Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.


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Neither here nor there

Katie here, continuing my travelog. Mama and I are headed home to daddy, and today is our second day of driving. All day. Yesterday I wasn’t very good about being in the car for so long, but I can explain!

Which looks better? Me or the mountains?

No one told me that we were driving home! I thought we were just going to the beach or the park and I didn’t understand that I’d be cooped up in the car all day! So I kept asking mama if we were there yet and by the end of seven hours she was about over the whole travel with Katie-girl thing.

So she says.

What a pretty day to travel!

Today I was a lot better, though by the last hour I did throw a bit of a fit. After all, my supper was more than 2 hours late! I had to remind mama that it was unacceptable to hold up a princess’s supper.

Anyway, we drove a little bit of the Blue Ridge Parkway on our way north. Not a lot of it, mind you, cause mama is on a mission to get home, but we got to see a little bit of it. She loves the layers of blue.

Perfect!

Me too, I could sit and look out over the view for a long time. Or until someone gives me a biscuit.

Enjoying the view.

Speaking of which, I’ve been snacking on treats Reilly’s mom packed for us. My guy even gave me heart biscuits! He’s a special guy, my Reilly.

Thank you Reilly sweetie!

Mama is really enjoying watching spring unfold all over again. It was spring weeks ago in Alabama and now that we’re in Kentucky we get to see the redbud and dogwood trees blooming all over again.

Isn’t this pretty?

And the deciduous trees are just budding out, with red and peach and orange and lime green making the mountains just glow in the sun. Mama couldn’t get a good picture of it cause she was driving. But the image below she took when we were at the Kentucky welcome center. The trees were on the other side of the freeway, and the light wasn’t as perfect as she’d seen when she was driving, but you can kinda see how beautiful it is here this time of year.

Can you see all the colors ?

Tonight mama is worried and is watching the weather channel. It looks like tomorrow we’ll be driving right into a bad storm. She can’t decide if we should get up early and try to beat the storm home, or if we should stay here for another night. But she says it would probably be two more nights because Saturday afternoon all the way into Sunday looks bad.

I don’t know what we’re going to do. Mama says we should get some sleep and see what tomorrow looks like. I personally think we should go back to our lake house, but mama says she has stuff to do in Michigan.

Glad we had a good day, cause tomorrow is going to be different.


Stuff to do? I thought she was retired!

Signing off….your travel guide Katie-girl.

Just another photo of me. Mama just won’t quit.


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A date with my boyfriend

Katie here. You all know I’m down in Florida waiting out the snow up north and visiting with my boyfriend Reilly Cowspot Dog. Well guess what? Yesterday we got to go on a date and we went to Reilly’s park!

The moms asked us if we wanted to go and we got all excited. But then, in a typical mama fashion, she took forever to get all her stuff together and eventually I made my opinion known.

Come ON people! Let’s get moving!

They moved a little faster after that and soon we were all in the back of the car headed out!

Everybody’s ready to go mama!

Once we got to the park we could hardly contain ourselves. So many great smells, and we were barely out of the parking lot!

Good sniffing everywhere!

Some of the time I spent with my special guy….

Let’s go this way Reilly!

…but most of the time we all just hung out together. That’s OK. I like Reilly’s little brother Denny too.

We didn’t always agree which way to go.

Of course the moms made us stop to take pictures. We tried to cooperate.

We’ll all look at you guys if you promise this is the last time we have to pose.

But sometimes we just had to take things into our own paws and put a stop to all the photography.

Enough is enough moms!

We did agree to sit with each of the moms for a photo. We figured if they had to do it they’d see how annoying it was to be interrupted while having a fun day at the park just for a photo opportunity.

This is my mama with all of us!

We had the best time! I treasure every minute I get to spend with my guy Reilly and his family. And that’s not just cause his mom gave us doggy ice cream when we got back home.

Yum. How come you never buy me these mama?

Yep, I’m a lucky princess. Kisses to my prince Mr. Reilly.

Me and my guy.

And thanks to mama and Reilly’s mom for taking us on a wonderful date!

What’s next mama?


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Ocean spray is good for my furs

A beautiful spring day at the beach.

