The love of Mike

Posted By on December 6, 2017

Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.  (John Lennon) – Lennon hit on a profound truth here – with its roots in the Bible.

I’m busy. You’re busy. We are all running around planning for this and that. Hopefully though, we remember to enjoy the many moments that make up our lives. Hopefully we also remember to live in the NOW.

With my partner of 37 years spending so much time in the hospital, perilously ill at times, I entered a new level of BUSY. It has been dizzying to spend as much time as possible with Mike, and to keep up with his care and condition while still working full time.

What I see clearly now is that all of the things around me are temporary. The dust bunnies, the dirty laundry, and the overgrown hedges can all wait. Expressing love to those around me is what can’t wait.

Thank you to my friends that have been so generous with their kind words, prayers, and shoulders to cry on.  You are a Godsend, and I love you.

I appreciate my son and daughter and their significant others, as well as my brother who have been so helpful and supportive while Mike has been sick. You are all such a blessing. I love you all so much!

My beautiful collies don’t know why I have had less time to spend with them, but they are eager, wonderful friends always there to show their love and lift my spirits. Collies have enriched my life as far back as I can remember. Hopefully, we will have lots of playtime together by Christmas!

Most of all I want to express my love to Mike, my longtime partner on this journey together. Our lives have been a rollercoaster ride- honestly never a dull moment. I doubt we will ever have a dull moment together, but I do hope for some peaceful ones to enjoy as we settle into our retirement years. I want to thank you, Mike, for giving me a life of full-tilt love.



Here are some pictures of Mike with our collies. He knew how much I loved collies so he embraced them too. 





I will be retired by Christmas, after working over 40 years, and Mike should be home before Christmas. It should be one of the happiest Christmas times ever.

 By mid- January, I hope Tracer will bless us with some beautiful, brown collie babies. There is nothing more fun than collie babies!




















































And so it goes

Posted By on November 29, 2017

October and November have been strange here with my husband Mike in the hospital most of the time. He is usually my anchor that keeps things at home rolling along efficiently. Thank goodness he should be home from the rehab hospital before Christmas. He is making steady improvements slowly but surely, and that is something I’m grateful for.

I let our little Melody daughter, Jilly, go to a great new home in central Texas to be the family dog and part time goat herder. Jilly was getting cuter everyday- plus she is a smart girl with a lot of personality. If circumstances had been different, I think she would have stayed here with us.  Spreading my time between work, the hospital, and home has been tiring. Thank God I am retiring the end of December!

Here is a picture of Jilly at her new home. What a sweet girl!

Jilly pic taken by her new owners.


On the subject of smooth collies- we currently have a sable merle smooth girl owned by Lea Bertsch, her daughters, and Tina and Larry Patterson visiting us. Her name is Reba- aka Gr Ch Scalloway’s You’re Gonna Be Golden. She is here to be bred to our up and coming boy Patton.  If Reba takes from the breeding, she should have rough and smooth puppies in sable and sable merle, and possibly sable headed whites. I think Reba is white factored. Patton definitely is. I think Reba and Patton compliment each other nicely. If Reba has puppies from this planned breeding, they would be due the end of January 2018.

Here is a picture of Reba with Lea after winning best of variety at the recent Austin show. Reba has done very well like her ump-teen champion siblings!

Reba at Austin with Lea



I have my fingers crossed that Tracer is expecting puppies sired by Patton. It is too early to tell, but I see some positive signs. I am very excited about that combination. It would be the first litter of my retirement years. No more calling into work saying “Sorry, I won’t be in today. We are having puppies!”


I want to say a special thank you to my friends and family that have prayed or sent good wishes for Mike. I believe with all my heart that they helped pull him through a scary time. God bless you all!














Bright spots

Posted By on November 5, 2017

My husband has been sick for awhile, so things have not exactly been normal at home lately — whatever that is. He’s had a rough go of it mostly resulting from damnable Diabetes. He is back in the hospital right now in ICU, but is getting better. I’m writing this by his hospital bed right now- trying not to annoy his nurses too much.

There have been a couple of bright spots in our collie world recently, so I will mention those.


