Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Here, kitty kitty kitty

Spaying and neutering is something I have firmly believed in since the first time I heard Bob Barker remind his viewers on the Price is Right how important it was.  And believe me, that has been a long time!!!  I recently have had many examples of why I so firmly believe in this literally dropped on my doorstep, okay maybe not dropped on my doorstep, but living and breathing and affecting the health (and food bill) of my ranch, so that counts too.

Meet Pimienta and Nocola, Royal Ranch's newest addition's.  Pimienta means pepper in Spanish and Nocola means no tail, I guess you'll be able to figure out who is who.  Not quite a year ago our renters got two cats, brother and sister from a breeder of Bengal Bobcats.  They got them for free because they are solid black instead of the typical Bengal markings.  Now, as a Landlord, I really try to mind my own business, but when I saw that the cats had had kittens I got a little concerned, let alone that the kittens were outdoors.

During this time, some changes in that very same rental happened and we took back over half of the duplex that the cats use, so Isabella and I became very familiar with the cats and what was going on with them.  That was when I realized that the Mama kitty was pregnant again!  As a matter of fact, Daddy kitty was trying to breed Pimi as well, which is what finally got me to leave a (not so friendly) letter on the door of the renter.  Well, one thing led to another, and thank goodness I have friends in the rescue business,  and now fast forward a couple months and here we are...
So, it has taken me multiple trips down the mountain to Spay Today to get all of the adult cats spayed and neutered.  I took Daddy, Pimienta and Nocola, who at the time all still belonged to the renter down right away.  Mama was busy having just had these cute little things.  I then waited until two weeks ago and got Mama spayed, another trip down the hill we go.  Last weekend we got to take her to a vet up here to get her tested for Feline Leukemia so that my friends over at Evergreen Animal Protective League can have these adorable babies without spreading that horrific disease.  Today we will deliver the babies, yup, all three of those precious babies are going to new homes through EAPL over in Evergreen.
Now, I mentioned that none of these cats were to be ours, and that was the original plan; until the renter mentioned that he might sell the middle generation at a pet store.  Since they are Bobcat Bengals, and since he is having a hard time financially and since they are always looking for kittens, etc.  Well, I'm probably going to offend someone here, but over my dead body!  I have heard waaay to many horror stories for these cats that Isabella and I have been working very hard to tame and take care of to end up in some filthy pet store!  So, that is how Pimi and Nocola became Royal Ranch cats, and you know the funny thing was that the very same day that we "claimed" Nocola, she started calming down.  It was just as if she needed to know she had a place to stay forever.
Okay, so I have bragged about my friends in high places, but you do not need friends in high places if you don't get yourself in this pickle of needing multiple surgeries done at once.  There are lots and lots of resources out there people.  If you can't afford to spay or neuter your pet, call your local shelter and they will help you get it done, I guarantee it.  Also, help your neighbor, they may be too embarrassed to admit that they have a problem.  We have a sad story going on right now here in Colorado, an 80something woman got kicked out of her house due to it being overrun with cats.  I know how it happened, I have seen it.
As a matter of fact, last summer, the very same thing happened to us.  A gal had been coming to us to buy her hay, and when she broke her leg, we offered to help take care of her horse.  Well, it led to much more than that, her place was taken over by cats and could have been condemned at any moment.  So we cleaned it up and got the animals fixed.  It was amazing, I found a group that brought a motorhome to her place, and in one day we trapped, spayed, and neutered 22 cats!  If we had not done that, the cats would be doubled by this year, think of that!  People just don't realize how quickly it gets out of hand.
Now, off of the "soap box" as my Dad would say, but I do have some interesting points about these Bobcat Bengals.  They really are some amazing cats.  Boy, can they climb!  The ones with no tails have extra toes to help them with their balance, which kind of looks weird, but again, makes for some amazingly agile cats.  Genetically, this has been an odd bunch.  Mom and Dad are both solid black as are Pimi and Nocola, and then here comes the third generation that has all of the Bobcat Bengal traits, like the toes and tails, but are Siamese in color, very odd.
I'm not sure where I stand on the breeding down the Bobcats and Bengal tigers thing.  Before I met these cats I would have said I was against it, for sure.  And I'm not too impressed that the breeder did not make sure that my renter get the cats fixed if she removed them from the breeding program.  But some of the websites I have visited are pretty cool, and talk about saving a piece of wildlife and endangered species, and the "good examples" of the breed are amazingly "tiger" like.  What do you think?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Metaphysical Monday

