Life and times of a hunter

Turns out that Lilli is quite an avid hunter.

Ever since autumn arrived we have had an abundance of small furry animals around the yard and forest. Mostly forest mice and field voles. And it seems that both are quite easy prey when you have good hearing and a sensitive nose. Especially during the last couple of weeks there has been quite cold temperatures and little snow. Without anywhere to hide the yard has been quite full of mobile snacks. And Lilli has made the most of it. For a few days she managed to grab a several during her excursions outside. The flower garden has been a particularly fruitful location.

Snack hunting in the garden

But on our trips to the forest she has also found some success.

Snack hunting in the forest

But lately with the arrival of snow things have been a bit more difficult. Although that doesn’t stop her from trying.

Snack hunting in the snow

Wednesday, 16.07.2008

Another few evenings spent in the ceiling and the end is in sight.

Over the last few days the shelves were finished. The railing around the ladder hole is done, and the air vents are in place.

Just a little dusty still.   Nothing that a good cleaning wouldn't cure.

Tonight I finished off the final part of the door frames, cleaned out all the offcuts of wood and removed all the tools. Now all that is left is to clean everything and give the walls a coat of sealant and the floor a coat of varnish. That should protect everything a bit and stop it getting so dirty. Then we can start moving the junk there.


Lilli has had a hard time the last few weeks.

Puberty hit about three weeks ago. In other words Lilli was on heat for the first time. Luckily though we don’t have so many male dogs in the area and those that are, we only see out walking. So in that regards we haven’t had to keep her under lock and guard. But otherwise she has left a trail of blood spots around the house and had a bit of a problem holding onto pee at times. The physical changes seemed to confuse her a bit as well. There was definately a lot of licking going on at times and various bits and pieces were quite swollen.

But the worst of it is over now and she has settled down again. I guess that in the next few weeks we will have to make an appointment with the vet.

Saturday, 12.07.2008

Well, not much writen here for a while, but work goes on.

The attic is nearly finished after many days and nights of scratching around in the ceiling. I didn’t really have an idea how long it would take, but it seems to have stretched on quite long. Although there were gaps of a couple of weeks between work days where I didn’t get anything done.

The longest and most time consuming part was putting up the walls and ceiling. For that I used tongue and groove paneling. It seemed like a good idea at the time, and the end result is quite good. But without a nail-gun it wasn’t much fun.

And the most annoying part was that after many calculations and recalculations of area to be covered I discovered in the end that I had forgotten to include the ceiling in the area to be covered with the paneling!

Seems that the wood run out before the wall did.   It's going to be a bit draughty like this.

So needless to say we had to pay another visit to the hardware shop and get some more wood. This time though we had to manage with getting it home on the roof rack instead of having it delivered. Although we did also need some more wood for the door frames and some for the shelving as well. In the end it actually took two visits to collect everything. Got some floor panels to use as doors as well. They were as thick as the plywood sheets I was planning to use, but a much more manageable size and cheaper as well. But hopefully that is the last thing we need to buy. Lugging stuff around on the roof racks isn’t much fun.

With most of the attic closed in it wasn’t possible to get anything long up the stairs any more, so it had to come up through the hatch above the car-port. Luckily it is still possible to get things up there although there isn’t much space to maneuver, so the paneling has to be the right way around the first time.

The next up was the door frames and end walls. Thinking about it now, the design I had was probably the wrong one. It worked out that each panel had to be cut separately to the correct length and with an angled end. I’m not sure how it would have been possible to do it otherwise, but without all the cutting it would have been much less work. Still, it looks quite good in the end.

All I need now is a door.   A neeeked wall.

The state of things at the moment is that both end walls are done. All the architraving I wanted in place along the top of the walls and around the doors is finished. One set of shelves is in place and I’m working on another two. Those shelves should be finished tomorrow with any luck. Then there comes the railing around the stair hole, some air vents and the doors at each end. Then maybe we can start piling all our junk there…

A big girl now

Lilli is already over 6 months old now and a pretty big girl now (relatively speaking :-).

Couch potato

The last of her puppy teeth came out a couple of months ago and her new ones are much improved. Bigger and less sharp, so less likely to poke holes in hands when playing games. Even the strongest of toys are no match for her new teeth. This one lasted about 5 minutes before bits were coming off.

