Friday, November 26, 2010

What we do when it rains!! :) COW EARS!!!

So what do you do when you have 14 dogs (five boarders for Thanksgiving) and it rains? Bring out the cow ears!!!! COW EARS?? I know, many of you give your dogs pig ears and didn't even know you could buy cow ears. Well, let me tell you what- after giving my dogs cow ears, I won't ever give them pig ears again. I also order "sweet cheeks" from Christi's Canine Cafe and those are the cheeks of cows- they smell like vanilla and the dogs LOVE EM!!!! Cow ears are thin, not greasy at all, low in fat and calories and an average dog like Gracie can take 30 minutes to chew through 1/2 of them. Yes, I buy them and then use loppers to cut them in half. They are so much cheaper than Bully Stix and other chewy treats. Since I am waiting on a shipment from Christi of sweet cheeks and beef tendons, we are happily chewing away this rainy day with our cow ears. There's a link to Christi's Canine Cafe on the first page of my blog on the left- go visit her- she is THE BEST and she inpects everything she ships before it goes out. She does not carry cow ears, but everything she carries is AWESOME. It's less expensive than Petco or Pet Supermarket and I can feed the treats to my dogs without fearing that they'll be dead in the morning b/c something was REALLY made in China and is laden with some bizarre toxin. Gracie and Quinn are shown below, somewhat blurry, I am sorry to say, munching away while it pours.

You can comment as anonymous!

Hey everyone- my sister in law said she couldn't leave a comment b/c she didn't have an account with yahoo. You can always leave a comment!!! Click on the bottom option which says, "Anonymous" and then leave your comment and your name if you want. AND WOW- I see visitors from GREECE ( I love Greece, would love to go back!), China- have friend adopting there as I type, and so many other places- I am thrilled that so many people are reading my blog. I have alot of advice in here about health issues in dogs, so look around or you can email me if you have any questions at

Friday, November 19, 2010

It's either feast or famine around here!!

Here is Emily, our oldest daughter on the night of her induction to the National Junior Honor Society. I am biased, but I am telling you, she was the most gorgeous girl there!!! :)

This is Janie, Jane Jane guwl, or just precious to me. She is one of our owner surrenders, who has advanced breast cancer. She is my heart dog. She loves to snuggle up where ever it is warmest and stay there. She is probably 12 by now and has just been the greatest dog.

Yes that is a cat, named Jackie, lying down on Gizmo's back while Cavallino looks on with interest. Wonder why we call it Pharaoh's HAVEN??? They are best buddies!!!
The picture to the right shows Julianna giving Gizmo a bit of sweet tea- yes, he IS a SOUTHERN HORSE!!! Julianna is such a responsible horse owner and we are so proud of how well she takes care of Gizmo.

There's an old saying, " It's either feast or famine." That means, things are either really great or really awful. I am telling you that is the case here at the zoo. We will go months where no one gets sick or dies and then BOOM, out of nowhere, we have weeks that seem they will never end. The past three or four weeks have been "famine" weeks. We had two cats with abcesses, one that I treated and it healed up in 24 hours, and the other that took three vet visits, two surgeries and 10 days of round the clock treatment ( hot wet compresses, eye drops, and antibiotics by mouth- ever pill a cat? NOT EASY AND NOT FUN!) and an Elizabethan collar. I am usually a pretty stoic person but after dealing with blood and pus for 10 days, I literally lost it- physically and emotionally. I don't throw up unless I am pregnant, period. Well that 10 days with the cat's face did me in. Happily, Truffles is all better now and I am getting some sleep. He was such a good baby.

So now is feast time- literally and figuratively. My oldest daughter was inducted into the National Honor Society last night and I am getting some of those kids as volunteers here. HOORAY. The kids will be on a cruise for Thanksgiving week so I will have a week of rest and working with the animals. HOORAY. I will miss them terribly but am so grateful they will have a nice memorable week with their grandparents. Here are some random pics of things here- I am still too tired to match subjects up with names and stories. But I should be able to come up with some good stuff next week while I am having a lighter week! HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!!!!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Minis are coming the Minis are coming!

Well this is one excited family. Around October 19th, we will be the proud owners of two miniature horses. They are both males, and the buckskin paint's name is Gizmo and the bay's name is Cavallino. We purchased them from a lovely couple named Debbie and John Driggers at Delta Shamrock Farms. Gizmo is around four months old and Cavallino is six months old.
Why you may ask are we getting two miniature horses? Well, there are lots of reasons. We have always loved horses and once owned a quarter horse named Chap. Julianna and Emily spent a year riding at a friend's ranch and were both good riders and very much loved it, but Julianna in particular LOVED IT. Last October she broke her ankle (not related to the horses) and it healed and she did rehab, but several months later she began to have weakness, sharp shooting pains, and discoloration in that foot. After x-rays, MRI's and several doctor visits of all sorts, we got two diagnoses of CRPS. CRPS stands for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, which is a nerve illness and it used to be called RSD (Reflexive Sympathetic Dystrophy). We have two friends with this illness and it is capable of rendering someone wheelchair bound or in horrible pain for life. The good news is that many times it goes into complete remission in children. It's a hard syndrome to understand but the basic way it works is that when a part of the body is injured, the CRPS can travel to that part of the body and tells the nerves there to continually fire. This causes the sharp shooting pains, sensitivity to cool air, or even a fan blowing on that part of the body, severe pain, and weakness. The solution for this is to desensitize the affected nerve by using that part of the body and trying to get the nerves to "shut off"- not completely but to stop "overfiring".
Jules has had the episode in her left ankle which lasted for four weeks and a couple episodes in her right hand causing pain from her ring finger up to the wrist and weakness in that hand and wrist. Riding horses is not permitted, due to the risk of severe injury if she were to fall off the horse. We can't put her in a bubble but we have to limit the chances of her getting severely injured. So that means for the time being that riding horses is off the menu. So we prayed and talked and started thinking about ways that she and our family could still enjoy horses without the risk and my dear friend Laurel suggested getting a couple of miniature horses. They cannot be ridden due to their size but are horses in every other sense of the word. They are about 30 inches tall at the shoulder when full grown and are very easy to keep. So for Julianna's 12th birthday we took her to the Driggers' farm and told each girl to pick out a horse. I thought she was going to faint. So Jules picked Gizmo (the girls named the horses) and Em picked out Cavallino. This is very much a family project and this will be another way for us to spend time with our children at home, outside, and all helping with the care, feeding, grooming, and loving of these tiny treasures. The hand exercise in grooming and training them will be just what the doctor ordered for Julianna's hands and will be great for both of the girls. They can be walked like dogs (funny, huh?) and taught to do tricks, but mainly they are going to be here to be loved, trained to be handled, and to be another great way our family can bond. As the girls get older there are alot of things competing for their attention- good and bad. We encourage the good things such as youth group, good friends from school and things like that. This will be another good activity that they can share with those friends and family. We'll keep you posted on the babies' progress. Right now we have a run in shed to build and a pasture to get ready. YIPPEE!!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Gracie and her grief!

