Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Here are two videos for you. Ignore that fact that I babble like an idiot (and two octaves higher than usual!) throughout.

In the end Ophelia delivered seven live babies and one stillborn. Three black, two pink with spots. And I am no expert pig sexer, but it seems pretty obvious to me that there are five girls and two boys!

And these little suckers can MOTOR!

All sacked out under the heat lamps.

They are too adorable!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Well, as a change from grieving over my dog and rejoicing over my piglets, let's finish up the Sri Lanka trip photos.

We stopped at the Dambulla Cave Temples and found this adorable monkey family love-in and group snooze:

The temple complex is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Just downhill from the Cave Temples is the Golden Temple with an immense gold Buddha:

He is absolutely enormous! I took this shot while climbing up to the caves.

These temples date back to the 1st century BC. The outdoor architecture was added in 1938...

Inside are many beautiful Buddha statues and paintings. Every square inch of wall and ceiling is decorated. You can compare all these photos to the ones I took in 2006, on a cooler, rainier day.

I can't remember which cave is which, so you'll just have to enjoy the photos (and read this!)

So many Buddhas!

And an elephant on the ceiling.

There are 153 Buddha statues at the Cave Temples. Amazing! This place is just one of the many wonders of Sri Lanka. I really want to go back for a third visit before too many years pass.

And here's Louise, my grief therapy cat. ;) She drools when you cuddle her! I don't know why my knuckles look so red in this photo. Don't worry, they're fine (unlike my floor, which I hope to get refinished this summer!)

Sunday, April 20, 2014

And on a happier note... oink oink oink!

I am missing Easter supper with my mom-in-law and hubby. Why?

This is why! And she's not finished yet. Seven and counting. I just came in the house for a snack!

Oh MY!

If you need a pot-bellied pig, I'm your woman... ;)

A week ago, I was on my way home from Sri Lanka. Since then, I found out my rescue pig was pregnant, lost my dog, and now this! And I'm not even over my jet lag yet!!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Thank you!

Thank you for all the kind and comforting comments about the loss of our Sophie. Gordon and I have both read them all and it was really helpful. THANK YOU!

If you can stand it, here are a few more pics of our Labby girl..

On duck patrol!

Just enjoying the summer.

A couple of weeks ago. Desperately waiting for me to give her her daily toast crust!

She loved life.

My beautiful girl.

So patient with stupid humans! :)

I'll really miss my little beekeeping buddy, even though she did tend to EAT the bees...

Thank you. Happy weekend!

Friday, April 18, 2014

A very good dog

Since I can't seem to do much today other than think about my Sophie, here are some pics of our sweet girl who left us too soon.

She was holding her sit for me so I could take her picture, but she really wanted to run!

This was taken just after the dogs arrived at our farm in November 2007. Sophie was a kissy girl from day one! You can read about how they came to us here. Because of the dogs, we have two great friends and a godson. Our godson's mother fostered the dogs for two weeks before handing them over to us. We have been friends ever since. As Patrick (godson's Dad) pointed out to me yesterday, that's Sophie's legacy. A fine one it is!

She didn't like dressing up, but she wanted to please me so she tolerated hats. :)

Sophie liked to herd ducks and chickens.

She loved her daddy a whole lot.

She and Tristan always had their noses to the ground!

And she loved to run. My, how she loved to run!

I think winter was her favourite time of year. She truly seemed to love the snow.

And I loved her.

I loved her blonde eyelashes and big brown eyes.

And her expressive ears!

I know that look. That was the "Please let me out of this sit-stay so I can come kiss you!" look!

She gave great doggy kisses.

Because she was a great doggy.

My walks won't be the same without her. She took such pleasure in them!

She was bossy with her buddy Tristan, but they were together almost their entire lives. Tristan was just a month younger than Sophie, and was adopted by their former owners when Sophie was three months old. Tristan seems to be doing okay without her. I think he's trying to cheer me up.

Sophie was always with me, whether outdoors or snoozing on her bed next to my desk.

Nothing made her happier than the prospect of a walk, except maybe the prospect of a swim! I only had to say the word "walk" and she'd go crazy.

She liked her food, too. We usually fed her outside, because she was on a raw diet and it was less messy to feed her there. She had a whole pre-meal ritual. As I carried her bowl outside, she'd launch herself off the porch steps (literally flying off the top and down to the ground, rather using the three steps!), spin around once, then wait expectantly for her meal.

I knew something was wrong Wednesday when she padded down the steps slowly, and didn't do her little spin. But she still wanted her supper.

Three weeks ago, on March 24th, we took one of our last walks together...

...she was so happy and energetic! I can't believe she was already full of cancerous tumours.

She adored the woods.

Tristan needed to lie down for a rest halfway through the walk. Not Sophie!

It won't be the same for any of us without her. 

She often found a cat in her bed, and would just stare at me beseechingly until I removed the offending feline. She sniped at the cats a lot, but she knew who was really the boss!

And there were always kisses! So many sweet kisses.

And mud. So much mud! And she was great at bringing me stinky dead things! And she LOVED butt scratches. Her favourite thing.

But most of all, she loved to run. Especially towards me. I'd call her name and she would come running, no matter where she was. Usually she delivered kisses upon arrival.

This week she really wasn't feeling well...

...but she kept her good nature. 

Every morning, the dogs and I had another ritual. I would eat my toast in bed, but leave a crust for each of them. Every morning, as soon as Sophie finished breakfast, she would tear up the stairs and sit next to my bed, waiting for her crust. Even yesterday she did that, albeit a bit more slowly. But her ears pricked up as soon as she saw me handing that crust to her, and down the hatch it went. I wasn't supposed to feed her anything before her vet visit yesterday, in case they needed to sedate her for x-rays. But I completely forgot when she came for her toast crust. I am SO glad I did. So glad she got her last little treat.

This morning Tristan got both crusts. He seemed pretty happy about that.

On March 24th, just before we went on our trip, I took a series of photos of Sophie running towards me. Today I figured out how to make an animated GIF with them:

You can see the joy etched on her face. She adored being outdoors and just running, running, running. It's so hard to believe that three weeks after these photos were taken, she's gone. This is how I will always think of her: running towards me with a big doggy grin, ready to give me kisses.

Our hearts are broken but we'll always treasure the memories we have of our Sophie, a very good dog!

Sophie, September 2002 - April 17, 2014