A Trip to the Woods..

This morning we had the usual birds around the feeder, but the weather was much nicer than it has been lately.  I notice the finches don’t come around as much when the Grackles and Doves are present.  Today, we had about 13 doves under the feeders.  I saw some finches and juncos, but the number never got higher than four or five, which is rare this winter.

The snow is slowly melting today, too.  Since the weather got into the upper 30’s, I felt a trip to the creek was necessary.  And, the dog needed a walk badly, too.  So, this afternoon, we took advantage of a slower day around the house and headed down that way.  We didn’t see much in the way of birds…because we were making a lot of noise ourselves. 

However, once at the creek, we noticed a lot of ice still.  No wonder the birds have been eating snow.  The creek itself had frozen about solid.  Sure there were some thin spots, but all in all, it was safe to walk and play on….so we did.  I take for granted that I did a LOT of exploring as a kid.  And, the things I just understand and take for granted are things my kids (even my 10 year old) have never experienced before.  Things like walking on ice.  I knew enough to be the one to test it out and venture yonder onto the spooky sheet of slick.  But, I didn’t know what to tell them before I cut them loose.  To their credit, they didn’t just blindly run out there.  However, their balance was highly suspect.  Before I could get back to them, my 5 year old, Chris, bit the dust.  The problem is…he had his hands in his pockets!  That is something I should have probably told them.  “If you keep your hands in your pockets and start to fall, you won’t be able to protect your face from the rocks.”  Oops, and yup, Chris kissed a big one.  Poor guy; I saw him land face first on it.  Of course, he cried, but it didn’t look that bad.  He scraped his cheek and had a small cut in his lip, but nothing more than that.  Lesson learned, though.  He didn’t put his hands back in his pockets while on the ice.  Trooper for getting right back out there, though, after a little encouragement.

My daughter, Katelyn, decided to wear something non-tennis shoe.  So, she had her issues.  However, she remained on her feet the whole time.  Her feet just got darned cold.  And, Matthew wiped out a couple times because he was hopping, jumping, and trying to run on the ice as if it were regular dirt.  The dog came along and was obviously the most graceful of all of us.  But, she, too, looked like a crazy person on the ice.  We got some great laughs out of her because she would try and stop but skid off another 10 feet while backpedaling.  She also loves snow.  Who’d-a-thunk that a boxer with such short hair would be a cold weather dog?  Not me; not from what I’ve read.  But, she is.  She loves the snow!  She runs and plays and I swear you can see the smile.

The kids didn’t take to long to start complaining that their hands and feet were cold….being internet-age kids.  So, we headed for home after about 30 minutes.  For me the most fun was watching them experience ice for the first time.  However, for them, the most fun was coming home to hot chocolate.  Crap, gotta run………I just heard a spill in the living room.  That’s just fabulous.

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