Beautiful sights

Beautiful sights
Horses at blue water Lake state park

Monday, December 31, 2012

Sun Screens

I love camping/RVing in the sunny weather!  However, I do not really like the sun to shine on my skin.  I burn really easily.  I also don't like the heat which the sun can build up inside the motorhome or outside in the yard.  I have window awnings, and a long awning for the passenger side of the motorhome.  But even with all the awnings open there are times of the day when the sunshine goes around the awnings and creates heat which is too warm for my comfort. 

Many RVer's have sun screens hanging from their awnings, so I researched and bought a sunscreen to hang from my large awning.  I thought it was pretty nice until I tried to roll up the awning with it's electric motor.
It never moved.  I thought that the motor had failed , so I called the awning guy, and when he came, he discovered that it was not the motor, but the weight of the sunscreen that was too much for the awning motor.  So I returned the sunscreen for a refund, and went back to the drawing board.

One of my RVing neighbors (Delores) told me that she bought solar screening material at the Ace Hardware in Blythe, California, and that she hung it on the inside of her windows on a curtain rod.  I looked hers over and decided it was a pretty good idea. She said to make sure it allows for air flow through it.
Delores' extra screening
 I bought two rolls of the solar screening, and so far have just replaced the insect screening on the screen door.  This screen has kept a lot of heat outside the RV when the sun is shining under the ends of the RV awning.  I intend to make solar curtains to hang inside the other windows as needed to keep heat out.
I have a cactus garden on my motorhome dash.  I know these plants need sunlight.  I have to remember not to hang solar screening between the sun and the cacti, but will try hanging it to the rear of the cacti and block the sun from the motorhome living room.  I don't think I will get as great an effect that way, but the cacti will survive better, so it will be okay.
Cacti in motorhome dash area


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Tiny yard...Big Fun!

 Our yard is a portable fence.  It is 35 ft long and 12 feet wide.
Fleur in our yard
Squeakers in all parts of Mother Bunny enhance the fun!
Mother Bunny and Power
Mother Bunny is a toy made by AIDE4GREYS.  They make toys that last, and squeakers in all, unless otherwise requested.  This is a group of volunteers who raise money to aid greyhound adoption.
I gave Power a stuffed toy from Walmart last week and it was used up and torn up by bedtime the same day.  Mother Bunny still looks new, except for the dirt!

The fencing folds and I carry in on the bike rack which fastens to the motorhome ladder on the rear of the motorhome.  Having this fencing adds a lot to the RVing lifestyle.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Destructive nature in a greyhound?!

I posted about the non destructive nature of greyhounds recently.
I now realize that our "kids" love to prove us wrong in life!  Last evening I was watching TV, and Fleur and Power were relaxing in the living room.  I heard chewing sounds but that didn't bother me because I knew I had put chewy toys down for them a bit earlier.  When I glanced down at one point and saw that Power had chewed off one complete side of his food bowl. 

 The food bowl was made of collapsible silicone, and I liked it for the small size it was when collapsed.  Now of course it will require even less room to store since Power polished his fangs on it!   His teeth are beautiful white color and strong.  He did a great job of using the food bowl to relieve his chewing need.  I have a stainless steel bowl in my kitchen which will now be Power's food bowl.  I hope he doesn't chew up the stainless bowl!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Chair Repair

A chair from a garage sale cost $5.00, but had a broken leg attachment.  Carol arrived with the chair and a pop rivet kit.  Neither of us knew how to use the rivets but we found out that the rivets were not long enough for this job.  Looking through the junk drawer we found a 3 inch bolt, a lock washer, and a nut.
rubber tip covers new bolt end
Then a drill and bit to drill the hole in the leg of the chair large enough for the bolt..  We are so fortunate that we have solar systems and inverters.  Our electric drills work fine on the inverter so we soon had the drilling done.  The bolt was inserted and the lock washer and nut inserted.  Then out came the Dremel to use the cutting disks to cut the extra length of the bolt off shorter.  Three cutting disks later we had the bolt shortened, the sanding disc smoothed the edges, and we were done except for the cleanup.  To do this small fun project we had opened 4 storage compartments in my basement, got out drill, dremel, screws, storage boxes, extension cord, connections, drill bit, pliers, etc.  The cleanup was as much work as the repair!
repaired chair

We had fun and enjoyed the challenge!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

RV Slideouts, are they just slideouts?

Slideouts are a great addition to RV's.  They increase the inside square footage without making one purchase a larger RV.

My RV has 2 slideouts, and so far the only problem I've had with them is the occasional error in which I forget to move the driver's seat forward when I close the slideout.  The slideout meets resistance, bends the chair and then the slideout stops due to the resistance.  Chair repair has been relatively easy.

My neighbor has a large slideout and today she couldn't get the slideout in, and later couldn't get it out.  She asked for help.  The first instance was the low battery (turning on her generator took care of it).  The second instance was due to her forgetting that the slideout locks had to be released.  When she got back from town, she tried to open the slide, but forgot the two locks had to be released.  She asked for assistance and it took me a while to figure it out since I'm not used to the slides having locks.  It seemed that she was having a day of slight memory loss...she'd forgot how to start her generator, then forgot she had slide locks.  A few minutes later after each episode, she remembered what was going on and I felt that she was okay to be on her own.

