Panda's First Smile

Panda's First Smile
PandaPig's First Smile!

Friday, September 28, 2012

My Comfort, Our New Love

Little Squirrel Having Breakfast in Bed.
We just discovered how much he loves
classical music! 
Yum-Yum and the herd are happy 
and soon I will be out of bed, too.
We still believe everyone
needs a little Squirrel now and then!
 (although it's true I dream he has a bushy tail...)
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Wednesday, September 26, 2012


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Bellingham volunteer pilots fly rescue missions to save two dogs | Local News | The Bellingham Herald

Bellingham volunteer pilots fly rescue missions to save two dogs | Local News | The Bellingham Herald
^^^Read for Hope, Happiness, and Joy!^^^
Before taking a brief time-out from being online, we want to leave you with this heartwarming, true story featured on the front page of today's
Bellingham Herald!
Most media outlets break news that only creates fear, divisiveness, and is enough to cause anyone to believe we live in a world on fire with hatred.

 Guess what? Those are words. THESE are pilots.
Real people. This is selfless service, called Seva in Hindi, this is ACTION SAVING LIVES!
 And this is their inspiring, true story!
We're taking a little break.

See ya soon! Love you all.
Yum-Yum, Bhindi, Vinny-Guinea,
Peter-Peanut, & adorable Squirrel.


 Precious Yum-Yum and I are fighting the good fight: ageing with illness. One of our faithful readers, Ms. A, author of blog on our list "Sarcastic Granny" just discovered a passion she never knew she had for photography. Please check it out, she just picked up a camera not too long ago and WOW!

I just rediscovered drumming, having not played in a rock & roll band since 1973. (Edwin and I played Japanese TAIKO drums about ten years ago) and I worked as a photographer for a few Asian newspapers when we still lived together in Seattle...That was a really cool combination of my love for martial arts and percussion.  Yet, returning to my earliest musical "roots" has been wonderful because I discovered what "body memory" is, and that I can still play my band's playlist. NOW THAT brings me back to life: A percussive-not-concussive FIRE AND PASSION
even illness and traumatic brain injury left untouched!

And Yum-Yum, WOW! He has been with me from "before the FALLS" when we still lived at the Wildlife Refuge with our bengal cat, Chai, and has nurtured every guinea pig we have taken in since then...he was actually mentored by PandaPig himself! He fights for his life with courage, passion, and a spiritual dignity I don't come close to: rarely EVER
will you hear him cry out in pain. Animals are hard-wired to do that because if a predator finds a weak one, they become a meal real quick and guinea pigs, or cavies, are wild herd animals who live in the Andes of South America. They once roamed free but now are probably all domesticated for food.

I wish I had known sooner how much pain Yum-Yum has been in...but we know now and are treating him.

But possibly more than anything is my love for photography and nature. Seeing our friend, Ms. A and our friend, Giz (Gizmomma World, also on our blogs list) discover hidden gifts is...well, it's GOOD.

It's REALLY Good!

 Giz is fighting the good fight, too, yet capturing nature as if she just awoke to a new Morning! Who amongst us, young or old, isn't in some way struggling to find our way through life towards that Beautiful Day?  
Yet, for those ageing and dying: this post is dedicated to you. We pray that these days of challenge include the beauty and color of wisdom acquired from overcoming our personal challenges as they paint our world with hues of Sunsets not ready to fade...only getting deeper and richer as we are carried onward to that HEAVENLY Horizon.
With Godspeed. "Endeavor" on.
{Thank you, Rashmi, for inspiring this post.}
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I heard a song on the radio. "I'm Beautiful, No matter
what they say..." was the only part I heard.
I am beautiful, too. All us piggies are.
And so are you, dear readers and friends!

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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Guinea Pig Welfare » Emotional Wellbeing and Guinea Pigs.

Guinea Pig Welfare » Emotional Wellbeing and Guinea Pigs.
(^^^Karen has posted the response we wrote after her brilliant
piece about boars yesterday. We invite you to share and read
her site and FACEBOOK, as well!)

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts, 
Karen, for sharing our story with your many
readers worldwide and your own experiences 
with guineas through YOUR "Guinea Pig Welfare"
site and FACEBOOK.