Gracie as a pup- below and Gracie now

Our little boxer mix, Gracie Rose is in mourning. She had a best friend named Abbey, who was a lab/pit mix. They were best friends. They played for hours on end and chased each other in the yard constantly. Abbey was young- and started showing her "pit" side little by little. First there was food agression- no problem, we feed all of our dogs in their crates. Then came toy agression- problem- she and Grace would growl and "play fight". Then one day all hell broke loose. Abbey had a toy and Grace went up as usual to grab it and Abbey went INSANE and we were lucky to get her off Grace. Mind you, she was a year younger and smaller than Grace. We called a hundred people, from pit experts to pet psychologists and got the same answer- " It is only going to get worse, rehome Abbey." Well, we did and Grace has not been the same since. She mopes under our bed and still grabs a toy and runs outside and looks around like, " Where is she??" So we are asking God whether we can fill that spot or whether another needy dog (we would only do a rescue puppy with no pit bull in it) needs to come here to have a home. This is Gracie's puppy picture, and another of her now. We're trying, Gracie Rose!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

I have the E Ticket and it's not all it's cracked up to be!

Well, for my girls, today is back to school day. Emily is in
eighth grade and Jules entered middle school (6th grade)
today. They were ready, happy, loaded down with their
books and schedules and Jules might have been a bit nervous
but overall, they were READY. Em assured Jules that she
would walk her to her homeroom and any other classes
that she needed help finding and I felt really proud of both

I have homeschooled for two years until a back injury derailed me so I have experience in both kinds of school-homeschool and public school. I also taught in public school for 10 years. (We don't have money or desire for the kids to be segregated at a private school.)Each year that my kids have been at public school I drove them to school in the morning and they rode the bus home in the afternoon. WHY? Because I wanted to pray with them on the way to school and bless them before they entered their day. Some mornings were glorious prayers and other mornings I was so fatigued it was, " God I am too tired but you know what they need, please do it today."It was a special time for us- and I loved it.
This year both kids got on the bus this morning and will be riding it home this afternoon. Ok, no big deal. Except that when Em rode the bus sometimes in the am last year, I still drove her to the bus stop at her friend's house to have those last few minutes to pray over her or tell her how capable she was or just to say, " GIVE ME A KISS, NO I AM NOT WEARING LIPSTICK EMMY!"
So they were going to walk to the bustop today. Good.It's time for them to do that. I ran out and said to them" Please don't go, I"ll eat you up, I love you so!" (an old
favorite we say all the time from the classic story Where the Wild Things Are.) Em looked at me and said, "OH MOOMS, do you want to drive us to the bus stop?" " YES YES YES!" Jules said, " I wanna ripstick to the bustop." (A modern day skateboard).
Then she looked at me and said, " But I will ride with you guys." So I prayed the most thorough prayer a mom can pray in 2 minutes and they kissed me and out they got.
I got home and Jon said, " YOU GET TO DO WHATEVER YOU WANT TODAY!" I looked at him and said, " Yea, only I don't want to really." He said, " Rest today
read, do whatever!" I said, " I feel lost today Jon." Not sad, not depressed,
not unhappy, just kind of lost feeling- like someone gave me a freeE ticket at Disney (if you aren't old enough to know what that is, it was the tickets that let you go on the COOL RIDES AT DISNEY like Space Mountain or Pirates of the Carribean and when your E tickets ran out, you had to either buy a whole new book of tickets or ride Dumbo or 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea) It was a treasured thing. So I have the E ticket and am standing in the middle of Disney World thinking, " But there's nothing I really want to ride today." BIZARRE? You bet. I told Jon, " They are growing up and learning to live without me."-they now do their own laundry, make their own lunches,and have always done their own homework,
unless they were stumped.I don't ever and will never "bail" my kids out of an assignment they forgot or left at home or waited until the last minute to finish. "And Jon, that is good and right and profitable for them, and I know that. But I miss them. I miss just knowing that they are upstairs being silly and making stupid dance videos. I miss driving them to school and having six minutes to pray instead of two. I missTHEM, the essence of THEM in my home." He said, "I understand."

So while there may be mothers settling down with a cup of coffee today saying, " Praise be to God for school starting!", I am not one of them. I want the E ticket but I want to go on the rides with my kids. That doesn't mean I want to homeschool- I know that I cannot and do not want to educate them to the standards that they are educated by six different individuals at school. I am honest about that. I don't have the energy to do it with excellence.I just wish kids still came home for lunch- maybe we could hop on Space Mountain and then they would say, " WOW, Mom, that was awesome, wanna go again?" And we could. But E tickets don't exist anymore, kids don't come home for lunch anymore, and there is a mom in Florida who is going to have to adjust to riding the rides alone.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Maggie is safe and sound at Tony's house!! Hooray!

