Sleepy baby

Would you look at that face!

Of all the inside cats we’ve had over the years, none has taken to cuddling with me at night like Nosencrantz has! She is very particular about it, and she has actually started to “bully” me to get with the routine! She goes to her corner of the bed which, unfortunately, she starts kneading, which I don’t want because she’s going to put holes in my sheets. Then she sticks her face into my hand, demanding I pet her head. Especially around the eyes. And if I’m doing some last minute checking of my phone before putting it on the charger, she will bash at it with her face until I pet her!

Then she spins around, shoves her head into my hand again, then drops her body down on my arm, the back of her head and neck in my hand, and stretched out to my elbow, while demanding I continue to pet her face with my fingers cupped around the back of her head! Since she also starts kneading again, I usually end up having to use my other arm to grab her front paws to stop her. End result, she’s tucked into a nest between my arms, and happily goes to sleep.

Sometimes when I get up in the morning, she stays, even after I straighten the covers over her.

Of course, all my bedding is absolutely covered in fur. It doesn’t even wash out completely anymore, it’s so stuck into the fibres!

It’s a good thing she’s so darn cute, because she’s such a pain in the butt, too! 😄

The Re-Farmer

It’s a shrimp!

Nosencrantz may turn into a ball of anxiety around the other cats, but she’s completely different, with me!

She has completely adopted me as her own, personal human. Incredibly affectionate. This is her napping after a hard session of “pet my face! Now!” 😄

She has the softest fur of all the cats.

Does it make up for her habit of crapping in all the wrong places? I gotta admit, when I had crawl on my hands and busted up knees to clean up another mess in the shelf behind my night stand at 2am, I certainly didn’t think so!

I’ve blocked off the space now. She has lost one of her hidey holes for when she runs away from the other cats.

After I cleaned everything up, blocked it off, and went back to bed, the little bugger came over and began snuggling me.


I’m such a sucker for the cats.

The Re-Farmer


I ended up doing my morning rounds later than usual today, but I sure had some beautiful views!

We got another frost last night, and the trees look just stunning!

I had a pretty frosted morning, myself – frosted at Nosencrantz, mostly! Way too early in the morning, I heard a strange scratching sound in the shelf behind my night stand; there is a wall of shelves behind my bed that can’t be taken out of the room without somehow dismantling it, so I have my bed frame up against in, blocking some of the shelves. The one behind my nightstand is only half blocked, and it usually the place Nosencrantz hides in when some of the other cats decide to go after her.

The scratching I was hearing?

Yeah. She decided to poop in the shelf, rather than one of the freshly cleaned litter boxes. In the farthest corner, of course.

Then, after I cleaned it up and went back to bed, Nosencrantz started scratching again.

In a litter box.

She wasn’t using it. Just scratching in it.

And on it.

And the floor around it.

And the baby jail walls next to it (yeah, we still have that set up; Butterscotch loves to nap in it!)

She eventually stopped, but then Butterscotch tried to make a jump onto the window ledge, failed and somehow managed to knock over the small food bowl I’ve got tucked in the corner, partially blocked by a shelf specifically to prevent that from happening!

After cleaning that up, I tried to get a bit more sleep, but then Leyendecker and Cheddar started scratching at the door, wanting in.

I finally gave up and got up, heading to the kitchen to start the kettle going to heat water for the outside cats. It was still kinda dark, and I didn’t have my glasses, so I was perplexed by a glowing blue box in the wrong spot. The Cat Lady had given us their older water fountain for the cats, and it’s plugged in and set up in front of a shelf in the dining room. It has a blue light that makes the base glow, and you can see the water level. Well, the base was several feet away, in front of the entry to the kitchen – and the top part, with the fountain, was gone! I found it pushed up against another shelf.

I’m blaming Susan for this. She has a thing for digging in water bowls and splashing all over. I’m guessing she must have pulled the top right off – then kept splashing in the water, from the looks of the floor!

Still better than having to crawl on the floor to reach and clean up poop, though!

Nosencrantz just climbed onto my chest as I write this, and is getting all cuddly.

As if I could forgive her that easily!

Awww… she’s curling up and settling down now, purring like crazy.

