Saturday, April 30, 2011

STEM is awesome!

Last summer my son attended the STEM camp at the United States Naval Academy. STEM is the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program for future Engineer/Technology/Science Majors. The Naval Academy has one of the top Engineering schools in the country and their program is just amazing.  The students get first hand exposure to Robotics, Chemistry, Biometrics, Cryptography, Forensics and more.  They get to work in labs and have the opportunity to learn so much more than they ever dreamed possible.  It is a tough program to get accepted to and my son had the best time last year.  It was without a doubt the academic highlight of his entire life.  As soon as the admissions board opened this year, my son reapplied.  It is almost impossible to get chosen twice, but my son was determined to do all he could to get selected again this year. He was so impressed with all he learned last summer, he just couldn't wait to learn even more this year.  He has been checking his mail every day for weeks and weeks with eager anticipation. Well today the mail arrived.  There on top was the thin white envelope from the United States Navy.  We gathered around as he opened the envelope and he braced himself for the disappointing news. As soon as he opened the letter his face brightened and was filled with the biggest smile I think I have ever seen. He just kept saying NO WAY! NO WAY! NO WAY!  The very first word on the letter was, "Congratulations!" He is still in disbelief. He is SO excited!!!!  I am so excited too. The Naval Academy has a way to reach the center of his core interests. A way to bring out the desire in him to be all that he can be.  It makes him excited to learn. It makes him want to succeed and to learn and to do his very best.  I am so grateful that he has this opportunity again.  It means the world to him and to me.  The very first person he called was of course his sister who is a Chemistry major at the Naval Academy.  She was SO proud of him. He is already planning on what he needs to bring.  First up.....we need to go to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.  My soon to be 15 year old son needs some sort of picture ID.  He is not old enough for a driver's permit of course -but the only ID card he has is a YMCA membership card with a picture of him from when he was 6 years old.  He is now almost 6'3" and NO one believes me when I say he is 14 years old.  I am thinking the airlines might want some proof that my very tall son is indeed only 14. I found out that the BMV will do picture ID's which is great.  He will need one to get on the Naval Base. You must present a picture ID at the gate if you are over 16 years of age and last time I think they were starting to question why he didn't have an ID. The last few visits he has been mistaken for a midshipman. My son is ready to go first thing Monday to get the ID.  I told him he had to go to school first. You know - school which equals learning which equals good grades which equals getting into the Naval Academy. OH I am SUCH a mean Mommy! I guess he will have to wait all the way until AFTER school before getting his new ID.  Egads! How will he ever stand it?!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Well....then you would be a SMURF!

Lately, our lovely pond has been visited by some serious fishing creatures and I am not talking about the human kind.  We have a couple of fisher hawks and herons that think Yesteryear Acres is the ideal spot for fishing and lounging around for the day. 
To say that Mr. Yesteryear Acres does not enjoy watching his fish flying off into the sunset would be an understatement.  A few years ago we found that if we use a algae reducer blue dye the birds can't see the fish as well. I let Mr. Yesteryear Acres know that the pond was a muddy green and it was time to make it beautiful!!!  This is an awesome argument for me - because I LOVE the color blue and if I remind Mr. Yesteryear Acres that the fish will ALL be gone....suddenly he loves the color blue too! I mean does this look like like a lovely color blue to you?  It is most definitely a murky green!
So off to the farm store for the delightful BLUE! YEA!  I love how beautiful it makes our pond!!!!  I can just sit out there for hours. Mr. Yesteryear Acres and my daughter had fun putting the mixture in.

My daughter wanted to touch it.....My daughter wanted to swim in it...
She asked Mr. Yesteryear Acres what would happen if she jumped in and Mr Yesteryear Acres said, "Well then you would be a SMURF!"
She decided perhaps she would skip the swimming idea.
Here it is slowly making its way across the water.
It makes the whole pond look lovely.
It will stay like this all summer long.  I love love love it! I feel like I am someplace tropical as I gaze across my little blue sea.
 Here is to Blue Skies and Blue Seas!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Break in the Clouds

OH my gosh!!!!  For one brief shining moment --------- I saw the color blue!!!!! I am not kidding.  The color blue!!!!! The minute I saw the tiny break in our unending constant cloud cover, I ran outside with my camera to capture the moment of beauty.
I felt revived and happy and so glad to see something other than grey!!!
Look who else was happy for the break in the clouds....
Mr. Yesteryear Acres found her in our lilac tree right outside our door.
I was very careful not to disturb her while I took the pictures.
She couldn't have picked a better location. Our lilac tree is just starting to bloom.  We have one in our backyard and quite a few out front. I LOVE the way the lilacs smell when they come into bloom. The whole world smells lovely.
It won't be long before the entire tree will be in full bloom.  I quickly got one more shot of our spring flowers ...
And then the rain started once again. Right now we have fierce howling winds and tons of rain. Sigh.....tomorrow they say we may see the sky again!  I hope so! The fact that 2 ducks are "swimming" in our horse field is not a good sign.  I keep telling them --- that is NOT a pond! I suppose by all the splashing they are doing - they might be onto something. If we are lucky enough to see "GASP".... "THE SUN!!!!"...I will be running outside with my face turned upwards and I will welcome Mr. Sun with overwhelming joy. Let's all think bright happy thoughts! Come on Mr. Sun!!!!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Everybody loves Presents!

Today was present day! Yea! Who doesn't love presents?  My first present of the day was my delicious cup of coffee from my sweetie Mr. Yesteryear Acres. He makes me my coffee every morning with just the right amount of Demerara sugar and real heavy whipping cream. He only drinks coffee BLACK so for him to get out all the extra stuff just for me and make my cup of coffee perfect every single morning is always an awesome and most appreciated present. After my delicious coffee - the door bell rang and it was ANOTHER present!!!  A very lovely puppy family sent me a gourmet basket full of yummy goodies.  I love goodies!!!  I love blueberries and maple syrup and mmmmmmmm!  So happy!  It was a really nice thing for them to do and just made my whole day. Then Mother Nature was so kind to give us a very brief respite from the drowning rains and Mr. Yesteryear Acres asked me if I wanted to take a walk with him. At first I was thinking HECK NO! It is all muddy and wet outside and I am too busy and I have too much to do - but he had his very cute irresistible face on - so I didn't say any of those things and just said YES.  We put on our tall rain boots and enjoyed a nice walk in the woods together. It was really nice.  The gift of being together is the best present in the world.  It also reminds me to live in the present.  Being aware of lovely things happening in the moment is a good way to live.  As wet as I was when we got back - I can still say I enjoyed every moment.  When the mail arrived today....there was yet another present! I am not sure what I did to deserve such a day full of lovely surprises but I am quite thankful!!!!  My mom sent me an adorable little stuffed toy bear for Mother's Day. She said it was because I was such a good mom. Awwww. To make my day complete, several families emailed pictures of their sweet doodle doggies to me. I just love getting picture updates!
Here is Molly.  She is a Double Doodle.

