Life by the Big Marias

Monday, December 11

Big Maria Mountains beyond the main camping area of Midland LTVA

A few posts ago I wrote about coyotes around our campsite.

Shortly thereafter the sheep returned to the fields between Midland LTVA and Blythe and we no longer hear coyotes howling.  I suspect the coyotes are keeping the Great Pyrenees guard dogs busy at night.

When we drive by the fields of sheep during the day, some of the dogs lie flat on their sides asleep, while one or two are still working.

I wonder if the dogs instinctively follow a day shift/night shift schedule.

~ ~ ~

Reggie, Roger, and I go into town.

We need water.  I fill our five one-gallon jugs at the dispenser in Blythe (5 gal. = $1). When we return to camp, we find someone waiting for us.

“Look who’s here!  It’s Skeeter!”

~ ~ ~

Several posts ago I promised to give a report on the no-shock, anti-bark collar for training Roger not to bark so much.

Here’s where we are with that plan.

I ordered the collar via Amazon and with great anticipation waited for my package to arrive at the UPS Customer Center in Blythe.

I followed the tracking shown online and was dismayed to see that when the package arrived, it was refused. A visit to UPS confirmed this. UPS, at least this UPS hub, does not accept anything shipped by a carrier other than its own.



This explains why there’s a business in town, a rent-storage business, that charges a monthly fee to use their address for receipt of packages.

I haven’t gone that route yet. I don’t know that I will.

Roger’s barking is not a pressing issue right now.­

Yes, we’re talking about YOU, sweetie.

Out here in our secluded campsite at Midland LTVA, there are no triggers to set off Roger to bark, other than the sounds of wildlife, and he’s allowed that. I appreciate Roger assuming the role of guard dog for us.

Reggie isn’t interested in doing that.

It’s Roger’s barking in campgrounds and when meeting people that I’d like curtailed.

The crew leads the way on the “road” away from our camp

NOTE: A few readers of this blog ordered no-shock, anti-bark collars from Amazon.  I hope you’ll give us a report in comments on how well it is working (or not) for you and your dog. Thanks! — Sue

More photos from our walk at dusk . . .

Reg and Rog trot across wide, flat spaces available for camping

~ ~ ~

Our walks usually include a zoom-and-play segment.

~ ~ ~

I love it because the boys wear out their motors in time for bed and they sleep well.

~ ~ ~

 Although they never tire of this in spirit . . .

~ ~ ~

. . . eventually their bodies need a rest.

~ ~ ~

“Let’s go home.  Tomorrow’s another day.”

~ ~ ~

Tuesday, December 12

Hanukkah begins at sundown.  Wishing our Jewish readers a very “Happy Hanukkah!”


NOTE:  To learn about the traditions of Hanukkah, go to for an informative article on the subject. — Sue


If you’d like to browse and shop Amazon and see a few of the products recently purchased by readers, follow these links:

Jr. Hockey Goal Set
Bluetooth Tracking Device
Economical Birdbath De-Icer
Seasonal Magnetic Mailbox Cover
Neck and Back Massage Pillow w/Heat
Embroidery Machine w/Exclusive Bonus Bundle

RVSue and her canine crew is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for site to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

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95 Responses to Life by the Big Marias

  1. Cinandjules 🌵 says:

    Skeeter time!

    • Mary says:

      It gave my dog the shakes and he black out every time. I threw the thing away.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        What was it that gave him “the shakes?” The calming medicine or a anti-barking collar?

        Also if you’re talking about an anti-barking collar, was it the shock kind or the vibration/sound kind?

        This would be helpful to know. Thank you!

  2. Dawn in NC says:

    Second! Hey Cindy, I left a message for you at the bottom of the last post! Now to go back and read!

  3. Calvin Rittenhouse says:

    I like having the mountains in the view, with the easier terrain of the desert as the immediate surroundings. That makes a good place for an easy stay.

    It’s useful to know that about the UPS location. Shipping will be an issue any time things are not available locally, so that’s something to work on.

