The good, the bad and the ugly.

awesome

01/31/2017 When the weather has been crappy for so long and then it gets nice, $hit starts happening and it gets downright exciting here on the rock. We had Francie and Franklin over for Bill’s signature pizza, which he had made the day before while I was running around with Jason and Alex. We sat by the pool and sipped wine for awhile, then went up to the porch to have salads and pizza. As usual, the pizza was the bomb, there were only 2 small pieces left from 2 big pizza’s. Old Kentucky Bourbon chocolates from our Kentucky friends were dessert. Thank you John and Lizeth for the yummies. I am eating the last one right now. And Francie and Franklin, you are missed already. {They took off last week to spend some time on their new boat  yacht. They’ll be cruising around wherever they want to for the next year or so.}

I met Jason (IL) at Barefoot Cay on Thursday morning for a tour with my wonderful friend Milesse. Milesse is one of the founding owners of this exquisite small boutique resort on it’s own private cay.  We started with a tour of the resort. Having been there many times before, I thought I knew the resort rather well, I didn’t. Milesse pointed out so many things, took us into the rooms, behind the closed doors, laundry, food storage, into the villas and into the condos above the dive shop. I wrongly assumed the places above the dive shop were nice, clean little rooms for divers. So wrong. They are elegant condos overlooking the water that separates the dive shop from the cay. There is nothing plain about any of the rentals. They all emanate subdued elegance.

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From there we went over to the palapa where you can enter the water to snorkel or lay on the hammocks and swing in the breeze.

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The color of this water is why I moved to Roatan.

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Not sure what this is.

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Very nice villa with a kitchen, 2 nice bedrooms w/ AC and baths, and this porch, overlooking the 3 steps to the beach. Paradise.

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Your private beach!

We walked all around the cay and saw where they will do a few more rentals. They won’t overpopulate or change the atmosphere of the resort, they have a lot of unused land. BFC has become Barefoot Luxury and will seek out new locations in the Caribbean to open dive shops or a new boutique resort or both.

When we were finished with our tour we went to the second level of the restaurant and had watermelon smoothies. They were extremely refreshing! It’s always pleasant spending time with Milesse,  getting to do it at the resort is like icing on the cake.

From BFC Jason and I went to French Cay to Arch’s Iguana and Marine Preserve. My friends own the iguana park and I am blessed to have become family with the Arch’s.  They are a very cool, well known and respected island family. The Arch family patrols the Marine Park Reserve which is right off of their docks, 24/7. It’s all protected waters with no fishing allowed and people still poach at night, stealing small conch and baby lobsters. It’s a never ending thankless job. People that do this stuff either don’t care or don’t understand that they are ruining the future of these sea critters. Kill the babies and you’ll have no adults. such bad behavior.

Jason and I got to visit with the iguanas, see the babies and let the big guys crawl across our feet.

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So many baby iguanas. They are caged until they are around 18 months old. If they weren’t caged, the chickens and birds and black spiny tailed iguanas (carnivorous) would eat them, few would survive.

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Yep, I allow warm iguana bellies on my feet.

Just as we were finished looking at the babies, Sam came. He took us out on his boat (that he and his father built) Miss French Cay. We were in the area that he protects, down to Fantasy Island, CocoView and back. It was simply gorgeous on the shimmering sea.

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Some of the boats in the cay. The water in the cay is protected by the reef,  many boats safely anchor there.

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CoCo View. The most returned to dive resort in the Caribbean. My friend Andrea is the nurse there.

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Under the bridge

We left there and drove straight to our house. I wanted to show Jason the view from our roof, which is amazeballs. We, along with all 5 dogs, went up there, he took some photos and then we left for the quick drive to Cal’s for lunch.

When we got there I told Carl (owner of Cal’s) who I was with. He actually smiled. If you know Carl, a smile is a big deal. Jason and I had a great meal, I saw some friends there and we also saw Paul, a gringo who Jason interviewed on Tuesday. When we went to pay, Reynaldo said Carl got the bill. Super nice of him, not necessary, but appreciated.

