Category Archives: the tonka files

We thought dogs were good, until SHE came into our lives…

Into the Unknown

She’s nervous.

She’s nervous because this is where she is…

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And this is where she wants to be.  Between her and her goal is a big gulf of the unknown, untried and scary looking.

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Will she do it?

Will she get her feet wet?

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Yes!

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Go, Tonka, go!  Keep you eyes on the prize, my dear.

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I love that she didn’t worry about what was going to happen when she got there, she just knew that’s where she needed to be.

The draw was big enough.

It was the love for her master that drew her on.

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She knew she’d be taken care of if she could just get to her master.

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She got a standing ovation from everyone on the shore for making it so far.

Uh-oh, looks like we forgot someone…

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It was a very long distance for a little guy.

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Helps’a comin’ Sawyer.

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Big sister will see to it that you reach the raft.

These roads are so much easier when you can share the traveling, aren’t they?

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Let’s go!

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Almost there!

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You made it!

Now that you’ve come this far there’s only one thing left to do.

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Do it again.

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It’s going to be a little harder this time because there’s no easy way in. You’ve just got to trust us and make that first big jump.

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Or not.

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How about a little help?

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Yay!

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You did it!

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Let’s all go home together.

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Safe and sound.

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A girl and her dog and a lesson learned.

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God may ask you to wade into the unknown bit by bit, or jump in cold turkey.

It may feel like this.

Alone.

Without footing, and there’s no telling what lies beneath the surface or how deep it gets.

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But He has the eternal perspective. He sees it like this.

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And He sends helping hands when you need warming up and comfort.

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Not just what you need, but more. Tailor made for you.

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You are His baby.

His presence is tangible in the hands and feet of his servants sent to minister to those in need.

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 It is His goal to make you complete and perfect like Him. No matter what life throws you. It’s not a surprise to Him.

He’ll walk you through fire and water and try you in the furnace of suffering.

All the dross will burn away and out will come shining gold.

Some day you’ll be strong again. He guarantees it.

“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 1:6

Like Tonka looked to her master without a thought to what was going to happen–

He is waiting.

He is enough.

Never Leave Cookie Dough Unattended

I had a chance to make Oatmeal Crispies and double the recipe. This allowed me to put 2 big, fat rolls of cookie dough in the freezer.

 “Mom, is there anything to eat?”

“Why, yes.”

I like having an answer.

And I like not throwing a box of Oreos at them.

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I adapted the recipe to use fresh-ground whole wheat flour from my grain mill, and also used organic non-hydrogenated shortening.

Do you know why I go to these extra lengths?

Do you know why I spend the extra time and money?

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So I can come home from a short trip down the street to pick up Mckenna at the barn and find the whole roll of cookie dough gone.

And only the wrapper left lying on the floor.

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Apparently I make fresh and wholesome cookie dough for DOG FOOD.

I can’t believe you ate the whole roll, Tonka.

It’s not even cooked—yet. We can throw the whole kit and caboodle into the oven and change that.

It’s still set to 350.

She’s Lucky it was George

Let’s add up your list, shall we, Tonka?

Wii Remote

Camera

iPod

Shoes

Makeup

Soap

Deodorant

Stuffed Animals

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It’s like throwing money down the drain, ripping it up, chewing on it, and spitting it out.

So I guess we can add money to the list of things Tonka has destroyed.

She’s lucky it was a George and not a Jackson.

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Love is blind.

Love is expensive.

Love endures dollar breath.

Makeup for Dogs

Welcome to the sixth in our series of — Tonka: The Worst Dog in the World.  Today we will be exploring makeup application for canines.

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There’s no need to use high dollar cosmetics. I know this departs from our usual high dollar preference, as when eating a camera or an iPod.  But eye shadow is eye shadow when it comes to dogs.

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There may be a lot to choose from in your cosmetic bag, but try to limit your selection to eye shadow for the purposes of this tutorial.