Happy Monday to all of you, and I apologize for letting the weekend go by without dropping in to say hello.  We had my wonderful brother-in-law and one of his great biker buddies for the weekend which is always quite an adventure.  Although Scott comes to see us as often as he can, he was out of the cream for his lip, and Tom had forgotten to take him some last week when they met for lunch, so I am not all that positive he didn't come just to pick up the cream (BTW he will drive 2.5 hours for this stuff!!!), but we got to see him either way, so his reasons for coming don't matter-ha!
I also know that many of you miss Royal Ranch Royalty, and I do have some new four legged Royalty that I am anxious to share with you all, but of course, here at The Royal Ranch, there is quite a story behind it, and it is a good one, so I want to wait and share it on Tuesday when I write for Green Spot-On so that my message is heard by many.  Now, that sounds like I'm going to hop on my "soap box", as my Dad would say, and maybe I am, but you'll have to stop back by tomorrow to meet two, yup, two of my newest family members!  And, to make it even more mysterious, we will be saying goodbye to three more...Now I've got you!!!
So, today is Metaphysical Monday and I saw a video earlier last week that has been on my mind since I saw it.  It is worth sharing and what better place to share it than on a metaphysical blog?  Listen to the whole thing, it is truly amazing!  They had already shut this young lady's life support off, and she fought her way back.  Now this is why I believe in angels, not because we can always see them, but because of things like this, remember this happens every single day, this one just happened to get caught on video to remind us that they are here.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The funny things that make me tick...

The view at The Royal Roost

I say it time and again, guilt is a useless emotion.  When I am going to start listening to myself, well, that is a different story all together.  I had spent weeks beating myself up that I hadn't set aside my meager marketing budget for our bed and breakfast The Royal Roost.  Set aside my foot, we have no budget!
See, we normally advertise on VRBO, which is a great site, but the price to advertise almost doubled this year and I had not expected that in this economy.  Of course summer is our busiest season and I just felt like I was some kind of schmuck business owner for not doing the status quo of the previous years and couldn't get my poop in a group to get my advertising bill paid.  What a piece of work (well that's a nice word), I had been telling myself.
That was when I realized that I was getting my weekends booked, and even a few week days as well.  Mostly with repeat customers and some new, but all of them had been referrals of some kind.  On one of the days I had gone up to the cabin to clean it for the weekend, I found that our bird had rebuilt her nest; now, what does this have to do with advertising?  Everything, in my book.
Mama bird
(this shelf is structural or we'd remove it)

I had been watching for signs of her, and we had done a few things to try and get her to not build her nest there, because last year some of our guests made her so nervous we lost three baby birds before I knew it.  Besides my family, I have not told anyone until now, that is how upset I have been over the loss of those baby birds!!!
So, mama bird can finish out her time at the B&B, and we can be a little more choosy with who are guests at The Royal Roost right now while she is laying and hatching and raising her young.  My motto has always been to listen to your heart and to always do what you believe is the best thing for yourself, but sometimes in business you forget that.  But, even as a business owner I need to stay true to my goal, and that is to be environmentally friendly, I started that way over a decade ago, and I will surely not change course now.  In these times of trouble and upheaval I think it is of utmost importance whether it is in business or personal situations to really reexamine what makes us each tick, and really passionate about the world to remind us where we stand and hopefully it will leave us on nice solid ground.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Metaphysical Monday

