Wednesday, February 23, 2011
The other evening, when it was dark, windy and sleeting, there was a plaintive mewing outside our door. A little cat was out there, covered with ice, enough that he crunched when I touched him. Since Luna has had so many health issues since I adopted her in December, I did not want to bring the stray inside, so I found an old cat carrier, put a purr pad inside, covered it with a warm blanket and put it on the sheltered side of our deck. After drying the kitty with a towel and putting food in the makeshift house, the kitty went right in and seemed happy with its new quarters.
This is a tri-colored cat so I was certain it was a female until the morning when I discovered that he was an intact little boy. I was able to get him in to the vet yesterday to be neutered, vaccinated, wormed, and have his eye and ear infections treated. I picked him up from the vet this afternoon and he is happily settled into the bathroom.
As it turns out, my friend whose cat died in December, is now ready to let another cat into her life. So this little love muffin, Joey, will be going to live in his (hopefully) forever home tonight. He is such a sweetheart, I'll really miss the little guy!
How did he get here? Someone dumped him. We live so far out in the country that we really don't have any close neighbors, and any cat wandering from one of the neighboring houses could easily find its way back again. Little Joey was affectionate and obviously acclimated to people, doors, dogs, etc. So - someone just decided to drop him out of a car in a remote area. I cannot tell you how angry this makes me. Most of these animals end up dead.. starvation, exposure, predators, and cars contribute to gruesome deaths of these once pets become strays. If people get pets then end up unable to care for them, why don't they at least find a shelter for them?
Little Joey is one of the lucky ones.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
We had a great time hosting our almost-annual lunar new year party. I say almost-annual because last year we had to cancel because our driveway was literally a mountain of snow, and there would have been no place for anyone to park. This year, we set the date for our Year of the Rabbit party for the culmination of the celebrations - the lantern festival - so we hopefully wouldn't run into weather related problems. We lucked out completely! The ice that was a glacier on our driveway had melted last week, and it turned cold enough that the ground was hard instead of muddy.
It was a fun party.. 35 people, and pleasantly international including friends from Japan, Vietnam, England, and Mexico. Everyone brought delicious, yet healthy, food. It was a much needed antidote for the cabin fever everyone had developed after being iced in for over a week.
Yesterday in preparation for our party, I logged up 3 hours of heavy house cleaning. The house looks great - I hope it can stay this way for a while. Today I need a little rest though. All of that cleaning triggered an arthritis event in my hand and some back pain. I try not to aggravate my back, but I get caught up in what I am doing and twist the wrong way or forget and lift something.
Today I am working on building the skinny-stick floor to the dollhouse/fairy house I am building. I have been trying out ideas and making samples before each step, then running them past my fairy expert, my 10 year old niece. My expert liked the lavender paint on the wood floor sample, so once I make the floor for the loft, I will paint it lavender. It feels good to get back to this project as I really didn't have time for it last week.
So today, I have planned a bit of a day of rest. My goals for the day: work on the fairy floor, read my book, and play some music.
Have a lovely Sunday!
Thursday, February 17, 2011
I do love cooling off and giving myself time for creative solutions...one of the great things about being older; I'm a lot less knee jerk. Yes, I am speaking of the Valentine's Day icky-letter debacle.
I have taken time with the whole class explaining the very democratic process that goes into our plays and the casting of them. The children, after all, select the plays and vote on them, and the children also get to decide which parts they would like. Since it is a three year mixed grade class, the oldest get first choice so they get a chance to shine on stage as 6th graders... kind of their senior project. Then the rest of the class gets to decide. Other things that were 'unfair', I mapped out for them so they could see how things work with some diagrams to help them understand the democratic process that makes up the backbone of our school and my class. It is a rare school where children get so much choice, but since this is the only school they have ever attended, they take for granted how much they get to participate in the curriculum choices.
And what are mess-ups if they aren't learning opportunities. That is part of what life is about. We make mistakes, we use bad judgement, we trip up. I met with the children involved with the litany of what is wrong with me and how unfair I am that was my Valentine's letter. I told them that I thought they meant it as a form of communication, but ineffective in problem solving. A letter with concerns should be respectful, state the problem(s) clearly, and propose a solution that both parties could reasonably achieve. I modeled one for them and asked them to select one of the issues they had with me and rewrite the letter in a more respectful and effective format.
Suddenly, they had no problems to solve. Rewriting would actually be work and it would be much easier not to have a problem. However, I required them to make up a problem and write a letter respectfully proposing a positive solution so they got practice with using a more positve format.
Everyone is in a much better mood after dispelling that negative energy, and it's on with the play, all cast members happily working on their lines and songs. There is balance in the Force.
On the home front, Luna has responded very well to her regime of antibiotics and L-lysine. The vet was very pleased with her progress and has said she can now be off the antibiotics.
We almost had a calamitous event with the chicken girls two nights ago.
I had been out walking the day before and found these darling raccoon prints. I love their little fingers and toes and noted that they were now out and about, enjoying the beginnings of the thaw. However...
The evening of Valentine's Day when I was tired and frustrated from drama at work, I forgot to close the bottom door of the chicken coop. Thank Heavens for Stella, who woke me up barking her head off. One of those raccoons had gotten into the chicken coop. Raccoons can kill chickens in an instant. Mike and I were probably pretty comical running out to the coop in our jammies - Mike with a broom and me clanging pots.
The chicken's were a bit frazzled, but unharmed and the raccoon loped off unfed. I really need to be more attentive to my evening chore of making certain the chicken girls are tucked in.
And.... this has been a happy sight:
What's this green stuff? Oh...GRASS! I forgot what it looked like. Maybe we really will have spring!
Sunday, February 13, 2011
My sweet Spark friend, Bill, posted that he wanted his butt kicked into gear, Reading his post, I realized I was very much in the same place... way off of my exercise routine with a million reasons why. I know I have been affected by both the ice, and the overwhelmingly relentless gray skies... but enough with the excuses!
Today, inspired by Bill's blog and the idea of Valentine's Day resolutions, not to mention heartened by the blue skies and melting snows, I launched into a return to a routine.
My accomplishments today include:
30 minutes of yoga
20 minutes of physical therapy exercises
60 minutes steel string guitar practice
30 minutes mandolin practice
30 minutes flamenco guitar practice
120 minutes of laundry, ironing (yes, I still iron ), and house cleaning
30 minute walk with Stella in the yet crunchy snow
Now, hopefully, I'll have a little time to sand the flooring for the Fairy House in preparation for laying the floor.
Photo for the day:
I might have clomped crunch, crunch, crunch through the ice covered snow, but Stella levitated. More often than not, not a paw was on the ground. She was one happy poodle today!
And as for me, I am thankful to Bill for mentioning that there are just so many excuses.
It was time to get moving again, and oh boy, did that feel great!
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