Lucy’s Nature Friday

First, big wags to our friends over at the LLB Gang for hosting Nature Friday!  Even though I got to do Awww Monday this week, Mom gave me first dibs on presenting Nature Friday. *wags* I didn’t even mind my picture being taken this time!

Hmm, I wonder where the best spot would be for this presentation…

There’s some pretty stuff down that way, but I don’t really feel like going off the porch right now. I haven’t had my post-breakfast nap yet.

Oh, looky there! Nature right here on my own front porch.

OK, Mom, take the picture, I’m ready.

What? I am smiling.
Happy weekend everyone!! *wags* Lucy

Nature Friday Around the Neighborhood

Hi Folks, Lucy here. First, big wags to our friends over at of the LLB Gang for hosting Nature Friday! Riley and Xena and I took a walk around the neighborhood yesterday and saw all the pretty colors and fun Halloween decorations. Chia goes early every morning for a fast, 30 minute walk with Mom, but we don’t get to go. Riley can’t handle it (shhh, don’t let him know I told you) and Mom says Chia by herself is enough of a handful, BOL! So she stayed home (and screamed) while we finally got our walk. Here’s some of what we saw.

This first house looks like a crime scene!

Aren’t the leaves on that tree beautiful? And I wagged my tail at the happy jack-o-lanterns.

While Mom was waiting for Riley to make his slow way up the driveway once we got back home, she got a picture of me and Xena in front of our fall flag.

I promise we’re not sticking our tongues out at you. It had gotten pretty hot in the sun, and with Riley, we had a very slow, sunny walk! We don’t care though. We were all just happy to be out walking with our Mom on a gorgeous fall day. Have a great weekend, everyone!

*wags* and *wiggles* Lucy, Xena and Riley
Xena: Hey Riley, you almost to the house yet?

Blount Mansion Nature Friday with Selfies

We are joining Angel Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

At the beginning of the year, our Mom and Dad took a trip to Knoxville, where they danced and visited restaurants and old houses. Us and our sitter, Miss Christy, told y’all about it here.

Today, for Nature Friday, we want to show you the gardens at the Blount Mansion that they visited on that trip.

We didn’t think one of our blog posts would be complete without pictures of us, too!

XOX Riley, Lucy, Xena and Chia

Pots and Dirt and Scary Cart Thingies

Lucy: Hey Xena, you went shopping with Mom. Did she get her basil to plant? I might try some of it this year.

Xena: I don’t think so. Something about still having nights below 40.

Chia: We better get more dogs if she needs more than 40 at night! Are you sure she didn’t say she needs more than four? That we’re getting another dog? Woohoo! We’re getting another dog, another dog I can be boss of!

Lucy: No, no more dogs. So, Xena, where did y’all go?

Xena: Oh, we just went to the big store with big carts that attacked me. I was brave and *quiver* hidbehindMomandshehadtocarryme. Then she bought a really big bowl which I hoped is my new food bowl and dirt, which I totally don’t understand since we have plenty of dirt in the dog lot. Remember when we came home and she dumped the dirt out in the woods from that other, smaller bowl and then poured the new dirt into what I hoped was my new food bowl and dug a hole in it for the plant thingie?

Lucy: Oh yeah. I remember her saying the aloe plant had a ton of new babies and outgrew its current pot. There it is on the porch table, with the mama plant surrounded by all her babies. So cute!

Chia: Then she took the other house plant that wasn’t looking so good and dumped all the dirt out in the woods – and I didn’t manage to get out of the fence that time – and pour a bunch of new dirt in the same pot.

It must like it’s new dirt cause it’s already looking better! I wonder what it tastes like. Hey! There’s my stone up there with it. Hey, Xena Sis, whatcha doin’?

Xena: Watching the plants grow.

We are joining Jakey, Rosy and Sunny (happy birthday month, Sunny) of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Nature Friday: Xena versus the Tomato Plants

We are joining Angel Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Xena: We finally got a sunny day when Mommy had time to go out front with me and bring her phone camera. When brother Andrew gave these tomato plants to Mommy, they were barely as tall as my knee. Now they’ve taken over the sidealk and killed the hosta that was growing behind them. I think the hosta will have it’s revenge when it comes back next year and the tomato plants don’t!

I found out that this is where Mommy’s been getting the yummy little red tomatoes that she tosses to us like edible balls. Mmmm. So whenever I get a chance, I hunt them.

