Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dog Walking 101

Humans have a lot to learn about dog walking. Especially walking three hounds named Molly, Dimond Willow and Gus.

Dog Walking 101 tips for humans
compiled by The Three SoundHoundz:

1. let the dogs lead
2. let the dogs wrestle
3. do not get in the dog's way
4. leashes are for tug-o-war, not leading
5. let us bay as loud as we wish
6. run
7. run faster
8. hurry up
9. if you fall, roll out of our way
10. provide adequate couch space once we're back home

And good luck getting out of the driveway.
Our best wishes to all you dogs for a good walk with your humans!

Molly, Dimond Willow and Gus
The SoundHoundz of Alaska

Monday, March 9, 2009

"SPRING" Break? I think not.

BEEEEEEEEEP (classroom intercom). Please excuse the interruption. We will be having outside recess today. There is a slight breeze and it is above zero. Be sure to wear all of your gear.

My students stared in disbelief out the window as the announcement came over the intercom. The trees outside the window were bent in half, and the snow blew in great waves horizontally past them. The kids trudged quietly to the closet area and began gearing up for a long 30 minutes outdoors. Only an hour to go until Spring Break would finally begin.

Later, upon returning to the classroom, a student described the recess as "brutal!"

Yes, it is officially Spring Break for the public schools here in Fairbanks, Alaska. But where is the Spring? Definitely not here. Maybe in Minnesota where Bentley lives. Maybe in the DC area where Marmalade resides. Possibly in Central Park where Wimsey frolics. But most definitely NOT here.

Surprisingly, no one hung around to play on the playground after school.

A new weather system deposited about a foot of fresh snow, then promptly left the area with clear skies and temperatures back on the negative side. And a season total of 60+ inches of the fluffy stuff. Where else do teachers send their students out the door for Spring Break with stern reminders to take their boots, snowpants, gloves, hats and scarves because YOU WILL need them?

And as the parent of two teenage daughters, notorious for their ability to shun warm winter gear, I came up with a brilliant plan for celebrating the first night of Spring Break! We would stop at Coldstone for ice cream! Hooray! It was all happiness and love until I mentioned that it would be a photo opportunity for the blog as well.

Are you kidding? Have you lost your mind? It's something like 90 below zero in that wind!!? Mom, this is TOTALLY not funny!

Unfortunately, all I had was my iphone camera, otherwise the disgusted expression on one particular face might have been a little more clear.

I dropped over $20 on ice cream! Where was the love?

It was a long treacherous drive home through blasting wind, and I thankfully pulled the car in the garage.

As usual, I was greeted by the raucous baying of our three hounds, Molly, Dimond and Gus. All thoughts of bad weather flew from my mind, as we turned towards feeding and taking them out for a romp in the snow. By this time, the wind was dying down and the temperature was on the upswing. Time for a delightful frolic as dad plowed the drive for the 3rd time in two days! Even the surly teenager was happy in her sugar rush and was ready to play with the hounds in the snow. A Spring Break miracle, indeed!

(Thanks for your patience with the buffering, it's a rather long video)

Well, it may not be spring yet, but it is a break from the daily grind. And with our hounds, we WILL enjoy it, snow and all!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009