Catching Up

Hello! Friends!
Well, we had a little thunder, some rain, some higher winds, but luckily it looks like maybe the snow is mostly over for the year. There’s been a lot of sad gray days, but that seems appropriate for the last couple weeks. I won’t dwell long on the sadness, we’ve had some truly heartbreaking moments trying to find a new routine without Scooby and watching my four legged family members work out that Scoobs isn’t going to come tippy-tapping through the door. It was particularly hard watching Joe’s face light up when he saw Scooby’s blanket for the first time again, and then look up at the shelf where I had arranged all of Scooby’s things when I went to tuck them in later that night. I know it’s silly to attach human ideals to critters since they truly think differently, but I swear it seemed like he was saying Good Night to Scooby.

Our raccoon has stuck around, although he’s realized we won’t feed the cats while he’s around so he’s now terrorizing the horses and Dad as well, which is grand. To clarify, we still feed the cats, but differently now, they are not going hungry, in fact, our sweet Honey has gotten quite the filled out figure. She’s not fat, but she could very easily get there. In her defense, it’s hard to exercise in the winter. No one wants to move in the cold.

Sunrise on a stormy morning… it was a lot less purple on my phone

I cut my hair finally a couple weeks ago. It was almost waist length and now it’s just above my shoulders. It’s cute, not terribly what I had hoped for, but I forgot how much my hair will shrink up when cut wet and I didn’t let the new stylist know. It’s cute though, so even though I was looking forward to chest length, I have a sassy little short cut, with lots of bouncy layers, and it’s like a bonus! But please, share with me what to do with short hair stylewise, because the last time I had short hair was middle school and I also had bangs and none of that was a good choice haha. I want to make the most of this bonus hair “phase” and do cute styles with it. I love the new stylist though, she’s amazing, and I am officially a loyal customer. It’s nice, I haven’t really clicked with a stylist since middle school, so haircuts weren’t fun or a priority. It’s kinda a fun, indulgent little treat to do something new with your look in a chill, supportive environment. Low key might be considering a balayage in the summer if I get bold.

I finally got some art hung up in my room again. There’s not much more to say on that but I am pretty excited about it. Good way to spend the stuck-indoors time, since unfortunately it looks like we still have a few weeks of mud and rain to mess up plans.

On one of our rare sunny days, I tried hopping on Ro to see where we need to start training wise and…she needs some medical attention. Her arthritis is a little rough right now and she’s pulled something in her back and I’m not surprised, but I think this year is going to be a rebuilding year. It was a wake up call, her little soreness we’ve been managing isn’t just because of the cold, I reckon.  I want to focus hard on getting her topline stronger, working out the best solution for her arthritis, since she’s clearly not mentally ready to not be working (she instigated the initial session, she just got cranky when she got sore, and if she doesn’t get at least a little work occasionally she goes slightly mental), and I want to work on our teamwork, which can be done in saddle or on the ground. As for Miss Nellie Belle, my goals for her are more mental. I really want to expand her horizons, work through her still explosive fear response, and our teamwork… which is a trend. She’s such a clever girl, she deserves to not be scared of her world.
Joe has been spending more time down around the barn with me. I still try to keep a fence between him and the girls, but he’s been doing exceptional with his heel, sit, and recall, so I am slowly becoming more confident with having him around. I still don’t think he will ever hang out with me while I am working directly with the girls, mostly because Ro has no patience for dogs and Nellie is still a lit firecracker when overstimulated, but less so because my sweet overgrown teddy bear can’t listen. Although, spring fever hit him hard and being still pent up inside means our inside the house listening skills are slacking like crazy. He’s taken me out running around like a banshee a couple times already.

Until we chat again my friends!

Until We Meet Again, My Very Best Boy

TW: Pet loss, grief, medical descriptions 

I won’t lie to you, I had written a fun little post talking about the animals and their spring fever shenanigans while father winter keeps fighting for all its worth. That post no longer feels appropriate.

Sweet Scooby-Doo has been slowing down for a while. He was a happy boy, liked basking in the sun and wandering in his yard. A couple days ago we noticed that he wasn’t acting himself, then he started having problems keeping to a potty schedule and generally seemed upset. Wednesday morning we took him to the vet thinking he had a stomach bug or maybe some senior potty problems. The vet asked if they could run some tests while I went back to work.

I’ll save you the suspense, and the brief batch of hope we were gifted. The final news wasn’t good. Sweet Scooby had no kidney function left. The vet was just as shocked as I was, he was a happy, busy, loving dog, without the ultrasound we wouldn’t have known. He had been off the last couple days because his kidneys had finally given their last.

Wednesday we had to make the heart wrenching decision to let Scoobs leave peacefully, surrounded by his brothers and family. The vet let us know he wouldn’t ever be pain free or comfortable again, and that we were making the kind choice. 

Not the easy one.