One of my other neighbors decided to advise her to hang up her keys. She told her that her memory was not reliable enough to be safe on the road and driving.  I felt so bad for the whole situation.  I hate to think of anyone having to quit while they are still able to take care of themselves.  My elderly friend is quite able to care for herself with occasional small amounts of help.
Delores and her dog Abby
She goes for a half mile walk each morning and each evening walking herself and her dog. She cooks for herself each day, and takes care of her RV herself.
Delores is an ex-marine, and a very smart lady, and also a full time RVer since 1986.  She is a single lady, and also has no children, so to age doesn't mean going to live with your family(in her case).

My question is, is a slideout problem just an incident or is it an indicator that it is time to hang up the keys?

When my Dad was still alive I  was able to help him keep going till he was 94.  
Each year he needed more and more help and eventually did not drive or cook.
He still enjoyed life though, and died on the road RVing with the family (me and my 4 pets).

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Patience... do I have it?

Today I found that all my progress in car restrictions was completely undone.

I was having back and hip pain, so not feeling well.  I decided to go to town to buy some solar screening, and stopped at McDonald's for a chicken sandwich on the way.  I ate half the sandwich and then put the sandwich under the driver's seat to deter dogs, made sure the barrier was in place between the driver's seat and the passenger's seat.  I went into the hardware store, and was back out in 10 minutes, and found my female Fleur in the front seat and my food gone!  I was surprised, and furious that she had done this after 7 years of never being allowed into the front seat or being allowed to get into any package in the car. 
Fleur, so innocent looking!

I was so angry that I wanted to beat her.  Of course I did not beat her, I did not yell at her, but it was difficult to calm down because I was feeling defeated. I had believed that she would not force her way into the front seat, due to the barrier, and I was so disappointed to realize that I have to use a better barrier, which means spending money again, and retrain.  I thought the problem was solved when I bought the first barrier! I remember the old saying" the best laid plans of mice and men".  So true, so true.

Monday, December 10, 2012


I have been working on genealogy for about 5 years.  

Two or three years ago I began attending the "Genies in the Desert" Genealogy Seminar held each year in the Parker Arizona Bluewater Casino Conference rooms the first Friday of December.

The speaker has been Geoffrey Rasmussen, the author of the Legacy Family Tree Genealogy Software.  He is a dynamic speaker and so down to earth and very knowledgeable on his topics.  

The subject of genealogy is dear to my heart since my grandmother gave my family a brown grocery sack with pencil written genealogy information from way way back.  This was the basis of my research.  Nowadays one doesn't have to drive across country to find info from censuses, military records, cemeteries, and relatives.  Some information is still necessary by personal visits, whether to visit relatives, cemeteries, or courthouses, but it is getting more common to find info on the internet.  The seminar I attended this week was about the technology of genealogy sharing and research. I learned that cemetery info is often found on .  There is also a site called This even has a mobile app which allows one to take pictures of a gravestone, and upload the photo along with the GPS location of the gravestone's location. 

Last spring I felt privileged to volunteer to help index the 1940 census.  I really enjoyed doing it and due to the hard work of many volunteers all over the world, the census was indexed in approximately 3-4 months!  This was all done while sitting in the comfort of my laz-e-boy recliner in my living room.  My computer was the only tool needed.  When someone needs information from the 1940 census, it is readily available online.  In the past it would not have been available.

I was interested in a divorce that occurred in my family in about 1925. I didn't even know where it occurred.  I went to visit a cousin, and she and I decided to try the courthouse in a nearby county.  The family had lived in that county when they were first married.  We drove to the courthouse and went into the clerk's office.  They allowed us to look but no one helped us to understand the  filing system.  We looked in the big books in the records room and wrote down what we found but it gave only coded info which we did not understand.  We were about to leave, feeling defeated, when we spoke to another clerk, who insisted in helping us understand the codes. She explained that the codes were references to the storage boxes that the original court papers  were stored in.  So that clerk showed us the boxes and in them we found the original divorce papers from 1926, along with the custody battles that followed the divorce.  None of this info was available online and a visit to the courthouse was the only way to get the facts.  If I had been unable to go to the courthouse I could have hired a genealogy researcher to do the legwork for me, but I really enjoyed the time getting to know my cousin. 

Sometimes family stories are happy, sometimes sad, but usually interesting regardless. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Awning trouble

2-3 years ago I spent $2600 to get the very best awning on the market.  I got a Carefree of Colorado through ShadePro.  The awning was electric and also had a wind sensor and automatic retracting feature if the the wind gets high.  I've never had a minute's problem with it until today.

I ordered a sun shade which hangs down from the awning tube and gives more shade under the awning.  I and a neighbor installed it, and it never entered my mind to check the electric function afterwards.  But this morning my mind said "make sure it is working with that sunshade on it".  I tried to get it to retract but nothing happened.  I read the owner's manual and then called the company(Shade Pro) to ask for repair.  They said the repair guy (Ron) was not going to be available till the next day late in the afternoon.  I worried (out loud) that if the wind came up and ruined my awning, I was going to be very angry that it was destroyed while I was waiting for repair.

