Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Success in the Goat Pasture!

Rose came into the kitchen, running up from the barn, looking a bit flushed:

"Ummm," she said.  "I think someone should come outside. "  She flushed a bit more.  "I think something is happening with Buck and Gwen."

I went out to investigate and yes, indeed!  A whole lot of something was happening.

Tonight I noticed that Rose stuck a purple post-it note on the cabinet above the desk:
February 27, 2013--Gwennie and Buck's "engagement"

From what I saw, they've skipped the engagement entirely and are well into the honeymoon.

So, according to a handy-dandy on-line Nigerian dwarf goat gestation calculator (don't you love the internet?), we have a due date of July 22nd.

No turning back now.  We're committed.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Only a Brave Man Could Wear These Pants

And Cholita clearly feels her dad is the bravest of the brave.

Lyle says he's not so concerned about his trousers.  If they didn't suit the occasion, he could always change clothing.  He's more concerned about the fact that he has no crotch and something is happening with his wrists.

I love Cholita's drawings.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Along with Love.....

Spring is in the air!
 (And actually we have no evidence that love is in the least in the goat pasture.)

But Spring?  Well, there's all sorts of evidence!  The roses are leafing out to beat the band.

So much so that today Lyle helped me prune the beast-- the climbing Autumn Sunset. 

And speaking of beasts, I don't think you've seen the puppy recently.

Despite his size, he's still very much a puppy.

Helping with the spring pruning.

I don't even know where he gets these things.

But I can tell he was feeling it today too.....

....Spring is in the air!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Love is in the Air--Hopefully

So we've never been much for animal husbandry.   Our dogs have always met with the knife at the first sign that they might want to have descendants.  Poor Franklin still doesn't even lift his leg to relieve himself.  He's a squatting gentleman, thank you very much.

But we've been thinking that we could use a couple more goats to keep down our brush and bramble.  Our trio have seriously been the easiest animals we've ever owned.  They're just cute, entertaining lawnmowers.  And better yet, they were free--gifted to us by one of Lyle's patients.  On the day they arrived nearly two years ago, here were our wethers--


and Hermes,

and our solitary female--Gwen.

Some friends of ours also have Nigerian dwarf goats and offered us the services of one of their fellas if we ever had the desire for goat babies.  I thought we'd probably leave that offer on the table.

But we do have a big family reunion coming up this summer (and the gestation time would work out about right) and visiting kids (the human variety) do seem to enjoy our petting zoo and the pictures of baby Nigerian dwarf goats are pretty adorable and we do have more bramble than the current crowd can handle......

So I made a call yesterday and left one of the strangest phone messages I've ever produced.  Thankfully it was the correct number and within the hour, this little man arrived on the premises:

Uncle Buck.

And when I say little, I do mean little.  I feel badly saying that about our viril male, but he's just the tiniest, cutest little guy.  Apparently he's a newbie at these types of rendezvous, but he seemed eager.  

Our goats took one look at him and ran for their lives.  Even the chickens scattered in a flurry of wings and squawks.

After a few minutes, Gwen shyly came over for an introduction, but our wethers body-blocked her and led her away.  They might not be up to the task themselves, but that doesn't mean it's open season.  No siree.


Uncle Buck just kind of stood there like, "Hey, if you'd just get to know me!"

Then our males escorted Gwen to the barn where they directed her to the top step and Hermes effectively pinned her there.   XiXi said, "Mom, I don't think Gwennie likes her new husband."

Gwen finally wriggled away from Hermes and made it into the goat house, where she was continuously shooed away from the entrance by Costello, while Hermes kept watch from the steps.  


Poor Uncle Buck.  Why do the women never go for the little guys?

He's on loan for a month. 
 Cholita's got big wedding plans.
Baby names are being picked.

Maybe a candlelight dinner?
Time will tell.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

A Weekend Jaunt

A Conversation with Lucy:

"Mom, guess what?!  I got into that choir!"

"Huh?  You got into what choir?"

