Archive for the 'the ponds' Category

Walking on Water

This time of year the amount of usable space we have nearly doubles. Why you ask? Because our pond is frozen over. What you didn’t know we had a pond? Well we do. 1 ½ ponds actually…and an island.


Anyway, we like to take full advantage of all the extra walkable area and the access we have to the island in the winter. Since we live in the country we don’t have any sidewalks. This isn’t a big deal most of the year we just walk out dog in the ditch where she enjoys sniffing out critters. But in the winter the ditch is full of snow and the roads are sprinkled with salt that gets between her toes and cuts them up. So we walk her on the ponds instead. It might seem strange but she loves it because there are lots of places to smell that are normally inaccessible and because there is typically less snow on the ponds (she hates walking in deep snow). It’s a win – win!


I always love walking under this huge willow tree in the winter. Eventually we hope to clear a trail and put a bench under the willow branches on the land side.



Exploring the island. Something must have smelt interesting to warrant walking in the deep snow.

After some freakishly warm temperatures and freezing rain this past weekend the ponds were very slick and would have been perfect for ice skating. We’ve had a lot of people tell us that they used to ice skate on our ponds actually. They were popular winter hang out spots back in the 70’s. We don’t have any ice skates but we were out sliding around in our boots with Sophie. She was taking Flannel Man for a ride:


Also this year with his new snow plowing ATV Flannel Man cleared off part of the pond so we could play broom ball. Flannel Man had is two younger brothers come over to test it out and we had a brutal battle.

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In the end we had one broom that survived. Apparently they don’t make brooms like they used to!


Boys will be boys

Flannel Man loves living in the country especially with the pond. As a boy he spent his free time playing in the creek near his house and catching any wildlife he could find. His favorite animal by far is the turtle. So one afternoon when a turtle decided to crawl onto our yard FM was very excited.

He came running to find me and yelled, “Quick get your shoes on and grab the camera!”

From his level of excitement I would have thought Sean Connery was at our door (FM is a huge James Bond fan). “Why what is it?!?”

“There’s a painted turtle crawling in our yard!”

“Oh, OK.” Damn I wanted to met Sean Connery.

When we got outside FM went into stealth turtle catching mode and quietly snuck up behind it then jumped in for the kill…er the catch. Meanwhile, I couldn’t help but laugh at what I’d just witnessed.

“What? They’re fast when they want to be!” FM asserted.

Look at that smile! He was so excited to catch the first turtle at our new house.

I of course wanted some pictures but the turtle wasn’t cooperating.

He wouldn’t come out of his shell so we set him down and waited…and waited…

Finally we turned him over because according to FM they use their heads to roll over.

Turtles make for interesting series pictures. I could have had 20 pictures that looked like this before he moved again.

Wait…there he goes…

Hey look at that they really do use their heads to roll over! Look how long his neck is!

And check out those feet!

OK, we cheated the poor guy was in the last pose for way too long so we helped him over. What can I say we’re suckers for turtles.

We decided it would take him forever to get back to the pond so we wanted to put him back in the pond.

But before he’d let him go FM decided he might want to go on a little ride. Can you tell FM is a kid at heart?

(Notice how our pond is now completely covered in duckweed.)

What turtle doesn’t like to do barrel rolls?

Can you hear the airplane noises? FM has had 27 years to perfect them. I always told him he should be one of those sound effect guys he can do all the classics; airplanes, gunshots, fast cars, and trains.

FM finally put the turtle back in the duckweed filled pond where it happily swam off. Probably never to return again having learned his lesson of what happens when he gets within FM’s reach.

The next day FM comes to the door with these two turtles…

and a toad. It’s reptile heaven over here!

FM said, “This is a good toad.”

“Why is it a good toad?” I asked.

“Because he hasn’t peed on me yet.”

Apparently that’s one of the things they do for self defense.


***Note: No reptiles were harmed in the making of this post. ***



Kayaking In Our Back Yard


This past weekend we also got our kayaks from Flannel Man’s parent’s house and gave them a new home in the shed (aka. the detached garage). FM made some nifty kayak racks out of bent electrical conduit and pipe insulation. Now we just need to buy some brackets of some sort to hold our paddles.


We also took the kayaks out for the first time this year out on our pond. FM has been dying to go kayaking in the ponds before they separate into two ponds again. Mama Flannel and Brother Flannel (I just made that up) stopped by and took a few pictures of us for our We’ve Moved cards. I thought it would be more interesting than just a picture of the front of our house. They turned out pretty cool:


The ponds were a lot murkier than I thought they would be. I thought you might actually be able to see something in the center but no it was just black. In the areas that the pond has flooded too you could still see the tall grasses just below the water. Paddling under the willow tree and through the cattails was fun. When we went around to the smaller pond we found a deer stand in a tree that looked like it was on our property. It happened to be very close to the place I saw the deer last week.

We’ll have to do it again sometime but when we’re wearing kayaking clothes not jeans that could soak up gallons of murky water. We were hoping to be able to go kayaking out on a nearby lake this weekend but it was too cold. Oh, well maybe next weekend.



This is the story of two twenty something newlyweds who are learning to adjust to life in their first house, a 1973 fixer-upper.
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