Sunday, November 29, 2009


Dear Gavin,

I saw mountains! Gramma says that we have mountains in Missouri, but the mountains I saw were in Tennessee. I was pretty scared when I heard Papa say, "Here we go, up the mountain." First of all, I did not know what a mountain was.... and "up"? Up did not sound good to me.

I went to Gramma and she held me and said that she wasn't fond of driving through the mountains either. I asked her to explain what a mountain was and she got that big book called a dictionary out again. We looked it up together. It said that a mountain is a land mass that projects conspicuously above its surroundings and is higher than a hill. What? Gramma laughed at me and said, "Okay, Buddy, I will dumb it down for you." Dumb? Did she just call me dumb?

No, she said that she would just explain it in simpler terms. She reminded me about those big rocks that Papa found in the woods and brought up for Gramma's gardens. She told me to imagine one that is so big that it looks like the top is siting in the clouds. Okay, now I am scared as I look out my window and see the mountains in the distance. She said that roads had been built so that cars and trucks could travel around them to get to the other side. I got in my kennel. I did not want to see this!

We made it through those mountains and then stopped for the night. Us dogs went out one last time and then we all slept. In the morning we could see where we were. This is the site we parked in. We all had to put on our harnesses and leads. Gramma said it was to keep us safe. I am okay with that, but Oscar wanted to get away.

Check this out! This place we stayed was on a lake called Nickajack Lake. It was very big! I thought that the pond a our park was big, but man, this place was so big that there were boats parked there! Gramma said that these boats were big enough to live in!

This boat wasn't even in the water! I thought it looked pretty funny. Gramma thought someone might even be living in it. At first I thought that might be cool, until I realized how high off he ground it was. That would be like jumping off a mountain for me! I made a joke, did you get it?

These boats are stored in the water and it looks like someone may call them home. I don't know if I would like that. Where would us dogs go to do our business? In the water...... no, I don't think so!
I must say that I am happy to be home from this trip. There is still a lot to tell, but I am now tired and ready for a nap. I have had a difficult morning. Aunt Debbie gave us dogs some cool treats last night and Emmy did not eat all of hers and has spent the morning growling and snapping at me and Oscar every time we get near her. Gramma says she is feisty. I know, another new word to look up. That dictionary said that means touchy or quarrelsome. If that means she wants to pick a fight, then that is the perfect word for her!
I will say goodbye to you, my boy, and ask that you not be feisty today! Gramma says that I have given you good advice. That is because you are my boy and I love you!
Your non-feisty dog,

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Road Trip

Dear Gavin,
Remember that motor home I told you about? Well, we went on a trip. This word trip is a tricky one, let me tell you. Gramma got out that big book she calls a dictionary and we looked it up together. It had a lot of different meanings. Gramma says that the one we were looking for was "voyage or journey". She said it meant we were going to travel.

Oscar and Emmy were excited. They tell me that taking a trip is great fun. They tell me that we will get to see a lot of new stuff and get out at different places. I am not so sure I want to take a trip. I still remember getting into Gramma's car that day we went to get the motor home. I did not like it, no, I did not! There were all these other cars and trucks and they were all moving and we were moving and my head was spinning round and round and round. How can they think this will be fun?

Well, the day came and Gramma and Papa got up early. They got dressed and Gramma said we had to wear our harnesses. Mine is purple with white dots. I think it makes me look like a clown, don't you? I wish that you would have a talk with Gramma about this. I think I need something in leather. I am thinking black would be nice with some zippers and chains. Yes, that would be more to my liking!

Well, enough about the way I am dressed. Gramma was pretty smart and she brought along my favorite blankie and I snuggled up on it. I was glad to have something that smelled like me and Gramma, really I was. But.... I still felt a little queasy with all the movement. Queasy is another new word, it means that I was a little sick in my tummy. I felt like yakking up everything I ate, but I didn't.

That Gramma of yours is really smart. She brought along my old kennel. I felt safe and secure in it! Papa even took the able out so it would fit. I love Papa!

We traveled for two whole days! We stopped to do our business and for Papa to put gas in the tank. He grumbled about how much it cost every time. The first night we stopped at a campground in a place called Tennessee. I will tell you about it tomorrow. I am still on Eastern Standard time and it feels like bedtime to me!

