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Betty LaRue

Post a good thing that happened in your life today

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Posted (edited)

Received a WhatsApp invitation from our elder son to us and his brother to share his forthcoming 40th birthday celebration remotely by drinking a glass of wine. It will be a happy occasion tinged with sadness.  

Edited by Bryan
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They finally had active dry yeast at the grocery store so I can make myself bread. 😎Since finding out I had a gluten intolerance several years ago, I have really missed good crusty bread but haven't baked any kind of rising dough bread in decades, so it should be interesting. I tend to bake pies, cookies and quick breads. I toyed with purchasing a pricey Emile Henry baguette pan, but found a silicone 3-loaf bread form on Amazon for roughly 1/10th of the price so figure that's more appropriate for a neophyte bread baker. I actually love baking in silicone - I have red silicone muffin tins and loaf pans, they cook evenly, nothing sticks, and they clean up easily - even in the dishwasher. Easy to store too. 

 

I did get myself their medium sized Dutch Oven for Mother's Day - on sale - I've been making so many soups, stews and chili in my huge 12-quart Caphalon stock pot but my freezer is getting full with all the leftovers/extra so this should be perfect for when I just want to make enough for the two of us with maybe leftovers for one day - and it's supposed to be awesome for no-knead bread (of course, when baking gluten-free you don't knead the bread dough anyway) - but it's a crusty round loaf and I found a GF recipe. 

 

Look for photos in a couple of weeks when all these cooking goodies arrive. I've been baking like crazy but haven't been photographing any of my efforts. Too busy eating!

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I hear there is a new standard called the Covid 15. Pounds gained, that is.

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A baby robin in front of my apartment door! I kept thinking I heard a chirp in the hall and finally decided to investigate. I guess I should have grabbed my RX100 but I grabbed a scarf instead in hopes of catching it and taking it outside. I managed to save a sparrow once by throwing a light cloth over it. They sort of go all limp in the dark. It was at a client's house and their three cats were fascinated by this little sparrow caught between the screen and the window. I put the cats in the bathroom and did manage to get the sparrow and release it outdoors. My little robin chick wasn't so easy. It kept flying and fortunately it flew downstairs, not up, but it was flying against the front door. I finally got it going towards the open back door and it flew out into the garden. I saw an adult a bit later so I'm just going to leave things be so the little one can be fed. I wonder if we have more than one. Very exciting in the BIG CITY.

 

Paulette

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7 hours ago, NYCat said:

A baby robin in front of my apartment door! I kept thinking I heard a chirp in the hall and finally decided to investigate. I guess I should have grabbed my RX100 but I grabbed a scarf instead in hopes of catching it and taking it outside. I managed to save a sparrow once by throwing a light cloth over it. They sort of go all limp in the dark. It was at a client's house and their three cats were fascinated by this little sparrow caught between the screen and the window. I put the cats in the bathroom and did manage to get the sparrow and release it outdoors. My little robin chick wasn't so easy. It kept flying and fortunately it flew downstairs, not up, but it was flying against the front door. I finally got it going towards the open back door and it flew out into the garden. I saw an adult a bit later so I'm just going to leave things be so the little one can be fed. I wonder if we have more than one. Very exciting in the BIG CITY.

 

I'm glad you completed a successful rescue Paulette! Urban wildlife does seem to be on the increase, especially with humans a bit out of the way. I was housesitting years ago and a dove got in and went straight up to a high window and kept flying into the glass trying to get out. I located a ladder and had to climb up to try and get it. I'd never touched a wild bird before. I wore gloves and had to decisively reach out to make sure I grabbed it without causing injury. I realised I had to be calm and steady for the bird who was panicking and managed to take hold of it and release it outside. I was so relieved that it ended well.

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Birds fly into our greenhouse occasionally and, confused by the glass, struggle to get out. I've found the best method is to walk around outside to the  rear of the house when the bird will fly towards the open door at the opposite end.

 

We currently have blue tits nesting in both our home nest box and that at the allotment. I'm surprised at the success with the new!y installed allotment box as it's just 6 feet off the ground and adjacent to a busy walkway, but the birds just ignore us humans, even when standing right next to the box. I only hope that the itinerant cat that is sometimes seen there doesn't take too much interest, there are rats to keep it busy.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Sally R said:

wildlife does seem to be on the increase

 

That may be so Sally R but I still have to see butterflies around where I live. So far I have only seen two Orange tips and two whites in a 6 to 7 week period.

 

Usually there are Small tortoiseshells and Peacocks in abundance this time of year but not seen one so far.

 

Allan

 

Edited by Allan Bell

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A good thing. No post = NO BILLS.