Katie here, continuing as your tour guide. Today I take you to see the Atlantic Ocean in northern Florida. Though to be honest most of what you’ll see is me. But that’s why you come to visit my, ahem, mama’s blog. Right?

I thought so.

Showing off my true form, and proving I’m not fat! It’s just fur people!

This will have to be short as I had a very long day yesterday driving in the car for miles and miles and hours and hours and then today I got to walk on the beach forever. So I’m behind in my sleep quotient and I need to get to bed.

I’m visiting my intended Mr. Reilly Cowspotdog in Florida for a couple of days. He didn’t feel up to frolicking on the beach so I sacrificed and went to inspect one of his beaches for him. I always do my duty, yes I do.

Everything’s OK under these rocks, Reilly!

It was a little bit warm, at 63 degrees, but very windy which kept my furs fluffy and cool. There was hardly anyone else on the beach.

Nose into the wind and on a mission.

That meant that mama could let me run free most of the time, though she had to hook me back up to my leash when joggers went by because I like to tell them off and mama says that’s rude. Whatever. It’s Reilly’s beach and I’m just making sure everyone knows that we shelties rule!

I got the zoomies for a little bit, I was so happy!

Mama took a few pictures of things that were not me, but not very many. Mostly I kept her entertained by all the fun I was having. She likes watching me enjoy new things. I guess that’s why she takes me with her on so many of her adventures.

Artsy pelicans.

My only complaint about this adventure was the first wave. The tide was coming in and I forgot how wet the ocean was and I was standing there and a wave came up and went right over my feet! I jumped and mama laughed and I twirled around trying to get it off me and then it left. I was mortified and never let it happen again! Mama didn’t get a good picture, but this is sort of how I looked.

Wet feet! Wet feet! Wet feet! Get it off of me mama!

Oh, and another embarrassing thing was that mama kept trying to get a picture of my behind with the wind blowing all the fur forward. She says it was cute. I made sure she didn’t get a decent shot. Then just as we were leaving she said she got me AND the danger flag.

Drats. Never let your guard down with a mama and her camera.

Anyway, I’m outta here, I have things to do and people to sniff.

Talk to you guys later. Don’t look at my behind.

Signing off for now, Katie, beachcomber extraordinaire.

Mama! Don’t you embarrass me!


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Gotcha Day, the adventure continues

Shhhhhh….mama’s sleeping and I wanted to get back online and tell you about the rest of my Gotcha Day, the 11th anniversary of me coming to live with mama and daddy. As you know this year I’m with mama down South, and she forgot all about my anniversary! But we spent the day out adventuring with my Aunt and Uncle, so that’s OK.

After we got finished with the crazy art compound Pasaquan we drove another hour and arrived at a Providence Canyon State Park. It’s Georgia’s very own Grand Canyon!

There were red cliffs and white cliffs and a beautiful blue sky.

Mama and Uncle and Aunt and I decided to walk down to the bottom. Mama was a little worried because it was a warm day and she was picturing herself carrying me back up if I overdid it. We asked a Ranger how far down it was and she said it was a little over a mile down and back up. Well! I can do a mile mama!

She still looked worried, it wasn’t the down that concerned her; she said OK, but she’d be watching me and if I got to lagging she was turning around. Plus she had water for me, and treats. So maybe it would be fun.

Are we going all the way down there mama?

So down and down we went. We saw lots of people coming up and most of them were panting just like me. It was pretty steep. But there were lots of trees for shade and it got cooler the further down we went. Once we got to the bottom I instantly saw a problem.

Water. Lots and lots of water. Not deep, but definitely wet and as you all know I do not get my feet wet. No I do not. I am a princess and it is unseemly to have damp feet. Plus I just went to the groomer a couple weeks ago and I am not up for having to do that all over again.

Ummm…that’s not water is it?

So I suggested we just observe it from the edges. But my peeps seemed to think we needed to walk upstream. I tried to find the dry edges to walk. I was very focused on not getting my feet wet.

Let’s stay over here where it’s dry!

But some of the stream didn’t have dry edges! Oh NO! What is a princess to do?

Oh no! Wet feet!

