Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

Apifera Farm is a registered 501 [c][3]. #EIN# 82-2236486

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©Katherine Dunn.

Friday, February 28, 2014

A girl and her pig

Marcella has managed to sway Ernest into friendship. He is tolerant of her puppiness and she is learning her boundaries with Ernest. She kind of lights up when he is around, like,

"Oh good, Ernest is here!"

I caught a few shots of the odd couple yesterday, with Marcella licking Ernest's eyes which he really likes. When he has had enough attention-or too much of her attention-he gives her a swift- but too hard- nose push, and she flops over in submission.

If you like these posts and animal shares please consider pledging to my next book on Kickstarter-there are pigs in it after all.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

You can take this donkey home...if

Wouldn't you love to have a donkey-maybe in the kitchen, or bedroom? This art might be yours if you pledge at $25 or more, or up your current pledge by $25 or more.

It is crunch time! 25 days to go and we still need over $6,000 but we had a good boost this week and are 54% funded. [Thank you to everyone who got us here so far!]

I Need You! Here is how it works.

New pledgers:For each $25 you pledge, your name will be on a slip of paper, and placed in the donkey's bucket. SO if you pledge $75, your names gets put on three pieces of paper and dropped into the bucket. Keep in mind for each $25 you pledge, if funded, you also get three of the books when printed.

If you already have pledged:For each $25 increase you make on your current pledge, your name will go into the donkey's bucket. And yes, each additional $25 gets you another copy of the book once funded and printed. In addition: I also plan to do another surprise name pulling out of the donkey bucket for those that have already pledged to date and increase their pledge. So some of you that up your pledge might have a surprise in the mail after the project funds [note the positivity in that].

As always The Head Troll will pick the name out of the bucket and that person gets the art [this will happen after funding] [9x13", acrylic on heavy watercolor paper, retail value $850+].

I know some of you won't be able to increase your pledge $25 or more and that is okay. But the days are waning. If you can pledge another $10, or SHARE this project on blogs and social media-it is so appreciated. I really mean that-it means so much each time a pledge comes in or a word of encouragement. Fundraising on a deadline is not for the weak or whiny.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Celebrate the man in the rubber suit

Now that the birthday party for Goose is past, I am beginning my preparations for a special dinner for Martyn tonight, the one and only Dirt Farmer. This is a person that still looks hot to me in a rubber suit, even though I'm usually to tired or distracted to act on any sudden impulses- but a girl can take notice. He would die if he knew I said that-online-but it is true.

Martyn is the best mate and friend I could have found that first day after I landed in Oregon, alone, with a blind terrier and a gassy pug. He was the first person I met, and the first one I'd marry. He matches my over sensitivity with calm and humor, lifts me up in sadness at the loss of mother or old goat. He cheers me on with my hopes-even when they seem about to fail.

Most importantly, he is crucial to keeping Apifera standing. While I use hay twine as my main product to secure everything from fence to gate, Martyn is handy with all power tools- most of which 'm banned from using.

He gives me companionship by the fire-and always makes me laugh. He cooks for me like I am visiting from a far off country, and helps me with the most mundane tasks, and many on the spur of the moment-

"Quick! Grab a board, the pigs found a hole in the fence!"

I once heard a very old man-in his 90's- that had lost his wife of 50 years. He said he had his work which he loved, but that 'life just wasn't as fun any more." Tat broke my heart for him. For that is how I imagine it would be, what Apifera would be, without The Dirt Farmer.

So I'll squeeze him a lot tonight and stuff him with baked chicken-smothered in onions and white wine-and toast to life together.

Want to honor the Dirt Farmer on his birthday? Go make a pledge to the current Kickstarter project -after all it is our love story that the book is partially about.

Party for a one year old goose, er, goat

I was 15 minutes late to the 12:15 Animal Cracker Tossing Party in honor of Little Goose's first birthday. The Head Troll is prompt and if you aren't there at the start time of her invite, tough love, my friend. I appreciate this, as I was raised never to be late-that it is self absorbed and wastes the other person's...or goat's...time.

