Tuesday, March 31, 2009

1st Baseball practice

My boy getting the hit
Catching practice with dad

Tonight was the boys first practice at the church ball diamond over in pricetown. I think they did really well. They split the boys into two groups. One group had batting practice while the other group had catching practice then they switched half way through. Our boy is the second smallest boy on the team. Probably one of the younger ones too. It goes up to age 7. My husband helped the coach out by being in charge of the catching part while the coach focused on batting practice.

I think my husband had fun even though the second batch of boys he had were older and more rowdy. I think they were getting a little tired since practice is from 7 to 8pm. My kids are used to going to bed at 8 so they were tired and hungry. So we stayed up till 8:30 and had a snack when we got home. Some of the parents were really critical of their kids and verbally correcting them and telling them their sisters hit better than they do. I didn't hear very many good jobs except from the coaches. I thought this was supposed to be fun at this age. I might try to direct my son but I would try to praise his efforts not criticize them. Well guess I must have a different perspective. I'm not looking for the next Babe Ruth, just some good old fashioned fun. Which is what I felt my son had last night.

He hit a really good ball last night , but I missed it cause I was checking his sisters math homework. Since she was off school sick last week she had 8 math papers front and back to complete. So we did homework during practice. That's why I didn't get many pictures or video. I'm sure there will be plenty more chances though. I got out of the office late but I managed to make it there just as the boys were getting warmed up. So I really didn't miss anything.
After the practice the coach asked my husband to be assistant coach and he accepted. I think its really cool he takes such an interest in the kids, so many dads don't. In fact it was mainly moms at the field last night and one dad who did nothing but sit in his chair and yell at his kid. I am so lucky to have such a great guy. He only had about 3 hours of sleep yesterday to go on but he was there helping with homework for sissy before practice and for our son during it. And the bonus was our boy wore his cup with no fuss. I don't believe it.

Also if you look past the white fence in the background of the photos you will see Ruble cemetry That is were some of the kids early ancestors are burried. In fact the Ruble name is the family name of my fathers side of the family. We have such strong ties to this area.

Catching with dad video & batting with coach video

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Easter Rabbits

We currently have three litters of new zealand white rabbits for sale. They will be ready for new homes from now through Easter time. Pricing ranges from $8.00 to $10.00 per rabbit. Email us for more info lablover1996@yahoo.com
This litter and another litter we have will be 6 weeks old for Easter. a total of 14 rabbits available. These litters are $8 each.

This litter will be 10 weeks old for Easter. A total of 8 rabbits available. This litter is $10 each.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Puppies Week Three Update

Well pups are just a little over three weeks old now. They are walking much better now still uncoordinated though. Their teeth are breaking through the skin and are very sharp. They now bark at their mom when she decides to get out out the box and take a break from them. We moved them to the garage when we had my daughters birthday party and you can hear them bark inside the house. They have been dewormed and I have ordered their puppy packs from purina. Today they each got assigned collars so we can keep better track of them. They also got their first feeding of puppy chow soaked in warm water to make it nice and soft. They took right to it and ate about a cup total, which is pretty good for their first time. Mom enjoyed eating what they didn't. After they were done they all laid down to sleep with their full bellies.

two girls and one boy.boy is on the right

two boys and one girl. girl is the one on her back

Video of the first dinner. They are really getting down to business.

Vaccines to help prevent disease?