Last Saturday Layla (Cherann’s N Tairis Share The Luv), was shown in Benton, Arkansas by her breeder, and co-owner, Cheryl Kobularcik, to win a four point major under James Noe. Layla is an elegant tricolor daughter of Miguel (Ch Cherann’s No Stranger To Luv ), out of Ch Alcor’s With a Twist. Thank you Cheryl for doing a great job with her!


Today another daughter of Miguel and Afterhours Cashmere Princess finished her championship last weekend. Lovely little Sweet Pea, (Ch Cherann’s Tickled Pink at St. Roch) bred and owned by Nick Moyers and Cheryl Kobularcik,  picked up the last point she needed at the show in Joplin, Missouri. She was shown by Jay Lee who always does a great job. Congratulations to all!

Sweet Pea with Jay Lee



Last but not least is little Jilly, our 8 week old daughter of Melody and Adam. Jilly has gotten so cute! She seems to have the great body of her mother and a blend of Melody’s sweetness and Adams’s mischievous personalities. More good news- Jilly’s eye exam was very good, Yay!


Jilly in bowl

 Jilly decided to sample the big dogs’ food.
















Looking Good!

Posted By on October 23, 2017

It was a pretty weekend even with a little wind and rain. Saturday I got to assist my brother with his art display at Fort Worth’s Art Goggle event. He was one of 850 artists displaying their work along Magnolia Street for 18 blocks through the medical district. There are a lot of talented artists in this area.


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Sunday I got to go to the dog show in Belton, Texas. Lea Bertsch was showing some of her girls and our big pup Patton. Patton has been winner’s dog or better at his first 4 shows, which brings his point total to 4 so far. Saturday he was best of winners for a point, and also got a group 2 in the puppy herding group. Today Patton was winner’s dog, best of winners and best of variety over a champion for another point. I’m really proud of how he is coming along. He is going to be a lot of fun to show. I can’t thank Lea Bertsch enough for working with Patton, grooming him, and getting him shown. Today Lea’s friend, Keileigh, helped show Patton- aka- Tairis Runnin’ Down A Dream.Here are some pix from the show. I only had my cell phone camera, and the indoor pix were awful.


Patton 10/22/2019




Patton with KeeLee


Patton 10 21 2017 at Belton

Patton is doing good for a 9 month old boy coming out of  summertime temperatures.




We have another little beauty in the house. Melody’s pup Jilly is getting cuter every week. She is a fearless little monkey that is quite entertaining. Jilly is coming up on her six week birthday. 


Jilly w toy 10 21 17


Jilly 10 21 2017

Jilly looks so sweet, but she has a sassy side too!


Melly and Jilly 10 22 2017

Melly is not much of a disciplinarian.



Fall blessings…


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Cute babies large and small

Posted By on October 9, 2017

Melody’s lone surviving puppy- Miss Jilly- is four weeks old now. She is a spoiled baby and doing very well. She has learned to drink water (Praise the Lord!), and eat soft food. She is also playing with us, with her mother, and her toys. I so wish she had at least one littermate for company, but she seems pretty happy. She certainly gets a lot of attention.

Here are some pictures of Miss Jilly at 4 weeks of age.

Jilly at 4 weeks


Jilly with toys 10 08 17


Jilly profile at 4 weeks


Jilly looks back 4 wks



Our big nine month old baby boy- Patton- has gone to visit Lea Bertsch this month to go to a few shows with her. Patton is a son of our girl, Poppy, and Leas’s boy, Samson. Lea showed him at his first shows this weekend at Humble, TX, and Patton won a point each day. Thank you Lea! And special thanks to Marge Toohey who brushed him on Saturday. Collie people are some of the nicest people around. Patton is still in summer coat, but I can see new coat growing as the heat of summer begins to diminish. I think he’s going to do well at the shows as he matures. Here are a couple of snapshots of Patton after the shows this weekend.


Patton and Lea after the Humble show


Patton at Lea's 10/08/2017

Patton’s AKC name is Tairis Runnin’ Down A Dream, after my favorite Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker’s song.   I hope Patton will run down my dream of completing his championship in 2018.

