I’m not completely sure what happened to November.  Between prepping for the conference and hosting my family for Thanksgiving, it was a crazy month. The conference ended earlier this week and we have no travel plans until Christmas.  So, I can get caught up on cleaning, organizing and writing.

The house is mostly decorated for Christmas thanks to my mother.  My folks visited for a week early in November then came for a few days before Thanksgiving and while my dad refinished two tables, my mother cleaned and decorated.  This is a GREAT house to decorate, from the lighted tree in the front window to the garland on the staircase.  And after having NO mantles from which to hang stockings, we now have four downstairs and four upstairs.  I wonder how Santa decides which chimney to use?

Getting heat going was a major concern.  The furnace works but it is pretty inefficient so we had propane lines installed and inserts put into three of the fireplaces, including the library which is our main hang out room.  It is toasty warm and the heat rises to the upstairs bedroom where we sleep.

Today was a “dog” day.  I walked my two early this morning and Spot was overly excited by some smell down near the silo.  His hackles were up all along his spine. Then, we saw hunting beagles tearing around the front yard and field, their owners in hot pursuit.  We helped them catch one and they said that something had spooked them, gesturing towards the back of our property. Hmmm…we’re wondering about coyotes although Bob has also mentioned a bear.  Better keep my eyes open on those early, pre-coffee walks!

The other dogs that were part of the day are now tucked into the dog crate in the back of my truck, waiting for animal control to open on Monday.  It’s a mother beagle and her adorable puppy that somehow ended up under our lumber pile.  We’ve seen her before but she has always run away and we know she had at least two other puppies earlier this year.  Today, we managed to catch both of them only to discover that the dog catcher won’t come on the weekend unless it’s an emergency.  It is tempting to adopt them, but I’m letting my intellect rule my emotion.  Four dogs would be too many and I’m not prepared for a puppy.  The local farmer who helped us get them from barrel to crate thought she might make a good hunting dog so we have a small bet that he will come back to retrieve them tomorrow.  Meanwhile, they have food and water and the truck will certainly be warmer than outside.  I’ll check on them before I go to bed.  One of the perils of living in the country is that people let their dogs run and aren’t always great about getting them spayed and neutered. But I can’t adopt every stray that wanders through…my two are both rescues and maybe someone will find a soft spot for these two. I’m still holding out for two cats.


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