Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Pretty as a picture

I'm thinking of becoming a model...

See how pretty I can pose...

Wait - is that food down there???

OK - I'm back!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

See you next year!

hummingbird at feeder

This summer some raccoons began making nightly visits to our yard. They would polish off any of the uneaten food in our squirrel feeders along with anything else they could find, including the uneaten hamburgers accidentally left on the grill by my nephew one night.
It didn't take them long to discover the hummingbird feeders. I came out one morning to find all 3 feeders on the ground, with a couple of the little plastic yellow flowers ripped out. After that, I started taking the feeders inside each night. Twice I forgot, and both times I found all of them on the ground the next morning.

The problem with bringing the feeders in each night, was that I needed to put them back up each morning ... early! In midsummer, the hummers would arrive at about 5:45 looking for their morning sugar-fix. Usually I would drag myself up at 5:30 to put the feeders up, then crawl back into bed. If I overslept, the quiet, unobtrusive hummer peeping outside the screen was my alarm clock. As the daylight hours shortened, I was able to "sleep-in". By Labor Day, the hummers weren't arriving until almost 7am.

Well, now the season is over. It's been over a week since I've seen a hummingbird... I'll put up the feeders for a few more days, I'm just not bothering to get up at the crack of dawn to do it.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Brooks Chicken, Oneonta NY

Brooks House of Barbecue, Oneonta NY

This restaurant is often our lunch or dinner stop whenever we're traveling from my parents' house to my sister's house - a half-way point between Binghamton & Saratoga Springs, NY. My sister went to college in Oneonta, so our family has been a fan of Brooks Chicken for over 25 years.
My sister's college roommate refused to eat there - not because she was a vegetarian or that the food wasn't delicious, but because of their sign. The neon figure of the chef chasing the chicken with a hatchet was just too much for her to handle.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Leaf relief

dead leaf

OK, it's just a tiny dead leaf, but when I walked into the aviary first thing in the morning, all blurry-eyed, and saw this on the floor, my first thought was "a dead baby bird". No, baby birds don't have tails.... Oh my God, it's a baby mouse! I have mice in the aviary!!! What a relief it was when I realized it was just a leaf!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The tolerant houseguests

It's amazing what some people will put up with just to spend a little time at Lake Gaston!

the friendly society finch

the friendly society finch

the friendly society finch

the friendly society finch

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Walking on water

Hey - we built that for the turtles!

Funny that they hop out of the water to take a sip of water ...

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Habitat for Humanity in El Salvador

Every summer our minister leads a team of NC teens and adults to El Salvador to help build houses with Habitat for Humanity. This evening they showed us some photos and spoke about their trip. Now my mind is on El Salvador, so I've gathered some photos from two summers ago when I made the trip. That was the only time I've ever travelled outside of the US, so it was quite an adventure for me and I loved it.

children in El Salvador

The children were adorable...

children in El Salvador

Here I am with Gladys, standing in front of her new home.

Habitat for Humanity in El Salvador

Her 420 square foot cinder block home may not look like much,

Habitat for Humanity in El Salvador

until you compare it with her old home in the photo below.

Habitat for Humanity in El Salvador

Friday, September 08, 2006

She can do sudoku????

I learned today that Honeycomb has a talent for sudoku puzzles - my kind of bird!

After solving the puzzle, she gets ready for a nap in her favorite "bed".

The turtle pad

Every summer we anchor some kind of buoy near our dock. This gives us something to hook our floating chairs to, so we don't float away if we fall asleep. I know, it's a rough life. In the summer of 2005 we used a styrofoam life ring. We were a little late bringing it back in and the turtles started using it in the fall for sunbathing. We decided to leave it there for them, but sometime during the winter it broke free and they had to find other places to sunbathe.

turtles on life ring

This summer we used a ball-shaped buoy instead of a life ring. Fall is approaching, and yesterday we saw a turtle looking longingly at our buoy. I'm quite sure he was wondering "how am I supposed to climb on that???"


Time to build the "turtle pad" that we've talked about all summer...

turtle pad

Here's the finished product floating in the lake -

turtle pad

We haven't seen any turtles climb aboard yet, but I'm sure they will discover it soon.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Pups on a road trip

Oh, they love to ride! It amuses me that when they get into the car, they have no idea where they will end up. But they don't care... a pillow on Mommy's lap, an occasional snack ... life is good!

chihuahuas in car

chihuahua in car

chihuahua in car