But I got caught up in an email, and was running late. By the time I got to the barnyard gate, there was quite a bit of activity already happening.

"Get over, I'm first!"

"No, I am!"

This went on for a few times until I heard multiple hard heads bashing. No worries, just the way we say, Move over, please, NOW! around here.

The nice thing about The Head Troll's party planning is the party is intense, and then, it's over. I often am only at one of these parties for less than 10 minutes. And there is never any clean up. It allows me to observe and extend well wishes to the guest of honor, and then get some work done.

If you have never been to an Animal Cracker Tossing Party, they are wild at times. Little bodies crushing for position, pigs grunting, ducks flapping and the occasional chicken making a mad dash for a cookie, or to get away from the moving white fluff thing that came to live in the barnyard not more than a week ago. The llama and Scooby Keith watched from afar, and Old Rudy was given special cookies directly by me, so as to ensure he got some.

When the party was over, the birthday boy looked content. He stood up on the ridge and watched as the final crumbs were eaten, then headed back to the barn.

If you enjoy these stories from Apifera, please consider supporting the Kickstarter project now going on to help birth another book. My art and writing are what allow me to live here and maintain the barnyard of Misfits. Thank you.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The truth be told by this outsider

I have a story to tell you. It amuses me now, although at the time I was perplexed and a bit miffed [to put it lightly]. And because I was asked again-for the umpteenth time about this subject-I decided to come clean with the real story, the truth, years later. It comes over and over, and I'm tired of hiding the facts.

When we moved here to Yamhill, I knew nobody. I had a national following in illustration at the time after 15 years and had some nice things under my belt. So someone suggested I do the Open Studio Art Harvest Tour out here in Yamhill County. I felt I might not fit in, or wasn't sure the effort would pay as I knew my prices were high for Portland, let alone Yamhill, and I am not a realistic painter like many in the tour. But a few years later, I thought it might be fun, and a way to promote myself and the farm to the area. I had just finished my first book so figured people could always buy that. So I applied- which meant sending in actual images as they had no online entries. I sent small archive prints and a history of my work including awards, press and shows. I chose 5 animal images, including this one of Pino.

And they rejected me. A jury of three artists who had lived in the area for many years. What was even funnier, for lack of a better word, is they returned my archive prints- folded- yep, folded and ruined in an envelope.

Fast forward a few days. A friend in the area, an artist, was not only shocked, but felt there must have been a mistake. I said it was probably a personal reason, maybe they didn't like I was from out of state, etc. But I never really knew why. Finally this year I was told by someone in the know that the jurors felt - well, my work was like something a child had scribbled on paper and just wasn't up to their snuff. You'd think that a rural art tour would be happy to have some new blood, especially someone who had made a full time living as an artist for over 15 years and might bring in some different buyers.

When people in the area used to ask, "Hey why don't you do the Art Harvest Tour?' I always said, "Not enough time" which is actually true now- it falls on 6 days of prime October weather, 2 straight weekends, and I just would never do it now- but, I always felt like a spoiled sport by telling the truth.

Once again, someone asked me today about it. I told her the truth this time. Maybe this donkey is the scribbles of a child- but who cares, it's a wine country art tour, not the Guggenheim. [insert laugh track from barnyard]. I love where I live, and I hold no grudge against the three judges-in fact, I feel so lucky that I still have a child in my eye and heart. I'd love to improve my drawing skills, and as I age, I find I am more and more...I still can't draw hands. Or proper perspective. But I sure know how to draw what I feel. So for now, I present you with my donkey drawing you see before you, rejected by the Yamhill Art Harvest Tour, but selected by the American Illustration for the website gallery in NYC that same year. His one eye might be crooked to some-but for me, it is just symbolic of a fellow who looks at the world in the only way he can-his way, a bit askew and misfitted.

