Georgie & Bella’s First Road Trip – Moses Creek Falls

On a mild, sunny September morning, Hubby and I set out – with much anticipation and a little apprehension – for Alberta. It’s a long ways to travel with two young puppies, so we decided to break the trip into two days with some fun stops along the way.

Georgie, our eight-month-old Chihuahua, immediately settled onto my lap, while Bella, our five-month-old Papillon/terrier, insisted on riding shotgun next to Hubby (her best buddy). She looked so cute, I couldn’t be annoyed.

Our first stop was Moses Creek Falls in Revelstoke. There’s a wide trail on the right-hand side of the parking lot (located about six kilometres down Westside Road), so we followed it. Before long, we came across a No Trespassing sign and then another sign saying Explosives, Do Not Enter. The trail ended at a munitions shed. Obviously not the correct path, so back we went. Not the most auspicious start, and a half hour wasted.

Behind the Moses Creek sign, on the left side of the parking lot, is a narrow dirt trail. This took us down to a road, which we headed right on. The road is rough, but driveable. Hubby didn’t enjoy walking it and wished we’d driven down.

At the road bottom, we followed the trail to the banks of the Columbia River, where we caught glimpses of the Revelstoke Dam.

The Columbia River, with one of my favourite glacial mountains, Mount Begbie, in the background.

We wandered along the river bank for a bit, not sure where to find the falls. We could hear it, but not see it. We did see lots of cute toadstool villages.

Hubby finally located the trail heading up to the falls. I’m so proud of my little girls. Georgie forged ahead, eagerly climbing all obstacles in her path. And Bella, who isn’t terribly keen to walk on a leash, bounded along, showing her first signs of genuine enthusiasm.

Moses Creek Falls isn’t huge, but it’s very pretty, set in picturesque surroundings. Despite a couple of drawbacks getting there, visiting it was worth the effort.

The rush of the falls intimidated Bella, and I had to pick the little princess up to get close enough for a picture. Surprisingly, Georgie, who’s afraid of all strange noises, wasn’t fazed.

We didn’t dawdle as long as I’d have liked, because of travel constraints and the time we’d already lost finding the falls. Soon we were back on the highway, headed for Golden, with two exhausted puppies snoozing on my lap.

Join me next week to explore Golden’s Rotary Trail and search for Confluence Park.

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Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

 

Wishing all my fellow Canadians, especially family and friends, a Happy Thanksgiving. I hope you find joy and gratitude in your lives. Here are some of my joys, for which I’m so grateful:

Our two puppies. Georgie, who came to us in March (thanks go to our youngest son for driving her out here from the coast) and Bella, who joined us in June. I’m grateful my hubby set aside his misgivings to welcome these precious little ones into our family.

Hubby had his knee replacement in May, and is working hard on a complete recovery.

May was a good month, as we also celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary. And the best gift of all that month was the birth of our adorable granddaughter. I’m beyond grateful for our miracle baby. Take my word for it, she’s beautiful and perfect in every way.

I’m grateful my oldest son and his family came to visit twice last summer. A quick trip in June to meet our new little princess. And again in August, to celebrate my oldest grandson’s birthday and have some fun in the Okanagan sun.

We usually try to go to Alberta for Thanksgiving, which coincides with my son and daughter-in-law’s birthdays. This year we opted to go in September to celebrate my younger grandson’s birthday. It’s the first time in five years we were able to do so, and for that I’m grateful.

I’m also very thankful that we made it safely back home the day before a huge snowfall caused all sorts of havoc in Alberta and on the highways headed west. I’ll post photos and stories of our trip in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I’ll gratefully enjoy turkey dinner tonight.

A Month of Trials and Tribulations With Georgie and Bella

Having a puppy is great fun. It’s also work. Having two puppies is even more work. I love my little girls, and I’m grateful for the joy they bring, but I’m ready to put the busy puppy phase behind us.

