our rough night, Mom was a bit 'fragile' today. It didn't help either that the weather was cloudy and cooler than usual along with a high wind that kept blowing my coat up when I was outside. Early it felt really cold and so after a long time, Mom took pity on me bringing me in for breakfast before I'd had time to figure out why I was outside. So to add to her sad and weary feelings she had to scrub and clean up after me to begin our day together. Yesterday our friend Day did tell Mom that I'm losing more of my senses like depth perception and so it seems that I'm even more confused than ever. Of course this really affects Mom--to watch me must be difficult even though I'm not hurting. She's the kind of person who feels the hurt when some one she loves isn't doing well. I think I'd better try to digest the fact that moving on will be a good thing not only for Mom but for me, too.
My bedtime cookies has a bit different flavor than usual this night...believe Mom laced them with Calms and Rescue Remedy. She does this not just for her but so I'll feel less anxious, too. I don't mind a different flavor of any kind as long as I get my cookie. Hey, maybe I ought to be labeled a 'cookie monster'--HA! Well either I was ready for a great night's sleep or this ploy worked. It sure feels good to sleep well AND to give that gift to Mom.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Monday with Mom!

10/26/09 Today we both got our walks and then went about 'business as usual'. My "job" included snoozing and I thought about my favorite of all time toys again--my 'fuzzy monkey'. His floppy arms were what intrigued me and because I played with him so much he sure did get scruffy looking. Mom still has him but I just don't care to play anymore.
My dear friend Day was here today. She gave Mom a massage, did energy work on me and most importantly gave me some real peace of mind. I've been struggling with the idea of leaving this 'cushy' life. I told her I was uncertain what will happen when I do decide to go, so she shared mind pictures with me of how wonderful the next place will be. Along with reassuring me that Mom will be okay that really made a huge difference to me. Now I can relax and be more comfortable until the time I decide that I'm just too tired to be here any more.
Day also called me a 'fighter' but sometimes that turns out to be not such a comfortable quality. Last night we were awake and usually out of bed almost every hour. Mom is wondering if lots of "power naps" add up to a good night's sleep... On occasions like this Mom must draw on her 'saint-like' patience over and over. Even a nightmare-ish night like this is made a bit easier to handle, however, remembering what it was like when Katie was deciding to move on.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Week end with Mom!

10/24/09 After the rough start the day got a bit better, but Mom was very busy when all she really wanted to do was get away and/or relax. When she should have been leaving auntie Robyn was on the phone and then another friend needed to come over to ask a favor. It was 3 p.m. before she could take time for herself.
Man, even after Mom tried the 'kitchen reminder' I was so determined not to stay in my bed that I bumped my mouth on my bed so hard it began to BLEED. When Mom noticed she kept a level head and cleaned me up with nice cool damp paper towels, checking to be sure I didn't hurt anywhere. Even after that it was a restless night. Mom probably turned that light on and checked on me 10 or 12 times during the night. I just am having a hard time changing positions with my weakening hind legs. Sure hope I can figure out how to not do this so Mom gets her sleep. Gotta keep her healthy.
10/25/09 We finally got a larger chunk of sleep early this morning so we slept a bit later than recently. Mom spent mostly a lazy day but did cook some chicken mostly for me, I think since I haven't eaten as well as usual the last couple of days. She also shared some yellow squishy stuff with me that I really liked. I think they call it squash--what a peculiar name for a food...
This couldn't have been a much more 'laid back' day, but then they mostly all are for me these days. After my now usual brief "understanding lesson" that Mom wants me to sleep near her, it was a pretty good night, only needing to go out very early in the a.m.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Friday with Mom!

10/23/09 I was so happy that Mom got up early enough to get her walk and then enjoy a couple of hours out with a friend. It was a quiet day and I didn't even miss her while she was gone. Later she left again and came home with lots of cans--pretty sure food for me.
It was a really good night until about 4:30 in the morning when I just couldn't contain myself. Mom jumped out of bed immediately when she heard my commotion, but not soon enough. When she picked me up, in the dim light at first she thought water was streaming out of my mouth but with both relief that it wasn't something worse, and then dismay she discovered it was coming from the other end. Well that realization took enough time that I'd not only wet the bed but sprayed all around it and down Mom's front. Oh well, went right back to sleep in my kitchen bed while Mom had to figure out where to start to begin cleaning up the mess.
Think she may go out again today...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Thursday with Mom!

