Preparing for the Arrival of Fall

Seasons change, that’s true, and lately we have been watching our Summer slip away and Fall is quickly sneaking in.  Gosh, I still remember earlier this year when we were still in the planning stages of starting our first garden and how excited we were.  We sat at the kitchen table and drew out our garden on paper with all the correct dimensions and figured out how many seeds we could plant, figured out all the material we needed from Home Depot to build our raised garden, and bought all of our seed cells and soil to start our sprouts indoors.

Now, as we look at our garden we can tell that it is almost time to say goodbye to our fruitful crop of fresh veggies that we have enjoyed all season, and then it starts all over again next year.  With Fall quickly creeping in on us, we need to start gathering seeds from our garden that we can use next year.  We are saving all of our red pepper seeds, cilantro seeds, and the seeds from all the dried out marigolds as we dead-head them.  We had so much fun with our marigold seeds that we saved from last year, as we started a bunch of them in a small pot and transplanted them into one large pot for one beautiful display of color.   Marigolds smell so good and they are deer resistant too, so if your flowers keep getting chewed up by the deer, try planting some marigolds!

We also planted strawberries for the first time this year and some of them did not take, but we did get a great many of them that grew into beautiful plants and they all have long runners all over the flower bed they are in.  When you plant strawberries for the first time, you will not reap any strawberries from them for the first year, so next year will see strawberries on our plants.  If anyone has planted strawberries before, do you know what you need to do to the strawberry plants when the season ends to prepare them for the winter months?  If you have any tips on how you cover them up, let us know!  We definitely know that we will need to put some sort of netting over them next year when they start producing fruit so the birds and chipmunks won’t eat them!

Here’s some great photographs of our garden & what’s going on in our pumpkin patch!

With the seasons changing, it also means that Nikita will be shortly working on getting her winter coat.  We can tell that she has been losing more hair lately and we know that her winter coat will soon arriving.  But, if it was not for the FURminator, we would have more hair on the floor than in the brush.  If you don’t already have a FURminator, you need to get one!  This brush really removes hair and since she has two coats of fur, this works well with removing the undercoat too.  The FURminator comes in many different sizes, so choose a brush that will work best for your dog or cat.  We got the larger one for Nikita since she is a bigger dog.

With the seasons changing, it also means that you need to get your house ready for the colder months.  It is better to start checking into these things now so you don’t have to do any of this when it is freezing out.  Have you checked around your doors to see if they need any caulking to keep the cold air out?  Putting weather stripping around your doors and windows also helps keep out any drafts.  We have also used those window film sheets that you place around your windows with double-sided tape, then use your blow dryer to shrink the film and this keeps out a lot of drafts and saves on the heating bill too!  We were surprised the first time we used this film (and yes, you can still see out the window) as it definitely kept the rooms warmer, so we definitely recommend products like this!  You also should start up your snow blower and get it ready for winter, buy some gasoline (when you can find it cheap), and get your snow removal items ready.  We bought an ice scraper for the driveway a few years ago for about $24 and we don’t know how we lived without this thing.  It it a heavy metal scraper that you use on the driveway to scrape and chop the ice off and it also works well on removing those hard packed tire snow tracks.  You just run it down the packed snow and it pulls it right up off the drive, then use your snow shovel to push all the mess away.

If you decorate your yard for Christmas, this is a good time too to climb up on your ladder and get all of those hooks placed on your gutter now so you can hang your lights.   Who wants to do this when it is snowing outside?  Not me!  Check your lights to make sure that they all light and replace any bulbs that burned out, also since you don’t want to head outside to turn off your Christmas lights when it’s snowing, make sure you have invested in an outside timer that you can set to come on when it gets dark, and goes off automatically to the time you preset.  We did our entire front yard bushes with LED white Christmas lights last year and also included LED icicle lights for the gutters.

