Thursday, March 29, 2007





(Ok, so huggay really isn't a word,
but it rhymes, doesn't it? - And I did send a HUG for you with Grandmom)

love, Aunt Tina & Uncle John

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Pondering sheep butts

Ah, yup, that's what I said - Pondering sheep butts.

However I thought it would be more polite to show you the beautiful daffodils that are blooming in our yard, before we get down to business.

And, drum roll please, for the first time in six weeks, we had a drug free day! Just a couple of Advil liqui-gels to combat the achey back! Now, could someone please explain to him WHY he cannot go picking up things that are heavier than a darn gallon of milk - We've had several impassioned (on my part, anyhow) conversations on how he needs to let his back heal before he starts being mr muscleman again & it's beginning to get a little stale...

Anyhow, back to the subject at hand...

Of course, the first place that John wanted to go, after he was "Up & attem" from his surgery was the barn - does that surprise anyone? One of the primary reasons was to teach me what to look for as Regina & Susie get more & more pregnant -

Here's my chores helper - for some reason Neelix just loves chicken scratch - put a little pile of it on the top of the feed bins and he'll munch it down

Here he is, guarding the hay until I get back with the feed bowls....

Oops, this is supposed to be about sheep, isn't it...

Here they are - Sheep butts - Lookin pretty pregnant - of course poor Anna D (in the center, just WANTS to be pregnant - a case of mastitis that has since cleared itself, kept her off the dance floor this year -) Isn't she the prettiest color?

Oh, Regina, how rude of me, I should have gotten the hay crumbs off your face before I took your picture - yes, I know it feels good to itch you there... and there too, huh?

Regina is probably the friendliest of our girls - although she is highly motivated by scritches - and would gladly keep me held hostage for hours, "oh, rub there, that's the spot" - I think she is probably about a week away - she isn't walking in circles and gnashing her teeth yet - then I'll know that we'd better set up the jug (pen) - Ruben got the panels out of the greenhouse for me last weekend - now we'll have to figure out how to put them together without John lifting anything - poor guy, we're going to drive each other nuts over that one, I can see it coming.

But we had a good day - not only a drug free one, but a trip to Home Depot, Farmer's Co-op, the grocery store AND the Hilltop for lunch - (yum) And a nap to boot. Made black bean soup for dinner - maybe I'll write down the recipe before I forget it - it was pretty good!

Speaking of recipes - check out the neat sugar cookies that Michelle from Boulderneigh made - her sister sent her the coolest "sheep" cookie cutter - Fun, fun, fun!

That's all I've got to say for now - It's past time to go to bed, and I have church in the morning -I'd like to take the day off, but it's the newsletter deadline, and I suppose I'd better be there to collect any stray notices, etc.

Since our minister is part time, occasionally a member will volunteer to do a service - Of course I did - And the Title of my service is "Blogging, Communication & Communities in a new century. (or something like that) Anyhow, I'm putting out a call to all my blogger friends -
#1 Why do you blog? #2 What do you get from it? and #3 Any specific point that you'd like me to make? - I'll quote everyone, unless they ask to be anonymous - I'm kind of excited about it - I have gotten permission from Susan at Farmgirl Fare to use the story of her lamb Cary for the kids story - - and who knows what else I'll come up with :-) Nite -

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Spring has sprung

The flowering plum is in bloom - and it smells so sweet - and the frogs are chirping at night - so loud it is almost deafening. The man in the moon was sleeping in a very skinny hammock tonight and there, can you hear it? "Brrrrr" (make sure you roll your tongue when you say it - "BRRRRRRR" From one side of the house to the other - like a little bitty jackhammer! "BRRRRRRR")

Yes, the woodpecker has arrived and he is looking for a girlfriend - how better to announce your arrival in the neighborhood than to beat on the vent covers of the houses - it echoes so sweetly - surely all the lady woodpeckers in the whole dang area will hear "BRRRRRRRR"

And look, he got a big purple bug to run out of that house - wait a minute, why is she yelling and throwing rocks - Maybe better fly over to that tree and laugh at her "Aaak, aaak, aaak, aaak, aaak!" Oh, and HAPPY FIRST DAY OF SPRING!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The guardians

Neelix is taking a break from guarding the hallway to our bedroom by checking out the newly blooming crocus (croci?) in the front yard

He also supervises my trips to the barn to make sure that I do the chores correctly.

