Birthday Girl

Hey Marge, guess what!?

It's your birthday!

Today you are officially 1 year old. In honor of your birthday (since we didn't have a party) I shall dedicate this blog post to you.

Your two favorite hobbies:

And chewing.

Oh, and looking adorably pathetic. That is not so much a hobby as a strategy craftily designed to maximize the # of treats we give you in a day

Marge actually got a Birthday card this year. It was from her wonderful "Great-Nannie" That is how the card was signed. The sender of the card is Nannie to I suppose "Great-Nannie" is how my furry-puppy-child would refer to her. But she is also 'great' because she has never missed sending a card on anyone's birthday. It always arrives on time, and is always an amazingly appropriate card. I don't know how she does it.

In efforts to not forget family would also be my Uncle's and my cousin's birthday. Tis a good day for a birthday I suppose.
Happy Birthday everyone!

Barn Cats

I want to preface this post with the statement that I am NOT a cat person.
By the end of this post, you won't believe me.
Heavens, I probably won't even believe myself.

But for now, just know, I am not, and never have been, a cat person.

That being said, the other day, Marge and I went for a walk and decided to stop in and take a peek at the cats. I have never done too much more than take a very quick peek, mostly because Marge can't make up her mind if she is terrified of them or wants to eat them. But this time, I crouched down and near the cats to see what would happen. Would you believe it - they all came towards me purring and wanting to be petted!

My heart melted.

Marge freaked out.

She was petrified. Obviously feared for her life.

So I took her back to the house, grabbed the camera, and headed back out to get better acquainted with the barn cats.

Upon my return, I found them waiting for me.

And as soon as I got down on their level - they came out to be petted!
(This one is my favorite)

Oddly enough, the 2 really old cats were the most friendly.

I have seen the older ones a lot around the farm. But they always looked really crabby and aloof. I was greatly mistaken.

My favorite one again. Wanting its belly rubbed.
I seriously didn't have enough hands to go around.

The old one, looking affectionate again.

My favorite one, eating my shoe.

The old white cat is on the right. The one on the left is the explorer, he wanders all over the farm.

It was difficult to get a picture of all of them at once. But this is everybody. The two older ones on the right. The three babies in the middle. And the explorer(who seems to be an adult, but not 'old').

I stayed for quite some time, and they never got tired of being petted.
They were adorable, and incredibly sweet.
I was/am a little tempted to set a little food outside our door and see if we can lure one down to live near us. Though, the Explorer would probably be the first to come, and he is my least favorite. Oh well.

Which is your favorite?

And I feel like I should name them (though, the landlady may have already named them, who knows. Perhaps I will name them anyway). What should I name them?

Project Update: The Garden

I have made only minimal progress on the projects that I started a couple weeks ago.

Really the only one that can be significantly updated, is the garden project. So here is a little update.

This is the spot where the garden will go. This is pre- any digging

This is me turning over the first bit of soil.
Our landlady offered to bring a tractor over to help. We declined the offer. I need the exercise and the sense of accomplishment

This is the first of about a million worms that we found.

About an hour and a half later....this is what I had done.
Not bad I supposed. But definitely less than half the size I want the finished garden to be.

Mon Amour was documenting the progress artistically.

One day, when the weather decides to quit raining, and perhaps stay over 50 degrees for longer than an hour at a time, I will finish digging, and start planting!

The Bull

One reader commented on Cow Naps: Nap like you're dead that perhaps that particular cow was pregnant, and so limited in her comfortable sleeping position options.

This is a distinct possibility, for reasons we will explore today.

This may look like a picture of an ordinary bunch of cows. But look closer. Can you spot the one that's different?

Here, we can look a little more closely:

Can you see him now?

Yeah, its definitely a 'him'. Most of the 'him' cows on the farm are "steers" which , as my eloquent land lady put it, are "boys who can't have babies. Don't get attached to them, they are the ones we eat"

Dully noted. Don't get attached to the steers, but you can get attached to the cows, and the.....


Can you see it now? This is no ordinary cow, or steer. This would be a genuine he-can-have-babies kind of Bull.

I hadn't seen him before just a couple weeks ago, when I noticed there was this significantly huge cow that had a brand on his backside. Most of the cows on this farm are not branded, so the brand was strange to me. But, I now have a hypothesis about the situation. This would be my totally unverified hypothesis. For all I know I may be waaaay wrong. But it makes sense to me.

