Monday, May 6, 2013

Backyard bliss.

I finished "the semester before the last semester of my bachelor's program" last week, and I'm anxiously awaiting new classes to begin.  I have one week left:  one week of freedom, one week of relaxation, you name it.

What it really boils down to is that I'm playing a hell of a lot of Candy Crush Saga on Facebook, then acting shitty when it's time to pick up the kids because I feel like I wasted the whole day.  Hmph.

(*Note:  I'm not shitty to the kids.  Ever.  Okay, rarely, but only when they deserve it.  Playing "good cop, bad cop" is tough, because I'm always "bad cop."  Always.  Okay, sometimes.)

The spring rains started about a month ago and the backyard is beautiful.  It's a tropical oasis of sorts, complete with non-native trees which I insisted on having because they were different:  Drake elms.  Ugly as sin and bare in the winter, a beautiful, living canopy the rest of the year.  The kind of tree you unconsciously duck your head to walk under, even though you don't need to.  The shade of green that makes you swear the branches are tinting the light underneath.  Breathtaking.

For years, I've been a fan of bird feeders.  I've got two in my backyard that are a few years old that I honestly spent about $60 a piece on, and that might have been back in the days of my 10% off Lowe's employee discount pricing.  I'm a bird-a-holic.  They're peaceful, they're productive, they're chipper, ... they are everything I'm not before 9am noon.

Having time free from schoolwork and APA papers has left me with a lot of time to bird-watch, so I started spoiling them a bit.  I bought three new feeders for the yard:  two of the window variety complete with heavy-duty suction cups, and one long finch feeder for the little guy I see trying to tackle the big seeds in the regular feeders.  To lure the wary travelers to my window feeders, I bought them some dried mealworms.  I thought that sounded rather enticing, if I were a bird.

So far, nothing but a random night-time frog has been brave enough to visit the window feeders.  He (or she) was a mess, with bird seed stuck all over him/her.  It was enough to warrant an Instagram photo, that's for sure.

Say "cheese."

Anyway, it had come to its senses by morning and was nowhere to be found.  +1, frog.

The problem, which I haven't even begun to touch on, really topped out today.  Squirrels.  In the trees.  On the fence.  On the ground.  Squirrels were everywhere, and suddenly my fury with them has come to a head.  It's a standoff.  I've considered adding squirrel baffles to the feeders in my trees, but I can't figure out how to make them work.  First off, they're expensive.  Second, I have my feeders hanging in a tree.  There's really nothing to "baffle" the baffle around.  Plan B.

I tried shooting them.  All of them.  Every squirrel.  I even watched a few videos about how to field dress a squirrel so we could eat them for dinner.  (Waste not, want not and all that.)  But that's too aggressive.  It got my blood boiling today, and who wants that when they're supposed to be relaxing?  (Side note:  time to adjust the windage on the pellet gun.  I didn't hit squat, PETA.)

Plan C:  going to Lowe's to purchase materials to build my own bird feeder pole.  Safe, easy, relaxing, squirrel-free.  Plan goes into effect tomorrow.  Once it's finished, the only thing to piss me off for the rest of my "vacation" will be Candy Crush Saga, where the drama continues to unfold.

Also, shouldn't I be writing or something?  Wouldn't that be more relaxing?  More productive?  More riveting?  Yes.  Andddd yes.

Cherstin, out.