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Yes, we made it to North Carolina. We arrived April 18, closed on a new (much smaller) house on May 2, the movers arrived toward the end of May, and we have been unpacking since then, trying hard to get everything done and in place so that we can catalog everything that got broken in the move and make a claim on it all. Sadly, so far there is quite a bit.

The ferrets stayed behind in Colorado with friends, until we could get settled. I didn’t think having incredibly aromatic animals in a hotel was a good idea. The gliders did go to the hotel, and the dogs went to boarding.

Unlike our last move, the long-term hotel was very different. The last time, in both hotels, there were separate bedrooms. This time, we were all in one room, with a kitchenette, which made for some tension. Nobody wanted to be boxed in like we were, but we had to deal with it. There were definitely some days, though, where it was tough.

With two glaring exceptions, the trip across country was pretty uneventful. Flat all the way, although the Mississippi River gave me some trouble, with my fear of heights. The next thing to terrify me was the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee. I think. You don’t realize you’re going up until you reach the point that you have to go down, and it’s a very steep grade that also twists and turns all the way to the bottom. And the speed limit is 55. With trucks and cars speeding by you. Needless to say, I thought the speed limit should be 10 mph. By the time I got to the bottom, white knuckles all the way, I was shaking and crying, and couldn’t bring myself to take the truck above 60 (it was a 75 mph speed limit). This is saying something, as I’m a leadfoot and always have been. I’ve been much better since having children in the vehicle with me regularly, never going more than five mph above the limit unless I’m alone–then all bets are off. But I couldn’t even get to the speed limit after that experience!

Oh, wait, there was a third harrowing occurrence! This one involved the dogs. Well, one dog. The youngest one.

I’d bought a topper for the truck bed, specifically for this trip. Brand new. I had it one day before putting the dogs in it to hit the road. Within an hour of getting in the truck, miss Valkyrie ripped out the wiring of the topper. How kind of her.

Then we made it almost all the way to NC without incident, until Hwy 20, where she proceeded to rip the screen out of the topper window, and tried to jump out of the moving truck. Mind you, all dogs were anchored to the steel loops of the bed. So hubby, in the rental car behind me, was honking and trying to call me, and my kids are having a meltdown, while I, having already seen what was going on, was trying to get off the highway. We rearranged the dogs at that point, so she couldn’t get to anything. And I was very happy to drop them off at the boarding kennel, finally, that afternoon.

I’ll leave the story of our move here, and get back to it next time!

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The Three Musketeers: Vanir, Valkyrie, and Thor

It is unreal, the amount of trouble a puppy can get into, even when supervised. To say that Valkyrie keeps us on our toes–constantly–is to vastly understate the situation.  I haven’t forgotten what it’s like to have an Arctic breed puppy, but Val is by far the most mischievous one I’ve ever been owned by. Vanir was shy when he first joined the family, which may explain why he wasn’t ridiculously difficult to train, and Thor was already three and an adult when he arrived. But Valkyrie is something else!! There is nothing sacred. She’s just barely tall enough to see over the counters when standing on her hind legs, but that doesn’t stop her. We have to police everything: floors, counters, closets, and even then, she will find what you miss, no matter how small! In the house, she is either on a leash attached to one of us, or she is in the crate when she can’t be watched. Crate training has begun in earnest!! She hates it, of course, because the boys don’t have to be crated at all, and she absolutely does, no question. On those rare occasions when she sleeps with us, she’s on the leash, and the wrist strap is around my ankle all night.

It’s hard, because she’s utterly adorable, and it breaks your heart when she cries because it’s bedtime or you’re going out and she has to go in the crate, but the house would be a disaster if we didn’t do it. The one night we allowed her to sleep with Aneira, she got loose and tore up the main floor. Garbage everywhere, papers shredded into tiny pieces, a dish broken…which is how she was caught. Bryony heard the crash at 3 am and came to get us after catching the little turdbrain. After that, the strict rule is crate at bedtime.

She definitely has a mind of her own, like all of her breed, and the ability to make you love her no matter what devilry she gets up to. She loves to kiss your face when she hasn’t seen you all day, her whole body wagging. Annoyingly, though she was my birthday present, she has a definite affinity for the PIP. She’s starting to include the rest of us, though, so it could be worse!