Ron called me about dark today and asked me what the awning was doing and said that he thought the motor had gone bad.  He said that the company had been having problems with the gears or something like that and that they were putting something made from a better metal in the repaired ones.  He said if I got a rebuilt on it would be $255 and if I got a new on it would be $350.. He is getting it sent in on the night truck and will be at my place tomorrow between 3 and 5 pm.  He said if the motor is not bad he of course will not put a new one in and I would not be paying for it if I don't need it.

I was thinking that I should not have to pay for it at all since they know they have defective metal in the installed ones.

All this was for naught, after all because when the repairman came, he said that the motor was not damaged, but that it was just not powerful enough to lift the weight of the sunshade and the awning.  So the solution was to remove and return the sunshade, and now the awning works just fine.

My worry was wasted energy!  Again!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Exploring Ghost Town

Yesterday, a fellow Dingbat RVer, Carol, and I along with our dogs drove 75 miles to get to the ghost town of Swansea.  The last 30 miles was dirt roads and the last three miles was really bad dirt tracks.  I drive a Chevy Tahoe 4x4 so we made it without difficulty, and the townsite is a great historical area.
BLM information kiosk at Swansea
From 1909, Swansea was a mining town for Copper.  By 1944, the plant was closed for good.  It had been struggling for it's entire life, and the price for copper declined after WWII, and the company was not able to stay open.
Swansea townsite from mountain pass
The townsite is in an isolated site south of the Bill Williams River in AZ, west of Alamo Lake STate Park, and northeast of Parker AZ.  Much of the old mill town is still there in ruins, from worker's cottages ( well preserved concrete) to deep mining shafts (1000 ft deep), management housing (foundations only),

Foundations of old buildings

 and train depot(adobe bricks), foundry, power plants, etc.  The old place has several areas of trash piles(broken glass bottles, rusted cans), and old railroad scales and tracks( for bringing in coal).
Trash area with mostly green glass in huge piles
Campsite at Swansea
The townsite is administered by the BLM and they have built 5 campsites in the townsite, along with 2 vault toilets.
This area is really beautiful, surrounded by low mountains, saguaro cacti, ocotillo cacti, teddybear cholla cacti, and paloverde trees.  One special sight is a natural arch formation.
Natural arch formation at Swansea

Friday, November 23, 2012

Washing the car and motorhome

My neighbor Debbie decided to get out her "magic rag" and wash her car.  She had about 1-2 cups cool water in a bowl and her "magic rag"

Fifteen minutes later she had a beautifully clean car and the water was dirty.  I asked her about the magic rag and found that it is a special kind of microfiber made by TRASAN of Sweden. 

Debbie got hers in 1996 and is still using it.  One dips it in cool water, wrings it out and washes the car, rinsing the rag as needed.  It needs no soap, etc and the car comes very clean with very little effort. 

The windows also come clean very easily.  Yesterday  Debbie showed me how to do my car wash, using the "magic rag" which I had mail-ordered.  My car looks great!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Skin, Skin, Skin

Skin is an important part of life.  The largest organ of the body, whether it is a dog's body or a person's body.  I am slowly discovering that Power's skin has more than just dryness.  His skin is rough and raised in a few places.  He is very skittish about being touched.  I think he must have never had to learn trust before.  Today I was putting some cream and he jumped each time my hand touched him.  When he saw my hand approaching, he tried to shy away. When I got the cream on him, he decided he liked it.  I've tried to use a hound glove on him to remove some of the loose flakes and dust after he lies on the sand.  He doesn't seem to know that sensation either.

After lunch yesterday I found a 2 inch diameter raw area on Power's right rib area.  It was moist and red and not present 1 hour earlier.  I decided to take him to the Vet this morning.  Quartzsite has a nice vet, John Hadlock, who has an old mobile home as his office.  He is conveniently located right on the main street, and both he and his office lady are friendly and good to the pets.

Dr Hadlock looked at the skin lesion, and checked the area nearby which still had hair in place and no rawness, just a raised area.  He said Power needed antibiotics, and gave him two injections, and a prescription of antibiotics for 10 days, and a spray of antibiotics to use for ten days.  He also looked at some of the other skin flakiness and said that it looks like dermatitis, and that I need to wash Power with dial soap twice a week.  I am supposed to take Power back in 10 days to be checked.  

I've never had a dog with skin disease before so it's learning experience for me. 

Thank God Power is willing to be medicated.  Today I bought a package of hot dogs and cut them into 1 inch lengths.  One antibiotic capsule will fit into a one inch length of hot dog.  Power eats this readily. Of course, Fleur likes the hot dogs and wants a treat so I have to be careful that she doesn't steal the hot dog with the antibiotic capsule inside!

This was also the day for the first dial soap bath.  I am camped in the BLM desert south of Quartzsite Az and have very limited dog bathing choices.  I decided to try filling a 2 liter soda bottle and put a squirt top on it.  I then squirted water on a microfiber wash rag and added dial soap.  I then kept adding water and dial soap and washed Power all over while he was standing on the patio rug outside my motorhome.  When I got through scrubbing him all over, I used the rest of the water to rinse him thoroughly.  Then I kept him outside standing in the sunshine to dry and we were done.  Guess what?  His black color is a different black now.  It is not a dusty black!  It's a shiny black black! 
Buttocks growing fur

After 10 days on antibiotic capsules and antibiotic spray and dial soap baths the sore on his ribs is healing nicely.  The second area (raised no rawness) is still not raw and still has not lost hair.  The general skin flakiness is much reduced as well.  He's really growing hair back on his buttocks, and new hair is even coming in on his tail.  

