I just had to share this photo I snapped. Henry is upset that baby Sage gets all of the attention. As I was sitting on the floor trying to photograph Sage, he came up, got right in my face, and reached his paw up to touch my arm. He's such a sweetheart. Love those blue eyes too.
I'm on day two of another migraine, accompanied by heart palpitations, panic attacks, and anxiety. I shouldn't have any reason to feel this way, and I even got plenty of sleep last night and the night before. I'm hoping I feel better tomorrow. Since Tony has tomorrow evening and the weekend off, that should be helpful.
I got some cute photos today.
Wisp is four months old now. She's had a fun run in the house, but it's getting to the point that even cleaning her cage every day isn't keeping the odor down. We're anticipating all highs above freezing for the foreseeable future, so it looks like Miss Wisp will be moving outdoors soon. I had hoped to wait until it was remaining warmer before transitioning her, but Tony is putting his foot down on the smell, and I can't really argue with him. I don't like my kitchen to smell like a bunny barn either, and I don't have the time or energy to clean her cage twice a day.
Anyway, today when I cleaned her cage, I filled her bin with hay. She was pretty excited about it. She's so cute. I love the fluffy fur tufts between her ears.
Baby Sage is doing well today. She's moving around a little more, learning to get those little legs underneath her. She is one day past three weeks old today (22 days). She looks more and more like her dad every day. He's blue and white, and she has a similar pattern over her back and her ears. I love when she perks her ears up when she hears anyone speaking. She's such a sweetheart.
Her eyes have been a little goopy and stuck shut the last few days, but a warm moist paper towel gently run over her face clears her up right away. I'm not sure why Floki isn't cleaning her eyes up, but I will continue to clean her up as needed until the problem stops. She has such a cute little face, I love when she opens those little peepers and looks around.
Outside it's warming up. Just a little above freezing every day, but it's enough to get the snow melting. There's a mud puddle in the yard just outside the barn, and the ducks and goose have found it. They are thrilled to have open water (or a shallow mud puddle) again, and have spent all day playing in it. I had to herd them away from it to get them in for the night.
I finished #3's purse yesterday. She chose a nice bright blue and wanted more of a clutch shape (longer and shorter) but with a cross body strap. No clasp. Somehow when I attached the shoulder strap it didn't look right at the top where it comes off the purse, but I corrected it by adding a cute little bow to either side.
I was several inches into the next bag project (for #2) when I made the decision to pull it apart and start over. It was just too big, and looked like it was going to be ungainly to carry around. So now I'm a little slow and behind, but it'll be better in the end.
Baby Sage is adorable, as always. Her little ears perk up whenever she hears my voice. A couple days ago I left a blanket in there that didn't fit in the laundry load. Sage loved it. She was able to move around a lot more without getting cold on the floor. I felt a little bad when I finally threw it in the wash yesterday morning. Sage stays either on the carpeted base of the cat tree, or under the fish tank over by the heat vent. Floki seems to be a good momma. As much as she leaves Sage alone, I think it only looks odd because she's alone. If it were a little pile of kittens napping together it would seem less strange, but little Sage, laying all alone, seems so sad. She's a sweet little soul, and she's got a beautiful personality. I'm looking forward to when she's a bit bigger and a little more interactive.
Today, while at the feed store to get more rabbit food, we stopped by the garden section. I joke with my husband that this competitor of his store will get in seed potatoes before his store does. They didn't have any seed potatoes, but they did have a display of dormant fruit trees. They were only $17.99 each and decent sized. Much to my surprised delight, Tony said to go ahead and get some. "An orchard is an investment." he said. So today I brought home two Contender peach trees, two Kieffer pear trees, and one Methley plum tree. And so our journey into starting our orchard has begun! Now I need to figure out what to do with them until the snow melts. For now they're in the unheated entry way. They're dormant, pruned down and no leaves, but they were indoors when I bought them.
