On the Iditarod Trail (More)

Why are we so enthusiastic about Snowhook, our team in the Iditarod? Just read Rebecca’s overnight race report and you’ll know.

The team has arrived safely in Ruby, the first checkpoint on the mighty Yukon, and the second of our dropped dogs are now home. I picked up Natty, a lead dog today. She is currently on the loveseat and snoring.

The team made quick work of the run from Cripple to Ruby which is no surprise on the hard and fast trail. I expect him to rest the team for several hours before continuing down the Yukon River onto Galena. Pacing the team does not merely mean riding the brake to keep the team at a steady gait rather than running too fast. Pacing is also about what AJ does when he’s off the trail.

Whether he’s camping on the trail or resting the team at a checkpoint, AJ will tend to the dogs quickly so the dogs can get as much rest as possible. He will give each dog straw to communicate to the dogs that resting is the name of the game. While snow melts in his cooker and he prepares a meal of kibble and meat, AJ will remove booties from the dogs’ feet and examine each member of the team. He will rub their muscles and paws with ointments, and cover them with dog jackets and blankets. This routine is all about efficiency. The quicker he tends to the dogs, the more they are able to rest. When his chores are complete, he will tend to his own stomach, any equipment repairs, and eventually, his own heavy eyelids. Depending on how long he intends to rest the team, AJ’s work will begin again in a few short hours as he prepares another meal for the dogs, re-examines each dog, and puts booties on 64 paws.


Melanie remains in our hearts.

And, thanks to ML, more of what it looks like up there:



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This entry was posted on Saturday, March 8th, 2014 at 8:50 am and is filed under Chet The Dog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

183 Responses to “On the Iditarod Trail (More)”

  1. B. Stover
    9:00 am on March 8th, 2014

    I’m chuckling at the image of Natty on the loveseat snoring. Thank you for the report Rebecca and Spence.

    Love the picture of the hoarfrost ML.

    (I don’t enjoy being a lurker.)

    Good morning all.

  2. Herd of Hounds
    9:03 am on March 8th, 2014

    Good morning, everyone! Thank you, Rebecca, for the insight into the grueling schedule. We know you and AJ truly love the Snowhook dogs. The next time mom whines about 3 members of the nation within, the POP and sushi, someone please, slap her upside the head with Rebecca’s post.
    Have a sun on snow Saturday (for AJ, any way).

  3. Tupper and Gilly
    9:05 am on March 8th, 2014

    Hi Bee! Good to have you back among the posters.

    Sure wish you were coming to the Plunder Part too.

    And now off for gluten free grocery shopping.

  4. Buddy and Leno
    9:25 am on March 8th, 2014

    Morning folks of all legged varieties. Tell you what, that schedule just makes me tired reading it!

    So in not too long, Leno and I go to find a new kitty friend. Hopefully this one will stand up to Fiona and smack her upside the head once when she goes into holy terrier mode. Jasper’s getting more confident, he comes downstairs now immediately after Fiona goes up to bed, and people don’t make him too nervous anymore. Just Fiona. I’m sure he’ll be fine with new kitty, Leno will be very enthusiastic about meeting him or her.

    Nice hearing from the hounds and Dawson.

    And, now that I know for sure what’s happening with Melanie, our prayers are with her for her peaceful transition, and with her family of course.

  5. Barb & Maggie
    10:08 am on March 8th, 2014

    Good morning all. Nice reporting as always from Rebecca.

    Bee nice to hear from you again. And of course B & L, glad you are back.

    We agree, Barb is never going to complain about wiping paws when it is wet or muddy outside!

    Thinking of Melanie and her family this morning.

  6. O'Howlers
    10:28 am on March 8th, 2014

    Good morning! Mom has to work today. Isn’t it Saturday??? 🙁
    Good update from Rebecca. Love Snowhook. Rebecca, why was Nattie dropped?
    Welcome back Bee !!!! We missed you you you!
    Ditto to Buddy and Leno.

  7. O'Howlers
    10:34 am on March 8th, 2014

    AJ left Galina. He has his mandatory 8 on the Yukon now.

  8. O'Howlers
    10:35 am on March 8th, 2014

    AJ left RUBY RUBY RUBY. He has his mandatory 8 on the Yukon now.

    sorry…multi-tasking never works.

  9. Barb & Maggie
    10:38 am on March 8th, 2014

    As Barb is preparing to pack and head out for her annual stock holder’s meeting with the Plunder Investment Group (P.I.G.) next week she had a random thought.

    There is a saying on Wall Street, which Chet would have fun with – “Bulls make money, Bears make money, but Pigs get slaughtered”. Ummmm, pondering….. maybe we should be the Plunder Investment Association, otherwise known as P.I.A., or maybe not!

  10. B. Stover
    10:58 am on March 8th, 2014

    Yes, I just received a musher alert that AJ left Ruby about a half hour ago.

    Thanks all for the welcome back. (T&G: I wish I could go to the Plunder Party also.)

  11. Herd of Hounds
    11:07 am on March 8th, 2014

    Breaking news: Energizer Bunny arrested: charges with battery!

  12. Wose-the small and meek
    11:20 am on March 8th, 2014


    Hurray! HRH, b is no longer a lurker!

    Pixie: Thank you for your daily reports.

    ML, such lovely pictures last night!

    Big love to our Purple Princess and her family!

  13. Wose-the small and meek
    11:21 am on March 8th, 2014

    HOHs: Snicker

  14. O'Howlers
    11:27 am on March 8th, 2014

    Hey, Pancho! Props to your Other Half! He is still on the team! Heading down the Yukon.

