Monday, October 29, 2012

Jennyanydots

 
Posted by PicasaAtticus, Annabelle Lee and Jennyanydots
Recently one afternoon, sitting on the steps, I was looking for inspiration for this week’s column and Jennyanydots rubbed against my arm. She must have known that she has been neglected, and was gently reminding me that she was certainly a worthy subject for this column.
Jennyanydots and Atticus are litter mates. Atticus was almost named Eliot or Bustopher Jones, but Jennyanydots was the only name considered for Jenny. Much like the character in T.S. Eliot’s poem The Old Gumbie Cat, Jenny wants to help others.  She shows compassion for injured or sick animals or people, and is blessed with a nurturing and caring nature. Unlike her namesake, she doesn’t crochet or tat.
Jenny learned compassion early in her life. Atticus and Jenny had a sister, her name was Annabel Lee. Annabel was born with many difficulties, and lived for 7 weeks. Sadly nothing could be done for her, so we gave her the best 7 weeks that we could. Jenny helped care for Annabelle, making sure there was room for Annabelle when the kittens nursed. She cuddled, and gently played with Annabelle to the best of her abilities.
Jenny also pays attention to people’s clothing. If your clothing is a color that will contrast with her fur, then she makes sure to rub against you so that you can carry some of her fur with you. It is an attempt to spread her love, but it is not always appreciated. Jenny checks on Little Peep as she heals from her latest trauma and was friends with Clover. She watches over the rabbits and believes that the dog needs her assistance when she goes outside. The dog feels differently.  Jennyanydots was the perfect name for her, even though she lacks the tabby stripes of the fictional Jennyanydots.
 Jenny strives to provide a bright spot for all that come in contact with her.  She knows that she can’t take hurt and pain away, but she can comfort and love the animals around her. Helping others is her purpose in life, and she fulfills her purpose passionately and effectively. Humans could learn from her example. Jennyanydots is truly a Gumbie Cat, and shares her love and her fur with anyone willing to receive that gift. As T.S. Eliot said in his poem The Old Gumbie Cat, “nothing is done without trying” Jenny knows this is true.

Friday, October 26, 2012

South Georgia Snow

This is "snow" in South Georgia.
 
 
 
This cotton has been defoliated and will be picked soon.
 
 
 
When the cotton is being picked, a fragrance fills the air. It is the smell of cotton and farm machinery. It is a lovely smell, crisp and clean. If only there were a way to bottle this smell, then the fragrance could be enjoyed year round!
 
 
 
This is also about the closest we will get to snow here, unless maybe we get a few flakes that usually don't stick.
 
 
 
This was an exciting time for year for Daddy. He was extremely busy at this time, but this is an important time of year for a farmer.
 
 
 
A year's worth of work, hopes, plans, fears and sometimes tears. Will there be enough rain to produce a good crop?
 
 
 
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This is a lovely sight to me, there are many happy memories attached to these sights. It is a bittersweet feeling. Daddy is no longer able to enjoy the sights and smells of the harvest season. My happy memories will always come to mind when I see cotton, and I will always remember the importance of this season.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Does Little Peep Have 9 Lives?

 
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They say that cats have 9 lives, Little Peep was wondering if she too had 9 lives. Little Peep often finds herself in trouble, and her life has been saved 4 times. If she has 9 lives, then she needs to slow down.
 
This past Wednesday, I walked out to check on everyone and there was no Little Peep. I counted chickens and called her name. Little Peep comes running when she hears her name, so this was strange. I counted again and everyone was accounted for, with the exception of Little Peep. There was no way that she could have unlocked the door and flew away. The fence was intact and there were no escape holes visible.
 
The sinking feeling that something bad happened washed over me and my mind played back the images of the last few months of Little Peep growing up. The first image was Kevin holding the almost dead, partially hatched chick in his hand, which we placed in the incubator hoping she would live. Little Peep may be guilty of living in her own little chicken world, but she never misses the opportunity to get a treat.
 
This was disturbing. Then I noticed a few white feathers on the ground near the laying boxes. Looking behind the boxes, I saw a fluffy chicken bottom and a leg. “Oh no, Little Peep” I cried, hearing her name, she moved her leg. With strength that came from an unexplained place, I moved the laying boxes, and gently picked up the injured chicken. Little Peep looked up at me gratefully, and made chicken noises, as if to tell me that it was not fun being upside down, and those Silver Laced Wynadotts are mean!
 
