Happy 2017!!

I’m sick! I brought in the new year with a shot of Nyquil.

I have a “heavy cold”… hey, whatta ya know, I’m just like the Queen!

BUT… I’m gonna keep on keepin on, that’s my motto for the year.

‘They’ say that whatever you do on the first day of the new year is how the rest of the year will go.

That certainly was true of 2016 since Capri D and I started the year with a nice brisk hike. I kept my resolution to keep up with walking for the year.

I started out walking about 2 miles or so, 3-4 days a week all through January until June. About mid June I decided to challenge myself and see how many days I could walk consecutively and I’m proud to say that I walked EVERY SINGLE DAY for the rest of the year! Most of those days I walked between 3-4 miles, sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less.

My reward has been about a 20 pound weight loss although when I look in the mirror I just don’t see it. I am wearing a few sizes smaller though.   

SO, I’m gonna keep on keepin on with last years plan and stick with the walking.  Even though I’m sick today I went out and did three and a half miles. MaMa always said if you felt sick you should just get up and MOVE and you would feel better… I have to say, it didn’t work but I am glad I got 2017 off to a good start.

Happy New Year everyone!

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The Georgia Aquarium

We’ve been wanting to visit the Georgia Aquarium since it opened so we decided to stop by there before we went way down yonder to visit the beavers.

Despite the EXTREMELY high cost to get a very poor lunch and the fact that just about every single child in Georgia was also visiting that day we had a good time.

Look at those cute Beluga belly buttons!

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Adorable sea otter snoozing

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King Crab

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Beautiful albino alligators

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Stunning jellyfish

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These were one of my favorites, grassy sea dragons

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By far the most impressive was the biggest ‘tank’ where there was every type of fish imaginable. 

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Whale sharks, all different types of rays, giant grouper, and many different sharks.

There is even a glass tunnel you can walk through and see them swimming above you.

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It’s like you’re right in the water with them

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Mr. C took this picture of me standing in wonder

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Surely it WAS wondrous to see these beautiful creatures that I’m sure I would never get to do otherwise, so close up and personal.

At the same time it is a bit sad that they aren’t swimming freely in a vast ocean.

That is the conundrum of animals kept in captivity, be it fish or beavers or any other animal. They serve a very important purpose of educating people, hopefully making them see the beauty and importance of the fellow inhabitants of our world and in turn, be more informed and compassionate.

As long as the animals are well cared for and provided clean, healthy environments with daily enrichment, I think we should all take advantage of the opportunities we are afforded to see and learn about all of God’s beautiful creations.

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Posted in Trips and adventures, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Way Down Yonder

On the Chattahoochee!

That’s where Mr.C and I spent the past weekend.

Most of you probably know that a couple of months ago Michi and Pita moved off of The Hill and headed down to live in Georgia. 

They will live out their lives safely at a wonderful facility, The Chattahoochee Nature Center, where they will educate the public and be wildlife ambassadors.

The decision to send them, and all that was involved to make it happen was difficult. But our hearts are happy knowing that they will never be trapped or shot.  In fact, they will live a life of spoiled luxury with a beautifully designed pond and a climate controlled ‘lodge’.

We flew down to check out their new digs and got to spend some time with them.

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Michi seemed to remember us but Pita didn’t seem too interested in becoming reacquainted. She always was a bit more stand-offish and independent, the little brat.

Here is Michi with his best buddy

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Their new pond is wonderful with lots of room to swim and dive. It is 6 feet deep in most areas with over 19,000 gallons of water that is pumped in from a large natural pond and is constantly recirculating with fresh water.

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On Sunday we spent a number of hours just sitting and watching them in their new habitat.

Pita is much the same as she was here, very busy moving sticks around and upgrading her living arrangements.

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Michi… also the same, swimming around and eating the entire time.

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What astonished us both was the fact that as different groups of people and lots of children (LOUD children) came to see them they remained completely unphased and never acted the least bit stressed or frightened.

