I, TWooie, Do Solemnly Swear

That I will beat up The Food Lady’s landlord’s dog again at the first opportunity to do so.

Naughty TWooie!!  My landlord has a very sweet and amiable yellow Lab named Mia.  Sometimes Mia comes along when the landlord visits to do repairs or whatever.  Last week he and Mia stopped by to bring the pressure washer to try and clean up the DOGAWFUL MESS a turkey made when she got on my porch and managed to open a can of white ceiling paint, knock it over, and then tread through it all over the porch.  Although TWooie has been doing *surprisingly* well on our hikes and hasn’t objected to any of the client dogs who come along, he has a different view of dogs on HIS turf, and he Does Not Want Mia on his lawn.  He was actually doing okay – some growling and air snapping at her from a respectable and safe distance behind my knees – but when Mia and the landlord went to leave through the gate, TWooie must have figured all his bluff and noise had worked, because he went in for the hair pull (in a previous life, TWooie was an 11 year old girl) and Mia objected, and the dog fight was on!

As neither of them really had their heart in it (after all, TWooie is 98% posturing and only 2% malice) nobody got hurt, but it was quite the epic battle.  We* (*I) felt bad, so we* (*I) went to the doggie bakery and bought Mia a little heart shaped cake that said “sorry” on it to give to Mia when we got back from our hike.  And it was very easy to give to Mia, since she and the landlord were once again on our lawn doing stuff when we returned, so I assume the landlord wasn’t too upset about the whole thing.

But can we talk for a moment about my turkey with superturkey strength?  How does a turkey open a can of paint?  And WHY?  I really don’t get turkeys.  I have two lady turkeys right now sitting on a dozen eggs between them, but will they nest inside the barn?  No no, they must lay their eggs and sit on them outside, behind the barn, under some old dead blackberry thornies, where they are guaranteed to get pissed on when the weather is bad, all night long.  Last night I went out in the pitch black and downpour with a piece of plywood and made them a shelter so they didn’t drown.  And then at first light they promptly abandon their eggs to run around squawking and eating all day.  I don’t have high hopes for those eggs hatching.

But I do have high hopes for the ones in my incubator hatching!  They are due in one week, and I candled them two days ago and found 13 turkey embryos bouncing around in their shells like teenage gymnasts.  Very exciting stuff!

I spent last weekend, about 10 hours a day, painting.  I painted until my arms felt like they were going to fall off, and I could no longer feel my hands.  I took care of the hideous, no good, very bad psychedelic room, which required two coats of primer and two coats of paint (and I swear, in the right light, I can STILL see the outlines of the hideous pattern!).  But now it’s done, as is the dog room (kinda).


The dog room needed a new floor, so I bought and and laid lino against pee errors (also known around here as “Gemma, Piper and Addy piss wherever they want to”) and painted, and installed new baseboards.

And psychedelic room is now a nice relaxing shade of pale blue-grey, and not an assault on the visual and aesthetic senses!

I also painted my bedroom, and I still don’t care if you hate pink or not; I like it, and I like how it turned out.  Especially as the bedroom used to be a horrible colour that looked like a cross between pea soup and cat vomit.

As I had repainted the bathroom a couple of weekends before that:

This leaves me with just three rooms to go; living room, office and kitchen.  Starting to see the light at the end of the renovation tunnel!  The living room will be an aubergine shade, if I can find a paint store that carries it and/or can replicate it:

and will also need white baseboards installed.  The kitchen is going to be a nice shade of apple green, and I haven’t decided what do with my office yet.  It also needs flooring, as it’s just subfloor at the moment (don’t ask me why, I really could not tell you the mysteries of Which Rooms Deserved Real Floors And Which Did Not according to the previous tenant).  I also picked up an extremely inexpensive table and chairs for the dining room.  The table top needs to be refinished, so that’s also on my list of things to do.

But as I say, I took this weekend off from painting.  Although it is sunny today, and I am itching to start fencing, because a couple days ago we arrived home to find two cows in the yard.  I did not see them initially.  This may seem weird to you, that I would not notice cattle on my lawn, and I admit it’s weird to me too, but that’s what happened.  And I let the dogs out of the van, and they DID see the cows, and exactly what you think would happen when dogs see cows for the first time happened, and it was CHAOS.  So I really need to make sure that cows and goats are one side of the fence and my acorn-brained dogs are on the other at all times.  Because Fae thinks she can *take* a longhorn cow protecting her 500lb calf, and I don’t think that’s how I want Fae to depart this mortal coil.

Anyway, since the photo studio room was painted, I was eager to try it out.  So yesterday I limited myself to just a couple of errands (I took garbage to the dump, since we don’t have garbage pick up out here in the middle of nowhere, and I picked up two lady ducks for my new Pekin drake Howard – Howard was a stray duck rescued by a friend who then passed him on to me.  And apparently ducks are racist, because my India Runners staunchly refused to make friends with Howard, and Howard was sad.  But I found a nearby duck farmer who provided me with two Lady Howards, so now he has his own little harem and everyone is happy again) and then I rigged up holders for my backdrops, set up my lights, and gave the studio a test run!