In researching my varieties a little more, I've found that plums and cherries are safe to plant in proximity to black walnut, but apple trees can't be near black walnut. The problem is that I've found different lists that put peaches and pears on both sides of this list. Can they be near black walnut or not? Since the area I had set aside for an orchard is bordered on one side by black walnut trees and boxed on on the other side by water, I'm realizing that I don't have nearly the orchard space I had originally thought I had. Once you measure out 50 feet from the black walnut tree line, you're already in the middle of the orchard space. While I'd love to have additional trees in that area to block certain views, it's not worth the financial loss if the new trees don't thrive.
After much thought, checking and re-checking my aerial map, measuring several times, and consulting with my husband, we have decided to change our plans a little. Instead of using the east field as an orchard, we are going to use the northern end of the front fields. This will also add an additional sound and vision barrier, while providing the trees the furthest positioning from any black walnuts, while also giving them a south-facing location with wind block to the north. I don't think it will take away enough from the northern fields to make a dent in our potential garden space there anyway, and it means even more possible space for apple trees to be added in! The east field will now be used for black walnut - tolerant vegetables, such as corn and squash and beans. It will still end up used to grow food, just not in the way I had originally planned. I think this will actually work out better anyway.
Back at the feed store in the garden section, #5 and I stopped to look at some of the yard decor. He liked the zombie gnome, but it was expensive ($40). We ended up bringing home two little sleeping dragons, and a solar-powered fairy house. I am so excited to start gardening.
I'm almost done with #3's purse. I just need to add the strap, but I can't measure for it because she's off spending the night somewhere tonight. Perhaps I will be able to get that measured out tomorrow and completed Monday.
I'm making plans already for #2's bag. He wants one he can use as a school bag. He's got some pretty elaborate ideas too. He wants a tote kind of like the one I made for #5, but he wants a cross-body strap, a flap closure, and an additional interior pocket for his gaming dice. He needs it to be able to hold all his school stuff, which means adding in additional support somehow. I've got my work cut out for me!
Sage is doing well. She is still mostly in eat or sleep mode, but she has played a few times, and her little claws are sharp! She chews on my lips or my nose when I try to snuggle with her. She's adorable, but still so tiny. It's hard to know how to play with her. I wish she had someone her size to curl up with or play with. She's too small for toys yet, but soon, I'm sure, she will be running around chasing the jingle balls and the mitten toy. I am excited to watch her grow.
I haven't had much down time lately to do any more tomato or pepper research. Every time I attempt to sit down, #5 needs something. And of course he doesn't go to sleep on his own, which means by the time he actually goes to sleep, I'm exhausted and ready for bed too. It's a struggle to have time to write up a blog some days, but here I am, trying to keep my thoughts and projects updated and shared promptly.
Some random ideas floating around in my head currently...
We just bought a length of PVC piping to fit inside an old pair of #1's boots. They will become planters this summer if I can figure out a way to cut the pipe to the proper size. I'm not sure what to plant in them yet... flower, herb, or vegetable?
Pistachio shells - potential craft project, or compost fodder?
Winter sowing experiment I meant to do last year... Big clear tote, drainage holes in bottom, holes in top to let rain and snow in. Fill plastic cups with soil, plant seeds, and line them up in the tote, then use the tote as the greenhouse. This would give individual plants more space, both with roots and with height. Possibly a great idea for peppers and/or tomatoes. Or maybe apple tree seedlings?
I made another loaf of bread today. I mostly followed the instructions for white bread, but instead of 2 Tablespoons of dried milk, I added 2 Tablespoons of almond milk. Instead of 3 Tablespoons of sugar, I added 3 Tablespoons of honey. Then #5 and I added honey-roasted sunflower seeds, since we had several individual packets laying around. We ended up adding 4.8 ounces (according to package sizes) into the mix.
It came out really nice. It smells like sunflower seeds, and it tastes good too. I can't taste any honey at all, but the sunflower definitely came through!
Underhill went off to her new home this morning. I weighed her this morning at 5.5 pounds. That's smaller than I anticipated her to be at six months old, but it's been a harsh winter, and growth is never what it should be for the fall grow outs. Anyway, I hope she proves to be a fantastic breeder for her new family. They were really nice.
Little Sage is 15 days old today. Her ears are open and she can hear. She perks up when she hears us talking near her, and actively crawls toward me when I call to her.