  15. Herd of Hounds
    11:27 am on March 8th, 2014

    Jodi and Mick: the people not the pups. Thanks for being in contact. We don’t know how to thank you enough for not only acceptance but for being there for Rebecca. We enjoyed our time with y’all and look forward to doing it again…Jodi, yours and mom’s McGuivers got on like a house on fire! Good news.

  16. Barb & Maggie
    11:32 am on March 8th, 2014

    We have decided that we like Fairy Dust better than hoarfrost. Sorry Bee, we know hoarfrost is correct, but it just has such a harsh sound to it.

    Howlers, How is Izzy doing with her broody-ness? Buffs are know for being excellent mothers, so they tend to get broody more than some other breeds. BTW, sometimes they will pick off their breast feathers so they can keep the eggs warmer, so don’t be alarmed if she does that.

  17. O'Howlers
    11:40 am on March 8th, 2014

    B&M, Thanks. I did think I saw her picking a feather off, and I noticed feathers in the nest box. We take her out of there every time we see her in it (a lot). At leat she is back to being her sweet self. When Mom got home from Alaska, she thought someone had switched out her best friend! Then she found out Pop had thought the same.
    Mom keeps telling her, sorry Isabel, but you are not going to have any babies.

  18. Masquers
    11:42 am on March 8th, 2014

    Regarding the number of dogs required to finish under the burled arch…Philip Walters posted this on F/b:
    I would not be surprised to see at least one or two teams scratch before the end of this race simply because they ran out of dogs. Iditarod rules require you to cross under the Burled Arch with 5 dogs still in harness, and several mushers are dangerously close to that minimum with still 400 miles to go in the race. 5 dogs is the requirement, but not terribly practical– with the required gear plus personal gear, food, etc. that has to be in each sled to make the trip, 5 dogs just won’t move very fast. I would expect to see some teams with more dogs move up in the rankings simply because they are capable of traveling faster.

  19. O'Howlers
    11:51 am on March 8th, 2014

    Hugh Neff is down to 8 dogs.
    Raymey Smyth dropped due to illness on his team. Here is the article:

  20. BearSpiritDog
    11:55 am on March 8th, 2014

    Yes! Fairy Dust is Magical & so are the Photos taken by our
    Alaskan Photographer Extraordinaire!

    B: You are a Lurker no more. Welcome back!
    (did you ever find out what the problem was?)

    Hounds: Energizer Bunny. Chortle. You are a Hoot!
    We won’t have a Sun-on-Snow Saturday here, but Hope to Have a Sunny One and Hope All of Youse do too!

  21. Masquers
    11:59 am on March 8th, 2014

    Howlers: Thanks for the link with more info on Ramey Smyth.
    We see John Dixon scratched in Ophir…that makes 15 mushers now out of the race.

  22. Herd of Hounds
    12:04 pm on March 8th, 2014

    AJ and Snowhook are running at 10 MPH along the Yukon river. Boy, those dogs want to run!

  23. Masquers
    12:15 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Does anyone know why some of the flags are a different color on the GPS map?

  24. B. Stover
    12:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Bear: No, I still don’t know what the problem was.

    “Hoar” derived from Old English “har” meaning old. (The connotation of old and white probably came later and was connected to frost.)

    “Fairy” derived from Latin “fatum” meaning fate. (In Greek and Roman mythology there were three goddesses who controlled human destiny and they were called the “Fates.”) After Disney who knows what happened.

  25. O'Howlers
    12:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We thought it had to do with someone being updated recently, but that was just an assumption. We could be all wet. or snowed. or something.

  26. BearSpiritDog
    12:29 pm on March 8th, 2014

    B: LOL.

  27. B. Stover
    12:35 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Masquers: Green flags represent mushers on the move. Orange flags are mushers who aren’t moving or whose GPS hasn’t sent in updated info. (I just looked this up on the Insider.)

  28. Herd of Hounds
    12:35 pm on March 8th, 2014

    HRH B: Yes, Disney could bastardize anything…and did!

  29. Siber-H
    12:37 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Great reporting from Rebecca about all the work and caring that happens when the musher and team stop for a rest.

    Masquers, Good Kat! You found the answer to our question about how many dogs can be on the team when they cross the finish line in Nome.

    Stover, Good to have you back with us.

  30. Masquers
    12:37 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Howlers: We here thought it might be the rookies, but then that didn’t make sense because of Lindner’s flag.
    Just now we were clued in to the fact of spelling Aliy’s name wrong…all this time saying Ally. Gah.
    She’s in the lead! GO ALIY!!!
    (if she is the first to Nome, it will be the first time a woman has won the race since…when & who?)
    Howlers, Siber…Help me out here.

  31. Masquers
    12:39 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you, B.

  32. Herd of Hounds
    12:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    *80’s? Susan B?

  33. Siber-H
    12:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Masquers, Since Susan Butcher, but I don’t remember the exact years. It was a long time ago.

  34. Herd of Hounds
    12:43 pm on March 8th, 2014

    1st woman to win=85, Libby Riddle
    86-90 Susan Butcher winner

  35. Siber-H
    12:43 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Masquers, 1990

  36. Herd of Hounds
    12:45 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Siber…jinx, owe us a coke

  37. Riö – The Evil Pug
    12:45 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Finally!…I get to sit down and check the race…snort!

  38. Herd of Hounds
    12:51 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Rio, so glad that this Sat. you are with us’all.

  39. Riö – The Evil Pug
    12:55 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Aliy!…Or Martin Buser will win this one…snort!…If Aliy wins it will make the news big-time…heh!heh!

  40. B. Stover
    12:56 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you Siber-H.

    HOH: One thing I tried to post yesterday but couldn’t was: Welcome back Sharon.

