The Guardian and Trainie

The Guardian and Trainie
Nick and Babe

Thursday, December 24, 2009


I haven't been outside in three days.  This is not good for the mind and body.  It was raining for a couple of days and then it was just plain freezing.  This is not a good excuse for not getting out and exercising.   I have been trying to focus on making a few things for my grandchildren for Christmas.  I have made this my top priority and I finally accomplished what I set out to do.  My grandson requested a pair of hand knit mittens for Christmas so I made him a pair and a scarf to go with them.  My little granddaughter, his sister,  requested the same but "please grandma make them hot pink!"  I finished her pair along with a scarf also. I ended up making mittens for all the grand  kids and then I proceeded to make little ornament hats and stockings for them also.  I used to make and give ornaments every year so that the kids would slowly gather their own ornaments for their Christmas Trees they would have some day.  I would like to continue with that tradition.  I have been so busy what with moving and getting settled during the holidays last year and the 2 years prior I had all of my sewing and knitting stuff packed away in storage.  That made it really difficult for me to make anything when I would have to fish around for the supplies I needed.  Prior to these last three years I always had a sewing room and could access my stuff whenever I felt the need to make something.  It has always been really nice having access to all of my craft supplies whenever I wanted.  This year I finally was able to set up a sewing room again!  I had to let it sit and slowly I began to get organized enough to begin a project.  I started knitting first because I was going to the coast a lot and it would be cold and I needed a hat and a scarf.  Then I began to get traveling kits together so I would have things to do when away from home.  My fiance is a surfer and I love to go to the beach with him hence I have had time to make things or read both of which I love to do.  Anyway I am sort of getting away from what I started to say and that is that I am making things for Christmas.  I am still working on a cape and hat for my little great grand niece.  I hadn't made her anything when she was born and I feel that I should do something.  I had a little bit of a hang up with her father so I didn't  feel motivated to make anything.  I am knocking down the walls that have been built up for way too long.  My nephew and I don't see eye to eye but that is no reason to not recognize and appreciate the beautiful little niece who was born into our family. So back to work I go.  It is Christmas eve and I am not done.  Love to all.  Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Boy is it difficult getting anything done when there are people around.  Focus, focus, focus but it is so hard.  My granddaughter is at my house.  She is four and quite a busy little girl.  Little ones require a lot of attention.  Not to mention my daughter.  She can be quite a handful herself.  She is so emotional.  From one extreme to the next it is very consuming.  I do not know how to stay on track when there are people around.  For example here I sit trying to write and my granddaughter comes to talk to me.  I have to stop.  It is only fair to her.  She will only be here for a limited amount of time.  Life will not stop and she will grow up so stop I will. 
My hopes for all the people I love is happiness.  I cannot solve their problems nor do I want to.  However I would like to have a little less disturbances. 

