Saturday, March 12, 2016

Special Message Boards

A message for Patrick, from Maria.

When Maria spends a Saturday at the office with Geoff, and Patrick, she likes to use the whiteboards, and so Patrick sent her a gift. Maria sent him some pictures while she was home from school. When she's not drawing at work, she's programming... I think Patrick likes to encourage future programmer talent. Maria may be the youngest (unofficial) intern!

Maria had her first taste of cough syrup. Can you guess how she felt about that?

Mister Foo thinks Maria is an excellent artist. He finds her subjects, and use of color to be discerning, sophisticated, and spot on.

Art imitates life?

Thank you, Patrick. I love the chicken!

Love, Maria

Dr Chango :: Seventy One

Drs Chango and Foo have been making the rounds, attending and comforting the sick... Max, then Alex, Maria, William, and Geoff. Our kitties can be so concerned, affectionate, empathetic... it's a heartwarming thing to witness their compassion.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Goat, Goat, Chicken, Girl, Goat

The other day Ada whispered in my ear, "You've posted sixty-nine pictures of cats, flowers, birds, tortillas, mud, and Tasha. And what about me?" She wasn't exactly whining about the oversight, just a bit flummoxed, which is understandable. I didn't bother trying to explain to her that she is hard to photograph, that she moves into the lens, nibbles the camera strap, turns her back on me, or has her head deep in her hay trough. Instead, I assured her that we were specifically saving Picture # Seventy especially for her, that we wanted to follow it with an entire photo essay, featuring her, at play, with friends, just being her naturally beautiful goatself.

I guess she thought I was only placating her... "Pffft."

Honestly, Ada, this is your post. Today you are the star. And everyday, you are our dear goater, our darling fatty goat, pushy, nibbly, talk-talk-talkity ginger goat.

Ada and Friends

I wish this activity were easier to photograph. They initiate their stand and head-butt game at regular intervals, especially when they are out in the yard, and have spectators. It looks hilarious and sounds awful! They don't hold back, crashing foreheads at full force. It creates shockwaves.

Ada's eye. This picture is cracks me up, all because of her look. Ok, and her stance, and those hanging legs, and the belly. Tasha's all "Nah. I'm not feeling it."

Tasha is way more laid back.

Ada talks more, eats more, pushes more, bosses more. Oh my goats, I love her face.

"Hey. Hey, come here," she whispers, "I want to tell you something: burrp." She nuzzles close to me, then belches in my ear.

We love you, Ada Lovelace Goat.

We love you... even when you want to nibble our skirts, our shirts, our boots, our buckles, our tools, our pencils, our books.

Double trouble!

We love you both, goats. The chickens might have a few choice words to describe your behaviors, but we all manage to work things out.

And there they go! When their heads meet, the air reverberates.

The chickens stay clear of goat games.

And Maria reminds them that she is not into goat games, either! The sun sets, everyone meets at the run, where they know treats are coming. We toss them oats and pellets, tuck them in, lock them up. And say goodnight.

It's Ada :: Seventy

Ada Lovelace Goat.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

A Little Help :: Sixty Nine

In consideration of his tight situation, I dubbed him: Winnie the Lizard.

Wood you like to hear the rest of the tail?

Alex and Maria found the lizard desperately wedged in the wood post. Maybe he followed a cricket in, but got too fat to retreat? Everything was against him... the too small hole, the direction of his scales, the drag of his hanging body, while he tried to keep his head on, how much of him was exposed to birds, cats, heffalumps.. It was a perilous scene. Alex reminded us, "We can't tug on him, or he could drop his tail." Even our talking was causing him to play dead, so we sat around, writing notes, and making as little noise as possible. After some silence, Winnie resumed his struggle against the post, wriggling frantically, trying to get a leg up. Then he'd slump, as though from fatigue. The sun was setting. Alex and Maria went in for our space heater, and using an extension cord and a chair we got him warmed up. He was revived, and managed to free first one hand, then the other.

The effort was exhausting, and besides panting, he was limp, again. This was when I began considering the difficulty he must be having keeping his back end high enough so that he wasn't injuring his front end. Even though touching him obviously caused him panic, Alex and I decided to risk the trade off and try giving him support and leverage. We moved in some scraps to raise his tail and legs.

Just as we expected, poor Winnie played dead.

We waited, quietly.

William fed us the spaghetti dinner he'd made.

Then, Winnie sprang back into action.

