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I'm a children's author. Animals are a constant source of writing material for me. They are also my heart!

Mud is Good

>> Saturday, September 17, 2011


I know Tango and I look like tiny specs in the composition of this picture but the greenness of the pastures for this time of year is totally amazing. It's been interesting for me. Tango's been off. He's had x-rays and injections and the whole nine-yards. Basically, he's going to be okay but I've not been able to do my usual work with him. In fact, I've only been allowed to ride easily. I should be upset by the interruption in our routine, but I'm not. I had forgotten how calming and joyful it is to ride just for the sake of riding. Sometimes the small things in life are what matter the most. Not the competitions or the deadlines of work that needs to be done to meet a specific goal. Life should always be so easy. Remind me of that when Tango is all well again and I'm stressed out about getting him all clean for a show. Mud is good.

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Spun Tale...Tail!

>> Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sammy's about had it with spring and summer. He's tired of the heat. He's tired of the grass and...he's tired of itching!
The poor little guy doesn't mean to leave hair all over the house but even after I brush out bushels of white and brown fluffy fur he scratches out bushels more. I'm thinking of turning my house into a spinning factory. Why I think we could make the most beautiful sweaters and afghans you've ever seen. The colors would be so neutral they would go with anything.
I could give Christmas presents that would leave people in awe. "Where'd you ever find this cashmere coat?" they would ask. "And who's the designer?" I'd smile and reply, "The designer is Sir Samson of Center Woods."
I could even donate things to my sister-in-law Sandy http://homelessbridge.blogspot.com/ who has a group that knits and crochets for the homeless. "Sandy," I would say, "I've had Sam's fur cleaned and sterilized at least fifty times. My spinner can offer you more scans of yarn than the store in your basement can hold."
Sandy would be happy. I'm not sure what she'd say but I would be willing to bet she'll leave a comment and let us know. And as for my husband Chuck...well, when I give him his pair of Samson-fur-socks he's going to be overwhelmed with joy. "I'll never have to worry about fur on my socks again," he will say. "I've got FUR FOR MY SOCKS! Jan, you are more talented and gifted than I ever knew," he will say to me.
I'll feel a little smug. "Just think," I'll whisper to
Chuck. "All the money I earn from my Samson- designed products will pay for all the steroids and antibiotics that Sam is going to take until well after the first frost. Chuck will be happy. I know he will.

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Join Me to Just Eat

>> Monday, August 29, 2011

I've started a new blog for myself. I'm sick of dieting and I want to just eat. JUST EAT. I've started a blogging journal to try to make it through an entire year of plain old eating. I want to change all the bad habits I have about food and I'm going to need all the help I can get. My goal is to have made a life style change by the end of a year.

If you have ever struggled with dieting or food, please come join me at http://celeryandcarrots.blogspot.com If you've never struggled with eating issues come and share your secrets with me.

Meanwhile I'll be back here with more animal stories soon. I just competed in a fun horse show with my granddaughter and I have pictures to share. And...I'm still in the process of applying for my non-for-profit. Seems I have lots of irons in the fire!

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Unconditional Love

>> Saturday, August 20, 2011

All of the kittens and their mother left on Wednesday. This little girl was the only one left. Annabelle took over.


She let her pretend to nurse.

She played with her.

Then she gave her to Sam to cuddle.

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Ivy and Her Kittens Update

>> Wednesday, August 3, 2011

It's been several weeks since I first came to you with sweet Ivy's dilemma. I can't thank you enough for all your wonderful comments and suggestions. Ivy's four beautiful kittens are growing and growing. They are funny and strong and well-loved. Best of all, as soon as they're all weaned they have homes to go to...wonderful homes. My daughter-in-law is going to take Ivy and one of her kittens. I call that kitten Little Dot because she was born with a polka dot on her head. My daughter-in-law said, "I don't care if Ivy has three legs or four...I need her as much as she needs me." Funny how animals bring such comfort to people and how certain people are just made for special animls. Some matches are made in heaven for sure.

Ivy's kittens are magnificent. One kitten WAS as white as snow, but now traces of orange are appearing on his ears too. That kitten was the only male. For some reason, my grandson named him Boots. Then there's the little calico. She was the first born and we named her Gracie. Somehow she just seemed full of grace and the name seemed to fit. The fourth kitten is a pinkish color of orange. My granddauther named her Rosie. The little balls of fluffy kittens are four weeks old now. They roll and tumble and play constanty. It's hard to get any work done in my office because I can't keep my eyes off Ivy and her kittens.