  41. Tupper and Gilly
    1:06 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Mama just came home with biggest, giganticist turkey in the whole world. She says she is gonna roast the heck out of it on Thursday for our Special Guests. This is just in case they are P.I.G.s. ( private joke – in order to get a good rate at the hotel Mama told them this was the annual meeting of the Plunderers’ Investment Group. The hotel sakes person wrote down P I G. Then looked up at Mama and grinned. )

  42. Herd of Hounds
    1:12 pm on March 8th, 2014

    HRH B: same back at ‘ya.
    We’re all together again, we’re here, we’re here.
    BUT, why does it take adversity to join us?
    This little piggy is PACKED and READY…like locked and loaded?

  43. Barb & Maggie
    1:15 pm on March 8th, 2014

    T & G, Did you see our post above about being PIGs? Barb suggested we could also be PIA’s ( aka Pain in the A**)No not us, NEVER!

  44. Thief!
    1:17 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Golinka is a Thief! at heart. I am certain of this. I love white lies. My Lady does not.

    The Giant does a lot of work while the team is resting. My Lady says he is always on the go, go, go and only stops to eat a gallon of ice cream. His metabolism is on overdrive, whatever that means.

  45. BearSpiritDog
    1:22 pm on March 8th, 2014

    P.I.G.’s! That is Hilarious, Golinka.
    (snicker. this could only happen to the plunderers)

  46. Herd of Hounds
    1:25 pm on March 8th, 2014

    After the giant eating 21/2 steaks at the mushers’ banquet (shhh..don’t tell Rebecca), why would a metabolism that one can control be a surprise?

  47. Herd of Hounds
    1:29 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Our Favorite Musher is at EXACTLY the half way point!
    GO SNOWHOOK. Keep the furry side up!

  48. Masquers
    1:29 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thanks you guys. We here thought it was Susan Butcher, but weren’t sure of the year.
    Riö: You are right about that! When she wins it will be HUGE news.
    We see Dallas Seavey is moving up fast but, according to race standings, hasn’t taken his mandatory 8 on the Yukon.

  49. Buddy and Leno
    2:06 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We’re back with new kitty friend. She’s nine months old, medium hair, brown and black or something, not very big, and very friendly and likes to be held. She met with Leno’s approval, or rather, he met with hers. When we were walking by the doors to the cat rooms, this one boldly walked up to the door and, really, stood nose to nose with Leno and didn’t flinch. Of course, Leno’s a pretty easy-going fella and makes friends easily. We just need a new name. Irma just will not do, no, not at all.

    Well…except, she’s gone into hiding. Good times with blind folks looking for hidden cats.

  50. O'Howlers
    2:08 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Masquers, women won 5 out of 6 years in the 90s. Mom had posted the exact years in fb the other day. We thought you saw it. Everyone is waiting for a woman to win again. They say the cheering for Aliy when she came in 2nd again last year was even louder than the cheering for Mitch Seavey.
    Mom is finally done working!!! Hurray!!!!

  51. Wolfie
    2:35 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Well, I have a bit of an announcement to make: mom is going to be a grandma again. Breena, Cody’s girl is expecting. This of course makes life interesting for mom and dad, because that brings our household numbers up to 13 Kats, 2 dogs, two old folks, an infant, and a pregnant lady. Whew!

    Chad and Cody are not a part of our lives at this time. Hopefully they will decide to get better one day, but for now, their journey does not intercept with ours.

  52. Wolfie
    2:36 pm on March 8th, 2014

    And as always, we are thinking of Snowhook and our dear Melanie….

  53. BearSpiritDog
    2:53 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Golinka & Barb: P.I.G.s…How about…Plunderers In Gangs. 🙂

  54. BearSpiritDog
    2:54 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Sorry, Wolfie: Someone Here did not refresh before posting.

  55. ML
    2:56 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I seem to have lost the ability to communicate except through photos. Here is another one for Staff.

  56. BearSpiritDog
    2:59 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy&Leno: Hopefully the Meeting with Fiona will go as well.

    ML: What a Beautiful Quilt!

  57. ML
    2:59 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Oh, Mary, you are welcome to come to Texas.

  58. Herd of Hounds
    3:04 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy, stop looking and the kat will appear.

  59. Masquers
    3:09 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Oh, oh…Buser has slipped ahead of Aliy, but she is traveling faster than he is and will soon (paws crossed) take the lead again…happy to see Petit moving up into 3rd place.

  60. Barb & Maggie
    3:12 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy, God luck with your new addition. She will come out of hiding eventually.

    Wolfie, Oh my! Does Cody know? The two little ones are going to be close together. When is the new one due?

    ML, We love the quilt. That will make a great wall hanging. Did you buy it?

  61. Herd of Hounds
    3:15 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy, STOP looking and the kat will appear.Linda then, Susan x 5. Time for a woman again!

  62. Wolfie
    3:27 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Cody knows. I’m not sure what is going on with him. He kicked Breena out, we took her in, and now he is threatening to burn our house down. Do I think he will? No. Are we getting a restraining order? You betcha. He was in jail last week, and is now on probation. Now he is getting evicted. Apparently he and his party friends are going to rent a house. Good luck with that. Chad is here now, and is hitting the bars every night.

  63. Mollypop's Mom
    3:27 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Tomorrow Loulou will be 9 months old. She and Teddy RR are quite close in age, but not in size.

  64. Wolfie
    3:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I think the baby will be here in October.

  65. Herd of Hounds
    3:36 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Wolfie, remember…your friends you choose, your family you explain (or restrain).
    Go Snowhook!
    Go Aily!

  66. Herd of Hounds
    3:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Mollypop and Lulu’s Mom: TY soooooo much for the wool/fleece, layering info.
    Mom was toasty warm in AK and is getting close to mastering pulling up tights.

  67. BearSpiritDog
    3:43 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Little Loulou! Not so Little Anymore!

  68. Riö – The Evil Pug
    3:45 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Burp!…Someone is back from eating out…grunt!…A burrito with extra hot!hot!hot! green chili and a margarita on the side…gasp!

