Saturday, May 19, 2007

I live! Pt 2

We're still unpacking so I don't have photos up yet (have to find the cable to hook the camera to the computer) and we're already off again - this time to Welshpool for a herding workshop with Hope and Sierra for the weekend. So we'll be back Monday.

In the meantime I'll try to recap what's been going on since I posted last. The biggest bit would be that I've got all my babies back with me again! I picked up Hope and Sierra the first thing on the morning we were moving in. I got there and found out both of them hadn't had a bath, which the lady appologised for and warned me I might not want to hug them. I told her they could have been covered in pig muck and it wouldn't have mattered. After enough pats to make me smell as strongly of kennel as they did, away we went to the vets for a nice hydrobath... after a month in a kennel, they needed one! Then home for me to get a bath too! LOL Both my girlies are happy as clams if vibrating from pent up energy and a bit out of shape from not being able to hoon around all day but training... um... what training? They ever had training??? You'd never know it, the little monkeys!

After that we picked up Noir (who is a butterball of purring bliss) from my vets and took our VERY packed car and dog float home! I am also sporting a nice limp to go with this as when we took the float down from the top of the (steep!) driveway where we were staying, Nic lost his grip, the weight was too much for me alone and in an attempt to prevent it from becoming airborn (yes, seriously) I got a nice bit of skin scraped off the top of my foot and knee. :rolls eyes:

I can't say how much I looooooovvvve this place! It's such a pretty place and such a pretty property! I also can't say how much I love being in a place that's OURS instead of a hotel or temporary stop again. LOL We found out some history on the place... apparently it was bought in 1897 by Arthur Tinkham who lived in a bark hut until 1911 when he finished building our place. He was married to Elizabeth Chisholm and as she was Scottish she called the property "Inverness". As Elizabeth was Anglican and her husband Catholic, they weren't able to attend the same church so one of our "bedrooms" was built originally to hold their Sunday services in at home! The front gardens were designed and planted by Baron Bonmula, the gentleman who also designed the Melbourne Botanic Gardens. (Yes, it has my big white gum that I knew any place I was going to get HAD to have.) There is another tree here, a big pine, that was planted in 1911 when the house was built, next to our bedroom window that is in a picture of the property from way back then. (Photo is a gift from the previous owners.) Until 1950 the property, along with surrounding properties were apple orchards. The property remained in his family until 1946 when a family named Taylor bought it. The guy we bought from actually had kind of a neat story... he sort of approached me aside and asked if I was spiritual and believed in pyschics or not. I could hardly hear him as he was talking low, thinking that Nic's surname being Italian, Nic was probably very traditional catholic and not inclined to spiritual matters. However when I said I was he was talking about a white lady in the gardens and psychics coming here and that's what he meant when he said the place was tranquil, not just that the setting was tranquil (although it is) but that it exhudes a spiritual tranquility. I'm not quite sure, but I think what he was saying is that we've got a ghost of a white lady who liked our garden so much she never left!

The first thing Hope, Sierra, Cade and Laurent did was start running in big circles exploring every nook and cranny at top speeds! (Albeit top speeds for La are a bit slower than the others.) Running in big circles around the place has been a "thing" every day since. I think probably 99.95% of photos I've taken since we got here feature dogs at full tilt with bubby in hot pursuit! LOL The other ones were ones of La with a feather wand playing with Noir. While I still wouldn't leave them alone together, supervised they're disgustingly adorable together and La is remarkably gentle with Noir... most of the time. (There was one attempt to rough house with Hope and Noir which Noir was distinctly unimpressed with.) The only bit that's slowing them down is that Laurent has a nice full blown cold, complete with the grumpies and a snotty nose.

It's also been interesting to see Nic adjust to country life. Our neighbors on all sides have cows, specifically beef cows. Our one neighbor has a dozen cow and calf pairs and a big bull in the paddock next to us... Angus. The other neighbor has a bunch of young calfs being weaned from their mums next to us and their mums and some others across the road. They also have a trio of horses. The other neighbors have a mixed lot of cattle of various ages. At feed time, there gets to be a lot of mooing going on at any rate. And if you go out at night, someone sounds the alarm and you hear a cow bellow out the alert to the rest of the herd. We're in a bit of a valley and the first time it happened, it scared the living CRAP out of Nic who reckoned the were-cow was out to get him!

Our other "interesting" happening with the cows has been with Cade. I let him out our back door to potty and he dashed off after some ducks that were in our dam. (These are wild ones and flew off well before he arrived.) That game spoiled he took off like a rocket and cleared to pastures before I figure out what he'd locked in on: the neighbors BULL. The neighbors seriously big, muscle-bound, strapping heavyweight bull. That fool dog was bearing down on him and I could just hear him thinking, "It's bigger than a bunny or pheasant but by gawd I can TAKE 'EM!"

We're busy unpacking now... mostly going good with that. Most of it I packed myself and having moved as often as I have and owning as many breakables as I do, I pack things so that nothing is going to get broke short of a comet falling from the sky and mooshing it into pieces. The only thing I didn't pack is the paintings and frames as our moving company was SUPPOSEDLY antique/delicate experts and would only insure what they'd packed (iow could vouch was packed "correctly"). Well the only things that have been damaged have been the things THEY packed. La's cot has a nice dent in the wood on the backside. (Not visible but not the point.) Nic's TV stand has a big chip out of it. The key is missing from a wardrobe. And the Very Expensive Pictures we got of Laurent's first birthday that we had framed professionally have a big GOUGE IN THEM!!! So freaking steamed! They didn't even wrap them in paper or bubble wrap or anythign, just jammed them into boxes together where they could clang against each other! I am absolutely terrified to open our art collection and see what has become of our delicate old French paintings.
All in all though, this has been one of the best weeks in recent memory! I'm also stunned at how much older La seems all of the sudden. We've got so much more verbal communication going on and him understanding how to manipulate his environment (tools, guiding me to what he wants to see or have named, using stools and remotes to get specific responses, counting (even if it only one, two, un, deux) etc. etc. He really wants to help at whatever the task is... cleaning, sorting, unpacking, taking care of the animals - he's watching, making mental notes, reproducing behaviour he sees etc. We're also discovering more of our "boyness" as well and are obessessed with work trucks, tractors, cars and dinosaurs - particularly ones that roar LOUDLY, and pounding things (his hammering bench and anything he wants to use as one, drumming etc.) His vocabulary is stretching out and new words are popping up literally every day, quite often as soon as I tell him the name of the thing and he's half the time ASKING for the name of an item he doesn't know the name of, then repeating it in toddlerese. (Apricot = pwe-caw, grape = gay PUH, chicken = ticken)
At any rate, since I've got to be up EARLY it's time for me to go to bed!

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