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In case y’all didn’t see it in the comments to yesterday’s post, A posted to let us know how Pearl (formerly Dandelion!) is doing:

Duke Man and Pearl Girl are doing wonderfully!! She is exploring her new home and already loving her new brother. They are getting closer and closer to cuddling. They won’t let me take many pictures because as soon as I move they immediately wonder what their Mama is doing. She has completed our little family.

Awwwwwwww, is that the sweetest thing ever? I think it might be!!!

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Sights from around Crooked Acres.

That bowl is on the side stoop for the cats, but lately the birds are getting more use out of it. Especially the Tufted Titmouse..s? Titmice?

I love the droplets of water in the air! Not bad for a picture shot through a dirty door.

Fred’s Mom gave us a Christmas Cactus (I think) on Thanksgiving Day. Try not to be jealous of my klassy plastic dish, I don’t want water to leak all over the top of the dresser. I’ll be repotting the plant as soon as I can remember where all my indoor plant pots are.

The garden has been put to bed for the Winter. I’ve spent several hours over the last month using the lawn sweeper (it attaches to the back of the riding lawnmower) to sweep up leaves and toss them on the garden. Fred tilled them into the garden last weekend. Then I started a pile of leaves next to the garden, which I’ll use to put around the plants next Summer to hold the weeds at bay. Hopefully our garden will thank us next year.

It’s hard to tell from this picture, but the pile of leaves is about three feet high and ten feet wide.

The romaine growing on our compost heap. I expected the frost to kill it, but it’s stronger than ever. Maybe we’ll be eating salads all Winter long!

The hens enjoy a stale bagel.

Pretty hen.

Hen with a chunk of bagel in her beak.

Toasty the rooster keeps an eye on his wimminfolk.

Dust-bathing hen. They really like kicking around in those leaves. If they didn’t already have a ton of leaves in the chicken yard, I would have tossed more in there for them.

As far as I can tell, the ducks are spending all their time out at the pond. Fred’s got plans to build them a shelter.

Whyyyyy are these freakin’ ladybug larvae still around? It’s DECEMBER.

George with bedhead, and a leaf stuck to the front of him.

“Lady, you has snack for me?”




“Is there snacks over here, is there, is there, huh?” Oh, George. Always a day late and a dollar short, bless his goofy puppy heart.

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More Weeds pics, from before they left Crooked Acres.

Sooner or later, they all fall for the Loony Jake charm.

“Hey, Mister Corbie, you sure are purty.”
“You have excellent taste. Now go away.”

If you ever want to foster kittens, you really need one of these scratchers. I see them in other foster blogs ALL the time. Kitties love ’em! Here, Dandelion was getting a higher vantage point so she could see what was going on across the room.

They’re good for relaxing on.

Relaxing on the floor works too – she’s not picky.

Straws are yummy.

Thistle reminds me of Magoo in this picture, although she doesn’t quite have his ratbat profile.

Did I mention that straws are popular around here?

THAT looks comfy.

Thistle, trying to figure out the cat shelves in the kitchen.

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“Oh my God….”

“…it’s full of Da Birds….”

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Alice Mo the calico sure does find you annoying, yo.


2011: For the Love of Cats review and giveaway.
2010: Bobby haz a complaint.
2009: No entry.
2008: No entry.
2007: I might as well go ahead and buy another six beds so there’s room for him IN THE FRICKIN’ HOUSE.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



12-6-12 — 31 Comments

  1. Hen with a chunk of bagel in her beak – and Gracie’s grin made me smile. Then the pictures of (should have been mine) Dandelion put pangs of loss in my heart. *sniff*

  2. The het rays emitting from da Corbs are definitely at the Booger level! And those photos of Stripey are intense, especially the first one.

    Wow! That is one boy how loves his bird! I also love how Alice isn’t even bothering to untuck her front legs to register her disapproval… the ears and het rays are enough.

      • Het rays are manageable. It’s the pee wars which are killer!

        I’m dealing with major het here because Sweetpea decided last week that she wasn’t going to take her pills no matter what flavor of pill pocket I used. So, I made the big change this weekend to the hyperthyroid diet for her (the quickest diet change in history since I don’t want her to get worse). The problem is that Fuzz thinks the thyroid food is the best ever and can’t understand why I’m not letting him eat it (the phosphorus levels are just too high for his chronic renal failure).

        I’m having some success with feeding Fuzz wet CRF food while I feed Sweetpea dry thyroid food… and that works until Sweetpea realizes he’s getting wet food. Still, there’s been a ton of het rays between the cats and from the cats to me. I’m sure it’ll settle down. I hope so.

  3. Is it wrong that I am completely distracted by the idea that bagels get stale at your house? With a teenage boy in the house, I am lucky if I merely GET one the morning after I go to the grocery store. You have the luckiest chickens on earth!

    The scratcher? My fosters love it. They do everything but scratch on it. It’s the perfect place for napping (both on top and below). It’s also a great place to stage a sneak attack on your siblings.

    Is that Mr Stripey? I’m trying to remember which one doesn’t wear a collar and failing miserably.

    • Yeah, that’s Mr. Stripey. They all love Da Bird, but Mr. Stripey loves it in a deep and abiding Everett Peppers way!