    LuLu!…She has grown. Well at least her hair has grown…sniff!…Lil’ Sammie hasn’t complained about her too much lately…heh!heh!

  69. Herd of Hounds
    3:50 pm on March 8th, 2014

    OH’s Pop: are you still Bear or are you now bare? TY for being the chauffeur/doorman. Miss you and OH’s mom.

  70. Diane C.
    3:56 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Hello All–Is it Loulou or Lulu? Pretty girl, either way.
    Everyone here is appreciating the photos, obscure references (Clotho, Atropos, Lachesis), and the news that Snowhook is still on the move. (Glad to know how well AJ is taking care of the team–I’m still really new to this sport).
    B and L–You will be with Phoebe again, eventually, and she will get along splendidly with your new little one as well.

  71. Diane C.
    4:00 pm on March 8th, 2014

    HOH–Yet another joke! (I’ve gotten much mileage out of Moses brewing tea, so please know they’re appreciated.)

    Prayers to Melanie and family and all who may benefit from them.

    I can’t get any of the Insider-based material, unless it turns up on YouTube, but will look forward to the Sing Sing U. movie (since my HOA requires me to pay for HBO I might as well use it).

    Bright blessings to all. (Is it appropriate to wish mushers “Cool Runnings” or is that just for that other kind of event?)

  72. BooBear
    4:02 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Happy Saturday, all. Mom has been cleaning house all day but has decided to stop for now. Sometimes Mom really likes doing the housework. Makes life seem more normal. But she has been keeping up with the blog and AJ’s progress. We are so proud that he is racing so well. Thank Kat he hd the 2nd sled to switch too. When we checked the Insider, we couldn’t make a lot of sense with the tracker. Think we will go back and look now that the racers are more spread out.

    Proud of Jem and his nose! Still in the race!,

  73. Herd of Hounds
    4:10 pm on March 8th, 2014

    BooBear, we are all proud of Jem and his nose. What a sweetheart he is in person. Bright blue eyes and smiles.

  74. Masquers
    4:18 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Hi Diane & BooBear!
    Team Snowhook into Galena!!!

  75. Herd of Hounds
    4:24 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Wowser, Our checkpoint! GO SNOWHOOK!

  76. Wolfie
    4:34 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Galena! Go Snowhook!

    Lulu is gorgeous! Hopefully Sammie will decide to be BFF with her one day!

    Would love to see a photo of the new kitten!

    And we too love Jem’s nose and eyes!

  77. B. Stover
    4:48 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Clotho–the spinner of the thread of life; Lachesis–the measurer; and Atropos–the cutter…The three Fates. Fun! Heh!

  78. Herd of Hounds
    4:58 pm on March 8th, 2014

    HRH B, Leave it to youse to find something educational in posts!

  79. Wolfie
    5:12 pm on March 8th, 2014

    ML, love, love, love the quilt!

    Texas is looking mighty fine right about now!

  80. Buddy and Leno
    5:16 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We intellectually know this (stop looking and cat will appear). We of course have done this thing and are sure she’ll come out of hiding when she wakes up. Really, what an easy-going kitty she is. Didn’t complain about being put into a soft-sided carrier, well, apart from trying to claw her way out. Slept much of the way home, didn’t make a peep in the car. you know how well most cats travel. That being not very.

    We feel fairly certain that Phoebe is up there hanging out with Chet (mine, not that other one), because they were great friends.

    As for family…yeah…friend of mine says that “friends are the family we choose”. Which works for me.

  81. BearSpiritDog
    5:27 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy&Leno: That is something on which We all Agree…and, we
    the Plunderers, have Chosen Our Family Well.

  82. O'Howlers
    5:35 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Finally caught up. Farm chores done and the pantry and fridge restocked. Came home to see the email that AJ is in Galena. Yippee!!
    Mary, you are a saint.
    Marylou, you ought to be a professional photographer. And while you are Way Up North in Alaska (are you ever leaving), feel free to buy us that beautiful quilt. Mom says it looks like Boris.
    LouLou looks pretty big to us. Of course, if she were standing next to Teddy, she probably would not. They would have a great time together though.

  83. Masquers
    5:45 pm on March 8th, 2014
  84. Herd of Hounds
    5:46 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Whoa, stand next to Ms. Darah Thea at 13 months. Moose on the loose!

  85. BearSpiritDog
    5:50 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Look! Up Top. There is Whitey-Lance in Nome!
    Must be the year AJ touched his paw to the Burled Arch.
    What a Moment!

  86. Tupper and Gilly
    5:51 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy – we love your sense of humor. Glad you found a new friend. Well, kind of found. At least you know she is in the house.
    ML – are you going to be a Texas Transplant. You seem to be fitting in so well in Alaska
    The white dog (Lou 0r Lu) is very cute. Wonder if she will be coming to Massachusetts.
    Wolfie – oh dear….bless you.
    We need to go look at the Iditarod site. Funny – half the time we get the emails, half the time we don’t. We didn’t get this one, but did get the link to the LiveStream at the finish on Tuesday.

  87. O'Howlers
    5:55 pm on March 8th, 2014
  88. Princess Sam
    5:57 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Loulou weighs 8 pounds and I’m up to 9 pounds now. Last week I stayed with her for three days and thought I was going to starve to death. Too much kibble. I needed to get back home to my daddy and my boy who feed me better.

  89. O'Howlers
    6:02 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Aliy is down to 11 dogs, and Buser still has 14. We want Aliy to win, but we think the odds are with Buser right now.
    We didn’t get an email about the livestream, but seriously? Tuesday??? That is one fast Iditarod!