"You know, the All-State Honor Choir!  The one I told you about!"

(Look of intense concentration)

"Mom, don't you remember?"

"Umm, vaguely."

"So anyway, I'm the only one from my school who got in, so you'll need to drive me to Portland on Valentine's Day and it will be for 3 days and......."

Lesson learned:  I need to listen more closely.

But since Lucy would need to be transported to Portland anyway, we decided to make a family trip of it.

I'd heard Portland was for foodies and we weren't disappointed.

First, I give you.....

The Waffle Window

It's literally a hole-in-the-wall place--a window cut into the side of a building, where they serve every type of waffle your heart may desire.  

The 2 general categories were sweet or savory.  Clearly the kids went for the sweet.  I had "The 3 B's Waffle" with bacon, basil and brie.   What a way to start the day.

Then it was off to the Portland Zoo,

where the main attraction was Lily, the new baby elephant.....possibly the cutest thing ever.

After lunch at the Tabor Food Cart, home of the original Schnitzelwich, I'm surprised Lyle was able to move at Rose Garden park.  He later said that the first bite of this Czech specialty was his favorite food of the trip.  The last bite was his least favorite.  We didn't even eat dinner--still stuffed.

The next day we enjoyed our trip to OMSI, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, where Rose had a hair-raising experience with static electricity.   For dinner that night, we went to The Lemongrass Thai Restaurant, where I learned that I can't categorically state that I dislike tofu.   So delicious.

On Sunday morning, we looked up a local church and when we saw it,  wondered if GPS had led us astray.

When you see an LDS church, you generally know it's an LDS church.  This gorgeous building was constructed in the 1920's and inside it featured amazing woodwork, antique light fixtures, and leaded glass windows.  

Apparently it also once had an elevated podium, accessed by stairs, raised high above the congregation, throne-like seats for the bishopric, and a military mural depicting various ward members fighting in World War I.  In the chapel.

For all its quirkiness though, it still had the exact same blue-flowered couch, letting us know that we were indeed in the right place.

We rounded out the trip with a tour through the Pittock Mansion, and a visit to a park with a playground built on top of a dormant volcano, causing the kids a bit of concern.  They walked lightly and kept on the edge of their swings, just in case circumstances might necessitate a quick exit.

We met back up with Lucy at her concert on Sunday afternoon.  It was amazing.

All in all, I'm glad I was only half listening when she told me about this opportunity.  I might have encouraged her to let that pass by, missing out on a fantastic vacation.  
Sometimes it's better to not over-think things.

P.S. The towel dilemma has been solved and we're just waiting on the delivery of specialty hinges for the cabinet doors and then the kid's bathroom will be DONE! 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

And One More....

Admittedly, with the natural light, anything will look better, but here's yet another option.....

Too much white?  Too stark?

Monday, February 11, 2013

A Sneak Peek at the Bathroom--And one Final Decision

The bathroom is done, or very nearly.  
I plan to do a lovely "after"photo shoot, but in the meantime,
I'll give you a teeny tiny glimpse because,
we're having marital discord over the selection of bath towels.

Can you give us help?
Offer suggestions?
I have my favorite.  Lyle has his.  
The kids have opinions as well, but they get only about  half a vote.

So, here are our candidates,
towels with the tags still attached, 
towels that cannot be used until this decision is made.
My kids will be dripping wet and cold without your help.

Towel A is a lovely blue/green color and matches beautifully with the shower curtain and the picture.  Does it match too perfectly?

Towel B is a cheery mosaic print, which brings in a green not found in either the shower curtain or the picture.  Maybe that's good, maybe that's bad.  Thoughts?

Towel C explores our dark side and picks up the black detail in the wall tile and floor tiles (which you'll see later).

Towel D is also a cheery little number with checks that match wall, picture, and shower curtain quite beautifully, but is it too much geometric print?

So what do you think?  A, B, C, or D, or None of the Above?

Note: If you select the None of the Above option, you will need to find an alternative towel because I've looked at every towel in Kitsap County.