It looks like Underhill (the last doe rabbit for sale) will be heading to her new home tomorrow morning. She will be a breeder for an other homestead. That will just leave Ulric and Fella still looking for homes (both bucks).
Today while picking up a snow-blower (yes, I gave in - we now own a snow blower), the gal at the home improvement store said the potatoes and asparagus tubers would be in stock in two more weeks! Yay! Tony is already planning to build me more potato towers, since they out-produced the tire tower and the grow bag the year we tested them all. This year I wanted to try two or three different varieties, but found out that the All Blue potatoes we grew last time are no longer available. They replaced them with "Magic Molly" instead. I will probably end up picking them up to try just because they're available locally without postage fees. I have also found two varieties in seed catalogs that I want to try. Purple Viking is a potato with purple skin with pink splotches, but white flesh inside. Pinto Gold has a pink skin with yellow splashes. The flavor is said to be "buttery" which would be great for someone like me who desperately misses putting butter, cheese, and sour cream on her baked potatoes (lactose intolerance is no fun). I'm a little taken aback by the cost on them online though. I may skip the Pinto Gold and just go with the Purple Viking and Magic Molly this year. I should (hopefully) get enough to save some back for seed next year.
I spoke to my trusted adviser, whom I frequently bounce ideas around with (she gives the best advice), and she suggested trying to cut sugar out of my diet as well. Sugar can be replaced in recipes by honey, maple syrup (the real stuff, not the high fructose corn syrup crap), or stevia. As it turns out, I happen to have a few stevia seeds. Perhaps I will have to attempt to grow them out. She said you can just dry the leaves out and then grind them up like I do with some of my other herbs, then use it as sugar substitute. For now I will be trying to cut back, but not entirely eliminating sweets. I already try to eat healthy, but I put sugar in my coffee and yes, I make Kool Aid on a daily basis. Seriously, I have five kids and without it they suck through a gallon of apple juice every day - check the price difference between two cups of sugar and two Kool Aid packets versus a gallon of apple juice. Yes, water is healthier, but flavors make it so much easier to drink.
Today the mail brought some concord grape seeds. From what I've read online they have dismal germination rates that can take months, and it can be three or more years before you actually get a harvest - which may not even be a good product because you're dealing with seed-grown versus cutting or grafting. But hey, let's give it a try anyway!
I have 23 containers drying in the bathtub now. I sanitized them yesterday and will drill drainage holes tomorrow. I have so many more seeds I want to get into containers. I always feel like I'm running out of time, but really, as long as the ones that need stratification (cold time) are planted out early, the sensitive plants can wait until April. Still, I'd like to get some more jugs out soon. If nothing else, it clears up the space they're taking up in the kitchen.
I finished the purse for #1 today, and started a purse for #3. Hers will be blue, small, with a flap top with no closure, and a cross-body strap. Simple, but able to hold her phone.
Today we also looked at fencing. I'm going to need a way to keep Josh (the goose) out of the garden. Last fall he chewed off pretty much all of my okra and pepper plants about 2-4 inches up the stem, for no apparent reason. He didn't eat them, just chewed on them until they broke, then, like a lumberjack, just moved on to the next. The problem is that a fence will keep Josh out, but it won't deter Phil, Henrietta, or Big Red (the chickens). So do I get rid of the chickens? Give up on gardening? I don't know. I'm really hoping the chickens will leave the garden alone. Perhaps they will prefer treats from the compost heap when it's warm enough for them to be wandering the yard again. Anyway, fence panels run $15-$30 each, plus the posts and hardware to connect them all. A roll of fencing is $30 for 50 feet, again, plus the cost of posts and such. Tony seems to think it's going to be easier to get the roll and some cheaper posts and then we can move it or add to it as the garden grows over the years.
Oh garden thoughts... My happy place. I'm looking forward to barefoot weather.
Sage is two weeks old today. She is playing, but still tips over frequently. She's strong and curious. She's adorable. Floki is taking good care of her so far. We have had a couple incidents where we've caught one of the other cats either trying to steal her from her mom, or playing more like a cat would play with a mouse. As she gets bigger and stronger, I think she will be fine. For right now she tends to stay at the carpeted bottom of the cat tree. It's near the heat vent, and probably keeps her feet a fair bit warmer than the linoleum flooring.
