Our first real frost

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Yesterday I had a good morning/early afternoon. I felt pretty good.

We had our first real frost the night before last, and in places the sun didn't hit, some frost remained all day. Usually this happens earlier in October... it's pretty amazing we made it until the end of October before getting our first real frost.

After coffee I knew I wanted to get out for a walk with the dogs because it was cold out but crisp and sunny, the perfect fall day.

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Rollie has to get used to wearing sweaters because he has really short hair. He's not totally against it, but he's still getting used to it. He has not learned to wear a harness yet either, which he will have to for when we go traveling again, so we are working our way up to it slowly...

At the beginning of our walk he went crazy trying to get his sweater off again, and it was rather hysterical. He's a real character.

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Finally he gave in. This is his "fine, you win mom" look.

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and off we went, all bundled up...

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Just a little frost left at noon when we went out, but it stayed all day. It is pretty...

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I had tucked Rollie's hood in but it came free and for a while he was running around with it on, which was rather funny cause he couldn't see where he was going...

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But like a good mom, I fixed it for him...

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Norman really enjoyed his walk, both him and Douglas love getting their coats on because they know it means a walk, and Rollie is figuring that out fast too...

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We spotted these two in one of our fields...

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After my little walk with the dogs I decided to go out with Kevin for a little bit while he collected some logs.

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I wish I could help him, I love gathering wood, hauling rounds, and splitting them. It's something we enjoy doing together. But since I cannot help him this year, I just enjoyed being in the forest and watching him. Being in the forest reminds me, I'm still alive, and still connected to this magical place.

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It was so beautiful out... I tried to picture this landscape covered with snow, which it will be soon enough...

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The marsh is in between it's fall red and winter brown...

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It's been ages since we had been to this particular spot, I couldn't make it all the way out to see it, but Kevin took some pictures for me.

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Back at home the goaties were happy to eat up some leftover pumpkin...

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It was a real feeding frenzy and I was lucky to get any pictures that were not blurry...

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This one cracked me up when I saw it on the camera when I was done taking pictures. Pumpkin mouth and his stinky friend in the background.

Last night was horrible. I was in a tremendous amount of pain. It seems likely I had an ovarian cyst pop. I've had that happen before so know the pain well, but the ovary that was giving me trouble met it's end in Georgia in July. My remaining ovary never caused me trouble before my surgery but it has ever since, although it's not caused me even remotely this much pain. Thankfully I finally fell asleep. Today I spent the day in bed with my heating pad and my dogs resting.

It was a hard night and day, physically but also emotionally.

And then the most magical thing happened.

Our old friend showed up to say hello. We were sure he was gone. We are sure of it year after year, but this year we were really sure. He's at least 11 years old. I've known him for 9 years this year, and Kevin, 10. He's a part of this place and a part of us. He showed up one year with his antler busted and his eye gouged out, and yet he survived. He showed up last year with his Achilles tendon sliced. But he survived.

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His antlers are busted up, he's been in a bad fight recently, but he's still got fight left in him. His skin is sagging and he's showing his age. He is no longer a trophy or good for meat at his age, but he'll still have to try and survive the upcoming hunting season. It's hard to say if he can manage making it through the winter, but he's surprised us every single year. Sometimes I think he's not real at all and he's just a ghost, that's why every time I think I'll never see him again, he shows himself to us. If it were not for the fact that we all see him, I'd think I was hallucinating.

I like to think I'll be able to see him forever, every time I look for him. Every single year he comes, and I cry a million tears at the sight of that face. It's like being able to see someone you've lost one more time. Like when you find yourself looking for the face of someone you've loved and lost in a crowd. You know you'll never find it, but you look anyway. That's how it feels with Torn Ear. But somehow, like magic, if we wish hard enough, he actually appears.


Primitive Stars said…
Evening, I so enjoy your posts so much and love all the pictures of the animals. So sorry to hear about your pain last night, how terrible, glad you rested today. Oh my, I cannot believe that beautiful boy came to visit you again, he is still so regal to me, I love Deer, hope he stays safe at your Haven, Blessings Francine.
forest said…
Torn Ear knew you needed to see him...
I'm so pleased for your good days and sad for your bad ones!! I believe we had frost down here in Atlanta before you guys up there!! Hard to believe!! It's too bad you can lure your deer friend into your fenced in area so he could live his life in a retirement home where he would be loved and cared for. But know he wouldn't see it that way. And I guess you can throw him pumkin and such - but you don't want him to feel friendly towards you so he can survive the hunters. It's such a cruel world for the wild animals. Continue to improve!!
jaz@octoberfarm said…
wow...torn ear is back. it is so nice he knows to come back to a place that is safe. glad you felt well enough to go out for a while. sorry you had such a bad night though. happy halloween! we are about to get lots of rain!
Lana said…
Love those woods. So magical, indeed. And how neat about Torn Ear... what a legend of the woods he is! A real king of the forest.
I'm glad to see torn ear. What a magnificent fellow.

Nice that you had a good day anyway. Sorry your evening was a bummer.

Don't over do it!
12Paws said…
Dear Donna, Your heartfelt thoughts about Torn Ear blessed the socks right off my feet! So happy you shared them as well as, once again, your lovely forest photos. Sorry for your painful episodes, but you've come a long these last few weeks. No trick or treating tonight!
It was meant to happen, the Visit. Animals are innate at sensing what we need. May you feel better each and every day.
That is so sweet that your friend came back! I bet it was so nice to see him. I love animals in sweaters, so naturally I really enjoyed this post :)
Nana-Bob said…
Aww, Tom Ear. Yes, he was meant to come there to see you. I bet he actually stays near by all the time, but you never know. Do you leave out scraps for him or is that just inviting other animals not so much wanted? HE is looking a little rough, but at least he's there. :)
That little Rollie, so much fun!
It's amazing that he has survived this long, coming back to see you each year.

Wishing more good days ahead.
Mary Ann said…
Oh, Donna. Torn Ear was what drew me to your blog in the first place... gosh, how magical for you!
Dewena Callis said…
There are so many wonderful stories in your blog about all your animals but this one of Torn Ear is like a classic children's book. The stories he could tell! But it would be a heartbreaker, I'm sure. I hope he survives again and someday when he does not I hope the end is easy.

I'm so sorry you're having to go through more pain. I wish so much that it would just stop!

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