Canadian in Candia

June 30, 2009

Cooper’s First 4000 Footer

Filed under: Dogs — Tags: , , , — Miriam @ 3:23 pm
Cooper on Tecumseh

Cooper on Tecumseh

I have another sad post I’ll have to write later but I want some happy posts in between.  I was visiting an animal shelter this afternoon when I got a picture message from my husband.  The picture included the caption: “Cooper’s first 4k”. This is exciting to both me and Adam.

New Hampshire has 48 peaks over 4,ooo feet in elevation.  While this may seem short to people from out West, it’s what we have and some are quite challenging. From Mount Washington at 6288 feet to Mount Tecumseh at 4003 feet, the White Mountains are full of hikers attempting to complete the 4000-footer’s club list. Which Adam and I have both completed.  Adam has actually completed the list in Winter.  Dogs may apply to the club, but only as having completed the all-season list.

Going on a tangent, the reason dogs may not receive the winter patch is that some dogs have the advantage of being well suited to winter climates (think Newfoundlands, Siberian huskies, etc.) while others would be at risk if an over enthusiastic owner tried to get them up a mountain in adverse conditions. Tangent over.

One of the reasons we got a dog was to bring him hiking with us.  To enjoy the trails and mountains. To complete the list one more time would be a bonus.  It’s an excuse to get our butts out hiking.  And today he completed the first peak on his list:  Mount Tecumseh.

Mount Tecumseh is the small mountain on which the Waterville Valley ski slope is found.  It’s generally a great peak for beginners and dogs.  With a round trip book time of about 4 hours. Considering it’s low height it does have a couple interesting view points. If you are interested in Hiking Mount Tecumseh, pick up a map and read this website and/or the AMC’s White Mountain Guide.


June 29, 2009

New Hampshire Animal Shelters

Filed under: Animals — Tags: , , — Miriam @ 12:00 pm

As an animal lover and someone who likes to have harmony among the animals in my house I spend a lot of time when I’m looking for someone to add to our family. It usually takes me a few visits to several animal shelters before I find someone that really clicks.  We had found Beavis on our second visit to the same shelter that week. He had been there the whole time we just hadn’t noticed him enough to play with him.

There are many animal shelters in New Hampshire, but each operates independently.  Each shelter keeps its own hours.  To help people who are searching for a future pet, as we are currently doing, I have put together a “cheat sheet” of animal shelter hours in New Hampshire.

Please keep in mind that these are animal shelters with physical locations. Many rescue groups in New Hampshire work on a foster home basis and may have animals placed in various pet stores for viewing, but mostly list the animals looking for homes on the internet.  Please visit for listings of homeless animals near you.








Animal Rescue League

Bedford, NH

Closed 1 pm-7 pm Closed 1 pm-7 pm 12 pm-5pm 12pm-5pm 12pm-5pm

Manchester Animal Shelter


10am-4pm 10am-4pm
6pm – 8pm
Closed 10am-4pm
10am-4pm 10am-4pm Closed

Concord Merrimack County SPCA

Concord, NH

Closed 12pm-5pm Closed 12pm-5pm 12pm-5pm 12pm-5pm Closed


Straham, NH

11am-4pm 11am-7pm Closed 11am-7pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm

Cocheco Valley Humane Soc.

Dover, NH

Closed 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-7pm 11am-5pm 11am-5pm 11am-4pm

NH Humane Society

Laconia, NH

Closed 10am-6pm 10am-5pm 10am-6pm 10am-5pm 10am-4pm Closed

Humane Society of Greater Nashua

Nashua, NH

12pm-5pm 12pm-5pm Closed 12pm-5pm 12pm-5pm 10am-4pm 10am-4pm

Lakes Region Humane Soc.

Ossipee, NH

Closed 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm Closed

Salem Animal Rescue League

Salem, NH

Closed Closed Closed 11am-7pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm 11am-4pm

Monadnock Humane Soc.

West Swansey

Closed Closed 12pm-6pm 12pm-7pm 12pm-6pm 12pm-6pm 12pm-4pm

Franklin Animal Shelter

Franklin, NH

Closed 8:30am-1:30pm 8:30am-1:30pm 8:30am-1:30pm 8:30am-1:30pm 8:30am-1:30pm Closed

Conway Area Humane Soc

Conway, NH

12am-4pm Closed Closed 12am-4pm 12am-4pm 12am-4pm 12am-4pm

As listed on the shelters’ websites on 6/29/2009. Please let me know if you are aware of any changes.

I’ll be making some new blog posts soon. But I just wanted to share this first.

June 21, 2009

Loss of a pet

Filed under: Cats — Miriam @ 10:37 pm


This is not a happy post, but it is one I need to write in order to deal with this.

This morning Beavis slipped out when Adam brought Cooper out for his morning ritual. Because the cats are usually hard to catch and it was raining so we assumed he would go hide under a car, Adam left him outside. When I went out less than 20 minutes later to head to my yoga class and try to convince the cat to come in I found him. Beavis was hit by a car on the road in front of my house. I couldn’t have been more horrified when I realized it was my cat there at the end of the drive way. We think he died instantaneously of a broken neck.