And here is Finley. He is an F1 Labradoodle.

And here is Moose in a carpet of Bluebonnet flowers.  Isn't that adorable?
Today I thoroughly enjoyed my presents. The presents that came in the mail.  The present of pictures. The present of spending a quiet moment in Nature. Most of all I enjoyed the present of the day.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hail? In a Rainforest?

Ahhh, life here in the rainforest is going splendidly.  I keep thinking that with the overwhelming amount of "April Showers" MAN OH MAN - The May flowers are going to be AMAZING!!!!! We should have flowers everywhere! The sidewalks will blossom! Tonight we are under a severe thunderstorm warning with at least 2-4 inches of additional rainfall AND large hail. OH JOY!  Hail and a Rainforest!  You don't get to see that every day! We had a very nice family drive up from Tennessee to pick up their sweet puppy and they had to drive through horrible storms to get here. I felt so bad for them and then they had to turn around and drive through an even worse storm to get back home. *sigh*  I think we are all suffering through the continual wet dreary days! Where Oh Where could the sun be????  It has been so long since we have had a sunny day, I might need to sit under a lamp and pretend it is the sun just so I can have something bright and shiny to admire. Hey! Maybe I will gather up all the hail pellets and create a beautiful prism of fire and ice! Or Maybe we can make a "snowman" out of hail pellets! Or Maybe we can use the hail pellets and have nice cold frozen drinks!!  Or Maybe we can just sit and watch all the hailballs float by on our own private lake.  You know the "lake"? Once upon a time, it used to be our backyard. In the meantime - we keep mucking along and enjoying the doodles mud and all!  The doodles of course don't mind one bit.  What is more fun than a big ole mud puddle??? NOTHING!  We have quite the collection of "chocolate" doodles, both big and small.  It is okay though, because as you know.....everyone loves chocolate!

Monday, April 25, 2011

In Between the Showers

To say that I was shocked to wake up to thunderstorms and pouring rain would be ridiculous. I mean if I were to wake up and see something called "the sun" well THEN I would be surprised!!!!  Yes here in the New Rainforest of the midwest - it was yet again another soggy day.  We did have a few break in the showers here and there. It didn't last long but we made the most of it.  I grabbed my camera and took as many pictures as I could before the next set of soaking rains drowned us.  Our magnolia tree only got a few moments of majestic beauty this year as most of her beautiful flowers fell along with the rains.  I think today is the last day we will be able to appreciate her glory.
The puppies thought the tree was beautiful too!

A carpet of flower petals.  Ahhhh how lovely!

Soft as the softest pillow!
So take time to smell the flowers.
 Even in the wettest spring...Beauty Abounds! 

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Hoppy Easter!

The good ole Easter Bunny did not disappoint this morning and filled our baskets with Easter candy and chocolates. My son was quite happy to start his morning off with the breakfast of champions - jelly rabbits, chocolate rabbits and butter cream filled eggs.  If you ask him - he had jelly and eggs!  Almost a traditional American breakfast!  We had a lovely Easter morning before we got busy with all the farm chores and work that needed to be done.  This afternoon we headed out to Mr. Yesteryear Acres' brother's house to celebrate Easter with all of Mr. Yesteryear Acres' family. We had a full house from little toddlers to great grandparents. Of course the food was delicious. I don't believe there is a single Yesteryear Acres event or holiday that isn't filled with yumminess!  We had our very favorite strawberry "salad", homemade bread, baked ham, green beans, potato casserole, deviled eggs, and real salad too. Everything was soooo good.  The hummingbird cake for dessert was super yummy too!  We spent hours just laughing and talking and enjoying being part of a very big and very loving family.  It is so nice to be surrounded by love.  I love talking to Mr. Yesteryear Acres mommy and daddy. I love them so much and every time we are together, I just feel lucky to have them in my life.  I love talking to my sister-in-laws and brother-in-laws and nieces and nephews and grand nieces and grand nephews.  One of my favorite moments of the day was watching my 14 year old son who is 6'3" playing with his little cousins.  He was tossing them around and pushing them on the swing. Of course they adore him. My daughter was also playing with all the little kids and there were just smiles all around. From the Easter Egg Hunt to the delicious Easter dinner and everything in between.... It was a perfect Easter celebration. Hoppy Easter to you and to those you love.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Bread is in the Oven

Well Hello Rain!  Again. I really enjoy my home in the new "rainforest" area of Ohio.  I never knew that when we moved here that we in fact moved to a rainforest but based on the massive number of inches upon inches of rain that we have received - I believe we qualify for rainforest status. In fact - I think I will go out and plant bamboo tomorrow. I should be able to have an entire bamboo forest in no time.  I wouldn't at all be surprised if when I opened my door I were to be greeted by a toucan or gibbon or some sort of poison tree frog. Come Rain Forest Creatures ----- Ohio awaits!!!! Despite the dreary rainy day - all is well here at Yesteryear Acres.  The puppies have had fun playing and did get a brief recess time outside in between the thunderstorms. I have been busy baking for Easter tomorrow.  I already have a loaf of potato bread made and my Old Fashioned white bread will be ready to come out of the oven in about 30 more minutes.  Next up is Honey Oatmeal Bread.  Tomorrow we will be celebrating Easter with all of Mr. Yesteryear Acres' Family which will be a lot of fun.  Best thing of the day tomorrow?????  Strawberry Salad!!!  Made with love by Mr. Yesteryear Acres' Mommy. Mmmmm!  We all like to pretend it is really a "salad" but actually it is mostly dessert like.  We all ignore that fact and proceed with the "it has SALAD in the title" so we should eat it WITH our dinner as a "salad".  My son can eat an entire plateful and happily go back for more.  I am not sure what everyone else is bringing but - dear sweet sister of Mr. Yesteryear Acres - if you are reading this.... nothing says I LOVE YOU and HAPPY EASTER like Pecan Pie!  If you wanted to make me one of my very own - I wouldn't mind.  Here's wishing everyone a very Happy Easter tomorrow.  I hope the Easter Bunny is very good to you.....and brings chocolate!  We will all be looking for our baskets first thing in the morning. I will be dreaming of finding mine full of chocolate fudge, chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, mmmmm chocolate.  I think I better make salad for dinner tonight. Real salad. The kind made with green lettuce and carrots.  That way I will have plenty of room for all that awaits tomorrow! Happy Easter Eve!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Who's on First?......Mother Nature!

