Friday, October 14, 2011

Last Call for Bottles - Merrilyn Part 21

So we reach the final bottles for the three musketeers.  The final real contact as we send them on their way into the wild.  It's a very sad day for us all.  Merrilyn has been in care now for almost 12 months, and every day of that time she has enjoyed her bottles of milk, (special kangaroo formula - never give kangaroos normal cow's milk), and as she drank she would close her eyes and I just knew she was in seventh heaven.  I loved every tug of the bottle and was always sad to see the bottle empty and now I was giving her her very last bottle.  Tears come to my eyes just thinking about it.

  Buster too loved his bottle, almost as much as his pouch (See Last night Merrilyn part 20).  Though we were trying to minimise contact he always managed to talk Stephen into giving him a cuddle post bottle and Stephen knew this would be the last as Buster must stop making contacts with humans.  A 50-60kg eastern grey male is not something that you want cuddling humans! 

He sucked his last bottle down.

 And had one last cuddle.

He seemed to know something was coming to an end.

Bob too loved his bottle and I fed him with Merrilyn.
I wanted to cuddle them both too, but simply didn't have enough arms.  I had other joeys in care to feed, but somehow the three musketeers, and especially Merrilyn, had captured my heart in a way no others had.  Tears fell as I fed them for the last time.

So now all three were fully weaned, out of their pouches and out of the safety of the pen. They were totally free, 24 hours a day and no longer needed humans to survive.  This isn't the end of the story though - not by a long way!  Stay tuned for their adventures as they make their way back to a life in the wild.

As you journey in life, think of the animals who don't have a voice of their own, and speak up for them as they live here too.  Take care until next time.  Cheryl

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Last Night - Merrilyn Part 20

Time flies by in this life.  It has for me lately with blog episodes not being delivered on time, sorry, and it did for the growing joeys too.  One minute Merrilyn was a fur less, helpless joey dependent on me for everything and suddenly it was the last night she would ever spend in her pouch!

In fact her last night was the night before this photo was taken.  The joeys had been outside now for weeks.  Initially they had their freedom only during the day, but now they could also come and go at night.  They only had their pouches at night and it was time they left their pouches behind.

In the wild, eastern grey kangaroos spend roughly ten to twelve months in their mothers pouch.  Buster and Bob had been able to spend much longer as we were releasing all three together and Merrilyn needed to catch up.  It was Merrilyn who eventually led the way.  She was always the strongest of the three, despite her younger age.  She had let us know that it was time, spending less and less time in the pouch.  This last night of the pouches I left my bed several times and every time the two boys were tucked up inside their pouches whilst Merrilyn stood guard beside hers.

Buster, by far the oldest, was the most attached to his pouch.

By now he could barely fit inside.

When I told him this was his last night - he was not impressed!

Oh no - losing my pouch?  Please no.

And so the very next day the pouches were taken away for the very last time.

And so the little band of musketeers... 
.. became big brave musketeers.

Buster left, Merrilyn and Bob.  Now living permanently outside the safety of the fenced area.

They were still having a daily bottle and some pellets.

(Excuse Buster rolling out the lipstick in this photo - male kangaroos are excited by females and food!)

Soon it would be time for the final bottles and their real move for self sufficiency back in the wild.
Until next time!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Buster Blossoms - Merrilyn Part 19

Remember this little guy? (Part 4 - Buster Arrives)

Well he blossomed into a great teenager!

His fluffy look is because he came from higher altitudes so had a thicker winter fur.

His personality was as soft and cuddly as he looked.  A very gentle boy.

You'll also recall his broken foot. (Part 10 - what else can go wrong?)

As you might remember it didn't set well and so it never sat as it should and a callous formed, but it never slowed him down.  The callous shows as a round circle towards the bottom of the thick part of his foot. 

You can also see the strong fore paw.  The nails are blunt but can do a great deal of damage.  Which is one of the reasons a male kangaroo must be released and de-humanised as soon as possible.  Buster liked to come up and gently place his forepaws on your shoulders and that was fine if you stood completely still, but if you moved away quickly you'd be left with welts.  We knew, that once he was fully weaned, Buster needed to go completely wild as quickly as possible. He still had five months to go to come completely off his bottles and by then he'd be even bigger.  