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It did my heart good to listen to the comments of the various people. Exclamations of how cute they were, how amazing their tails and feet were. One young girl was excitedly telling her parents about how smart Pita was because she had watched Pita moving sticks and pushing dirt as she was working on her private outdoor lodge.

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I do believe that they are doing their ambassador work quite well!

 

Posted in Baby beaver saga 2015 - Michi, Trips and adventures, Wildlife Rehab | 2 Comments

A Somber Return to the Blob

Welcome to the quarterly installment of Life On Sassy Cat Hill. Hopefully that is just a little joke and I’ll get back to blobbing a bit more regularly… but I won’t make any promises.

I’ve had a few posts sloshing around in my head waiting to be written down but they just never materialized. I have always wanted my blog (aka blob) to be a positive happy read for whomever may stumble upon it out there in cyber-land; but frankly, there have been happenings around here on The Hill that have made me quite grumpy and not exactly able to write with a positive and happy feeling. So, I just didn’t write.

Todays post however, will not be a happy one but I felt the need to write about it.

For months now I have been walking every single day, usually at a local park with a walking trail that runs along the beautiful Shenandoah River. My routine is to walk down first to the river’s edge and take in the beauty of our area. I’ve posted many pictures from the same spot on facebook and instagram. Standing in that spot for just a few minutes would give me energy to walk the 3-4 miles ahead. Many times at the end of my walk I’ll go back down to that same spot for some more energy to get me through the rest of the day.

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Yesterday, Sunday, September 18, 2016 Mr. C joined me as he often does on the weekends. As we walked down the hill to that very spot we observed two individuals a male and a female in the water throwing rocks forcefully into the water as their friend; another male, watched from the bank.

As we got closer I realized that they were forcefully throwing those rocks at an animal struggling in the water. I could not tell what it was but I was horrified as these two monsters laughed gleefully as they bludgeoned this defenseless creature. I heard the female ask several times as she laughed… “Is it dead yet?”

I screamed “What the F#@k are you doing?!” At which point they stopped the torture and tried to pretend that they hadn’t been doing anything wrong. They even started hugging each other and laughing and kissing. I began to call the sheriff’s office at which point the guy on the bank yelled something as a warning. I was so angry I don’t even know what he said. Then I realized I needed to take pictures of the cars license plates as they were clearly planning to make their escape before the sheriff arrived.

As they came out of the river the girl kept repeating “I’m sorry, I’m sorry” They all made a beeline for his truck as I unleashed a string of profanities on them and told them that they were despicable human beings. Unfortunately I only got a picture of the guy on the riverbanks face as the other two ran by too fast for me to get good shots of them. I had gotten a clear shot of the truck and plates though. As expected, they piled into the truck and peeled out of there as fast as they could.

I had never completed the call to the sheriff’s office as I knew I needed to use my phone to get those pictures. So after they left I made the call as my HERO, Mr. C. waded into the river in his best walking shoes to try to rescue the animal. He was able to reach it and bring it to shore limp and barely breathing. I did my best to revive it but it was already too late. The poor little groundhog’s lungs were full of water. I worked on it for awhile and for a few minutes we thought it might be breathing again but that wasn’t the case.

We gave our statements to the sheriff and then again to the Game warden. They told me that there is a “possibility” that there will be charges against them, but I really don’t believe that they will get any type of punishment at all.

Yesterday I was furious.

Today is a gloomy, rainy day. I still went down for my walk, I still went down to that spot and stood there looking out onto the river but instead of seeing beauty and being filled with energy all I could see were those monsters torturing and killing this poor, sweet little being…. and laughing.

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It seems to me that I should be able to file charges against each of them personally because they robbed me, and what they have robbed me of was far more precious than money or jewelry. They have robbed me of all of the joy and peace and energy I got each morning as I gazed upon that spot on the river and I will never be the same for witnessing such evil.