Scooby spent many years with us, almost two decades, and was such a sweetheart of a pupper. Scooby was technically my brother’s dog, a wonderful Christmas present, and a perfect addition to our family. I remember his little red bow and a note that said “This one was too excited to stay in the sleigh”. When my childhood dog was blind and deaf, Scooby valiantly took it on himself to be Winchester’s constant companion. We jokingly called him “the menace” because he was convinced he needed to be involved in everything, often pushing open doors or moving light furniture when it suited. He was my rock when Winchester passed and the constant comic relief, always talking and being ever so dramatic. He loved standing out on the porch when the wind blew but hated thunder, preferring to hide out when “the big dog barked”. He always made sure his brothers were hiding too, he was responsible, you see.

When we decided Scooby needed a companion after Winchester passed, and then accidentally came home with three puppies, Scooby hid under a blanket for a week. He had very little patience for his brothers, unless we weren’t looking. More than once I caught him playing with his brothers in those early days, before deciding it was enough and crawling back under the blanket. Luckily they grew on him, especially little Sherlock. He was a fantastic older brother though, firm, but teaching, and caring. He was a patient jungle gym for the little ones and a pillow for Joe, until Joe got huge, that is.

Losing Winchester and later, Sherlock, took its toll on my sweet Scoobs, he had a very big heart He wore on his sleeve. We noticed him slowing into his elder years after the latter loss, and that he enjoyed slower activities like sunbathing and naps more than zoomies. He was still always up for a good nature walk though, he loved to explore.

Scooby had many nicknames, most commonly Scoobs, Scoobert (occasionally pronounced like Colbert does his name), scoober-doo, the-doo, scoobediah, scooby-dubious, and his favorite, my-handsome-special-beautiful-boy (I told you, a flair for the dramatic).

It doesn’t seem real yet, and I doubt it will for a while. My mornings started with some Scooby snuggles and evenings ended tucking him in, he was always curled up in his little daybed, and I don’t know how many times a day I’d leave my desk to go snuggle him in a blanket. I think I got the idea in my head that he’d always be around to hang out with me, but the cost of love so pure is the loss, we are gifted with so many years, but we cannot have something so amazing forever. 

I will forever love and miss my sweet little bichon. 

I love you forever, Scoobs.

A Little Shopping…


It’s been a little warmer here on the farm, which has caused a very premature spring fever in everyone. The horses have been fussing like crazy, taking apart fencing, loafing in the sunshine, bullying each other (happens every spring, it seems) and getting all sorts of muddy and dirty. The dogs want to be out in the yard a lot more, especially Joe, which is fine when it’s warm enough, but since someone has to watch them at all times they haven’t gotten to go out quite as much as in the summer. The temperature itself hasn’t really even been too bad, but we have had a persistent icy northern wind for days, and it can physically hurt to be outside.

I did take my crochet out and sit in the sunshine while they roamed a couple days ago. I took some video so I could share it with my friends in Seattle, who were still fighting snow, so maybe I’ll cut that together and share with you all too!

I was on-call at work for a large part of the last two weeks, which means no leaving home or being away from the computer, so this last week has been a mad dash to catch up on all the errands that need running and chores that need doing. I had to go get more grain, run grocery shopping, pick up some cat food (which is a story I’ll share in a moment) and run to get my taxes done. All of which was in a different direction from one another so it took multiple trips. Crazy busy!

We also got to run some fun errands, I made everyone come to the used bookstore with me again and we all have some new evening reading materials. We have been trying to turn off the tv more often in the evenings, sometimes we talk, share news, and sometimes we read, enjoying each other’s company without needing to engage. It’s pretty common for us to do that in the summer on the porch, but in the winter we sometimes get a little attached to our shows. I, of course, got more mysteries, but also Pride and Prejudice, which has been on my TBR list for forever.

Christopher and I adventured a few towns over to check out a store called the Vintage Nerd too, a game store we had never been to. It was much bigger than we thought and we took about an hour and a half to walk through and browse, and I still feel like I probably didn’t see everything. I may have gotten some stickers, a game from my childhood, and some dice. I don’t talk about it a lot here, but when it’s cold and stormy, a favorite way to decompress after work for me is video games. I don’t play super often, at least not nearly as much as I did in school, but I do enjoy them. It should surprise no one that I love a good farming game.

I mentioned that I needed to tell you about the cat food. That was a bit of a misdirection because I don’t actually have much to say about the cat food (other than I tried to fetch it in a windstorm and I learned my local BiMart isn’t windproof). The currently ongoing story is that of a very large, very mean raccoon. He moved a few days ago and has totally trashed the tractor shed. He has terrorized the cats, broken some of the irrigation pipe that was stored in there, pulled wiring out of the hand tools and the lighting. He also got into some stuff a family member was storing in my shed and now I have to replace their stuff too. Luckily it was nothing major but still, I feel bad that their stuff got messed up. They were expecting me to keep it nice while they moved, ya know?

Then this little jerk decided to start camping out on my porch trying to work out how to get in the house. He’s super bold, and doesn’t seem to fear people at all. It’s worrying. He opened the tractor shed door himself, and for context, I can barely wrestle that thing open sometimes. He’s a chunky, clever little thief who is hellbent on food.
So, if anyone has any ideas how to handle that? I’m all ears.
Until we chat again my friends!