Today .....surprise surprise! It rained when I woke up. It rained when I ate lunch. It rained as I loaded up the car with my kids and their friends and Mr. Yesteryear Acres and headed to the ball field. We have been planning a fun family outing for a while and for once EVERYTHING worked and we actually were all ready ON time. We were off to our minor league baseball team to enjoy an evening out at the stadium watching a good ole American Baseball Game. We drove the hour to the ball field and we arrived right on time. In the rain. In the pouring rain. We made our way to our seats and before we could get comfy in our chairs.....the announcement was made that the game had been cancelled. No game. Why? Could it be the torrential downpour? Could it be that snorkel gear was needed to be able to go out onto the field? Could it be that everywhere we go it looks as if we are surrounded by 10,000 lakes? So what could we do? Should we cry and pout and complain that the only time we actually make a family outing work that our plans are rained out? That it just isn't fair!?!? Nope! We ate baseball food! We laughed. We joked! We had the best soggy non-watching baseball game ever! I am not sure if we could have had more fun even if they had played. It was nice to get out. It was fun to eat junk food. It was fun to be together. I guess you can look at the game as nobody lost! Not even us!

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Our electric is back on! YEA!  JOY!  HAPPINESS!  CELEBRATION TIME!!!  Oh I am so happy. Pioneer life is OVER!!! Weehoo!  I think I will start my laundry. I am going to run my dishwasher. I am going to turn on the TV!  I am going to take a shower! I am going to vacuum the kitchen. I am ..........IN THE DARK!!!!! Noooooooooo!  Boo hoo!  No Electric! GONE! ALL GONE! Now I have wet clothes in the washer and dishes that are all soapy and a halfway vacuumed kitchen.  Back to the buckets. Back to Pioneer Life. Back to the candles. I think I will start washing my dishes by hand. I think I will wring out my laundry. I think I am already showered just by all the washing! CLICK! YAY!  JOY! HAPPINESS!!!!  Our Electric is back on!!!!! Now I am even happier!  Now I am even more appreciative!  Now I am celebrating more joyously!  I am resetting my clocks!  I am turning on my TV! I am starting my wash again!  I am..........IN THE DARK! Nooooooooooooooooooooo!
Dear Electric Company - As much as I am enjoying my moments of sheer joy the ensuing moments of agony are really not as pleasurable as you might think. I appreciate that with the 2 tornadoes and the widespread damage in our little town that you have your hands full BUT if you could maybe refrain from the hourly false hope of actual, for real, turned on, working, functioning, electric power, I would ever so appreciate it. It is far too much to go from Pioneer woman to "push a button and VOILA!" every few minutes. Of course I definitely prefer the working electricity thing - so if you could work your magic and turn mine on - I would SOOOOO appreciate it.  I realize there is a saying, "you don't know what you have until it is gone" - but believe me.  I already know and I would like it back.
Thank you.
Pioneer, 21st Century, Pioneer, 21st Century.....Pioneer Woman

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why Yes - I would love to be a Pioneer Woman today

Violent storms with winds clocked at over 100mph hit our town last evening and left a wake of devastation.  Schools are closed. Businesses are closed. Roads are closed. Street signs lay crumpled up like aluminum foil and uprooted trees and downed power lines can be found everywhere. We are safe and sound and all the puppies and doggies are fine.  We have some missing shingles and tree limbs everywhere, but other than that we escaped real damage.  The rest of the town isn't so lucky. I have one friend that can see the sky....from inside her house! Others lost their cars and barns and it is just a big mess. We are on well water here - so no electricity = no water.  It makes things particularly challenging. We also have elderly neighbors on both sides of us that need assistance so very early this morning Mr. Yesteryear Acres was out making sure everyone was okay.  He has been in and out, back and forth all day long taking care of everyone and everything. My son has been helping as well.  My daughter and I are making sure all the doggies and puppies are fine so it has been a busy day. "Fortunately" (or maybe I should say "Unfortunately" LOL) we are used to this. One Christmas we had a horrible ice storm and it left the entire area paralyzed for almost a week.  We had Christmas by candlelight and played board games every evening.  We have a camping type propane stove so we were able to cook meals for everyone around.  Our neighbors definitely appreciated the warm food!  We are lucky enough to be able to heat our home with wood - so we kept everyone warm and toasty and in looking back - it is a Christmas that we will always remember.  It was the Candle Light Christmas of Family and Friends. In September 2009 an actual Hurricane ripped through here - despite the fact that Ohio is NO where near an ocean - and it left everyone without power for almost 9 days.  I practically lived at the nearby coffee shop as it was the only place with power and internet.  I drove home with water every so often and we all managed to get through it. I think my hair smelled like coffee for a month! So today starts the fun pioneer life once again.  Days like these, make days when you turn on the faucet and water comes out, ever so much more appreciated! Guess it is time for me to go fetch the bucket!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Doodle Friends...Doodle Style!

This past weekend I delivered a sweet puppy to meet his big Uncle Duffer.  Duffer is one of our labradoodles from Nellie and Kipper and he is 7 years old. He is a big lovely F1 labradoodle and was one of our very first doodle doggies to be featured on our website. Yesterday I received this picture of little Max with his big Uncle Duffer:
Isn't that just the cutest picture?  I love how both Duffer and Max have the same expression and how Max is sitting on Duffer's tail. It is just adorable.  That picture reminded me of how Doodles love to have best friends too!
Sometimes they have little best friends:
Sometimes they have old best friends:

Sometimes their best friend is just their size:

New best friends make the best snuggle buddies:

And when there are no doodle doggie best friends to be found........