My Hypothesis:
My farm does not own a bull. So we rent one.
This would explain why I have never seen this bull before.
It would also explain why it is branded "PT" - when there is no P and no T in our farm's name
And it makes sense in light of the fact that last year, baby cows arrived late-fall some time.
Which is an appropriate time line assuming they rented the bull at about the same time last year.

So yes, Mr Scary Looking Bull is not here to stay. He was contracted for a particular job, and once the job is done, he will go away, back to a farm where a "PT" brand makes sense.

Stay tuned for much cuter baby-cow posts later this year!


To most, this would just look like a cool pile of uprooted trees.

But that is not what makes it cool.
It's coolness lies in it's potential.

We are just waiting on the right combination of no wind, not too dry, and farmer's whim for this pile o' trees to become....





The anticipation of this fire is definitely exciting....and also a little frightening. It's going to be intense!

Cow Naps: Nap Like You're Dead

The Fly Naps post met with such (relatively) impressive success that I thought I would follow it up with a sequel called Cow Naps: Nap Like You're Dead!

There is one particular cow on the farm that likes to nap like this:
At least, I am pretty sure it is one particular cow, cause I have never seen more than one cow napping this way at the same time. Perhaps they take turns, I don't know.

But I think its just one cow.
They first time I saw her nap this way I thought she really was dead.

Then her shoulder itched...and she moved.
She wasn't actually dead. She was just napping like she was.

She should be careful though; she is tempting fate.
When Mon Amour saw her he grabbed his fork and his ketchup.
Dead looking cow = beef = dinner.
Between Mon Amour and the Bald Eagles, it's not safe to go around napping like you're dead.

Mom's Birthday

For a change of pace....a post with pictures...OF PEOPLE!
Crazyness. Who does this. Not me (at least not all that often)
But there were so many good pictures from last weekend, that they had to be blogged!

My little brother was excited about the spaghetti lunch!
And yes, mom is fixing/serving her own Birthday meal...oops, how did we let that happen. Oh well, we will do better next year.

Dad really is excited about the food...but sometimes he works like 18 hour days on his feet, when he's not working he likes to use the minimum amount of energy required by a situation.

These are my lovely grandparents. They are both absolutely amazing people.

After the spaghetti lunch...there was cake!

Little Brother was so excited about the prospect of a rather large number of candles that be broke out the flamage before the candles had arrived. Silly boy.

Technically we didn't have enough candles. But, had this celebration taken place at our house, I am sure our smoke detector would have informed us that it was waaaay too much smoke.

Little Brother showing off the stubby candle that he used to light the rest of the candles.

As per mom's request, I skipped all the ones of her blowing out the candles.
She looked lovely in them though. She always looks lovely.

On to presents!

Mom is being social and excited about the presents
Dad, again, is utilizing bare minimum energy. Its ok though. He deserves a break
Little Brother...he...well...he's just chillaxin' I suppose

We got mom a nice, new, red towel. She loved it.
It's difficult to appreciate the amazing-ness of a new towel, unless all your current towels are as....who knows how old they are. Just trust me, fluffy new towels = great gift!

I don't know what happened here. Mom's face is intriguing enough...but then you look at Dad's face...and the real mystery begins. What were they looking at / concerned about? Who knows.

The lovely ladies.
Just missing Little Sister.

In case you are curious, Mon Amour was at the party. He was taking all the pictures. We will get him in some pictures next time.

The Worst/Best Part

There is one thing that my house does not have that I really do miss.

That is, a bath tub.
Or even a bathroom with more than 3 square feet of floor space.
Or possibly a bathroom with a door taller than 5 feet 7 inches.

But, honestly, it is mostly the bathtub that I miss.
I adore taking baths. It was my primary means of relaxation (until last spring when we moved here...)

So, my favorite part of my in laws house:

Ta da!
Their newly remodeled bathroom. Completely with fantastically amazing, too comfy and deep to be true bath tub.

If heaven were a bath tub, this would be it. *
*Not intended to be an actual theological statement :-)

Let's take a closer look...
I am pretty sure you can make it a good 2 feet deep at least.
And there is non of that uncomfortable no-slip stuff on the bottom that comes with bath/shower combos.
It is long enough to comfortably stretch out in.
The back is curved for comfy relaxation.

