Baka Chan ~ Our Little Fool, Our Dog

I found him. My dog. He was tied to a pole in front of an empty lot. He was tied with the rattiest, dirtiest rope I had ever seen and he had a little cat collar on that was so old, it would have broken off if he had pulled hard enough. He didn't though, he wasn't very big. I stopped and looked at him. He stood up on his hind legs and begged. I was in love.
Baka at 3 months

I hurried home to get Adventure Man. He was just coming home to our little apartment in the teacher's building. I told him about the little puppy and we raced back on our bikes to see. There was only one person around in the neighborhood. An O-baa San. A Grandma. She was little and bent over and she said, You should take him! He's been terrorizing the neighborhood for days. He's been thrown out! No one wants him!

That's what happens in Japan. It costs a lot of money to have a dog fixed. And they just leave them tied up in the back yard so it's easy for a stray to impregnate a dog. There are a lot of strays. When a pup shows up, they just dump it somewhere. We lived in a very rural area and this was very common, apparently.

The dog stood up again and begged at my husband. He was in love too.

We took him home. He stunk so bad we had to give him two baths. He had been living on trash and monkey poop. When he was in the bath he fought it so bad that I called him a "baka!" A fool. The Japanese equivalent of Stupid! My husband laughed. No matter how I protested, his name was final. Baka Chan. The Little Fool.

4 or 5 months

We cut a hole in the side of a Rubbermaid Storage box and made him a dog house. We walked him every morning and when we got home from school, where we taught English, and then again at night. He never barked and our neighbors didn't even know he was there until we moved back to the states.

I called him my Baby Dog. He was my first baby.

By the time we started having kids he was two. He was so excited to see Lulu. The first night he got up with me each time I fed her. He would sit at my feet. After a few nights of that he decided he could trust me. Or he figured someone should be getting some sleep around here; it might as well be him!
Baka at 8 years ~ He always crosses his front paws 

He looks like a pure Sheba Inu, but we'll never know. He acts like one, too. They are "cat like" and dog aggressive. They need to be well trained to be controlled. But they are incredibly loyal. If you've seen the Richard Gere movie, Hachi, then you know. That really happened, only in Japan. There is a statue of the the dog at a Tokyo train station. I think it was Tokyo, anyway. The breed was bread in Japan to hunt wild boar.
Chasing a Ground Squirrel 

They are also snow dogs with thick undercoats that shed out tuns of hair. They should be brushed everyday. Should.

enjoying the spring sunshine and the snow
~ what a life ~ 
Sometimes he would ask to go out when it was snowing and just sit and look up at the flakes coming down to rest on his fur. He loved to chase snow balls which explode in his face.

Baka is now 14 years old. He is cranky and arthritic, and deaf. A few months ago he started throwing up. He couldn't keep anything down. The vet said he had liver malfunction. He seemed to be doing OK on meds. But still vomiting a lot. Then he had a seizure. Amazingly, after the first seizure, he seemed a lot better. But the seizures are most likely do to the build up of toxins from the liver. This is a common problem with the breed.

The seizures started getting more frequent. And the last one lasted so long, and he laid there so still as I held him, I thought he might go right then and there. {By long I mean a few minutes. It feels like 15 to me!}

He saw the vet again and she wants him on a special diet.  He hasn't had another seizure, but it's only been a few days. Other than that he acts fine. As I said, old and arthritic, and sometimes it's hard to get his attention when he just stands there and stairs. I feel like I'm yelling at the rug! But he also still jumps around and enjoys being out and about. He's been a wonderful dog. And I am so glad to know that we have given him a much better life than he might have had on his own in the mountains of Japan.

Baka Chan
My Little-Old-Man Dog 


Instagram Love ~ 1000 photos

Today I took my 1000th photo on Instagram!
Yeah, I'm obsessed!

But not only that, I'm only 4 weeks away from being on Instagram for a year. So in less than a year, I have taken, no, shared 1000 pictures with anyone who is on Instagram. I've taken many more pictures then 1000.

So, in honor of this special event...


I'm sharing some of my favorite shots.

Just a few. A lot less than 1000 anyway.

 You know how I like to do flashbacks. Like, "a year ago today" kinds of things.

So enjoy. And if you want to follow my snap happy madness, just click on the gray camera up at the right hand top of my page. It's a crazy life I lead, but someones gotta see it!

And have a wonderful weekend, Y'all!


Dollhouse Diaries III

A few months ago my daughter said she wanted to share her dollhouse dolls. They were my dolls when I was a kid and now they occupy a bookshelf in my daughter's room. She loves changing the "scene" around and then taking pictures of them. She also asks me if I have posted them on my blog. I'm starting to wonder if she needs her own blog???

It looks like the dog has knocked over the milk pail. Mama looks pretty mad. And poor Daddy, he got stuck getting the toilet unclogged! Oh My! And while Granddad snoozes someone is setting the table.

What will a dinner in Doll Land bring this busy family? 


