Sunday, March 23, 2008

The end of an era

Well, it is an end of an era and the beginning of a new one. My little Corolla I bought brand new with zero miles on it 10 years ago was my first car and has been through it all. She taught many people how to drive a manual, been hit by 2 deer, sat in the salt, sand and sun of FL and finally found her way to retirement. It was a long string of events that brought us to this point and concluded with the door handle falling off in my hand. Zippy wasn't pretty at the end but she sure was reliable. She carried a lot of memories for me and so in some ways it was hard to let her go.

Below is her replacement, Red! Red is a Toyota Tacoma 4x4. We've wanted a truck for a long time for the practicality of it. Matt took it out 2 days after we got it to pick up some large pieces of pegboard that he has wanted but had no way to get home from Home Depot. I absolutely love it. Rides like a dream.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

the most recent our yard

Last week I heard a commotion in the woods behind our house and when I took a closer look, I saw a pair of hawks making a nest about 50 feet from our back door. I haven't been able to get many good pictures of them until this morning. In the tree right off our back porch they started mating. This is the female perched after the fact. Now, I have been trying to ID them and not sure I have it 100% correct but I am guessing- a red shouldered hawk.

Now Boyd or Jamie... if this breeding was successful, how long should I expect until there are chicks? I am all too excited, if you can't tell.

Despite their nesting in close proximity to our house, we still manage to have a fair bit of other song birds that flit around and don't seem too bothered by it all.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Spring is arriving

Signs of spring are starting to show up all over. We are so excited to see what will bloom and can't wait to start some planting of our own.

Maggie is growing fast

Maggie is how old? Good question. Every time I think I have her age pinned, I look in her mouth to realize she is still holding on to her baby teeth which should start falling out around 4 months of age. So she keeps getting bigger while I continue to knock her age younger and younger and realize that this medium sized dog might be deceivingly bigger than we wanted. But... she sure is cute- and we have had multiple offers to take her if we ever get rid of her and more dog sitters than we could ever imagine.

Her passion is chewing on sticks, leaves, branches, etc. They are the cheapest toys around although one will not due. She raids our fire log pile for new twigs and logs that she can pull out and drag around the house and chew on. She plays with a twig for 5 minutes and then has to find a new one- that wouldn't you know it- looks identical to the one she just had. We vacuum daily to keep up with the woods shavings that are strewn throughout the house.
The cats are getting used to her S L O W L Y! She doesn't quite know their personal space, yet; although with frequent pops to the head and deep growling they are teaching her. I snapped this picture below as she sidled up to Abby trying to "make nice". You can see from Abby's face she wanted nothing to do with it. Abby has taken charge of the situation with Maggie and has resorted to chasing the dog. The other two cats keep their distance and have learned how to maneuver around her in the least conspicuous manner.

This is the way we really love to see her- PASSED OUT! She has made one of my stuffed giraffes her new favorite toy. She chewed its eyes out, she body slams it, and sleeps with it. A true friendship, if you ask me - although obviously one- sided!

I have taught her to ring a cow bell that hangs from the doors in order to let us know when she needs to go potty. Ever since she learned to ring bells, she has not had an accident in the house. Of course, it didn't take long for the cats to also learn the same trick, and although they haven't resorted to ringing the bell, they definitely come running when they hear Maggie ring the bell, b/c it means the door opens and the outdoors is only a few steps away.