Monday, May 19, 2014

~NO VACANCY~

Spring rain is falling...there will be no working in the garden this day... my spirits have not been dampened...for you see.. the Bluebird of Happiness has arrived at my door...to be exact, four pair of Bluebirds now reside in the nesting boxes here at Dog Trot Farm...the "NO VACANCY" sign has been hung... 
"How the countryside thrills with joy when Bluebirds bring us the first word of returning spring. Reflecting heaven from his back and the ground from his breast, he floats between sky and earth like the winged voice of hope."
~WL DAWSON, 1903~



Sunday, May 18, 2014

~THIS GRANNY'S LIFE~

First let me begin by offering  a heartfelt thank you to those of you who have taken the time to e-mail me, inquiring as to my well being...I am happy to report that I am well, as is Mr. Dog Trot...lets just say it has been a very long winter... Spring has finally arrived here in Southern Maine...the cold earth has begun to warm, trees are now leafing out, our surroundings have evolved from a drab winter brown to shades of emerald green...the scent of apple blossoms dance in the warm spring air...the lilacs await their turn...
Now, I admit I have been a lazy blogger...one day my laptop remained closed... one day led to the next...which turned into weeks... I discovered Pinterest and it took on a life of it's own...need I say more...but...
Today, Travis Lloyd turned 2... I cannot believe how quickly the time has gone...let me just say that becoming a granny is the best gift your child can give you...life becomes busy...there are tractor rides...morning chores... chickens to tend...a treat for Winslow Homer...kitties to feed... 

there is a new swing set to master...
Thomas The Tank Engine has become an important part of our day...as has Daniel Tiger...there are cookies to bake...and bubbles to blow...a garden to plant...a lawn to rake...
 
and silly books to share...we are happily busy...this is one Granny's life...and I highly recommend it!

Happy Birthday Travis Lloyd...Granny Wo Wo and Grampy Bill love you to the moon and back...
I look forward to catching up and seeing what everyone has been up to...Greetings from Maine...

Monday, March 31, 2014

~SERIOUSLY?

Two words...sick again...even my mental well being is beginning to suffer... 
Will this winter weather ever come to an end...
Seriously...I am beginning to wonder...

Monday, March 24, 2014

~SPRING?

At 7:15 this morning...as I walk out the door... heading to Travis's house... I am immediately hit with a blast of cold Arctic  air...I succumb and silently accept that spring will be slow to arrive in our neck of the woods..I live vicariously through those of you (KIM...LISA) who are enjoying spring and all the wonders that it has to offer...

A fire in the wood stove is still much in need... as are a winter hat...parka...mittens...and long johns..today the sun is shining and  snow is not in the forecast till early Wednesday morning...
 The snow is beginning to recede...a patch of brown earth can be seen here and there...
Travis and I bundled up and brave the cold...we hike the trails left by snowmobiles along the fields...
we unearth his lawnmower and a favorite ride on toy...our eyes and nose run like leaky faucets, but the cold winter air feels good... soon we hear a downy woodpecker tapping on a tree...a pair of cardinals call to one another while  chickadees dart in and out among the  pine trees... 
Travis points and says "look Wo Wo"
"oh, I say"..."Travis that is a bluebird... the bluebird of happiness" Today is a happy day...despite the cold...and despite the fact that Mr. Opossum has decided to make his home under the hen house...~sigh~ 

Monday, March 17, 2014

HAPPY ST.PATRICK'S DAY~

May God grant you always...
A sunbeam to warm you
A moonbeam to charm you,
A sheltering angel, so nothing can harm you.
 
For each petal on the shamrock...
This brings a wish your way
Good health, good luck, and happiness
for today and everyday...
~Irish Blessing~

Thursday, March 13, 2014

LOOKING ON THE BRIGHT SIDE~

 Tonight... I am not going to comment on the snow that is swirling over the fields or the cold bone chilling temperatures...or the fact that Tuesday evening I was in need of a visit to the local quick care where I was diagnosed with an ear and sinus infection or the fact that on Wednesday afternoon Mr. Dog Trot was feeling poorly... made an appointment with his physician and  was diagnosed with bronchitis...no... I am not going to bore you with all that ... Nor am I going to let winter get the best of me...the best of us ...I am just going to leave you with a photo and these most appropriate  words...
If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome...AMEN~Anne Bradstreet~

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

ONE LITTLE BOOK~

This afternoon while Travis was having his nap I decided to be productive and organize my bookcase...While going through my books... this little book... "Field Book Of American Wild Flowers"... fell to the floor...the book had become lodged against the back of the shelf and hidden behind some larger books...
 On a beautiful summer's day... Mr. Dog Trot and I were driving on a road less traveled... a road to nowhere...when we discovered a flea market...I have a fondness for vintage flower books and this book happened to catch my eye... it was not the price of one dollar that drew me in...but the inscription found inside...
  "To my little wild flower"  I thought how sweet..how romantic... being thought of as some one's wild flower... I do hope Ted and Georgia lived a blessed life and raised  lots of little wild flowers of their own...This is where one's mind goes on a cold and wet winter's day...