Well, our Ibizan Hound is being fostered by a very nice person named Tony and his wife Leah. They know dogs like I do- they are more dog oriented than people oriented. (Compliment to him by the way.) Maggie has settled in well. She has had horrible allergies and we couldn't afford to get her tested and do the shots and that broke my heart. More importantly she had been showing agression toward some of the dogs and has tried to kill one or our IGs twice. Well the night before she was to be picked up I was crying my eyes out and I said, " God, I want you to give me one HARD FIRM NON ARGUABLE SIGN that this is the only way. The next morning I was out with Maggie, Quinn, Abbey and Grace. All of a sudden Maggie had Abbey nailed against the fence and was going to tear her UP. I broke it up and had Abbey come with me and BOOM Maggie ran up and did it again. Maggie had never shown any agression toward Abbey before and there was no "reason" for this agression on this morning. I was shaking all over with anger and fear for Abbey and every doubt in my heart about Maggie having to go just went POOF like a flame being burned out. I said, " God thank you for this hard and inarguable sign."

God knew that Jon and the girls and I love this dog with all of of our heart and I guess he knew I needed some sort of loud billboard kind of sign. So she went to Tony's the next day- I never cried until that morning when I opened the fridge and saw the package of ham and I just fell to my knees sobbing. Ham is what we used to put her meds in or reward her with ham after we gave her the meds. Oh my Maggadocious, we loved and do love you so much and I will never see your picture without tearing up a little. If we could have changed your aggression, I would have begged borrowed or stolen (not quite) the money for your allergies, baby. I miss you but I know you are being a blessing to Tony and Leah and they will see how much you were loved. I know Tony will find her just the right owner and that Maggie will bless that family as our surrenders bless us. Janie was nine when she came here with breast cancer- it's been 3 years and she is old and quiet but she has been such a blessing to our family and I love her so very much. I know some person will say as I have of Janie's old family, " God thank you for the family that loved this dog and thank you that she is part of ours, we love her so very much."
PS. This is not Maggie, but it is a picture that shows the grace and majesty of these very intelligent amazing dogs.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New good homes needed for Abbey and Maggie!

Abbey on left sucking on my hand and Maggie on right looking sad with allergy meds.

Maggie's allergies will not cease and the next step is allergy testing which can be upward of $700 and Abbey Dabbey Doo needs another puppy to roughhouse with. So, ICHUS (Ibizan Rescue) is working on finding some great people to take Maggie and pay for her allergy testing and shots and give her a great new home and I am checking out come prospective homes for the Abbeymeister!!! I took them both in bed with me last night and cried and cried. But we are not the BEST homes for these dogs and that is what rescue is all about. So say a prayer for me, for the girls, and for the new owners of these precious gifts from God.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Donna and Lainey come for a visit!

Well we had our good friends, the Clarks come this week. Their kids were participating in power up clubs for our church and my kids were recovering from 2 straight weeks of vacation. Donna and Lainey, their adopted 4 year old Chinese doll stayed with us. I taught her how to swim last time she was here so she was eager to get in the pool as soon as they arrived. Julianna did a superb job of watching her and playing with her in the pool- even without her floaties!!! We so enjoyed hearing her laugh and be silly. She also LOVED the trampoline. She would just giggle and giggle when she fell down. I am certain that Julianna will be a mommy one day or at the very least work as a superb babysitter. WAY TO GO JULES!!!!
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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Rejoice for the son that was lost is now found!!! OUR HAITIAN CHILD RALF IS ALIVE!!!!

Two days ago I got a Compassion envelope in the mail. Usually it is a letter from Jane or Ralf or updated pictures of them. However, since the earthquake hit Haiti, Compassion had no news of Ralf, only that he was missing. Every day since that earthquake, I have prayed for this boy and asked God to tell him in his heart that his American sponsors had not forgotten about him and to believe in God and hang on. I asked everyone I knew, including my favorite bagger at my grocery store, Morris to pray that Ralf lived. But I got no update from Compassion, so I assumed the worst, but still thought of this child so often. When I saw the manilla envelope and saw it regarded Ralf, my hands began to shake violently and I began to say, " Please Jesus, Please Jesus, please let this be good news!" I opened the envelope and there was a picture of my Ralf- taller and thinner and with a very serious look on his face and eyes that had seen I don't know what. I began to shake and sob and sob and sob with joy. I called Jon at work and cried to him, " RALF IS ALIVE JON, OH HE LIVED!!!" I called Compassion and they told me that the only news that they had was that Ralf's home was destroyed but he was alive. I know nothing of his parents or his siblings. I sent a massive email out to all the people who had been praying for him and told them that our prayers had been answered. I wrote Ralf immediately and just poured my heart out and told him that I had no idea who he had in Haiti but that his American family was crying and praising God that he was alive. I so want to see this child. I want to hug him and see his face and touch him- I never thought I would hear of him again. Thank you God for sparing this impoverished angel. Give him the strength he needs to survive whatever trauma he suffered and may suffering now. Give us a way to encourage him and be his family if he needs one.

If you have never sponsored a child, it is a very special thing to do. We have developed close bonds with the four kids we have sponsored and have lost two of our African kids to tribal warring and relocation and when you get that letter or death or relocation, it hurts like it is your own child- lost or dead. So to hear that our Ralf was alive was even more precious to us because the two children we lost were both boys. I continue to pray for the nation of Haiti and all the other children there who may be orphans or have severe injuries or have experienced such horrible loss. I wish I could scoop them all up and bring them home. For now, I will just rejoice in this child being alive and pray for the day that I can hug him and he can see and know that his American family truly loves him.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A review of a book I just read- a must read!!!

