Monday, January 24, 2011

The House Pumas

After stealthily ignoring the pumas for most of the morning, I managed to catch them on their perches.

Here's Toby on the back of the sofa. Toby's second favorite perch is on this Scottish Blackface pelt. His favorite perch is the very top of the kitty tree. The two kitties used to share this perch. Now Toby lops over on all sides all by himself. Kat still fits neatly inside.

And here is Kat who took over my chair while I was stalking Toby and capturing his spirit in the black box. I caught her while she wasn't looking, at least not looking at the lens.

This is our other house kitty - no longer a puma. She's actually doing fairly well for a 15 year old kitty. Spike disappeared for days last year. Sometime in there she got injured and almost starved. She managed to come home, but I didn't think she'd live. Obviously, she lived, but didn't heal well, so now she's our "broken" kitty with a pronounced limp in the rear. She gets around well enough to climb onto the living room sofa and chairs and mostly keeps to herself and seems happy. She came in to see what I was doing - stalking her nemeses, Kat and Toby.
Later, Toby wrestled me into my chair, where he held me down and forced my hand to repeatedly stroke his fur, while he mesmerized me with his enchanting buzz. It was all a plot to get his spirit back. It worked.
- Franna

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Toby and Kat

Almost 2 years ago, I found these kittens amongst the straw bales in our trailer. Today, they're happy and healthy house pumas. The calico is Katrina (the Calico) and the tabby is Toby (the Tabby). At the time it was a big decision to take them and bring them indoors where their feral mother wouldn't be able to find them. I'm glad we chose to raise them. :-)

Friday, January 07, 2011

Adventures at the Beach

Dave and I started our life together as a couple 11 years ago very near this site, on January 1, 2000. There was so much hoopla about how all electronics were going to die or malfunction as the calendar turned over to Y2K. Businesses large and small updated their computer systems and installed work arounds to keep the calendars intact and continuous. It all worked! As we sat on the beach at the turn of the year, drinking champagne and talking about our future together, none of the lights went out and the world continued. There were awesome fireworks at midnight :-)

You don't get to see this view often from the jetty at Westport. These are the Olympic mountains... from the West side. If you look really, really hard, right through the middle of the photo, you can see ERN on the other side of the range.

Gotcha! ...didn't I? Yes, ERN is there. Of course, you can't see it in this photo. We can, however, see the other side of the range from ERN on a clear day... and imagine looking through to Westport.

We drove to our favorite stretch of beach, south of Grayland to find this... This stretch of beach is known as "Washaway Beach" and wash away it has! This used to be about 200 yards of beach access road, complete with rest rooms about half way down. It has been reclaimed by nature! Every few years, a house falls into the water. The constantly shifting sand spit is not permanent. Long Beach, Westport, Ocean Shores, and other coastal places are built on sand spits, and will eventually be remodeled by Mother Nature.

We chose another portion of the beach to enjoy.

The dogs love to run on the beach and chase each other and the shore birds. Clifford, especially, loves to chase the birds. The birds stay well out of reach, and he barks his frustration at them, and continues to run.

The Labradors just love to run, both in and out of the water. Winnie and Villa are racing each other and the surf.

...and they check in when asked to.

Back from the surf, there was a small pond, partially frozen. We spent quite a bit of time here with the dogs. They explored and slid on the ice, chased the shore birds who'd taken refuge here on the open water, and chomped ice. When they got to the edge of the ice, their footsteps created a harmonic within the ice and it made an eerie, musical sound that carried far along the beach. Here's Villa, checking it out.

And Clifford fallen through at the edge. Notice, it's pretty shallow, so we weren't worried about them getting stranded or stuck.

And here's Winnie with a prize piece of the ice.

Just so you don't think it's always this clear and sunny... Westport is very near the rain forest of the Olympic mountains. While the temperature might be moderated by the Pacific, the clouds build up against the mountains and many more days than not, it is cloudy and wet.

Regardless, it's one of our favorite places, and we don't get there often enough. This year, our visit happened to be during the very limited razor clam season. As low tide approached, more and more people and vehicles arrived. We packed up some tired dogs and ourselves and made our way home - still in sunshine, but in much colder temperatures.

- Franna