August 2008


I was flipping thru the paper 2 weeks ago – and read that the local wildlife rehab center was having an open house.  They are not open to the public, but do hold open houses once or twice a year for several Sundays in a row.

I was excited, having dealt with them years ago, when they first started out, and really wanted to see the place. I called and made reservations for my daughter and I, and the following Sunday zoomed out of here for our tour!!!

It was an hour drive, to Waynesboro, Va and we got there a little early. The Wildlife Center of Virginia is nestled in the woods, at the base of the George Washington National Forest, in a lovely eco friendly wood building. We went to the reception desk and said we were here for the tour. We were a week EARLY!!!!

I had been so excited, and obviously wasn’t looking at the right week on the calendar!…………………so, we left disappointed, with a handful of pamphlets and got back on the road. At least we knew where it was and how long it took to get there!!!

This past Sunday, we , again, got in the car and headed back out to Waynesboro,  on the CORRECT day!

What a difference a week makes – there was limited parking, because the tour was fully booked- that was a little frustrating- I was sure my van was going to fall off the edge of the road, while trying to maneuver around to get parked!!! But we managed, and went inside.

There was a short talk and video telling all about the center and its patients. There are many animals who are never able to be returned to the wild, and they become good will ambassadors, or  ‘animal educators’.

These animal ambassadors were the animals who were on the tour. There was a snapping turtle, named Spike, who had spent the first few years of his life as a “pet” kept in a cooler. His diet was poor and as a result he had skeletal problems which would prevent him from ever surviving on his own. There were a number of snakes, who were unable to be released for one reason or another, and then there were the birds.

Pignoli was a tiny owl, who was found on the railroad tracks, with a badly damaged eye. His eye ultimately had to be removed, and Pignoli became an animal educator. He has been with the Center for 10 years, and was not at all bothered by the audience or the noisy children oohing and aahing at him! A volunteer came in with a recording of an owl, to try to inspire Pignoli to speak – but he just blinked his one good eye disdainfully at that tape recorder, and never said a word!! As the volunteer said, they really did not know WHAT the owl on the recording was actually saying, so Pignoli may have been doing the right thing by NOT responding!!

Next stop  on the tour was outside to see the larger birds, housed in a gated compound behind the main facility. There was an absolutely stunning juvenile bald eagle, who was due to be released. He probably had a 6 foot wingspan, and pretty much ignored the nosy humans gawking at him thru the bars.

There were red tailed hawks and red shouldered hawks,  a kestrel, and several different types of owls.

Unfortunately, we were not allowed to see the fawns who were scheduled for release, and there were no bear cubs on the premises. Even if there were, I doubt that we would have been allowed to see them. Altho, the guide said we would know if there WERE bear cubs there, because they  are always a rowdy, noisy bunch!

The Center recently had a bobcat kitten, who had just been transferred to a facility in Maryland. She had been found by the side of the road, by some people who thought she was a domestic kitten. Her eyes were still closed. They kept her for 3 weeks, feeding her milk and cat friskies, until it started to dawn on them, that she was NOT an ordinary kitten!!! I don’t know how they could have made that mistake in the first place!!

The bobcat was so imprinted on humans, that she could not be released back into the wild, so she also will be an animal educator.

The Wildlife Center has a state of the art operating room, with vets on staff. One of the founders of the center, Ed Clark, Jr., goes around the country and the world teaching conservation, and  working to develop regulations to protect the environment. He has helped develop the WCV into an award winning teaching and research hospital , having handled  more than 50,000 patients over the past 25 years. Clark is also the creator and host of “Animal Emergency”  a show on t.v.’s Animal Planet.

Having worked as a kid with a wildlife rehabber, and worked with animals all my life- if I was a little younger, and the Center was a little closer, I would  be working there every day!!!

If you live in Va, I would recommend taking the tour, which runs thru Oct, or signing up for some of their classes. More info can be found on their website  http://www.wildlifecenter.org

Unfortunately, it was hard to get good pictures of all of the birds. The cages were dark and heavily barred in some cases, and it was a cloudy day with a heavy tree canopy. But I was able to get a few.

