Category: Critters


“Lower-Phylum Guardian Angels”

I firmly believe that every one of us has at least One Guardian Angel.  And, if the truth were known, we probably have ‘groups’ of them hanging around us constantly.  How else can you explain all the unexpected  protection, or guidance, or love that we feel “from Somewhere’?

One of the many things I studied over the years was just What angels were, and where they were, and what classifications there were, and what they looked like.  I found many surprising things, including that Some angels Do, Indeed, Have Wings!  There are many different ‘levels’ of angels, depending upon their ‘job’.  One of my very Favorite levels is what this Post is about…the “Lower-Phylum Guardian Angel”.   This is dedicated to some of these Guardians that have been a part of my Cousin Mary’s life.  Thank God she had the presence of mind to get pictures of them to share!  The ‘stories’ are by Mary.

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“This is Cha Cha:  b.1976, d.1990.  She was our hellion.  She came from a wild litter and she never really lost that wildness.  We gave her that name cause that cat food commercial was so popular at the time… Cha cha cha!! ”

Chillin' for the camera

“Jasper: b.1993 d.1995.   We only had him for about 18 months. He died from surgery complications. The little stinker would eat anything, and I don’t mean just food.  During  his operation the doctor found 32 cents in his stomach.  He was loved even if for that short time.”

"Can I have those pennies on the table? Or a shoe lace? Or Something?"

“Sambo: b. 1974 d,1988.   Our 20lb plus cat!.  We had him before we got Cha Cha.  They bonded right off and when Cha Cha got hurt, Sambo (“Sam”) nursed her back to health.  Cha Cha and Sam we got while living in Hawaii and brought them both back with us to Okla.”

"I used to be a Panther....before I shrank."

“Skipper:  b,1975, d. 1993.  He was our first ever Peke!  He was given to us when he was already at least 10 yrs old.  He had been abused but settled into our home and hearts.  And how he was loved!  He would sleep on top of John’s pillow at nite.  He was definitely John’s dog.”

"I Love John! I Love John! I Love John's pillow!"

“Taz (‘White Tazmanian Devil’)  b. 1994, d. 2010.  He was our charmer.  The name really didn’t fit him at all but that is how we had him registered.  One spoiled dog I can guarantee that.  He never really knew he was a dog. ”

"I am Beyond Cute, and I Love You So Much!"

“Trixie ( ‘Trixie Southern Belle’).  b.1995 d.2010.  She was definitely my dog!.  Girl-to-girl is what it was. She would pick on Taz continuously…and Taz just ignored her big time! ”

"Pardon me, Sugar...did you want to capture of photo of little, ole me?"

Finally we have  Angel.  This sweetheart  belonged to my Mom until she passed, then went to live with Mary whom she adored and who  loved her back just as fiercely!

"This is my 'Forever Home'."

“Each one of these special pets gave John and I love and compassion, and total devotion.  God gives us His animals to take care of and love…and we wouldn’t have missed any of it!”

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I am willing to bet you have had a few “Lower Phylum Angels” in your life, too….and you just didn’t suspect  it!

“Are We There, Yet?”

“So…..so…..sleepy…..

....Can't keep my eyes open ...(photo by Mary/Mom)

….let me know as soon as we are done with snow, ok?”

Even though it has been only a few short weeks, I have grown to love the Robin clan.  The parents seem to be very “Pro-Family”….a Character Trait that a lot of us  two-legged critters appear to be lacking lately.  We  could use more of that Now than ever before.  Even though Robin Hood is brave, and teetering on the edge of a glorious new life, I get the feeling his siblings will be close on his trail-blazing butt!

Mary:  A couple hours ago took a look and only saw 3 babies. They are all grown up and leaving home this week. What a sad grandma! Will keep you up on the count as this week progresses.

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Mary:  Well they all did what big brother did… about 8 this morning there were still 3 babies in nest. An hour later all gone    11:06 AM
Me: Can’t you just ‘hear’ the typical “Mother Response” to that:  “So, just because your big brother does it that makes it all right for you to do it too???!!”

Me:  And, they kind of scoot right out of photo-taking range very quickly, don’t they?

Mary:  They have all flown the coop! Did get a pic on one chick hopping around the yard. Will send it later.

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Mary:  This is Peep-a-Boo, the last to leave home.  he/she just sat there and posed for me.       11:09 AM

So Tiny, and So Ready to Take on Life photo by Mary

Me:  Wow!  Blends in well with her surroundings, huh?  It looks like she is looking up at you!

Me:  Omg…I am SO smiling! She just sat there and said “Good bye”, didn’t she? No fear, just “Laters, Gramma.”