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It seems that the dragon loom and I have finally come to an agreement. I have a system now that helps me keep better track of where I am in the pattern. It seems kind of obvious in hindsight, but it took me awhile to realize the way the pattern worked, because I wasn’t looking for it. I was simply following the directions by rote, not really paying attention to it. Once I did see it, though, it was easy to work with. The pattern sequence is 8 turns of the tablets, made a bit more complex by the fact that I’m actually working with five packs of tablets, and they go in two different directions for half the sequence, and in the same direction for the other half, but it’s two consecutive picks for each turn. So I started counting off each pick, one and two, change direction, one and two, change direction, etc. That wasn’t working, because while yes, the two picks were identical, the next two weren’t, and carried the same numbers, so I was still losing my place. I had to count them off as one through eight, and once I started doing that, everything flowed much better. If I’m in pick five, I know exactly which direction the cards are turning, and therefore which way I need to turn them next in order to continue the weave, or to unweave in case of a mistake. It has been much easier!

Aneira is doing well with therapy, and she and I talk each night at bedtime about how her day went, rating everything on a scale of one to ten. Lots of hugs and kisses are given, along with lots of “I love you”. There are those who would say that all the repetition of those words devalues them, but my personal belief is that your kids can never hear them too often. Kids too easily fall into the habit of believing that their parents hate them. Not only that, but there’s also the fact that anything can happen during the course of a day, and sometimes whatever happens can mean that you never have the opportunity to say those words to that person again. So I say them as often as I can, to make sure the girls know how much I love them. So far, I’ve been lucky, and both of them are still tightly bonded to me. I don’t know how much longer that will last; Aneira will be thirteen in a couple of months!

Valkyrie is rapidly becoming the queen terror of the house. It’s a good thing I’d bought a whole bunch of Clorox wipes at Costco, because they’re getting a lot of use as we work on potty training. She and Vanir are very close, but the old man, Thor, still wants nothing to do with this little upstart. And she’s way too smart for her own good: she has already figured out that doorknobs are what allow one to open the door and escape a room. I have watched her working on them, and she’s going to get it right sooner rather than later! She stands on her hind legs, takes the doorknob in her mouth and tries to twist it. If she had opposable thumbs, I’d be in deep trouble already!

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I don’t know what I want to do tonight. I’m sitting in my little studio, staring at Pinterest, and I don’t know what I want to do. I’ve got three bands in various stages of weaving on three different looms, and I’m looking at other patterns for another band. I’m also looking at tatting patterns, because it’s been awhile since I picked up a shuttle and my fingers are itching for one. I’ve also got two blankets on crochet hooks that could use some work, and I saw some interesting crochet stitches on Pinterest too.

And then there’s Valkyrie, with whom I’ve made some strides today and who is just cute as a button, and I want to play with her too. And Vanir has been very lovey-dovey since Valkyrie arrived, so cuddling him is a must, too. And I have to say, I don’t understand how it is that he is still as adorable as a puppy when he is an adult and nearly five years old now. Yeah, my dogs aren’t spoiled or anything!

There are also my adult coloring books, markers, and colored pencils…I could spend some time coloring with my kids. There’s so much I could be doing, so much I want to do, and can’t figure out which want is greater than the others! Sigh. So I think what I’m going to do is read more of Tablets at Work. I need to know more about how tablet weaving really works. I’ve made so many mistakes with the strap on the dragon loom that it’s not funny. If I lose my place, I generally end up cutting the weft thread and pulling it out back to the beginning of the pattern repeat, because I can’t figure out how to unweave it without compounding the problem. So studying is probably the best idea. It’s not like the book isn’t interesting, because it absolutely is, it’s just that I’d rather be doing than reading. Sometimes, though, you can’t jump ahead like that, and this is one of those times.

 

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Fourteen years old!!

Yes, I had a birthday a few days ago, and so did Thor, our now-fourteen-year-old Sibe. We share a birthday, which is pretty cool, I think. And while I’ll tell you how old he is, since I don’t think he cares, I think I’ll refrain from mentioning my age, in favor of my vanity. Most people express disbelief upon hearing my age, swearing I look younger than I am, but I’m never sure if the disbelief is genuine, or politeness lol.

