Smudge Alpin MacRuff’s Adventures and Upcoming Writing Projects


Hello everyone,

It’s hard to believe, but Smudge Alpin MacRuff will be five months old tomorrow. Smudge has changed so much already!  He’s smart and sassy like many terriers. If you tell him no, he talks back. He even did it to the vet!  I try not to laugh. Really. But it’s so hard and I fail. Miserably.


Already giving the stinkeye.

Smudge and I just started puppy training classes. I told him he needed to learn how to be a gentleman terrier. Yes, I talk to my puppy like he can understand everything I’m saying. Why? Because I think dogs are smart and they are definitely smarter than people give them credit for.

Terriers in particular I think aren’t given a high enough rating for their intelligence. From what I’ve seen whoever is doing these tests, they knock them down on the scale due to their stubbornness, which is wrong. If you consider what Cairn terriers were bred to do they needed their stubbornness, ability to focus, think independently and have the energy to rout out foxes, badger, and other forms of rodentia. Stubbornness and intelligence are two different things and a good working terrier requires all of this and more to get the job done.


Mama, are you taking another picture?

It’s fun to watch Smudge grow and learn new things, to see his personality emerging.  I have a journal keepsake book I made to keep notes on the things he does and anything else I want to remember.

The terrier curiosity along with everything being a game is quite exciting and entertaining. This can be a good thing, and not so good, which leads to  ‘oh crap, he’s got something and run off with it!’, his tail wags, his eyes shine and the chase is on.

Napkins, facial tissue, paper towels (kitchen paper), notebook paper are all potential victims of Smudgie’s shredding. We’re all learning and so far I’ve learned that the only way to get him to stop running and drop whatever he’s confiscated is to offer a piece of a treat. Yes, puppy blackmail.

Let’s be honest, my arse isn’t fast enough to catch him. And why bring on an asthma attack when I can use bribery and get the job done for the moment. As you can see, the drop it and leave it commands are areas we haven’t gotten to yet in training. I’m looking forward to the day when I don’t have to resort to food bribery.


Look into my eyes. “Give me the treat. You know you want to.!”

With all this walking three or four times a day, running around and chasing Smudge in the house I hope there’s some weight loss in my future. I must be diligent with my attention because puppies, like all babies, are prone to sticking everything in their mouth. I’ve got to keep an eye out for undesirable things on the ground like a dead crawdad. The partial body of a dead crawdad is not on the puppy’s diet. (Blech!) There was no way, NO WAY I was sticking my fingers in his mouth to get that thing out. I did try using a small stick but it didn’t work. His puppy jaws were clamped tight. I said a prayer and figured it was going to come out either from the front end or the back.

It’s been a long time since I’ve had a puppy and my first time to be owned by a Cairn terrier. He’s an energetic handful but I love my furbaby so much.


My writing schedule is odd but I’m getting a few things done.

Here’s what’s in the works: A Homemade Recipes for Dogs cookbook by me and Smudge. Depending on how many I sell, I would love to make a donation every three months to a Houston area or Texas organization that rescues terriers. When it’s ready I’ll write a blog post and announce it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

I’m lengthening an erotic romance short story that was published previously. It will be novella length  (80-120 pages) for the Common Elements Romance Project. All of the authors participating are writing stories with five common elements, in any romance genre. I’ll post more information as it gets closer to the release months of October and November of this year. There will be a Facebook party and the authors will be doing things for their releases, too.

There’s one more project I’m working on. A Young Adult paranormal contemporary romance. I wrote it (and finished it) years ago. I picked it back up, still liked the story and could see the potential.  It takes place in a small, Texas town full of supernatural species, and the other part of the story is in the Celtic world realm. The heroine, Tara. learns she is more than a clairvoyant shifter. She is the only one who can help her boyfriend, Druce find his mother, who disappeared five years ago. They’re on a time limit racing to save Druce’s mother and stay alive. Tara and Druce’s lives are threatened by Ancient Celtic deities who will do anything to prevent the layers of lies from being exposed to the Council.. Will Tara and Druce find his mother and deepen their relationship or will they fail?


August 5-30, 2019 for Hearts Through History Romance Writers of America chapter. Go to the Hearts Through  History website for more information. *I’ll post links to the workshop when I receive them.

October 7-31, 2019 Young Adult Romance Writers of America chapter. Go to their website for more details. *I’ll post links to the workshop when I receive them.

If you’re on Facebook and are a fan of my work, I’ve started a Reader Appreciation Group.

Hugs and blessings, Tambra and Smudge


2 thoughts on “Smudge Alpin MacRuff’s Adventures and Upcoming Writing Projects

  1. Hywela Lyn says:

    Hi Tambra
    Loved hearing about Smudge. He sounds gorgeous. I also have a terrier – a ‘rescue’ called Choccy. He is the most loving little dog, but a real ‘con’ artist. He’d been kept shut up for the first two years of his life and had never been taken for walks or socialised, so consequently would bark and spin and generally go crazy every time we saw another dog. So I started giving him a small treat every time we saw a dog out on our walkies. It took two years, but eventually it worked and now we can see another dog and he’ll go up to it with a waggie tail to make friends. Then he looks at me and says ‘where’s my treat then.’ So I’ve never been able to drop the ‘food bribery’ – I still use it to ask him to sit when we cross a road, to reward him when he comes to call, etc. Oh yes, he’s trained me well!


  2. tambra nicole says:

    Hi Hywela,

    I’ve loved hearing about Choccy! What an amazing little guy! What kind of terrier is he? A Cairn?

    We may have to continue to use treats for some things, I think. My husband is using treats on their walks to get Smudge to sit and focus on him instead of the vehicles on the road that he wants to chase. He’s excited by anything that moves.

    I’m so happy Choccy is able to make friends with other dogs. Or at least tolerate them. By taking Smudgie to train we’re learning the best way to teach him and Smudge gets to interact with his classmates and before that everyone, he comes across in PetsMart.

    Since terriers are so smart I think they keep their humans on their toes.

    Thank you for stopping by to comment. It’s been wonderful hearing from you!


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