Okay what else can go wrong around here? I thought everything was on the upswing on tueday when I left the doctors office. However that evening at the baseball meeting my little girl complained she didn't feel good. I was hoping it was just because it was getting late and she was very tired. She was taking benedryl because she had a reaction to a dye in one of her shirts and had an itchy rash. Not so next morning she had a fever and sore throat. So she stayed home with daddy. She stayed in her room and watched movies while he slept. When he got up her fever was really high again. We debated taking her to urgent care. Then when my son got home from his grandmothers it looked like he was having a reaction to his vaccines. So we loaded up and went to urgent care. Since both kids had rashes they immediately put us in an exam room instead of the waiting room. My son had a large swollen area that was hot to the touch on his right arm were he had been given his DTP and Chicken pox vaccines. He also was breaking out in little spots all over that were very itchy and he was getting more and more as time went on. He even had them on the bottoms of his feet.
The doctor was the one who had seen our son's toe the week before. I liked him then, not so sure now. He did a strep test on our daughter. It was negative so just a viral infection for her. For our son he agreed it was a vaccine reaction, probably from the chicken pox vaccine. We asked if he was contagious the doctor said no it's a killed virus. I didn't quite understand how you could have pox marks from a killed virus but ok. That's why we give dogs killed rabies vaccines cause they can't get the disease from it. So anyway we went home. I pulled out the vaccine info sheets our doctor had given us when he gave the vaccines. It said the virus was contagious. Then I got on the web and found it is in fact a modified live vaccine which made more sense to me. I was believing the Internet more than the doctor by now, but decided to wait and call our regular doctor the next morning. In fact our son has come down with a case of the chicken pox from his vaccine. It will most likely be a light case since it is vaccine induced. And they said he very well could be contagious for awhile, but that the vaccine induced form is less likely to be contagious. So we will er on the side of caution and keep him in quarantine from the rest of the world. I can't believe how uninformed the doctor at urgent care was. How many kids has he sent out into the world to infect other people. It is fine not to know something and have to look it up. I would have admired that more. There are so many things in medicine to know and sometimes you just have to say I don't know. So people watch your doctor and trust your gut. I usually don't refer to the internet too much for these sorts of things cause there can be alot of misinformation there to, so use responsible sources like medical universities and the CDC which is were I went. And remember a mother always knows her kids the best. I just hope I am done with doctor visits for awhile now. I just want to stay home with my itchy sick kids.

A photo of my son's arm were the vaccine was given.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Pronounced Healthy

Started my day with a little yoga today. It was an episode on balance. Not something I am good at, but I made it through. Then hubby and I went for a 3.1 mile run. I was happy my time improved from yesterday. I was under 30 minutes today. Hooray!! I think I might have tried to kill my husband though since he was going on about 4 hours of sleep. But he never asked to slow down. I started out slower for him, but after I saw my time at the one mile mark was really sucking I really pick up the pace. And the hill in the middle of the run really sucks. But we made it. Hubby said It helped having me there to keep him going. I really think I pushed it a little hard for him today. We even got a flyer for a 5K in the mail today. My shin has been acting up a bit and today my calf feels a little tight but it is starting to loosen as the day goes on.
So after the workout I hit the shower ate lunch and cut hubby's hair. Then I had to take my son for a well child checkup. He was pronounced healthy. His toe is healing well. He is average on his height at 3'7'' and in the 5th percentile for weight at 38 lbs. That was down from last year he was in the 25th percentile, but doctor said not to worry and I'm not his sister did the same thing. However he needed four booster shots, boy did that suck. Afterwards we went to krogers to buy Bolt as a reward.
Next we are off to the baseball meet and greet tonight at 7:30pm. Our son is very excited. Well it is getting pretty cloudy guess I better go care for the critters before the rain hits.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Rollercoaster Weekend

Well my day started off with not really wanting to go to work on Friday. It was a pretty day and I wanted to be outside at home. We were pretty steady at the office two surgeries and a full book of appointments. So for a dose of sunshine I went to the near by park which has a one mile track I ran for 3 miles. I was pumped. I ate my lunch in the car on the drive back (5minute drive), which means I didn't eat much and I ate fast. Not a good combo after running that much. It made my stomach hurt a little. I was in the midst of seeing my last appointment for the day since the doctor was leaving an hour early when my husband called to say my little boy was running a fever and vomiting. He shouldn't have a fever he is on antibiotics. So I finished up my laboratory samples and microscope analysis and medicated my surgical patients and headed to meet my husband at urgent care for the 2nd time this week.

My son was a wet noodle when I got to the urgent care. He is rarely sick and to see him this down and out was scary. They did a strep test which was negative, and pronounced it a virus. Since he couldn't keep anything down they prescribed and anti vomiting agent which worked but knocked him out! He fell asleep on the couch watching T.V. He never falls asleep on the couch. IT was very cute, and my husband and I took turns holding him while he slept. It was kind of nice to cuddle with him. However he woke up at 1:30am and was up till 3:30 am. Not good since I had to work Saturday. Anyway by the time I got home from work he was feeling better but still cranky. So we curled up on the couch and watched Madagascar2 which I bought for him on my way home. Unfortunately he and sissy missed basketball and cheerleading on Saturday.

