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Sunday, January 31, 2010

This and That

It's been freezing cold and snowing.  I'm getting a little sick of this.  I can't get to the barn and so on and so forth.  So, I decided to buy a yellow bouquet of flowers and then photograph them. A bit of yellow never hurts.  Right now I'm listening to Joni Mitchell sing "I Had a King."  It seems perfect for a dreary evening.

The large buck is out there snarfing up most of the food I put out. That's well and swell, but I wish he'd leave some for the fawns. It's been so cold.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Never Say Never

I am a photographer. These days I shoot mainly wildlife and what interests me for pleasure, and horses for business.  Back in the day I was a wedding photographer. Shooting a wedding is a lot like running a marathon, it's hard physical work.  But it was oh so worth it.  To be part of the joy of the day and the pictures were gorgeous.  Then came this new species of person, celebrated on tv and print, the wonderful "bridezilla."  Bridezilla's killed it for me, and I swore, never again, and I do mean, never. 

But they say time heals all wounds, and maybe the economy has knocked the wind out of the species; because I actually agreed to shoot a wedding this spring and I 'm actually looking forward to it. Who knew?

Now for things on other fronts:

1.  If my wonderful horse, Miss Kitt, checks out when she has her internal exam this spring, I'm going to breed her.  I'm physically having to stop myself from buying John Lyon's "Bringing up Baby," until I know that she's pregnant and everything is fine.  Don't want to jinx anything here.

2.  I have organized my underwear, sweaters, jewelry and shoes. I stand looking at all the wonderful organization and think this is worth it. Notice I haven't mentioned the chamber of horrors, my office. But I'm slowly getting there.  It certainly makes getting dressed in the morning easier.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Deer Update

Here's an update on the family. It's been a fantastically hard winter for them, so I've started feeding them. Before, I'd set out a few treats, but now it's horsefeed. When I come home from work, they're waiting for me. I get the food in the bucket and in a very low voice say, "ok guys, it's coming. You know the drill. You walk away and I put down the food." Then they walk down the hill and wait. From time to time I can see Pixie's little face peaking over the brush. When I'm finished, I call out, "ok guys all done. I'm heading back into the house and you can come and eat." And they come running.

I think my big boy might have been shot. The side you can't see was messed up and he was limping. Here's more about communication. As I was pointing my camera with the long lens at him, he looked up at me and I told him, "you know you are safe here and I would never hurt you, but if you see another human pointing things, run away as fast as you can." He stood still for me, but right after I finished taking pictures, my neighbor who loves the deer, came outside with his video camera. The buck took one look at him and took off. Go figure.

Now is there an animal behavior expert who can tell me if they know what I'm saying, or is it the tone of my voice or what? But it really is amazing.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Januaries

Right around this time of year, even the best of us can come down with a bad case of the Januaries.  Here's why.  Unless you are fortunate enough to live in southern California, or in any other year but this one, southern Florida; it's been dark and cold, it is dark and cold, and it's going to be dark and cold, YUCK!

Now this is what a typical day, when the Januaries come knocking, looks like. It's dark and cold when you wake up. You slog out of bed, get dressed, grab your coffee, and then you get to deal with the cold,snow, ice, or driving rain and:
1.  Drive to work, or 
2.  Drive your children to school, or
3.  Deal with farm animals and livestock, or
4.  Some wonderful combination of the above

Then after having all that fun, you get to have the supreme pleasure of:
1.  Dealing with the pressures and deadlines of work, which somehow seem to be much worse this time of year; or
2.  Cleaning your house, which you just cleaned yesterday and will probably have to clean again tomorrow, or 
3.  Muck stalls, and feed and water.  Gee isn't fun to knock the ice out of the water buckets and then schlep off to the well pump, to haul the water bucket by bucket to the stalls because your line to the barn has frozen? And why is it that the horses, cows, sheep, goats, pigs,etc seem to do more of what they do  when the weather is lousy?

So what's a girl to do?  Well there are a few things I've found that help:
1.  Flowers.  All grocery stores sell flowers.  Buy a big bouquet every time you go, and place them where you can see them.
2.  Paint you toenails red.  It's a small thing but it's cheery.
3.   Start a creative project that you can do indoors.  Start a needlepoint, crossstitch, knitting  or quilting project.  If you decide to quilt, go to a sewing store or an online distributer and buy 12 of the prettiest squares you can find and then spend lots of time laying them out, delighting in the colors.
4.  Buy a coffee grinder that's only for herbs and one of those packages of rosemary they sell in the grocery store.  Grind the rosemary and delight in the smell.  It really is wonderful.
5.  Plan a flower garden.  Look at all the gardening magazines and seed catalogs and plan out what you're going to do when the ground thaws.
6.  This is the really important one. In two and 1/2 weeks when we're into February, go outside on a sunny afternoon and look at the quality of light. It's so much stronger and brighter. The days are getting noticeably longer. Winter can toss whatever it feels like at us, but the worst is over.  Spring is on the way

Thursday, January 14, 2010

What I Like About Winter

Here's what I like best about winter.

1.  I like it when it's not too cold.  45 degrees suits me fine.

2.  I like the grey green silveryness of the landscape and I like the way late afternoon light reflects off the trees.

3.  I like sleeping when it's cold.

4. I like the hush when I hike through the woods.

5. I like planning spring.

PS:  I forgot to mention, pot roast.  I just love pot roast and the only time I eat it is in the winter.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Weekly Report

Well the boys are behaving themselves a bit better. I was so furious at them for chasing away the fawns, so that they could get all, and I do mean all of the food.  One day I went so far as to stand outside and yell at them, "You greedy bastards, how dare you chase away the babies.  They're just little babies and they don't know how to forage and you do."  Should I add that the does did not behave a whole lot better.  I actually saw one bite and kick her fawn, driving it away.  I really couldn't believe what I was seeing.

Anyway, the boys are allowing the does and the fawns to eat first.  It really is amazing.  The does and the fawns come and eat in a few distinct areas.  Then the bucks come straight to the areas the does have left for them. I'm not sure if thinking that they're sharing is Disneying the situation, but it sure does seem that way.

Oh yes we had a new visitor last night a possum came right up the house and started rooting around in the bird seed and acorns I leave out for the squirrel.  He looked right at me through the glass slider and continued eating.  The cold is making all the animals do things they wouldn't normally do, so I guess I've added another creature to the ever growing number that come to my "all you can eat cafe."

On the home front.  I hung several hooks on the guest room wall and I'm going to hang up my necklaces.  Currently they reside in a pile in a dresser drawer.  Other than that I'm procrastinating away.  There's so much to go through, I just want to throw up my hands and run screaming out of the house.

Speaking of going out of the house.   Today is my day to help out at the barn, so off I go.  I'll be posting more later.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

No More Granny Panties

I've found the greatest book "Throw out Fifty Things" and so far I have tossed out all of my yucky underwear and ratty sweaters and sweatshirts. So what I have to go to the barn, I don't have to look like the dog's dinner while I do it.   I think that counts for 2.  Go to the website and take a look.  It really does energize you to start tossing.

Now the weather is gross.  It's 22 degrees and the wind is howling.  I'm worried about Pixie. This weather is hard if your grown, but to be a fawn in all of this, is almost impossible to comtemplate.  All I can do is what I'm doing, doubling the amount of food and saying a prayer that all of my guys make it.