What The Hay

Crafty Hayseed Goodness!

The test… February 23, 2008

Filed under: family — clothespin @ 12:44 am

So, where have I been?

Hmm…. Well, I think I’ve been off in the land flippin out.  Around the time of my last post (months and months ago) I did a little experiment.

You see, despite being a yankee and theoretically having a genetic dislike for collard greens, I found myself nearly stalking the vendor of said greens at the local farmers market.  Not because he was cute, but because he had greens and I NEEDED them.  I had been convinced that all yankees were nuts and that greens were the greatest thing on the earth and why didn’t my parents feed these to me?  I ate vast quantities of these for weeks, along with pink-eyed peas and corn bread.  My husband thought that I was nuts.

I also had developed extremely sore boobs.  So sore that some nights, I couldn’t sleep on my stomach.  It was bad.

Despite having a degree or two in biology, I didn’t catch on very early.  Finally, one day, I bought the little experiment in a box and took the test… yes, the pee test.

I am pregnant!

Really, right now, I have my moments of excitement.  But, back then, I was seriously flippin out.  We had been not trying to prevent this for about 2 years by this point and I had convinced myself that it was just never going to happen.  I had become OK with this – to the point that we were even talking adoption.  But, to suddenly be possessed by this little creature that would change my life forever… well, it took a bit of adjustment.  And, I have been adjusting ever since.

Incidentally, she is a she and her name is Rose.  She is due the first week of May, so there may be more lulls in my posting.  Right now, our life is really busy.  Because, just to make life even more entertaining, we also just bought a fixer upper house.  Not that we’re nuts or anything.

So, now I’m in the midst of trying to make curtains for her room, paint her room, paint the kitchen, figure out how all of my craft stuff is going to fit into my new TINY office/craft room…   And, we have 2 more months to go.  So, stay tuned for the lunacy…


Oh Beautiful September 5, 2007

Filed under: funny stuff — clothespin @ 9:44 am

My friend Monique is a fun, quirky lady. She wrote the following poem this summer, after her crazy sister started the first couple of lines for her… Sing it to the “America the Beautiful” tune… Now, I wonder what kind of snack I have in the kitchen? Enjoy!

Oh Beautiful for Dessert

by Monique Reed


Oh, beautiful for spice-ous pies
For amber waves of crust
For purple berry filling ooze
And cool whip is a must!
All hail, Dessert, all hail, Dessert!
God shed his grace on thee!
This lesson teach: a piece of each,
Bedamned to “sugar free!”



Oh, beautiful for layer cake
Or Bundt or pound or cup
And angel food is always good
Just watch me eat it up!
All hail, Dessert, all hail, Dessert!
Don’t have to ask me twice
You keep your greens and lima beans–
I’ll have another slice


Oh, beautiful for puddings sweet
Of chocolate, bread, or rice
With cream or fruit, sprinkles to boot
And butterscotch is nice!
All hail, Dessert, all hail, Dessert!
Enjoyed with fork or spoon
Each scrumptious taste hangs round my waist
Oh, let dessert be soon!


Oh, beautiful for ice cream’s glide,
Sorbet’s refreshing grace
In summer’s heat, they’re light and sweet
Oh, watch me stuff my face!
All hail, Dessert, all hail, Dessert!
Where are my scoop and bowl?
No chocolate sauce? Oh, what a loss!
Dessert delights my soul!



Oh, beautiful for cookies round
Or square or cut or dropped
Crispy or soft, meringue’s sweet loft
With nuts or frosting topped
All hail, Dessert, all hail, Dessert!
A cookie is just right
Can’t eat just one–A dozen’s fun
Why are my pants so tight?



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Dragonfly Cloth August 29, 2007

Filed under: Alabama,projects — clothespin @ 3:58 pm

Ah, Alabama. Yes indeed, I can profess great love of the state that claims heritage to both the first and third world. Much around Auburn has been a pleasant surprise. A lovely dog park, much lower traffic in the town, access to national forests a short drive away and a few other things that I can’t remember right now. These are the happy first world things.

The third world things though, well, they nearly take away all of the points earned by the first world. In fact, the drivers license folks very nearly take the cake for the most asinine system ever conceived in all of organized intelligent humanity. A process that in other states takes at most an hour, maybe two… took all day for me yesterday.

After arriving at 6:30am (yes, in the morning!) to get into line outside of the office, which, by the way, is no where near a government building and is in a strip mall of moldering outlet stores, I began knitting. I came prepared, knowing that I would be there a long time… a little project that would take my mind off of the long line and produce something I can use. Plus, it had a dragonfly on it…
After making it inside of the office at 8 am, the nice little girl at the desk said that hubby and I had mis-read the requirements and I would not be able to get a license with the papers that I had. Did I mention that I got up at 6am for this? So, loosing my place in line, I drive home, looked for the birth certificate still in a box, and decided that lines at neighboring counties couldn’t be as long. Right?

