It’s All About…Arnie!

Looking back, I remember Greta expecting her first litter of puppies, and how she would lie next to me in my chair and I would feel one pup kicking the daylights out of her. This feisty pup intrigued me and I told Jack that if there was at least one boy, we would name him Arnold, after Arnold Schwarzenegger,  the Terminator!

And there was just one male pup in that litter. Arnie was the only boy with 4 sisters! Thus Dackel Princess’s Arnold was born.

Arnie kissing me. Janet's pictures

Arnie and me shortly after he arrived. He was such a big, lovey, puppy. I had not wanted to keep a male back then. I wanted one of Greta’s daughters to carry on with breeding, once Greta was done. So I was not allowing myself to get too close to Arnie, knowing that eventually, he would be leaving us. I sold him to a college professor. In fact, he was all set to go, but she changed her mind at the last minute and so we kept him. It was the best decision that we ever made. Arnie has filled our world with so much love and happiness and laughter!

Jan. 29 Anneliese and Arnie 001

Anneliese and Arnie at 10 weeks old.

Watching Arnie and his littermate sister, Anneliese grow, from the moment they were born has been an experience. These two are devoted to each other and even now, at the old age of eleven, they are still enjoying each others company! When Anneliese gave birth, Arnie was there. And when Anneliese was ill or had surgery, Arnie was there to protect her while she recovered.


Anneliese in the front and her snuggling brother Arnie, with his head on her back. They are so close and so tender with each other in a way that is very different from how they relate to their mother, Greta, and Lili.

Arnie has a fan club in our town. There are places we go where they know Arnie. The bank, McDonald’s drive-through, and The State of New Hampshire Liquor Store. At the Liquor Store, they asked for his picture as he is now their Mascot!


The clerks there all look forward to Arnie’s visits and he looks forward to going in because it means cookies and a lot of pats from everyone.

Imagine our surprise yesterday when we were going in and a woman was exiting the building looked over and said, “Hi Arnie” as we were walking in! We later found out that the Clerk had said, “Oh look! Arnie is here!” while she went to get his cookies!

Arnie is an amazing boy and I feel so fortunate to have kept him. He is one of those once in a lifetime animals. And we feel so very fortunate to have him in our lives. Destiny, fate, whatever it was that made the Professor change her mind and decide not to come and get Arnie that day, I am forever grateful!


The One About The Grocery Cart

The weekend flew by for us. I wasn’t planning on making The Chicken, Escarole and Meatball Soup, but heck, after writing it and reading it, it just sounded so good, that first thing on Sunday morning I went out to get all that I needed to make the soup.

I was in the grocery store, which was jammed with Ice Fishing Derby grocery buyers, and I stopped and placed my carriage to the side so I could access the Escarole. I got two beautiful bunches, went back and got my carriage, and off I went.

I did not want this to become a marathon shopping trip. Just in and out, and go home and have breakfast. I had made it clear to the other side of the store when this strange man came running up to me yelling, “You stole my cart!”

I looked at the cart which was filled with my groceries and said, “Excuse me, are you sure?”

“Yes, see that is my grocery bag! You stole it!”

“Oh, I am so sorry. It was just an honest mistake. I thought this was my cart.”

I felt pretty bad about it but this man was being rather of a jerk about it. His grocery bag was quite old, filthy and obviously had seen better days! Why would I want to steal his bag?

A neighbor of mine overheard this man chastising me, and said in a loud, yet light voice, “Hey man, lighten up. It’s Sunday!”

Anyway after switching carts, and sorting out the groceries, I went on to finish my shopping. But I thought this was weird. I honestly didn’t steal his grocery cart!

The soup came out very well, and as the evening winds down, I am now planning my next afghan. I ordered the yarn for it. Everything should be here by Friday and then I will be working on yet another afghan!

Probably a good thing, as it will keep me out of grocery stores where I might take someones cart!

Have a great week everyone!


Do you watch much TV? I used to, but in my older years, I am getting very picky about what I am watching. In fact most nights there isn’t a regular TV show on that I watch. On those nights I sort of zone out and allow Jack to watch what he wants.

I do have a few that I really love. The show This Is Us. That show is probably the best written, directed and acted show on the TV right now. I go to a fan site on Facebook for that show and I am amazed at how many points of view there are for the story, the characters, or even how the writers have written a particular story. I love it all, even when I spend much of the episode crying. It means that it touched me in a very real sense.