Dear readers, please check out Karen's site
(Listed in "My Blog List") to discover some 
of the quieter, hidden subtleties or the 
"secret inner lives" of guinea pigs, including 
their emotional and spiritual gifts and needs. 

Karen has been kind enough to include us in today's
post! You will recognize our cast of characters
but some of you may not have been fans back
when we adopted our dear Erica. Seeing her
precious face again has brought tears to our eyes
that we were blessed with one such as her! She 
taught me how to listen to those who speak 
through their sweet hearts to our own.Thank you, will always be missed, never forgotten.

"So Mom Takes Me to the Vet Today..." by Yum-Yum, tragically non fiction

For the very first time in my storied career as
editor of this blog and my brief stint as contributing editor of the MOD Blog, I 
really don't even know WHERE TO BEGIN!

Hmmmmm...O.K. let's begin with me, since I'm my favorite subject. Mom took me to the vet today! Whee.

Did I have an appointment?
Was there a reason for me to go?

 It was only to pick up more of my meds. The vet staff were as surprised as I knew they would be and delicately as possible reminded mom that they had spoken with her TWICE on the phone yesterday about how to Stupis-Proof my meds so she got it right and my many maladies and afflictions could receive the proper treatment I deserve.

She looked about as stunned as she did last night upon seeing our agoraphobic neighbor downstairs meeting the pizza deliver guy. She said (she always says this to him) "It LIVES!" then as he paid for a NOT SMALL box of something we knew was not vegetarian she asked, "Wow! If it wasn't Friday I'd say you're about to watch a football game on your gigantic, flat screen T.V. mighty neighbor."

Mighty Neighbor, pizza balanced delicately as he walked back into the building with her, replied "I am watching football and it's Monday."

"No it isn't. It's Friday."

"It's Monday. Monday night football?"


"Well, it is."

"Hmmmm, considering you rarely come out of your man-cave, are you S*hitting me? IT'S REALLY MONDAY? PROVE IT! WHO'S PLAYING?"

"The Seahawks."

"What? What? What? What? The Seahawks? Monday Night Football with the Seahawks?! Can I come? I have a special 12th Man jersey and if I wear it they will win! And I have never watched anything on a flat-screen T.V. before."


Mom is so excited! She comes in, highlights the appointment that I don't have with the vet tomorrow/today, not so unlike the end of last night's game, digs out her Seahawks jersey and enters her first "MAN CAVE!"


After half the game and having endured a relentless migraine for a week, she has to put a pillow over her face while the referees make hand signals she has never seen before even though she has been a Packers (eek, but true) fan since Vince Lombardi, Bart Starr, and Co. led them to the Very First Super Bowl Victory in History. It was still B & W, she says. The referees (temps filling in for the ones on strike) are making signals with their hands and arms that resemble something sailors would do aboard ships at sea, lots of  things that could be interpreted as religious, military, Boy Scout badge material, who knows?
Well, neighbor is kind enough not to eat his meat and before halftime she feels a seizure gonna happen if she keeps watching (although from the sky, Seattle sure had become beautiful) and she leaves.
And misses the extraordinary Hail Mary "touchdown- touchback" at the end!  Bummer.
Get up early, sets the alarm clock (notice any neural sequencing issues here?) and we go to the vet and I am so bored.

Then we come home and she discovers Sir Paul is going on tour having just written his first musical score for a ballet.
And decides that since he was her favorite Beatle before George Harrison was (and remains) her favorite Beatle and she has been practicing her para-paradiddles, that she will finally get "back into a band and go on tour."

Which brings me to this: 
where do I EVEN START?

pity us?
if you don't, now would be 
a good time to start.

Seahawk 12th Pig!
(Google "12th Man" you people 
who will never understand us 
Pacific Northwesterners!)

{mom got Traumatic Brain Injury, forgot to mention, it's only fair to say, i guess...}
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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Ingrid has a guinea pig and bunny rescue in
Bavaria, Germany and sports star tattoos on her cheek,  inspiring us with her beautiful blue eyes, kindness, warmth, compassion, and Love for all Creatures Large and Small.