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Day after surgery

Hi there.  I really didn't think I would be able to type today but here I am.  One day after surgery and typing away.  Al arrived last night at the same time as my mom was leaving.  Hurray I won't be alone.  My hand is sore but really doesn't hurt.  For those of you who didn't read my previous blog I had carpal tunnel surgery.  It went very well.  So both of my hands are done and no more pain in the middle of the night.  No more tingling and numbness when knitting or driving.  However, I will not be returning to Home Depot.  I feel that the work that I was doing, lifting heavy boxes and tools, would aggravate an already sensitive area.  The lifting of heavy things is what irritated the already existent carpal tunnel problem. 
I must tell you about my day yesterday.  The plan was to get up around 5:00am and leave by 5:30am.  It would take approximately 2 1/2 hrs to get to Sacramento Mercy General Hospital where the out patient surgery would be done.  No problem. Well I failed to set the alarm properly and woke up at 5:25am jumped out of bed literally and called to my mom who would be driving me there and home.  We got out the door by 5:45am and headed down the road.  We had an uneventful drive there arriving 20min ahead of schedule.  The doctor wanted me there by 8:30am.  I got checked in, changed into a gown, IV in, blood pressure checked, medical history taken and left to wait for surgery.  Now I must tell you my doctor does not usually do surgeries on Friday's but today was specially requested so that three other doctors could watch the endoscopic carpal tunnel surgery.  I accepted the offer of  having my surgery done two weeks earlier than planned so there I was waiting.  I waited two and a half hours before they even came to get me for surgery.  I was getting a little perturbed with the doctor.  It was just plan rude for him and his staff to leave me there without even coming in to let me know how things were progressing.  Well I was there for surgery and I wasn't going to walk out now.  So wait I did.  The last time I had surgery on my right hand I had a little issue that I had made a note of to speak with whoever would be responsible.  The issue was some pain I experienced during surgery.  I was told ahead of time that there was a place in my hand that during surgery many people feel a little and that if I felt any pain at that point I should let them know and they would give me some more pain killer.  Well I did this in the last surgery and they gave me nothing!  They just said it would be just one more little cut and it would be over.  Well two cuts later and it was over but I could feel everything! The only comment my doctor had to my feeling anything was that I was a tough woman.  Well tough woman or not I do not want to feel pain if I don't half to.   So, I was bound and determined to say something before surgery this time and I did to everyone who was taking care of me until I got to whom ever was the responsible one for stopping the pain.  The anaesthesiologist he was the guy I needed to speak with and I did.  I told him of my previous problem, he explained to me the situation and told me he would be right there with me in case of any problems.  He was exceptional, stayed right there with me and even explained what I was seeing on the monitor.  I wanted to watch the surgical procedure.  It was quite interesting.  Surgery over I recovery done I thought I would be on my way home but nnnnooooo.  Remember I came here with my mother.  I haven't told you about her yet but she is a little bit in her own world, a little bit looney.   She was to go get her car and pick me up in front of the building where the out patient surgery is.  I was rolled up in a wheel chair by a male orderly and we waited and waited.  We waited so long that the orderly took me back down stairs to leave me with the nurses and they too were perplexed as to what to do with me.  I was ready to just tell him to leave me and get up and walk out.  I know my rights.  The nurses were asking me questions about my mother trying to see if she was maybe not all there and shouldn't really be driving.  I with some reservations explained that she was fine and would be around soon.  She probably got lost.   We went back up stairs and I tried to cheer up the orderly.  My mom finely arrived but was soon frazzled after leaving me waiting so long she locked her keys in the car so now she has to call triple A and we are waiting for them.  After my surgery  I was pretty looped and probably would have slept in the car but now I was wide awake!  Oh well I will sleep when I get home.  Whooh!!!  What a day.  Today I am going to relax!!! Talk to you all tomorrow.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Baking down on the ranch or not

Well woke up this morning with the excitement of a new stove and oven.  The new stove arrived and the guys set it up and all seemed fine until they left, I set the clock and set the oven to bake.  I got on the phone with my mom and waited for the oven to preheat. I finished my phone call and turned back towards the stove and low and behold the clock was not lit up anymore.  OH MY GOODNESS!!!  "Okay, okay do not panic," I said to myself.  Be logical and check the breaker to see if it was blown.  NO, that is/was not the problem.  I have lots of baking to do before my surgery tomorrow but it is looking I am not going to get it done.  I hope that this will not be the case.  If I can't bake today oh well I will just have to do it next week and be really careful with my left hand.  At least I am right handed and that hand is in decent working order.  I am still recovering from carpal tunnel surgery on the right hand.  Well at least I got my candy made, butter cookie dough mixed and shortbread is ready to bake.  I will just have to do what I can and not worry about the rest.  I will not stress over the things I can't do anything about.  I have done what I can and now it is up to somebody else.  I learned this lesson a long time ago do not stress over spilt milk.  It won't get me a new stove and I just will feel awful and what would that accomplish?  Absolutely nothing!!!  So I guess I will just focus on mixing all of my cookie doughs which is what I really needed to do before surgery anyway.  The baking can happen later and besides I still have the stove top to cook dinner or whatever until the new stove gets here. Hang, hang, hang the phone is ringing and I need a stove so wait I'll be right back.................... I just recieved a call and the new stove will come next Tuesday.  Oh peaches I am sooooo excited all over again.  Do you detect a slight bit of me being a little facecious?  Well you would be right!  And just a hair bit preturbed!  Do you blame me?  Heck no!  If I was the average gal I would be taking a valium or something!  But I am not the average gal I am just going to go on with the day ahead of me. Breath Melanie breath!
Well folks it is a beautiful day here on the ranch.  The sun is shining, the sky is blue with a few clouds and a bit crisp out there.  I happen to be indoors with a nice cozy fire going and pleasant music playing on the radio.  There are so many things that I need to get done that there just isn't any time for idleness.  FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS!!!!!  Catch you all tomorrow.  Loves, hugs and kisses.
Okay people I am back!!!  My new stove seems to have a mind of it's own.  Was there a short, is there a short?  I could not say however the oven is back and I am going to give it a try.  Temperature is set and baking here I come.
By the way I may not be able to type tomorrow so I might not be back for a couple of days.  Please do not fret I will return with a lot to say.  Love ya. Wish me a safe recovery. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Life in general.

