Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Roadside Treasures

Some people call them weeds, and admittedly cattails and thistle are both terribly invasive. They do, however, add texture, color, and beauty to the hard and noisy road. And notice the cool barn in the background.

Golden Moon in Profile

I turn the corner and there you are
Shining in golden glory
Your gibbous face
Framed by long dark clouds
That highlight your saffron glow
You are a beacon of beautiful light
Guiding me as I drive home
There are no words to describe
Your absolute beauty
I am blessed by your presence
Cleansed by your pure and loving light

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Many years ago I adopted a plant while helping clear out a friend's house. I've recently decided it must be a small epiphyllum.

A friend in Boston sent me starts of several epi's this spring. They are growing well, but I fear blooms are still a year away.

I've become totally enamored with these plants. The blooms, of course, are stunning - but I like the plants themselves as well. I wish I could slip them into the crotches of trees, as my friends Veryl and Glenn do with their orchids in Hawaii.

Veryl, besides being a fiber artist, has written a soon-to-be-published mystery "Murder Spins a Tale."

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Golden Moon

Moon of gold
Low in the darkening sky
Slowly rising above the trees.
An echo
Of the hot summer sun
Promise of a cool night to come.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Working Pet LGD

The Great Pyrenees Club of Southern Ontario has published a wonderful story about my beloved Livestock Guardian Dogs - in this case, of course, a Great Pyrenees.

A family dog, well socialized and living with a large family, showed her 4000-year-old roots when a bear arrived at the family cabin, looking with interest at the convenient collection of young humans.

This is a well-written story that is certainly worth reading. Great Pyr and Bear - Pet or Working Dog? It helps explain why people fall so deeply in love with these large, stubborn dogs.

Have some tissues handy.

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Late Summer Eve

In the early evening I went over to my friend's place. On the way home I had to stop and take a picture of the mountain and trees in the late light.

St Helens without her shawl of snow and ice. This was taken about 7:30 pm.

When I got home the sky had turned pastel, and the nearly-full moon shone enticingly.

A little later and the sky was lavender, and the moon was brighter. A lovely end to a warm summer's day.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Lady of the House

Lady has not worked out as a working dog, but she's a lovely girl. This weekend I had to be away overnight, and needed a secure place for her. A friend kindly offered his back yard, so Lady went to her first Bed & Breakfast.

First order of business was to check out the fence line, followed by a snack of tender greens.

She was given full access to house and yard. As it got dark, she knew just what to do, in spite of a life previously devoid of couches.

And as everyone started getting ready for bed, she again knew just what to do.

Lady did so well on her short vacation that I decided to move her in with my house/back yard crew. She has settled in well. This is what she wants, to be a house pet, to protect and serve from inside 4 walls and a fence. I'm hoping we can find a new home for her soon where she will get just that.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Fog Lake

I love clear mornings - and we've had very few of them this year. Our cool and cloudy summer has been punctuated with blindingly hot periods. One day it's 68 deg, the next it's 96. With night temps in the mid 50s and day highs in the upper 90s, an early morning fog drifted into the valley. The bottoms of the trees peek through the fog and look like reflections on a lake.

It is so beautiful I catch my breath in awe. What a glorious planet we live on.

Friday, August 13, 2010

I'll Have Some HONEY With That

This morning Lula came up for some loving, so I sat down on the porch and put my arm around her back. And instantly felt a sharp pain - a wasp sting. Sure enough, there was a wasp crawling around in her fur. Yikes! I've been developing an allergy to wasps, so I quickly went inside and slathered honey on the sting, the taped a cotton round over the area to keep all that honey in there.

The pain started diffusing instantly, and after a few minutes I could barely feel it. For the first time I did not take any antihistamine - I wanted to see if the honey would be enough. It's been over an hour, and no ill affects. I get the occasional twinge from the site, but it doesn't hurt, I don't feel bad, it isn't swelling.

Love that honey.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Meet Lula

In my continuing efforts to find a co-worker and companion for Charlie, my working Pyr, yesterday I brought home Lula.

Lula spent the past two years with her sister with a herd of goats - they were raised with the goats. Owners sold the herd, and the dogs ended up in Pyr Rescue.

Lula is missing her sister, and a bit overwhelmed by the animals here (when she finally saw a goat she went right up to say hi), but is doing pretty well. She's calm and quiet, and not too interested in chasing chickens. Today she spent some time in a paddock by herself (and some time in there with Charlie), and more time on leash with me while I did farm chores. She's feeling insecure, which I'm sure will pass as she gets used to life here at Ravenwood.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

View From the Front Porch

Magic and Millie. Magic thinks there might be grain inside the house.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

It's Magic!

The horse of my heart, Magic, has come home. She's a 5 year old Spotted Draft, weighing in at around 1800 lbs.

Shortly after arrival she's calmly eating the yummy grass hay with the other horses.

Isn't she a beauty? It looks like everyone is giving her a bit of space...

but only a bit. She doesn't seem concerned about the mixed group of souls who live here and share food.

Friday, August 06, 2010


The reason installing an electric fence isn't always easy or inexpensive. I'm fencing in an acre of woodlands for the horses.

Looking down the north line from the lane

Two-thirds of the way to the east corner

Looking back towards the lane

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

More Scat

While we are on the subject of scat, here's some that was located right next to the bear scat. This is from a coyote. The hair is probably from rabbits, which are plentiful. The white is no doubt from the high bone content of the rabbits.

I think it's interesting that I often find bear sign and coyote sign next to each other. I suspect the coyote is marking this as his territory, and the bear is ignoring him.

Bear Sign

I'm fencing in an acre of woods for the horses. This is much easier said than done, since the woods are thick and a path for the fence has to be cut out, and the trees disposed of. Just measuring is a trial.

While walking through the woods, we kept coming across scat filled with cherry pits.

A little internet research showed this to be black bear scat. This isn't surprising, since there was a bear sighted on my lane a couple years ago, but with the quantity of scat I think there's more than one bear. It's hard to believe there can be so much bear sign, yet I've never seen them. I hope they don't mind having new neighbors.