"R E S T"
4 letter word not allowed to be spoken in the Ridgetop household. LOL
Very odd to be home and not greeted by our big Bubba. Haven't seen Angel at all, but did catch sight of Rika catching a few winks yesterday. My sweeties are having to double up on the protection work without Bubba.
Took it easy coming home. Spent 2 nights on the road and pulled into the driveway around 2:00 pm on Tuesday. Got the car unloaded, unpacked the coolers, did the laundry. Did not cook dinner although had been bombarded by texts from my children about what delicious meals I could cook for them. LOL Bunch of jokers!
DD2 is very upset about doctor's visit with Annabel. Apparently since 16 month old toddler is not speaking words clearly, obeying directions, and cuddling full time with parents instead of constantly being on the go, pediatrician has frightened my daughter by telling her to have Annabel tested for autism! It took me several hours to calm DD2 down.
I was a preschool teacher for many years, and did daycare for many more. I myself identified an autistic child in my 2 year old class, another with delayed development, and a 3rd with Tourettes. Not to mention my own 3 boys with language related learning problems. (All 3 of my sons are college graduates by the way.) I also identified DD2's learning developments stemming from fetal alcohol syndrome and got all of them the appropriate help.
DD2 apparently told the pediatrician that Annabel does not communicate with words (she babbles like any other 16 month old), does not like to cuddle (wrong, she cuddles appropriately, just prefers to investigate anything and everything around her - she is a very active baby), and does not lead her parents by the hand (or was it that she doesn't want them to lead her by the hand?), and she doesn't obey instructions. OMG! SHE IS A NORMAL TODDLER!
The pediatrician sent home some paperwork for DD2 to fill out about how Annabel behaves to identify her as autistic. I told DD2 not to fill it out herself, rather let me and DDIL2 do the observations. DDIL2 is a preschool teacher with a degree in early childhood education. She works with disabled children as well. We discussed the pediatrician's theory and compared it to what we had seen in autistic children and found none of the tell-tale symptoms of autism in Annabel. Autistic children don't like noise, don't like to be touched, do not like interaction, and will sit alone doing repetitive actions. Annabel enjoys interaction, loves to be cuddled and tickled, is into everything, and when playing alone does not repeat any actions. As to her not talking - she babbles constantly. I would like to sock that doctor for upsetting DD2!
One thing though is that since Annabel has a 4 year old sister who is constantly talking to DD2, and also playing with Annabel, it is possible that DD2 has not noticed how much Annabel talks. With an older sibling, younger siblings tend to grow without the constant acknowledgement of first time actions.
Kathleen and I will check Annabel out, but we would have noticed any sort of behavior not on par with her age. Soo mad!
At any rate, that little rant over, I can now get going on developments here. DD1's MIL is in town for a while, and they came over yesterday. Her health is not very good, and she is upset that we are moving to Texas. She lives in Pittsburg and is considering moving to California. Her other 3 sons and grandchildren live in Pennsylvania and Maryland. She says the weather is bad for her arthritis. Apparently she is upset that if she lives here we will be gone and not able to help her get around - driving her places, etc. While I like Cindy a lot, I really don't want to have to take care of her and have to get her to the doctor etc. She can't drive anymore and the roads and traffic here would terrify her. However, I think this is just talk on her part. Her younger sister lives in San Jose and she would probably live with her. Her sons found a nice apartment in an assisted living community but when a place became available she refused to move. Two months later she demanded to know why they did not get the place for her! Her home is falling apart around her, needs enormous repairs, is in a bad neighborhood, has no resale value, and the only bathroom is upstairs which is very hard for her with her arthritis. She doesn't drive so has to take the bus everywhere. I told DD1 that the brothers should have just taken the apartment and moved her in regardless. She would have been angry for a while, but it would have worked out once she was there and saw how much easier it was to get around. She is Chinese and the sons are first generation American so they follow Chinese tradition of not only taking care of her but being obedient. She is becoming more difficult as she gets older and has more health problems. Very sad but we are planning to go play MahJong next week and visit. She is a very nice person and is just not able to get around and do the stuff she used to do.
