Hot Dogs Gotta Have Tryptophan in Them

PATRIOTIC NIKITA

By now, everyone should be back to work after the long holiday weekend, dreading going back to the daily grind.  It’s hard heading back after being home for a few days relaxing, and getting back into the swing of things at the office, but believe me, once you walk through those doors….WHAM, it’s back to normal & the race is on!

PATRIOTIC BELLA

But over the weekend, we relaxed, had family & friends over, enjoyed a good fire pit amongst a few rain drops, watched more fireworks & smoke bombs and consumed many many hot dogs.  But what I had noticed is that I was in a constant state of sleepiness to which I contend the hot dogs had tryptophan in them.  I know that hot dogs have lots and lots of stuff in them that I don’t even want to about, but I figured out that my sleepiness was due to the massive consumption of hot dogs.  Hmmm, interesting.  Who knew?

GRANDMA NIKITA AND BELLA

Nikita and Bella had a great time with everyone outside and enjoyed chewing on all the ice cubes.  (did you notice that Bella is still wearing her birthday tutu?)  They love their Grandma and always ended up sitting next to her.  But the funny thing that happened is when Nikita saw something and went to run, and she pulled Auntie on her chair with wheels, right out of the garage.  WHIZZZZZZZ, there goes Auntie!  The only bad thing that came out of this was that Daddy got hurt, as the chair wheel smashed into his ankle.  He’s ok now, once Mommy really got Neosporin on it to heal.  (someone always gets hurt in a holiday related accident, don’t they?)

FIRE PIT

But there was one thing that I had always wanted to try to photograph, and I got the chance to do so this weekend.  Take photographs of sparklers!  Yeah for sparklers!  Every time someone picked up and lit a sparkler, I went into action!  I tried to hold the camera really still (as I did not have a tripod with me by the fire pit) and just kept snapping away until the sparkler fizzled out.  One by one, everyone kept lighting them, ooooh I was in heaven snapping away!  I could not wait to get back inside to upload all of my photographs to my Dell Mini to see what I had taken.

VAL SPARKLER

JULIE SPARKLER3

The outcome of the photographs was not bad at all, for my first time ever taking sparkler pics!  It is just amazing that  the camera can capture each and every little sparkle that shoots off the stick as it slowly <POOFS> itself out.  I will have to do some more research on how to capture a better sparkler photo and have my subject in better focus too, but all in all, I love how they turned out.  (but, if any of you seasoned photographers and have any hot tips on how to photograph sparklers, let me know)

TURTLE SPARKLER

JESSICA SPARKLER2

JEFF SPARKLER

VAL SPARKLER2

JULIE SPARKLER

A good time was had by all, no sparkler injuries, fire pit was safely put out, ankle healed, and I am finally out of my hot dog coma.

Happy Fourth of July

For those of you who have dogs, you know what the Fourth of July brings.  Fireworks. Dogs go crazy and bark at each and every boom, some dogs are frightened and need comforting, but nonetheless, our dogs are affected in some way by them.  My heart goes out to those who get scared of the booms, as Nikita used to be frightened by them, but now she just gets all  twitter-pated and huffs and puffs as she runs through the house.  Bella could care less, but barks, just because Nikita is.  Silly dogs.

Have a safe & happy 4th and make sure you take time to relax & enjoy the day with family, friends, some great grilling & fire pits!

Here are some of my favorite fireworks photographs… Enjoy!

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The Storm on the Eve of the Fourth

Last night we had another huge storm whip through here with high winds, lots of rain, thunder & lightning.  I have been trying for a long time now to capture in a photograph a lightning bolt, but have been unsuccessful to date.  I sat by the front window last night trying to do just that and did not get any lightning bolts, but got some great storm photo’s. 

 

While sitting in the dark at the kitchen table watching the storm, my eye caught some interesting shadows on the ceiling from the kitchen light.  For me, being a photographer for many years, I notice things like this, as these things make very interesting subjects.  So I decided to take our little battery operated LED light and place it on the floor to see what Nikita would do.  She approached it, sniffed, and started to dance around it.  She then started batting it with her paws all around the floor as the glow from the LED lit up her face.  (sillydog)  That was the only fun that she had last night, as the loud thunder and lightning had her glued to us the rest of the time. 

