• Shannon

Thursday Barks & Bytes & Thoughtless Thursday

I don’t know where this week went.  Here it is Thursday and I feel like it just started!  There’s been a lot of doctor appointments this week, shopping excursions, a vet visit.  The weekend of diarrhea stretched over into the beginning of the week with diarrhea (this time it was Rama) and for a few days there, the whole house was poo-scented.  Gah, it was awful.  She’s since recovered, thank goodness.  It smells much better in here!


As October begins we have a kid birthday to plan, Halloween festivities and I feel my backpacking trips eeking closer.  I have been acquiring the things I’ll need (I’m doing an ultralight setup) over the weeks and here in a bit we will be able to test them.  Since the dogs haven’t camped (save being in the RV at dog shows), we will be starting out in the back yard, then progressing to some overnights away from home but still in Florida.  The middle child (you might remember his wailing episodes from hikes past) has vocalized that he would like to participate in these activities.  I was dumbfounded.  Excited, but dumbfounded.  Perhaps some cooler weather and some s’mores around the campfire might soften him to being outdoors.  I will not hold my breath, but I will let him try it out.

Since Rama is no longer showing, she’s had a lovely retirement, but she’s put on some extra pounds.  She and I both need to shed some extra weight.  She loves to run with the bike, so we will be doing some of that as well as building up the mileage with our local walks and hikes so that we are in the best condition possible for the changes in altitude and terrain.  Cairo is in good shape, and they are both accustomed to carrying packs.  I’m very curious to see how they do with sleeping outdoors.  My hammock has a rain fly that will provide them shelter underneath, but I’ve considered bringing a separate ultralight tent just for them.  I’m just not sure they’d use it.  I may have to experiment with this in the back yard to see what they do.  Maybe just an extra rain fly?  Maybe mine will be enough?  I don’t know.  Any experiences that any of our readers may have had with their dogs getting used to sleeping outdoors while hammock camping I would love to hear.

One of my pieces.


I’ve also been having fun acquiring some new leads and testing them out.  I recently got a biothane lead and am loving it.  I will be doing a review on it soon.  I’m excitedly awaiting a new dog pack, and am still comparing ultralight packs  (for myself)and alcohol stoves, though I may just make my own out of a coke can.  That right there is some pret-ty cool stuff.   We have a good bit of camping supplies in the garage from when the oldest boy was in cub scouts, but pretty much all of it is just too heavy and not suited for ultralight backpacking.  I would love to hear from any of you on what piece(s) of ultralight equipment you’ve found invaluable.

Once I get some overnights and weekend excursions with the dogs out of the way and I feel we are all doing well with it, I plan on doing some longer backpacking trips.  I would like to do some fundraising for some rescues that really need it, and I think this would be a cool way to do it.

I’m very excited to get back up to the mountains.  It’s been a while.  I think I’m most looking forward to the cool breezes, the gorgeous views and the absence of children constantly pulling at me.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my children.  I really do.  But all moms need time away or we want to jump off a bridge.  The most relaxed and serene I have ever been is breathing mountain air, hiking through the woods and of course, enjoying being out with the dogs.  I need some serenity badly right about now.  I’ve been struggling with Mommy Burnout for a few years now and since the mastectomy I’ve been itching to take some time and do some things for myself.  As moms often do, we just keep pushing on, ignoring what we ourselves need, trying to take care of everyone else.  If you don’t have a life–if you define yourself solely by the act of mothering–you will lose yourself.  Maybe not in the first year, maybe not the second, but at some point, if you do not replenish yourSELF, you will be in trouble.

Any of my readers enjoy their “me” time?  What do you do to replenish yourself?


Click on the above links to be taken to the Thoughtless Thursday and Thursday Barks & Bytes Blog Hops.  Tons of fun, lots of good reading, super cute pets and wonderful photos.  It’s a Thursday full of win.

#hikingwithdogs #backpacking #dogs #takingcareofyourself #ultralightbackpacking #youremotionalhealth #hiking

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