Happy Birthday, Sweet Ingrid,
And thank you, Fairy, for introducing 

us to Ingrid and her meeri piggies!
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Mom discovered the expression
"Shelter-in-Place" from one of
her best friends in Seattle who 
works in an inner city school...
Every time something bad happens,
they have a "lock-down" and then
"Shelter-in-Place" until the gun-totin'
outlaw is found. They always get scared
that he is inside the school and they
may be locking themselves IN 
WITH HIM, but so far have been
lucky. (And this is grades 6-9, young
kids who are frightened easily.)

While mom languishes in bed
with her stupis migraine, we are 
Sheltering-In-Place because everytime
we go on Runabout she gets confused 
about who can Runabout with whom
(don't even ask!) without fighting,
so now she is in lockdown with 
yoghurt & granola, popcorn(?!), 
ginger ale, and a 3-day-old muffin
that is so healthy she can't stand the 
taste and thinks that as the days go
by the taste will improve.

Why all this, you ask? No reason,
other than to show you that when we
piggies "Shelter-in-Place" we got STYLE! 
Wee Squirrel is asleep and I am 
about to LEAP atop my box to watch 
and hold court with all the other piggies!
We have the best set up in the place
but with so much time to stare at us,
I know mom is re-decorating our
arrangement so every piggie gets
more space...and Yum-Yum is still
doing better! Yeah! We know that
Squirrel is the reason why, but getting
lap & snuggle (with Baytril antibiotics 
slipped in) at breakfast and bedtime isn't hurting, 
either. In fact, we all voted and it's unaniMouse: 
mom is spoiling Yum-Yum. We told her
so now we are all figuring out an extravagant
habitat configuration that would allow
us to all be closer to her bed so we can
all Snack&Snuggle her to sleep.
(hey, it's about comforting mom, not
getting bedtime treats! stop thinking that!)

Going through withdrawal from 
medications is hard and we know she
is in pain because of how dramatic she 
becomes after even a week of each
lowered dose. Still, more time with us!
And we only get better and better
homes because decorating ours is

Sheltering-In-Place. We get scared when
Susan tells mom they or her son's school or
the neighborhood they live in has to do that.
It's one reason we like Bellingham better
than Seattle. 

Now I'm just prattling on, but wanted to
add we just got another new box with
extra polarfleece squares on top so I'll 
return to my DeLuxe Penthouse now!

Just an update from the friendliest,
coziest Shelter-In-Place: We invite you 
all to come and visit! Popcorn is free.
We love popcorning and charge no
hidden fees for your enjoyment.

Your Favorite Guinea Pig:
Peter Peanut, is havin' fun!

{what's that Yum-Yum, a neuter coming? 
I have absolutely No Idea
what you are talking about! Ya 
just wanted to be included in this
blog post, so go back to munching
something and let me prattle on 
mindlessly to my adoring fans}...
Neuter...what that even mean?
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Friday, September 21, 2012

Vinny Declares Squirrel the Winner!

Squirrel, just dig those pretty pink
toes in and PULL! 
You Can Do IT!
{Vinny in Background,
not in the ring.}

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We are taking life one day at a time,
appreciating ourselves by demanding
that mom give more lap time, treats, 
Runabouts, and All Good Things.
I'm feeling better, but now I know
that all it takes to get what I want is
this posture and facial expression:
Mom picks me up and gives me
snuggles because she gets sad.
Wow, why didn't anyone tell
me how good this works?
I get my way all the time now
and I'm LUVIN' IT!

Yum-Yum, I think you're on to something!
Today, I gave mom the "You pay attention
to everyone but me," look and 
INSTANT Vinny-Guinea Spa Day!

Hey, if you're gorgeous, let the
world know! Yeah, baby.
Check out my tail-feathers!
Oooooh, baby-baby, you likey?
Fairy? Bear? Tell your sister
from Scotland she can have "all dis
heah" for free, she just gotta love me!

I'm so beautiful sometimes I can 
barely stand myself!!!

These are my: "Come Hither" eyes!
Waaaaah! Ladies, I'll put a ring on it.
(Beyonce, you can dance all right,
but can you POPCORN? like 
a guinea pig??? Can you?!")

Tra-La-La, I am Vinny-Guinea
and up top is Yum-Yum and those
should be names for the best
Gelato ice creams in the world.
Cuz we is silky smooth, sweet, and
And as long as we got mom home 
nursing her migraine, we are workin'
it, baby, working IT!

