Monday, January 30, 2012
post, last year. The quilt tops are just amazing. Pictures of the tops before they were quilted are at the link, just posted, and I also wrote about it with some "before" photos a few posts back.
I finally got around to putting one up on the quilting machine a few days ago and finished up quilting it, today. I used a very light polyester batting and wasn't sure I was going to like it but I think it works. I am not usually fond of "flat" solids but think it turned out beautifully. I may have to rethink my fabric prejudices:
My beloved birdcam (not the trail cam) finally bit the dust and after trying everything I could think of to fix it, I gave up and started cruising Amazon to see if I could find a replacement. Mr. Wonderful suggested I call Wingscapes, the maker, and ask them if they knew how to fix it. I called on Sunday and left a voice mail with Melissa. Who knew this company actually had a named person answering the phone!! I left a message explaining the situation. I didn't expect much help since it was no longer under warranty but thought maybe it was a common problem that had an easy fix. While I was out in the studio, today, she called back and told Mr. Wonderful that they were sending me a brand new birdcam!! I was so excited and impressed! So, henceforth, I shall tell everyone and their brother what a great company they are. If you have a chance to get something from Wingscapes, you really should do it.
Yesterday, I went out to the property to check the trail cam and while there, I kept seeing HUGE deer tracks everywhere. I wondered to myself if the big bucks had come back and deduced that perhaps the mud had somehow made the tracks look bigger than they were. And then, I saw this:
Once I decided there had been cows trespassing, I kept a look out and, sure enough, saw where they had wandered all through the wooded area and muddied up the pond. Once I realized it was cows, it is hard to imagine that I had been convincing myself that it was big deer. Deer that size aren't deer. They are moose or elk. Or have been exposed to large doses of radiation.
The trail cam was still strapped to the tree but there were broken branches all around it and it was pointed in a different direction than how I'd left it. Upon checking the videos, I saw where up to seven full grown cows (not heifers) tried to eat the camera. They left the evidence on the video. Two of them grabbed the strap and yanked on it for several minutes. Fortunately, it doesn't look like they damaged it.
I don't know what was going on with those cows but on several of the videos, they were running this way and that. Perhaps they got into loco weed. It was like seeing heavyset pixies spinning and dancing in the moonlight. I can't imagine why they would have been in the area where I put the trail cam because it was on the trunk of a cedar in the densest part of the wooded area where there wasn't anything to graze on. I put it there, hoping to get some videos of bobcats. But no. I got psychotic, rogue cows. And you know what else? They apparently don't sleep at night, either. Some of the most enthusiastic camera attacks took place in the dark.
I don't know where the cows are, now. I didn't see them while I was out there and I looked. Our property is right on the Chisholm Trail so maybe they hit the road. More likely, someone came and got them.
Happy Quilting, Penny, Evelyn and Pearl
Saturday, January 28, 2012
The Double M is Mimi's brand.
Mimi lives north of Kaw Lake and in addition to her own property, she leases large (at least by city standards) pieces of property to run her cattle. I understand that in that part of the country, you need about 8 acres to support one cow.
She's got a couple of bulls. Look at that single tree off in the distance:
Right now, calving season has started. Mimi puts the bulls out with the cows in April, which means that babies start arriving in January. Last year, with the hard winter we had, she lost quite a few babies that were born in a blizzard. This year, the temperature has been wonderful which makes it easier on the mamas, babies, and bovine midwives.
On Thursday, we went out in the afternoon to check for new babies and to doctor three cows that were ailing. Mimi's dog, Jack, hopped on back and came along with us:
After doctoring the cows, we went to look for baby cows. Mamas will sometimes hide their babies out on the range and finding them is like looking for a needle in a haystack. Mimi spotted one pretty quickly and once she pointed it out to me, I could see it. I suspect practice helps in that sort of thing. To be honest, from a distance, it looked like a cow patty.
While she was piercing his ear, I was keeping an eye on his mama who was coming over at a trot to see what the Sam Hill was going on. Mimi didn't seem concerned (she is, after all, fearless), but I was prepared to scream a warning, if needed. I also knew where they keep the tazer.
My back east friends may not know what an armadillo is. It is a varmint about the size of a loaf of bread:
The tail (he'd gone into a burrow but left his back end out - idiot):
I would not look at the next few photos if you are squeamish (this is a warning to one of my daughters). Jack caught a couple of the armadillos and killed them.
Actually, the armadillo in the previous few pictures, after being mauled, managed to get away from Jack and race back down a burrow! Jack went after it, to no avail:
About that time, I saw Mimi looking down the armadillo hole and she had some pliers in her hand. She was considering grabbing the armadillo's tail to drag it out.
Mimi had the pliers because, she said, she didn't feel like it was a good idea to stick your hand into an armadillo burrow and grab its tail (with your hand).
Okay, so I will be honest with you. Even with pliers, I didn't think it would be a good idea to stick your hand inside an armadillo hole and grab an armadillo tail. But I will be BRUTALLY honest and admit I didn't tell her that because I thought it would be abundantly cool to see her drag an armadillo out of its hole. Yes, I admit it. I am an Okie.
But at any rate, the armadillo got away while her frontal lobes kicked in and kept her from doing something that, while really cool, was also probably really dumb. I say that but in my heart of hearts, I am not sure an armadillo would have done much and it sure would have been cool to see, regardless.
My blood was up!
After seeing the armadillos, we drove over to see a horse herd that runs wild. Aren't they beautiful? They just came racing over a hill right towards us:
I thought I counted 22.
Yeah, yeah, that last was pretty lame. But true.