Eventually, when I had to, I just gave in and walked in the water. Don’t tell them, but it was pretty cool and my feet weren’t so warm when they were wet. But my beautiful white feet turned Georgia clay red!

I don’t like it but I guess I don’t have a choice.

I’m hoping mama doesn’t notice that and doesn’t make me go back to the groomer. I was a pretty wet mess by the time we turned around to head back to the car.

I give up!

On the walk back up the cliff we stopped a whole lot. And not just for me either – my people were huffing worse than me! Most of the time I was out front pulling them along. As you may recall my mama calls me a mountain goat.

Resting on the way up. Don’t look at my red feet.

I did really well, and drank all my water and ate a few treats along the way. We saw lots of dogs but it was mostly the children we ran across that wanted to meet me. I let everybody talk to me and pet me and tell me how beautiful I was (even though I knew I was far from beautiful dripping muddy water off my furs!) and I thought the whole thing was fun, though a bit muddy for the likes of a princess.

I told mama that was stretching it a bit much, so the next place we went that day was a marina where I got to sit under Spanish moss and on a porch with rocking chairs.

This is pretty. And a lot drier!

That was more like it.

Except for the warning about the alligators.

What does this sign say mama?

Geeze mama! What were you thinking! I’m alligator bait here! Let’s get back to the car and home so I can get my supper. Sometimes I don’t think you even have a brain woman!

Once we got home and I got my supper I was all stretched out on my comforter when my Aunt decided she’d comb out all the seed pods and sticks caught in my muddy red fur. I opened one eye, didn’t tell her off or anything, just got up and crawled under the bed.

Enough people! (Don’t look at my red feet.)

I’d had enough adventuring and I didn’t want to be bothered. Mama and my Aunt laughed and said that was OK. And they let me sleep till the next morning by which time I had pretty much cleaned myself up my own way. A princess knows how to prepare for the new day after all. She doesn’t always need help from her people.

The next day I went for a long boat ride and saw cool stuff, but that messed my fur up too. I swear, mama needs to come up with a more sedate adventure for me now. Cause I can’t keep putting myself back together every single day, you know?

I know you know.

Don’t tell the peeps, but this was sorta fun.


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How I spent my Gotcha Day

This looks like a magical place!


Katie here! Did you know that March 31 is my Gotcha Day? That’s the anniversary of the day I came home to live with my mama and daddy. Well, this year I am down in the South with my mama and you know what? She forgot my anniversary! She didn’t remember until we got home a whole day late!

But I forgive her because on the actual day we were so busy that even I forgot to ask for an anniversary treat! (Plus I got lots of treats because we were out adventuring all day long!)

Lots of big faces everywhere.

Saturday morning, my Gotcha Day, my Uncle and my Aunt and mama and I went to a very interesting art compound about an hour south of Columbus Georgia. It’s called Pasaquan, and it was built by a hippie kinda guy back in the 70s. (Mama says don’t say back in the 70s cause according to her that was just a couple years ago. Whatever mama.) You can hear him talk about it if you go to the link above. You can also google it and find out more. It’s been restored and is supported by Columbus State University and the Kohler Foundation.

The hippie dude, whose name was Eddie Owens Martin, called himself St. Om, and spelled it St. EOM.

Signed and dated.

It was a warm day but Mama and my Aunt and Uncle made sure I had water and got to sit in the shade a bunch. Still, being the model that I am, I had to pose in front of some stuff.

Lots of pretty color here!

I tell you, the colors here were so bright that sometimes I had to squint my eyes! Oh wait. That was the sun. Well anyway. We walked around all over but my favorite spot was this circle of sand. Whenever we were near there, while mama was busy taking pictures of stuff not me, I would run over there and stand in the sand. I wonder if she got my message that I wanted to go to the beach?

It’s cooler at the beach mama!

Mama would look around when she got done with her silly camera and say, “where’s Katie?” HA! Sometimes I was standing right behind her. And sometimes I was at my beach! After awhile she just never let go of the leash. Darn.

Just one of many crazy and beautiful walls.

There was a cool house there, with these funny steps up to it. I ran right up the steps because they were nice and wide…

Come on up!

