Posts Tagged ‘Lad’


Today, well.. today we chased Lil Hallie around the yard.  Then Dad came home and he put her in her own room with her own bed and blankies and toys and is spending time with her.  She is heading into her time and us boys are in love!!!!  Can I go see her dad?  I think you threw my ball in there… lets go see!


What a lame try that was Lad. Try something like “Dad! Lil Hallie’s room is on fire! Lets go save her!!!!!!  See… there he goes… wait he stopped…. oh oh, he figured out it is not on fire… I’m out of here.  Ahem….


Okay dad!  We got the bar to dance under so let’s start celebrating!!! ONE POINT! ONE POINT! ONE POINT!!!  Yes, in case you missed it the Liverpool Reds won yesterday moving within one point of Chelsea who has to come to Anfield, the home of the Reds!!!!!  As Ginger would say… MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!  Look, dad went under the bar… wow, he is really happy!






Dad, your Liverpool Reds hat is in the room with Lil Hallie…. she is chewing on it….


Works everytime….. hehehehehe

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My daughter has been gracious and kind and allowed me to use her internet and computer at her house since mine is down.  Let me start by thanking everyone for their support the past couple of days. Your emails have been wonderful and your comments also. 🙂  It has brought unspeakable joy to our hearts.

Since my internet is down if anyone who has my phone number hears anything about the Dixie search please call me. 🙂  I do not know how long our net will be down.


Today the collies played in the cold sun and hounded the squeel who has been a big chicken since he was almost snatched out of the yard, not daring to come down too low or across the fence.

As the snow has melted we have been finding toys lost under the snow in the yard.  Rebel has his football again after several months without it.  He runs like a crazed maniac when I kick or throw it.  So, we have Branwen chasing her bat, Lad his ball, Rebel his football, lil Hallie and her brain cover, Ginger and her missile and Rutherford and his branches.

Today a bunch of parts for the Case tractor I am restoring showed up.  A winged radiator cap, which looks nice when I put it on, a gauge, some gaskets, a Case Emblem for the front of the hood and a boot for the gear shifter. They also sent me a nice Case Tractor calendar. 🙂

As is usual when I came home today the collies crowded at the fence and barked, whined and Lad ran across the yard howling……. I came out to a bunch of happy collies and we played for a while till they came in for their supper.  We saw the squeel, saw a Hawk, Geese, Ducks and various other birds. Even a rabbit ran by the fence…. the collies of course did not miss any of it.

Ginger stole Branwen’s bat today.  That lasted for a minute or so…. Branwen stomped over and Ginger refused to give it back.  In the end Ginger played with it for a minute then saw a bird and moved on…. I thought it would be war for sure, but nothing doing.  Ginger decided that the bird was more interesting as Branwen prepared for war. 🙂

Just another day at the Meadow…..

Ginger pose

-who wants a dumb ol’ bat… birds are more sporting….


Ball, ball, ball, ball…..

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Dad has re-painted the front wheel to Old Allis and has the lug nuts in the warm oven with the gas turned off now hardening th paint to put them back on tomorrow.  He has begun working on the Case SC and pulled off a front whell to paint.  We laughed as we watched for the rim is made of cast iron and weighs about 100 pounds! He didn’t know this and when he pulled it off boy was he surprised.. hehehehe

But, back to us collies. Rebel (Walter) has adopted a old soccer ball and today was peeling the leather panels off the outside…. it will soon look like Lad’s ball. Amazing how he figured that out isn’t it? We will get pictures asap!


-Dad, he is copying my ball!!!

In other news it made almost 50 degrees today! We collies raised a ruckus that hasn’t been heard in the neighborhood for a long time.


Raise a noise unto the Lord in thanks!!!


Then the squirrel showed up!!!! KILL THE TREE RAT!!!


Dad, I just want a ball like Lad’s.. its sooooo much fun!


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When Ellie moved here her favorite trick was to grab the end of the toilet paper and strut through the house happily like she had a treasure as the roll unrolled and wound itself around everything she strutted around! 🙂

It was I guess her way of letting us know she was here…


-This is a picture of Trevor with his daughter Branwen behind him. He is looking up at me.  When Trevor first moved in with us he spent the first day and a half awake and worrying about what would happen here at the Meadow.  You see he wasn’t used to being inside a house and he found it a bit disconcerting.  BUt, he finally took a long nap and came to love it here at his forever home.


When Laddie moved here he slept in a shoebox.  The first night I tried to put him in bed with us and he spent the night trying to rip out my hair, chew on my toes and fingers and trying to wrestle with me.  Laddie rarely took a nap but when he did he kinked out totally. Here he is with Sadie… who was greatly annoyed by him taking a nap on her.  But, she grumbled and went to sleep herself… LOL

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Hi, its me Lad!!!! Let me talk to you about my ball!


