newly scheduled regular programming

There have been some recent changes in our household concerning our animal friends.  Wolfie, primarily.  He is now living at my dad's house, about 20 minutes away, enjoying 2.5 acres of fenced and shaded land to roam, a dog buddy to play with, and no toddlers and chickens and cats (and two dozen neighborhood dogs) around to make him feel unsettled.

It was, in many ways, both a difficult choice to make and long in coming.

Wolfie is almost 12.  He is a shepherd-husky mix with poor vision in one eye.  He is scared of many things.  Thunder, wind, fireworks, children, loud noises, sticks, slick floors, sudden movements.  The list goes on (and on).  We adopted him as our own 10 years ago, about 6 months into renting our old house in Fairview.  He kind of came with the house, and was living in the fenced-in front yard when we moved in.  Our landlords lived across the driveway from us and they were taking care of him.  He has come a long way, but because of what was I'm sure a less than ideal past, he remains a dog with many "issues".  We've had a few incidents that have made it clear that he is generally not a safe dog to have around a toddler.  He is not an aggressive dog, but unsettled and anxious and fairly unpredictable.  He loves Claire and Claire loves him, but the level of vigilance that we felt we needed to maintain in order to keep her from bothering him and him from possibly (and certainly unintentionally) hurting her as a result was kind of wearing us out.  Plus, as he has always insisted on remaining a predominantly outside dog, we felt the space we had to offer (which is constantly being reduced through the addition of chickens, bees, more raised beds and fruit trees) was less than ideal.  We are extremely grateful and lucky to have my dad so close, with the ideal situation awaiting.  He also happens to be Wolfie's favorite person ever.  He knew my dad before he knew us, actually, seeing as how it was my dad who inquired about the rental house for us and developed a relationship with our previous landlords while we were still up north and thinking of coming down.

So here we are.

I miss him.

I decided as part of this change that I needed to make a serious effort to go out to visit him often, and to take him for a walk around the dairy farm that we used to walk by when we lived out there.  So Claire and I have been picking him up and bringing him out to walk by the farm for about an hour, then stopping by a favorite self-serve farm stand before dropping him back off at my dad's.  It is a nice new ritual.  One that I already find myself looking forward to again and again.  Walking by that farm and going to the stand are two of the things I miss most about our old place.  Claire loves seeing the cows and playing 'I spy' as we walk.  We watch the barn swallows and martens and look for herons in the farm pond.  It's great for me to have that time to connect with my pup.  And it's even better for me to see how he jumps out of the car and happily goes back to my dad's afterwards.  No guilt, no sadness.  Just a happy dog and a mama at ease.

thistle~ a spiky yet lovely little plant, and a very pleasing word to say, I believe.

We came home with a bag full of sweet red peppers and a couple stems of tube roses (or is it tuberoses?), along with a couple handfuls of red clover blossoms to dry.

There is a lot across from one of the farm pastures that I've always gazed at a bit longingly on our walks.  A stream runs along one side of it and it is surrounded by farmland with views of hickory nut gap.  There is an old dilapidated barn and a small stagnant-ish pond.  Couldn't help but notice it's for sale.  Not that we are looking.  We are not.  And not that we are in a position to purchase land and build a new home.  And not that we even have a desire to leave our little town that we've called home for a mere 2 1/2 years.  But because there was this for sale sign staring me in the face.  That land, you see, was supposed to sit there unnoticed for another decade or so.  Just in case we decided we wanted to move back out there and really do this little mini-farm-esque thing.  But no.  It's for sale.

creek to the right, 18 acres of mixed meadow and woods on the left:

and here's the view across the street:

So I called.  Because that's what you do, right?  Like when I called about the awesome two-story brick building for sale here in town that I thought (and still think) would make the perfect place for a small movie theater.  Yeah, that didn't work out either.  Turns out the land kind of costs a lot of money.  Well hmmm.

I just hope it isn't turned into a couple dozen somewhat matching craftsman-esque 'cottages'.  Not that I have a problem with them.  On the contrary, they are rather up my alley.  I just don't want them there, on 'my' land.  That's all.

Is that so much to ask?


  1. Such a great post, sweet lady. I'm sorry to hear about Wolfie, but it sounds like he's loving his new 'digs. God love him. We have a cantankerous dog, too, but he's never done anything to make us find another home for him. I totally understand your pain, though.

    I love the pictures, as usual! You should totally think about writing a book and combining your photography skills. You're amazing at it.

    I love you and hope all is well with you guys! Give the babe our love and tell Mike hi!

    1. thanks, Jen~ I really think he is. And thanks for your encouraging words!
      xoxo from NC

  2. Sounds like Wolfie will have a chance to thrive in his new home. It's a win win situation. He gets to stay in your life but in a place that is really suitable for him.

    There's 100+ year old farmhouse for sale two blocks from us. It's on 1.5 acres (not a ton) but right in town and takes up a whole block. It's a dreamy space. When it went on the market, I did like you, and called. Just because, I had to know -- just in case.

    1. exactly.

      oh I'd have called, too! did you post about it once... a yard sale there perhaps? it rings a bell.....



thanks for taking the time to read and comment~