Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

David and Carolyn just left for Rhode Island after spending a very enjoyable week here in Michigan's Thumb.  We ate too much, took many road trips, and talked and talked. Of course, OF COURSE, I haven't had time for the blog.

On Thursday we saw "Having a Wonderful Time, Wish You Were Her" at the Barn Theater in Port Sanilac. There's a great harbor there and a couple of nice restaurants.

One day we traveled up to the very tip of the Thumb and stopped at Grindstone City where you can still find examples of old stone grindstones even though they no longer make them.

David and Carolyn were taking photos. There's a grindstone in the water in the fourth photo below. Clicking on photos enlarges them.

A honeysuckle bush in fruit.
We saw this house with matching phlox and door in Port Austin.

David and Carolyn went all the way up to Mackinaw Island for a couple of days, ate fudge, traveled back in time, rode in horsed-carriages, stopped in Hartwick Pines, one of my favorite spots in Michigan, on the way back down to the Thumb.
Relaxing in the north forest after breakfast in Bad Axe.

The dogs love them.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Korpur, Kitty, Totty

Kitty the Icelandic Sheepdog puppy spent several days with us recently; she's now back home and we all miss her terribly. At five months old now, she has a great temperament, is on track for weight and size, and is coming along very nicely. I think she looks like her mother Totty.

Kitty - Vinlands Kathleen

Totty - Vinlands Totty

Korpur had a bout of intestinal upset with diarrhea last week and I was very worried. I called Thumb Veterinary in Sandusky, Michigan in a panic to get him in and examined. I asked them to try and squeeze us in which they did; the experience was very bad and I hope I never have to use them again.
Korpur - Alaskastadirs Korpur

Sailboats on Lake Huron racing this weekend from Port Huron to The Straits Of Mackinaw.

Thursday, July 16, 2015


Kit is going home today and we are really, REALLY, going to miss her here. There is nothing more fun than having a puppy around. All the dogs are more interested and energetic because she has reinvigorated them.

She follows me around everywhere, comes when called, loves to explore everything, is afraid of nothing, has a healthy appetite, and, just plainly, has been a delight and a joy to us.

Carolyn and David are coming next week to stay a while and I'm looking forward to having them. David helped me move - last year! It seems like much longer that I've been here so much has happened. Most importantly perhaps, I've adapted to the pace of life here and I love it.

Here are some photos from this morning. Clicking on photos will enlarge them.

I planted three Clematis Jackmanii on specially constructed trellises in the fall before my house was finished. This is only their second year and they are doing very well. This one has a volunteer annual poppy growing with it. Bear (right) approves of the combination.

Volunteers are plants that seed themselves in your garden without your help. Back in my Royal Oak garden I had a "bush" Clematis which I did not bring up because, I assume, they cannot be divided. The blue flower in the middle of the photo is a volunteer Clematis that must have hitchhiked up here when I transplanted something else - perhaps a Pulmonaria. I love greeting old friends.

Prunella is a wildflower that has recently, perhaps, emerged in a more cultivated form in blue, pink, or white and can be found in garden centers and plant nurseries now. The above plant is truly a wild plant but I love it regardless.

These two volunteer "weeds" are wild yarrow. Yarrow stalks are sometimes used for I Ching.  They also can be found in nurseries in more cultivated forms but I like the wild ones better - they are, in my opinion, hardier and easier to grow.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Kitty (Vinlands Kathleen) the Icelandic Sheepdog puppy from last February's litter, returned to her birth home for a few days summer vacation. Everyone loves having her back and they want to keep her. It's been great having a puppy in the house again but sadly it will be a short-ish visit. She is a real sweetheart. She has been running around the fenced forest/yard exhausting my older dogs. Four of my Icelandics are over ten years old!

Kit is a really good looking shorter haired chocolate, tan, and white Icelandic. Here are some shots of her. Click on photos to enlarge them.

Kit with Grandma Kria

Kit, Aunt Pila, Mom Totty

Kit, "Stop running? Why?"

