Tag Archives: spring

Don’t fight with a skunk for the garbage rights!~ Or, Perimenopause sounds like a new dance…

work in progess of a cartoon charcter of me.
rodents made this into a condo

The past few days have been just gorgeous. The air is cooler. The sky has been a range of clear blue, to heavy thick grey clouds and rain.  The trees haven’t changed color, even though the past couple of weeks the leaves have started to fall and dried leaves crunch beneath my shoes.

The yellow jackets are cranky with the cooler air, and the over abundance of fermented fruit.  Drunken bees are interesting indeed.

The grass and the wildflowers are now orange, red and browns mixed with dirty yellows.   Even the air smells like fall, dried grass and hay, mud, mold and Halloween.

 I feel a little sad; this summer was so hot, I couldn’t enjoy it. Each day was a steam bath of heat, making it nearly impossible to breathe, and walk at the same time. Even when I made an attempt, the mosquitoes forced me back indoors.

Now, I have to make my fall list of chores, I still haven’t finished my spring’s time list. Summer, forget it. That list was eaten by Uriah and I didn’t even care.

This past Friday the garbage was still sitting out by the curb, not having been collected on Thursday, the normal garbage pick up day; by Friday it was ripped open and spread around the mouth of the driveway by a skunk. I wanted to make sure it didn’t spread out into the road, so I rushed out and picked up the paper towels, and chicken bones scattered along the ground.

 As I shoved the very smelly garbage into a new plastic bag, I wondered, why the skunk hadn’t finished off all the bones. At that exact moment, when that question rattled around in my head, I saw a black nose, with black fur and a white stripe slip out of the drainage tile that stretched under the road  connecting the east side to the west.  

We shared a look and I stood up fast, “Oh no you don’t! I said out loud as I backed carefully away.  “You are not going to spray me!”

I thought I was safe, the skunk was in the drainage ditch and I was near the road. He would have to spray upward to get me.  I decided to ignore it.    I watched out for the cars whizzing by me, mere inches from my head.

Hurrying with the cleanup, I failed to notice one important thing.

 That little skunk had sprayed the other garbage bags.

I tossed the bag I was holding onto the pile, and then decided to straighten them all.

Right now, as I type this, I wonder why I had the compulsion to straighten the garbage bags….

The smell hit me hard, rotten chicken and the odd, burning green smell of skunk!

That skunk didn’t need to spray me, I did it myself. Then with all the brain power I had left, I covered my nose with my sleeve. The sleeve, which had skunk juice on it!

I headed back home, fast!  Uriah happily following behind, his nose pointed up as he kept sniffing the air around me. I gagged and blinked multiple times.  Having to stop when I thought my stomach would end up in the driveway if I moved to fast.

Next week, Michael is checking on the garbage!

****

Sorry, I haven’t been here a lot. I missed reading your Blogs. I will get back in the game. Sitting is a real pain.

Uriah is doing great. New dog food he lost a little weight. He needed to.

The examiner isn’t paying out like I hoped. They made some changes and the numbers aren’t posting correctly. Still I keep trying. I wrote my first article June 27th, I am on number 44 today, and I only made $17.97, that’s with 2,476 hits. Hmmm!?

I am trying my hand at cartooning myself. I jumped around on the internet checkout sites to make your self into a cartoon. Then I pieced together a character, redrew it, and colored it in paint. It is a work in progress. I posted it with this article on the examiner. ( I tried to add a link and wordpress just wouldn’t let me, here is the full link)

http://www.examiner.com/plant-life-in-chicago/searching-for-the-noxious-plant-called-marijuana-hampshire-illinois

 My camera started acting up. 90 % of the pictures came out blurred and the camera started making odd noises. Luckily I had a store warranty I took it back to Best Buy and they gave me a different camera. Maybe I should get an under water camera. It’s a thought.

 **Don’t read this part if your squeamish about women’s issues.* I’ve been doing the doctor run for Michael. Then I had my normal routine -yearly exams.  My doctor thought it would be a great idea to do a biopsy of my uterus. A fast decision he made. He said, instead of me coming back in a few months; let’s do this now…. I was in no position to argue. Michael said, I looked like I saw a ghost when I came out of the doctor’s office. perimenopause is so much fun! Results sometime next week.

Magic beans And Happy Fairies Planted A Garden!~Or, What’s The Name Of That Herb?~

With one of my cats, PJ sitting to my right I finally began typing out this Blog. The past week has been full of gardening fun, rain, high humidity, cold weather and todays temperatures pushed me into air-conditioning.  The range has been maddeningly painful.

