Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Essex's Fifth Bark-Aversary

Dad woke me up this morning, singing "Happy Bark-Aversary Essex". We have been together for five-years. You can read about our early days together in the following posts: How I Met Dad and My First Week in Key West. I really love Dad folks, when he is sick I sleep by the foot of the bed watching over him. He has said "Getting Essex was the best thing he ever did in his life." Strange thing is I know he is serious cyber-paw pals. Deacon looked hurt, but Dad told him "If it wasn't for my great reports to the Great Dane, Deacon probably would have chosen another family and Dad loves Deacon a whole lot too." Deacon licks Dad's face and collie tails are wagging.
Bark-Aversaries are a good time to share old photos. Here are some pictures during my first year with Dog Dad.

Exploring my yard

Nibbling on a coconut.

Look at this palm frond folks

Catching some Zzzzz's

First Bath
Napping in my crate in Miami

Our friend Ludo gave us an award a couple days ago. "The award states that "This blog invests and believes in PROXIMITY - nearness in space, time and relationships!"
In other clearer words, "These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers! Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."
We graciously thank Ludo for the award and pass it to eight more pupsters. We tried to check to make sure you didn't have, so forgive us if we give you an award you already have.
2 - Tosca

Dog Speed,
Essex & Deacon

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

No 1 Cousin Update

We just got an update from our No. 1 cousin.

= = = = = =

Dear Essex & Deacon,

I just wanted to let you know that I found my furever family. It is a grrrreat family, I really love everyone. I have to admit, I am a bit scared to go outside though. I wish that I could have met you two, but things are what they are. This family is a full time job, so I doubt you will hear from me again.

Woofs and licks,

No. 1 cousin


We sure are glad that No. 1 Cousin found his furever home. He hadn't barked at us since a couple days before Collieween, so we were wondering. He is a super sweet dog and hearing he found a furever home is the bestest Essexmas present of all.

Dog Speed,

Essex & Deacon

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Essexmas

We hope that everyone had a great Essexmas, just like us. We went for several walks today and then Dog Dad took us over to meet our Guardian Dog Angels Foxy's Mom & Dad. Both of us gave a big swishes of with our tails. We know good people.

We wanted to share some pictures but the camera has been misplaced. We will have to find it tomorrow, wo we can share some pictures.

Merry Essexmas,

Essex and Deacon

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Essexmas Eve

We hope everyone has been a good pupster, kitties, hamsters and such. Santy Paws knows how you have been there is no fooling him. All the good pupsters should get plenty of treats and belly rubs this Essexmas. We are thinking of all of you out there. How do we know it is Essexmas, well check out the ornament at the top of the tree. It sez Essex, so it must be Essexmas.

Many of you up North will have a White Christmas. When ever Dad is blue during the winter he checks out Grand Forks, North Dakota. He worked there for over four years. This morning he got on the computer and saw that it was -15 F (-26 C). That sure brought a smile to his face. He told us we would have been peeing pupsicles if we lived there today.

Well we have plenty to do and Dad will be over his neighbors house tonight. So that means we are going to Angel Paws early. We see him getting the leashes. Until tomorrow.

Dog Speed,

Essex & Deacon

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Essexmas Baking

There were sure a lot of Essexmas goodies on the table for hoomans this morning. Dad was getting it all together before taking it to work. It sure made us hungrrrrey. Dad made all this from scratch. There was Angel Food Cake, Cuban Flan, Placzek, Anise Oil, Czechoslovakian Cookies, Mazurki, Pecan Delights and Walnut Rounds. Then of course there were all those smells from his baking the last two weeks. Arrrrgggg.

We gave Dad our best puppy dog eyes and barked "What about us?"

He replied, "This weekend guys, I'll bake Cheddar Collies and Peanut Butter Labs for you and your pals to celebrate Essexmas. Maybe I'll even try a new recipe."
Tails wagged and mouths drooled. Some homemade treats for the Collies this Essexmas.
Arooooo, we love our Dad.

Essex & Deacon
Angel Food Cake

Anise Oil Cookies

Clockwise from top right:
Czechoslovakian Cookies, Walnut Rounds,
Pecan Delights, and Placzek


Cuban Flan

The goodies Dad baked

Sunday, December 14, 2008

14 December

Dad has been busy. A vet visit and Essexmas baking. Deacon had his distemper shot and checkup. He is doing grrrreat. He weighs a whole 74 lbs and all his tests were good news. The vet loves seeing us because we are in such good shape.

Dad continues to make human stuff for Essexmas. He said he has a ton of baking left to do. I think he is ready for all the baking to end.

Grand-Paw is out of the hospital and is in an assisted care facility until he becomes more functional. While Dad doesn't like that news, it is what needs to be done. Hopefully Grand-Paw will be back on his own in a month or two.

Well, we here the buzzer going off. Another batch of cookies done.

Dog Speed,

Essex & Deacon

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Deacon's Second Anniversary

Deacon - 10 DEC 2008 - Angel Paws
Deacon - NOV 2006 - Holmhaven

It has been two years since I came to live with Auntie Essex and Dog Dad. I love and enjoy being with both of them. They have taught me a lot during our time together.

To celebrate we went to the dog park early and stayed late. There was a some extra sharp cheddar cheese. Dad gave me a big lick from the tip of my nose to between my ears and a big hug. Dad may be quirky, but that is what I love about the guy.