So the day in question didn’t start out so well. A couple of days earlier, I had woken up to find my left knee painful and starting to swell. No idea what I’d done to it. I hadn’t fallen, wrenched it, or banged it into anything. Just, out of nowhere, blammo! And over the course of the next two days, it blew up to twice the size of the right one. I couldn’t bend it far, and couldn’t straighten it completely either. It hurt to touch it or move it. The PIP thought I should go to the ER the night before my birthday, but I refused. And by morning, I really had no choice. So off to the urgent care I went. Xrays were excruciating, but showed no breaks and no reason for all the swelling. Orders have since gone out for an MRI. Fun stuff. So I ended up with a compression bandage on the knee, naproxen for daytime, hydrocodone for bedtime, and instructions to wait for the MRI folks to call.

Then I had to head up to Denver International Airport, because my birthday present was arriving on Alaska Air. Naturally, the weather turned ugly, and since I was driving up alone, I opted to avoid the highway and take the back roads, which were themselves pretty nasty. I don’t ever do the highway in bad weather. Call me a wimp, but contending with idiots who are far exceeding the dry speed limit of 75 mph is not my idea of a relaxing drive. Thus, back roads. It takes longer–a lot longer–but I feel more confident of surviving the trip!

Without further ado, let me introduce my present:

Introducing Valkyrie, Tovik’s Warrior Goddess

She is an adorable bundle of trouble! I admit to being nervous about introducing her to Vanir, but the two of them are fast friends already. She follows him everywhere. Thor is less thrilled about the new arrival. It hasn’t been long since Bandit left us, but we agreed that the kids needed this, and I’ve known the owners of Tovik Siberians ever since I got Thor eleven years ago.

This is the first time I’ve ever had a pack that consisted only of Northern breed dogs. I figure Valkyrie’s mask will eventually fade, but right now she’s got striking markings. And when I finally get a picture of the three of them together, they’ll look beautiful together. And boy, am I glad the boys are neutered!!! She’ll be spayed after she’s a year old, to make sure she grows properly into adulthood. I have no desire to breed!

Of course, she latched right onto the PIP, Mr. I-Don’t-Want-A-New-Dog-Yet, who cuddles her every chance he gets, and she considers the girls of the household to be furniture, to be ignored as much as possible. Annoying, lol! Unless we’re giving out treats, of course. But what a cutie!

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The horn tablets are a bit larger than the bone.

It’s very quiet in the house since Bandit crossed the Bridge. The boys seem to be lost, Vanir more than Thor. Bandit was who he latched onto when he joined the family as a puppy, and he’s been looking for her since she’s been gone. We all have, really. The girls are really devastated, but taking it better than the adults. Fourteen years of “Where’s Bandit? What is she doing?” doesn’t evaporate overnight. She was part of the family, and it’s hard not to have her here. I keep looking for her goofy grin. I even miss yelling at her not to eat the crap she finds outside. There wasn’t much she wouldn’t eat. If she could chew it, clearly, it was edible. The more gross, the better.

I don’t understand how it works. For the most part, when the dogs are inside the house, the older two were sleeping, and thus things were quiet. I don’t understand how it’s even quieter now. But it is, and for now, at least, we’ll have to get used to it.

As for my little weaving experiment, I’m not going to call it an unqualified success, because it’s still on the loom and not finished, but I’ve woven quite far on the DMC satin strap, and it’s continuing to do well. Nothing has snapped or begun to unravel (and now that I’ve said that, I’ve jinxed myself), and I really believe if it was going to, it would have already done so (now I’ve really done it). But as I’m weaving, the bone tablets work their way closer to me with each quarter turn, and at the end of every sequence, I’m pushing them back up the warp. And unlike cardboard tablets, obviously, bone is thicker and more abrasive to the strings, so I’m surprised, really, to see so little wear on the strings. Tablet weaving also requires the weft to be beaten into place more firmly than other types of weaving, and the satin has taken it all like a trooper!

