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Saturday, March 14, 2015

February 2015 -- hard winter

Winter returned with a vengeance after a mild period.  We ended up burning all of our wood for the year.  If not for the time we were in England, when the house was running on gas, we would have run out too soon.  I scooped out all the bark and dirt from the old dog kennel where we keep our firewood and put actual dogs in it, at least for a few hours, one day.

With the cold weather the birds have been hitting our feeders hard.  I figured out that some of them would come to the feeder even if I were standing nearby.  So I stood out there and photographed birds close-up, and with no intervening window glass.  The results are nice and crisp.  One day while driving into work there was an enormous flock of snow geese landing in the fields near West Quincy.  I pulled over and took some photos.  There must have been hundreds of thousands.  I also learned where the Trumpeter swans hang out, and got some shots of them flying in.

Having these dogs is like living with a cast of cartoon characters.  They're always cracking us up with their antics.  They are also, without exception, quite affectionate.  We love them to bits.  Still, they come with challenges.  Every one has been to the vet in the past month.  First, Kitty.  She was peeing pink, which I diagnosed as a urinary tract infection.  They gave her antibiotics, which made her vomit and poop constantly, poor thing.  She threw up at 1 a.m. on a Sunday, and I found some large, active nematodes in her partially digested food.  So everybody got dewormed and heartworm tested.  They also took her off the antibiotics.  The sisters were spayed, and Isabel had her hernia repaired while they were at it--all on their first birthday.  Gretchen had her teeth cleaned and an epulus removed.  They're all good now, but it has been trying.

It's been the automobile shuffle here, as I bought a 2014 Ford C-max hybrid.  I enjoy its high-tech features.  I kept the Lil Egg to be towed by the RV when we're camping.  Meanwhile, Savannah bought a used Jeep Liberty so I sold the Taurus she has been driving for the past several years.  So I had no net change in number of vehicles.