Luna and OliverWe have kittens!

I wasn’t exactly planning this. Claire and I have been going to the Siskiyou Humane Society and visiting kittens this summer. She met one, Tatiana, and fell in love. She was a great kitten, but when we met her she was not ready to go home. Then, life got extremely busy again.

My cat, Little, moved in with the ex-husband last year. She’s a calico and somewhat tempermental, and she took some swipes at Claire. Little started spending some time outdoors, but as the weather got cooler, she went to live with the ex.

This summer, Little came back while the ex was traveling. But his travels ended, and Little went back. We found ourselves cat-less again.

So, we talked it over and decided we could go get Tatiana. Of course, being the sweet cat she is, she was already adopted. We met two other kittens that stole our hearts immediately. I was sure Mark would kill me for bringing home two kittens, but he has been awesome about it. They were named Daisy and Oren, but they are now Luna and Oliver.

Luna is the black one (with a little white moon on her chest). She is very outgoing and sweet. She has a cute little squeaky meow and she loves sitting on people. She also gets called Lunalove and Lunabug.

Oliver, the tabby, is a bit reserved. He’s still very sweet, but he likes a little more autonomy. He’s extraordinarily soft. He reminds me very much of my cat, Bacia, a maine coon that I lost in Texas. I still miss her, so I am thrilled to have Oliver.

They’re wonderful. Oddly, Luna is very much like Claire. Oliver is more like Max. And they’ve kind of matched up that way.

Alex is a little jealous, but he is very sweet with them. Kittens are not quite ready to connect with the dog, though.

I was not planning on adopting this year, but it is entirely wonderful. It is giving me an opportunity to work with Claire on allowing things — and kitties — to come to her instead of trying to go get them. It has been slow going and it’s a tough thing for a rambunctious five year old to get. But she loves the kitties enough to want to get it.

Getting Ready for School

Summer is ending. The kids have one more week before school begins, and my life will change more than I think. After a not-so-great 6th grade in the standard public school, Max is switching to a charter school. He’ll have to do more on his own, I’ll have to be more involved. But last year was not good on many levels, and it’s time for a big change. After meeting with the staff at the charter school, I have a lot of faith he’s going to do much better there.

lake

Claire enjoying Lake Siskiyou while Alex, our dog, watches.

Claire I don’t worry about much at all. She’ll be just fine. This summer, she’s taught herself how to swim (backstroke and dog paddling) and she’s taught herself to read. All with a little help from mom, but honestly not very much. She just decides she’s going to learn something and she does it. She’s also taught herself to count to 100 and she’s doing basic addition/subtraction. She’s a case study for unschooling, for sure. But she wants to be around kids. So, we are really lucky that we’ve got an amazing charter school in our county.She can jump ahead at any time to a different grade level, while still being in the same general age group. She’s going to do really well there, I think. She’s really excited about attending.

Raw Milk and Sustainable Farming

We went on a farm tour yesterday at Kid Creek Pastures. I am a big believer in growing my own food and buying local from sustainable farmers. I was really impressed with the entire operation and the awesome people, Shawna and Jacob, who run it.

Their kids are really involved in caring for the animals. I loved watching their daughter scoot the pigs from their hiding spots so we could see them. She is an amazing little girl, and Shawna and Jacob are giving her such a gift to be able to learn how to work with the earth and the animals in a sustainable farming practice. Though Max wasn’t very excited to go on a farm tour, I asked him to please come. Claire loves animals and farms, so it was a great experience for her. I feel very lucky to grow my own food and live so close to cows, chickens, horses, and pigs. My kids might not think it’s interesting, but I think it’s better for them to grow up under the assumption that food comes from farming instead of food coming from stores.

Anyway, Claire loves the milk, and I hope to make some cheese on my own from the incredibly fresh milk. So, I am now owner of a share of a small herd of beautiful cows. I got a half gallon to start, but after one day, I can already tell I will need to upgrade and get more.