My sick boy passed out on the couch.

On Sunday he was back to himself. So I spent the morning disinfecting the house then we went outside and planted our raised bed garden. A full bed of spinach and broccoli and another of potatoes. YUM! We had lunch then headed over to the school to play tennis with the kids. We all had a great time even though none of us are very good. Then we went to basketball and cheerleading. Today was the last day. Our son got a medal and our daughter got a certificate. They had a great season. I will miss watching them, but baseball starts soon and our daughter will start tumbling soon too.

My daughter's squad.

My son with his medal.

Now we are home the kids are having dinner and my husband is off to bed. I am blogging and not sure what I'll do next. There is so much that needs done I don't know where to start. Most of it is outside stuff and it is starting to cool down so I probably shouldn't take the kids out. Maybe I'll bake something who knows.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Great Day

Today was awesome!! It started with the fact that I really didn't sleep well but that was ok I got enough. My husband got home early this morning so we cuddled in bed for an hour before the kids got up. Then we couldn't eat breakfast because we were having our blood drawn for a life insurance policy at 11:00am today. So after we got our daughter on the bus and the animals fed we dropped our son off at my mom's and went for a run to take our minds off our stomachs. We both run better on empty stomachs anyway. So this time I was determined to pace myself better. It was so nice to run with my husband. I was worried that I would run to slow for him or something, but it turned out we kept pace together very well. We talked a little but not too much we were focused on the task at hand. The only hicup was the neighbors dog tried to follow us. He was a cute friendly little guy, but we didn't want him on the road. After stopping for a minute to shoo him back we were off again. We had to shoo him on the way back too. Anyway we made the whole 2 miles without having to stop for any walking and the time was about the same as my last effort. I was just running way too fast the last time and wore myself out quickly. I was glad we made it because my right shin has been giving me issues again and I wasn't sure how it would react to the hard road. It hurt a little but all in all it wasn't bad. When we reached the house I threw my arms up in celebration. I was so happy now I am sure I can go the whole 3.1 miles next time cause I felt so good this time. It was a real energy boost. Thanks to my hubby it was a great time, can't wait till we can steal away again sometime for another run together. It really made me feel closer to him. I know that sounds goofy, but it did. As a bonus the insurance lady took our blood pressure hubby was 112/70 great, but I beat him with 104/70. I love to beat him! Then we celebrated by going out to a local resturant with our son. Then I came home and worked in my flower beds. What a great day!!!! The only downer was I got dog poop on my running shoes, but they cleaned up ok.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


What motives people? With obesity on the rise all over the US even in children what could motivate us to do something about it?. It is hard work to loose weight and it takes a huge commitment of will power and time. I am the first to admit I have my moments of weakness (especially for chocolate) and sometimes it is hard to get motivated to go work out. So what keeps me going.?

1.) the first key to getting me started was the fact that I had several family members get ill recently. The one that got to me the most I must say was my brother. We are pretty close and even though he is 9 years older than me it was hard on me to think of his current medical condition. He is overweight and last summer was diagnosed with gout and kidney stones. Not life threatening but still the same a very real very painful condition. I realized I wanted to be healthy in 9 more years not ill.

2.) The next motivator was the fact that my doctor said I had caffeine induced lumps in my breasts. This opened my eyes to the fact that the 4 to 5 sodas I drank per day were really having an effect on my body whether I realized it or not. My pap test also came back abnormal which was pretty scary. I have seen the suffering of chemo and cancer. I didn't want to go through it or put my family through it. Even though I don't want to die I didn't want my family to have to burden a sick wife and very expensive medical bills , so I decided I was going to let nature take its course, but I would try getting fit. I am happy to report my last pap was clear. I was also having ovarian cysts on a very regular basis. I was having very large ones that very so painful I couldn't even turn over in bed when they would rupture. Happy to report with diet exercise and a little hormones those are long gone. I was also having very heavy bleeding during my monthly cycles. We are talking going through super sized stuff in just 10 minutes. At this point I was very worried I just might have cancer. But again with hormones my symptoms improved but not 100 percent,. After diet and exercise I am 100 percent normal, in fact sometimes they are very light, a sign of an athlete.

3.) I didn't like the way I looked especially the fat accumulating around my knees. It just looked gross.

4.) I didn't want to be a drain on the medical community. Our medical system is so messed up.

