Tag Archives: Animals

Effie, Guardian of Gloves

Effie is very proprietorial about her Daddy’s things, his outdoor work gloves, for instance. Sitting on them seems to her to be the most secure mode of protection.


Filed under Cats, Effie, Home Life, Photos

Our deer lunch guests

Mule deer never seem thwarted by snow-blanketed fields. I enjoy their visits, and I am happy they find fodder on our modest acreage. I am also happy that they leave the rabbitbrush alone.


Filed under Animals, Nature, Gardens, Photos, Rural life, Seasons, Weather

Halvor on Lookout

My husband, who took this photo, is building a gated fence around our small orchard, which has provided our visiting deer a feast of plums, apples, pears, and grapes. Halvor has taken up guard duty, even though fruit season is behind us for the year.


Filed under Animals, Nature, Gardens, Cats, Halvor, Photos, Rural life

Effie Runs off a Herd of Deer

Nine young female mule deer formed a troupe and congregated on our property this morning, and Effie was not welcoming. She gathered a look like thunder in grey clouds. She stuck a menacing paw through the fence surrounding Effieland.

She has done this to Cat Halvor, who is close to twice her weight, and this morning she deployed The Look and The Paw and sent nine does hightailing it away and out of sight in a few seconds.

Good for Effie, defender of our grapes she understands are important! The grapes were well out of reach for the deer, but they turned tail and ran when Effie’s power paw came through the fence. The deer evidently had no sense that a fence kept them apart from Effie, as well as keeping them from the grapes.

This all happened as I watched through the window, and the deer were gone before I could fetch my camera. I have these photos from previous occasions.

Warning yowl directed at Halvor. . .

 The Paw says she means it. “Does this look like Halvorland to you?”

I mean it. Any further questions?


Filed under Action & Being, Animals, Nature, Gardens, Cats, Effie, Effieland, Home Life, Photos, Rural life

Effie & Halvor: It’s more about jurisdiction than thwarted romance

P1020038 This is Effieland–does this look like Halvorland to you?


Filed under Action & Being, Animals, Nature, Gardens, Cats, Effie, Photos

Effie and Hormisdas: Are They Courting?

I sensed Effie’s need for a friend, and approached Heidi with the idea that perhaps her Hormisdas and Effie could be friends. The time-space issues would probably mean little to them. Heidi and I live 1,843.2 miles apart. We have sustained an abiding bond for 10 years. We have never met in person, and neither of us has the gumption to travel.

Effie is very lively, while Hormisdas is actually quite stuffy. He lives with an equally stuffy snow leopard named R. Aloysius. Heidi and I believe that kinetic Effie and stuffy Hormisdas–and perhaps R. Aloysius as well–might develop long-distance amity toward one another. Heidi and I and our husbands have all been very good friends for a decade. Of course we would be thrilled if “the kids” reached across space as well.

P1010957Effie is an explorer of everything in her world.


IMG_20160203_114736Hormisdas surveys his world from the vantage of his majestic living room.

P1010958Effie likes jungle environments.

IMG_20160526_102749_956 (3) RAlyHormisdas likes beds. Here he helps R. Aloysius find his lost tie tack.


Filed under Action & Being, Animals, Cats, Effie, Friendship, Photos

Room with a view


Effie hasn’t really demonstrated much largesse toward deer; in fact, they sometimes prompt a teeth-clicking hissy fit.

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Filed under Action & Being, Animals, Cats, Effie, Nature

Morning of a fawn

P1000278 fawn

This little Bambi hiked down our front yard all alone this morning. I shot the photo through the window to avoid spooking him.

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Filed under Animals, Nature, Gardens

Oh deer, and the heat, the heat. . .

Really, it’s only 98°, and I’ve relished 109° days before.

Coolidge is our exclusively indoor cat. He’s known all his life that he’s too precious to go out. Ah, but we have outdoor animals he knows nothing about.

0530151518a (3) Coo on hammock

Halvor (my name for him), a companionable neighborhood cat who is thrilled with Coolidge’s snubbed leftovers, is “our” outdoor cat. We enjoy feeding him just because he is so grateful. He rubs his head around my ankles before he even steps up to the dish I put down. His brother and littermate–at least I think he is–often comes along. We call him Torvald. He has a known home, but Halvor graciously shares his portion with his brother.





The chickens are growing fast. My husband put a drinking hose in their ark; they were skeptical, but they finally discovered that falling water is good to drink, as well as to walk under–and wet alfalfa is so delicious!


Two seconds before I took her picture, this doe was lying down in our carport
next to my car, but she stood up, preparing to sprint off as I approached. Our carport presented a rare allotment of shade, sufficient to cover her from head to haunches.

0608151517 oh deer

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Filed under People, Places, & Things

A cat, a bell, and a long slog toward hope

My cat, my cat, you are becoming unintelligible and I am humbled that I ever imagined a possibility of expertise with your afflictions. Yours wound me as my own.

Coolidge’s diabetes has gone renegade since his thyroid went volcanic. I can’t do radical increases with the long-lasting type of insulin he needs, and there’s just no chasing the numbers anymore—but if he’s stuck in the mid-200s, with occasional nosedives into the 40s and 50s, at least he isn’t stuck in the 300s, and he doesn’t have ketones.

And now the new wonder formulation of thyroid suppressant is making sores in his ears. And Friday he had a blood test for his T4 and it’s much too high. Still. His T4 was perfect when he was taking the pills, and of course the pills didn’t hurt his ears. But they made him inappetent.

It’s not my fault, but that doesn’t matter: I feel incompetent anyway. Frustrated, discouraged, and incompetent. I’m letting him down. After all, what’s so hard to figure out? An endocrine system is only a little more complicated than the whole rest of creation.

My husband gave me a little bell for my chain link bracelet. It’s such a pretty little bell, and my husband knew the significance of the bell to me. I hear the bell ringing as the ringer cries, “Unclean, unclean!” And so I am, unclean and yet scoured. A sinner saved by grace. Already and not yet: already redeemed and not yet perfected. That’s not for this life. The timing of our pastor’s exposition of this theme last week was a more than welcome refresher.

My cat groans, joining the rest of Creation that awaits the end of the effects of the Fall. Man took down all of Creation with him when he first sinned, when he rebelled against God. Disease and death are the consequences of man’s rebellion: hyperthyroidism, diabetes, ulcerated ears, and the inevitable end of each wondrous life itself.

My cat has, I think, a sense that none of this is his fault. We have always encouraged him to believe that nothing is ever his fault. Nothing could be his fault because he is not sin-tainted. Only humans can exercise a conscious will to sin. I sense that he knows it is I, not he, whose intrinsic defectiveness has brought certain unpleasant things—things like pin pricks, injections, caustic medicine, and sore ears—about. But my cat cannot abstract; he cannot hope. I can abstract and I do have hope; and I even have a little bell to bring to mind that I already have that for which I hope. But not yet.

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Filed under Action & Being