Tail still needs fur.
Power is a hard working dog!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

FUN for the dogs and owners

Delores with Abby
Dumbledore, Power, and Fleur
This morning, My friend Delores (with her dog Abby), my friend Carol(with her dog Dumbledore), and I(with my two greyhounds) drove a few miles into the desert to a great unoccupied area, to let the dogs have a bit of off leash time to run and play.   Dumbledore is a basset hound who has been best friends with my dogs for years.  Abby is one year old, full of energy and also a good friend of the greyhounds. We parked on the top of a hill so that no matter where the dogs ran we could see them.
Dumbledore and Abby
The dogs know that we have treats in our pockets and a big water bowl at the car so they come back every few minutes for refreshments!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Gift for a family

I  got a catalogue from a neighbor a few days ago.  She asked me to toss it in the dumpster.  I glanced at the cover and wanted to see what it was. The catalogue was from Heifer International.  They are asking people to gift a goat, rabbits, chickens, a heifer, an ox, etc to help a family or a village in a undeveloped country.  It would provide more food and more livelihood for the group.

The idea intrigued me, and I thought that it's an idea I can and want to buy into.  Most of my family live in Germany, and sending gifts is not easy, due to questions of size, color, would they like it?, etc.  My family members are quite mission minded, and I liked this idea because the gift is really needed, and many people everywhere need help. My niece Miriam served as a missionary lab tech on a medical ship in west Africa, and she served as a missionary lab tech for six months in Afghanistan.  Her Husband, Jost served on a missionary ship in West Africa and worked on a building crew which worked in terrible heat building a medical building.  When I was a young lady, I served as a missionary nurse at a refugee hospital in Hong Kong.

When I still lived in Texas, I had a neighbor named Becky.  One day she commented that there is no limit to the good one can do if one is not worried about who gets the credit.  I had never thought of it like that, and it influenced me a lot.  

 "The poor you always have with you" 

That statement is true now as before. But also there is never a shortage of people who have much.  If we want to help, we can, and there are many ways to help.  We can find a way to help if we will only think about it.

So...I decided to gift a flock of chickens to each of two villages.  Heifer teaches them how to care for the birds, and gets them started.  The villagers can then have eggs to eat, eggs to sell, chickens to eat, chickens to sell, and chicken manure to put in the gardens.  One gift makes many gifts.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Power Feeding time

Power has no hesitation in eating! 

Fleur however is now and has always been a nervous eater.  If any little thing is bothering her, she won't eat at all.  But that doesn't mean that she wants any one looking at her food.  She likes to protect her food bowl, both physically and mentally.  She can't stand the cat looking at her while her food is in the bowl, and she also doesn't like the other dog to even think about her bowl of food.

Power is so eager to eat that he tries to gobble up the food too fast.  Then he chokes on it and spews the food all over the floor.  That doesn't bother him.  He just re-inhales it!  I have discovered that he really needs an elevated food bowl, so I turn a dish pan over and put his food bowl on the dish pan.  That makes the food bowl elevated 9 inches.  He does much better with the bowl elevation.  I believe that he needs it even higher, so I am thinking about what I already own that might work.  If I have to I will purchase something but I am trying to utilize something already owned.  (In an RV every item has to have a home.)  Extra items take extra storage space. I realized that the plastic storage box behind my recliner would be about the right height for Powers food bowl, and I wouldn't have to find a place for a new object.
The picture above is of Power outside the RV in Quartzsite AZ.  I think he's beginning to relax and enjoy himself, don't you?

Power is also such an eager eater that getting his antibiotic capsules down is an easy job.  I have been inserting the capsule into a round meatball treat and putting the meatball on top of his food ration.  Occasionally I see him spit the capsule out, but I just pick it up and put it into another meatball, then put the new meatball back into the food bowl.

Power standing by elevated food bowl
I gave the brain cells time and found a solution for feeding time food elevation.  I have a large plastic storage bin just behind my Laz e Boy recliner. It is the right height so I just put Power's food bowl on the bin. Now he is not choking himself nearly as often. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

RV friends!

Dorothy called me a few weeks ago.  She was visiting in NM and wanted to drop by.  We had a lovely visit at Bluewater Lake State Park New Mexico, and then she went on to California to her high school reunion.  In the meantime I moved on the Quartzsite AZ and set up camp on the BLM land south of town.

Dorothy called again and was heading back to Texas and would be passing through Quartzsite, so she stopped again for a visit.  She came bearing gifts.
Quilt made by Dorothy and given to me.

 She brought walnuts from a tree at her brother-in-law's home.  He had run them through a shell cracker, had baked them for an hour, and so they were really easy to shell and the baking had killed any worms which might have infested them.  She brought dried plums, persimmons, and a large red onion.
What a guest!  Dorothy is fun all by herself, but now I will automatically think of her each time I eat some of her bounty or cover up with the quilt. .

The walnuts I finished shelling today.  I have about 1 gallon of shelled walnuts.  I put them in the freezer so I can use them as needed and they won't spoil.  It was very pleasant to sit outside, in the shade with a breeze blowing, and shell a quart every day.   

