Keeper, 10 wks


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Keep is such a rad little pup. She’s 10 weeks and learning fast. She’s got these floppy ears that are trying their best to stand up, but they end up leaning over to the left like there’s a strong wind coming from the east most of the time. She probably won’t be able to fit under the couch next week, which is sort of bittersweet because when we first brought her home she was scared and found shelter under there. Now she likes to pop out from under the couch and sneak attack Jack for fun. They play all day, it’s the best thing. To think I was ever afraid of introducing another dog into Jack’s life! She knows how to sit, give paw, lay down, and spin on command. We’re working on roll over. I’ll post a video of that soon. She’s house trained and likes to play fetch. Border collies and herding dogs in general (Jack is one too) are so impressive. They are so loyal and smart. It’s really fun having her.

Also, Trey and I got a kick out of the last photo…look at that glamour shot, with her little Cindy Crawford beauty spot on her face. Get ready Vogue…or should I say Dogue? Work it!

INSPIRED / Tomboys

tomboy

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I’ve been called a tomboy for most of my life. I grew up with an older brother, loved exploring the woods behind my house and was always relatively athletic. In college, I lived with two guys and found myself on the porch drinking beer with guys while they worked on their bikes most nights. Then I became a biologist in a predominately male field. I used to loathe the word “tomboy”. I thought it was an unfair classification of females who happened to like things our society had classified as being “boyish”. Why did driving a manual vehicle and liking the outdoors have to be considered “boy-like” instead of just a girl’s personal preference? Why did the word boy even have to be involved? I also wasn’t a fan of being seen only as a guy’s girl when I was most definitely a girl’s girl too. But, lately I’ve come around to the word, seeing it used more and more as a term to describe a certain style that celebrates independent females who blur the lines between traditional masculine and feminine styles. Women who rebel against the norm and embrace the general badassery that comes along with it. I like having a style that reflects that part of my personality. Lately I’ve been inspired by the tomboy aesthetic, especially the late sixties/early seventies era styles with the classic vintage shirts, a good pair of blue jeans and plain cotton tees with that perfectly worn-in look to them. 

Images above: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.

Pismo Beach, CA

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We drove down to Pismo Beach for the long weekend. Pismo is a cool spot about half way in between San Francisco and LA. You can drive out on the beach and camp, have fires, and play on the dunes. It was Keep’s first camping trip. When Jack was her age we took him to Lake Tahoe and it was a great experience, so we thought it was time we got her out and let her start experiencing our way of life outside of the house. I loved everything about this trip. The way we drove out on the beach and slept in the back of our old truck with the pups between us. How we stood side by side looking out at the setting sun while Keeper chewed on sand dollars on the beach. How the sky looked like it was on fire from the layers of red and pinks streaks. Waking up to the smell of salt water in our hair and dog breath in our faces. How we drove home up the 1 and stopped along the way to sit on the cliffs that fell into the sea below. The sounds of the elephant seals in the rookery. Looking over and seeing Jack’s head out of the back window, his face silhouetted by the sun shining on the Pacific. How Lola, our Land Cruiser, got a new fan belt and air compressor once we got back to the Bay. How it reminds me that we’ll be building fires on beaches and chasing horizons until the sun goes down on us for good. 

Keeper, 9 wks

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Keeper is 9 weeks old today. She is feisty, wild and sweet. In a few days she’ll be too big to fit behind the couch, her favorite hide out. She’s learning quickly and already knows how to “sit”, “give paw” and “lay down” on command. She tells us when she has to go outside and likes to carry her water bowl around when she wants more. At night, I’ll lay down with my back on the floor and fold my arm loosely in towards my side. She’ll find the space I created and curl up in the crease of my elbow. It puts a quiet smile on my face every time, this feeling of earning her trust and friendship.

This week and last have been busy ones. I’m looking forward to getting out and spending more time outdoors soon. We’re in the process of building a bed in the back of the Land Cruiser for a trip down the coast this weekend. Keep’s coming, Jack too. Woot.

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Fried chicken, pickles

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“Hey bay, if you could eat anything you wanted right now, what would it be?” I asked Trey, looking up from the magazine I was reading on the couch. “Fried chicken from Fremont Diner in Napa”. He responded promptly from the next room having obviously already thought about this.

It was the weekend. We were on vacation from the week. We needed to take showers anyway. Driving an hour for fried chicken just made our brains feel right. So off we went with the dogs. Keeper sleeps a lot. She runs everywhere all enthusiastically and then just stops in her tracks and falls asleep in the middle of the floor. Her favorite place to sleep in the truck is either inside the center console that’s missing its top or on the bench seat in the back with Jack. She’s Jack’s biggest fan. He’s incredibly sweet to her. They play together a lot and she has perma-wet ears because Jack puts her whole head in his mouth.

