Saturday, June 30, 2012

In the leafy treetops, the birds sing, "Good morning!"

More like, "In the leafy eaves of the porch, the birds sing, 'Get away from my babies!'"

My friend Carrie wrote a blog post recently about birds having babies on her porch and the parents hating her.  Well, guess what - the same thing is happening at our house right now!  We had some birds build a nest outside of our front room window and lay eggs - we knew there were eggs because all of a sudden, the birds hated us - but we were dismayed one day to find the eggs broken all over our porch.  Yes, for some unknown reason (perhaps the eggs were duds?) the parents had pushed their eggs out to sudden destruction.

But then!  A new couple moved in!  They built a nest in front of our front door and also laid eggs!  AND THEN THE EGGS HATCHED!  We now have the most adorable things happening all the time outside our front window, and we love to watch it.  The parents hate us.  In fact, when we went on a walk last night, they followed us for a full block screaming at us to leave their babies alone.  Anyway.  For your and my viewing pleasure, I took some videos.  Now you can see just how cute they are!  I have included only the most action-packed scenes.

video

At about :45, Joel walked into the front yard.  You can hear the mom and dad scolding him for it for a couple of seconds.  It went on a lot longer in real life.
Why, yes, at 1:00, that is a piece of poop scooting out!
1:55 is one of my most favorite parts, when he snuggles up and puts his arm around his brother.
Can anyone contest that seeing tiny little baby birds stretching out their cute skinny necks and gigantic beaks to be fed by their mommy/daddy is not one of the cutest things in the world?

I love these little birds living on our porch.  Sadly, their constant scolding and poop are both annoying enough that we probably will not let them live there again.  But I love them for now :)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Strawberry Days


There exists in a nearby city a fun little festival called Strawberry Days.
(Yes, this sign says "Straberry Days" instead of "Strawberry Days,"
but I didn't create it, and it was the best I could find.
You're just going to have to deal with it.)
I've heard that, every year, they give out free strawberries and cream,
but this year I learned that the cream is magical. 
Naturally, we decided to check it out.
On a pleasantly cool Tuesday evening, 
J, M, and I headed out to get some free strawberries and magic cream!
and also enjoy the free concert in the park.
The event started at 7:30, and we arrived around 8:00.
The band performing the free concert in the park was none other than The Beach Boys!
Just kidding.
They were probably about the same age, though,
only this group was performing other artists' music.
They were decent, but not worth the trip.  
No, we had come for the strawberries and cream.
Let's be honest - I was pretty much there for the cream.
There were approximately 1,000,000 people there, 
and as we followed the crowds to the strawberries and cream line,
we passed many people enjoying their magic dessert.

Then we got in line.

Only it turned out not to be the line for free strawberries and cream.
Unfortunately, it was the line for watching the crew clean off the tables,
for sadly,
all the strawberries and magic were gone.

After half an hour.

Wouldn't you think that a city that apparently produces enough strawberries to host a festival named after them would have enough that they'd last half an hour? Perhaps 45 minutes?

Alas. 

So we chose to skip out on the free concert and head over for some ice cream,
since it's probably close to magic cream.
J and I recently discovered a Maggie Moo's by our house
(and I loooooove Maggie Moo's, partly for nostalgic reasons and partly because it's delicious),
and that's where we went to satisfy our craving for magic.
When we arrived, we saw this taped to the door:


Was everything conspiring to keep us from achieving magical status?!
It was really quite disappointing.
I love Maggie Moo's.  Aside from the fact that I wanted ice cream, I was also really sad that this business I'd been so excited to see wasn't actually there.

We ended up settling on Coldstone, where I discovered Oatmeal Cookie Batter ice cream.
Although it was no magic cream,
it was still pretty good.
And it was a fun night spent adventuring with my husband and brother.
We'll probably try again next year. :)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

"In my pretty garden the flowers are nodding"

Did I mention we also have a flower garden?
Well, we have many of them, but as of now, 
all but one are filled with waaaaaaay too much dirt and/or weeds.  

But here's a picture of the one that has actual flowers in it :)

These bloomed last week! Aren't they so beautiful!

Close-up

We also have several rose bushes that are doing really well.  You can see them a tiny bit in these pictures, but I guess I should take a few of them by themselves so you can see how pretty they are. 

"I tippy tippy toe through my garden..."

We have a garden!


We chose to do a raised bed, since our dirt stinks.  Sometime in the future we'll have multiple raised beds, but for now, this is it.  The pot has an onion plant in it that started growing on the kitchen counter.  It's an experiment!  So above is a picture of our garden when we first planted it...


...and here it is now!  As you can see, our corn is getting nice and big, and the onion became two and had to be split up and transplanted.  All the other plants are still tiny and hard to see in this picture :)  We planted onions, carrots, peppers, tomatoes, and corn.

transplanting onions


A close-up of some other plants. This picture is about a week old, and several of these have  doubled in size.

We planted a bunch of little onions, so when I was thinning them out, I decided to bring some inside to grow green onions.

And now, for your viewing pleasure:


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

updates...

So, student teaching got pretty crazy... and I decided I had too much to worry about without adding blogging to the list.  I'm feeling more relaxed now, though, so I thought I'd pick it up again :)

I'm halfway done with my practicum!  My minor is Teaching English as a Second Language, and I have to do a practicum (like a mini, much more stress-free student teaching) in order to finish.  At first I was assigned to a school an hour away from home, but when the lady in charge found out where I lived, she graciously reassigned me to a school twelve minutes from our house.  Awesome!  And it's worked out pretty perfectly.  It's a little different from what I'm used to - it's a summer school program, so it's more relaxed + the program is two 3-week blocks, so starting tomorrow, I have a new mentor teacher and a brand new batch of kids - but I've really enjoyed it.  Almost every student is there because he/she failed during the normal school year, so I expected them to be a little rough around the edges, but they're pretty endearing :)

So in exactly three weeks, I'll be ready to officially graduate!  Woohoo!

Monday, June 4, 2012

also

Oh yeah - by the way,



We bought a house!

Whaaaaaat!

"First Steps" - Dallas Clayton

Cast open your windows
and look out into the world.
Throw open your doors -
those neighbors are your neighbors.
Those people are your people
waiting to have questions asked
and answered,
waiting to be found out, 
and turned upside down,
and impressed.
Waiting for you,
waiting alone
behind shuttered windows.


I read this poem tonight on Dallas Clayton's blog, and it impressed me.  Because we just moved, J and I don't know anyone yet.  Sometimes when I'm home, I see headlights or the flash of the sun on a car driving by, and I secretly hope it's a neighbor bringing us cookies or welcoming us to the neighborhood.  Then my mind asks, "If someone was going to come, why would they wait two months?" and the car always passes by.  Then today I read that poem.  This is what it said to me:

You're waiting in your home for someone to come meet you.
You're waiting for someone to care,
to ask you about you,
and to let you tell them.
You clean the house so you can invite someone over
"someday"
Or so the person who knocks will see a clean living room when you open the door.

Across the street,
she's waiting in her home for someone to come meet her.
She's waiting for someone to care,
to ask her about her,
and to let her tell.
She cleans the house so she can invite someone over
"someday"
Or so the person who comes will see a clean living room when she opens the door.

So "cast open your windows
and look out into the world.
Throw open your doors - 
those neighbors are your neighbors.
Those people are your people...
Waiting for you..."
And they need a friend, too.