But his favorite job is sleeping - and yes, he does look like a big upside down dustmop, doesn't he?

Sinda, on the other hand, has totally supervised the bedroom. She has barely left John's side and when she does, it's with complaint, and you surely shall know about it. Poor thing, she has such a hard life - ha, ha, ha...

But soon, their work shall be done - John is improving, seems by the hour - (he's presently planning a little work party for Saturday) - we'll keep you posted, won't we kids.

Patient update

Quick update - My sisters came yesterday to help & cheer me up - mission accomplished. John actually ate dinner with us, while SITTING AT THE KITCHEN COUNTER! This a.m. he was up and around, had breakfast out in the kitchen & was talking & planning about when he could go back to work when I left to come to work myself. YaHOO! A light at the end of the tunnel.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Home again, home again......

Real quick to let you know that (as far as Dr. Baker was concerned) John's surgery was a SUCCESS! Apparently there was a bone chip or spur and the nerve had somehow snaked around it where it wasn't supposed to be - the bone was pressing on the nerve and that was what was what was causing so much pain - They removed the offending piece of "kaka" and that removed the pressure on the nerve. They didn't have to remove any disc material at all. Whew.

A couple of hours in the recovery room and we are back home - I think he really wanted to stay there longer, but I told him that I hadn't made any arrangements for someone to feed the sheep, because I thought we'd be home in time - and voila' - he screwed up his fortitude and here we are.

I am eternally indebted to our minister, Rev. Nan, who not only came this a.m. to take him to the surgery center, but spent the entire day distracting me from the worries at hand, and then piled him back into her Suburau and brought him back home. Thanks so much Nan, I don't
know how we'll ever repay you. AND, it was still light, thanks to daylight savings time, so I didn't have to do chores in the dark.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Just the facts, ma'am

Fact - It only rains in direct proportion to how many sacks of groceries that you need to bring into the house.

Fact - 15 mg. morphine sulfate twice a day is not as strong as 12 mg. of hydromorphone 4 times a day. And boy, let me tell you, its been a long day...

Fact - Fleece does not make good kitty litter. Now, I'm not pointing any fingers here (Neelix?) & I know I should have gotten them picked up earlier...but couldn't you have just gone in the sand next to the tarp insteak of ON the tarp...... luckily there was only a little damage to one fleece.

Fact - I feel like a computer that is running some HUGE program in the background - always worrying, slows me down, makes me think about sleep alot.

Fact - John's surgery is scheduled for Monday at 12:45. Studies have shown that patients who are the recipients of prayer & concentrated good thoughts recover faster than those who aren't. Our thanks to all of you who have sent your good wishes and prayers for his speedy recovery. I'll let you know what happens.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

And the beat goes on........

We started on his third refill for the painkillers today. I had reduced him down to 2 pills every 6 hours or so - but now that he is up and moving around, it seems to iritate his hip and he has, what I call "pain surges" - poor guy.

He got a card from Skittles the Ram who lives with our friends Kathy & Ralph at Sheep Thrills Farm in Flagstaf, AZ. Kathy has back problems herself and has been very helpful & sympathetic to me as we go up and down on this merry-go-round that we've been on for the last MONTH!

Anyhow, Skittles invited him to come down and visit - and I think that John was more touched by that card than any others that he has received - it was really a very funny card too, about duct tape being good for all kinds of things - putting a patient back together being one of them - Skittles dictated a very nice note to his "mom" - John really liked it (thanks Kath) - AND, he is saying that maybe we might have to take Skittles up on his invitation!

Our friend Nancy took the boys to the auction on Monday a.m. - I had a really big cry about it after she left. I'm not much of a farmer, I'm afraid - and if I had to kill my own meat - the reddest thing I'd be eating would be beets.

