The adventure continues…

You never do know what you are going to see in the country.

Lately, the roadkill buzzard activity has been a whole lot more interesting. Instead of your standard racoon/possum menu, this past week has brought me a wild hog on the side of the road and a coyote…all being feasted upon by the vultures. The wild hog was huge and lasted for days. It was like Thanksgiving for them. At the end, all that was left was the rib cage and part of the snout. It was a beautiful viewing for the drive home from wherever each day.

But yesterday brought something different.

There were extra kids at my house, helping celebrate freedom, Martin Luther King Jr., and a day off of school. We had decided, since it was below 80 and actually not going to be hot, to build a little campfire that we’d keep going a lot of the day. S’mores, chatting, etc. It was going to be nice. So I was out in the yard gathering my fire supplies when my oldest boy ran to me breathless and said, “Mom, there’s a bald eagle in the yard. Come quick. There’s an eagle.”

I’ve been down this road before. This is the “There’s a shark!” when it’s actually a porpoise. Or a “Coyote!!” when it’s really a house cat. So I moved toward this bird sighting at a relaxed pace, still in my pajamas, waiting to see one of the aforementioned buzzards, hopefully chewing on a filthy, beastly raccoon. I walked around the fire pit where 6 children were yelling and pointing and bouncing and flailing and I looked toward the bird.

Hmm. That’s interesting. What IS that thing? I wasn’t sure. I did think it merited a closer look, though, so I told them to stop the yelling and flailing while I ran in for the binoculars. When I returned, there was just as much flailing and bellowing and the bird was watching us. I couldn’t believe it was still there. Just sitting there at the back of the yard by the treeline. I raised my binoculars to my eyes while Mama’s Boy begged for the next look. What I saw shocked me. It was a stinking bald eagle.

And T was pouring salt into our water softener, not paying one lick of attention to any of it. That’s because it couldn’t be America’s bird. There was no way. But it was. And it was staring at me in my own yard. It was one of my favorite moments at home and I will remember it forever. Because the eagle stayed long enough for us to pass those binoculars to every child. It stayed long enough for us to get a poor quality picture and some video. And it stayed long enough to confirm my theory that a hawk is eating my chickens.

As we watched in awe, the eagle launched into the air and we watched his huge brown wings beat the sky. He circled around once and flew back toward us again. At that moment, from the opposite side of the yard, the hawk swooped in and actually started harassing the eagle who was twice his size. Twice the hawk descended upon the eagle. And finally the eagle flew away.

If that hawk will attack a bald eagle, I’m pretty sure I’ll never have free range chickens again.

But it sure was cool to watch.

Photo Jan 21, 9 10 15 AM(1)



Today I…

  • Got up right at 8. That may sound late to you, but I felt pretty good about it.
  • Made breakfast for 4 famished orphans, for myself, and for 13 chickens.
  • Worked on bible lessons and memory verses before 10 a.m.
  • Worked out with 7 of the fittest people on the planet. They kept saying things like, “Keep your tummy tucked in nice and tight” while I responded, heaving, “If I could do THAT, I wouldn’t be doing this stupid video!” My million dollar idea that I will not actually carry out is an exercise video variation of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Instead of you having to work out to those 7 super fit snobs, you could work out with me (working out with them) as I mock them for the dumb exercise-elitest things they say. Instead of wearing tight black pants and a sports bra, I’d be wearing my floppy cut off gym pants and a large t-shirt. You’d like working out with me.
  • Did 5 loads of laundry and actually put it away.
  • Changed my own sheets. Such joy in clean sheets.
  • Facilitated the kids’ chores. I did not actually have to do them for them.
  • Walked around downtown antique shops and bought a bunch of black and white photos that made me laugh.
  • Got suckered into buying carwash products at a gas station.
  • Used all car wash products upon arriving at home, just to see how stupid I truly am. I fully expect the van to have no paint in the morning. Or be dirtier than it was to start with. But actually it seemed to do a pretty good job. Maybe this time, I will not end up beating myself about the head and neck.
  • Ate the finest meal I’ve had lately, compliments of the male chef who lives in my home. Tilapia with some sort of dreamy sauce drizzled on it (even MAMA’S BOY ate and liked…you have NO idea what this really says about the fish!), steak, potatoes au gratin, and cabbage plucked from our garden this morning. If you add enough bacon to something, even cabbage can taste like heaven.
  • Did more laundry.
  • Hunted racoons. Did not get one or even see one. You know what they say, “a hunted raccoon never shows up…”
  • Questioned my decision to raised 10 extra chickens. Tried to remember what my initial thought was. There is an 80% chance that this experiment will end in utter catastrophe.
  • Made people take baths/showers.
  • Walked 20 more minutes on the treadmill, out of guilt over what I ate for dinner.
  • Blogged.

This was a super full, extremely satisfying day. I am bone tired. And happy.

I think 2013 is my year. I haven’t written down my resolutions, but I have been living them so far. I think the reason I haven’t been blogging is that I’ve been trying to take living a little more seriously. My general goal for the year is to be a better, truer me. To keep my promises, which means promising more carefully. To remember important events and people. To focus on what matters and let the little stuff go. To read the bible. To create…not people, but words and art and anything that comes to mind. Definitely not people, though. To get fit, even if it means suffering through hours and hours of really annoying people who think everyone can salsa dance as easily as they can. To live without regrets.

So far, so good.  But the chicken thing is still out there.


Some blogs come easier than others

I owe a few people a pig story. I said I was going to write that up before the new year. Here it is, only January 6, and already I am a liar.

New Year’s Resolution: Stop lying so much.

It’s good to have goals.

I am in the middle of writing up what happened with the pig. I am at least 800 words into it but I just have to quit for the night. Tomorrow the kids go back to school. No one is dreading that more than me. This has been a glorious 2 weeks. I have loved having them home and being home.

But 6 a.m. will not delay coming just because I am up writing about pigs.

So I’m going to bed.

I thought you should know.

Aren’t you glad we did this?

I’ll try not to leave you hanging past tomorrow. As if you care. But in the interest of not lying in 2013, I am not making any promises…