Monthly Archives: May 2018

AARGH!

As most of you know, we have quite an assortment of wild critters in or near our yard: ducks, Canada geese, rabbits, deer, terrapins, turtles, egrets, raccoons, osprey, squirrels….

Although I’ve planted various flowers for years, and have leaned toward those that the deer ignore, I’ve never planted veggies.  So this year, I decided to try my hand at “farming” and planted one cucumber plant and one yellow squash plant. I planted them in containers and placed them on our deck.

To keep them bug-free, I’ve been spraying them religiously with Sevin (as per instructions from the owner of the greenhouse/nursery where I bought the plants).

They were coming along very nicely…..”were” being the key word here. This picture was taken last Wednesday.

Early Sunday morning, I stepped out on the deck just to check on things.

This was the cucumber plant.

And this was the squash.

That thud you may have heard was the sound of my heart sinking.

I’m guessing this damage was done by deer (the three steps coming up on our deck are no deterrent); my cousin says had it been rabbits, they would probably have left a bigger mess.

So I immediately set about rigging up netting to try to save the plants. How did we live before zip-ties?  And I’m now referring to our yard as a “Gypsy Garden”. You may recall my efforts to save the plants on the other side of the deck railing this year have been successful.

But my sweet Motor Man came to the rescue Monday and built a couple of cages to, hopefully, protect the plants.

I tell ya: it’s a zoo around here. But rather than the animals being in cages, the plants are.

Stay tuned.

~These Days Of Mine~

 

Advertisements

May I See Your ID Please?

A few days ago, I was out puttering around in the yard.  Always alert for snakes, I caught glimpse of movement out of the corner of my eye.

I apologize for the poor photo quality; these were taken with my cell phone. At the time, I just snapped the photos because this was a pretty good size “turtle”.

But, when I began looking at them closer, I noticed the white face (what?) and those eerie white CLAWS.

I continued to take pics as he/she moved along our driveway. But, I was wearing flip-flops, and let me tell you: when it started moving in my direction, I backed up VERY quickly.

My friend, Renee, is a true animal lover (of all species), so I messaged these pics to her.  She is a member of several online animal groups and posted the photos to some of those groups.

The general consensus of the experts seems to be that this is a Northern Diamondback Terrapin.

I searched online for photos and had to check several sites before I found one that shows the white mouth.  I located this one on the American Museum of Natural History web page.

And I do believe we have a positive ID on my visitor.   Thanks, Renee!

~These Days Of Mine~

 

 

Random Five Friday

Some randomness to close out May…this year is quickly slipping away…

1.) A few weeks ago, Motor Man and I took a day trip to the South Boston area of Virginia. I found this “gate” made of old tobacco wood at an antique shop and bought it,  not knowing what I’d actually do with it. I think we found a good spot. Thanks, Motor Man, for fixing it in place for me.

2.)  As a lover of bacon (and ham), this recent Bizzaro comic  made me chuckle.

3.) Yesterday’s sunrise.  I hadn’t been up but a few minutes, opened all the curtains, and that big orange ball caught my eye.

4.) Hoping for a pretty day tomorrow, so I can stop in at our local Farmers Market. There are two vendors that I particularly enjoy: one is a couple who sells beautiful cut flower bouquets. The other is operated by twin sisters, a bit older than me, who make and sell handmade jewelry.  My friend, Donna, and I affectionately refer to them as “the Baldwin sisters” (The Waltons tv show), only these sisters sell jewelry, rather than “the recipe”. These are three of the necklaces I’ve purchased from them.

5.) Last Sunday, the weather cooperated, and we were able to have our Memorial Service on the grounds of “the old brick church; such a sacred, special spot for so many of us who live in the area.

And may we all pause to remember the real reason for the holiday.

~These Days Of Mine~

 

Wild Horses By The Atlantic

You may recall that, a couple of years ago, Motor Man and I randomly met a sweet couple  (Renee and Mike) from Ohio on the beach at Carova. Renee was taking pictures of the horses, and….so was I (imagine that).  We “hit it off” and became Facebook friends.  They return to the Outer Banks once or twice yearly, and we drive down to spend some time with them while they’re in the area.

From my blog posts, you already know that Carova is a magical place for me. Renee feels the same way. Last week, they were at the beach on vacation, so Motor Man and I spent last Tuesday with them.

It was The. Perfect. Day. on the beach. The wind was from the west, which meant the flies were annoying the horses (not a good thing), but that also brings the horses to the water’s edge seeking relief. We lost count of how many horses we actually saw, but we’re guessing  70+.

When you have that many harems in one location, there are going to be “dust-ups” among the stallions. Although one of those looked pretty serious, thankfully neither horse seemed to be injured.

There was action everywhere; too much for Renee and I to capture with our cameras, although we certainly tried.

This won’t be the smoothest video you’ve ever watched, but I didn’t edit it. I thought those of you who’ve never been to the area would enjoy seeing not only the horses by the ocean, but also them running up on the dunes. I caught a couple of encounters among the stallions in this, including one kicking up his heels down by the water around the 30-second mark. (There is sound, but depending on your browser, that may not work. For me, it works through Edge, but not AOL.)

Motor Man and I didn’t think to take our tripod, so we asked a stranger to take a couple of pictures of us.

Hmmm….these two look a little guilty about something.

Mike and Renee are so much fun; we always enjoy our visits with them. After our amazing time on the beach, they treated us to lunch before we headed back home.

We’re already looking forward to their next visit, and can only hope the horses are as plentiful then as they were this time.