Happy Fourth of July!  Have a safe holiday and remember that if you do set off any fireworks, you may be start a fire on all of the dry lawns in the neighborhood, so think twice about it.

We were starting to think that we might perhaps be rained out for our Fourth of July cookout, but woke up to sun and a high humidity index.  Great!  Now we will be sweating to death over a hot grill, but that’s ok because nothing beats a grilled hot dog with slightly burned edges.

Happy Fourth of July

Everyone is hustling and bustling around town, and stores are packed with shoppers that are stocking up on buns and hot dogs for their Fourth of July parties, but don’t forget about your treats!  We have an easy idea for you that everyone will enjoy, Patriotic Strawberries!  We featured these last year, but thought that we would share them again, as they are delicious, not to mention easy to make. 

If you have a melting pot, use this to melt a little over a cup of your white chocolate melts (found at any craft store) and dip your strawberries in the white chocolate, then dip them into blue sprinkles.  That’s it!  Now, wasn’t that easy?    If you don’t have a melting pot, you could melt your chocolate in a glass measuring cup in the microwave at 10 second intervals, but be careful not to burn your chocolate.  The melting pot works best because it keeps the chocolate evenly heated and will not burn the chocolate.  When you use the old method of melting chocolate in a glass measuring cup in the microwave, the chocolate will melt, but it will also cool while sitting on your counter, that’s why we recommend for you to use a melting pot as it works best! 

Making decorations for the Fourth of July is simple.  Even a red bow on a flower pot spruces it up.  Or, how about pulling out your big colored rubber bands (we know you have a supply in your home somewhere) and pull the rubber bands over a glass votive holder, red band, white band, red band (you get the idea).  The glow of the candle, of course, will not shine through the rubber bands, but it decorates your table in Patriotic style! 

We have made some of our own wood patriotic crafts, like our patriotic wood house boxes, our patriotic monogram “R” that adorns our front door in style, and even used some pieces from a pallet and made a quick and easy patriotic flag to hang in our garden on the fence.  All it takes is a little red, white, and blue and some creativity to pull off a festive Fourth! 

And, you can’t celebrate the Fourth without fireworks, so we wanted to share with you some of our outstanding fireworks photographs that we took last year.  You can click on the photographs to enlarge them, if you wanted! 

Have a Happy and Safe Fourth! 

Fireworks & French Fries

Over the weekend, our community had their Home Days and Daddy & Mommy headed out for the night.  I had to stay at home, which I am ok with since they can trust me now to be alone in the house. 

Mommy wanted to show you some of the great photographs that she took that night.  She uses a Nikon D40 Digital Camera and it captured some truly awesome photographs of the fireworks.  Click on each photo to see how truly beautiful the photos are as it enlarges them for you to view. 

 

Daddy and Mommy took their chance on trying to win me a stuffed toy (Thanks for thinking of me) at this water balloon game.  You had to shoot water into the mouth of a Tazmanian Devil that blew up a balloon and the first person to get their balloon to pop, won a prize.  Mommy & Daddy both tried to win me a prize to bring home to me, but in the end, they ended up spending $6 and got nothing.  What a rip off those carnival games are!  I think that they are rigged and the operator of the game picks who they want to win.  Didn’t that guy know that Daddy & Mommy were trying to win me a prize?  If he did, he would have let them win.  Grrr, I don’t like that carnival guy!  Thanks anyways to Daddy for trying real hard to get me something, as he is always surprising me with new toys.  (I love you Daddy – You’re the Best!) 