What is most upsetting about this is that Beavis used to have permission to spend time outdoors when supervised until he had a near miss a month or so ago. Then he had slipped across the road and decided to respond to my call to come back as cars where traveling both directions on the road. Nearly getting hit twice a few feet away from me.


Beavis was just over two years old. We adopted him as a 10 month old. He was just another “generic black cat”. We were lucky that a shelter volunteer pointed him out. At the time we were looking for a young short-haired cat that would get along with our other cat Audrey. He had been in the shelter for 2 months and he worked out wonderfully.


At first he wanted nothing to do with us. He enjoyed playing with Audrey and was a great companion to her. After about 2 months of being with us he warmed up to us.


In fact he warmed up to us so much that he would occasionally get in the shower with me if I had not slept at home the night before.


He was an independent animal, but he loved being pet and would talk to me. He played with Audrey, when we got Cooper he adapted to Cooper quicker than Audrey did. He kept the puppy in line. He slept next to me when Adam was out of town. He’d get in bed with me when Adam gets out of bed in the morning. He meowed at me if I stayed in bed too long.

Beavis and Cooper

In short he was my buddy. He was my cat of the two. I feel terrible that he got out. I feel terrible that we didn’t scramble to get him back into the house. I’m going to miss him tremendously.


We will get another cat in a few weeks, in a few months, I’m not sure. The cat will not replace Beavis, but will help fill the role of playmate to Audrey, as friend to me. In the meantime I will snuggle with my puppy and other cat to help me feel better.


Beavis in the crate


R.I.P. Beavis
February 24, 2009 – June 21, 2009

June 20, 2009

Ocean Beaches

Filed under: Dogs, Nature — Tags: , , , — Miriam @ 10:29 pm


I love going to New Hampshire’s 18 miles of coastline. I guess I’m a natural beachcomber.  I spend a lot of time in the winter walking along the sandy beaches and I’m really excited to have Cooper to join me on future excursions.

BeachesTaking a dog to the beach in the summer time requires more logistics. Some of the beaches allow dogs but only after “beach hours”. Recently we have gone to York Beach which requires dogs to be on lead (no more than 15 feet) on the beach and after 6pm. The town of Rye allows dogs to be on the beach from 7 pm until midnight and they can be under voice control.

Cooper’s still getting used to the waves, but he loves chasing balls on the beach.


June 19, 2009

In a dress

Filed under: Dogs — Miriam @ 8:00 am

Derry Dog park

Dear Chihuahua owner,

Is it not enough that your dog is the size of other dogs’ chew toys? That most of the large dogs at the dog park have bigger feet than your pet? You must show up to the dog park on a lovely Sunday morning with your dog wearing a frilly pink dress. The other dogs probably make fun of her. No wonder chihuahuas become the bullies of the dog park.

Please treat her like a dog and not a doll, and maybe then you’ll have a better behaved animal who is generally happier.


Me and my poodle puppy who is scared of Chihuahuas after watching a group of them attack a Great Dane.

June 18, 2009

Beach Roses

Filed under: Flowers, Nature — Tags: , , — Miriam @ 2:34 pm

BeachesI have lived in states that border the Ocean for over 7 years now. And for many of those years I have visited beaches on a regular basis. From Maine to Cape Cod, I have always associated these flowers with the salt spray, the sound of waves and dogs and people running along the sand. I never knew what they were.

BeachesI recently listened to Anita Shreve’s Strange Fits of Passion as an audiobook. At one point, while describing a cottage on a cove in a remote part of Maine, the author mentions the cottage is surrounded only by “wild beach roses”. I decided to look up the plant to see if I had seen the flower before. Sure enough, the pretty pink, red and white flowers I have seen and known on the beaches of my adulthood are Beach Roses.

What surprised me most? They are not native to North America. They originate in Asia.

I’m not sure if these flowers that survive the sometimes brutal climate of the New England seaboard are planted as low maintenance ornamental plants along the coast or if they actually do grow wild now. But they are a beautiful addition to the coastal areas.


June 17, 2009

Spaghetti Hot Dogs

Filed under: Recipes — Tags: , , — Miriam @ 12:00 pm

Spagetti Hot Dogs

I first saw this idea here who found it here who got it from this russian livejournal. So it’s making it’s rounds on the internet I wish I still babysat or had a niece or nephew because I think little kids would love this quick and easy meal. OK, perhaps not as quick and easy as spaghetti with sliced up hot dogs but a fun way to get the kids to eat dinner.

What you will need:

Spagetti Hot Dogs

  • Spaghetti:I think I used thin spaghetti. I would recommend using a spaghetti that’s tough enough to not break when you pierce the hot dog pieces. I bet whole wheat spaghetti would work too.
  • Hot Dogs: I used turkey hot dogs but I’m sure any kind of hot dog/soy dog would do.

Slice up hotdogs in bite sized pieces.
Spagetti Hot Dogs

Stab spaghetti noodles through hot dog pieces. It’s hard to get a specific pattern on both sides, I gave up pretty quickly on getting the spaghetti to be perpendicular to the hot dog piece.