 

 

 

 

This is just a view inside the operating room, with x-rays of a recent patient.

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All is well at Mountain Meadows on this rainy, misty day!!!

 

 

 

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Nature does not hurry, yet, everything is accomplished……………………………..Lao Tzu

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Good morning!!!!
Good morning!!!!

Awakened at 4am by a worrisome thought now forgotten, my still tired brain began thinking. Slowly at first, the thoughts flowed. Unable to turn them off, I was forced to get out of bed!

 

It’s a little after 5am- still dark outside. The crickets are still harmonizing their soothing hum. The hounds have started their early morning wake up call! Back in our former ‘sub-urban’ world, dogs barking would result in an irate word or three from a neighbor, or a visit from the cops!  Here in the country, it’s just a part of nature’s backround music!

 

The hounds are the alarm clock for the cows, who alert the sun, who awakens the local roosters and stirs the wild bird population.

 

As soon as the sun’s morning rays start to peek from behind the mountains, the woodpecker will start his noisy and rhythmic search for breakfast, the mourning doves will coo, and the trees will murmur with the sounds of feather rustling as the birds who slept within the trees sheltering branches awaken.

Soooo, at 4:45 in the morning, what else is there to do but to hunker down in front of the computer, with a cup o’ tea!

 

This post was inspired by a newsletter from a recently discovered blog- The Altered Page. http://www.thealteredpage.blogspot.com

Artists (my friend Patty is one – http://www.bitze.wordpress.com ) were invited to share things they collect- and what a WIDE variety of collections there are!!!

 

I am relieved to know that I am not the ONLY one living in a sea of debris (to coin a phrase from a non artist friend!), artistic tho it may be!!!!

 

So, even if you are SANE and only collect ONE thing, please comment and let us know what you collect!

 

Here’s my short list:

I Covet and Collect:

*online friends

*ideas

*stories

*rocks

*hand thrown pottery mugs

*aprons

*photographs

*books and magazines

*bones and feathers

*netsuke

*teacups

*vintage gold framed mirrors

*homeless animals

*flotsam and jetsam

 

Have I left anything out? Definitely! – but this list is subject to change. Collections are a constant ebb and flow, just like life…………………………………..

 

All is well and RAINING at Mountain Meadows today – and the hay fields and I are very grateful for that………………………………………..

A couple of posts ago, I mentioned I was planning to re-open my little antiques and collectibles shop in a place not too far from here. I have been selling on eBay, but REALLY missed having an actual shop!!!! There is something to be said for human interaction and not having all the inventory in your house!!!!!!

Before we moved here, I had a nice large room, in the historic district of Leesburg, Va, in a beautiful old house, that was “home” to about 20 + antique dealers. It was the best place, but , when we moved, unfortunately, it was too far to away to keep up. Soooo, I started selling the small inventory on Ebay, and that worked well for awhile. One day, my mom got the “bug” and took a small booth in a multi vendor antiques mart not far from here. I am not sure what this building was prior to being an antiques mall – maybe a motel or a garage, but there are alot of vendors/dealers inside! 

Well, you know what happened…..when I went to help her set up her booth, I ended up renting a space of my own!!!! It is much smaller than what I had in Leesburg, but very well advertised and alot of folks come thru!!! So, I will try it out for 6 mos, and see how it goes. If it does well, I will fancy up the booth, or maybe even get a larger one!!!!

If you are ever in my neck o’ the woods, you should really stop in and visit this place!!! There are some GREAT deals here – I can’t walk out of there without buying something – occupational hazard!!!!

It’s called The Shenandoah Valley Flea Market, 3549 Old Valley Pike, (US Rte 11),New Market, Va – they are CLOSED Tuesdays and Wednesdays- Debbie is the owner – she’ll welcome ya’ at the front door!!

Here are some pix of the booth – it’s a work in progress – I DO have WAY more stuff than will fit in this 7′ x 8′ space, but it’s fun, fun, fun!!!!

