Friday, September 25, 2009
Injections x 2 = $28.00
Prescript. Refill = $5.00
Meshach About My Business Again = Priceless
Examination x 2 = $20.00
Wormer x 7 = $7.50
Amoxi Drops x 2 = $8.00
Vaccinations x 6 =$90.00
Healthy Kittens Once Again = Priceless!
It's been an expensive week.....but we are all still kicking!
Friday, September 18, 2009
To say that motherhood is wearing heavily on her shoulders would be an understatement. Don't tell, but I think she is borderline abusive to her kits! Yep. The little mites will run up to her when they are all out playing and she will snatch them, kick them, bite them on the head..then give them a lick and a promise. Then she gazes off into the past (or future) while the little kitty veeery quietly tries to escape her clutches and then slinks off. Of course when she is ready for them to nurse she is all sweet goo-goo love to them. The minute it's over though, she is up on the highest shelf in the condo. I think we will soon have weaned kittens....
I can't say I blame her...they can be an obnoxious little bunch at feeding time. They are now eating solids quite heartily and at times ferociously. And they play..and play...and play. Still though...their little round innocent faces and pudgy little bodies are like a magnet. So sweet.
Before I just thought I was going through allot of cat food and kitty litter....Silly me. But I must admit...I've enjoyed these little rascals--too much I think...
And here they are at 5 1/2 weeks old.....
Thursday, September 17, 2009
The sheep didn't really enjoy the event. Rosemary was 'okay' and she didn't baa all day as I feared she might. However she was very selective in who she allowed to befriend her. The cookies helped her, and she didn't hesitate to indulge in those when given the chance. Rosetta was okay, because she was with her mom, but she wasn't letting anyone touch her! JackieD just shut down. He didn't want to be touched, he did not want to see all these peoples ---so he hid behind the girls. Finally about mid afternoon everyone had relaxed enough to lay around and chew cud. They were very happy to be loaded up and to get home. These are three of my friendliest sheep who crave attention and petting, so I was a little disappointed that they took it so hard--I don't like to see them stress. Oh well, you never know. The stories they can tell the other sheep...." there are bajillions of humans out there, but we are the only sheep in the world!"
The Clydesdale's didn't show up this year, but a new display was a lady with her Irish Wolfhounds. She was across the aisle and catty-corner to us.
What enormous dogs these were and so quiet and even tempered. Farley --the grey one (who I did not get good photos of!) was especially friendly to me. He is a rescue dog and very happy in a now stable home. He shares it with the older tan male dog (whose name I did not get) and they get along famously from what their owner says. I just could not get over their size. They make Boone look like a lap dog.
There were many dogs that passed through. There were a pair of Westies, and a pair of black miniature show poodles (the male was from Denmark!) which I failed to get photos of, as well as these happy little Scotties.
People are very interested in livestock heritage breeds and the hardiness of most of them. Small hobby or self sustaining farms are making a come back and these smaller, thrifty often dual purpose animals are filling the niche. It's funny how the circle completes itself.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
The day was filled with fibery people it seemed. As usual there was allot of questions about the sheep, with most people being very interested and open to learning. I had one little boy pretty much scold me for not brushing my sheep everyday. Obviously in his eyes they looked a little too unkempt! Another lady rushed up exclaiming that I had brought a big horn mountain sheep (Jackie). I'm pretty sure she hadn't thought through the whole idea though...Celtic Festival = Big Horn Sheep?... She was very surprised and a little dubious that he was a Shetland Sheep...
There were the usual contingent of people that 'eventually' would like to have a few animals, and were thinking about sheep. Some are still in the dreaming stage, some will never make the step, and others have researched and will fulfil their dream. My mantra to all is 'good fences'...you must have good fences. I think it comes as a surprise to some that good fences would be so important to having sheep. Those that were interested in fiber were numerous too, and the cross range of ages was inspiring. Then you have what I term in my mind as 'city folk' who haven't a clue about farm animals and just want to have their picture taken with them. Cows or sheep, uh, tinkling is cause for great exclamations and observation. (Oh people..get a life--you do it all the time--glad someone isn't in the bathroom with you, cheering you on!)
visiting with a few old friends and family, and generally talking more than I normally do in a month of Sundays. I had two things I wanted--Fish and Chips for lunch and one of the plate sized shortbread cookies. Jama eventually found and bought me the cookie, which thrilled me no end. I didn't share it with my family at all! Nope...I still have over half of it and am enjoying every bite. Allena stopped by with her family and gave an impromptu drop spindle lesson for new Shetland sheep owner, Barbara. My Mom, Dad (when he could get away from his duties), Sister and Niece all came by and stayed for a spell.
