Tag Archives: Duke

Duke and Isabelle

Wordless Wednesday

Why yes, I have been neglecting to photograph my two formerly favorite subjects.  Here they are!

Don’t forget that my Spring Celebration starts tomorrow! Join in by posting your favorite birthday cake (or pie, etc.) recipe and linking up!



Filed under Living from Scratch, Local Agriculture, Outside

Bark It Out

A Parable

About a month after Ed and I got married back in 2004, I decided I really wanted a puppy.  Ed’s birthday was conveniently coming up, so I surprised him.  I knew Ed didn’t really want a dog yet, but I figured once he saw that cute little Golden Retriever he’d fall in love.

We set up a crate for the puppy and planned to have him sleep there.  I put in a soft blanket and a stuffed animal.  Everyone told me how much their dogs LOVED their crates and how they all slept there without a problem.  Well, everyone except my parents, who have always snuggled in the big bed with their dogs (and their children).  I expected our puppy to have a rough first night but then learn to love his crate.

I was wrong.  Ed and I put our sweet little puppy in his crate that night and went to bed.  Within minutes, the formerly sleepy puppy was barking his head off.  Ed actually put on ear phones to try to get some sleep.  After a little while, I couldn’t stand it.  I went to my puppy.

He had tears in his little eyes and his nose was running.  He was sweaty and exhausted from barking.  As soon as I unlatched the cage and picked him up, he fell asleep in my arms.  I waited a few minutes and then tried to put him back in the crate.  He woke up immediately.  At that point, I realized it was going to be a long night.  I was on summer vacation from school, so I spent the night with the puppy on the couch, letting him sleep on me and then trying to put him in the crate.  It didn’t ever work.

We spent two nights like this and then I lost it.  I screamed at Ed: “If you want him in that crate, then YOU put him in there!” 
The puppy would cry as if he was in pain and sometimes even wet himself.  He’d fight going into the cage and dart out before we could get the door closed.  Ed tried once to put him in and then agreed with me: our puppy could sleep in our bed.

Our puppy, who we named Duke, cuddled up on my pillow above my head.  He slept peacefully and was happy to snuggle up to us. 

At the next vet appointment, I told the vet that I let him sleep in our bed, with shame on my face.  I explained that I couldn’t understand why everyone else’s dogs seemed to love their crates and ours hated his.  The vet explained:

“Puppies are like children.  No two are alike.  You need to do what works for your puppy.”

I let go of the guilt of thinking my puppy was “controlling” me.  We were all happy and sleeping, and that was what mattered.  In a few months, Duke had grown too big to sleep comfortably in our bed so he happily moved to the floor, despite constant warnings that he’d ALWAYS want to sleep in our bed. 

Looking back, I’m happy to have had these nights to cuddle with Duke, as it was a short time in his life.  We left Duke with my parents when we moved off the farm, as you simply can’t take a farm dog off the farm.  We still visit Duke often and love him just as much, but we knew we did what was best for him.  I’m also very happy to have learned these lessons before adding Joshua to our family.

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Where do your dogs sleep? Did parenting a dog or other pet impact how you parent your children?


Filed under Home, parenting

I’m a Bloodhound!

My brother, Nathaniel, got a new puppy! He’s an 8-week-old bloodhound, and he just so happens to weigh same as Joshua (held by my brother Jonathan in the photo above).  What follows is a transcript of Dukie’s reaction to the new puppy…

Hi! I’m a bloodhound!

I like cuddles!

We’re gonna be best friends, aren’t we?

Listen kid, around here we all pull our own weight. I’ve got the perfect job for you…

Do I have to guard the corn all night? Wait, I smell something…

This kid’s got a lot to learn.


Filed under Local Agriculture, Outside

Horse Pictures!

Isabelle is almost 7 months old now, and I’m 32 weeks pregnant.  Due to both of those facts, it’s a little bit too dangerous for me to go in her pen now.  She’s frisky, and I’m not in any shape to dodge her high kicks and air jumps! 

Duke loves to get in on the action and visit with Annabelle and Isabelle.

Isabelle and Dukie are friends, even if he is jealous of the attention she gets.

Thanks for the pictures, Mom!


Filed under Local Agriculture

Roll in the Hay

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The hay baling continued today, and you can read all about it over at my mom’s blog.  Instead of repeating her post, I’m just going to post pictures of what Duke did while the boys were working.

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Dukie loves to roll.  He rolls in snow, in grass, on area rugs, on dead animals, on my mom’s flowers, and even in insulation if he gets the chance, but we try to keep him out of it because he makes a huge mess.

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Duke realized he could roll in the hay, and he went for it.

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He looks like a maniac, rolling and rolling.

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Then he got tired and went to take a nap in the shade.

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At five years old, Dukie has calmed down considerably.  He even has some gray hairs coming in.


Filed under Local Agriculture, Outside

In the Pasture

We took Annabelle and her baby out to the pasture for the first time today, in an area that was partitioned off from the other animals.  We stayed with them for a few hours, to make sure they were comfortable, and to visit with anyone who stopped by to see the new horse.

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After a little getting used to, the filly decided to run around the pen, nurse, and check out her new surroundings.  Annabelle got right to grazing.

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It was all so exciting, and we could tell she was getting tired.  But she didn’t want to go to sleep! (Do you see gold bug?)

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Finally, she couldn’t stay awake any longer and drifted off to sleep.  Annabelle stopped grazing and stood over her baby as she slept.  It was so sweet.

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Little girl, you’ve had a busy day.


Filed under Local Agriculture