Buster adored his pouch and he was going to be able to keep it a little longer than usual as both Bob and Merrilyn were younger and we wanted to release them all together.  The three of them spent all day out roaming now, but at night were given their pouches and locked into a pen where they were safe from predators and yet able to graze freely, though I suspect that once Buster tumbled into his pouch he didn't venture out again until morning!

Until next time.  Love the animals, they belong here too! 

Friday, September 2, 2011

Growing Joeys - Merrilyn Part 18

Sometimes life is just wonderful!  After multiple dramas in a short space of time, (read back over Merrilyn's story to catch up with the action.), we moved into a time of relative peace and joy, watching the three musketeers grow!

Buster and Stephen's relationship grew.

Bob continued to sleep when and wherever possible!

And Merrilyn?  Well she continued to bury herself deep into my heart.

She also loved to sleep.

She loved to lick human flesh!

But most of all, she loved her bottle!

When not sleeping, or eating, the three joined us for walks.  Exploring the territory that was to become their new home.  My wish was for such safe and beautiful times to last forever!

Wishing you all safe and beautiful times.  Until next week. Cheryl

Friday, August 26, 2011

The 7 x 7 Link Award

Hi everyone and firstly an apology for my absence last week - just too much to do and the blog simply didn't happen, so sorry to those who wait for their weekly dose of the roos!  The blog has won another award and I feel both proud and humble.  It's lovely to think you are thought of when these blog awards roll round cyberspace and I appreciate the thought very much.

Thanks to Jo of Chronicles of Illusions for the award.  Please go and say hello to my Aussie/NZ friend.

This award is fairly complex award and so it will occupy the space this week, but it gives me the chance to mention older posts that some of you newcomers won't have read and may be interested in. I first need to link you to seven previous posts:

1. Most Beautiful

In a very biased way I find any posting with an animal featured is beautiful, but if I have to chose one I'll go with the first part of Merrilyn's story.  Kangaroo Joey Arrives.  Long time readers know a bit more about Merrilyn, but this is where I decided to chronicle her life from the start.

2. Most Popular

Of recent times, (and it's really hard to call this one as readership grows) Gone in a Flash is the winner hands down. The Story of Merrilyn's overnight disappearance.

3. Most Controversial
Death after Sex caused a little controversy.  I certainly think it attracted people who wondered what they might find and the little antechinus has quite a story!

4. Most Helpful

I've had lots of thanks for my pumpkin soup recipe, which overcomes the problem of cutting through the tough skin of many pumpkins.  If you liked (like) this you might also like homemade mango ice cream.

5. Most Surprisingly Successful
Well many people find one snake off putting, let alone two - and two engrossed in fighting with each other! I used photos my father manged to capture quite a few years ago in the fighting snakes post.

6. Most Underrated.
Possibly because it was early on, but somehow this post didn't catch much attention and I find squirrel gliders simply irresistible!  Want to find out more - go to Not much bigger than a thumb!

7. Most Pride Worthy.
This was a tough one.  Awards are great and I often blog about things I'm proud of, but I settled on this post that I don't even recommend you visit now.  It had an oil leak meter on it showing how much damage the gulf oil spill was doing!  Oil continuing to spill took me away from here to another part of the world, but I think we need to speak up whenever our natural environment is threatened - after all we need it ourselves to survive!

So now to pass this award to 7 blogs!  I've decided to pass it to 7 blogs belonging to people who both follow me, and who also come over and leave comments regularly.  They each have unique blogs, but more than that, they are great human beings who have become, or are becoming my friends!  A welcome to some new followers too and be sure that I'll be over to follow you as long as your icon links me back to your blog!  So if you are looking for some new blogs to check out - here's the list!

Catbird Scout - some of the most beautiful writing you'll find around!

Whispering Pines - lovely family and lovely stories

The Untroubled Kingdom of Laila Knight - Go and share some of Laila's divine madness.

So You're A Writer - reasonably new but great writer's blog.

Shirley Wells - Dark Crimes, Deep Secrets, Powerful Stories.

Kiddothings - humorous stories of raising small children.

Mom of the Perpetually Grounded - again funny stories, this time of raising teenage girls.

So enjoy!  Thanks again to Jo of Chronicles of Illusions for the award.  Back to kangaroo stories next week!

Now added this to Lovelinks #21 Go and take a peep and join the fun!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Merrilyn Loses Another Life - Merrilyn Part 17

Do kangaroos have "lives" like cats do you think?  If so Merrilyn has already used up two.  The first when she survived the impact of the motor vehicle that killed her mother and the second when she chased a wild kangaroo and ended up out over night when very small. (Gone in a Flash) and now, for a third time her life was in danger.