      Send the teenage boy down here. We’ll put him to work and then he can fight the chickens for stale bagels. πŸ˜€

    • My sister-in-law has one that’s pretty old (well, not 50 years old, probably more like 20) and I’m hoping to keep this one alive. It’s in one of the few places in the house where the cats don’t go, so that’s a good first step, I think. πŸ™‚

  4. Lovely pictures this AM. I am loving George and his goofiness. Jake is gorgeous as is Corbie. Stripey puts on a good show too πŸ™‚
    The Christmas cactus reminds me of my grandmother. She ALWAYS has one growing. Those things bloomed all the time at her place.

  5. The first photo — of the Tufted Titmouse — made me wonder what the plural of Titmouse is, so even before I scrolled down to see your caption I was thinking “Titmice? Titmouses?” Anyway, I love them (along with Chickadees) 1) because they’re adorable, and 2) Titmouse. Hee hee.

    Those straws look like peppermint sticks. Very Christmas-y.

    I feel I need to say thanks again for this blog. I’m on maternity leave with a two-and-a-half week old right now and little things — like looking at kittens — are keeping me sane as I realize it is almost 10:00 AM and I’m not dressed or fed yet. But at least the kid is!

    • LOL – every time I type “Titmouse” I feel like I’m a misbehaving 12 year old. πŸ™‚

      10 am and the baby’s dressed and fed? I think you’re doing really well, personally!!!

  6. Love the Christmas cactus…but don’t replant it until after the flowers fall off.

    I am going to have to get one of those essses. Bourbon loves to try to sleep under our scratcher shaped like that and he just doesn’t fit. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks for the tip on the Christmas cactus, I’ve never had one before, I’d like this one to live a good long time. πŸ™‚


      Yeah, they went off to freezer camp at the end of October. They were actually with us longer than pigs usually are because by the time Fred thought to call to make the appointment, they were scheduled pretty far out. The bigger pig weighed almost 500 pounds and the smaller one was about 50 pounds less.

      • πŸ™‚ I’ll just think of them running around with my grandma chasing after them up above^(in heaven-previous comment should have read *had*). The funny part is I can’t really see my grandma chasing much of anything. I think rather they’d be chasing her saying “hey lady, do YOU have cookies?”

  7. Oh, I’m going to make you so happy right now!!
    Genevieve (decorator/designer) is on Rachael Ray right now, talking about Christmas stuff.
    For those with cats who won’t stay out of the Christmas tree:
    Geranium essential oil.
    Spray it on the Christmas tree….it smells wonderful….and cats HATE it, and they will stay away from your tree!!!!
    See? I knew this would make you smile!!!!

    • Where would one get such stuff? It might be handy to have. I put a few decorations on my hutch and Oreo seems to think they look better on the floor.

  8. I googled it, and apparently you can get it online….don’t know about stores, though. I don’t have any cats, but immediately thought of everyone here when I heard it. πŸ™‚

  9. I am so happy for Dandelion! We have a floofy long-haired white FIV cat with gold eyes at the no-kill shelter where I volunteer. Her family abandoned her at the vet’s and the vet called us. She is just gorgeous and it breaks my heart she’s there.

    My cats didn’t like their fancy ess. I finally donated it to the no-kill shelter. The two darlings love their cardboard ess. Of course, I have to spend money every time I replace an ess they destroy!

    • It’s fairly easy, although time consuming, to make your own cardboard cat couches or scratchers from flattened cardboard boxes. Just cut dozens of shapes out of the boxes and glue them together with Elmer’s or equivalent glue. I use webbing clamps to hold them together while they dry, but anyone could ‘clamp’ them with weights or tape. I usually cut out the shapes while watching videos or listening to audiobooks – it’s pretty mindless work. Just make sure to use only one of the shapes as a template for consistency’s sake.

      I understand that if you have a jig saw, another way to make cardboard esses or scratchers is to glue lots of flattened boxes together to make a slab and then cut out the shapes you want with the saw. I’d think you’d have a lot more waste and dust that way, so I just stick with my method.

      • Oh, I also use my spring-loaded scissors to cut the cardboard — it saves on hand fatigue. If you don’t have those, cut the cardboard with a utility knife.

    • My two cats consider their Ess absolute magic, to the point where one side is on the verge of destruction. I think Father Christmas might bring them another, and I HOPE he’ll find a home for that abandoned white beauty and so many others very soon.

  10. Hey Robyn, my first work-study job at school was keeping the kitchen garden compost piles. Even in a Maine winter, a good compost pile generates enough heat to keep it from freezing. That may explain why your lettuce is still growing… and why it might grow all winter. Pretty neat, eh?

  11. I have a question for you, Robyn. Since you’re feeding stale bagels to the chickens in this post, would they appreciate stale multigrain bread? I have a full loaf of stale multigrain bread I don’t know what to do with, so would you mind if I send it to you? I hate to waste food, even if it is stale. Call it an early Christmas present for the chickies. Let me know.

  12. Howdy Robyn. I have a question for Friday. We’re finally taking the kittens in to be neutered next week and were wondering about pain meds for after. When my husband called the vet to get prices for things they mentioned two doses of pain meds for each of the boys. I was wondering if they were necessary in all your experience. Especially since you mention how the kittens always seem to not even notice anything happened to them by the time you got them home. Granted these boys are now 7 months old so maybe being older will change things. Thanks