RIP Tom Petty, and thanks for writing so many wonderful songs.



Tom Petty


















Jilly’s good and other good news

Posted By on September 25, 2017

Jilly at 2 weeks


It’s been a busy weekend – too short as usual. I just wanted to post an update on Melly’s little girl- Jilly. She is doing fine- eating, sleeping, and growing. Her eyes are open now so she can find her mother if Melody changes positions in the box. Jilly is up on her feet more or less exploring the confines of her big whelping box. Singleton puppies always get spoiled. After she eats, Jilly is content to curl up by her mother, or equally content to crawl into my lap for a nap. She is a precious little girl. I still think she is a smooth. Whether or not we will keep her remains to be seen. She may possibly be available in about 7 weeks. We will see. 

I’m excited that Layla is growing hair and will be going to some shows with Cheryl soon. And I guess we are going to let Lea Bertsch (owner of Patton’s sire- GCH Scalloway’s Lion Hunter) show Patton at the Humble shows for his debut. He looks ok for an almost 9 month old puppy. How he will act is another story. He is, after all, a son of our wild child- Poppy. Updates to follow.

We got this nice bit of news from Lea Bertsch and Liz Long. They put another point on the Poppy/ Samson puppy, Maxi, co-owned with Lea and Tairis Collies. That brings Maxi’s point total to four in only a few times shown.  I can’t wait to see how Maxi’s siblings Willa and Patton do at the shows. 

The Samson/ Poppy puppies were a special litter. All the puppies were pretty, and the people that have the siblings as family pets are all very happy with them. Doss, who went to a family near Houston, was evacuated from their flooded house with the rest of the family by the US Army in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Doss’s owner, Bronwyn, said he behaved wonderfully in crazy conditions. Doss was floated out in an inner-tube to reach the army truck! Thank goodness Doss and his humans are all fine.  Bronwyn said Doss was a favorite with the other evacuees and has a future as a therapy dog. I could not be more proud of her pup.



Doss in the back of the army truck



































Heartbreak and hope

Posted By on September 17, 2017

Less than a day after my last post celebrating Melody’s three surviving puppies- we lost two more. It felt like being hit in the gut with a sledge hammer- twice. At 10 PM on Monday night, Mel Jr., Roland, and Jilly were all nursing and looking great. By midnight Mel Jr was dead. A couple of hours later Roland died in my hands. I don’t know why. They were not crushed or smothered. They just stopped breathing. I suspect that maybe the drugs Melody got during her C-section might have damaged them. Thankfully, little Jilly survived, and is doing fine. She is a week old now, so it appears that she will make it. She eats like a little pig.  It’s so sad she won’t have siblings to teach her to share. Melody will have to show her the ropes. Jilly is precious and we are very happy she seems to be thriving.

Here are some pictures of Jilly today as she turns one week old. Click on the pictures for an enlarged view.

Jilly 9 17 17


jilly profile 9 17 17


Jilly close up 9 17 17


Jilly nursing 9 17 17



I also took a couple of pictures in the backyard of my almost 9 month old pups from our litter from Poppy sired by Samson.  I’m still very happy with them. Willa and Patton are very sweet puppies and are looking pretty for this time of year. I hope we will be able to get them to some shows this winter.


Patton 9 17 2017


Patton resting 9 17 2017



Patton face 9 17 17


Willa 9 17 2017


Willa front 9 17 17



Willa head profile 9 17 17


Summer has come back full force for now, but I know cooler days will be here soon. We are all looking forward to that.













Three new lives begin!

Posted By on September 12, 2017


Melly's 3


Breeding collies is not for the faint hearted.   I had been getting things ready for Melody’s big event for weeks.  I checked my list of all the stuff I use at whelping time, gathered it together, and ordered the things I needed to replenish. Finally we were all set. I started taking Melody’s temperature and recording it a week before she was due. I got the fast read thermometers, but she still began to go the other way when she saw a thermometer in my hand.  Her temperature read the same day after day, until last Friday. There it was – a drop of almost 3 degrees below normal. That usually means whelping is around the corner – usually less than 48 hours away. 