There are many diseases that can kill a kangaroo joey in care, but the two I fear most are coccidiosis and the other is something we call the blood parasite disease.  I don't think you want in depth detail here, so suffice to say coccidiosis is caused by a parasite and it can result in a very painful death and I lost three beautiful joeys to it very early in my caring career.  They had come to me after being very distressed by a violent thunderstorm and the carer they were with adding to their distress by putting them under a shower as they had been covered in mud and then the further stress of finding themselves in a new place with a new carer.  I didn't know enough then to know it was a recipe for disaster.  They were all dead in two weeks - their bodies over whelmed by the parasites as their immunity was weakened by stress.  I still cry to think of them.

Not a great photo, but this is them the day they arrived.
They were very ill within hours of this photograph being taken.

The blood parasite disease is yet to be properly identified, and a diagnosis can only be confirmed by an autopsy, so survivors may or may not have had this particular disease.  Again I had two joeys struck down by it in my early caring life.  One I saved, the other had to be put down as the parasite had reached her brain and she lost all coordination. 

Merrilyn had always been feisty and fit, and her overnight escapade showed she was tough, so it was with some horror that I found her very subdued one morning and though she came for a walk with me her breathing seemed harder than it should be and there were none of the usual sprints.  I cut short the walk and returned home.  When the symptoms of coccidiosis appear it is often already too late, so I gave her a dose of the medicine just in case and added two products to her milk that help strengthen the immune system, and was happy when she did still drink, even if not as enthusiastically as normal. For some reason Merrilyn had burrowed into my heart more than any other joey I'd raised - maybe that first 3 weeks of tending to her every two hours, twenty-four hours a day?

Merrilyn at 4kg.
Despite the medicine she didn't pick up. She took on a hang dog type look and her breathing was still quite noisy.  I gave her rehydration fluid and her poo was definitely off, though showed no signs of blood, which is a tell tale sign of coccidiosis.  I did not sleep much that first night and the next day she was no better, but thankfully she was also not worse.  She was inside a shelter and so I could see she had eaten little of the grass that had been left for her.  I checked her gums and they seemed paler than the previous day and another dark shadow crossed my path - the blood parasite disease caused anemia.  Could I give her a shot of the medicine we use for the blood parasite disease on top of the coccidiosis medicine?  It's clear to me that kangaroos often deteriorate under modern medicine and I think it's because it can destroy the gut flora that they need to survive, so I am always hesitant to dose up unnecessarily, but there was no way to tell if her problem was the blood parasite and if it was...  I rang all the carers I could think of who might know and as usual advice varied.  One of the major problems we have is wildlife care is so much trial and error.  Yes we do know a lot, but there's so much more that remains a mystery.
Merrilyn would not eat grass and she would not take a bottle - something totally unheard of in this gorgeous creature who adored her bottle!

So what to do?  When some more poo arrived it was desiccated - something else I'd seen with the blood parasite and so now I didn't hesitate.  I took out the syringe and gave her the jab and then called to whoever the greater power is in this life to give this beautiful creature a chance to survive.

As big as she was I popped her back into a pouch and held her
and tried to think of other things I could do to bring her through.

It took a week of coaxing her to eat, a little at a time, and quiet care, and then her energy increased and I knew she'd make it through.  I don't believe it was coccidiosis.  Did she have the blood parasite disease?  I think it is likely, though we'll never know for sure.  I'm just pleased that she made it through!  Joeys - as they survive, years are taken off my life!

A request.  Please check your profile to make sure your blog shows up if I click on your follow icon or comment.  I have a few people I'd love to follow back and read their blogs but I cannot find my way to them.... help.  So if I seem rude drop me an email,, and let me know how to find you.  Many thanks and thanks so much for following and commenting - it makes my day!
Also the blog has collected another award.

The goal of the award is to spotlight up and coming bloggers who currently have less than 200 followers.(That's me though I have cracked the 100 mark now!)

The rules of the award are:
1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you.
2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
4. Have faith that your followers will spread the love to other bloggers.
5. And most of all - have bloggity-blog fun!
So firstly my grateful thanks to Carrie Butler at So, You're a Writer  This is a great new blog that carries some seriously good information for writers as well as some very unique and fun posts.  Well worth a look.