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Winslow Farm: An animal lover's fairy tale come to life - YouTube

Winslow Farm: An animal lover's fairy tale come to life - YouTube

Right now as the world burns with hatred, we can focus on goodness and humanity. "We should all respect animals for who they are...they're innocent and pure. Their spirits are just beautiful," says Debra White. Hallelujah! 

The T.V. reporters did a beautiful job on
this inspiring story of love and redemption, creating a Sanctuary for animals who had been abused.
This is a world we can create with our own hearts and hands. This is a world we are creating together, for through Molly the Owl, guinea pig rescue, and stories like this, including the silent heroes whose financial donations make places like Winslow Farms and Panda's Pig Sanctuary possible, we have a different vision of our world: one of kindness, compassion, and love.
We are so grateful to people like Debra White.
We are so grateful to all of you.
Adopt a rescue animal if you can
and make a difference!

'HERO' Pig Saves Baby Goat From Drowning! - YouTube

'HERO' Pig Saves Baby Goat From Drowning! - YouTube

This just in. A tiny goat at a petting zoo drowning
as his foot became stuck in a rock. Out of nowhere,
a pig, dubbed the "hero pig" plunged into the water
to save the baby goat. 

Would you consider giving up eating pork?
Or eating less? Pigs have feelings, too. 
Thank you.

This was very healing and I am feeling better.
+ Bhindi, Vinny-Guinea, Peter-Peanut & Squirrel


Last night I dreamed that Squirrel had a big bushy
tail and he could soar and fly. When I told mom she
said I was describing a flying squirrel. She said they
are very small and adorable. I asked her how did she
know he wasn't a flying squirrel, then, since if you ever
heard the way she talks about him on the phone, she
uses those words "small and adorable." 
Everyone agrees with me.
Mom's bad migraines are back and we fear she has
mistaken a flying squirrel for a baby guinea pig.
So far, no one has volunteered to ask her.
I am staying right here under my colorful tent
because if he does fly, at least it won't be on me.
Mom just lies in bed as if she doesn't even care.
She said "I can't imagine these antibiotics are 
actually even getting into Yum-Yum's furry 
mouth the way he shakes his head "to & fro"
but he's doing better, that's what I care about."
Gee, thanks mom. You got us a flying squirrel,
how can we ever thank you?!
(you think we haven't thought of ways?)
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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Taming your Guinea Pig.

Hi Everybody,
If any of you are considering rescuing a guinea pig of your very own
here's a great site to help you understand your new companion and commune
with him or her gently and safely. If you have any questions regarding how
to house, feed, or care for your new Piggy, we have lots of valuable links
in the "My Blog List" section and Guinea Pig Magazine (also listed) is
the only International magazine devoted completely to guinea pigs and their
quirkiness, health, and care.

It's a terrific magazine and Alison, publisher and editor, just lost her
beloved Piglet today. We learned this from two piggy friends who saw
her FACEBOOK  (we are not on FB) so please visit her at
Guinea Pig Magazine FACEBOOK and share your condolences as they
are much needed and she and Guinea Pig Magazine - who featured our
very own Taj Mahal as their New Year Cover Pig (including an interview)
- were unspeakably supportive of our own herd loss last winter.

Yum-Yum has what Alison's beloved Piglet had: a bladder stone and
urinary tract infection, among other health issues. We think Yum-Yum's
stone is smaller and his condition less severe, but it would be a lie to
say we (o.k. FINE, piggies!) that I am not a bit shaken up by her loss 
for this reason, as well. 

For now, "the kids are all right" and so good night, sweet dreams, and our
hearts go out to you, Alison, you and Piglet both in our prayers tonight and
always...thank you for being there for us. We hope you can feel our love even
from "across the pond" for you are a treasure. You said Guinea Pig Magazine
would not exist had it not been for Piglet:
We feel immeasurably grateful to him, Alison, since
so many beautiful, sweet piggies and their slaves
benefit from the magazine he inspired.
We sure have!

We are so sorry for your loss, dear Alison...

(((Alison and Piglet))) We love you.

Chana, Yum-Yum, Bhindi, Vinny-Guinea, Peter-Peanut,
and Squirrel (our own resident Hospice Therapy Pig.)

Taming your Guinea Pig.(link)
(great site! just press the piggies, they popcorn and leave you a poop!)

