Sunday, May 31, 2020

Spoiled kitties of the Hedges household

Hello Mum's blogger friends; this is Ambrose with a healed paw! Thanks for all the kind wishes. 

Mum took photos this week of we kitties having breakfast - mostly in bed! 
 Missy had breakfast on Mum's bed 
 I, Ambrose, was served on the chair under the veranda table 
 Mama is old school, and got up for breakfast
Last week, Chappie was shown here - on the kitchen counter 
 And it's cold now so we kitties are sitting around the hot spot

But when Mum brings out the vacuum cleaner, I am the only one who isn't afraid of the noise 

Critters and business news

Uh-oh, I'm late posting again. I won't say why. It's most frustrating to say the least. I've come into the farm office to post to my blog as the WiFi is a lot stronger here than when it has to reach across the lawn.

Once again , I have lovely photos of our walk. As always, the Grey Heron was sunning itself under the nearest bank. It flew over to the other side and stood there watching us. 
 Grey Heron

 As always Skabby dived into the dam and splashed about happily. 
 The heron didn't move. Its reflection was so clear in the water below
 I got the rippled effect  caused by the doggie dip

Back home, my vegetable garden, which Thandi and Joyce prepared and planted, is thriving! 

 Kale seedlings doing well... are the cauliflower seedlings! 

And my piece d'resistiance (no image, just info)  Please bear with me Eileen, using your meme to impart my news:)

Earlier this week, the founder and chairman of Weigh-Less appointed me one of the virtual Group Leaders for online groups. Since South Africa's Lockdown from 27 March, we have all led Virtual groups. And well. We're entering Lockdown Level 3 tomorrow, 1 June and although churches are permitted to gather, Weigh-Less will not be running groups in venues yet. Once this happens, my group members, 80 plus, will be weighed in venues again and under strict Covid-19 regulations. 


I will also be running the Virtual group of members who lives many miles from my regular venues. I have signed up 14 members since end March, from all over South Africa. And this week I signed on a member in Melbourne, Australia. So exciting. 

I'm linking to Saturday Critters with Eileen, here


Sunday, May 24, 2020

Injured Kitty Journalist

Hello Mum's blogger friends and their kitties and dogs. This is Ambrose, with an injured paw. I couldn't tell Mum where I'd hurt it and as she tried to apply wound powder, I hissed at her and batted her with my good paw. 

She says I should be fine as I ate all my breakfast and came in later and had a lunch snack of kitty kibbles. 
 Mama and Missy on Mum's bed 

Some afternoons I get to Mum's bed first and claim the spot. Mama then hides and sleeps in Mum's closet - on her clothes ! 
 I, Ambrose and Missy on Mum's bed! 
 Mama bought a new type of Kitty Kibbles. Chappie enjoying the first serving 
 Chappie's bowls says : "Feed me MEOW"

In the week, I sat on the fence pole. Mum thinks I may have a splinter in my paw from this.
 I like to be King of the Castle 
 Mum snapped the dog's paws - he'd been swimming! 
I heard Mum telling him not to come indoors until the mud dries and falls off! 

Cows and dogs cooling, a lifer and new calf

Hello everyone. I'm a day late at posting on Eileen's meme again, Internet slowness and my notebook needed updating. Which needed Internet! A vicious circle.

An LBJ has caught my attention in the past weeks. I asked my SIL Shelley for an ID. She narrowed it down to a pippit. According to my bird book, it looks like a Buffy pippit. Any birders out there, please help? 
 Buffy Pippit -a lifer for me

As always on our walk  we see cows! They were coming home to be milked...

 But first, cool the hooves...
... and have a drink 
 Skabby beat a hasty retreat! 
 Mmmm, making good milk 
 The sun was already low on the horizon 
 A newborn calf with a big voice !
Mum watches the  human and dog carefully 
My little car is a year old this month this week. And has had ten weeks of rest. And was filthy dirty! 
After Thandi's loving touch, it's fresh inside and sparkling outside 

I'm linking to Saturday Critters here

I trust you're all keeping well and safe. Happy Sunday to you ! 

Monday, May 18, 2020

Lawn mowing services; Lockdown levels and playing with images

Hello dear Blogger friends. It's Sunday afternoon, winter in the Southern Hemisphere and I'm still sitting in my outdoor office and able to watch the garden birds flit in and out of the shrubs while the sun warms the lawn around my little cottage.  

On Friday I was sitting here working on my Weigh-Less menus and admin, when I heard the ride-on mower idling at my gate. I jumped up and opened the gate and let the driver in.

Normally John, my 75 year-old neighbor, mows my lawn, but today it was the garden lady, Nurse. Resplendent in skinny jeans,  gumboots and wearing her face mask.
 Nurse enters the garden riding the mower 
Doing a splendid job of mowing my lawn 

Watching Nurse on the mower, took me back to the days we lived on the mines in Africa. Grant used to tell me that women operators were far more reliable than men. They were never late; they never booked off sick; they treated the machine with great respect and kept it in immaculate condition. 

We're still in Lockdown although we've moved from Level 5 (complete house arrest) to Lockdown 4 where we are able to shop for clothing and have your vehicle serviced among a few privileges.  We are not permitted to visit others and to gather at all. We have to practice social distancing and wear our face masks when out in public. So far many South Africans are abiding by the law although there are several who think this  VYRASS is a white-man's disease which makes them invincible.

