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Archive for October, 2015

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My husband spent some time yesterday hooking up the rabbit hutch.  It’s more like a nice condo. This picture is a little blurry, but you can see he put a window in so the rabbits can say hello to each other.  They are both in tact and we aren’t wanting to breed at the moment.

We will have to buy one more water bottle that heats through the winter, because the water will freeze here in KY.  The only thing left to do is board up the outside. Right now all the sides are off for summer breezes (using chicken wire).   All we do is screw wood over top of it and remove it depending on the season.  We make sure to bring the rabbits in the kitchen on super cold days and socialize with them, any day.  They hop around while we do school, which entertains the baby.

We just got our first big freeze yesterday.  Jack Frost is here to stay.

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Meet King Arthur!  He is our newest member of the family.  Arthur is a four month old buck.  For pickup, it took us about 2 hours to get to our destination in Southern Indiana, from where we live in Central Kentucky.  I didn’t remember it took that long, but it is a very beautiful drive.  When we arranged the meeting we had planned on taking home a FAB torte, but the farmer brought this guy along. He was two months older than the torte, and noticeably larger.  We could definitely tell he was a boy too.  Being new at raising rabbits (as an adult) has been very educating.  I helped my grandfather when I was little with standard rex rabbits, but as an adult it’s all new to me again.  A year and a half ago we purchased a FAB, but it turned out to be a doe!  Just this week we got the pedigree changed. King Arthur is a calm and sweet guy.  I was a little worried about getting a boy, but the farmer convinced me this guys mother was his smartest and well behaved.  I do love his white fiber.  It is kind of matted up, but we will shear it soon.  We will try to capture more of our journey as we go along.  Until then, here’s a little verse.

 

Rabbit twitched his twitchety ears on a twinkling autumn day,
He could hear the North Wind whistle and he scampered off to say:
Hurry, hurry, hurry, hurry, we must all get fat and furry,
Not a moment to be lost, I can hear bold Jackie Frost.

Groundhog sniffed her sniffety nose on a snappy autumn day
She could smell the winter coming, and she waddled off to say:
Hurry, hurry, hurry, hurry, we must all get fat and furry,
Not a moment to be lost, I can smell bold Jackie Frost.

Squirrel shivered a shivery shiver on a shiv’ry autumn day
He could feel the North Wind’s fingers, and he scurried off to say:
Hurry, hurry, hurry, hurry, we must all get fat and furry,
Not a moment to be lost, I can feel bold Jackie Frost.

Black Bear blinked her blinkety eyes on a blust’ry autumn day
She could see the snow clouds gather, and she lumbered off to say:
Hurry, hurry, hurry, hurry, we must all get fat and furry,
Not a moment to be lost, I can see bold Jackie Frost.

 

 