Wow!  I couldn't believe it when I got on my blog and it said I hadn't been on here since last Wednesday, shame on me!  Things have been very busy around here, blessedly my son is back from Seacamp safely and had a wonderful time, we have been busy at the B&B (again blessedly), and we have switched the llamas over to pasture; more on that on another post.  Today is Monday and I have not done a metaphysical post in quite some time, I have had some folks say that they miss them and I have had this one on my mind for a long time.  So, let's get right down to business.
I have a Metaphysical Monday post in my drafts folder that I have had in there for weeks.  I couldn't quite decide why I never finished it, or didn't like it, or whatever, and this morning as I was rereading it I realized it was because I still sound apologetic or something.  Like I am trying too hard not to offend somebody.  Probably in my trying not to offend someone, I will offend someone else, and I have chosen to share these things in the hopes of helping people, so who could that offend?  Ideally, anyway.  Now, it has been so long the post has changed dramatically it seems.
As many of my regular readers know, our family recently unexpectedly lost a beloved cousin.  For a few weeks before he passed I was very ill with a flu that I then passed to my husband.  That all sounds innocent enough right?  Well, it's not quite that straightforward in my case.  See, my rabbit Lucy was dying at the same time, so I was thinking maybe that's what the feeling of death was that was hanging over me.  Yup, there is no other way to describe it.  That's what made my immune system get that low, I haven't been sick in years.  Really, I do know how crazy it sounds, but I also know how real it is to live it, I was even talking about death in my sleep.  
Lucy had already passed, we had had a few weird things happen here at the ranch (like a squirrel drown in the water trough and the loss of some hens due to a citrus accident), but my dark cloud would not dissipate.  As silly as it sounds, as sick as I was, I started to worry that I was dying.  Then I got the call from Dad, and rudely enough the first words out of my mouth were "what the Fu@%?"  I couldn't believe it was Joe who had died.
Before I even hung up the phone, my cloud was gone.  No kidding.  That night while I slept my fever broke and the next morning I woke up and was no longer sick with the flu.  We were still unable to travel to Iowa due to Tom getting it, but it was crazy.  Okay, so where does that leave me.  Should I have explored the cloud more so as not to make myself sick?  I'll take the flu over knowing a loved one is going to pass anyday, thank you.
But, isn't that where I am supposed to be going with all of this?  Isn't that why it is getting stronger and more irritating?  I'm thinking so, it's time for this butterfly to spread her wings.  Lately I have been given the opportunity to see where maybe this could be of help and not such a hindrance (no I can't guess the Lotto numbers!) to people.  You know, I don't mean to toot my own horn, but as far as sixth senses go, mine is pretty good.  I joined a group of mediums that do a conference call once a week when I decided to start working with my skills and thought I would be just an observer, but have always had something to add (correctly I might add), even as a beginner.
I guess it is the same with any part of your life, when it gets to the point where it is affecting your health, it is time to wake up and smell the coffee.  Learn what you need to learn, live as much as you possibly can and make as many miracles as one person is capable of making...and then some.
Just so you all know how much a part of me this is, the symbol for the Metaphysical posts is one of my tattoos.  Notice how not much else is visible, that should give you an idea of locale on my body-ha!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Career Day Follow Up

One of my favorite views on my job.
I have been wanting to tell you all about my time at Fitzsimmons Middle School Career Day for weeks now and just have not taken the time to do so.  I did mention it very quickly, but it deserves much more than that because I got an envelope recently that made me really think about what I had done.  It was an envelope fat with letters on lined paper, each of them dated and nicely addressed in practiced sixth grade cursive.  I'll share a few with you here:
Dear Mrs. Jeute,
I really enjoyed the visit to FMS.  I thought your job is amazing, you get to hang out with all the animals.  Mrs Jeute, you inspired me to want to work with animals.  Who could know llamas could be so fantastic.  Once again I really appreciate you taking the time to come to FMS,

Dear Mrs. Jeute,
I appreciate the time you spent to talk to us about your job.  I personally think that being an author is really cool.  I also like the idea of having a bed and breakfast.  I really enjoyed looking at the book you wrote.

Dear Mrs. Jeute,
I want to express my gratitude for your visit at our school.  It was stellar to actually get to meet a real author.  Some of my classmates are calling you "Lama Lady" but I don't think your a lama lady.  I hope you get to make some more books.