Little Humans make best friends too.  Here's to our sweet Doodles and all their best friends...both two legged and four!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Doodle Friends....Doodle Smiles!

Oh my goodness!  I had sooooo many nice emails and messages and facebook posts - my cup runneth over!!!!!  Thank you so much for all the thoughtful and lovely posts to me.  You made my entire day bright and cheery!!!!! When I first decided to raise puppies about 15 years ago, I knew that I would love it. I love animals.  I love horses and farm animals and zoo animals and fishies and kittens and puppies. I love them all.  When I was in college, I worked in a pet store for several years because I loved animals so much. In the end, I had to stop working at the pet store because I loved animals too much. The constant crating of the puppies really made me feel awful every day. We bought our very first labrador retriever puppies when my daughters were 4 and 1 years old. We named the puppies Ozzie and Harriett and they were just the best doggies ever.  3 years later we added another labrador to our family. Her name was Heidi and of course she was also the very best doggie ever.
We raised sweet labrador puppies for many years and then started raising doodle puppies which we totally adore. I always knew I would love spending my days with adorable puppies.  I knew it was just what I was meant to do. What I didn't imagine way back then, was how many friends I would make along the way. We have met so many wonderful families over the years. I get Christmas Cards and tasty treats (my personal favorite!) and emails and picture updates and every time I see a picture of one of our puppies, I just smile. It is so nice to stay in touch with our puppy families and I am grateful to have made so many dear friends. I have also made friends with other labradoodle breeders which is really awesome because only another labradoodle breeder would truly be able to empathize with just how many times you have to clean up puppy poop in one day. Thank you all my dear friends. Your kind words touched my heart. Raising doodle puppies is a wonderful and fulfilling way to spend our days......making doodle thing ever.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Thank you little doggie

Well our little puppy didn’t make it to Maine.  I tried everything.  I tried to remain upbeat today but having someone extremely mad at me just gets to me. I don’t know why I let one situation make me feel so completely miserable, but I guess I am just that way. I care a lot about our puppies and about our puppy families. Even though the delivery situation wasn’t something that I had any control over, I went as far as to offer the puppy free of charge if the family could find a way here to come pick her up. That solution didn’t work either. Since the puppy didn’t make it to Maine this weekend, the family decided to pass on bringing her home. She is a sweet little puppy and will definitely bring smiles and lots of love to whoever adopts her.  Right now she is snuggled up with my daughter while she does her practice AP Calculus tests. The puppy is being very supportive and is keeping my daughter’s spirits up while she wrestles with hours of math.  I have noticed that the sun SO desperately wants to come out today.  There have been little peeks of sunshine every now and then so hopefully all this wetness will dry up soon.  I wouldn’t mind if the sun warmed me up too. It is a bit breezy and chilly for late April! I am going to head out this afternoon and take some new pictures of all our puppies for the website.  We have 7 Scarlet puppies that need new updated photos so they can show off how lovely they are. I am keeping my fingers crossed for lots of great pictures!  Tonight Mr. Yesteryear Acres is making his famous vegetable soup for dinner.  He said that I get to take the night off which is so sweet of him.  My poor big toe sadly isn’t any better BUT – hey it is only one toe! I have 9 others! LOL. I think it is broken above the joint so that isn’t as bad as it could have been.  I still need to figure out how get a shoe on without pain – but for now I am wearing big fluffy warm socks so maybe I will just stick with that for the week.  I am not sure what to do about sleeping yet because every time I moved last night, the pain in my toe woke me up. My little doggie knew I was not feeling so great so he cuddled under my chin all night and I have to say that made me feel lots better. There is something about the love of a doggie, who just loves you every single day no matter what, and snuggles and cuddles with you…it just makes everything better.  I am lucky to have so much doodle love!!!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tired, Wet , Sore and a bit Sad

Today was not the day I was expecting. I try to write upbeat happy blogs - and I am SO grateful that usually - my life is upbeat and happy!  I am blessed beyond words that most of my days are filled with joy and pleasantness.  Today - sadly - it just wasn't one of those days.  It was a day where things just weren't meant to go my way. My day started off with a bit of a shock as I arranged to have a puppy delivered to a family in Maine this morning.  The person I so deeply counted on to deliver this puppy for me - didn't.  She just didn't do it.  I mean - this is beyond my comprehension because when I say I am going to do something - I do it! So then I had a family upset with me - and understandably so - and I had absolutely no way to fix it.  They needed a solution today - and I couldn't make that happen no matter how hard I tried. It just couldn't work out for the day. This made me SO sad. I hate to disappoint anyone and I tried everything I could. I even found a good flight at a reasonable cost from Maine to our airport here - but no one from that end was able to fly - so it just didn't work. So now they are really upset and I am upset.  I spent hours trying to find a good solution and still had the very long drive home looming ahead of me. As I was packing up my things at the hotel,  I dropped my very heavy laptop on my TOE!  I crushed my toe so badly. It was bleeding everywhere and I probably broke it.  Luckily they had bandages at the front desk so I was able to get it fixed up enough to drive home.  Then it just poured and poured and poured all the way home. Driving through the mountains in the rainstorm was not fun at all.  There were many moments when I couldn't see through all the rain and fog. I was afraid I would drive right off the cliff! With my poor toe!!! It took forever to get home and I am so tired. And Sore. And feeling a bit sad over the entire day and how things turned out.  I know I did everything I could - but still - the sadness remains. I think a good ice pack, comfy pajamas and a long night's rest will make things better. It is nice to be home.