This review is not written by me, but I have read the book and I think it is one of the best books I have ever read. It is honest, warm, and very encouraging. I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and found the nutritional advice to be great. I actually emailed Daniel and he emailed me back and I hope to meet him when he comes to Jacksonville in August. Read the review and know that I give this book FIVE STARS!!!!

God Said Not Yet!: One Man's Experience With "Terminal" Cancer
by Daniel Edward NeffEdition: Paperback
Price: $13.99
Availability: In Stock
6 used & new from $13.07

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
An Inspiring Book About One Man's Battle with "Terminal" Cancer, June 22, 2010
This review is from: God Said Not Yet!: One Man's Experience With "Terminal" Cancer (Paperback) "God Said Not Yet" One Man's Experience With "Terminal" Cancer By Daniel Edward Neff God has a wonderful way of bringing friends and acquaintances back into our lives. I remember Dan, as we called him, from the time we both attended the same church. We were never close friends, but attended some of the same singles events as we were both single during that time. When I left that church, I lost touch with Dan but heard several years later through a mutual friend that Dan was fighting the battle of his life--he had the "C" word--"the most feared word in the English language," as he describes it in his book. So when Dan contacted me to read and review his book, I jumped at the chance! Here is the back cover synopsis: "When I placed my faith in God many years earlier, He promised, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." I would find out if that promise was true. From the initial diagnosis, to the time I died on the operating room table, to being faced with a (literally) life-or-death decision regarding the bone marrow transplant procedure, to the alternative treatment that He led me to, God never abandoned me. The doctors said my life was over, but God said, "Not Yet!" This book is his journey through the time of his cancer. But it is so much more than that. The theme of the book is about his hope and trust in the living God who breathed life into Daniel at the moment of his conception and who breathed healing into Daniel when he needed it most. It is about the path he took to find God, the love story of finding his beautiful wife, Linda, and hearing and submitting to God's calling on his life. Scriptures abound in Daniel's story that encouraged him and Linda throughout the two-year period of Daniel's cancer and treatments. Finally, there are several books and websites recommended for reading and gaining knowledge on some of the treatments that Daniel experienced. This book is an absolute praise report to God! Dan clearly gives all honor and glory to God for his healing. All of us are or have been affected by cancer. We either have a friend, a relative or perhaps even we've experienced cancer personally. This is a book that you will want to read and or share.

Fun in the Mountains!!!!

We went to Little Switzerland NC to visit my parents in their mountain house and we had such a great time. We hiked to Linville Falls, spent a day at the Gem Show, and biked 17 miles downhill (most of it) on the Virginia Creeper Trail and most importantly spend time with Mama and Daddy. The weather was gorgeous and we truly loved being with them and in the mountains. I have more pics to share but they are on Jon's camera, so these will have to suffice for now. Mama and Daddy, thank you for the gift of being able to fly up there and for all the fun things we did. We love you!!!

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Sunday, May 16, 2010

Peace like a river...................Thanks to some folks who need to hear it!!!

Well, it's finally come. Peace. Praise God. It's been a rough six weeks, but the calm after the storm has finally arrived. It didn't arrive in one big chunk but in little ways. Peace, to me, is the feeling that everything is as it should be. Now I don't mean that literally- my house is a wreck, my wood floors are mountains from flooding, and sand is everywhere, but the storm inside my heart has ended.

What am I talking about?? Well, the last six weeks have been full of death (read earlier blogs- a friend of my brother's committed suicide and two of our healthiest cats died very quickly and suddenly. ) Added to that was more drama in my original birth family than I could deal with and some memories that I had buried long ago came rushing over me like a tidal wave. ( I am not adopted, I refer to my birth family as my original family and my kids and hubby as my immediate family.) Added to that were additional worries about Bucky's family, and no way to help except to pray for Vicky and the kids.

I called a time out from visits or phone calls from some people I love very dearly. Not a permanent time out but a temporary one until I could literally get my feet under me. I found that once my family (brother and sister and my husband) knew about some childhood issues I had been through that maybe I could breathe easier and was that ever the truth. I found I had been anxious that Daddy would walk through the door, wanting to talk, or to drop off a tool, or Mama would call, or that if I called anyone I might get them on a bad day. I felt I couldn't lie down and pray without waiting for the dogs to bark announcing an unexpected visitor. Once I knew I could abide here in my house with my kids and husbands and animals with no surprises, I was like a different person.

I would like my original family to know that I love them very much. They know that, but love is action, not words. And I haven't felt like I have been in action much. I think that is one of the hardest things for me to understand- and I have been asking God to show me how to deal with it. My love language is someone who loves me calling or writing me an email or text once a week or acts of love like bringing me medicine when I am too tired to drive to the pharmacy. I don't care about gifts, or cards (they're nice but not neccesary) (Deb H, you are the card queen and I love your cards), or anything else. Just a "thinking about you but too busy to talk" email is amazing. It is for me an instant pump of helium to my heart balloon that may be coming down. Someone answering the phone when I am crying and them saying, " I"ll get your meds, Anne." is LOVE TO ME. It is " this person really does care and think of me occasionally" feeling. People can tell me they love me till they are blue in the face, but if I feel like I got forgotten in the shuffle of their very busy lives, I get so depressed. Now, most of you know I have bipolar 2. This has nothing to do with my illness- it's the way I have been forever.

With that being said, there are some people I would like to thank.

Debbie H, thank you for getting my medicine and making me feel like it was no big deal.

