Peace in this House.

Written By: B.D. Butler - Jul• 24•12

“You’re writing the story of your life one moment at a time.” Doc Childre and Howard Martin

Lately with everything that has been going on in daily life, it’s hard to hone in and lock down time to write.  Writing is such an outlet for the creative mind, and you start to go a little stir crazy if you can’t. has gone live, and is now a website attached to the blog (which you are reading, in case you needed to be reminded 🙂 ), and we have been tweaking some things with all of the suggestions and comments that I have received.  We are also wrapping up the planning of our wedding, which is in 42 days, and that is also a little nerve-racking (to say the least) but hey with the help of organized people, and a little from vodka we will make it through.  It is actually not very unlike me to take on too much at a time, I think that I tend to rise to the top when stressful conditions occur, in fact my mother always wanted me to be an emergency room doctor or an airline traffic controller.

This morning, I found a song by Wynonna entitled “Peace in this House” that reminded me of my two “sister-in-laws” Amy and Heather, of whom have pulled together a family unit out of extreme adversity.  They integrated families, and have made great strides to give their children, in what seems to be a terribly chaotic and stressful society, a life of normalcy.  I respect that, and what they have accomplished, and their children are better people because of knowing them.  So, just like other blog entries I will begin with the phrase “It got me thinking”.


As of now, we don’t have children yet, I always joke that I said “when I can keep a plant, dog, parrot, and fish alive, then I will consider taking on the responsibility of parenting.” .  Well, if you have read this blog and know anything about our lives, you will know that I have done a pretty good job so far.  I like to think of our animals as our children, and it’s taken a lot of effort to get them to co-exist.

I originally was a little concerned about two cats moving in, and then having retrieving bird dogs in the mix too.  There is something about larger parrots that don’t quite get the reaction from cats that little birds do.  I think because smaller birds move so quickly and erratically it gets the cats natural hunting instincts going, similar to that of a string or laser pointer.  Where as larger birds, aren’t so quick and their moves are pretty calculated.

Cooper and Sadie

Cooper and Sadie

I think the dogs and cats are in agreement, the birds are their annoying roommates that make too much noise.  To be honest, I get it, they do have their alarm beeps, and weird high-pitched chirps, that would probably make the most devoted of christians drink excessively.  Whereas the birds think the dogs and cats are entertaining, and not in the traditional way of, let’s play, more of the way of manipulation and bullying.  As I wrote in previous entry “A Letter From Sheldon” Sheldon got nipped pretty early on when he was a puppy, and I think that instilled the fear of god into him.  Cooper is not gentle nor delicate, and basically wants nothing to do with the dogs, except treating them as toys.  He will call Sheldon, and then use his talon to grapple a claw full of food, and fling it at him.  Sheldon has learned to enjoy bird pellets.  Both of the birds call out “Clayburn, Sheldon, want to go potty”, or do the standard whistle, and they will even say “come on, let’s go outside”.  I’m sure that it was confusing for the poor dogs, to hear our voices coming from the other end of the hallway.

Sadie our little Dwarf Maine Coon has actually tried to nestle into Dexter’s cage for a nap, which did not go very well.  I was folding laundry in the other room, and I heard the infamous African Grey Growl, and needless to say, Sadie did not get into Dexter’s cage and definitely keeps her distance.

Clay (13) and Sheldon (10 months)

I introduced Clay to Dexter in the way that Cesar Milan (love him) instructed on his show, and Clay took a few sniffs, and Dexter wanted to step up on his snout.  Later Dexter made a few high-pitched beeps (as greys do, just because) and Clay ran into the other room.  It was at that moment I knew that I wouldn’t really ever have to worry about the two of them having a problem.  Dexter has chased Sheldon away from his cage a few times, and therefore because of the interaction with Cooper adding his experience with Dexter, I’m afraid that poor Sheldon will never be a bird dog.  The birds, I’m sure with their devious plotting, made it that way.

Ah, poor, striving for the Academy Award for most dramatic dog in a leading role, Sheldon.

I learned early on, when you have parrots, you have to be very careful of the interactions that they have with other pets in your home.  Our household got extremely lucky, because there is really no large conflict, in fact the birds are more of a threat to the dogs and cats, then the alternative.  Parrots can do damage very quickly, one nip, and you are making a $500 trip to the emergency vet for stitches to a nose, or hoping you can salvage the tail on your cat.

I think all “families” strive for “Peace in this House”, and it’s a matter of how you integrate new members, and allow each individual, to be just that, an individual.


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