I am such a suck for the cats.

The Re-Farmer

Got my goat!

I like little things.

The dash of our vehicles is decorated with faux jewels and tiny plastic animals, set up in amusing poses. At least it did until we prepped it for trade in (it’s going to be scrapped if that happens, so we left the faux jewels. 😁) Across the top of my monitor, I’ve got a row of tiny Kinder Egg dinosaurs and a couple of tiny chickens. As we cleared the house of my parents’ stuff, we found other tiny objects that we kept, ranging from toys they had for the grandkids, to miniature decorative plates and so on and I also kept.

Under my monitor, I had a number of tiny objects, such as a miniature treadle sewing machine, unique little rocks and pebbles, and tiny toy animals.

Note I said “had”.

Nosencrantz discovered them.

I keep finding them on the floor, so I started to hide them under my keyboard.

I am now regularly awakened by the sound of her scratching under my keyboard, trying to get at them!

This morning, she got my goat.

She even chewed off a leg!

We just got them a bunch of new toys, but nooooo…. she had to go and get my goat!

Why is she so determined to get these tiny animals???

The Re-Farmer

Our 2022 garden: potting up, and new sprouts!

After checking on the plants last night, I ended up shifting things around earlier than expected. Some of the Cup of Moldova tomatoes at the top of the mini-greenhouse were getting too big! With not being able to remove the cover, it was actually a bit difficult to get them out. The door flap doesn’t open all the way to the top of the cover, so I only had a few inches to get them through.

I was going to just take them to the sun room, but they were so tall, I decided to pot them up, using some pots we found when cleaning up the old basement.

I had to commandeer a larger bin being used for something else, to fit them! The plants were potted with about 3 inches of their stems buries. If I’d had deeper pots, I could easily have buries another 3 inches.

There were also some new seedlings I finally was able to get pictures of.

These were taken last night. The Yellow Pear tomatoes had started to come up earlier, and there were finally some Chocolate Cherry sprouts showing. Among the squash and gourds, there was that one Giant Pumpkin pushing it’s way through – then a Tennessee Dancing Gourd suddenly popped up!

This is how they looked this morning. It’s always so exciting to see how fast they grow, once they germinate! That Giant Pumpkin looks like a tiny Audrey II, about to sing “Feed me, Seymore!”. 😀 Since this picture was taken, the leaves have already opened.

The tomatoes handled their first night in the sun room quite well. The only place there was room to put them and still get light was at the bottom shelf. The shop light we’re using to give light from the inside isn’t long enough to light up all the shelves we’re using. The highest shelf we’re using only gets light during the day, so that’s where we’ve got smaller bins of toilet paper tube pots seeded with the tulip trees, paw paws, and some of the kulli corn. Until they germinate, low light is not an issue for them.

These tomatoes are the same age as the ones we’d brought to the sun room earlier; they’d been left in the mini-greenhouse because they were smaller. Now, they’re bigger than the ones that have been in the sun room for a while, but the sun room ones looks sturdier, though they also still have a bit of cold damage on their leaves from their first night in the room. The greater temperature swings make for stronger plants plants, almost like hardening them off.

One of the things I did before coming in from my rounds was got into the garage and grab the folding closet doors we found in the outhouse when we cleaned it up. We’ll need more space for plant pots in the sun room, and we’re going to use it, probably with the new saw horses I bought, to set up a “table” over the swing bench. Depending on the height, there should still be room for Potato Beetle to curl up on the swing bench when he wants to be in the sun room again. 🙂 He, I’m happy to say, leaves the plants completely alone.

Unlike Susan, who desperately wants to eat them all.

Or Beep Beep, who wants to sleep on them.

Or Tissue, who wants to dig them all up.

They do make this whole “starting seeds indoors” thing much more difficult that it should be!

These tomatoes, however, are now safe in their new pots and new location. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

Of course…

I recently crocheted pairs of fingerless gloves for my daughters, to help keep their hands warm while at their keyboards upstairs – the little ceramic heaters my husband got for them do keep things warm up there, but fingers still get chilled! Especially my older daughter’s drawing hand.

