Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Korra--MY FEELS, music

So my free time has been consumed with Legend of Korra fanart. I spent my day off Sunday laying in bed with a sore back watching Firefly and drawing Korra. Today I drew Bolin, Mako and Korra...can you guess who my favorite is? Yeah.

I could go into a big rant about how this is the best show ever with the best animation, world building, background paintings, character designs, character development, etc but that's boring. So here, have some music suggestions instead as an apology for disappearing due to adjusting to a full work week and such:

Also this is kind of a "behind the scenes" to my art I suppose, since I listened to a mix that included these songs and a few others while drawing above picture, which includes the progress art. So there you go...a soundtrack for an illustration.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Wat is a "Life"

I finally got a job as a designer! I work at a print shop doing design. It's awesome. But now I work 6 days a week, and am beat when I get home, then I play with Mason to wear him out and then I'm DEAD. I'm still working on a personal piece and a comic in the meantime, so it's been a hectic past week. Sorry I've fallen off of the blog-o-sphere, but eh. Hopefully soon a scanner will be in my mitts so I can show some progress on the corgi comic and personal piece. :) In the meantime...I am alive!

My friend's mom, Vickie and I rescued a little corgi (or mix?) from a shelter today. I submitted paperwork, she went and got him and is fostering! He has a HUGE growth on his neck and I think that's the only reason he wasn't adopted, because he is HELLA cute. Meet Buckshot:

He is 3 years old, and needs to be neutered and have his second head removed. He is well behaved, gets along with dogs and ignores cats and is housetrained (from what we're told). He is very friendly and sweet and will look sooo handsome with that lovely lady lump removed. If you are interested in adopting this guy once his junk n junk is removed, feel free to email me at 23spades@gmail.com and I will forward you an application. :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Second Dog Solved

I'm still a little leery to post this since it will seem final and I'm still thinking it's too good to be true, BUT: Justin is going to move to Austin (my eventual hopeful destination as well) and he has found roommates but they don't want a dog. He is willing to find another place to live, but he offered Olive back to me to both make it easier on him, and because I've been still checking up on her and miss her every day. My dear friend Shannon even offered to drive her up if she could stay for a while, and I said HELL YES.

So I'll be getting my little girl back! I'm so thrilled. It has to wait either until my parents cave under me begging to let her come back and stay in their house, or until I move out (undetermined. If he moves to Austin before I move out I'm sure they'd let her come or I could find a foster situation, which I'd rather not do.) Here's my little furry demon red-headed tri pem girl:

A little about Olive: I rescued her back in August, she was dumped in an animal shelter from what I'm guessing is from a breeder as a few others that look just like her have popped up there--usually females that have obviously been bred. I had also been told by someone in Bowling Green that there IS a man who gets rid of his females when they can no longer have puppies. Olive is only about 19 pounds, and looks like she only had 1 litter, so I'm assuming maybe that first litter didn't work for her, because she is SO TINY. Even for a corgi she is little.

She is very grouchy, protests to anyone touching her butt without her consent and makes awful choking demon noises when she's excited about another dog. I MISS HER SO MUCH!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Mason and Xena

Mason and Xena! My BFF Allison and I took our corgs to the park yesterday. Xena has a tendency to bolt when she feels playful, so I began a search for a fenced in area (since Broadway, VA isn't exactly dog park central) when I thought to ask my cousin (who is playing softball now) if any field in Broadway was fenced in, and THERE WAS ONE! We went down to the Timberville park by the river and one was COMPLETELY fenced in. We were thrilled.

They had a blast, and it's the first time since I left Olive that I got to see Mason's cardigan ass play with a pembroke (or whatever he is, I'm going to say cardigan since he still looks a hell of a lot like a cardigan (for example). Since I can't prove his pureness due to being rescued it's easier to say cardigan for now, as that's still what I personally believe. I guess that's the problem with most rescues--no papers to prove it, so what can ya do? And that is my makeshift explanation of why I bounce back and forth on it, but still retain that he's a cardigan.)