Last Saturday a family of magical beings came by and helped turn over the garden and plant some vegetables. They stayed only about three hours, but during that time I was able to talk to, and walk around with three little boys, while their parents grunted and groaned, as they dug, straightened and chopped up large chunks of dirt and moved around rocks.

When the boys spotted the rocks, the middle one was enthralled by the odd shapes and sizes. He wanted to take some home so they could make their own, Stonehenge under a tree in their back yard.  I was in agreement, so a pile was formed and a box appeared from the barn, a sturdy box that would hold all the rocks. Their father didn’t’ realize those rocks, when placed in a box, would weigh a ton and a hernia, until he tried to pick them up.

 Being a magical family, the boys had hoped to float the box of rocks above the ground. But alas, they forgot their fairy dust and had to settle on using a simple dolly.

 In the meantime, Uriah was being ridden like a horse.  A horse that was too tired to stand. He laid on the ground while the youngest boy sat upon his back and held tight to his ears.  I was worried Uriah wouldn’t like this, but when I saw his furry face he had a happy doggy grin. Finally, Uriah got tired of the game and stood up. Luckily the littlest guy was expecting this to happen, so he jumped off Uriah and gave him a big hug.

Uriah heard something in the trees and did his slow walk towards them. He kept looking back at me. When I finally turned my back, he slipped in-between the trees. Totally vanishing between the green leaves and heavy branches

Uriah’s normal disappearing act caused great distress to the youngest boy. He called Uriah’s name over and over, it must have seemed like hours to him instead of minutes, until Uriah reappeared to hugs and kisses. Uriah looked up at me, I shrugged and he happily trotted off with the little guy running along behind him.

Because of that extra help, I was able to plant a large amount in a short time.

This morning the rain was still pouring down, watering the seeds and plants, allowing the garden to take root, now, that also means the weeds will have a fighting chance too. I haven’t used weed killers or inhibitors in many a year. I prefer the old fashion wrestling techniques… I pull and the weeds pull back:-)

Poem, As The Earth Bleeds!~Or, We Need To Notice The Profits On The Wind And Remove The Earths IV!~

As the Earth bleeds

                              and

Oil seeps from its core, smothering life

Our needs come before everything

Our needs move in circles where money rules

Our needs place us up above all else

Our needs cause the Earth to bleed

Our needs smothers and drowns

Every living thing in oil and blood

Our needs are not what we think

For

     If

       We

           Took

                  A

                   Moment

                                To

                                   Think

                                           Outside

                                                       Of…

Our needs, would we notice

Our needs are killing the planet

Stop!

And ask yourself

                          What do you really want?

As the Earth bleeds

*

~ Question: What’s wrong with using wind and solar energy? When will life take a front seat to profit?
I found the picture I used here:
http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=news+on+oils+spill+in+gulf+of+mexico++2010&go=&form=QBIR&qs=n&sk=#focal=d0016a8f167db3282e26c160de37391c&furl=http%3A%2F%2Fi.dailymail.co.uk%2Fi%2Fpix%2F2010%2F05%2F10%2Farticle-0-096DF4F9000005DC-336_634x577.jpg

**

Visit: Jingles Thursdays Poets Rally-

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/05/12/thursday-poets-rally-week-18-may-13-19-2010/

Run, Run As Fast As You Can! You Can’t Catch Me I’m The Sanosuke Man!~ Or, Drop That Meat!~

A migraine followed me around all day.  It lifted slightly around dinnertime. That’s when I started hunting out something to eat. In the freezer I found one steak.  We have plenty of ice cubes and some chicken, but only one steak left. To defrost it quickly I set it on a plate and slipped it into the microwave. 

 I walked out of the kitchen and came back two minutes later; Sanosuke was climbing over the microwave. He wanted that steak. I gave him a hug and set him on the floor and removed the steak from the microwave and set the plate on the counter.

I started fussing around the kitchen; I pulled out the frying pan and grabbed an onion. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Sanosuke silently jump on the counter. As I turned towards him, he grabbed the steak and jumped from the counter. When I yelled, he held his head up high, so the steak wasn’t dragging on the floor and ran faster down the hall.  Michael spotted him and instead of stopping Sanosuke he started laughing. Without hesitating, Sanosuke raced into our bedroom.  I was right behind him and grabbed him just before he dragged my dinner under the bed.

Michael was still laughing when I came out of the bedroom. I held the steak out of reach of Sanosuke who followed behind me complaining loudly.

Sanosuke sat on the counter and watched me cook the steak and potatoes with onions. I sliced a tomato and added some corn to the plate. I carefully sliced the steak into strips.