She was missing some of the feathers on her neck and had to have medication sprayed on her. She is spending a few days in the chicken hospital or the brooder rather, and will be fine. Perhaps it is time for the mean girls to find a new home.
 
The ability of an animal to persevere amazes me. Life’s unexpected storms will not change their course. They have their goals and forge on. There is much to learn from them if we slow down and pay attention. These animals teach and inspire me daily. Little Peep will be fine this time. Our next adventure waits for another day.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Monday Musing - Find A Hungry Bachelor Quick!

Bachelors seem to appreciate home cooking more than married men. As my husband was leaving the table recently, I asked if he liked his supper. “Huh, oh yeah, it was good” was his response. That was not the response that I was looking for. My mind began calculating how much bread would be required for a month’s worth of sandwiches.
 
A few days later, I carried a meal of homemade dumplings to my favorite bachelor. The real kind of dumplings, not from a mix, a box, the freezer section, or worse yet – those canned biscuits cut in quarters. The best dumplings imaginable, the kind my Gran made with a rolling pin. He called me later to thank me. He had enjoyed his meal and enthusiastically praised my cooking and then he said that my husband was a lucky man. His status was upped to My Favorite Bachelor on the Planet. His response rivaled my daughter’s joy over a particular chocolate dessert that I made for her this past week.
 
This made me think about some things. Bachelors really enjoy good home cooking, and they happily tell you so. Unlike husbands, who don’t always remember to tell us that they appreciate our efforts. If you want to feel especially good about your culinary skills, cook for a bachelor! They get excited about home cooking, and grin from ear to ear. Everything sounds good to them, especially if the recipe came from your mother or grandmother.
 
Why didn’t I have this realization many years ago? Should I have gone into business providing good hot meals for bachelors? Would I become rich and famous from this idea? What about a franchise? More importantly, would Clover have thought this was a good idea? Yes, Clover would have liked that idea, especially if the men had tasty shoestrings.
 
My Favorite Bachelor on the Planet reads this column and no, I will not be telling you who he is. That secret is mine, and there is no way I am sharing the praise with anyone. Besides, my grocery list is written and menus for the next several weeks are planned. As for my husband, after hearing what My Favorite Bachelor on the Planet said, he comments on my cooking daily, even on sandwich night. If you want to hear fabulous comments on your cooking, find a bachelor quick!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Remember Me?

Do you remember me? This is what I looked like in June 2012.
 
 
 
I was skinny, the vet said that I was emaciated. I only knew that I was hungry! See how pitiful I looked in the picture below. My fur was matted so badly that it was like a second skin. It took 5 hair cutting sessions to get all of the bad stuff out of my hair, it wasn't fun, but I felt better after they were finished!
That was my past, before I came to live in my new home. Things are different now!
 
 
 
Mostly, I would rather play with my friend Mazie than pose for pictures. We have lots of fun together! I get plenty of food to eat now, notice that I am wider than I was in June, but I am healthy now!
 
 
 
My fur has grown out now, so much had to be cut away that I was almost naked! Now, I have fur that is not matted, I don't have to hurt now! My hair gets brushed every day, I like that because it feels good and it keeps the mats out of my hair.
 
 
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Maybe one day I will sit still so that you can see a picture of my face! Until then, I am playing with my best friend Mazie, eating healthy food, napping, getting brushed, and all of the other things that a dog should be doing. My life is good! I am happy too, I like to run and sometimes I act a little bit silly. That is how good that I feel!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Could Little Peep Have ADD?

Little Peep is growing and she is more of a Big Peep now. Her name will not be changing; she knows her name when called. Little Peep lives in her own chicken world. She ignores the other girls and has no interest in the up and coming rooster in her flock. Little Peep just keeps pecking along, minding her business, at times stopping to stare at something. What goes on in that chicken head of hers? Was she damaged emotionally because she was hatched out by a duck?
 
Perhaps Little Peep is just easily fascinated. When the rest of the flock is walking around the yard, Little Peep is more interested in watching what is going on around her. The other girls know where the good worms are, but Little Peep just stands there staring. She watches Emmett, the birds, the cat, the dog, me anything that happens to catch her attention. She is also easily distracted, and sees little danger in the world around her. Meaning that when she is outside of the pen, we must be there too, or disaster would surely happen. What is she thinking?
 
