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So Long Terrible T

April 22nd, 2019

She was called Sweet T and Terrible T, and was a gentle giant, but a little neurotic too. She wouldn’t hesitate to kill a coyote, raccoon, skunk, or fox, but was gentle with the ducklings (her favorites). We loved her independent spirit (though not all the time). On our way home from the emergency vet Friday night, Mr Chiots said “I can just see your mom, in her bathrobe, greeting T and feeding her milk bones from her pocket.” My mom loved this dog, as did everyone that met her. She will leave a giant Anatolian shaped hole in our hearts and on our farm. We are thankful she went out in her prime while still working and doing what she loved and we didn’t have to watch her fade to a shadow of herself. She lived a good, long life. It’s so difficult to lose pets, but they are such wonderful companions while they are with us.

They weren’t 100% what happened, but the best guess is hemangiosarcoma. While tragic for her to go so quickly, in the end we realized it’s a blessing that she was playing one and gone the next. She would not have tolerated treatment or a long illness. So long Tara…

That Dressed Up Chiots

October 31st, 2018

Lucy, the garden’s namesake has been gone for a few years now. It was sad to lose her, but she lived a long and happy life with us. Around Halloween I always think about her because she LOVED to dress up and go trick or treating with the nieces & nephew. I searched through my photos and found a few to share.

Lucy was a great do, she was larger than life and still lives on in our hearts. We were blessed to have her in our lives for almost 13 years.

Happy Halloween from all of us at Chiot’s Run

Extra Spring in Her Step

November 20th, 2014

Terrible T is a winter dog, which is understandable with the thick double coat. Once the weather dips down into the teens she’s a completely different dog. It’s like she’s a puppy again with boundless energy.
Tara in Snow 9
Tara in Snow 7
Tara in Snow 5
Tara in Snow 2
Tara in Snow 1
Tara in Snow 6
She rolls in the snow and has a GREAT time. I can’t take her on hikes in the summer, she’s simply too hot. Now that the weather has cooled down we’ve been taking hikes in the afternoon. She had a grand time sniffing deer trails, peeing on fox scat, and rolling in the snow. I can’t blame her, I love the cold as well. Back when I was a runner I much preferred running when the temperature was below 30.

Do you like the cooler weather?


April 30th, 2014

Yesterday we were gone all day long.  I had to shoot some product photos and Brian was working for a client.  We then had dinner with friends in the evening and didn’t get home until very late.  Generally, days like today meant that we left the animals all cooped up during the day, locked up tightly against predators, but now we have Tara.
chickens 1
She’s our Anatolian Shepherd Dog (ASD for short) that watches over our flock. It’s amazing to watch her work, her natural instincts are to protect the flock and she acts much differently than Lucy, our older lab mix dog. You can tell that everything she does is to keep predators away.  She leaves her scent around the property and is on constant lookout for things that are out of the normal.  You’ll see her sniffing the air frequently, trying to catch the scent of someone out of place.
chickens 2
As a result, we returned home to all the feathered members safely in their open door coops. We counted everyone and closed all the doors and headed in to bed ourselves. We’re certainly happy that she is here helping us. It’s so much more efficient to use animals and their natural instincts to do jobs around the house and gardens. There’s no way we could be watching all the time, thankfully Tara does that for us.

Do you know of any local farms using dogs to protect their animals? 


March 18th, 2014

“Let not our longing slay the appetite of our living.”

― Jim Elliot from The Journals of Jim Elliot

I was thinking about this quote as I bundled up on Sunday morning. It was 3 degrees when I went out to feed the chickens and ducks. I love a good brisk morning, the cold air invigorates me and gives me energy. This time of year I have to be careful not to start hoping for spring and wish away the last precious days of winter. I’m trying to soak up the last weeks of winter while they’re here. Tara is great at this, she LOVES winter and the snow. Every evening we take her on a walk through the woods, when we reach the back field she gets all crazy getting rid of the last of her energy. Such sheer joy playing in the snow, she’ll really miss it when it’s gone!
Tara in Snow 1
Tara in Snow 2
Tara in Snow 3
Tara in Snow 4
Tara in Snow 5
Tara in Snow 6
Tara in Snow 7
Tara in Snow 8
Tara in Snow 9
Tara in Snow 10
We need to learn from Tara to embrace what we have for what it is! I’ll be enjoying the dripping maple sap, the slushy snow underfoot, the cold air in my lungs, the comfort of knee high wool socks and shearling lined boots and the joy the dogs have for the snow!

What are you enjoying about this particular moment?

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.