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Mousekin’s Golden House

In the woods there are many small trees, and many tall trees that reach to grow tall in the deep shade. There are low growing bushes with berries and seeds that pop and roll about the forest floor. Beneath them all are tiny paths that only mice can see. One moonlit night, Mousekin followed one of those paths to one of his homes in a hollow log. Right in the middle of that very small path, Mousekin saw something that Someone had thrown away when Halloween was over. He hid behind a log, perhaps it was dangerous! Mousekin had never see a jack o’ lantern in all his mouse days. He wriggled his nose furiously at the strange smell. He was so excited that he drummed his tiny paw on the hollow log. Mousekin was so excited about the pumpkin that he did not watch for danger with his bright shoe-button eyes. Nor did he turn his shoe button ears to the wind to listen for birds, for owls and hawks and other creatures who wait to catch a white foot mouse. Suddenly as Mousekin took a second turn around the smiling face, a hungry owl swooped toward him. But before the bird could even blink his eyes, Mousekin jumped straight into the jack o’ lanterns mouth. Once inside he looked about. He was in a beautiful golden room! Just the right size for a little mouse. From one of the top windows in his room, Mousekin could see the owl sulking in an evergreen tree. The first rays Of the morning sun shone in behind the owl. Night was over and it was time for Mousekin to go to sleep. Mousekin felt safe inside the Sturdy walls of his golden house. He did not even waken until evening when the katydids began to argue. “Katydid, Katydid!” After he stretched and Cleaned his white undercoat, he began to explore his new home, scurrying in one window and out another. Now Mousekin was alert to all the Sounds of the woods when evening came. He heard a rustle in the bayberry bush, and a soft step on the dry leaves. He knew it was… the cat. Just as the cat was about to spring, Mousekin dove into the pumpkin and began to houseclean. Out of all the windows he threw bits of candle and pumpkin seeds. The cat jumped! But not for Mousekin! He jumped straight up and then he ran as fast as he could to get away from the big, round face with the terrible teeth. The cat would never take that path through the woods again! The days grew shorter and the nights longer. Mousekin worked each night to fill his house with things to keep him warm and comfortable in his new home. He split grasses with his razor sharp teeth, and wove the long slender threads around and around. He made many trips through the woods to find soft things to line his nest. Little feathers dropped by a bird in flight, thistle down and milkweed that grew in the clearing. While Mousekin was busy gnawing and nibbling, and doing all the things that mice do, he still found time to watch the animals that passed by his golden house. One very chilly evening, a box turtle plodded by. He never looked up or down, but moved like a toy being pulled to a pond at the edge of the wood to some tangled tree root beneath the ground where he would sleep away the winter months. But when the Turtle reached the jack o’ lantern, he stopped in his tracks, and he streeeetched his neck to see if what he saw was true. Just then, Mousekin popped his head out of one of his windows. And then… The box turtle lost no time in turning around and heading once again for the tangled root beneath the ground near the pond at edge of the wood. Most of the birds had gone to warmer lands, only the feeble bird was left in the thistle. The wind blew hard now, and scooping up piles of hundreds of leaves and scattering them about like brightly winged birds. One day, the freebie called to Mousekin, “come south with me, come right away! Your house will never do. The wind will blow, the snow will snow, and chill you through and through!” The little mouse whistled a high and soft “goodbye!” He would not leave his golden house. A chipmunk hurried by, his mouth so full of nuts he Could hardly speak! “Come with me, beneath the ground, that house will never do. The wind will blow, the snow will snow and chill you through and through!” Mousekin scrambled up his golden house and slipped through a tiny opening at the top. He slid down the feathery stairway to the warm, soft lining below. Mousekin curled up, tucked his tiny feet behind him, wrapped his loooong tail around some milkweed down and pulled it closely around him, and fell fast asleep. Little by little, and bit by bit, something began to happen to the jack o’lantern. It began to close its eyes in the frosty air. It shut its mouth against the cold wind. The next day, the gray sky opened, and great white flakes fell upon the sleeping pumpkin. Inside, Mousekin was curled up into a tiny fur ball. He was safe, and warm, and fast asleep in his golden house.

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Song:
Mousekin the little mouse, lived in a golden house
Mousekin found a jack o’lantern by a tree.
He thought, “this could be a house for me.”
It kept him safe from an owl and a cat.
And he lived very happily after that.
Mousekin the little mouse, lived in a golden house
Winter was coming, the leaves were falling down
The turtle made a winter home under the ground
The bird told Mousekin his house would never do
And chipmunk said the wind would chill him through and through
Mousekin the little mouse, lived in a golden house
Mousekin crawled inside his golden house
Jack o’lantern closed his eyes and closed his mouth
Then winter came and the snow was deep.
And Mousekin was safe and sound asleep.
Mousekin the little mouse, lived a golden house.