Here's the video I took today. My apologies for #5 in the background. I try to do my videos in the morning or late evening when he's asleep, but today Sage was playing and I wanted to get a video...
After Monday's snow storm, we still hadn't been able to dig out. I've been under the weather for several days and Tony ended up catching a ride to Brainerd with my mom on Tuesday and then spending the night there to get to work today. The vehicle remained snowed in here. The kids had to trudge through deep snow down the long driveway to get to the bus again this morning.
I finally gave up and emailed the people we bought the house from to ask who had been plowing. They sent a husband over today to plow us out. I am incredibly grateful for this kindness. Tony got a ride home after work and happened to get home as this guy was finishing plowing. He refused any payment. So thank you Derek, for clearing the driveway, and making a couple big snow hills. The kids are excited at the prospect of playing on those in the coming days! I am happy to have my husband home again, now that he can get the car out of the driveway to get to work!
It's been snowing all day, with high winds. Several times the snow was going past the window completely horizontally. There are drifts up to three feet deep, though we probably only got 8-10 inches total. You can no longer see the 5-gallon buckets that are beside the garage. Several of our windows are now caked in snow due to the winds pressing snow into the screens. We made no effort to shovel the driveway today due to the winds. School was called off this morning, and by this evening they'd already announced a two hour delay for tomorrow as well.
This is not, by any stretch of the imagination, the worst winter weather I've seen here in Minnesota. Not by a long shot. We can still open our doors, the electricity is still on, and we have heat. It is the worst we've gotten so far in the new house, but it's all good. That two hour delay tomorrow means kids can bundle up and help shovel the driveway. Tony is supposed to go back to work tomorrow, but I'm not entirely sure how that's going to work. We have a long driveway, and just snow shovels and man-power (or woman and child power on days Tony works). Anyone have a snowblower they'd be willing to sell for cheap in the Brainerd/Staples area? I just can't afford the $500 they go for new, and we did not budget in hiring someone to come plow (we can save money and shovel it ourselves - right?).
Using Google maps and the scale for distance, it looks like the driveway is roughly 850 feet long (.16 mile)
I've been hitting the penny auctions on eBay. My weird way of coping with stress. Today I won some blue seed beads, some unicorn charms, more moss rose seeds, a necklace (for #1), a bracelet (for #1), and a pair of earrings (future bribe for chores when I need a little extra help around the house).
I am still working on researching tomato and pepper varieties. I don't think I'm going to be able to get through them all before it's too late to start seeds, so I'm going to end up winging it... There are a few varieties I definitely want to plant though. Cow's Tit and Dino Eggs tomatoes, and Albanian Red Hot, Bell of Lebanon, and Black Pearl peppers to name a few. Some of these I have very limited seed (think 5 or fewer seeds in the collection), so it's of utmost importance that I grow them out.
Sage seems to be doing well today. Her eyes are open, she's been chewing on her feet (playing?) and Floki has resumed nursing as I have found her in the box with the kitten a couple of times, without me having to place her in the box.
Here's a quick video I recorded this morning.
I'm continuing to work on #1's purse. I didn't snap a photo of it today, but I got the bag portion done and I'm working on the flap now. Then it'll just be a matter of adding the loop and button closure and the cross body strap. It's looking pretty good. She chose the same variegated yarn I used for my prototype coaster (which I still love and used every day). I will try to get an updated photo tomorrow of my progress (or maybe even a finished product).
I made banana bread in the bread machine last night. This morning I took it out, sliced some of it up, packaged a couple slices for some of #1's friends (she wanted to take some to school to share) and asked the other kids if they wanted any. Only one kid got to taste it before our *very* naughty dog jumped up and stole the entire loaf right off the stove top! Lesson learned! Next time, it needs to be pushed all the way back, or put away as soon as it's sliced! Too bad I used the last of the bananas, and we're snowed in now. I guess maybe tomorrow I will make another loaf. Perhaps with peanut butter or something else I can find around the house.
