Due to a glorious visit from five family members, straight out of a commercial for _______ (Fill in the blank–Allergy medicine? Arthritis medicine?), in which old people are still able to keep up with and enjoy the youngsters, I’m behind on everything else. “Everything else” being far less important than family, right? (Note: Using the word “youngsters,” makes me feel old right there.)
I was looking at past posts, as I do on occasion, to see if I could repost something I wrote that hadn’t been covered in a while, and was reminded that asking readers what they like to talk about has resulted in all kinds of good things. As in, me learning things I didn’t know before, and/or, didn’t know I didn’t know. As in, readers getting to bring up topics important to them that I have never covered.
So, the ball is in your court! What would you like to talk about in the weeks and months to come? I’m truly curious about what you are going to bring up.
MEANWHILE, back on the farm: First of all, it’s like a Disney movie out here since Nellie has been gone. (I insert another word in front of “Disney” when mentioning this to friends. Insert word of your choice.) The chipmunks are line dancing on the garden wall, the bunnies have been getting busy under the bushes, and the Blue birds are practically pulling out strands of my hair for their nests.
This is wonderful: The yard is like a movie scene of carefree wildlife enjoying the summer. Three male Rose Breasted Grosbeaks at the feeder! Phoebee babies fluttering their wings so adorably I want to feed them myself. Chipmunks sitting outside the kitchen window cleaning their cute little faces with their cute little paws.
This is not wonderful: The yard looks like a scene from Watership Down, with multiple generations of rabbits having their own family reunions in front of the peonies–all the better to eat their way through my garden. I didn’t even bother planting snap peas this year; no time to build a fence to keep out the bunnies. A woodchuck ate all of my lily bulbs, chives, and who knows what else in one of my gardens. Chipmunks are non-stop entertainers in summer, and agents of destruction in winter. We have friends who had to buy a new car because the chipmunks ate so much wiring in their Prius it was unable to be repaired. The stories of how much damage they can do are endless. This is all a reminder that there was a reason that humans and cats formed a bond together. We will do our best to manage the wildlife while enjoying the flurry of small mammals and birds around the house. I’ll keep you posted on how we do.
But most of all, Jim and I had the joy of hosting my three nieces last week, each amazing in their own way, and two of my grand nephews. Here are a few shots of the special time we had together.
The boys, who live in a suburb, loved running free at the farm. They were GREAT with the dogs, and the dogs were great with them; that made the visit extra fun for me. (And, still: Note that every evening I put the dogs away in their crates for awhile. I must have had at least a 100 clients who said “But he was sooo good all day long at the family picnic!” Until he finally bit the four-year old, because he was exhausted.)
Running up the stairs that lead down to the Wisconsin River:
Every one got to go riding thanks to friends Taylor and Lou Ann. The boys (note the hands behind their backs!) learned all about safety around horses and how to be kind and gentle to them.) The star of the show here is Pocahontas, a lovely Quarter horse.
Everyone got to play in friend Donna’s huge hay mow; I snapped this photo of the light coming through an old window:
One last shot from the garden, which is mostly between blooms: Some late blooming Iris that remind me of flowers that are about to morph into fairies:
That’s it for this week. Time to muck out the house, get back to working the dogs, writing a novel, gardening in the garden, and trying to make the world a better place–for animals as well as people. I hope your week had even a fraction of as much joy as ours did, and I look forward to some interesting suggestions from you about future blog topics. I’m so curious what you’ll ask for!