Sunday, June 9, 2013

The Expanding Gatchel Nursery

OK, show of hands - who freaked out when they saw the title of my blog post?  Not to worry, it is NOT the indoor Gatchel nursery that is expanding.  (Breathe, Grant!) Nope, but our animal friendly neighborhood has apparently gotten the memo that the Gatchel yard is the place to raise your brood!

A few weeks ago we saw the first inhabitants of our little nursery - two baby bunnies that were living under one of my daffodil bushes out front.  We had just sat down to dinner when out they popped and over came Mom who gave them a little snack right then and there!  We've seen them occasionally since then.

Thursday night, as we pulled our bikes into the driveway from DQ, we learned that a fawn and her Mama had taken up residence in the yard of the neighbors, very close to our property.  We've had plenty of deer nesting in our yard before but never a baby.  Grant says he's seen the fawn but the kids and I have yet to spot it.

Yesterday morning, watching out his window, Noah noticed a nest with a bird in it sitting on top of the heating unit coming off the back of the house.  We had a nest there last year as well and it seems that the space is being occupied again.  When the bird flew off awhile later we noticed a couple of eggs in the nest!  We'll have to keep an eye out for those babies.

Finally, yesterday afternoon Grant was out on the lawn mower when he noticed a female duck being scared off by the noise who had been camped out under some of the overgrown grass under Mikayla's back window.  He went to check it out and discovered a nest with a dozen eggs!  We're going to have baby ducks!  We've pointed the nest out to the kiddos but told them it is very important they don't get any closer and disturb the nest or the Mama.  Mama did return late yesterday after being scared off by the mower and was still there this afternoon when I checked on her.  Mikayla is about beside herself and is asking constantly if the eggs hatched yet.

So animals, anyone else want to add to our growing menagerie?  I feel like maybe we could start charging admission at this point.  If I haven't made it clear lately, I love living here.  Our neighborhood is the best and I love all our animal occupants!

The majority of our day was spent outside working.  I tackled the patio and the weed monsters around the deck while Grant and the kids cleaned up a brick pile from last year and helped bag up the stuff I was hacking down.  Oh and put together the hammock.  Then this afternoon they gave my car a much needed bath.  I'm not sure if the car or the kids ended up wetter in the process, but they had fun and I have a shiny car so no harm no foul.

In other news...

Happy first anniversary to my favorite married sister and her other half.  One year ago today Michelle and Dudley got married and threw one heck of a party to celebrate.  Here's hoping that this year only offered a glimpse of the joy and happiness we hope they share for the rest of their lives.  Love you guys!

Also, happy National Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Day.  Someone FINALLY got things right and rhubarb was easy to locate this time since it is definitely in season.  I ended up making the same pie I took to my parents a couple of weeks ago with a couple of tweaks.  I made my own crust this time and I made the crumb topping half white sugar and half brown sugar.  Grant liked it better than last time and I noticed that this one actually held up a lot better than the other.  (See the picture for what I mean)  I haven't checked, but I'm kind of hoping this is the end of our rhubarb adventure for the year.  I do have about a stalk and a half left in my fridge and am pondering a use for it...

Alright, I'm off to set my menus for the week and make my grocery list for tomorrow.  We're currently out of milk, eggs, bread and even peanut butter and hot dogs, so I'm thinking shopping tomorrow is a must.  Also, I already have our iced tea brewing, I think I've finally nailed down the recipe for a Black Cow and the only thought that keeps crossing my mind when I hear "Herbs and Spices" is Kentucky Fried Chicken's blend of 21 herbs and spices in their chicken, so who knows what I might come up with!  Until then...

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

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