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As a side note, you may want to purchase a special pillow just for this; it may save the floor from unnecessary stains.

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Now, just a light arc of color in the crease of the eye is the most flattering.  Here we see “Cranberry”.

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The same color can be carried down onto the cheekbone for a more dramatic effect.

Makeup removal is a breeze–

throw the whole thing outside.

For a long, long time.

Of Dogs and Water

I remember what it was like to not wear makeup. I never looked this good.

“Are you okay?” people ask me today if I dare to venture forth without it.

But this post isn’t about that, it’s not even about people, although we did venture forth.

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He loves venturing forth.

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He’s pointing with his leg to ask if he can go down there.

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He went down there.

By the way, getting a shot from this perspective almost always works in your favor, unless it’s a very bright day and their eyes squint shut.

But this isn’t about photography tips, although we did take a lot of pictures.

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It’s not even about the flowers we found…

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Or,

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the,

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jumps,

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that were made. Yes!

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Or the victory dance.

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It’s about a sign.

A sign?

Yes.  A sign.  Or lack thereof.  You see, there was NO SIGN saying we couldn’t let our dogs off leash.

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So we did.

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And as she shot like a bullet across the wild landscape, free for the first time…

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I couldn’t help but wonder…

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Would she ever come back?

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Not if I was lucky….

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Welp. There goes that idea.

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And yet,

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I’ve heard there are hidden pools in rivers.

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It’s pretty shallow for hidden pools.

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But a girl can dream.  AH!  Nope.  Darn those grippy paws.

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Daisy took a different approach to relishing in her freedom.

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She just jutted her snout under water.

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I have no idea why.

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And then she laid in the current like an otter-dog.

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Ahhh, the peace, the solitude.

It’s like the kids are out of the house and you have it all to yourself.

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And then they come home.

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And your prone position dissipates like mist in the wind.

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As you receive the splash in the face of your new reality.

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The roar of the falls thwarted verbal communication.

His gesture means, “Hey, Mom, can I go down there?”

or, maybe he’s trying to say:

“Hey, Mom, let’s all go home and pitch in to get the house clean.  And then bake cookies.

And fold laundry.

Yeah, that’s it.

Then we’ll sit around the deck and groom the dogs and tie a pink ribbon around Tonka’s neck.

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What actually happened:  We all cleaned the house yesterday, Mckenna baked cookies, I folded laundry, Mckenna groomed the dogs and tied a red ribbon around Daisy’s neck, Tonka fell exhausted into bed while I looked at her and thought, that should be me, it should be me!

Is Hate too Strong a Word?

There is no way to break this to you gently.

I can diffuse it.

Soften it.

Screen it.

But in the end, you must prepare yourself.

I suggest you put your coffee down.

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She did it again.

Does something look a little off with this camera?

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Not up to snuff?

Lacking?

Inferior?

Hmmmm.

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I think I see a pattern.

Yes, a distinct pattern of bite marks.

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What kind of dog contemplates an electronic and assesses it as a chew toy?

What kind of dog!???

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And what kind of dog KEEPS CHEWING.

Goodbye, camera. Your screen is black forever now, like the place in my heart that used to hold endearment for my dog.

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Not this dog.

You’re the best dog in the world, aren’t you Daisy?

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Just look at that face, pure sweetness.

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And devotion. It’s in the eyes.  She’d never betray you.  Unlike her counterpart there, in the background chewing as usual.

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Ah, you’ve got a bone this time. Fancy that.  And yes, I am talking to you.

Can I just ask you, what made you stop?  Was it the taste of  auto flash, or the shards of digital screen that were unpalatable?  I mean, why not go all the way and just chew the whole thing in two?

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Daisy would never do such a thing. She respects our property, don’t you Daisy?

Such a good dog!  Do you want a treat, Daisy?  Does Daisy want a treat?!

Do you want a biscuit?  Do you want a cookie?  Do you want….a……………

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Camera?

