Wednesday, November 3

going for walks

this is what my neighborhood looks like these days. this was taken last night, and that white house is kitty corner from mine. some of the trees have lost their leaves, but it's still very pretty around town with all the fall color. for nov. 3, that's not bad! although i hear there might be snow in the forecast for mid-week next week.

lately the girls and i have been heading out for walks immediately upon my return from work in the evenings. they love it, and it's good exercise for all of us. scott has been working late this week, so he hasn't been able to come with us.

i always bring one of the puppies' balls with me, and we play fetch as we go. that way the girls get a lot more exercise than if we just walked the whole time. they both love it, and fox likes to pack the ball around, and she'll bring it over to me when she's ready to chase it again. when they play fetch together, it's a perpetual game of keep away, and i think they like that aspect more than actually chasing it after i throw it.

the first part of our walk consists of this big hill, with the picnic shelter halfway up. i'm not really sure why the picnic shelter is there, because otherwise it's just a dirt cow path and this hill with grass and sagebrush on it. 

this is the view from almost at the top of the hill, looking over the old neighborhood of casper, with downtown in the background. on the street running north that you can see, there are two vehicles parked on the left side. the back one is scott's black truck, and that's right where my house is. i love my neighborhood.

last night when foxy was packing the ball around she took it and left it in the middle of the creek that feeds one of the golf course ponds. with a bog on one side, and a steep bank on the other, i was trying to figure out how to get it back. of course, both dogs ran in the water and nosed it around, but i couldn't get them to bring it out. finally, after i robbed a nearby tree of a stick to fish it out, foxy trotted right in, grabbed it and brought it up the bank. i guess she thought i was taking too long.

this is one of the golf course ponds that the girls discovered. yes, they did smell like pond scum upon returning to the house, but they sure liked it. and this was about at the farthest point of our walk, and they were hot and panting, so they loved getting in the water for a drink.

i'm not used to such tame antelope! this group is very curious, though, and even started following after us as we walked. our dogs don't chase game or small animals, which is nice, so they notice the antelope, but don't try to chase them. there's one decent buck in there. i'm sure he knows he's safe from the hunters as long as he stays with the golfers. i like the long shadows cast by myself and the two pups in this photo. you can tell which one is lucy by the curly tail shadow. :-)

there's a lot of juniper on the sagebrush hill where that picnic shelter is, and i'm seriously thinking about going back and robbing some branches off this one with the berries. i've always wanted to make a wreath out of juniper boughs with the blue/purple berries.

here's the girls trotting along behind me on the cow path. we thoroughly enjoy our walks. :-)

then, when we get home, they're ready to rest and sleep the rest of the evening. it's a very good arrangement!

foxy was sleepy, too. being typical high-energy heelers, the walks are great for them, and hopefully getting in the habit of daily walks will keep them from going stir-crazy this winter. i'm not sure if the golf course clears paths of snow, but i'd like to keep going up there. if it snows too much, we'll have to detour around on the street to get there, instead of going up the hill.

on another note, here's our wood stove in the front room. we haven't lit it yet, and yesterday the stovepipe expert came to make sure it was all good. turns out, it isn't. we need a greater length of double-walled stove pipe up by the ceiling, so i talked to scott about it and the stovepipe guys are coming back today to give an estimate on labor and materials to do it for us, since scott's pretty busy these days.

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