    • GAYLE M COOPER says:

      If the package is refused by the UPS, haven’t you already paid for it on your credit card, and in fact, own it now, but don’t have it in your possession? Or do they not charge your credit card for your purchase until delivered?

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Amazon charges your credit card right away and, if the item(s) are not delivered, Amazon quickly refunds your money (to your credit card). I’ve never had a problem.

  4. Kathy from MI says:

    Hi Sue!

    It’s so funny about your dogs doing the zoom and play. I’m wondering if all dogs do that because my dog does and my son’s dog does. And it’s always in the evening. My son’s wife calls it “the Zoomies”. And you capture the action quite well, I must say. That’s hard to do.

  5. Dawn in NC says:

    I love that name, Skeeter! It was my nickname for one of my favorite cats. Her name was Cosmo and her nickname was Skeeter Girl. I look forward to hearing about the back story behind where Del got Skeeter from. I love watching all of them play together. Thanks for sharing this with us.

  6. Barb in Florida says:

    top ten!!!

    • Barb in Florida says:

      Oh, Sue! As I read “Reg and Rog trot across wide, flat spaces available for camping”, made me wish so bad I was there. Just got done watching Death Valley Days remake. This version in 1965, in color, low budget, but they filmed on location in Kanab, UT & AZ , Death Valley (of course). I mostly watch for the scenery, but fun to hear places you’ve been. I crack myself up looking for you in the background. I have seen a few cars the editing missed way way back.

      I hope I have not added to your confusion of keeping all your “Barb’s” straight. Because I went back to the beginning, I saw others, even in FL. One may have been my next-door neighbor’s mom!! I read in the comments of the last post that you thought one Jules was another. I originally was Another Barb. I keep waiting for the other Barb in FL to say “Hey, that’s my name”. I imagine after 6 years, people coming & going, it would be quite difficult to keep us all straight.
      I even remember when Joyce changed to Ozarkjoy, but also forgot.

      I ordered some cartridges for my leaky kitchen faucet yesterday. The trip to the hardware store was a bust, but found em on Amazon. We’ve been fetching water from the bathroom and heating on the stove to wash dishes while we wait for them to arrive. It’s been fun, conserving water, seeing if I can get used to living on way less water, sometimes saving rinse water to dump on a plant.

      Went to Lakeland to seal the deal on my new roof (Irma) and pick out shingles. They are sooo busy mine will be done mid April. It’s not leaking, so we’re good.

      Thanks for the post and the happy puppy pics 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        You’re welcome, Barb. Thank you for the order — I see the faucet cartridges! 🙂

        • Barb in Florida says:

          They’ll be here tomorrow!! That was fast.

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            Shipping is very fast… usually surprises me, too. I wonder if the cartridges had to go from Fernley, (or whatever its name is) NV to you in FL.

            • Barb in Florida says:

              The sink is back together – the parts were shipped from Lexington, KY. Must be whichever distribution center has what’s ordered. My oats & noodles came from GA (in same box). We have a DC 10 or so miles away. I guess they must not have had the stuff.

  7. rvsueandcrew says:

    Hi, Blogorinos!

    If this page has been jumping around on you, it’s because I messed up the photos. Put one in the wrong place and forgot to insert two others. I fixed it.

    Flying by the seat of my pants, as usual.


  8. Pat McClain says:

    Top ten!

  9. Pat McClain says:

    I read once that the best way to train a dog not to bark is to first train them to bark…on command. When they have that down, they will look to you for permission to bark. Of course, with a free spirit like Roger, this might not work, lol.

  10. Archae says:

    Hi Sue, Roger and Reggie,
    Those photos of Roger and Reggie are precious. Thank you. I do have a question though. I thought Amazon used UPS to send packages. What does UPS mean?
    Thanks for any light you can shed on the subject.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Archae,

      UPS — United Parcel Service (and USPO — United States Post Office)…

      Amazon does send packages via UPS, also via FedEx and USPO and Onyx.