Here, mater, mater! Where, oh where are you? Hmm, gotta go deeper.

Wait! Is that one? Nope, just the edge of the pot that one is in. Can you believe these are all growing in pots? Seems Mommy isn’t much of a planter. When they first started to grow, she went to the hardware store to buy something for them to climb up. She saw these big things for plants to climb on, and thought they were way too big. Now she knows better, BOL! No one can even travel down our front walk without going around them into the yard.

What’s that?

Agh! Something’s in there! It almost got my nose! What, Mommy? It’s time to go back in and work? OK, I’m right behind you!

Happy Nature Friday and Weekend, friends, with a reminder to keep your nose outa trouble. XOX Xena

Natureless Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Xena: Mommy promised to take pictures of me checking out the huge tomato plants when she got home from work today. I like to stick half my body into the tomato forest and hunt for little red tomatoes. Yummy! It’s only got green ones now, but I’ve heard those are delish sliced and fried in cornmeal. Mmmm. Mommy said she’s not going to try to slice and dip and fry little maters that aren’t much bigger than my nose, BOL! Anyhow, it was starting to rain hard when Mommy got home, and it hasn’t stopped all evening. So. No. Pictures. That’s why we’re having a Natureless Friday.

Chia: Xena! Hey Xena! Look what I found in the recycle bin on the kitchen counter!

Xena: So what? Oooo, you opened someone else’s mail. You could go to jail.

Chia: No, numbnut, come look closer. Just whose mail is this!? Do you see the name right there under $0

Xena: DON’T CALL ME NUM…it’s…it’s got my name on it! It’s my mail! Wowzers! First I make a new texting friend, and now I’m getting my own mail! I need to call them. Has anyone seen where Mommy left her phone?

Chia: I want mail! I want mail! I want mail!

Xena: Look at this! This mail’s for me, too! I can’t believe it!

I’m going to be busy for a while, Chia. I need to answer my mail. Maybe I’ll have even more friends…and maybe they’ll all have treats…

I am Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess with mail

Mom’s Trip Part 2 on Nature Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Hi there, I – the Schnauzer Warrior Princess – get to tell our story today. Let’s continue with our tale about the Birds in the Parrot Mountain Bird Reserve. On Tuesday we showed you pictures of brightly colored macaws and of the pesky cockatoo named Rosy, and of course a nice picture of us at the end so you didn’t go away disappointed. We have more bird pictures and stories for you, and maybe even a bonus picture of me (and maybe Lucy or someone else in the pack, too.)

Let’s start off with this Timnah Parrot.

She was a curious bird. Doen’t she look like a sweet girl? Look at that beak. I think I would make a point to be nice to her.

Next is a Solomon Parrot.

She looks rather solomn. I wonder if that’s how that species got it’s name…

Here’s some more colorful Red and Green Macaws.

I don’t know why those two on the right were in a cage. The one on the left by himself looks really friendly. When Mommy offered him her hand to see if he wanted to perch on her, he gently touched it with his beak to say no without hurting her.

These Toucans kept each other company in a big cage. I think the Toucan on the right was sticking her big beak into the other one’s business. You know, telling him what he should and shouldn’t do. Maybe they’re married.

And I think the one on the left finally told her to shut up, that what he did was none of her business! Doesn’t she look startled?

Lucy: Why would you say that, Xena?

Xena: Because I like good stories. They’re everwhere. You just have to look for them. Now get outa mine, Lucy.

Toucan Sam was there too.

Mommy and Rhonda were looking for the area where they were supposed to use the cup of nectar they had bought.

This Yellow Crested Macaw helpfully pointed the way.

Next, Mommy and her friend Rhonda went into the section where they could feed cups of nectar to the little birds. They always have adventures when they’re together, and this was no exception. It started out with one little bird feeding from the nectar.

Then a second birdie joined in, but the nectar was all gone, so they started licking the sweat off her neck and shoulder.

Before she knew it, there were four baby birds licking her sweat and perching on her head.

Mommy tried to help her, but the birds only bit at Mommy and kept licking Rhonda. People lured two of them off with cups of nectar, and Mommy had to use her hand to swipe the remaining two off. They got out of there really fast after that!

I know you want to see a picture of me before we say bye bye. But Chia asked if I would put a picture of her in since she has been sick, and, being a good sister, I said yes.