We love watching the seasons change as it brings so many different things to do, but we could do without the snow shoveling.  Oh well, it happens though and we can’t stop the seasons, but we will be ready for next year and will have lots of fun planning our next garden and perhaps will include some celery, different tomato plants (like Juliet tomatoes) and whatever else new we want to explore.

The FURminator

Spring must be close by because the bulbs are emerging from the ground through the snow and I am  losing hair like crazy!  I got FURminated today and this is the pile of what actually came off of me.  My Mommy brushes me a couple of times a week to keep me looking great, and she decided to use the FURminator today too to remove a lot of my loose hair and undercoat.   The FURminator is amazing to watch, as you start at the nap of the neck and work your way down to the butt.  About half way down the back, you will see the hair collecting on the FURminator brush.  Once you get to the rump, you just push the little button on the brush to pop off the collected hair, or you can just pull it off.  Words to the wise though, be ready for some static cling in doing so, as using the brush creates this and the hair sometimes sticks to your hands.  It’s all good though, as when you are done, you have one good looking groomed dog!

If you don’t have a FURminator, I strongly suggest you pick one up as they work wonders on hair removal.  Check out the FURminators on eBay first as they have better deals and are a lot cheaper than if you purchased one from a pet store. 

Have a great weekend!  Love, Nikita

Spring Clean Your Pooch

Squeaky Clean

What do dogs love the most (besides eating)?  Getting dirty!  No matter how much they love to dig & roll around outside, we need to help keep them clean and well groomed.  A dog who is not well groomed can develop skin problems & other health related issues.  

Since us four-legged friends come in many shapes & sizes, colors & even funky textures, we all require basically the same grooming requirements to keep us looking snazzy & well groomed, not to mention smelling good too. 
 
HERE ARE SOME GROOMING TIPS TO HELP KEEP YOUR POOCH CLEAN & HEALTHY:

BATH TIME:  All dogs need to be bathed on a regular basis.  (no matter how much they hate this)  We should get a bath about every four to six weeks, but depending on your pooch’s length of hair, you may need to wash them more frequently.  Important Note about baths:  Wash their head….last!  The second a dog’s head gets wet, they “shake“.  (also make sure you don’t get any water in their ears too) 

BRUSH YOUR TEETH:  Yes, dogs do get their teeth brushed!  The best way to do so is by using a battery operated spin-toothbrush as this gets the job done faster.  Cleanliness is a must for a dog’s mouth.  No pooch should ever have bad breath.  If they do, they may have a problem with their teeth and gums and suggest that a vet visit is in order.

CLEAN INSIDE THEM EARS:  Ears should be kept clean too, in order to prevent any ear infections.  This is more important for poochies with long drop ears like Beagles (Snoopy Dogs) and Basset Hounds.  Just moisten a cotton ball with a pet ear cleaner and massage inside the ear to get all of that gunk out.

PEDICURES:  Keep those nails trimmed!  Ever listen to your pooch walk on your hardwood floors.  Do you hear that click click click sound?  If so, you might need to get those nails trimmed, because leaving the nails too long might make it hard for them to walk.  If you are cutting them yourself, always make sure you do not cut past the quick, which is the blood vessel inside the nail that runs almost to the end of the nail. 

TAME THE SHED MONSTER:  Daily brushing of your pooch helps with all the unwanted tumble weeds around the house, not to mention it makes them feel better too in these hot summer days ahead.  As I have mentioned before, you should definitely look into purchasing a FURminator for your pooch because this product works so well with hair removal & undercoats.  You will be amazed!  Also, by getting into the habit of brushing your pooch on a daily basis, this will also help cut down on knots & tangles.

Congratulations!  Your Pooch has been successfully Spring Cleaned!  Now go out and enjoy your day with your Pampered Pooch!

Squeaky Clean Pooch,
Nikita

 

Taming The Shed Monster

Shedding, it’s the natural thing that a pet does, but it does not mean that you have to accept it.  That is why you should definitely look into getting a FURminator for your pet.  We picked one of these up because a friend recommended to us that it works!  From the first time you use it, you will say “WOW” and keep saying that because it works that great!  The FURminator is supposed to eliminate 90% of shedding, so why wouldn’t you want to get rid of those tumble weeds from rolling around in your house. 