…even though I knew that I’d have to pose on them for mama. I’ve got this gig figured out. Pose for a picture, get a treat. Sometimes mama would say “OK sweetie, this is the last one.” But I knew she was lying. It’s never the last picture!

We stayed a long time. They even packed a picnic lunch and ate it under some trees. Mama couldn’t stop taking pictures, and a lot of them weren’t all about me!

I think that guy was watching me.

There were plenty of places where I could rest in the shade while my peeps explored. We had the whole thing to ourselves except for a little bit where one other guy was there taking pictures. Mama says she’ll have to bring daddy here some day.

This guys’s watching me too mama!

I think the man that created this had a different sort of mind than me. For example, just about the only animals in any of this work were snakes. No dogs. I don’t know what he was thinking. Though he did have two big shepherds that kept him company out here in the country.

Layers of walls filled the space.

There was so many colors and shapes it was almost overwhelming. It’s definitely a place you should visit if you’re ever in that part of Georgia.

All sorts of color everywhere.

Full disclosure though, there are some art pieces depicting naked men and women. So maybe don’t bring your kids or your mother. Shelties are OK though.

Call ahead for the hours. We hear they change by the season.

Mama says there is so much more to show you but maybe she’ll put together a slide show later. She says I have to get off the computer now and go outside to play. She says too much screen time isn’t good for me.

Geeze. I didn’t even get to tell you where we went next on my Gotcha Day! I guess I’ll have to wait till she falls asleep and do another post. Shouldn’t be long, she’s old and falls asleep all the time.

Over and out, your art critic gal Katie.

She told me this was the ‘last’ picture. I doubted it. I was right.


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Mountain dog continuing saga

Katie here!

I thought this sign was pretty. Plus it helps me remember how to spell Cherokee.

Early yesterday mama was complaining that it was cold. Really really cold. I checked and it was a balmy 36F (2.22C) when we went out to explore the yard around 4 a.m. I don’t know what she was complaining about, it was perfect if you ask me, but she never asks me. At 4 a.m. she mostly grunts.

Anyway, she was messaging with a friend later in the morning and mentioning how cold it was and then it hit her. Cold. Sheltie. Hiking in Alabama. She figured out she shouldn’t waste such a good opportunity to take me somewhere fun. And, because she’s a good mama, she hopped right off her comfy sofa and bundled me up in the car and away we went!

Her friend Jamie told her last week about this cool trail called the Cherokee Alpine Trail not too far from where we’re staying. So she looked it up and decided we’d explore it!

Turquoise waters on a sunny day.

My goodness, what a beautiful place! Though I had to ask mama why we drove for like 20 minutes so that we could have a view of the lake when we have a view of the lake from home? Mama said to hush. But it was really really windy and cold up there, so we headed to the woods as fast as we could.

Hurry up mama, let’s get to the hiking part of this adventure!

The whole Alpine Trail is 4 miles and mama says even though it was refreshingly cool four miles would be too much for us, so we decided we’d just go part of the way and see how it went. Mostly it went downhill.

This is the last time I’m posing mama!

Mama was kinda worried that we’d have a long climb to get back to the car, but I told her what did she think it would be, seeing as we were on top of the mountain at the parking lot? Nowhere to go but down!

Watch your step mama! I’ll wait for you!

She was trying to hold my leash and hang on to her camera and not slip down the pine straw covered path. Eventually she just let go of my leash and let me trot down at sheltie speed while she bumbled her way down behind me. I had to wait for her a bunch, but I didn’t complain. You have to be patient when you’re hiking with a senior citizen.

Isn’t this the best fun mama?

We got down to the bottom of the mountain and I got to play on the lake shore at a pretty little beach. I just loved it!

Worth coming all the way down here, right mama?

I ran and ran, back and forth, barking at the waves and grinning the whole time. Mama told me they were just teeny tiny waves but I wanted to show them who was boss so I told them off. Mama did a lot of eye rolling.

I got the zoomies on the beach!

Then she said we had to head back up the mountain. It felt like we had already walked a gazillion miles and she was worried I’d get tired. I didn’t want to go back the way we came and pointed out that the sign said the parking lot was the other way anyway, and only .6 miles away!