By this time I had three cats watching me.  One sat on the kitchen chair the other on the floor. Sanosuke stayed on the counter and glared at me.

I announced to the frowning cats.  “Alright guys! You can all have one piece, no more.”

They all stood up, tails flipping and watched as I slowly sliced up a small piece for each of them into tiny cat bites. I gave them each their own plates. Then I took my food and went into the living room.

Ooops!  I forgot my napkin. I got up and went into the kitchen for two seconds. I wasn’t looking for Sanosuke; I assumed he was still in the kitchen eating his piece of meat.

What I didn’t see was Sanosuke hiding under the table waiting for his chance. When I got up, he quickly jumped on the table and started eating, fast! 

“Bad Kitty!”  I yelled when I saw him with his face in my food.

 Within those few seconds he ate a lot!  I was left with two small pieces of steak. Sanosuke had raced out of the room when I yelled.  He knew he did something wrong, but he was just having such a good time he didn’t care.

PJ in the meantime, slipped up from under the table and quickly grabbed one piece of steak and slipped back under the table. When I bent down to check on him, Sanosuke reappeared and grabbed the last piece and raced off down the hall again.

I ate the rest of my dinner in peace.

They even stole the piece of fat I left in the pan for Uriah..

Michael wouldn’t stop laughing. I yelled at him. “If you thought it was so funny, then while Sano was running around the house with my dinner, why didn’t you grab the camera?   

He answered, “It was just as funny yesterday when he grabbed your salmon.” Michael picked up Sanosuke, and rubbed his tummy.” Hey little guy!  What’s for dinner tomorrow?”

I think its time to become a vegetarian:-)

*

 Cat picture is from Microsoft’s Word clip art

A Little Gardening On Mother’s Day!~ Or, Zombie Potatoes Are Invading My Garden!~

Today, Mothers Day started out beautifully, baby blue sky with a slight cool breeze.  Beautiful sweater weather!

I pulled out a bag of seed potatoes, my camera, Uriah and a shovel, while humming the theme song to, Green Acres. The dirt was soft enough to play in and the winds mild enough so I wouldn’t get dirt in my eyes:-)  Today, with Uriah’s help I intended to turn over a section of the garden that I designated, The Potato Plot.

Uriah watched as I carefully I peeled back the tarp.  Last fall I had covered a section of grass, which would allow everything under the tarp to turn brown making it a lot easier when I dug up area for planting.   The section was perfect!  After turning over the dirt I sprinkled fertilizer on the top.  Miracle Grow is my favorite.   Then I added handfuls of leaves, which I had collected this past fall and saved in a large garbage bag.   

 I brought out a tape measure and a knife, then set out the potatoes and read the instructions. That’s when I realized I should have cut the potatoes up a day, or so ago allowing the ends to dry…  Heavy sigh!

Instead of kicking myself, I took a picture of the zombie potatoes. Or maybe they are Vikings. Great Horns!

I will back track here: A week ago, I found out that if I wanted to plant potatoes, they should have been already been in the ground.  When the weather had warmed up in April, and the ground took a deep breath, that was when the potatoes should have been planted.  

 I figured the middle of May was close enough to April and still not too late to plant. Fingers crossed, I bought seed potatoes, potatoes that have eyes that will root and have little baby potatoes. Or at least that is the plan..

Uriah is in the kennel. Poor Uriah, I won't let him dig!

With Uriah’s help I started this day’s project. Then Uriah had a change of plans!  He dragged away the shovel and the bag of seed potatoes. Then he tried to lie on the very large bag of leaves. When his help turned to digging holes, I got a bit upset..   Dirt started flying everywhere. Uriah was banished to the outside kennel and I finished up by placing the cut potatoes on top of the dirt. Later on I will dig them in, unless Uriah beats me to it and buries them somewhere else…

Cut seed potatoes are sitting on top of the dirt waiting to be planted.

Poems and Pictures, Kittens Never Seem to Sleep!~ Or, Wednesday is Pussy Cat Picture Day!~

Michael disappeared with my camera yesterday. When I downloaded the pictures to the computer I found these. Pictures of PJ,  Tomoe and Kenshin sleeping, while the young brother and sister, Sanosuke and Kaoru,  wrestle and keep an eye on Uriah.