Nice pose there, Chia!

Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess

Xena and Larry on Nature Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Xena: I was ready to go to bed, and who do you think was in my bed? Larry the Lemur who I got for my June birthday.

Why are you in my bed, Larry? I didn’t invite you, and I think you should get down.

Larry: “But I love you Xena, and I want to be close to you. I can smell your beard from up here.”

Get off me Larry before your demise becomes a lemurick.

There once was a lemur named Larry.
His body was all orange and hairy.
He picked the wrong dog
To jump on her bod
So he got carried off by an eyrie.

Larry: That’s one mean schnauzer.

Lucy: How do I always seem to be the one the stuffies run to? *sigh*

The Mom: Here’s the actual “Nature Friday” entry.

I got some flowers (no idea what they are) on sale at Lowe’s and repurposed an old grill that I couldn’t even give away on the Next Door app. Now I have to figure out what to do with the extra pot of flowers.

Shadow Dog on Nature Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Look! I’m making good use of matching my surroundings.

I bet you can hardly see me. I’m part of the earth. That’s nature, right? Now I’m invisible except for my shadow. You can just call me “Shadow Dog.”

Wags and happy woofs, Shadow Dog

Xena: Is it Before the end of the month yet? (see here)

Shadow Dog: I have been advised by Dad to always say “No,” when you ask me that question. So, no.

Xena: But you’re not Lucy, you’re Shadow Dog. So you can answer me the truth.

Shadow Dog: Umm, well, umm, uhh…he advised Shadow Dog to answer the same way. (Whew, dodged that bullet.) Now get outa my post.

Shadow Dog, over and outa here.

Nature Friday at Greenway (again)

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

After our grand adventure at the Greenway last week, Mommy took us back the next day to try another trail off the main path. This trail started out with a sign saying the Boy Scouts had created it. That sounded promising, right? Well, sorta. Soon after we started along it, it started to climb. Not as steeply as the day before, but we were definitly going up.

The sun was shining in between the trees and everything was either green or brown. Once again, Mommy let go of our leashes and let us lead the way. Lucy didn’t want to get too far from Mom, so it was me who led. Before long, the path narrowed as the trees closed in.

We saw off to our left a huge tree that was uprooted. All the dirt was still on the roots, so we think it must not have fallen over too long ago.

The trail finally leveled out and me and Lucy, we both decided we wanted to be really close to Mommy. The problem was that she kept tripping over us or stepping on our leashes. You should have seen the nice little dances she did to avoid falling. Except once. She did fall once and her right ankle twisted just a little and she landed on the palms of her hands. We both were worried she got hurt and ran to her to see if she was ok. She said, “You know, girls, if I fall out here in the middle of nowhere and get hurt, it could be days before anyone found us.” (She wasn’t hurt.) So, thinking about all the meals we would miss in that time, we were much more careful — especially after Mommy said we would need to let her lead the way so we weren’t in her way.

We saw a lot of trees that had fallen over and were rotting, along with some that were rotting while still standing in place.

That one on the right scared Mommy and she hurried us past it.

There were a couple of signs with the word “Trail” and pointing which way to go. One was at a point where we could have gone kinda to the right and definitely up. As we started to go back down we got to a big downed log that had been cut in the middle to make a couple of steps.

That was nice. It was kinda like finding a present out in the middle of what seemed like nowhere.

The trail eventually led back down to the start of the trail we followed the day before. That explained the part of the trail where we could have turned to keep going up. We’re all getting to know the trails better, but there are a lot more to explore. We’ll save those for another day.

*wiggles and wags*

Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess

Nature Friday in my Hoodie (Pththth)

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting Nature Friday.

Xena: Since the weather has gotten a bit colder Mommy insists I wear my jammies at night and my hoodie on our walks. Now, while I would like to honor my Angel Piper – it was his hoodie — I would much rather not wear it. Why, you ask. Because Angel Lexi taught me that clothes are like a punishment and now I. Hate. Clothes. Sure, I used to wear them and look pretty darned cute when I was a puppy. But I’m a big girl now (I’m 3 whole years old) and I am just fine without them thank you very much. Anyhoo, this is what happened when Mommy first put the R2D2 hoodie on me.

Help! I’ve been blinded. Everything has gone dark!
How can I go for a walk if I can’t see!!