      The problem is Amazon does not give the customer the option of choosing the shipping carrier. It’s a crap shoot. If Amazon had shipped the collar via UPS, I would have it now.

      Frustrating! I’ve talked with Amazon about this, pointing out the thousands of RVers who need to choose, but I doubt it went anywhere.

      • Ed says:


        You are correct in what you have said about how Amazon ships but the bigger problem is the increasing number of products that are not shipped by Amazon.

        You may buy the item on the Amazon web site but the item purchased does not come from an Amazon fulfillment center but ships from some affiliate provider. I have become very disenchanted with Amazon over the years because of these two policy decisions that Amazon has made.

        For those of us that do not want to live in a sticks-n-bricks it is a problem but we are such a small minority that Amazon could care less.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          The only solution I see for full-timers without a place to receive packages is to pay for a business to accept one’s packages. 🙁

          I could place my order over and over again until I hit the jackpot, i.e. it’s shipped via UPS and thus isn’t rejected at the UPS Customer Center. Of course, I won’t do this because of my annoying conscience.

      • cc and canine ( now in Oregon) says:

        Hi Sue,
        Haven’t commented in a long time, but I’m still along for the ride… here in the Portland area, Amazon delivers lots of stuff in white high top vans with the Amazon logo… and the tracking numbers are preceded by AMZN …leading one to believe that they are now in the delivery business.

        Your photos are lovely as usual…isn’t it a long way into town for only 5 gallons of water? Where do you fill your water tank with water for dishwashing and toilet flushing?

        We’d love to get out on the road now, but we are really enjoying our current stint as babysitters.. Maybe next year!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi cc,

          I combine errands when I go into town. I don’t always list them in a post– things like grocery, library, laundry,rv supply store, hardware store, etc. or driving around taking photos or just taking a drive somewhere. My other expenses are so low or non-existent that the gas to ride into town isn’t a big deal. The cost of gas to town is part of the cost of water… not much!

          I don’t use much water for dishwashing. I don’t wash dishes daily in the desert. I have a large plastic bin with a lid where I put dishes and utensils needing to be washed. This bins stays outside. About once a week I wash and dry them all at once. Saves a lot of water and time. Sometimes I fill up 10 jugs of water and pour some water into the tank using a funnel. I have gone to the travel center east of here off the interstate where there is a spigot to fill the tank with water.

          • Sarvi in OR (currently in MI) says:

            I have 7 gallon jugs to refill my tank with water. Of course 7 gallons is too heavy to lift and pour, so I got a fairly inexpensive water pump that clamps onto to trailer or truck battery to power it. Using 2 short garden hoses, it pumps the water from the 7 gallon water jug to the trailer in about 2 minutes.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              Lots of folks go that route. Whatever suits your style! 🙂 I like one gallon jugs because I can fill them at a vending machine (and lift them) when a spigot isn’t available.

      • Archae says:

        Thanks for the clarification. Receiving pkgs at this time of year is especially difficult for full timers. Seems like Walmart, with ther ship to stores and stores evverywhere, is becoming the only option for many things.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I considered ordering via WalMart and then making the trip to Parker to pick up my order. That last part held me back. 🙂 I may do that anyway if the Inland Supply place doesn’t work for me.

          • Ed says:

            I placed an online order today with WalMart designating ship to store. It is one that I drive past when I go to Fry’s for groceries so it should work out but I have never tried it before.
            The downside will be the Christmas crowds. When I went past yesterday morning at 7:30 the parking lot was at least half full.

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              Hi, Ed,

              I’ve ordered online with WalMart before and it worked well. Good luck with the crowd.

      • Archae says:

        Thanks for the clarification. Receiving pkgs at this time of year is especially difficult for full timers. Seems like Walmart, with ther ship to stores and stores everywhere, is becoming the only option for many things.