The plums are delicious and I'm enjoying them for breakfast every day.  


Monday, November 5, 2012

Dry Skin

I find RVing so great that I seldom find fault with any of it.  My favorite places are in the deserts.  Living in the deserts means dry air, and that can lead to dry skin.  Many have this situation and solve it with lots of lotion.  I have not yet solved this problem, but I have tried lotions.

Now, this sounds like I am referring to my OWN skin being dry, but that is not the case.  The dry skin I am referring to is on Power, and also on Chica.

Chica is my cat, a tuxedo cat.  Power is my new greyhound, a tuxedo greyhound.  They each have black fur everywhere except white chin, white chest and belly, and white feet and white tipped tail.  They are identical in their markings, though they are different species, different genders, different ages.  
Power and his flaky dry skin

The very first day I had Power, Chica walked up to Power and they stood nose to nose, smelled each other, looked each other in the eye and have been good friends ever since.

The other similarity is their dry skin.  An animal with black fur shows any skin flakes.  Power is really experiencing dry skin, and I am treating his with flaxseed oil served in his food.  I have been advised that this is really good for him.  He eats so well that it's easy to just add it to his food.  Chica has other ideas.  She thinks flaxseed oil makes her food uneatable.  She says that dry skin is normal for cats of her aristocratic genetic background!  She also says that if I continue to be bothered by it that I should just turn my head.
She says "Royal felines are perfect, I am royal, so therefore I am perfect." 
Her Royal Highness  Chica

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Clicker training...WHO gets trained?

I ordered two clickers, and when they arrived, I opened the Neversaynevergreyhounds blog and watched the video on clicker training again.  I have decided to set aside 15 minutes each day to work on the clicker training.  I really respect the training that Jennifer has given her greyhounds.  I want to be a good trainer, as well, and feel that I can copy her methods.

I also have a lot of faith in Power's basic temperament.  He's got a lot of calm and gentleness that will be a benefit to him and I as we progress.

Bicycle Power

Power seemed to feel much better yesterday afternoon, and was beginning to get some of his puppy energy back.  I knew from experience that a dog can be very bored and destructive if he doesn't have a constructive outlet for his energy.

I'd been taking him for walks and at first that's about all he felt like doing on his sore foot.  Now however it is a different story.

I hooked his leash to my recumbent tricycle and we did a slow circle around the RV camping area on the BLM.  He was in heaven to go just a bit faster and farther!

This is such an extraordinary dog.  He is an agreeable personality, and doesn't try to pull on the leash like all my previous dogs have done.  He's sleeping all night now and has been doing all his business outside.  He eats well and in general is so well behaved.

He has figured out that if I pick up his leash it means FUN!  He runs to me to get his leash hooked up.  He no longer hesitates in entering and exiting the motorhome.  His method of entering is very different from Fleur.  She walks one step at a time.  Power jumps the full distance from ground to inside motorhome( 5 steps).  I tried to get him to put his feet on the steps, but he said "what for, Mom?  I don't need steps.  I can fly!"

Let's fly more, Mom!

Stitches Stitches

Yesterday I had the suspicion that Power's operated foot still has stitches in place.  Last week I drove 100 miles to the vet who did the surgery to get the stitches out.  Now I find at least two more stitches.  I was not going to drive back to Flagstaff to get them out.  So I got out tiny scissors and tweezers and started the procedure.  One stitch came out easily but Power figured out what I was doing and wouldn't cooperate for the next ones.  So I still have at least one stitch to remove.  I thought it would be done but maybe tomorrow.  

I didn't want to get Power so upset that he would feel compelled to bite in order to defend himself from the pain.  He's got a gentle soul.  I think the stitches can wait a day..

One day later... Power had a very restless night, kept waking, and wanting out, went out, played with squeaky toy outside, finally put leash on and walked him around in the desert till he pee'd and pooped.  Then when we went back inside the RV I moved his bed to the kitchen in hopes that if he was restless he at least wouldn't be irritating his new "sister" Fleur.  Fleur is a grouch when bothered at night.  She's 9 1/2 yrs old but that's not why,  she's been touchy all her life.

Power didn't want to walk on the operated foot during the night and cried with pain when he bumped it on the way in or out of the RV.  

Today I need to get that stitch out and be done with it.  
Finally all the stitches are out (I think) and the foot is looking less pink and swollen.  He walks on it well unless he bumps it.  If he bumps it he cries for a minute, but he stops soon and keeps going.  The knuckles on the operated foot are still looking pink and a little swollen, Power is not licking it nonstop anymore.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fundraiser in Quartzsite

Quartzsite, AZ is a town of many faces.  One face is that of people who need help to feed themselves.  Some semi homeless individuals come to the desert each year because they can camp in the desert and get by with little or no shelter.  Other folks with very limited financial means come in their vans, trailers, etc and camp in the desert.  They have shelter but very little money for food, etc.  The people of Quartzsite (both permanent and transient) have organized a food bank, a feeding cafeteria, and other types of programs to care for those needing help.  Funds are raised  by means of spaghetti suppers.  It's amazing to see hundreds of folks coming to a spaghetti supper, and each person donates $5.00 to the food fund.  While folks eat, a live band plays in the background and tables are waited on by volunteers and scouts.  These waiters do a great job of taking orders, distributing plates, drinks, salads, and deserts for their assigned tables.  