The window needs a little work - and the plywood "wall" was put up to cover the old garage door!

The window needs a little work - and the plywood

Lace curtain to temporarily cover the lovely plywood!

Lace curtain to temporarily cover the lovely plywood!

More re-arranging, more stuff!

More re-arranging, more stuff!

Shelving unit the husband made has a new purpose!

Shelving unit the husband made has a new purpose!

Well, Ooglebloop’s Treasures is open for business!!! There is alot more cool stuff still to be unpacked, re ticketed, and put on the shelves!!! It’s alot of work, but the good thing is- people are buying and the “stuff” is getting out of my house!!!
Time to get off the computer, and go find the husband. He is across the river, digging up small trees to plant along our property line. So, I am going to get my camera, my walking shoes, and take a hike!!!
All is well at Mountain Meadows today……………………………………………..

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My 100th post winner was Kimmie of http://www.artinredwagons.blogspot.com

I wanted to show the different stages of the zentangle she won – but wanted to wait ’til she received it!! Didn’t want to spoil the surprise!!!! I am so happy that she liked the “z’- since Kimmie is a VERY talented artist – it was high praise to me that she liked it!!!

 

My favorite “z”‘s to do are my ‘temari ball’ designs – I even have some actual temari balls that I want to work on, one of these days!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, finally – TA DA!!!!

 

The finished product!!!
The finished product!!!

I didn’t realize this final pic was a little blurry, before I popped the zentangle in the mail- so check Kimmie’s blog for a better shot!!!

All is well and beautifully sunny at Mountain Meadows today!!!
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But, in every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.———John Muir

Da da te daaaaaa!!!!

I let the math goodies calculator (thanks, Patty for that tip!) pick the winners.

The winner of the apron with some goodies in the pocket is……….

DRUM ROLL PLEASE!!!!!!!!

#8 – ELAINE!!!!! Who thought it would look great on her daughter!!!!!! Congratulations!!!!!

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The 100th post zentangle winner is………………….. #3 – KIMMIE!!!!!! Congratulations!!!

That was fun – thanks to all who participated – old friends and new!!!!

Elaine and Kimmie , you  need to give me addresses to mail your goodies to!!!

I just happened to notice, while checking my apron contest (which ends at 5pm est TODAY-see August 8th post to ENTER!), that THIS is my 100th post!!! Who’da thunk it, when I stepped into the kingdom of blogdom, 6 months ago, that I’d get to a milestone where I’ve written 100 posts??!!?? It is both addictive, and satisfying, and has opened up a world of new friends, who appear to enjoy what I write about – ’cause they keep coming back!!! Thank you!!

To celebrate the 100th post – I am having a mini GIVEAWAY, along with the big APRON GIVEAWAY, which will end at the same time today- 5pm est. I figured, why not!!!

I will be giving away an original zentangle-that will be created today. I have pictured 2 of my others below, just to give you an idea of what you’re in for, if you win (LOL)- there are more of mine pictured on an early blog post, and on my friend Patty’s blog (http://www.bitze.wordpress.com) . Patty is REALLY good at zentangling and all kinds of altered art, by the way!!!

So, comment below, thanks for checking in, and I hope my next 100 posts will be as interesting for everyone!!!

 

The day is just starting, it’s foggy and a tad bit chilly out, and I see two of the resident rabbits out  back trimming the clover for me. All is well at Mountain Meadows this morning……………………………

A  cheery postscript for this birth day……………..”So, unless we die prematurely, we have no choice about entering old age.”……………Jane Sigloh, Like Trees Walking

Just a reminder- the APRON GIVEAWAY has less than 24 hours to go!!! Make sure you comment to be entered!!! See my August 8th post!

Also visit my other post about how I first fell in love with aprons: http://www.ooglebloops.wordpress.com/2008/04/28/apron-love

I want to thank all the new friends for entering – and I am working on next month’s giveaway right now!!!!

The crickets and frogs are singing their night time song, the birds are saying their goodnights, and so am I…………all is well at Mountain Meadows tonite!

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