  11. Always hard to get a huge organization to stop and listen to an individual. But hopefully they will!

  12. Jean in Southaven, MS says:

    Sosorry about the collar. I guess Rogers prayers were answered. He did not want that old collar any way. I like where you are and your description of your days. It sounds very nice. I can hardly wait to be retired. I don’t even care what I do everyday, I just want the chance to just be home and choose who I interact with everyday. Thank you for sharing and be happy.

  13. Renee still in Idaho says:

    Hi Sue, I’m enjoying visiting you in the desert and also enjoying the seclusion. I too appreciate when my dogs alert me to intruders or something or someone nearby. Do you have any problems with fleas out there in the desert?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Renee,

      None of my crew — the original or the present crew — have had one flea or tick since we’ve come out West. That alone is enough reason to live here! It’s wonderful for them and I love not having that battle.

      • ReneeG from Idaho says:

        Thanks for letting me know. Same with our dogs. When we lived in the South and Midwest, that was another thing! Fleas and ticks!

  14. Barbara(Nashville) says:

    Reg & Rog are so cute running around the camp ground. Those boys sure know how to have a good time. Not much different than the human kind we have here in the community. Angel got her Christmas grooming today. I am so happy, the groomer told me this is the second time that she has actually come out of the crate and played with the other dogs. Maybe she will get to where she likes going there.

  15. Mona from West Texas says:

    Hi Sue, Over the past three weeks I have been shopping using your links on your page. The most recent was the Jr. Hockey Goal Set. I get happy when my items make the list
    (that’s silly). Since Thanksgiving, at least one item has made the list. I enjoy shopping via Amazon, don’t enjoy driving to the mall and standing in long lines. Today, I spent 45 minutes in line at Bealls, for a pair of slacks. Can’t believe I did that! Enjoy the desert living, it is the best!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Mona! When I saw the Jr. Hockey Goal Set on the orders report, my reaction was “What a neat gift for a young person!” (I assume it’s a gift.) I do appreciate you using my blog to go shopping.

      I agree with you about shopping in stores. I’ve always hated it. That’s why I was very disappointed not to receive my order from Amazon. All year long I accumulated a list of items I want to order!

      I used to shop at Beall’s in Florida.

  16. Shawna says:

    Sue, I was given this idea from a gentleman who’s daughter had a barker, and it works with Charlie “Digger” Barkley, one of the Chiweenie Brothers. Put a few pebbles in a aluminum can. When you want him to be quiet shake the can near him. Works for my watchdogs, as long as I remember where it is!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I appreciate the suggestion, Shawna. The problem is Reggie is always with Roger. That sound would ruin Reggie’s day. Remember The Monster — the metal roof over the picnic shelter that made a sound due to expansion in heat? Reggie panicked and ran inside to cower on the bed. He reacts the same to a plastic drinking bottle when it makes a cracking sound.

  17. Cinandjules 🌵 says:

    I’ve been reading up on livestock guardian dogs….very interesting indeed. The one that appears to be sleeping isn’t…

    When I was visiting my friend in Lincoln CA, we watched a godzillion goats eating the brush at a Del Webb community. Hah hah …if there wasn’t a huge Great Pyrenees lying on its side…seeming like he couldn’t be bothered.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I figured some had to sleep during the day because they work all night when coyotes threaten the greatest.

  18. Joe in TN says:

    The mountain picture is a good one. I tried to look up the Midland LTVA on Google Maps to see if you would have either a sunrise or sunset over them, but could not get my bearings. Either way, I’m sure it is beautiful.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Joe,

      No sunrise or sunset over the Big Marias from where we sit. They’re north of us. The sun sets over the Little Marias which are further away.

      Yes, sunsets are beautiful in the Southwest, even when the horizon is a straight, horizontal line. 🙂

  19. Larry Bandy says:

    We have a vacation home on the River North of Blythe. It is my understanding that Inland Supply will accept packages for you,check with them at the service desk..

