It’s officially Fall…

Well, not according to the calendar, but the weather has definitely turned around here. The last of the monarchs just hatched and flew off, bringing the count officially above 30. All but two hummingbirds have headed south, the leaves are turning yellow and red, and we’ve had our first frost already!

The frost actually touched off a mild panic on my part, since some of the Pollies don’t have their legs yet. They’re still in full on tadpole stage. The original group have all turned into the cutest frogs ever, but the new ones are rapidly running out of time before the snow starts flying. So we (and by “we” I mean I) figured it would be a good idea to heat the tank to speed up the process. There happened to be an extra fish tank heater lying around, so now it’s in the bucket and the Pollies are happily swimming around in 70+ degree water, even when it’s 32 outside. Plus, we still have the huge 150 gallon tank that Gene said is too big for this house, but it’s not to big for the shop! Worst case scenario, the Pollies can winter in there.

In other tank related news, I finally got to set up a tropical fish tank in my office! It’s just a 20 gallon, since Gene was adamant that 150 gallons of water is far too heavy to house on the first floor. I was lamenting that fact to my friend Jennifer, who sagely observed that I don’t fall into the basement every time I take a bath, and the tub holds *way* more water than that. I pointed that out to Gene, and he said I’ve just been lucky so far.

But a small tank is better than no tank, and it’s perfect for a school of neon tetras. I spent the evening setting it up and decorating it, and Gene had the brilliant idea of running the hose through the window so it was super easy to fill up. After the water has cycled, I’m going to drag him to World Of Fish in Duluth. It’s a two-hour drive, but so worth it.

Other than all that… the only other news of note is that the barn swallows have fledged. Now they’ve taken to sitting on the cable line that runs from the shop to the house, and shrieking for someone to bring them delicious snacks. (Not unlike the sounds that emanate from my office, come to think of it…)

They’re really cute to watch, but mama swallow is even more protective of them now that they’re out of the nest. Whenever I walk under the cable, which is often, she’ll fly directly at my face. Lucky for her I’ve got cat like reflexes and she’s only gotten my hair like four times, tops.