I also love Homeland. Claire Danes, as Carrie Mathison is magnificent and she just carries that show. Although I loved Rupert Friend, as Peter Quinn, and I will miss him now that he is gone, I look forward to new actors that will be introduced. Anyway, great writing, directing and acting.

I do admit to watching and liking The Incredible Dr. Pol and The Pioneer Woman. I tend to watch them whenever they are on. I guess because I love animals and I love to cook.

Then there are the usual shows that I like, but I have found that they are no longer as fabulous as they were. The Big Bang Theory, NCIS, Mom, and Blue Bloods. They’re okay, but if I miss them, I don’t really care. There is a cute new show called Young Sheldon, that is sweet and it does make me laugh, but that’s all it is, fluff. Cute fluff.

Aside from the above, I watch sports. Yup, sports. I love to watch tennis, especially the Grand Slams like The French Open, Wimbledon, The US Open and The Australian Open, although the time difference means I watch a lot after they have occurred.

I also like to watch Figure Skating, Skiing, and Gymnastics. But the other stuff on the TV just isn’t worth wasting my time with.

This has meant that I have gotten a lot done with Mandy’s afghan. I sit here in the evening, with the TV droning on, and I work on the blanket. It’s looking so lovely and beautiful and I sure hope it will be all that I want it to be when it is done.

It’s All About Clean Rugs and Floors

On Thursday morning, I woke to find that Anneliese had an accident on the family room carpet. This carpet is almost ten years old, and aside from being vacuumed, it’s only been spot washed.


Quinn standing on the rug we shampooed today!

So, since it was supposed to be 90+ degrees today, I decided to roll up the rug, carry it outside to our patio and vacuum and then shampoo the old thing. We got it rolled up and outside, and by ten o’clock it was already 90 degrees out there. So, with my hat in place, I started my mission.

Operation Clean Rugs & Floors

I vacuumed, and then started using the carpet cleaning machine to not only shampoo it, but rinse it as well.

What a tough job in the heat. I was soaked to the skin when I was done and feeling a few muscles that have been asleep for a while.

While the carpet dried, I took the no-skid underskirt and washed that in the washing machine and then hung it out to dry. It dried in about 20 minutes in this heat. Really a perfect day to do all this.

I washed the floors in the kitchen and family-room, and then moved the bookcase from the left side of the sofa to the right, giving me a safer spot to place my laptop computer on a small desk, which now sits where the bookcase did, next to my chair.

By four o’clock all was dry and the rooms were ready to be put back together. Jack helped me place the non-skid skirt, and then the carpet on top. Right now, the house smells wonderfully clean and fresh and despite a few aching muscles, it was totally worth the time and all the energy we put into it.

One note here: The dogs are totally confused. They thought the rug smelled perfectly fine. You know that Pepe La-Pew Doggy Scent that pups love so much! This new lemon scented cleaner/deodorizer is simply too clean for them!


It’s All About…

It’s All About… the love in your life!

I was think the other day about how incredibly special it is, when you have your children. You see their beautiful faces for the first time and I could not imagine loving anyone as much as my child on that day!

But then, I held Savannah, and suddenly my heart grew and I felt the same overwhelming love that I had for my girls.

As I have watched Savi grow over the last four years, this thing called love has grown bigger and more special. I find I live for our visits and there is nothing better than to hear her call my name, as she throws herself into my arms!


The delight in having this grandchild is pretty amazing. Each step she takes, each milestone, each moment, fills me with such joy!


Then Quinn arrived. I had daughters, and so Quinn is my first boy! My darling grand-baby boy! From the moment I laid eyes on him, I felt my heart grow again! This beautiful, magical baby boy came into our lives, and yet, it seemed he’d always been with us.



Watching him grow, and smile for the first time, and focus on a toy, or a voice, and laugh as I change his diaper, just fills me up with such happiness.

These two children, these beautiful, happy, loving kids, are the answer to so many of my prayers. And I am thankful. So very thankful for all this love.

It’s All About…Having Fun!

I’ve been trying to get Hubby out more, to go exploring. So many things are really pricey to do these days, but last week during the noon news I heard of a local beer tasting, that was in our town and admission was free.