That left me with a few little balls of leftover yarn. I had a few things in mind to possibly make with them, so I kept them in a bag of yarn I keep by my office chair.

Tissue discovered them.

For nearly two weeks now, I’ve been finding them all over. I’ve followed trails of yarn down to the basement. I’ve unwound yarn from around the dining table and chairs. I’ve had to untangle them from the wheels of my office chair. I’ve discovered yarn barfs in cat hair dust bunnies the size of Alberta. I’ve repeatedly had to untangle the yarn and rewind the balls. Any potential projects I had in mind went out the window, as there was just no way to get all the cat hair out of them.

While Tissue has been the one so dedicated to pulling out these balls of yarn, no matter how covered or hidden they were, once the yarn was out, there was usually several other cats involved in the destruction by the time I find them.

I couldn’t let the yarn go to waste, so I figured, what the heck. They want the yarn that badly, I’ll make a mat for them and they can have it. It’s not like it can be used for anything else than cat toys, now!

While I was working, I had the two balls of yarn at my feet while stitching and watching a video on my computer. Part way through, my husband wanted to look up some information about my video card, so I put the mat aside by my keyboard and stepped away for a bit. There was just a couple of minutes in between my husband leaving my computer, and my returning to it. In that time, I found I had to unwind the red yarn from the wheels of my office chair again, and both strands had been chewed through. I had to knot them together to be able to continue. Which I normally wouldn’t do with crochet, but it’s for the cats, and they don’t care if there are knots.

I finished off the leftover yarn and gave the cats their new mat.

Which they are now completely ignoring.

I have made a number of mats and cat beds for them. Usually, the moment the item hits the floor, there’s a cat on it, checking it out. I’ve never made one out of yarn they’ve been so eager to steal and play with before.

Not one came over the check this one out. Not even to sniff at it.

Because, of course.


The Re-Farmer

Kitty count and plant prison

I notice the cats outside have been really appreciating the digging of paths around the yard!

I counted “only” 17 in total this morning. I did not see the newcomer. Hopefully, they are all doing fine in their little shelters all over, when they’re not using the ones in the yard.

Rolando Moon had been posing like an adorable loaf, but in the time it took me to dig my phone out of my pocket, she decided to come over for pets.

I’ve had some frustrations with the indoor cats and the repotted plants that are finally inside. Though they have been liberally – even excessively – doused in cayenne pepper, we seem to have one cat that is not at all bothered by it. I think it’s Cabbages, but I’m not sure. They do their dastardly deeds when we are not around to see them. Yesterday morning I into the living room and found two of the aloe vera had been thoroughly dug into, with soil scattered all over. My daughters cleaned that up while I was outside, thankfully.

Last night, our vulnerable pots went into plant prison.

The big aquarium greenhouse set up has been repurposed to house the aloe. The two on the right were the ones that got dug up. We’ll see if they survive! My daughter’s orchids will be going in here, too, because the cats keep going after them, even though they are all hanging kokedama.

We brought in the aquarium lights yesterday evening, but I didn’t turn them on until today. They had been in the sun room and were pretty cold.

It didn’t take long for Saffron to rediscover her favourite butt warmer!

It’s a good thing she is such a tiny little thing. 😀

We’ll be using the aquariums as greenhouses to start our onion seeds in a couple of months. Hopefully, by then, the aloe will be well established in their pots, and we’ll be able to move them out to make room.

The Re-Farmer


Just look at this criminal beast!

I was just heading out to do my morning rounds, when I discovered crime had happened, and the criminal was watching me. Nicco, this time!

I let my daughters know, and when one of them came down to the old basement, she found FOUR cats had gotten through! Once the Spice Girls figured out how to unblock the top of the screen, all the other smaller, lighter cats are following their lead. 😦

I really wish we could find a way to stop this. There are just too many fragile and dangerous things in the old basement. So far, they have managed not to cause destruction, but I’ve found stuff on the floor showing that they are climbing the shelves. Shelves full of glass bottles, vintage canning jars and cleaners. And I’m always concerned that one of them will knock aside the cover to the sump pump reservoir. At least it’s dry in there right now, but still…

As I write this, I hear noises from the basement… The top is blocked off again, but I suspect we will find a cat in the old basement again.