Friday, April 15, 2011


Today I hit the road bright and early with my sweet puppies. After about 30 minutes of the 8+ hour trip, one puppy said, "Arooooooo Awooooooo Aooooooooooooo" which I am fairly certain translates into: "Are we there yet?"  I let him know that, no, we were NOT there yet. Not even close.  This was followed shortly by "Arooooooooooooooooo" then "Arooooooooooooooo" I am not sure why one puppy .....I am not naming names.......MR. ORANGE COLLAR..........but I was keenly aware of each mile marker. It was like traveling with a toddler.  Are we there yet? How about now? How about now? Are we there yet NOW?  Hey, I have a question.....ARE WE THERE YET?  Even though we had one puppy that liked to get the exact navigation coordinates of our trip on a timely basis, the trip itself was a good one. The sun was shining, the weather was beautiful and as I traveled East - Spring came into full bloom.  Once we hit Maryland - SO many beautiful trees were in full flowers.  Daffodils were blooming, tulips were blooming. The world was green and full of flowers. It was SO lovely. It was a little sneak peek at what our place will look like in a few short weeks. It made the drive simply lovely.  I also got to meet the nicest families today.  Everyone was on time and it was definitely love at first sight for all the new families meeting their sweet puppies. On top of the treat of seeing so many happy faces, I got a delicious treat of cupcakes from one of the puppy families.  Mmmmmm!  Now how did they know I like cupcakes?!!!  Tomorrow morning I make the long drive home.  Guess I will watch Spring in Reverse and I will wonder the whole I there yet?????

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Non Stop

I have been rushing around non-stop all day long. I was up before 7am and haven't stopped since. Today starts the spring hair cuts for our doodles and poodles.  Every spring all our doodle doggies get lovely new short coats.  We like to have their coats trimmed pretty short each spring. By summertime the coats are just the right length to keep our doodles insulated from the summer heat. The coats are also just the right length to keep our doodles from getting sunburned. We can only a do a few doodles a day so our "spring shearing" will be going on for the next few days.  Can you hear any of our doodles bleating yet? Baaaaaaaaah!  It is always hysterical here with all the "new" looks. 
At first the dogs have to do the "OH MY....who are YOU???! YOU LOOK MARVELOUS!" 
And then of course they get the "HELLO I AM ELMO!!!!" YOU ALREADY KNOW ME!"
Which is followed by, "ELMO? ELMO? OH my gosh You look 10 years younger!!!!"
This goes on for quite a while.  It is a full out fashion show! It cracks me up every time.  Between the spring haircuts - I have been getting all my puppy care packages together for the big weekend.  We have several puppies going to their forever homes so I need baby blankets and collars and puppy food and all the goodies for their big day. I spent most of the day getting everything organized and ready. The only sad thing about being so busy today was that I was too busy to go to my son's first home track meet. I feel sad that I missed it!!!  I really wanted to go but I just couldn't get everything done in time and he was done running before I had a chance to get out the door.  He did really well though and got the fastest time for his school. I so wish I could have seen him! I will have to make it to the next meet.  Thankfully, he understood why I couldn't make it and was super happy about his run time. Tomorrow I am delivering a few puppies so I had to get everything finished today.  I am hoping to leave first thing in the morning. I will be driving all day tomorrow and then at the first light on Saturday morning - I will be driving all the way back home. It will be a long 2 days - but totally worth it.  Who doesn't like to deliver happiness?  The puppies all say THEY ARE READY!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dinner Time

We are very lucky here at Yesteryear Acres in that we make having dinner together a top priority.  We juggle puppy visits, puppy care, school functions, school athletics, meets, games, matches, and meetings in order to have our dinner together. Sometimes we eat ridiculously early and other times we eat long after dark has fallen, but the point is - we eat together.  We don't have our phones or radio or TV turned on. We sit in the dining room together as a family and enjoy each other's company. It is something we can count on and something we really treasure.  Yesterday was what I would describe as a NOT so pleasant day and even with the unpleasantness of the day - dinner was awesome. There is not one single family dinner here at Yesteryear Acres that isn't filled with laughter. No matter how bad the day is - we pull each other up and make each other smile and laugh.  Yesterday, we all agreed that dinner was definitely the best part of the day.  Every night we share what our favorite thing of the day was - and last night it was 100% unanimous - dinner won.  Was it the food? Well of course it was delicious - but that wasn't it. It was the company. Simply put ....We love each other. We love each other dearly and having dinner together is something we all enjoy. I feel so blessed that we are able to have that time together. In this busy, hectic, over-scheduled, world - it is nice to stop and breathe and relax and laugh and eat good yummy food and for just a little while think, "All is right with the world".  Thank you dear family for always being my center of everything wonderful. I can't wait to have dinner with you again tonight.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Grey Mood

Today was one of THOSE days.  You know what I mean - where something goes wrong the second you wake up and then it just continues going downhill from there. I had one of those days ALL day long.  Nothing earth shattering. Nothing that can't be fixed. Nothing so horrible that life as we know it comes to a screeching halt BUT nothing pleasant either. For instance - I have to give puppies baths all the time. No big deal.  Late last night I had to give a puppy a bath from head to toe.  He was yucky.  This morning, first thing....ACK! SAME PUPPY! Evidently Mr. Lime Green collar boy is SO sweet the other puppies think, "Hey, Mr. Lime Green is such a softie.  He is soooo soft.  In fact, he is SO soft, I think I will just back up here and my business". ACK!  Poor Mr. Lime Green collar! POOPED ON AGAIN!  I mean seriously! That is just not nice. And to make matters worse, Mr. Lime Green just looks at me with the biggest sweetest eyes that say, "yep.....pooped on again."  He is very grateful for my bath giving and is a super super sweet puppy but it was just like UGH! Poopie puppy first thing in the morning! BEFORE coffee!  The rest of the day kind of followed suit.  A couple of times I felt like I was being pooped on!  I had a number of things go wrong - right down to my blog writing! I was almost done writing it when "POOF!" half of it disappeared! I mean GONE! I was typing near the end of the blog when suddenly I was back up in the third sentence typing and the rest of the blog was GONE.  I couldn't even retrieve it because the blog has an auto save every 30 seconds so the second my blog erased itself - it saved the new version. My whole day was like that. Mr. Yesteryear Acres didn't fare any better today either. Three unexpected "drop by" visits, mud, rain, more mud, more rain, wet dogs and more rain.  I guess the only thing good about grey days and grey moods - is that it makes one all the more appreciative when better ones come along.  I am hoping tomorrow brings some sunshine our way. We could use a sunny smile sent our way!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Grey Days