Lasted about 5 minutes

With the coming of spring Lilli likes to be outside as much as possible, guarding the yard from birds and other dangerous animals. You never know when the house will be attacked by a rabid wagtail or a killer butterfly.

Watch out.

Thursday was May Day, and it has just gotten hotter every day reaching a peak today. So this weekend has been a bit too hot outside, even for Lilli. Although she just needs a brief break inside before the guarding continues.

Oh, the heat.

Today there was a thunderstorm which was quite scarey and required hiding behind the armchair inside, but once that passed there was a nice spring shower. It was the first rain in a few weeks and a bit daunting at first.

To get wet or not?

But after a while it became necessary to get wet.

It's raining!

After all that, even though she is a big girl now, she still likes nothing better than a cuddle.


Sunday, 04.05.2008

With the coming of spring so starts more work. First up for this year is the attic. The attic will be unheated storage space built into the ceiling space. The rafters already had a space designed into them to be used for this and between the ventilation pipes and the chimney we have about 10 metres of space there, but the attic itself is about 7-8 metres long. We had always planned to build it there, but it has taken quite a long time to get started.

Of course nothing goes as expected. A couple of weeks ago when we decided to actually do something we ordered all the wood we needed. Pine tongue and groove floor boards and panelling for the walls. Both as cheap as we could get. Of course the day they delivered our near 1000€ of wood we found an advert for exactly the same stuff for half the price on sale…

Putting down the floorboards was quite simple once I worked out to knock them into place with the hammer and an offcut of boarding. Although most of the boards were twisted, so it took a bit of work to get them in place sometimes. The biggest problem is the hole in the ceiling where the steps come up. That took quite a lot of messing around to build a nice frame enclosing the hole.

Lots of grooves, not much tongue.   I hope that insulation isn't toxic...   Mind the gap.

But after a few scratchy evenings of jumping from rafter to rafter the floor was finished.

Mind the gap part II.   A nice dancing floor for the mice.

Next up is the wall/ceiling panelling.

Winter paradise

We spent Easter in Varkaus.While we were there it was freezing most of the time with fresh fluffy new snow. That drove Lilli crazy 🙂

Fun in the snow.

So much so that she wanted to spend all of the time outside

My nose is a bit cold.

Of course there can be such a thing as too much snow.

Scaredy dog

Last week was Lilli’s first day at puppy school. And it was very scarey. Lilli spent her free play time either hiding under a chair or being chased by another dog.

Scaredy dog

The other dogs are very interesting to watch, but only if they don’t get too close.


Friends and fun

Lilli has had her second visit to the vet now. The first was a month ago and the second just last week. Both visits were for her vaccinations. With both those complete she can now meet other dogs.

That presents a bit of a problem since Lilli finds that other dogs are extremely interesting and very scary. So there is a lot of jumping around and running away involved. Hopefully that should be solved soon though as we have booked her into puppy lessons starting from next week.

While at the vet we managed to weigh her properly. The first time she was just over 4kg and the second time was 5.25kg. The vet recommended we take her off puppy food and already start her on adult food since she is growing so fast. That is supposed to be quite common for her breed. Fortunately the adult kibbles we got turned out to be pretty much her favourite food (most of the time).

Also last week she lost the first of her puppy teeth, the two top front ones. No sign yet of any others coming out though. She has grown quite a lot and one side effect is that her reach has increased quite a lot and she takes advantage of it to grab anything she can get her teeth around. She had been quite well behaved (mostly) up until last week, so it might be a side effect of teething, or just wanting attention. But we will see if we can it out of her.

The winter has been pretty warm and wet and generally yucky which, for the most part, has resulted in an extremely dirty dog every time we went out for a walk. The worst part is that the road grit and dust from the studded winter tyres didn’t wash off.

Dirty dog.

Lilli didn’t appreciate it much either since being dirty involves getting baths.

The last few days though have been a complete change. It snowed about 10cm during the weekend and then nearly another 5cm yesterday. Lilli was in a white heaven! There is nothing so much fun as being up to your butt in snow 🙂

See dog run   See dog jump   See dog covered in snow

And final compulsory cute puppy picture.

Ohhh, cute little puppy