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.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Opie hits the town in his flying sock monkey pants

Opie shows Sylvia his new outfit
One of the biggest challenges I've faced in my life is...sewing functional goat clothes. Not cute little romper's for kids to keep them warm-but real goat outfits I can put on our little bucket of love so he can't drop pellets or piddle. Sounds easy, doesn't it? Nope.

Opie's waist is 33 inches. That's an inch bigger than Martyn's. His visit today had him adorned in his newly improved traveling clothes-a dog diaper, along with a belly band I made of flying sock monkey fabric which seemed appropriate. My new outfit was a big improvement from just having the dog diaper-the latter would slip off when he stood up to greet an elder on the chair, causing pellets to fly out of the tail hole [fortunately, everyone is understanding of this and ok with it since I quickly sweep them up and they aren't messy]. So I adjusted the tail hole, and improved the velcro waist. The belly band has a diaper material in it, washable, and that worked really well except I need to add a thicker diaper material.

Opie took it in stride. I'm sure he wondered what more he had to put on just to visit friends.

Our visit was nice. The residents got to go home for Thanksgiving, and some went to a family members house. I was glad to hear that. This week, Mary, in the pink sweater, opened up a bit more. She went home to the island she lived on for years, and told me she saw her old home which is now a B&B-but it didn't make her sad because it looked so different to her since they had remodeled and added rooms. The sweater she had on was hand made by her sister who died at 97. Mary knitted a lot but never made herself a sweater, since she was usually knitting things for others or children. I wondered about getting yarn there to them and we could knit mittens and donate them. I'll look into the reality of that.

Each visit, we learn a bit more about each other, and build a trust that we are here to stay, and that we are committed to our visits, and to sharing not only our animals, but genuine caring and friendship.

Each time I leave, they always thank me so earnestly for coming, and as I walked out the door, I could still hear Jean saying, "We'll miss you, Opie, see you soon, Opie." I felt Jean seemed tired today. She has beautiful hands and I realized there will be a lot of loss ahead in this work-and even though I have had a lot of loss in the animal work over the past 15 years...it did hit me in my heart today,

I don't want to lose, Jean.

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Jean and her beautiful hands

Opie falling asleep in Mary's hands

Mary's beautiful sweater knitted by her sister

Sylvia and Opie

Richard always talks to Opie and chuckles

Joe is very funny and inquisitive. I love the quiet look in his face here.