We are expecting more snow tomorrow. The weather forecast says that we should anticipate 4-7 inches (with localized totals up to 11 inches), with the possibility of ice between 6am Monday and 6am Tuesday. Well that should be fun! The kids' schools have already called to announce a 2-hour late start, but all the schools around us are already closing ahead of the storm. I wonder if we will get another call in the morning calling school off completely.
The three bottles I put in the kitchen window nearly a month ago (with herb seeds) never came up. The window side of each is growing green inside, but no herbs came up. I'm disappointed, but not altogether surprised.
Tony has challenged me to a Rosemary contest. This will be year five of me trying to grow it from seed, failing, buying it from the nursery, limping it through the summer, and never getting a harvest. He thinks he can do better. So I welcomed him to it. If I win, we're still in the same position. If he wins, we get fresh Rosemary. Not a bad deal either way.
I did get the last of the winter sown containers moved. The last batch I had set outside the side door, and then we had a good thaw so they were sitting in water, then a freeze, so they were pretty much glued to the ground. I was able to chisel them up and move them to the South side of the house with the other containers. I figure it's a better location and offers more sunlight.
When I woke up this morning, I found little Rosemary, huddled up, all alone under the kitty tree. Floki had moved Sage and was nursing her somewhere else. Rosemary was already cold, which is pretty much a given that death isn't far behind. With the help of #3, we got Rosemary warmed back up, but it was clear that wasn't enough. We got her to nurse twice, but she was weak and her nursing sessions were only a few minutes long. This afternoon when it became apparent that Rosemary was failing and didn't have much longer, we decided to let her be with Floki and Sage (and Mabel) in the end. When we came back to check on her, she had passed away, tucked in with her family. Our hearts are broken. Rosemary will be buried with Basil in the spring. We're not sure where, but I'm sure #3 will come up with some gorgeous flowers or something perennial to plant over them so we can always remember them.
I know I've got a pink blueberry bush and a white blackberry plant that will be coming in April or May. Perhaps one of those would be a good option as a memorial plant. Otherwise, we're planning to get some apple trees too. That would be a lovely way to memorialize them in a way that isn't likely to be disturbed. Otherwise, flowers could work too. Something perennial. Maybe some daylilies or irises.
Since Rosemary's passing, Floki seems to have largely abandoned Sage now. I keep finding Floki curled up with the other adult cats, with Sage all alone on the floor. If this behavior continues, and we have to pin her down to get her to feed Sage, then Tuesday I will have Tony pick up supplies while he's in town and I will just have to commit to raising Sage by hand. I hope she can hold out that long.
This evening I started my next purse project. This one for #1. She wants a purse in the blue/grey variegated yarn that is a little wider and deeper than my own purse, with a cross body strap anchored all the way down the sides to the bottom for full support, and a flap with button and loop closure like #4's that I finished yesterday. As I'm started to crochet it up, the design it's making is actually quite pretty. I am looking forward to seeing how this one turns out!
I finished #4's purse this afternoon! It's pink, purple, and blue variegated with a cross-body strap and a button and loop closure. She's excited to start using it right away!
I've noticed lately a large growth deficit between the remaining kittens. Rosemary is starting to fail while Sage remains robust. I'm not sure what the problem is, but even Floki seems to notice and several times has pushed Rosemary away, or had taken Sage to another spot and laid down to nurse her without Rosemary. We continue to try to make sure that Rosemary gets nursing time, and Floki does allow her to nurse. Rosemary still actively seeks out a teat and seems to nurse well. I'm not sure what the problem is, but I can only assume Floki has a better idea that something is severely wrong that we can't understand.
Welcome to March! If you're up here in USDA Zone 4 it's time to start your indoor tomato and pepper seeds. I'm still not entirely sure if I'm going to do this for 2018 or not (guess I'm out of time to contemplate it). I have one little started tray I could use, and I was thinking about using it for some of my rarer seeds. Do I really want the hassle of a grow light and a shelf in the house though? Isn't winter sowing just that much easier?
The kittens are doing well. Floki moves them frequently. This morning she had them at the base of the kitty tree, then she moved them to a box, then back to the kitty tree, and now into another box. I think she's getting tired of Mabel trying to steal them.
