Sunday, May 22, 2016


She's awfully cute. Also very vocal and astonishingly springy. She still does not approve of Finny at all (Katie has the scratches to prove this, having foolishly brought Olivia closer to Finny's crate than Olivia wanted to be.) However, she is growing like crazy, and I'm sure that once she's not so small she'll feel less threatened. At least I hope so.

Anyway, here she is, helping Travis with his math. She says Olivias love precalculus!

They love the way it shreds between their teeth and turns to confetti in their claws.

Fortunately, Travis is not one to take his math homework too seriously, so Olivia's contributions to the job are not a problem.

She thinks bookshelves are a cozy place for sleeping. I let her get away with it the One Time, but this is not going to be a thing. Cat hair in the books. At least, I hope it's not going to be a thing.

It's hard to say "no" to someone so cute and little!

Finny went to the vet's and got "tutored" on Thursday. I was worried (about the anesthesia part), but he came through with flying colors and is now back to his exuberant self, despite doctor's orders to spend 7-10 days resting quietly. We are trying to keep him quiet, but it's an uphill battle.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Mouser in Training

The mouse/mice does not yet have cause for concern, but Olivia says she's "working on it." Researching mouse hunting strategies. Then sleeping on it. Lots of sleeping on it.

She has defeated the evil roll of toilet paper, though. That problem is fully solved. Whew!

Finn, though, is off his feed. Depressed by our refusal to let him "play" with the new kitten. (The new kitten shows a dramatic disinclination to play with him, and we are hoping that if we give her a little time she will warm to him.) Anyway. We got a wading pool yesterday, in the hope that a good splash would lift his spirits. And I think it did raise them a bit!

Harry thinks we've gotten him the world's biggest water bowl!

Finn was very skeptical at first.

The kids had to use a combination of treats and force to introduce him to the joys of swimming. Further proof, as if the lack of retrieving interest wasn't enough, that he's a bit of a hoax as a "golden retriever." All flash and no substance, as it were. Fortunately he's sweet and decorative, and also we don't actually need a dog to retrieve ducks we don't shoot. Still, it's kind of embarrassing.

Once he got the idea, though, he was okay with the pool, and very enthusiastic about running around like a lunatic and leaping up to catch sprayed water.

Now that's the puppy smile I love!

Olivia spent some time on my desk today. She defeated my camera strap. She says it is all part of her master plan to destroy the mouse. I defer to her expert knowledge.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Our New Little Mouser!

Travis has had this Hershey kiss "mouse" for years. Yes, he's the sort who can keep chocolates beside his desk and never eat them. But a mouse, or maybe several mice, have moved in recently and one of them discovered and ate part of his chocolate cousin. We've been unsuccessful in trapping him -- apparently the Havahart trap we have is meant for something more ratlike in size. Anyway, Ed was reminded that we were going to look for a kitten, and so we did.

Meet Olivia! Finding a female kitten was harder than we expected -- they are not thick on the ground in our area just now -- but we finally found the perfect (we hope!) little girl at a shelter in Winston. The Forsyth Humane Society, and I can't recommend them enough! Incredibly nice people, and the shelter is clean (Ed stopped by another place on Tuesday which, he says, reeked.) and well run. A woman called me on Wednesday to tell me our application (you have to apply for these cats, and have your vet vouch for you!) was approved, and to ask me which kitten I would like. And she put my choice on hold for us! How cool is that? Olivia had been staying with a foster family, but she was coming in anyway on Thursday to be spayed, so we made an appointment to come in and adopt her today, Friday.

And she's just darling. Two months old, and a Siamese mix. You'd think the operation might have slowed her down, but she's playful and sweet as all get out! (Unless the surgery did slow her down and she's going to be a maniac when she recovers.... But how likely is that?)

She is very snuggly.

Finn is very eager to meet her, but the feeling does not seem to be mutual. Yet. I imagine that in a few days they will start to get used to each other and will become great friends. Cross your fingers!

Tonight she sat on the couch with us while we watched "Danny Deckchair," a fine movie which my dad recommended. She is sure we plan to party on all night, but I am leaving her in Katie's capable hands (Katie has hardly left her side since she came home) and going to bed. I hope the mice are taking notice of our fearsome new mouser and planning a immediate move to safer quarters!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Absent Minded Blogger Returns

Whoops. Stepped out for a cup of coffee in March, and...

Anyway, the flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, and the blog goes on!

This hasn't been the most stellar of school years. The least stellar, actually. Math and Latin sucked up too much time and provided little delight, leaving not enough time to thoroughly enjoy the fun stuff.  And, sadly, we'll be continuing through the summer to get math and Other Things finished so that Katie can start at the high school next year and Travis can take most of his senior year classes at the community college. That's the plan, anyway. Still, the kids are healthy, and Ed, as always, is a paragon of all the husbandly virtues, so I shouldn't complain. Or sink into the Slough of Despond  and neglect my poor old blog.

However, if I did slip into the slough, at least my faithful Finny would pull me out  join me! He continues to be a joy, if still astonishingly toothy.

And my irises and peonies are blooming! Only because Ed provided them with a fence to protect them from Finn, who kept pulling them up and eating them. But now Harry has a new place to Escape from Finn! Here you see him hiding, waiting for Finn to go away.

And Finn, waiting very happily. He knows his kitty will come out and play with him sooner or later.

Finn and Travis.

Finn says deck chairs are not ideally suited to dog anatomy, but he makes do.

My parents came over for our last supper before they head back to Maine tomorrow. I will brag and tell you that I did a very fine dinner. Well, except the turkey. Ed did that, and it was very good. But I did lovely sweet potato pudding, beans, mushrooms, stuffing, dark rye bread (or pumpernickel?), and a really nice orange cake (lots of Myers rum -- yummy!). It all turned out well, and we had a good evening, and I won the last round of Bananagrams. Which is unusual!

Have I mentioned how Finny feels about my parents? Especially my dad?

(Here Ed is holding Finny so that my poor mom can put on her shoes. Finn may be down, but he's still smiling!)

Finn, giving Daddy a goodbye kiss! I'm sure he'll be So well behaved when they get back in October that they'll hardly believe he's the same pup, but he'll be very glad to see them. Dogs are good that way.

Monday, March 21, 2016


We lost our sweet Emma kitty today. Kidney failure. The vet said there was nothing to be done. She was an excellent cat, and was uncomplaining and well-mannered all the way to the end. We will miss her company very much.

And it is spring. Or so says the calendar. The trees and shrubs are all in flower, and there are beautiful daffodils, but it is cold.
Katie really wanted to go hiking again at Stone Mountain yesterday after church, and despite my reservations about the weather it sort of sounded good to me too.
We wound up getting rained on on the way back, and it was very chilly, but Finny Loves wading! He didn't want to leave his creek -- only the promise of another vanilla ice cream cone convinced him. Funny pup.