Friends in my gardens

March 19, 2009

Elise and buddy

Elise making Buddy pretty

Who let the pigs out?

September 29, 2008

farm jen chase pigs

I’m sure the pigs were just waiting until my husband, Mike, went out of town for a few days; then they implemented their break out plan.

Day one of the break out plan, our 20 pigs were successful in the initial break out phase and the kids spent four hours chasing them, trying to keep them out of my gardens and the corn fields while our son, Scott, worked on fixing the fence.

Day two of the break out plan got an early start, a new more daring escape plan was discovered at 7:45 a.m.  Luckily, Jenny and Megan had not left for school yet, so instead of exercising their brains for the next four hours, they exercised their legs chasing piggies instead.

When we finally figured out that the fencer wasn’t working properly and needed to be replaced, I sent Jenny and Megan to town to buy a new one.  When they came home from town with the new fencer, they informed me that they had just experienced the most embarrassing moment of their ENTIRE LIVES upon going to buy the fencer!  It seems a male worker came up to them, sniffed, and said loudly, “Have you girls been chasing pigs?”  They were absolutely mortified to think that they smelled like pigs, and I absolutely loved it; it was the best laugh I had all week!  Somehow the girls didn’t make the connection that I had called the store to ask about pricing and sizes of fencers before I sent them to pick one up; the fellow who helped me on the phone knew our predicament and was teasing the girls.  I don’t think I’ll tell them for a while that they probably didn’t smell ……………….. it makes the whole pig escapade a little more flavorful!

Then, when I went to write Jenny and Megan’s absence notes for school, I was given strict instructions, “DO NOT WRITE THAT WE WERE CHASING PIGS!!”  Oh my, so embarrassing……………..  hee hee.

farm - chasing pigs

baby bunny

Two days ago while excavating in the yard, we found this teeny-tiny newborn bunny.  His mama must have had her den in the ground right where we were digging, and this little guy survived but lost his home and family.  I really didn’t expect him to live for more than a day without his mother, but the kids insisted we give him a chance by feeding him with an eyedropper.  Though his eyes are still closed, he is beginning to squirm and wriggle around; we’ll just have to wait and see if our help is enough.  Does anyone have any advice for us, such as how often we should be feeding him, and what is the best milk for him?

wordpress pic kitten in water bucket

Here’s our new kitten, Charlie, doing what cats love to do!  I wouldn’t have guessed that a watering can would be a comfortable place to take a nap, but I guessed wrong!

The bossy white robin

June 7, 2008

white robin

In the spring of 2007 we had a surprise visit one day by an albino robin. She flew around the yard for a few days, then decided to settle in for the summer. The robin was white almost all over, with just a few brown specks on her wings, and she had a very bossy and territorial personality. She spent the summer chasing away all the other birds in our yard, and it kept her very busy! With her white color and bold manners, she was easy to spot and often was the topic of conversation when we had visitors. She left in the fall with the other migrating birds and we felt fortunate to have been entertained by her all summer.

white robin med pic

Imagine our surprise when she returned again this spring with the other robins! This year she is snow white all over, but she is still one bossy robin! She seems to have another agenda this year besides chasing other birds; she has turned into a homemaker and is raising a family.

The kids spied where she was nesting and climbed a nearby tree to peek at her nest. The first time they peeked they could see one blue robin egg. A few weeks later they peeked again and saw three brown baby robins, which answered the question they had been asking me, “Mom, will the white robin have white baby robins?”

Just the other day we happened to be walking by her nest and could see a fledgling perched on the edge of the nest, ready to fly. We saw the youngster take flight and could see that robin junior had passed his flying lessons with flying colors! The very next day we saw Momma robin bustling about collecting building materials for a new nest! I guess she’s serious about this homemaking thing, though it appears that this time she’s not going to build her nest close by for all the Niemela’s to see.