I got a new photo of Wisp today. My goodness she is gorgeous! Look at all that fur! She's getting pretty big too. I suspect that is largely due to her being indoors though. All of her calories are going toward growth instead of keeping warm outside over winter. That said, as of Saturday she is going back outside. We're supposed to have two days that reach 40 (Saturday and Sunday) with the night just dipping below freezing, followed by one cold night and then the rest of the forecast shows above freezing for the high temperatures every day. Spring is coming! Wisp is fantastic, but I don't care for indoor rabbits. They're stinky, and honestly, I'm getting tired of cleaning her cage every day to keep the smell at bay. Her fur tufts around the backs of her legs are starting to look a little snarled. She's going to be a high maintenance rabbit. Time to break out a brush before she goes outside!
I got the baby spider plant I ordered in the mail today. I'm so excited! I learned a lesson with the baby pothos I bought before (it died), so I planted this one right away, watered it well, and stuck it in the window. It looks good so far. I hope it survives and thrives. I love spider plants, but the two we had in the past met unfortunate fates (due to the cats).
I'm still working on #4's purse. It's coming along nicely. I hope to have it done tomorrow or Saturday.
It's been a bit of a busy day today between trips back and forth to a couple appointments and a shopping stop along the way.
The two remaining kittens seem to be doing well. They are content and mostly quiet. Floki and Mabel both lay in the box with them. A couple of times I've found a kitten in the middle of the floor. I'm still not entirely sure which cat is moving them out of the box.
I completed #5's bag this morning, in time for him to bring it to our appointments. He was quite excited to bring his toys with him.
Onward to the next purse project! I started #4's purse the other day but set it aside to finish #5's bag. Now back to her purse.
Basil's struggle is over. The little fella passed away surrounded by his sisters, his mom, and his grandma this afternoon. I went to check on him as he took his last breath. Rest peacefully little Basil. He survived six days.
In handling him afterwards I gave a more thorough inspection, now that I wasn't worried about making him uncomfortable. I found our cause of death, and it's both heartrendingly sad, and mindbogglingly odd.
Our dear Basil had deformed legs and a nub tail, that much we already knew. But upon closer inspection after he passed, it became apparent that those were not his only malformations. Basil had a mouth, a tongue, a full palate, but at the back, his tongue was attached to the back of his throat, completely closing it off. This kitten couldn't have eaten anything because his mouth was not attached to his throat. He had been breathing through his nose. Our poor Basil never stood a chance. Bottle feeding would have been no help as his mouth was separate from the rest of his body. Surgery was never an option on such a tiny being. I once asked about euthanizing extremely small or young animals who were damaged beyond repair (remember I used to do rescue) and was told by a vet that they could not and would not euthanize because their smallest needle was far too large. We really had no options with Basil, and despite it all, he was a trooper right up to the end. This morning he was still cuddling up with his sisters, still attempting to nurse.
Tonight my heart is broken for Basil, but I take comfort in knowing that we loved him mightily, and we did absolutely everything we could - there's nothing else we could have done, and nothing would have saved him regardless.
The two remaining kittens seem well. They are vigorous, active, and vocal. Both are starting to open their eyes, and actively seek out Floki when she is in the box.
I continue to work on #5's bag. I made the straps today but have not finished attaching them to the bag yet. I'm really hoping to have them done tomorrow. It looks pretty nice.
This morning I went to check on kittens and found just Rosemary and Sage in the box. I admit, my first thought was that Floki had eaten Basil... She did kill kittens in her last litter. Then I heard the weak mew coming from under the fish tank stand a couple feet from the box. There was tiny Basil, chilled and weak, but alive. I don't know which cat pulled him out of the nest box, everyone here has their suspicions... It could be Mabel, grandma to this litter, who has attempted to steal Floki's kittens in the past and has started trying to lay in the box with Floki and the babies. It could be NetherQuartz, who takes any opportunity he can to attempt to treat a wandering kitten like a toy (which is why we moved them to a box they couldn't escape from). Or maybe Floki knows there's something wrong and is moving him out of the box? Or moving him to one of the sideways boxes on the fish tank stand and he fell out? I don't know.