What is going on in that chicken head of hers? It probably goes something like this – oh look a pretty bird, cats are funny looking, I should scratch for some bugs, why do bugs have so many legs, look at the goat, why don’t people have wings, the sun is warm, have I been standing here too long, cats are funny looking, did I just think about that, oh well the sun is warm, look at the pretty bird. Could Little Peep have ADD in addition to being emotionally damaged?
 
She wouldn’t have made a good Chicken Little because she couldn’t remember to tell everyone that the sky was falling. Little Peep would look up and notice a cloud and then something else would catch her attention.
 
Maybe Little Peep is smarter than we think. Perhaps she knows that she lives in a place where a crippled chicken and duck, one silly goat, and a ridiculous rabbit named Pansy have lived. She knows that she doesn’t have to be perfect to live here and she is perfectly happy, if she can remember that. After all Miss Ceelie, Clover, Pansy and Hoppy called this place home; Little Peep is merely another name to add to the interesting characters we have cared for.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

New Old Cabinet and Loving Pfaltzgraff

 
This cabinet has been with me for a number of years. It was painted country blue when I bought it from a friend. Yes, it is that old! It has been blue, cream, and now it is white. The hardware was painted when they painted the cabinet, a pet peeve of mine, and had to be cleaned or replaced. I chose to clean it. After a good cleaning and scrubbing, all  of the pieces were not the same color! What else to do but grab a can of black spray paint and make all of the hardware the same color.
 
 
The glass from the doors had been replaced with chicken wire and it was left that way. However time and several paint jobs left their mark on the chicken wire. We (meaning my husband) removed the chicken wire and cut some more to go in place. This job turned out to be a bigger booger than we intended. Having saved the old wire and remembering that the hinges came out well, I painted the chicken wire black. It fit right back into place perfectly!
 
 
 
This cabinet is used daily and our everyday dishes are here. The dishes are made by Pfaltzgraff and the pattern is Remembrance. This pattern came on the market around 1984. So it is not old, but still lovely. It is a pattern that I have admired for some time and found this set at King Cotton Antiques.
 
 
 
It is a soft, feminine pattern and works well in my farmhouse kitchen.
 
 
 
The previous owner must have been a southern bride. There are 6 sherbet dishes with this set. There is a slight difference in two of the soup/cereal bowls too. My guess is that the pieces were purchased individually, as would have been done if these dishes were wedding or bridal shower gifts.
 
 
 
The coffee cups even look happy are ready for a steaming cup of tea or coffee.
 
 
 
 
Jelly jars are our everyday glasses.
 
 
Pfaltzgraff dishes are heavy duty and hold up well for daily use, as well as pretty to look at and display.
 
 
 
A few of my favorite cookbooks rest on top this cabinet. They are each well loved and used.
 
 
 
This "new" old cabinet fits right into my farmhouse kitchen. Several sets of dishes have lived here, but knowing my love for Pfaltzgraff they will not live here forever.
 
 
 
The pattern below has captured my attention, and is the reason that the red shelf liner was purchased.
 
 
 
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The hunt is on!

Linking to

Trish's Heart and Home for Heart and Home link up

Rose Chintz Cottage for What's in Your Cabinet

Cozy Little House for Tweak It Tuesday

Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday

Lavender Garden Cottage for Cottage Style Linky Party

 A Delightsome Life for A Return to Loveliness

Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday

Have A Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson for Share Your Cup Thursday

Stone Gable for Tutorials, Tips and Tidbits

 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Monday Musing - A Rooster Named History

This morning I am sharing a blast from the past, as no column ran in last week's paper. That was my fault, life gets in the way sometimes! Hope you enjoy!
 
 
My Gran told me many stories about her life. I enjoyed listening to her stories, and wish that I had each one recorded to play back and enjoy again. Instead I rely on my memories. Gran told me once that she had received 3 chicks as a wedding present from a friend. Keep in mind that my Gran was a bride during the depression; this was a welcome and very much appreciated gift. I find that amusing thinking about today’s bride. Knowing Gran, she would enjoy hearing about the things that happen here. I know which stories would make her laugh, and can imagine her sitting in her chair laughing at the things that occur here. Gran would enjoy the rooster stories too.
Our first flock consisted of 10 birds. There were 5 Dominickers, 3 Rhode Island Reds, and 2 Americaunas, sometimes called Easter Eggers as they lay the blue or green eggs. I wanted the Dominickers because my great grandmother had that breed. My Mama had chickens once, and they were Rhode Island Reds. I remember that they were good layers.  As for the Americaunas, well I just had to see those blue eggs for myself. Out of these 10 chicks, 3 would become roosters, 2 were Dominickers, and 1 was an Americauna. A friend told me that our choice of domincker and Rhode Island Reds were good choices, as the Dominckers were gentle, and the Reds would be good layers. She failed to tell me that the Reds could be best described as evil! She was mistaken about Dominickers, as there is nothing gentle about Dominickers, especially if that Domincker is a rooster.
 
