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Give a hoot!

March 5, 2006
Things have been very busy again for me, and the the last two days I have been at home again, thank goodness.  I am so worn out and I am really glad for some days off to get back to normal.  I expect to write about last week in the next few days but for now I am going to stick with events of this weekend because they are much simpler. 
  Saturday was forecast to be mild and sunny, so I decided to work on gardening.  I have a lenten rose in bloom as well as yellow and purple crocuses.    The rose is not really a rose but is a very pretty pink colored flower.  I trimmed the fern somewhat in the back yard because I want the bloodroot flowers to be able to come up and it was also covering my short rhododendron.  Poor thing, I don’t know if it will make it in that spot.  I might have to move it. 
    I also filled up the bird feeder and the squirrel feeder.  We have one little fir squirrel (about the size of a chipmunk) that always gets first dibs on the peanuts because he is so quick, we call him Zipper.  Then comes along a black squirrel who is followed by a male wherever she goes.  Guess it is that time of year.
  Anyway, I fed the squeeky animals, dug in the dirt and got nice and muddy, then washed up and went for a walk to the grocery store with my husband.  When we got back I remembered that I didn’t close up the composter, so I went to the back, and I was surprised with what I saw.  Instead of Zipper running up and down I hear him squeeking his little lungs out.  At first I thought it was because of the larger squirrels sitting in the feeder, but it was something much bigger.
  We had ourselves a barred owl sitting in the backyard.  Wow, was it ever a sight to see.  It just calmly sat there the whole time we gawked at it and let us get quite close to take pictures.  I read that they have eyesight 100 times better then us so it was really patient with us “weakeyes”.  The owl stayed all evening and past when it got too dark for us to see into the back.   Mostly it stayed very still except for looking around with the remarkable way owls can move their heads more then 180 degrees, and blinking those great big brown eyes.  At one point a squirrel got hungry enough to climb up and grab a few bits of corn.  Owl watched squirrel very keenly but never made a move.  Then squirrel noticed owl and sat on a branch shaking his tail before taking off.
  Today is the first Sunday in Lent and we went to church.  Before we went we had another surprise, I had forgot to close up one of the tubes on the hamster cage and Pookie had gotten out.  We spent 30 minutes checking every hamster hidey-hole looking for Pookster until I found him in the upstairs closet, sleeping.  He was not please at being woken from his sleep so rudely with a flashlite and a hand poking at him, and I think he must have been a little thirsty too.  He hissed a bit and then ran under the cover for my sewing machine I have stored in the closet and stayed there until Jeff brought his favorite box and then we took him back to his cage where he happily went to sleep in his nest with a chunk of apple.
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