Wednesday, June 30, 2010


This "phenomenon" occurred while we were sitting on the deck one early evening. I'd guess that the heat and wind caused this strange coil in the pond water. We could watch the algae slowly turn and tighten the swirl pattern.

All legs

The dried weeds appear to lend extra legs and maybe a cane to the Great Blue. Looks like he's on a mission for fishin'...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

On the Lam

The 'kids' enjoyed the extra attention from Wisconsin visitors (even tho Louise and Thelma had to first get past the "stranger danger"). Here Baron dashes away from Wis Niece in case she plans to take away his mammoth (beef) bone.

Bluebird of happiness or melancholia?

We have a lovely Eastern Bluebird population here. They have the softest, sweetest call - quite melancholy, actually.

Lots of ranchers attach bluebird houses to their wooden fence posts. I'd love to except our fence posts are about a foot too short and I think the Catahoulas (and Tuxedo) would have a field day with them. So at Run*A*Round, they have to find alternative housing. But they still manage to hand around.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Makes scents

Marigold sniffs the front lawn for bone fragments left over from our "bone picnic". Every few months I go to the feed store and buy roasted beef bones for the dogs and we open them up on the front porch. That way the bulk of the meat/fat residue stays outside rather than on the inside floors. After an hour or so of munching, the bones (and dogs) are allowed to come inside for future chewing.

Back off

One of our fat and happy squirrels turns its back on me as I take pix from the office window. The little fuzz-butt...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Spidey sense

We recently had the pleasure of hosting Sis from Wis and her daughter, Wis Niece, on a visit to Run*A*Round Ranch. We spent hours on the deck and front porch soaking up the heat, enjoying the birds, beating back mosquitos. This was one Texas porch sighting they did not enjoy. I think that's a mamma spider carrying babies on her back.

Me and my shadow...

BB provides a close shadow for Marigold in repose.

Saturday, June 26, 2010


Baron and Thelma share cool floor space near the foyer (a pause for paws).

Momma didn't raise no fool.

A butterfly comes in to enjoy nature's equivalent of a 7-11 or a Sonic drive-up. Why bother foraging from bloom to bloom when you can dine on refined sugarwater directly from convenient plastic spouts? You still have to fend off ants, though.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Hello Sweet Pea!

These little beauties show up along fence lines and in the pasture.

On the prowl

BB, Baron, Thelma & Louise tromp in the field next door. Luckily, after making their investigative rounds, they usually return to home territory pretty quickly. The excessive summertime heat helps expedite their return.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dogs possessed

Looking like something out of werewolf movie, Baron, BB & Thelma enjoy a spurt of energy and pure glee on the run.

Counting crows

I see 4 here.
Whenever they hang nearby and watch me closely, I think I'm about to be in a Windex commercial or something (even tho the birds in the commercials are magpies, technically).

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dueling woodpeckers

A downy woodpecker seems to face off with a red-belly on their own feeders.

The banjo pickin' music from "Deliverance" comes to mind...

Like we don't get enough natural egrets/herons...

I went ahead and added a metal one to our landscape. But he helps to guard a bare spot in the ground cover where the dogs like to lay...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Just a blade of grass

Not. A member of the walking stick family, I presume. This one resembles field grass. Mother Nature is pretty clever, even a little strange.

Cattle egret

These guys are usually seen running alongside beef cattle as they stir up bugs in the pasture. They'll pop in and visit Zim and Gem on occasion too and this one paused to skirt the pond edge.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Scamper rats

They're lucky they're cute because as much feed as they eat and as many times as they pull down my bird feeders and as often as they tease my dogs through the deck windows...

Blah blah blah. I'd feed them anyway.

I See You...

A turkey vulture stops by, perching atop the pipe fence that leads down into the pond. Poor guy looks like he could stand to get a little more sleep...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

A trucker in another life

I love it when Tuxedo sits in the barn mow window and surveys his world - especially when he does his "trucker" imitation. You know - when the truck driver has his window rolled down and his arm stretched across the door panel. I think Tux was a big rig hauler in a former life.