Feeling satiated, we went straight to Daniel Johnson’s Sloth and Monkey Hang-out. Daniel wasn’t there when we got there, they said he was just at lunch. Stephanie (Daniel’s GF) had our name on the sheet and we were given a guide and taken in. It was later in the day so the sloth’s were sleeping in the trees but we could easily see them. Some of the monkeys were running helter skelter on the roof, sounding like rhinoceros. The monkeys all get 2 hours a day out of their cages (in pairs, not all at once). The guide took us in the cages with the huge Macaws. These birds are magnificent. Now, let me say, I’m not a bird person. I used to lock myself in the bathroom when my mother let her damn parakeets out to fly around the kitchen. Here I am in a cage with birds bigger than my head. Just then Daniel came and he stepped into the cage with us. They held a sunflower seed over my head and the freaking bird landed on my head, 2 TIMES. I ask Daniel if it was going to poop on me and he said, you never know. Great, thanks.

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Monkeys climbing high

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Beautiful bird

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The colors are brilliant

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These birds were all rescued

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Jason holding one of the macaws

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Not what I imagined doing that day

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Walk like an Egyptian

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A sleeping sloth

Daniel talked to us about his next project which is to make his cages much larger and taller than they currently are and to move a few things around. He has a nice operation and he takes impeccable care of the animals. He is Sam Arch’s cousin, small island.

Jason had another appointment in West End at 3ish and I had volunteered to drive him back to the other end of the island. Once I dropped him off I called my friend Ann and ran up and said hello, she’s my twin, in case you didn’t know that.

On Saturday Jeanie and Roger came here and we all rode together to Trish and Dave’s home in Sandy Bay. Trish and Dave were headed back to Canada the 23rd. We had a nice dinner, enjoying the amazing view. Once it started to get dark, we left for home. I never had the tint removed from my windshield, it’s pretty dark and makes a night drive similar to driving at night with almost dead flashlights. Plus, the Duchess and husband still had to drive to Hell with a View in Camp Bay.

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We ate dinner out here, gazing over the north shore

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Beautiful

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Never ending beauty

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The Duchess having a chat with Santiago, her watchie man.

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My twin Ann’s house is partially visible from Trish’s deck. She lives the next hill to the east.

This is part of the mess we came home to. Barrio and Highway were left inside. Aside from the bottle of Black Seed Oil that Barrio chewed up on top of the ottoman, he also destroyed a styrofoam egg carton. This really isn’t a big deal, but I never buy eggs in styrofoam, only in a cardboard flat of 30. I then transfer them to the styrofoam containers because they fit in my fridge so much easier.

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I found the GLASS dropper from this 2 days later. So happy he didn’t get hurt but not sure how he got the screw top lid off.

Sunday was a day at home. I did go to Mega Paca in the morning but then stayed here all day, we had several workers so I stuck around and made sure things I wanted done were getting done.

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Alexi finishing the barbed wire top of the fence. he also wrapped the rubber tree branches in barbed wire, it will thwart any would be thieves for sure.

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One of the things Bill and Miguel did was put the top forms on the concrete gate posts. Now to get them finished. The gate does open with a remote now, no more getting out of the car and opening or closing it. SO MUCH BETTER.

The school bells are once again ringing for the island kids, they are on break Nov-Feb. This year Alexi will be going to a different school, one he needs to go to for the Bomberos (fire fighters) that is held every Sunday in Punta Gorda. He needs new school shoes, we are taking some of his pay every week and holding it for him so he has some money to buy things he needs. If he has money, his mother “borrows” it and never repays him, of course. We are going to open a bank account once he gets ID. He has never had any because it requires his mother to actually do something to get it. Jessica, his younger sister is going to go to the English school that Alexi went to the last 2 years. She needs everything for school except undershirts and socks which Julie and Robby brought for her already. Alexi’s brother and nephew both need school clothes also. I don’t know if it’s me and my attitude or what but it pisses me off that Alexi’s lazy assed “mother” will not spend one penny for her kids to go to school. If someone else doesn’t cough up the money, so sad, too bad, they don’t go. This will be Jessica’s first year back to school after not going for a couple years because her mother wouldn’t buy the uniforms and supplies that she needed. In her defense (and believe me, the last thing I would ever do is stick up for the lousiest mother of the year award winner) the uniforms are expensive. We spent $100 USD on 2 pair of dark blue pants, 2 white short sleeved shirts, a pleated skirt for Jessica and a pair of slip on black shoes for her and socks for the boys. We also got them each writing notebooks that they needed. $100.00. A hundred dollars to get kids almost ready for back to school is nothing for people who have a little money but for the majority of people on the island, it is a LOT of money. Now remember, many families have MANY children (hello birth control?) and they can’t afford the uniforms so the kids don’t go to school. In a country with such an overpopulation of children and extreme poverty in the majority of the communities, why the hell do they have to wear uniforms? How does that change their  learning capabilities?