Note: The Art harvest Tour is scheduled for 2 weekends in October. Visit their website to learn more.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Pig tested

We are down to 27 days, folks. Please visit the Kickstarter fund page and pre order at any gift level you'd like. I have been working on this book for many years and it is close to my heart-birthing it can be a slow process, and a lonely one [except I do have the donkey for lunch breaks!] but I feel we can make the goal if everyone who follows here, or who has bought Misfits- pledges now. We are only at 40% funded. I have not given up hope, because I look at the lists of people I've promoted the book too, and I just feel they will come through for me and this book.

It's going to take a herd and a flock to reach the goal in time. But the book's underlying message is to never give up on a dream, and to let dreams evolve. So I'm holding onto that sentiment, even though the hill to climb is steep.

Things you can do to help today-

- Share the link http://kck.st/1atG0OW on Facebook and social media

- Do a blog post [feel free to use images from my posts on this blog about the book

- Email 5 friends that love pie, donkeys and farm and share the project

- Email friends that have lost at love and feel like their mate isn't out there-the book might resonate

- If you have pledged, consider adjusting your pledge upward

And finally- thank you to those of you who stepped up early to pledge, and share. I really, really appreciate it.

Style of The Dirt Farmer

We dress pretty raggedy around here, as some of you may know. If you saw me in my now thread bare barn coat you might think I need to take up a collection for myself, versus collecting for the Misfits feed bill. I've always been a casual dresser, but in my city life I like to remember that I had a style. That style has given way to pure functional attire for the cause of the moment-be it fencing, aiding in lambing, goat hauling or pig mud wrestling. Sometimes I think grand thoughts-

"I will start wearing dresses again...or a skirt into the feed store."


The Dirt Farmer has a way of getting dressed and always looking...Dirtfarmish, don't you think? After I took this photo he leaned down and fixed his pant leg, so he'd look tidier.

"Totally ruined it for me," I said. And that was the end of the photo session that day.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Head Mistress in training

I underestimated the sheer pleasure of watching this dog in action. Even at two months, her instincts to sit back and observe are keen, and each day I see more signs of her intellect as a guard. Smart as a whip, the breeder told me,

"If a Marema wants to get from one pasture to another for good reason, it will get there."

On day two she had made a tunnel out of her safety pen, which allowed her to share the larger stall with Moose and Goose. While this complicates this early stage of her career here-for me, not her-it is interesting to watch.

Today was a big morning for her, and the main flock. I didn't think it wise to train her on the pregnant ewes-only because stressed pregnant ewes is not good, and they are a week or so from lambing. So this morning I have the main flock out in the barnyard, amongst the Misfits, and Marcella. The sheep are less hesitant around her, and what is interesting is she does not take chase, she sits back and observes.

She is still a pup though, showing off a stick to Moose, then chasing him-a behavior I will not encourage, and gave her a strong, "No chase!" which had her drop to the ground- excellent reaction!

And the Bottomtums were let out of their pond area. I wanted to see how she handled chickens, since their wings are not clipped. The ducks came with clipped wings, and Priscilla can hold her own, but is old, so I wasn't comfortable letting them out yet.

If you are having Marcella overload, I guess I could apologize. But it is a wonderful relationship forming, me and her. Life is complicated right now because of her-the feeding regime with the goats and pigs is hard enough, separating out who eats and who only gets hay- and now with Marcella, it is over the moon hard. She can not be amongst them, as Ernest and Rosie can get rough- or specifically Rosie the resident grumpologist. And I don't feel comfortable having the llama in her midst during feeding, so he and Scooby Keith go to the orchard. It all requires lots of buckets, shooing goats about and then about again, grabbing Marcella and containing her while someone eats, etc. I've also discovered she loves the barn cat feed which can't hurt her, but the cat haven for breakfast is no more.