Time to remove the ram from the breeding pen. I also need to call Rafael and have him either pickup his sheep or deliver them. I also have to arrange a date to take 3 lambs to the butcher. That will get several mouths off the payroll.
I am starting to go through the freezers and use up stuff. Three freezers and all full. Oy Vey! Where will I put those 3 lambs?! Then I have several ewes lambing in August, and a couple the first week of September. That will take care of lambing until the big rush in December. I also have to move some of the yearling ewes and open ewes over to the breeding pen and put in Moyboy. Since the majority of his get rated 5's I figure i better use him a good bit and produce more high quality ewe lambs for the flock. I am also considering entering the Western States Dorper Show in May with some junior lambs. Hardly anyone shows junior lambs so that will be a good opportunity to introduce some of our homebred stock. The animals in the show go through the auction too. If any lambs are exceptional keepers, I can put a high reserve on them. However, my theory is sell high and just breed more. I won't be taking any rams, just ewes. Good ewes are always in demand at these show/sales. And my lambs will be competitive. I just need to get DGD1 to learn how to show them. She wants to do it but not sure if her parents will allow her to go and miss a day of school. Maybe I can talk them into it if she writes an essay about her experience.
Next job here will be renovating the 5th wheel. I need to put up the sunshade and set up the table saw. Got to find the roll of insulation in the shed and cut 2 pieces off to fill in the door areas that were access to the under-banquette storage. Then I will take the oak paneling I removed from the banquette and trim it to fit on the wall to cover those openings. Once that is done, the trim I salvaged from Baymule's reno pile will go on and it will be done. I am so thankful that Bay had those pieces of oak and white batten still available! I couldn't find anything here even to buy, and those pieces were free and exactly what I was looking for! DH couldn't figure out why I was happily loading them into our car, but I explained. While he remained puzzled, after 50 years he doesn't question my peculiar ways anymore.
Little Robert is just like his father - he is a climber. DS2 looked up from his reading the other night to find Robert balancing on the back of the recliner - standing. Got to him just in time. Yesterday he got hold of his bubble gun and was blasting soap bubbles all over the family room. The bubble machine had been up on the counter and we couldn't figure out how he got it until we noticed him pushing his horse over to the sink and standing on the back of it. I had to remove a lot of other items from reach. DS2 could climb like a monkey - nothing was safe. Robert is no longer walking. Instead he is running everywhere. While we were gone DS2 and DDIL2 put all the child proof latches back on the cabinets. Toddler time has hit Ridgetop (again). Time to remove everything within reach of 2' tall people. DH's magazine table is no longer safe either.
Back to physical therapy today. I hope my knee passes muster for the therapists. I think I actually have more movement in it although I wasn't able to do as many exercises while on the road as I normally do.
Supposedly we will get some rain from a tropical storm from Mexico this week. DS1 said we got a little last week. We got some on the way home going through New Mexico and northwest Texas. We came home through Amarillo. DH said it would be cooler than the southern route through El Paso. 108 degrees! Silly boy. There are clouds outside, but often they go past us and drop rain elsewhere.
Rain in August is very rare here unless a big tropical storm hits Mexico. Or we take our roof off the house to replace it. Each time we have removed the roof to replace it we have had several days of heavy downpour. We cover the furniture with plastic and take cover in one room with just a few buckets. Normal Ridgetop luck!
Still peeved about doctor's words to DD2. Looked at the chart they were using showing "developmental milestones for 15 month olds.
One was "Can they imitate scribbling with a crayon" Hah! What stupid mom gives her 15 month old crayons or markers unless she likes cleaning rainbow poop or scrubbing walls?!
Here is another about language readiness "Can the child say complete words?" AND "Does the child make 2 word sentences?" What planet did this doctor come in from?
My child's first word at age 22 months was "No!" closely followed by "dog". Some ambitious moms may identify nondescript babbling as words, but PUHLEASE! 2 word sentences?!