Dad gave this ball to me when I was almost a year old….. that was almost 6 years ago. 🙂

It is a association football that the leather cover pieces fell off or were chewed off, the inner liner is now gone and it has had three bladders put in it….


Dad had tried multiple times to replace my old ball…. but I whine, I throw  fit and I refuse to look at a new ball….. so he has accepted that this is the only ball I ever will want…. so he fixes up the Jesus Ball (its been resurrected how many times now?) or the Frankenstein ball as it is also called.   He says its mine till I die.  Then, he will bury it with me…. so I can play with it in the afterlife…


Its ugly, its horrific, its terrible looking… but its mine…. and its all I have.  My only earthly possession and I love it….  Dad wanted me to tell my story about my ball and there it is.. I have spent countless hours  playing with it and it never grows old… my favorite thing is when I go to give it to dad and as he reaches for it I run away.. hehehehe…. love driving him crazy! 🙂  So, if any of you ever come around here you can play ball with me…

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He was the hero of many of Terhune stories and had three books about him.  What did the real Lad look like?  In the above picture you see starting on your left, Bruce, then Wolf, the Lass and then on the far right Lad.  Yes, that is the real Lad.

In this picture in the front is the real Lad again. Behind Terhune is Bruce and standing up is Wolf.

Sunnybank Lad

Another picture of the real Lad.  To me he reminds me of our Anya in his face and ears. His fur reminds me of my Trevor and big Hallie with long curly hair that is thick. 🙂 So, this is the real Lad of Sunnybank, the collie who was the bravest, smartest and most heroic of them all.  As you can see he is not a perfect show dog, but more the old farm collie style…..   His line ended with Wolf who died a heroic death.  Lad lived to be over 16 years old, a nice long life for a collie who had so many adventures.  He has been gone for around 95 years now…  You can visit and see his grave at Sunnybank to this day.  Terhune liked to relate that once a General of the US Army, apparently a famous one, came to Sunnybank to see Lad’s grave.  I remember Terhune saying the General stood at attention and saluted Lad and said that Lad was the greatest soldier of them all.  At first it doesnt make sense, but think about how the stories of Lad he fought for good and for Sunnybank loyally and with true dedication all his life.. yeah, General (Pershing?) had it right. 🙂

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As we head along the trail from the hut where Trevor and I sat and became friends… we come up to a trail on the left…. to the right is a special place we will come back soon to see, but to the left is a trail I call Niamh’s trail. She loved this trail and all of the collies love strutting down it for it is rugged, hilly and beautiful.  Cedars everywhere… high ground on the right, lower ground which is a swamp to the left as we walk on this low path….. When I walk this trail I love the beauty and adventure but I always become a bit sad for I remember Niamh…..

NT-1This is a place where they teach students about nature and the trail goes on behind these seat stumps….

NT-2We are going down the trail and you can see the slant of the ground and its always green with pines and cedars all year….



NT-3Lil Hallie and Lad looking at it all and enjoying it immensely….









nt-4The trail ends here and swing up a steep hill to the right… but here are the twin Cedars we love to see. Actually they are 3 Cedars as you can see if you look closely that the one on the left actually was two trees which grew together… 🙂  We have picnicked under here and rested and enjoyed the beauty.  It is fun when it is just the collies and I, or my family with us or when my friend Georgia goes with us.  Soo, I will have to take my friend with us for she loves walking too… since it is getting into the walking season here it wont be long before we go several times a week again… 🙂

NT-5These Cedars are huge for Cedars… if you look closely the one on the right was broken off in a big storm years ago, but she still lives and thrives which makes my day everytime I see her.

We will now head back to where Niamh’s trail began and we will go to a spot Trevor and I discovered together…. or as I call it, Grandmother Cedar…..   its a special trail to get there and I can’t wait to show you the matriarch of the nature center….

walk 4This is a picture from a very long time ago with Niamh….. it has to be at least 13 years ago……  a collie’s lifetime… it makes me pause since Niamh has now been gone 7 years…. you would think I would not miss her as much as I do…..


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The other day it was cold, rainy and windy and we packed up Lil Hallie and Laddie to go to the nature center for a walk.  We have walked at the nature center for 20 years…..Lil Hallie walked with Trevor at the end of his life and Laddie learned walking from Trevor when he was a puppy.  This was our first trip there since before Trevor passed and I had some mixed emotions.  It is sort of like letting go the last part of Trevor…. I miss him everyday and its hard sometimes, but life has to go on.

