Friday, August 27, 2010

Birthday bash

Every once in awhile we get to have those perfect days. Days where all is right with the world and nothing can seem to go wrong. I was lucky enough to have a day like this twelve days ago when I celebrated my 35th birthday with friends and family.

My parents planned to be in Missoula this year for my birthday and I thought it would be fun to have a get together while they were in town. Theresa and I planned a picnic for my folks and many of our Missoula friends. It ended up being a fantastic event and a chance for people to gather before fall arrives.

We had ribs, chicken, salads, along with some great adult libations. Not to worry the kids had soda and water to drink ☺ Theresa thought she was being quite funny by putting a sheep on my cake as you can see in the picture HA HA HA There is a story that goes along with my cake motif but you’ll have to ask Theresa about that!

It was awesome having T’s grand daughter Aleah and our nurse Casey’s kids in attendance. They are all so cute and man are they getting so darn big. Aleah was kinda shy but Casey’s boys sure warmed up to everyone.

Piper, Casey’s oldest boy is six and he lives to play pranks. Well Theresa bought Jelly Belly jelly beans for the party but she bought Piper some “special” look-alikes that were in a word noxious. He laughed so hard giving me these nasty confections. The jelly beans were disguised as normal Jelly Belly’s but they were flavors that included: skunk spray, pencil shavings, dog food, toothpaste, baby wipes, rotten eggs, and centipede. Hey at least I was given some normal ones in between.

Well I’ve rambled enough but I would like to thank everyone who was involved in my special day. Having my parents here was the best birthday present I could ask for. Sometime this weekend I will blog about the rest of my parent’s recent visit.

Peace… Mark

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Wow it’s been a busy but amazing summer and I apologize for the lack of blogging activity. Things are going great in Missoula and I just had a very nice visit with my parents. There will be a blog about that soon but in the meantime here’s one about our first visit to the weekly Mountain Pugs meetup here in town. I hope everyone of you is having a fantastic summer and I promise that my blog will be busy before the start of fall.

The Missoulian recently published an article about Mountain Pugs, a locally based Pug owner group that meets weekly at Missoula’s Bark Park. We got very excited after reading this because we’ve been looking for a way to network with other area Pug nuts for a long time. Well about ten days ago we braved the unknown and under went our initiation in local Pug culture.

Theresa and I pulled up near Bark Park with Sammy and Ugga not knowing what craziness lay in store for the four of us. We turned onto the trail leading into the park and met the owners of Bam Bam, an enormous thirty eight pound muscular Pug. We walked and talked while Bam Bam playfully chased after Ugga. It turns out they were all making their first visit to the group too.

I wound my way to the meeting spot, maneuvering my chair around bumps and low hanging tree branches. We finally arrived at a shady area where all the other members were congregating with their curly tailed furkids. I looked to the right, I looked to the left, and all I could see were PUGS. There were fawns, blacks, little Pugs, big Pugs, young Pugs, old Pugs, and even a few Puggles thrown in for good measure. Ugga was quickly off to socialize with the others but things were quite different with our Sammy.

Sammy is usually if not always Mr. Outgoing at home but in the presence of all these strange Pugs, he became a big shy guy. He initially wanted Theresa to hold him but after a few minutes he cautiously checked out his surroundings. He didn’t venture very far from the security of his mama though. Sammy will definitely be making more meetups so he can learn to better socialize with his furry brethren.

I’ve included some of my favorite pictures from the meetup. The second picture is of a sweet Pug named Polly. Little Miss Polly slowly made her way up to me at first, woofing at the mysterious contraption I was seated in. Her owner then brought her up for a closer look and I was immediately given a few gentle pug kisses. I was sure smitten with Polly and can’t wait to see her next time.

The final picture is of our Ugga. We brought along a water dish for our kids but it didn’t hold Ugga’s interest very long. She was wandering around and thought this dish looked much more inviting than hers. Nothing like your Pug lounging in another dog’s dish. Oh well nobody minded at all because we were all there to get away from the grind and smile at life for awhile.

We had a great time meeting over 50 Pugs and their wonderful owners (or people as I like to say). I look forward to many more meetups in the future and getting to know many new friends both furry and human. My life has been so enriched by these snorty, silly, and bug-eyed creatures and it’s amazing to be around others who couldn’t agree more.