And also to Lady Gwen of Run Gwen Run.  I think I first met Lady Gwen, who by the way combines running and writing to make for a very interesting blog, through the Favourite Book Blog Fest and as she approaches her first blogoversary she's creating a blog fest of her own that you may like to join in on. (It's a very clever judge and jury blog fest running in early September.    Here's her first post about it so you can join in the fun. As I was preparing to give this award to her, she gave it to me!

So who to pass the award on to?

 1) Bryce of The Bryce Daniels Preservation Society.  I always think of Bryce in red shoes - well he hails from Kansas!  He's gathered an amazing number of followers in his blog's short history and many of us want to see who wins out - the novelist or the poet!

2) Jo Bryant of Chronicles of Illusion. Now Jo lives across the ditch from me.  Which is Australian for saying she lives in New Zealand.  Quite a few interesting snippets to be found on this blog!

3) Ms Mouse of Ms Mouse Cleans House definitely deserves an award.  Anyone teaching cats to use a real toilet, instead of a litter box needs an award!

4) Mrs Catch of Catch is my fourth choice - and these come in no order of merit! With a tag line of "Catching the sweetness in life" this is a place to go to enjoy and be serene - well most of the time... (She's also a fellow Aussie!)

No number 5 as that was Lady Gwen and as I have two people to thank I think that's enough for you all to run round if you have the time.  Thanks again, to Carrie and Lady Gwen for the award!  "Talk" to you all next Friday with more adventures from Merrilyn and the musketeers! 

I've also attached this post to Lovelinks #19.  Take a peek.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Bob back in trouble - Merrilyn Part 16

If this is your first time here you can start this tale from the beginning here.  It's the story of Merrilyn, and her kangaroo friends.To my regulars, many thanks for all your comments, to new followers many thanks too and I will be round to join you and thank you soon but am just managing to keep the posts going whilst being very time poor at the moment.  A short post today as the story continues.

Poor Bob - never a dull moment for him!  Thankfully Merrilyn and Buster are all good news.  Merrilyn showed no signs of any ill effects from her overnight adventure, (Gone in a flash), once she over came the tiredness, and though Buster ended up with a slightly crooked foot (What else can go wrong and Foot and mouth disease ) it wasn't slowing him down. 
Buster on the left and Merrilyn on the right - firm friends and growing fast!

However Bob continued to get himself into trouble.  It was clear from the outset that this little kangaroo, either from genetics, or his early experiences, wasn't going to turn out to the be the brightest star in the sky.  We're still not sure exactly what happened.  One morning I looked out and somehow Bob looked different.  (I think if you have been following this story you'll see the clear differences between the kangaroos - they do look different and I can tell them apart).  Anyway I raced out and sure enough Bob did look different.

His little face was all swollen.

He was breathing fine and his eyes were fine and I kept my eye on him until he returned to normal.  I suspect one of two things - bull ants - we have some of the nastiest ants in the world in Australia and I find they can be one of the most painful things to be bitten by and I was put off my feet one day when trying to find a joey when I stepped on not one, but two, bull ant nests in quick succession and my ankle was swollen beyond belief.  The other alternative was a wasp or hornet or some kind.  Either way he had taken a close investigation of something that nature should have told him to leave well alone! 
All's well that ends well.
Until next week.  Take care of the animals!  Cheers Cheryl

Friday, July 29, 2011

Giant Kangaroo Attacks Elderly Woman - Merrilyn Part 15

OK I'll get to the kangaroo attack in a moment but first...
Remember this poor pathetic little joey from part 11
In fact this photo was taken after we'd had him in care for a week.

Well I'm pleased to say in just eight week's Bob under went a transformation.

Hard to believe it's the same joey, but I promise you it is.  There's a tell tale sign he's a happy boy too - can you spot it?  (Remembering he's a boy!)
I had dubbed him the third musketeer and indeed the three musketeers built a solid bond from a very early stage of Bob's arrival.

Merrilyn is on the left, Bob is lying down and Buster on the right.  Walking with them around the property and seeing them growing it's just an absolute joy!
And so to the attack.