DD2 is feeling much better now since we went through the list and proved that Annabel is completely up to date on everything except for her mastery of the dictionary and art. The doctor had the nerve to write "Delayed language and social skills!" I wrote my own clinical observations on there - no I did not call the doctor names although I wanted to. Her sister and sister-in-law were also annoyed at the doctor's chart. As to social skills, she is very friendly with everyone and even when 15 month old cousin Robert hugs her in a choke hold or bites her she is very nice to him. She does push him away if he comes at her with his mouth open and his teeth bared, but that is just good sense. Robert is a fierce biter.
Anyway, I forgot to describe our trip to and from Texas. 19 hours on the road the first day. Then another 5 to Erick's. Returning to CA was easier and we spent 2 nights on the road. Still exhausting though.
DS2 is going to Texas for a military reunion with his unit. Wives are not allowed so DDIL2 will fly out to meet him 2 days later with Robert on 9/18. DS1 will fly out with her to help with the luggage and baby. DS2 will rent a car and ick the up. His reunion is in Houston but they have not decided where DS1 and DDIL2 will fly to. Then DS2 and DDIL2 will visit her relatives in Wichita Falls and do some sightseeing in TX. We will pick up DS1 and take him to see the ranch. Then he will travel back to CA with us in the truck and 5th wheel. DH, DS2, and DS1 are all involved in the question of what airport to fly into. I have distanced myself from that argument since not only can I not make myself heard (incredible I know ) but I also don't care. As long as we are in Texas during September we will catch up with them somewhere.
Right now I need to work on the 5th wheel, sort out the ewes that are due to lamb, and replace the ram in the pen with those ewes needing to be bred. Actually I just need to work up a calendar of when this is all to happen. DD2 will be staying here watching the sheep and feeding while DS1, DS2, and DDIL2 are in Texas. She has watched me pull lambs so I will leave my book with illustrations for her to refer to, and she can call and I will talk her through it if necessary.
Now I just need to get Rafael to pick up his sheep. Otherwise, if he leaves them too long I am going to ask for board what with the cost of hay! Hopefully he will come get them soon. The 3 ewes are bred (or at least exposed for 2 months) so they need to go.
Since she interacts excitedly with everyone, enjoys noisy interactions, babbles and is a very active child, etc. our family had decided that DD2 should change pediatricians. On the other hand, Annabel is DD2's first baby so it is possible that she misunderstood what the doctor was referring to as "words". Annabel is very active and into everything so probably at the next visit the pediatrician will diagnose her s ADD and prescribe Ritalin. Sometimes I think that doctors just look for things to scare new parents. Just tell them their active children are normal. As far as ADD and hyperactivity do parents and doctors even understand what normal activity is for a child? Remember when we were kids, we were out the door and riding bikes, playing softball, etc. No watching TV all day or playing video games. With so much TV and video games and cell phone games most parents would not recognize normal childhood activity and are eager to jump on a diagnosis. A diagnosis of some problem means they are not at fault for just turning in the TV and video games and letting their kids sit all day!
Sorry for ranting - I am remembering when DS3 broke his navicular bone skateboarding. (In humans it is in the thumb.) I asked the doctor how soon before he could resume normal activities and when the doctor asked what they normally were I told him - feeding 5 horses, feeding 50 goats, helping bottle feed another 50 goat kids, etc. (DS2 did all the milking) the doctor looked panicked and suggested that he take it easy for a week. DS2 has insisted to this day that DS3 broke his hand on purpose since it was kidding season and milking was in full flood! LOL In fact DS3 showed his goats in a cast at Great Western Fair in Tulare and won Junior Champion. I guess the doctor thought all kids just sat around the house all day!
Anyway, a busy day today. Robert won't sleep in his crib and Annabel wont sleep in the small portacrib. Robert is sleeping on a mattress on the floor instead so . . . DDIL2 and I are going to remove the toy storage bins from the nursery and set up the toddler bed in their place. Annabel can sleep in the crib Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, and Robert can sleep in the toddler bed. Just as well since his new brother (yes, another boy joins the clan) will need the crib eventually. DS2 has been declaiming that his next child will be named Thor. I think to tease his wife but we have all jumped on the bandwagon and are calling the future child Thir, Thorkel, and Baby Thor. LOL The toy storage bins will go in the famiy room in the baby jail. Robert doesnt play in the baby jail when it is locked, but he treats it like a personal toy room by swinging open one panel then going inside and carefully shutting the panel behind him.