Melody seemed uncomfortable Friday night.  I slept near her so she could alert me if her labor started. She woke me up numerous times, but she was not in labor. She just wanted to be pet. All day Saturday Melody laid around sleeping, moaning, and trying to get comfortable with puppies visibly moving around in her tummy. Melody has always been a moaner, always tending towards being a bit of a drama queen. By Saturday night she had to go outside and relieve herself a dozen times or more. I knew puppies would be coming soon.  Neither of us got much sleep, Friday, or Saturday night.

Sunday morning her contractions started for real. Before too long her first pup was born. He was a sad sight. I thought he was dead at first. The poor little guy looked like something the cat drug in. Melody and I worked on him until finally he was squealing. He was a white factored, sable merle boy. I called him Possum.

The next pup to come was a very white factored blue merle boy, similar to Melody except probably rough coated. With color and markings similar to his mother, we are calling this boy Mel Jr. He is a cute and apparently healthy boy. He was ready to eat from birth!

So we were waiting on the next puppy because I could feel at least two more in her belly. Melody had good strong contractions that went on and on and on. After a long while of contractions but no puppy we called our vet. Of course it was a Sunday. It seems like most emergencies happen on Sundays or holidays. It so happened that our reproduction vet was going to be open on a Sunday afternoon and would see Melody as an emergency.

With construction traffic, (do they ever finish fixing roads?) it took me almost an hour to get Melody to the vet. The poor girl was still pushing but no puppies came out during the trip. The whole time at the vet poor Melody was pushing with each contraction. No uterine inertia here. She was pushing HARD! 

The vet did a sonogram and x-rays. The problem was that one puppy from each of the two uterine horns had come down toward the birth canal at the same time. They were in a road rage battle that neither could win. There was just not room for two babies to come out at the same time, and they were both stuck.  At this point there was no choice but to get a C-section. Melody had done her best. It was a matter of bad luck for her pups to come down at the same time. She fed her two already born babies until it was time for the C-section. She was still trying to push the others out on her way to surgery.

The good news is: Melody is fine, and the C-section recovered two live puppies. One of the stuck puppies didn’t make it. I stayed close to the vet office while Melody recovered, and fed the two babies born earlier while we were waiting on their mamma and siblings.

The vet walked out holding a tricolor boy pup and a sable girl. I thought they were two of the cutest newborn puppies I had ever seen. I didn’t know if the C-section would recover any live pups, so I was overjoyed to see these babies!

Back home, Melody has been able to feed the pups. Thank God she is such a good mother. The three bigger pups all latch on to nipples like little pigs. The small boy we called Possum couldn’t latch on without help. I tube fed him puppy milk every couple of hours. Sadly by Sunday morning, little Possum is gone. It’s so sad to lose a new baby. I would rather never meet the babies than to hold them, and do all I know to keep them going only to lose them. It’s a sad part of breeding dogs.

Now we will focus on the three new lives. Let me introduce, Mel Jr- a very white factored rough blue merle boy.

Blue boy aka Mel Jr


blue boy Mel Jr face


And the sable girl involved in the birth canal traffic jam- Miss Jilly.  For all the people waiting on a rough sable girl- I am very sorry about that… I would bet the farm that Miss Jilly is a SMOOTH. I think she’s beautiful!

Jilly- Sable girl side


sable girl Jilly face close up



And lastly we have a tricolor boy, called Roland, after the Dark Tower series. He was the last to be born- wondering what was taking so long, I suppose. He is a perfect little boy. I am not sure yet if he will be a smooth or rough, but it won’t take too long to tell.


Tri boy Roland side



And that is that. There will be no more puppies from Melody, so these babies are extra special. In case you can’t tell, we love our Melly. I am mostly a rough collie fancier, but Melody is a unique character that made me love a smooth as much as any rough collie that ever shared my couch.  I hope to share our couch with Melody for a lot more years to come.


Melly with her pig before she went into labor.


























