Journal Entry / Thoughts For Today 08/20/2018

Home Again, Home Again

I was nervous returning home tonite. As I left for the afternoon, I gathered the turkeys and one chick who thinks she’s a turkey and put them in the big run. I searched and searched for my 3 remaining laying hens. They were no where to be found. I left the hen house door propped open with the chance they would be there upon my return.

First thing out of the car, I let my excited dogs out of the cabin, grabbed the flashlight and headed to the garden area.

The dogs, as usual, were running around half crazy, jumping on each other, so happy to be free from the soft bed and pillows they had to endure while I was a away. I do understand that is a hard row to hoe when all you want to do is run and play in an unrestricted environment.

I get out to the hen house and peek around the propped open door with the flashlight and there on the perch are my girls waiting to be secured in their clean and comfy home. I took a breath and locked them in, checked on the baby chicks, and the turkeys and headed back to the cabin.

It’s an extremely dark night. Not many stars, and the moon is obstructed by the intense canopy that covers the compound. I’m thinking as I’m walking about the chickens, because I have one that has been gone for about 2 weeks. I’m sure to predators. I wonder about the secrets that Mother Nature holds and how she has implanted the homing instinct into those chickens and so many other wonderful things that as you live here in the forest you become so aware of, when all of a sudden I am slammed to the ground by 2 rambunctious cowboys. Changed my thought pattern in a hurry, like, am I ok, how’s my back, can I get up? All the while the younger bully boy is licking me and so happy on his level. OK, where’s the flashlight? Can I maneuver around and get up? For those of you who know me, it’s tough getting up off the ground…still, since having both knees replaced. But I do get up, proceed to the cabin, complete my chores and feel blessed that as tough as this life can be here in north woods in trying to live minimally, I know that there has not been one minute that I have regretted leaving the easy life behind. For me, Life is a Journey, and I’m just takin’ it one day at a time. Cabin life, that’s all I need.

The Cowboys

I would like to introduce you to the canine buddies who share our life and our tiny home. They are Dish and Newt, “The Cowboys”.

First, we have Dish. He will be 2 years old in March of this year. He was from a rescue group who provided medical care after his owner surrendered him for lack of cash for treatment. He was 20 weeks old when we picked him up. He is beautiful dark brindle with a white patch on his chest that stretches up under his chin. Dish is a Mastiff/bully mix weighing in about 90lbs now. In comparison to his body, Dishs’ head is huge, and with his mouth open he looks like a land shark. He is a lean, mean muscle machine. When he runs through the woods, he is as graceful as a gazelle. I’ve owned greyhounds in the past and they too are powerful, graceful runners, but nothing compared to Dish. He is completely comfortable running and dodging trees at full speed. He loves the woods with all its’ smells and the quiet sounds of nature. But with all his grace and beauty, Dish is not the brightest bulb in the box. The early extreme medical issues caused him some developmental problems.

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Second is Newt, he is going to be 1 year old in March. Newt is a smaller Mastiff/bully mix weighing in about 45lbs so far. He is a beautiful fawn color, with a white patch on his chest.

Newt is a handful, still a pup, he is a chewer and a digger, with a keen sense of smell. He can dig up a mole a foot under ground. Newt, like Dish, loves his time in the woods. Chasing chipmunks is his favorite thing to do. He races through the woods with his ears on high alert listening for the chipmunks whistling back and forth and his nose to the ground not missing any scents that have passed through. Newt is not graceful or agile, but he is a protector.

We live in an area that is surrounded by absentee owners, sportsmen who use their property three or four weeks out of the year for hunting or cutting firewood. We also have a huge tract of state land that lays untouched by humans a good share of the year. Because of the absence of homeowners or other cabin dwellers, we have a vast array of wildlife that travels around and through our property including black bear and coyote. Although it hasn’t happened yet, I’m sure Newt would have no problem facing down a bear. He is fearless.

We get many questions about their names. Well, life is all about compromise, so we decided that if my husband picked the dog, I would name it and vice verse. Well this time I chose the dog, I mean dogs, so he got to name them both. Their names come from the movie, Lonesome Dove, my husbands favorite, and Dish and Newt were cowboys in the movie. My Dish and Newt are just as rough and tough as you can imagine any cowboy  in the old west were, so their names are very fitting.