Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Jessica Rabbit, and others.

So there is a bunny in the neighborhood. We decided that we would just continue to watch the bunny. Now I am not the only rabbit savvy person doing it. That's a relief. This email to Heather sums it up:

I talked to you on the phone about a year and a half ago about a rabbit that was living in the front yard, in a home made cage, a couple blocks from me. I learned a lot from our discussion and decided that the best thing to do was to keep watching the rabbit and provide hay to prevent skimping to save money. I have refilled an empty water bottle more than once. I leave hay pressed against the chicken wire if it doesn't have food.

Cynthia Atayan, who lives very close, wanted me to tell her where it was so she could get it, but I wouldn't.

The rabbit, a Dutch, disappeared when the weather got cold and I was afraid it had died, but it re-appeared when the weather got better.

This year, the bunny is still outside. There are blankets and plywood stacked around the cage to protect from weather. So I told Cynthia the address. We are both making sure it has food and water. Sometimes they take down the boards and blankets so the rabbit isn't in the dark all day. We check and make sure they put them back up when it gets dark. They often don't.

Cynthia has an old laptop that she says she will trade for the bunny, taking her daughter with her in the hope that someone cares and will sell the bunny to a little girl. No one is ever home, or when they are, they don't answer the door.

Today there was still ice in the water troughs at noon. Single rabbits can survive this temperature, but not comfortably. I worry about frostbitten ears.

We don't know what to do. Can you advise?
Cynthia and I concluded that we would just continue to watch the bunny. Now I am not the only rabbit savvy person doing it. That's a relief.

I looked at Moo Cards. The basic card comes down to forty cents er card unless you get 500 cards. That's a crazy amount for me, Both the forty cents and the 500 cards. I think Vista Cards is better. About half the price. I still have to work on it. and then I have to make new art. New art has been a problem with first a sick dad, then a foundering horse, Then a new pony, then a sick pony. then another new pony who needed training and rehab. Then a sick mom. Then a sick mother-in-law. Then a second pony with a mystery problem that was hind gut ulcers. And building a house and new flooring in the old house.......

Monday, December 28, 2015

More flickr

I'm still working on Flickr. You can see it if you go to www.flickr.com/doublecatbatik. Check it out. At least type it into your search and go there, make sure the addy works, then report back to me, please.

I've been through so many photos........
When I get all the addy parts figure out, I will order Moo Cards. It will have my etsy store address, and my Flickr address. Should I put my blog address too?

What should it say?
Textile Art

how about
Doublecatbatik Textile Art
Cara Drouin
esty addy
flickr addy, blog addy
email addy

What do you all think? How much is too much? Can I get double sided? That would be best. too much info can be overwhelming.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Driving with Francois and Flikr

Last Wednesday, Francois and I hooked up Yndi and Pepper single. He drove Pepper and I drove Yndi and we went trotting loops around the hot walker and drain barrier in the lower parking lot. It was fun! Not being able to use the arenas at Indian Hill limits the opportunity to do circles and figures. Normally, I just stick to the roads. I didn't get any pictures.

Francois said Pepper was kind of spooky at things that shouldn't have bothered her, like changes in the appearance of the ground. He thinks it is training and wants to long line her tomorrow. I long lined her for a year already. I think it is lack of conditioning-when she gets tired or is pushed to the edge of her ability, then she looses confidence. This makes more sense to me. He has a strong background in Parelli Natural Horsemanship where the focus is on slow training. My experience is different. I learned at Jill Munro's that a horse with pain the inhibits their ability run from danger compensate by getting an earlier start; they are more on guard. With Roger Cleverly, who is more into conditioning than I am, or most people, for that matter, I reinforced my understanding that the horse must be conditioned to perform what you are going to ask of it. So, I think Pepper needs to be in better shape.

Yesterday I spent a couple hours locating old art photos and loading them to me Flikr page. I need to get my stuff up there and organized. I think that when I do, I can make a business card with my etsy shop and my Flikr account. I need to work on that today.

