Saturday, March 31, 2007


As you can see, the ducks on the pond are driving Danny crazy! I have no doubt that he is a retriever, because he runs back and forth along the edge of the pond when he sees the ducks. So far he has been good about stopping at the edge or just getting his feet wet, but the look in his eye says soon!

When Danny was chasing the ducks, the deer herd ran by on the far side of the pond. Poor Danny, he didn't know what he should be chasing! I am beginning to think we live in a wildlife refuge. The other night there was a raccoon on top of the bird feeder (I guess deer, raccoons and birds enjoy sunflower seed). Add in the hawks, woodchucks, birds, snakes, singing tree frogs, coyote, and skunk and we have quite the menagerie! And don't even get Jeff started about the bears!

The ducks fascinate me. The male ducks perform "duck fighting". I am not sure if the drakes are fighting over the female or if they are trying to claim dominance of the pond, but the males will attack each other. They flutter just above the pond, diving and chasing each other across the water. I have never seen anything like it. I know that the mallards will only be with us a short time. I will miss them, but will not miss their quacking at 6:00 am when they land on the pond. When 7 ducks land and QUACK,QUACK,QUACK for 15 minutes the entire neighborhood hears them.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Duck Pond

I came home last night to a pond full of Ducks! The first two ducks we named Paddy and Maddy McDuck. They're always together and his green head reminds me of St. Patrick's Day. They've been here on and off for about a week now. I like to think they are the same ducks from last year.

A couple days ago another pair showed up. I tried to come up with more Irish names for them, but settled on Fred and Ethel. Each pair stays to their end of the pond and minds their own business.

And then there's Dupree. I named him after the third wheel from You, Me, and Dupree? He's back and forth between the two couples like the odd-man-out. Paddy and Fred sometimes chase him around, but he doesn't leave.

They're been a regular crowd for the last few days. Maybe it helps that they find a little corn by the edge of the pond every now and then.

Thursday, March 29, 2007


Danny's favorite show this year is American Idol. In fact, he is so enamored with one of the contestants that he's trying different hair styles. He's insisted we call him Danjaya from now on...

Connecticut is tops...

...on the list of how long you have to work until "Tax Freedom Day". Ugh.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

2 tons to go

The wall is finished - the question is what to do with all the remaining 2 tons of stone ? It is hard to believe that all of this came from our yard.

The topsoil has been delivered, but grading cannot occur until the stone is relocated, either off site or to extend the wall.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Ducks, Dogs & Stone Walls

All of the snow had put a temporary halt to the landscaping. Construction of the wall restarted today and I worried that the ducks would be frightened of all the noise. When I left this morning the mallards were happily floating on the pond and surprisingly they were still there when I returned home from work.

I went out with Danny to take these pictures and when I turned around there he was, head in the pond drinking - if the pond were cleaner, I wouldn't mind but Danny did not seem to care. As I yelled at Danny to stop ("Do you want to get sick?") - he spotted the ducks and a gleam came into his eyes. I got him away from the edge of the pond, but he just sat at the edge of the driveway, staring at the ducks. I do believe that somewhere is Danny's heart, he truly is a bird dog (he is the only Golden I know who goes into a point when he spots birds) and I know it is just a matter or time before he decides to retrieve one of the ducks. Since Danny just got a bath on Saturday, I believe that this will occur sooner rather than later.

I almost feel sorry for Danny, he tries so hard to be good, but the mud, pond and ducks may just be too much of a temptation for him.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Old Friends Returning

The pair of ducks that spent some time at our pond last spring have returned!
It seems that the deer and ducks will have to learn to share this place.

Thursday, March 22, 2007


Now doubt about out, Persephone is moving in. We've been in the forties for the last couple days and the fifties are on their way. Our poor snow person from a couple days ago is getting beaten down but good.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Spring has sprung,
The grass has riz,
I wonder where,
The flowers is.