The Day Keith Richards Stole The Playground Pirate Flag

Getting ready for the Rich and Famous is a lot of work. Although, the Rich seem to be harder once they are here then the Famous. The Famous usually have a staff who informs the Resort of all the things that must be ready and in their cabin for them to be happy. The Rich, aren't necessarily famous and they haven't quite figured out that if they give the Resort a list of needs before hand, they would have far less to complain about once they reach their destination. 

The best complaint I've heard of was: "The rocks outside my cabin are dirty. Can you please send housekeeping up here to clean them." I kid you not. 

The longest list of requests was from the Rolling Stones. We were busting our butts to get ready for them.

Did you know that they have Casablanca lilies wherever they go. As the in-house florist, I got to do the flowers for their rooms. However, Casablanca's have a vary strong scent. Not everyone wants that smell in their room. Some of the arrangements HAD to have Casablanca's and some of them had to have ANYTHING BUT. I can so see them fighting over the placement of the flowers. There were Casablanca's back stage as well. Someone really loves their Stinky Flowers, as do I! 

Jolly Rodger on the beginning of
Pirates of the Caribbean 4
Now the tale I will share didn't happen at our current Guest Ranch, no, we used to work and live at a ranch outside of Missoula Montana. When the Rolling Stones performed at MSU they stayed at our ranch. And however stressful it was to prepare for our special guests, they were by far, the most fun group to have stayed with us. They didn't want to leave. We didn't want them to go.

During this time, the kids in the employee housing had a playground between their homes. And one of the families had a big Jolly Rodger. A homemade pirate flag that they hung on the fort of the swing set.

Now most of the guest lodging was on the other side of the Blackfoot River. But there was one beautiful home over looking the river that was just below our houses. Keith Richards was there. When housekeeping went out to make up the room after the first night, there was a Jolly Rodger hanging over his door. Pandaemonium struck. Radios were cracking and phones were ringing. Finally my Darling Adventure Man called me and asked, "Did Keith Richards take the Pirates Flag off the playground???"

I had no idea! I looked out the back door to see. It wasn't there! Where was the flag? Adventure Man said that housekeeping said that it was over the River House! 

OMG! THAT IS SO STINKING COOL! By all means! Keith Richards CAN steal the kids Jolly Rodgers! What a great story that would make….

As it turns out, the Mom who made the flag, and who's boys it was, took it down that day. The playground flag had been lowered that day. Probably out of respect for the legend on the banks of the river, who apparently always travels with a pirate flag and flies it where ever he goes. 

But Keith loved the story. And that our kids played under the Jolly Rodgers, as well. 


January ~ My Month In Photos

We started 2013 off in California where Bunny got to see the beach for the first time. So we start with Today ~ We have Bunny at the beach. But it's also something new. Something New ~ my lovely scarf. 
 Heart ~ rubbed on the window of the car in ice. It was getting cold as we drove north.

 The View From Here ~ This wasn't the view from where I was that day, because we were driving home and I simply forgot to take a picture. SO this is the view from the top of the Dumbo Ride in Disneyland. Movement ~ Again, I didn't take this pic on that day, but the gas station in Pasadena CA had this great sign with the add-on of Racing Gasoline. So that's how the Little Old Lady From Pasadena did it!  Mine ~ The kids piled all the stuffed animals in the house on top of Bunny. Her favorite word is "Mine" plus, she is mine! 

1 o'clock ~ It snowed that day. Something that started with "T" ~ Tea, we started getting our first bunch of colds around this place. Street ~ That would be in Big Town! Little Town doesn't have street lights. 

Water ~ A hot herbal blend tea bath for Mama! From Nature's Tropical in Helena MT!
Circle ~ I needed some candles while in the bath! Yellow ~ my free range chicken egg! Yum!

An ordinary moment ~ Getting them rounded up and in the car to do the school bus run (this could also be used as Ready). Two things ~ Carrot and peanut butter. My snack! Shadow ~ The picture I drew in the disney art studio last month! 

Delicious ~ an avocado and spinach smoothy in the making. Something I saw ~ My 12 year old's art work. This is what she doodles! What I do ~ The dishes. And laundry, and bathrooms, and beds and...

Corner ~ of one of the guest cabins. Electric ~ The light in my kids bedroom. Is it any wonder they get so scared at night! Look at the shadow! All the light fixtures in our house were made by the original owner of the guest ranch. Some day I'll give you a tour! Strips ~ The snow drift fence we set up to protect our driveway. 

Landscape ~ It's small here but there are deer in that shot. Together ~ My Bean was in the school play. The Tortoise Versus the Hare put on by the Missoula Children's Theatre. She was one of the Reptiles. And The Sun ~ They don't call it Big Sky Country for nothing! 

 Grow ~ my Christmas Cactus has a bud! Yeah! Down ~ making cupcakes for their big sister for youth group. Yourself ~ That's me. 

I hope you enjoyed the randomness of my month in photos with Fat Mum Slim
To get the February list click here