And...pulled through!

Hello, friend.

And that is the rest of the true tale. The End.

Some people care too much. I think it's called love."
~Winnie the Pooh
With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Meet Jane :: Sixty Eight

A new character came to life last night when Maria was drawing. She calls her Jane. And the chicken is Betty. We don't know Jane's friend's name, nor the name of her cat.
"Maybe you can help?" suggests Maria.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

After :: Sixty Seven

After flooding rains, streets like raging rivers rushing to the coast, after lightning, thunder, hail, and wind, after toppled trees, and muddy shoes. After rain boots, and raincoats, and sixth graders greeted at camp with snow. After the storm that came, left, came, left, then poured one more time: Blue skies, sunshine, fallen leaves, dazed goats, wet hens, puddles, a new day.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Monday, March 07, 2016

Amor :: Sixty Six

Maria and I made dinner together. Albondigas, with produce from the farmer's market and our own garden. And tortillas, which she practically manages all on her own. When I sat down with my soup, she brought me her special tortilla... hecho con amor.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

Saturday Was Good

Having a pool... it sounds luxurious, glamorous, "lucky." But it can also be a costly headache, confusing, frustrating, gross, laborious, and most of the year too darn cold to use anyway. The truth is, I have never fully come to terms with embracing our pool, with feeling unabashedly in love with all of its perks and benefits. After all of our years of renting, moving, and waiting... finding this home was such a thrill and relief, the pool part felt merely incidental. We couldn't even use it for a long while, not until Geoff could figure out the wonky electrical bits, the faulty wiring etc. Just about the time we were getting the hang of maintaining it we learned that the water was kapoot, and had to be drained, which is a colossal headache when you don't have sewage hook-up, but are on septic. The pool got a bit green, then super disgusting, then quite hideous. We had to figure out a plan. My vote was for ducks, turtles, lilies, koi. Other suggestions included: demolition, Hobbit home, anti-zombie fort, fill and build a workshop (another favorite of mine,) and least practical... empty it by a bucket brigade. Pools cannot be emptied with out the risk of them popping up out of the ground... particularly risky in the event of heavy rain, the kind you get during El Niño conditions. So, when we finally did get ours drained, and scrubbed, we were racing against the storm that was arriving Saturday night, to begin refilling it, returning the mass that holds it down, in the ground. You guys, I realize this is not the most compelling story, but you can thank me for sparing you a lot of the details, the months of angst, the labor it took to turn things around. We are beginning to imagine our happy ending. It looks like our patched, stained, lumpy, cold pool with horribly dangerous decking, will be open for swimming, again! We look at each other, and ask, "Does this mean we are going to be 'pool people' and do 'pool people' things?" Indeed, we are. Soon we will be having luxurious, glamorous, lucky pool people events. Dust off your floaties, scrounge up some wet suits, polish your flippers, and reserve your cabana spot... this summer is going to be fancy.

We turned the hose on, then went on an explore...

We are at that stage when getting all of us together... same place, same time, is a wonder and a feat. I know some of my friends will understand what I am talking about. Work and schools (three different ones) and friends, and obligations, homework, projects, fallen fences, dead pools... there are so many things that make it a challenge for us to all be out together these days. Anyway, I feel happy that I thought to ask the waiter to please take our picture. Some of us are not going to be happy about the squinting into the sun expressions, and it's only a cell phone snapshot... but I am glad to have this. Naturally, it makes me think, cheese-wiz, we should hire a photographer and get a nice family portrait taken, then I try to remember the last time we did that. {1999. Max was six months old. Huh... guess, we are due.}

My first born is twenty-five years old, and my baby is discussing the particulars of the game she wants to program. The minutes can last a long time, but the years slip by at an uncanny pace.

Can you tell I don't plan these posts? Suddenly, I am on this sentimental journey, feeling all the feels about the swift passage of time.

Sorry. Where was I?

I think I meant to share some nice moments from our outing. William wanted us to see sights, hang out together, a little birthday celebration extension. It was a good idea, and a lovely day. We walked and had breakfast in Pacific Beach, we stopped by an antique shop, visited Old Town, then came home to check on the pool. Maria splashed in the slightly above freezing water, then we made a fabulous dinner, and watched the last two episodes of Cooked.

Saturday was very good.

Walking in Pacific Beach :: Sixty Five

A Cass Street pup.

With Infinity More Monkeys, a picture a day.