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Jessica and Efraim, he’s trying on a shirt for school.

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Bill bought the boys each a bag of peanuts.

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Osman on the L and Efraim on the R. Efraim is Alexi’s brother to a different father and Osman is Juliana’s 5 year old son.

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We bought local and went to Oak Ridge to Clifford’s store. he is the Vice Mayor of Santos Guardiola and a really nice man. He helps Nidia out a lot.

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A motorcycle coming down the hill and 3 guys on horses. It’s the wild wild west.

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Efraim

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Osman

We dropped Juliana and the boys off at a seamstress in Politilly. The boys both needed their pants shortened and tucks put into the waist. Hopefully they will get 2 years out of the pants. We didn’t buy them big on purpose, they were the 2 smallest pair they had.

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This door is on the second story of a house by the seamstress.

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Jessica and a friend’s baby.

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Efraim and Osman on the porch where the seamstress lives.

When we were leaving Politilly we had to slow down to go around a motorcycle on the road. When we got right up to it Bill said, “well, look who it is.” It was Alexi’s poor excuse of a mother and her boyfriend who beat Alexi. She probably knew the kids were with us and that we were buying them school clothes but she never even said thank you. We should have knocked them over. Or run them over. I turned my head, I was afraid of what I would say. If she cared at all, just one tiny little speck of care, I wouldn’t feel so upset by her, but she doesn’t. She just does not give one $hit about the kids she brought into this world.

It’s all about the good, the bad and the ugly. I’m trying to make peace with it, I struggle.

 

 

Life in the nut house

planet

05/15/2015 My life has changed in a way I never dreamed it would. I rescued a dog with a bad leg that had to be amputated and a month ago yesterday she gave me 7 gorgeous babies. I guess they were my gift. For the first two weeks they were pretty easy but that has changed exponentially. Frito is not too into these little milk suckers now that they have teeth and I have been designated the surrogate mom. They are eating a formula made up of evaporated milk, egg yolk, water, yogurt and Karo syrup. I mix powdered baby rice cereal and a dog food gruel of a good puppy chow. The gruel is tiny little puppy chow nuggets softened to mush in water. They go through one whole can of evap. milk mix a day. All I do is make puppy food, seriously. Well, that and clean up puppy pee and torn up newspapers and wash their bedding.

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They are rough with each other!

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And cute cute cute

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Love watching them wrestle

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Outta my face!

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My boy Barrio

These guys and girl are big healthy puppies and they are active and OMG, they are so loud.  The loudness proof follows, and if you think to yourself, “oh that is so cute” imagine it at 1 AM and again at 4 AM. NOT CUTE. Click HERE. We have a huge pen for them on the covered and protected downstairs concrete porch. They love it down there. They also spend a lot of time in the grass chasing each other and climbing on Lola but they are only in the grass if we are there to watch them. I wish I weren’t such an anal dog owner, but I am. I’m afraid to have them downstairs after dark because of the Boa Constrictors. Granted we have never seen one at the house but one is all it takes and I could never live with myself if something like that happened. This may no longer be paradise. When it gets dark we bring them upstairs and they run and pee all over the living room. I may as well just keep my steam vac out here and filled. We have a wooden pen for them up here too but they hate it and howl when we put them in there. Hence, the sleepless nights and I can’t stand to let them howl because #1. They are loud (have I mentioned how loud they are?) #2. They get so upset from crying I’m afraid it will hurt them. No sleep sucks.

