Tuesday, September 29, 2009

1 month

I've been feeling rather down lately... not exactly unexpected but it's certainly not fun and I'm conscious of not letting it spiral into out and out depression. It's been a month since we sent Veri to the Bridge and two dogs still feels like an amputated limb. You still feel like it should be there and step into life by habit only to find air where your mind remembers there should be firmity and start tumbling.

I've spent the better part of the past few months just working on getting through everything and trying to keep our household (relatively) chugging along. The lambs are now more independent - and Luna's sore leg seems to have come good thankfully. The major repairs are more or less done and so the constant stream of insurance adjustors, assessors and repairmen tromping through my space from sparrows fart until sundown is over for a few weeks. Everything is returning to what passes for normalcy in our house and the shock of it all has worn away leaving the starkness of it's reality. In a hundred of the small tasks that make up the day I'm reminded I will never have my little blue dog with me again.

I'm finding the finality of it is hitting me in odd ways as it sinks in. With other losses I grieved of course but also felt that another would help me, whereas where after Cami and now Veri I've not been able to think of a point where I could contemplate another. A number of people are sure this is just a temporary thing but for someone whose life has been all about her dogs, it's an eerie and uncomfortable thought to be having at all. I have a very hard time even looking at other dogs right now. It's not even that they're doing something that reminds me of her or that I wish I was there showing or whatnot... it's just that those dogs are there, and alive and their owners have them to love still. It's the ghost of all the moments we'll never have I see in those dogs.

I went to the Royal and ruined every one's time. Poor Nic, I didn't really want to go back to watch the dogs but wasn't really in the mood to do anything else and no I didn't want to leave but I wasn't sure I wanted to stay either. The only minor positive in the day was that I was finally able to pet another dog besides my own and I think that was mostly because it was of a breed so different looking to mine. Several other dog events have caught be by the side as well.

Laurent doesn't seem to really grasp the whole thing. He has become a bit obsessed with talking about her passing and Cami's as well as he tries to nut out the concept of death and forever. I answer everything honestly but sometimes I wish the child came with a mute button for when I need him to just shut up about death and dying already.

Monday, September 21, 2009

I live...

As usual time has gotten a bit away from me. I'm still very wrapped up in my own head at the moment. This has led to much badness in terms of keeping up with correspondence, in that I sit down to start replying to someone and walk off a dozen times and then feel awful for being about a week late and probably making people wonder if I'm mad at them or don't like them or something. Meh. I need to get my act together.

In the midst of this here's what we've been up to:
  • The kitchen is back to normal after the tree crashing through it and is now a nice sunny yellow instead of the dark green it was previously

  • We've spent some time restructuring two raised veggie beds out back, making them six slightly lower beds and spent time planting out some of my little seedlings.
  • After getting up the large (10 bay, each bay being 1.2m wide x 2 m deep) aviary for the chooks, we're now working on the fencing for it a bit each weekend as funds permit.

  • We also went to the Melbourne Royal the other day to watch the Australian Shepherds. It was lovely to catch up with people but I'm afraid I rather put a damper on the day for Nic and La as I wasn't much in a festive mood. I did learn that a breed that had been on my wish list some years back, the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen, IS actually in Australia and spent awhile patting one though.
  • La's lobby for a hermit crab won and we brought home "Crawlit" the crab the other week
  • We've also welcomed ChaCha the chook, also named by La. She appears to be an brown layer cross of some variety and came from a neighbor as she was getting bullied by the hens there. She's rooming with Tiger, one of my friendly little SilkieXs.

  • With the house repaired I've finally been able to test my incubator! I have a dozen std Australorp eggs in it as well as a few Partridge Wyandotte eggs to give it a trial run! 20 days to go!
  • The lambs are growing well, except for poor Luna who came up with a bum leg last week. She either pestered one of the other ewes or it's polyarthritis but either way she gets an injection every day for 5 days to help. A few of the lambs and ewes may be looking for new homes in the future, though I'm not 100% final on my decisions yet.
  • La has been veerrryyy excited about his birthday coming up in October. He's singing himself (a very off key) happy birthday song every day, has decided on his theme (it's going to be a brachiosaurus party... not just any old dino, a brachiosaurus specifically), planned his cake (it's got to be 'berries, mango, strawberry and mandarin dino cake that's green') and would like 'a lot of kids, his Hopie and a lot of people and Ana' there. Ana is a local Aussie breeder for anyone not in the breed and La has a wee crush going on. LOL
  • In keeping with his party, Lily has an actual dress. You may now all die of shock - the child owns something overtly GIRLY and I even think it's cute. LOL We also got her lovely amber teething necklace in the post the other day.
I've also done a few projects which I've forgotten to post pictures of so here they are...

this scarf was actually completed ages ago but I never posted it as I was trying to find yarn for a fringe and haven't found any so.. eh... it's being called completed.

this one is a ribbed neckwarmer in handspun overdyed coloured corriedale thick-n-thin paired with a vintage French button... for when you need a scarf but don't want to be dealing with the wind blowing it up in your face or a baby grabbing it.

And for my KAL group, the September "ABC" dishcloth. I use them for burp rags for Lily and they are the most fantastic burp rags as they absorb heaps without looking gross like face washers do!

Sunday, September 13, 2009


In honour of not wasting any more time, I've been getting out with Hope and Sierra more, which I've been very slack with following Lily's birth. I really can't chalk it down to anything but being slack given how easy of a baby she is, it's just a matter of working it back into my daily routine as I'm a creature of habit. I also discovered after three years of having it (actually, almost four...) that my camera has a video function, which of course I had to try out!