  20. Susan in south central WA says:

    Our Alaskan Klee Kai rescue Tala (we’ve had since February) decided in the late spring that she needed to protect us from horses in fields, joggers, motorcyclists and bicyclists. Oh and the light bar on a ski boat behind a nearby fence. I didn’t want to go the bark collar route so I ordered a Zikke Sonic Bark Control from Amazon. I keep it on the center console of my car and when we approach horses or joggers etc I’d turn it on to the lowest setting. It only took about 2 times per type of thing she barked at. First time she barked. Second incidence she’d look around like “what the what???”. Now I just keep it in the off setting in the same spot.

  21. Linda in NC says:

    LAST? There should be something said for that! But then I am sure that there will be more comments.
    I don’t know anything about anti-bark collars…but I could use an anti-chew collar. Hannah is hard at it!! She got a hold of my SD card today.. bad mommy! So far she hasn’t destroyed anything that can’t be fixed. We take long walk everyday to help burn some of that boundless energy! She broke her tether today and went to visit the neighbors. Very social, my girl. Now it’s the cable tie out.
    I am at the south entrance to Joshua Tree NP. I am going to drive through on my way out. Very windy here. I can see I-10 from here, but can’t hear it. It is mesmerizing to watch at night.
    I finally met Dawn from Asheville. A very nice lady! She is working on her solar install and I am finishing my entry mosaic. Hopefully, we will take a side trip together when all is done.
    I loved the pic of the sheep and your little zoomers.
    Have a peaceful evening.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Linda,

      I know where you’re camped. I haven’t tried that spot yet. Twice I’ve camped on the other side of the interstate (handy, but not a charmer). Yeah, it can be mesmerizing watching the passing lights. I remember doing that when boondocking near Tonapah AZ.

      How neat that you two blogorinos got together!

      Enjoy Joshua Tree!

      • Linda in NC says:

        Hi Sue-

        Yes it is neat that we finally met. I think that us blogorinos share a common bond-you, the love of dogs and the appreciation of natures beauty.

        I am fine with that!

  22. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Good morning, Sue, Reggie, Roger, and the blogorinos!

    Sending you all wishes for a blessed day!! 🙂

    Gotta get ready for work. It is 16 here…bitter cold. I laughed the other day when a local weather forecaster lamented that we would not see 50’s until the weekend. Ummm….it IS winter….we should have these seasonable temps! Had our first snow last Friday into Saurday. Very pretty with limited impact on the roads…made my yard look like a winter wonderland! ❄️ ❄️ ❄️

    Sending you, Reggie, and Roger love and hugs from me and Gracie pup! Enjoy your day on the LTVA! Scratches at the door, it is not Avon calling, it is Skeeter!! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Denise, for sending love and hugs and a wish for an enjoyable day. I wish the same for you even though its cold and you’re at work. 🙂

  23. Toni CT-NH says:

    Maybe you can search some videos on youtube for some tips on suppressing the barking.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Toni,

      Thanks for the suggestion! YouTube videos eat up a lot of data that I need for running this blog and for finding factual news on the internet. Like I wrote, it’s not a pressing issue right now. In fact there isn’t opportunity to suppress inappropriate barking because we there aren’t any triggers for Roger to bark, where we are living now.

  24. Sarvi in OR (currently in MI) says:

    Thank you all for your prayers the other day. Mom passed yesterday surrounded by many loved ones. Such a relief that she is no longer in pain.

  25. Terri in Tx. Nice and nippy! says:

    Well, here is my take on the bark collar. I don’t mind my dog barking at night when the coyotes are out, but if someone drives up during the day he goes nuts! So, we got the collar that starts out by emitting a low tone which gets progressively louder. Also, eventually, it starts to vibrate against his neck. There are two little prongs which touch his throat which sense when he is barking. I haven’t used it much, but if I am fast enough, I can put the collar on when someone drives up. He will bark a few times, but not like he was. Of course, I am also standing there telling him no! The collar is not supposed to stay on him more than 5 hours. I think it works, but I also think he will also associate the collar with the barking. I will keep using it and see what happens. I see my massage pillow made the list. That thing got great reviews so am hoping it can give some good relief! Wonderful pics as usual! Take care, RvSue!