Dry Camping logistics for bathing greyhounds

My new greyhound, Power, was not given a bath when he came off the racetrack due to his injuries and his surgery.  I wasn't overly worried about it but now that I found tapeworms, I want to give him and his bed a good bath. 

I am camped on BLM land in the Arizona Desert, have only a tank of fresh water, and am trying to decide if I am going to use a commercial grooming service, or go to a faucet and bathe him in cold water, or use the water in my RV tank, which I can heat.  The RV has an outside shower with hot and cold water so I will probably use that.  One thing I have learned from 40 years of owning dogs is that many of them are terrified of bath tubs and nearly faint from fear while in a tub.  I might use the outside shower during the hot part of the day, and then the bath is done.  No more wondering what to do.

Keeping a dog out of the sand and soil till dry is not too difficult.  I put a yard mat inside my large x pen next to my motorhome, so I believe I could keep him clean.  

Next I want to clip his toenails.  The operated foot has really long toenails , Probably due to his foot being bandaged and painful.  I need to take care of this issue.  Power is walking pretty well on the operated foot, but if I leave the sock off it, he wants to lick it continuously.  So for now I have a sock on the foot and take it off several times a day to check over the foot.  The foot looks sore and weird due to the missing portion.  The knuckles that are left in the foot are red and hairless, and seem to be swollen.  I feel that time will help.  When he cannot lick the hair off, I hope the hair will regrow.

I did clip the nails on his operated foot.  He was well behaved but acted like he didn't understand why Mom was holding his foot off the ground.  I nipped just the tiniest portion of each nail so he would realize that nothing bad was going to happen.  The nails on those toes are very crooked (probably due to his injury to this foot) I'm hoping that with time they will straighten.

On one front leg is a red sore about 1/2 inch in diameter. The adoption agency said they had been trying to get it to heal before I got her.  I think I will put triple antibiotic ointment on it and then cover it with a sock.  Perhaps it will heal when Power cannot lick it.  The sock should let air get to it but keep Power's powerful tongue off it.

I did accomplish the bath yesterday about noon.  I waited for the warmest part of the day, and used the outside shower with the water warm.  I put a towel down on the soil.  He wasn't sure what was going on, wondered why I wanted him to stand  on the towel.  The water and shampoo worked together to get him lathered.  With Power's short hair and no fur undercoat the rinsing went rapidly.  Then I threw a large towel over  him to soak up some of the water. After all was cleaned up we went for a short walk to give the sun a chance to dry him. Mission Accomplished!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Friends old and new

Wednesday (after a nearly sleepless night) we got in my car, drove to Yuma, and visited two couples whom we have met while RVing.  One couple we worked with 2008-2009, and they are dog lovers as well.  The other couple are camp hosts we met this year.  They are greyhound people.

After 75 miles I suddenly realized I'd forgot my purse, so I pulled off the road to let Cari drive.  While in Yuma, we let my dogs play with Mike's dog, Bella, and went to Petsmart.  I was afraid my boy Power would pee in the store.  I walked him around outside the store but he showed no interest in peeing.  Off to the inside of the store.  He and Fleur were perfect!  I was surprised.  They had not been in that store and had not had enough exercise so I was fearful of misbehavior.  

Looked at Dog food brands.  The so called quality foods are terribly expensive.
$45.00 for 15 lbs.  The best ones were twice that much.  I finally bought one bag of Nutro lamb and rice and plan to mix it with Purina One Lamb and rice.
I was not expecting those prices.

Many times I am in an area that has few resources for quality dog food.  I need quality dog food that is readily available and affordable.  Any ideas, anyone? 

After the Yuma trip, I wondered how the night would go.  It was much better.
I  didn't have to be up but once during the night.  Fleur is still having some adjustment problems with Power at bedtime,(she wants to order him around) but it was better last night as well. This morning I noticed tape worms on Power's butt so I called Verde Valley Greyhounds( my adoption agency), and she told me that their vet in Flagstaff could not mail me the meds because it is a type of poison, and that I should have taken out the pet insurance she recommended.  She said if I called it in I could still use it to take Power to a vet.  So I called the insurance and they said that it is $59.00 per month.

I took Power to the Quartzsite vet and he gave Power a shot of tape worm medicine. Power found his lungs and yelled his head off!( not a peep up till then!) The vet says that I will not need to give him any more meds and do not need to treat Fleur and Chica.  $40.00  Not too bad. 

Next I need to work out bathing logistics! 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Night Power !

My lovely big boy is partly night owl.  He wakes and need something...

  • is it outside to pee?
  • is he cold?
  • is he hungry?
  • is he thirsty?
  • is he bored?
  • maybe his foot hurts...
  • maybe he needs...............something

I haven't figured it out yet.  If I bundle up and take him for a walk he is happy to go, but doesn't pee or poop.

If I give him something for his foot he is happy to take the pill in a treat, but he's still unsatisfied.

If I throw a blanket over him he throws it off and ignores it and his bed.

If  I give him some water, he just looks at it.

If I break down an give him a snack, he looks at me while he inhales it but still is not satisfied.

If I give him toys to play with, he then leaps up to get the toy, drops it and ignores the toy.