  90. Herd of Hounds
    6:06 pm on March 8th, 2014

    OH: with you on fast. Scary!

  91. Princess Sam
    6:08 pm on March 8th, 2014

    In a few days the P.I.G.s will meet Loulou, Tyb, and me me me! Golinka, once again they’re leaving me home. Loulou too.

    Their dinner will be pizza and wings. The dogs get kibble.

  92. Princess Sam
    6:10 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Note to travelers: in Buffalo they’re just called wings.

  93. Princess Sam
    6:12 pm on March 8th, 2014

    And how come Kat got to go last time, I ask?

  94. Barb & Maggie
    6:17 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Sam, they are just called wings here too. We knew they started in Buffalo, but someone just told us this year is the 50 year anniversary for Buffalo wings. Is that true?

    Barb is starting to organize and put things out for her trip. Now Jessica called and reminded her that she said she would make 3 doz. dog biscuits for a school fun raiser. Must be done tomorrow. Gah!

  95. Barb & Maggie
    6:19 pm on March 8th, 2014

    That should be fund raiser.

  96. Siber-H
    6:21 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Howlers, Love the Siber photo!

  97. Wose-the small and meek
    6:22 pm on March 8th, 2014

    ML: Consider photography as a profession. Your photos are beautiful. The husky on the quilt reminded me of my friend Siber-H. LOVE the quilt.

    LouLou is getting to be such a lovely young lady.

    Wolfie, God bless youse guys!

  98. Pancho
    6:32 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I still have my tail wrapped around Melanie’s wrist while she rest under the Quilt. Tenzing says I might be a natural born Smoocher. He said I have a dog given talent for the craft. I am just as surprised as anyone. We have some new residents under the Quilt. My Lady rushed Melanie, the puppy not the person to the vet yesterday. That little bear cub of a puppy stayed over night at the vet’s and we don’t know when she is coming home. This morning, she rushed Kirby G. Runworthy to the vet because he was exhibiting the same symptoms as as Melanie the pup. They are worrit that a virus has hit the pups. As a precautionary measure, all the pups are now on medication. I am trying to convince my Lady to take a nap under the Quilt.

    Wolfie: Belle Starr has offered up her puppy-sitting services.

    Buddy and Leno: Welcome back.

  99. Siber-H
    6:36 pm on March 8th, 2014

    It is very thoughtful of Macy’s mom to stay in Alaska so she can take pictures for us, us, us.

    Snowhook puppies, Get well you guys.

  100. Belle Starr
    6:44 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I need a baby LouLu or I’m going to be in a very bad mood.

  101. Teddy Ruff Rider
    6:47 pm on March 8th, 2014

    For something a little lighter and entertaining, my gal Zeta is going to be a movie star. See the coming attractions for Operation Z.E.T.A. that her dad made. Woo! Woo! that’s my gal Zeta.


  102. Riö – The Evil Pug
    6:55 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Zeta!….Wow!Wow!…I wonder if ole SiberH could keep up with that Zeta….heh!heh!

  103. Princess Sam
    6:59 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Belle Starr, you can take Loulou and her dumb toy basket too!

  104. O'Howlers
    7:14 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Wow! Z.E.T.A. !!! What an adventure!

    Snowhook PlunderPups, please get better.

  105. Masquers
    7:20 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Howlers: Now THAT is a great reminder.
    Teddy: Like Riö says, that girl can run!
    LouLou: What a stash!

  106. Kat
    7:20 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Your Highness Princess Sam, I did not request that trip. Oh no I did not. Momma is too afraid to drive far on her own so I had to keep her company. I was forced to stay in the hotel room with her and LouLou’s mom, and I was forced to sit lay through the BDHW’s looooong talk (she is NOT funny). (Whispering) I slept thru most of it. And then I had to hang out with the gaggle of Plunderers while they yakked thru breakfast. The only fun for me me me was when I got to play with Tupper and Gilly, and dig with Callie, and hunt for Basil and Sage, and hang out with the big black bears.

  107. Kat
    7:21 pm on March 8th, 2014

    And now she stole my avatar!

  108. BearSpiritDog
    7:23 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We saw this quote and of course immediately thought of Melanie,
    “There is nothing more truly artistic than to love purple”
    Vincent van Gogh

    PlunderPups: Sending Healing Hugs.

    Poor Kat: You are So Abused.

  109. Barb & Maggie
    7:33 pm on March 8th, 2014

    That is a great video, Teddy. Zeta’s folks are very talented.

    Loulou, why are all your toys so new and clean? And a personally monogrammed toy basket? Your are one spoiled diva!

  110. BearSpiritDog
    7:45 pm on March 8th, 2014

    TeddyRR: Friends with a Movie Star! How Cool is That.
    Judging by the preview, Z.E.T.A. the Movie will be a Sundance Sensation for Sure. We were very impressed.

  111. Wose-the small and meek
    7:47 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I hope the Snowhook puppies are tip-top soon.

    Grizz and I hope that the finishing sled has been helpful to AJ and the team. We feel privileged to be a part of Snowhook.

    Pancho: Tenzing may have something there. I think you would fit in nicely with the Smoochers.

  112. Wose-the small and meek
    7:52 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Whoooohooooo, Teddy ! I do believe a star is born!

  113. Riö – The Evil Pug
    7:58 pm on March 8th, 2014

    LULU!…Can I come over and play with your toys?..snort!….There are a couple that would really look good in my warm soft bed…wheeze!

    Worst!….We are settling down watching “Worst Cooks”….sniff!…My friend is afraid she is going to turn into one of these nitwits cause she never cooks any more…grump!

  114. Wolfie
    8:30 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Wose, I think it’s so fabulous that you and Grizz bought the new sled. You are brilliant!