I made a mistake naming our second puppy Bella. She’s certainly not the dainty little angel the name implies. Despite only weighing four pounds, there’s nothing delicate about her, and with her excess exuberance, ‘Rascal’ might’ve suited her better. Or perhaps ‘Diabla’. I’m jesting, of course. She can be a stubborn brat, but she’s also very affectionate and loves everyone. She just needs more growing up.

And she needs to stop having accidents in the house. She’s five months old now and should be housebroken. She asks to go out during the day, and accidents only happen once it gets dark. We take her outside regularly in the evening, but she’d rather play than pee. Indoor piddles aren’t a daily occurrence, but she still can’t be trusted, and it’s frustrating.

At around four months old, Bella’s facial hair started getting shaggy.

I didn’t trust myself to trim it without poking her eyes, so I contacted several local groomers. All I wanted was her face trimmed fairly short, but apparently the full trim package is the only option available. I wasn’t overly pleased with the job on her face. It looked uneven and choppy, and was still too long. Her moppy little feet turned out nicely, though. And she was a good girl for the groomer.

A month later, she looks cute again. The hair isn’t as jagged looking, but it’s already getting long. I’m not thrilled at the prospect of paying another $40 for services I don’t want.

Georgie and Bella usually play wonderfully together. Georgie mothers Bella, cleaning her face and ears daily, and Bella likes to be wherever Georgie is.

They both love to chew, so we always buy two of everything, to avoid squabbling and jealousy.

This works until one of them decides she wants what the other one has. Bella simply takes what she wants from Georgie, which often makes Georgie snarl. Bella might back off, or she might not. If Georgie wants Bella’s toy, she’s more subtle. She’ll get another toy and enthusiastically play with it right in front of Bella. As soon as Bella drops what she has to take Georgie’s toy, Georgie swoops in and grabs Bella’s. If Bella doesn’t fall for this ploy, Georgie whines and cries and tries to convince us to take it from Bella and give it to her. It’s quite entertaining.

The girls were thrilled when we put a rug in the living room. They have comfy beds, but apparently the rug is superior to nap on.

Georgie turns eight months old today, and we finally got her spayed last week. The vet wanted all her adult teeth in first, but ended up pulling a baby canine. Bella was so vexed about Georgie being gone, she spent much of the morning sulking in her bed.

Georgie sometimes looks stoned in photos, but she wasn’t faking it that afternoon. Poor baby.

She rallied that evening and even ate a few bites of food. When I gave her pain meds the next morning, she got groggy again.

The following morning, she seemed even more drugged after her dose of meds. She acted scared of us and just wanted to be by herself.

So pathetic.

Thankfully once the drugs left her system, she became her busy, happy self again.

 

Baby Bella B Is Four Months Old

It’s hard to believe that our little Bella is already four months old. Partly because it feels like we just got her, but mostly because she still acts like such a young puppy compared to the maturity of our seven-month-old puppy, Georgie. She’s amazingly solid for only weighing just over three pounds. She likes her food and adores her treats.

Bella isn’t quite housebroken yet, which she should be by now. When we got her, she’d never been outside and she had no idea she should pee on the grass. She’d go on the sidewalk or wait until she came in the house to pee on the floor. Although we’re still working on consistency, there’s been vast improvements.

When we take Bella for walks, she tends to draw a crowd. Everyone wants to know what kind of breed she is. We aren’t really sure. Her dad’s a purebred Papillon and her mom was advertised as a maltipoo, but judging by Bella’s wire-haired coat, there’s some terrier in the mix. We don’t care what breed she is, it’s just hard to explain it to curious people.

Hubby jokes that she’s always walking downhill.She’s a sturdy little rough and tumble thing, who loves to wrestle and chase with Georgie. And she’ll climb onto just about anything. A couple of big jumps (which thankfully didn’t injure her) have scared her enough that she doesn’t do that anymore.