We need to keep the baby jail intact because when Annabel exhausts us we put lock her in the baby jail. Sometimes for her own protection when Robert is around because he wants to hug her around the throat in a choke hold until she turns purple. He also likes to kiss her which she views with suspicion since he has bitten her so many times in the past. Toddler play. Half assault, half affection. The baby jail also acts as a ginormous toy box.
DS1 says P1 (our very best with all 5's and most beloved Snowflake) has another abscess on her rear leg. It is ripe and needs to be drained this evening. Then medication in the hole. She is due to lamb in another several weeks so I will have to be gentle. Luckily, she is very tame. She gave us beautiful twin ewe lambs first time out, and Colene loved them. Hoping for another ewe lamb from her. She is bred to Moyboy who gave us 5 grade 5's out of 7 ewes.
The ram lamb that Colene insisted we keep looks great. He wasn't docked at 3 months old and I was afraid he was too old but she said they do it all the time in South Africa at that age. She banded him, then grabbed a sharp knife and lopped it off below the band! Wow! I gave him a booster of CDT. Just before leaving for TX I didn't like the look of it - very red and swollen below the band so gave him 6 cc of penicillin just in case. DS1 said the tail fell off the next day and the little fellow looks lovely now. We just have to set up a separate pen for him so the mature rams don't kill him. We will put a couple of the younger bred yearlings in with him to keep him company. They are smaller and being bred he won't pester them. He can't go out on the field with the ewe lambs as a ram so that will be the best arrangement. I won't breed him until he is a yearling.
I am seriously considering halter breaking (or having DGD1 do it ) the younger 2 month old lambs and eventually the November/December lambs in anticipation of entering the West Coast Dorper show. Now that I know I won't be laughed out of the ring for their quality, I am anxious to see how our lambs stack up against other breeders. And even at the starting auction price of $400-500 maybe make a little money. With so few White Dorper ewes in the show the last two years, they might even go higher. One can only hope.
Got to make an appointment at the butcher for the 6 months old that had the disappearing/reappearing rectal prolase. I thought I would take the 2 remaining ram lambs but checked and they are inky 2 months old. However, I might take them and have them butchered and cut into quarters for DS2 to roast on the Traeger. He is checking if he can do it. One trip with the cost of gas is all I want to make, and the auction is in the opposite direction from the butcher. And prices are down in the summer on lambs. I could ait until just before we leave for Texas. I really don't want to wait 2 months until we return. Weanling milk fed lamb is delicious.
The barn is set up like DS1 did it for the inspection with a 10 x 20 pen where DS1 took out the interior jug dividers. That will be a good size training pen for halter breaking the ewe lambs. The end of the month we need to put the jug dividers back in place for the lambing ewes and Elizabeth will be back in school.
Yesterday I went to PT in the am, then accompanied DH to the doctor for basal cell cancer removal. He had one done before the Texas trip and had 3 more to do. I went in with him and the doctor was very cool. He has a lot of doctor friends in Texas and loves country music. The doctors sliced and diced DH to country music. LOL They asked if I wanted to wait outside, but I wanted to see their scalpel technique so said I would stay. Learned how to do surgical knots - mine always come apart as soon as I have finished sewing up the cut. Then they had to remove the stitches from the previous surgery and unfortunately the site had healed over one of the stitched so the doctor came back in and had to do a bit of cutting to remove it. I told the nurse that I would have just scraped away the new skin on top and cut it out. She said "Ow". DH amused himself by making faces of excruciating pain while she was working to upset her. We must have been a big hit with our joking since they all told us it was a kick to work with us and to hurry back - apparently most people cry. Two more excisions to go.