The Barn Theater in nearby Port Sanilac presented "Night of the Living Dead", an amusing zombie play - not sure if was meant to be amusing. Carolyn and David are coming in about ten days and, if there's time, we plan on seeing "Having a Wonderful Time, Wish You Were Her". They plan on taking a ferry to and staying a couple of nights on Mackinaw Island while here.

Around the barn where the plays are staged there are several rescued buildings that have been saved and moved to create a historical site. This railroad station was moved from Deckerville recently and is currently being restored.

Over the Fourth of July weekend Tracy gathered wild red strawberries and white Swiss alpine strawberries as a desert. Along with blueberries we also had it was literally a red, white, and blue weekend. Maybe I'll try to repeat that for "Le Quatorze Juillet". Tracy and Jon have sold their very successful restaurant - Fritatta and I will miss going there.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Amber Jade Aanensen

Amber Jade Aanensen took these great photos recently of Lee (Vinlands Leifur) the Icelandic Sheepdog who lives in Michigan with his guardian Jennifer Sanders.


Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy Fourth

This from Suzanne: -

Tryggur, Shadow, Kippa on the agility pause table

Friday, July 3, 2015

Buck Moon

The full moon has been orange which, no doubt, seven billion other people may have noticed too. I had little idea the full moons had different names. Click to enlarge the photos.

The Fourth has already started here with loud bangs. My dogs have never been startled and frightened  by the firecrackers but for some reason this year Totty is having  the shakes. Most of the time I don't mind being alone but during the holidays it is hard to fill the time.

Iris chrysographes?

Plants from the nice couple near Port Sanilac have started to flower. The iris is a very dark almost jet black. The photo makes it look lighter than it is. She might have called it chrysographes or something similar.
Pom Pom Dahlia

Years ago I found a small sliver-leaved plant growing in my neighbor's backyard lawn. I liked the leaves so I dug one up and moved it to my yard. The next year it took off and I've had volunteers ever since. The flowers are a brilliant cherry pink. I believe it's a Stacyhys, an old fashioned garden flower. I'm so happy one volunteer hitched a ride up here with another plant. They do survive long but they do self-sow which means they fit my criteria.

Thursday, July 2, 2015


I just got this email from Courtney, Icelandic Sheepdog Bangsi's guardian.

It's been a while since I updated you on our little guy. I have some photos for you to keep you in the loop! He is doing so well! We had a little setback about 2 weeks ago. We were playing a lively game of fetch and he made high speed contact with a door frame (did I mention he is gangly and incredibly clumsy these days?) and managed to sprain his poor little wrist. He went to the vet and she prescribed rest...yea that didn't go well. We tried all kinds of mental gymnastics to keep him busy and mentally tire him out, and we would make great progress and then he would take off across the house out of boredom and re-injure himself. Unfortunately he needed puppy calming medications for a few days, but that did the trick. He is back on his feet and frolicking like normal. 
We had a BIG party (ok..big for us- 15 people) the other day and he did a delightful job with everyone! He was sweet with the toddler that was attending. He herded her a bit, but didn't jump on her or scare her at all! Everyone loved him and played fetch with him for as long as he wanted! Everyone praised him for his delightful manners.

We don't feed him any people food so he doesn't go after people's BBQ when they set their plate down on the low patio table.

Bangsi also graduated puppy class last week! Our trainer says he is the smartest pup of his age she has EVER seen...and she trains standard poodles. He is still picking things up just about as fast as I can teach him. He recently learned to "back up" so that we could put shoes and socks on without tripping over him. I still think I am going to teach "doggie yoga" soon since he does a funny little down dog maneuver when he wakes up. I just have to remember to keep my clicker and treats with me for when he wakes up so we can get started! He is always much better behaved when we have exercised his brain and his body. I have to start looking up new things to teach him on the internet since I am running out of ideas!

Anyway- enough blather. We love him! He is doing so well. He is a wonderful ambassador for his breed- all our friends want his siblings!
Did I mention he is the cutest little guy ever???

Vinlands Leifur (Lee)

Vinlands Leifur the Icelandic Sheepdog, guardian Jennifer Sanders and handler Nina Fetter, got a third in the Herding Group from American Kennel Club Tom Hale at the Warren County, Ohio on May 23, 2015. Click on photo to enlarge it.