With Bella starting to teeth, she’s discovered the joys of chewing on furniture. I don’t find it amusing, and I tell her all the time, “It’s a good thing you’re so cute.” She’s definitely cute. A little rascal, perhaps, but such a cute rascal.

Penticton’s Waterfronts In The Sun!

I’m pleased to finally have a fun post to share. We’ve seemed to live in limbo for the past year and a half, hanging close to home because one (or both) of us wasn’t physically capable of doing much. Needing a break, I proposed a road trip to Penticton, approximately one hour south of us, to explore Skaha and Okanagan Lakes waterfronts. So one sunny day last week we packed a picnic lunch, grabbed the pups and set off.

We headed to Skaha Lake first. We parked at Sudbury Beach (huge bonus – parking’s free), and walked along Skaha Lake Road to Skaha Lake Park.

Skaha Lake, Penticton’s south-facing, smaller lake, has such a pretty setting.

We strolled the long, paved promenade, then wandered back through the lovely grassed park opposite the beach.

At lunchtime, we retrieved the car and returned to Skaha Park, to enjoy our lunch at one of the many shaded picnic tables. This parking lot was also free! Georgie and Bella were happy to snack, drink and relax.

Skaha Lake and Okanagan Lake are connected by the Okanagan (Penticton) River Channel. Hubby and I had fun floating down that channel several years ago.

We found yet another free parking lot (I’m so impressed!) off Riverside Road. It’s just a short walk to the promenade along the north-facing Okanagan Lake.

The SS Sicamous, Canada’s largest remaining sternwheeler, is situated at the west end of the promenade. This impressive steamship has been beached in its current location for many years, although last Spring’s high lake levels briefly floated it.

The SS Naramata is beached nearby.

Okanagan Lake’s beach and promenade were busier than Skaha.

As usual, it was slow going for us because our puppies draw so much interest. We always let folks, young and old, pat and visit with them. The girls love the attention, and it helps with their socialization. We use the stop times to refresh them with water. Bella takes any opportunity to sprawl in the shade.

The lake was curiously devoid of any type of watercraft compared to Kelowna’s congested waterfront.

The iconic “Peach” is located on the easterly side of the promenade. Their tasty cones were worth the price (and calories).

While waiting for our cones, I spotted “The Romp”, life-sized statues of children playing on the beach and decided on a closer look.

Hubby and the girls waited for me in the comfy shade.

Last year, as I mentioned, our lakes rose to flood levels, and these poor children ended up knee-deep in water. Some kind passerby actually provided them with lifejackets. Nice to see everything’s back to normal this year.

Views of the SS Sicamous and the eroded clay cliffs in the background on our stroll back.

Our last stop was at the Penticton Rose Garden. Georgie and Bella enjoyed the shade. I enjoyed the roses.

Two tired, but happy puppies on the drive home. It was a good day.

Double The Trouble, Double The Fun…Two Puppies Are Better Than One!

Our Chihuahua puppy, Georgie, is six months old already and totally precious! (I blogged about getting Miss Georgie Girl here)

She behaves beautifully on her leash and is enthusiastic about walks.

Outside continues to be a favourite hangout. And she finally comes when she’s called!

She and Rocko, the neighbour dog, are madly in love, sharing doggie kisses through the fence.

With Georgie maturing nicely, what would possess us to get another puppy? Three words: Energy To Spare. Georgie begs to play nonstop.

We give her plenty of attention, just not as much as she’d like. So, five weeks ago, we got her a playmate, “Baby Bella B”. (The B stands for butterfly ears and bunny-rabbit legs)

Bella’s an undetermined mix of breeds – her dad’s a purebred Papillon and her mom’s a poodle cross. The tiny runt of the litter, Bella weighed two pounds at eight weeks, only slightly more than Georgie did. We’ve no idea how big she’ll get.

Regardless, she’s 100% adorable.

Her fuzzy wire-hair coat has nice markings with several cute splashes of brown.

Wherever Georgie goes, Bella isn’t far behind.

