Sunday, February 22, 2009

Gibby is a Sneak

I discovered today that Gibby is really sneaky. When I was in the farmhouse kitchen two days ago, I put my favorite leather workgloves on the counter, then bustled around mixing up dog food and filling water bottles (I save old large laundry detergent bottles for watering the farm animals - they're much easier to carry than buckets and they don't spill all over your pant legs.) While I was busy elsewhere, Gibby must have sneaked up to the counter and grabbed my gloves. I didn't see them on the counter so I didn't think about the gloves when I left that night. Yesterday, I knew they were gone when I needed them to hay the horses. When you pass out dry grass hay without gloves, you never know what's going to stick to your hand. Sometimes it's a little sliver of the hard stem of a grass, sometimes a burr or part of a thistle, sometimes your hand just gets scratched. Since I didn't have my gloves Saturday and couldn't find them anywhere in the car, the house, or the barn, I didn't feed the grass hay. I have a small supply of very expensive, very rich alfalfa that's really soft on my hands, so I opened up one of those bales. Tonight I had to do the same thing. I was kind of hoping to save the alfalfa for emergencies, but I guess protecting my hands from scratches and itches qualified. But, while I was thinking about the hay and wondering if I might have to go buy another load at the auction to finish out the winter, I remembered the last time I saw my workgloves. I realized Gibby must have taken them - so then I had to play the "what would Gibby do" game - I went right over to the dog kennel and looked through the fence. Right there, in the middle of the pen, next to the little bunny holding a soccer ball, a couple feet away from the big soft tiger laying upside down in the snow, I saw a bit of a doeskin color peeking through the snow. We've had at least four inches of snow since I last saw the gloves, but I bet they were right there. I unchained the gate and went in - which really bothered Gibby, I think he knew what I was after so he kept trying to get in through the gate, but I beat him to the glove. I found the first glove right away, but the second one was more of a guess - I looked for some kind of unusual mound in the snow, and found the second glove. Gibby grabbed a stick and tried to get me to throw it for him, I think he was trying to get me to forget about the gloves. What a character he is!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Blue - Caught!

Haven't had much blog time in recent days. Yesterday, I fell at the farm - in the indoor arena, I tripped on an ice stalagmite, formed by drips from a leaky spot in the ceiling. The ice rammed my leg and I guess I'm lucky it didn't break. It was one of those painful falls where I had to lay still for several minutes before I could move - and in the process, I learned that George is not a helpful rescue dog (not like my old Rusty) - I yelled at a horse to get away after I fell, and George took off. I didn't want to be walked on by a curious horse, but I could have used George to bark them away for me. Anyway, it was mostly my dignity hurt, I'm fine now.

This morning, I was hooking in the dining room, had about an hour of nice peace and quiet before my mother needed any help, and caught Blue making a big mistake. George has proven that he loves to sleep on his hooked rug and I have known that Blue has decided she deserves one, too, but this is the first time she didn't fly away when I caught her.

I put the rug on the loveseat to protect it. The loveseat was inherited by my mother from her Great Aunt Nell Fillmore. It came from the Fillmore home. Aunt Nell left a matching chair to my grandfather, and when he died my mother was given the chair. This loveseat and the chair have been two of my mother's most important possessions. Aunt Nell was an artist who travelled to Germany to attend art school back in the 1890s. Mother has two of her paintings which will someday be mine. My oldest brother had one of them, a wonderful pastoral scene, but let his kids knock it off the wall and damage the frame and then got rid of it when his wife was given some "collectible" prints - I am so glad my brother is color blind and had no appreciation for this wonderful painting.
(I'm sorry, the photo of it has a reflection from today's bright sunlight.)
Anyway, I caught Blue on the loveseat and I'm really glad Mother didn't see her. I think Blue is getting a little senile and doing things without thinking about the consequences. We've always been told that you can't teach an old dog new tricks and maybe it's also true that you can't get them to remember their old tricks.