Do, we packed them into my truck and off we went.  Hallie in the back looking out the back window like her grandmother Hallie did, Lad with his head between the front seats looking at where we are going and whining on and off as he is impatient.

We pull up and Lad perks up and by his face I know he recognized the place after all these years.  Lil Hallie did too….  We unloaded them and headed for the trail with lil Hallie trying to cut of Lad and guide him where she wanted him to go (her grandmother Hallie did this to Trevor all the time!) and Lad watering everything in site and then strutting ahead of lil Hallie (just like Trevor did to big Hallie) so it was eerily a deja vu moment!

pines beginningAs we came up on the opening in the pines I could smell pine and the wonderful fall smells. The pines are much prettier than in the picture for they are tall and green and it gives it a mysterious dark look as we walk the curvy trail into the forest.  Ah, the cool crisp air felt good and my mind thought of Trevor and I missed him but I also wanted to make this fun so I said a prayer under my breath and talked to him and move along.

past the pinesAs we moved around the curve into a small glen Lad was trying to figure out what to water as lil Hallie looked up and then smiled her glee!  As you look on the ground you will see between the plants these little pine like plants growing up about 4 inches high. I do not know what they are called but I sure would love to have some in my Japanese Garden at home.. they are so cool….

past the pines 2As we rounded a bend we came back into the woods and ahead of us you can see the trail curves left or right.  To the Right I call it the Hallie and Trevor trail… it is curvy, hilly, narrow and since it was wet very slippery. So we went to the left towards the enchanted forest…..  Lad as you can see is looking back for I stopped to take the picture and he is impatient.. LOL

The color is past the prime at the nature center while we are at the top of our colors 12 miles south of here…

toenchanted forestA mile down the trail we are coming up to a bend in the distance.  Around that is the entrance to the wonderful Enchanted Forest….. Nimah loved strutting through here.. Trevor would do his twinkle toes power walks and lil hallie and lad moved in unison at a quick pace…. on this trail one time I found a dead Red Tail Hawk….  look into this picture in the center and you will see two trees the trail bends just past there and the world changes…. the enchanted forest you see is a pine forest full of red pines and it has moss, red pine needles and black dirt with fallen trees and depending on which angle the sun is at it will be dark, or glow red or glow green.  The enchanted forest is also unique in that when you enter it is deadly quiet… like someone turns off the sound… strange.. but I love it there.. especially in the fog…. or in the snow….. it is fantastic.. and tomorrow you will learn more about it and see it…

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Yesterday my wife was watching TV and it was a musical and she was singing along.  Laddie was sitting at her feet and he finnaly turned and looked at her and vented his disapproval of her singing.  Those who have read here for a while know that Lad does not howl or make the usual sounds, he actually tries to mouth words and changes his tones and it sounds like he is talking, although I can’t make out the words.

Well, he started making sounds and trying to mouth words and his tone strongly suggested he did not like her singing!!!  So, she stopped and told Lad that she was going to sing whether he liked it or not.  Lad just glared at her.

So, she started singing again and he looked at her disapprovingly and then in a louder and more agitated tone proceeded to complain about her singing and voice his disapproval!  Finally, the look on his face, his tone and the sounds he was making made my wife stop for she could not take his unhappiness.  After she had stopped he looked at her for a long time and finally flopped over on his side and went to sleep.,,,, happily!!!!

I just watched in disbelief and laughed for thats my Laddie…. getting his say into the fray!


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We named our Ellie after this Sunnybank Collie not only because it is a favorite story of mine but to remind ourselves what is really important with the collies……


Blind Fair Ellen by Albert Payson Terhune-taken from Baltimore Sun Magazine 1933

Sunnybank Fair Ellen was a strange little golden collie, a dog that never saw a glimmer of light. She was born blind – as are all dogs – and she remained blind throughout more than a decade of such gay happiness as falls to the lot of few collies or humans. When the other pups of the litter opened their eyes, Fair Ellen’s lids remained tight shut. A week of so later they opened. But expert vets found there were dead optic nerves behind. There seemed to be but one merciful thing to do. I loaded my pistol to put her out of her misery. It was my wife who intervened, reminding me that Fair Ellen had no “misery” to be put out of – that she was the gladdest and liveliest member of the litter.

When the six-week-old family of pups were turned loose in the huge “puppy yard,” they began at once to explore this immense territory of theirs. At almost every fifth step Fair Ellen’s hobbyhorse gallop would bring her into sharp contact with the food dish, the fence wires or some other obstacle which her four brothers avoided with ease. Always she would pick herself up after such a collision with tail wagging and fat golden body wriggling as if at some rare joke. Not once did she whimper or fail to greet each mishap merrily.