ANYWAYS. Seeing Xe run around made me miss my Olive so much. As much as I still want a catahoula mix, I may end up getting a Pem from a breeder like I originally planned. I guess whatever happens happens, and as with Mason the right dog will come along at the right time. No use rushing it. :) And in the meantime I can see Xena!!!! She's such a cutie. She and Mason have the same quirks--especially the "I'm going to lay down when you say sit. Derp." and the running around in circles while playing (play herding). Gotta love the corgz.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Waiting for October

There's a point when a memory is recalled so many times that it becomes just a few images or a sound. Sometimes I try to grasp for those things so many times that it just becomes a mess in my mind.

One thing that's good about things you remember from your youth is they seem to be more associated with feelings than the later ones, or I feel that way in my case. One thing that always strikes a nostalgic chord with me is Polaris, and I've been listening to them a lot lately.

I get the natural images and memories from The Adventures of Pete and Pete, and everything associated with my pre teen years: like riding my bike on a summer's day to my friend's house down the street, where she had just assembled a tree house with her sister out of a literal tree that had fallen over in a recent storm.

She had perfectly pushed the leaves around to form rooms and cut windows by removing branches and forming holes. There were even doors assembled out of branches snapped and placed in the hallways. There were also many many ticks and other bugs, but that didn't seem to matter. This was cool, this was great and this was timeless.

We wanted drinks eventually and we went into her house, which also had these tiny hallways--obviously where she based her architectural preferences. We climbed up them in that way you always attempt as a kid--feet on one wall, pushing your back to the adjacent one and wedging yourself up near the ceiling. Her hallways were much more narrow than my own, so this was entirely possible and entirely BADASS since we would drop down and attempt some kind of ultimate ninja move in the process.

After this we went back down the road to my house on our bikes and met up with the girl that lived across the road from me. It had flooded everywhere so we waded in the disgusting standing water in the ditches by the road, probably filled with bacteria and diseases. Then I found a dead decomposed snake skeleton along the road, picked up a vertebrae with a stick and washed it in the stagnant water, satisfied that it was clean enough to touch.

We went up to the neighbor's house who lived on top of the hill in the woods and jumped on her trampoline. Her kids had grown up and moved away, so she was always fine with us using it at our discretion. What was great was the fact that the way up the hill to her house was thick with trees. Scattered throughout were these little piles of feathers, as if a bird had just exploded there. In the back of my mind I knew it was a fox or a coyote, but birdsplotion sounded cooler. Once we arrived where the trampoline was placed, it was completely open to fields and mountains on the other side of the hill.

We would lay there until the sun set, knowing it was time to go home once it was dark, but it was never really completely dark there. You could always see every star.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


I never really gave Weezer's new(ish) album, Raditude, a chance since I really didn't like Make Believe and I felt like nothing could compare to Pinkerton (plus I thought the album title was super lame). But, I'm finding myself more and more addicted to this song:

Now if I only could get past it and listen to the rest of the album. Oh, and the album cover is awesome

Monday, April 9, 2012

Rawhides: The Things You Might Not Actually Wanna Give To Your Dog

So I was debating for a while if I wanted to post about this, because I saw it only as my opinion and I don't want to seem like it's all around wrong to give your dog rawhides, but this lengthy article has made me change my mind and post about it, because I feel like you can feed your dog whatever you please, but many people don't know about the dangers of rawhide so it's at least worth bringing up.

I used to give Mason rawhides, but my friend Shannon talked about her corgi, Hiro, swallowed one whole once and almost choked. After this I started hearing online about how they have caused intestinal blockage quite a few times. At this point I stopped buying rawhides, and switched to knee bones and bully sticks, or just filling up a Kong.

I don't really like to share or talk about nasty food facts, but this is one worth mentioning from the article;

"Other poisonous residues that may show up in rawhide include arsenic and formaldehyde. Even dog skin is a possibility. An ongoing investigation of the fur trade by Humane Society International, an arm of the HSUS, resulted in this information, as listed on their website: “In a particularly grisly twist, the skins of brutally slaughtered dogs in Thailand are mixed with other bits of skin to produce rawhide chew toys for pet dogs. Manufacturers told investigators that these chew toys are regularly exported to and sold in U.S. stores.” "

And as I stated before, on top of that there's the risk for intestinal blockage. Rawhides don't digest like normal food, and if one has been swallowed whole or in large pieces it can possibly create a cause for surgery.