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

A SIGN OF SPRING~

"Wo Wo come here... I see something"
 "what do you see Travis"?
 "something...come here Wo Wo"...
 "I see animal tracks Travis"..."what do you see?" that...
 Oh I say, that's a opossum Travis...
 oh Wo Wo...pussum...Our first sign of spring I tell Travis...
pussum funny Wo Wo...
Yes I say, pussom funny... lets have a juice toast to our first sign of spring...and Travis... I think we had better check on the chickens...chickens have friend Wo Wo...yes I say chickens have a friend...

Monday, March 10, 2014

MRS TWEEDIE AND BIRDIE MAE...

Winter continues to have a firm grip on us here in the Northeast...yet again another snowstorm is heading our way...the flu...it headed my way too...two weeks of being down and out was not fun in the least...So... on my first day of clarity, with a little strength in my limbs... what did I do...but paid a visit to our local animal shelter...yup...I came home with a cat...Sunshine was turned over to the shelter by her breeder who no longer had time for her. This sweet cat had spent her entire  six years residing in a metal cage...producing litter after litter of  kittens...Sunshine is now Mrs. Tweedie... and has settled quite nicely into her new home.
 Travis gave her a good going over...
 counted her "piggy toes"
 and was impressed to learn Mrs. Tweedie had just had her teeth cleaned...Travis just had to
show Mrs. Tweedie that he too brushed his teeth...
 Now...did I  mention Mrs. Tweedie has a little girl named Fluffy, well... today she too came home to live at Dog Trot Farm ...Fluffy is now Miss Birdie Mae...Both mother and daughter are purebred Ragdoll cats...a wonderful laid back breed with a sweet docile disposition...
This evening I found myself at the "quick care" sinus and ear infection were the diagnosis...honestly will this winter ever end?  And what will I bring home next...?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

~THE MORNING AFTER~

After a snowstorm, in the early morning hours, as the sun begins to rise, the earth sparkles in white brilliance...a cleansing of sort...mornings such as these remain etched in my mind...it is winter at her finest...
 A foot of new fallen snow now blankets us here at Dog Trot Farm...Mr. Dog Trot spent the better part of last evening snow plowing, snow blowing, and shoveling... I unearthed our vehicles and eventually forged a trail to the chicken coop...with winter days such as these my flock are given special treats... peas, corn, oatmeal, berries, warm and inviting while a flock block for pecking aids in their boredom...hence "cooped in"

 This morning, bright and early my little helper was ready and eager to go to work...after twenty minutes of layering... long johns, snow pants, heavy socks, boots, hat, hood, and mittens (this is granny's workout) Travis and I are out the door...We bid the tractor, excavator, and plow truck a hardy good morning and set off on our walk to granny's house. The morning is cold, but Travis and I don't mind morning chores are waiting...
 we dig our way to the chicken coop...with a delivery of much appreciated warm water...Travis checks the nesting boxes for eggs and soon sings out..."I see them Wo Wo" my girls have continued to lay despite the cold winter weather... 
For those of you who live south of us... who have experienced winter's wrath first hand... loss of power...trees down...utility crews from Maine are heading your way...Travis' dad and his crew left late last evening and have now arrived in Penn...I do hope everyone is up and running soon, we here in Maine understand the hardships one faces during such a storm...but there is a little boy who misses his daddy...as Travis said goodnight to his daddy on the phone...his final words were "see you tomorrow." Stay safe everyone...

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

~ONE DAY~

One day you're out enjoying tasty green blades of grass...dreams of spring run through your mind...dirt baths commence...
  dreams are burst...
sadly, you are reminded six more weeks of winter remain...we push on...dig ourselves out...and realize tomorrow is another day...

Monday, January 27, 2014

~I'M SORRY~

Ladies that you for your kind comments in regards to my recent post...Accidentally I hit the delete button instead of the publish...ugh...To much talk of Robert Redford...goodnight...

~A LOVE AFFAIR~

The trees sway as the cold wind blows...January's bleakness remains...the day brings snow and sleet... 
Ladies... if I were to have an actual  affair...being that Mr. Dog Trot was not in the picture...Robert Redford would be the man of my dreams...In fact, call me crazy, I recently  created a board of Mr. Redford on Pinterest...yes he has aged, but haven't we all...I look beyond wrinkles...Now, I blame my love affair with Russell, Russell Stover that is, to the never ending inclement weather...those happy endorphins which one acquires from a brisk  walk  can also be found in a Russell Stover candy box... chewy dark chocolate... such a satisfying delight...and if you have self control, unlike me, no harm is done...but... if  this love affair continues much longer, I will morph into the shape of a pickle barrel...Speaking of a pickle barrel I recently watched a television program called "My 600 Pound Life"...Let me tell you I  yanked my hand out of that candy box, threw it's cover on, and have not looked back...

A weekly flower bouquet is to be my indulgence...
and if my home should begin to resemble a florist shop you'll understand why...

