Thursday, June 27, 2013

Okay, Take a Break!

We have oodles of Hummingbirds visiting and dining on our Honeysuckle bush, just like last year.
Occasionally, these tiny, winged bundles of energy do take a break and sometimes we have the camera at the ready when they do!  Sometimes they pose and give us a show too, see above!

Jail (Cage) Break!

Had a code red in the auxiliary chicken coop this past Sunday morning with a couple of the young pullets attempting to "fly the coop".
It's a good thing we were home to put a stop to it.  Emilie calmly went out, caught the offending leader and gave her a stern talking to followed by some tasty treats.
However, this morning we had a double-code red at the same coop.  I was awoken from bed by the all too familiar sounds of chickens in distress.  When I looked out the window there was a Red Fox trying to get a hold of a chick.  He was darting back and forth and also jumping up against the front of the cage.  With one eye opened I was able to race outside and chase it off but not before he grab himself a chicken wing.  The good news is that the chicks wings isn't too bad and will be fine.  However, the bad news is that the fox didn't immediately take off when I approached it AND here it is 11:00AM and it's been back two more times.  Fortunately, the neighbors dog has spotted it both times and chased it off.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Don't Mess with SFrye "McGregor's" Gardens!

As you can see here Peter Rabbit has found himself behind bars.
Ironically, our strawberries stopped being eaten about the same time as ole Peter here was relegated to solitary confinement.
Believe it or not Emilie caught Peter.  She took the cage he in, tossed in a handful of strawberries and left the door wide opened.  Peter hopped on in to dine and it just so happened that Emilie was looking out the window at the time and off she darted.  All she had to do was close the cage door and wallah!
We adults over think things too often.  I didn't think there was even a slim chance any critter would willingly walk on in, let alone sit there while a human approaches and shuts the door.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Another Emilie Milestone!

Emilie's fifth grade graduation ceremony was held this morning.
Congratulations M!!
It's off to middle school next year!

Tomato Plants + HHH = Happy Plants!

The three HHH's have arrived and the vegetable garden couldn't be happier, especially the tomato plants.  They're growing faster than I can tie them or so it seems.  Hoping for a bumper crop this year!

Young Ladies

Babies no more - our chicks have grown!
They're approximately 2 months old now, fully feathered and little flying machines.
A nice batch of young pullets for sure!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Find The Critter

Can you find the critter in the above pictures?
These are baby praying mantis's and very tiny!
We've count six on one plant alone!  Hopefully, they'll fill up on the unwanted insects and continue to grow.

The Life of Riley (Trixie Dog)!

Shhhh, Trixie dog is relaxing and trying to get some shut eye!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


Went out at lunch time today and got myself a haircut.

On the drive over I had some dipstick riding my ass, which is not surprising.  The posted speed limit was 35, so that's what I set the cruise control to once I noticed the nimrod on my tail.
So, when we get to the lights I get in the center lane and the ass-hat gets in the right lane.  He proceeds to tell me that, "You drive like a 90 year old lady!".
To which I responded, "Great!  That's what I was going for!"
Let me also mention that this pin-head was a young kid driving daddy's Lexus SUV.
I have my fingers crossed that he crashes into a solid, immovable object...

My 2013 Softball All-Star

Emilie was voted by her teammates to the 2013 softball All-Star game!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

People Suck!

I could give you example after example to illustrate my point, however, I'm pretty sure you'll have experienced "them" too.
They're everywhere...

Friday, June 14, 2013

I'm Proud of You!

Congratulations to my son Christopher who was selected to the 2013 Lacrosse Bay State Conference 1st Team All-Stars!  The game to be held at Harvard stadium Monday, June 17 @ 7:00PM.
He set a new WHS lacrosse record with 65 goals scored during this past season alone!  Also, voted Most Valuable Player by his coaches and received the award at the team banquet this past Tuesday night.
Quite the accomplishments!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Frye Packing and Shipping Co.

Wrapped tight and as snug as a bug in a rug!
We've palletized my grandmothers kitchen table and chairs.  The plan is to have this dude, which weighs approximately 400 - 500 lbs, shipped from Massachusetts to Tennessee to it's new home at the Leonard homestead.
SOOO, happy that it's staying in the family.
The cat we wrapped up inside is doing just fine too!  We left a small enough opening to get food and water inside.  Just not sure about the whole litter box situation, phew...

Black Swallowtail Instar - Hatch!

In a previous posting of mine titled, "Black Swallowtail Instars" from Wednesday, October 31, 2012, I talked about the Black Swallowtail caterpillars that we attracted to our parsley.
Anyway, I dug out a parsley plant in the fall before the frost killed it, potted it up and placed inside a 20-gallon fish tank.  I then pulled all the instars I could find and placed them on the parsley plants in the tank.  Added some branches for them to build there chrysalises on and store in the garage for the long cold winter.
Well, the dude pictured above was the first of the instar to hatch!  As you can see the parsley plant is long since dead but the chrysalises are still there.  A couple more to hatch then I can reclaim and clean my tank.
We let this dude go, who proceeded to fly off as though it's been flying for years.  Just hope he chooses to stick around and enjoy the flowers we have available now and the many, many to come.