Obviously they're not an end-all-be-all you're dog's gonna die danger, but it's something I totally wasn't aware of.

Mason's Park Days

I took Mason and my niece and nephew to the park the other day, which is what most of these photos are from. Two are from us just taking a walk down a main road and then a dirt road. Anyways, Mason proved his teenagerdom on the park day--he was a total scamp. He ran around and would play frisbee but when the kids were running around he started following them and jogging circles around them holding his frisbee like "this is fun! We're having fun! What are we doing? Is this fun? I'm coming up there. Wait up. Where are you going? THIS IS FUN." And would not, even if I was probably on fire, listen to me. He even got on the playset and went down the SLIDE. Weird ass dog.

Anyways he's back to listening and falling over if he's in trouble as of the past few days. I took him to the park to play frisbee in the abandoned baseball field and we saw a few dogs. I need to take more photos of the baseball field--my brother played softball there and it's really neat, it's off of the main strip in Broadway which when you go behind it it just looks like this nice neat row of houses next to a road, then there are train tracks between it and the field. On the other side there are trees and a river a bridge. I dunno, it's just a really cool setting. (You can kinda tell in the first photo what I'm talking about).

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Mason Walking

Just a fun video of Mason walking. His tail gets weirder by the day--first he held it up like a flag, now it's getting more fur so it's heavier and does this floppy half curl that most of the time comes down and touches his back like a scorpion tail. Also you get to see his little drumstick legs moving, which is always funny.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Prepping For the Worst

Today someone mentioned on the CorgiPals facebook announcement of the new fundraiser for the several corgis that all need help at once about having CP be a resource for preparing for these kinds of disasters as well as helping out. I thought this was a great idea, and I'm going to work on a pitch for that here, and keep editing it in the future. So...that's what this is.

I think something many people should consider (including myself) is setting up an emergency fund for your dog. One thing I've realized being involved in CorgiPals is the worst CAN and WILL happen, and if a place like CP isn't available to help, it's a good idea to have an amount set aside for things like this. From what I've seen emergency medical expenses can range anywhere from 100-3000 dollars. I think something I'm going to implement in the future gaining of a dog is putting back 15 bucks a month for the first 2 years of owning him. That gives 360 bucks, which is a good start towards a down payment for any large issues that may arise. (Such as eating something, cancer, DM, ANYTHING).

Another option that I'm aware of is CareCredit. If your vet offers it, it's basically a credit card for large vet bills. I need to do a bit more research into it, but I believe there's no interest for the first 6 months. This in combination with a little bit of a fund set back can really make all the difference in being prepared for any shit hitting the fan. And hey...if it doesn't, then you have a little extra cash, so it's a win-win, amirite?

Of course I don't think these are at all necessary to pet ownership, and honestly I don't have the extra funds to set back for Mason, but I am aware of the CareCredit option and plan on using it if anything ever happens to him. I'm hoping to research a few more assistance programs like CareCredit for people like me, who are broke ass college grads who just want to know there are ways to survive a dog getting super ill and not get stressed at the thought and feel unprepared.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

PetVetID Review

PetVetID is a business started by my friend, Tavia. Right now it just needs networking, so I thought I'd write an honest review now that I have my card:

What PetVetID offers is a card with all of your pets information on it, for easy access at vets and emergency clinics. I sent Tavia a copy of my records for Mason and she whipped this up--it has my name and address, Mason's breed (or what I'm guessing he is for now, he's either a cardi or a mix!), his age, sex, if he's fixed, weight, medications he may take and any medical conditions he may have.

On the back are his vaccines, card expiration and Microchip information, including his personal URL and one of those smart phone photo link thingies!:

I have yet to register my account, but basically you go register on the website and the url listed becomes the pets url for easy access to all of this information.