Dear Mrs. Jeute,
I truly appreciate the you gave to tell us about your job.  But you could have stayed home and worked but you came and we are all very grateful of it.  The book that you showed us was very nice and colorful.  Your inspiration to write your book was very nice it shows what you like to do.  We are grateful that you came.  Thank you.

I must admit that when I got that wonderful envelope, I shed a few tears with a smile a mile wide.  Little 'ol me had an impact on those kids.  And the funny thing was that day had been very crazy, there were three presenters in a short time frame, and I kept getting short changed on time.  Which was fine with me, because I am not the best public speaker, but since the group was mostly kids, I was pretty comfortable.  Another thing I thought kind of ironic is that not one of the letters mentioned my name, which all of them thought was quite funny the day of the presentation.  I was glad to know that it was not all they remembered.
This isn't a post about patting myself on the back, it is to remind you, my dedicated readers to get out there and share your hidden, or not so hidden, talents.  From middle schools to adult education classes around the country educators are anxious to share their classrooms with real life workers to bring that experience to their students.  What better way to share the love of your work than with future glorious minds?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Working with Nature

I must admit, I'm a tad bit jealous of our neighbors and their gorgeous ponds.  We sit up on the hill overlooking the valley and the neighbors with the gorgeous ponds, so don't get me wrong, I don't have too much to complain about, I just don't have waterfront property.
One of our neighbor's, we'll call them the J's, have spectacular fly fishing ponds that they have built up over the years.  They stock them every few years with prize winning trout and even make a little money through a local fly fishing association.  The P's on the other hand, have a smaller pond just to watch wildlife and such.  It is so cute, they are a retired couple and have a bench sitting over the dam, and all kinds of rocks and wildflowers, they really enjoy their yard.
So recently, I have been hearing about troubles with the ponds.  Actually, I caught Mr. P going after the geese, yelling and chasing them out of his pond (he doesn't want them taking over because then they will contaminate it).  Funny as could be!  Then, come to find out, the J's are having a problem with the Blue Heron damaging some of their beloved fish.  And I do mean beloved.  We have seen Mr. J (one of Tom's best friends) jump in the freezing cold winter water to revive a fish that has been caught and released, the rules of the pond, of course.

The main problem is that the fish are too big for the Heron in the first place!  So the fish is getting injured for nothing, and the Heron still gets no dinner, bummer.  The J's can't use a lot of regular detractants for the Heron because that would interfere with the fly fishermen.  They did buy a fake Blue Heron, but that mostly just scared the dog.
Well, I got to thinking (could be dangerous).  And watching that Heron's pattern, he seemed to like the P's pond just as much as the J's pond except he wasn't getting anything to eat there.  But when the Blue Heron was at the P's pond, the Geese were nowhere to be found.  They seemed to hang out in the beaver ponds up the valley just a bit where they belong.  Hmmm..., how about we stock the P's ponds with inexpensive (native, of course) brookies for the Heron to hunt so that he leaves the J's nice big fish alone?  This could solve everyone's problem.
I talked with Mr. J and he thinks the plan is brilliant (with just a tiny bit of prodding from me-ha!), and I will talk with the P's today.  I'll let you know how the plan works out, but it is always best to try and work with Mother Nature than against her!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Thank God I didn't have a spare $50...