  26. My son and I spend a lot of time with our dogs but we trained them not to bark with Caesar Chavez’s method…a simple hush sound from us is all it takes now. Our new adopted dog Izzy is learning so well, she’s learned the word ‘no, stay, treat.’ She use to get into the trash but repeated low key ‘No’ has helped in teaching her. She no longer chews on shoes and not to bite and clamp on our other dogs when playing. She use to dash out the door (house and car) but she learned ‘stay.’ Izzy is really smart and a quick learner. She’s part corgi and I think terrier. She’s about a year and half….we adopted her at 8 months old. She also learned not to run from us to greet people and other dogs…she stays by us until we know she and others are safe. She learned this the hard way…she ran to greet big dogs who attacked her but she roll on her back which saved her from being mauled. We were loading them up in the truck for a ride when she saw the dogs and ran from us to greet them but it back fired. Our dogs occasionally forget the time they chased a bear from our camp site. I guess survival instinct played a role…hahaha We try to teach anyway. The dogs are allowed to bark until we give the command, Izzy is allowed to play as long as she doesn’t bite and clamp her jaws on our other dogs. I’ve never seen dogs clamp their jaws before so this was new to us. It’s a miracle she learned to not clamp her teeth/jaw with simply saying ‘no’ to her….but as I said she is very smart dog.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rita,

      I bet the corgi in her is what makes her smart and easy to train. She sounds like a great pup!

      • Barb in Florida says:

        My dog is also a corgi. Full though so she sheds like no dog I have ever known. Her name is Cheddels, (Cheddar + petals =another story) but her knickname is Hairy Sheddels. I made the mistake of having a cherry laminate floor put in. You can see every hair!!! When she walks it’s like Pigpen from Charlie Brown. But we still love her & she is real smart, too. Does having a mix help with the shedding? I bet she’s cute 🙂

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          If being a mixed breed means less shedding, it’s probably determined by what particular breeds are present. That’s my hunch.

          “Pigpen”… Too funny!

        • Barb in Florida says:

          Instead I should’ve asked if her dog sheds alot and if she looks mostly like a corgi.

  27. Rochelle in IN says:

    To whichever blogorino (my “forgetter” is working overtime today 🙂 ) recommended the book “A Man Called Ove” – THANK YOU! I just finished it and it was absolutely wonderful. I see the author, Fredrik Backman, has 2 other books. I need to check them out. If they are anywhere near as good as this one, then I’ve got a treat in store for me!

    • Dawn in NC says:

      Hey Rochelle, his books “My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry” and “Britt-Marie Was Here” are also excellent! Bear Town is a bit more serious and quite a different feel.

  28. Cynthia from San Clemente says:

    Sue, we use a dog bark collar on our little mixed breed, Lucy. People who have Lhasa Apsos tell us they think she is primarily that breed, altho I see more terrier in her. However, Lhasa Apsos were originally bred by monks in Buddhist monasteries as interior sentinels, to alert the monks to any intruders (Tibetan mastiffs were used for exterior sentinels) – and based on Lucy’s “sentinel” characteristics I tend to agree she might have a lot of Lhasa Apso in her. We live on a corner and whenever anyone walks their dog along the sidewalk, or kids skateboard or ride their bikes, she barks until they are out of sight. And her bark is piercing, especially considering we have tile floors. So, we got the PetSafe bark collar, which uses a vibration that (hopefully) interrupts the dog’s bark. It has been a complete success with Lucy. I know it doesn’t hurt her because she actually comes to me and lifts her head up so I can latch it on to her each morning. I think maybe her incessant barking was even bothering her!! It’s not cheap – I think we paid about $100 at Unleashed/Petco for the first one we got. It lasted about 2 years (with a couple of battery changes) before it quit working and we had to buy another one – but to me, the peace and quiet is worth it. BTW, we tried traditional training methods on her first – they had worked on our Wheaten Terrier and our Pit Bull (who is generally too lazy to bark) to no avail. When we leave the house and the dogs are inside alone, we take the collar off of her – I figure it’s worthwhile to have a dog barking if a prowler or burglar is at the door.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cynthia,

      Your report on the success of the PetSafe bark collar is very encouraging! Thanks for the details about it. I’m going to get a bark collar for Roger when we start staying in campgrounds again.