As for Ivy, the question of the amputation is not so certain in my mind now. Her femur has apparently healed (wrong, but healed) and she walks and jumps with a huge limp. Ivy has an appointment at the vet again on Tuesday. Dr. French will let me know what she thinks needs to be done. If you have sent a check to Beechwold Vet Hospital, I will make sure it is returned to you or apply it towards whatever needs to be done. You let me know. We have found a vet in Athens, Ohio who is willing to do any surgery for much less after consulting with Dr. French. Beechwold is a business and Dr. French is not permitted to "give discounts" to rescues in spite of the fact that she would like to do just that.

After this rescue is over and done I've decided to look into starting a non-for-profit organization to raise money for other rescues or for people who have pets that need medical attention and can't afford to get it done. I'm on a mission. From what I understand, it will take about a year to get things up and running but my heart and passion are a driving force. Somehow, I'm going to incorporate my writing into the organization...even if it's only to write press releases. If you have any suggestions for me, please let me know.

When I think about the number of rescues I've had over the years it blows my mind. I know many of you rescue too. People who love animals are special people. I'm truly grateful to know so many of you.

I'll keep you posted on Ivy and her kittens. Sammy, Annabelle, and Maddie are adjusting to having my office turned into a "cat room" although I'm sure they'll be happier when they can lay on the floor by my feet again. What's a little inconvenience when five precious lives are going to enrich so many people?! Don't ask Sammy...ask me!

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For the Love of Ivy

>> Friday, July 8, 2011


This is Ivy. I named her myself. Ivy deserved a name. She showed up at the barn where I board my horses in early spring. Someone probably dumped her there. Ivy wasn't like the other barn cats. She was sweet, gentle, and friendly. From the very beginning it was clear that Ivy liked people more than hunting. Her loud purring resonated around the horse-filled stalls. By late spring it was obvious that Ivy was pregnant. A kitten having kittens, I thought to myself. Ivy isn't more than eight months old herself. As sad as I was I turned a blind eye. I already have three dogs and as most of you know, we kept our last foster...an 18-month-old-145 pound Newfoundland.
About a week ago, Ivy disappeared. Everyone assumed she had gone off to have her kittens somewhere. We were wrong. She returned still pregnant and dragging her right back leg behind her.
I couldn't leave her at the barn. I just couldn't. I took Ivy home with me and put her in a large crate in my office. My husband wasn't happy and neither were my three dogs. On Tuesday I took Ivy to my vet, Dr. Kelli French. She took x-rays and came back with the bad news. "Ivy's femur is so badly broken she is going to need to have her leg amputated," Dr. French told me. I asked if there were other options and Dr. French told me yes, but surgery to put in pins and plates would cost thousands of dollars. "Cats do very
well on three legs," she told me.
Dr. French sent me home with Ivy. "Let her have her kittens. In five weeks, we'll take off her leg and she'll be ab
le to walk and stand so much better." I took Ivy home.
Normally I can handle my rescues on my own. This time I can't. I need help. The surgery to amputate Ivy's leg is going to cost around $800 dollars. Dr. French has set up a fund at Beechwold Vet Hospital for Ivy. If you can help me, please send a check to Beechwold Vet Hospital, C/O Dr. Kelli French 4590 Indianola Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43214. Put "For Ivy Mader's surgery" in the memo line. Ivy and I will be eternally grateful. Also, if you could share this post through a link on your blog that would help too. Animal people help animal people.
Ivy delivered her four beautiful kittens on Tuesday night - shattered femur and all. When Ivy is well and her kittens are weaned I'll find wonderful homes for all of them. For now, that's the least of my problems.

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Touching Tulips

>> Friday, April 29, 2011



I had just walked down the little path and back in our yard when Sammy came out to greet me. He walked beyond me and turned back as if to say...you missed something...you didn't stop to smell the flowers. Isn't it interesting how our animals can remind us of the importance of recognizing special moments? Every moment is special to them. Each word each touch. Each sight each sound. I went back down the path with Sammy and bent down to feel the dampness of the dew on the tulip stems. I missed that the first time around. After all, who touches tulips? As of today, I do.



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