So this morning at 2:30 am I decided that I had to do something drastic.  Power was unable to settle and my female greyhound Fleur would begin growling and barking at Power.  No sleep was in sight for me, so I went back out to the living room and sat in my recliner, covered up with a quilt and dared those dogs to keep on!  Of course they promptly fell asleep.  I wonder if their necks are in a cramp....MINE is!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Power Part 2

Today we drove in the motorhome about 160 miles.  Since it was Power's first time in the motorhome when it's moving, I wondered how he would do.  He did great!  He especially liked it when I dropped some cookies on the floor and he got to them before I did.  Great reflexes.  Those were not injured in his accident.

He managed to get the sock I had covering his surgery foot loosened up enough that it was hanging long on the sore foot, sort of like those funny clown shoes with the extra long toes!  He never let it slow him down, though.

When we got to Quartzsite AZ, I had planned to find one of the two main shade trees and camp under it for cooler temps, but the two shade trees were already taken.  So I drove on down the dirt road to the spot I have always used and there was one of my friends, Debbie Lemon!  I was so glad to see her.  I picked a spot near her and we had a lovely visit.  Debbie's dog (Maui) is a black poodle.Normally Maui has a fit when I approach with my big greyhounds, but she liked Power!  Debbie is a long time RVer and a pretty lady.  Her husband died two years ago but she's very capable and still on the road.  Debbie is also the best beader that I have ever seen.  She covers bottles with leather and does the beading on the leather.  Exquisite!

When we stopped for gas, I took the dogs out for a pee break while the gas tank filled.  I can see that Power has the down part of the steps all figured out, and is doing a lot better on the entering UP the steps.  One thing I've noticed is that he pees without lifting his leg, or even squatting.  He just stops and let's it rip!

Walking around at camp is funny, because Power has a hard time deciding whether to take his TRIBBLE
(stuffed toy with squeaker) with him or to let it stay on the yard mat.  He wants to have it both ways!
I am having to remember to watch for the Tribble in case he drops it.  And, sore as he is he still wants to be released to run.  Today I will unload the fencing from the rear ladder of my RV and set it up.  Then the dogs can play outside and relax off leash.  Rattlesnakes are still out due to the heat, so I need to remember to keep an eye out for them.

Bed time brought with it the fact that Power was not yet ready for sleep.  He was interested in sniffing all around for the possibility of cookie crumbs.  I finally clipped his leash to a retainer to limit his exploring, and he could then move in a smaller area.  His exploring was also making my female greyhound (FLEUR) very antsy and she would growl and bark at him saying" stay out of my space!. She did the same with Val when he was alive.  She want's to be in charge!

Bedtime brought with it the fact that with no electricity, it was very warm and I have two fans which work off battery power.  The dogs got one and I and the cat got one.  After I got to sleep the dogs woke me up wanting to go outside.  So out we went so that Power could pee.  He wasn't ready for sleep, he took the Tribble out and want to run and play.  This was repeated at 3 AM and then at 5:30 am.  By then I decided to stay up.   Out we went, Tribble and all. The beauty of the night sky is breathtaking.  I doubt that Power is thinking of the beautiful stars and moon.  He just wants to play.  Smart boy.

Since  I'm supposed to keep him a bit quiet for a little while to let his injuries finish healing, I have not let him get too rambunctious.  I think he is not in too much pain.  He still gets an antibiotic pill twice a day.  I put the capsule inside a PILL POCKET which is a treat with a pocket in it, to hide a pill or capsule inside.  The treat smells and tastes so good that he ignores the presence of the capsule inside. One gulp and it's gone.

He's so black that at night I can't see him.  I put a white cloth around his neck last night.  I could she if he was into mischief or asleep.  T think I'll look around for a larger fabric to put around his neck at night.

Monday, October 22, 2012


I'm convinced that RVers and dog people are some of the friendliest on earth.

Meeting others!

I had some interesting comments from folks yesterday and today.  First I want to say thanks to all who comment.  I checked out some of their blogs this am while I was waiting for the sun to rise.
Betsy Speert has an interior decorating business and also a restoration business for vintage RV's!  I'm going to love learning from her site!  Thanks Betsy!

Patsy Erdman has the greatest picture of her hound wearing glasses!  You got my vote for getting a dog to be so photogenic and cooperative!

Laura has three dogs who all stayed still for the camera.  Great job, Laura.What is the trick?

Harriet has two Italian Greyhounds.  Sounds like a bundle of energy times two, doesn't it?

Lucy &amp Loree wrote a comment and I checked her blog.  It sounds very interesting.  I'll be checking it out frequently.

Kcgaz joined the blog and he has his own blog as well  Check it out   From the picture of the RV ( Tioga), it sounds like he and his family are learning like all the rest of do....through experience!  Welcome kcgaz!

I've been having blog visits from Germany and I am excited to think this might be family.  My closest family live in a town near Hamburg Germany.  Dearly loved, Jost, Miriam, Dana, and Keno!

Jerry and Sandy of sound like I'm going to learn a lot of cooking tips.

Again, I sure enjoy hearing from you!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

New Dog

Today I went to the adoption area for Greyhounds of the Verde Valley, held at the Fall Festival in Camp Verde, AZ.  They had six dogs present.  One was the most beautiful brindle you've ever laid eyes on.  He was also very full of himself.  He was continuously trying to escape the fencing, by squeezing through the one inch opening, or jumping up on the fence, and generally thinking mischief.