      Interesting that Lucy likes the collar. Makes me think that Roger might like it, too, and Reggie, even more so. I think Roger’s barking makes Reggie nervous.

      Again I want to thank you for sharing the little movie you made of your sweet pup. You did an excellent job. I don’t know how you managed it — The music and all. It tore me up. The photos and music have come to mind several times since I watched it.

      BTW, you have a lovely home. Obviously your dogs live the good life! 🙂

  29. weather says:

    Looking at the photo with the dog among all the sheep it’s nice to think of… how he helps lead them to fresh fields for them to graze… and to gently flowing water for them to drink. The harsh reality of their being prey for coyotes without the dog’s protection is a part of the picture that’s not as pleasant to think about. Still, I did take the time to research about how a pack of dogs guarding sheep behaves.

    You’re right, Sue, it’s instinctual for them to take turns . Some guard while others sleep, then reverse roles with each other, the owner’s needn’t designate which ones or when. The dogs make their own decisions and can be trusted to make sure the flock is always watched over, by day or night. Cinandjules was right, too, in saying that one appearing to be resting may not be. They’ll try to lure predators close to the flock that way. They would rather deal with an enemy without leaving the flock unattended, what an intelligent strategy, again, instinctual.

    It’s great that Reggie’s barking isn’t an issue while your home is where you are now. The little guy has had a lot to adapt to in the few month’s he’s been part of your family. For now I’m glad the three of you can just relax and enjoy yourselves.
    “…Tomorrow’s another day.” – great caption and thought. That photo with your sweet BLT and beautiful yard, softly lit the way they were then, looks so peaceful it makes me sigh.

    It’s peaceful, and softly beautiful around my home, too, at the moment. In your reply to me on the last post you mentioned a red cardinal in a snow covered tree. I haven’t seen one recently, but there were two young eagles perched in our trees yesterday. As I stepped outside a neighbor rushed over to be sure I wouldn’t miss the chance to see them here. As we watched them with the snow falling around us all I again felt the warmth that thermometers cannot measure.

    That’s held me for a few days now, even more than usual. It’s not easy to define, but I think you know what I mean. It began one morning when upon awakening I noticed both Polly and Kyla were asleep near each other on my bed for the first time. They had bonded well before that, as companions, yet hadn’t reached that level of trusting each other, like family,before. Then these snowy days began. Three different neighbors have plows and are keeping my path and parking area clear. An unspoken bond has grown between us all, we look after each other’s well-being and happiness.

    My three friends that share a home and have the antique store, and I, wanted to get anything that involved driving done yesterday. We knew the roads would be icy with today’s temperatures being in the teens. She needed red paper plates for a church breakfast, one guy needed to have WalMart car service center replace his car battery, I needed to pick up my new eye glasses at their vision care center, and the other guy planned to stay home to feed and walk the dog.

    Why not save gas, use one car and visit at the same time, right? On the way they stop here to pick me up, the battery quits-too dead to jump-, ha! The guy at home gets his tools,comes to take the battery out, she’s on home, phone & dog watch, ( to neighbors, no we don’t need help, thanks, it’s okay to leave this car here in your way?great!)…
    2 hours later – I’m thinking about how grand it is to have full fuel tanks for our cars, furnaces, and cooking. I see your post and just want to look around noticing how well I can see this gorgeous world again. Sorry to be late commenting- all the preceding is why.

