Sunday, June 1, 2008

Squirrelly-O Iglesias

Rocky the orphaned squirrel is now a strong teenager. He is a bundle of energy and virtually explodes at playtime. We let him climb in the lilac bush and he goes bonkers! Jim is going to use one of our spare nest boxes to make an outdoor nest area for Rocky when he's ready to be released. Our hope is that he'll stick around and stay in touch. When he discovers girl-squirrels, he might not want to!

What is a male squirrel called anyway? A buck? A boar? A furry grenade?

At any rate, Rocky loves to eat sunflower seeds, maple seeds and today he discovered white clover. He is as healthy as can be and full of explosive spunk! We think he will do very well foraging for food when we release him.

I raked out the chicken run this evening. All the uneaten grass clippings and what-not were used to mulch our blueberry and raspberry bushes. I noticed that one of the blueberry bushes has a few berries on it. If only the bushes were larger I would have a nice blueberry crop to look forward to. As it is, we're going to have to wait a few seasons before the bushes are large enough to produce well for us.

Last week while out on my evening stroll, I found this large gourd that had survived the winter intact. My cousin grows various gourds and pumpkins to sell each fall in a neighboring field. I brought it home and now it's a charming bird house. It only took about 15 minutes to make. I hung it on the trellis my sister-in-law and her hubby made for me a few years ago. I have some heirloom morning glories planted under the trellis. I noticed this morning that they are really taking off now that it's warm. When they cover the trellis and start to bloom, I'll repost this picture. It's a very large gourd and would make a nice home for a house wren family.

The black cherry trees are blooming which means there will be tasty, bird-sized fruit to feed our feathered friends in a few weeks. The windbreak is carpeted with lovely, green growth. The air smells fantastic; crisp, clean and earthy. My senses are overwhelmed with the perfection of the natural world.

The scents and sounds instantly transport me back to my childhood, when I would spend the entire day outside. The family property was my playground. My mother knew I was OK and never pestered me with a curfew or put limitations on me that city kids faced. I could run free, unrestricted, the entire day. I would come home in the evenings tired, hungry and suntanned. I slept deeply and awoke refreshed. That's the way every child should grow up. That's how our children are growing up, thank God.


  1. Hehe, Amy, you are funny. I'll think of Rocky as a furry grenade. I didn't realize that you were serious about having a squirrel. LOL

    Amen! Kids should play until they can't keep their eyes open anymore... I couldn't agree more. Maybe they will be the ones to save our planet from the demise it is headed towards.


  2. I came across your blog through another. I just love your pictures of your yard! Very beautiful. I love the gourd, I make birdhouses out of them too. So quick and simple! I am over run this year with ground squirrels eating up all my vegetable garden. I hate them and wish they would all move away!

  3. Go Rocky! I love the pictures of him, he is so cute.
    And you're right Amy... there is no better way for a child to grow up.

  4. sounds like my childhood! If the children today could run and play-there wouldn't be such a need for ritalin!Love your blog!

  5. Great posts. I wish I had a Rocky, he is sweet! We too are fortunate that our children have the chance to grow up in the great outdoors. It is sad that more children do not. Thanks for all you help identifying the flowers on our farm.

  6. Amy, I grew up in much the same way, unfettered by curfews in the summer and rambling around the forest and fields, exploring to my heart's content. The restrictions I did have were that I couldn't go downtown, or to movies or hang out at the local pizza joint. I wasn't allowed at the homes of people my mother didn't know either. So, off to the woods or curled up in bed with a good book.. ahh-h-h-h, that was the life! Glad your kids are getting to experience it!

  7. I had to read through this post twice to get the fullness you put into it. Your family is so very lucky to have this heritage. Kids need to play and explore and then play some more. I love the gourd too. I put one out and there is a wren family in it. They are non-stop singers!

  8. Amy, Great pictures, looks like you have a beautiful place there and you should be very proud. We are growing birdhouse gourds this year for the first time. Hope they do well, we have some nice projects for the kids lined up if they do.


  9. Wow! Thanks to each of you for leaving such nice comments here. I am flattered to read these fantastic comments from equally fantastic people. Thank you so much!

  10. It's so nice to sit down with my cup of coffee and visit with you on your blog. I swear if i close my eyes and take a deep breath, i can smell the lovely scents in your garden too... I too grow "heirloom" morning glories and they literally cover my fence every Summer. They can be so invasive tho! My Mother tells me that these very same morning glories used to grow in her Grandfather's yard!!! So i guess they ARE heirlooms! :)

  11. I loved this post and it reminded me of my own nature-filled childhood.

    Sadly for a number of years I had forgotten that wonderful life as a child and our family lived in a box in the suburbs. The backyard was a sterile square with concrete walls and houses close side-by-side.

    I'm so grateful we finally realized that is not the life for children, or any human to life freely and joyfully within.

    It's such a blessing and enrichment to the body, mind, soul and spirit to live somewhere where you can use all the senses to be a part of nature.

    That last photo is just beautiful. That beautiful view just begs to be explored.


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