Thursday, December 2, 2010


I don't care if you are an avid hunter, I don't care if you believe deer meat is so tasty (Like boot leather), I don't care if you want your infant to bag a deer, I DON'T CARE. Don't tell me hunting is a right, don't tell me it pays for whatever, I don't care. I do care when in the name of hunting animals are fenced, tortured and killed all in the name of so called dog training. What difference then in pit bulls fighting - what difference Cock Roosters fighting ? What animal is worthy to protect, only ones used for illegal betting but, hunting is not the same in Indiana. The Department of Natural Resources voted to allow dogs to mutilate coyotes in fenced pens, hunting huh? What honor is that? I saw the video, I read about DNR passing the act, I have been so angry, do disgusted. I look out at the coyote Buddy that is one of our teachers, one of our beast friends, it makes me ill to think someone would torture him so dogs can hunt them. In Indiana you need a permit to have coyotes, will these so called training facilities need a permit and where will the victim coyotes come from? I don't know-it is not right! For me sometimes I wonder if any animal stands a chance, are we so selfish we cannot find a way to live with nature. I don't care I will spend all the time I can around nature and the animals because for me and the Animal Guy, our beast friends need all the help we can give.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


When you have a tough decision to make you need the right people to help you out, goes for everything, I think. That very thing came up in my life not long ago. My only intention in this dilemma was to conduct myself the way that is most respectful. Probably happens all the time, but, I felt I needed to get a second opinion, one that knows me, and likes me anyway, that I trusted, to help me, and for me it was my 4th grade BFF PJ, I made that call. She listened and I made my case and after all my "what do you think?" all she had to tell me was "You'll do the right thing", and we said goodbye. At that moment I was kinda like..what, that is not I want you to tell me, what do I do! Anyway, the right thing is what I hoped I did. It wasn't till about 4 or 5 weeks later I was mowing the grass and it hit me, man, that was probably the nicest thing someone has told me in a long time, that the me she knows will do the right thing, when it comes to the tuff stuff in life. YOU ROCK PJ!


Sometimes things happen, happen so you get to realize who you are. Bad, good, sad, funny anything can help. One thing this year, well, a lot of things but there's one I really thought... funny. Before a school convo last year in the restroom I was placed in a awkward life scene: me in a stall fastening my belt: herd of gals, 8th, 9th grade chatting about the convo, "It's the Animal Guy - yeah that lady thinks she is funny". HEY I AM FUNNY!!! All I could think of was I needed to come out and she was going to have to look me in the eye- if our places were reversed and I had said that , oh man, serious bummer, what would the others in the herd think? I felt for the young gal, I just tried to smile a kind of smile, went to washing my hands. The stunned silent herd froze like the old lioness had slipped into the gazelles, they scattered, muttering something about " can she hold the snake?" she was funny.

Fishing With Abe Lincoln

The US Fish and Wildlife Service has very special people that care so much about nature, they just want as many kids of all ages to enjoy the outside, the natural world. That leads Larry to pack some of our wild animal teachers and head the animal truck to Washington DC to help teach inner city kids about our wild animal friends plus they get to fish in the pond next to the World War II memorial in the nation's capital. Fishing and seeing Larry and the reptiles like our gila monster, alligator snapping turtle and more and of course Itty Bitty the python likes to tag along. This year the US Fish and Wildlife Service purchased 300 copies of our new book "Baxter's Alphabet Swamp", I have to say we are honored that "Baxter's Alphabet Swamp" made it to Capital Hill! Since I stay home and care for the rest of the beast friends that means I get a present...and Larry is headin east again soon so more loot for Cher!!!

Cool Creek - Great Park

For the animal guys, that's me too, summer takes us instead of school cause well, they are closed; anyway we usually start at the Cool Creek Nature Center in Carmel, Indiana. It is a fun night, great campfire, songs and the animal show next to the creek and after the program the yummy part..marshmallows, roasted. Wild animals outside always a good time!!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Scary Dog Dreams