Last Friday evening a new friend and her husband came over. We had never met except on Facebook. She and her CHIROPRACTOR husband are considering moving here. YAY for a chiropractor! They came to the island for a week and drove down to our house Friday afternoon. The 4 of us went to Cal’s for dinner and then came back here and hung out for a bit. Michael was kind enough to give me a treatment for my upper arm that has been bothering me for almost a year. He did acupuncture, cracked my neck and taped me again.

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He thinks I may have a torn muscle in my upper arm. Not what I need. A few of the needles wouldn’t come out of my arm, we had to wait about 30 minutes until they could be removed.

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Kinesiology tape

Saturday was my airport gig day. I got there at 10:20, first flight was due in at 11 but it came in @ 10:30. EARLY??? It was a busy day however we did get an hour break in between flights so I had some time to chill. All the other times I did the greeter thing I came home and could hardly stand up my feet hurt so bad. This time I wore my Crocs sandals and my feet and body were fine. I could have danced that night! If only. I really enjoy volunteering there, I get to talk to people from all over the world, some making their first visit to the island, some returning year after year. Once we get all the passengers in the immigration building and sorted into the proper lines we then ask them to have their passport ready, get all the papers out of it, and we talk to them about the areas they are staying. We do this because the Immigration officers are from the mainland, they don’t know the island. One of their questions is “where are you staying?” Parrot Tree Plantation or Anthony’s Key mean nothing to them, they don’t know where they are on the island. We get everyone ready in hopes we speed up the process and then we just chat with them and try to keep them from realizing how long they are waiting. Sometimes a LONG LONG time. It’s fun, I like to talk to new people and always hope I display the persona that the visitors wish to see when they get somewhere new, a friendly face. I’m filling in for someone again this coming Saturday.

Sunday the pups had been so active that Bill went and got groceries alone. I stayed home to keep them in the pen. The whole week was filled with puppy care, feeding, cleaning up, playing with, kissing holding and snuggling and that’s pretty much it. When Nidia from Because We Care messaged me to see if I was up for a school drive on Thursday I said, HELLS YEAH! Bill was home working on re-making louvered shutters for Craig and Cleo’s house so he was in charge. Unfortunately I was up until after 11 with the pups and they had me up again at 4:44 AfreakingM. I was zombified the next day.

Sherri was here at 7:30 in the morning and we met Nidia @ 8. The first stop was mid island at Santa Maria, I was there with Because We Care for the Christmas food drive and TOMs shoes deliveries.

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Schools are given rice and beans for the students, many of the schools make tortillas and fill them with the rice and beans so the students have at least one meal during the day.

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Nidia and a local dog explaining about the school donations they are receiving. She makes sure they know that people buy them and bring them down here for the students.

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We handed out 363 packages of school supplies.

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Students at Santa Maria waiting

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Some were wearing their TOMs shoes

After there we went to a school in Brick Bay, we also delivered shoes there. It is right down on the water and there are mangroves and I am sure mosquitoes in the standing water.

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Kindergarten students coming out to get supplies. Notice the steps? They are cinder blocks filled with dirt.

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They all came out holding onto the shoulders of the person in front.

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This little boys insole was coming out the back of his shoe. We may go back there and do another shoe fitting.

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Little girls in line

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This little boy came over and started talking to me in Spanish, I wasn’t sure what he wanted but I figured it out.

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He wanted his photo taken so he could see himself in the back of the camera.

When we were done there we went east to Politilly. This is a school that my good friend Janice and her husband Don do so much for, it is in their ‘hood. These kids probably don’t know how lucky they are, the view from the school is absolutely amazing.

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The tree was covered with wild orchids

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The view is stunning.

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Sherri leading the kids in a circle in an attempt to get them to line up

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They kept going round and round…

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So many braids and barrettes in the girls hair!

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Grateful students with Nidia

When we were finished there we headed down to Crawfish Rock. I was also there during Christmas doing the food and Santa drive. This school is situated on the water too and Sherri and I were getting eaten alive by the sand fleas or mosquitoes, they liked us, I couldn’t wait to get in my car!

