Friday, April 15, 2005

Will The Real Friday Please Stand Up
This is the first day this week I haven't had multiple places to go. I was looking forward to staying home and alternating between being outdoors, in the kitchen, and knitting.

This was the list for my peaceful day at home:

  • Knit a pattern repeat on Backyard Leaves
  • Finish writing up Cozy Cables CIC Vest pattern
  • Start second Cozy Cables CIC Vest
  • Go for walk at fish hatchery and check on swans
  • Clean kitchen
  • Make bean and ham soup
  • Rake remaining leaves in front yard
  • Uncover hostas and violets next to barn (more raking)
  • Write a blog post

Instead, the day looked like this:

Pappy on a comforter on the floor after being drugged at the vetsPappy was in pain this morning. We had no idea what kind of pain. His whole body was tense, he didn't want to do stairs or jump on or off his favorite furniture, and his tail was between his legs.

I spent most of the morning being "worked in" at the vets office, then waiting for the sedative to work so they could take x-rays, and then waiting for the x-rays to be read.

The results were inconclusive. Once he relaxed the vet could isolate the pain to his right shoulder. Pappy does have a large scar there from his pre-rescue life.

No bone problems showed in the x-ray and his digestive tract was clear. The vet sent him home drugged, with more pain pills and instructions to call tomorrow.

I put him to bed back in the bedroom, but his people dog instincts kicked in and he staggered out in into the room where Bob and I were sitting. I made him a bed on the floor where he wanted to be. He's been sleeping on it for over eight hours now.

Swans on the nest at the fish hatchery Since Pappy was drugged and Glory was barfing up her annual grass eating binge, I took Sunny to the fish hatchery for a nice walk to check on the swans.

Daddy swan was grumpier today. He started hissing before we ever got to the path. We didn't linger.

There may be cygnets in that nest under their mother's wings. If there are, she's not ready to show them yet. We'll be back.

The fish hatchery is a great place to walk - great paths and so much to see - incentive to visit often.

Eastern hognose snake found under the leaves next to the barn My goal is to rake up several large piles of oak leaves every day. Today I cleared out the hosta, fern, violet bed next to the barn.

Imagine my surprise when I uncovered a thick, brown spotted snake that immediately curled up and hissed at me. (I'm getting hissed at a lot this spring.)

I'm a novice at snake identification. I've been working on learning to identify the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake ever since I was assigned a biological inventory area where Massasaugas have been seen.

Most spotted snakes look alike to me. And they usually slither off so fast I don't have time to grasp the differentiating details.

I thought this might be a Massasauga so I took pictures.

Even though my naturalist friends would have been totally impressed by a Massasauga picture, I was not disappointed to discover it was only a harmless Eastern hognose snake in my backyard.

Three bluebird eggs in the nestbox After the raking was over Sunny and I took a walk in the back field to check the bluebird nest box. There's been a new egg every day for the last three days.

There will probably be two more eggs with the last egg laid on Sunday.

Fourteen days of incubation puts the estimated hatching date on Sunday, May 1, just two days before I leave for Idaho. I'm going to be missing some cute hatchling baby pictures, but I'll be taking some much cuter granddaughter Sydney baby pictures.