One night about a week ago I heard the dogs, Tim and Enos plus the wolves Chloe and Blake barking and carrying on. So I went to the front door looking out to see what was going on and there was Chloe the wolf looking back thru the front door window, kinda asking "What's Up". At that moment I was reminded of the scariest dream that I had when I was a kid, it was so scary. I had it more than once too and it still creeps me out now! The dream was always slow motion, waking up to my Mom and Dad's front door to look out the window, as I get closer to the door I could see something outside. I got closer to press my face to the window and as I did a dog-wolf thing was looking back at me, it was so scary it walked on it's hind legs like a person,it looked in at me and licked the window, turned and walked out of my parent's yard on it's hind legs and down the street. To this day, I cannot stand those awful velvet paintings of dogs playing cards, you know the ones....creepy! I am not sure why that dream is so scary, because I look out now and the dog faces I see are friends, very special friends! I wonder if the scary dreams are not so scary, maybe that scary dog or what I thought was a dog was just a glimmer of what challenges may come in life. What we might think is so scary is really not so bad after all. But I still cannot stand those creepy paintings.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Three Wishes

When I visit your schools, I really love to read and check out the student's work the teachers display. Larry the animal guy thinks that all your stuff would make a great book, so creative! One class wrote about three wishes they would want, most wanted money, games and stuff and one gal said "Dr. Suess books", a girl after my own heart. That got me thinking, Larry and I would really like to show you just how amazing wild animals are, but if I had three wishes, well I would ask for more wishes! Then first I would like to show you things I know like how cool it is to watch Elizabeth the baboon use her index finger and thumb and how she hugs so tight and you feel her hands and feet grab hold of you, its something, or maybe wish you could hear the sound the bobcat makes when he is in his happy mood or even the scary one he makes when he is not happy.Or one more wish that you could see in the summer the tiger's fur looks like velvet, so smooth that the black stripes look like the ridges in corduroy. That's three or more but one wish thats more important to me would be that all the animals will always have a wild home a perfect place, a wish we can make happen together.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Teacher's Pet...NOT!!!!

School and I were never a great fit. I wasn't a bad student and I got good grades but, I was very, social, let's say. On our report cards there was a place for the teachers to make a statement or suggestion I am not sure what you call it. I still remember my first grade teacher wrote "Cheryl has a lot of friends and she likes to talk to them". Another comment that year "talks to much!", those "digs" or statements stuck with me. I don't think that she liked me and I am positive I did not like her. What lesson did she teach? Anyway, the thing is now I go to school to help Larry and his job is to talk mine is to handle our animal teachers and not talk. How about that? It is true! Students will ask why I don"t talk and our joke is that if I did talk the convocation would be two hours long! So I guess that is funny, cause my first grade teacher was wrong, I know when to talk and when to listen and learn.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Friends as Family

I think, maybe, some of the most special friends in our lives we meet in school, the ones that really know ya. They kinda become family too. I hope that you know what I mean, cause you have friends like that! Sometimes those friends can help you see your family in a different way. My mom was a pretty tough mom, she expected us to do our best, do the right thing, her way, no excuses. She was right and boy do I miss that gal. One of my old friend/family friends came for a visit and we were talking about family moms - dads and he said " He liked my mom, because every time he would see her that the look in her eyes always made him feel good about himself". He said, "She just made him feel better", and that blew me away, I had no idea . See only someone that is family can see family. In this life, I could only wish to make someone feel like that. She always welcomed friends as family, maybe we should try it!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Bear Necessaties

When Larry does his radio show It is kind of my place to take up the slack and do the daily chores which are usually shared tasks. Sound fun?, it is most of the time except in winter - the watering chore! Now you have to remember I am all of 4' 11" and a 5 gallon bucket is almost half my height and each animal can drink at least a couple of gallons at a time - specially Buck and Faith the bears. And when they want water they will let you know - the metal water tank becomes their own bell so to speak. They clang it around to remind us to get to work and yesterday the tank ended on its side. Now I have to say when I am alone I don't enter the bear house, you kind of want somebody around for backup. They are big black bears and I am still the mama but why push it. We respect each other...lets say that! So I am using my handy broken rake handle to maneuver the tank next to the door and get it upright, all the while I am asking help from Buck or Faith. About the time we got the tank up Larry shows up and finishes the task..and we all laughed..great timing. This morning Larry came in and said "You should see what your bears have done", I'm like "what?". Around here you never know what might happen but look what the bears did (see picture)..they were ready for their drink!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Special Christmas Tradition

Did you have a great holiday, make it through OK? Did you love all your presents? The critters around here enjoy the holiday special treats. And for Lizzy the baby baboon and Gus the bobcat it was their first! Liz was fun to watch with wrapping paper and of course she loved the packages just as much as the toys! Sound familiar? They think holidays are great! One of my favorite gifts this year is the orchid blooming and even after all the bumps this year it did not disappoint. Blooms are still popping out and two or three more to come. That orchid ends the year blooming and on into the new year, too cool! I hope that your special presents are like mine still blooming and still making you smile.