Do you like these posts? Please consider pledging to the current Kickstarter campaign-only 30 days left to birth the new book! My writing and art keep the farm afloat, and help maintain the Misfits. Thank you.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Marcella's new arrangements

I am thoroughly enjoying working with Marcella. I am also glad I waited 10 years to bring a guard dog on-as I don't think I would have had the right boundaries early on in farming. Many people ask how I can possibly leave that little sqooshy face out in the rainy, muddy barnyard at night. The fact is it is where she wants to be. She shows that in her willingness to leave me at the gate. When we walk about the barnyard, even in four days she has become independent of me and always returns to be around the animals. I am not one to call my animals "fur babies' - they are individual creatures with non human motives - and this dog was bred to have this job. It's incredibly clear even at this age. Fascinating to watch.

She seems to have found a spot on top of the compost bed, that sits up over the lower fields-at a glance she can see the pregnant ewes who are separated out from the rest of the flock. This of course makes sense-why wouldn't she pick such a vista for the view of the flock, and she can turn the other way and see the goats.

This morning I let her come with me to let the main non bred flock out, which involves walking them out of the barnyard, down the front road past the house, and up to Muddy Hill. Marcella will eventually be spending her time with the flock, in various fields, so she needs to start learning the lay of the land now. She came along willingly and it was just fun to watch her examine the flock up on the hill. The flock however is not quite ready to accept a moving fluff ball - perhaps a rabid bunny in their eyes- to come into the field. Today I had to get the flock to a certain point in the barnyard, while holding Marcella under my arm, so the flock wouldn't flee back to the barn like yesterday. But today we made progress, some of them came up for a sniff. Eventually, I'll pen her near some of the flock and they will learn and create the dynamic.

Today I let the chickens out. I think she's young enough not to be harmful. I am told later on it might be an issue, when she is bigger but still has puppy play in her. I've been leaving the clipped ducks in, as well as Priscilla, just to be on the safe side.

It was calmer all around today, a relief. I am still keeping the llama separate, but he seems ok around the pup, I just don't know him well enough. Yesterday I went for a ride so she met Boone and that was all fine and good.

The goats are not anxious around her now- although some of them still react when she comes bounding in the barn. She is so resilient. I'm afraid the one stinker of the group is Rosie. As I was writing this post I heard crying from Marcella, but it went on and on so I dashed outside. The pigs were coming from the stall area, then Marcella, so I assume it was Rosie. Rosie also bit Raggedy Man this morning and has been snappier around Ernest at times. It is usually around food issues, which is why separation is important. But my new thought is that her hearing or eyesight is failing. I noticed the other week she seemed a bit startled when I'd go to pet her and wondered if this was happening. Assuming this, I will watch things closely. In time, Marcella will just avoid contact with the pig-like all smart Misfits learn-stay away from the grumpy pig. I found no marks on her so all is well.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

To fund or not...just give me a pig kiss

If you aren't sure what the "Kissing Pig Level" is all about, please visit here and take a good look. It's your chance to pre-order some books and help an indie author/press get yet another love story out into the world. The world can always use another love story-especially one for the middle aged gang or those who are a bit later to love like I was in my then forties. And if donkey, homemade pie and talking barns are included, all the better for many readers.

I've also put up a couple mock ups for cover options to mull. They generated about a 50/50 opinion pull on both my Facebook pages, but I kind of think option 2 is slightly ahead, and it is the one I was leaning toward from the start. But I will put them down for a bit and look with fresher eyes. It's interesting to hear the comments too.

We have 32 days left, with day 30 being the middle of the 60 day funding period. As you know, the fund goal must be met or I get 0, and you aren't charged. To be honest, I am having a hard time going through this one, and look forward to the end-no matter what the outcome. I guess that is not the best marketing tactic to get you to pledge NOW, but I really am exhausted by it, and knew this is what I was up against. When it is over, no matter what the outcome, I'll know I've done my best to pitch it to you all- but I will be relieved to be back to other things. I would warn that to all Kickstarter people-especially the majority that do not garner immediate funds like I've seen some people do of late [bravo for them, but it is not the norm]. I think that is something I'm trying to avoid- the watching or examining other Kickstarter project-some that seem rather boring to me, and they get over funded by day 5 or something. That's when you start playing the - "What's wrong with me" in your head.

