I photographed and posted these 12-inch Hug Me Slug plushies in my toy shop. These fleece colors remind me of fruit, or jelly beans, mango gold, orange, lemon yellow, and soft orange sherbet.
And these are dark forest green, light turquoise, and olive green fleece.
I plan to keep adding more as I get them ready. I’ve been updating my titles and tags over on Etsy, because they are trying out a new navigation set-up for some people, and it has shown up for my account. I think they are trying to streamline it, and so I am trying to streamline my shop in accordance. I’ve also been straightening up my shipping profiles on Etsy, since postal rates seem to change a lot too. And I’m continuing to stuff toys. I feel like I am terribly slow at everything, but I am actually fussy and perhaps set unreasonable expectations for how quickly I can get toys ready, or photos taken and edited. I am pleased to see my toy shop being repopulated. I hope you will come visit.
I am so relieved that fall is here. The temperature change makes me feel like I am coming back to life, even though I feel a little overwhelmed by how much there is to be done. I want to feel like everything is coming together, but it can only happen one piece at a time. I’ve been at the computer all day, making progress. I think I will go read a book on the porch for a while.
I am now stuffing and detailing the Hug Me Slugs I have started. It has been too gray to photograph these, but we should get a sunny day soon. These are the larger, 12 inch tall ones. I hope to post them in my toy shop soon, and keep finishing and posting more.
It is finally slightly cooler and it even rained a little, making it possible for me to get another tree in the ground. I am putting in a row of Green Giant Arborvitae, to block the sound from the road, and to enclose the yard. I will be so happy when fall arrives. I am going to keep planting.
I wandered around, taking some photos this morning. The flowers are losing their blooms, but I still find them pretty, like these ageratum. Our friend Linda, back in our old neighborhood, gave some to me, from her yard, and they have continued to reproduce every year.
It is nice to have flowers and trees and bushes from our old home. I hope to add more here to make it feel more comfortable and familiar to me.
The morning glories came with this house, and have continued replanting themselves for the past fourteen years we have been here.
I love this dark purple one.
It is pretty even with its leaves all chewed.
I have no idea where this tiny red morning glory came from. It was suddenly blooming at the end of the porch this morning, having made its way up a bush.
While prowling around the yard, I found one of the few remaining dandelion flowers. The wind was blowing while I tried to get it into focus. It looks like it is floating through green space.
I also came across the abandoned mockingbird nest in my beauty bush. I kind of wish I could climb in there. It looks like a good place to hide out, if you are tiny.
Even decaying things look beautiful. I keep passing this moss on tree bark.
I found a giant mushroom too. I wish I knew what kind this was. If anyone knows, please tell me. I loved to collect them when I was little. Bird nests and mushrooms make me think of homes for magical woodland creatures.
Speaking of woodland creatures, a second little black kitten was spotted, twice now, running up to our front door in the dark, to quickly grab some snacks out from under Santana, when they are put out. As I mentioned before, we have been having strays showing up at our neighbors’ houses, then a kitten, and now a second kitten. I have been trying to trap here, hoping to get the kitten some veterinary help, since I can’t get to where the cats are coming out of the woods behind my next door neighbor’s garage, but it isn’t working.
I turned our porch light on to see this happening, Santana guarding the trap door. So far, I have trapped him twice, and an opossum once. Santana thought that was funny. He was lying next to the trap when I came out to escort the opossum off the porch, and gave me a nod and a meow to let me know he wasn’t the one who fell for it that time.
Santana, who comes from across the cul-de-sac from us, firmly believes our house is his house, and our yard is his yard. He has also been fighting with the cats who cross the lawn, chasing them away. He has bites and scratches every few days lately. He recovers from one set of injuries only to get new ones.
This morning, there was fur all over the lawn, and his face has some scratches. I don’t know who the other participant was, only that he was gray and possibly white. I think Santana’s Convenia shot will probably tide him over for these cuts. I hope the other cat is okay.
It’s tough to control the situation, when none of the cats involved are ours, and the strays are showing up for food at neighbors’ houses. I end up asking for them to trap where the cats are so they can get fixed and vaccinated. There isn’t much hope of any adult cat getting trapped on our property, not with Santana fighting with them, even if he does seem to tolerate kittens and opossums.
I was trying to decide whether I should add this photo to my last post about this special Hug Me Slug Angel, but since it made me so happy, I decided to share it on its own post. Here he is, united with his companion Hug Me Slug, and their mom, or my customer’s mom. They were both gifts for her. She wrote to tell me her mom loves her Hug Me Slug Angel, who was made in memory of her dad, who passed away last Christmas. Their 57th wedding anniversary would have been this month. She says her mom is enjoying her new independent living apartment. She told me her mom has her slug angel in her living room there, but will likely be taking him out to share with other residents in the community. I hope he makes everyone smile. I enjoy thinking about the conversations with this adorable lady about her slug and the story behind him.
This is what toy making is all about, spreading some joy and some comfort, making someone feel good. That makes my day.
This is how my day begins, with these characters. Oliver Bunny waits for me to get up so he can have his veggies and his banana slice. Sometimes he gets super excited about this. Here he is, with his lips around the bar of his pen, letting me know he needs immediate attention. He was really taking a break from chewing on his litter pan, which is does to make a point. He turns to look at me, to make sure his efforts are effective. He gets what he wants, and then he comes out for the day to hop around.
And this lady below is usually asleep when I wake up, even though she has been yelling during the night lately. I am pretty sure she has hyperthyroidism, since our cats keep coming down with it as they age. I need to make an appointment to take her in for a blood test. I got an iodine test that people use on aquariums, but I don’t know if there is anything to be done if I find iodine in anything, or what the safe levels are. It isn’t regulated in water and no one I’ve asked has had much information. And it isn’t necessarily the cause. The vet and the person I talked to at the local public health department both said there seemed to be a lot of cases of hyperthyroidism in cats in this area. It’s more of a mystery.
Cats have continued to show up here, popping out of the woods behind my next door neighbor’s house in the evening, and then running back. He doesn’t want us to trap there, and Santana, our other neighbors’ cat chases them away from our house. I am hoping his owner can lure them over to her yard, since that seems to be our only option for catching them, to get them fixed. I count four adults so far, and surely one is a female, probably the mom of the kitten that showed up. If this goes on any longer, there will be more kittens and my neighbors will have a colony behind their houses. I don’t have the funds to take care of that situation. They are going to have to come together. If the cats get fixed and vaccinated, it will be okay, but that has to happen.
I’m sewing through stacks of fleece, trying to get more colors of Hug Me Slugs together. I get sleepy when I sit at the sewing machine. Watching the needle go up and down is hypnotic. It is so much easier to stay awake with a movie to watch. I will be able to do that when I move on to stuffing and hand sewing. I also need to take my sewing machine in to be cleaned. I thought I was a year behind, doing that, but Facebook showed me one of those “4 years ago today” posts, and there was my machine, just back from servicing. Oops. There must be a lot of fuzz inside from sewing all that fleece!