Well, I shall leave you with this peaceful scene from a week ago Wednesday - it was so beautiful out - I had John's big work boots on so I wasn't too afraid of falling - just had a great time out in it.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Shearing Day

Shearing day & Sunday to boot - maybe we should have something special - since we have about 35 # of pumpkin in the freezer, all in nice tidy little one # packages, I remembered a recipe that I saw on Farmgirl Fare for "Spicy Pumpkin Pecan Raisin Muffins", so in my spare time this a.m. between feeding the sheep and feeding my excited husband, I whipped up a batch. Now, I don't make muffins very often, don't have the "touch" I guess - but these were really easy (and really good too!) and they made a lot! I actually have one of those silicone muffin pans that makes six BIG muffins - (and that is the only muffin pan that I own, so I put the other half of the batter in my bundt pan - worked like a charm!) (

However, I digress! This was about naked sheep (I was actually going to title my post "Naked Ladies" but I thought that might get me some visitors that I didn't really want LOL)

Our wonderful shearer, Marsha, showed up right on the dot of 11:00 a.m. John was so excited he could hardly stand it - he's only been outside the house three times since Valentines day, and two of those times was on a stretcher into an ambulance!
Marsha starts out each sheep by checking feet & cutting their toenails. She's very organized and does such a good job - everyone got a nice haircut this year.

She was also very sweet and brought each ewe over for John to snuggle.
Now we have five more lumpits of wool - oops, you can see last year's lumpits stored in the corner of the greenhouse.
All in all, it was a great day, but very tiring for John. He pretty much slept the afternoon and woke up only for dinner. I went to the store, fixed dinner, ran a load of dishes, talked to my friend Kathy at Sheep Thrills Farm for almost an HOUR (thank you Kathy!) updated you and now I'm off to watch Brothers & Sisters - one of my favorite TV shows! More later this week - I'll show you pictures of Wednesday's snow - I actually caught pics of snowflakes - Cool!
Later, T.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Not again?

Help! I want to go live someplace where it doesn't snow!

News for "Inquiring Minds"

I realized tonight that I have begun to measure days by John's drug log. (I keep a log of every pill I give him & when) & it is now the 1st of March - could someone tell me where February went?

March has certainly come in like a lion - it has snowed all over western Washington tonight - it looks like we have about an inch of "popcorn" snow - it's 30 degrees out - I'm hoping that it just stays cold so it's not slippery when I go out to feed in the a.m. I also have to figure out how to get a new bale of hay down. Should be interesting.

I had a "close encounter" with Gizmo this a.m. He decided he didn't like where I had my hand, and I wasn't paying attention and BAM! My right hand is pretty - all black & blue - I am very lucky that he didn't break my knuckle - I bonked him really good on the noggin with the feed bowl, but instead of looking contrite, he looked defiant. Little shit!

The big news of the day - Dr. Baker's office - the neurologist that we were referred to - callecd yesterday and they had a cancellation for today - could he be there at 1:30 - Several things fell into play here -

* It was payday for me - ABSOLUTELY NO WAY that I could take the day off - 40 people depend on me for their paychecks and no one else knows the program.

* Nan Geer, our minister from Free Church Unitarian, had already planned on being here to give John his lunch & meds - so she was very accomodating and was willing to take him into town in her Suburau - because - - -

***!!! He walks - he stands - he sits - kind of shakey, mind you - but it seems like in the past 4 or 5 days he has improved 100% every day.

* Our neighbor John R. was nice enough to come over to help Nan in case John needed help getting out to the car. Their biggest problem was getting him to go to the car and not take a little side trip thru the gardens...

* Our dear Friend Nancy, who is a retired nurse came over to help Nan too - so here we are - all three of us sitting in the exam room with John. Dr. Baker must have wondered what kind of a deal he got into here LOL -

*I need to go to bed, as it is almost 1:00 a.m. - but I wanted to tell you the biggest news, that surgery is scheduled for March 12 - so save the date - say your prayers that it is successful -

I'll give you more news in a few days when I find out more about what they will be doing. It will be up & at 'em early tomorrow - John is convinced that he can take care of himself - including getting his own lunch (mind you - the lunch fairy will have it all ready to go in the fridge - but this is someone who wouldn't/couldn't even get out of bed 5 days ago. YAHOO!