Home Days was crowded with a lot of kids, figures, as it was hard to get around with the mass groups standing around talking & texting on their phones.  But we did get the chance to run into a few of our friends and neighbors.  We also ran into this nice guy named John.  John works for our city and is the nicest guy around and has replaced our mailbox that was damaged by the big snow plow trucks and even the mailman who hit it once.  John told Daddy & Mommy some funny stories of the kind of calls they get and he said that this one little old lady called them to her house to remove a “rock” that someone got in her driveway.  When they got there, they saw that the “rock” was more like a pebble in size and they laughed. (they removed it, of course)  And then someone else had the great idea of what to burn in their fireplace.  They figured that who wants to go outside for wood in the winter, soooo why not just burn your Christmas tree (your WHOLE Christmas tree) in the fireplace!  John said that this person just stuck the top of the tree in their fireplace and figured that while it burned down, they would just keep pushing it into the fireplace and burn the whole thing up!  Well, that is not what happened as you could guess – – their house caught on fire!  This guy wins the stupid award of the month for this stunt! 


There were so many things to look at our Home Days, lots of vendors, lots of food, perhaps the next Mayor was even there air brush painting t-shirts, some very loud bands were playing, but the best part of Home Days was Mommy getting to spend some quality time with Daddy.  She loves Daddy so much and hopes that he knows that in his heart that her love grows for him every day. 

I hope that you have enjoyed all of Mommy’s photographs, and I can’t thank her enough for helping me document my life through her photos.  Take time for your pets every day and make sure that they are happy, just like you go through life with your significant other – make them happy too!  They are who bring the happiness into your life.  Make sure they know that you love them as life is too short!  Even the simpliest gesture of time at Home Days with the one you love, can bring happiness to the heart.

 

Plop Plop Fizz Fizz Oh What a Relief it is

Waiting for the New Year to arrive

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!  I hope everyone had a blowout celebration to an end of another year and rung in the New Year in style!  As for this puppy, I turned in early and did not even see the ball drop.  Ball drop?  Was that one of my balls?  Where did they get that ball, I want it!  Anyhow, I had a great end to my year because Daddy & Mommy invited my Auntie and my Grandma over for New Year’s dinner and spent time playing with me!  I always get so excited when I see them, and I sometimes make little puddles on the floor, sorry Mommy.  I was so tuckered out after everyone left and I turned in early – I just grabbed my fluffy bone pillow like I always do and ran & jumped on the bed & I was out like a light, but I woke up at Midnight to the sound of fireworks going off and of course, I had to growl & bark at them like a good puppy should.  I even slept in late with Daddy and Mommy this morning and was a good little puppy.

Daddy & Mommy took me over to visit the nice ladies across the street in the Medical Building the other day (their names are Lisa & Maggie).  I love visiting them so much because they rub my belly and give me hugs, kisses, and treats.  Can’t wait to see them again! 

Lisa & Maggie

I thought that I would share with you a list of some of the things that I don’t like:  (the list is not long)

  1. The garbage can by the curb – I hated that thing since I first saw it when I was little.  I growl at it every time I see it – then I have to growl at the man in that big noisy truck who picks up the garbage can
  2. Daddy’s gas grill – Not sure why I don’t like this thing, but when I saw the cover on that thing blowing in the wind, it scared me and I had to stand my ground and growl at it.  Now everyone is safe! 
  3. The upright vacuum – Just to clarify, the vacuum that I LOVE is the little thing called a canister vacuum, that is the one that Mommy uses when she vacuums me off, this upright thing is so lound and scary that I run and hide when Mommy gets this thing out of the closet.  Grrr!
  4. Mommy’s new Smoothie Maker – Daddy just got Mommy a thing called a Smoothie Maker for Christmas (I know Mommy likes it a lot – thanks Daddy), but when Mommy turned that thing on the other day to make a Strawberry Bananna Smoothie for her and Daddy, I had to protect my little world and jumped and growled at it and I even made noises that I have never made before, but they were coming from deep down in my belly.  Daddy & Mommy were cracking up over my shenanigans, but I stood my ground with that Smoothie thing and protected everyone! 
  5. The word “No” – Now, this is something that I know I have to work on, at least to make Daddy & Mommy happy, but whenever I hear that word, I act up like a bad puppy and run around and don’t listen, who knows why I do this, but every time I hear that word, Look Out!

I hope that all of you had a Happy New Year and you look forward to the start of another year with your loved ones.  Peace out!

HAPPY NEW YEAR from NIKITA!

Hugs & New Year Kisses,
Nikita