The Re-Farmer

Protecting the jade tree, and critter capers

So… we’ve had problems with the more recent additions to our cat colony indoors. They’ve decided our plants are for them to play with and dig in.

One of the pots we’ve been trying to protect is has the parent jade trees that we brought with us when we moved. During the drive out, it got cold enough to kill some of the plants in the back of the van, and most of the jade tree died off, but it amazingly did recover and has been doing very well.

Now the cats are trying to kill it.

Mostly Cabbages, and her dirt digging, but the other cats have discovered that jade tree leaves make good toys. We’ve done a number of things to protect the plants but, with this particular pot, some cats – and we’re not sure which ones – have managed to knock aside the things we’ve used to protect it, and get right into the middle of the pot. Along with the soil being dug up, the stems of the plants were being bent outwards, with some getting snapped off.

Yesterday, I engaged in a bit of a rescue.

You can see cat toothmarks on a number of leaves!

I was able to get the pot outside – a job that required one daughter with a spray bottle to keep the cats at bay, while the other opened the doors for me.

The pipes that you see are the spare uprights from one of the shelves we put up in the old basement. The basement is too low for the full height of the shelves, so we never added on the top self. In trying to protect the several jade trees in this pot, I shoved 4 of the unused uprights from the shelf into the pot, and used them and some cotton yarn as supports.

I discovered they also work really well to water the pot. I can just pour water into a pipe to water from below. The pot is actually a self-watering pot, but the opening to the reservoir on the bottom is small and hard to get at.

In their efforts to get at the middle of the pot, the cats ended up pushing the yarn down the pipes, and they were no longer supporting the plant stems. All the stems were bent and spread outwards, like a massive spider. So I redid it, this time making sure to loop around some of the bigger stems. It should not slide down anymore.

I’m amazed by how resilient jade trees are!

After replacing the dug out soil in the middle, I had the thought that using some of the grass clippings and garden soil mix I had left over from “hilling” the potato bags might help keep the cats out of it. Then I gave the whole thing a nice shower with the hose, with water that had been warmed by the sun.

When it was brought back inside, one of the first things that happened was several cats going over to investigate.

Then start chewing on the grass clippings.


They were so determined to get at it, I ended up trying to put a leftover piece of wire mesh around the bottom. It wasn’t big enough, so I tried protecting the rest with a transparent recycling bag. We still had to make liberal use of the spray bottle to keep the cats away!

Of course, we couldn’t stay in the living room all evening, monitoring a plant pot. Coming back a couple of hours later, we found some determined cat had managed to get under the plastic and spread grass clippings all over the place.

And our vacuum cleaner is broken, with no budget to replace it until next month.


In the end, with the assistance of a daughter keeping the cats at bay while opening doors for me, we moved the pot into the sun room to keep it safe.

In the process, I discovered a piece of the jade tree had been broken off, so I stuck it into another jade tree pot; a smaller one with a plastic ring cut from the top of a Costco corn puff container to protect it.

That was yesterday.

This morning, I was awakened by the noise of cats trying to get through the screen between the basements again. There’s nothing I can do about that, so I tried to ignore it.

Then I heard the big thump.

Going into the living room, I found one of the pots with an aloe vera in it, on the floor.

Thankfully, between the dense plant and the plastic protector around it, it didn’t actually fall out of the pot and virtually no soil was lost.

As I put it back on the shelf, I saw the dirt.

The smaller jade tree, with its protective collar, had been dug into. Some small, determined cat managed to reach through the opening and get at the soil.

I moved the pot to the dining table, went back to clean up a bit, returned to the dining room, just in time to discover Susan – SUSAN!! – on the table, trying to get into the pot.


I ended up shoving some mesh fabric around the opening, but it looks like this pot is going to have to go into the sun room, too.

A while later, I went to do my rounds outside and found two cats on the platform under the basement window, looking at me. Possibly Turmeric and Susan. Or Saffron and Big Rig. It’s a bit hard to see through the two layers of mesh on the window.


I let the girls know they were there. The last time I tried to go into that basement to get cats out, I popped a kneecap on the stairs.

So… that was my start to the day. :-/

The Re-Farmer