Friday, May 29, 2015

Whatcha Up to this weekend?

It's the giant Annual Cowichan and District SPCA garage sale at the Cowichan Exhibition Grounds on Hwy 1 just north of Duncan BC.  Sixteen thousand square feet of incredible deals, all well organized and all clean and priced.  This is not your average garage sale - last year we, the volunteers, raised over $40,000 for our local shelter via this sale, and credit must also go to the wonderful community of supporters who donated goods and of course who then attend and shop, shop, shop.

Some of the things in the furniture section this year

I was not on the core team this year, as I have been for several years past - the team that accepts the donations for months in advance, sorts them, prices them, boxes them, stores them. Instead, I opted to enjoy my spring, do some gardening, go on some Elder college day courses, explore some new areas.  I just helped unload trucks and open boxes on Thursday, and set up the toys and games tables today, and I'll be there floating around helping where I'm needed all weekend.  And I'm already tired, so I can only imagine how exhausted the core team is.

Part of the Toys and Games section I set up today

Please, if you live anywhere nearby, or want a great weekend trip further afield, do come support us.  If you think you might buy ANYTHING other than groceries in the next year - then we have something you need!  As for the food - Bob's Burgers will be whipping up your lunch, and Darlene has been baking like crazy to tempt your sweet tooth. The biggest and best garage sale on the island, if not in the whole province, will be open 8:30 - 3:00 both Saturday and Sunday.

Yes, we even have plants and lots of garden stuff!
And puzzles and pet stuff  and seasonal and kitchen
(oh do we have kitchen stuff!)
and crafts and linens and books and jewelry
and miscellaneous other stuff too!

Oh, and did I mention sports and tools too?
Camping gear, fitness stuff,,
you name it, we got it!

And clothes!  Fill a bag for just a few dollars!

So come.  Look.  Buy.  All proceeds go directly to the support the animals in our local shelter!

(But please leave your dogs at home - the weather is far too warm to leave them in your car even if you should find one of the very rare shady spots to park, and while dogs are allowed in the hall, the crowds and new environment are enough to make even the most laid back dog anxious.)

Mitzi:  Yeah, I'd much rather spend the day
snoozing on Mama Jean's bed!
Tee hee!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Sometimes one needs a little inspiration....

I went to a presentation by the Ladysmith Camera Club last night, entitled "Dogs in Motion".  It was not only about how to achieve good photos of active dogs, but also demonstrated some interesting photoshopping techniques to use on those action shots.  It was the inspiration I needed to do two things:  post one of my favourite action shots of my friend Barb's dog Scooter, taken on a hike a couple of months ago (and yes, I will post more shots from that hike shortly); and play around some more with a free program called Picmonkey which allows me to do many of the things one can do in photoshop without tearing my hair out learning to do it.  The result was far from perfect, but given that I only spent an hour on it and that I had already deleted some of the shots I needed to really show what I wanted to show, I'm relatively happy with the results and eager to try some more action shots.  Anyone with a water dog wanna take a hike?

Anyway, here is the initial shot I had saved to post as part of a blog about that hike:


And here is the photoshopped (Picmonkeyed?) creation, inspired by the presentation I attended.

Leaping, bounding, water-loving Scooter!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

A Message from Mitzi

Hi!  It’s me, Mitzi!  I’m not sure where all the other critters disappeared to, but I is the only dog around here now.  So when Mama Jean is too lazy busy to blog, I hasta do it for her.

But that’s okay, because I haz something Very Important to blog about.  It is about my family and bicycles and cancer.

Me and my Auntie Sooze
I luvs her lots.

Y’see, I had visitors the other weekend.  My Auntie Soooze and Uncle Franklin came to see me, all the way from Vancouver, and they didn’t bring a car.  They rode their bicycles!  Well, not on the ocean – they took a ferry for that – but all the rest of the way, via Tsawwassen and Nanaimo to Crofton, and back again via Salt Spring Island.  That’s a lot of peddling!

Mah Uncle Franklin and Auntie Sooze
riding down MY street!

And why would they do that?  Other that it being a boootiful weekend for a ride?  Well, they is training for a very important event that happens at the end of the summer – The Ride to Conquer Cancer! 

Readers might remember that I came to live with Mama Jean when my first mama, Mama Anita (who was Auntie Sooze’s sister), died of pancreatic cancer. But y'know what? Auntie Sooze’s mama and papa also died of cancer, and Mama Jean’s papa died of cancer, and lots and lots of people in our circle of family and friends have been hit by cancer - some are cancer survivors, some died, and some are currently battling cancer.  Even my Mama Jean had skin cancer about thirty years ago, but surgery and radiation got rid of it.  A lot of people aren't that lucky though, which is why the doctors and scientists have to do lots and lots and lots of research to find ways to beat it.

So on August 29 and 30th,  Auntie Sooze and Uncle Franklin are participating in the Ride to Conquer Cancer, riding their bicycles all the way from Vancouver BC Canada to Seattle Wa USA!  That’s like TWO HUNDRED kilometers! (And don’t tell them I said this – but they ain’t no spring chickens – I happen to know Auntie Sooze is only a few years younger than Mama Jean, and that is ANCIENT!).  But they is practicing lots and they is fit and they is looking forward to a hard cycle and a good time.

Ah'd have to have a helmet to participate - -
and much longer legs!
And because the ride is all about raising money to support cancer research, my Auntie Sooze wants to raise lots and lots and lots of money. On the Ride to Conquer Cancer website, you'll find her page here, where she tells you all about why she’s participating and how you can help.  

I gave up my treats for a month, and told Mama Jean she had to give up her treats too (and let’s face it, a bottle of good scotch costs a lot more than a little ol’ bag of dog biscuits!).  So I’m hoping some of you might give up your treats for a month – or even just for a week – or a day -  and help sponsor my Auntie Sooze.  Cause it’s a really good cause and she is workin’ really hard to get ready for it. 

Any closer we get to conquering cancer is good not just for humans but for us dogs too – because lots and lots of dogs battle cancer and the more we know about it the better. 

Bye Auntie Sooze!
Haz a good ride!
So please consider sponsoring her. You can donate online, by clicking her link to take you to her Ride to Conquer Cancer page, and then clicking the donate button on her page. It’s that easy!  Here’s the link to her page again:

Love and hugs, Mitzi

(PS:  If you sponsor my Auntie Sooze and send me your mailing address using the email link at the side of my blog, I’ll even send you a personal thank you card with an autographed photo of me! How’s that for bribery? Mitzi )