Friday, July 10, 2020

I've really got to do this more often

More frequent posts would mean fewer photos and less mental effort to put them all (not that you ever get them all) together with thoughts and words, but I'm having trouble managing that. So here goes another big catch-up – and I'll try to check in with shorter posts in the future (she says hopefully).

The very afternoon of my last post, we picked up and unloaded the first of four loads of hay. Our local hay guy had stored first cutting orchardgrass in his barn for us, and needed it out because he was getting ready to bale alfalfa. We were going to haul it all on Sunday, but with a chance of rain in Sunday's forecast, we decided we'd better not wait. So we got a load Friday afternoon, another load Saturday night, and two more loads on Sunday – and managed to avoid the rain! Now our barn is satisfyingly full; we left enough room for a couple tons of second or third cutting orchardgrass for the sheep.
Poppy's first hay season

safety inspector


Hay crews were busy on our hill that weekend, too, trying to beat the rain that never really materialized. (I'm glad the hay we got was put up several weeks earlier; this was too mature.)
I was sure we were losing another one. One morning last week I found one of our Black Australorps on the floor of the henhouse. She couldn't stand and I figured it was only a matter of time. To let her die in peace without getting henpecked, I placed a bottomless wire cage over her in such a way that she could access food and water, and picked a few tender greens for her. Every time I returned I expected to find her dead, but by afternoon she actually seemed a little better. That night when I shut the pop door, the wire cage was empty and she was up on a roost, and she has been fine ever since! That's a first.

Last Sunday I finally got Rick to fix the water lines so I can more efficiently water the garden plants. We also picked the last of the strawberries, the first flush of marionberries, a small bowl of black raspberries, a smattering of boysenberries, and a mediocre harvest of red and white currants. The currant bushes were hard to access for all the grass and weeds. Rick said with some surprise and frustration, "I weeded these earlier this spring." Uh, yeah; weeding is not a 'one and done' thing around here, especially this year! I also picked basil and made pesto; yum.
Wrens serenaded my berry picking
Will this heat cycle never end??? It does, finally, seem to be waning, and Rick confirmed that with cytology today – but she's still not safe to socialize with the intact neighbor boy. Poppy really needs regular romps with other dogs; humans just don't cut it in the energy expenditure department. She did get to play with her sister after we finished hauling hay Sunday before last; Penny and her people were going out of town and they were showing me what needed to be watered.

Here is a much mellower Poppy the next day. As I've said before, a tired terrier is a good terrier!

This week I've worked my usual two days, and covered for Rick's vacationing secretary the other three days. I took Poppy with me to the clinic which was BOR-RING –

but we did stop to play with a friend's terriers after work Tuesday (Poppy wore them out!),

and on Wednesday another friend brought her dog to the clinic.

I played with Poppy when I got home from work Thursday,

 but like I said, humans don't cut it. When I turned my back she jumped back on the bed and destuffed the little pillow I use to support my shoulder at night,

and when I put her in the laundry room to work Stella and do evening chores, she destroyed the pink bed she sleeps on. Used to sleep on . . . it's in the trash now.
It's a good thing she's so stinkin' cute!

Last Sabbath we had our first in-person church service in almost four months. It was a physically distanced, outdoor affair, which we can easily do behind the church on our very large lot. Everyone brought their own chairs and signed in at tables in case contact tracing was needed; the building was only open for restroom use with masks on. I was comfortable with the protocol, although I don't crave the physical gathering as some do. The plan is to continue doing this for the time being. In the meantime....

Yesterday afternoon, Penny and her people got back from their camping trip in eastern Oregon. They attended an outdoor July 4th gathering, at which one of their friends didn't feel well. Too much to drink, he thought. A few days later, still not feeling well, he got tested and found out he has COVID. By then, Penny's 'dad' was having symptoms, and is still sick. Penny's mom feels fine, but they are both planning to get tested and are presuming he, at least, is positive . . . and over 70 with heart problems. 😳 Obviously Poppy won't be going over to play with her sister for awhile. And maybe I'll stay home and watch church on live stream tomorrow!