Mama and Daddy, thank you for picking me up at the car place when the "2 hour no big deal" wait became a five hour one and my dogs were in the house about to pee everywhere. Thanks for picking up my prescriptions. Thank you for everything you've done to help me, more than I could name. Thank you for my self esteem, you'll never know how much I have needed that and it was the one thing I never struggled with as a kid. NEVER. I know you know I love you always. Let's have dinnner here soon, I haven't had you since Dad's party.

Mom and Dad Trinkle, thank you for your constant love and support and for giving me peace about not coming to camp this year- what a gift that was. I thank you for all you have been to my kids and my husband and to me. You have shown me what God's love looks like lived out.

Susan, thank you for listening, caring, and understanding why I needed to tell you. Thanks for not being angry at me when I screw up, you have this amazing ability to not see people's mistakes, only their good sides, and I need to learn that from you.

Joyce, thank you for never shutting down the communication between us, even when you were frustrated or angry with me ( I am sure you have been at times.) Thanks for being my other sister. I love you so much and miss you so much, I am crying. :) You are so special to me.

Mike, thank you for making the effort to call me and I am sorry for my frustration. I am trying my best to understand how to communicate with you and I love you with all my heart. I am sorry for hurting you. We're good.

Jon, God only knows what a gift you are to me. Thank you for texting me from work just to say, " How's your day going, honey?" WOW, I feel so loved when you do that. I can't even tell you how loved I feel. Thanks for being the girls' chauffeur when I am in need of sleep. Thank you for your holding me when I felt like I would cry myself to death. Thank you for understanding how much I love other people and that I do mess up but you know my heart and thank you for that. Thanks for being more than I deserve and such a gift from God to me and our children. I hope and pray each day that I make you feel just that loved. If sandwiches are love then you are stuffed with them and love, literally and figuratively. :)

Laurel, thank you for everything you have always been to me- a sister, a best friend, a sounding board, and a true loving soul. I know I have been that friend and sister for you too, but you need to know that I thank God every day for bringing you into my life.

Emily and Julianna, the last thank you's go to you. You are such beautiful young ladies and most importantly, your souls glow with God's love. You are my reasons for getting up in the morning and the last thing I think of when I go to bed at night. Your mother's day cards healed my heart more than you will ever ever ever know. The words you wrote were like literally sewing up my heart. I know I have made some mistakes in life, but you are my pride and joy and God uses you to show me that I must have done something right amidst all my mistakes, when you remember something I said to you, or you remember that man looks at the outside but God looks at the heart or you tell me that I am the best mommy in the world.

This post was 'all about me" but it was really all about the other people in my life and how much they mean to me and I hope everyone feels that and knows that I care about your lives too and I know I have shown that to all of you. I love you all, Anne

Friday, May 7, 2010

We love you Cookie Conker!!!

I don't know how many more deaths I can take. On the left is a picture of two of our cats, Bella on the left and Cookie on the right. Cookie died Wednesday of heartworms. Yes, it is very rare in cats and no, we had no idea he was sick. I saw him under my van, which is a place he never goes and I knew INSTANTLY something was wrong. I called Jon and we brought our dear Cookie Monster in the house and I knew he was going to die. After doing rescue for so long, there is a smell of death that lingers on an animal when they are dying- that sounds bizarre and hard to believe, but even my kids know that smell when we used to get very sick squirrels. I begged Jon to take him in, as I knew I could not take this particular cat. You see, Cookie is a very special baby to me. Several years ago, our neighbor's dog killed my kitty Moses in our front yard- he didn't actually die until we we at the ER vet, but it was a horrible traumatic death. I never go out and get a new animal when one dies but a sudden traumatic death is like a scene from a movie that won't go away. So the girls and I went to Animal Care and Control and I saw Cookie and I knew he was the kitty. He hated thunderstorms and I always let him inside during them. I had a premonition that he should be an inside cat, but we have allergies and I just attributed my over protectiveness of him to the fact that Moses had been killed outside. He was killed by a disease that mosquitoes carry. Dr Rockefeller, my vet saviour called me from her office and said, " Anne, honey, it's not good." I said, " I know, Renee, I know he's going to die, he smelled like death, but WHAT IS IT??" She told me and said, " He's going down fast." I said, " Put him down now." She was so dear and asked if we wanted his body which was the most beautiful cat body in the world, with the most remarkable markings on it, but I told her through my sobs, " I cannot see his face again, I will just die, Renee." She said, " I know, I am the same way." And she said she would take care of my baby for me. I asked her if she would tell him I loved him and I was so sorry and she said, " Of course." "I'm so sorry, Anne, I am so sorry." I said thank you and hung up and held on to Jon. He was our Cookie Monster, Cookie Conker, Tootie (rhymes with cookie) Tonter and so many other little pet names. When people know you have seven cats, their reaction to the death of one is either, " Oh, that's too bad". or there are dear souls like Dale who weep with you because they know that each one is as special as the rest, no matter how many creatures you have. Thank you Renee and Dale and to all my friends who texted me to tell me how sorry they were about our baby Cookie. (He was six years old but always my baby.) Renee, when you get to heaven, God will put a special jewel in your crown shaped like a paw and say, " You will never know what comfort you gave Anne Trinkle by sending her animals to me so sweetly and with such love and empathy." I love you.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