This is simply un-nature-all. I’m not going anywhere looking like this.
Moments later…

Hey Lucy, bet I can walk faster than you.

Lucy: You’re not walking, you’re trotting like you always do, Xena.

Xena: Haven’t you heard, Lucy? Trot is the new walk, BOL! Besides, when was the last time you actually saw me walk? My new motto: Why walk when you can trot?

Lucy: We’re supposed to be posting about nature, not racing.

Xena: Here’s some nature on the road – it’s called leaves. Dead leaves. Maybe we should look some more. I’m not done trotting.

Lucy: OK Xena, whatever you want, Miss Trot-about. Umm, there’s a lot of leaves over there. And some sun, too. I think that counts.

Xena: Rrrrr. Why am I having to pull so hard to trot?

Lucy: Mom’s yelling at you to “Heel,” and to “Walk with me!”

Xena: *grunt* This trotting fast is hard work when no one cooperates. Uh, did you or Mommy say something, Lucy?

Lucy and Xena the Trotting Schnauzer Warrior Princess wishing you a happy and natural weekend.

Nature Friday: Bear Stuffies

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang with much thanks for hosting. Nature Friday.

So I’ve been thinking. Why does Nature Friday always have to be about plants? Aren’t we all part of nature? I know, deep thoughts for me…Angel Lexi must be haunting my dreams. So what about bears? And if bears, then why not my bear stuffies? I mean, they’ve got feelings too, right? At least I believe they do, so it must be true. I think that’s how it works. Wow, Angel Lexi really is around here somewhere.

Usually my bear stuffies are all hibernating by now – with the exception of Winter Bear who sticks around all year. I guess the warm weather has kept them active and still in the mood to play. Then, right after Thanksgiving, this happened.

Xena, we need to talk to you. We’ve been having lots of fun with you, even deep into our usual hibernation time. But since Riley’s been here, we’ve had to stay up out of his reach so that, well, you know. *shudder*

Anyhoo, we decided it’s time to go take our long winter nap. We love you and will see you in the spring.

Riley: You can stop talking trash about me. I’m right here, you know. I haven’t touched even one of y’all since I’ve been here.

That’s cause they’re right, Mommy did set all my stuffies up on top of the Victorola so that you wouldn’t hurt them. Stupid dog. Now they’re going away and I won’t see them for months!
Mommy, send Riley home so that my friends don’t have to go hibernate.

It’s OK Xexe, it’s just Nature. We’ll see you in the Spring. And thank you for the yummy berries on Thanksgiving. Those were a great treat, and it meant a lot to us that a schnauzer would share her food.

Love, Bears Sweetheart, Jen-Jen, Brownie, Rainbow and Lexi’s little bear.

Nature Friday Around Our Neighborhood

Hi there! Mommy said if I want my picture taken with the mums (I still think that’s funny, they aren’t anyone’s “mum” that I know of) then I need to tell you about them. So here goes. She got the pot of flowers last year, set it out somewhere in the yard, the weather got cold, she stuck it somewhere else, found it this spring and dropped it pot and all in the hole in front of the house were she had dug out a bush and they’ve grown crazy big. There, I did it without even taking a breath.

She’s wondering if it will bloom again next year and if she should take it out of the pot and plant it in the ground now or in the spring or if she should just store the whole thing in the shed or what to do with it. I wonder if she wonders a bunch of stuff like that about me.

Then we all took a walk, and this is us turning the corner out of our driveway. Notice anything odd about our mailbox?

Daddy’s here, so I can’t tell you who backed our truck into it and then tried to straighten it back up and got it straight enough so it won’t fall over but it is still the leaning tower of mailbox. Mommy tried to push it but decided it must weigh about 87 tons.

A few houses up the road, we stopped to look at a pretty bug. I wonder if it tastes good.

Anyhoo, there were little bees trying to get the pollen out of the flowers there too, and the butterbug kept moving to a different flower when a bee would get too near. Smart bug!

At another neighbor’s, who we call the chicken people because they raise chickens, we got a picture of this tall plant. It has little purple flowers laid flat against the stem with white parts sticking out.

We’ve never seen a plant like this before and don’t know what it is (which isn’t unusual for us. Do you?

After a great walk on a beautiful, warm, sunny day, our schnauzer flag greets us home.

Do you see how it works for both Halloween and Thanksgiving?