DD2 stayed for dinner last night. Just the 4 of us. I made a casserole and we had enough left for tonight. We had just finished dinner when DD1 called and wanted to come over with her boys and her MIL. They had been to Santa Barbara Zoo all day with DS2, DDIL2, Robert, DDIL1, and DGS3 and DGS4. DSIL1 had just taken DGD1 to her first soccer practice, none of them had eaten and DS2 and DDIL2 were not home yet so o told them to come on over and I would feed them. They wanted to play MahJong. DS2 and DDIL2 arrived from the zoo trip, also hadn't eaten. So I served 6 people dinner. Then we played MahJong. DSIL2 arrived from work - no food left but he is a finicky eater and didn't want casserole so no problem there. DD@ bathed Annabel in the kitchen sink, Robert attempted to "play" with Annabel. Annabel resisted. Everyone ate supper and a great and noisy time was had by all. I sat in the recliner after serving dinner because my back had started to spasm. DD1 cleared the table, DD2 and DSIL2 went home, we played MahJong. Eventually DGS1 and 2 wanted to play MahJong so I gave up my spot, emptied the dishwasher from the first go round and did another load of dinner dishes. Then they called me to come play. I took another 3 aspirins. DD1's MIL, Cindy, is going back to Pittsburg next week and they wanted us to go over this evening. Told DD1 I couldn't do evenings since I get too tired. DD1 never starts game time until about 9:00 or 10:00 pm and I like to be laying down relaxing by then. So we agreed to go over today after lunch. Long day.
We will be leaving for Texas on September 4 and plan to arrive on the 6th or 7th. Got a lot of flack from DD1 about us being gone on September 3 - DS2's BD, and Maysie's family BD party. Swore we never mentioned being in Texas in September! She can be as deaf as her daddy. In his case it is physical, in hers she just doesn't listen to anything she doesn't like! She still says we never told her we were going to move to TX! Only for the past 5 years!!! Getting to TX by the 7th we will drop the 5th wheel trailer and meet Baymule. Got stuff to do with her. Then up to Sulphur Springs to drop off some stuff at the farm. Guess I better get the trailer ready for that trip since it is only 4 weeks away!
Well, we were supposed to go to DD1's house "after lunch" to play MahJong, so at 1:00 DH started muttering we should have already left. This is a man who sits in the car gunning the engine 20 minutes before any departure time then complains because you are "not ready". Knowing DD1 and her ideas of time, I told DH to call her to see if she was ready for us. Naturally she was not since DSIL!, the grandkids, and his mother, had gone to karate. Then they were going to go shopping at Costco (warehouse store). Had DH tell her to call us when they got home for us to go over to play MahJong. Got the call after 2:00 and played until 7:00. Put a pork roast in the Instapot before leaving.
My knee was really hurting by then, and I suddenly remembered that DS1 wanted me to drain an abscess on P1. We rushed home and he moved her into the barn. She is huge!!! Will deliver lambs any time now. Her first due date is next week. DS1 suggested we drain it tomorrow, but I didn't want her to go into labor burst the abscess and get all that poison mingled with placenta, and babies, etc. We drained the abscess. Same place on stifle as last year. There was some scar tissue from having burst a bit the year before since I was out of town and couldn't drain it in time. However, emptied it, washed it out with iodine, then put antibiotic with a syringe into the empty pocket. I sprayed the area with Alumashield to keep flies off and she is in the barn now. I will check and see if I can give her some Penicillin so close to lambing. After checking online, looks safe. I will give her about 10cc this evening when I check the abscess for more drainage
DS1 is setting up the table saw for me to work on the trailer. Hoping to get it done fast. Then DS1 will have to help me with installing a drawer on one side, and access door on the other in the base of the bed. The base of the bed is just open storage that you have to lift the mattress and wooden platform to access. And you can only reach in about 2' from the foot to reach stuff without help holding it up. If DH holds it up, I can crawl in and get to stuff. If I install access to the head end of the bed platform we can reach in from there for stuff, much easier for old people. Now I just have to get to work on it. The molding Baymule gave me will be perfect for the bed cutouts too. Measured it on the table end and it is perfect! Both size and color of oak!