    • weather says:

      Oh, sheesh, just read my comment and realized I failed to mention we did get the red plates,new battery and glasses during the two hours yesterday. Not including that might make it seem that I was whining instead of really happy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, weather,

      Your comment is such an enjoyable, interesting read. 🙂 I’m glad everything turned out fine by the end of the day! How nice that you have these neighbors who are friends, the kind that make sure your driveway is cleared of snow and are open to making a group errand run.

      I’m glad you got your eye glasses and do not have to be on the roads. Thank you for the information about the guard dogs taking shifts. I had a feeling they do that on their own. Incredible animals!

      Forgive me for forgetting Polly. Recently I mentioned Kyla (called her Kayla) and made no mention of Polly. I’m sorry. How sweet that they have each other, as you have your friends, too.

  30. Mindy says:

    This vibration collar worked very well with our border collie. I would highly recommend it.

    Barkwise bark collar

  31. rvsueandcrew says:

    Hi, Blogorinos,

    Thank you for giving us reports on anti-bark collars. I ask that you not post links. The name and/or description of the product will do.


  32. Rhodium in Va says:

    I remember learning about the Jewish holidays from reading the All of a Kind Family series of books with my daughter. They are about a family with all girls on the lower east side in the early 1900s. I never knew there were so many holidays. It’s a very sweet series of books.

  33. Ramona says:

    Hi Sue,
    I’m currently living with no permanent mailing address in Oregon. I stopped at the local post office and was told they would accept ANY package/parcel/letter for me if it was addressed to me, then General Delivery, then the street address of the post office. There is no charge and I have been receiving all my packages and letters that way, including those sent via UPS. Hope that helps!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I use General Delivery for mail and that works well. However, when UPS shows up at the post office at 8 p.m,, in my experience, the packages are not left at the post office. They go back to Amazon.

      • Ed says:


        I think both you and Ramona can be correct. Sometimes and at some places the USPS will accept UPS packages – some sort of ‘gentleman’s agreement’ at the local level. Certainly not USPS policy and the ‘agreement’ can be broken at any time for any reason by the local USPS.

        There is also UPS SurePost which starts out as a UPS package delivery but then is ‘handed off’ to USPS for delivery to a USPS mail box. I recently received an package from Jet that used UPS SurePost. But, you as a customer have no control/say on when a shipper may, or may not, use UPS SurePost so it is not really a help to you and me!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Hi, Ed,

          You’re right on all counts. I was talking today with an employee at Inland Supply, following a tip from a reader who has “a vacation home” in Blythe. What the reader advised is true — Inland Supply will accept packages from UPS, but only if the order is placed from Inland Supply (because Inland Supply charges !5% to place an order.) Hmm.

          My neighbor Del said he used a Gen. Delivery PO address in Blythe and the package arrived via UPS. The post office rejected it. He was able to track it to UPS in Lake Havasu City. He was going to arrange for an address to receive the pkg. but hit another snag because the LHC facility wouldn’t deliver into California.

          I think delivery services are reaching a point of dissonance that something is going to surface that will bring all this inefficiency and confusion to an end. I’m being an optimist in spite of not receiving any packages while camped here. 🙂

  34. Harriet says:

    If you run across a Petsmart they sell this little clicker. It goes “click-click” when pressed. It is used to train dogs. Safe and easy to carry with you anywhere. I used it with my dog to keep him from jumping up on people. Cute dog or not , it is not appreciating by most folks.
    All I did was click it when he started to jump, it distracted him and he would stop. I would then put him at my side and tell him to sit. Praising all the way , with treats if necessary in the beginning. It only took a few times and he got the idea.
    These little guys are very smart, I’m sure it would work on them.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’ve been wanting one of those, Harriet. Funny, I was thinking about that about an hour ago and here’s you recommending it. 🙂

  35. Diann in MT says:

    I’ve been meaning to remind you of the Geminid meteor shower tonight. It was at its peak last night but it’s still visible in the middle of the night and early tomorrow morning. I witnessed it last night. With glee. So much more glorious than fireworks.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Diann. Maybe the middle of the night potty run will coincide with the meteor shower. 🙂

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