 

Sleeping cats

                    can sleep

                                 like no other

Safe and warm,

                        happy and

                                        well fed

Smiles and grins

                         after wrestling and

                                                        a frantic chase

Surrendering to  

                       hunger and

                                      natures call

Sleeping  kittens

                        wrapped in a catnap

                                                        lovingly as one…Purr to me

Going Green With Singing Toads For Sunday!~Or, Can I Vote For This Singing Group On American Idol? ~

Just a video for Sunday, turn up the sound.

singing toads
hanging in the water with webbed feet spread wide
singing for company
for amphibian love..smoooch!
for a insect dinner
floating over the tiny tad poles that swim along the edge
does he view them as children or rivals
sing your low and high pitch songs
calling out and joining in the choir
i am listening       are you?
because…
summer sounds  like sing toads
 

Winds Blast Across Illinois Farm Land~Or, Are These Political Winds? If Yes! They’re Kicking Up A Lot of Dung

 

This afternoon we had a small dust storm. The farmer across the road from me had turned over his field during the past week. Today the winds picked up the dirt and manure from his fields and ran it straight north.

The wind tunnel was an interesting sight. So I decided to Video tape it for you. I was really glad the wind didn’t shift and come out of the west and head east. That would have brought all the dust down on me. 

 Check out the video. I add a short poem.

Winds blast
across the open field
Pushing in from the south
tearing to the north
Too close
Yet, just far enough away
I should head back 
to the house
If the winds shift
I will be covered
in dust and manure
A powdery layer
That will coat everything
This Place is
Dubbed…
Tornado Alley
Not that one ever hit the house
They all seem to jump over
to somewhere else
As political winds do
Unless they want to cost you money
Then they stay, and
rip your roof off
For now I watch
I lean against my car
It convulses
as the wind
beats against it
in an attempt to push it
and me
off this road…

Last Walk Of The Day~ Or Pull That Off Me With The Head Attached!~

The night air was cool with a sweet, smoky smell of a camp fire threading its way past me as I stared upward into the slowly darkening sky. There were very few clouds. The ones above were wispy and rolled like the scales of a fish. They reached out and  past me. I had the feeling someone was pulling the blanket of daylight off the bed and the narrow end was caught on the setting sun. While the horizon was a dull, peachy color with grayish blue, the color and clouds spread out over head and mingled into a dark bluish-grey.

Uriah whimpered. He wanted to take a walk in the tall grass. I did not.

“Go on, Uriah! Do your business!” I pointed out towards the pond and lengthening shadows.  

Uriah stood and watched me, then nervously shifted from one paw to another.

“Come on! It’s not a trick! There’s no boogieman out there waiting to eat you up..Hmm!’

I frowned and stared between the darkened branches of the Blue Spruce.

“There could be some horrible Ticks in there!”

Uriah whimpered then sat down.

I turned towards the front of the house.  Deciding that the ticks may not like to walk the slight incline up hill so I maybe safe if I walk around the house… I can hope!

Uriah followed. First, he peeed on a few of the taller tuffs of grass, as he passed by them, then he stopped to stick his nose in a chipmunk hole and to sit on the tulips. I never understood why he had to sit on my tulips.

 I really need to get some diesel and wake up the tractor. That thought crossed my mind as I stood in ankle deep dandelions, thick and dark leafy greens with yellow flowers.  Too tall grass is perfect for Ticks, they love it. I kept looking around hoping nothing jumped at me.

For a half hour last night, Michael tried to get a Tick to let go of my leg. The little bugger was covered in soap, then Vaseline, Michael tried to shock him by lighting a match, blowing it out and touching the bug with the hot unlit end. Still he hung on a death grip with his little foot and mouth pinchers. Finally Michael announced he got it off me and with its head still intact. -That really was an odd sentence, could be I’m tired.- I hate Ticks!

A robin yelled at me from the trees and Uriah let out a long loud yawn, time for bed.

Last night I took a picture of the moon. Here it is..

I took these pictures of the flowering Crab Apple trees when it was nearly dark.
 

 

My Rat Is A Cross Dressing Opossum~ Or, Can I Get A Gun To Match My Shoes!~

This weekend was beautiful one of those perfect, mid-western spring days. The skies were baby blue with nary a cloud to be seen. The birds were singing. The winds were just a gentle breeze, and the trees were all budding lime green with a sprinkling of leaves waving as I passed by. The air held a slight chill so I had to wear my orange coat unzipped, I never broke a sweat.

Uriah ran up to me panting. He had his worried face on. His eyes bulging out as he tried to walk as close to me as possible, without actually jumping into my arms.

“Come on Uriah!  What’s wrong with you?” I patted him on his head and he paced then leaned into me.

I stood up and looked around not yet getting what the problem was. Then I heard it. The call of the, Warm-Weathered-Mid-Western-Gun-Owner and  my main reason for wearing a bright orange stylish coat all-year-round.  Avoidance of bullets! Add in the fact that I could be seen from miles off. Unless they think that deer, coyote and raccoons shop at Fleet and Farm, I should be safe.