So I’ll almost certainly continue to use the DMC satin for weaving. The downside of that is that it’s pricy, and you can’t get all the available colors in one store. They’re $.99 per 8.7 yard skein. The cost of buying enough satin is  going to be exorbitant. To buy 3 skeins of each color at DMC itself would be measured in hundreds of dollars. I’ll have to work on that slowly lol. But I think it will be worth it. And the way the floss separates on its own at the ends, it’ll be perfect for tassels at the end of the strap.

The horn tablets finally arrived today. Getting them here has been quite the adventure. They were sent once before, from the same company that sent the bone tablets. They made it all the way to Denver, got rerouted to San Francisco, and were returned to Germany, for no reason either the merchant or I could discern. So they sent them again, and this morning before the mailman ever got here, the tracking information said that they had already been delivered and left with someone at the house. Well, of course, the package wasn’t here. This began a round of calling the post office several times, trying to find out what had happened to it. I have been reminded how much I hate computer menus. It took two hours to get to a point where the computer recognized my request to speak to a representative, and then find out that I was going to be on hold for at least another hour. I was still on hold when I heard the mailman filling the boxes outside. I got down there in record time (for me), and found out that the package was in the box waiting. Yes!

Oddly, the bone tablets are a bit smaller than the horn, because according to my order, both sets are 4 cm. Weird. But I’m happy with both, so it’s not a big deal.

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Bandit’s last photo, tonight.

Tonight, Bandit collapsed on us. She let us know it was time for her to go be with her sister and all of the pets that went before her to the Rainbow Bridge. Naturally, as she lived life her own way, she did death that way too. She never had any physical health problems that becoming young again wouldn’t have conquered. Never lost her appetite. Still occasionally roughhoused with Vanir. Always happy.

But tonight it was time.

It’s a decision I hate making, and it’s one that humans make over and over again for their beloved furchildren, and one I will have to make again soon for Thor, as well, who will be fourteen at the end of the month. And will I continue to have dogs, even knowing what I’ll go through at the end? Absolutely. I wouldn’t know how to live without a dog.

From the very beginning, Bandit did everything her own way. She was never a dog to lie around and cuddle with you, unlike her sister Smoky. She had to be out and about, regardless of the risks she took. We often said she was part cat, with all attendant nine lives, and would outlive all of us. She survived things we thought would be the end of her: rattlesnake bites, being hit by a car on one of her excursions. She was a young dog with the snake, barely out of puppyhood. She was already a senior citizen when she climbed the fence and got hit by the car. Her right hip was dislocated, the leg degloved, the ankle capsule destroyed, her skull broken, the pubis muscle detached, and she survived. More than that, she thrived. The vet thought that she would be in staples and splints for six weeks. She was out of both within three, and climbing the fence again two weeks after that. She was ten at the time.

She has given me more grey hairs than any dog before her. She has given us laughter and love. The day we brought Aneira home from the hospital as an infant, she tried to climb into the bassinet with her, and that set the tone for how she felt about her furless children. She adored them as much as they adored her.

She never so much as growled at anyone in her life. She got along with everyone, no matter the species. There was no one she didn’t love, and no one that didn’t love her back.

She earned her honorary silver harness, putting up with the shenanigans of her Arctic brothers and even encouraging them, joining in with the Siberian Furniture Olympics when they were all younger.

She hated water with a passion, despite being a Labrador retriever. If she wasn’t drinking it, she wanted nothing to do with it.

Bam-Bam, you gave us so much joy throughout your life. We are missing you so much. Wait for us, North of the Bridge, with your silver harness and your sister. We’ll miss you until we get there. We love you, baby girl.

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Maverick's ladies, Melisande and Musette

Maverick’s ladies, Melisande and Musette

On the 23rd, I made a trip to Lone Tree to meet a lady who needed to rehome two female gliders. I know, I know…this would put me at nine gliders, but ever since Maverick realized there were other gliders nearby and he could see them but not interact with them because they wouldn’t accept him, he’s been lonely. He watched them constantly. Both my other cages contain males, which may or may not contribute to the lack of acceptance, depending upon who you talk to, so something needed to be done. Enter the lady I was meeting. She lives in Aspen, which is apparently a good six hours away from Colorado Springs, and was heading out on a trip from Denver International, so we agreed to meet in Denver the day before she left so I could pick up her girls and bring them home to hopefully become friends with Maverick.