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A friend of mine translated this story for me from the you tube video.  If you are going to watch the Mousekin story, then skip to minute 2:12.  All the children had a blast.  The party schedule was Play + Eat, Story + Painting a pumpkin, and Cake + Gratitude.  It was a big party for a little 2 year old, but most of the people who came were from our homeschool group, and then grandparents.  I didn’t give him a special party for his first birthday, or really a Blessingway, so I put extra energy into this sweet party.  All kids went home with a homemade paper bag, decorated with pumpkins and gourds, a tiny bottle of bubbles, a mouse finger puppet, a pumpkin made out of tissue paper and floral tape (filled with birdseed for a bird blessing), and their painted pumpkin (small gourds technically).  We had a lot of food set out and it all just made me So happy to serve and feel the Abundance of the fall season.  We have worked so hard over the past 3 years.  It felt important to have a Harvest party, centered around honoring Cedar.  We were extra grateful for gorgeous fall weather.  Pictured below are chalkboard drawings by Raysun Frost.

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Here’s a lovely picture at the end of the day.  My sweet boy taking a ride in his wagon, with a friend.

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Good day!

It’s Thursday, aka Thors Day.  Thursday always feels warrior-like to me, as if we must fight our way to Friday.  All my boys slept in, so for that I am happy.  It gave me some time being awake, in silence.  Since the sun has been waking up later, I can see how our sons are following nature. Imitating.  And because of our schedule, they are going to sleep earlier as well.

Fall has been an exciting harvest.  We are harvesting with our small family-owned business. Tomorrow night is the reception for our Functional Design show in Louisville.  Here’s a link for more details. http://www.la-fs.com

Today I must stay Present.  I must honor my way through what is Now.  The animals are all fed. Our new puppy is fitting in Quite nicely.  She’s a joy really.  Ayla the Elder seems roused a bit more from her boring and sad life, since Kiva passed.  Our French Angora (FA) doe is in her hutch, that is more like a condo.  She has the life.  One side is all straw bedding.  There are two water bottles. One has a heating element for winter.  We feed her hay, pellets, sunflower seeds, banana peels, lettuce, some other varieties of fruit.  Her color is gray with black ears.  Below is a picture of her the day after we got her, from a reputable FA farmer.

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She’s much longer now and the boys call her Guinevere “Gracie.”  As often as possible we take her up to the round pen to run and hop and get some fresh air.  This past year we have learned a lot about his particular breed of rabbit, known for its fiber.  We collect it as it falls out, but also we gently clip her at the beginning of summer.  It seems about every 90 days her fiber cycles out.  Even though she has plenty of straw bedding, and the hutch is closed in, I leave her fiber alone during the coldest months.  Here are a couple external links about the history of the French Angora Rabbit.

FA history 

Angora Wikipedia 

Today we are going to meet the same farmer and look over two bucks.  We do not have any bucks or males on the property, except in the human form.  It will be an interesting discovery having a FA buck here.  I only want to come away with one today, and I really prefer a doe.  The first time we bought a FA it was supposed to be a buck, but turns out it was a doe.  She is very gentle.  I hear if they don’t breed or aren’t fixed, they can be grouchy.  So far things have been fine.

I’ll post a picture of our new FA soon.

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Handwork on Planning Day (Saturday) was inspired by a really slow internet connection.  I was supposed to be watching and absorbing awesomeness from Robyn and Brian Wolfe on Waldorfish. I checked out the replay on Form Drawing and Temperaments, but because of my rural connection and the overcast rainy weather it took a REALLY long time to watch.  But, I was committed.  While I waited for my computer to load, like the olden days I picked up a project.  A couple weeks ago I had decided to pull together an Autumn Fairy.  Right away I felt I had made the head too small, and wasn’t happy with the colors.  I had to take a break and order more orange roving before moving forward.  Doing and being is done in layers over here, and time does not exist.  But here we are, October 2015.  I’m nostalgic about the past, I have good feelings about the future, and here I Am Now.  Working bit by bit.  Learning.  Grounding into the moment, so that we all don’t slip away with our thoughts.  We are holding down the Home this week as Papa Bear prepares for a Design Show next weekend. AND, our third born son turns 2!  Not only is it Harvest Season, but it is also the season of changing leaves and falling leaves.  What will we let fall away…

So, I followed the Happy Hedgehog post demonstrating the Spring fairy.  Fairy making is enjoyable. They don’t take overly long, and the result is a pleasing, unique energy.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask me here.

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