Headlines around Australia this week, and probably the world, screamed from newspapers, the radio and TV.
 AFP put out a release across the world headed Giant Kangaroo Attacks Elderly Woman.
And it's true a kangaroo did come into an elderly woman's garden and he scratched and kicked her.  The thing is, and I am always amazed by the media's ability to omit a few salient facts so that people are horrified and start thinking of these gentle creatures as granny killers!
This release finally came out later, not front page, not mentioned on any radio or TV program and probably not beamed across the world.
Kangaroo "Eddie" who attacked 94 year old woman to be put down.
What this story explained was that Eddie the kangaroo wasn't a wild kangaroo, he had, in fact been kept in care after an unsuccessful attempt to release him.  This day he had escaped from his enclosure and was probably just looking for food and he associated food with humans and when this human didn't feed him he got annoyed.  Eddie is now injured, as well as dangerous and sadly having him euthanased is probably the only way.  These animals are meant to be wild and free.  Males in particular can become aggressive if kept in captivity.  Although this carer probably couldn't face having him euthanased, the result of keeping him could have resulted in someone losing their life.
I hope for media that report things less dramatically and completely so people don't think all our kangaroos are like this (a wild male will usually run away unless he is cornered, attacked, mating or being fed by humans), and I hope all carers who consider keeping adult kangaroos this way also take heed that it is the animal who will suffer in the end.
Sorry it's not all cheerful in the land of kangaroos, but there you go.  Until next Friday, many thanks for visiting, your presence is an additional joy in my life!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Foot and Mouth Disease - Merrilyn Part 14

Some weeks nothing seems to go right.  You long for a quiet life.  You want everything to go smoothly.  Why does life sometimes seem to conspire to ensure life is anything but quiet and smooth?

Thankfully all was smooth for Merrilyn.  In fact her biggest problem was staying awake!
 She was now a healthy 4.3kg and growing by the day. She was 9.5 months old.

The boys were another story.
 Those of you who've been here a while will recall that Buster broke his foot in Part 10.  We worked hard to keep the cast on for the four weeks the vet wanted it there.  He didn't want to wait much longer as Buster was growing fast and he was concerned the cast would affect the foot.  We headed to the vet's to have the cast removed with trepidation.  Had it healed well?  It had been nearly impossible to keep him from running. There was good news and bad.

  The good news was the bone had knit well.  The bad news was he now had a crooked foot.  You can see the dark "toe" at the end of the foot.  The one on the left (your left) is clearly turned in.  
This shot shows it a bit better.  Buster was now 12 months old.  Still about six months from being fully weaned.  A male kangaroo must have full use of his hind legs.  He must be strong and he must be able to run fast.  Would this defect be a problem for him in the longer term?  

A number of people leaving comments have suggested the joeys are our pets.  It may look that way from the outside but our role is to simply help them achieve their freedom to go back to the wild, not to keep them here with us.  In fact trying to keep a male kangaroo around, when they reach adulthood, can be a very dangerous thing, but more on that later.  Our immediate concern was whether we were saving Buster now, only to see him die a horrible death later.  We discussed it with the vet and all agreed we'd keep going and see how Buster adjusted.  If we felt he was going to suffer later then the awful decision could be made before he was too big to take back to the vet. Time would decide his fate.  

Then we discovered a major problem with Bob.  He'd overcome his tummy troubles and was starting to put on weight.  Then, the day after Buster had his cast removed I noticed something very strange about his mouth.
Here he his taking his bottle.  Looks fine - right (and a much finer head than he arrived with!)

Take a look this side - His mouth looks somewhat deformed.  I couldn't believe it, or believe I'd missed the extent of it in the few weeks he'd been here, though between the joeys in care and stabilising new joeys for others I'd been pretty busy.  I thought I knew what was causing it and it had to be stopped or his mouth would be permanently damaged.

You might recall Merrilyn liked to suck on her tail for security. Something I had discouraged and that she now didn't do.

Bob had chosen to suck on his foot and had obviously started doing it at a very young age.  He needed to stop.  He was almost 11 months old and quite a big joey and his sucking was damaging his mouth.  How to stop him that's the question?  He was settling in now, so hopefully his stress levels were subsiding and the sucking was now just a habit.  So the foot was gently removed every time he was caught in the act and he was distracted with a mouthful of grass.
The three musketeers were bonding, but between the 3 of them, life was certainly not going to be quiet or smooth!

This week has bought a great milestone for me in the blogging world.  My 100th follower.  I'd like to thank all my followers, as followers and regular comments are what keep us going and my blog has grown rapidly since I started serialising the life of Merrilyn and her companions just one post a week generally.

