Blue Ball: A Charlie Guest Post

Charlie blue ball

Woohoo!  It’s Ball Season!

Some of you love baseball.
My family cheers for the Pittsburgh Pirates.

We love football too – if it is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Right now – our Pittsburgh Penguins are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs,
and though they use a puck instead of a ball, it is still very exciting.

There is also basketball, softball, tennis, golf, volleyball, soccer, wiffle ball, ping pong, bowling, pool, and probably a million other ball games,

but my favorite ball game
(if you don’t count eating meatballs) 

is Blue Ball!

My mom brought out the bucket of blue balls the other day, and boy oh boy did we have fun!

It’s a simple game, but such a BLAST!

Here is how you play it.

Step 1:  Mom throws the ball in the grass.

Step 2:  I run and get it, and then I run back.

Step 3:  Now here is the FUN part….

Sometimes I bring the blue ball back to Mom,
but other times…..  I ZOOOOOOOM right by her and trick her!

Sometimes I bring it to her and drop it….  but (get ready for this!) right when she goes to pick it up,
I grab it first!

And then – (are you ready for this one?)
other times I bring it back – but don’t let go of it, and I make her beg for it.
Sometimes Mom pretends to cry – – –  like I can’t see a fake a mile away!

Other times I let her yank at it for a while and I ferociously (fake of course – but she doesn’t know!) GROWL!

Blue Ball is most fun when you play it by varying up the way you play Step 3 every time.

Isn’t that a great game?!

Hope you have some fun playing whatever kind of ball you like this weekend!

Woofs & Wags,

Charlie is an adopted dog with brown eyes and a white-tipped tail who brings joy and laughter to his family and friends.  Charlie is a gifted writer, raving food critic, cat, chipmunk, and donut lover, and exceptionally photogenic model.  Some of his best friends are Mike the UPS Man, Cliff the Mailman, and ANYONE who delivers pizza to the house.   If you would like to read more guest posts by Charlie, simply type “Charlie” into the Search box at the top right hand corner of this link:   If you would enjoy a companion like Charlie, please consider pet adoption.



Watercolor Week 7 – Mikey

watercolor mikey

For this week’s watercolor experiment, I decided to try to paint one of my favorite creatures on the planet – my furry son, Mikey.

Mikey head shot

I used this photo from Mikey’s recent guest post as my inspiration.

Gosh I love this little guy so much!

How did I ever become one of “those” people that oogle and google over their dog?!

I guess when I realized how much joy a pet can bring to your life.

If I leave the house for five minutes or five days, I get the same excited greeting – like I am the best thing that ever happened to him and he is so happy to see me.

Sadly, Mikey has cancer, and we are not sure how much longer he will be with us.  He is slowing down every single day.  And every day, I tell him how much I love him and what a good boy he is at least 10 more times than the day before.

Maybe he will surprise us and rally, but for now, we are enjoying every single day we are given to enjoy this precious creature that loves like none other.   And not only us – but every person that comes to our home – from the UPS man who bring him cookies to the mailman who is not allowed to give cookies, but always gives him at least two minutes of ear scratches and chin rubs, to every visitor that sits on our living room couch who is almost certain to have Mikey jump in their lap for at least a few minutes (to make them feel welcome of course!).

We “rescued” Mikey from the humane society about seven and a half years ago, where he was living after being saved from a “kill” shelter in another state.  He is a “mutt” in terms of dog definition – guesses are part beagle and part Jack Russell.  But I think what really happened is Mikey rescued us – not the other way around.  He has shown us pure unconditional love and joy and gratitude and gratefulness and goodness.

I wish I could have done his beautiful spirit better justice, but I don’t think I have it in me to redo.  I don’t have the ability to capture his beautiful spirit just yet.  But it is in my heart, and that is a gift I will cherish forever.

mikey watercolor

So here’s to Mikey – the best ever!

Cheers & Hugs,


The tomato caper

garden 4

This weekend, I planted my little vegetable garden. It was such a beautiful day on Sunday and prime planting time here in Northwestern PA.

A couple years ago, I decided to turn this tiny little plot in the side yard right off the driveway into a little vegetable garden instead of planting shrubs and mulching like the rest of it that is wrapped around the back.  I just planted a couple of tomato plants and a few herbs the first year to see how it would go.  It was so exciting watching the yellow tomato blossoms turn into little green tomatoes, then grow and turn yellow, then pink…. but then POOF! – before I could get a red one – they were gone!  Never got even one red tomato that first year.

You see, I didn’t have a fence around it that year.  Didn’t think we needed it.  You know – we do have guard dog Mikey to chase away any deer or critter that comes close to the house (that is his job and he is very diligent about it as he flies in and out of his doggie door – unfortunately baroofing on his way out – even when I am on a conference call during the work day!) when he spies any movement from his slumber-filled days.

garden 3

But nary a tomato I got that year, and I couldn’t figure out how the deer or rabbits got them all without Mikey chasing them away.

Then one day, after going into the office, I pulled in the driveway and caught the culprit….  It was MIKEY!  He was sprawled out mid-garden nibbling away and feasting on a few plump red tomatoes that happened to ripen that day.

So the next year, up went a fence around my little garden – not to keep the deer and rabbits out, but to keep Mikey out!

Mikeys tomato plant

I do, however, plant one tomato plant each year on the OUTSIDE of the fence…. just for Mikey.


He might be just a teeeeeensy bit spoiled….

But – that is what’s so great about Life in between…

Cheers and hugs,