27 entries categorized "critters"

It's Nice When We're Kind

I finally captured them on film! 

graphic be kind dog cat

This is our 15-month-old puppy and 10-month-old kitten.  Both were little rescue pets.  I love how kind they are to each other. 

Trust = Peace

Now, don't think all is peaceful and relaxing in our house...the pup does not get along with our adult male cat for some reason, so we break up plenty of squabbles.  Maybe that's why I'm so delighted with these two. 

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Her First Catch

She's been begging for a fishing pole.

image from www.flickr.com
We haven't come through on that yet, but we did find a spare pole in the garage.   So, in a moment that usually only comes in fiction and fairytales, her grandfather, Popo, took her fishing in the Best Fishing Hole in the World - our backyard river, where we toss hook-less bread to the fish every few days, just to watch them swim.

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I feel a bit terrible about this, but she easily - within a minute - caught a fish.

With bread.

Popo said he never caught a fish with bread before.

image from www.flickr.com
Always eager for a teaching moment, I asked our little gal if she'd like to learn how to clean it and grill it, but she knows how much we'd enjoy watching it swim.  Popo tossed it back.   And so the fish lives on to feed or catch another day.

With bread.

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The Mama Wren

Who's there on my dirty porch column?

image from www.flickr.com
Oh boy, can I ever identify with this gal...

image from www.flickr.com


Four hungry mouths, all crying at once, all of them needing me at the same time.   This mama house wren's overwhelming task took me back a few years when I was as twittering as she.

image from www.flickr.com
Hers flew out of the nest sooner than mine, though.  (I'm not jealous of that.)

If you're a young mama still in the Thick of Things, hang in there and train your babies well.  In just a few years, your training will have paid off:  They'll make their own food, you'll have time to feed yourself (yes, really), and with the leftover time you can do all sorts of nonsense like blog about birds. 

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A Morning on Perdido Bay and a Net Full of Fish

The children and I were blessed to go on a boat called the Bottom's Up one April morning a year or two ago.  The boat dragged a net along the sea floor of Perdido Bay, the bay that joins Florida and Alabama so that you don't know which state you're in while you're on the water.  The netload of fish was dumped into a trough on the boat, where the children could feel and ask about each live animal.  Soon, the animals were tossed safely back into the water to swim away.  Below are photos of our one netload of fish. 

image from www.flickr.com

Red Snapper on Perdido Bay  Robin Fish of Perdido Bay image from www.flickr.com

Blue Crab of Perdido Bay 

Bat Ray in Perdido Bay

Lizardfish of Perdido Bay 
Blue Crab and Flounder  image from www.flickr.com

Red Snapper on Perdido Bay
flounder in Perdido Bay

 image from www.flickr.com  

Male and Female Crabs of Perdido Bay

image from www.flickr.com 
 When we went on this boat tour, we were excited and thought it was interesting and fun, but we also thought it was something we could do "tomorrow," and "next summer when Nana comes." 

Oil arrived in Perdido Bay last week.   
  

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Gulf Coast Critters

I think my softies,  if they were as animate as our 7yo thinks they are, would want us to do whatever we can to help out the critters of the Gulf Coast Oil Spill. 

So. Is anyone up for some bird watching?  Audubon has asked us to help out by counting seashore birds.  I cannot think of a more lovely way to spend a day in June, can you?

Softies at the beach

(taken on the last day of 2007 when oily beaches didn't cross our minds.  The softie in the middle is an original creation of our then-4yo, the now-7yo who still thinks her sea turtle can move & talk)

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Worth Saving

Fort Morgan Alabama

Late April, I sat on this beach (which is really pure white, but curiously looks dirty in this photo -- I think shadows are causing that)....as I said, I sat on this beach at 5:30am in my bed clothes: a tank top, yoga pants and barefeet (I didn't know I was going to walk out on the beach --  my feet took me there before my eyes were quite awake). 

...I sat on this beach at 5:30am with -- you'll not believe this -- a sun rising in the East and a full moon setting in the West.  It was a scene so utterly beautiful that it bordered on surreal. 