Today I only walked 2.5 miles in the pouring rain. I cried for almost the entire walk.

Today I feel defeated, today I am sad.

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Now I’m a Yakker

Mr C got a bonus and he bought me a present!

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Yep, that’s how he rolls… am I a lucky gal or what?!?!!

On the last day of his staycation we headed out to a local lake so I could take it out for the first time.

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Mr C was in his boat and I was in mine. We had walkie-talkies so we could communicate easily.

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I was astounded by how close I could get to the different wildlife while in the kayak as apposed to being in a boat or even a canoe.

The normally skittish turtles stayed basking on their logs

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This little dude even swam right up to me.

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I was able to float right directly above this big guy

Can you see him?

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The waterfowl seemed to not even notice me until I was right up next to them.

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The best thing was seeing the signs of another active beaver colony… lots of chewed sticks and stumps

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Stubs of scrub trees and pathways also called ‘beaver slides’

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And even more exciting was being able to paddle right up to the lodge and see the underwater workings of this amazing animal

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Hummm… apparently I didn’t take pics of the underwater structure, guess that means I’ll have to go back… darn!

I’d love to go back in the evening sometime and perhaps see the beavers themselves.

I’ve declared that the kayak is the best present EVER!

Thanks Mr C… you’re the best!

 

Posted in Trips and adventures, Uncategorized, wildlife sightings | 2 Comments

Enjoying the Water

We took the boat out a few times last week.

We went to Lake Anna where Mr C would like to retire some day.

There were a few places for sale but probably a bit out of our price point.

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Mr. C fished without much success while I was feeling lazy and mostly just enjoyed the views.

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We found a very active beaver lodge!

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These were some ambitious workers!

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An easy way to save your trees from beavers should you ever need to know.

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When we got home that evening I got a call from the local sheriff’s office asking me to get in touch with a person who was claiming to have from some abandoned otter babies!

I had the guy bring them to me and was quite sure they were NOT otters but I wasn’t exactly sure what they really were! 

I could tell they were in the mustelid family mainly because they stunk to high heaven! I suspected they were weasels.  After what happened in the chicken coop a few years ago I knew that I didn’t really want to raise these two. So the next day I delivered them to the local wildlife center. They were thrilled to be able to raise these two MINK babies!

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They are super cute! I’m glad someone was happy to have them and I’ve read that they are fun to rehab but I don’t really want them here on The Hill. I wish them nothing but the best…

                                   …somewhere else! 

 

Still more from the week to show you later Smile

Posted in Odds and Ends, Trips and adventures, Uncategorized, Wildlife Rehab, wildlife sightings | Leave a comment

A Busy Week and Saying Farewell to BB

Mr C took last week off for a staycation. Usually when he does that we end up doing a bunch of projects around the house, however this time he truly took the time to enjoy some of his favorite things.

He spent some time in the woods and lots of time on the water.

We did start the week doing one project and that was replenishing our woodpile for next winter. While doing that we discovered a great place in which to release BB. So after a couple of days preparing for my heart to be broken, we took him out to begin the rest of his life.

I opened the crate and he stepped out into a whole new world.

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Tentative at first

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Then getting braver

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and braver

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and BRAVER

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He looked before him and saw a new beginning filled with possibilities

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He turned around as if to say thank you

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Then set off to explore. I followed him for a bit and watched as he checked out the area

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and did a little rub-a-dubbing

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Then he got back into the water and disappeared around a bend

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That’s when I did the hardest thing ever… I walked back to the truck and fell sobbing into Mr. C’s arms and we left.

I sobbed all the way home.

I found this rock while we were there which kind of depicts our journey. Two lives coming together for awhile before each going their own way.

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Mr C said “I hope this gets easier.”

Somehow I don’t think it ever will.

I’ll be back with more from our week.

 

 

Posted in Baby Beaver Saga 2014, Odds and Ends, Trips and adventures, Uncategorized, Wildlife Rehab | 7 Comments