So what initially got me started was was being scared of being sick. I must admit it was hard cause I did feel tired a lot at the begining, but as my stamina improved so did my energy.So starting out my BMI was 26 which isn't too bad but still overweight. I started my exercise program at a slow pace with just walking (probably at a 3 or 3.5 can't remember) on my treadmill. It would take me 45 minutes to go a little over 2 miles and burn 350 calories. That was 8 months ago I am now running at 6.6 and the same amount of time gets me over 4 miles and 700 calories. Granted I usually don't run that far but sometimes I do.
Well in 4 1/2 months I reached my goal weight. I lost 40lbs. I now have a BMI of 20. I can even shop in the juniors department again. Don't hate me I worked very hard to get here. I worked out every single morning getting up at 5:00 AM to get my workouts in before kids and work. So now that I reached my weight the hardest part is maintenance. A family member recently said better not throw out those fat clothes you'll need them when you gain the weight back. That made me even more determined to not gain it back. So what keeps me motivated now? I'll admit it is harder now that I am where I want to be. It is easy to say Oh one skipped workout or one piece of cake won't hurt too bad. But it is hard to get back on the wagon after taking a trip off. so I...
1.) remember that comment about the clothes.
2.) have set a goal to run a 5k, don't know what I'll do after I actually do it.
3.) try to remind my self how much better I'll feel after that hot sweaty run. I do dread it before hand, but I feel a sense of accomplishment afterwards, and I do have more energy.
4.)remind myself of how healthy I am now and how I don't want to go back to being sick.
5.) the fact my husband likes the way I look and I don't want to let him down, even though he'd love me anyway.
6.) to be healthy and active for my kids and to set a good example for them.
7.) remind myself of the way I feel when I put on my new clothes.

What held me back before was its so much easier to sit and watch TV. I was tired alot. I was addicted to caffeine. I do have bad knees, but they are improved since I have lost weight there is less stress on them and the muscles around them are stronger. And lastly lack of desire and attitude.

So it is hard , very hard, but finding motivation is the key. Attitude is also important. I found I can run farther if I tell myself how good I feel instead of focusing on how much longer I still have to go. However you have to watch your body doesn't adjust to much to your routine. I am currently running mostly cause I am training for that 5K, but I hope to add in different cardio soon. I really think I would like kickboxing and we are talking about getting a heavy bag. I also think Zumba looks fun. Maybe I'll get to try them soon.
Lastly it helps to have someone to support you. My husband is that person for me. He has even started working out and he wants to do the 5K with me. Tomorrow we got a sitter so we could run together. let me tell you running on the open road is different from the treadmill. I have trouble pacing myself and wore myself out the first time and wound up having to mix in walking with my running. Tomorrow will be my 2nd time out, so I will try harder to pace it more evenly. I was really bummed after the first run. Anyway even though not everyone has been supportive like the clothes comment person It helps to have that one person there to back you up. Of course my partner can also be an enabler at times. He loves ice cream and always asks if I want some. If I say no he says oh neither do I. Then I feel like I am depriving him somehow so I break down and eat a bowl with him, but its always low fat. It's nice we can be there for each others ups and downs. I also have a good friend who is battling the same fight. I wish I could help her more, but I know she is strong and can do it, but recently she has had some personal issues set her back. I want to be there to inspire her, but I don't want to push too hard and drive her crazy. I know she can do it though.
In closing I have only had 2 sodas since November. That was a huge habit for me to break. Now I really don't crave them and they don't taste the same to me. Now if I could get chocolate to do that life would be smooth sailing. Well I hope I inspired someone to find their motivation. It is hard but well worth the battle. And yes I still do dread those sweaty runs, but I do them cause I am motivated.

Halfway To Driving

Eight years today I gave birth to my beautiful little girl. She is still just as beautiful, but soooo much more independent. We had her party on Saturday since it is a week night and everyone has to work and she has homework. She had a great party with all of her family in attendance. She was very hard to buy for this year since she doesn't do toys much. I think her favorite gift was the moon chair we bought her for her room. She has had great fun watching T.V. in it this week. It will permanently live in her room as a reading chair. She got lots of new clothes, some DS games, a couple movies, some CD's and a few small toys. I can't believe she is 8, and it scares me to think in 8 more she will be driving and boys will be knocking on our door. I will certainly never be ready for that. I wish I could keep her little forever, but I can't.Her new DS Game.Her new bike.Her new chair, a favorite gift from mom and dad.