  115. Princess Sam
    8:39 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Yea! The Wosengrizz sled!

  116. Wookie's and Teddy's Dad
    8:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We got a wonderful surprise in the mail today from OFH (our favorite hobbit). Thank you so very much.
    I suspect the second sled has made a world of difference for AJ and the team on the second half of the Iditarod. Their times are looking great so far. Thanks so much to Wose and the Griz.

  117. BooBear
    8:48 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I got a surprise from C.Hobbit, too! Think you very much! I hope the Hobbit is feeling better and that her meds are starting to work.

  118. BooBear
    8:51 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Um, THANK you ….

  119. Pancho
    8:53 pm on March 8th, 2014

    At long last, the Insider finally did a video on the giant. What did he talk about? Our dear Melanie.

  120. Wose-the small and meek
    8:53 pm on March 8th, 2014

    I also received a surprise from CHobbit. Thanks!

  121. Tupper and Gilly
    9:00 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Creator – as evening comes, we thank you for the day that has passed. We look to the sky to see the night to come, for we know that no matter where we have been today, we will travel on under your stars.
    There are times when we feel the trail is too hard; that we have felt only the bumps and bruises. Let us not forget the wonders that we also have seen. For no matter how difficult the past has been, there have been moments of pure joy, of unbearable happiness, of contentment with the beauty all around us.
    Creator – on the night, AJ is far from home. He is far from the beginning of the race, but cannot see the end. His heart may be heavy with weariness and concern. We ask you to lift him up, lift his heart, lift his eyes to the beauty around him, and give him courage and hope. He has bourn the trials of a terrible trail. He has suffered the separation from not only his beautiful Bella, but also of two of his faithful dogs. He is tired, bruised and battered, but he is strong. We ask you to hold him, heal his aches, and show him a trail ahead that is well lighted by our love and support. Let the miles fly by under the feet of the dogs, let the trail be fast, let the race be glorious.
    Creator – on this night, Melanie is also on her path. She is far from the beginning of her life, but we would have wished that the end would still be far away. Her heart may be heavy with weariness and concern. We ask you to lift her up, lift her eyes to the beauty of the path before her. She has bourn many trials in this life, and yet life is so sweet. She is tired, bruised and battered, but she is strong. We ask you to hold her, sooth her pain and fear, and show her a path ahead that is well lighted by our love and support. Let her dance among the galaxies without fear or misgivings. Let the miles fly by, let her path be smooth, let her dance be glorious.
    We ask you to watch over all of us as we learn to forgive the trail behind us, and to optimistically seek the path that is in front of our feet. Let us go forward, always looking for the beauty, but never forgetting the wisdom we have gathered from the past.
    We ask you to watch over Truman as he steps forward in his battle. We ask you to watch over Jim, and not let his trials of the past keep him from enjoying the future. We ask you to gently cradle the sweet puppies and breathe good health into them, so that one day they may run with AJ and remind him to look forward to the beauty around the next corner.
    Creator – as evening comes, we thank you for the day that has passed. We look to the sky to see the night to come, for we know that no matter where we have been today, with the strength and love of this family, we will travel on under your stars.

  122. Kat
    9:01 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Video on our Giant? I must find it!

  123. Buddy and Leno
    9:03 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Melanie found the cat hiding under the desk. Got her out, no protests, took her up, showed her a litterbox, and she used that with no trouble. This cat is terribly good-natured. She even let me clip her nails. Front ones, no problem. Back ones, a little kicking but nothing too out of control. Such a nice kitty. Got a photo with new cat (we decided on Jasmine, we like it better than Erma) with Melanie, but it probably isn’t a great one. I shall get a better one.

  124. Barb & Maggie
    9:03 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amen and thank you.

  125. c.hobbit
    9:03 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you and Amen.

  126. BearSpiritDog
    9:05 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amalia, This evening’s Prayer is so beautiful. Thank You.

  127. O'Howlers
    9:08 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you. That was beautiful.

  128. Wose-the small and meek
    9:09 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you for this beautiful prayer.


  129. bluecat
    9:11 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Thank you.

  130. Riö – The Evil Pug
    9:13 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Beautiful!…And so fitting for this day…sniffle!…Amen!

  131. O'Howlers
    9:21 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Aliy is first into Unalakleet.

  132. Siber-H
    9:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    We here love, love, love the Zeta Movie!!!
    We want a full-length feature film starring Zeta.
    Zeta will have no need of any makeup artists…can’t say that about the two-legged actresses. That is an extremely well done movie trailer.

  133. Buddy and Leno
    9:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Yes! Thank you, and amen. That was a beautiful prayer.

  134. Riö – The Evil Pug
    9:34 pm on March 8th, 2014

    MOOOving!….AJ and the A-Team are on the move!….Wooooo!

  135. O'Howlers
    9:38 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Still 14 dogs! Woooo!

  136. Herd of Hounds
    9:47 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Smoochers to Belle Starr.

  137. Riö – The Evil Pug
    9:50 pm on March 8th, 2014

    CHobbit!….I forgot to say that I got a little something from you too….chuffle!..You are too good to me, so keep up the good work!…wheeze!

  138. BearSpiritDog
    9:51 pm on March 8th, 2014

    A Surprise from C.Hobbit! We got one too!!
    Thank you, thank you!!!

  139. SnowBella
    9:57 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amen. Thank you.

  140. Herd of Hounds
    10:08 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amen and amen.

  141. Herd of Hounds
    10:11 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy and Leno: Glad Jasmine has been found and is working in:)

  142. Dawson
    10:14 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amen and thank you. This prayer resonates deep within me and makes me also pray for emotional strength for Melanie’s sons and Zoe, and her good friends Amalia and Leonard and for Karen.