Today I wish all our cyber-paw friends and regular friends a extra special dose of the Collie Blessing. "May your tail wag, your belly be full, and may you have a forever family to rub your tummy and scratch behind your ears."

Dog Speed


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Plan Dog

Dad was in strangely quiet this morning. He drank his coffee and scratched us behind the ears. Then he said to us, "We must never forget."

We gave him our best you lost us Dad look.

In a low quiet voice that was almost a whisper he told us of a time before Dog Dad was a twinkle in Grand-Paw's eye. Back when Grand-Paw was a young man. The world was in upheaval. Europe and China were ablaze. The United States had watched but had not entered the war. On Sunday, December 7th 1941 everything changed. The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Almost every American living then could tell you were they where. Grand-Paw remembers of that we are sure. He was a soldier during WW II and served in Europe.

Grand-Paw and pups circa 1942-43

Grand-Paw and a pup
Mojave Desert, Calif - 1942

Some saw the approaching storm and started making plans. In 1940 the Chief of Naval Operations wrote a memorandum that was given to President Roosevelt on 12 November 1940. That memorandum described four courses of action A through D. The recommendation was to go with option D. D stood for Dog in the Joint Army/Navy Phonetic Alphabet. The options were:
  • A - Defend the western hemisphere.
  • B - Go on the offensive in the Pacific against Japan while remaining on the defensive in the Atlantic.
  • C - Fight equally committed in both the Atlantic and Pacific.
  • D - Go on the offensive in the Atlantic (against Germany and Italy) while remaining on the defensive in the Pacific.
Our names have strong ties to WW II. Deacon came from Grand-Paw being the Chaplains assistant and driving around the front lines during the war. Grand-Paw and the Chaplain were even strafed by a Messerschmitt. They abandoned the jeep and scattered into the woods. When they got back there was a cannon hole between their seats. Dad's college roommate's aviator father served on the Essex during the Korean War, but the Essex was built and saw battle during WW II.

Dog Dad slowly took a sip of coffee. Faced west and saluted. We know Dog Dad won't forget.

Essex & Deacon

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Favorite College Team

We were sitting with Dad on the sofa watching football when he asked Essex, Deacon what is your favorite college team?”

We howled back “Guess.”

He named off “Ohio State, Oklahoma, USC, Florida and Notre Dame.” We rolled our eyes. Then he said “It must be a dog.” Tails wagged. He said “The Washington Huskies, Georgia Bulldogs, Connecticut Huskies, and North Carolina State Wolfpack.” We shook our heads no.

Dad said “I give up, who is your favorite team?” We barked “Texas A&M.”

“The Aggies, why in dogs name are you Aggie fans?” Then we told him about Reveille.

Reveille VII from Wickipedia

Reveille is Texas A&M’s Collie mascot. She is a cadet general, and wears 5 diamonds on her maroon-and-white blanket. All freshmen cadets refer to her as “Miss Rev, ma’am.” She picks a sophomore to be the mascot corporal and Miss Rev goes classes and accompanies him on dates. Reveille has her own cell phone and student identification card. If she decides to sleep on a cadet’s bed, the cadet sleeps on the floor. We looked at Dad. He laughed his friendly low laugh and said “In your dreams guys.”

The story of Reveille started in January 1931. Several members of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie band were returning from a party when they unexpectedly hit a small black and white mixed-breed stray dog. They smuggled her into school, but the dog began barking when “Reveille” was blown by the bugler, thus the origin of her name.

Reveille I from Wickipedia

During the opening football season, Reveille I became the official mascot and led the band onto the field for their half-time performance. During WW II Reveille I was given the rank of Cadet General by the U.S. Army. When she crossed the rainbow bridge on 18 January 1944, a military funeral was held at the football stadium and she was buried at the north entrance facing the scoreboard so she could always watch the score of the game.

Reveille Grave Site from Wickipedia

The students tried but were unable to raise funds for a second dog. An alumnus donated a sheltie, who became Reveille II. Reveille II was the mascot from 1952-1966. “Miss Rev” marched with the Aggie Band during football games and she had a habit of relieving herself on the football field. Bets were often placed as to which yard line.

Reveille III – VIII have been purebred Collies. Some interesting things include when Reveille IV crossed the bridge in 1984 over 10,000 hoomans attended her funeral. Reveille V was mischievous and loved to steal erasers from chalkboards during class. Reveille VI became a movie star in the 1996 film "Reveille, My Life as the Aggie Mascot." Reveille VIII became took over in 2008 and was whelped in Topeka, Kansas. We wonder if Topeka is close to Wichita where Great (Great) Uncle Bobby used to live.

Hmmm, if we start licking Dad’s face and nibbling on his ear, maybe we can get our own cell phone and time on the bed. It is worth a try, right cyber-paw pals?

Dog Speed

Essex & Deacon

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Monday Night

This is Essex the "Moondog" reporting that something strange was going on with the night sky Monday. Our photograph doesn't do it justice because Dad couldn't keep his paws really really still. Deacon wanting to lick Dad might have had something to do with that but I digress. We saw a crescent moon with two bright dots in our sky. Those dots were Venus and Jupiter. From what was barked us supposedly it looked like a smiley face down under in Australia and New Zealand, but was frownie face here in Key West.

We hope those of you that like this stuff got a chance to see it because it was way pawsome. We were a bit upset because the clouds got in the way, so we only could catch a glimpse now and then.

Unfortunately, we were a bit disappointed because we were hoping to see a moondog too.

Dog Speed,

Essex (aka Moondog)