The birthday cake. The theme was littlest pet shop.

It was a chocolate cake with vanilla icecream in the center, and I ate way too much of it, but it was so good.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Our Trip To Urgent Care

This morning as I was watching my son get dressed I noticed his toe looked funny. Upon closer inspection it looks like an ingrown toenail. It is very red and swollen. He objected to my probing to much. The redness extended down the side of the nail and wrapped around the bottom of it. So that much redness scared me, so off to urgent care we went this morning. The doctor was very nice and gave us the choice of foot soaks and antibiotics 4 times a day for 10 days or to numb his foot and cut out 1/3rd of his nail. We opted for the more conservative soaking antibiotic treatment. He said it should resolve in 1 to 2 weeks or else we would need to cut the nail. This is perfect since we have a well child visit next Tuesday anyway, we can recheck it then.
This is my son's right foot nice cute pink piggies.

This is his very infected left big toe. It is so red and swollen.
Cephalexin Supension. Yuck!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Puppy Update Week Two

My eyes are open now but you still look fuzzy.
What a beautiful head he has!
My husband with one of the boys.

A big pile of pups.

Well the little balls of fur are up on their feet now. They will stand there all wobbly for a few seconds then collapse and resign to crawling again. They are crawling all over the place. Their eyes and ears have just opened and they can now regulate their own body temperature. They are getting quite chubby. Mom is still not too keen on visitors. She growled at my husband's family over the weekend. She really is a great mom. I will be giving the pups their first dewormer this week and they will be dewormed every two weeks till they go to their new homes. Well that's all for this week, look out for even bigger changes next week.

Signs of Spring

Well I think Spring is here even though we still probably have a few more days of cold weather in our future. The first sign of course is my husband going back on third shift to start his fish deliveries. The next is the sound of Spring peepers and other frogs flocking to ponds and shallow pools of water to spawn. We have yet to have a really warm night with a good rain though. My husband and I like to take the kids out herping, that is looking for frogs and salamanders. When the weather is right, a little warm and rainy the critters come crawling out all over the back roads around here. We love to slowly drive the roads and stop and pick up what we find and bring it back to the house for closer inspection in better lighting. Then we turn them back to the wild in our woods. it is very educational for the kids and the adults have fun too. Hopefully we will get a good night soon. But in the mean time we recorded the sounds of the frogs in a shallow pond back in our woods. They can get quite loud around here.

The next sign of spring is that I have mini daffodils blooming. I am not sure what the little purple flowers are. Anyway these flowers are very special. They came from a planter that we bought for my husbands granny's funeral. We wanted something we could plant at home that would come back every year and remind us of her, and the purple flowers remind my husband of the purple pansy's he used to plant with her every year as a child. So these flowers are at the top of the favorites list at our house.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

My facebook

I just opened up a facebook account, thanks to the urging of my sister in law. I haven't had much time to get it up and running yet, just the basics. I can't wait till I have more time to explore and see all the things I can do with it. So those of you who have facebook please come check me out.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Friends of Friends

Today my little girl came home with a picture of her friends dog, Buckeye. Isn't he cute!!!! Everyone around here is Ohio State fans.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Pepper girl- The best mommy dog

Baby Pepper at a local pond we used to visit quite often. Yes I'm a baby too in this photo, only 18 years old.
Pepper doing what she did best, being a mommy dog.