You know, it's a darn good thing I didn't have a spare $50 this week or I would have messed up a really cool thing.  Last weekend Tom noticed a bubble in the back tire of my son Thomas' car.  Now, this is very scary for us because just a few months ago Thomas had a blowout of his front tire in Turkey Creek Canyon on Highway 285.  If you are not familiar with Colorado roads, this is probably one of the worst places for a front tire blowout due to the curves in the road, no room to pull over, and the fact that it is a commuter highway.
This event in itself turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because a Spanish speaking man pulled over to help Thomas which was a great lesson in Karma for the whole family.  Tom is always stopping to help people at 4:30 in the morning on his way to work and it really scares me because I worry about his safety.  Although Papa and Tom were both on their way to help Thomas that day in the canyon, it was the unknown Spanish speaking man that helped him through the roughest part of the tire changing.  Thomas said it was also good practice for his Spanish class, just like his Mama to make the best of a bad situation!
Anyway, back to this week, Tom told the boys (Thomas and Austin) that they had to change the tires themselves.  What?  That's right, the car had come with a spare set of perfectly good tires and Tom told the boys that they had to use the old fashioned tire changing machine at Austin's dad's house and change the tires on the rims.  I thought it sounded a little hard for them, but I'm just a candy ass Mom, so I kept my mouth shut.  Then the boys started in on me.
They didn't want to ask Austin's Dad for help, and that was an awful lot of work, and didn't I have the fifty bucks?  I did what I thought I should, and explained to them how long it would take them to earn the $50, versus how long Tom told me it would take them to do the tires.  I also explained that Austins dad would not want them driving around in an unsafe vehicle either and had offered that tire machine to us multiple times.  The only offer I made was to smooth all of the men over (which I never had to do).  To talk with Dad and to give them more time, and to make sure that Austin's dad didn't give them a hard time about the tires.
They did the damaged tire first, and I was afraid that would be it.  Tom set the blown out tire directly behind Thomas' car the next day so that he could not go anywhere without seeing it, just a little reminder that he still had four to go (remember he still had the spare).  The timing couldn't have been any better because that night when the boys got home, tired, proud smiles on their faces both Tom and Uncle Scott were in the driveway having a beer.
Luckily I was there too.  Those seventeen year old men, yes men, had changed five tires and rims on an old fashioned tire machine.  And there were two old fashioned bikers in the driveway there to greet them and be amazed and proud of their work.  And do you know what the funniest thing of all was?  Neither of those old school bikers have ever done that kind of old school tire change!  I just laughed my way through my dinner preparations, I am sooo glad I didn't have that fifty bucks this week...

Thursday, June 10, 2010

My New Little Friend

Okay, okay, I know I'm about a decade or so behind in technology up here on my mountain, but I just had to write about my new little friend, my i pod.  My son just got an upgrade, and I pitched in a little, so I got his old one, that's a form of recycling, right?
I mean this little baby has the means to really rock my world, literally.  As you all have probably gathered by now, when I do something, I really throw myself into it; and that includes listening to music.  So yesterday, for the first time ever I got to do my chores to the blissful noise of my own choosing.  And let me tell you, when I came around the corner and saw my seventeen year old sons laughing so hard they could not hardly stand up because I had been singing and dancing my way down the path from the barn I just about died laughing myself!  Now that is a great way to start a day, in  my book.
Although I have been given the lecture, "Mom, you've got to remember that the entire neighborhood can probably hear you singing!" and "Mom, you're weird!" by each and every one of them, all of the kids have said it with a huge smile and have been anxious to help me get it all set up and even add more music.  Which is funny, because they say that will only cause them more embarrassment, hmmm....
On a more serious note, I have thanked Nathan again and again, because not only have I had a lot of fun with this little gadget, but I have realized that this could have a huge impact on my "bad brain days".  Now, I don't mean to go all ga-ga on you on a regular post day, but I have to.  My bad brain days are somehow connected with my extra sensory stuff, as well as my epilepsy.  With this i pod I will be able to shut a lot of this extra sensory stuff out, period.  That is my hope, I will let you know how the testing goes.  That wasn't so bad was it?
I bring this up because I know that this is a very common problem with all neurological issues, even migraines.  Over-stimulation of any kind is hard on the brain for people with every neurological problem and I was really able to shut a lot of stuff out with my i pod on.  If you have kids with these types of issues or ADHD, try having them sit in a quiet room with their i pods on for a while.  I'm even going to try some relaxing types of music, which I have never had before, but I think would be great with this specific machine.
Warning:  I am not a doctor, and I don't even play one on TV.  I've only had my i pod for a day, but the change I felt immediately, made me want to write this post.  Dancing can cause serious injuries to hips and backs of women and men over the age of 35 if done on uneven ground.  Neighbors may think you are crazy if you dance around while cleaning your water trough with toilet scrubber as drum stick.
PS  I bet you wish the boys had gotten video!!!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