The sale of cigarettes and alcohol is still strictly prohibited which has created the sometimes dangerous brewing of your own liquor. There are illicit alcohol and cigarette sales at exorbitant prices. There is an ongoing argument against this law but only time will tell when it will be lifted. 

When we entered Lockdown level 4, Thandiwe asked if she could return to work.  I told her that she isn't permitted by law to work indoors so she cleans my veranda, hangs the washing and irons on the veranda table.  Once again, she has her midday meal here and takes fruit, vegetables and cat pellets home.  She also has more time to care for the garden which was a bit neglected when she had household chores. 

Last week s Joyce, Ron's house lady, and also working in the garden, helped Thandiwe to dig beds for vegetables. The next day John took them to the river where they cut intungas (branchlike poles) and brought them back to my garden. On Friday, Thandiwe cut these down to size and made a fence to keep Skabby out! 
Ambrose on the garbage bin. Thandiwe can be seen in the background 
building the protective fence with the poles lying on the lawn 

While walking along the farm road with Skabby, I stopped and took a photo of a thistle. It's a dreaded invasive weed, but made a beautiful subject. Back home here I decided to play with the functions on Word.

The last image is my favorite; do you have one? 

Here's wishing you all a great new week. Be safe and keep well. 

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Hedges Kitties and dog

Hello Mum's blog friends; this is Ambrose telling you about life as kitties and a dog in the Hedges household. 

I have started sleeping indoors again, on Mum's bed. Missy sleeps there too but Mama sleeps on Mum's pillow. 
 Me, (the Ginger kitty) and Missy on Mum's bed 
 Mama, Missy and Chappie enjoying the electric heater in Mum's office 

 This morning, as usual Missy was on top of Mum's closet. Mama decided to climb up the rails inside the closet. 
And both kitties played batting each other 

Chappie having a snack 
When Skabby and Mum go walking, we kitties stay home. I found this photo of the dog in the water 


Saturday, May 16, 2020

Photographic [canine] assistant and a Grey Heron

Good afternoon dear blogger friends. Here I am again, posting on Saturday Critter with Eileen! Thank goodness I get my weekly fix ! 

I posted recently how, on our daily walks along the farm road, when Skabby and I approach the dam, I leash him up and urge him to be quiet. I've been trying to get a photo of the resident Grey Heron. Only to see it fly up as we sneak up on the watering hole. 

Earlier this week, I almost forgot my quest, and let Skabby run along ahead. As the dam came into view, I was fascinated by the perfect reflection of the electric pole on the opposite bank. I snapped it. 
 The electric pole reflection 
Then Skabby dived into the dam and within a few seconds the rings made by his body, reached the image - and I  snapped again! 

My photographic assistant helps create interesting reflections! 

Then to my surprise, as I looked to my right, I saw the Grey Heron sitting on the bank. Dead quiet. Watching us, but not flying off either. 

 Grey Heron

 I managed at least a dozen shots before the heron took off lazily and flew away. 
Up, up and away   
At my feet, Skabby continued to plodge in the dam while I photographed the heron! 

The next day when we arrived, the heron wasn't in attendance. But the dam looked so beautiful, anyway. The winter days are spectacularly beautiful and mild at the moment. 
A perfect reflection of the clouds in the humble farm dam! 

I'm linking to Saturday Critters with Eileen here

We have just passed day 50 of Lockdown. No one is sure what happens next, so the wise and wary are following the rules, wearing their masks and washing their hands. Still no gatherings are allowed and the sale of alcohol and cigarettes have been banned for the entire Lockdown period. 

I trust you're all keeping well and safe. 


Saturday, May 9, 2020

Farm critters, birds and house resident

Good morning Blogger friends. Here I am with Saturday Critter posts which Eileen kindly hosts. 
Another beautiful day in the Central Drakensberg 

As usual I have a mix of farm animals, birds and water birds to post. 

As Skabby and I set out for our second walk of the day on Thursday, we met the milk cows being herded down the road to the dairy. I decided to get a different angle of the cattle and went down on one knee to photograph them.

Two things happened: Skabby turned around and ran back to me, licking my face...

...and the second thing that happened, the cows stopped dead, bunching up and causing the others behind them stop as well. 
All the cows stopped while Skabby careened into me - precariously kneeling in the road! 
 I had to post this White-fronted Bee-eater with our beautiful mountain peaks in the background

Earlier this week I walked further than Skabby's watering hole. I climbed a steep bank and could look out over the dam which feeds the little pond where Skabby has a daily dip. 
The farm's top dam 
 Egyptian geese pair - the male on the left and the female next to him. In the water in front of the geese, is a Red-Billed Teal 
 An out-of-focus photo of a Red-Knobbed Coot 

At the lower watering hole, while Skabby cavorted in the water, I photographed an African Sacred Ibis. And its silhouette.  
 African Sacred Ibis 

Back home, as Skabby and I decamped, I noticed a movement on the veranda wall. Our normal house resident.
Rain spider 

(I await Sandra's comment!)

I am linking to Saturday Critters with Eileen here.

Wishing you all a happy and safe Saturday.