Moving Over…

With the decision to move to Burundi came the decision to add more focus to the next stage of our lives, beginning with a brand new shiny fancy pants blog! The reason things have been so quiet over here, is that I have been trying to paint the house and make it look pretty over there on the new blog! Please visit, no more drifting along with driftwood…. now you will be cruising with us on our new adventures. Thanks for following, I’m gonna need your support to make it through this big life changing move!

A good place to start over there on the new blog would be by watching this video made by the incredible Make My Day Pictures.


Rope Swing

There really is NOTHING better than swinging on a rope swing. The only thing I can imagine that would top this… if the rope swing was over a nice piece of water to drop into!

My little guy got in on the action too.

Plus there was an old tractor. Life does not get better than this if you are a boy!

And horses, which made this momma happy.

Plus a trampoline and beautiful light, which made us all happy.

Thanks Vasthi and Martin and Megan and Drew.

We luv yah, sooo very much.



A Year Already?

Where has the time gone? Today Neo turns a year old. So much has changed in a year and the days have gone so fast! In one year Neo has been to Cape Town, The Untited States (Minnesota, Wisconsin, Colorado, Washington), Kenya, Burundi, and Tanzania. He has been to the game park, the sea, the city and the farm. That’s one well traveled little boy!



Sometimes you do things you say you never will. Two days ago it just happened. She ate, she drank, she chased a cat and her stomach failed her. It twisted in on its self and she began to die. Our beautiful faithful Great Dane friend was in pain and all I could do was hold her and weep in the very packed vet’s office in front of a room full of strangers. They told me that cancer had caused the torsion (read about bloat/torsion here). They told me they could operate and they WOULD find cancer so we could do the expensive surgery for nothing, or put her out of her misery now. I left the vet’s office bewildered and panicked.

I drove Ella home, and on the two-minute drive from the vet to the house, I called Ella’s breeder Debbie. Debbie told me there was hope. Before I even reached our driveway I turned around and headed back to the vet. I phoned Coffee Guy and, despite our agreement that we would never do surgery if our Dane was a victim of bloat, I found myself saying “We have to try. We have to. I can’t live with myself if we don’t.” He agreed.

Within an hour she was in surgery. Dr. Morris searched her entire insides for traces of cancer and found NONE. He untwisted her stomach and stapled it to her abdominal wall. Later that day she woke up. She was happy to see us, she did not look at all like a dying dog. The next morning I camped out at the vet’s office with her. I brought the vets some coffee and homemade peanut butter cookies hoping for an early release. By 1pm I had convinced them to let her go home.

As I was signing paperwork Dr. Morris tried to pet Ella. She jumped up on the seat behind me and stuck her head in my armpit. She is definitely not his biggest fan, but he saved her life. Actually, the guy who really saved her is Coffee Guy. He had seen bloat up close and personal with the death of our other Great Dane, Durbie. He recognized the symptoms right away and he mobilized us!

I am grateful that we have our Ella back, even if it means our big Obama tax return is gone!



I hope it’s a great one for you and yours!

I’m taking a holiday from this lovely blog to spend some time with my hooligans, but I’ll be back after Christmas… once I’ve stuffed myself with turkey, gotten a suntan (cuz… yikes, do I need one), read a good book (yeah, right), dreamt of snow, and chased a tiny superhero around the yard.

Here’s to happy messes!




It really is hard for me to continue our amazing Zanzibar story when when we are busy getting our fingers stuck in the garden, mixing up batches of cookie dough, having dance parties to “All I Want For Christmas”, ordering our Christmas turkey, answering questions about where fairies come from, and doing dives into the swimming pool. I will get there though, the photos are beautiful and I can’t wait to post them! In the meantime, you can enjoy this little treasure we found while pottering around the garden.



Our Ella.

I’m taking a break today from writing about our adventures in Zanzibar (more to come, don’t miss it!) to enter the I Heart Faces weekly photo competition. The theme this week over there is Pets. I took this photo of our Ella Bella a few days after we got back from 3 months in the USA. She had missed us terribly and was willing to pose. Now, since we’ve been back for awhile, true to Great Dane form, she turns tail and runs whenever she sees the camera come out. I’m pretty sure she thinks the camera is a Great Dane eating monster, just like her water bowl and the nail clippers. Cheeky puppy, oh well.

You can see more photos of Miss Ella-the-cheekiest-dane-in-the-world right here and let me know if you think I picked the right one to enter. I am a horrible decision maker, but I know you all love me anyways.




p.s. go take a peek at all the other lovely pet submissions over at i heart faces!