Sunday, March 18, 2012

Goodbye to the Two Holer

Last summer, John completed two new outhouses for the campground which were badly needed. The old two holer had become a recliner. The back end was sinking in the ground, making it quite difficult to get up after completing your business.

Using his indispensable backhoe/loader, John dug holes that were about 10 feet deep for the new toilets. No worry of them ever filling up. He also put clear plastic roofs on them, filling them with plenty of light to see, except at night of course.

Yesterday was the day set for the demise of the two holer since we still had enough snow on the ground to make it safe to burn it. He drove his backhoe/loader over to the toilet, then using his bucket, he began the demolition. It was fun to watch and probably fun to be the operator in the cab. After it was satisfactorily smashed flat, John lit a match to it and we had a bonfire. (Not one that we wanted to roast weiners over, however)

It's a lot nicer view now facing west from our dining room. And we hope our campers enjoy their new toilets.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Our Tribute To Saga

You've probably heard that phrase from years ago that was used to advertise a TV show called The Wide World of Sports moderated by Howard Cosell. It talked about "the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat."
I think our family just experienced that in a different sort of way. As you may have read in a previous blog, Joanna won her first dog sled race at the 83 mile Midnight Run in Marquette, Michigan. What a thrill it was to be waiting for her at the finish line and see her and the team pop over the hill in first place! It was quite a moment.

This week it feels like we are experiencing the agony of defeat. Joanna's beautiful and precious 23 month old Irish Setter began to limp after returning from a walk. It seemed she wasn't able to put any weight on her left back leg. In fact her whole back end was a bit wobbly. We just assumed she had somehow banged her leg and would heal by resting and staying off of it for awhile as she has in the past. We called our vet to make an appointment to get her checked out.

But after a few days of rest, she was worse and had also acquired a gurgly sound in her breathing. Alarmed, we rushed her to the vet in Dryden on Sunday where they examined her and came to the conclusion she had either a fungal or bacterial infection of some kind in her spinal area. It sounded serious. They wanted to keep her to put her on I.V.'s and antibiotics to start counteracting the infection and run some blood and urine tests to see if they could pinpoint the problem.

After conferring with other vets, including an online forum, our vet decided to put her on the antibiotic specifically for Blastomycosis hoping she would respond. On Wednesday we drove to Dryden to bring her home and continue the drug treatment for Blasto. But when we got there, the vet carried her out to us and sadly explained that she was not better, but her condition had worsened. Now Saga had lost the use of both her back legs and she had no bladder control. We followed him to an examination room in the back and laying her on the table, he went over all they had done to try to help her. Her symptoms were still a bit baffling to everyone, but the consensus was that she most likely had intradiscal spondylitis and she had already sustained permanent injury to her spine. The condition would only worsen. The clinic staff said Saga was a very sweet and cooperative patient and they were sorry that there really was nothing more they could do.

We soon realized, with crushing dismay, that our only choice was to put her to sleep. As we cried, Saga lay on the table, totally unaware of the present disastrous situation, looking at us with those big brown eyes, licking our hands and probably wondering when we were going to take her home. We spent a few more minutes petting her and kissing her goodbye. How do dogs work their way so deeply into our hearts?

Each day we relive happy memories of Saga and the joy she brought to our lives. She was not only stunningly beautiful, but she had such a free, fun-loving, excited- about- life, personality. In just a year and a half, she had become an obedient, mature dog who enjoyed being loved and cuddled. She displayed cute quirks like carrying around a pillow from her crate, making comfy beds for herself with blankets and some of Joanna's clothes on the floor, playing hide and seek with Sabre, and acting like a Mommy with sled dog puppies. John got a kick out of the way she would sit by the garage, waiting for someone to come out and play even when we were trying to beckon her into the house. He would often take her on walks in the woods with Sabre. Sabre has been unusually sober lately too. I think he misses his little playmate. The house seems emptier without our little ray of sunshine...our redhead.

Thank you Saga for bringing such joy to our home. We'll never forget you!!

Sunday, March 4, 2012


We'd like to inform everyone that is trying to contact us that our radio telephone has recently developed a loud static sound, making it extremely difficult for us to hear the caller. Apparently, the caller can hear us pretty well though. The Bell repairman has been working on it, but is unable to bring any improvement at this time.
So, if you are trying to connect with us by phone, please speak loudly and clearly or email us at Hopefully, this will be resolved soon.

Thank you for your patience.