Sunday, March 18, 2007


The hawks are back! Last summer, we would often see them sitting on our deck or in the trees near the pond. Winter came and we would spot one occasionally, but yesterday and today a pair spent most of the day in the yard. (look closely at the picture, there is one above the other in the tree).
I am not sure if the hawks are here for an easy meal (all the songbirds at the feeders- they did get at least one yesterday) or if all the digging in the back yard has stirred up some field mice.

They are beautiful and I love seeing them soar and dive. When I am outside and hear their shrill cries, I search the trees and there they are - 2 side by side. If only the hawks would show some interest in the woodchuck, my problems would be solved!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

I'm dreaming of a white St. Patty's Day?

The massive Noreaster hit Wilton on Friday. After blowing the driveway Friday night, Saturday morning, and finally Saturday afternoon, we finally hit blacktop.

J&M and the girls came up for a visit for J's birthday on Saturday. When the girls found out we had snow, they decided to bring their snow gear and spent some time enjoying themselves in the snow. When I went out to take pictures, I got pummeled with snowballs, so I quickly retreated.

(Middle two are decent stop action photos.)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Heavier equipment

The large excavator arrived today. The old yard is disappearing (thankfully) and the stone wall continues to expand.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Heavy Equipment

The heavy equipment arrived and our yard is now a big mud puddle. You can see the start of the "farmer's wall".

A Good Dog

I started reading Jon Katz a number of years ago when I picked up my Wife's copy of A Dog Year: Twelve Months, Four Dogs, and Me. I was attracted by his adventures with a troubled Border Collie named Devon because we used to have a pretty active Shetland Sheepdog and I could relate. Boy could I relate.

Jon's latest book, A Good Dog: The Story of Orson, Who Changed My Life is the latest continuation of his adventures with Devon (nee Orson) set on on his farm in Upstate New York. But this is not just a collection of stories of life on a farm as The Dogs of Bedlam Farm: An Adventure with Sixteen Sheep, Three Dogs, Two Donkeys, and Me was. Jon delves into his relationship with Orson and how their lives both complement and complicate each other. He has a deep emotional connection with his dogs, but keeps their lives in perspective. I caught myself laughing several times, nodding my head a couple, and grabbing the Kleenex a few.

Orson is Jon's doggie soul mate. His "one". I'm not sure everybody has just one doggie soul mate. I've had four dogs in my life and every one was special in his own way. One was my best friend, one needed me, one loves me for who I am, and one drove me crazy. But they were all good dogs and every one holds a special place in my heart. Just one special dog in your life, no way.

Both Danny and I say four paws up to A Good Dog: The Story of Orson, Who Changed My Life.

(The obligitory photos of Danny boy included. I'm trying to work on my digital pictures in natural lighting situations and here are a few of the better ones.)

Monday, March 12, 2007

Breaking ground

The landscaper has finally started working on the back yard! The first step is a baby step - the silt fence has been installed and the utilities are marked. The heavy equipment should arrive in a few days.

Here is what the yard looks like now - you can see that there was no planning - bushes seem to be planted wherever they could fit and the terracing divides the yard.

Friday, March 09, 2007


I'm all for anti-spam measures. In fact, I have the word verification turned on for the So What Co-operative. But c'mon, I had to look at this one three times and decided it was W V N S F V Q B. Nope, that's wrong.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Last Snow

With any luck, this will be the last snow of the season. Not like we can call two sub-four-inch and a couple dustings snow. Not like we can call all five weeks a season. Either way, we've had enough of Winter. Here's Danny enjoying the waning snow. When we come in, he rushes up the basement stairs and waits for us at the top. I guess this particular day he got tired of waiting and laid down!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


The woodchuck is back! We saw it grabbing leaves and twigs and then it disappeared under the shed. I just hope the shed will not become a woodchuck nursery.

When Danny goes out he constantly sniffs around the shed. I guess the theory that a dog will keep woodchucks away is incorrect. Of course, Danny does not keep the deer away either. I guess I will not be planting petunias (woodchuck candy) this year

Thursday, March 01, 2007


Lets just say I'm a 411.