~These Days Of Mine~

 

 

 

 

 

 

Around The Yard This Week

Today, I’m sharing some recent photos taken in our yard.

Yes, they leave a horrible mess, but there seems no way to get rid of them persuade them to go elsewhere. So it’s only fair that Canada geese would occasionally provide a photo op. At last count, we had several couples with many, many babies, who are growing by leaps and bounds. If they all return to the place of their birth, we are in serious trouble in years to come.

We have seen so many turtles in the past few days, including this biggie in one of our flowerbeds.

I thought she may have been laying eggs, but she walked away, leaving this hole uncovered.  Perhaps some of you turtle experts can advise?

Recently, I glanced out the kitchen window (thus the poor quality photo) and caught glimpse of this VERY unwelcome visitor. I had always thought the birds were protected by the tree branches while they were at the feeders. Thankfully, this has been the only time I’ve seen that hawk.  Hopefully, all the racket I made when I opened the door scared him away permanently.  (Wishful thinking, I’m sure.)

Are you familiar with Carolina Sweet Shrub?  Years ago, Marshall’s paternal grandmother had one at her front porch. I always admired it, but never was able to grow it from the cuttings she’d give me. Finally, I’ve had success.  Those dark red “blooms” have a very sweet aroma if you crush them between your fingers.

A few weeks ago, I noticed that my garden phlox foliage was visible.  Normally the deer devour them right away, but this year, I rigged up a “blockade” with stakes and netting.

AND…that has paid off.  Well, I have flowers blooming, but they aren’t phlox. I posted this picture yesterday on FB, asking for help identifying the yellow plant.  My schoolmate (and birthday twin), Marilyn, came through for me and said it’s a primrose. I don’t recall planting THAT, but what a beautiful surprise. Now, hopefully, the plants on the left are my phlox.  And my netting is at top capacity, so if this foliage grows any taller, I will have to revamp my blockade.

And, after what seems like WEEKS of rainy weather, the sun came out late Saturday and treated us to a beautiful sunset.

What’s happening in YOUR yard?

~These Days Of Mine~

 

 

 

~These Days Of Mine~

 

 

 

 

 

 

Random Five Friday

Closing out the week with some randomness:

1.) Motor Man and I took a quick day trip to the Carova area of the Outer Banks earlier this week.  We actually lost count of how many horses we saw ON. THE. BEACH. The flies were bothersome, and when that happens, the horses head to the water’s edge for relief.  And because so many harems were in the same location, there was lots of action among the stallions.

2.) For the past few weeks, I’ve been fighting what I thought was tendonitis in my foot. An urgent care visit last week, along with a week’s regimen of prednisone, icing, and compressing provided no relief. So yesterday, I saw my podiatrist. After an x-ray, which showed no fractures, he diagnosed severe inflammation. An ouchie cortisone shot followed, and now I’m in a surgical boot until there’s some relief.  But….the squirrel bird feeders were empty, so… (And, yes, Motor Man would gladly have filled them for me, but I’m a bit on the stubborn side.)

3.) It seems I now have a pet crow.  He sits on this almost-too-small perch and caws at me while I’m in the yard.

4.) I thought this was an interesting shot.  As you may recall reading here before, Gypsy loves playing in her water bowl.  I’m not sure the reason why. Earlier this week, she jumped up in my lap immediately after some water-play. You just gotta love the durability of denim.

5.) This Sunday is our annual memorial day service at the “Old Brick Church” Cemetery in Bacon’s Castle. It’s a tradition that began LONG before my time. Weather permitting, the service is held outside near the ruins of the old church c. 1639. At this time, it’s looking as though, this year, we’ll be having it inside at a nearby church.

Enjoy your weekend!

~These Days Of Mine~

Poison: The “Cure” For What Ailed You

For my Facebook friends, this is a bit of a repeat of a post I shared over the weekend, but with more information.

Saturday, I bought this tiny (about 6 1/2″ tall) lamp at our local monthly Pickers Market.

The vendor mentioned to me that I may have “gotten a real bargain”; she hadn’t taken time to research this item.

There were some markings, which made that chore a little easier.  A quick search when I got home showed these available on Ebay from $19.99 to $120.00. We were heading to a race later that day, so my dear friend, Pam (Two Spoiled Cats), took the time to find and send more information to me.

This is a “Vapo-Cresolene” lamp, which, years ago, was thought to kill germs and help ease the discomforts of all sorts of breathing problems, as well as measles and diptheria.  The customer put Kerosene in the lamp, then Cresolene in the removable cup at the top of the lamp and lit the tiny wick located just below the white chimney.

I’m guessing that this little lamp was made sometime in the late 1800’s. It’s amazing to me that all the parts are still there, especially the removable cup at the top and the white globe, since they aren’t attached.

Of course, we now know that the Cresolene, as well as this little lamp, although certainly adorable, probably had no effect on those diseases it was thought to cure.

There’s much more information available here in the link that Pam sent me; it’s well worth a few minutes to read. Marshall had also done some quick research and found the picture of the cresolene medicine bottle, also shown in the article, which is clearly labeled “POISON”.

Some of you know my Motor Man and his quick, dry sense of humor. He’s been battling allergies the past few weeks, which included an insistent cough. Last weekend, when I read him the info about the cresolene lamp, he said: “Well, fire that sucker up. I need it!”  He’s much improved since that time; perhaps just having the lamp in the house, even unlit, was all that was necessary.

I doubt these little lamps are rare, but just for the fun of having it, I think I definitely scored a bargain for $5.00.

~These Days Of Mine~