For my brother and everyone who loved Bucky

As I laid in bed this morning, my mind was still reeling from the news of one of my brother's oldest and dearest friend's suicide. I have hurt for my brother and his buddies who all grew up together here in Mandarin. Bucky was known as Bucky to all of us, his given name was Walter Woolfe Jr. Most of my memories of him are from my childhood and teenage years- he spent a lot of time at our house and I spent a lot of time at his house with my folks and brother and sister. I remember a tall, handsome man with dark curly hair and a mustache most of the time. He gave real hugs and always took time to talk to me even though I was just Mike's "kid sister". He never made me feel like he didn't have time for me and in later life on the few occasions I saw him as an adult, I was always OVERJOYED to see him and give him a hug and he always asked about my folks, my kids, etc. He and his brother had a monkey and a mean as snot Chihuahua named Timothy. :) I loved both of them. I loved his parents- Kay used to sit me on her lap and read me stories- one in particular that I cannot remember the whole title of, " The Hag, the Bag and..................." I was always begging her to read it to me and she always did. I did feel true love from Walter and Kay- Walter would always swoop me up and hug me like I was the most special little girl in the world and I loved him very much. I have such vivid memories of Bucky and Carey's room (you had to step down into their little room and it felt like a cool little hideout place) and the way the house was laid out and I learned to swim in their pool- my sister taught me and I spent many happy hours there.
Bucky always looked right at you when he talked to you- he gave you the feeling that you mattered. I loved him like a brother. My mom always welcomed my brother and sister's and my friends to the house and it was always such fun when he and John would come. I hadn't seen Bucky for 7 or 8 years, but he was one of those people you always hoped you would run into sometime at the pharmacy or somewhere in Mandarin. I wanted to write this for Mike, Billy, Mark, John, Chip, and all the other guys and people who loved Bucky and were his childhood and adulthood friends. I know you are hurting and I wish I could hug each of you. I really do. I will write his ex- wife and children a note and send it by snail mail- they are in such pain. So many people are hurting- I hope all of us can heal and that Bucky can see us and hear us and know he was very very loved and is very dearly missed. The thought that keeps me going on the days I am crying so hard is that he and his birth family are all together (that's my personal belief) and that there is finally peace there. Vicky, if someone forwards this to you, I love you and our family would do anything for you - ANYTHING. His memorial is tentatively scheduled for the weekend of April 24 at Mandarin Park. We love you Bucky.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Patches and her nine lives

We have a troubled child here at the zoo. Her name is Patches. She has been with us since 12 weeks of age, from a puppy mill. We didn't know it was a puppy mill when we went. Once I got there, I realized it was a puppy mill and I had two choices. Leave (I had my 2 and 3 and 1/2 year old children with me) or stick it to them. So......... the dog I was supposed to get was "sick" and they refused to show the "sick puppy" to me. That's when I KNEW these people were not good. So I played my best cards- I told them I would take the all white dog and if they knocked 50% off her price, I wouldn't report them. I bought the puppy, got home with her and reported them anyway. She was sick as could be - worms, diarrhea, lethargic, you name it. We took her to the vet immediately and they told me she would be fine but she was one sick pup. She has never been "right in the head". She has always had an extreme distrust of strangers, has always loved to play fetch with her special ball, and has had questionable vision, thus making everything new very frightening to her. She has also had an uncanny and aggrevating ability to scale our 5 foot fence so she could be with us in the front yard, and then jump back over when we go in. She is 8 years old and we love her dearly.
The picture above looks like I am holding her head sternly- I am not, I am trying to get her to stop looking around and licking my ears so we could take her picture. The picture below shows her neck and if it makes you woozy, you shouldn't be a human or dog mom. Trust me. This dog has an amazing ability to heal. She also has an uncanny ability to get into TROUBLE. She has run away from dog sitters for 2 days at a time, is a fear biter at the vet, and has been hit by a car with not a scratch or bruise on her. All of this makes us sound like horrid owners, but we are nothing but the opposite. When we learned she had run away from our first dog sitter, I prayed for the last five hours of the car drive home and cried for the entire five hours. After we got home and called and called, she came running out of the woods, covered in ticks, from pin head size to huge engorged ones. We wept and thanked God for her safety, checked her for injuries, bathed her, handpicked ticks off of her and next time she boarded at the vet, in a crate. Now, if she doesn't come to a person upon meeting them, we disqualify them as a dog sitter.
Her last misadventure happened on Thursday between 2:30 and 4:30. Our dogs are often left in the safety of our yard while I run errands. I came home and Patches ran up and Emily said, " MAMA, PATCHES IS CUT UP!!!" I looked down and saw her throat and about died. I stayed calm as usual, assessed how many cuts there were and called my vet. The lacerations were so clean that I knew immediately that they were from something sharp in my neighbors yard- there was not a speck of dirt in them, nor were the edges jagged, so I knew that was in our favor. I rushed her to my vet and Dr. Nguyuen (pronounced Winn) was amazing- she told me they were clean lacerations and I told her, " I will do whatever I need to do, but I am not taking this dog to an ER vet- I trust you." Since Patches will try to rip the hand off any stranger on a good day, I told them to bring me the smallest nylon muzzle they had and told the tech to stay away from the dog, I would hold her for the exam. Glad I did that, when Dr. Nguyen came close to look at her, she went CRAZY, almost came off the table and by the time I got her secure, I was covered with blood and the tech and Dr. N were saying, " Thanks for knowing your dog." I suggested they sedate her with me holding her and then I would leave. I laid on my neice's bed for the next hour and picked her up, all sedated, stapled up, and her tongue hanging out of her pathetic little mouth. Bless her heart.
Fast forward to next morning. She was ready to eat, ready to go out and by day three she wanted to chase her ball and cleared the dang fence when my back was turned. ??????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So she's on leash duty now and I don't know what she's made of, but I wish God had made me out of the same stuff. I don't know if she's one her seventh or ninth life, but I am not worried, she obviously is intended to stay here with us and give us years more of laughter, love, and heart attacks.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

And a partridge in a pear tree......................