Kilties, or parade as usual either. However, the 'civilian' crowd seemed pretty steady in number and the music was a nice background accompaniment throughout the day. I really can't think of a time when there was any kind of long lull in the stream of people that came through. The weather was very sticky, and for awhile the sheep were uncomfortable. I think part of that was stress. I had brought a battery powered fan, but didn't' use it as eventually a nice breeze picked up out of the north.
Here are a few pictures of my 'booth' and sheep setup. It was difficult to set it up so that it flowed, but eventually I settled on an "L" shape for the tables. I had a chair set up next to the sheep between the tables and pen, so I could answer questions and run interference if necessary.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
I work half days on Friday, so as soon as I got home, I planned to load up the truck with all the wool, roving, tables, supplies and sheep crate etc. When I pulled into the driveway, I noticed Jeff and Cal (Shetland ram and wether) standing under a tree in a place they never hang out in during the day. Still in Celtic planning mode, my thoughts were, hmmm..that's strange, wonder why they are standing there? That was the last I thought about it til evening.
Loading went pretty smoothly and in about an hours time I had the truck packed to the gills, including having the sheep carrier loaded and strapped on. Somewhere during this time, I let the kittens out for their first solo unsupervised play time. Granted I was keeping an eye and ear out for them, and it was only for about twenty minutes.
Fast forward to evening. It was time to fix a catch pen for the sheep that I had to load the next day, let the kittens out again and then tote them to the breezeway to put up for the night. I was out in the garage, with the kittens, when it struck me again that the rams were still in the same vicinity as earlier in the day. Finally I says to myself-- I better go down there and see what is bothering them. Maybe a plastic sack or something caught up on the fence... When I walked around the big round bales to take a look, I was stunned to see a little dog staring back at me. What the heck? Who are you are how did you get in my ram's pen?
Then I was able to feed him. He would let me touch his head, but didn't want any part of me snapping the leash to the collar. To me he looked like an old dog. The best I can figure is he somehow squeezed himself through the cattle panel gate to gain access to the rams pen.
While he ate, I went and finished doing some chores and put Boone in his yard (he was freaking out all over the place). I also called my Mom to see if she would call around to the neighbors and see if he belonged to anyone. In the meantime I looked out and the dog was now out of the rams pen and wandering around the front of the place (still within my parameter fence).
All I could think was I can't leave him wandering around ---I was going to be gone all day the next day, and there were cats, kittens, chickens and sheep to worry about--not to mention Boone freaking out. I was incredibly bummed--what on earth was I going to do with an old, intact male dog? I had hopes because of the collar, but Butterfly was wearing a (flea) collar and that didn't indicate anything. By this time I was calling him Fox, and decided he looked an awful lot like a Shiba Inu. He was wandering about, with me still trying to coax him to let me snap the leash on.
It was starting to get dark and I was just getting ready to call my Mom back to see if she'd had any luck--because I still didn't know what I was going to do---when I looked up and saw her walking up the road. After Mom got up there Fox decided to head up to the garage. I sure didn't want him up by the sheep so went to head him off. Then miraculously for one brief instant he let get close and I snapped the leash on! Woot! I expected him to lead, but he started screaming and bit at the leash, but slowly we worked our way down.
The upshot of it all, after a flurry of activity, was Fox got tied to a long training lead attached to a tree, Mom stood guard and I went down and helped Dad load up another cage I have into their van. (They were using this for Heidi and she had just graduated to her new house and didn't need it anymore). Remember my truck was loaded up so there was no way to haul it on there! I heard the dog scream once while I was down there (Mom said she walked a few steps towards him!). Got the cage set up and after everyone left, me and Fox slowly made our way to it. I ended up having to thread the lead through the top wire, and pull him in, while using my foot to push his butt. I was very mindful about getting bit, although I really don't think that he would have. He put up a struggle, but finally I got him in the cage, with a hay and blanket to lay on, water and food.
I felt really bad because there was no way I was going to take him out of the cage the next morning before I left--there would be no time and I was afraid he'd get loose. I told him just to potty in there as he needed, but he held it all night. Poor little doggie, he eventually went sometime after I left but was pretty tidy about it.
And sometimes things have a good ending! One of the neighbors Mom called didn't get in to the wee hours of the morning, but when she saw the message she was very hopeful it was her dog and called the next morning. She attempted to describe him to Mom but Mom had only seen him in the dusk and couldn't give her specifics, but when the lady mentioned he was as Shiba Inu, Mom was able to tell her that is what I called it. By then I was already at the Celtic Festival and was ecstatic to hear that it was likely "Fox" was going home! I can't even describe how relieved I was. Taking on seven cat/kittens was overflowing my plate as it were.
