Monday, June 08, 2020

Getting to Know You --

Well hello, there!

This little episode that lasted less than 2 minutes set my heart racing – it was the most unexpected amazing thing, and yet I knew it could be dangerous as well should Mama Doe have come out to protect her fawn.

It seems that the fawn was moving in the woods, and curious as curious Zoey is, being still a baby herself at just 15 months old, decided that she had enough of social distancing and wanted to make friends with someone who was about the same size as herself.

I turned around to jumping, leaping, much bleating from the fawn as a game of “Catch me if you can!” started down the hill toward the bottom of the drive.

By the time I got there, Zoey and the fawn were now playing “Keep Away!” on my neighbor’s lawn!

I had the leash in my hand, but not wanting to scare either of them (Forcing Zoey to run off into Barbara’s woods) I talked to them while filming 60 seconds of video.

Click to Play:

Instagram only loads up 60 seconds worth of video – so it’s cut off at the end when Zoey playfully rolls over at my feet to show her belly somersault style.

At that point of her playfulness, I grabbed her collar, snapped the leash on and slowly walked away leaving the fawn where it stood, bewildered at what just happened.

Where is Mama Doe? It is anyone's best guess.  A bit later when we drove to the QPO, the fawn was nowhere to be seen.

I just want to play!

Come and get me!

In her defense – Zoey never touched the fawn or made any really aggressive move towards it.  It was all “Come Play!” and “Try to get me!” on Zoey’s part.

On the part of the fawn – she was learning to stomp and charge just as her mama taught her when being threatened by a perceived predator.

It sure set our day off reeling!
(Oh my sweetness!)

Zoey is  giving good morning kisses to Lola!

She is inquisitive, and her herding instincts are strong!  But she never nips or bites, never growls and seldom barks. 

She has been with us almost 3 months and we are still trying to piece together things she may have learned before she came to us.  We are working on training her, but the hardest thing so far has been to get her to recognize and respond to her name.  

I figure she spent 12 months being called something ELSE and we haven’t figured out what the magic words are yet.  Though “HEY!” will often get her attention.

Yesterday when I posted the video to Instagram and Facebook, amidst the many fun comments – there were of course some judgmental ones of “You could be charged with wildlife endangerment and fined!” "You need to control your dog better."

This is Southwestern Virginia where the deer outnumber the cattle, and the cattle outnumber the people.  And this episode lasted less than 2 minutes.  I had to retrieve Zoey.  I was not encouraging her play time.  I got her safely out of there as quickly as I could.

That said – after several comments from folks letting me know that their dogs have also become deer playmates, I took to YouTube and loved what I saw.

Click to Play:

The naysayers and animal rights activists can say what they want, but the deer aren't getting the message!

And this was yesterday’s big job.

I so wanted the porch to be freshly painted this spring.  But Covid-19, quarantine, my very reduced income, and the fact that even The Hubster has been furloughed from his job and is working reduced hours at greatly reduced pay mean that it will be put off for another year until we can recuperate.  

This has become the year of cutting corners for so many of us.

(Believe me – I am not complaining.  We are well, healthy and I am so grateful for the gift of TIME and the fact that he still does have a job.)

A bit chippy – but clean!

You don’t really realize how massive this wrap around porch is until you start scrubbing the rails.  I figure that some chipping paint can be a touch of “shabby chic” until we can tackle it next year.

We tried power washing, but it removed "too much" of the paint and we needed to be more gentle to preserve what is there.  I also heard of "Wet it & Forget it" but it was Sunday afternoon and more than an hour's drive to get some and no one wanted to leave what we were doing to buy anything.

And gutters do have to happen because a lot of the green gunk could be avoided if the rain wasn’t just running in sheets off the roof.  But again – that’s been pushed back a bit.

I can scrub for miles and miles and miles -

Patio furniture has also been hosed off, and the porch floor has been scrubbed with a scrub broom.  There are still areas to tackle out here, but it is looking much more inviting.

I love thinking of earlier times - there are overhead hooks between each of the porch posts and I bet there were hanging ferns all the way around.

I'm not that much of a gardener so that is unlikely to happen at this time.  That is A LOT of porch ferns!