The Wait...

Waiting for results at the vet.
Yum-Yum is showing improvement
with his bladder infection and we
have discovered a cyst on Bhindi's
back which will be biopsied on Friday.
We have NO DOUBT Yum-Yum's
improvement is also the result of the
enormous outpouring of love for all
of us here at the Sanctuary/Hospice
and we are grateful beyond measure.
(the rest of this we edited out, so

if the comments don't make sense,
it cuz of we edited the rest of this out!)
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Monday, September 17, 2012

He Comforts Me (and this is the one I meant to post Below! drrrrrr.......)

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Thank you all for your loving support as we go from Sanctuary
to Hospice for Yum-Yum. He has his good moments and his
not so good moments but guess what? Ever since Squirrel
came into our lives - and I discovered just how hard it is to
remember how to spell his name! - Yum-Yum's seizures have
stopped. He is very happy, still eating and drinking, not liking
his meds 2x/day but otherwise enjoying himself and now that
his physical pain is also being managed we choose to be happy
as some of my near and dear ones have informed me my own
moods create an environment and it could be a morbid one
or a Happy, Joyful one as we enjoy these remaining days,
weeks, hopefully months together: so we choose Joy
and if I need to cry I will go into the coat closet.
Everyone needs a little Squirrel.
And friends like all of you!
Much love.
To my loved ones in India: Prem.
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Sunday, September 16, 2012

For Yum-Yum: Stand By Me (Steelpan) - YouTube

YumYum is not doing too well. I am practicing my drumming.
(With rubber practice pads, are you kidding? Guinea pigs and
migraines? No steel drum here, mon! LOL!)
Drumming may come in handy to support an inevitable grief.
Since I play a steel bucket (which I will also be painting)
this song is dedicated to Yum-Yum: I will always stand by you.
The rest of you: DANCE FOR US! PLEASE.
The video gets hip-hop and really fun towards the END, 
Dance. And please Stand by Us...
we feel you.

Stand By Me (Steelpan) - YouTube

Saturday, September 15, 2012


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Yum-Yum and Squirrel: A Miracle!

We don't know how much longer Yum-Yum will be with us.
But, we do know one thing: This morning he did NOT
have a seizure! We celebrate the moment and
are grateful to Squirrel for livening up our Pirate by
 popcorning, scooting, curiosity, adorableness,
and giving all of us, the entire herd, so much HAPPINESS!

Whatever happens will happen. But our feisty, playful, precocious squirrel making us 
all giggly: SQUEEE!
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Please enjoy our next post!
The official sweatshirt worn by
my new friend says it ALL:
It really Does Take A Village.
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STOMP Opens Closing Ceremonies at the London 2012 Olympics.
They get paid.

But I believe EveryWoman deserves a drum,
even if it's just the lid of a tin bucket.
My New Friend sure likes it!
I carry my drumsticks and bucket lid EVERYWHERE
because here in quirky Bellingham you never know when
you might come across a Drum Circle for a Charitable Cause!
It's a good policy for every Bellinghamster, as you can see.
Some Bellinghamsters prefer "real drums" but decorated nicely!
(And Adobo is a Philipino food yummy once you replace the
chicken for TOFURKEY.)
Ya, real good, adobo.
Many Bellinghamsters simply dress this way because, well,
that's how we roll here in our defiant, little artsy-outdoor Paradise!
Meet Olivia. She needed a kidney transplant or she would die. A little girl donated a kidney.
Both children were playing and doing cartwheels on the grass. But she and others like her
will need anti-rejection medication for the rest of their lives. To help pay for these costs,
and to help other children do cartwheels on the grass, she established her own foundation:
The event, one I had no idea was taking place (just happened to show up
at the right place at the right time) was LIV FEST 2012! WAY COOL.

So, get y'self a bucket and a sturdy pair of drumsticks, cuz ya just never know
when they're going to come in handy helping your community saving a life!
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Friday, September 14, 2012

The Many Moods of Squirrel

I'm philosophical.
I can roar like a lion!
I can be a porcupine.
I am a ninja guard-pig!
I'm a caring creature.
Yum-Yum loves me!

"Mom, can I go back home now? 

This creature is annoying. 
I'm too old for this.
Thank you.")
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