Then I noticed that never did she collide with the same obstacle a second time. Coming close to food dish or the like, she would make a careful detour. In less than a week she had learned the location of every obstacle, big or small, in the yard. She could traverse the whole space at a gallop – without once colliding with anything. It was not a spectacular stunt, perhaps. But to me it seemed – and still seems – a minor miracle.

It was the same, presently, when I took her out of the puppy yard for a walk with me. Into tree trunks and into building corners and posts and benches and shrubbery clumps the poor little dog bungled, but never into one a second time. Bit by bit I enlarged our daily rambles. I was teaching her the lay of the whole forty-acre place. And never did a pupil learn faster. Within a few weeks Ellen could gallop all over the lawns and the orchard and the oak groves and could even canter along close to the many-angled kennel yards and stable buildings without a single collision. She had some nameless sense. I don’t know what it was; but by reason of it I often saw her stop dead, short not six inches from a wall or a solid fence toward which she had been galloping at express-train speed.

It was on one of these educational rambles of ours that her fast-running feet carried her into the lake up to her neck. With a gay bark she began to swim. Most dogs, on their first immersion in lake or river, swim high and awkwardly, buy Ellen took to water with perfect ease, as to a familiar element. She swam out for perhaps a hundred feet. Then she hesitated. I called her by name. She turned and swam back to shore, to my feet, steering her sightless course wholly by memory of my single call. Thereafter her daily swim was one of Ellen’s chief joys.

I noted something else in my hours of unobserved watching. That yard full of collie pups was one of the roughest and most bumptious of all the hundreds of litters I have bred and raised; play was strenuous almost to the point of mayhem. Yet when Fair Ellen joined in the romps, as always she did when she was in the yard with them, they were absurdly gentle, awkwardly gentle; very evidently they were seeking not to hurt her.

Ellen invented queer little games which she played, for the most part, all alone. One of these was to listen to the winnowing of the homecoming pigeons’ wings. The birds might be flying so high as to make this winnowing inaudible to human ears, but Ellen would hear. Always she would set off in pursuit, running at full speed directly under the pigeons, swerving and circling when they swerved and circled, guided wholly by that miraculous hearing of hers – the same sense of ear which told her from exactly what direction a thunderstorm was coming, long before we could hear thunder.

A veterinarian told me there was no reason to think Fair Ellen’s blindness would be carried on to any puppies she might have. He was right. She had several litters of pups during her twelve years, and every pup had perfect sight and perfect health in every way. I sat up with her all night when her first puppies were born. There were nine of them. She did not seem to have the remotest idea what or whose they were. The night was bitterly cold. Ellen for once in her life was jumpy, with taut nerves. For many hours I had a man-sized job keeping her quiet and keeping the nine babies from dying of chill. At last, long after sunrise, Ellen began groping about her with her nose, snuggling the puppies close to her furry, warm underbody and making soft, crooning noises at them. Then I knew that my task had ended; that her abnormally keen ears had caught Mother Nature’s all-instructive whisper. Thereafter she was an ideal little mother.

As the years crawled on, Ellen’s jollity and utter joy with life did not abate. Gradually her muzzle began to whiten; gradually the sharp teeth dulled from long contact with gnawed bones. Her daily gallops grew shorter, but the spirit of puppy-like fun continued to flare.

One afternoon Ellen and I went for one of our daily rambles – the length of which was cut down nowadays by reason of her increasing age. She was in dashing high spirits and danced all around me. We had a jolly hour loafing about the lawns together. Then, comfortably tired, she trotted into her yard and lay down for her usual late afternoon nap. When I passed by her yard an hour later she was still lying stretched out there in the shade. But for the first time in twelve years the sound of my step failed to bring her eagerly to her feet to greet me. This was so unusual that I went into the yard and bent down to see what was amiss.

Quietly, without pain, still happy, she had died in her sleep

You can read more about her in SUNNYBANK HOME OF LAD and in THE WAY OF A DOG by Albert Payson Terhune, two great books!

Sunnybank Fair Ellen

Now, the first big selling book was Lad, a dog.  Here is a link to a photographic copy you can read online.  To read go here;


I hope this is helpful.  These books are from a different era.  But, I love them immensely.  Perhaps it is because I am a collie lover, perhaps it is because many of the collies he writes about were ancestors of the wild, crazy bunch I live with now.  Whatever it is, I love these books and I hope you may find enjoyment from them also or that perhaps someone you know who loves animals will like them too….

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