Little birdies

I have been hearing a lot of cheeping going on from the nests around the house. Last year, we had a family of woodpeckers in a dead tree at the edge of our pond, and we used to go down and sit on our bench and watch the parents feed the babies. I think that attention made them move on, though, because they’re not there this year, but there is a family in a dead tree across the gravel road from our house, and from our orchard I can seen the parents flying in and out of the hole and hear the babies asking for food. They also seem to be finding most of their food from one of our walnut trees.

Those aren’t the only babies I’ve heard recently, though. On Saturday after dog class, we had Mischa in the car because we took her to taekwondo. We drove out to the alpaca farm, because Wayne had promised his brother he would buy more socks for his friend. However, when we got there, we saw that they weren’t opening for 45 minutes. Wayne had to go to the bathroom, so we drove up the road to Daybreak Park, where he visited the restroom and Mischa, Luke, and I walked down to the water. As we began to return, we heard a terrific noise and then a huge bald eagle, its wingspan close to six feet, flew away from a tree about 20 feet away. In the distance, we could hear its babies crying for food, well, shrieking, really.

We went to get me coffee and then we returned to the alpaca farm. We had wondered why there were so many cars there, and it turned out we were just in time for shearing. One alpaca was done when we got there, and by the time we left, about three more had followed. One of them, who the store owner told us was a prima donna who didn’t like to be touched, screamed the entire time she was down, but the others took it calmly. I would imagine it would feel much better in the summer without the fleece, although lately we haven’t had any hot weather.

Here’s my first artichoke. It is only two inches tall.

In my garden, I have been harvesting lettuce and sugar snap peas, but I have a largish green tomato coming in and two small ones. A bigger surprise is an eensy beensy artichoke. When I planted my artichoke plant, my niece told me it would be three years before I got an artichoke. I planted it only a year ago, and here is one, albeit only two inches high so far. I don’t know if it will get big or it I should just let it turn into a beautiful purple flower. But if it grows large enough, I’m going to eat it!

This week, Hillary seems to be doing much better. She has taken up residence on the kitchen table instead of hiding in the bedroom, we assume to be around people, and she is eating a little bit more than she was. She seems to have decided to prefer the kitten food, so that’s what we’re going with.

Last Wednesday for our hike, we returned to the Yacolt Burn trailhead to walk the Tarbell trail. At that point, it is a mountain bike trail. We walked it in the spring and it did not look particularly like a bike trail, but this time it did, with ramps and wide, banked turns. It made difficult hiking, and I’m not sure we’ll try that trail again. It was particularly difficult walking down some of the ramps.

Luke’s Puppy Play and Train was cancelled all week because the kennel got a dog flu, so Christine and I scheduled a puppy play event at our house for just Luke and Duchess. On Thursday, Christine brought Duchess over, and we let them play in the wolf pen. Then we had coffee and homemade scones. Of course, Wayne joined us for the scones.

Friday, I waited a while expecting to hear from my sister-in-law Nancy, but did not, so we went out to run our errands. She texted on Saturday and invited me over with my niece Katrina and the kids. They had a new trail cut around the perimeter of their house, and we all walked it, except Mark. It was cut but not cleared, so there was lots of blackberry bramble to get through and the elevation was quite steep. We went in near their driveway and came out above the house. They have already bought some really interesting new furniture, finding a bed made out of logs (not the traditional log bed but one of cut slabs of log) and some bookcases put together with pegs. They also bought an antique dining table and chairs and a reading lamp. They now have their couch facing the view from the window, and Mark said he is thinking about not even putting his television together, because he likes just looking at the view.

This week the Puppy Play is cancelled again. We had our usual pack walk, only we went downtown instead of walking at the park and in the residential area. Yesterday, we just ran errands.

In art class, I have finished the teal part of my starfish and have started on some blackish teal parts.

 

 

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