I write so often about the dogs, that sometimes I
forget to include the smallest creatures of our home.
This is Izzy (short for Isabella), one of our two
cockatiels. They are Julianna's birds- the other
one's name is Holly and used to belong to our neice, but we convinced her to give her to us when her schedule got too busy and college was looming quickly.
Our cockatiels love each other very much- they preen each other all the time and sing back and forth to each other (they are caged together). Izzy learned the Gator Fight Song from Holly and Holly has learned I don't know what from Izzy. They love to look in the mirror and will just make all sorts of noises to the birdies in the mirror. They are devoted to one another, when we take them out to the pool porch, the other bird screams like he has been murdered. (We have to take them out there one at a time to reduce them flying into the pool). So we make a trip and then QUICKLY go back for the second bird and oh, the screaming is horrible until they are together in their outside cage.
Julianna is an amazing owner and takes very good care of them. She loves them dearly. Often when I am listing the animals we have at our home, I feel like adding , " And a partridge in a pear tree" at the end. I guess these are the partridges. :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Facebook FREAKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I don't know what other people do during the day, but I assume that people with jobs (real paying jobs) work while they are at work. I assume that stay at home moms work while they are at home. So how is it that so many people can spend SO MUCH TIME ON FACEBOOK??? Is this while they are home after the kids are in bed, during their workday, or are their kids learning to potty train themselves while they are playing FARMVILLE???????????????????????? Oh my gosh, I have to say I am beginning to hate Facebook. I get "virtual flowers, lattes, quiches, zucchinis" and all other sorts of crap that frankly I don't want and don't have time to look at!!" Ok, if this is someone's hobby (like reading or watching a show, fine, but I know people who are honest to God on there for 3 hours STRAIGHT. Are you kidding me?????? Is Mafia wars your REAL LIFE???????????? People log on to tell you what they ate for breakfast, that they went to yoga, that their kid made straight A's in school or that they just found an amazing recipe for truffles. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?????? Maybe I am just a sourpuss, but I don't need to know that you have gone through your 3rd box of tissues with your cold, or that you painted your fingernails blue with black stripes, or that your take out was YUM YUM! I don't know that much about my own family. In this house, we work and we play. I spend most of my day cleaning and taking care of animals, kids, my husband, and our property. I don't have time to pull real weeds much less pull them on Farmville. I think it has become a "virtual reality" for many people as a way to escape from their real lives and that's fine, but when you are pulling weeds in Farmville but haven't emailed your friends in months, something is wrong. I get friend requests from people I don't know EVEN through other people- why are they requesting to be my friend if THEY DON"T KNOW ME?????????????????????????????????? I am THIS close to closing my page, I swear. If I get another "join the support Tim Tebow's commercial club" request or another "could you water my fake plants while I take a virtual vacation", I am going to come loose on someone and it's not going to be pretty.

Here's Julianna!!

And here is Julianna- 11 and having fun all the time- you cannot get a serious picture of the child. She was with a good buddy who took this picture. She is smart, loyal to her friends, VP of the student council and my little nurse when I am sick. She's a good kid and is a good example to her friends!!!

Here's Em and Jules is coming!!!

Sorry folks- I haven't updated the girls pictures FOREVER. Here is Em's fall picture. She's 12 going on 13. No, she doesn't wear makeup. No, she isn't a hoochie mama. She is a great kid, scripture on her tennishoes and not a label slave (as she puts it.). She is my number one vet assistant and blood or gore doesn't bother her. She picks great friends and loves to hug me. Jules is next. Sorry for the five year delay. :)
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Sunday, February 7, 2010

Updated pictures coming soon!!!

Everyone must be wondering if my kids are still six and eight. :) I deleted their pics today and will replace them with some new ones soon. We lost the hard drive and once again I lost years of pictures, so I will really have to dig to find some. When will I ever learn to back up my pics????????????????? :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Samson is in doggie heaven and I KNOW IT IS TRUE! AMAZING STORY!!

Well, I share stories of miracles, sadness, things that make us laugh here and all of it is true. And I always have said that God is a very specific God. Today was such evidence of this- this story will truly amaze you but please know it's true, because it happened to ME.

Samson is our 17 year old greyhound and most of you that follow the blog know his story- he was given to us five years ago and we thought we would have him for a few months. The months turned into years and he is the finest dog we have ever owned- hands down. He has been my "soul dog"- the one really special dog in your life. He was a fast runner and was the fastest dog here for a long time- then we noticed him limping. So, our vet told us his knee in the rear left was just shot with arthritis, so we put him on Deramaxx for the last 2 or 3 years. Well in July of 09 he was doing very badly- his arthritic knee was hurting him alot and he didn't get off the couch at all during the day. I called Dr. Rockefeller, my vet and told her it was time. Jon dug his grave and we waited the two days for Dr. R to come. Samson did a turn around that was like a miracle- he was playing and running- and Jon said, " He saw that hole and said, " NOT YET FOLKS!!!"

The last few days Samson has been in horrible pain and his bad knee has been collapsing under him and I knew today when I looked at him that it was the day to send him to relief. So I took him in and Dr. Eslick , who is also my vet, but not the one who knows Samson said, " So we are evaluating him today?" And I was shaken- I had told them I was bringing Sam in for a PTS. (Put to sleep). I said, "NO!" "So you want him to be put to sleep today?" And I am thinking, " AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH why is she asking me this?" But it went peacefully and I cried all over his beautiful brown nose and sang him all his songs. I had alot of special "Mom and Sam" songs I sang to only Sam. I left and thought, " His body is made new and his soul is at rest." I was driving home and I saw something standing in the road and as I got closer, I saw that it was a GREYHOUND. He looked confused and walked in the middle of the road and off to the side. This was in a residential area, so he wasn't at a huge risk to be hit but I noticed he was limping and didn't have a collar on. So I stopped and called him to me and he came. I thought, " Well, he's got to be microchipped, I'll take him back to my vet and find out who his owner is." His nails were well trimmed and he was at a good weight and lots of muscle, so I knew he wasn't a stray. I tried to coerce him to get in my van and he yelped like, " NO WAY LADY!!" I then heard a motorbike behind me and a 70 year old man said, " Thank you maam." I said, " Is this your dog?" "Yes, maam, he just slipped away from me." I said, " Well he's limping, I don't know if he got hit or not- but PLEASE PUT A COLLAR ON HIM, I am headed home after putting my 17 year old greyhound to sleep." He smiled and said, " Well thank you again." The dog ran to him and off they went. And I was filled with JOY- it was like God saying, " Don't worry, it was the right day, Anne, and I have him and here's a little miracle for you. I HAVE NEVER EVER SEEN A GREYHOUND WANDERING IN OR AROUND A ROAD, EVER IN MY LIFE. It's just not something you see. So Samson, thanks for sending me that reassuring message that you were protected and taken home like this old man's dog was. I love you Sam Sam.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Prayers for Ralf and for the dear people of Haiti