 

 

Allan

 

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A little robin chick in the tree by my fire escape this morning. I don't know if there is more than one but at least one is being fed. Later I saw an adult with a worm in its mouth. I couldn't see where it took the worm but it was wormless when it flew away. Then when I was watching later I saw the two adult robins, then a red-tailed hawk flying by from the direction of Washington Square Park. Finally a sparrow showed up. We have an abundance of sparrows in the city. Every now and then I'll see a bush full of puffy fledglings. They are really cute at that age -- as are we all, I think.

 

Paulette

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5 hours ago, Allan Bell said:

That may be so Sally R but I still have to see butterflies around where I live. So far I have only seen two Orange tips and two whites in a 6 to 7 week period.

 

Usually there are Small tortoiseshells and Peacocks in abundance this time of year but not seen one so far.

 

Allan

 

That's interesting Allan. I hope the butterflies are doing ok. Insects worldwide have apparently been going down in numbers in recent years, so it is a bit concerning when they are not around. I certainly remember seeing many more dragonflies as a kid than I do now. Another possibility may be a bit of a change in their migration patterns this year, that is if they are migrating butterflies. I saw something on a David Attenborough program recently about butterflies migrating vast distances, something that I hadn't known about before.

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1 hour ago, NYCat said:

A little robin chick in the tree by my fire escape this morning. I don't know if there is more than one but at least one is being fed. Later I saw an adult with a worm in its mouth. I couldn't see where it took the worm but it was wormless when it flew away. Then when I was watching later I saw the two adult robins, then a red-tailed hawk flying by from the direction of Washington Square Park. Finally a sparrow showed up. We have an abundance of sparrows in the city. Every now and then I'll see a bush full of puffy fledglings. They are really cute at that age -- as are we all, I think.

 

Paulette

 

That sounds like a lovely morning of bird watching Paulette. Robins are so cute, and how wonderful to see a red-tailed hawk. It made me think of a Tom Petty song I like called You and I Will Meet Again in which he sings about a red-winged hawk, which is probably a different species but I am guessing still North American. Hawks feel like they symbolise freedom or a free spirit.

 

A nice thing that happened today is that our lovely neighbour brought around some cake left over from her husband's birthday. It was a chocolate sponge with some cherry filling. Yum!

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As a child, I used to climb trees and scamper around them like a monkey. When a baby robin, just starting to feather, fell from its nest in my backyard tree years ago, I cradled it and climbed the tree to put it back in the nest. Way high. 😲

Much to my surprise, when I went to climb down, my knees began to knock. I had developed a bit of fear of heights, or just become aware of the damage that could be done from a great fall.

My teenage daughter stood below saying, “now, Mom, take your left foot slightly to the right and feel that limb...now, lower the right foot straight down about 18 inches....

That was my last tree-climbing excursion.

 

Yesterday, Mother’s Day, I went to my daughter’s. Ray grilled a salmon, we had baked sweet potatoes and a salad, and apple pie. We maintained proper distance. It was so good to visit and have conversation face-to-face. My son in Alabama gave me Amazon credit in the amount of $100. Yay!

Betty

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Posted (edited)

Consulted via WhatsApp by our 12 year old grandson for help with his maths homework, makes a person feel moderately useful.

 

However, we spotted a, presumably wild, rabbit in our garden yesterday, other people are seeing rats, think I would prefer rats. Maybe due to the lack of cars on the streets?

Edited by Bryan

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Two good things happened this morning. I found the exact pair of shoes I’ve needed (same as my last pair) on sale in our little, locally owned sporting goods store. We’d gone in first thing this morning to look for a pair of running shoes for my daughter, who is a competitive athlete. Our retail shops were only allowed to open yesterday and, since my daughter had worn most of the tread off the bottom of her running shoes, she desperately needed a new pair. While there, I just happened to check for the shoes I wanted, thinking I was going to have to place a special order, and there they were. Half price!

 

The second good thing was a reported sale for a decent $$ amount (US magazine). The photo is of a French hospital and was zoomed several weeks ago. I’ve been extremely discouraged lately. My zooms have been good, but I hadn’t had a sale reported since mid-January. I know sales are down for many people, and I’m sure this doesn’t mean more sales are soon to follow for me in upcoming days, weeks, or months, but this at least gives me a little encouragement. 

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Posted (edited)

The council are restarting the green waste collection so I've been making sure all the bags are full of the trees we've been cutting down over the last 6 weeks. No more bonfires necessary so that gives the street a break! Seriously, there's not much smoke if you leave stuff to dry out for a week or so.

And I won't have to take the paper and cans and bottles down to the recycling point in a wheelbarrow anymore.

There was a fox sunbathing in the garden again this morning- we usually see a few of them in the garden but gardening and foxes appear to be incompatible.