The birds weren't quite up yet, at first.  Neither was the sun.  The sand was swept clear of footprints during the night, so that the only prints were those of coyotes, hermit crabs, and ...me.  When I first arrived, the moon and a single star were the most visible features in the sky.  They were surrounded by a white haze, then, as the sun rose, the star and moon faded into a blue-grey haze and finally tucked beneath the Earth.

Before the moon set, and while the sun was rising, colouring the Eastern horizon, pelicans arrived.  Pelicans always look like Jurassic birds to me, dinosaur-like.  They never fail to make me smile.  They flew in a line, one leading six or so across the sea in front of me. 

The seagulls arrived a bit later (they are apparently more lazy than the pelicans).  What the seagulls lack in early rising, they make up for in worship.  Gathered together by the hundreds, a large group met on an tidal island out in the Gulf a ways, while another group gathered on shore, not far from me.  They cackled and cawed and made such a ruckus that I'm sure they were having a worshipful songfest to start their day off right. 

Just when I thought all was perfect -- just when I was about to join the seagull's prayer meeting -- three dolphins swam across the horizon.  Really.  "If this was a movie, we'd roll our eyes at this point," I thought.  A sunrise on my left, a full setting moon and stars on my right, waves crashing, seagulls worshipping, pelicans flying, and... dolphins?  It was a little over-the-top, but in a perfect sort of way.

Just then a dolphin leaped out of the water.  (That was definitely over-the-top)

I couldn't be silent any longer.  With a quick glance at the beach houses behind me, to be sure I was still alone, I joined the seagulls in worship, singing quite loudly the song that came to mind first, which fittingly begins with these words:

Who taught the sun where to stand in the morning?

And who told the ocean you can only come this far?

And who showed the moon where to hide til evening?

Whose words alone can catch a falling star?

Well I know my Redeemer lives.

If I didn't know my Redeemer lives before the dawn of April 29th, 2010, I'd have realized it right then, right there on that Alabama beach. 

And that is why the Gulf Coast is worth saving from the oil spill. 

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Puppy Duty

We're loving our new puppy.  As if you couldn't tell. 

image from www.flickr.com
On our fridge is a chart that looks like this:

Puppy We each take care of the puppy in 2-hour time slots.  Whoever is on Puppy Duty does all necessary puppy jobs: feeding, watering, outside doo-ty, and playing.  If the puppy messes, the person on Puppy Duty cleans it!   Our little gal, newly 7, is "A".  She was put out when she wasn't on the first list, so I gave her a slot, but I know who will really be taking care of the puppy!

So far, a week into our Puppy Duty schedule, it has been working like a charm.  I think the chart makes the puppy seem easier than she would otherwise.  Especially for me!

Here are a few more shots of puppy love:

image from www.flickr.com

image from www.flickr.com image from www.flickr.com
image from www.flickr.com

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Perspective

image from www.flickr.com 
I remember when he was almost that tiny.  When he'd ball up in a fetal position - like newborn babies tend to do - I could hold him on my chest,  his bum with one hand, his head under my chin.  We'd cuddle for hours like that.

Now the kid is 14 and 6'4" and I can't even remember the last time I could hold him, but I'm pretty sure it's been quite a while.    

I hardly know what to do with a teenager, to be honest.  It's not like I've been the parent of one before!  For his sake, and for mine, I'm trying to remember what it was like to be his age, when I knew just about everything.  I do distinctly remember wanting more freedom and wanting to be treated as an adult. 

The thing is, he's still that little puppy to me.  

He has so much yet to learn, can't possibly be set loose yet, and is still just a baby.

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Cute Trouble

My man surprised (shocked) us Sunday with this yet-unnamed cuteness.

image from www.flickr.com 

Oh, good gravy, I'm sunk.  

image from www.flickr.com 
She is the sweetest puppy ever.  She tucks herself into bed in the late evening and doesn't whine all night.  Imagine!  Enjoying the sweetness of a puppy without all the trouble....without trouble so far, that is.  I know there is trouble to come.  Puppies gnaw, they pee, they chase things.  Oh, but what cute trouble she will be!  

image from www.flickr.com

 I am so glad to start a new adventure with Little No Name. 

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