I also don't know how long he'd been out on his own. One of his little toes is swollen, he's got little marks all over him now, and I strongly suspect one of the ladies moved him out of the box and then NetherQuartz tried to "play" with him.
I warmed him back up with my hands before returning him to his sisters, who welcomed him immediately by piling all over him and then sleeping in a heap together.
I again held him to assure that he got some nursing time without his big sisters knocking him down. He always seems to do so well, latching on, good suction, but never any swallowing motions. Below was the photo I took after I snuck my hand away from supporting him and blocking his sisters. They all seemed to be asleep but still attached to momma. The size difference is becoming painfully obvious. Basil is minuscule compared to plump Sage.
I went off to do some housework and returned a bit later to find Basil nursing of his own accord. No assistance and he'd found and held a teat against his sisters! Mind it was one of the front ones with less milk, but all the same, my hopes rose. I really hope this little one pulls through... though every ounce of logic and past experience tells me he doesn't stand a chance.
I did take another brief video today. I suspect it may be the last with three kittens in it. Basil can't hold out forever, and he's so thin now that I have to wonder how he's even here with us still tonight as I type this up before bed. Tony insists he's "looking stronger" and seems "more active" tonight, but I don't see it. I would absolutely love to see Basil grow up and be a spunky, playful, loving soul. I want so badly to see how he does with his bad leg and his nub tail. I want to see if his coat develops colors later or if he will stay white. I want to see him open his eyes, to play with toys, to pounce and play with his sisters.
Tonight I weighed each of the kittens. Sage is 4 ounces, Rosemary is 3 ounces, and Basil is 2 ounces. Why is there such a drastic difference between 2 and 3 ounces, but not between 3 and 4 ounces? Either way, here's the video from today - complete with a cameo from Mabel (their Rex grandma). She saw the box was empty and came to see what I was doing with them.
After completing most of the house chores, I sat down to work more on #5's bag. I got to the point where I could go no farther without the next color, so I texted Tony to let him know what I needed.
When he got home late tonight after working a close shift, I quick did the last four rounds with the new colors. The bag itself is complete. Now I just need to make and attach the straps (they will also be matching Ninja Turtle colors). What a cool creation - and even cooler that I made it up myself. No pattern, no Pintrest photo... just an idea in my head! I hope the straps work the way I think they should.
This bag now measures 17 inches wide by 17 inches deep. It took almost an entire skein of yarn to produce over three days (so far). Tomorrow I plan to do the straps and get a finished photo. Then onward to #4's bag (which I already started while waiting for Tony to bring home the new yarn). Hers will be a cross-body purse with flap and button/loop closure made from variegated pink/purple/blue yarn.
Rosemary has one eye peeking open, and Sage is working on both eyes peeking. Little Basil is still with us as of bedtime tonight. His eyes remain closed for now. This is really early to have eyes starting to open, so I'm not sure what to think of it.
Sage has a dark mark over her nose and under her chin. I suspect this isn't coloring, but instead damage from falling off the cat tree before I was able to convince Floki to keep the babies in a box on the floor.
Today is Floki's third birthday. Happy birthday Floki! She was the runt of the Viking litter, and the sole survivor after her sister (Lagertha) died at 11 weeks old due to a bad reaction to a vaccination. Both of her brothers (Rollo and Ragnar) died as babies (Rollo had birth complications and Henry smothered Ragnar because I felt bad for them and put a blanket in the box).
I am continuing to make progress with the bag for #5 that I am crocheting with his green yarn. He has asked to have the top rim done in a variegated yarn he found in my closet. He also wants two handles, so it will be more like a toy tote and less like a bag. I guess that means I won't have to create a flap like I put on my purse. That could save me some time!
The green bag is currently 8-1/4" deep by 17 inches wide. When I'm done I'm hoping to make it at least 12-16 inches tall. It has to fit all of his Ninja Turtles toys, including both of his TMNT vehicles and all of his actual turtles and their accessories. When I'm done with this project, I think I will try making a purse for #3 or #4 next. If nothing else, it's giving me a sense of purpose in an otherwise stressful time frame.
Amanda's blog about everything, important and trivial.