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The school @ Crawfish Rock

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OMG, she is beautiful

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The joy these students get when they see their face on the display of the camera is incredible! Look at his eyes!!

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So cute!

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Nice desks, thankfully these are not in use.

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This little face cracks me up, she is so funny! I’ve never seen school desks like these before.

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Another beauty with no hope for the future.

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Nidia telling the students once again how we get the school supplies and that they MUST say thank you or gracias when they are given them.

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I’m not sure but I believe the mattresses are for naps. More than likely this is more than the kid have at home to sleep on. Usually their beds are the floor, maybe a blanket..

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The older students saying thank you in front of the Honduras flag

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Kindergarten students showing me their new books. This classroom has the newest desks and chairs of any that I’ve seen in the schools. (except for the new ones we are distributing with Because We Care)

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Wonder Woman Nidia showing the students how to use dental floss

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It’s a good thing I can’t pick up kids like I do dogs, he would be # 1. Kindergarten boy with no shoes.

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Supplies and a trashcan

After we left Crawfish Rock we traversed the mountain (hill) to the last stop of the day, Hottesparrow. I had been spelling it Hottest Sparrow but I was wrong. The road from Crawfish to there was bad to say the least, thankful for my AWD car.

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I guess you can call this a road

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A home on the way there

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Yep, that’s how you spell it!

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The line up begins

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We had toothbrushes for all the kindergarten kids

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And the teachers got supplies too

We got a lot accomplished in a few hours Thursday morning. After we had handed out all the supplies we loaded all of the backpacks and supplies I had in my car into the truck Nidia was in. Next Friday we are headed to Helene with 20 more desks and LOTS of school supplies for the students there.

Sable and Bandit’s future parents came over on Friday to see their babies. It makes me feel so good to know these two will have a good home. Last night we had them all inside and they were really good, we put them in their box as soon as they woke up and had no accidents on the floor. They all slept until 5 AM when Highway barked. Then they were up, we fed them all and took them downstairs. I went back to bed for awhile because I could and I like to sleep.

I had to do my airport thing again today, I really enjoy that except I sweat like a freaking pig. I am going to invent and patent some sort of under boob deodorant, I’ll be rich in a few months, rolling in the dough with dry boobs. I mentioned earlier that we are asking people where they are staying; well today I asked a young girl and she said, “with my dad.” I asked where her dad lived but she didn’t know. I asked who her dad was. She told me and I said, “Oh, XXXXX, the Lionfish Hunter?” She said “yes, do you know him??” I told her no, only on FB and that his birthday is the same as my son’s, Sept. 17th. I also told her where her dad lived. Small island.

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See, I’m official!!

We just fed the pups for the umpteenth time today and now they are running all over upstairs. I never wanted puppies, never in my life. I have owned dogs my whole life and aside from my mom breeding her toy poodles, we never had puppies, we always had our dogs fixed. This is new territory to us. We are both busy enough as it is, add in 3 dogs, then #4, who has 3 legs then 7 puppies and this house is sheer bedlam. But at the end of the day I can sleep (when they allow me to) knowing we are giving these pups the best start at life that we can. I kiss each and every one before I feed them and after, they are ALL held several times a day, they are used to people and other dogs. We are trying our best to be responsible puppy parents and can only hope and pray that the new owners of these dogs love them and give them the care that they deserve.

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Barrio, chilling, not a care in the world. We love this guy and all 5 of his brothers and his sweet little sister Sable.

It’s been a busy fulfilling week and I’m fried. I’m signing off with a fresh glass of wine in my hand and am headed to the couch, that is until we have to feed the pups again.

P.S.  I was messaged this morning by my friend Stephanie about a dog with mange and starving that she saw near our house. I had to leave for the airport early but told her I would go look tomorrow morning. Bill ran to Oak Ridge today and said he saw the dog also. Stephanie set some wheels in motion and some fabulous people will take this dog and rehab her. Bill and I are going to go look for her early in the morning and bring her back here until Marc can come and get her. Hopefully another dog saved by the fabulous people willing to shelter them. Thank you so much Olivia and Marc, you two are amazing!

Adiós Amigos!