For 9.99 a year (to keep everything updated and current, you would need to replace your card yearly), you get all of THIS--a handy way to be prepared in an emergency for your pet. And because they are laminated cards that are the same size as your average drivers license, they fit easily into your wallet.

I would recommend these to anyone--it's a great thing to have, it's cheap and it's an extra layer of security for your pet. Please check them out! I love mine, the quality is great! Plus I get to carry around a little ID card for my dog in my wallet, and nothing is cuter than that.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Mason Sucks and a Rant

Mason went to an Easter Egg hunt today, and he sucked. He was too busy pulling and regressing in his good behavior because of all the other dogs he couldn't go say hi to to find any eggs. It was awful.

But in other news, I was talking to Cara today about how I was going to write an entry about weight earlier when I realized it wasn't really anything about myself, I was just kind of being critical of others caring about it, and I didn't want anyone to get offended--plus this a blog about myself, so I should reserve it for things about myself. I just worry that people focus so much on the way they look that they lose sight of how beautiful they are--and that's my opinion on that.

In other-other news, I got an awesome new hoodie. Target is having a sale on their men's Mossimo hoodies in tons of cool colors. I got a medium to fit over my big ol' hips, but it's cotton so I'm hoping it will shrink a bit since the top is baggy. I want to go get a hilighter yellow one too...

I guess to connect a photo of myself to the aforementioned weight discussion, since why the heck not, I know I'm not the prettiest person alive. I don't try to be. I don't wear makeup, I try to burp as loud as possible and my glasses and shoes are always dirty. I eat whatever I please and I wear tshirts more than I do dresses. But I don't feel like I need to look a certain way to validate myself--I don't care. I just wish people would not care too, because everyone is amazing and beautiful in their own way.

Unless you're a douche, in which case SUCK IT!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

My Day Off

I love taking pictures of Mason playing frisbee. My parent's backyard is so photogenic with the green grass and the patches of dirt and the weeds and the shadows from the trees.

Also here's Mason and I from earlier today:

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

My Boy's All Grown Up!

I don't really have any exciting new pictures to go with this, but Mason has graduated to not needing his crate! He could've probably ditched it months ago, but I waited to be safe since we just moved into a new home.

I finally started a job at my cousin's store, so I've been gone most days lately from 10-6. Today I really wanted to get out after work, so my mom fed him and I went immediately from work to eat with Allison and her boyfriend, Evan, and then went to The Hunger Games. She put him in my room when she went to bed, and I came home to him laying on my pants I left on my bed wagging his tail. She also left him alone earlier while she was at work, and came back to him on my bed. I'm glad to know he's missing me while I'm gone!

I'm very proud of him, I'm glad he is finally calm enough to be trusted alone while I'm gone! I'm sad to say this, but he's growing up! I guess he's still technically a puppy for another few months to a year, but he feels like he's in his young adult phase. :) He's not a baby anymore! YAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!! Time for another!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Bike Check

Cara told me to put Beetlejuice up on The Pedal Room! After having her explain to me what it is, here's the page! I still haven't looked to see what type of brake I'm runnin', I haven't gotten to ride between the rainy days and working. But there it is!

Reprimanding Your Pup

I know reprimanding your dog is a controversial subject, and I'm kind of worried about talking about it but I'm going to talk about what works for me.

I will not and do not hit my dog. Don't hit YOUR dog. It's not ok. I spanked Mason ONCE in his whole life, I'll be honest--he ran out the front door and almost got hit by a car. I was so upset and mad at him almost killing himself I whopped him on the bottom like my dad used to do to me when I was little. I immediately felt like a shit head, but needless to say he has yet to run out the door like that ever again. But that is not the way to teach your dog not to do something--he'll associate it with something bad, he often won't understand the connection between the two things, and it can make him afraid. It's just not a good combination, and that was my BIG mistake.

Now fortunately, I was blessed with a puppy that immediately responded to a negative tone of voice. By consistently using that to reprimand him, (a firm "NO MASON.") he quickly developed a shamed look whenever someone told him no. One thing I did subconsciously that I've happily seen develop into his form of reprimanding is the fact that I ALWAYS snapped my fingers whenever he was not listening and he needed to do what I was saying before I whipped out the angry voice.