As the beauty of yesterday's sunshiney beautiful day fades into a distant memory - Mr. Grey Sky is back again with the once again dreary rainfall.  *sigh*  We have had SO many grey days. I cannot wait for the beauty of spring to really arrive once and for all. There is hope --- today I noticed the little flowers just starting to bloom on our trees. Our magnolia tree is getting flower buds and our cherry tree desperately wants to be in full flowering beauty.  I would say our daffodils are gorgeous but evidently what they are - is DELICIOUS.  The deer have been holding secret gourmet feasts in our front yard gorging themselves on tender daffodil flowers. Mr. Yesteryear Acres went out the other night at 3am and ever so politely asked the 6-8 deer to please find another location for savoring spring flowers. They reluctantly agreed but it was all a big pretense as they were back again last night. Seriously - we have acres and acres behind us - why eat the few beautiful flowers out front by the road? I am sure the deer will say because they are more delicious than the flowers in the woods - but I beg to differ.  I say - move on deer! Move on!!! I hope tomorrow brings a bit of sunshine our way.  The puppies were sad to not have a long time to play outside today. It was just too rainy and muddy for puppies so they were stuck inside most of the day.  They did however have a lot to say about it.  Mostly they said "WE LIKE THE RAIN, WE LIKE THE RAIN, WE LIKE THE RAIN......LET US PLAY IN THE MUD".  Mean old human mommy. Maybe tomorrow puppies. Maybe tomorrow!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Pictureful Day!

I spent HOURS and I do mean HOURS taking puppy pictures today.  I didn't have a helper so I was left to do all the photos by myself.  I felt so guilty about not getting good pictures of Scarlet's puppies on the website yet. Getting the new puppy pictures taken was the very first thought I had when I woke up and I just knew I had to get that done today - help or no help. Did you know that if you ask a puppy to please please please sit very still and look right into the camera lens and SMILE - the puppy will do that for you right up to the exact second you click the button to take the picture? At that exact moment, the puppy will turn away so you get an awesome picture of an ear. I took a lot of pictures of ears today. 983 pictures to be exact.  Yes it was a very long photo shoot.  But in the end the puppies could see how much it meant to me to have some awesome pictures to put on my website so they finally cooperated.
Ohhhhhh - you want us to stay still and pose? How about like this?
OR like this?
We are getting the hang of it now!
Is this cute enough?

I am too tired to pose!

I am not too tired!

I am ready for my picture! CHEESE!
It might have taken all day - but it was worth it.  The best part adorable as these pictures are....the puppies are even cuter in person!!!!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Dressful, Bearful, Sandwichful, Musicful day!

This morning my daughter and I walked out the door with her prom dress in hand and hit the road. We had an appointment to get her prom dress altered and the place is a good hour's drive from our home so we got an early start.  We arrived just on time and the seamstress got all the measurements made and the dress should be ready by the end of the month. My daughter is so excited as the dress will fit just perfectly now.  Since we were so far from home......and by my exact calculations the Zoo was a mere 9 miles from our location.....what could we do?  Go straight home or try yet once again to catch a glimpse of our new polar bears? POLAR BEARS! We have gone before only to see them sleeping far off in the distance.  We thought we would just scurry over and run to the polar bear frontier and see if we could get lucky this time. Well evidently we chose wisely because the bears were out in full fashion!  We arrived just in time to see one of the polar bears swimming and fishing.  She was adorable!

We just wanted to reach out and hug her!
She had a blast swimming and was so graceful both in and out of the water.
We wanted to stay all day and watch her swim but we really had to get home.  My husband's uncle was having a retirement party and I really needed to get home so we wouldn't be late.  I called to let Mr. Yesteryear Acres know we were for REAL on the way and he said we could stay another 15-20 minutes and still be okay on timing so then we RAN to the Grizzly bear exhibit and look what we saw...
Hey Man - stay off of my rock


It was AWESOME!  We could "BEARLY" tear ourselves away, but felt we definitely got our bear's worth! Once we got home, Mr. Yesteryear Acres and my son took off for the party.  There was much too much work to be done at home and the puppies are really too little to leave behind so my daughter and I stayed home to care for the little babies and get some work done. We made the most delicious grilled cheese sandwiches with Irish cream butter and homemade potato bread for lunch. Mmmmmm! They were soooo good! We then decided to play all the American Idol episodes we have missed so far and get caught up on all the good music while we worked. It made the day perfect.  We didn't get everything done that we wanted to get finished so you know what that makes tomorrow? Pictureful day!!!!  The sun is supposed to come out tomorrow so I am hoping to get some awesome pictures of all our sweet puppies. I am sure it will be Picture Perfect!!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Puppies Going Home

Today our little puppies starting going to their new homes. It is so much fun to have families over on such a momentous occasion.  Everyone is SO happy and can't wait to meet their new little furry family member. The puppies are excited to be lavished with all the "oooohs and awwwwwwws". It is a big happy puppy festival of fun! I always get asked how I can part with my sweet puppies, and the answer is always the same - seeing so much love and happiness is one of the nicest parts about raising puppies.  Watching new happy puppy families hug their little bundles of furry love sends a smile right to my heart. We had a lot of puppy love happening today. In fact one family found out they had DOUBLE the puppy love.  They came to get one puppy and I had 2 for them to choose from. I have never seen such torture before! They really truly honestly to the depths of their souls loved BOTH puppies.  Their older daughter was in tears thinking about leaving one of the puppies behind.  Then the other daughter was in tears thinking about leaving the other puppy behind. The bonding with both puppies was immediate. The puppies took to the whole family and well - it was just pure puppy love.  What could they do?  How could they choose?  How do you think this story ends???  ........ Yep - they took both home! Now they have to come up with 2 cute names!!!  Doodle Love x 2!  Awwwwww so sweet!!!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Bath Time!

