21 April 2012

Easter Weekend

Yes, I realise Easter was a week ago. I feel that I should mention that at the moment I'm finishing up my first semester of Graduate school, so life is crazy busy. Plus, while this Easter holiday is filled with fun memories, it also holds a very sad one for us.

The sad news first. My rat Gus died. I of course knew it would happen. Death comes to us all, no? And I expected it. He's been losing weight and slowing down since December. But he lived to a ripe old age of 3-3.5 years. He's been with us since November 2011, and I like to think that I gave him a happy end to his life, with the love of me and Camden, and also the companionship of Robin. Saturday (the 7th) night I held him while I sat outside on my parents' porch swing and read. I snuggled with him Sunday morning, also. I knew he was close, but I didn't expect it. Not really. I went to town, and when I came home, he was gone. I buried him in my parents' orchard, which is close to the garden I've planted there. He's "just a rat" and I only knew him for a year and a half. But I loved him. And I miss him. He was such a snuggle bug. And now Robin is alone, which is terrible for him, I know. I'm giving him as much freedom and time with me and Camden as I can, since I can't bring myself to get another short-lived rattum to keep him company. Is that selfish of me? Probably.

And so I can end this post on a happier note: We did have a lot of fun at my parents the days we were there.

Saturday, Camden and I helped my dad get the garden in. He's trying a new thing this year: raised beds using stock tanks. He planted green beans and zucchinis in them, hoping it will be easier to harvest them. And since I'm fresh out of home-grown canned green beans, I say more power to him! And if it saves his and my mom's backs, even better.

Planting corn with my dad's fancy corn planter.

Planting a garden is hard work! Naps afterward are always nice.

We also went to Haha Tonka State Park. I was hoping to see the bats fly out of the cave at dusk, but unfortunately, I should have done my research first! Apparently the bats were still hibernating, and we saw nary a one. We did have fun picnicking at the cave, and walking a shortish (3/4 mile) nature trail with my mom, who never goes for that sort of thing because of her knees. Amazingly, we even got my dad to go with us, even though I think he would have rather stayed at home. (But I'm pretty sure he had fun, even if we didn't get to see any bats.)

A jack-in-the-pulpit. This is the only place I've ever seen one.

Me and Cam and Molly. I have zero idea what he's looking at. *cough*weirdo*cough*

Walking the trail. I cut through a grassy area to get ahead of them to take the picture. Camden got on to me for it :(

Dad jumped out from behind a tree and (tried to) scare us. We'd been hearing him making owl sounds since about halfway through the trail, so I wasn't that surprised. Funny story: He was making owl sounds to mess with us, and then an actual owl started answering him. I think he and Cam are listening for the owl in this picture.

The bat cave! The entrance is in a sink hole, so you have to walk down a bunch of stairs to get to it. They've posted three or so thermometers along the way so you can see how the temperature changes as you go down the steps. So nifty. We're going to try to catch the bats when we're back in the area in mid-May. Wish us luck!

03 April 2012

the princess and the peas

Sunday night I had the opportunity to rescue my neighbour's girlfriend. Kind of. I had put Cam to bed, and was enjoying my alone time while browsing Pinterest. At least, I was until I heard what (I imagined to be) a person being thrown to the ground and start crying. After going through the possibilities (zombies, thieves/plunderers, domestic dispute between my neighbour and her boyfriend who live across from me, or something else) I decided to brave the unknown and poke my head out my door. It was not zombies, or thieves, or my neighbour's boyfriend beating up on her, but what appeared to be a basket of laundry spilled across the grass and sidewalk. That would explain the sound I thought. The door to the apartment next to mine was open, and that was where the crying was coming from. I knocked and called in, "Are you okay?" She answered, but I couldn't tell what it was she said. I walked through the house, idly musing that it was a mirror image to mine. She was in the back bedroom sitting on the floor with the lights off. I turned on the lights and looked her over, but I couldn't see what was wrong. "What happened?" Apparently, she had been carrying laundry to her car and stepped off the porch wrong. She told me she heard something snap. I winced inwardly, having just recently done about the same thing (I sprained my ankle pretty badly right before Valentine's day). Quickly, I ran back to my place for a bag of ice. Except, I don't have ice. Or an ice pack. I did, however, have some frozen peas. I poured those into a Ziploc bag, wrapped it in a dish cloth, and ran it back over to her. "Do you have a phone to call your boyfriend?" I asked her. She did; that was what she was after before I came over. While she called her boyfriend, I stepped out to give her some privacy (partly because she started crying again when she told him what had happened) and decided to pick up her laundry for her. After I made sure her boyfriend was coming to help her, I told her I picked up her laundry, closed her front door, and walked the few steps back to my place. And I sat there wondering if she'd just sprained her ankle or if she'd broken it. A few minutes passed and I heard her boyfriend's Jeep pull up, and the sounds of him helping her to her car, then them both leaving. This morning, I saw her boyfriend and asked him how she was. He said it was just a sprain. Thank goodness for that!
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