 
 
No. 2
We watched these chicks grow, and found the dynamics fascinating. The Head Hen emerged, she was a Dominicker. There was an Americauna that hopped instead of walked. This gentle girl received the name Hoppy. Kevin and I knew that 3 roosters would be too many. When we talked about it, he said that he would “do something when the time came”. Fighting my urge to name everything, I simply called the roosters number 1, number 2, and number 3. Number 1, was the dominant rooster.
Number 1 was easy to pick out, he was the first one to become aggressive towards us. He hated Kevin immediately, and merely tolerated my presence, knowing that he would get his opportunity to deal with me later. Kevin wanted to take care of the problem, but I begged him to wait, a big mistake on my part, to see what will happen. The only experience that I had with roosters was a pet rooster that I had as a teenager. He had loved me, notice that the word loved, past tense, is in this sentence. This rooster changed after 2 little boys that will go unnamed, put him on top of the barn to watch him fly down.
Number 1 chose to deal with me one morning as I gathered eggs, he decided that I would not be gathering eggs anymore. He managed to get me into a corner, he was ready to attack. Being a girl, I did the only thing I knew to do, and that was to scream. Like a flash of lightning, my hero without a cape appeared, my hero was number 2. Number 2 came to my rescue, and began defending me. I told Kevin what happened, and then there were 2 roosters in the chicken yard. Number 1's new name is History.
 
 
 
No. 1, former No. 2, showing his scary look
The new number 1, and former number 2 was now my hero! Kevin tolerated this bird, even though neither liked the other one. The new number 1 wanted a chance to deal with Kevin without me around. Number 1 greeted me every morning, and walked with me to empty clean, and refill water buckets. Since I do not speak chicken, I have no idea what he was trying to tell me, but he made his chicken noises and kept me company when I was in the yard. Number 1 stood at Clover’s gate, waiting for me to clean and refill her water bucket, attempting to communicate with me the entire time. He kept the evil Rhode Island Red sisters away from me; our relationship was working very well. Until one morning I opened the gate, and he attacked me. I have a scar on my leg, and don’t know what happened or why he chose to attack me that morning. But I blame the evil Rhode Island Red sisters, I know that they must have told some malicious story about me, causing my hero and protector to attack. When I told Kevin what happened, he went out to the chicken yard, and then there was 1 rooster in the chicken yard. His new name is History.
 
 
 
 Hoppy
 
 Number 3, the Americauna rooster, was now number 1, and having witnessed what happens to aggressive roosters, he knew that he had better be on his best behavior. We do not desire to pet and hold the chickens, they have a job to do, and we want them to do their job without attacking us. The third Number 1 lived with us for 2 years peacefully. Number 1 was a beautiful bird, and fathered some mixed breed chicks. One chick grew to become a rooster. We lived that way for over 2 years, and when I opened the gate one morning, he attacked my leg, fortunately for me I was wearing boots. When I told Kevin what happened, there was 1 less rooster in the chicken yard. Number 1’s story has not ended, he was re-homed , and went to a place where his services would be useful.

 
 
Hoppy and chick
 
 
 
 
Hoppy watching as her new chick poses for his glamour shots
 
 
Clover watches these stories unfold before her. She keeps watch over the chickens, and has her favorites. Clover has watched as Hoppy became broody, setting on her clutch patiently and hatching her first chick. Hoppy wanted nothing more than to be a mama. Clover watched that chick grow, and become the new number 1.
 
 
 
Posted by PicasaClover



Gran would have enjoyed hearing these stories, and would offer advice from her experiences in the country. She would laugh at the lessons that I have learned the hard way, and would have reminded me to take care of my wounds and keep them clean. Gran would have liked Clover, and delighted in her stories. Quite possibly she would have found herself rolling in Clover too!

Clover would be pleased to know that her legacy lives on, she is still fabulous! Hope that you enjoyed our blast from the past!