Ahem…mama…I think we should go this way.

Good thing I can read. Mama would have taken the long way back!

The trail went up and down and all around through the woods. Sometimes it was just stuck on the side of the mountain and you had to watch where you were going. Mama let me walk it without her hanging on to me. That works best for us. That way I’m not dragging her along too fast.

This is a good spot to rest while I’m waiting for my mama.

Mama said I was a mountain goat. I think that’s a compliment.

When we finally got back to the car mama checked the map again cause it felt like we walked all four miles, but darn it, it really was just a little over one mile. I think miles should count double if they are straight up or straight down, don’t you?

Back on top of the mountain again!

On our drive home we got sorta lost. The GPS said to turn left but some guys were paving the road so we went straight and eventually the GPS took us on a little road that just got smaller and smaller.

Go ahead and take the long way home, mama, I’ll be resting my eyes in the back.

Mama was starting to say bad words and she didn’t even breath when we had to go over a rickety one lane bridge. But she got to see a barn so that made her feel lots better even though it took us twice as long to get home as it did to get to the park.

Obligatory barn photo.

When I got home I took a really long drink and then wiped my face on mama’s bed. And then I took a nap.

What you lookin at?

What a great day! I think the temperature in Alabama should never go above 43 degrees. I’m sure everyone would agree that it’s better to be cool than hot. Am I right?

Maybe I should try to get that on the next ballot. It would probably be the least controversial issue there!

Talk later, your Mountaineer Princess-gal Katie.

A little wind in my furs.


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Just call me a mountain dog (but don’t call me late for supper)

It’s really pretty up here mama!


Katie here!

Guess what? Yesterday I got to climb Smith Mountain with my mama! I told her it was about time cause she’s already been to the top of the mountain twice this trip and I haven’t been up there at all!

Come on with me, this is a cake walk!

Why last year at this time I’d already scaled that mountain three different ways! But mama says I’m slower this trip and besides it was sort of warm out and she worries about me you know.

I’ll wait for you right here mama

So we took it real slow and every time I looked at her she was offering me water. Which I took by the way, I am not a foolish sheltie, no siree.

Let’s get into the shade mama!

Still, I had a really good time and we spent a lot of the climb in the shade, hiding among the long leaf pines and the big rocks.

Mama just loves these big pine cones. I have no idea why. I thought they were sort of boring and not worthy of my time.

Do these look at all interesting to you guys?

We finally got to the top and there were lots of young people there, and a couple dogs too. All the dogs ran up and down the stairs; obviously they are not royalty. I made mama carry me.

They’re trying to get a selfie. The boy dog would rather look at me. Of course.

We found this place that used to be the picnic area when the mountaintop was a ranger station. Can’t you just imagine the rangers out here in the evening roasting something yummy for dinner? I checked out the fire pit area very carefully and unfortunately there were no leftovers.

What do you mean you forgot our picnic mama!!

I thought this rock was interesting too and mama asked if I’d sit on it, cause it (and I) was pretty. I said no way mama, and even when she put a treat up there I wouldn’t get on it. I have my limits you know.

I’ll smell it but I’m not getting on it. Nope, not happening.

Finally we got to the top and mama took the obligatory picture of me with the tower just so you all know I really went all the way up there. Not up the tower you understand, just up the mountain. Mama said no way no how was she carrying me up that tower. She said I wouldn’t have liked it up there anyway. She’s probably right.

People would believe me without proof, mama.

Then we started back down the mountain but I didn’t want to go! I liked it up there! So we sat around a bunch more and she took some pictures of pretty things that were not me. Like this orange rock.

Not getting on that rock either mama.

And this crowfoot violet. Mama says that her mom used to look for these all the time. Mama says she’s seen quite a few this year and they make her smile. Whatever mama.

Reminds mama of her mom.

Once I got her moving down the mountain we made pretty good time. Near the bottom I was even trotting. It was time for supper don’t you know and I have a rule: Never delay the supper of a Princess.

Get a move on mama!

Signing off for now, your mountaineering Princess Katie.

Next time let’s go in the morning when it’s cooler mama!