Someone needs to make treats big enough for me to find! I couldn't miss this one, eh?!
10/22/09 Mom got up while it was still dark--know she doesn't like to do that. At a slower pace today, we both finally got our walks--of course the fact that Mom took me first probably had some thing to do with my refusing to eat my breakfast (sure will be glad when this kind of food is gone). It isn't quite so hot these days and so we can go later in the day. Today was sunny and crisp again. I always seem to be able to find plenty of energy for walking--just like I used to without quite so much gusto.
Finally I settled down for a nice afternoon nap, unlike yesterday. Sometimes Mom treats me like I'm helpless and yet I need help. When we walk I'm becoming more and more dependent on her leading the way. In fact sometimes I have to bump into her to know what direction to go. And even in the kitchen sometimes I can smell my food but really have no idea where to find it. Should I drop one of my cookies, thoughtfully served in a white bowl, I can not see them at all since they are always the color of the floor--a shade if brown. If left on my own I'd be in sorry shape. Thank God for Mom.
Yet again another good night.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Wednesday with Mom!

That’s me on your right, at the beginning of my healthy, happy life!

10/21/09 Another great walk this a.m. and I really 'trucked'. All day though I was restless and Mom was trying so hard to figure out what was up with me. Sure wish I could just tell her, but sometimes I don't even know myself. Think my tummy might have been a bit upset--maybe Mom won't buy this most recent kind of food again. After all I don't care if I have a variety of flavors or not--I just like what I like. Maybe she'll even cook for me again...

With the way Mom hasn't been 'on her game' and my acting strange I think I wore her out today. Over all, however, I am so very grateful that my life has been a healthy one. I've only had to go to the place that makes me 'quake in my boots' a couple of times. And Mom has been just as healthy. I'm pretty sure it has lots to do with a positive attitude but also eating and doing healthy things. Rethinking, I guess as much as I worried and was frightened of things early on, I should be even more grateful that this didn't affect my health.

I even piddled on the kitchen floor at bedtime...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Tuesday with Mom!

10/20/09 Gentle awakenings--that's one of the very best part of my days. When I sleep too late and sometimes can't even contain everything, Mom still gently snuggles me awake. She has noticed lately that tail wagging has pretty much ceased. When Katie quit swishing her full white tail, Mom was so sad because she thought Katie was no longer happy. Well, it really is just that I don't seem to be able to find the energy to get my happiness all the way to my tail. (Heck, I don't even raise my tail like a flagpole when I pee anymore!) And what I feel now is a different kind of joy--sort of more a calm and peaceful contentment that doesn't require the demonstrating of it.
Mom's energy was different today. Think I like her more peaceful way when she is up way earlier than I and gets lots of her computer stuff done. Of course she just might have had less energy than usual, having awakened so early.
I was so happy to get out for my walk on this perfect day that I did my 'bunny hop run' even away from home whereas I usually just get excited to get back home. And people sure do look--well, just imagine a 90 year old man jogging down the road!
Uneventlful day giving me lots of time for my special contemplation time. Katie is on my mind again and Mom still hasn't put together her album. I guess her human friends are important, too.
Mom was clever this night, letting me roam the kitchen while she got ready for bed instead of putting me right into my confined bed from outdoor last call. This seemed to help me appreciate the plush bed that is for my overnight sleep.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Monday with Mom!

Another 'costume' for you--hope I'm getting you in the mood for Halloween (and maybe Christmas, too...)!
10/19/09 Well, I really blew my perfect record today! After Mom's thinking erroneously that I needed to go out in the middle of the night, she put me outside this a.m. and I still wasn't moved to go. Therefore when she brought me in I did a puddle on the floor--at least I missed any of the rugs...
Good thing Mom got her walk early, before the wind began blowing because her head seemed to be affected all the rest of the day. She let me stay outside longer than usual instead of my walk. Good thing I don't seem to have the same kind of allergies.
At bedtime the "jack-in-the-box" label would have been appropriate. It seems to be becoming a habit for me to not want to stay in my bedroom bed at bedtime. Poor Mom does everything she can think of to help me want to go to sleep so she gets pretty frustrated when nothing works, since she's ready for 'light's out'. I think it might have something to do with being confined after having my freedom in the kitchen all day long. Picking up on that, Mom put me back in my bed off the kitchen. Then either I get the message and want to go to bed in 'our' bedroom or I've gone so soundly to sleep that she can carry me to bed for what usually turns out to be a good all night sleep.