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The dogs and I have been walking every morning.   This morning’s walk was delayed by me needing to fix breakfast for David,  who was home for 24 hours.  After he left the dogs (most notably Tucker) started becoming annoying.  So I pulled on my boots and said let’s go!

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The ferns in the woods are getting tall and thick.  Tucker negotiates by sproinging over them like a deer.

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Phoebe, on the other hand,  walks around them,  finding a path. 

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This amazingly colorful creature is a damselfly of some sort.  At first I thought it was a butterfly by the way they were flying. 

So even though it rained last night I decided to walk down to the river,  mainly to show you why I don’t generally walk down to the river in late spring and summer.   My previous walk down there is just below and was 7 weeks ago or so.

The way down was boggy and buggy.   I saw this guy.

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I understand why David refers to it as a cedar swamp.   A couple times my boots almost got pulled off!  I finally reached what I think of as the Island,  the high spot between the swamp and the river field.

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I was wrong about the grass.   It’s more like 4 ft high out there.   There are some paths through it,  most likely from the deer.

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Closer to the water it isn’t as tall.   I could see Sadie.   Tucker was sproinging through it like a deer.  Add he made his way across I heard “rustle rustle rustle splash!” as he ran out of field and ended up in the river.   Here are some pictures of him sproinging.

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He’s such a happy dog!

Sadie chose to go swimming again.   Phoebe waded a bit.   Tucker again took an unexpected swim and didn’t seem to like it.  Getting back through the grad field was a little challenging.   The path had closed up behind us and I hadn’t checked for a landmark.   Now I know it’s the big dead tree.  

Then it was back through the forest floor and home again.  Every dog is now napping quietly.  

Here’s a tuckered Tucker.

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He thinks my hammock makes a fine bed.

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I’m not one who likes a full schedule.  I need time in my days/weeks/months for just doing nothing.  I haven’t had a lot of that lately.  Between work and school, I’m running all over the place.  I am learning to drive a big truck, and finally feel comfortable doing so.  I understand where my trailer is now – something I was having trouble with.  Now that I”m getting it, I can back up that sucker!  Next week is finals of quarter one of two of truck school.  So far, so very good.

And now for pictures!  I’m going more or less in time order, since it’s been awhile since I unloaded my camera.

poppies

These poppies are from my trip to California at the end of March.  My grandmother passed away and I went to be with my mom.  We took a drive and I was determined to find some poppies to take a picture of.  I did, and the color of them makes me happy.

rose

 

This rose is from my grandmother’s garden.  I love how it just seems to glow from within.

 

hills

 

The central California foothills are the landscape that is burned into my soul.  I have loved everywhere I’ve ever lived, but this landscape of rocks, oaks and green hills soothes me like no other can, except anything with water.

truck school

 

April 3 was the first day of truck school.  I’m learning a lot, enjoying knowing the instructors and other students and eager to be done so I don’t have to stay home alone any more.  It does mean big changes with critters, but they’re ones I’m willing to make for the sake of me and my marriage.

horses

 

Our sixth anniversary was April 28.  We went to Grand Rapids to visit the Grand Rapids museum, have a good dinner (we went to The Twisted Rooster and I wholeheartedly recommend it – great food!), and see a movie (Oblivion, with Tom Cruise – we both enjoyed it).

museum birds

 

This display was at the museum, up high.  All the colorful birds just really caught my eye.  The exhibit was old Victorian case collections and described how they preferred to look at collections, rather than things in their natural habitats.  It was very interesting to see things like these birds grouped together.  I think I like seeing both.

 

flowers

 

While he was home for our anniversary, David left a few days before my birthday.  He sent me flowers at work, though, and a balloon.  I was grinning all day.

kayak

 

I celebrated my 50th birthday by getting out on the water, for spring had finally come.  I almost talked myself out of it, worrying about going alone, blah blah, but then just went, and I was soooo glad I did!

turtle

 

Pretty painted turtle – it had climbed up a tree branch to sit out over the water.  I was careful not to scare it, as it had obviously worked hard to get there.

kayak after

 

Afterwards.  I was so peaceful and relaxed…

tucker dew

 

The dogs have been getting walked in the woods a lot.  Tucker is a little taller than Sadie now, but lighter.  He’s getting to be a better dog all the time.

handsome tucker

 

And he’s very photogenic.

tucker attack 1

 

When we’re walking is when his herd dog breeding shows.  Sadie was meandering up behind us when he went into his crouch.

tucker attack 2

 

Then he leaps into motion.

tucker attack 3

There is a quick altercation – lots of teeth (though less teeth now as he’s growing up mentally).

tucker attack 4

And calm.  When we walk, he spends probably the last 25% of any walk pestering Sadie, trying to get her to chase him.  He loves to be chased.

samuel

And no blog post would be complete without a chicken.  🙂  This is not Jack!  This is one of his kids – I thought I had 4 pullets hatch last summer.  What I forget about the BBS Orpingtons is that the cockerels are slow to show themselves.  I even thought Jack was a pullet for the longest time.  I call this guy Samuel, because he’s Jack’s son.  Heh.  That’s how my mind works when naming chickens…We lost Romeo in March (while I was in California, so I’m not sure what happened to him) so Samuel gets to stay, as I prefer to have 2 roosters with a large flock of hens – this way they get watched out for.