Posts tagged birds

Grandkids and Gourds


Little Ghosties

This past summer Tim grew gourds in the backyard.  When he planted the seeds he thought they were the types of gourds that are used for Purple Martin housing.  But they turned into the bottleneck gourds so we are just making bird houses out of them.  They grew in abundance and covered the back fence and were pretty in a messy kind of way.   

The grandkids came over this past weekend  – we’d been planning this for several weeks.  It’s been so darned cold or nasty outside that we only had a few ready.  Once you get them dried enough to hear the seeds shaking around like crazy, they need to be cleaned up.  Then you drill the hole in them and clean the insides.  Then each one must soak for 20 minutes in copper sulfate to kill bacteria, etc.  So we only had a few ready and I sure wish we’d had more because they were anxious to paint!! 

It was a perfect day for this because it was cloudy and rainy outside.  At least it was warm so between coats of paint we did go out and mess around.   They painted them and I hung them by their little strings in the laundry room on clothes hangers to dry.  Brightly colored gourds all lined up on the clothes rod dangling and swinging, bumping into each other, making funny noises, swapping paint spots.    Little ghosties. 

What’s funny about that is one weekend before Christmas I was painting up a bunch of them for gifts and hanging them in there to dry.  I didn’t notice that Rocksey wasn’t going in there at all.  That is where her food and water and bed are when we leave for work and she gets penned up for the day.  By Sunday afternoon I noticed she kept jumping up on the side of the tub and looking longingly (THAT should have been my FIRST clue) into the tub.  I walked by her later and saw her standing at the laundry room door staring at those gourds then eyeballing her water bowl.  She looked like she could use a drink.  (I recognized that look.) 

Then it hit me.  She’s scared to go in there!  I had about 8 lined up drying and to her I think they looked like little ghosties!  I picked her up and showed them to her and went “OOOOOOOO” and she about came unglued.  She had been fine while I was holding them to paint but she didn’t like them swaying around in her “room.”  So I moved them and the second I did, that poor little dog went in there and drank and drank and drank her water.  God, didn’t I feel bad.  Tim said he’d seen her standing in the doorway too looking in but didn’t know what to make of her. 

The kids worked on their gourds off and on all weekend, adding finishing touches and on Sunday Tim made a wooden stand to hang several of them on and took it to their house and put it in their backyard.  It turned out very pretty and the kids seemed very proud of themselves.  I know we were proud of them!  

I can’t wait to get more gourds ready for them to paint.  I want to hang them all over the yard and hope the birds use them for homes. 

 We’re also going to find out if birds like the color RED. 


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I dropped off a Shidzoo and got back a Chee-hooa-hooa



Our sweet little dog.  She was starting to look quite crummy so it was time for a furcut.  I took her to the local groomers- I’d used them before with my other Shih-tzu and they’d done great with her considering the fact that was one mean little sucker right to the end.  The groomers moved their digs a couple of years ago and I hadn’t been in their new place since.  Only the building has changed, the rest has remained the same.  They still have the shabby looking parrots that make so much noise no one wants them, they still have the same sad supplies that look like they’ve been on the shelf for 20 years and they still have those two little hellions they own, two small miniature collie looking things that bark, squeal, scream and jump whenever any one walks thru the door.  Continuously.  I don’t think they ever stop barking and it’s those loud, high-pitched barks that grate on your last nerve.

Poor Rocksey.  She immediately started shaking and quivering (she’s so tender, as my husband says) and I just hated to hand her over to the strange looking, strange acting man who stands behind the counter.  It just about breaks my heart to leave her there, even though I’m certain they do take good care of her.  Rocksey looks at me as I’m leaving with this “OH MY GOD ARE YOU LEAVING ME HERE??” look and I have to turn away and not look at her again as he takes her to some cage in the back where the two little screamers are.

I get back to work and watch the clock for three hours.  At noon, I speed up there to get her.  Walk thru the door and almost fall over a glass fish tank sitting on the floor near the door.  I mumble something about a safety hazard but say nothing else.  At the counter is this very large, and forgive me, very ugly woman and she has the old tattered parrot on her shoulder.  Standing next to her is an equally homely younger version of the woman who is missing most of her front teeth and they’re both talking to this parrot like it’s their baby.  Behind me is a little girl, also toothless,  who is gawping at a ferret in a cage on the floor and she is screaming, “Mommy, Mommy, I want this thing, I want this thing!”  over and over again in a pitch a tad higher than the dog standing in the window in the other room barking at everyone coming up the walkway.  I badly want to punch either her or the other yapping dog behind the counter.   While I’m waiting I become mesmerized by the back of the large woman and the bird’s butt hanging out over it and start wondering how big a turd that bird could plop there.  Not that it was going to ruin the faded, dingy housedress the woman had on…but…STOP…where am I going with this…now I’m getting mean.  The bird creaked it’s neck around and looked at me and I think it only has one good eye, but I could be wrong.  I didn’t want to make eye contact in case one of the youglies thought perhaps I wanted it to sit on MY shoulder.  Please. No.  The birds tail lifted slightly and I stepped back and it made a sort of chirpy noise…but nothing happened much to my relief.  I think it may have been reading my mind.  But, I digress…

A young fellow comes out and hands me Rocksey and I hesitate because at first I really thought it was a white chihuahua.  With big ears.  This furcut was different from her first.  The first one was at Petco and they gave a “Bichon Frise” style cut which was really cute on her.  Yet it is her, I can tell by the half-hearted wag of the tail and I take her and she seems glad to see me.  I pay the $30 and we head to the car and she gets into her pet carrier and immediately lies down.  She doesn’t move again until we get home.  She leaps out of the car and runs over to the cat, Peebs, who arches up and hisses.  Even the cat doesn’t recognize her!   But they touch noses and re-acquaint and Peebs snorts and I swear, smirks at Rocksey as if to say, “Look at your funny ass, homie” as she stalks off twitching her tail in mirth.  Rocksey runs inside, noses all her toys (the living room is now called Romper Room because of all the toys strewn about) she tosses around her favorite pink toy and plops down on her towelmat to resume chewing on last night’s chop bone.  I fix myself a lunch and turn on the noonday news.  All is right in our world again.

Now our pooch is done again for at least another three months and my mission for the day is accomplished.  Next time I’m thinking I may spend the extra money and take her back to Petco.  Maybe.

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