THE BEST BBQ chicken thighs ever!

We were starving when I got home.  I had planned on cooking these Saturday, but we worked so late that day that we ended up with a frozen pizza.  Some days are just like that.  Some days can find you so worn out that you opt for pancakes, or heck – just cereal.

But last night while we were cleaning up and showering from all of the deck work I first cooked the thighs in the instant pot, and then we finished them on the grill for about 6 minutes (3 minutes per side) just to caramelize the BBQ sauce.  I will definitely do this again.  And we have leftovers which is great.

Instant Pot BBQ Chicken Thighs:
  • 8 large bone-in chicken thighs with skin.
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup water (or chicken broth)
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
Place the chicken thighs in the instant pot.  Mix the seasonings and sprinkle evenly over all pieces.

Mix the liquid smoke and the barbecue sauce with the 1 cup of water or broth and pour over the chicken in the pot.

Put the lid on, turn the valve to sealing, and select Manual or Pressure Cook, high pressure, for 10 minutes (12-15 minutes for frozen or partially frozen).

It will take about 10 minutes for the pressure to build and the cook time to begin counting down. When the cook time is over, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10-15 minutes, then open the valve and remove the lid.

Remove chicken, brush with barbecue sauce, and place on the grill for 6 minutes. (3 minutes per side)

This chicken was so moist and delicious and it was SO easy.

Today? Well, hello Monday!  Back at the QPO to get mail out and then I am going to head out mask on face to do some much needed shopping.

I need two step-to-open trash cans so no one has to touch a swinging type lid to dispose of anything at the inn.

I need taller trash cans for the bathroom paper towel waste.  And more trash can liners.

And some other things.

I’m heading to Sam’s Club in Bristol and it’s been Ages since I have hit a big box store and I didn’t want to do it on the weekend. I hope things have calmed down enough that I can shop normally, even while wearing a mask.  That there won’t be crazy lines and no merchandise inside.

How about your Monday? Anything interesting going on?

Quiltville Quote of the Day

Sometimes life needs interruption to regain focus and shake off complacency.

I feel it happening all around me. All of this struggle can bring forth great change for the better.

Let's keep the love moving forward!


  1. That porch is so inviting! Hope I get the chance to enjoy it one day. Have a great day Bonnie!

  2. Thank you for filming the cute deer/dog video! What a fun little episode. (I was afraid that you would get hate-mail for it however.) Some people just have nothing better to do but to fuss at others.
    I love your heart, Bonnie. You keep doing you! <3

  3. I'm not much of a gardener either and porch ferns are my go-to plants. You only have to give them water and occasional fertilizer and they're great to dress up your porch. A fern in a stand/urn on either side of the front door works well too.

  4. If you need to teach Zoey her name and to come when called you need to start with baby steps. Took classes to train my doberman so I am speaking from experience. Put her on a leash,then let her wander about 6 ft away. Using the word come (to get her attention) and then her name. If she does not respond appropriately pull her gently to you and use praise or treats when she gets to you. Must do this everyday, even a couple times a day, until she will do it when she is off leash.

  5. You make my mornings! Marilyn Marks

  6. Love the video. Some people need to get a life.

    1. amen, and criticizing yours is not an option! xo

  7. Oh my ....... what a wonderful way to start my day. Zoey and the baby dear are so precious. Then the video of the other dog and dear brought tears to my eyes - looks like they are great friends. Terry
    p.s. Don't forget to delete the naysayers - they find negative everywhere - they don't know the happiness they are missing.

    1. Totally agree! It was GREAT to see them romping! We are ALL animals after all!

  8. Animals love to play with other animals. So cute! I'll be attending an outdoor birthday party for one of my little guild's ladies (she's turning 88 today).

  9. Great video! When you live in the country you will get all sorts of encounters with wildlife that's just how it is! Thanks for the chicken recipe, I'll give that one try when the rain lets up, we have had an unusual amount of it lately, I'm anxiously waiting for it to stop so I can paint!

  10. I played your video. The bleating and bark got the attention of Mabel, my golden. She requested I play the video 3 times for her. She was mesmerized and wanted to join in the fun!

