Merry Christmas 2016

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Six years ago, I had a bright idea of making a nice Christmas card picture with my three Hooligans and their letter to Santa. At the end of the photo shoot, I had over one hundred pictures and not a one suitable for a Christmas card. I came up with the idea of doing a collage of some of the outtakes. Since that day, the Christmas cards have been a collage of the effort to make one, along with a letter to Santa.

This year, a couple of my fur babies have been in and out at the Tennessee Valley Animal Clinic, and I’ve had six weeks of allergic bronchitis, so the pictures weren’t made. Throughout this post, I’ll share Christmas card covers from 2010 and the 2016 cover that I took a couple of summers ago with the three posing nicely.

The wireless fence apparently had a weak signal that wasn’t sending a zap when the Hooligans got near it, only a vibration. So Levi was following Patches out at night, sneaking over to the neighbor’s house, and eating the cat food. He has two things on his mind — eating and sleeping, in that order. I finally had some daylight on Sunday to work on it and found a connection that I had to replace due to a lightening hit on the neighbors fence. It fell apart when I picked it up. Due to the drought, the wire isn’t back in the ground yet. I cut the section out, stripped the ends of the wires, and redid the connections. Now to I need to get it back in a protective cover and in the ground. I also redid the connections along the creek, broken when I had tornado-damaged trees taken down. The whole section needs to be replaced with new wire.

Apparently, Levi got zapped when he ventured out alone the next night and couldn’t get back in. Patches is a pro, knowing when it’s on and when it’s not. I didn’t see him that morning and thought he was staying dry in the back garage. Mom called me at work to tell me he was out and she would let him back in after it stopped raining.

She went over, opened my garage door, and turned the fence off. When she went back into her yard and pulled him to my yard, he yelped as he got to the fence and ran across it and around to the front of the house. She turned the fence back on and went home.

She’s been getting a good laugh out of him all day and kept saying I had the fence off. I predict he’ll be home in the morning.

Dear Santa,

We’ve been very good doggies this year. Mom hurt her knee, and we tried to help her weed by digging holes around the yard. Mom said we dug the holes too deep and also dug up the good plants along with the weeds. She didn’t explain to us the difference between a good weed and a bad one. All plants look the same to us.

We had a big ole groundhog to invade our territory. We quickly dispatched it, but Patches grabbed the wrong end and landed up in the hospital for four days getting patched up. She also had an ear infection a few weeks back that swelled up her ear like a balloon, and she had surgery twice to put drains in them. Blackie has a bad limp from a shotgun blast in the past. One of the pellets is embedded in a joint on her front leg. She’ll get better, and keeps hurting it chasing after Levi. Speaking of Levi, he was sneaking out of the yard and going down to the neighbors, eating their cat food. He’s learned how to make a sound like a woodpecker when he’s trying to get Mom to hurry up and feed us. Mom says he’s been a very bad boy.

This year, Mom said we weren’t going to make our Christmas card picture, as we are the “walking wounded.” We aren’t sure what she means by that. We have so much fun making our pictures each year, tugging and yanking Santa hats off of each other and ripping them to pieces. Mom said something about pulling the drains out of Patches ears. Maybe she’ll let us make one next year.

Santa, we want lots and lots of biscuits and rawhide chews. Mom won’t let us have them. And bring us lots and lots of biscuits, not the healthy stuff Mom gets us.

From all of us:

Wishing you the warmth of home; the love of family and friends. May you have a Blessed and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.