The sound of a gun being fired caught my attention, along with the immediate high pitch ‘Peeeyuuu!” sound traveling behind it.  The bullet must have ricocheted off something then headed in my direction.

Sort of ruined that safe feeling of wearing my orange coat!

I continued on with Uriah around the back path, enjoying the warmer spring air, just a little more leery.

Yesterday when we took the same walk I saw one of my neighbors, standing in the farmer’s air field, at the back of the path. He and his two young boys were digging a hole. When I came close we exchanged pleasantries. Then he explained the farmer gave him permission to shoot the chipmunks. He then told me that the coyotes hunt the chipmunks and dig holes making it unsafe for the farmer to land his planes. Okay..

 Then he added. “You shouldn’t be walking around without a gun!” He nodded looking around.   “There are Cougars in Illinois that sleep in the trees! Just like in California and they will jump out at you. Or grab little kids, like my boys here,” He pointed to his sons and mimicked biting at the kids, “and then they’ll drag ‘em off” He hesitated for effect then added. “And there are Wolves here now. I know a hunter who saw their tracks just on the other side of town.” Hand on hips, he gave me a few seconds for that to sink in then he continued.  “And a Wolf pack will hunt you down if you’re walking alone!”  He pointed to the gun slung over his boys shoulder. “That’s why you should never walk around here without a gun.”

 I responded back.  “Wolves eat rodents! Rats, mice, rabbits, chipmunks… not people!’

“They will if they get hungry enough!”

There are certain points during conversations where I think of Lucy and Charlie Brown, the Peanuts Cartoon characters. This was one of those times.

 

Lucy had told Charlie Brown, the reason a Palm tree is called a Palm tree is because you can get your entire palm around it. Charlie Brown reacts by clutching his stomach in pain.

 

I know how he felt…

To be truthful he had me a little nervous. I remembered how Uriah was frightened a couple of times at night, and I mentioned that. (see  link #3 below)

“Yeah!  Probably a Cougar!”  This guy is good. He will nod yes, when he wants you to say yes. And shake his head adamantly when he wants the negative reaction. Right now he was nodding and looping his thumbs in his belt loops. ”Yeah! Cougars!”

Okay I have to stop here. I tried to call the county to ask them about this. But no one called me back.  Gee! I wonder why…

A couple of Cougars were sited a year or two ago and they were shot. Illinois doesn’t have cougars on the endangered species list because they are so few. Cougars were exterminated in Illinois before 1870.

As for Wolves, according to ‘Defenders of Wildlife’ site (see link #1 below) Wolves; “were killed in most areas of the United States by the mid 1930s”

The difference being, Wolves are on the endangered species list.  (See the link #2, below)

Back to my walk: Uriah was bored he wanted to keep walking he didn’t want to stand around and talk. He kept glancing at the guns, then looking away.

I had to ask this question.” How do you know that a coyote was digging those holes? Could’ve have been anything!”

He answered with a wave of his hand. “Well there are coyote tracks all over the dirt. They are really good diggers.”

“I was just wondering, because we have a lot of holes made by Muskrats.” I pointed behind me, about fifty feet away there was a visible mound of rocks.

“Muskrats? Huh!”  

After that answer I was wondering if he knew what a Muskrat was.

“We also have a couple of irritating rats near the outside kennel that dig a lot!”

“Rats! You sure it’s not a opossum?” He gave me that I don’t believe you look.

“No! It’s a rat. A nice fat county Rat!” I held my hands about half a foot apart.

“Could be a raccoon.” He mumbled.

“Coon! No it’s a rat!”

 He kept shaking his head, as if I would change my mind and agree it was something else.

“It’s a rat! I have a picture of it. Unless it was a opossum, and it dressed up like a rat!”

Luckily his phone rang and his wife summoned him to dinner.  Or he was bringing it with him. I don’t know!  I didn’t look at what happened to the chipmunks they had shot.

When I got back in the house, I told Michael we needed a gun to fend off Cougars and Wolves. He wanted to know what I was drinking on my walk…

#1: Information on grey wolf:

http://www.defenders.org/wildlife_and_habitat/wildlife/wolf,_gray.php

#2: Endangered species list:

http://ecos.fws.gov/speciesProfile/profile/speciesProfile.action?spcode=A00D

http://ecos.fws.gov/tess_public/pub/stateListingAndOccurrenceIndividual.jsp?state=IL

#3:

http://gerardinebaugh.wordpress.com/2010/03/15/something-was-in-the-fogor-take-bets-on-who-pees-first/