Peppermint's Elegant Delight
March 11, 1996 to April 11, 2005

On March 11, 1996 the most amazing dog was born. She was a female black lab from a litter of 11. Her mom was black and her dad was chocolate. We went to look at her when she was 12 weeks old. It was only her and her 2 chocolate sisters left. Someone had recently tried to break into our apartment while I was home alone. I decided we needed a dog, even though we weren't supposed to have one where we lived. I wanted a rott, but my husband won he wanted a lab. The only dog that could stop an intruder with only it's tongue. Anyway we came home with this cute black furball and gave her the very original name of Pepper. Peppermint's Elegant Delight to be exact. We had no idea how to raise a puppy. I read every book I could get my hands on. At first we didn't have a crate, so we locked her in the bathroom at night. She promptly ate a hole in the drywall. I would go to work and come home to find my husband watching TV and urine spots all down the hallway. She was really good he would reply. Also I said no dogs on the couch well that lasted all of a day since my husband would lay with her on his chest. She's on me not the couch he would say. Well 2 months later we moved to a house with a fenced yard. She could now run and play outside without the fear the landlord might drive by. We took her to our first obedience class and learned sooooo much. She gave us our very first litter of puppies. We had read books, but had no clue about proper breeding practices. At least we were smart enough to OFA her hips, and lucky enough that her lines went back to the famous Bradking Beverly, one of the top producing lab girls of her time. The first litter the first pup was born before we realized she was in labor. We then called everyone we knew and they came over to watch. She was such a trooper. Now I wouldn't let anyone near one of my whelping females. I sure am glad she knew what to do cause we didn't have a clue. She went on to have 4 more litters for us. She only gave us black and chocolate pups, and one time she gave us 13 pups and raised every single one of them with no supplemental feedings. She taught us so much in her 9 years with us. She loved to retrieve, but would not swim. She would stand at the shore and steal the bumper from the other dogs and bring it to us like she had done all the work herself. She also loved to preform the speak command to the point of being very annoying with it. She died in 2005 from Mast Cell cancer. It was located on her vulva and they could not remove it without massive reconstructive surgery to her. We opted for chemo to reduce the size of the fast growing mass, but it made her so ill we decided to stop. The tumor wasn't shrinking anyway. We kept her as comfortable as possible but the cancer spread to her mammary tissue and she had a mass near her front leg. She was still happy but the original mass was so large and ulcerated and smelly that we were frightened it would become massively infected and necrotic and fly season was coming soon. So we opted to send her over the rainbow bridge. This was the hardest because she was our first dog and our first loss, and she was still licking us in the face in the vets office. She was a wonderful dog who taught us so much about dog ownership, breeding, and labradors as a whole. She would have been 13 today, she left us far too early.

Puppy Update

Well the babies are a week old today and the 6 are doing great. Still 3 girls and 3 boys. They sure are cute. Mom is starting to take short breaks from them now. She hops out of the box and lays next to it on the floor for short periods. However she is still protective. She barked at my brother the other day when he came to visit. She never barks at any other time. This video is of them nursing this morning. They really go to town. Their eyes and ears are still closed, but by next week they will be opening and then the fun begins. Mom is on a strict feeding schedule of 4 meals per day. That equals 10 and 1/2 cups of food per day. Noone ever said dog breeding was cheap. Her morning feeding also includes what I call gruel, cause it looks so gross. It is 1 1/2 cups of dry puppy food with 1/2 a can of canned puppy food and 1/2 a cup of milk. I know, I know any vet will tell you not to give them dairy it causes diarrhea, but this is a labrador with a stomach of steel. Her stools are wonderful. I started making this years ago with our first breeding female. Back then I made it with baby formula, and sometimes I still do, but this time I guess I was too lazy to buy it we are using powdered milk instead. Anyway It probably doesn't do much for them I don't know. I suppose the dog food is probably all they need, but I like making it. It makes me feel good, and the girls never seem any worse for wear so I will continue to do it till I have an issue. I usually only feed it till the pups start nibbling their own gruel at about 3 weeks of age. Then mom's calories start to get gradually cut until the pups are 6 weeks of age when we wean them totally off of mom. Don't worry they still get to socialize with mom after that and they usually get to play with my old female, Cami. Who in her day was an excellent mom and certainly knows how to keep those pups in line. Well I'll keep you posted on their progress.

Full Bellies. I love the one sleeping on his back.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Furry Friends Friday

Remember this baby bunny from one of my January posts. Well they are getting big and fluffy now. But my other two rabbits just had litters Wednesday night. One had 8 and one had 9. They will be ready for Easter.

Here is a picture of one of my does with her litter. These babies are about 3 months old. Aren't they cute.

Here are 2 more of my does. We have 4 does, Prancer, Angel, Cotton, and Cloud. All named by my daughter. We also have a really nice buck named Bigwit, also named by my daughter. The name comes from an old cartoon movie about rabbits called Watership Down. It was one of my favorite movies as a kid. I also made the cages they are in by hand. The cages have been recently rearranged so they can stack on one another and make more room in the barn for the crates I use when they have babies. i use crates cause I was loosing too many when the does would decide to have them on the wire instead of the nest box. A straw lined crate eliminates that problem.