Now this is interesting, as both Hubby and I love beer, even though we don’t drink it very much any more, due to diabetes and well, it just plain makes me fat!

Anyway, Wednesday came and I got Hubby ready and off we went on a beer adventure. Fun right?

Well, we arrived and the first thing I noticed was that there was no sign pointing us to the beer tasting. I wondered how people could possibly find this event with no signage?

We walked in, went down the stairs to the ballroom, and a man met us at the entrance. We signed in, and he gave us a name tag, and then asked, “What company are you with?”.

Well, we looked at each other and wondered what he meant. But we smiled and entered the area. The first table we came to had smoked fish and shrimp and the man asked us “What company are you with?”.

We explained that we are basically neighbors to the event, and we’d heard about it on the TV. Everyone was so nice, and graciously offered us samples.

We went from tables with nuts, the beer, to more fish, to simply the best Ricotta/Asiago cheese stuffed ravioli, more beer and then I hit the mother load. Gelato!

Who knew Gelato could be so good? The worker offered me cups of banana caramel, chocolate with chunks of chocolate and my favorite coffee with chocolate swirls and chunks. I could have stayed there all day, but we moved on to more beer, bread and bacon.

Let’s just be clear here. There is nothing better than bacon. Especially when it comes right from the farm!

Well, it turns out this was an event for restaurants and caterers. It was not really a general public thing, but the people running it were so nice and welcomed us with open arms. We spent about two hours tasting and talking and having a great time.

I felt a little bit like Forest Gump.


In the end, I think we can both say, it was a blast!

It’s All About…The Turtleneck

Ever since I was a little girl, I have spent my life in turtlenecks. For those who may not know this slang word for a usually cotton shirt, that has a neck on it, that snuggles and cuddles you neck, and keeps it warm.



Heck, I even had summer turtlenecks, that had the neck piece, but short sleeves. Yes, I love that style and my closet is currently full of them.



Flash forward to 2016 and the surgery, which put  titanium pins and a small plate in the throat area. I’m still not sure I can even imagine what this looks like, but when I go on the 26th of this month, I will get pictures of my xrays.

Meanwhile, back to the turtlenecks. I cannot wear them! I feel like someone is literally choking me! I have several of them which are very loose, and I can’t even wear them. So, I will taken these shirts and store them for a while in another closet and perhaps order some cheap scoop and v-neck shirts.

The scoop and V-necks are about the only thing that is comfortable, but it sure does leave my neck chilly!


It’s All About…Kindness

Recently, during our car trip out to Ohio, I brought with me an actual paper filled notebook. Often I get ideas and I jot them down before they are lost in time.

It's All About

One idea that kept coming back to me was, “It’s All About…”

Certainly life is full of things that make the world go round, but sometimes I think we get lost and forget what “It’s All About.”

So here is my first entry, into a brand new category for my blog!

As we drove down highway 86 toward Cleveland, we were talking, listening to the radio and of course stopping periodically to use the restrooms.

One thing that made me both smile and frown was the way people, strangers, treated each other. Sometimes good, sometimes bad.

My grandmother always told me to smile and be kind. She said that you never knew when someone needed a lift and that your smile might be the only one they see all day.

Kindness comes in many shapes and forms. Being polite, stopping to help someone, or when a dining-room is full of all sorts of people attending reunions, sharing a table.

I’ve been on my own crusade since 9/11. Every time I am in a restaurant, an airport, or perhaps shopping, when I see a member of the military, I stop for one moment and thank them for their service.

Recently, I saw two old men, with their military company’s emblem on their hats. They were World War II soldiers. They were talking, both had canes and you could see that the years had been tough for them.

I went over and smiled broadly, and thanked them both. One of the men got quite misty, and they both thanked me.

My smiles and helpful ways are not limited to the military. I am always on the lookout for older people in the grocery store who cannot reach the top shelves. As I am 5 feet 8 inches tall, with long (monkey) arms, I can reach everything pretty easily.

Yesterday, I was in the grocery store and I was smiling. The next thing I knew a little boy in a neighboring carriage called out to me: “Hi Lady!”

I swear, Kindness is contagious! And so are smiles. Just like my Grandma Honey always told me.

It’s All About…Kindness