And that's when I take a breath, go outside and look around. I have what I have and it is just all good even if a Kickstarter project doesn't get funded. So there.

I have an idea that I just want to be with my donkeys again. Alone from the world for awhile. Maybe spend 24 hours straight on Muddy Hill with the The Great White. Take Boone on a day long trek and try talking to 5 strangers along the way and ask them one question. I don't know, we'll see... I'm tired.

So there you have it-32 more days-and then my donkey and I bake a pie and retreat to the hills.

Hey the donkey just brayed, maybe someone pledged. Either way-my cue to get to the barn for feedings.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Working girl arrives at Apifera

I have named her "Marcella", pronounced Mar-chell-a to honor her Italian heritage. She is a Marema and she has a very important job to do at Apifera- guard the sheep and Misfits. She will be busy.

We drove to Bellingham on Saturday, leaving at six in the morning and picked her out of three pups. Then we turned right around and hauled ourselves home. The trip was long, and made longer by the ridiculous under built highway of Seattle-which the powers to be had shrunk by two lanes, causing us to lose an hour and a half on Seattle's freeway stuck in grid lock and wacked out drivers. So she got her first taste of what my voice sounds like when I am grumpy.

But we made it home and she spent her first night in Old Man Guinnias's old suite, so she could be safe, but also have nose touching with the goats.

This morning was a big day for her, and me. And The Misfits. While she will probably do most of her important work with the flock, allowing us to develop our upper fields, she will also have to know and accept everyone in the barnyard.

It was a bit painful to watch at times. I brought her out for intervals of about 20 minutes, in between my chores of getting the lambing stalls ready. Many of the goats just stood back, disturbed, concerned and wary. But Wilbur and The Head Troll took action, smacking her down. A bit of this will happen, and if she were bigger, I'd leave her out to work it out. But she is a bit small for that, so I am chaperoning all her visits with the barnyard. She gives them all her best submissive gestures - tail wag, bent down head, even flopping. But goats know dogs are predators, so it will just take a bit of time.

And we made huge strides even by the end of the day.

I don't want her to over bond with me, so I put her safely in her stall area when I need to until the introductions are acceptable.

And who do you think finally was the first one to accept Marcella? Ernest. Sweet little Ernest. Rosie on the other hand walked right up to her and tried to bite her. But that will end too.

This is a new thing for me, and I am up for the challenge. She is not like the terriers or other dogs I've had, and the breeder gave me lots of good reading material. Her personality is very independent compared to other pups I've had-but she is submissive which is good-but not overly. She seems very smart. I like it. I wasn't sure what it would be like to have a dog in the barnyard-I never allow our dogs there-but I really liked her following me. That will change of course, when she is mature enough to fulfill her job as Head Mistress.

I'm speaking in an Italian accent to her. This amuses me, and perhaps will help me learn more of the beautiful language.

Friday, February 14, 2014


Apifera is spending the day kissing. Happy Valentine Day to all of you too.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Moose on the loose

The greatest pleasure is all mine-watching this little creature head back to the barn, determined with each step to get to the best part of the hay pile before anyone else arrives.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The donkey explains it for you

Besides getting a copy of the book if we get funding, Pino delivers his own personalized bray each time someone pledges at this level. Can you hear him?

Most of you know-but some may not- that Pino is the actual donkey that helped me first deliver pie to nearby farms, and who to this day is the ambassador of healing to all who come to meet him. And of course he is a big part of the upcoming book, "Donkey Dream" which I hope to fund through Kickstarter. Pledging ends 3/23.

The Donkey Bray Level is a great deal-you help get the book printed, but you also get a copy for $25 which includes USA shipping, and once the book is out it will cost a bit more than this due to shipping. So don't take donkey steps, get a move on to the Kick page.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

For our dear Raggedy Man

As promised, I pulled together a birthday part for little Raggedy Man. He had requested the Misfits gather for an Animal Cracker Toss, a favorite past time for them.

