Wednesday, January 22, 2014

oh betty … oh itty bitty betty

oh itty bitty betty she has quite a fan club out there and we're long overdue for betty post - with a special shout out ! to both of her godmothers ;-)

Itty Bitty Betty has a new (with love) nickname - the hairless holstein.

I saved her most recent photo for the very end of this post as some of you may want to avert your eyes. She currently looks like a poorly clipped harlequin show poodle - it's that bad. Initially, the hair loss was mainly at the base of her tail, we were worried that it was a flea infection, allergy or possibly worse - mange or some other nearly microscopic parasitical thing. We took her to our favourite, longtime vet Dianne Stevens - who after cooing, oohing, ahhing & lovin' big time on Itty Bitty Betty for some time (Dianne is a crazy cat lady also) - pretty promptly said Nope ! it's caused by stress - Ya huh !! Itty Bitty Betty's nerves are bad, she's anxious and/or possibly bored and grooms, or over grooms, herself to accommodate this new neurosis.

Of course Mama's (moi) taking it very personally. I'm thinking Hey ! Betty we rescued you & spayed you sometime in early summer preventing the near monthly gang raping of you in our yard by every poor abandoned Tom for miles around & thus ending the ongoing cycle of new litters of kittens every month or so for you to try and Mother, we feed you well, we adore you, we do still let you outside during the day (when it's not too cold, too snowy, too icy or too dangerous), we provide you with warmth, comfort, shelter … and you thank us me by telling me your stressed !?!

Our vet thinks Betty has Feline Psychogenic Alopecea as she appears to be in every other respect as healthy as a holstein, her skin, which is so clearly visible now, is soft, supple, pink & healthy looking. She's not behaving at all like a stressed out cat, though there are the occasional huffing, puffing, tormenting events from the boys (Oliver & Virgil) but Betty seems to be holding her own and is in no way hiding, avoiding or running away from them. She has had a lot of major changes in her life (including hormonal/spaying) and I guess change is change - good or bad - it's still a different life for her. Our vet said to not worry about it … I'm considering knitting her a few outfits :-)

Stress in your cat’s life can provoke excessive grooming. This usually involves a change in your cat’s environment such as moving to a new home; a change in the owner’s schedule; the addition or subtraction of a family member, including other animals; aggression among cats in the household; moving furniture around; seeing a new animal outside; or boredom and frustration. In addition, you may be unaware of other stressors in your cat’s life. Self-grooming behavior relaxes cats, so when they become anxious, they may over-groom. Over time, the behavior becomes a habit-forming self-perpetuating cycle, and unrelated to the environmental or internal stressors. It evolves into a type of “compulsive behavior,” and may progress to extreme self-mutilation and self-aggression, signs often seen in feline hyperesthesia syndrome. It is a self-reinforcing behavior, involving the release of endorphins (happy hormones).

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

faith & dragon slaying

this wild, intuitive painting thank you Flora B which I love is by my friend Bee (Billie) who turns 9 on Valentine's Day 

be brave 
be kind 
be true 
be you 

Susan Black

(hey ! that's me ;-)

As some of you already know I'm a huge, huge fan of Oprah's Super Soul Sunday and never miss a week. Recently Oprah's guest interview was with the lovely, loving and ever profound Marianne Williamson - as usual I listened to their chat over and over and over again, getting some new nugget of wisdom & truth each and every time. Here's Marianne on The Law of Divine Compensation, kinda like the law of Karma or another much more evolved method of slaying dragons. I'm sure she may sound pretty woo woo to some but in this year of FAITH for me, the year I am living faithfully & fearlessly, the year I am committed to trusting and believing in the Good, the Fair, the Just, the Kind & the Love - even when I can't see them, even when the bunch of them are all hiding from me deep in the thick dark woods.

Monday, January 20, 2014

faithfully, fearlessly

more scenes from a recent walk to the lands of deserted cottages and along the ice packed crescent beach  

I have come to accept the feeling of not knowing where I am going. And I have trained myself to love it. Because it is only when we are suspended in mid-air with no landing in sight, that we force our wings to unravel and alas begin our flight. And as we fly, we still may not know where we are going to. But the miracle is in the unfolding of the wings. You may not know where you're going, but you know that so long as you spread your wings, the winds will carry you. 

C. Joybell C.

a prayer of sorts, a mantra for sure - I'm trying with all my might to live more faithfully & way more fearlessly

Sunday, January 19, 2014

conquering molehills

this first photo makes me sigh, such beauty / a teeny red forest grows along a fallen log / near the crescent beach / hello my good friend green / ice maps / more life uncovered by mildness / early morning crow / asters / the view at the end of Water St.

Faith is not the clinging to a shrine 
but an endless pilgrimage of the heart

Abraham Joshua Heschel

I've been busy this brand new year slaying dragons & conquering molehills on the pilgrimage to my own heart

Sunday, January 12, 2014

a sunday

Virgil / from the laundry room looking into the kitchen / the boys (Virg & Oliver) sleeping in the pillow topped penthouse pad / looking out into the Northumberland Strait / heather / Miss Winnie D / lichen love / Oliver & Virgil / from the Thinker's Lodge lawn / the dude brainstorming / making breakfast / all the street signs are in English & Gaelic / my fav - clementines / les penthouse pour deux ;-) 

Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it. You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestations of your own blessings. And once you have achieved a state of happiness, you must never become lax about maintaining it. You must make a mighty effort to keep swimming upward into that happiness forever, to stay afloat on top of it.

Elizabeth Gilbert

Can't wait to read Elizabeth's new big fat novel - The Signature of All Things

Saturday, January 11, 2014

mistakes (& some big ones)

Winnie Dixon entering her 16th year - ice be damned / crow + seagull / Oliver, Virgil & Sam / last boat to leave our icy harbour / thai coleslaw - delish ! / the nest aver the boys Oliver & Gussie / before winter really arrived / I do love growing anything / best chapped lip remedy / at the end of Water St. awhile ago / the boys in the penthouse pad / my best girl Dee when we could still walk along the boardwalk

What a waste my life would be without all the beautiful mistakes I've made.
Alice Bag

trying to come to terms with some terrible mistakes I've made this past year - mistakes that continue to haunt me into 2014 - reminding myself just how far I've come and just how much I've learned from these choices/mistakes - trial by fire … that's for sure ;-)

+ Happy, happy birthday Miss Winnie Dixon - 15 yesterday - woo ! hoo !