We knew it was coming. The end of basketball season is upon us and over the years it has brought us some harsh winter weather to contend with. Much as people were tempted to put away their snowmobiles and tune up the lawnmowers it was hard not to think that winter was not over yet.
If you're tempted to start your garden, it might do you well to start some of those tomato seeds or plant some chia seeds. The chia seeds are good for the body and good for the soul.
It is always good to see some of that green stuff now instead of all the white snow.
My mother always picked the leaves from her dead-looking geraniums and after doing that she said it felt good to see the flowers sprouting some of those new pretty green leaves.
I remember back in my grandma’s day there were plants around every corner to be bought like nowadays. But there was always something about starting your own plants from scratch.
There is really quite a bit of room to start new spring plants and fruits and vegetables at my mother’s house, but the avacados that she has started are beginning to look like trees. I guess that is the one regret of living in Minnesota where things freeze if they are not taken care of properly. It hurts to see dozens of prolific avocado plants go to freeze.
And of course, plants always seem to look best and brightest just before “the freeze,” which is why many of us try and save them. But there's Gods' promise that the dead will live again. We just have to have faith.
On to another thought. My nephew Kade wanted to get a dog. It was vetoed because, Number 1, my mother, loves animals but doesn't really like them in her house. Number 2. There was a chance it could trip her and she would fall, and Number 3, losing a pet can almost be as bad, or worse, than losing a loved one. Tears may wash away sadness, but there are always those memories that pop up.
Then someone gave Kade a couple of birds. And we all fell in love with them. What’s more entertaining about a bird other than they sing and chatter away and can look you in the eye and demand your attention?
Raising birds is not cheap. They "eat like a bird" and they can be as much fun as a circus. They are champion gymnasts. They love to play and are champions at demolishing paper or kleenex boxes with their sharp beaks. (Kade puts small kleenex boxes in their cages so they can use them as a place to hide.)
And one has to be careful when you are feeding them as they can grab your finger and hang on! They do give us lots of entertainment and what we love most is watching them play their own game of basketball, much like the Harlem Globetrotters.
Kade has one blue parakeet that especially enjoys playing with small plastic balls that have openings in them, which allows it to pick them up and throw them. It is a delight to see it playing ball and we marvel at the dexterity that it has. I've watched it “field the ball” and it has become a champion at putting the ball right in "the basket," which is really its food or water dishes.
This game can go on for a short or long time for the parakeet, depending on how the game is going, I guess.
The love of birds that Kade has is just that. They are like acrobats in the circus as they move their bodies in any amount of different ways, hanging from their toe nails, their beaks, or whatever. They like exercise type toys - rope ladders and swings etc., of which most are plastic and bright in color. They also like to ring a bell that Kade has put in their cage too.
It is hard not to get fascinated in watching them for hours, as well as listening to all their chirping and chatter. Sometimes it can get kind of loud. It doesn't help that my mother has a clock that also tells the time of day using the sound of birds chirping and chattering too.
At last count, Kade has nine cages of birds. He has one canary, three cockatiels, three parakeets, three peach faced love birds, as well as nine regular love birds, and one we are not quite sure about, for a total of 19, plus he has a few eggs that we are waiting to hatch. As I write this he thinks that one of those has now hatched and he has a new baby now too.
And yes, those birds can make a mess. They throw eaten seed, or seed they don't like, out of their cages, as well as shred the paper he puts in the bottom of their cages into itty bitsy pieces. Kade has to get the vacuum out every day to clean up after them.
My grandmother used to have a cloth apron that had elastic on it that she used to place under her bird cage, which made it harder for the birds to throw out their trash. I guess we will have to get busy and make something like that to help catch the items the birds don’t like and throw from their cages.
Like I said, they can be loud at times and we sometimes have to "turn them off" if we are on the phone or if their noise at times drives "company" a little crazy, but we are used to them. At night Kade puts his “kids” to bed. He places covers over their cages, which tells them it is time to go to sleep and surprising the chirping and chatter stops and everyone gets a restful night sleep.
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Birthdays and anniversaries:
• Thursday, March 2nd: Willard Christenson, Wilfred Christenson, Laurie Jensen, Angie Hagen Rasmussen, Joanne Kaiser, Roger Langlie, Casey Lyman, Abner Smith, Alexis Elizabeth Klocek, Ronnie & Marcia Hutchins, Paul & Kathy Underland
• Friday, March 3rd: Jeff Lageson, John Crabtree, Valerie Tobiason Quiring, Maurine Larson, Frank Thompson, Bill Draayer, Terri Jensen, Darlene Christensen, Charlie Hanson, Jessica Tufte, Terri Miles, David Underland, Darren & Christine Hanson, Angie & Jeff Rasmussen, Nicole & Nathan Milender
• Saturday, March 4th: Dawn David, Teresa Hove, Larry Spear, Julia Elizabeth Neitzel
• Sunday, March 5th: Dayna Schember, Nicole Ella Schultz, Tim Toft, Vickie Haberman, Steve Van Ravenhorst, Declan Dean O'Brien, his 6th
• Monday, March 6th: Valerie Schember, Aaron Reese, Larry Reese, Dawn Dulas, Lynda Maddox Norland, Wade Wacholz, Ryan Schimek, Marlene Peterson, Lillian Weaver, Jami Ann & Travis Marzolf
• Tuesday, March 7th: Jace John Goslee, his 11th; Marlee Diane Dutton, her 13th; Jake Ortiz, Emily Horan, David Otterson, Chuck Hagen, Lorna Reistad, Kenneth Peterson, Lance Cummins and Peggy Evenson
• Wednesday, March 8th: Derek Alan Lee, Janice Olson Paulson, Greg Nelson, Carla Paulsen Haugen, Melissa Trindad, Kathy & Mike Plunkett, Stephanie & Tom Pulley
• Thursday, March 9th: Reese Sharon Glynn, her 10th; Taylor Jensen, Chris Clausen, Peter Dammel, Curtis Langlie, Mark Sawyer, Joel Wacholz, Dean Waltz, Jacklyn Cromwell Olson, Chris Farr, Joleen Thompson
• Friday, March 10th: Julie Stieglbauer Dahl, Sue Misgen, Aaron Callahan, Travis Johnson, Michelle Olson Bedney, Tom Vavra, Heidi Mattson LaFave, Chuck Hanson, Gayle Dummer, Douglas Schmidt, Linda Anderson, DeLynn Johnson Rohrbacher, Hannah Emily Brunsen
• Saturday, March 11th: Arielle Lynn McClaskey (2011), Elsie Jacobson, her 4th; Marion Mast, Carolyn Flesche, Leroy Folie, Kari Thostenson, Jon Carlson, Michelle Meyer, Larry Richards, Tim Simon, Joan Ahlstrom Diderrich, Tanya Swearingen, Tom Arbogast, David Callahan, Dean Lembke, Spener Sebastian Sommers, his 13th; Doug Blouin, Wendell Kuehni, Paul & Shirley Nelson Gould
Wishing you sunny smiles to warm your heart on your special day!