Saturday, January 15, 2011

Variations on a Theme

I was sitting there in my chair by the woodstove this morning, pondering breakfast without much enthusiasm. I was hungry, but very disinclined to make anything. Besides, my options weren't appealing. Every day, we have some version of eggs or oats. Scrambled eggs or fried eggs, sometimes with bacon, sometimes in juevos rancheros, sometimes plain. Or oatmeal. Sometimes with milk, sometimes with applesauce, sometimes with cinnamon. But always, eggs or oats, eggs or oats, day after day after day.

I thought maybe this morning I would just have yogurt. Except I knew that wouldn't keep me full long enough. So when I opened the refrigerator to get the yogurt and remembered there was a hard-boiled egg in there from a few days ago, I decided I'd better eat that. For the protein, you see. And while I was eating the egg, I saw the box of Cheerios on top of the refrigerator. So I had a bowl of those.

Eggs and oats this time. The inescapable breakfast.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Hey Look! More Snow!

Oh wait--you can't look because I don't have any pictures. Too bad.

You should know better than to request photos. Haven't I expressed often enough what a terrible photographer I am and how much I hate carrying a camera around? Besides, my cameras seem to be accident-prone and bringing them outside is a dicey proposition.

Anyway, I have lots of pictures of previous snowstorms, which look pretty much exactly like this storm. How about these photos? Or this one of the driveway buried in snow? Or how about this one of the Abominable Snowdogs?

You get the idea. Snow. And as for the anchor ice, it looks like this, except without any sun to shine on it and make it all pretty and glowing. Instead it's getting covered in a fresh layer of snow at this very moment.

It's all very wintery and all very familiar. Snow. Ice. Blackrock in the winter. We've seen it all before.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


We had a Weather Event yesterday. That event being snow, and lots of it. It started on Tuesday night and continued steadily all day yesterday. It was still snowing when I went to bed last night, though it seems to have stopped now.

We ended up with about six inches of very light, fluffy snow. It's light and fluffy because it's cold out there. At the moment, 15 degrees with a stiff wind. Cozy. But I like the light snow; it's much easier than heavy, wet snow when I have to get out and do things like get the tarp off the woodpile and open the gates to give the chickens water.

Speaking of the chickens, they are not appreciating our Weather Event. The chickens don't appreciate ANY weather except sunny and warm with a chance of bugs. They get bored in the winter without anything on the ground to peck at. Apples just aren't the same as all those lovely insects.

As for me, now that my morning chores are done, I'm free to sit inside with Cubby and enjoy the wintery scene outside my window. Nice.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Oh, the Suspense

I've decided that we've had far too many days of wordy words, and not enough photos. But I have not yet gotten the most recent pictures I've taken off of the camera and onto the computer. So! Let's have a mystery photo!

Hmm, June 2009 . . . whatever will it be?

Excellent--sheep on the beach.

I posted this one before, when A. had put his sheep down on the beach to eat down the scrub there. He didn't do it this past summer; I suppose because he had taken the electric fence down that was keeping them from the road and didn't bother putting it back up. Just as well. Given their newfound love of adventure (and the road), it probably wouldn't be safe to put them there.

Too bad. It was pretty funny to have sheep on the beach.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Visitor

I looked outside this morning at the dogs swirling around the dining room door and then did a double take, because Otty looked curiously . . . fluffy.

That's because it wasn't Otty. It was another black dog. Specifically, it was the neighbor's Bernese Mountain Dog. He came visiting once before and the MiL identified him. She knows pretty much every purebred dog within a twenty mile radius, I bet. This particular dog lives just over the gully and is a very nice dog, if not overly intelligent. Last time we kept him in the back hall while we called his owners to come get him. This time we brought him right in the house, since he was just outside the door.

Mia was inside at the time, and while she wasn't overtly hostile, she did keep a close eye on this interloper to her territory. Especially since Cubby was there as well. Mia stood right next to the chair I was sitting in with Cubby, looking ready to bite the strange dog's face should he show any signs of aggression towards the hairless puppy. That would have been a less than fair fight, to say the least. The other dog doesn't look as if he's ever so much as chewed aggressively on a dog toy, much less attacked coyotes.

Cubby was quite interested in this new strange animal as well. It was the same color as Otty, but fluffy like Leda. It looked like a dog, but showed no interest in licking his face. Whatever could it be?

In this way our unexpected visitor entertained us all for about 15 minutes before his owner came to collect him with many expressions of gratitude for our corralling of his wayward dog. Nice to know our dogs aren't the only ones that go visiting.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Phone a Friend

My family, like most families I'm sure, has recognized every member of the family as the go-to question answerer for certain subjects, based on our areas of expertise. My sister the veterinarian probably gets the most phone calls from us seeking advice, because my brother and I both have animals (though in his case, that's a singular--one dog) and she's the animal lady. Probably sort of irritating for her occasionally, but she's a good sport about it. (A Good Sport in general, as I'm sure you recall.)

In the past, all questioning phone calls directed my way have had to do with either grammar or word definitions. Because in my former life, I was a copy editor. But a phone call from my brother on Saturday made me aware that I appear to be filling a new role in the family knowledge bank: chicken expert.

My brother was walking around with a friend of his (read: no Internet access to Google questions) who is thinking of getting chickens. They had a disagreement about the necessity of a rooster (not technically necessary for egg production, just so you know), and so my brother called me to settle the argument. Actually, my sister could also have answered this question, because she has, I'm sure, academic knowledge of chickens.

I may not have the academic credentials, but I have the chickens. And so I am now the person to call with all questions chicken. Yet another in a never-ending list of examples illustrating how my life has morphed into something I never would have imagined.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Early in the Morning

If you had told me a few months ago that I would now be voluntarily getting up at 5:30 in the morning, I would have laughed. And it would have been a slightly hysterical, sleep-deprived laugh, because Cubby did not sleep through the night, which meant I did not sleep through the night and therefore slept as long as he would in the morning in a desperate attempt to not feel like the walking dead in the morning. Five-thirty was a time to be dreaded, horrible numbers to see on the clock because it meant that the baby was awake and so I had to be awake and somewhat functional despite the lack of sleep.


Cubby started sleeping through the night a couple of months ago. He now wakes up around 5:30 in the morning to nurse, but will then obligingly go back to sleep for a couple of hours. I could, of course, also go back to sleep. Sometimes I try, but I invariably end up lying there thinking my Crazy Brain thoughts and not sleeping anyway, so I get up. And it's GLORIOUS.

No one else is awake, so the house is quiet. I can get the fire going, let the dogs out, and make my coffee without running into the living room every few seconds to make sure Cubby hasn't gotten himself into some kind of mortal peril. Then I can drink my coffee without having to entertain him with toys and books and whatever else will keep him occupied while I have my first cup of coffee. THEN, I can have a second cup of coffee. I can read! I can get online! I can do anything without interruption.

And that is why I get up at 5:30 in the morning. It's now my favorite time of day. Funny how your perspective can change so fast.