Thursday, October 25, 2018

Crumpets 'n' stuff

My Dad was a big crumpet fan. He made me a big crumpet fan.


There's not too much to them, so I don't know why I like them so much. But I do, along with a cuppa tea. Maybe because it's an excuse to eat butter.

I was toasting crumpets yesterday and I heard my Dad's voice telling me to make them "nice and crispy!" As in almost burned. Of course, he was the one who left his Marks & Spencer Extra-strong teabag in the mug as he drank his extra-EXTRA strong tea! He liked things well-done, except for his meat, which he preferred medium-rare. He was an excellent cook, and I can still taste his chili and his split-pea soup. 

My Dad's been gone for 26 year; I still miss him. My parents split up when I was eight, but I spoke to my Dad on the phone every single day (in the days before cell phones!) until I was well into high school. As I grew older, he was the one person I could turn to for support and advice when I had a problem, and I always knew he would listen well and give me the help I needed. I knew he had my best interests at heart. Sometimes I still want to call him up to talk to him... we always used to start out conversations talking about what we were having or had just had for supper. Food was important to both of us! I still have his phone number memorized, even though he died when I was 28. He lived in the same apartment for the last 18 years of his life. I had a dream about him the other night. I was trying to call him, but I couldn't get through. I often have that dream about him and I just see it as my desire to talk to him coming out in my subconscious.

Meanwhile in foster-kitten land...


...Jack thought he'd sample a power tool.

And this week I have gotten in some horseback riding...


...the best place to be!


Everybody had burrs in their tails and manes when we got back from our trip. but I have them all sorted out now. I wish my hair look as good as Roo's!




Saturday, October 20, 2018

Back to reality....

Not that reality is so terrible, but I could have done with two more weeks in Spain. The trip was great; I love Spain, plus we get to visit our friends Mitchell and Jerry (of Mitchell is Moving) which is always wonderful. And as Mitchell notes in a recent blog post, we all forgot to take pictures of each other. Instead we just photographed the delicious rice pudding cake three of the four of us had for dessert! :)

I met Mitchell through blogging and met him (and Jerry!) in person for the first time on our last trip to Spain two years ago. It's amazing how it can feel like you have known someone forever, when you've only met each other in person twice! I wish we were geographically closer, but we'll definitely be visiting them again the next time we are Spain.

I loved every part of our trip, but our two horseback riding trips were the highlight for me. Here are pics from my very favourite ride....



We went with an outfit called Riding Fun in the Sun, led by Jo. It was fantastic! One of my fav holiday rides ever.


Wind turbines in the distance


We rode through these herds of cows, which I found just hilarious. Because the cows are herded by men on horseback, they are  inclined to walk or run away from horses, and so don't cause problems on rides. Occasionally a young, curious cow will come up to the horses, but they are easily shooed away.



That said, near the end of the ride, one of the cows actually wanted to play with one of the horses! The cow was jumping and frolicking, until he got sent packing by Jo. it was pretty cute.

Riding makes me extremely happy. I came home vowing to make it more of a priority in my life, particularly since I was so burnt-out and exhausted at the start of the trip. My goal is not to let that happen again. I love rescuing cats and kittens, but I also need to be more careful about looking after myself, because I'm no spring chicken anymore! :) One of the things I have let slide is writing on my blog, which is something I really enjoy, so I am also going to try to make sure I make time for that!


Another two weeks in Spain would have been great, but we were both definitely more relaxed by the time we got on the plane home Thursday.

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, October 06, 2018

Another day, another cone

Poor Redford... the MOnday of the week Keaton disappeared, Redford showed up with a large gash at the base of his tail. It was a clean cut, not an animal bite; he managed to slice himself open on something. He needed ten stitches, a drain, painkillers and antibiotics! And he had to stay in the granary for two weeks (in fact, he's still there. Indoor life seems to suit this barn cat!)


He was remarkably tolerant of his cone, almost proud of it!


The cone came off last Tuesday, and he has healed up really well. I would LOVE to know how he hurt himself. I hate having any outdoor cats, but we have such vermin problems in our barn without a few barn cats on patrol!

Meanwhile, Monty got skunked for the first time last week...


THat's mud on his ruff. My theory is, a skunk paraded itself along the fenceline, and Monty was trying to dig under the fence to get at it, but failed and instead got a shot of Pepé Le Pew parfum!

Meanwhile in Spain, things are smelling much sweeter. Today we walked around the beautiful town of Estepona...





People here take a lot of pride in their homes. It really is a very beautiful country!



And flashback to earlier this year when we did Cats on Your Mats yoga, and dear Keaton had the time of his life!

Friday, October 05, 2018

Hola!

Yes, it has been a very long time since I have posted. This is not for lack of wanting to post... my life has become too busy, and I am trying to sort that out and get back on track. It is hard to get any time to myself at the farm these days, and I need time alone to do my creative work. Fortunately I do have some amazing people helping me, especially my friend Sharron, who does a lot of work with the foster kitties, giving me some beautiful chunks of time.

 I can't remember when I was ever as exhausted as I am now, so obviously something needs to change. I am reflecting on all that while we are in Spain for two weeks...


Genalguacil

I love love love spending time with animals and foster kitties, but having to deal with so many people every day is wearing me out. I am an introvert! I like people, but I need time to myself to recharge. So I am enjoying a good recharging in Spain with just my Gordon for company.

 Just before we left for our vacation, we discovered that our beloved boy Keaton had a huge tumour wrapped around his kidney.



Keaton gave the best hugs and had a purr like a babbling brook

A couple of weeks back, Keaton (a barn cat) disappeared for three nights, which was totally unlike him. When he returned, he was unwell with a fever and weight loss. He spent four nights at the vet, where his blood tests all came back normal. They managed to get rid of his fever, and he seemed well enough to return home. We put him in the granary so he would be safe inside while he continued to recover. After a week on Clavamox, I saw he was deteriorating and picking at his food, so he went back to the vet where he finally had an x-ray and the tumour was discovered. In a week, he had gained 2 kg of water weight, and the tumour was actually pushing his colon way out of place. 

There was nothing that could be done. Even if we'd found out about it a couple of weeks earlier, the results would have been the same. Cats are remarkably good at hiding illness.



Keaton was having difficulty with his breathing and had stopped eating much, so we made the decision to send him to Rainbow Bridge on Tuesday, the day before we left for our trip. He was only five and it was almost a year to the day since we lost Millicent, and of course we just lost Mootie in July. It has all been a bit too much for me.

Keaton was a one-of-a-kind cat, and the farm's meeter-greeter and mascot. He was also the favourite of our farm manager Luc, who had a very special relationship with Keaton. He brought him treats, and gave him a daily cuddle, and called him the king of cats. Which he was. A wonderful king indeed.

And Luc also built a box to bury Keaton in, dug out a hole in the woods with the tractor, then filled it in by hand with a shovel while I watched. I hput a spring of catnip in with Keaton so he'd have something for the kitty afterlife. Luc, who usually is quite chatty, did not say a word as he buried our beloved cat, and neither did I.

I wish he could have had many more years with us. I miss him more than I can say.

So I am taking it easy here in sunny Spain, reading and eating and enjoying some quiet time with my husband, and I am hoping that when I get back home, I will be able to manage my life a bit better and not get so exhausted again, and have time to post on my blog, which I do as much for me as anyone else.

Wishing you all a peaceful and happy weekend, and happy Thanksgiving to my Canadian friends!