The lady that he belonged to was really scared he had bothered the sheep, (I gave a little lecture once when one of their corgis was in my field) but he hadn't. She was very happy to get him back. They run a back yard breeding kennel with a few breeds, and I guess they had gotten him a few days ago. He had gotten loose (or they turned him loose?) and he wouldn't let them catch him. They kept putting food out, thinking he would come around, but then he disappeared. He had been missing about three days. I'm so relieved that he was claimed. They feed/treat their dogs well, even though it is a backyard breeding setup. Fox is seven years old, but looked much older since he was so thin and crippled.
There again, if I was paying attention I should have known something was up. I had to lead the sheep out to pasture for two mornings in a row and they kept looking to the south like they saw something. I think that Fox got hit or something because he had a big cut on his foot and acted so sore. I gave him some aspirin and I think he slept very well that night.
I'm unable to turn away the lost and homeless critters, but when it rains it pours and I was feeling a little desperate!
The after story is shorter----I came home to an empty crate, my happy dogs, and relaxed sheep. I was only going to unload what I needed to, but on the way home I was listening to Laura Ingalls Wilder's, The Long Winter, and got inspired. The sheep were so glad to be home and gladly jumped out of their carrier. I figured if Almanzo and Cap could drive their horses miles across a snowbound prairie, fill umpteen sacks with wheat and turn around and head back in the same day, surely I could unload my piddly little truck! :-) It went pretty fast and I was really glad to have it done after all.
And that is it. I live in a zoo and I'm the caretaker.... I think......
Sunday, September 13, 2009
First off, thanks so much to everyone that participated! There were three people who guessed the gender of the kittens exactly. In fact the first person to comment with the answers was the winner....drum roll please....
...congratulations to Vicki for correctly guessing the kittens gender and for being the first 'out of the gate' as it were. I have to ask if it was a lucky guess, or if you picked up hints, or if you could just tell by looking at their sweet faces?
Vicki if you will let me know which kitten you want as your prize, I will get it shipped to you in a few weeks. Okay, okay....which book you want....
The second person to correctly guess, was Tammy at Wrensong. Once Vicki decides which book she wants, I'll let Tammy know what is left and see if she wants a runner up prize.
Thanks again for participating! I enjoyed all your answers. Sage was insulted about some of the weight guesses though. Michelle and Allena came closest to his actual weight of 14 lbs. Phylliso & Tammy are his furever friends with their guesses of 12 lbs.
Coming soon...a day of Celtic Clannish-ness...
Thursday, September 10, 2009
It's been blurry this week. The long three day weekend was wonderful, but I've had trouble keeping the days straight every since!
My tomatoes are finally starting to produce. I've even gotten a few, many of them slightly gnawed by some of the bazillion garden pests that have descended this year. I actually have gotten some Arkansas Traveler varieties to go with the Cherokee Purples. The third variety, which was suppose to be Lemon Oxheart, is pretty obviously a Roma instead. I had several pounds of mixed tomatoes that needed to be dealt with, so I decided to make spaghetti sauce. The store bought sauce is chock full of sodium, and I wanted to try a homemade version.
Romas, however most of them were Romas. I also added mushrooms, and assorted spices. The cookdown process took very little time, but de-seeding the tomatoes did. Even at that, the sauce was still pretty 'seedy'.
Sandwiched in with all the last minute flurry, has been trips to the dentist to try and fix another abscessed tooth. I'm getting pretty frustrated with it all, but am still hopeful this tooth can be saved.
We have a winner (actually several) on the contest, and I'll try and get that posted sometime over the weekend. Thanks for playing the game. :-) I'll try and take lots of pictures of the men in skirts, and uh, other events too. Hope you all have a great weekend.
And now I need to head off to bed! It's calling my name.
Saturday, September 05, 2009
Hints: 1) The daddy to the kittens was most likely...black. And you know that Butterfly (the mom) is a black/yellow/white calico.... 2) There are three boys and three girls.
Rules: Contest will end next Friday, September 11th at noon. Winners will most likely not be announced until Monday, September 14th. Enter only once, please. I can only ship to the USA, but if you want to enter anyway and you are in another country, please feel free to, just for the fun of it! Winner gets first choice of a kitten...or okay, one of the three books listed below.
What I need to Know: Gender of each kitten listed below. To make it easier I've numbered them. List number and sex of kitten in your entry. First person that lists them correctly wins. However, if no one gets them 'exactly' right, I've thrown in a bonus question. How much does Sage weigh? Hint--he is a big kitty, and stands 13 " at his shoulders and is 34" long (including his tail) more or less. He wasn't real happy about being rousted from his nap for measurements. So the person that first gets all the genders correctly wins. However if there are two or more that do not get all the answers correct, but have an equal amount correct, then the Sage weight guess will break the tie.
Here are the kittens:
And here are the prizes: (I know...no books about cats!)
Practically brand new--only read once. Click on the title for more information.
Very good condition. Click on the title for more information.
Gently worn..ex-library book. Click on the title for more information.