Thanks go out to The Head Troll who decorated for me-as I'm preoccupied with snow and work. Poor little Ernest is so exhausted from the last 5 nights of the extended Snow Sleepover Party that he fell asleep. But Rosie provided one quick dance.

These parties never last long, but I'm gad we pulled it off for Raggedy. He is such a cool little dude.

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Snow Donkey, mothers and mittens

As an adult, we are suppose to have learned the concept that instant gratification of our needs can not always be met. We get disapointed alot, we humans. I was suppose to pick the pup up this weekend, and now even a Monday pick up won't be possible due to the snow. I need feed and hope to go Monday if I can, but the snow and ice has caused difficulty for all of us. Hauling water is tedious and back breaking-but at least it is not freezing today, and maybe the water will be back soon.

I was sick of myself. Rather than complain about the snow, and now ice glaze, too much, I decided to take the snow bull by the horns this morning. I summoned up any energy I had left after once again chipping out gates and barn doors and I looked to the sky, eyes closed,

"Snow donkey! I need you!"

I helped Snow Donkey appear-for snow creatures are always a collaboration between land dweller and sky' gift of snow.

I wore a pair of hand knit mittens that were given to me in the 70's, by a family friend who was really like my grandmother and an avid knitter. She came to all of our family gatherings and died in her eighties some thirty years ago. Every winter we would get mittens, always with two color of stripes. When I cleaned out my mother's house, I found a pair she had saved for herself, even though she lived in California in her later years. We both missed Becky a lot, and those mittens just brought her to us anytime we needed her.

So those mittens I had on had a lot of magic dust for sure. As I patted and caressed Snow Donkey, watching his form emerge, I had a memory come to me-of when I was about eight and my Uncle and Aunt came to visit us in Minnesota. He was a well respected astronomer and a real brain. The guy didn't buy TV's, he made them on a weekend for fun. I was always in awe of him as a child. So they visited in winter, and we had lots of snow. He helped us make this giant snowman by creating a snow ramp to help move the large balls up higher-which he explained was how the Egyptians built the pyramids. More awe.

Perhaps it was the mittens, but more likely it was the combination of Snow Donkey and the mittens- that reminded me to let it all go sometimes-the fact the roads are impassable today and you need feed by tomorrow, or that you're stressed about the Kickstarter project, or the simple fact there is no coffee and you can't get to the store-and just fly around with the snow. I've never ridden a snow creature, just the real winged animals here, so I am not sure where I will go next with Snow Donkey, or how long it will take. But he certainly transported me somewhere today, and got me safely back home when it was time to come in.

Snow Donkey is a lot like a mother, I guess. He is here to remind through action that everything will work out-one way or another-perhaps not in the same order we think is best. Nothing I was faced with in the past three days really was 'bad'. I had lots of firewood, power, water, good food, cupcakes, wine, warm animals, safe animals, and a husband to help me.

"It's just weather," my mother used to say, when we were facing the tenth day of below zero weather.

Friday, February 07, 2014

Pig snow dance

As a former Minnesotan, I get a little embarrassed when we have what my old homeland would consider a slight snow accumulation. But out here, even a dusting causes great excitement and dread. Last night I was in stitches watching a weatherman outside in Portland with a pencil, showing the viewing audience how-Good God!-the snow was halfway up the pencil. Of course when the infrastructure of the whole state lacks plows and de-icing, it is havoc from the get go when snow does come, especially since the cities are built on hills and valleys.

Out here, snow like this means one thing-hauling water to all the stalls and paddocks, twice a day. The worst is over, as the winds were so fierce on Wednesday night I had to move the elder ponies into the goat barn as their hut could not keep the snow and wind out, causing both of them to be layered in 4" of snow! And the winds made it impossible for them to stay warm. All the shelters were adrift, so the goat barn became one giant sleepover-with little pigs, old ponies, and Great White walking around, with his befuddled llama look. Ernest the pig was having a great time though–it was as if he was the little kid who got to hang out with all his old cousins for one whole night.