In the meantime: a rabbit photo!
Pierre with Alfalfa Cube

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Family at the barn

We all went to the barn yesterday. Some poop cooping. Some poop was too much in the mud so We left it. Walked ponies and turned them out. They just walked around looking for food.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Chillin' With My Poops

Here are my homies.

The rabbit around the block, who I have learned is Jessica, is still outside this winter.

The summer before last, I told Cynthia from Rabbit Haven about this little Dutchie. She wanted the address so she could steal it.

I called Auntie Heather and we talked about the implications of stealing or buying, and I decided it was best if I didn't do anything. It might motivate them to move the bun to the backyard where she could be more easily forgotten.

So I have just been taking them alfalfa pellet bags of orchard grass hay. The were buying the tiny PetsRUs bags and not giving her enough because its expensive.

Last winter she disappeared and I wondered if she had died, but she reappeared in the spring so I figured they moved her in.

This winter she is still out. They have piled boards and quilts around the cage to keep the weather out, but now she lives in the dark. So I messaged Cynthia and gave her the address.

I agreed to take her in if Cynthia could liberate her (and I would be in deep doo), so she went over to check her out. The owner was not there, just the room mate, so she was going to go back.

She is going to take her daughter and say her daughter wants the bunny and is willing to trade her laptop for Jessica. 

I am still waiting to hear.

I am wondering about a three-way bond. If Cynthia can get her, I should buy her a bale of orchard grass hay.

Please, sir, I want some more.

Pepper love her treats. The key to her heart is, truly, her stomach.


Here it is, hooked up. The first time I took ponies anywhere, I needed the four wheel drive. So lucky we got it. Adrienne and I took Yndi and Twist to Gilroy. Harry helped us a bit in the arena and then he and Adrienne and I went for a drive on the streets.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Alone In The Dark

I have now logged on with my IPod Touch, in bed, in the dark. It's 2:40 am, I've been awake for almost two hours. I woke up getting a migraine so I took some caffeine to stop it. This has been going on three out of four nights for weeks. I'm into serious sleep deprivation. Everything's crumbling.

So I'm listening to a documentary about the Eagles. I remember hearing these songs growing up. It reminds me of being a teenager. I remember being overwhelmed and alone in my confusion. I didn't know how confused I was, or how out of touch with people, because I had never been anything else. It makes me sad that I am old now. I wish I could be young but not lost. I was so lost.

Elise Lalor posted a  article a while ago. Autism spectrum disorder in girls, how it looks different from the outside and isn't diagnosed because the diagnostic criteria is for boys. Then I read an article in the NY Times. It was my biography. Can you have a disease before it's diagnosed? Can you have A disease before it is discovered? Does it matter? Why didn't my mother like me? Why didn't she even know she didn't like me? Not liking your own daughter was such a horrible thing and she could never be that horrible.

Unattached and lost, no anchor, moving all the time.
Now I'm old. Now I can see. I maintain my anchors; ponies, rabbits, dog.
Still lonely and bewildered. I can fake it pretty well. Maintaining my anchors takes all my time.

Breakfast for animals is in an hour. Whiskers knows I'm awake. Four hours sleep. Again. Can't wait til spring.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Pirate Bun

I have adopted Kasey the Pirate Bun. I started fostering her for The Rabbit Haven in November 2014. She had a white bulging eye and so she was adoptable at the shelter.  A veterinary ophthalmologist determined that she had glaucoma and she had her eye removed.
Then she was spayed. She stayed in the living room for a long time. I didn't want her to go to a loud busy adoption fair with only one eye. Too frightening. So I waited for someone to be interested via the website.  
She couldn't even play in the living room because strange buns at large made Pierre attack Silver, who was very sick with kidney failure. We became very attached to each other.

After Silver died. I took Kasey and Pierre to a fair just so Ray could work with us and see if they could be bonded. Maybe, but it was not an ideal bond. armed with instruction and patience, I did it. It took five weeks.
Kasey now has the life I wished for her, bonded to another bun, and Pierre is happy again. Kasey is ecstatic to play in the family room and has adapted to the routine.