This leads to the reason why I decided to write this post--as he's 1 year old, I've started to notice things that work for him. When he doesn't listen, I snap my fingers and repeat the command and he does it. When he's out to pee and wants to sniff something and I snap and say "COME" loudly he'll come running. I had never noticed it before, but I guess I accidentally clicker trained my dog with my snaps. I think it's a good method--just as you reward when your dog does something right, it's good to have something associated with when he does something bad, so he knows quickly to correct.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Mason's Identiy Crisis

(Mason dealing with his identity crisis. "WHO AM I? WHAT AM I? WHY CAN'T I EAT ALL OF THE THINGS?")

I have always been of a firm belief that Mason is a Cardigan Welsh Corgi. When he was little, the vet's concurred. My discussion with a breeder went well, but it all depended upon his 1 year mark onward as to if he would fill out and look the part. Well...he isn't. He's built leaner all over--legs, chest, stomach, face, everything. His ears are still set too high.

When he was younger a lot of people asked if he was a Border Collie mix, but I didn't buy it. I've seen "Borgis" as they're called and he doesn't fit the type. Then I looked into the Karelian Bear Dog breed. It'd be a longshot if he were a Karelian Bear Dog Corgi mix, but it seems like it! He looks just like one, but with bigger corgi ears, short corgi legs and the corgi personality. Karelians even seem to have that underlying brown in their coat like he does.

At this point, that's probably my best guess. He's still my guy, and who knows what he really is, I can't prove a thing about his lineage since he came from a shelter.

Below are examples of the two breeds--a C-Myste Purebred Cardigan and a purebred Karelian bear dog. I feel like Mason is if the two of them had a baby:

After his initial emotional breakdown after I told him I suspect him to be part Karelian, or just not all corgi, he seems to be adjusting fine:

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Dog Fur and How to Deal

If you have a dog like mine, you have fur on your everything. Mason has a double coat and is always shedding. His fur isn't sticky like a cats though, so it falls right off of my shirts, but I still make sure to brush him at least once a week. I can't recommend the Furminator enough. I know a lot of people pimp it, but seriously it deserves its hype. They're pricey, but worth it in my opinion. Cara was telling me how she liked the kinda rakey-circle types, and the design is much like that, but with two layers of the rakes, and I believe they're finer and it just works really well.

I do have to say do NOT over Furminate. I've heard of it damaging coats, but I think that's from just going overboard. No matter what you do, you will always pull out fur. Know when to stop, and you're good go! I've found this is the best at getting out the dead fur, preventing a lot of shedding and it's not painful for Mason. Normal wire brushes he hates and I can tell it hurts him, but this just seems to go fine, even if he does get bugeyed every time I brush:

I e-mailed Furminator to see if they'd send me free products to review, since I'm too broke to afford their other new brushes, but I doubt that's gonna happen. A girl can dream though! But I've heard their curry combs are equally as awesome at smoothing out the fur after the initial combin'.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Secret Project

Cara and I have a secret project in the works--a hopeful webcomic! I won't reveal many details, mostly because we're still working on it, but it's gonna be sweet. It's kind of on the backburner at the moment since we're both pretty busy, but it's ALWAYS in the back of my mind. I spent a few days nonstop doodling for it, and we figured out the designs for the main characters!

The last pic was one of the many tossed designs for her, we went with a shorter ponytail to kind of give an approachable appearance--one thing I really wanted was a girl that wasn't typically pretty. Someone relatable. She has a bandana to mirror her dogs bandana, and she wears jean shorts and kicks. Her dog is a mix of our dogs, he has Didgeridoo's coloring and one floppy ear, medium length legs and he has Mason's pointy ear and his blaze! I think they make an adorable baby.

To give a brief hint, it's a girl-and-dog adventure story with some mythical overlays and it's going to be set in Australia!

EDIT: 3/27/12: Here's an illustration of the two main characters by Cara! I LOVE IT: