Stand up When You Hear Your Name

Right now our new friend seems to respond to tongue clicking, the rattling of the food bag, and “Hey, good boy!” I couldn’t very well refer to him as SHUSH-SHUSH-SHUSH here, and I didn’t want him to get accustomed to Good Boy as his name either since there are quite a few wild cats around, and if another happens to start enjoying my company I’ll probably say “Hey, good boy” to him as well. We can’t have everyone thinking their name is Good Boy. This isn’t the Foreman house; everyone here gets their own moniker. So, after nearly three weeks of going back and forth with names, we finally settled on Pickwick. Hopefully he’ll acknowledge it in time. If not, I still have SHUSH-SHUSH-SHUSH to fall back on.

What made you think of Pickwick, you didn’t ask?
Well, let me tell you…

I came across the name while doing research on my genealogy. I resumed working on my family line a few months ago, after pausing for our year without internet in Connecticut. I’m trying to make as many connections as I can on my own. It’s very easy to link the wrong people when 96% of your ancestors are named Mary, so I don’t want to depend on someone else’s research. However, occasionally I run into blocks and grabbing someone else’s tree information helps steer me to the path of making the connection (with sources) on my own.

Unfortunately, the lineage that led to my discovery of a ship christened Pickwick, was not my own. I followed a lead from someone else’s tree and spent an entire evening researching the wrong family history. Luckily, I noticed the error before setting the names into my own family tree. The same can not be said for the fellow whose research I went by.

Title From:
Look How Far We’ve Come
by Imagine Dragons

When I Win You Over

The other day, when I was writing the About page, I mentioned “a friendly little orange cat who runs around the fields nearby.” This is that cat. I don’t think he’s accustomed to being touched but I think he likes it? I’m getting mixed signals. He’ll rub on my legs, purr, swat me with his insanely sharp claws, and then resume purring and rubbing.

I am what I am. I would tell you what you want to know if I could, for you have been kind to me. But I am a cat, and no cat anywhere ever gave anyone a straight answer.
– Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn

Title From:
When I Win You Over
by Miner

Falling in Love in the Setting Sun

There is a group of mule deer here whose numbers are between 17-20. They’ll often wander through our back pasture in small clumps. Yesterday six or seven of them decided to rest by a shed that will eventually become our goat barn. I’ve taken dozens of photographs through the windows, trying not to disturb them, but yesterday I decided I’d had enough of the distorted images and I opened the back door.

Slowly and quietly over a period of ten minutes, I worked my way outside without startling them. Sitting on the step with a warm breeze blowing in the early evening sun, while the mangy deer lounged nearby, was beyond exciting. I have probably repeated “I sat with wild deer!” to Brian no less than twenty times. Incredibly, in the half hour I spent with them, I didn’t get a single good picture.

Title From:
Tell the World
by Eric Hutchinson

It’s Just the Way It Goes

We are being overrun by mice. Poop is everywhere!

They began their assault by entering through plumbing holes beneath the kitchen sink. We plugged the holes with steel wool, which they then pushed out of the way to continue peeing all over the dish rack. So we hot glued the steel wool in place and stopped their invasion. Then the assault came from behind the stove. We moved the stove and the refrigerator and glued steel wool into any opening big enough for a ball bearing to fit through. Following that, the mice started pouring from the furnace closet. We can’t remove the furnace to reseal the room so we blocked access to the bottom of the door by installing a threshold.

Finally, the onslaught of mice abated…for about three hours.

Mice started showing up beside the refrigerator again. We could hear them clanking around in the oven. They’d shoot across the floor to a dog bowl and back into their safe haven. Occasionally they’d make their way into the living room and hide behind the couch as Levee, our heeler/shepherd/mystery mix stalked the area, waiting for them to emerge. Our bedroom is off the living room and yesterday I watched as a shadow flew across the floor and disappeared around the corner. “Mouse!” is Levee’s new favorite command and when I saw it bolt into our room I shouted “Mouse! Mouse! Mouse!” and pointed to where it went. I followed her in and checked the only place I felt they would have the nerve to hide: the closet.

Poop. Was. Everywhere.

We use a large metal shelf in our closet to hold all the sheets, towels, blankets, and a couple baskets of socks. Everything was covered in little black pellets. I found two holes, no larger than marbles, against one of the walls.

ARGH!

We pulled everything out again in the kitchen and the bedroom closet, found they had made a sizable entrance next to the gas pipe, resealed everything with steel wool, glued in place of course. This time we also nailed or screwed 1×2″ strips of wood above the steel wool.

Next we need to check every other closet and seal the bathroom as well, where they’ve started coming in behind the toilet. If they get through these barriers, our last attempt at finding a way to stop them without murdering them, will be to staple screen or flashing over the steel wool and wood. If they still persist, they’ll leave us with no choice.

We’ll have to move.

Title From:
What It Is
by Kodaline