Hello People!  Today I will bake, bake, bake!  Two days before I get surgery on my left hand.  I already had surgery on my right hand for carpal tunnel.  All is well no more waking up at 4 in the morning in pain.  Yeah!!!  I have a lot of things to accomplish before surgery.  House keeping is a number one.  Last time seeing as I had my right hand done I couldn't hardly do anything.  I am not ambidextrous.  I try but it takes a huge effort.  This time it is the left and my right is doing well so I shouldn't be so bad off.  I am cooking another turkey soup for the dogs.  I feed them in the evening predominately.  What with this cold wet weather I think it helps keep their bodies warmer through out the night.  These dogs work, sleep and eat out of doors so any little bit I can do to help keep them healthy and warm I will do. 
The holidays are upon  us and I am trying to get into the spirit.  It is sort of difficult when you are surrounded with buy, buy, buy!!   I have always been one to encourage my girls to see the love and sharing of ones feelings around the holidays.  It is not about buying stuff.  What is a gift anyway?  Why do we really give of things and not of ourselves?  Put your heart and soul into the season.  So much of what is going on at this time of the year is about the winter.  The greenery represents the spring coming and the lights are representative of the coming of longer days of light or sunshine.  Could we all remember who we are and where we live.  This is our planet and we have seasons and we absolutely should give thanks and show appreciation for all that we have and I am not talking about stuff.  I am talking about life.  Look around and appreciate the simple things.  I personally look around me everyday and I am so thankful the I can see all this beauty.  The green grass, the trees, birds life in general.  I haven't always lived in such beautiful places.  I know the ghetto but there is beauty there as well.  People in the rawest form, surviving that is beauty.  The will of a living breathing being treking through the day to day effort to push forward sometimes through the toughest situations.  This is the beauty of life itself.  The will to live!  I love you people.  You are beautiful.  We are all in this place together.  When we are stripped of all worldly things what do we have left?  Who are we?  Children of the Universe!!  Hence why the nude thing was so popular in the sixties.  It was about the core of who we really are.  No clothes to judge with.  You could not tell who were the haves and the have nots.  We were just people!!  We are just people.  Who has the right to judge anyway.  There is no right or wrong.  We are just making choices and the choices beget other choices.  Spiritual beings having a human experience?  I will leave having said that.  Have a great life.  Talk to you tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Quince, coyotes and things

The quince tree is almost bare.  I still have a few in a box on my porch but I just can't seem to get motivated to cook them down.  Oh well maybe another day.  Last night the dogs were barking, barking, barking then I heard why.  There was a big coyote out there somewhere.  At least it sounded like a big one.  Those dogs never cease to amaze me.  They are on watch every night like clock work.  They patrol the perimeter of the property every night and  sometimes during the day as well.  I don't always see them patroling but I do see their huge paw prints.  That is something to see.  These dogs are giants.  The male, Nick is about 110 lbs. and stands about 27 inches at the shoulder.  The females are a couple of inches shorter and probably 10 to 20 lbs lighter but the puppy I call Babe is a close second to Nick and she loves to do the same work as Nicky.  Nina, the mom, the alpha female in the pack she stays predominately with the herd.  Her pup, Maddy, also known as Madrigal, she also stays with herd and Nina.  Nick and Babe, they are perimeter dogs.  They are the first on the scene.  Rest assured though all four dogs are on anything that needs to be dealt with.  Living out here on a large ranch alone it is so comforting to have the dogs for protection. 

