Beagles Rule!!! by Molly Run Cottontail Holm

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Every year, I watch the Westminster Kennel Club and I cheer my cousins on to do well. I come from a line of Champion AKC registered Beagles, so of course, I always bay the loudest for the Beagles. My second favorites are the Bloodhounds. This year, when I was watching the heart-pounding Best In Show while gnawling on a doggy-bag, beef rib-bone from the Cheesecake Factory, I could hardly stand the suspense. As Uno took the ring, and did his thing, dancing and prancing so proud, my ears stood back and I held my breath and hoped the fans were right–He was the favorite! When the judge gave him the top prize, my tail wagged so hard, I could hardly keep my butt from wiggling.

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Mr. Uno doing his Snoopy dance.

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I was so happy a Beagle won, that I put on my party dress and my mom said I could have some Frosty Paws to celebrate. BEAGLES RULE!

Brr, it’s cold out there

I don’t know what part of the country you live in, but Boise is experiencing very cold weather. This morning’s temp was only eight degrees. There are icicles everywhere, even on the fenders of cars. Speaking of cars, it’s hard to keep a car clean in the winter. Road conditions throw mud and slush onto your vehicle. My car is silver so that somewhat disguises road grime, but it seems as if I’m always pulling into the carwash. I’m pretty anal about how clean I keep my car.

I think what I miss most right now is the smell of flowers and freshly cut grass. I love the way summer smells on a hot day. I miss my swimming pool, a good book and the anticipation of a BBQ’d steak with corn on the cob from the fruit stand my husband likes to frequent.

I don’t like the winter. Never have. I sure hope that Ground Hog predicts summer is around the corner . . . At this point, I’d even take a sliver of spring. My sweetheart brought home some tulips for me the other day. I got optimistically hopeful this stinky winter will almost be gone.

Is it cold or warm where you live?

Hot Dawg and Happy New Year!

Anyone who’s been a long time subscriber of my e-mail newsletter knows that I lament the long, toasty days of summer. I am not, nor will I ever be, a winter person. I don’t like the cold and grabbing for a coat just to get the mail from the mailbox. Give me sun and surf, a glisteni

ng pool and a good book and I’m singing hot-diggity dawg!

Knowing this, my dear sweetie of a husband planned a winter getaway to Mexico for our family to celebrate the New Year. We left two days after Christmas, and surprisingly, no problems in the airports. We were the last flight

out of Denver that morning with less than a half mile visiblity and buckets of snow sifting down like sugar. When we landed in Puerto Vallarta, it seemed silly to be schlepping a coat.

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We started our jaunt at a small coastal town called Rincon de Guayabitos. This is the view from a horseback ride we took.

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My big hair is ridiculous. Bringing a flatener to a humid area is a waste of electricity. On the beach, many locals would ask if you wanted your hair braided like Bo Derek in the movie 10. I told my step-daughters I was going to let my hair fluff to a really puffy air-dry and then tell the lady to braid my hair. She’d probably have run screaming.

After two days, we changed hotels to Puerto Vallarta and I really enjoyed the resort feel of this Marriott. We had the top end of the eighth floor with an ocean view. I’m so glad I speak Spanish enough to be understood and I can understand enough of it to get along. All those years of growing up in la ciudad de Los Angeles paid off!

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And the pool was just great. This is the view from our balcony.

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A poolside sunrise.

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New Year’s Eve with the sunset behind me and the beach. We went to the hotel restaurant for dinner and they supplied hats and horns. A boy about nine thought he was in charge of all the horn blowing, but he hadn’t reckoned with my step-daughters who gave him what for with horn blowing back at him across the restaurant. He finally stood up and tried to take control, but our table won the battle. Go us! Later that night, my husband and I enjoyed some of the best fireworks we’ve ever seen, stretching all the way up and down the coast of Mexico. Thank you, Gregorio, for a wonderful trip! X O

Happy New Year to everyone! Now I’m back in snowy Boise. Ah to be on that sunny beach once more!

Merry Christmas!

I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! Have a wonderful day filled with blessings and joy. Thank you for your support by buying my books. You’re all much appreciated!

Deck The Halls

So my husband saw this wreath in the home and garden shop and he thought it would look cool in our front entryway. I was like–how are you going hang that way up there? He frowned at my lack of confidence. He got a tall ladder. Tall enough to reach the Empire State Building, and he climbed it and strung some kind of mega strength wire from point A to point B and he managed to get it up. The bells had to be added after the wreath was up. The overall affect is quite stunning. He done good!

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That’s Cocoa sitting on the rug. And Molly is snoozing in the background on the kitchen floor tiles. She’s passed the dining room and underneath the four plates hanging on the wall.

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Our Christmas tree in the formal living room.

It’s A Girl!

We have a new girl at our house. Her name is Cocoa (Puff). She’s a five month old Yorkie and she’s been with us about a month. She’s adapting well and likes to play with Molly, my 12 1/2 year old Beagle. My Molly dog has been a great girl . . . and I was very sad to hear she’s sick. She’s got Cushings Disease and she’s not going to last much longer. I will be heartbroken to lose her. She’s been my best friend.

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Miss Molly wagging her tail and the Cocoa Puff, her sidekick.

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“I didn’t mean to pee on the rug, guys.”

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This is where Cocoa sleeps while I’m working. I have to remember to keep my feet still. She’s under my desk!

The Best Christmas Present Ever

In honor of Christmas, I thought I’d do a fun contest. Just post a short essay about your most memorabl holiday gift. The contest will run until December 15. The winner receives a $100.00 gift certificate to Toys R Us.

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In our house, my daughters first pick was always Barbies. They played them through junior high and would have continued if we’d kept a toy room in our new home at the time. I have bins upon bins of Barbies, cars, clothes, accessories, McDonald’s shop, airplane, etc. that I have kept for posterity.

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Baker’s Dozen Signing

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I thought I’d share a photo from the Baker’s Dozen signing in Boise a couple of weeks ago. Standing next to me is Robin Lee Hatcher. Sitting (from left to right) is Jan Hambright and Joanne Pence. The turn out for this signing was great! Thanks to all who stopped by to say hello.

Just Ducky

So we have a pond at our house. There are cat-tails surrounding some of it and in the summer, the frogs love to keep us up at night by croaking. There are moderately sized green frogs and then the large bullfrogs. We have a blue herron who comes around and eats the frogs so this is a good thing. There are large carp in this pond–they’re about two feet long. Then we have lots of blue gills and other fish. I don’t know what they are. Doves fly in at dusk to get drinks. We have quail (about 18 of them) who run by quickly to search for seeds along the shore. But the most prominent birds on the pond are the ducks.

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I’m no camera genius, but this was a sunrise one morning with the ducks on our pond with the sun coming up through the weeping willows. We have about fifty ducks a day who hang out at our house. For a while, five geese showed up. Our ducks are mostly Mallards, but now we have one American Coot (it looks like a duck, but it’s not) and eight Baldpates aka Widgeons.

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I absolutely love this duck–a baldpate. The coloring on its head is amazing. I like these fifty-plus ducks so much, I started feeding them cracked corn. They go nuts for it. Now when they see me, they come waddling out of the pond and are practically tame. The other morning, it snowed and when I went outside, this was the sight that greeted me.

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While this is all great, and it’s fun to be able to stand there and feed them while they are mere inches away, there is the downside . . . they now think our swimming pool is better than the pond. This doesn’t make my husband too happy. But you have to admit, this is one cool photo!

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