20 September 2012

Lab Love: The Love Dog.

Lab Love

The Princess Lenore a/k/a The Love Dog a/k/a The Hound of Love entered my heart five for six years ago during one of the loneliest and coldest winters of my life. She has gone on to become a warrior for love, star of children's and adults books, and friend to countless thousands of people. She brings light and love. I love the Red Dog, he has entered my life in a profound way, but nothing will replace the sweet power of the Love Dog. She kept love alive for me, and I will never forget it.

There is no love quite like Lab Love.

Lenore will be with me Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Battenkill Books, Cambridge, N.Y. to help me kick off the "Dancing Dogs" book tour and also celebrate publication of "Lenore Finds A Friend," my second children's book.

The event will include a reading from me (brief), a talk and Q & A and a signing. Next Saturday, October 29,  I will be at Northshire Books, Manchester Vt., also at 7 p.m. Reading, talk and signing.

Posted in General

The New Bedlam Farm Chicken Coop. Ideas Welcome.

The New Bedlam Farm Chicken Coop

Here's a possibility for a collaborative venture in the new universe of the digital community. The Internet is great for collecting ideas, as opposed to advice. We were about to dump this old rotting hay wagon full of tires, and I had this made impulse to turn it into a chicken coop. I talked a chicken coop whiz from Common Sense Farm and he was shocked but intrigued at the idea. I told him I thought we should preserve this wagon and the tires, tie the new place into the old. I suspect our chickens would have a blast hopping up and down on these tires, roosting on the big ones if they had a secure shelter above them.

My idea is to pile the tires up and put a mesh tent, a coop over them with a secure door to keep predators out. It's a great spot for a coop in front of the barn near the donkeys, and the chickens would have good and buggy area to explore. I'd welcome any ideas for the design or composition of this creative expression. As Ben explained to the bewildered coop builder, "Jon wants something artistic." Ben has been through this before, and he just chuckled. "You're out of your mind," he said. True.  I don't need any advice, but ideas and design and material thoughts are welcome for the New Bedlam Farm Chicken Coop. The big challenge is to use the tires, which I want to do. I don't want to throw any of this out.

Posted in General

Sharing The Pasture: Dogs And Ponies, Tractors And Poles.

Dogs And Ponies

I was surprised to see a few months ago that the fence posts that line Rocky's favorite pasture had no wire in them, he could have walked through them and onto the road anytime. I don't know when they fell apart, but maybe it's a good think Rocky doesn't see. Todd put up some strands and he is replacing them all tomorrow. Red has taken to escorting Rocky on some of his rounds around the pasture, he parallels his walk. Rocky had company today as Todd charged in the pasture with his poles and tractor. Rocky didn't seem to mind a bit. Not much fazes this durable creature.

Posted in General

Todd Mason. Dog Fence. Southern Pasture

Todd Mason

Todd Mason put in the northern pasture fence Monday and Tuesday, the dog fence today and he began work on the southern pasture. He'll be done by Friday or Monday I think. He is also building a rail fence around the new animal feeding area, so Rocky or the other animals don't slip off the  hill. I can't imagine Todd could do what he does if he didn't love it, and he is fun to have around. His tractor is  used to haul poles, pull them up, burrow holes in the ground for him. He wields it like a baton.

Posted in General

Autumn Dance. Take A Breath.

Autumn Dance

Some people love the wooded landscapes of mountains, or the Adirondacks, some love the sea. The farm landscape is the one I love, its open spaces, rolling fields, creaky old barns and changing seasons. Every autumn I look for what I call the autumn dance, the ballet between the tractors and trucks harvesting the corn, driving long fields perfectly in sync, in harmony, and you can smell winter just behind.

Looking at this field, I take a deep breath, I close my eyes, I have been watching for this dance all week, ever since I heard the tractors out in the fields, saw the sileage blowing in the wind, waiting for my shot. Today I got it, and it reminded me of the autumn dance, to stop, take a deep breath, remember what life is about.

Posted in Farm Journal, General