 

 

 

Here is an example of what came off of me today, in one day, and what won’t end up on the furniture either.  This neat little tool even takes off my undercoat, and that will help me stay cooler on hot summer days.  

So, what are you waiting for?  Tame that Shed Monster you have in your home and you’ll be happy you did.  Take it from me, Nikita, this thing  is great!  It also works on kitties too!  

The Tamed Shed Monster,
Nikita

 

Braggin Rights

 

Hey everyone, it’s me, Nikita!  I hope everyone had a great weekend and a Happy Mother’s Day!  My Auntie Rene just reminded my Daddy that I forgot to post something over the weekend….now I feel embarrassed!  YIKES!  I must have been really busy and I was, because I was trying to finish my little project for Grandma for Mother’s Day.  I made a little collage of photographs of me when I was first adopted and Grandma came over to see me for the first time, to photos of me now, on how big I got.  Grandma just loved it and I went….”Phew” because I worked hard on finishing it on time for her.  Grandma cooked a great tummy rubbing dinner for the family (stuffed cabbage), and I know that you all are thinking….that she should not have been the one cooking, but NO ONE can cook like Grandma can – – so who better to make this scrumptious meal, than Grandma! 

Daddy & his Mom

We spoiled her (of course) with tons of presents, and even one that made her cry (with tears of joy).  I love my Grandma so much! 

Our wonderful neighbor (Jen – she’s the one who’s getting married on June 4th) let Mommy borrow her really cool doggie brush for a few days to see if she liked it.  It was called the FURminatorWOW, is what my Mommy said when she first used it!  This brush gets a rating of a 10 in Mommy’s book because it worked so great on my long puppy hair and helps with 90% of shedding.  Daddy ordered one for us so that I can look fabulous and also help with the “tumble weeds” (this is what Mommy calls them) or furballs that seem to gather around the house.   If you don’t have one of these, you truly need to get one! 

We did our first cookout over the weekend and Daddy & Mommy had some tasty hamburgers and homemade thick-cut french fries (are you getting hungry yet?) and I….. casually walked by Daddy’s glass of wine that was sitting on the driveway and took some sneaky sips before being caught.  “Hey, this is not my water bowl, but I like it!”  LOL    Mommy is trying to teach me a new trick – how to crawl!  She figures that I already know how to lay down, so teaching me how to crawl on the floor would be easy to learn.  So far, I kinda got the concept of how to do this, but my butt keeps popping up in the air.  I guess I have to work on this one a little more! 

My Auntie Rene also “reminded me” that I did not do my blog post on the American Idol elimination last week – Jacob Lusk.  This was no shocker that he was sent home, as his performances started to head down the ladder for the last few weeks.  There is a lot to say about Jacob: he is a great singer, sings gospel music like an angel, and adds a nice spark to any R&B music he sings, but…..it was time for Jacob to head home.  This is not the end for Jacob, as his time on American Idol will open many doors for him, but remember….being called a “Diva” is not a good thing if you are a man.   As for this week’s elimination, we are not sure that Lauren will be able to handle it if she ends up in the bottom (again).  My advice to her is, “Stop crying….you’re in the Top 4 Baby“.  (Stefano would gladly take your place! LOL) 

Anyhow, I hope Auntie Rene is happy that I updated my blog today & got all of you up to date on what is going on in my little world!  There is one little critter that I wish I could get though….it’s the little jittery chipmunk that has been teasing me all morning on the front porch!  He knows that I can’t get him, but he just runs back and forth teasing me.  Your time is limited my little jittery friend…hee hee hee

Sunny Monday kisses to you,
Nikita

P.S. – Mommy wants to thank Daddy for surprising her with the sterling silver heart & diamond necklace for their Anniversary & Mother’s Day (THANKS DADDY – We Love you!)