I’d never driven to the Denver area alone before, and I’ve only gone up there maybe five times, including this trip, in the five years we’ve lived here. So naturally, I was nervous. I’m not fond of driving on interstates, and I love to drive. The longer the drive, the better. But interstates are populated by eighteen wheelers.

When I was seventeen, while driving my dad’s car back from somewhere I wasn’t supposed to have been, with two people I wasn’t supposed to be with, we were hit by a Ryder truck. That truck skidded 61 feet before he hit us. I saw it coming and stepped on the gas, but this was an economy car, which means there was really no pick-up at all. By the time we started moving, it was because we had been launched, Dukes of Hazzard-style, by the impetus of collision. The truck’s tire tracks were in the trunk all the way up to the back window. We were lucky. Not only did the tracks end at the window, but the gas tank was under the trunk. One of the police officers on the scene told me that when he heard car-and-truck collision, he’d thought they would be hosing us out of the vehicle.

Add this to the experience of growing up in an area of high traffic, which means you regularly heard news reports about eighteen wheelers jackknifing on the highway, and you get a good idea of my paranoia. The nice thing was that outside of the interstate, there were other highways we could use that did not allow trucks. For the area of New York that I trekked through most often, only the Long Island Expressway allowed trucks. The Northern and Southern State Parkways, the Grand Central Parkway, and the Van Wyck did not, so I most often used those. The City, or Manhattan to those who didn’t grow up there, was about an hour away from my home. We drove in often with my parents as kids, and as teens and young adults we drove in even more frequently because that was where the nightlife was. We averaged that trip at least once or twice a week, and an hour-long commute is a normal thing for New Yorkers. Even a two-hour one doesn’t raise any eyebrows: lots of people live in New Jersey and make the commute to NYC every day to work. So we made this drive often, and I knew the parkways well and didn’t have to deal with trucks. Paranoia indulged.

But now I’m driving to Denver. Alone. For the first time, with only a couple trips under my belt. What’s so amusing is that the drive isn’t that bad, trucks aside. It’s not…while I’m actually doing it. But when I think about doing it, I get chills and cold sweats. I have no idea why.

I left about 9 am because I wasn’t sure about traffic or where I was going. We were going to meet at Park Meadows Mall, at the junction of I-25 and CO-470, which I, for some reason, thought was on the  far side of Denver. I left way too early, because traffic was smooth sailing, and the mall was on my side of Denver. Lone Tree is actually on the outskirts of Denver. I was on the road for maybe an hour, tops. As she was coming from Aspen, she had a longer drive ahead of her, and wouldn’t arrive until 2:30. I had lots of time to kill. Wandering around a mall covered maybe an hour. There’s just not a lot to do in a mall if you’re not a size 3 and you’re holding onto every dime you’ve got. I drove to a couple of other places nearby too, but ended up hanging out in my truck for about an hour before she arrived.

I met the family and we talked gliders for a few minutes before all of us hit the road again, and I brought the newly named Musette and Melisande home. What can I say? I was in a mood for some elegant French names this time around. So no themes followed this time, although Musette did come from a really old Judy Garland musical cartoon called the Gay Purr-ee from 1962. It was one of my favorite movies, about country cat Mewsette leaving home for the big city, Paris, and leaving behind her beau, Jean-Tom, who follows her with his little sidekick Robespierre in order to keep her out of trouble. Meowrice was the villain of the piece, voiced by Robert Goulet.

The two of them are absolutely adorable, fully as sweet as Maverick. I didn’t put them all together right away, though. They were both a little freaked out, which is understandable. A long car ride, a new person, a new environment…anyone would be a little freaked. So they went into their own familiar cage for a couple of days.

Last night, I took the girls and Maverick into the tent together and took video. It couldn’t have gone better!!! No fighting. No crabbing. Lots of Maverick marking them with his scent, and them allowing it. Victory!!!!