Edited by spacecadet

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9 hours ago, Bryan said:

Consulted via WhatsApp by our 12 year old grandson for help with his maths homework, makes a person feel moderately useful.

 

However, we spotted a, presumably wild, rabbit in our garden yesterday, other people are seeing rats, think I would prefer rats. Maybe due to the lack of cars on the streets?

Found a use for a couple of my old plastic tool boxes. Took out the trays cut a 3" hole in the end near the bottom, perfect for holding 1 rat trap, nothing can get in apart from Rats and mice. lift the top lid to see results. Bait with a peanut. So far 6 rats caught near my compost heap.

Andy. 

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9 hours ago, aphperspective said:

Found a use for a couple of my old plastic tool boxes. Took out the trays cut a 3" hole in the end near the bottom, perfect for holding 1 rat trap, nothing can get in apart from Rats and mice. lift the top lid to see results. Bait with a peanut. So far 6 rats caught near my compost heap.

Andy. 

Wonderful! Good idea.  Are you laying the dead rats on a fence post for the hawks?

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Posted (edited)
14 hours ago, aphperspective said:

Found a use for a couple of my old plastic tool boxes. Took out the trays cut a 3" hole in the end near the bottom, perfect for holding 1 rat trap, nothing can get in apart from Rats and mice. lift the top lid to see results. Bait with a peanut. So far 6 rats caught near my compost heap.

Andy. 

 

We have to use poison to deal with the rats at the allotment, not keen on this but can't see an alternative. People keep chickens and they go after the feed. The one occasion when I have deliberately killed an animal was when I found a dying rat and, to end its suffering, cut off its head with a spade. Grim.

 

Whilst on this topic I once came across a deer in a bad way lying in a roadside ditch, it having been struck by a passing vehicle. I felt obliged to kill it, but being on my bicycle, had nothing to hand to bring a swift end. Had to leave it there, felt bad about it.

Edited by Bryan

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6 hours ago, Betty LaRue said:

Wonderful! Good idea.  Are you laying the dead rats on a fence post for the hawks?

I have a pair of Buzzards nesting not far away that are benefiting Betty. I chuck the rats over onto a stream bank at the end of my garden, I think they keep a beady eye on my garden because it only takes a few minutes and one swoops down. 

Andy

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2 hours ago, Bryan said:

 

We have to use poison to deal with the rats at the allotment, not keen on this but can't see an alternative. People keep chickens and they go after the feed. The one occasion when I have deliberately killed an animal was when I found a dying rat and, to end its suffering, cut off its head with a spade. Grim.

 

Whilst on this topic I once came across a deer in a bad way lying in a roadside ditch, it having been struck by a passing vehicle. I felt obliged to kill it, but being on my bicycle, had nothing to hand to bring a swift end. Had to leave it there, felt bad about it.

I agree with you about the poison Bryan, it kills the rat but also kills anything that comes across the poisoned animal (cat, dog, owl etc) Warfarin travels! 

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Posted (edited)

A very very good thing that happened to me today is that we are back on the road again!! After 3 months in lockdown, we are now heading north to escape winter in Alice Springs (20C). We had to stop at two police check-points for biosecurity controls. All good. Freedom! Or at least partial freedom. Last night we had farewell drinks by our motorhome with fellow campers who had, like us, become part of the campground furniture. Lots of different personalities and amazing stories. There was an American gold prospector, a family with twins living permanently on the road home schooling them, a guide leading 4x4 tours in remote places of the Outback, etc. Some people are truly inspiring. 

Edited by gvallee
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17 hours ago, aphperspective said:

I agree with you about the poison Bryan, it kills the rat but also kills anything that comes across the poisoned animal (cat, dog, owl etc) Warfarin travels! 

 

We've not had much success with traps, the rats are too cunning, but preferable to poison if you can get them to work. What type of trap are you using?

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6 hours ago, Bryan said:

 

We've not had much success with traps, the rats are too cunning, but preferable to poison if you can get them to work. What type of trap are you using?

I'm using the traditional spring loaded bar trap, cost about 2 euro over here. I did modify them slightly because that rat could reach the bait without standing on the trigger, just shortened the trigger by about 15mm not the 2 side legs though. Makes them reach in further under the bar, works a treat.

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I've made my self-employed income support claim so there should be something in the bank account ahead of the direct debits next week.

And my lodge had a Zoom meeting yesterday. I had to keep schtum and stick to the keyboard because OH already had a work meeting on and as we all know by now you can't have two mics in the same room without an awful lot of howling.

Anyway my absent friends video has gone down well. We do what we can.

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We've been on the road again for two days and it's magic. Everything is so much more intense after 3 months in lockdown. Tonight we are camped by a field. I looked out and thought I was hallucinating. A bison!! I looked at my glass of wine, it was still untouched. Promised!! 

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