Books Read-October 2020

1. A Conspiracy of Bones-Kathy Reichs

Forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan works on solving another case while dealing with her own personal issues.

2.Sisters by Choice-Susan Mallery

Sophie, Kristine, and Heather are cousins. They look out for each other in their changing lives, offering courage and support.

3.Sea Wife-Amity Gaige

Juliet, her husband Michael and their two children buy a sailboat and live on it for a year. This book did not hold my interest and I stopped reading after about 40 pages.

4.The Giver of Stars-JoJo Moyes

A tale about four Kentucky librarians under Eleanor Roosevelt’s traveling library. The friendships that develop between the girls is heartwarming.

5.No Fixed Line-Dana Stabenow

A Kate Shugak crime mystery that takes place in Alaska. Kate solves a case involving drug and child trafficking. A good read.

6.The Haunting of Hill House-Shirley Jackson

A classic about a haunted house and the people who show up to study it.

Of this list, my favorite was Giver of Stars. The relationships between the characters is heartwarming. I kept picking up this book because I couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen.

A Good Snuggle

Zekie. Photo bombed by Orange Kitty.

Even a problem child needs a good snuggle.

I was sitting on the sofa this morning when Zekie crawled into my lap, gazed at me, and fell asleep.

Come to think of it, he didn’t even cause any problems today. We didn’t encounter anyone else on today’s hike so it was a peaceful event.

It was a good day.

Book Recommendation!

I normally post the books I have read for the month in one post, but this one is so good I just had to share now-The Finders by Jeffrey B. Burton.

Mason Reid is a dog trainer. His four dogs, a German Shepherd, two smooth collies, and a golden retriever, are all cadaver search dogs. The youngest, Vira the golden, turns out to be a superdog with with stellar abilities. I won’t give more away.

Their work on cases is gripping. I couldn’t put the book down. It is a crime book so be prepared for that. I highly recommend giving it a try!

Books Read-September 2020

One of My Library Shelves

1. Who Rescued Who-Victoria Schade

Elizabeth loses her high-powered job but discovers family and gains a dog and a new career and life in the English countryside.

2. The Big Finish-Brooke Fossey

Duffy Sinclair lives in an assisted living facility. Life is predictable. Until his roommate’s granddaughter crawls in through their bedroom window one night and everyone’s lives change.

3. Separation Anxiety-Laura Zigman

A once successful author learns to deal with her own feelings and her dysfunctional family. This book was listed as funny, but I only found it to be sad and painful. I finished it but wish I had stopped when I thought about it.

4. The Banty House-Carolyn Brown

Three senior ladies living in Rooster, Texas take in a teen expecting a baby. They develop friendships and become a family.

5. Howloween Murder-Laurien Berenson

Melanie Travis and her standard poodle Faith search for who has poisoned the Halloween treats, causing the murder to look like it was committed by their friend.

6. A Walk Along the Beach-Debbie Macomber

A book about the Lakey sisters, their family, and love interests. A bit heart wrenching for a Debbie Macomber novel, but a good read.

7. The Geometry of Holding Hands-Alexander McCall Smith

Read about 100 pages and decided to give it up. Found myself wondering what I would read next every time I picked it up. Just not in the mood for it.

Magazines:

Yankee

Several of these books were excellent but if I had to pick a favorite, it would be Who Rescued Who. It made me wish that I lived in the English countryside.

Who Stole My Bread?

Zekie, Thief

We had some excitement a few days ago. I bet you can guess who was the source of it. Yes, it was Zekie. Our problem child. You can read why at this link. No Mistakes

I had some bread dough formed into three loaves and it was sitting on the counter for its final rise before going into the oven. You can already see where this is going, right? Living with multiple dogs (currently 6) and two cats, we have swinging doors on our kitchen that we close with a bungee cord to keep the animals out as needed. I stepped around the corner for a second to look out the window and I turned around and was down to two bread loaves and no one was even chewing!

We didn’t have any evidence of who it was except that Zekie’s breathe wasn’t quite the same as usual. Didn’t smell like yeast though. And he was acting guilty. That could have been coincidence too. Claire the sheltie does occasionally put her feet on the counter too. But she is awfully small to have eaten that much, that quickly. And with Zekie’s reputation…well, it usually is him. We put him in his special crate made of aircraft steel incase he got sic.

Something was niggling in the back of my mind that this may be more serious than just an upset tummy. So I got out my phone and began to research “dog ate bread dough”. It turns out that this can be exceedingly serious. Zekie only ate one third of a batch so I was hopeful, but the more I read, the more worried I became. The bread dough can continue to expand inside the stomach and may eventually cause pressure on other organs and potentially the stomach could burst in the worst case. It is also possible that the yeast can ferment and form ethanol in the stomach. This could result in a drunk dog or it could be lethal.

All sites agreed that it was wise to get the dough out of the stomach stating that this could be difficult via vomiting depending on how gelatinous the mass of dough became. If you were going to induce vomiting to try to regurgitate the dough, sooner rather than later produces the best results before it starts to mix with stomach acid.

Next step was to search how to induce vomiting in dogs. Miraculously, I have never had to do this before. Hydrogen peroxide was recommended. Use ONLY 3% hydrogen peroxide at 1 teaspoon per each 5 lbs. of body weight, up to a maximum of 3 Tablespoons, no matter the dog’s weight. This is what my on-line sources said. I also called my daughter and asked for her advice on this procedure since I know she is familiar with it. Calling to ask your daughter for dog medical advice is pretty cool!

So, I got Zekie, a bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide, and a measuring Tablespoon and headed out to our fenced pasture. I gave him the correct dosage for his size, about 37 lbs., and waited. All I knew was that it should work pretty quickly. I did not know what “pretty quickly” was. For a bit I thought it wasn’t going to work. Apparently, pretty quickly is about 10 minutes. That’s when I saw results.

The bread dough came up. Yes, the thief was indeed Zekie. I had to throw a bag over the “used” dough while I went to get a scoop, so that he wouldn’t eat it again. He vomited a second time but most of the dough was up.

And thus was my indoctrination, and hopefully only experience, into the induction of vomiting in dogs. Long live Zekie!

Signs of Fall

Bisque in Process

One of the signs of fall at our house is that I make butternut squash bisque. It contains an assortment of vegetables and homemade broth that are complemented by cream and white wine.

Whole Wheat Bread Dough

I always make fresh bread to go with it. These two things make a satisfying and delicious dinner.

Bisque and Bread Ready to Eat

The things I cook vary from season to season. During the summer months I avoid using the oven since it heats up the house. And I avoid dishes with long cooking times.

Now I switch to more lengthy and complicated dishes. They are the perfect for a cool autumn day.

No Mistakes

People think smart dogs are easier. Sometimes this may be the case. Not always.

Zekie is wicked smart. He understands most things he hears. After I correct him several times for misbehavior and he doesn’t listen, I can ask “Do you want to go in your crate?” Only once in a blue moon do I have to follow through. He understands and capitulates.

He can figure out ways to do most things he wants. Opening bins, trash cans, and more. He knows to do these things when I am outside so I don’t catch him in the act.

Talk about brains. Yesterday, we drove past the parking lot where we often stop to go walking. We didn’t stop. We were going someplace else. Zekie whined as we drove by because we didn’t stop.

It is a challenge staying one step ahead of this boy. He is a no mistake dog. If you make a mistake, you pay. He is my kind of dog. I love him.