  11. Great video of Zoey Jo and the baby deer, loved the Great Dane and deer video too, so sweet! For the naysayers - haters gonna hate...
    Love you, Miss Bonnie :)

  12. Love the video of Zoey and the fawn, as well as the other video of the deer and the dog playing. I would much rather have Zoey try to herd the fawn then a porcupine or skunk! I guess that in the country we are used to different things than those who live in cities. Quiltville Inn is looking beautiful and shabby chic so in right now! Love seeing all the green you get to enjoy.

  13. Hi, Bonnie. I look forward to your blog every day. You provide so much encouragement to us, and keep our spirits up, despite whatever is going on in the world around us! Mom and I so enjoyed the video of Zoey's encounter with the fawn. Keep those great hits coming! What is the brand of Instant Pot you have? Your recipes are so inviting and easy, we would like to get the same, if possible. You bring such a breathe of fresh air to us quilters ... Enjoy your day and take care! Pat fron NY.

  14. Hi, Bonnie - glad it's still going well for you all, if not perfect. One very easy was to get a dog to respond to her name is to make it worth her while: carry treats with you or have them stashed throughout your areas, call her name very excitedly and give the treat to her when she looks at you. She'll make the connection quickly, and you can slowly fade the treats for attention. That will get her to look at you when you call, if what you want is for her to come then just train that next. The name is to get her to pay attention to you, next you tell her what you want. The biggest helps for training a great recall is not to call unless you're pretty sure they will respond (as the training progresses you can make it harder, but otherwise you are training them that they don't have to come). You need to be more exciting than what might distract them so fabulous treats, an excited voice and demeanor, and try to never call for things they don't want to do - go and get them for that. Lastly, do lots of comes where you treat fabulously, and send her back out so she learns that the come doesn't mean the end of anything, just more fun. Good luck! I love dog training. It's so exciting to watch them learn.

  15. The Bambi/Zoey video is the best thing ever! Both of them were engaged and curious and no harm, no foul - just nature.

  16. Wave Petunias would make great porch baskets too. Last year I got some by mistake for my planters along the walk to the garage and they were just beautiful all summer and fall. I wanted more this year but all they had was the 4" pots at $4.50 ea. NO! I would have needed a minimum of 15. Last years were in the little 4-packs at a much more reasonable price. The sign in the greenhouse blamed it on Covid, as everything else has been.

    I thought Zoey & the fawn playing was so cute. It was easy to see that Zoey just wanted to play, no harm intended. I find the special interest groups with their judging & shaming to be so tiresome. Can't they just live their lives and let others live theirs? Anyway, I don't bother my old gray head about them too much. LOL

  17. Zoey Jo is doing what her breed of dogs were born to do. Our daughter and husband have 2 dogs, Raider and Mattie, who go to the golf course everyday with their "daddy" where they "herd" the ducks. They don't scare them or chase them, they "herd" them like they herded the sheep when the grands raised lambs. Loved how the animals get along. People should learn from that. The judgmental people should read about Noah and his family caring for animals on the Ark for 40 days with wild and domestic animals all together! All were saved except the judgmental kind of --hmm

  18. I bet that will be the best video I see all week! Thanks for sharing! So much better than all the political, protesting, and covid videos. Just something magical with wildlife interactions. And forgot all about those naysayers-some people just aren't happy unless they are complaining

  19. Sounds like several of us have painting on our lists. Startef paintingmy deck and house last year. Life got in the way now I too (PNW) am waiting for the rain to stop. Need to do more research first. Started the porch rail with what was supposed to be chip proof. NOT. Am kind of thankful I didn't get any further. Now to get back to some quilting. Zoey is so darn cute. Her antics are fun to watch. And like others have said, pay no attentionn to the "critics". Some people think they are responsible to point out everyone else's faults and mistakes. Like they're perfect and oh so knowledgeable. So unless they're perfect and can walk on water, ignore them.

  20. Terrific post as always. Xx

  21. Thank you. Zoey and deer was funny but Great Dane and deer was just too funny and felt so good. I will sing that song and laugh all day.

