Archive for June 4, 2009

New Arrivals

Fourteen chicks hatched last week, one of whom had a birth defect (hatch defect?) and did not survive. The first hen that I rescued from an abandoned egg that initiated this whole egg incubation thang has started laying little cream-colored pullet eggs daily.

Since Pup has been on patrol at night, the chicken losses from raccoon predation have ceased around the house and the sheep barn. Chickens and ducks that roost beyond the confines of the yard and sheep barn fence are still falling victim to predators.

Hens are so confident in the ability of pup to protect them from the peril that kills in the night that they have moved back to the sheep barn to incubate some eggs under the feed mangers, damnit. I had been grabbing the eggs from the nests out there to place in the incubator but obviously waited a bit too long this last time.

I have big blood blisters over the back of my hands from attempting to rescue an egg that had rolled out from underneath a duck along with some broken shells this morning. Apparently there are ducklings now. I hope that she has better luck raising them than any of the other ducks have had this year. Out of @ 50 duck eggs hatched, there are only two surviving ducklings, and those are from eggs that I rescued.

Anyway, duck and hen are incubating the nest; I don’t know which one is sitting on the ducklings!

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Looking For Replacement for Computer that is Sleeping With the Fishes

I haven’t really had much time yet to look for a replacement computer, but a replacement computer I must have! SwampMan stubbornly insists on doing actual work in the evening using his, so my ability to get online has been severely hampered. Now that I don’t have to be awake at the buttcrack of dawn (this description was given to me by a coworker!) to go to an actual job that pays actual money to pay for my actual expenses, I *might* be able to actually post again in the wee hours of the morning when SwampMan goes into hibernation. I suppose I should let go of some of my few remaining funds and get a new one, particularly since SwampMan refuses to let me configure his computer the way I like, and to save all 7,000 or so of my favorite websites. I can put nothing in “favorites”.

Soooooo. Do I want a cute little portable computer that I can blog from in the comfy chair (that will probably be destroyed the first time the grandchildren come over and I forget to put it out of reach of small people) while I sit companionably beside SwampMan while he swears at his computer while he watches very loud movies involving car chases and dismemberment, or a big clunky desktop that I can retire to for hours on end in peace and quiet out in the office that SwampMan refers to as “the bat cave”?

I’m undecided! Anybody got any suggestions? Remember, I need to go as cheaply inexpensively as possible, but I would like my computer to be dependable.

Update: Note to self: Move battery backup from dead computer now resting in state to SwampMan’s computer. Damnit.

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Unemployment Day One

School is out! I have to admit that I shed some tears as the little ones left, never to be seen again. I hope that their lives will be joyful and that all their teachers next year will be understanding of all their various disabilities and have far more patience with them than I sometimes did.

For example, one young boy would constantly question the whereabouts of somebody that was not present. He would ask “Where’s Skeeter?” or “Where’s Mary?” 60 seconds after he had asked that same question and been given the answer that the person in question was at home today because he/she was sick or that they had a doctor’s appointment. It would continue throughout the day.

After months of that, I finally wised up. After the first (truthful) answer, when he asked “Where’s Mary?” again, I would say something like “Mary ran away to the Alligator Farm and now she’s wrestling alligators for tourists”.

“NO SHE’S NOT!” came the indignant response.

“She isn’t? Then where is she?”

“She’s at home sick with her mommy!”

“Are you sure about that?”

“YES!”

“Okay then, if you’re sure!”

“Where’s Skeeter?”

“Skeeter is driving for NASCAR. I think he said his car was blue.”

“NO HE’S NOT!”

“Why not?”

“He doesn’t have a driver’s license!”

“Are you sure?”

“YES!”

“Do you think you have to have a driver’s license to drive a race car?”

“YES!”

“Then where could he be?”

“He had a doctor’s appointment!”

“You sure about that, sport? Are you sure he isn’t really taming tigers in Tijuana?”

“No, he said yesterday that he had a doctor’s appointment today.”

“Well, okay then, as long as you’re sure!”

Then there was the child that could spell and write his name on Friday but might lose that ability to remember how to spell it over a 3-day weekend. And the child that could read all of his sight words on Friday, be able to tell the sounds of the letters, and be clueless on Monday. If the parents do not work intensively with these children over summer vacation, then they will have to start all over again next school year. I have a great deal of sympathy for the parent(s) who have to come home from work, do the household chores and care for a child (or children) with disabilities, and try to spend quality learning time as well. The parents are overwhelmed and have other children that need attention, too.

So, on my first day of unemployment, I’ve spent the entire morning worrying about what will happen with my (former) charges!

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