Another was a lovely red boy, who was calm and good mannered but had recently killed a cat.

Third was a smaller red girl with her tail completely tucked up between her legs, shaking with fear, unable to hardly breath she was so fearful.  Poor girl!

A black girl called Sedona, who had some adjustment problems at her foster home.

Another brindle dog, and one more red boy.

Finally, a black boy 18 months old, white chin, white chest, white feet and white tipped tail.  He was walking like he was in pain, and didn't want to walk at all.  Turns out he had an accident in a recent race, got his feet and legs torn up.  One toe had to be amputated( it's still bandaged), and the other feet are abraded, scuffed ankles, and wrists as well.  Tomorrow I will go to his vet and the stitches on the amputation will be removed. I hope to find out the extent of his injuries and find out what I need to do to get the best healing possible.
His name is Wild Power House, and to me he will be Power. He will have some real healing to do, along  with trying to regrow the hair on his rear hips, and his tail.  Many greyhounds rub up against the bars of their cages and rub the hair off.  My greyhounds have all had this for a short while.  Most grows back within the first year in a home where they are loved and not caged.

Welcome, Power!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Getting ready for another Greyhound

Welcome to Barbara Dewell, my very first member on the blog!  She has a great blog called Me and my Dog .
She has encouraged me to blog and helped me learn the process, so thanks,Barbara! 

Welcome also to Patty Erdman.  Patty has loved and lost a greyhound as well.
Thanks Patty for sharing with us.

I am really excited about the possibility of getting another greyhound, and have been going through my dog supplies to make sure I have what I need.

  • I purchased a 20 lb bag of dog food
  • retrieved the dog dish Val used and made sure it was clean
  • got out Val's red fleece winter coat and washed it
  • located Val's Thunder shirt and washed it
  • hung Val's leash on door handle in case I need it.
  • placed fur brush in handy location
  • reminder to go to atm for cash in case adopters won't take check
  • Dog bed... got out dog bed cover and located blankets and other padding to stuff the cover.  The new baby needs to be comfortable!
  • print out and fill in the application for adoption
  • Supply of heartworm prevention and flea and tick prevention on hand
  • doggy toothbrush on hand
  • dog toys ( purchased thru toys and collars and leashes.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Travel Preparations

For nearly three weeks I've been camping at Bluewater Lake State Park in NW New Mexico.  I really love it here.  But, winter is coming fast here, it's below freezing at night.  My favorite parts about this park are the horses, and the great beauty of the landscape.This park is managed by Kelly the ranger who does a really great job.

I will be leaving in two more days.  I started getting things ready a few days ago.  I got out my tire gauge and checked the pressure.  All of them needed a bit of air, so I got the compressor out and got the tires all pumped to the optimal psi.  Two of the valve stems had lost the caps so I replaced them with new ones from Walmart.  My neighbor, Cari, was out checking her tires and needed to pump them up.  Her tire gauge is malfunctioning, so she asked to use mine.  Her compressor has a very short air fill attachment, and she asked me to help her get one tire filled because the short attachment was nearly impossible to hold in place on the valve stem.  We finally go it done.

My cactus garden needed watering and fertilizing.  

As you can see, I have to protect some of the plants from the cat.  I thought cats would be deterred by the thorns, but Chica is a sneaky girl!  The clear plastic works well.

The water hoses I own were just barely long enough (three 25 ft hosed hooked end to end) to reach to the nearest faucet for fresh water tank fill. But that job is now done and have the hoses recoiled and stowed away.  

Windshield cleaning is my least favorite job.  I have cleaned it 5 times in the last month and cannot get it clean enough to keep from having a film of streaks inside and outside that are annoying to look through. Used Windex, Alcohol, Rain-X, and Invisible glass.

Repair hole for Dash A/C

Hole repaired and touched up by me

Two months ago I had to get the dash A/C repaired again.  The repair shop left a hole in the front of the motorhome again, so again, I need to touch up the hole repair.  White caulk and white touch up paint make the 12 x 12 inch hole repair less noticeable.  A body shop could fix it so it was invisible, but next time the A/C needs repair the hole would have to be opened again, so the less expensive option is my choice.

Checking under the hood for oil, antifreeze, transmission, brake fluid, etc will be the last job on the mechanical list.  I'm so grateful that motorhome manufacturers made the recent models so that I don't have to take off the engine cover to check transmission fluid.  Last item is to hitch up the car and we're on the road again!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012



I thought retirement was supposed to be easy!  It is still filled with decisions, but different ones in addition to the regular ones.

The decision on my plate this week is: Do I get another greyhound to join the family, or do I decide to keep the family small and avoid the extra cost, housework, training, etc.

My family consists of one greyhound female 9.5 yrs old, and one cat 6 yrs old.
I have been used to having two greyhounds and two cats.  Over the last two months I have lost one greyhound and one cat , both to bone cancer.  I miss them greatly.
Phoenix, 17 years old

Beginning something new

I travel with my family of pets, at present a tuxedo cat named Chica, and a white and red greyhound named Fleur.  We live in a 31 ft Sea Breeze Class A motorhome.  This has been our home since 2007.