Sunday, May 7, 2017

Birthdays, racoons, pelicans, tulips, and dandelions...

My husband and I had a fabulous weekend.  We celebrated his birthday.  We went out to eat and enjoyed the day.  My husband is an amazing man and I am thankful that we are able to share our lives together.  

This weekend we went turkey hunting.  We didn't see a turkey, but we sure saw plenty of other creatures.  It isn't about shooting something.  It is about sitting and listening to the geese and meadowlarks.  It is about watching what goes on out in nature, when nature doesn't think you are around.
 Rocky lives in the cottonwood right next to our hunting stand.  He isn't a very large raccoon, but is always ready to provide us some entertainment when hunting is slow.  I have never seen a raccoon that is so painfully pokey when he is going down a tree. 
 After a fruitless morning hunt, we swung by the fishing hole on our way out.  It may be a bit light on fish the next time we go, as this group of professional fishers have been in the area.
 Those two male mallards hung out with the pelicans the whole time.  I could only wonder if they were discussing their travels. 
 I cannot believe that huge horn and hook on the bills.   They are impressive birds.  They flew over me as I was leaving and the whole group was silent.  That was interesting.
I was watering my newly planted apricots, when I noticed the plethora of dandelions. What the heck, that wine was pretty darn good.  I started picking them.  Yes, I don't learn.  Preparing dandelions for wine is the biggest pain.  You have to separate them from the green stuff and that isn't easy.  My loving husband even came out and helped me for a bit.  He doesn't even like wine.  Hours later 6 cups of dandelion petals.  Then the problem.  Those of you who follow my blog know I lack when it comes to scientific notation, or even the most basic of notes.  Well, go figure.  I tried to decide what recipe I used for the perfect wine of last year and there are problems.  The recipe from my tried and true wine recipe book says to use white grape juice.  The thing is I'm somewhat of a purist and rarely add to the original fruit.  I highly doubt that I added white grape juice.  If I kept good notes or had even mentioned something in last year's blog I could repeat the success of last year's batch.  Alas, all I did in last year's dandelion blog was complain about what a pain they are to prepare them.  Very similar to this year's blog.  Only I am going to mention that I did not add any juice or raisins to this batch.  Only 1/4 cup of lemon juice.  I am keeping my fingers crossed that this is similar to last year's experiment.

My bulbs are blooming like crazy. Sitting on the porch pulling dandelion petals isn't so bad when you are surrounded by flourishing flowers. I took a risk and transplanted my eggplants, melons, pumpkins, and flower seedlings outside.  I hope it was a good decision.  This is probably the earliest I've put seedlings out.  I also planted my corn, cucumbers, and beans.  I also divided some plants and watered everything.  It was supposed to rain today, but that didn't pan out.  

I have to show the fish windchime my brother made for me.  He calls it my early detection tornado warning wind chime.  It took awhile to put everything together and I love how it looks.  It makes a pretty cool sound, but he is right that there may have to be a rather strong "breeze" before it chimes to life.   I've been trying to add more art to the garden and his fish creation is exactly what I was looking to incorporate.  

What types of art do you have in the garden?  Is there something that is difficult to make, but you still make it because it is so good?  Have you ever seen a pelican up close?  Hope everyone had a wonderful a weekend as we did.


  1. You get some of the most amazing wildlife pictures! I guess perhaps that's because you're surrounded by a lot of wildlife!?! :) Nothing like that around here...too many shopping centers and too much traffic. There's still a lot of farmland's just way different.

  2. I have looked for some new art to add. I have a lot of stone and driftwood that disappears when things grow bigger.Like that chime, I need one.Those pelicans eat 6-8 fish a day and can clear out a small pond fast.They are so neat to watch.

  3. I have never seen that kind of pelican before. I watch them at the beach but those are so unique. Really incredible. They look so big next to the mallards. I love your early tornado detector. What a nice gift.
    Happy birthday to your husband. It sounds like you had a nice day. I like your friend the raccoon. I liked what you said about sitting in nature. Its so true.
    I have to work on getting some art in my garden. Lovely flowers. I hope your wine turns out amazing.

  4. Wow, I've never seen such a horn & hook on a pelican, and I lived in The Pelican State for a few years as a kid. What a great photo.

    We have an abundance of wild persimmon most years from several groves in the woods. Once they're really ripe, they are delicious right off the tree. You can spit out those four or five seeds, which helps keep the grove thriving. But when you get as many as we do, I feel obligated to do something special with them. Removing the calyx is fairly simple, but separating those seeds from the pulp is a royal pain. The end result - my favorite is persimmon mousse - makes the time and effort worthwhile. I hope your dandelion wine turns out even better than last year!

  5. Dandelion wine! I hope you made better notes this year on what you did. I've never seen pelicans with hooks and horns before. Your flowers are looking lovely.
    I had all sorts of garden art at the old home. Now I have little things that stick in my pots. the one garden angel I brought was blown over on the balcony. Her face was smashed in and she broke in two. I want to get another figure but must consider the strong winds we get on the 11th floor.

  6. I never knew that pelicans had horns on their beaks. Not a bird we see anything of unless in captivity.

  7. What a neat post! I've never seen pelicans up close before. They are really different than I thought. The raccoon is a funny character, too. I've never tasted dandelion wine, much less made any, but I could really add to your stash of dandelion flowers...I hope the wine turns out!

  8. Love seeing your photos of the waterfowl. My sister-in-law made Dandelion wine once; I wasn't a fan, but then I don't drink wine. I've read that Dandelions are very important for bees and birds so we've been told not to use weed killers on them. Have a wonderful weekend, XOXO

  9. Those pelicans are amazing, aren't they? I've only seen them from a distance a couple of times out here, floating on a reservoir.
    Your tulips are gorgeous. The first spring flowers are always such a treat, aren't they? You are much more ambitious than I am with your dandelion wine. I like your fish chime.


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