Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Rescue the Perishing


Avian Rehab Accommodations
We live in a hunting community, where the pheasants are thicker than Alfred Hitchcock’s Birds. Dead, wild animals adorn the walls of nearly every home and commercial establishment within a 250 mile radius. Beasts with four feet, fins, or feathers are all considered “trophies.” And little boys grow up longing for the day they will bag their own beast and hang it on their wall.

I have three of those little boys, and as such, no moving creature on our acreage is safe. Armed with all manner of weapon, sling shot, homemade bow and occasionally the bb gun, the boys prowl through trees and grass hoping to eliminate the pests that dig holes in our yard, eat our garden and haplessly present themselves as targets.

Last week as they were on the prowl, a young robin fell victim to the little band of hunters. Having been instructed by their father not to shoot song birds, they were immediately alarmed and began to assess the bird’s health.

Lo and behold, in the vigorous hunt the bird’s leg had been severed at the “knee” or whatever you call it on a bird. Amazingly he was still alive.

Seeing his suffering, the boys dropped their weapons, and immediately went into rescue mode. I first noticed the carnage when my three little animal EMTs came pounding up the deck stairs with our neighbor boy toting the bird-gurney—a cardboard box taped shut at the top. They ran into the house, grabbed a screwdriver and before I could ask questions they proceeded to stab15 holes in the top of the box for ventilation.

Exploding with excitement they relayed the story, as all good hunters do.

Then they opened the box. There, was the traumatized, one-and-a-half-legged bird.

As I peered into the box, I noticed a loose bird leg sliding around in the corner of the box. Naturally I inquired, “What is that!?”

“It’s the leg from a black bird that was already dead! We’re going to put it on the robin… because a little hop is better than not being able to walk at all.”

A little hop…? “How are you going to do that?” I probed.

The four boys looked at each other, then at me and questioned, “Glue?...or maybe tape? Can you sew it, Mom?” I confessed I could not.

My little hunting party, turned EMTs, were now attempting to craft a prosthesis for their prey turned patient.

To hasten his recovery the little crew retrieved two vacant birdhouses from the garage and nailed them together making a sort of aviary condo. (see picture).

They relocated the bird to its new surroundings despite the squawking. My youngest stroked its little head and the squawking ceased (out of fear rather than comfort I suspect.) Noting the bird’s silence, my youngest whispered, “See, he trusts me.”

Oh certainly!

I am sad to report that before the scheduled prosthetic surgery, the bird passed. Upon hearing of his passing, my middle boy lamented, “I knew we should have fed him something else!”

Alas, we rejoice that he is well and whole in Heaven. And I personally rejoice to know that my little hunters do have a little heart.

This post is linked up to The MOB Society's "Let's Hear it for the Boys!" Thursdays.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Friendship is Born of...Blogging?



“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another:
What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
~ C.S. Lewis

The quotable Lewis summarizes what has been fleshed this blogosphere and in real life conversations with my real (as opposed to virtual) friends. I have been delighted by every comment and conversation! It only fans the writing flame inside me.

Following is a list of moments when friendships have been born or nurtured, where you and I have said to one another, “What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”


I discovered my friends have served unrefrigerated shredded cheese not only to family, but also a multitude of guests; packed the same cheese stick in a school lunch for three days in a row; strengthened stomach and immune system by serving pot roast left on the counter over night; and eaten spinach AFTER the expiration date on the package! *Gasp*

Flying in the face of the FDA regulations, each of these offenses resulted in…no sickness.
(I’m not recommending this, I’m just saying it’s happened to the best of us : )

It turns out most everyone wears clothes more than once without washing in between. One true rebel against excess laundry even requires her kids to abide by the same policy.

One dear friend, who is a much better parent than I, said she has also drowned out the dinnertime clamor with medicinal music blasting from her ear buds. She claims to know others who have as well. Reveal yourselves at once, I say! Let us all be friends!

So far my mother is the only one who has confessed to using the time saving spot-mopping method. It occurred to me I probably learned it from her and should give credit where credit is due.

Sometimes we need the assistance of our upper elementary aged children to figure out how to double or halve the fractions in our recipes or to preset the radio stations in the vehicle.

Most of us have learned never to say never when it comes to using electronic devices as “babysitters.” Judge not, lest ye be judged!

Not surprisingly, no one has admitted to bleaching in the buff…but, I know you’re out there. Perhaps you haven’t had the chance to try it yet.

Thanks for reading, my friends. I adore every conversation, comment and “facebook like.”

Thanks for giving me permission to be real!

Your comments and confessions make me giddy! 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Knock Before Entering


My shower curtain, bathroom rug and black Yoga pants all testify against me. Even my brand new, spring-green, clearance (thank goodness) shirt mocks me from my closet.

I should NOT be using bleach!

Regardless of how careful I am, how far I stand from the washer when pouring the bleach, how far I hold the spray bottle from my body, I still, always, without fail, manage to ruin some non-white fabric with bleach.

But alas, I have no other option! The five of us share the same bathroom. Need I say more?

I must bleach!

I have ventured to the world of non-bleach and “green” cleaners. I’ve heard about the silver-laced rags which cost as much as 30 gallons of bleach, and honestly, I just don’t trust them. I’m no scientist, (and if I were it’s quite possible I’d have a different opinion) but nothing says “germ-free” like the overwhelming smell of bleach. Though it may produce a headache, you can bet your ibuprofen that it won’t allow the reproduction of any living organisms.

So today, with the fabrics of my life accusing me and the dirty bathroom taunting me, I implemented an unconventional solution. I threw the shower curtain over the rod, removed the bath mat, locked the door for privacy and…well, let’s just say I didn’t bleach my clothes.

There. Problem solved. Unconventional? Yep. Too much info? Maybe. Workable solution? You bet! Sustainable plan of action? Time will tell.

But for now, I will shelve the spendy silver-laced rags, and “green” cleaners because the extremely affordable bleach comes straight from the table of elements. Which, by my logic, means it’s straight from the earth, and I will go about my cleaning au naturel.

Dare to share your unconventional problem solving methods!