While I was bonding, I backed off of showing affection toward Kasey to help her look to Pierre for it. 

Now, Finally, two months later, Kasey and I can take up sort of where we left off. She has been so fascinated by Pierre that she really couldn't take time for me. Now she can. Bonus, Pierre wants more pets too!

Thursday, December 03, 2015


The Peninsula Carriage Driving Club newsletter came yesterday, a paper one. In the snail mail. The Christmas Drive is on Sunday, the 20th. Its a potluck. The Indian Hill Ranch Christmas party is the 19th, also a potluck. I hate potlucks. I want to do both, but it makes a weekend of crazy cooking, which I also hate. Sunday, especially, trailering ponies and cooking.

There is also a wicker pony wagonette for sale. The price is good. I want it. There is a phone number. I am trying to decide when it is too early to call. I already wanted a single pony carriage. I may get lucky and get it.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

kitchen counter

e bought a new truck. I didn't blog about it because I haven't taken a picture yet. It's a Chevy.

Then we had a nice Thanksgiving. Joseph was in tantrum mode all day, but when the food was on the table, he took the initiative of opening the Martinelli's sparkling cider and he was pleasant for the entire meal, which was good.

I used one sweet potato and three russet potatoes with butter and heavy cream and the mashed potatoes were the first mashed potatoes I have ever really like. They were good left over too.

Friday the counter people put the plywood base in the for the kitchen counter up at the mountain house. They put the vanity tops on too. Dave went for that.

Monday, they installed the kitchen counter and I was there because Dave was at work. They were supposed to arrive between 8am and 9am, but didn't get there until 11:30. I hurried up and drove so fast I made myself car sick. 

Lydia got to go and was happy when she heard she got to "go in the car" and went totally nuts when Dave put her yellow safety vest on for the mountain. When we got there she ran and ran and ran! So many stickers! At least I had something to do while I waited. I had to use scissors for some.

The quartz we picked out looks great. I can't wait to see it without the cardboard floor!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Goodbye Red Truck

Twenty years of memories, for sale, $3,000.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Google Earth

Yndi and I are in Google Earth. This is the street view of Indian Hill Ranch.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

News from Sweden

Yndi got a message from Jamie this summer. I posted this picture on the Gotland Ponies in America facebook page. Pernilla Jobs, from Sweden, Yndis birthplace, had this to say:

"Yndi's mom Madicken was awarded the ELIT-diploma recently, posthumously, for her progeny. Yndi could be her last foal still alive, nice to see her getting the pampering she surely deserves."

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Auto buying stress, Auto repair stress

We agreed to buy the truck. The actual purchase will take place Monday, giving both the seller and us time to get out ducks in a row. Cashiers checks from two financial institutions must be obtained with the correct spelling to the Payble To. There is a waiting period for availability of transferred funds. The seller has to arrange for a way home from his workplace where the sale will take place. DMV forms in order too. And time to check the VIN in Carfacts. There are weirdnesses, of course. Trucks like this are not usually for sale until they have many miles. This one has only 21K. Its barely 11 months old and we are the third owner, and it came from TX. We have had to decided the weirdnesses are worth the risk.  Still stressful to spend this much money.

I have been trying to band x-foster rabbit Kasey with widower bun Pierre. After a month of bonding exercises and a stress bonding of a three hour trip to the vet in Los Altos during the commute, They got to spend an afternoon in the same BUNker. The plan was to allow them to spend the night if the afternoon went well. Sadly, after I went to bed, there was chasing. I got up and separated them so I could sleep. That was Thursday. Today, Saturday, Pierre escaped during Kasey's playtime out, and after he requested grooming(he is SO ready to be bonded!) Kasey humped his head instead, but that was OK and now they are fine.