This morning it was just lovely outside.  As I was taking the puppies outside, I quickly realized that I did not need my heavy jacket. The sun was out and shining and it was splendidly warm.  Ahhhhh. How perfect. It has been a while! Once the puppies were outside romping around I decided the weather was just right for bath day.  Usually I line everyone up in the bathtub but I thought it might be nice to do sponge baths outside instead. Well I can tell you the puppies thought it was a FANTASTIC idea.  Honestly.  First the fun began with all the puppies racing to my big bucket full of Baby Shampoo and warm Water. "OOOH YUMMY!  Look at all those bubbles!!!!  Let's eat the bubbles!!! YUM YUM YUM"  Of course I was endlessly busy trying to get the puppies NOT to eat all the soap bubbles but basically it was a losing game on my end.  The next fun thing was...."LET'S EAT THE WASHCLOTH!!!!" YUM YUM YUM"  Did you know that washcloths were the yummiest thing on the planet?  Did you know that washcloths make the very best tug of war toys? Did you know that 2 puppies running away with a wet washcloth are faster than a wet human sitting on the ground?  Speaking of wet human....yes I was soaked.  I mean REALLY soaked.  The bath time went something like this.....
Me - "Let me get you all nice and clean puppy"
Me - "Okay you can take your wet soaking paws and your wet tummy and get off of my lap now"
Puppy - "OH NO! I DON'T WANT TO. Let me call my other wet brothers and sisters over and we will all crawl in your lap together! YEA WE ARE ALL SNUGGLING WITH YOU!"
Me - wet wet wet wet and yep wet
I didn't realize that OUTSIDE baths were EVER so much more fun than inside baths.  Outside baths are for running and romping and making mud puddles and mostly outside bathtime is for getting human mommies very very very wet.  The end result?
14 beautiful clean shiny nice smelling puppies
One wet soaking dripping muddy soapy human.
Oh well......At least some of us look good!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

By Appointment Only

For those that follow my blog, you already know that Mr. Yesteryear Acres and I work long hours each and every day caring for our doggies and puppies. We don't mind at all - because if you are going to raise sweet beautiful puppies - you need to be there for them. You have to be ready to care for them first thing in the morning....even before coffee!!! You have to care for them way into the late evening.  Middle of the night - check. Birthdays - check. Holidays - check. Special events - check. Slumber parties - check. Beautiful days, cloudy days, stormy days, sunny days, cold days, summer days - check, check, check, check and check. We do all this and more because we love our puppies and caring for them is a round the clock, every day of every week, of every month, of every year type activity. When the puppies are old enough to be away from their mommy and are up on their feet romping about, we allow visitors to come and play with them.  I love meeting new puppy families and I love watching all the happy moments that occur right here in our own backyard. It is so rewarding to see people fall in love with our sweet puppies and have so much fun picking out just the right puppy for their family. Sometimes it is an easy decision.  A puppy chooses a family or vice versa - it is just love at first sight. Sometimes it is much harder as 10 puppies choose a family and in return the family falls in love with all 10 puppies. I say it is nice to be in love with so many furry babies! Having visitors here is really enjoyable -for the puppies, for the new families, and for Mr. Yesteryear Acres and I.  I can't tell you how many bright, smiley, happy, over the moon excited, fun, and lovely families we have had here at our house.  It is like Christmas Morning again and again and again.  Who doesn't love Christmas?!!  The only thing we request - is please, please, please - make an appointment first.We aren't really a typical business where it is okay to just drop by and hang out for the day without making a pre-arranged time to visit. Our days are pretty full - we might have trips to the feed store, veterinarian's office, school, grocery store or other activities planned.  I might be working......but....maybe I am working ....IN MY PAJAMAS! ACK!  Although I LOVE my pajamas - I am fairly certain that whoever is visiting would prefer that I am dressed and showered - and I would too! Sometimes I have huge cooking projects going. Or gardening projects. Or I am spending the entire day washing puppies in the bathtub, cleaning ears, trimming nails - what have you.  We have very little free time here - and having the "Oh I was in the neighborhood and thought I would drop by to play with your puppies" is really hard. It is hard because I hate saying no. I hate disappointing someone who made the trip all the way out here. But I also hate having dinner on the stove, or dishes laying out, or not being able to finish whatever project I already started because I have to stop everything for unexpected company. Hopefully that doesn't sound too harsh. I really love having puppy families over. I just love them more when we have the visits on the calendar. :)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

First Responder

Right before dinner tonight we heard the loudest crash and Mr. Yesteryear Acres took off running at full speed. We live on a road that I often refer to as the Autobahn.  For whatever reason - drivers around here like to fly by our house going 80 mph.  Whenever any one visits us, we always make sure to tell them to never back up down our driveway.  The cars come around the corner like missiles.  We are very very very fortunate that our doggies are well behaved and stay in the back. The front of the house would be positively dangerous.  Not long after we first moved here, I called Mr. Yesteryear Acres at work to tell him we had bodies in our front yard.  He thought I was being melodramatic and asked if it were a deer or something and I said, "No - I am talking HUMAN bodies!"  We had a car that came around our corner and hit the tree head on - and no one survived. Tonight didn't end as badly as when we first moved here but a woman driving around the corner ended up facing the opposite direction, on the opposite side of the street - ON ITS SIDE.  It was a really bad wreck.  Luckily Mr. Yesteryear Acres got there right away and was able to help.  I called 911 and it was a good 10 minutes before the paramedics showed up.  Meanwhile Mr. Yesteryear Acres and my son were helping to ease the pain of the passenger, hold back the suffocating seat belt, calling her family to let them know she was hurt but alive and keeping the car from rolling over.  Once the paramedics got there it took everyone to stabilize the car and haul her out through the back. It looks like she will be okay. Things like that scare me.  I was hit by a drunk driver and will never forget how that feels.  You just never know.  It is yet another reminder to live your days with love. With happiness. With gratefulness. I can't imagine how scared the woman's family was when Mr. Yesteryear Acres called to tell them about the accident. What I do know is - that NOTHING is so important that driving like a maniac is worth it. I have seen people FLY by me (and I am going the speed limit) and I wonder - really is the 10 whole minutes you will save by driving at the speed of sound worth it?  What will you gain in those 10 minutes? More importantly what could you lose?! Or what could you cause someone else to lose? Life is too precious to treat it with disregard and carelessness. Let's slow down.  Let's be thankful for each day we are given. Take time to love your loved ones and be loved by them. Nothing is more important than that.

