Sunday, July 16, 2017

Fleas and an Unexpected Blessing

Kitten Symmetry 
In KittenWorld, nothing remains the same for long.  They've been spending their nights in the living room, curled in the top level of their cat tree.  This sleeping arrangement suited me just fine.  However, for the past two nights, they've woken from their perch and come pottering in to be with their Mama.  Because I'm a fool for cuteness, I put up with their passionately purring little selves -- one pressed up against my neck and the other deep within the sheets.  My forbearance quickly ended with the stings from the fleas they shared with me.  I carted them back to their cat tree and went back to bed with the bedroom door firmly closed.  I'll be checking with the vet next week to see if they're old enough for a dose of Frontline.

Sparring on the duck raft just before they left for two years

Three years ago we had an unexpected blessing when a family with twin boys moved into a house up the road.  Joseph and Jonathan came knocking on our door one afternoon selling raffle tickets for their high school and looking for odd jobs.  We gave them a try and we were blessed to have them work for us for the next year.  They would take on any job that we pointed them too -- cleaning the chicken coop, weed-eating, raking, loading trash and debris into the trailer, and going with Bruce to the landfill to help him unload.  Their work ethic was amazing -- cheerful, energetic, and competent.  With them, our concern was never about getting them to get the job done but rather that they might overdo it.  Because they had just been accepted into the school's football team they were eager to build up their muscles and we were more than eager to pay them to do this (as long as they stayed safe, hydrated and fed).  Win/win.  They also loved animals and the dogs adored them.  And then, one June day they were gone.  The family moved away and we never knew where they went.  Two years passed.

So last Friday, right after breakfast, the dogs were barking at something and I saw someone walking up the drive towards the house.  I went out to see who it was, and it was Joseph.  Or rather, Joseph the tall young man as opposed to Joseph the lanky boy.  A few minutes later, Jonathan drove up and we got caught up on the news.  The family had gone to a small town about thirty miles away but moved back to their old house a few weeks ago.  They were very happy that they could have their senior year at their old high school and had come by to say hi and to see if we had any work for them.  Oh, miracle of miracles!  Any work for them?????

Yesterday Joseph and Jonathan raked the dry grass from the round pen and loaded up the trailer with grass and brush.  They hauled, cut up and laid oak branches on top of the pile in the trailer.  Then Jonathan took care of a few gophers with the pellet gun.  Bruce, the boys and the dogs all went to the landfill together and I baked oatmeal cookies for everyone.  Even if they weren't helping us, it would have been lovely to see them again to know how they are doing.  I had no expectation that they might be looking for work now that they were older and busy with school and their lives.  But there they were, ready to dig in.  Surrounded as we are by acres of dry weeds, their return is a blessing on many levels.


  1. Oh, my, what a wonderful and timely reunion for you! When we moved here, we had a cousin's teenager come stay with us to work for a week and a neighbor commented that they wished they could find a young man to help out. At the time I thought - wow - don't they know anyone? Now I am like that neighbor and wish we had a young person we could hire to help out... Enjoy your blessings!!! And those cookies...

  2. We used to have a young man work for us, usually one day a week. So much got done that day!. He's grown up and moved on but we so benefitted from his willingness to work hard for a decent wage. Happy you've got your workers (and friends) back.