RIP Bruce

Posted By on August 14, 2017

Bruce as a pup starting his show career

I got sad news today from Judy Gorham. Her pretty sable boy Bruce passed away today. He was twelve years old. In a way twelve years is a significant amount of time, but when you are talking about the life span of a friend it is painfully short. I know Judy and Steve will miss Bruce. I will miss seeing him when I visit Judy too. He was an easy going boy with a lovely temperament. Losing these wonderful collies is the hardest part of having them in our lives. Each dog lost takes  “another little piece of our heart” – to borrow the Janis Joplin song lyrics. It’s true though.

Bruce, aka Ch Avalar Tairis Triumphant,  was a significant dog for Tairis Collies as he was the first champion to come from our whelping box. He was a son of Ch Avalar Windcrest Breezin, out of Tagamor Tairis Leona. Bruce inherited the nice head planes of his parents and finished his championship with  3, 4, and 5 point majors. He was a combination of mostly Parader families, such as Vennessee. We have since gone a different route in our breeding program, but Bruce is one I will never forget. RIP Bruce. 















Good news, bad news, good news

Posted By on August 12, 2017

I absolutely love our collies. I love playing with them, chilling out with them, going to shows when I can, and having puppies. On the breeding side of this hobby, I’d say my luck at having puppies averages about 50:50. That’s how it worked out this time. 

I took Merci and Melody to the repro vet this morning for sonograms to see for sure if they were expecting puppies or not. It turned out that Merci is NOT having puppies. This is very disappointing. It’s a long drive to Missouri. Merci is a very pretty girl, and Pride is a big handsome boy. Physically and pedigree- wise they were so complimentary to each other. These things happen. We will try again. Unfortunately, Merci only seems to come in season once a year.

The GOOD NEWS: Melody, my uniquely awesome smooth girl,  IS GOING TO HAVE BABIES!  I don’t know exactly how many, but we saw multiple puppy hearts beating on the ultrasound. Yea Melody! She is such a wonderfully sound, good moving girl, I am hoping to get her dynamite body on these babies, as well as her endearing personality. Melody is a wonderful mother so I am hoping all will go well. Melody was bred to the handsome Bridgit son, Adam, (Ch Avalar Tairis Autumn Gold.) Adam should contribute his pretty type, elegance and happy attitude. We could have some real beauties from this breeding, and some fun personalities too.  Melody could have sables, sable merles, blue merles, or tricolors- some white factored. Statistically, half the puppies should be smooth, and half should be regular, rough coated pups. I can usually tell at 2-3 weeks which pups are smooth and which are rough. By five weeks there is no doubt.  She should have her puppies around September 10th, 2017. I will be putting together a pedigree and posting it. Ch Heatherri Let It Be will be on both the sire and dam side of the pedigree. Melody is a strong example of Cheryl’s breeding program, and Adam has Ch Windhaven Stranger in Paradise predominately in his pedigree through his parents, Bridgit and Miguel. I can’t wait to see Melly’s babies!


Adam at Nolan River show




Melly Jan 2016




Adam in the show ring with Jay




















Speaking of Adam … I am excited about some other potentially good news that happened this past week concerning Adam’s daughter, Carina. Carina, (Tairis A Cara Bonita) was bred this past week to Cheryl Kobularcik’s breathtaking yearling boy, Landon (Cherann’s Cherokee on Sacred Ground.) Carina is a beautiful daughter of Nick Moyer’s Ch St. Roch’s Moonlight Serenade (Flurry), and Adam. Carina is now in Missouri, co-owned with Cheryl. Landon is a son of Ch Wyndlair Cherokee Exclamation. Landon’s dam is Cherann’s Luv the Contessa. Landon is a drop dead gorgeous young dog owned by Cheryl and Susan Joslin. He garnered 10 points and two majors already as a puppy, going winners dog at three collie specialty shows. He has the makings of a superstar. Landon and Carina could produce some over the top pretty babies. If we do get puppies from this breeding, they would be due about October 10, 2017. All the puppies would be sables, most white factored, or we could possibly get some sable headed white puppies too. I would expect puppies from Carina and Landon to be exceptionally pretty. We should know in a month or so if the breeding took. Carina will probably be coming back to us in Texas to whelp her puppies if the breeding takes.


Landon at Kansas CC

Landon WD at OK Specialty