My initial plan was to let them have a few “dates” before moving them all in together, but after returning everyone to their cages last night and feeding them, I noticed a huge gap between the back of the girls’ cage and the floor, big enough for one of them to either escape or get a head caught. It was probably a result of the ride home in the back of my truck, and I couldn’t fix it. And of course, now that I’d seen it, I couldn’t unsee it. There was nothing for it: the girls were moving, and right now.

Fourteen hours later, all is still well. All three are sleeping in the same pouch, and the cage is a combination of items belonging to all of them, so the scents should be mixing well, and Maverick certainly spent plenty of time last night marking everything new that came in. The girls even spent time marking themselves with his scent by rubbing their heads back and forth on the scent gland on his chest. I couldn’t be happier with the outcome. Maverick has friends now, and is no longer a lonely single. And now, I really can draw the line and say no more gliders. Nine is more than enough.

But for some reason, other glider owners have been laughing at me since I said that…

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11 days till Christmas, and seven till Yule on the winter solstice, which, being Wiccan, is really the day I should be celebrating on, but it’s easier just to stick with Christmas Day. The kids would undoubtedly be happier if we went for the solstice, since it’s sooner, but, hey, we’re not even certain yet that they’re getting gifts this year. They’ve misbehaved so often and so badly in recent days that I’m inclined to just return everything and be done with it.

And there’s so little time left. Is Bryony’s bag finished? Not. Even. Close. I will have to work until my hands can’t move to get this thing done in time. I don’t know if I can do it. I forgot to reckon with how much I have to do during the holidays. There’s all the cooking that has to be done, which, thankfully, doesn’t take place until the day in question, but there’s getting things wrapped, shopping, hiding things cleverly enough that the kids can’t find them, and a zillion other things that I have to do, both concerned with the holiday and not. Tomorrow, in fact, we have to get the kids out of school early to get them to the pediatrician by 3:15, because their behavior has been such that it’s time to consult a professional. Bryony got herself in-school-suspension for half a day for bullying another little girl so badly that the child’s grades have dropped and she’s depressed. I was shocked to find this out, because we have had numerous conversations about bullying and how to treat one’s friends. Apparently, nothing has sunk in.

And Aneira is a teenager in nearly everything. Her mouth is writing checks her derriere can’t cash. The disrespect level has gone through the roof recently. If I spoke to my mother the way she’s been backtalking me lately, I wouldn’t have needed braces. I wouldn’t have had teeth. As it stands, after the latest episode of backtalk, when I asked her to help with the dishes only to be refused, I informed my child that I will continue to feed and clothe her because the law requires that I do so until she’s eighteen, but not to ask me for any extras so long as she refuses to behave like a member of the family. Her reaction was to shrug and say “Fine”, and walk away. Meanwhile, I went from anger to tears and back to anger. So, to the pediatrician to consult about behavioral issues and modification. I’m nervous, because with both parents being bipolar, the likelihood of the girls having the same problem is astronomically high, and I’m not keen on putting my kids on meds. I’m hoping that if they are diagnosed as bipolar, or ADD, or something like that, there’s a way to avoid meds. I just don’t want to start them down that path this young.

The animals also need attention as well, particularly the gliders, because they won’t stay tame without human interaction, as evidenced by the Dragons. As I’ve said before, they’re one step up from feral. One very short step! I don’t want the others to regress that badly either. So I find time to spend at least an hour with each group. Normally, that means I spend time with one trio and Maverick one night, and the other trio gets me the next night. The girls make an effort to spend time with Stitch, the rabbit, and the dogs are woven throughout the pattern. They’re easy because they have free run of the house and backyard, other than the master bedroom, so they’re not missing anything at any time. Still, making quality time for everyone and keeping up with everything else drastically reduces the time I have for working on Bryony’s bag or for sleeping.

Which explains why I am still up at quarter to five on a Wednesday morning.

