Friday, November 8, 2013

Putting My Ducks in a Row


My long-ish term sub assignment ended on Wednesday in a flurry of activity.  The job was always very complex, but Wednesday was super busy on top of all that.  This is pretty typical for me, and I think anytime I've ever been leaving something or ending something, I will have lots and lots of quiet days UNTIL the last day, which will be completely insane.  I never seem to go out quietly.  :)

 Anywho, the job I did was complicated, and except for a little previous experience when I had subbed for the same woman here and there, I had no idea what I was doing, and made it up as I went along--and I asked a lot of questions.  As time went on, I figured it out, and then I wasn't as lost as I was in the beginning, and then the job got fun, and the people warmed up to me, and I to them, and it got to be a really nice place to work.  And in the end, I was sorry to go.  Most surprisingly, they were sorry to see me go, and my last day I came in to find that I had flowers and a lovely card waiting for me on my desk.  I got hugs from everyone.  I was beyond touched, and yes, I cried a couple of times.  They grew on me, that group.  They really, really did.  I miss them already.  Luckily, I will be back there from time to time, and we'll see where it goes from there!

So yesterday I was back home.  I decided to take yesterday and today off, since Monday is a holiday, and take the 5 days to catch up.  Yesterday I ran some errands and moved furniture.  Actually, that's not the truth.  My husband moved the furniture because he "felt like it", and I just cleaned it up and worked on a project that needed working on--the hooks we use to have our kids hang their school stuff from.  Despite heavy duty wall-anchors, the hooks ripped right out of the wall, making a hell of a mess.  I have repaired the tears, and am working on getting the hooks mounted to wood, drilled right into the studs of the wall, so it doesn't happen again.  I'm about done, and will finish today, I think.

 In addition, I made some cheese--pepper jack!  I dehydrated a few jalapenos from the garden, a small bell pepper, and some cayenne that I had hanging in the dining room (doesn't EVERYONE have cayenne peppers hanging in their dining rooms?) and cut them up to teeny pieces and put them in the curds before pressing.  It looks gorgeous, albeit a bit lumpy, because monterey jack tends to settle fast, under small amounts of weight.  With the fancy brick method I use (ie: putting bricks on top of the mold to act as weights--it's very technical), I usually wind up with a somewhat lopsided monterey jack, as the bricks sit more on one spot than on the other, and the curds are very soft and can settle unevenly.  But it's my birthday next week, and a little bird has told me that there may be a cheese press in my future.  That would certainly solve that problem!

.....And my son was just reading this over my shoulder and said "It's your birthday next week???".  Aaaaaaahhh, I feel SO loved.

OH boy.

Today I will finish that hook project and then go outside to clean out the coops, because the chicken coop is about a month overdue for it's heavy duty fall cleaning and NEEDS it.  I also need to get to the ducks and geese and their houses as well.  So I'll be busy again, but it'll be good busy, as always.

In other news, Cynthia hits the big 8 month mark on Wednesday, which would mean time for breeding.  However, Cynthia, my little free goat who was given to me as "payment" for work I did for someone, has not grown ONE iota over the summer and is nowhere near the 80 pound mark that I use as a yardstick for breeding readiness.  (All right, maybe she's grown 1/2 an iota.  But she's still nowhere near the right size).

Old picture, but she's not much bigger than this now
Cynthia has grown a bit, but at 8 months, she is smaller than the three "Nupines" born this June--even the bottle fed girls, who are always smaller than a dam nursed baby, like Tallulah.  So methinks I have a "Minimancha" on my hands.  Cynthia was one of two, and first born.  It makes her unlikely to be a runt.  Cynthia's mom was small, and her dad seemed very small to me, especially knowing the size of other bucks.  Dulcinea, who is also a LaMancha, is not as big as Minerva and Lilly, who are Alpines.  However, she was never this small.  Either Cynthia is going to have a HUGE growth spurt over the winter, or daddy had some pygmy in him (which is what I thought when I saw him), and it came out in little Cynthia.  My bet is on the latter.  Either way, if Cynthia doesn't surprise me by growing a huge amount in a short time, I'll have to start looking into finding her a male her size.  My boys are too big for her, and that won't go well.  If she never gets big, though, I will always have a lap-sized goat to cuddle.  And let me tell you, that's not a bad thing.  I love my Min, but 110 pounds of goat on one's lap is no pleasure.  Mostly she's all front knees when she tries.  But having a little 50 pound dumpling sit with you, that's a sweet thing.  She's like a REALLY big cat.

And speaking of....  

Thank you for all your kind words about Icky.  He did come in, and it was the right decision.  Icky's natural state of being is "purr".  He can be picked up and hugged and the motor runs right away.  You can stop and pet him, and the motor starts going.  He always wants to see where we are going and usually will either follow, or wait for us.  He has stopped fighting with everyone, except for when they all feel like fighting, which cats sometimes do.  He's not singling anyone out, though, and honestly has blended in like he's been here forever. 

And it feels like he has.  It's funny, but I do think that cat knew that this was going to be the way it was.  When you call his name he turns and looks at you, and he will hold your gaze while you talk to him.  He's a special one, that's for sure.  I feel very lucky I came upon him in the road that day.

And I think that's about it.  I'm off to finish one job and start another.  Have a great day, my friends!!


  1. All this time I have been wondering what your job was. I tried that for awhile. First graders brought me to tears and that was the end of that. Busy, busy you!!

  2. Sounds like you have been busy!
    I love the duck picture, so cute!


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