The neighboring county that had an office open yesterday said that indeed, their line was short, come on down. So, a 45 minute drive in the scenic Alabama hills later, I arrived at this tiny ratty mobile home in a huge lot behind something that resembled a government building. As soon as I entered, a lady in a blue uniform informed us that any new folks that had arrived (at 10am) would most likely not be seen today as there were too many other folks in line ahead of us. There were 6 people. It was 10am. So, I left.

I then went shopping and ate lunch, then went by hubby’s office to show him the pretty new purse that I had bought (still not sure about it) to replace my not as grown up purse… He then told me that the line at the place I started at in the morning was reportedly shrinking, so go back and see how it was.

I arrived, got my name on the list, and sat, knitting on the same cloth, for another 2 hours. Some of the folks in there had been there since 8am and were still there. There was no guarantee that I would get a new license that day, but my options were sit and hope or go home and get up again at 6 and sit for at least another 2 1/2 hours – AGAIN. So, I stayed and knit, and jokingly offered the dishcloth as a bribe to the cute girl at the desk… (though, I’m not sure that I was kidding…)


I did get the license and I still have my cloth. I found the pattern at the Purple Duckie. It’s made with hemp yarn, which made it a bit stiff to work up, but should hold up well to daily use. I like it pretty well, it was easy to make and didn’t take too long… I may even make another. Hmm… I wonder if my knitting needles fit into that new purse?


Too Short a Time August 26, 2007

Filed under: Family & Critters — clothespin @ 10:41 am

It truly was too short a time that we got to know and love our little Delilah girl. Though she had been improving and even more energetic and alert than in the days before, things did not work out as hoped. I sat with her all evening as we gave her the IV drip, fed her, loved her.   In the afternoon, she’d had a terrible coughing fit, bringing up a lot of goo from the pneumonia in her lungs.  It weakened her terribly and while concerned we didn’t know what to do about it.  After an accident on the couch and continued potty break out side, she came trotting into the house, full of energy. She went straight to her crate and then vomited the meal that she’d eaten hours ago… at that point she was unconscious. Hubby lifted her out and put her on the couch, trying to help her, where she died. Thankfully, we had the pink juice and administered it to her to help with the final stages of death.   The vet thought that she’d thrown a clot from her lungs and died from that… It was horrible and sad and we are devastated. We will bury her in the morning and hopefully she will find more peace in death than she did in life. At least at the end, she knew that we loved her, that we fought hard to keep her and that we were with her through to the end. It is all anyone can ask, I suppose, when that time comes.

While two weeks is a short time, it seems that it is enough time to fall in love.

We love you Miss D and we will always remember you.


Comfort in the Pink Juice August 23, 2007

Filed under: Family & Critters — clothespin @ 12:42 pm

Yesterday was a hard day for Delilah. The vets said that her lungs were doing worse and while there was still hope, there wasn’t much of it. Still, in the two other distemper cases that they’d had in the past years, both had made it through this phase… but it was touch and go the entire time.

Before sending us home for the night, one vet agreed to ease my concerns … When Carbon was so very sick, the night before we helped him across the bridge, I was all alone with him. It was horribly hard and he was in such extreme pain and discomfort… and there was nothing that I could do. I did NOT want to repeat that experience with D. So, the vet sent us home with a shot of enough sedative to either completely knock her out or hopefully end the pain all together. She has an IV catheter in her leg, so administration would be easy, and we’ve had lots of experience with IVs with Carbon. This comfort of pink juice is what made me OK with bringing her home. I didn’t want to watch her go through a very painful final stage where she couldn’t breath and slowly die in agony. It wouldn’t be fair to either one of us and this way, if that moment ever came, I could help her to the bridge, too.

Happily, while close by, the bridge stayed far enough away as to not warrant the need of the pink. D struggled a bit with her breathing, pneumonia does that to a dog, but the meds and nose drops and my constantly wiping the sticky yellow snot out of her nostrils (despite her annoyance with that) seems to have done the trick. She ate a TINY amount of baby food, drank water and pottied outside. She growled once at Monster as he approached her couch and wagged her tail at hubby and I as we came close to her. She seems to have been more alert and herself than she has been in days. Slowly, hope began to build in me, even as the quality of late night/early morning TV lessened.

The vet called after I dropped her off this morning – she was pleasantly surprised. It is good to know that one of the new antibiotics is helping and that her lungs are starting to kick out the gunk that is in them. She is also getting much thinner – and that is not a good thing. Already very skinny when we got her, I can see her continue to shrink – the ingestion of food is critically important as she has nothing in reserve to draw upon. Hopefully, the baby food is more appetizing tonight. I think that we’ve graduated from “extremely cautiously optimistic” to just “cautiously optimistic” – but we’ll have to wait and see what the night brings. No matter how well she is doing now, there is also the grim reality that of all dogs who survive this mucosal phase, 50% will still enter the neurological phase and have to be put down. Hopefully, we will not be in that particular half of the statistic.