Spagetti Hot DogsIn a pot of boiling water, follow the spaghetti’s directions for cooking the spaghetti A La Dente. Gently drain water and voila.
Spagetti Hot Dogs

A masterpiece that can be eaten with or without a sauce. Although I would recommend that the initial presentation be without sauce.Spagetti Hot DogsPerhaps someone will come up with a creepy name for the dish and it will become a halloween favorite.

June 16, 2009

Live Free or Die

Filed under: history buff — Miriam @ 10:13 pm

Stark Park Manchester“Live Free or Die. Death is not the Worst of Evils”

Over 7 years ago I made my first trip to the state of New Hampshire. I was going hiking with my crew team in the White Mountains. One of the most distinct features I noticed on that trip up was the motto on the car license plates “Live Free or Die“. It’s a simple motto, a distinct motto, a mott that represents the attitude of many native to the state. Yet it is a harsh motto compared to Maine’s Vacationland, Ontario’s Yours to Discover, Massachusett’s Spirit of America, Quebec’s Je me souveins.

Live Free or Die is a matter of great pride to many native to New Hampshire. It comes from a toast given by a great New Hampshire Revolutionary war hero called General John Stark in 1809. The picture above comes from the base of the John Stark equestrian statue in Stark Park.  Stark park is one of the many sites in New Hampshire (and around the United States) that celebrate his achievements and life.

I leave you with another famous quote by the hero:

“Yonder are the Hessians. They were bought for seven pounds and tenpence a man. Are you worth more? Prove it. Tonight the American flag floats from yonder hill or Molly Stark sleeps a widow!”
— John Stark at the Battle of Bennington in 1777

Stark Park Manchester

June 15, 2009

FiveFingers Update

Filed under: Clothes, Vibram FiveFingers — Miriam @ 10:31 pm

Vibram Five fingers in action

I’ve been loving my Vibram FiveFingers so far. They are so strange as shoes. I can feel every rock, every stick and every puddle. I find myself having to pay attention to what I am stepping on or in all over again.

Vibram Five fingers in action

I mostly wear them to go walking in the woods with the puppy. This means I don’t wear them as often in real life because they often have leftover mud and dirt inside the shoes. They do dry very quickly though and seem to wash easily. Which is nice because I take them on all sorts of adventures.

Vibram Five fingers in action

When I do wear them out I always get a lot of comments. “Are those shoes?” “I’ve never seen anything like that before.” “Those are cute.” “Where do you find shoes like those?’

As for the biomechanics experiment aspect of wearing the shoes. I feel the plantar fascitiis less while I’m wearing the shoes, but it does sometimes act up afterward. The fact that I can feel everything under my feet makes me cautious, therefore pound less on my feet which probably helps. On the negative side the shoes seem to make my tarsal tunnel syndrome act up on occasion.

Vibram Five fingers in action

I feel very confident wearing them on rock. I feel like I stick to the rock better than with normal sneakers. I would love to wear them on some of the domes in Yosemite.

The funny part of wearing the shoes in the forest is that plant life can get trapped in between the toes.

Vibram Five fingers in action

June 14, 2009

Prissy Poodle

Filed under: Dogs — Miriam @ 10:13 pm

When we told people we were getting a poodle we occasionally got funny looks. “A poodle? Aren’t those a little prissy for what you guys do?” I have to admit both Adam and I had a few negative stereotypes of Poodles in mind when we started down the Poodle path.

When we started talking about getting a dog we were leaning towards Portuguese Water Dogs because of Adam’s allergies. They are a wonderful breed: intelligent, loyal, athletic and obedient. But they are expensive, and shortly after buying our house President Barack Obama showed an interest in the breed. One of the reasons I liked the breed was it’s rarity, the fact that breeders were very careful in selecting mates and owners. I liked the idea of having a breed that wasn’t seen on a regular basis. If we got a PWD we would appear to be one of the people who wanted a PWD because the President’s puppy Bo was of the breed.

Then I found Cooper’s Standard Poodle litter down in Massachusetts, the price was right, the parents were wonderful, and he was the last puppy left waiting for a home. I put a deposit down, Adam was still hesitant but he trusted me.

When we went to see the puppy we got to meet both his parents. Cooper’s breeders didn’t keep any of their poodles in show clips. Adam actually liked how they looked. He admitted to me that he thought that poodles had naked faces naturally, and that made him uncomfortable.

I’ll admit I didn’t really know that much about standard poodles other than what I had read in the AKC and CKC standards. My aunt Betty-Ann and her daughter my cousin Lorraine both have and adore their standard poodles. They recommend them highly. But I always pictured poodles as being, well prissy. Prim and proper, well behaved, always perfectly groomed and dainty is how I imagined them.

It turns out that standard poodles are large joyful high energy dogs. They LOVE being goofy and have no fear of dirt and mud…

Muddy Puppy

Muddy Puppy

Cooper needs a bath

Pawtuckaway Day

Pawtuckaway Day

And I LOVE it!

Muddy Puppy

And mud means bath time. Which always makes him look silly.

Bath time
Bath time

Bath time

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