They Grow Up So Fast…

Hard to believe it’s the last day of May… and Gene’s to-do list is still so long. (Monarch Sanctuary, wherefore art tho? Certainly not in my front yard.) We seemed to have skipped spring, and jumped straight into summer. Complete with 90 degree temps and clouds of mosquitoes. On the plus side, lightening bugs and thunderstorms!

The geese, (fingers crossed) appear to be two girls and a boy, so I’ve named them Higgins, Priscilla, and Claire. They are old enough now to spend the entire day outside, where they roam the yard eating dandelions and napping in the sun. We put them back in the secure pen at night, but they’ll move into a section of the new coop as soon as it’s ready.

We’re turning the old homestead in the front yard into their new quarters. Gene boarded up the side door so it’s warmer in the winter, and redid the ceiling and insulation where water had gotten in. We also had to climb up on the roof and repair the cracks in the chimney with some bucket of stretchy stuff that bore a disturbing resemblance to a melting Tootsie roll. Gene of course made applying it look super easy – he just stuck a trowel thing in the bucket, then spread it evenly onto the shingles and didn’t get a speck on him. I, on the other hand, promptly stuck the trowel to my hand, ruined my favorite t-shirt, stepped in melting Tootsie roll, and made the chimney look like someone went crazy with the chocolate frosting. But hey – it’s waterproof!

It seems like the more I help, the more I hinder. For instance this afternoon we were painting the interior with Killz to fix the mold situation, and Gene saw me eyeballing the roller that he’d had the brilliant idea of screwing onto the broom handle so we could paint the ceiling without a ladder. He let me paint with it while he went in to grab a cold beer, and came back not two minutes later to find me sadly holding a roller and a broken broomstick. Apparently you can’t press that hard – I blame the pythons.

Ceri decided she wanted to help as well. Her contribution was stepping on the paint can lid and tracking prints all over the floor, then rushing up behind me and knocking into the wet paint brush as we were walking back to the house. I guess it runs in the family.

We’re still doing the mail route once a week, which I still absolutely love. Gene, not so much. Getting him out the door at the crack of dawn is like herding an extremely large, grumpy badger. But we get to see so many cool things on the route!

Normally I remember to grab my good camera, although today I forgot. So of course today we saw a beautiful young fox whose coat was just starting to turn red, a huge crane, and a porcupine. The porcupine was awesome – they look like spiky koalas, and they can climb up trees with a quickness. I would have gotten even closer with my camera phone, but I totally fell for it when one of the locals said they could launch their spines at you. Sigh.

How Have I Gone 42 Years Without Geese In My Life?

Geese are amazing. If you don’t have some, you need some. Now. They’re adorable! The 3 goslings outgrew the office tank in a matter of days (and the Guinea chicks moved in!), so now they’re in a spacious heated box in the garage. But don’t worry – they still get tons of socialization time.

I take them out in the yard for a few hours every day, and they follow me around. If something startles them, they pile in my lap. If I pat the ground, they run over to me. I have Purpose. I’m like a gigantic mama goose now.

I even convinced Gene that they needed a wading pool! He found one that had been lingering in the backroom of the local hardware store for years, so it was a screaming deal. He even built a swim ramp for it! Never have you seen happier geese.

So now when I should be parked at my computer stressing out about deadlines, I’m parked in the sunshine watching happy goslings eat grass, chase bugs, and take naps cuddled up against me. Life is good.

In non-geese related news, the weather has finally warmed up to where I can transplant all my seedlings into larger pots, and start things like sunflowers and squash. I was slightly panicked about where to put all the new pots, since the portable greenhouse in the living room isn’t all that big. Gene added shelves to the screened in porch out front, so naturally I filled it to capacity. I was also left wondering why I took the time to meticulously create seating charts for all my planting trays, planted *at least* 7 different kinds of peppers and tomatoes, then labelled everything… “peppers” and “tomatoes”. Guess I’ll figure it out once they start to grow fruits.

Never Say Never…

After 10 years of pestering, brochures, long sighs and longer lists of benefits left in strategic places, Gene finally said yes to getting geese! And for all my readers with extraordinarily good memories, yes – he officially lifted the “divorce decree”. Bringing home adorable goslings would no longer result in the end of our marriage.

In fact, Gene’s the one that went and picked them up when the feed store called this morning to say they’d arrived! (That probably had less to do with excitement on his part, and more to do with the fact that I kept texting him “GEEEEEESSSSSSSEEEEE” over and over until he picked up the car keys.

He also apparently told the people at the store that he only changed his mind because he couldn’t wait for the day they got ornery and started chasing me around the yard. Or Chupi. As long as someone’s getting chased, he’ll be happy.

Of course, thanks to my detailed plans for socialization, that day won’t come. It won’t be like King Midas, who for some reason went from happily clucking over treats to share with his ladies to bouncing off the back of my ankles in a sneak attack that was only thwarted because I was wearing knee high rubber boots. (Which now apparently I’ll be wearing all year round).

It definitely won’t be like baby Mocha, who doesn’t even bother to lure me in by looking cute and cuddly anymore. She just charges.

These geese are going to love me. Right now they’re comfortably installed in the office tank, which Gene reluctantly brought back in after moving the older chicks to a heated brooding space in the pole barn. He wanted to partition off the huge stock tank so the geese had their own area, but I sagely pointed out that they’d never get used to my presence if they were outside when I spend all my time inside working hard on my computer to pay the bills and such. This way I can pick them up and cuddle them whenever I need a break, which is roughly every 10 minutes or so, or whenever something interesting happens outside the window.

Today, for instance, deadlines took a back seat to spa time. I figured since the goslings had been in their tiny little feedstore enclosure for the last week, they would love the chance to play in some warm water. I filled up the sink, being careful to add an underwater platform they could stand on if they needed a break.

Never have you seen happier goslings, or more water splashed around the kitchen. Let’s just say I’m glad I hadn’t prepped the coffee maker yet, because that carafe could use a little decon. Totally worth it though.