    A Catty Librarian left for Montana today. Turtleman and s-i-l came over for cards and snacks.
    I haven’t fully unpacked from the Alaska trip and now I must pack for the East coast. I’m having a blast but I may have turned into a semi- lurker.

    I’m hoping those Plunderpups feel better real soon.

    Buddy & Leno: Phoebe and Chet are romping together while your newest little kitty snuggles.

  143. Herd of Hounds
    10:28 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Dawson: Packed and ready with cribbage board and cards 🙂 Also have PurplePrincess clothing at the ready. See the PIG’s soon.

  144. Dawson
    10:34 pm on March 8th, 2014

    HOH: I’m looking forward to the cribbage games and hope I redeem myself. Digger is staying home, is that right? So I will be playing the brains of the household? Heh, heh.

  145. Herd of Hounds
    10:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    You got it sweetie!

  146. Dawson
    10:40 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Before I hit the hay I want to say how fast the checkpoints are whizzing by in the Meliditarod! IAlready in and out of the Herd of Hound’s Galena checkpoint and headed towards the Native American Veterans and Code Talker’s Nulato Checkpoint!

  147. ALR
    10:46 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Amen and amen. From the distance or a loyal lurker I stand with you all. Each evening prayer has a lesson of love for us all. And yes, Dawson, this prayer this evening resonates with me ….deep inside. The creators of the prayers are well in tune with the Creator of everything. Bless you all.

  148. Herd of Hounds
    10:47 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Having trouble believing how fast this race is going, too. Galena so far out yet now past 🙁 Hope OFM and his team are still safe.

  149. Buddy and Leno
    10:53 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Cribbage! I learned to play cribbage when I was a kid, but I’ve forgotten. I remember you have to add to 31 though. Actually, we learned it in math class. What a great way to learn math! Oh, well, except we didn’t keep score with the peg board, we kept score with an abacus. Yes, really. Damned useful thing, the abacus.

    Kitty progress: I think they’ll get along OK, except Jasper is officially a wimp. So Fiona goes upstairs with Alena to bed, and that’s Jasper’s cue that it’s safe to come down. So down he comes. And he kind of hangs out. Jasmine is sitting on the food bucket, which props the door to the cabinet under the counter where cats are fed. Jasper has to see her, but he doesn’t do anything. So I sidle over. And Jasper comes up alongside me and puffs up his fur. Some cat starts to growl a little. I think it’s Jasper, but nope, it’s Jasmine! So he just stops, sits down, wanders around a bit. Anyway, so they’ve been about a foot apart, with only a little growling from Jasmine and absolutely nothing from Jasper. Mind you, Jasper’s now pretty big (spell that “fat”) and weighs around two of Jasmine, but that doesn’t stop him from letting her be in charge it would appear. No fireworks though, no blood, not even any yowling, so I reckon things will probably be all right between them when the posturing is all done.

    And Leno? Nothing bothers him. He’s lying down with the new croaky stuffed frog. You’d think he’d try to disembowel the talking toys or the toys with squeakers, but he doesn’t. He’s very gentle with them. Fiona, on the other hand, not so much. We have to keep them away from her.

    So, yeah, happy travels to traveling folks 🙂

  150. Barb & Maggie
    11:10 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Well spoken Dawson and ALR. Wishing comfort and peace to Melanie’s family tonight. Healing thoughts for Boobear’s dad.
    Night all.

  151. Luna
    11:12 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy and Leno: Disemboweling squeaky toys is my one vice. I can’t help it. Tenzing treasures his toys. I wait until he falls asleep, I take them and then all that runs through my mind is: Destroy! Destroy! Destroy!

  152. Gilly
    11:21 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Luna – sorry, but I can’t let you play with my squeaky lobster. I love that lobster. I mean, I really and truly love that lobster. You don’t think Dawson will make me get rid of it, do you? She’s lergic.

  153. Tupper
    11:24 pm on March 8th, 2014

    GILLY. – turn that computer off and get in bed! We lose an hour of sleep tonight as it is.
    G’night all. Set your clocks ahead.

  154. Buddy and Leno
    11:30 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Talk about fast progress. Jasper and Jasmine went from Jasmine growling and Jasper just sitting like, “DOn’t hurt me!” to they just touched noses. Yeah, think they’re gonna be friends. I reckon Jasmine’s growl was more like, “Hey, keep back, I don’t know you.” But decided he was all right. Yay for harmonious households! Now if someone will just smack Fiona upside the head, we’ll all be good.

  155. Buddy and Leno
    11:32 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Also, I hate this time change thing. Pick one and stick with it for heaven’s sake! Also, does anyone else’s dog’s biological clock also have daylight wasting time? All of mine have had.

  156. BearSpiritDog
    11:55 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Buddy&Leno: Tupper’s right. We all need to Get to Bed. Morning will come soon enough.

    G’night. See you all for Sunday Brunch-my Favorite Meal of the week.

  157. Riö – The Evil Pug
    11:59 pm on March 8th, 2014

    Time!…grump!…We stayed up watching an old Hitchcock movie…snort!…Now you tell me I lose an hour of sleep tonight? I will make it up during nappy-time somehow…heh!heh!

    Deprivation!…I can only barely, even hardly imagine what kind of sleep deprivation The Giant goes through on this Big Race…snort!…The A-Team probably gets more food and more sleep than he does. I would bet all my treaties on it…sniff!…So whenever I see them arrive in the next checkpoint, The Giants work starts…wheeze!…I hope he has enough food and enough everything to see him finish this race as best he can and in good health…WOOOOOOO!..I hope we all did enough for him…sniffle!…I worry about him – I wish I could have done more…sneeze!

  158. Masquers
    12:04 am on March 9th, 2014

    BSD forgot to thank ALR for the beautiful comment and to say hi to Dawson.
    See you all tomorrow one hour later than usual.

