My favourite cup…


(click above link for slideshow of my cup)

This is/WAS my favourite cup.  It’s a silly cup with pictures of border collies on it.  I don’t have border collies, I have regular collie dogs, but I love this cup so much.  I am heartbroken that IT is broken.  I knocked it off the railing out in the front garden yesterday and it went falling to it’s demise onto some paving stones.  Actually, I’m surprised it only broke into a few pieces rather than shatter into hundreds because it must have fallen at least 10 feet onto the stone.  But it’s over – my and cup and I. 

I taped it together just so I could take its picture.  That brown shadow is not a stain in the cup, it’s just a shadow from the flash.

I’m appealing to anyone who lives in the UK or who is travelling in North Yorkshire, maybe Thirsk, to let me know if you ever run across a cup like this one.  I would love to replace it, but I just can’t remember exactly where I bought it.  Somehow I think it was in a Five & Dime type shop on the main market street in Thirsk, right behind the post-office, next to or in the area of the good bookshop.  But I can’t be sure.  So if you do run across a cup like this in your travels… pick one up for me and I will compensate you for your trouble.  I know now that I should have gotten more than just one. 

That’s it for now.  I have so much work to type today so I need to get at it.  We will see Paul’s cousin, J, tomorrow.  She is coming here with his folks for homemade pizzas.  Paul hasn’t seen her probably since he was a teenager!  She is up here (from Florida) taking a class for work and we are looking forward to our get-together. 




Picnic Anyone?


Anyone up for a picnic?  I’ve got the cooler all packed and ready to go.



Making progress…


When Kip arrived here on the 30th of June, he weighed 19.5 lbs.

Today, the 12th of August, he weighed in at a whopping 34 lbs.

I guess that’s progress, but then I don’t know how much a puppy should be gaining at first.  Anyway, he’s getting heavy when I have to lug him in from the garden, or up/down the narrow stairs!  Mightly heavy! 

I took a few pictures of The Dogs and by clicking this link, you can see them going forward from there (about 13 pictures today I think), or else click the “slideshow” link on the right and save yourself some effort.

I can’t really stay here long.  I am working now, and then I am having Paul’s folks over for his birthday celebration this afternoon – for dessert only.  I made a dessert that is positively to die for, and I’ve been meaning to share it with you but haven’t had the time.

I promise I will share it with you (it wasn’t my own recipe, I got it from a friend when I went to a baby shower recently) but it’s got to be one of the most sinfully yummy desserts I have ever had.  More on that later.

Puppy-dom is ruling around these parts, and just getting thru each day is a feat.

They each have a new bone now and are fairly quiet, but it won’t last.  I can’t believe the energy that is stored up in a puppy!





Tommy Makem – we’ll miss ye!

One of my all time favourite singers, Tommy Makem, has died, I’ve just learned. 


His Obituary reads as follows:

Tommy Makem, known around the world as “The Godfather” of Irish music, age 74, of Longmeadow Road, died Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2007, after a yearlong battle with lung cancer.

Born Nov. 4, 1932, in Keady, County Armagh, Ireland, he was the son of legendary source singer Sarah (Boyle) Makem and Peter Makem. He came to the United States on Dec. 5, 1955, to live with family members here.

The widower of Mary C. (Shanahan) Makem who died in 2001, he is survived by a daughter, Katie Makem-Boucher and husband Bob, of Dover (NH); three sons, Shane Makem, of Dover, Rory Makem and wife Elaine Scherer-Makem, of Amesbury, Mass., and Conor Makem, of Dover; two grandchildren, Molly Dickerman and Robert Boucher Jr.; and many cousins.

WE REMEMBER: In Tommy’s younger years, he worked at Kidder Press in Dover, then moved to New York City to become an actor, where after a brief but rewarding career in live television, summer stock and off-Broadway plays, he teamed up with Liam, Tom and Paddy Clancy. Folk music was the “in” music in 1961, and when he and Joan Baez appeared at the Newport Folk Festival, they were chosen as the most promising newcomers on the American folk scene.

Armed with his banjo, tin whistle, poetry, stagecraft and his magnificent baritone voice, Tommy mesmerized audiences for more than four decades. He expanded and reshaped the boundaries of Irish culture and also infused a pride in that culture.

In 1969, Tommy left the Clancy Brothers to pursue a solo career and immediately sold out the Felt Forum in Madison Square Garden, New York City. His popularity soared, and he went on three sold-out concert tours of Australia, three in the U.S. and several in Canada, Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales, all within two years.

In 1975, he teamed up with Liam Clancy, and Makem & Clancy was a magical combination that lasted until March 1988.

In 1994, he completed a lifelong dream when he taped “Tommy Makem’s Ireland,” a two-hour TV special, and on its last showing it was picked up by 320 stations nationwide.

He was well known for promoting Irish culture, and locally he helped promote the George Grenier Memorial Fund for the Dover Firefighters for many years, as well as performing at the Cochecho Arts Festival in Dover. He also sang at Gov. John Lynch’s inauguration, as well at the Mass for the 175th anniversary of St. Mary Church in Dover.

He received a doctorate of humane letters from the University of New Hampshire in 1998, a doctorate of letters from the University of Limerick, and a doctorate-litt from the University of Ulster. In October 2006, he was honored by being placed on a stamp in Ireland with his former bandmates, the Clancy Brothers.

Tommy could have lived anywhere in the U.S. or the world, however he chose Dover as his home, where he was a communicant of St. Mary Church.

SERVICES: Relatives and friends are invited to call Monday from 7 to 9 p.m., Tuesday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., and Wednesday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., at the Tasker Funeral Home, 621 Central Ave., Dover.

A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Thursday at St. Mary Church, corner of Chestnut and Third Streets, with Rev. Fritz Cerullo, O.S.A. Pastor as celebrant. Burial will follow in St. Mary New Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, it is requested that memorials in his name be made to a fund being started in the name of Tommy & Mary Makem Fund, c/o Attorney William H. Shaheen, P.O. Box 977, Dover, NH 03821-0977.

He meant a lot to me over the years.  I loved his voice, his music, his whole life story.  I remember going to see him in person once, too, and he was super, as usual.  He will be missed.  I am going to find my Makem & Clancy records now and play them.  Just for old time’s sake.  “Four Green Fields” was one of my favourite songs of all time. 

Goodbye, Tommy.  We will sorely miss ye!

It’s all a game


Thanks, Robyn, for this.  There’s always some little game out there to amuse us.

Speaking of games, it’s all about the game when you’re a puppy.

I’m slowly learning…..

I hide the dirty laundry underneath empty laundry baskets, then put a big dog bed over-top the whole laundry basket area, and then hope for the best. 

But it never works.

Every day he finds it, nuzzles his long nose into the pile, and around all the obstacles and barriers that I have carefully set out, and finds the underpants, or the socks, or the gloriously smelly teeshirts, and grabs one for his own munching pleasure.

I’d throw up my hands in surrender, but we NEED our dirty laundry to stay in one piece, or else we’d have to buy all new stuff. And we are not in the category of people who can buy new underwear anytime their dog decides to rip it to shreds.



(Click on picture to enlarge)

This is still hard – raising the puppy.

Even as I sit writing this, he is busily searching out a “no-no” to chew and thrash within an inch of its life.  The toilet paper roll has already succumbed once this morning when I forgot to close the bathroom door when I left it.  This house is chock full of tantilizing treats for little puppies to have their way with, and he’s not giving up just because we say “NO!” in no uncertain terms. 

I think he thinks “NO!” means “Oh, good dog – you found the treasure we hid for you!”


Harried but still unbowed…

Bex and Friends