We have sponsored a boy in Haiti named Dakens Ralf Losier- he is 11 and we've sponsored him since he was six. We do not know if he is alive or not. Compassion is an amazing organization and we had an email the day after the earthquake letting us know that they would be searching for each of the 2.500 children they serve in Haiti and would let us know of his fate ASAP. I fear to put his picture up but I want him to know we love him very very much and have thought of little else in these last days. I cannot watch TV or videos on the computer- I sob. We chose a boy in Haiti when we lost our last African boy child to tribal warring years ago. This child is known as Ralf to those that know him. We got a letter from him 5 days before the earthquake hit, full of news and good cheer and wishes for a Merry Christmas. (There is a delay of letters getting from us to him and vice versa due to the translation needed.) I had written him immediately back and I pray that he got it before the earthquake. It's a huge world and a small world, so if anyone happens to hear of anyone with his name please email me. WE LOVE YOU RALF. WE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN YOU OR YOUR PARENTS OR YOUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Melange a la Maison de Trinkle (aka the zoo)

I sat down to write today and thought, " There's so much to write about and there's no ONE thing to write about over the next thing." So, the word melange came to mind- it is French for "mixture". I think about it as a mixture of a variety of things- a bowl of multi- colored fruit or a group of people with 20 different shades of skin. Here, it means so many things. In many ways, things are always the same here- there is always alot of work to do, I am almost always joyful to do it, and our population stays about the same. Recently we had a really wonderful happening. Our green cheek conure, Bob, who was rehomed for safety issues 2 years ago with a dear friend (we were fostering a dog who thought Bob was something to eat). So we occasionally spoke of Bob and how he was doing and how we missed him. The foster dog got adopted. One day I was on Craigslist and there was an ad for a green cheek conure- I never click on those. I did. The ad said, " Bobby is for sale and I need to find a home for him immediately." Well, I called my friend who we had placed Bob with and she told me SHE had to rehome him for her dogs were trying to kill him and she had placed him with a nice young mom who had named him Bobby. I screamed, ' KAREN, HE IS ON CRAIGSLIST!!" Long story short- Jon and the girls FREAKED OUT, we called this young mom and Jon rushed over to get our beloved bird.He is the tiny bird with the burgandy feathers on his stomach. I cannot tell you how happy we all were but Julianna in particular was in tears over the reunion. He had been in smoking home with the young mom and had developed a fear of small kids. Karen of course, being a wonderful and amazing animal lover did not know she had placed him in a smoking home- and had interviewed this chick real well. We just love Karen. Bless his heart- he's fine now- very happy to be here and not afraid of anything. He is sitting on my shoulder as I type, trying to eat either my glasses or my neck. :) Very nicely and gently. God is specific.

We lost our dear Galina, as you read in our last post. Heartbreaking. Yesterday we went to a warehouse where we buy our bird food at a great discount (Deviney Enterprises- that's for you Anne- love you!) (If you live in North Florida or South Georgia and want some of the most GORGEOUS SEED AND FRUIT for your birds- go there. You can email me at for their address. Their prices are amazing and they sell almost every pet food you can think of, not just bird food. and we talked these poor folks ears off. There was an orange winged amazon in the office- we asked, " Anne, is he yours?" "No, he is for sale for a friend of mine." I went on and played with Anne's dachshaunds and the next thing I know Anne says, " Holy smokes, look at that." Jon was rubbing "Buddy's " head. I said, " What?" " Anne, that bird HATES MEN!!!" I just smiled and said, " Yea, I know, my hubby is the bird whisperer." Jon went on to talk in this super sweet voice and rub and rub this bird's head. Well, he's here now, his name is Monkey (he is so funny, he likes to hand from his feet from the top of his cage and looks just like a little monkey bird). No big investment- but a new great home for this fun bird- he makes the funniest littlest noises and is SO EMOTIONALLY SOUND. This is a delight for us as most of our birds are rescues, thus have messed up heads. Monkey is the yellow cheeked parrot with the golden eye.

Sam continues to live and even his bad breath brings me joy- every day with this amazing dog is a delight. Janie still has breast cancer but is doing well and sleeps next to my stomach each night. Gracie Rose is having a false pregnancy and it is about to kill me. I have NEVER EVER EVER EVER waited too late to have a dog spayed and time got away from me and she went into heat - of course we do not have any intact animals here, so she couldn't get preggers, but I felt like the worst doggy mom in the world. :) I keep telling her, " I am so sorry, little girl." My morals about certain things are almost too much. :)

We still deal with cold weather, occasional bouts of diarrhea, dogs who won't listen and having to keep up with everyone's shots or wormings and ALWAYS TOENAILS. But pretty much this is the life I love and my family loves it too. We all get tired sometimes and don't want to do our chores, but then we hear a meow or a version of "happy birthday to you" from Pepper or Gracie shows us her favorite toy by wagging her butt all over the place and you just forget your tiredness and laugh and smile and God gives you one more burst of energy. It's heaven on earth for us.