Thursday, September 30, 2010


Furry and I are planning a combo shin-dig for our birthdays in October. It's my *gasp* very first 40th birthday and his very last 40th birthday.

I was calling some neighbors to invite them this morning. I called up ol' Jack.

"Oh. I don't think we'll be able to come. Sugar beet season is starting and we harvest around the clock...."

O.k. - well, we'd love to see you but if you can't make it, that's fine too.

I hung up and Furry asked what ol' Jack said... I told him and we both started cracking up. NEVER would we get a decline like that back in our city Denver days!

Sorry - can't come. Sugar beets. I love it.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010



That show was amazing! The performers move in ways you wouldn't think a human body could move. A guy at one point stood there while one person climbed him to stand on his head. Standing. On. The. Guy's. Head. Two more came out to climb the guy and stand on each shoulder and two more hung horizontally from the ground off each hip. Seriously. What in the....? How is that physically possible?

There were people flying all over the stage - bouncing - jumping - leaping - coming down from the ceiling... and the horses stood there. Hind leg cocked. Ears out to the side. Oh... the hairless monkeys are flying all around the stage again? Ho hum. Borrrrrr-ing.

There was roman riding, roman riding while driving 4 in hand. Vaulting with a person on a horse cantering in a circle while the person jumps, does triple flips or some such thing in the air always landing back on the horse....

There were trick riders.... oh those trick riders! The horses would fly across the stage at a full gallop. The rider would be sitting backwards and flip themselves forwards... or hanging off the side of the horse or running alongside, jumping up and over to run on the other side... one rider came out behind the saddle, laying over the horse's haunches with her head dangling 3 millimeters from the horse's galloping hind hooves.


It was jaw dropping and stunning.

Afterward, we went into the stall area. There was this immense, beef-cake of a horse. Not tall - maybe 15hh - stout. Oh man, was that monster STOUT. Tree trunks for legs. Not sure I've seen a leg that big.... Comtois was the breed... colored like a Belgian. He was my favorite of the show. He was a vaulting horse... round and round he cantered... the flying hairless monkeys were nothing to him. La, la, la.

Cool, cool show, horses and performers.

And very, very, very, very, very (there may not be enough very's...) wonderful Furry Husband!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

How does that happen?

Furry Husband and my wedding anniversary is this Friday. ELEVEN YEARS! How in THE heck did that happen?

memories.... misty water color memories......

Turns out, Furry has quite a sneaky streak.

I was reading the paper - well, the comics - because seriously folks, you can never have too many comics/funny pages in your life. Sometimes I read the main section of the newspaper but not always...

I decided to read the main section.

As I was leafing through, there was a printed piece of paper with Furry's name on it... I couldn't comprehend what I was seeing really. Thought it was a bill or something from the news agency that was mixed into the paper....

Well it was stuck into the paper opposite of a Cavalia ad.

He got us tix to see Cavalia this Friday in Denver for our anniversary!


Cavalia is produced by a Cirque du Soliel person involving horses... it is supposed to be pretty effing amazing.

What a wonderful man he is... romantic sigh..... and to think it all started with me telling him a dirty joke, flashing my cleavage and sportin' platinum blonde hair while he tended bar at the Wynkoop Brew Pub in Denver.

Just like a fairy tale .... heh, heh.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Had many things up in the air last week, caused me to space out something I was supposed to do. I HATE THAT! I feel like Chris Farley in that SNL sketch where he'd interview famous people about the movies they'd been in, ask really stupid questions and then hit himself in the head saying, "stupid! stupid! stupid!"

Nothing I can do about it. Apologize, slow down and make lists - somehow writing it down helps me keep track way better than my leetle brain holding the info on it's own.

The French Market was silly. NOT at all the right venue to bring goats. It was more of an upper crust affair, the city wanted us on concrete for ease of clean-up, the EsScentuals booth was behind us maybe 10 feet.

Oh - the looks we got.

As if we were two random people hanging out in a parking lot with a couple goats... it was pretty funny. We tried to direct people to Meg's booth and to engage the people walking by.

It was cold, drizzly and COLD while we stood, in a parking lot, alienated, proverbial turds in the punchbowl, with two goats and I caught a nasty cold.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Back in the harness again....

I put Toe in his tracking harness and met up with J last night. She put in a track for us, we chatted while it aged for 40 minutes and off we went!

I think J is Toe's third favorite person in the world - she is THE SCENT LAYER! He gets so excited to see her and knows he'll be tracking her footsteps.

We worked on VST (variable surface tracking) since we aren't entirely sure the rattlesnakes have gone into hibernation in the tall grass fields used for regular TD (tracking dog) tracks.

He did pretty well... I had to help him out a few times. It's been too hot this summer for tracking on black top/concrete (required for VST tracking work) and too rattlesnake-y for any TD work. He hasn't tracked in a while and he is new to VST work with blacktop, curbs, buildings and other weird scent obstacles. He did great all things considering.

Tracking tests to earn his TD (tracking dog) title are October 16 at the Corgi Specialty - they are nice enough to allow other breeds if it doesn't fill with Corgis and October 30 for the Foothills Tracking Club... keep your fingers crossed!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

French Market...

goat milk lotion
quench your thirsty skin
Come meet Shannon & Dave
and goats (for real!)
from Star's Hollow Farm.

Au marché!
Come see us this Saturday the 18th of September
under the tree as usual
French Nest Open-Air Market
located at
Civic Center Park
9am - 3pm

Oooo la la!

Our chevre petites are going to an open air French market this Saturday. The one retailer selling our goat milk lotion in town, Esscentuals, has space and wants to "promote the goat" as it were.

