Monday, December 16, 2019

A Farm Report

Chickenblog used to have regular farm reports. There have been lots of them, going way back.

Oh... I got lost in the archives! I can't believe our goats are eight years old, that Chickenblog is almost 18 years old!


Where was I?

Farm Report.


We have six hens. I am sorry to share that earlier this fall we lost our darling Mako Mori Hen. She was a favorite of mine, tame, dear. I miss her. Our hens, also known as the chicas, include Liberty, she is a cuckoo maran, and her sister, Emma Thompson, both chiquitas. We have Trillian and Pele, two Ameraucanas, that are still laying pale blue-green eggs. Like Liberty, they will be seven years old this summer. We also have the two silver-laced wyandottes, Pepper and Pippi. Thankfully, those two have settled down, because they were not the friendliest ladies, and would readily peck toes and bare legs.

And we have the goats, too, of course. Ada Lovelace Goat, the caramel and white goat that was born February 25, 2012. And we have Tasha Tudor goat, and she just turned eight years old on February 21st. They are as darling as ever, still make me laugh, and shake my ahead in amused disbelief.

So, it's two goats, and six hens, and they live all together, outside, in Camp Whoop-Up.

In the house, are the cats... three of them, now! And I feel certain that they are going to become good cat friends, and companions. Cairo. Feynman. Sakamoto.

Still haven't heard him meow, but he trills, and purrs, and chirps.

The kittens love food. Like, really love it. Cairo is casual and almost indifferent about food, so we are a bit taken aback by the intent pursuit of vittles the kittens display. And Sakamoto absolutely meows, and loudly, plaintively. It's really cute and pulls the heartstrings!

We keep catching looks, expressions from Cairo, of dismay, resignation, disappointment, bewilderment. This is a look of mild confusion, as Cairo tries to puzzle out what is in my chair.

Sunday, December 15, 2019


These things start innocently enough, right?

Of course, walking into a pet store with a big banner that says "Cat Adoption Event," comes with some degree of awareness. But honest! We were just going to visit cats, just visit. Cats. Nothing else. Perfectly innocent activity.

Oh, hello!

They're brothers. They need a home! We did visit cats, and kittens, and these two were engaging, and docile, and cute, and Alex and I were done for! Next thing I know... I am turning in applications. From here we went to the thrift store, where I spent 13 dollars on 2 cat carriers, and four food dishes, and a book. I think the cat carriers being there was a sign! These kitties are coming home with us!

Cairo has had no Foo in a sad long time, and we all feel the empty space that Chango once filled.

Our applications were accepted and the very next night we came home with two kitty brothers, that were very quickly named in the car ride home!

Introducing... Sakamoto Nekko Chan... Gigi, Professor, Saki. This name comes, in part, from the black kitty in Nichijou, a comedy manga series. Sakamoto belongs to an eight year old scientist, Professor.

Introducing... R.P. Feynman... Professor, Pusheen, Fine Man, Mister. This name is for the physicist Richard Feynman. It comes in handy, with a cat, to exclaim, "Surely, You're Joking Mr. Feynman!"

Tori and her mom met us at the pet store, and so did Alex and Bambi. Geoff got a big surprise when we came home, where we were joined by Armand, then Janece, Paul, and Amira! Have two kitties ever enjoyed such a welcome home?

They actually love the carriers, and pop in and out of them.

We kept Cairo upstairs, but not for long. They had a brief and wary first meeting, and everyone agreed that it felt like a very good first meeting between new kitties.

Good morning, kitten.

It's a kitten honeymoon! A happy weekend of getting acquainted.

An early discovery was Sakamoto's very compulsive interest in Feynman's toes! Look at Feynman's expression! This nursing habit has obviously been going on for some time. Poor kitties!

And just look at Feynman's toes!

Things we learned the first day with the kitties...

1. Sakamoto misses nursing, and is comforted by sucking on his brother's toes.

2. Feynman has a resigned tolerance for his brother's needs.

3. Feynman is drowsy and not vocal.

4. Sakamoto is shy, and timid, but noisy.

5. Feynman is bold, an explorer, a scout.

We did not protract the introduction process between Cairo and the kitties. We figured over the weekend, with all of us home, we could supervise their interactions and intervene when necessary. None of us have ever witnessed an easier, smoother blending of cat families! The first day they kind of scooted around each other, and made a couple of vocal objections. By the end of the day, there were tentative gestures of play, and the next day they were making new games, and sharing romps. I am sure that Cairo is not 100% on board... he retreats to the master bedroom and the bed that the kitties can't scale, yet. Still, it's mostly calm, and happy, and we are having lots of fun watching, caring for, and loving kittens!