I decided to spontaneously offer my 100th follower a small reward, so please go and meet Jessica of Suitcases and Sippy Cups.  What's Jessica's blog about?  Well a family of six let's the world be their classroom as they travel together making memories.  Travel tips and guides
to great family locations are served up with a dose of humor, along with
stories to inspire families to pack up and go.  I'm so glad I found this great blog and joined as a follower, which brought Jessica over to see me and now we are building a friendship.  Jessica thought this particular posting might suit readers here and as it's about wildlife I have to agree.  See Turtles
Please go and say hi to Jessica and again, thank you Jessica and all my followers and commenters.  You're all great and I may well start doing a few more random acts of introduction at the end of a post so that you can meet a few more.

Until next Friday, take care all!

Adding this into the fun of Love Links #16 - Come and join in the fun.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Yet another problem child - Merrilyn Part 13

Just 3 days after Bob arrived in care, (The Third Musketeer) yet another bundle arrived in our life.  I'd taken on the role of Macropod Coordinator for our local wildlife care group, which means it was my responsibility to stabilise new kangaroo and wallaby arrivals.  On this particular day I was contacted by our local police saying they'd had a joey dropped into the police station and could I come and take it away please.

I headed down there and found a female red-necked wallaby, yes like Pepe and Joe ( What's a Wallaby) .  She was over one kilo (2.2lb) and well furred.  I estimated she was about 7 months old and her mother had been hit by a car.  I was surprised she had made it into care as at that age she was well able to run from people and it worried me that she may have some injuries.

I couldn't find anything obvious but she struggled and was difficult to try to feed, so as she should have been nibbling on vegetation by this stage I decided to give her rest and quiet and see what would happen.  Most of you have probably used a playpen along the way (or are they considered a no no for kids these days?)  Well they come in handy for joeys who are reasonably mobile and that you don't want to mix in with the rest of the joeys in your house.
The normal bars are encased in soft mesh so that the joeys can't just walk through them and towels and sheeting give them a sense of added security and privacy.  Copper, as we named her, curled up in Merrilyn's old pouch and fell asleep.  I gave her a few hours and then tried some more rehydration fluid.  She seemed very flat but I managed to get a small amount into her and suddenly she was fighting me.  I left her to rest some more and this process continued for a couple of days.  She lost some weight and seemed to have some colicky type pain which I treated and hoped that it was the dietary change and loss of her mom and not internal injuries.

A week went by and suddenly both she and Bob seemed to turn a corner together.  I'd been struggling to get his poo problems under control and he was well under weight but one morning they had both put on weight and Copper hopped out to take a look at her new world.  She was a delight!

She hardly stopped moving so capturing her on film was quite a feat.

Two days after these photos were taken she went missing.  I got up in the morning and there was no Copper in the playpen.  I couldn't believe that she could have escaped the house without us noticing and so I carefully checked every nook and cranny in the place, but no Copper.  I could not imagine where she could be.  The three musketeers were all heads out and looking for their morning bottle so I started to get them ready and when I turned around to give Bob his bottle I couldn't believe what I saw.

Perhaps she wanted company, or perhaps she sensed that Bob was struggling and needed a friend?  She wasn't actually directly in the pouch with Bob, but had somehow found her way between his pouch liner and the pouch.  She was obviously warm and happy and looking for her bottle too!

As much as I would love to have added Copper to the gang, between 3 demanding kangaroo joeys and Pepe and Joe, plus stabilising new joeys coming into care, I didn't have enough time to keep Copper here and after a few more days she was taken to another carers place for final feeding up and gentle release from their home back into the wild.  It's a beautiful property, with many red-necks and somewhere Copper will feel right at home.  I'm still amazed that she was in with Bob and also amazed she jumped out of the play pen so easily - at least we knew she was fit and strong!

As for Bob - well here he is at the end of his first week here.  Still scrawny but looking a bit better and with his systems settled slowly gaining weight.

OK before I go I want to point you to a new page I've put in Hopper Strategized.  This is an ongoing blog hop currently being co-hosted by Christin Vance of Mom Blog of Two Little Misters and Stephanie Greiner of Always Just a Mom.  It's a way to gain some more traffic and also keep your blog up front and centre on the Google engine.  All the details are on the page if you want to give it a try and I'm working my way through the people already on to to say hello.

Adding this post to Love Links No 15 - come and join in the fun!

Until next week.  Take care all, Cheryl