I picked Joseph up from work yesterday and we stopped to pick up the parts to fix the Bronco. He has figured out that he can do it himself and moved on from his place of despair. He had reached a hopeless stage where his resources of money and knowledge could not meet, and I offered him financial help. He asked for the promised money it before he ran out of his own money and I didn't cough it up, asking instead for an outline of finances on paper. He did that, and now I have to summarize under his disorganized mathies so I can get a clear picture and he can see how to present financial info(without me asking for clarification and trying to teach him directly, which wouldn't work). In the meantime, he figured stuff out better and may not need as much money.

Friday, November 06, 2015

Craigslist Love/Hate

We are trying to buy a truck. We have a lead on one, on Craiglsist. Its such a good deal we feel frantic, we are afraid too many people are also pursuing this truck. We have no idea if that's true. It is stressful.

Harry came to Ed Levin yesterday and gave me a lesson, we tried to get the pole and pole straps better. There was a lot of finagling. Every time you change one thing, a bunch of other things have to change to accommodate it.  We think the last thing to do is replace the pole straps, which can't get short enough, with quick links.

We passed the golf course on our drive. There was a group of golfers and one of them saw us. She tried to point us out to her friends, who were not interested in anything that was not on the golf course. Finally, someone looked, and she poked someone else end pointed. She obviously had more social clout and it was a chain reaction until the all the golfers were doing a pretty good meercat imitation. It was fun.

Someone else wanted to buy both ponies. Sorry. Harry told them it would be 100K each.

"Did you sneeze on your screen?"
"Yes, with coffee."
"I thought so."

Thursday, November 05, 2015

The Fuzzy Line.

I have spent four and a half hours sitting in traffic between yesterday and the day before. I took Kasey to her Rabbit Haven new adoptee vet appointment in Los Altos and got stuck in commute traffic coming home. I went to the DMV and got a form for Joseph and got stuck in commute traffic coming home from that. It was a DMV form that cant be printed on the computer and has to be an original, not a photocopy with the signatures on it.

Its his crazy junk truck problem. We bought him a '98 Acura to drive when he graduated high school and got his license. He chose the Acura. He really wanted a Bronco but we said no because of the high insurance cost. The Acura was a little high maintenance but many of the problems were from not checking oil and coolant. It was old and needed oil and coolant regularly.

He talked us into signing it over to him so he could swap it for a '90 Bronco. We told him he was now in charge of paying his own insurance. The Bronco is a piece of shit. He has gotten so deep into dept trying to keep it running. Sadly, he spent most of his paychecks on eating out and buying extras stuff for the bronco like a sound system and light bar and things to make it louder, instead of saving so he could afford to fix it the next time it broke down. Its been sitting in front or our house for two months now because he could not keep it running, nor control his impulse to drive it somewhere if he could get it started and end up making it worse.

We are helping him out because that is what families do, but we are not loaning him a car because then there would be no problem for him from making a bad decision. Plus, having him drive our truck makes it very high maintenance for us. He drives like an idiot and he has to pay associated costs of that until he figures it out. Parenting is tough. There is a very fuzzy line between helping and enabling.

So what he decided to do was buy another Bronco from Craigslist from a guy who got it from a picknpull. The sale to the picknpull was a lien sale. It isn't licensed. He figured he could sacrifice it for parts to fix the current heap. Turns out is is in better condition that the heap he wanted to fix, so now he has to strip the first heap of anything usable and get the new heap registered and repaired.

He is nineteen years old and I believe this is age appropriate behavior. He is learning a lot, though it seems to be trial by fire. A lot of things in life are just that.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015



I ordered Buns-of-Silver blog in a book. An indulgence(? really) that I figured was OK after I got some money for licensing art to BTizzy. I think it closes a chapter. I can see Silver's grave from the bathroom window at the Mountain House. She was a very good rabbit.

The house is moving right along. We ordered the counter top for the kitchen and bathrooms last week. Dave finished the install of the cabinets in the kitchen and is working on the under-cabinet lighting which is going to look great. I like to have low lights at night so I can move around but not feel like its daytime.

