Saturday, April 21, 2018


My mother had a saying for nearly every situation, as did many of her generation.  If asked to repeat something, her response was, "I don't chew my cabbage twice."  On an extremely hot day, she'd say, "Whew!  Think I'll take off my skin and dance around in my bones."  Some of them were nonsensical and others were full of sage advice.  One particular affirmation I remember is, "Every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better."  That worked pretty well on most things except when she tried to teach me mathematics.  I could read before I started kindergarten, but math might still as well be written in Sanskrit.

While not ready for a full-court press yesterday, I was, in fact, getting better and tended to a few piddly chores with a lot of sit-down time between.  I think Arden understood, however, when I excused myself from what would have been a most welcome visit.  I sure didn't want to share this contagious cold, and she didn't want it, either.  (I'm holding the good thought for the young couple who were here earlier in the week.)

Celeste is going to be bereft when I'm done with R&R (military slang for rest and recuperation) and she no longer has a constant lap available.  She's come to think of it as "her" lap and hers alone.  When Ralph needs a bit of a cuddle, he has to squeeze into whatever space is left.

The weather, too, is getting better and better.  It was in the high sixties yesterday.  I left a message for the neighborhood mechanic, Beau, asking if he could get John Dear running again before the yards and fields are totally overrun.  That doesn't take long once the weather warms up.

All's well that ends well.  Mother said.

Friday, April 20, 2018


Evidently expecting company was a great incentive to ignore having a cold and getting something done.  Lacking that yesterday, all the symptoms returned.  What a shame because it was a gorgeous, sunny day.  The best I could do was take Bess out to sit on the deck and bask like a lizard to get warm, come back in the house for a nap, and repeat.  Certainly nothing I'd consider blog fodder.  Drat.  I'll try to do better today.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Give And Take

The day I wasn't feeling well, my live lap warmers took their places and I was grateful.  I was also happy that I have a camera phone to catch moments like this:  Celeste washing her brother's face.
And then, in the spirit of sibling love, Ralph returned the favor.  I love that he is hugging her.  It's nice when the kids get along.

It's good that the worst effects of my cold abated yesterday.  During Larry's call, he mentioned that a friend in Hawaii was visiting her boyfriend in Somerset and that she was a "goataholic" and really wanted to come visit my girls.  Any friend of Larry's....  He said she would call me.  Okay.  With the possibility of guests and not sure when, I couldn't sit on my duff and so got moving on housework, cold or no cold.  Marty (Martie, Marti, Marte; whatever happened to "common spelling"?) called sometime after twelve and said she and Levi would be over in an hour or so.  "Will you have had lunch?"  "Well, no."  It was a challenge to scramble through the freezer to find something to make a hot meal in an hour.  The rain had held off, but it was a cold, cold day.

Everything was ready to come out of the oven when Marty and Levi arrived so we were able to get acquainted at the table.  They were a very amiable couple and there was no "first meeting" strangeness.

And then we got to the purpose of their visit and went down to the goat pen.  The girls didn't disappoint and came right up to their guests.  As always, Tessie, the unicorn, needed an explanation.  Curious, the girls came to sniff the strangers and get petted.  They were particularly interested in Levi, probably because they don't see many males around here.

I'm happy that Marty got her goat fix and that I met new friends.  Runny nose and all, it was a good day.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

More Weather

What with daily changes lately, it's not surprising that Nature finally got around to me and put me under the weather yesterday.  It was probably slogging through shin-high wet grass down to the barn and back and staying damp that gave me a doozy of a cold.  I so rarely get sick that at first I didn't recognize the feeling.  I gave myself the day off and spent most of it napping.

There were two very bright spots:  I got a lovely long chat with Larry, my Kid in Hawaii, and a photo text from Dave showing a truckload of oak rounds he'd been given from his job site.  They'll need to age a year, but it's a good start for next winter.

The old girl isn't done with us yet.  She's giving us a break today, but another storm is predicted for tomorrow.  Phooey.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Minute To Minute

Maybe Nature was having a tantrum yesterday, I don't know, but she pulled out darned near everything from her bag of tricks.  The rain had stopped by the time I went down to the barn, that was a good thing.  The NASCAR race in Tennessee had been stopped on Sunday because of rain and started again on Monday (that always messes me up), so whatever I'd planned went up in smoke.  Bess asked to go out about the time I'd decided it was cold enough to light a fire, so I opened the door for her and gasped.  There were six deer grazing in the front pasture!  It's been a long time since I've seen so many at once.

I had no more fed Stove than it started hailing, a lot of hail, and the nuggets were as large as big peas.  When that stopped, it started snowing.  Big puffy flakes drifted down for more than an hour, covering the deck and the yards on top of the hail.  Shortly after that stopped, she washed it all away with another outburst of rain.  By the girls' bedtime, all that had stopped and the sun came out just in time to sink behind the horizon.  It was a cold, soggy walk down to the barn.

The sun is out this morning, but it's way down to freezing.  Nature changes her mind minute by minute.  Oh well.

Monday, April 16, 2018


Ralph is one of those cats about whom it has been said that if the world was flat, he'd knock everything on it over the edge.  Celeste is not so inclined, but Ralph can't help himself.  I hear plops and kerthunks daily, and even if I don't hear them, I find the results in nearly every room.  Pencils, pieces of paper, lids I forgot to put back on, you name it.  If it's not nailed down, over it goes.  Anything that rolls is best, but he doesn't discriminate.  There is a small ceramic swan in the guest room that used to be filled with potpourri, "used to" being the definitive term here.  Luckily, the swan, now empty, didn't break when it hit the floor.  It's very much like living with a three-year-old child, a redheaded one, at that (no offense to the gingers of the world).

Cam doesn't have a TV and now her computer has gone wonky.  She's been calling in the morning to get a weather report so she could plan her workday.  She won't need to call today because it started raining after dark last night and it's still raining.  Oh goody.

Sunday, April 15, 2018


I had a heart-stopping experience yesterday.  While having a sit down after barn chores, I glanced over to see a cat walking along the deck.  "My goodness, that looks just like Celeste."  I quickly got up and went outside to check.  Since I rarely do anything quickly, that set Bess off and shutting her inside made her anxiety level even higher.  So the dog is barking and I'm going back and forth on the deck, out to the front yard, around the house, calling Celeste's name just in case.  The cat had vanished, no sign anywhere.  I absolutely knew I had seen a grey cat heading toward the hummingbird feeders and that it hadn't passed me when I went outside.  If it had been Celeste, where did she go and how did she get out and did she go alone? 

Evidently when I'd gone out to fill the hummers' feeders before going to the barn, the kitchen door hadn't latched completely when I came back in and the wind had blown it slightly open.  After having written just a couple of days ago that the cats were strictly house cats and why, I was truly heartsick.  The temptation of the open door was just too great.  I went to the bedroom to look, afraid I'd find nothing, and there was Ralph, looking guilty, wide-eyed and hiding under one of the bedside tables.  "Oh, Ralph, I'm so happy to see you!  Where is your sister?"  I can't describe my relief when Celeste came out from under the bed.  Both cats were safe, having come in the way they'd gone out.

Like little kids who knew they'd been naughty, they stayed in the bedroom all day in self-imposed exile.  No running up and down the hall, no crooning to the piglets, no coming to sit on my lap.  I think they'd been scared silly after their outing.  I know I was.

My little runaways stuck as tight as limpets in bed last night.