Mom, dad and I went on vacation for nine whole days to one of my
favorite places. It is a special cabin at one of our parks that the
public doesn't rent because there is no real road and mom says the cabin
is too rustic for the public. So staff can rent it. It is right on the
river. It is called the Brown Cabin (it's not named after someone named
brown, it's just painted brown) and it's at Shenandoah River State Park.
I know my pal @ShawneeShep and her mom know about the cabin because
they found it when they were hiking in the park.
It is a really good vacation for mom because there is
no cell service and no internet. Also no TV (they actually have a TV
that we can rent Red Box videos and play them but only three channels).
So mom read 9 books while we were there (actually they were on her
Kindle). One was that new Chet book (I will blog about that another
We did get a lot of rain thanks to that
Hurricane Lee coming up from the gulf. The Chief Ranger came and warned
us about possible flash flood warnings but the Shenandoah River just got
a little bit wider. The porch room that mom likes to spend her time in
(she can see the river and the windows open really wide (we will not
talk about the screens on the window that were perfect when we got there
but somehow not so perfect when we left - can I help it that I have to
jump up and bark when people go by hiking or biking?) has a tin roof so
the rain was very relaxing. When you want to spend your vacation reading
and relaxing the rain is not a bad thing.
It did not
rain steady so there was lots of time for me to go swimming in the
Shenandoah River. Since there is a current in the river (and none in my
pond), it is different swimming. The river tended to steal some of my
sticks too and there also seemed to be a stick shortage at the park
compared to our yard.
Oh the big news was that we also
took Alexis and she got herself a mouse! Mom said - another reason we
don't rent that to the public (no pix). She had lots of fun stalking all kinds of
If you like a good place for a vacation, I highly recommend Shenandoah River State Park. The park has "for the public" cabins that
are only a year old and two great campgrounds.
If you remember mom went to the Shorty Awards in 2010 because her @VAStateParks twitter account was a finalist. She shared a room with Vicki Boatright, perhaps better known by her artist name BZTAT, and they got to know each other. Since then she saw her at BarkWorld Expo 2010 and Blog Paws just a couple of weeks ago. While she was at Blog Paws she found out about the next Okey's Promise project.
Maybe you do not know about the first Okey's Promise project. BZTAT used Kickstarter to raise money for a mural that would be painted on a building in Canton, Ohio where she lives. The way Kickstarter works is that people promise (they call it a pledge) to donate a certain amount of money to a project and IF they raise the goal amount, the people pay their money. BZTAT calls the donors Promise Keepers which both Mom and I like a lot. You can donate as little as $1 or as much as you want. Mom was one of the Promise Keepers for the mural which was officially unveiled last month.
The name of the mural is "Safe Animals and Safe Kids."
Okey is one of BZTAT's cats, one she rescued from a parking lot who had been badly mistreated. Okey has a good life now but she still exhibits behaviors related to her earlier life. Okey was BZTAT's inspiration to raise awareness about the connection between animal abuse and child abuse. Where there is animal abuse there is often children and spousal abuse. Sometimes the animal will be threatened as a way to psychologically abuse the human victims.
Okey, photo by BZTAT
Okey's promise: Make the world a better place for children AND animals.
BZTAT has launched another Kickstarter project. Mom and I have already become new promise keepers. We think BZTAT describes the project and her goals the best in this short video:
I think this new artwork sounds like it will be amazing. Please help BZTAT take it from a concept to art that calls attention to this issue by offering hope by telling a story of survival and resilience.
What can you do?
Go to Kickstarter and become a Promise Keeper in any amount.
Tell your friends and family. Tweet it, post it on Facebook and Google+, blog about it. Okey's Promise can be found on Facebook by clicking here.
There are only eleven days left to make a difference by helping BZTAT reach the $6,000 goal.
I'm sure all my pals know that mom is speaking at BarkWorld Expo which is coming soon - it kicks off September 29th! She will be telling folks all about advertising on Facebook. She has done lots of ads on Facebook for her job at Virginia State Parks. While I am disappointed I will not be going, I know that my last hotel/conference experience was just too much for me so I am okay with it until I get older and mom invests in some significant obedience training.
Since BarkWorld will be two weeks away on Friday, there is going to be a great Yappy Hour Twitter pawty!
It is going to be exciting with the Shibbering Cheetos (@ShibberingC) performing, prizes and lots of fun. Click here for more information.
And, if you have not signed up for BarkWorld Expo 2011 it is NOT TOO LATE. Victoria Stilwell will be a keynote speaker from the show "It's Me or the Dog." Hmmm maybe mom can pick up some tips. Just because it's called BARKworld, don't worry the sessions are good for all anipals (and even humans).
P.S. Now that dad and I aren't going, mom would love a female roommate (dad insists on the female part) and she might just have a conference ticket available too. Email her at nancyDOTheltmanATdcr.virginia.gov.