I have decided that I should take a trip to Minnesota soon. I am quite the seasoned traveler now. I think I will wait until Gramma has time to make a more suitable harness for me. I think that perhaps Gramma and I will make this trip to see you, just us two. What do you think of that? I am missing my boy on this Thanksgiving Day. So as I lay me down to sleep I am thinking of you my boy.

Love from your dog,

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Dear Gavin,

I am writing about another new word today. That word is bully. This is one of those words with different meanings. Gramma helped me look in the dictionary. It says that this word describes "one who is habitually cruel to others weaker than himself".

Gramma says that Oscar is a bully. Does he look like a bully? Well, I guess he kind of does in this picture. His eyes are glowing. He looks like some of those scary things that Gramma had up for Halloween. They were scary faces with a light inside them so that they glowed in the dark. Personally, I did not care much for Gramma's decor for that holiday. I tried to stay away from it all. She would laugh like a witch and scare us dogs out of a nice little nap. Not funny.

Okay, enough about that Halloween stuff. Emmy says it only happens once a year and I am very glad about that. But that has nothing to do with bullies. But....wait, maybe it does. I bet bullies like to play tricks on Halloween night. And...I bet they aren't the funny ones like Gramma plays.

Gramma says that Oscar is a bully. I think she might be right about that.

See this nice dog? His name is Buddy. Gramma says that he is an old guy. His people take him to do his business in this golf cart. He doesn't even have to go for a walk!

Gramma says that he has a kind and gentle spirit. She says she can see this in his eyes. Gramma knows about these things, you know. She is very wise.

Gramma was talking to Mr. Tom, Buddy's person and she came inside to grab her camera. She said "STAY!" to us dogs and Emmy and I did. Oscar ran out the door and right into Buddy's golf cart. He attacked Buddy. Buddy didn't do anything to Oscar. I saw the whole thing with my own eyes. Emmy and I were quite embarrassed by his behaviour. We did not want anyone to think that we liked this, because we did not!

Gramma grabbed Oscar and spanked him hard. I heard her tell him that he was a bad, bad boy! Then I heard her say, "Growl at me, mister, and you will sorely regret it!" I am still wondering what all that means, but we will look up those words another day.

I need my nap now, my boy. The next letter I write may be from another state! We are going on a road trip and I will have lots to share with you. Don't forget that you are my boy and I love you.

Your non-bully dog,

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Safe and Secure

Dear Gavin,

I am still working on my vocabulary. Hey, I even know what the word vocabulary means! A vocabulary is a group of words that I know the meaning of. Gramma says that if you have a big vocabulary it is easier to say things. Gramma likes words; Papa said so. He said that Gramma likes to use her words to tell stories. Gramma tells me stories some times. Does she tell you stories?

I know two new words that I want to tell you about today. Safe and secure are my new words. Safe means free from harm. I am safe when I am with Gramma and Papa. That means that nothing and nobody will hurt me. Did you know that some words have more than one meaning? This is very confusing to me. A safe can also be a box that you put things in that you don't want to lose. See what I mean? Confusing! Oscar tells me that I will be able to figure out what the word means by the way it is used in a sentence. What? Emmy says not to worry that I will get the hang of this vocabulary thing and that my boy will, too.

In the picture I am asleep on Gramma's leg. I felt very safe there on Gramma's leg. The flash on the camera woke me a little, but I went right back to sleep

See Oscar? He feels safe, too. Sometimes I play tricks on him when he is sleeping. I will get one of our toys and throw it on him with my mouth, then I will run and hide. It is great fun. Sometimes he will just go back to sleep and ignore me. Sometimes he will grab the toy and run from me, then we will play. But, sometimes, he gets really mad and growls loud and bites at me. I don't like it when he does that!

Secure is the other word that I know. This word means that I am not in danger. That is almost just like safe, don't you think? Gramma always tells us dogs that we are safe and secure because she loves us and she won't let anything hurt us. Did I tell you that I love Gramma?

Remember I told you that we got this thing called a motor home? Well here it is. I figured out why they call it a motor home. You can actually live in this thing. It has a bed to sleep in and a bathroom and a kitchen to cook in, with a table to eat on. It is on wheels and it has a motor so you can drive down the road. Get it? Motor.....home. Gramma says that I am quite clever. That means that I can figure things out. She is right, I am a pretty smart dog.