Tonight was the Kaos Krew’s night for tent time. We’ve made progress in some areas, not enough in others. We have reached a point where all three of them run to me for comfort and safety when something startles them, and their idea of fun in the tent is to use me as their personal jungle gym, which means they’re all over me, including up in my hair. What we have not learned is that it’s not nice to bite me. Zoe, in particular, has a penchant for biting my fingers and toes. I invariably forget to put socks on when going into the tent with them–every time. And of course, it doesn’t take long for Zoe to figure that out and make a beeline for my toes when she thinks I won’t notice. Yes, she did get me once tonight. You would think, as often as she does it, I would have learned to never forgo socks. Even Aneira has learned that, and she doesn’t spend as much time with them as I do. She puts shoes on to go in the tent, yet I can never remember to put on socks. Go figure. But at least we’re making progress on bonding, which is all to the good. That means that at some point, the biting will stop. I hope.

Please, please, wish me luck on getting this bag finished in time. After that, I think I’m done with crocheting for a little while!

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Maverick and I in the tent

Maverick and I in the tent

I made a tactical error tonight during tent time with the gliders: I took the three Dragons in first, then forgot to wipe down the floor of the tent before bringing Maverick in to play afterward. Apparently, he was much displeased. Any area of the tent or my person that had contact with the three intruders had to be re-marked and/or attacked…which included my person. Won’t make that mistake again! Normally, Maverick is the most laid back of the seven, and acts as an ambassador glider when I know he’ll be meeting people, because he isn’t a nippy glider. Or say, rather, that he isn’t a glider who nips to get blood. But he was very unhappy with the scent of the Dragons in the tent this evening!

Interactions with the Dragons are still very discouraging. Mnementh is the only one, still, who will approach me, or allow me to approach him. Canth and Ruth still respond with absolute terror and run and hide if possible. In the tent, hiding isn’t really possible, other than to cower in the pouch that comes in with them. It’s so sad, especially since I really love all seven of them. I hate to see an animal that scared of contact with its owner. They seem to have no idea that I would never hurt them. They’ll run all over me in the tent, but I can’t touch them, or even twitch in their direction unless I want to see them run for the pouch.

Mnementh and Canth in their pouch during tent time

Mnementh and Canth in their pouch during tent time

Tent time is recommended because a small tent forces the glider to have some kind of interaction with the owner, which goes toward the bonding process. This isn’t an issue with Mal, Inara, Zoe, or Maverick. They have no fear of me whatsoever. I haven’t been putting any of them in the bonding pouch for awhile. For one thing, it’s been too cold, in my opinion, to take them out. For another, the Dragons need the attention a lot more than the others, so they’ve been the only ones to ride around in the bonding pouch, but only at home, due to the aforementioned temperatures. Which means they spend far less time in the pouch than I would prefer, because I don’t want the dogs further terrifying already scared animals that realize that they will fit into a canine maw with room to spare. I also don’t push Bryony into interacting with them, because she can’t seem to remain still or move slowly around them, which contributes to their fears. And she’s as nervous around multiple gliders as they are around her.

I’ve gotten some pictures from Blue’s new family, and he’s doing wonderfully! He readily bonded with them, which makes me happy at the same time it makes me sad and a little bit jealous, because he didn’t bond with us in the least, and he was born in this house and handled from nearly day one. I’ve redoubled my efforts with Stitch now, who is currently running around my room as I write this. He seems much happier now that he is an only rabbit! So maybe that will make bonding with him easier, as he seems to be less stressed now.

Bryony's bag...restart number three!

Bryony’s bag…restart number three!

Bryony’s bag is still giving me fits. I’m on the third restart now, with less than a month to get it finished, and never did get around to the micro-macrame or kumihimo jewelry I wanted to make for the girls too. These bags have been the bane of my existence, and I love to crochet!!!! I should have just woven some bags instead. Well, live and learn: hindsight is 20/20! I might be able to add a piece or two more if I can manage to finish this bag with at least three days to spare. At the rate this is going, it may not happen, but I’m certainly going to try!

The rounds are somewhere around 200 stitches each, but the yarn is so much smaller than what I used for Aneira’s bag that the bag itself will be smaller. The yarn is a viscose blend–I want to say cotton, but I don’t have it in front of me at the moment, so don’t hold me to that. I’m using the smallest crochet hook I have without resorting to the truly tiny ones, and I think it might still be a bit too large!

Well, it’s three am at the moment, so I think it would probably be a good idea to get Mr. Stitch into his cage and head to bed myself. Good night, all!

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