(for those of you who saw the original of this on Facebook yesterday – yes, Photoshop and I fixed “Winter’s Wonderland” that was advertising its presence very PINKLY!)

I’m lucky that the vast majority of my dogs like being photographed in studio and fall all over themselves volunteering to be the model.

Even Addy, who basically does NOTHING I ask her to do, ever, likes posing for the camera.  I suspect it’s just a combination of her loving being the center of attention, and cookies.  But whatever her motivation, she is simply adorable to photograph under studio lights.

Look at her adorable face!

And see all those tiny little white hairs sticking up on top of her head?  They are “sticking up” because the rest of the top of her head is bald!  Totally naked!  She suffers from Dilute Colour Alopecia, so she loses patches of her blue hairs on random spots on her body.  Usually it grows back in with coat change, but this time her head remains bald.  So when photographing Addy, it’s all about angles.  Otherwise, her naked head is very obvious.  See?  (btw, this is her checking to see if Wootie ate her modeling paycheque and if there’s any chance of getting it back before it slides down his gullet.  Wootie, OTOH, just views this as an opportunity to make out with a hot, slender woman  … even if she is balding).

Head shots are kinda my favourite, and I think Fae Fae won the session with this one:

It’s those big, big, round brown eyes and the wispy ears combination that does it, I think.

Although Dexter can give her a run for her money when it comes to, erm, “unique” head shots.

I messed with Piper’s photo a little too much in post, but I’m sharing it anyway because her expression kills me.  It’s so classically  Old “Who Am I?  What’s Happening?  Yay Anyway!” Dog.

She’s doing pretty good, my old lady dog is.  She has more cognitive issues than Tweed did at her age, but I kind of expected that because she was always a “live hard” kind of dog, whereas Tweed was a lot more laid back.  She is mostly deaf now, and I have to really keep an eye on her during hikes because it’s easy for her to march off in the wrong direction – she is very determined, and if I lose sight of her she can’t hear me calling her.  She has trouble with some of the paths if they are steep, or there are logs in her way, so she will head off to find a way around the obstacles, which sometimes leads to her just going somewhere else altogether, and then me running all over the forest trying to find her!  Sometimes, when she thinks she has had enough, she will simply turn around and start matching back in the direction of the car.  She’s tough as nails, bad knees and all.

And Wootie.  How can anyone not love The Woo?  I still can’t believe he’s almost 12.  He is such a perpetual puppy.

Whereas TWooie is just a perpetual weirdo.

And Peetie remains a perpetual PEST.  I have never had such an irritating dog.  Miss “No Drive” has no off switch and frequently has to be put in her crate to give everyone some down time, otherwise she’s hitting napping dogs with rope toys to make them mad, or bothering the cats, or standing on the arm of my chair and barking in my ear.  I don’t know what I did to transform her so completely, but I wish I could undo it!!

However, I will give her this – yesterday afternoon the landlord’s goats were grazing in the field right behind my yard, so I couldn’t take the dogs out to play ( I could only imagine the Cow Scenario played out again, but this time X 35) so instead I took them out for short walks two at a time to property meet the horses next door through the fence.  There was only one in the paddock, and he really wants to meet my dogs.  But Every Single One of my dogs was an asshole to the horse – Mad Teeth(tm), growling, lunging and barking … except Peetie, who was super keen to make friends and poked her head through the page wire and sniffed noses with the horse and licked his nostrils.

She’s very friendly, so I haven’t throttled her with my bare hands.  Yet.

So anyway, now I have a fully functioning in-house studio and I can start taking clients!  It’s super exciting, I have dreamed of this opportunity for a long time :)

Now it’s time to get out there and start working on the fence while the good weather holds, and prevent the Great Goat Slaughter of 2017.  Also, I want to get the fencing up so I can rearrange the poultry’s living quarters, so I can then bring MY goats home.  GOATS!  Also so excited :)


  1. Your house looks fantastic! And you must have superwoman strength + adrenaline to get that much done. Good for you! I hope it is a happy home for you and yours. 😊

  2. Susan M Pauley says:

    Love this post. Love what you’re doing to your house. Love all your dogs but Woo and Twoo are the best!

  3. Janet, Spur, Cutter, Copper, Rip & Emma says:

    Love the colors you’ve chosen – especially the aubergine! Can’t wait to see that. Thanks for sharing!

  4. It’s all coming along nicely there and I’m enjoying seeing and hearing about the progress. Also love the doggy antics, reminds me of my pack, although I only have 4 collies to make chaos, at least I’m not alone in the world or experiencing canine goonery!

  5. I am so happy you have found great place to land with your pack, and loved seeing the studio shots!

  6. Wow, so happy the universe has responded in kind…your place looks fantastic and your efforts shine! I think Peetie knows how lovely she is and will age gracefully. ;D

  7. Lola-Dawn says:

    Really like the colours you’re painting! Sounds like a great place for your canine/poultry/goat family!

  8. Piper 4 Ever <3

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