Christmas at the DB&DT House!

Merry Christmas!  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.  Here at the DB&DT home we had a fun time introducing Bacardi, Stoli and Luna to Christmas presents, which they all got to open themselves.  Bacardi wasn’t too sure about the idea at first, but she eventually figured it out.

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The excitement made Luna a little unsure, so she hid out under the tree while the dogs opened their gifts and then proceeded to act like toddlers on a sugar binge.

LunaTree

Eventually she came out to see if there was something for her to open.

LunaTree2

And seemed fairly pleased that there was several items with her name on them.

LunaPresent

The first was this fun fishing pole toy from Uncle Mark & Aunty Mere!  She was ready to pounce as soon as she saw it!

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Now that she had this gift opening thing figured out she moved on to the next present, one from mom and dad.

LunaPresentBag

She had to dig to the bottom to find it!

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And almost thought the bag was the gift!

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But it was actually a play tunnel!  I think she thought the bag was better at first…

LunaTunnelFace

But curiosity won out and she decided to investigate.

LunaPresentTunnelUnsure

She explored slowly and didn’t seem to notice the window in the middle.

LunaTunnelWindow

Probably because she spotted something interesting at the other end, which she quickly attacked!

LunaPresentTunnelReady

LunaPresentTunnelPounce

LunaPresentTunnelAttack

Big sister Tequila wasn’t to happy about her kitty kat being hidden inside this new thing.

LunaPresentTunnel

Even when she could be seen in the window.

LunaPresentTunnelWatch

Big brother Stoli was also worried about his kitty.

LunaPresentTunnelStoli

Luna however, wasn’t too happy that they could peek in at her.

LunaPresentTunnelStoli2

But without a doubt, the tunnel was the biggest hit of all the presents, keeping the dogs and the cat – as well as the hubs and myself – entertained!  The hubs gets all the credit for picking this one out!  But all that play eventually made for some tired kiddos and humans…

StoliDadChill

So we had to take a break before opening the rest of the presents, which included more toys and fun.  We wrapped up the day with a walk in the snow and a yummy Christmas dinner followed by special treats for the kiddos.  I look forward to many  more Christmases this this goofy group. 🙂

See Dog Run

The last critical move in project was a dog run for the girls, who have a doggie door at the deck.  We had planned to install a fence near the clearing line, but now that winter has frozen the ground solid that isn’t an option until spring.  Instead, we created a temporary dog run along the back of the house from used kennel panels I scored for just $100 on a local buy/sell page and free pallets from companies around town.

DogRun1

We closed off two sides of the deck by layering pallets on top of and next to the deck, screwing them together and then to the deck itself. A design the Klampets would be envious of! LOL

DogRun4

We tied the kennel panels together to make the main area of the run, from the deck to the hot tub, which also ended up acting as a portion of the run’s barrier since it’s so close to the house.  It’s not ideal, but it gave us a place to strap the kennel panel and a single pallet to, to complete the enclosure.  As you can see the girls don’t much care what it looks like, as long as they have toys to play with in the space.

DogRun2

It’s certainly not pretty and it’s not a big space, but it allows them to go outside during the day to go potty and play when we’re not home, so it accomplishes the goal.

DogRun3

We open the gate when we’re home so they can wander in the woods and explore a bit further, which they are totally enjoying.  They are pretty good about sticking close to the house so that if they are out of sight it only take a few moments for them to reappear when called.  Sangria has also learned that she can go out the gate and around to the front of the house when she hears someone working in the garage, so she quite often ‘shows up’ to help if you leave the garage door open!  That girl is one smart cookie!  Tequila on the other hand, apparently doesn’t care enough to leave her toys to see what’s happening, because she rarely follows Sangria around to the front.

Unfortunately, the snow on the roof slides off right into the run, so we’ve had to be vigilant about keeping the area shoveled so it doesn’t accumulate high enough to block the gate, or encouraging anyone to jump over – either the girls to the outside or critters to the inside!

I’m not sure how moose proof the run is as we haven’t seen any on the property since moving in, so I’m guessing that the girls make enough noise to keep them at bay.  I’m certainly ok with that, especially if it means I don’t have to shoo a moose out of my garden come summer!

Don’t Fence Me In

We knew we’d  install some type of fence at the new house to keep the dogs contained on days when they stay home and we are at work, we just weren’t sure what type we’d use.  It needs to be solid enough to keep our hooligans in and the wildlife out, but not so much that it impedes the rural setting and views.

My first round of research led me to this post and metal bar style.  I like it, but it’s a little too contemporary for our taste and it felt a little heavy.

Fence
Source

Then we spotted this chain link and wood style in a neighborhood where our builder has other homes under construction.  I’m not a fan of chain link, but because it was colored and paired with wood it looked ok.  It still seemed a bit much though.

Fence

The next option I found during a wedding photography gig at a garden.  The owners had installed his post and cable system after fighting the local moose population for years and loosing.  They told me they had fenced approximately 10 acres for about $7,000 by purchasing used cable from a contact who worked with the seismic monitoring station.  Apparently the seismic equipment requires new cable after a certain amount of use so they sell off the used wire in 1,000′ spools!

Fence2

Even better than the price was the fact that it blended in with the vegetation so well, you had to purposely look for it in some areas of the property.  Plus they said that they hadn’t had a single moose in the garden since the fence had been installed.

I showed the hubs this idea and he was impressed.  We may have to put the lower strands closer together to keep the dogs from going through, but that’s not a costly or difficult change to include.

Now lets just hope we get into the house before winter hits so we can install enough to let the dogs enjoy the backyard during the day!