Stay safe out there, people. Love from . . .


Leigh said...

Great photos, Michelle. Gosh, that hay! We have terrible hay here. Usually, it's harvested too late and contains a lot of seed heads. It isn't uncommon that the goats won't even eat it. The few people who know what they're doing sell out very quickly.

It's hard to blog this time of year. Too much else to do!

Retired Knitter said...

I get tired just looking at the Poppy pictures. I can't imagine what it is like to live with such a ball of energy.

I feel the same way about being around people now. Especially groups of people. I've never been a large group person anyway.

Tim B. Inman said...

Thanks for posting. Poppy is beautiful! How is her foot/leg? Looks good from the pics. AND, the pillow thing. My Annie does the exact same thing. Annie now is running 2 or 3 miles per day. Every morning, she begs and whines until I let her get into the Ranger. Then I drive the quarter mile to the timber and back through the fields. When I park and have coffee, she re-traces the Ranger path at least twice, sometimes three or four times, at a full hard run. We do this morning, sometimes at noon, and then again when she starts whining for a run again in the late afternoon. These dogs have incredible energy to burn, and they need to burn it! Poppy has such similar looks and characteristics. I love it!

Mama Pea said...

As you well know, putting up a blog post takes time. And time is certainly at a premium this time of year. How come so much has to be done RIGHT NOW?! Yesterday it was haskap berries, asparagus and strawberries for me. The hay in your barn is a wonderful sight. Must give you a secure feeling about the coming winter even now. Poppy gets more socialization with other pups than any dog I know. So good for her plus it burns a lot of energy she doesn't have to spend wreaking havoc on such things as big pieces of furniture or large trees rather than just pillows and doggie beds!

Michelle said...

Leigh, GOOD local hay is hard to find here, too; the reliably good stuff is grown in central Oregon with irrigation. Around here they rely on rainfall, which often hinders getting the first/only cutting put up at the optimal time; it's just too wet. We have been blessed to "get on the list" with one exceptional farmer (one of the very few who does more than one cutting), and even he couldn't get his first cutting put up when he would have liked. So this stuff is a little too mature, but the horses eat it.

Elaine, it's tired X 1000!!! I wish I could just let her run, but our gate isn't working, plus this morning highlighted a new hazard – mature foxtail awns. On our morning "sniffari" out in the pasture, she got one in each eye. Scary – especially if I had noticed right away (they have a nasty habit of going deeper FAST).

Tim, now WHY does Annie need the Ranger tour before running the route on her own???

I know, Mama Pea; I'm pretty sure my own son didn't get this much socialization! If I was still a jogger, I think that would do the trick of calming her down to a normal energy level, but my knees haven't been on board with that for at least a decade.

Jeanne said...

Wow! You really did do a huge post this time!
I'm so glad you got that valuable hay! The two inspectors were doing a good job!
I nearly drooled at the sight of your berries! I love them all.
I'm sorry sweet Poppy became Poppy the Destroyer! Rico has done his share, too, but usually his toys.

Have a good weekend!

Michelle said...

Thanks for wading through all of it, Jeanne! So far, Poppy hasn't destroyed anything too dear. Jackson gnawed on door frames as a pup, 'mementoes' we still have around the house!

Tim B. Inman said...

Why does Annie need the Ranger tour before her run? Who Knows! But it is the strangest thing. She doesn't go running until after I set the course. She is happy to run along with me where ever I go - all day long - but she only gallops when I set a route for her with the ranger. Then, away she goes, full bore and all out! What I do know is that she is much happier and much easier to deal with if I give her running time. Since I ride and then she runs, I'm happy to oblige.

Michelle said...

Well, that is too funny, Tim, and lucky for you (Maybe? Maybe not for health's sake?) that she'll let you 'lay the course' with the Ranger!