Cat and dog fun...

Early morning cat and dog fun. Minimus and I are enjoying some quality time on the verandah, with the first cup of tea of the day. Growl. Black Buster has appeared, and is tease-dancing on the table. So that sacred moment comes (wisely) to a halt.

 By the Hump.
Buster the Cat

Walking the dogs around the driveway - the kittens appear (their back door is open). Red Fred skids to a cartoon-halt, presents sideways (look how BIG I am) to poor Pebbles. Aargh! The dog runs away.

 Watched by Pebbles the Kitten Nanny.
Red Fred and Buster in the Driveway

Back in the house, Tiger gets her pill and her special 'active longevity' food, the kittens get their special 'paediatric growth' food. Cat and kittens swap bowls - oh well. The cynic in me thinks the recipe is exactly the same, with larger pretend-meat chunks for the mature...

 Getting much more mellow...

Nanny Pebbles...

Pebbles plays the kitten nanny and nursemaid. It looks sweet, this obsession with following the little furries. Pebbles started off being both fascinated and terrified, mostly wanting to smell their kitten-bottoms. Of course, it could be her maternal instincts? Awww.

Now Black Fred is tired of her attentions, and want a cuddle. No he doesn't. He wants to fight my plait. Ouch! We are off outside to do some tree climbing (kittens) and ball throwing (dogs).

Gardening with kittens...

The Fred kittens have influenced my gardening these last days. A responsible kitten mother, I like them to explore, but staying relatively close to the house. The doors are always open should kitten wish to run back inside to safety. So I've been clearing up the gardens close to the house. We've had lots of fun in the Shrubbery. I've trimmed Lychnis, pulled out huge weeds (oops), and made sure I didn't step on any kittens.

 Not sure which one!
Fred Kitten Up a Tree

Thoughts : the Periwinkle has spread everywhere. Some years ago I told it off, pulled out all the offending trailing pieces and left clear and strict instructions as to where it was allowed to grow. It didn't listen to me, naturally.

 In the Island Bed.

A messy summer...

Two species Phormium cookianums in the back have split open - it's been a spectacularly messy summer for the Phormiums. I've trimmed off the heavy flower stalks and the lowest leaves. But a proper slice and chop down is needed. I also found some sad roses 'sheltering' underneath. They need attention.

But has Non-Gardening Partner fixed the rustic garden benches? I asked him ages ago. No he hasn't. The kittens scampered up and under and over them no problem. Heavier life-forms (me) had to take more care...

Sunday 20th January

Today I've been working simultaneously on various projects in various places. It's been a bit windy (that means noisy) for the kittens to stay outside for long, and I'm still gardening close to the house. I cleared gum bark off the house lawn (three barrowfuls of the stuff). I trimmed Lychnis ('tis the trimming season for this somewhat sturdy and generous perennial).

And I dug out a rose (a pale apricot David Austin) from the side of the house. This rose has never flourished - I've always suspected the 'soil' was sour from being dumped with builder's fill.

We've also been gardening in The Hump. The tree (there needs to be a tree to scamper up when the dogs zoom through) of choice is the flowering cherry. Then the Freds played in the Island Bed, while I've trimmed Lychnis, weeded, and defined more edges of the Hump garden. I 'busted' Buster (my sulking adult black cat) hiding in an ornamental grass, spying on us all.

 We will miss you dear dog.
Rusty - His Last Photograph

Off to the pond...

Then the kittens went back inside for a snooze, and I went into the pond to trim some overhanging Phormiums. This would be my dog time - the dogs love going to the pond.

So there was the gardener (me), submerged up to her waist, hanging onto Phormium leaves so as not to sink deeper. The pond surface was thick with hovering dragonflies (NGP tells me they predate on mosquitoes, so I love them to bits).

C'mon, dogs!

C'mon dogs. Dogs? This is your moment. C'mon. Winnie? Come in for a swim? Neither dog was at all interested in me being in the water. In fact, I don't think they had really noticed. Apparently, unless I am throwing and shrieking 'get the STICK', the pond is boring for dogs.

I miss my old dog Rusty. He would splash in the shallows, 'helping', and swim around me to keep me close company. Dear Rusty. I don't think I appreciated you!