Gramma say that we will be hitting the road soon. That makes no sense at all, why would we hit the road? Emmy says it is an expression and means that we will get in the motor home and go on a trip. I must confess that I am not looking forward to it. I prefer the quiet life and staying home with Gramma and Papa. I think everyone should come see us. Oscar says that I should broaden my horizons. I will have to get back to you on that since I have no idea what that word horizon means.

I hope that you are learning lots of things in school. Gramma tells me that your mom says that you have a girlfriend. This is okay, I guess. She doesn't have a dog, does she? I don't know if I would like that. A girl is one thing..... but a girl with a dog.... I don't think so. Just remember that you are spoken for in the dog department, okay. Remember that I love you and don't forget that you are my boy.

Your faithful dog,

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Trick... No Treat!

Dear Gavin,

I have learned a new word....humiliation. Do you see me as I write this? I am humiliated. That is when you are forced to wear your sister dog's costume. Costume, another new word. A costume is something you wear to pretend you are something other than what you are. Why people do this, well, that is a mystery to us dogs.

Do I look happy? No, I do not. I am supposed to a ballerina. Another new word! I do not know or even care to know this ballerina is. My friend, Don, betrayed me! He helped Gramma put this awful thing that Gramma called a tutu on me and then held me for a picture. I did not want to be seen by anyone in this, no, I did not!

Another costume. This is a hot dog. I would have run from Gramma, but this costume is hard to run in. Do you see this? I am enclosed in what is supposed to be a bun with a row of mustard and ketchup on my back. I am supposed to be the hot dog! Oscar told me that Gramma made this for him to wear two years ago at a Halloween party. He was not happy to wear it either. He told me that his breed is sometimes referred to as a wiener dog and a hot dog is a wiener. Oscar says that this is a good example of irony. Another new word!

Sooooooo humiliating. I was hoping the ground would open and swallow me whole!

Oh, please.... I can't even hike my leg to mark this trashcan!

I tried to run through costume, but that didn't work either.
You must speak to Gramma about this costume thing. She made me wear a harness today. It was red, white and blue. She told me I was patriotic. Emmy tells me that this word means that I love my country. That is all well and good, but I think I can love my country just fine without having to wear some sort of cloth on my body to say so!
While I was wearing the patriotic harness that was attached to a patriotic leash we all got into the car and went for a ride. At first I was happy to get to go, but I did not like it so much. There are windows all around the car and you can look outside while you are riding. We were going very fast! I got into Gramma's lap. Oscar was already there. He was looking out the window and Emmy was in Papa's lap and she was looking out the window. I tried looking out the window and this really big truck whizzed by and scared me so bad. I put my head on Gramma's neck and hid my face!
Gramma patted me on my back and told me that everything was alright. I tried a few more times and I still did not like this thing called riding in a car. I spent the whole trip with my face in Gramma's neck! She was pretty nice about it until I was sliding down a little and I sort of dug my claws in to her shoulder to hold on. I didn't mean to hurt her. She held me close to her when Papa said to put me in the back. She told Papa that I was scared and that I could stay in her lap. I love Gramma!
When we stopped we all got out and peed on some grass by a bush. Oscar showed me how to smell for other dogs' pee. That was fun. After that we all got back into Gramma's car. Papa and Gramma looked at this big, big thing called a motor home. Oscar said that we used to have this thing called a motor home....... before I was here. Anyway he said that they used to take long trips in it and sleep in it.
Well, guess what? When Papa came back to the car he let me pee again and the he put me in the motorhome and drove away! Where was Gramma? Where was Oscar and Emmy? I was so scared! When we stopped again I was so, so happy. Gramma was in her car and so were Oscar and Emmy. I was so relieved and happy. Papa went into this place and we got hamburgers and a big cup of water. We ate in the motor home. I was happy again. Papa told Gramma that I cried the whole way with him, so Emmy stayed with Papa and rode with him. I was quite content to get back in Gramma's car. This time I did not even look out the window I lay down in the seat with Oscar and slept all the way home.
Well , this was an exciting day and I am tired after my big adventure. I will say goodnight now and remind you that you are my best boy! Next time I see you I will be in my motor home!
Your traveling dog,