  159. Riö – The Evil Pug
    12:27 am on March 9th, 2014

    Interview!…I just saw the interview with AJ (finally an interview!)…and now all of us here are sob!sob!sobbing!…wheeze!…The Interview was so damned short. (((sigh))) I know he is busy, I know he is tired….but it was ohhh so short…sob!sob!…The Giant is my biggest and largest hero.

  160. ML
    12:53 am on March 9th, 2014

    I think I saw Sasquatch yesterday.

  161. ALR
    12:54 am on March 9th, 2014

    I’m with you on that, Rio! And that Rebecca comes in second…not large in stature, but largein heart. And of course, who could not love Rio, Jr. and his eyebrows!

  162. ML
    4:35 am on March 9th, 2014

    Nicolas Petit has scratched before Unalaklete.

  163. BearSpiritDog
    8:30 am on March 9th, 2014

    ML: It breaks our hearts to hear of Another Team Out of the Race.
    The count now stands at Sixteen Mushers that have scratched.

    AJ & the Dogs are resting Safe in Nulato…checkpoint of the
    Native Americans-Veterans-Code-Talkers. It is the morning of a New Day and our courageous Musher & Team will soon be on their way to Nome.
    Godspeed Team Snowhook, Godspeed.
    Our Love goes with you & our dear Melanie.

  164. O'Howlers
    8:36 am on March 9th, 2014

    Petit’s dogs were fatigued and acting strangely. We think they were given bad food!
    Mom is finally starting to feel like herself again. And us. We ALWAYS feel like who we are!

  165. O'Howlers
    8:42 am on March 9th, 2014

    It looks like AJ is on the move!

  166. BearSpiritDog
    8:46 am on March 9th, 2014


  167. O'Howlers
    8:57 am on March 9th, 2014

    He dropped a dog.

  168. Masquers
    9:08 am on March 9th, 2014

    Pondering how Petit’s team got the bad food and which dog AJ dropped at Nulato.

  169. Wose-the small and meek
    9:21 am on March 9th, 2014


    Mama Luna, I am surprised that such a nurturing mama like you disembowels squeaky toys. I know you would never do that to Belle Starr, the Pixie, or the Giant. And hopefully not to your adopted daughter.

    I wish I could see the video. Sob, sob, sob. Creator, please keep a close eye on the Giant, keep him and his team healthy.

    Thinking of our Pixie, our Purple Princess and her loved ones, Truman, and the Plunderpuppies.

  170. O'Howlers
    9:21 am on March 9th, 2014

    Petit changed up their diet, and gave them horsemeat (!!!). He said he likes to change it up.

    We are pondering why Spence did not Spring Ahead. Heh!

  171. Herd of Hounds
    9:28 am on March 9th, 2014

    Blog took to the last full weekend of April last year to change time. Getting GPS updates but still haven’t been able to view videos 🙁

  172. BooBear
    9:28 am on March 9th, 2014

    Good morning. We love daylight savings time! It’s so nice to come home from work and still have some daylight to enjoy outdoors. In December, it’s dark by 5:30!

    Amen to the wonderful prayer last night and thank you, friends.

  173. Masquers
    9:31 am on March 9th, 2014

    Howlers: OFA must be sleeping in. Heh.
    Good morning, Rose. My dear friend, you always have such nice and caring things to say and always mention everyone in your prayers each day.

  174. Barb & Maggie
    9:33 am on March 9th, 2014

    Shouldn’t give them horsemeat!

    Hope the puppers are better this morning.

    How many dogs does AJ have now? He has dropped 3,right?

    Making dog biscuits for the fund raiser – now have 20 done.

  175. BearSpiritDog
    9:38 am on March 9th, 2014

    O’Howlers: Seems Spence & Admin didn’t see your Siber-Spring-Forward reminder.

    Hounds: Haven’t tried watching the Videos. We are afraid to change the settings for fear of losing the GPS information.

    BooBear: That is a Very Good Attitude about DST and…now that you mention it…quite true.

    Barb&Magpie: They are Not For Food! We agree!

  176. O'Howlers
    9:51 am on March 9th, 2014

    BooBear, we agree about DST, but were keeping quiet because everyone on this here blog seems to complain about it. We are so excited that Mom and Pop will now have daylight time with us!

  177. Masquers
    9:58 am on March 9th, 2014

    A really good link posted by Philip Walters:
    Contains lots of information we didn’t know about.

  178. BooBear
    10:37 am on March 9th, 2014

    Why will mom’s computer play other videos but when she clicks on AJ’s, she gets a generic race preview and then a message saying “no related video found”?

  179. Diane C.
    10:39 am on March 9th, 2014

    B. Stover–Yeah! In the North its three Norns (whose names escape me). Why always three, and why always women dealing with textile-related stuff (rather than, say, the gatherer, the chopper and the one who cooks it)?

  180. Diane C.
    10:43 am on March 9th, 2014

    Amen, amen. B and L–Good name, but where is the photo?

  181. Diane C.
    10:46 am on March 9th, 2014

    I see I’m not alone this Sunday a.m. I guess someone overslept.
    Blessings, peace and all good things to Melanie, Jasmine, Sammie, and everyone. Go Snowhook, and all of you have a wonderful Sunday.
    And may the Snowhook team stay strong and safe.

  182. Masquers
    11:04 am on March 9th, 2014

    Very good comments about Rule 36 under Philip’s post.

  183. B. Stover
    11:11 am on March 9th, 2014

    Diane: I think that the Anglo-Saxons had the “Three Weird Sisters.” I assume that that is where Shakespeare got the reference. I’ll have to do some research on this.

    Masquers: For some reason I can’t get the article by Walters on your link. The Dispatch comes up but only with a blank page.

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