At any rate, here are videos of the little black dog on the sheep. It's in two videos as the wind was going to blow the camera over toward the end of the first! Please pay attention to the clever dog instead of the craptastic handler who keeps flicking signals slower than she should too! ~_~

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Rally, Lily, Hoopie, Veri, Spinning and other Stuff

I keep meaning to sit and write and I have no focus at the moment and even less quiet time to organize my thoughts.

This week has been a full one... on Monday I had hoped to be in Canberra, at the Mother of All Rallies, protesting with thousands of other women, children and their families for the right to choice and equal treatment in birthing options. Unfortunately between vet bills and what we had to pay towards the repairs on the house from storm damage, my funds were down to a dribble. To boot my original lamb sitter and the place we were going to stay bottomed up as well. (Not their faults and I completely understand of course.) I was crushed not to be able to go though.

I was somewhat heartened to hear that it was well heard. There were around 3000 people, who traveled from all over the country. Just before the rally, a 2 year exemption period was announced which is encouraging even if it does rather smack of an appeasing sound byte instead of definitive action. It does rather seem to illustrate they've finally realized the tiger they've grabbed by the tail has teeth and is unwise to continue ignoring though. Some good round ups are at Ilithyia Inspired and Midwife Mutiny. I rather liked this segment of the second reading of the Health Legislation Amendment Bill, spoken by Ian Macfarlane also!

Instead I was at home, caring for La and Lily of course but also working on getting our house sorted, cleaned up, repaired etc. I actually kicked butt on my to-do list... never fails, whenever I'm upset I go on a cleaning-fest, I guess some sort of strange mental link with being able to gain order in some area if I can't tidy my emotions. All things being equal though I think some of the shock of Veri being gone has worn off and the finality is really starting to hit. The wobbles get the better of me several times a day and I'm finding myself absent minded and short of patience with having to have the repair people interrupting me a dozen times a day or people constantly nattering at me over the trivial and innane. Even stuff like a FB ap 'giving me a puppy' ap just days after annoys the crap out of me atm. Laurent is dearly not helping in this area either as he's been especially trying this week, though half of that is probably reacting to the upset he senses in me.

It wasn't all as doom and gloom though. In the tradition of counting ones blessings my beautiful Lilypillie turned 5 months old. Easy-going, full of smiles and giggles and quickly growing into a sunny little person this child is my bliss. Her warm little weight snuggled into my shoulder is heaven. She's teething up a storm which means she's a drooly little gummyshark. She desperately wants to figure out this mobility gig, she is rolling and scooting around on the floor and fascinated with shaking any toy that rattles or crinkles. She surprises a lot of people with how interactive she is, she wants to play and chat and pat your cheeks while squealing delightedly.

It's also was Hope's birthday, which we celebrated somewhat quietly though she got cake and pats a plenty, especially as her birthday fell on the Australian Shepherd Club of Victoria's meeting night, which happened to be at my house. The weather was too soggy to take her out to work on the sheep, so we did that the next morning and as her birthday 'gift' I am actually getting up off my slack post-partum bum and working her more often which she adores.

We also had the last lamb of the season born, a Corriedale x EL single ram lamb who is black and white with brown frosting courtesy of his EL heritage. That makes a total of 9 new lambs, 4 ram and 5 ewe lambs, 2 sets of twins and 5 singles, 5 pure Corriedale and 4 Corrie/EL, more moorit than black.

Last but not least I decided to brave attempting to go to a Spin/Knit-In in Lang Lang. Those of you who know La will appreciate my bravery in entering a room with 40+ women and their spinning wheels, not to mention knitting, felting, drop spindling, weaving, dyeing and machine knitting. We did survive however and got to meet grandridge from Ravelry, as well as winning a cross stitch in the raffle and after 2 years I have my very own spinning wheel! She's a little Tara upright and I loves her! (Still have to think of a name for her!) Apparently the owner had gone into a nursing home and her family was taking them to the tip (!) but were happy to donate them. The club decided to sell them very inexpensively to buy proper looms for some refuges living in the area who have no proper looms at the moment.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Vale Verity

A response from my local MP, Tammy Lobato

I wrote to my local MP (Ms. Tammy Lobato member for Gembrook) regarding her position on the homebirth issue and recieved the rather pleasing response yesterday.

Her response is as follows:

Dear Mrs. Orbitani

I write to thank you for taking the time to write to me in relation to proposed maternity service changes.

I am most passionate about the right of women and their families to choose the option of home birth. I am also very supportive of giving expectant mothers choice in where and how they give birth and to be able to go through this life-changing experience in a manner of their own choice.

Independent midwives perform a vital role in caring for mothers and babies and I support their continued role in maternity services. I also believe they should be entitled to appropriate insurance for their services, as are all other health practitioners.

You have asked me to write to the Federal Minister for Health & Aging, the Hon. Nicola Roxon MP, on your behalf. I have in fact already written to her on behalf of a number of my constituents advocating for the right for women to have home births and to argue for the right of independent midwives to access insurance.

I would be pleased to provide you with a copy of her response when I receive it. I will also continue to monitor the issue closely and speak on behalf of mothers who want to home birth and the midwives who support them.

Yours sincerely,
Tammy Lobato MP, Member for Gembrook