This is a picture of our rabbit barn. It is a shelter logic barn from TSC. I was skeptical as to how it would hold up, but it withstood the hurricane force winds that Ike brought us late last summer. I am quite proud of it since I put the whole thing together all by myself. I also cleared the land were it is at It was at the edge of the woods and all grown up with thorny bushes and stuff. I got a very nasty case of poison ivy doing it. It is really nice because the doors at both ends roll up so I can close it up for the night or only open it up a little bit if it is really cold out and in the summer I can raise both doors to get a good breeze going through. Rabbits hate hot weather and can die of heatstroke very quickly. They much prefer the cold.

You may ask what happens to all those baby bunnies. We do sell them for pets or 4-H projects sometimes., but that is not very profitable. We usually take them to a packer. He dresses them and they are then shipped out to become cat food. Some of the hypoallergenic foods the veterinarians use is made of rabbit (Royal Canin's Rabbit and Green Pea Recipe). So they are going to help poor itchy and vomiting kitty's all over the US. I would lie if I said a few don't wind up in the freezer here at home. They are a very healthy meat, and I know they have not been fed antibiotics or steroids etc. Can you say that about your meat.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Do you have your's yet?

Well leppard tickets went on pre-sale today. My hubby was johnny on the spot and got VIP tickets during the first 5 minutes after they went on sale. Hope they are front row!!! We are guaranteed to be in the first 10 rows. We get VIP parking a pre-show party and a goody bag and T-shirt. I can't wait till July!! A big thanks to my hubby for staying awake and getting me tickets since I had to work this morning. I think tickets go on sale to the general public tomorrow. Better get your seats soon, cause I hear they won't be touring next year. Also you can find a new leppard link on my blog. Phil Collen has started his own site. It is really nice cause it is written by Phil himself, not by fans like Sav's. Anyway It is about his music, guitars, fitness, and personal stuff like his recent vacation. I think it is really cool that it is written by him; the fitness part is my favorite. Be sure to check it out.

What's Cooking Wednesday

Remember all that stuff I bought at the Amish last week, well here is the fruits of my labor.
This is a loaf of whole wheat bread.
Here is my loaf of white bread.

Here is a loaf of jalapeno cheese bread. I think it looks just like what you get at jungle jim's. I used a rubber loaf pan for this one. It has a lot of give in it so when the bread rose it kind of went out instead of up. I like the look for this type of bread. I guessed has to how much cheese and jalapenos to put in. It could use a little more of both, but it is still very tasty. By the way the jalapenos were from my garden last year.

Here is all three loaves I think they are beautiful. I plan on slicing them and freezing some so we don't have to eat it all at once since it won't stay fresh as long as store bought. Did I mention that bread making has never worked for me. I have tried several times, but some how it never turns out right. I was thrilled to finally find a recipe that works. The original recipe was for white bread, but I just used the same basic recipes and added different flour or cheese, etc. to make the other types of bread. I am so happy it turned out so well.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Whelping Suprise

Well in 13 years of breeding it finally happened to me. I had always prided myself on the fact that it hadn't happened, but now I can't do that anymore. Yes we have an unplanned pregnancy.

Our sweet little girl Quackers surprised us with this package. At first I thought she was just getting fat from decreased winter activity so I decreased the amount of food she was eating. Then I started to joke with my husband that if she kept on gaining we would need to check her thyroid levels. Then I thought false pregnancy. Then I thought I've never seen a false pregnancy get this big so off to the vet for x rays. Sorry my x ray photos didn't turn out well. But if you blow them up you can see some back bones and skulls. The official count was 9 but with them packed in there so tight it can be hard to tell.

So off to the pet store for puppy food I went feeling guilty I had put her on a diet. We did the worlds fastest food switch, luckily with no diarrhea. Doesn't she look miserable. I am not sure I have much sympathy since she was out having unprotected sex without our consent. No just kidding I hate to see her like this. She is so uncomfortable, and very gassy.