If you’ll excuse me now, I have some running and playing to do with Lucy in our front yard before we go inside for an afternoon nap.

Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang for Nature Friday, and thank them for hosting it.

Nature Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang for Nature Friday, and thank them for hosting it.

Xena: During October we are usually up at Rock City dancing and drinking beer at Rocktoberfest.

Lucy: I don’t dance there or drink beer. I could be a Baptist dog.

Xena: Well, I decided I’m Episcopalian, and I do both. Here’s proof I dance, and drink beer.

Lucy: But this year that stupid Covid-19 thing kept them from having the month-long celebration. So instead, Mom’s been taking us to the Greenway, only about 10 minutes from the house, instead of almost an hour away up the mountain to Rock City.
We usually walk one or two hours on the different trails. This is the main trail that is all pebbly stones, where all the other trails start. The whole Greenway is at the foot of what is called Big Ridge.

Can you see the big hill behind us? There’s a road goes up there, and people live in nice houses near the road. I think I’d be afraid I would fall off!

After we walked some of the trails, Mom has started taking us into the dog park area where we are allowed to run off-leash. There was a huge white dog there who made me look little. He was friendly, but I rolled over onto my back just to let him know I didn’t want to be in charge.

Xena: Yep, y’all shoulda seen her acting like a sissy. I stood up to the other dogs and barked at them to let them know who was really in charge!

Lucy: Sure right, while you were in Mom’s arms! When Mom put you down, one of the dogs came toward you and you thought you were being attacked. I saw you run between the two dogs who were my size, screaming in your highest pitch. It sounded like someone was killing you, but you were running in the wrong direction, BOL, BOL!

Xena: Grr. I was using my Xena Princess Warrior scream, just like Lucy Lovelace used to do on the TV show. And she runs right into the midst of them screaming like that, just like I did!

Lucy: Yeah, well, I’m pretty sure she keeps her eyes open when she does it.

Love and wiggles from Lucy and Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess

Nature Friday in Lucy and Xena’s Yard

We are joining Arty, Jakey, Rosy and Sunny of the LLB Gang for Nature Friday, and thank them for hosting it.

Our Mom is not known for having what’s called a green thumb. But, God bless her, she tries. All the annual flowers she planted this year are on their last legs stems. We won’t depress you with those. However, last fall, on a whim, she dropped a potted mum in a hole in the ground where her last “failure” happened, thinking it would die over the winter and she could just lift it out of there this spring. Guess what! It’s blooming, and it’s not even supposed to bloom until early fall.

Just a little ways down from the mum is a hosta that Mom planted last year. She divided one big hosta into 4 parts and planted them all.

Something is eating the smallest one, down by the driveway. But take a look; the rest of them are blooming!

As you may have seen, we got a new porch built on the back of the house where our patio used to be. Mom and Dad decided they needed to “frame” it with something nice, so Mom and Dad drove the truck (it’s a law in Tennessee that you have to own a truck, we think) to a place where they use big machines to dump a load of pea gravel into the back – a whole ton! When they got back, Dad backed up the hill to the top, by the porch. First, they put down some kind of material to keep the weeds from growing through, then cut 4 holes in it. Mom sent Dad back in the car to get some hostas. She really likes hostas cause she doesn’t have to plant them every year! While he was gone, she dug 4 big holes in the ground where they had cut the fabric, then put a black plastic edging around it all to keep the stones confined. I guess she figured we have enough stones in our back yard as it is since most of the soil has washed away. Anyhow, he came home with these GIANT hostas!

We guess there are different kinds of hostas, just like there are different kinds of dog.

Some are bigger than others.

If you’ve hung in here this long, we have one more thing to show you. Mom wanted an herb pot. She got out the biggest planter she had and filled it with one basil plant and one parsley plant, and they grew like crazy!

But they all get along!

Lucy and Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess

Nature Friday

Lucy: We looked outside as the sun was setting and asked Mom to take a picture – through the front window – of the sunset.

Xena: The part you can see through the top of the window, does that look like a doggie running in the sky? Could it be Angel Lexi peeking in at us?

Lucy: The trees on the right side look like they are on fire (but they’re not) like a lot of trees in California. Prayers that all our friends and furiends – as well as all the friends and furiends we haven’t even met yet – are safe.

