Morning critters

Butterscotch and Nosencrantz were doing very well, this morning. They both seem to be enjoying their recovery period in the sun room! Nosencrantz wants more attention than Butterscotch, but not enough that I can get a good look to see how the ear mite status is. Butterscotch is still so much calmer now. She’ll come over for pets and I was even able to pick her up this morning, but she will not let me check the surgical site. I’m not about to risk injuring it by forcing her; so as long as there aren’t any concerning warning signs, I figure she’s doing fine. Amazingly, she still has shown no interest in trying to escape the sun room, which is so totally different from the past. Granted, when we were trying to keep her in the sun room for lengths of time before, it was because she was about to have kittens. Once she had them, she was more than content to let Beep Beep parent both litters while she tore her way through the screen on the old door.

If this behavioural change keeps up, Butterscotch may actually be willing to become an indoor cat!

We shall see. After all those years outdoors, it would be nice for her final years to be in comfort and safety.

By the time I’m done taking care of the sun room kitties, there’s usually a crowd outside the door, waiting for their kibble! Chadiccus, however, was much more polite about it and wanting attention before food. πŸ™‚

The water in the heated bowl was almost completely gone again, and it had been very full. It does make me wonder what other critters are coming around at night, to drink. The snow around the kibble house and water bowls is too hard packed for tracks. One of these days, it would be nice to have a spare camera set up on the area, just to see what’s going on! πŸ™‚

I’ve not been seeing quite as many cats, all at once, of late. I haven’t seen Potato Beetle in a while. Since he came back, he had been more aggressive about being the Alpha male – though he was tackling the females as much as the males. That seemed to end after I found him with that injury above one eye. It was pretty minor and healing up nicely, the last I saw, but it seems that battle lost him his status. I think I might have seen him this morning, but he slunk away before I could get a good look and be sure.

While putting the food and water out, I heard a loud yowling from the outer yard. I’ve heard it before, but when I when to check, I couldn’t see where it was coming from. This time, I saw Creamsicle Baby out by the pump shack. I’m still not sure it was him, as he’s developed a very squeaky little meow. I went to check closer and decided the pump shack door needed to be shoveled out.

This is where the cats usually get in and out of the pump shack. When the driveway was cleared, a pile of snow was made near the pump shack. While it does not block the door, there’s a ridge of snow in front that’s pretty high. With the winds we’ve been having, more snow has drifted in front of the door. The cats are still squeezing their way through, as you can see in the photo above, but I wanted to make it easier for them. It took breaking up a lot of snow with the ice chipper before I could dig a path, but I got it clear.

The door opens inward, so I didn’t have to worry about digging it out too much. Once I got it clear enough, I went in and cleared away some snow that had blown through the hole.

I had a bit of a surprise when I opened the door, though. One of the lights was on! I forgot to shut it off, the last time I was in there. It’s a CFL bulb, not very bright, and not near a window facing the house, so we never saw that it was on. πŸ˜€ Ah, well. No harm done.

When repairing the south facing window of the pump shack a couple of summers ago, I deliberately left an opening that used to have the chimney from a wood burning stove running through it. The stove is long gone, but with a pile of tires on the outside, and various junk on the inside, it’s a way for the cats to get in and out. The shack itself is just a frame with cladding on the outside, and I noticed a new hole in the wall, where some cladding has broken. It’s not visible from the outside, as there are sheets of aluminum against the bottom of the wall on that side.

On our list of things to work on is to fix up the pump shack. The concrete floor is badly cracked up, and the old cladding – which would be quite a bit older than I am – is looking water damaged and has gaps. It would be awesome to turn this building into a little workshop and, of course, we want to get the old well repaired. There is a lot of stuff in there I just don’t know what to do with, including bags of ancient clothing and rolled up awnings stuffed into the rafters, broken furniture, an old fridge that I remember my parents using for cream cans, and even an old, tiny, two burner electric stove sitting in the corner where the wood burning cookstove used to be. That old cookstove was what we used to heat water for baths, before my dad had the well dug next to the house and got running water and an indoor bathroom. If we can fix the well and fix up the pump shack, we could turn it into a summer kitchen for canning.

That would be very handy.

After clearing a cat path to the door, I put feed out for the deer and birds – interrupting two deer that were at the feeding station! I had to interrupt them again, to go switch out the memory cards on the trail cam by the sign.

That location is a real pain to get to in the winter!!! At least I don’t have to switch the cards as often, there. Between the snow and the plow ridges, I’m not at all concerned that our vandal will fight his way over to the sign and try to steal it, like the old one, or damage it.

Not even the deer will go through the area in front of the sign! A nicely plowed road is so much easier. πŸ˜€

Coming back to the house, I found these two babies, bellies full and watching the world go by in warmth and comfort!

These cats may be semi-feral, but they do get pampered as much as we can! πŸ˜€

Rolando Moon had claimed the prime real estate! She’s such a meany to the other cats, they don’t even try to fight her for this favourite spot.

Gosh, that expression! πŸ˜€

While still a bit chilly today, we’re supposed to warm up quite a bit tomorrow – perfect for taking Beep Beep and Fenrir in to the vet. My Weather Network app on my desktop has suddenly gone haywire, so I used the app that came with my computer.

Of course, all the apps are showing something different, since they all seem to be connected to different weather stations, even though they’re all supposed to be for our specific area. This is the only one that is showing us going above freezing, in the long range forecast. Above freezing in the middle of February? Yeah, I’ll take that, thanks. It’ll make things messy, but I’d rather have a nice, slow melt of all this snow, then for things to warm up all at once, later on. With the amount of snow we have this winter, as much as it’s needed, if it melts before the municipalities get a chance to clear the ditches, we’ll get flooding. Where we are doesn’t get too bad anymore. When I was a kid, there were a couple of sections of road that would get washed out every spring. Since then, a network of municipal drainage ditches have been dug through farmers’ fields that have been doing a good job of preventing that, as has taking trees out along the sides of the roads in strategic locations. There are still a couple of spots that are at risk of being washed out, if there is enough snowmelt all at once, but we are able to use alternative routes to avoid them.

If we have a wet enough spring, we might even be able to do a controlled burn in some sections of the outer yard this year. Wouldn’t that be nice!

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Seeing those warmer temperatures in the forecast has me looking way too far ahead right now! πŸ˜€

The Re-Farmer

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