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Anyway, so we drove and got chicken and ate it in the truck because it was cold outside and there was a wait. We stopped at a gas station on the way home, our mouths on fire from spicy chicken. Next to the gas station was a Goodwill where Trey found an old polaroid camera for $8. We’ve been playing with that a lot lately. Jack is such a good sport. Good guy, Jack.

Santa Cruz

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It was the sunniest day in Santa Cruz. Trey rode his bike at a DIY skate spot right off the beach, then we walked on the beach and got tacos. Santa Cruz is such a great place. I love the vibe there. Since Keeper doesn’t have all her shots yet she had to stay in my back pack or our arms most of the time. She’s very eager to run free. It won’t be long until her and Jack are chasing each other down the beach. I get all proud watching them together. She follows Jack around everywhere and he just kinda goes with it. It’s really adorable. This photo pretty much sums up their relationship right now:

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A pup called Keeper

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horses Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv02 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Over the holidays we got a new puppy. A little girl border collie named Keeper. We had been talking about adding another dog to the mix for a while now, but had gone back and forth as to whether we should actually do it. It went something like this – “No, we’ve got all we need with Jack”, “Yes we should, Jack needs a dog buddy to grow up with” , “No, it might change Jack in a negative way”. Then, last week the opportunity came up to see a litter of unwanted border collie puppies an hour outside of Yosemite and we decided – “Yes, let’s do it”.

Jack and I have been by each other’s side for five years and there’s a certain amount of love and loyalty that comes with that, so it was really important to me that he didn’t feel like he was being replaced or anything (slightly anthropomorphizing here). When we got home, Jack kept his distance, his eyebrows tellingly furrowed with worry whenever she walked past him. But, like all mammals, there are certain introductory rituals that need to take place before a relationship is formed, and we knew it would take a little time before they would feel comfortable around each other.

It’s been a week and we can’t get them to stop playing together. It’s very fun to watch. It took a few days of adjusting, but now they run around our place nipping at each other’s heels and rolling on the floor. They are really different in personality, but meld well together. If Jack is the studious, responsible boy who likes rules and instruction, then she is the energetic, highly intelligent rebellious girl. I can tell already. She likes to sit on my skateboard while it’s rolling and bite the waves in my hair if I lay on the floor. She follows Jack around and growls back at him if he growls at her. When you tell her no, she walks away howling. Her nicknames currently include Youngblood, Amy Whinehouse, and The Teenager. We also call her panda because she tends to look like a fluffy little panda cub.
Welcome to the pack, Keeper! Hope you like learning how to do cool stuff.

Holiday Woodland Origami

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Origami is such a cool art form that often gets overlooked. It comes with a certain degree of patience and commitment. It’s intricate, delicate. Each step must be mastered successfully before progressing, each fold creased meticulously until finally a 3D shape emerges in the palm of your hands. 

There’s this used bookstore down the street. They have this section outside that’s discounted, with books lamented as throw-aways in a box labeled $.99. Most of the books have yellowed pages, discolored from age and exposure to the elements over time. Something about taking something old and discarded and turning it into something new and revitalized always feels somewhat right, so I bought one of the books. Over the last few nights we made woodland creatures – bears, foxes and hares, as well as balloons, cranes, little presents, and a star made up of several smaller pieces from the pages of the book. Then we threaded some sparkly twine through them and put them on the tree. Jack helped (then later he helped knock the tree over and felt so bad about it he put himself in the corner).

Friday

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Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset What are your plans for this weekend? Jack’s thinking about having a quiet night in with a glass of local pinot on the fire escape, listening to the sounds of the city in the background. Maybe watch a documentary on bees later if it feels right. #hipster

 

The Shipyard

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Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset Processed with VSCOcam with lv01 preset It’s noon. I’m thinking eggs. My slippers are a good five feet from the bed, so you know, I will have to sit and think about that for at least 20 more minutes. Mila is making her rounds, meowing loudly in each room she passes, announcing to the world she’s hungry. Jack is more subtle, remaining by my side until I make a move. Trey’s in the shower, says he wants to ride the ship yard later.

It’s cold in my apartment. The one time I adjusted the radiator valve it caused a leak downstairs so now I just wear more clothes. My mind’s on surfing somewhere warm. I won’t go in the water here, not now. The water is too cold and it’s white shark season. There’s this rock out at the Farallones (some islands just off the coast), called seal rock. It’s called that because during high tide the rock gets flooded and all the elephant seals that typically occupy it get washed off the rocks into the water. It’s a popular place to see great whites because a big, blubbery elephant seal is like chocolate to them. After leading trips out there and experiencing a couple 18 footers wipe out seals, it’s like….nah, I’m good for a bit. 

So yeah anyways, Sundays. You really can’t beat them. Sleeping in late, eating eggs in your pajamas, playing around in ship yards with the sounds of the fog horns in the distance. check. check. check.