And it has a fun shower head attachment so that you can rain toasty water on yourself while simultaneously soaking in bubbly bath water.

One day, I will have a house with a bath tub. I don't think that is too much to ask
And maybe, possibly, one day I will have a house with a bathtub this amazing.

And if baths are not your thing....check out the shower in the newly remodeled upstairs bathroom.

It's hard to see, but this shower has many cool features, including:
It's huge
It's made out of a big glass box - the door to which opens both ways
It has 2 shower heads - one that comes straight down from the ceiling and one that you can either attach to the wall, or hold so you can point it in whatever direction you want.

Still not impressed?
How about this awesome sink:

To turn it on you move the little silver stick thing at the to, and the water pours from the base of said stick, spilling out of the glass disc and into the super cool blue basin.

In summary, very nice work on the bathroom remodeling, in laws!

Every thing my house is not...

Please do not interpret the following post as a statement of discontentment about my house. I love my little house. It is everything that I need in a house right now.

But, as a matter of strict facts, there are a few things that my house is not....a fact which becomes very clear when I visit other, larger, more stereotypically desirable houses.

Like, my in laws house, which Mon Amour and I had the pleasure of visiting last weekend.

Things their house has that mine does not include:

Sweet yellow outside walls.
(which they are actually in the process of re-painting. Oh well. Green will be cool too)
And a front door.

A lovely foyer area.
And a stair case.
(my house has a total of one step. no actual stair case)

A book nook.
And an upstairs.

A two sided fireplace!
Yes, the fireplace opens into the living room, and the dining room.
For all around fire place enjoyment.

A fun kitchen with green walls
Oh wait, I do have one of those.

All of these things are fine and dandy, and perhaps one day I, too, will have a house with some of these cool features. But, like I said, I am not that jealous of these things.

However...there is one thing that there house has that mine doesn't that I must confess, I am very jealous is, by far, (in my mind) the coolest part of the house....

More on that tomorrow.

Bald Eagles

In case I haven't already said it enough - farm life is delightful! Just when you think you have seen all the coolness that there is to see....something new happens!

Here on our little farm we have seen quite a few bald eagles. Usually just one at a time hanging out in a field looking majestic. That kind of sighting is sufficiently cool to impress me.

But then a couple weeks ago - Mon Amour and I went for a walk (without the camera, which we really should never do) when we witnessed a bald eagle chasing a goose through the sky! Back and forth they went, and it almost looked like the bald eagle was not going to get what he wanted, but then! He pounced! It was as though he had just been playing with the goose before this while all the while knowing that he could grab it whenever he wanted. He certainly did grab it - and dragged it to the ground where it fought bravely; and to some extent, succeeded, because after a few moments, the bald eagle gave up the fight and flew away. Leaving poor Mr. Goose crippled in the cow field. poor goose.

Again, sufficiently cool for me! But that was just the start!

The next day, Mon Amour and I were driving down the drive way when bald eagle # 1 went WOOSH across our path and flew off into the distance. Very cool. Then as we parked the car - we saw out in the field bald eagles #2 and #3!! Poor Mr. Goose must have kicked the bucket sometime in the night, cause this trio of bald eagles seemed delighted at their feast.

Needless to say - the sight was really amazing! For the most part bald eagle sightings in this area are reserved for the Wildlife Preservation areas where they have them in cages and such; and I have never seen 3 at once!

It proved difficult to get a good picture of the eagles themselves....but here is a sample of our attempts:

This one is really blurry, but is really the only one that proves they are actually bald eagles and not some other kind of big bird. See, they have white heads! And the white feathers at their feet are the remains of Mr Goose.

The cows were not big fans of the eagles.

The rest of the pictures (including the picture now at the top of the blog) just look like shadows - trust me though, they are bald eagles, and they were super-cool in person.

I am not sure what kind of wildlife is left for us to spot we've had lots of deer, lots of geese a couple foxes, a bunch of bald eagles and a black bear. There are rumors of a beaver family (complete with dam) living along the creek in the woods at the edge of the field...I haven't seen them yet. But perhaps I will go look for them this spring.