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See. She’s a good dog.

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Thank you, from the bottom of my heart for leaving our remotes, controllers, and cameras alone.

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YOU on the other hand are in the doghouse.

Don’t give me the evil eye.

I know what you’re thinking, the only thought in your little head right now…

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How good it tasted.

It’s War

What was that sound?

It sounded like the dog was chewing something.  Probably one of her dog toys, and yet…

There was a foreign brittle hint to the breaking of the plastic that tipped me off.

This was no dog toy.

This was war.

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My boxed set of Monk DVD’s was not acceptable material for exercising her jaws.

And didn’t we just go and buy an assortment of dog toys to avoid this exact situation?

Don’t I trip over these dog toys on a daily basis?

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And why would she pick Monk DVD’s as a chew toy anyway?

The dog toys are stored in a container on the left side of the tv.

The DVD’s are stored in a basket on the right side of the tv.

When she’s fishing her snout around in a basket filled with DVD’s, wouldn’t it occur to her that something was slightly off?

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Or do dogs really go find the thing that would make you the maddest and delight in destroying it?

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I don’t really believe that, but I’m tempted.

I’ve been tempted to do a lot of things since Tonka came into our lives.

Most of them involving serene, tranquil scenarios of a Tonka-free home where the dog toys are conspicuously missing from the left side of the tv.

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But I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon.

Mud Bath

We don’t have a sandbox.

(This will become relevant in a minute.)

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But we do have a mud box.

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It’s called the backyard.

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Winter’s veil has melted away and now it’s time to dig.

How deep should the hole be?  That is the question.

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Tonka will help provide the answer.

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Move aside boys, she’s coming through.

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You’ve got to let the professionals handle this one.

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Which is all fine and dandy….

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Until the wrong end of the dog is facing you.

Tristan hasn’t noticed the flying earth yet, we’ll have to watch the shoes to see when the situation hits him.

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Annnd, there you have it, it’s the turning in of the shoe tip that gives him away. Even though you can’t see his face, this boy wants OUT.

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Out!

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OUT!

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Sorry about that, Tristan.

I guess we should have learned by now, that when a dog’s gotta dig…

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A dog’s gotta dig.

No Tolerance

We don’t have many rules around here, but the ones we do have are strictly enforced.

And one of those rules is…

NO DOGS ON THE COUCH.

Ever.

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You know, like this.

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He got a haircut.

Which is totally unrelated to dogs laying on the couch, except

I have a feeling he might be the reason Tonka-on-the-couch looks so at home,

at ease,

in her element…

This is not a guilt-ridden face.

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Sawyer, have you been snuggling with Tonka on the couch again?

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Snips and snails and puppy dog tails, that’s what little boys are made of.

This is Her Guilty Face

I usually start right off with a picture, but I didn’t want to deprive you of the moment of surprise.

Surprise like the feeling that welled up within me when I was the first one up, shuffling down a darkened hallway, morning light streaming through the drapes.

Finding my way to the living room and finding as I got there, something foreign on the floor.

Realizing I might just have discovered the worse possible thing to find first thing in the morning.

The worst possible thing for the dog to have confiscated from the art studio,

The worst possible thing to put puncture wounds in and drag around the house like a chew toy,

piddling bright green paint on every imaginable surface.

Earlier, with my head still snuggled on the pillow, I’d heard her toe nails clicking their way downstairs in the pre-dawn haze.

And this was her mission: to find, to puncture, to paint.

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This is her guilty face.

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These are her guilty paws.

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And this was her canvas.

Which do you feel sorrier about, the paint or the dog hair?

(It was the day before cleaning day, I promise)

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With a splash-splash here, a splash-splash there…

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Here a splash, there a splash,

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Everywhere a splash-splash.

Old MacDonald had a farm,

but was suddenly short one dog.

E-I-E-I- OOOOOOOOOOOOOO!