Archive for December, 2010

Full of beans

Friday, December 31st, 2010

I love watching Jody play. Usually, she expends the least amount of energy possible. If she’s playing chase, she’ll walk at a snail’s pace. If she’s playing tickle, she’ll do it laying down. But something got into her today, because she was climbing, brachiating, and even running (if you can call it that) during a game of chase with Foxie.

Reprieve for Alamogordo Chimpanzees

Friday, December 31st, 2010

My family lives in New Mexico and my very sharp and active 89-year-old grandmother, who is a supporter of the Cle Elum Seven, sent me word of this great news this morning.

(for background information about the Alamogordo chimpanzees, visit:

Here’s the beginning of a story that the Albuquerque Journal published today:

Chimps To Stay in N.M. for a While

By Rene Romo
Copyright © 2010 Albuquerque Journal
Journal Southern Bureau

LAS CRUCES — The nearly 200 chimps housed at a federal facility in Alamogordo have won a temporary reprieve from being transferred to another site, where they were to become test subjects, according to the Governor’s Office.
In a phone call received late Thursday afternoon, an official with the National Institutes of Health informed Gov. Bill Richardson that the chimps will not be transferred until the National Academy of Sciences completes a review of policies related to the use of chimpanzees in biomedical research, according to a governor’s spokeswoman.
The review is expected to postpone the chimp transfer for about two years, said Richardson spokesman Alarie Ray-Garcia.
“Until the study is completed, there will be no transfer of the chimps,” Ray-Garcia said.

Read more:

This means that Negra’s daughter Heidi, Foxie’s son David and Jody’s daughter April will not be put back into research, at least for the time being. And it means that we still have time to let our voices be heard so that they and all of the chimpanzees can be retired permanently.

Solitary play

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

We try to plan themed enrichment days to keep us creative, and today was troll scarf day. We tied lots of trolls to lots of scarves. Jamie likes to wear these troll scarves around her neck, but Foxie prefers to drag them around with her. Here’s what Foxie did with one of the scarves we put out this morning:


Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

We are forever indebted to Chris, DeVar and the rest of the staff at our local Safeway supermarket. They have been supplying us with great produce since the day the chimps arrived in Cle Elum. Thanks to them, we rarely have to purchase fruits and vegetables for the chimps.

Last summer, our friends at in Seattle took an interest in the Cle Elum Seven, and began sending car loads of organic produce our way.

Burrito really enjoys all of this great food. And we love watching him eat.

Adorable Burrito and NEW STUFF

Monday, December 27th, 2010

First, adorable Burrito – a photo taken tonight at dinner with our fab new camera:

Burrito eating a pear

Now for the new stuff! I was away for a few days to spend the x-mas holiday with family, and when I returned, the chimp house had been transformed! Thanks to everyone who got us the new stuff off of our wishlist!!

J.B. picked me up at the airport in Seattle yesterday and we went to a store to purchase the new computer. After consulting everyone who had donated towards our new and improved technology (Candy Crannell, Kathy B., Gayle, Leslie, Barb in Ohio, Theresa, Catherine M., Jeani, Pam and Sue), we decided to go with a desktop. It was less expensive than the laptops, and we managed to get an even better deal on it at the store. So, we also purchased a much needed printer (ours broke about a week ago) and a large memory card for our new camera. Check out the snazzy looking office space in the chimp house now! Photos and videos look AMAZING on that big screen and the printer works like a champ.

new imac, printer, camera

Here are the other great gifts we received from generous supporters that have improved our days in the chimp house. We so appreciate your support and your response to my Holiday Wishes post about the things we needed.

Boot dryer for Jamie’s collection of boots:

boot dryer

Stainless steel bowls for produce:


Ergonomic kitchen mat for volunteers and staff working at the sink:

kitchen mat

Coffee maker for volunteers and staff. A welcome return to caffeine!

new coffee maker

New foot bath mat – no more tripping over the old pan and bleaching our pants.

foot bath mat

Much needed hand-soap. Isn’t this a nice, artistic shot? It was also taken with our new camera.

hand soap

We also received new memory cards for the cameras, which helped us to post this. And new blankets for the chimps (my favorite is a chili pepper blanket). And some awesome crayons for the chimps.

Wow, huh? We are pretty lucky to have such generous and thoughtful Santas among our supporters. We’re off to a great New Year already!

The thinker…

Sunday, December 26th, 2010

We’ve got a new addition to our playroom- the green hand chair. Pam Lehnert found it at Tap Plastics in Seattle, the company that helped with decorations for the Out of the Box auction. I’m not sure who’s more excited- Jamie or her human friends (I literally squealed when I first saw it!). Thanks so much to Pam, and to Tap Plastics for giving her such a good deal! We are thrilled!

Today in honor of Butchie Barney Nishitani

Sunday, December 26th, 2010

One year ago today Margaret and Karen lost a cat companion named Butchie Barney Nishitani. Butchie was a feral who was taken in by a friend of Margaret and Karen’s. When their friend fell ill, Butchie came to live with them. He lived a long life and we know his last several years were filled with love at M. & K.’s.

Today is a sponsor-a-day in honor of Butchie’s memory.

Below is a happy photo of Annie and Missy to remind us all to celebrate life and play a little today.

annie and missy playing

Happy Holiday!

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

What a special week this has been! Over the last few days, we’ve received tons of items from our Amazon Wishlist, we received our brand new, top of the line camera from our amazing board members (which produced the spectacular footage below), and today, the chimps had the most awesome party! Special thanks to Robbi and Dick Brown, Leslie Sodaro, Jeani Goodrich, Diane and Syd Marcus, Sue Elfing, and the GFWC-Battleground, WA for all of the enrichment and to all of our amazing supporters and volunteers, who make days like this possible. Happy Holidays, everyone!

Happy Day to Emily Hawkes

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

Caitlin chose today as a sponsor-a-day to honor Emily Hawkes. Thanks Caitlin and Merry Christmas, Emily!

Here’s a little Jody to light up everyone’s day:

Foxie nesting

Friday, December 24th, 2010