Quince, coyotes and things

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The birds are back!!

Good Morning world!  What a beautiful morning it is.   I was going through the daily ritual of preparing my hot peppermint mocha, one package of hot chocolate a smidgen of peppermint oil, coffee of course (breakfast blend) and I glanced out the window as I usually do.  The birds were back in full force.  Hundreds of them maybe thousands I'm not sure but a lot of birds.  They would alight upon the ground in a huge circle then off again with the most incredible sound only to land again moving southwards.  It appears that they are eating as they go.  They have left the property maybe they'll be back tomorrow.  I noticed the canadian geese are back in the vineyard today.  I love having them here.  The grapes are gone so there is no concern for them being around.  The vineyard manager doesn't like them around I guess they would eat the grapes.  It is a sad situation.  The geese need a place to nest and have their babies and their nesting grounds are being wiped out. 
We did have a pair nest by our pond last year.  They had three eggs they all hatched.  We were able to observe the goslings with both parents on the dam by our lower pond.  What a sight that was for us!  We had never seen a family of geese before our vary eyes in the flesh no less.  The hope is that a pair will nest again this year.
I can hear the sheep off in the distance.  They start their baaing as the sun begins to rise.   The joke around here is they are calling for Bbbboooobbbb.  Bob is the owner of the sheep.  He comes everyday in fact twice a day while the sheep are lambing.  I do think they are calling him.  Ha, Ha, Ha. 
Now that the rain has stopped the ewes and their little lambs move out into the meadow.  Ahah the birds are down in the meadow with the sheep. Lot's of yummies down there!  I am looking out my office window and can see the big white barn.  I hear sheep but it appears that most are still inside. Sheep don't appear to be too bright but they will gather together in the barn to get out of the rain and I have observed what looks to be an aunty tending to a group of youngsters. I am new at this sheep thing but I know what I see.  And oh let me tell you the little rams they are the quint essential representation of boys in the hood.  I wouldn't have believed it had I not observed it with my own eyes.  Those boys are a riot.  They band together and get into mischief.   There was a group last year that found a way to escape from the main pasture and boy were they full of them selves.  They would get out and run and jump butting each other as they romped as if there was no tomorrow.  Sowing their oats so to speak.  It was hilarious. I didn't notice any young ewes in the group just rams, however I will pay attention this year and be absolutely sure. There just has to be a female in the mix for, "well behaved women seldom make history."  I would like to believe that no matter the spieces there would always be one in the group who pushes the envelope.  How else would we all evolve.  Well I will talk to you all later.  In the mean time I will leave you with one message.  Oh Evolve!!!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

My Outback Station on the west coast of California

It is late the darkness surrounds us here on the ranch. The rain has subsided and the dogs are quiet. The coyotes must be laying low. Maybe their bellies are full so the sheep are safe for now. The lambs must be sleeping for their bleating has stopped. The sounds of the big rigs passing through in the night remind me of the world out there beyond our little realm. I love being here with the sounds of the night. They soothe me. I am left with my thoughts to wander where they may.
The dogs are out there somewhere watching, listening napping as they will with their ears always on guard. They are the great protectors of the land. They are a force to be reckoned with. I experienced this force first hand but I am now part of the pack. The dogs have a job and they do their job well. No one has to tell them what to do or when to do it. It is in their blood, in their genes. Their job has been passed on from one generation to the next genetically. It is really an amazing thing to watch and be a part of. They watch after the sheep but when I arrived they began to watch after me as well. No one asked them to do it was just in their nature to take care of all of us who live on the property. I am extremely thankful. I love that I am part of their pack.
When I first came here and was introduced to Nick I was with the property owner. Nick was chained up I was not aware of why but Nick seemed pleasant. I am not afraid of dogs I have owned a few in my life. I had no reason to be afraid of Nick. When I met Nick again he lunged at me for no apparent reason. That concerned me somewhat because I was to be living on the same property with him. I honestly thought that if he had not been on the chain he would have seriously injured me.