Monday, April 4, 2011

All day Picture-A-Thon

I am back home! WOW the puppies are sooooo cute! They are even cuter than when I left.  Our new spring babies have arrived as well. I was SO excited to see our little new chocolate doodles. AND we have TWO puppies that I like to call "Reese's Peanut Butter Cups".  We have only had one other puppy like this in all our year's of raising doodles and now we have 2!  OH I JUST LOVE THEM!!!! They are really cute.  Here is what our newborn baby looks like:
And here is what she will look like in about 7 more weeks:
Isn't that SO BEAUTIFUL?  I am super excited!!!!  We also have adorable new double doodle babies:
And adorable F2B babies that will be ready for new homes starting April 15th.  See tax day doesn't have to be ALL bad!


I spent all day taking pictures of all our sweet puppies and then uploading them to our website. I started working at 6:30am and am still working. I only took one small dinner break and then was right back at it again.  Dinner was worth taking a break for though. Mr. Yesteryear Acres made another masterpiece chicken dinner. Mmmm mmmmm good!  We are making chicken stock right now for the new mommy doggies! They will love their breakfast tomorrow morning. They definitely deserve it!!!! Thank you for giving us such cute puppies to love!!!!!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Homeward Bound

Today starts the all day long journey back home. So far my diet has consisted of chips, cookies, chips, coffee, chips, coffee, chips and more coffee. Wow!  So healthy right?  Travel diet of champions.  My daughter has consumed the same. Tomorrow night however, Mr. Yesteryear Acres is making us his very famous roasted chicken along with rice and broccoli. I cannot wait.  He makes the most delicious chicken in the whole world! The skin is full of yummy seasoning and is SO crispy. He has it down to a fine art! Oh I miss his cooking! All we have talked about today is getting home to see the doggies and our home and our family. It is really nice to be SO excited for a vacation and then SO excited to come home.  I know some people have the "leaving for home, vacation is over, end of the fun" blues - but I am always glad to go home so I am always happy. I am happy to go on vacation. I am happy to relax and have fun and do amazing new things.  When it is time to go home, I am always excited to see my beautiful house, and eat home cooked meals, and sleep in my comfy bed, and see my cute doggies and be with my beloved family.  It is all good.  So onwards we travel!  Chips and coffee in hand!  With any luck we will be home by 1:00am Monday morning.  Mr. Yesteryear Acres...........WE ARE ON THE WAY!

Doodles at the Door!

I am out of town enjoying spring break with my daughter and mom and will finally return home very late Sunday night/wee hours of Monday morning. I think my daughter and I are suffering from puppy withdrawal.  We miss home and the puppies and doggies! There is something about having an adorable furry love bug to crawl up in your lap to snaggy with that just makes the world right. Yesterday while we were out, a doggie came up to us. My daughter was in heaven.  The doggie was wet and kind of grungy, but my daughter didn't care.  She immediately started petting him and scratching behind his ears and the doggie just knew he had found a buddy for the day.  It was my daughter's favorite thing of the entire day.  We are on spring break vacation - and yet - her favorite thing was the wet doggie that loved her.  We are definitely true doggie lovers.  That doggie made us miss our own doggies even more! Of course we are having a wonderful time enjoying our vacation together but it seems we can't be gone long before home sickness sets in. Guess it just shows that there is no place like home.  Especially our home! We have oodles of doodles that just shower us with love every day. Makes life nice. Makes it so coming home is coming home to happiness, comfort, and love. Mr. Yesteryear Acres, I will see you soon!!! Have those sweet puppies waiting by the door!

Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fool's Day

Today was another cold day. If you were to look at the pictures we took - oh my! It looks like the most loveliest of days.  The sun is shining. The birds are singing. The sky is blue.....and my nose.... is red.....because it is one step away from frostbite. My ears are red and my fingertips are icicles! The wind was blowing at a steady 25-35mph. And it was a COLD wind! I thought it was April today. Hmmmm. I know that when Spring finally arrives for REAL - I will be SO appreciative! I will thank the spring air. I will adore the daffodils. I will smile at the spring birdies. I will admire the green grasses. *sigh*  I am ready.  The snow is no longer a welcome sight.  The cold winds are no longer a novelty. I am ready for Tulips and Easter Bunnies and Hyacinth blooming. It can't be too much longer right?  The puppies have been promised really lovely weather to romp in and they are waiting. The only thing that reminded me today was REALLY April was Mr. Yesteryear Acres.  Not only did he win the "Happy April First" contest by getting it in at 5:30am sharp - he really got me on an April Fool's joke.  I don't particularly enjoy April Fool's. I never liked it growing up and I still don't like it as an adult.  Why play practical jokes? It is never fun for the person on the receiving end! My daughter thought that Mr. Yesteryear Acres' April Fool's joke was excellent. She laughed and laughed.  My son also thought it was a good one. Even my mom thought it was funny. Everyone but me! I think Mr. Yesteryear Acres is still laughing.  I think he will still be laughing when he goes to bed tonight.  He pulled a good one today and is proud of his accomplishment. Okay - so the win goes to Mr. Yesteryear Acres for this April.  Next April - I WILL BE READY!  I have a whole year to come up with something really good.  I mean he can't win 2  years in a row. That is just wrong.  Be scared Mr. Yesteryear Acres. Be really scared! The next April Fool's is mine!

Nature's Artwork

I spent most of the day today FREEZING! I was so cold. My goosebumps had goosebumps.  My teeth were chattering so hard that my jaw hurt. I think I lost 10lbs just by my violent shivering.  Spring? I think NOT!  This evening I finally found a nice warm place and wrapped all up in snuggy warmness. The sun was starting to set and so I sat right next to the window and let the glowing sunbeam warm my face. I was all by myself and the quiet stillness coupled with the slowly sinking sun was just pure bliss. I felt all warm inside.  The blue sky was filled with white bursts of clouds that looked like waves upon the ocean. It was a beautiful sight.  Looking up at the sky with the warm sunbeam on my face - I felt I was at the ocean on a tropical day admiring the waves crashing upon the soft sandy shore. It was beautiful. The tranquility renewed me and I was warmed from the inside out.  It is nice to take a minute to just soak in the beauty of nature.  I think Mother Nature appreciated having an audience. I think she likes it when we stop our hectic pace to admire her beauty.  Thank you for the ocean filled sky tonight. I thought it was another one of your awe-inspiring masterpieces. I look forward to seeing your artwork again soon.