One Big Load

Okay, I am a little later with this post than I usually am, but I have a good excuse. See, I started to post this morning, but realized that what I really wanted to talk about had to wait until the end of my trip into the big city.  Yes, that's right, I braved the heat and headed down the mountain into Denver.  I say it like it's such a big deal, when many of the people in my community, including my husband, do it four or five times a week.  Eeew, I could not deal!
But back to me and my trip down the mountain.  The kids drug me down you see; they of course love the adventures to be had in the city.  Nathan had finally saved up enough money from his birthday and working around the neighborhood for an i pod touch and Isabella had watered the neighbors plants enough for a new Build a Bear. 
As you all know, we spent Mother's Day recycling and cleaning up the ranch and today was my first opportunity to take the load of recyclables in.  As you can see by the picture, it was a full truck load; this is stuff that has taken us quite a few years to gather.  As a matter of fact, as Nathan pointed out as we were driving away from the monstrous recyclable mountain, we had not paid a dime for one thing in that pile.  The bikes had either been gifts to us or hand me downs.  Most of the metal was stuff that had been left on the ranch when we acquired it.
The best part of all is that we earned $41.25 on the load!  That's why I'm so late, I was dying to find out (and share) my total.  Now, to really make your recycling dollars stretch, you take that money and head to your local Goodwill like I did.  Man, sometimes I even impress (recycle to upcycle) myself-ha!!!  No, I'm just kidding.  Nathan is getting ready to go to Seacamp in sunny San Diego and needs a lot of shorts; so of course, my first choice for b-ball shorts for a fourteen year old boy is Goodwill.  Forty bucks for a cheap*$$ like myself goes a long ways, let me tell you... I also got some flowers for the beautiful crock I inherited from Grandma!  Too bad I'm posting this late at night and can't show you the flowers...

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Royal Ranch Publishing

Good Morning!  I have a question to pose to all of you today.  As I have mentioned my book is done.  On Memorial Day I accepted my final proof!  This means that in a few weeks my book will be available on all of the normal retail channels, Ingram, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.  Now, I am not naive enough to think that my books are just going to start flying off the shelves by themselves, I can hope that will happen, but I know that I still have a lot of work ahead of me.  But, I'm pretty good at hard work.
So, this is where my question comes in.  As you all know by now, my name is pronounced Judy Judy, but spelled Judy Jeute.  Most authors have their names as their websites, but I have considered for now just adding my book onto my Royal Ranch website.  I have also considered getting a website like Judyx2.com.  
The problem is that hopefully at some point in time there will be quite a bit of information on this site.  Like recordings of the ranch, and myself reading part of each book, and downloads for teachers to have to prepare for my visits with Marcel the llama, etc.
What do you think?  Does the spelling of my last name make it difficult?  What is most memorable?  Come on people, now is when you can say, "Hey, I had some input back when she was just a mountain hillbilly blogger and no one knew her name."  Ha!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Gulf Oil Spill, again...

Yes, I know I just did a post on this damn oil spill, but this one is really bothering me.  And it must be really bothering a lot of people, because my beloved husband Tom had a dream the other night how to fix it.  And we don't even watch the news all that regularly.  And it is still in the back of my mind, that oil just constantly pouring out into the ocean.  It really is incomprehensible to me that it is being let happen, let alone they think it may take until August now to fix.  (My poor English teacher would die if she saw all those sentences starting with and, but I think it adds dramatic flair-ha!)
Come on, we have machinists in Bailey, CO who are dreaming of ways to fix this mess, and he's only an environmentalist by marriage.  We tease that I am biker by marriage, etc.  Back to my point-there can be no shortage of ideas here.  But, how do they go about getting them?  I know that deep sea makes it very complicated and such, but obviously the guys at BP have their heads up their butts, and so do the other top guys who haven't gotten it fixed, so how does Joe Blow get his idea in?  He probably doesn't, he just has to wait until someone in Hollywood comes up with a good plan, like James Cameron or Kevin Costner...

Thanks Angry Black Bitch for the links!  (Not a site to take the kids parents, but funny as can be!)