Our vet's office has similar images of dogs and cats lounging in rustic places as prints in his waiting area. I think I should submit this one...

Umm...A little privacy please?!

Oops! Sorry for the intrusion, folks. My bad.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Wilting from the weather...

These poor crepe myrtle trees were weighted down by snow just a few months ago. Now they're starting to wilt in the heat as they've already produced snowy blooms in an early summer. I watered them last night to perk them up a bit.

Weather forecast calls for 100-101 degree temps for the next 4 days or so. Hopefully that's wrong...

A bump on a log

A red-eared slider enjoys some sunshine while floating on an old log.

Just another day in the office...

As I look out my window and spy squirrels, a cardinal, a cowbird and a heron strolling by...

Friday, June 18, 2010

Another leggy ghost in the near night

Gem joins in the night browsing.

A ghost in the night

An egret stalks the fish and frogs before final night falls.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Showing his best side - either one!


A tufted titmouse feeds on sunflower seeds and demonstrates the "tufted" part of his name.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hoo-ray for Hay!

We finally have bales! After 2 days of mowing, then raking, then 2 days of baling, then re-raking, then final baling, our front field produced 63 round bales! A bumper crop thanks to good winter rains and snows. Now we can revel in privacy, once again, having spent almost a week with equipment and operators on our property at all hours.

It took a little longer because they were mowing, raking and baling Neighbor to the South's front pasture too and would switch off between pastures but they kept using our driveway and field as home base. Plus they re-raked to clear the scraps of downed hay from the ground so the 2nd crop can fully reseed and grow with a little help from summer rains (and some fertilizer). So then they had to re-bale the re-raked rows. It was a little like watching someone sweep the kitchen floor, then sweep it again, then sweep again to get every bit of dog hair off the tile. Ugh! I was starting to feel sequestered in our own home with the dogs as co-captives. Now we have freedom to roam once again! At least until Neighbor to the North can come to haul off the hay bales...

Claw snag

NASA would be proud of the way squirrels defy the laws of gravity. Here one munches on sunflower seeds just plucked from the swing feeder now occupied by a cardinal. (See the new header photo for the "before" picture.)

Duck, duck - no goose

A wood duck pair creeps up to the feeder tree.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Thelma and Louise do their best bookend impression while "guarding" the driveway circle.

Filling out

Gem is definitely starting to fill out a bit after 3 weeks on meadow. Here she seems to stop and smell the roses, even where no roses exist. But hey, just a reminder that the good life is worth savoring...

Monday, June 14, 2010

Fat Boy Slim

I'm posting this photo of Zim just to prove he still has ribs under that belly... He's my pretty boy.

Runnin' the roadways

On a recent outing to the feed store (again), this time to purchase birdseed, I snapped this roadrunner through the window of my car.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

A roll in the hay

Baron and BB investigate the newly mown pasture and Baron takes a roll in something. I'm certain there were a lot of mice, snakes etc. that succumbed to the blades as there were several buzzards that alighted in the field as well.


Could nature make anything more perfect or more beautiful?! A tiger swallowtail butterfly perches on a thistle pouf. Both are just perfection in my book.

Amber waves of grain / hay

If you imagine it in a palette of blue, green and white, wouldn't it look just like a frothy sea?!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Mommy! Mommy!

"There's something really exciting going on out there!" BB and Baron seem to say. This in conjunction with the hay guy...

Hay Phase II

The mowing of the hay field has occurred! Now, just a day or two of drying and it'll be raking and baling time! Woo Hoo!

Practicing her stealth skills

Louise appears to be testing her brindle camouflage technique against the drying grass. "Oh yeah. You blend."


Or in the case of a great blue heron, would it be Greatstanding?

Which brings up a question I have: If your parents' parents are called your grandparents, wouldn't your niece's daughter be called your grandniece? So why do we use the term great niece instead?

Since grandparents' parents are great grandparents, then I think your grandniece's daughter would then be your great grandniece. In other words, you don't get the "great" title until you're at least three times removed. :)
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