But it is all cattywampus in the barns. I have specific areas to feed everyone so no one gets too piggy, so with the ponies and the llama in the barn now, it makes it all the more problematic. But we all got by. Hoping for warming tomorrow, as the sheep have not been in the fileds for two days-and we are entering the final month of gestation for some of the unborns. Rosie is probably the only one who suffers-her favorite bed area is now where the ponies are for a couple more nights, which means the pig princess has to recreate her bed, and-gasp-sleep near Moose and Goose, the latter two who have been displaced from their sleeping area due to the fact The Great White and his sidekick Scooby are bedding down there for now.

So, I went out to try to take some photos this morning, which is always hard in snow. I have a hard time seeing what I'm focusing on in the view finder. The fields were not only animal-less, there weren't even bird tracks. It was all so quiet since everyone was in the barn-except for Doris and June, who remained in their pig hut. It reminded me there might be a time when there would be no animals in the fields, and it felt kind of lonely.

But Pearly June came running out of her hut, and reminded me of how glorious it is to experience snow for the first time. We get so jaded with weather, but what a beautiful, remarkable thing it is. Each little flake unique onto itself, drifting and accumulating into sculptural land art. So, I thanked Pearly June for reminding me of this-and I wondered what I looked like when I first saw snow. My mother must have been amused, and perhaps she too had a moment with me as I had with my pig this morning-stopping to embrace the wonder of it all.

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

More of The Great White

He is quite exotic for us all, so we are all admiring is unique feet and lips, watching him walk and lie down all seem like something out of a Jack Hanna movie. If you don't know the latter, I date myself.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

New gift level added to our "Donkey Dream"

We are almost 20% funded - we have a lot of small donkey steps to take together to reach our goal. It's important we get to 30% in the next couple weeks-statistically projects that reach that level make it, and this was true of the last Kickstarter I did.

So to entice some of you to get us there faster, I've added a new gift level.

If you donate $75 at the Kickstarter project page, you will get one of these prints sent to you once the project is funded [April], and then when the book is out you will get a copy of that too [expected book arrival June, 2014].

Please understand you will have to be surprised which print you will get - surprises are good for you–just ask the barnyard.

These are printed on matte paper with black archive ink. They are all black and white printing, signed on the corner border. Each print is about 8" wide.

Monday, February 03, 2014

The landing of a god

They have arrived.

The flock is not quite sure where this large white creature hails from- Earth or a far off galaxy?

Upon arriving Sunday, I put the odd couple in a paddock so they had nose touching with the flock, and the barnyard. Everything went smoothly and they are settling in. Scooby the goat is a dear, reminds me a lot of our old departed friend, Lofa Love. And the llama, who came with the name Kahilia which I am having a dickens of time saying...so he might gather a middle name to help me out sometime in the near future- is calm, but really observing and not ready for lots of hand holding at this point. But he very special.

So another odd couple joins us. I so look forward to getting to know them better.

We incurred some fees to adopt these two gents, and were lucky enough to hire someone to drive them up the five hour trip. Please feel free to toss a tip. It all helps a lot.

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Waiting the arrival of the elders

The sun is out and the skies are clear and crisp. And there is anticipation in the cool air-for me, anyway.

As I write you today, somewhere there is a truck pulling a trailer with an two elderly gentlemen in it. Or, creatures, I should clarify-there are no old humans being hauled in a horse trailer-just an old llama and his pygmy sidekick.

"I have a huge surprise for you all today," I announced as I entered the barn for morning feedings.

Then I held up the photo you see here today.

Some gathered to sniff, and ponder, others kept eating, or chewing cud.

Nobody ever listens to me out there.

The Head troll scurried about, as if she knew there would soon be procedures for the newcomers. I suppose she will be getting her notary seal ready.

I've never known a llama. Everything I have heard so far has me very excited to meet this gent. I suspect he will be part of elder meetings and has quite the wisdoms to share.

I look forward to this grand arrival!

If you like the stories here, feel free to toss us a tip. Or, you can help offset the adoption fee and travel cost for bringing these two new Misfits to Apifera [books will be sent to you as a thanks]