  22. Aliceart is right; I saw a dog trainer use this technique for a newly adopted dog. He said to think of the name as a command to "look at me" and he held the treat up next to his face to get the dog to focus on his face. It only took three times for the dog to look right at his face when he said her name. If Zoey is interested in treats, you might try it.

    1. I reckon this would work Bonnie - it would for me! I'd definitely come........just saying, love the blog and all the lovely, helpful supportive comments. Elaine

  23. Thanks for sharing the video of the fawn and your lovable dog. Nice to hear the sound of a fawn. Hope you get my package soon.

  24. I hope your shopping was okay. My "trick" at my local grocery store is to go about 2 hours before they closed with their earlier hours -- that ended up being about suppertime, 6 PM. Nobody else wanted to shop at suppertime, so I never had to stand in a distanced line to get in and usually not even a line for checkout.

    The store is back to being open until 10 PM (Ugh -- the poor workers!), but I'm sticking with about 6 for my shopping to avoid any kind of crowds. It's stressful enough to shop, even with a small number of people!

  25. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww! That was nice - and no animals harmed in the making of your video - just the human mum who probably forgot to breathe initially! LOL!

  26. Baby animals will always find friends. Just a look at Zoey and the fawn wagging their tails showed no signs of worry in either animal. Being babies they just wanted to have fun. I loved it.

  27. Your porch looks so beautiful I’m sure it will be a wonderful spot for alfresco dining or a bit of hand sewing.
    I saw the video of ZoeyJo making friends with the fawn yesterday and thought how cute they were just making friends and so sweet to see. Thank you for sharing with us all.
    Take care
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  28. Thanks for sharing deer and your cute puppy, I too co-reside with deer. They aren't happy to share the plot with me, as evidenced by the looks I get when I drive in and they are on the property. They do love my garden however,

  29. Enjoyed the video of the fawn and Zoey! Wish I could have been there. We have had a mommy deer drop her baby in our year, they are beautiful. Thank you.

  30. I loved the video, enjoy your blog daily, and YOU ❤️
    Good luck foraging. I still can't find cleaning supplies.

  31. Bonnie - I am a new reader and won't miss any of your letters each day - they bring me a lot of peace. Loved the video of Zoey and the deer and then a you tube video popped up with a similar story - long - but I watched every minute.

  32. I enjoyed this tale and think some animals are just quizzical and enjoy life. I'd also like to suggest maybe hamging planters filled with petunias or pansies for the porch - or a mixture of many flowering plants that can just be started by dropping seed into dirt filled hanging pots. I guess it may be the pots that are expensive though. Whenever you do get something - I think it will look beautiful. I love a wrap around porch!!

  33. Bonnie... You are a good person, living life the best way your know how. Please don't dwell on the 'acid' comments that come your way. You bring me joy each morning as I read your blog and relax a few minutes thinking of fabric, threads and quilt projects. And then you share the joys and sorrows from your own life... we laugh a little, smile a little and cry a little along with you. Please continue, with the knowledge that many love what you do for us.

  34. Loved the video. They were having fun and not shooting each other. At least that's what I saw!

  35. We have a neighbor that has a Shetland pony, and a doe has made the pony her best friend. She jumps the chain link fence to be in there with the pony. One day we came home, the pony had gotten out of the yard and was in our yard, and the doe was running the fence line, but wouldn’t leave her friend. We called the neighbor, she came with a lead rope, caught the pony, and walked her back home with the doe following right behind her. Unlike some humans, animals can live in peace together.

  36. So glad for your videos and daily life comments. You have always had your head on straight with a great sense of humor, dignity, wisdom and humility. So blessing us daily with such insights to the nature and world we don't always take time to
    see and enjoy is a positive blessing to so many. Please keep it up with ignoring the derogative, negative comments. thank you Bonnie. You may never know how many lives you have inspired in so many ways. God Bless you as you continue on this journey.

  37. The people who are critical of these two innocent animals having fun together are just weird. Zoey and the fawn were enjoying time with someone "different" from themselves with no judgement or hatred. Too bad the people with so many opinions can't enjoy this rare moment without feeling it necessary to make negative comments. They must miss a lot of great things in this wonderful world I think Zoey is beautiful.


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