Lucy and Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess wishing you a happy Freaky Sky Friday

We are joining Arty, Jakey and Rosy of the LLB Gang for Nature Friday, and thank them for hosting it.

Nature Friday with Competing Sisters

It’s Nature Friday over at my friend Rosy’s place. (Click here to join the hop.)

We got our first bloom of the season. It is a tall purple iris. When Mommy was growing up, her folks also called it a flag. It looked pretty lonely so Lucy and me, we decided to involve it in a contest with us.

So here is how it works. We both posed in front of Miss Iris and want all of you to vote on who did best. The only problem is that it was kinda hot out and we went for a walk first. Even so, I’m pretty sure I will win. I’m even going to let Lucy go first. Lucy said she is featuring three quarter and side poses, in a thoughtful mode. She picked a purple border to match the flower.

Now it’s my turn. Hmm, I guess I needed my beard washed after supper.I decided to do a side pose of just my face and a two thirds pose. I chose a pretty pink border to match my collar. I mean, who wants to look at some stupid flower, anyhow, right?

OK, so now it’s your turn to vote (for me).

Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess in a pretty pink border

Nature Friday Walk at the Greenway

Hi Friends. This story for Nature Friday is from a walk we took the first Sunday in December. The days leading up to it were very rainy and dreary, and no one would take us for a good walk. OK, so we got to go for a short neighborhood walk one day, but there was no one else out to say hi! Slowly, the weather started to warm up from the 30’s to the 50’s F (-10’s to 10’s C) and then Sunday the sky was a clear blue with temperatures in the mid 70’sF (24’sC).  Mom helped me with the temperature conversion with a new app she downloaded ’cause her old app disappeared when her old phone got dropped in the t…. Oops, Mom is making the cutting motion across her throat so you can just use your imagination as to why she had to break the bank to get a new phone.

Anyhow, that’s why we finally get to participate again in Nature Friday hosted by  Rosy at LLB in Our Backyard

Mom had been complaining nicely telling Dad that he needed to spend more time with her, so when she asked him to go with us for exercise a nice walk at the greenway, Dad –being the smart man he is — said, “Let’s go!” It’s at the same place as the dog park, so I knew right where we were.  Most of the leaves were off the trees and provided a soft walkway for our feet. The trail smelled so good, like squirrels and other dogs!

The trail ran right along South Chickamauga Creek. The creek is usually small enough to wade across (not that Mom ever has let us do that) but that Sunday — after all the hard rain — it looked more like a river.You can see the creek behind us. It was flowing pretty fast, so we stayed on the trail (mostly). There were ginormous puddles on the trail, too, from last week’s rains, and Mom and Xena kept exploring other ways around the trails while Dad plodded along the edge with me.There were some really beautiful areas — at least from Mom’s perspective. Me and Xena mostly had our noses down.  Xena and Mom were following me and Dad, trying to keep up, and Xena kept pulling on her leash. Me and Dad knew this because we walked to a chorus of “Xena, walk pretty,” and “Xena, walk with me,” and “Xena!!” I told Dad we should just lose them so we didn’t have to listen to it, but he said that wouldn’t be nice,” and “Try to be patient.”

We found an old, abandoned two-room cabin with a tin roof, and Mom sat a spell on one of the big wooden rockers on the porch facing the raging creek. There were only two “rooms” with an outdoors area to cook, all very rugged. The “windows” looked like they had been cut out later with no sign of any way to insert glass or screening, and the only door was gone. Mom had decided to take a picture on our way back by, not knowing we would end up at the end of a loop and not need to retrace our steps. Dad walked around evaluating the structure, trying to figure out when it was built. He found modern nails and things called 2 by 4’s that made him decide it was built probably around 1960 and left to ruin when the previous owner of the land donated it all for the South Chickamauga Greenway.

The temperature had risen by about 10 degrees and Mom and Dad were wearing their jackets tied around their waists as we walked back into civilization at the end of a sock-shaped trail. Can you believe it was in the mid-70’s (20’s C) in December?!

We had walked for over an hour and Xena and I, after getting our paws thoroughly wiped,  were very quiet in the back seat of the car on the way home. As soon as we got out of the car Mom threw Xena in the groom tub and washed the dirt and mud off of her until the water ran clear. Between the exercise and the warmth of the sun, we were all sleepy and and jumped – or fell – into the big bed and took a good afternoon nap.

Love and wiggles, Lucy.