Sunday, January 19, 2014

~JANUARY THAW~

Here in Maine "we" welcomed a week of  warmer temperatures...a January thaw if you will...those fickle days of winter where if you didn't know better you might assume spring was just around the corner...not... 
As  New Englanders, we realize this simply is not the case...Old Man Winter is just getting his groove on...That being said my hens took full advantage of those  spring like days...Exposed patches of green blades were soon located and quickly consumed...bathing in newly unearthed dirt began in earnest... laundry flapped in the breeze as I cleaned their coop...how nice it is to climb into bed on sheets that have dried in the clean fresh air...I know my girls, at the end of the day are grateful for their newly cleaned coop and a bed of fresh shavings... 
As warm air meets the cold wet snow a foggy effect is produced...
Yesterday the snow returned and the cold temperatures will  arrive early this week...
Mr. Dog Trot continues to wait on me as I recover from the Vnus procedure I underwent on Friday...My leg is propped high on pillows, there is no pain, just discomfort...Advil is the drug of choice. This time around I would have been open to something a bit stronger, but it is what it is...I am  happy relieved to have this procedure behind me...In two weeks  I will be prepping for the highly anticipated colonoscopy...I have undergone this procedure prior and know what is involved...as most will attest, the prep is the worst part of the procedure...preventative care is the key to maintaining one's health...Okay...I do need  advice in the health department...you see I have been having an affair...yes..I admit it...an affair with Russell...Mr. Dog Trot has not noticed...at least I don't believe he has, but the way I am heading it will not be long...more on that subject tomorrow...goodnight...

Friday, January 10, 2014

~A JANUARY MORNING~

 On this January morning...
Hope Springs Eternal...

Monday, January 6, 2014

~MONDAY MORNING~

A bit of sunshine...
on a  rainy Monday morning...
We are shrouded in fog, roads are slick, the wind continues to howl... local schools remain closed...surprisingly it is a balmy 49 degrees...snow is melting...there is flooding along the coast with random power outages..tonight the temperature dips back into negative digits...our driveway will become one long sheet of ice...ironically, the temperature in Maine is warmer than parts of Florida and Louisiana...(sorry Auntie Jo)The Farmers' Almanac appears to be spot on when predicting this winter's weather...Stay safe and stay warm everyone... 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

~LOSSES~

When it comes to the loss or death of a beloved  pet, saying goodbye is never easy... With the start of Fall sadly my losses began ...Sadie Mae, the feline matriarch of Dog Trot Farm disappeared...  she simply vanished... gone...I have yet to adopt another cat...
Phoebe's untimely death took me by complete surprise...she exhibited no external signs of illness...sometime Thursday evening Phoebe closed her eyes, went to sleep  ...her death was discovered Friday morning by Mr. Dog Trot...
  Dear, dear Loretta...my sweet little banty... died in November and is dearly missed...Loretta was a happy little hen... she so enjoyed keeping me abreast of the goings on in the chicken coop...Loretta never had a bad word to say about anyone...
Sweet Lulu Belle...one day her comb became pale and floppy her health quickly began to deteriorate...Soon we both realized, she and I, her time on earth would quickly be coming to an end...During her last days Lulu was given tender loving care, I thanked her for all the many beautiful eggs she had laid...  I remained close by her side...Lulu Belle is buried in the flower garden next to Gladys...
 Annabelle, my meek... shy... little girl...and soul mate to Don Juan...died in December...
 Don Juan's tiny heart was broken after Annabelle's passing you could see the sadness in his eyes...he was lost without her... I never heard Don Juan crow again...Yesterday his heart ceased to beat, perhaps even roosters  die of a broken heart...burial will be in the spring...
 Chicken keeping has many rewards... there is heartache too...but the rewards prevail over heartache...
I'm still on the fence about getting chicks in the spring...
Now a bit of good news, the new season of Downton Abbey returns this evening!!!

Friday, January 3, 2014

~FRIENDSHIP~

 One of the many things that can warm a heart on a cold winter's day is
the gift of friendship...
 
I have a friend, a friend I have yet to meet in person, but one I feel a connection with, a kindred spirit if you will...She and I reside on opposite sides of the country- she in California and me in Maine...Many of you, my readers, know this friend...Her name is Kim and she is keeper of the blog My Field Of Dreams. Kim is mother to six talented adult children and grandmother to eight...She creates the most amazing gardens, both vegetable and flower, is a crafter,  rug hooker and her love of chickens equals mine...
On Christmas Eve day a package from California was delivered to my door...As I opened this box I knew it would be special but I could not believe my eyes when I saw this...a hooked rug... this was no ordinary chicken rug design...
also included were  a "fancy" chicken ornament with a little lace dress...handmade all natural soaps, lotion bars, lip balm from Bumblewood which smell heavenly and feel so silky on one's skin...a jar candle and two sweet cloth hearts...
As I mentioned this is no ordinary rug design, this chicken was hooked in the image of my gal Gladys...Gladys was the best chicken a girl could have. Gladys was dearly loved,  the day a fox ended her life was the day I realized being a chicken keeper was not for the faint of heart...Kim understood...
Thank you Kim for your most heartfelt gifts...Gladys hangs in our living room where I can see her each day, okay I might take to her too...and seeing that I am now living in Siberia the moisturizing soaps and lotions are coming in mighty handy... So here's to friendship both near and far...