We'll bring Speck our young milker because she is more agile ( she can and will jump into the back of the station wagon vs. having to heave, ho, hoist old lady Spot at 180 lbs fightin' weight into the back of the car ), and she is friendly... not that Spot isn't friendly but c'mon.

Once you reach a certain age, aren't you pretty much over having new and stressful situations out of your control thrown at you? Spot is an old goat... no stressful French Market for her. And we'll take our little doe kid Daisy Dollop along as well... she is young, interested, cute, friendly and pliable.

I'm nervous as we'll be THERE with OUR product in front of the public eye!

The goaties will charm everyone. They always do.... wish us luck!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Methodist church....

I was raised Catholic and went to Catholic school, all girls Catholic high's why I have an undying love of all things plaid.

And while I was raised Catholic, once I was on my own, I stopped practicing any formal religion.

I don't knock formal religion, I think it does much good for many folks. And I don't wanna go further than that cuz I don't really like discussing religion or politics... we believe what we believe based on a lot of different life experiences.

So that said - I haven't been to church in a LONG time. A really, super, duper LONG time.

Furry's mom, my mom-in-law, goes to a Methodist church and while Furry was bonding with his buddies... scratchin' their men bits and lettin' it all hang out... I told my mom-in-law I'd go to church with her.

I know it means a lot to her and it's an hour of my life. What else am I gonna do in the Quad Cities? Oh, I coulda gone along with Furry but I wanted to give him time with the fellas on his own. I didn't need to see the other fellas scratchin' their men bits.

I was a little nervous about church. Images of spontaneous combustion were floating around in my head....

I took a deep breath and walked into this pretty little church in Milan, IA.

My shrivelled blackened soul didn't burst into flame!

I didn't fall on the ground writhing in pain!

There was no smell of brimstone or sulphur!

Heyyyyyyyy - so far so good!

I met a lot of my mom-in-law's friends I hear her talk about. She introduced me to most everyone and I met the women who will be finishing our quilt. (Remember that mom-in-law / daughter-in-law quilt I'm working on? Everything is being hand stitched. Mom-in-law taught me how... her stitches are beautiful and mine look like a drunk squirrel tried it's hand at sewing. My mom-in-law finished THREE quilts in the time it's taken me to complete my half of our one quilt... that quilt?)

The women hand stitch the quilt. Their work is beautiful. I was able to see the room it'll be completed in and the loom (or whatever it's called) our quilt will be stretched across while it's worked on. I shook the hands of the women who will stitch it together bit by bit... the ladies are 88 and 91. Tiny little bird hands... paper thin skin... joints disfigured by arthritis. Amazing hands.

Mom-in-law and I worked on the quilt while I was out there. I have all my rows stitched together and now I attach them to each other and put a border all around. I'm giving myself 3 mos. to get 'er done and shipped to IL to put in the quilt line for the church ladies. They aren't gonna live forever ya know. It lit a fire under my ass.

Wait, wait, WAIT a stinkin' minute here.....

.....maybe there WAS a little hellfire scorching my un-religious butt?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I'm still here!

Part of the reason I really, really, really, really did'na wanna go to TX was because Furry and I had this trip to the Midwest planned to visit his Ma and it was right on the heels of the TX trip. We bought cheap-o plane tix - $180 round trip - back in June.

I don't mind leaving home now and again... and I was looking forward to seeing Betty and then this TX trip cropped up inbetwixt me being gone for a horseshow and then away for another week visiting my Mom-in-Law.


I don't travel that much and I missed our home and our ani-mules terribly. But I'm HOME, HOME, HOME! There are angels singing on high and there is rainbow bliss and glitter encompasing our house with little butterflies glimmering all about because we are both so happy to be HOOOOOME!

We were in Rock Island, IL - part of the Quad Cities... 2 cities in IL and then just a hop, skip and jump over the Muddy Mississip are 2 other cities in IA.

My sense of direction is pretty non-existant and I never really knew which state or which city I was in at any given time as we drove willy nilly to and fro visiting Furry's friends, parents of friends and other relatives. We had a perfectly lovely time visiting... the weather was good... and we are glad to be HOME.


Did I mention how happy we are to be HOME?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Feta experiment...

I made a couple batches o' feta this weekend. Mugwump, from Mugwump Chronicles, is a writer for a newspaper in Colorado Springs. She is coming over to learn how to make cheese, get the full on dairy goat experience and write an article about it sometime in September.

Hey, I'll do just about anything to squash the bad rap goats get and spread the goatie love.

I don't make feta often and figured I'd better get cookin' to be sure I still knew how! I read in one of my Yahoo! groups about home cheese making that someone made feta with thermophillic culture (yogurt) vs. the mesophillic culture (buttermilk) feta normally calls for. They thought it made the feta softer and more crumbly.

I made one batch with the meso and one batch with the thermo.

I was surprised that there wasn't really much difference. I tasted them and thought the meso had more flavor... but maybe the thermo would catch up in flavor after a week of aging in the fridge? I ran a tupperware of each to a neighbor who was interested in feta the next time I made it. Told him he could be my guinea pig and let me know what he thought.

I also used way less salt than most recipes call for. The salt hardens the curd, which means less crumble, and personally I don't like the extreme salt. Besides, my hay supplier will trade me 1 bale o' hay for 1 container of feta and she wanted less salt too.

Sometimes I get stuck in the "rules" but this time decided I could *gasp* deviate from the written directions, use less salt and to increase flavor add a skosh more lipase. We'll see how it goes.

*Light bulb moment*

Heyyyyyy..... wait just a stinkin' minute here.... I wonder if I could make 400 containers o' feta to trade straight across for the hay we need for winter?