So, we are tired, poor and hopeful… it could be worse and it still might be. She seems to be a strong little dog … at least today, there is a wee bit more hope.


It is better to have loved and lost… August 21, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — clothespin @ 5:25 pm

than to never have loved at all.

I’m not entirely sure that I buy that. It sounds to me like a platitude told to the people who are suffering a great loss in a vain attempt at making them feel better. Basically, I think that it is crap. The reality is that it is better to have loved and been able to love many years and have your love grow old and pass away after a long and happy life rather than catch some stupid disease and die the first month that you knew her.

It isn’t confirmed, but Delilah probably has distemper. Only 50% of dogs infected with the disease live… and we are early in the game right now. She is feeling better right now, the fever is under control though the vomiting is not… She was on an IV antibiotic this afternoon, got fluids and nutritional support. The vet wanted to leave her at the clinic over night – but she would be all alone, and I couldn’t do that. How horrible would it be for her to have something happen, problems breathing or seizures and have no one there to comfort her. She doesn’t know me well yet, but at least she knows me and maybe loves me. I know that I love her.

Maybe I”m putting Monster at risk but after how many days together, isn’t he already exposed? Hopefully his vaccinations work, I’ve checked the records and he’s had all of the shots that cover this… hopefully this futile attempt at love won’t endanger the other love of my life. I don’t know. I’m keeping them separated but apparently the virus persists on clothes and floors and in the air… how do I sanitize the entire house? What if I’ve killed Monster, too?  But isn’t it too late?  Isn’t the virus already in the house?  I could go on a cleaning frenzy with the little bit of energy that I have left and would it do any good?  Or would it only make me feel better?

Please keep us in your thoughts… and please vaccinate your dog and love on them while you can.   And, thank you for all of the support… hopefully we’ll make it through …


Sick Little Girl

Filed under: Family & Critters — clothespin @ 6:35 am

So, Delilah is REALLY sick. She came from the shelter with a cough/vomiting phlegm stuff but it had gotten better over the weekend. She was perky and growling at everyone and starting to act like what might be her normal self.

So, Sunday morning, we took her on a short walk with Monster at the local park. I thought she was just tired and really out of shape… Sunday night, I had to hand feed her dry food. Monday morning, she would only eat a little bit of canned ID dog food…

The lethargy became really bad and she no longer followed me from room to room. So, I called the vet that had spayed her and we went in at 5 yesterday. The vet is nice enough but I have some serious concerns about her competency. They never took her temperature for one. She’s sick and may have Kennel Cough and no one thinks to take a temperature? They did blood work to make sure that she didn’t have an infection and sure enough, her white blood counts were well within normal range. The vet did decide to listen to her heart and lungs before leaving, and after a 10 minute conversation with me… Delilah’s lungs were full and she was having a hard time breathing in and out. Still, the vet wanted to wait until this morning for x-rays and then think about putting her on some sort of antibiotics. She kept saying that it is probably something chronic but never thinking that perhaps it is advanced stage kennel cough? Especially with the green/yellow oock coming out of her nose and eyes?

With her condition worsening at home, we finally managed to find the thermometer. Normal dog temp is 101-102.5… and hers was 107.2. We didn’t know what to do. By this point, I was crying and really upset… I called the local vet school and the lady on the phone said that her fever was “scarey high” – but no indication if it was critical or just serious. After some serious thought, we decided that we would try to control the fever on our own for a few hours first – the vet school would be there all night if we were unsuccessful. Plus, aside from an IV, we thought that we could provide nearly everything on our own…

We gave her some guaifenesin (the recommendation of the lousy vet after my pleading for something to help) for her lungs, which did seem to help, some aspirin for the fever and lots of gallon plastic bags of ice all over her body. I was up all night, taking her temperature every hour and writing it all down. Replacing the ice bags on her body periodically… I gave her droppers full of water and some high calorie goo that PetCo sells for convalescing dogs.

Her temperature slowly came down through the night and a couple of hours into it, dropped below 107. Right now, we’re hovering around 104 so while still very sick, I don’t think that the fever isn’t life threatening. She has to be carried out to the yard to potty and then she was only able to stand long enough to pee. That she’s peeing at all is a good sign – I keep squirting the water into her mouth. I’m waiting for the vet office to open so that I can get her in this morning. We will be using a different vet this time, one who hopefully got her degree at a vet school and not a cracker jack box. This vet was recommended by a local friend… I only hope that they will work us in. If not, off to the vet school we go…

I will post more as we know more, but for now she is OK. The joys of adopting a shelter dog… while she is very very ill at this point she is also very lucky – I hope.