Probably from being much smaller than her siblings, Bella’s assertive when playing with Georgie. They both usually want what the other one has, and Bella often wins.

Unlike Georgie, who’s not food motivated, Bella loves to eat and is eager for treats.

Bella adores Georgie, and Georgie really likes her, too (just maybe not quite as much). At first, she refused to snuggle together.

One day I happened across this adorable scene.

As long as Georgie initiates it, she’s now okay with cuddling.

I take way too many pictures of them sleeping. They’re just too sweet and comical to resist.

Georgie still sleeps in funny positions.

Bella’s body is too short and chubby to contort.

Right now, they’re still small enough to both fit on my lap.

Bella had the sweetest puppy ears, and I hoped they’d stay that way forever.

But her Papillon genes soon won out. Still so cute, though.

Maybe it’s because my old pup, Roxy, had tiny, hairless ears, but Georgie & Bella’s beautiful fuzzy ears rather fascinate me.

Like Georgie, Bella loves it outside.

They chase and wrestle constantly. Bella often dominates the wrestling matches, but Georgie leaves the clumsy-footed baby behind when they run. Lean and sleek, Georgie’s the undisputed speed demon.

Time out for a drink.

Our yard offers lots of shady grass, yet Georgie, the sun-lover, seeks out the hottest spots. Sometimes Bella joins her, although with her thick, fuzzy coat, she prefers shade.

In contrast to Georgie’s cautious nature (she won’t even jump off the couch), Bella knows no fear. Hubby had to add a bottom railing to the deck after she leaped three and a half feet to the ground below.

When our son’s family visited with their three dogs, Georgie was initially terrified. Doggie socializing is important though, and she soon warmed up to Piper and Shasa.

Bella loved them all, especially Sukie, the big lab.

Little devil even stole Sukie’s bone.

They were all amazingly relaxed together.

We often take the puppies on outings. They enjoy meeting people, which is beneficial to their socialization. They’re great in the car, and although Bella’s not as keen about walking as Georgie is, she’s learning.

They get plenty of water breaks.

And on the car ride home, they sleep like angels.

So, yeah, we’re busy, and we’re certainly looking forward to Bella being potty-trained. But these sweet little girls have stolen our hearts, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

Stellar Reviews For Dare To Risk All Audio Book

The audio version of Dare To Risk All has been available for about two weeks now, and the positive reviews have been pouring in, on Audible.com and a few on Amazon.com.

I’ve posted some samples below, and you can read them in their entirety on Audible’s website. (Canadians have to click the Audible.com link on the top bar to get to the American site)

5 Stars – A very heartwarming story, I loved it very much. The story was well written and very cute and adorable. A very good story to have in my car and listen to it while driving.

5 Stars – Lots of drama and a very enjoyable read.

5 Stars – Joyce M Holmes wrote the story beautifully of Tessa and Ben (plus lovable pet Milo). Lili Dubuque was an excellent choice for this performance. She added to the book with her easy tempo and smooth voice…The author wrote very realistic characters and had the right amount of tension and competition in the book. Well done.

5 Stars – I really enjoyed this book. This story is full of real life issues that deal with decisions and the outcomes as well. The narration was good and kept you entertained.

5 Stars – There were many ups and downs and a plethora of ‘woulda, coulda, shoulda’ – the very definition of the risk we take when we fall in love. The narrator was a great choice. She kept the listen flowing…made the great moments in this obstacle course very personal.

4 Stars – The story has a very interesting premise. It has a unique way of showing how the characters interact with each other. Very good audio book and enjoyed listening.

4 Stars – A good back and forth book with some good and some not so nice sub characters thrown in. I think the narrator did a great job too. This was my first listen for this author and narrator and I’d definitely but another of her books.

4 Stars posted on Amazon – Cute sweet romance story. Great characters. Loved Milo. The narrator did a good job with the characters voices.

You can find links to reviews for all  my books listed here.