Danger Will Robinson Danger!

Sitting on the back deck the other afternoon I got a pretty good scare. Walking along the railing was this critter, which I immediately grabbed and bagged.
I thought this was an Asian Longhorned Beetle, which has been causing havoc and killing trees in some of the Boston suburban towns.  The problem is so bad that some towns are proactively cutting down hundreds of trees and destroying them as a precaution and means to prevent these damaging pests from spreading.
After a little research I was able to determine that this dude was NOT an Asian Longhorned Beetle but rather the very similar looking but harmless Whitespotted Pine Sawyer - a female to boot.
Crisis averted.  Carry on.

Mr. Hinckley Dog Pen Completed!

This past Sunday I completed the dog pen I was building for a friend, well for her new dog Hinckley.  Hinckley is a Golden-Doodle and an awfully cute cotton ball.
Leveraged the 6x6 deck support posts and installed a couple 4x4 posts for the gate, used 4' tall fencing and did a lot of stapling.  Also, lets not forget the yard of pea-stone I carted from the driveway all the way around the house to the complete opposite corner, which I spread throughout the fenced in area.
All in all it came out pretty good and as I envisioned.  As you can see Hinckley approves too.


Monday, June 10, 2013


So, the other afternoon I spotted the mother woodchuck, who's burrow resides in the neighbors back yard, in our backyard.  However, she was not alone, nope!  She had (4) little woodchuck-lets in tow.  This concerns me something awful, as our veggies are all in and starting to take off.  They won't have a chance with a family of woodchucks roaming around.

Emilie grabbed the net and took off after them the other afternoon and much to my surprise she was able to catch one!  Boy was she elated, which is the exact opposite feeling of the woodchuck-let.  One down four to go.

Well, Saturday afternoon I was able to do the same thing, although, I used a shovel.  Low and behold, two woodchuck-lets caught.  Although, they're out and about, they are still too young to know and understand the dangers, plus tiny legs equals slow get-away speed.

I mush admit they are the cutest little things, however, they're not the petting-zoo type of animal, oh no!!  They're small but have some good choppers in their mouth and show them often.

Two to go...

Thursday, June 06, 2013

What a bunch of Asses

No, not the donkey kind or the human kind, they're the mother pig and piglet kind.
This uniquely colored and marked sow has three little pigs(lets) that she's raising.
This clan is not penned, so they have unlimited room to roam and forage.  With that ability these little ones will grow quickly.

The Robin Family

We have a robin family that built their nest in our Honeysuckle plant.  The nest is at the perfect height for Emilie to be able to see inside too.  She's been watching as the nest was being built, to the eggs being laid to, now, the four babies being raised.
They're growing as fast as weeds and will soon be too big for the nest to handle.

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Hunt The Wabbit Hunt The Wabbit...

I planted the (4) broccoli plants last weekend, all the while salivating just thinking of how tasty the tender florets were going to be, yummy!
As you can see from the before picture they look good; happy too!  However, if you look close enough you will notice paw prints throughout the freshly dug soil.  Clearly, we have a visiting cat issue.  Now, so long as they are catching the unwanted critters and NOT using our gardens as a litter box, they're welcome to stay.  I can deal with paw prints...
However, the after picture shows something entirely different - WHERE ARE MY BROCCOLI PLANTS?!?!  Thanks to Mrs. Wild Rabbit all that's left are broccoli stems poking out of the ground.
As Elmer Fudd used to sing - Hunt The Wabbit Hunt The Wabbit...
Before -

After -

Monday, June 03, 2013

Hi Ho, Hi Ho It's Off to Work I Go!

This past weekend was a productive one in the yard - the work never ends!
The 20 tomato plants have been staked and one tie around each, planted (6) kale, (8) peppers, (9) marigold plants and a row of ornamental corn mixed with several different varieties and sizes of sunflowers.  All this in just our BIG garden!
Today, it's been raining all morning, so everything is getting a good soaking!

We're Open and Ready for Business...

Memorial Day pool cover removal and setup -

One week later - she's swimmable baby -
First swim of the 2013 season took place yesterday afternoon!
Emilie spent the afternoon swimming and splashing.  She didn't seem to be phased or mind that the water was ice cold.  Perhaps, I'm just a big weenie...

2013 WHS Graduate

Congratulations to my son Christopher, a graduate of the class of 2013!!
Onto the next chapter in your life...

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Four Leaf Clover Find

Here's a picture of the 4-leaf clover Emilie found last month.  Hope it brings her good luck!

Saturday, June 01, 2013

I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat

Yup, we certainly did - guessing this is a neighbors cat.  Seems to always be here and when she is and the chickens catch a glimpse of her, the wracked and commotion that follows is deafening.
Typically, I wouldn't put up with this, however, I'm being tolerant for two reasons: (1) there are only House Sparrows nesting in those bird houses, and (2) we watched this cat catch a wild bunny the other day, which means one less critter eating our flowers.  I'm hoping she's also catching other unwanted critters too.
As you can see from the first picture she's very determined to get her some sparrow, as that bird house is some 20 feet off the ground.


It's June 1st already...