On my carriage, I made the adjustments of the pole back to where it was before. Harry Council recommended some changes and I tried them, but they created more problems than they solved. Francois helped me hook the girls, but with a shorter pole, the breeching couldn't engage and we had to break constantly going down hill to keep the carriage from banging into them.

Kacey, the foster turned adopted bunny, has her free vet visit today. Rabbit Haven pays for a vet visit to one of their vets for each adopted rabbit.  I am going slow bonding her to Pierre, so I will use this car trip to take them int he same carrier help the bond. I got the new bigger carrier with my 20% discount at For Other Living Things that came with the adoption.
Having two bunnies that are not bonded is hard because I need two Bunkers. Kasey is a leaper and hers has to have a ceiling. I am hoping that when she is bonded to Pierre, she will not feel the need to go out.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Where Have I Heard That Before?

I keep saying I'm going to start blogging again, and then I don't. Can anybody else relate to this? It isn't that it takes a lot of time.

So, one of the latest things that happened was going to the Combined Driving Event at Shady Oaks in Lodi and talking to Rif the carriage guy about my squeaky shock. He said the coil-overs that Todd Frey uses on his Sprint carts develop squeaks and the only thing you can do is get new ones.

Harry Council said I could order them from Ebay and install them myself, saving hundreds of dollars. So that's what I did. They arrives while I was out of town, visiting Daddy in Sparks, NV.

"The drive to Sparks, with Lydia dog, was uneventful." That's what I'd like to say. What really happened was that I hit traffic about a mile up the freeway in Fremont. It wasn't commute traffic. Probably an accident. Then again in Pleasanton. These two delays kept me from getting through Sacramento before the commute there. Eight hours after I started, I was half way through a five hour drive and I knew I wouldn't make it so I stopped in Rocklin, at the Heritage Inn where they charged my $50.00 for Lydia. We continues in the morning and were doing well until Donner Summit, when a tractor trailer about a quarter mile ahead of us, smashed up a guard rail and incinerated. We sat, imobile, engine off, for over an hour, in pouring rain, while the fire went out and the cinder was removed. The audio book I had was not good.

Fortunately, the trip home was uneventful.

Pepper had diarrhea when I got home. I new this ahead of time but I didn't realize it was that bad. I decided to give her wheat bran, but I didn't have any. Saturday morning I went to buy the bran. I had to stop at Orchard Supply Hardware to get a can to put it in, then to An Jan for the bran, then to Indian Hill.

While Pepper and Yndi were eating their hindgut ulcer treatment, I opened my new shocks. Instead, the box contained socks. at least they were the right color.
The new bran can wouldn't fit in my locker, so I had to take everything out and rearrange it. but it fit. Then I got the bran in and gave them each a nice mash. You cant just do anything around the barn, it always explodes into a huge task.

After the whole locker-bran-socks thing, I thought I was home free. Then I went home. On the way I say flames, going up the hill though the dried grass, toward Ed Levin Park. The fire trucks passed me going the other way. After reading about the Butte Fire and the Valley Fire this summer, I thought is was wise to prepare. I went home, grabbed a bag of chips and Lydia, and got the truck so I could go to the barn and hook up the trailer. On the way back to the barn, I saw aircraft rushing in to fight the fire. Then I loaded up with hay and water. They got the fire put out.

On the way home, I stopped to talk to an old friend. She talks a lot, I listen. She was hungry, they were out of food and money. They had clients who were not paying. That sucks. Lydia and I shared out chips.

After I got home, I had to run to the store and get something to cook for dinner so while I was there I picked up some things for my friend and took them over.

It was a silly day of unplanned stuff that never ended, but it could have been worse. I could have been hungry.

Days like these are why I don't get anything done.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pepper Lee's new pictures.

These pictures are from Saturday. Our clinic was cancelled, so Yndi got a massage from Jaime. She is having some TMJ issues and waiting for the chiropractor clinic. She liked her massage. You can see Pepper is standing a little differently from two years ago. My hips are out of whack. I need something. The therapist who was able to help me was in an auto accident and is now disabled and can't work..