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this is the Very Best of all possible ideas

A pretty close view of me, but the important part is that I'm wearing a large basket as a backpack, & Major Tom is peeking out, just his pawn & the top half of his head visible. His eyes are REALLY WIDE.

(I did one loop around the house & let him out, he really did pretty well with it, but this is the funniest picture I have ever taken in my ENTIRE LIFE)

After that, though, it was time to stick Loiosh in the basket instead & go check the mail, because 1) he’s bored, 2) I’M bored, & 3) I had herbs coming. Not that kind.

I found a terrifyingly large pawprint. That’s my hand next to it & y’all, I don’t have small paws. Photo by Inoru.

A VERY large pawprint, left in mud, with my hand splayed on the ground next to it.

I didn’t take a ruler out with me but judging by the size of my hand, it’s about four and a half inches long, top to bottom. Definitely a canine, with the claw marks visible at the top. I don’t think coyotes get that big so it’s probably one of the neighborhood dogs.

Also there are a lot of these plants growing! I’d seen them plenty last year but never blooming. Inoru’s pic, again, & they found out what it is, too, which I don’t remember but it’s in the carrot family & the leaves & roots are edible.

A low-growing plant with fantastically frilly leaves & five small grey flowers in a cluster at the center.

Loiosh usually hangs out of the basket much more than this, but it was a bit wooshy out. As witness also my ridiculous hair.

I'm still wearing the back basket, but this time I'm outside in the sun, & it's Loiosh just peeking out the top. Also my bangs are HILARIOUS.

Of course he got out for a bit to wander. & of course he went under a fence where I can’t get to him, but that’s what leashes are for.

Loiosh is standing on ground covered with low brown plants, pulling at the leash which is stretched behind him. All of this is seen through widely separated metal wire that makes up the fence.

Also yes, I did leave the other end of the leash tied to the basket, because I like being able to use my hands for things other than ‘corral the cat’ occasionally.

Basically the same scene but from farther away; the other end of the leash snakes through the fence & into the back basket, which is sitting on the ground.

The tree near the mailbox is making buds! I have no idea what kind of tree it is, but the bark on the new growth is red.

Cradled in my hand is a tiny red twig with even tinier leaf buds on it.

On the way home I stopped & carefully picked some piñon resin from one of the trees out front. This is a smidge over an ounce. I love how it glows in the sun.

A small metal bowl holding several irregular lumps of golden-yellow pinon resin. It looks rather like amber, which makes sense, because it's basically proto-amber.

BTW I’m just gonna post everything public right away for a while, on account of *gestures vaguely at everything* & we all need cat pictures.

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