Tonight Quackers woke me up around 1:30 am. She got out of her pen and came upstairs and layed down next to the bed. I got up and took her back downstairs. She had had an accident so I cleaned that up and let her out then put her back in her pen. Then 5 minutes later she was out and back at my bedside. So I grabbed my pillow and headed downstairs to sleep on the couch near her; knowing puppies were coming soon, but hoping she could wait till morning. It wasn't fifteen minutes later I hear her pushing so I was up and at her side in a flash. Then she decided she liked our bedroom a lot so she picked up her pup and took it upstairs next to the bed, twice. I thought it was cute, but labrador births are very messy and on my bedroom carpet is not the place to whelp puppies. So I made her go back to her box. After the second pup was born there were to many to carry at once so she gave up and resigned herself to the box.

Here is some video of her pushing a little. You can see her bear down slightly, and notice the hunched posture of her and her tail. Then she goes into a digging fit. This is sometimes called nesting and it can start days before the pups arrive. It is a response to pain cause by uterine contractions. Before we started the news paper was placed neatly on the floor of the box to cover it. I think she has done a fine job of nesting don't you. The next film is of a birth but it is kind of hard to see, but you can really see her pushing.

Here is a pretty good video of a birth of one of the pups. I love how she picks them up and moves them around. She did a good job I only had to assist with breaking the bags on the first 2 pups and she has done the rest herself. She likes to keep them cuddled up between her front legs for the first few days if possible, but it is hard to keep track of that many kids. After we are done I will have to give her a bath cause her back end will be covered in gross fluids. I will disinfect the box put down clean paper and a nice warm blanket. It won't stay clean for long cause Quackers will have discharge for several days following the births' so there will be multiple bedding changes per day. I will also have a major cleaning of my kitchen floor. The pressure of the contractions make her need to go pee a lot, but since it is 10 degrees outside and there is always the possibility of a puppy being born outside I didn't let her out she just went in the floor. If a pup was born out in these temperatures it would surely die. Did I mention this is not how I like to do my litters. I usually plan matings months in advance and baby my girls while pregnant and I try for warmer weather so they can be born in the garage were the mess doesn't bother me as bad. I have complained the whole time about having to have the mess in the house, but it is vinyl floor so it does clean up easy thank goodness. This was supposed to be a cycle were she wasn't bred, but I guess plans change. Well we are done in a reasonable amount of time from 2am to 9am, not bad. The puppy count was 9, but the last pup was still born. I also have two that have cleft palates so they will not make it. So that leaves us with 6 black puppies. 3 girls and 3 boys a perfect amount.

Well here we are all clean up. The box has been disinfected and new bedding put in and mom has had a much needed bath. Pups are nursing and mom is resting. Aren't they perfect.


Well my thermometer outside currently says it is 14 degrees outside, but my husband's job says spring is here. That's right He started third shift last night. That means soon it will be warming up and people will be stocking their ponds. Tonight he has a huge semi load of fish coming in from AR. A very cold night to unload fish if you ask me. He dressed the part in long underwear and all sorts of cold weather gear. I sent him with a big pot of homemade venison soup to help warm him up. So folks cold or not spring is here. In fact a few days a go it was warm around 55 and rainy and I heard some frogs croaking. By the end of the week it is supposed to be 60 and I bet I'll hear them again. That is the great thing about living out in the sticks, you get to hear all the sounds of nature. I'll try to record the spring peepers ( a type of frog) for you when they really get going. They get very very loud out here. I can't wait for the warmer weather.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Basketball And Cheerleading Week Two

Bright and early cheer practice at 8am on a Saturday. I don't think the girls are quite awake yet. Here they are practicing one of their sideline cheers. And this week daddy was there to watch.

On to the half time floor cheers. I think they did a great job. I love my daughter's little diva move at the end. She thinks she is just something else. And we think so too.

Now on to basketball. After thirty minutes of shooting drills the kids were onto their mock game. These games are so cute but are sheer coas. Our son is begining to figure out guarding. He was paired with the little girl with the yellow wristband. I think he is really catching on.

Here our boy gets the ball. He travels alot!!! Then decides to dribble. Coach Chip gives him a helping hand with the basket. Priceless. I just love rooting my little ones on, but unforunately I have to work the next three games, but I will get to make it to the last game of the season so I guess that'll be okay. This afternoon we signed our little boy up for spring baseball. Now we get to go buy accessories. My husband can't wait to take him shopping. Our son has been going around chanting batter batter swing all day. I happy he is so excited.