Mary: …or:  “I am a big girl now.”   I saw Robin Momma nearby, but she was not worried in the least about me taking pictures.  Like:  “I know you wanted a photo or two, so you Go, Girl.”   11:17 AM

Almost ready to leave... photo by Mary

Me:  I see Peep a Boo…on the handle of the hose reel!  Beautiful!

Mary:  And then there is the ever-patient Angel…getting one last look at What She Can Never Have!

"If I could only get outside for a second..."

Me:  lol….can almost feel her tension!

Mary:  This has been so much fun!    11:18 AM
Mary:  I have the  ivy already trimmed some what and will see if parents come to raise any more.  For now, I have This to look at:

SO empty....and sad... Photo by John

Me:    Oh, oh….getting a little teary eyed…    11:18 AM.
Mary:  I am sorry hon!  I have had a few more years with that than you have, but it is still teary for me when my kids visit and leave again.  That never goes away. We just adjust.    11:23 AM
Mary:  AND, as I have gotten older I want them back again… or at least closer to us.  Full circle!  11:24 AM
Me:  I’ve just decided to get an actual Print of that nest and frame it and hang it where I can see it at all times, as a reminder that All Life is basically running on the same path!
Mary:  God is Good.. all things come back around hon.    11:25 AM
Mary:  I’ve seen families re-united after years and years of separation.    11:26 AM
Me:  omg…We are writing my last post about what the Robin Family Saga was preparing me for….
btw…you and John have just played a major role in one of my more difficult learning experiences. ..Letting Go…THANK YOU!
Mary: Very good!  Omg… again our “Father” has provided…    11:27 AM

Mary:  Maybe you need a little Happiness….

A little bit of Heaven... photo by Mary

Me:  Ah, that worked.  Thank you!
Me:  Mary, I feel as if I am leaving something huge behind …but it is ok…    11:32 AM

Mary:  Each and every day another miracle or Blessing is going on in our lives    11:32 AM

Me:  Well, that was not only a very pleasant Miracle, but a fun one!  Mary, and John, thank you for making me a part of all this!  xoxox

Mary:  I’m worried.  There seems to be too much ‘bird’ for the size of the nest!

Me:  Wow!  They’ve gotten that big so soon?

Mary:  I really hope these pics show the true situation. those babies are sooooooooooooo crammed into that nest they have no room to move.  out of survival they will have to leave soon. lol lol lol

Mary:  The first pic shows where the nest is in the ivy….

Beautiful location, Robin Mom and Dad photo by John

Mary:  It is kinda hard to see it is so deep in the vine.  You can see the kitchen window Angel (cat) sits in and watches….till someone catches her on the counter!

Mary:  In this next picture is very easy to see the nest absolutely full to brim with kids!

Perfect view....a full nest! photo by John

Me:  Looks like they are oozing out!

Mary:  AND, when it gets This full…..one “Robin Hood” says:  “I’m SO outta here!”

"Wait a minute....if I leave, no free eats!" photo by John

Mary:  Boy oh boy!  Robin Hood is liable to leave home anytime now.  glad we had the opportunity to get this pic.   enjoy!

Me:  Well, let me take a look while I still have a chance….  Beautiful!  How sad…another child ‘flies the coop.’

Mary:  Soon but not yet!  lol lol  still a head count of 4

Yes, but for how long…..?

I just checked with Robin Momma’s Guardian Angel (aka: Mary).  Seems Mom is roosting quietly, and leaving the nest  less often.  So apparently,  4 eggs it is!

Mary and I were discussing the coming babies, and guessing how many were boys, and how many were girls.   Then Mary came up with an idea:  “We had better get busy finding names for these chicks!”

Oh, no….  If you give critters names they become ‘family members’, and all kinds of heartaches follow!  Or, you find you cannot ‘part with them’ after they’re grown and want to ‘leave home.’ Not a good thing, Martha!

Story time (an illustration of what happens when you ‘name’ critters):

My grandson and I lived in an old farmhouse for 6 years (the house with the bees in “The Buzzzz” post).  And, we have 2 cats.  Those two loved that house, and spent hours hunting for the occasional mouse or mole that found it’s way into the basement….or anything else they could chase.  When I moved us to an apartment, my cats quickly became bored.  Afraid they may become depressed from the lack of “activity”  (hunting), I came up with a simply “wonderful idea.”…ya..

I took my grandson to the local pet store and purchased 2 feeder mice for the cats to chase. By the time we got them home, my grandson had Named Them!  AND, he made it very clear to the cats that “the mice were HIS mice!”  So, after buying a lovely cage, great food, and toys for “Chicken Poo” and “Rustle” (NOT Russel….Rustle, for the  sound he made ALL NIGHT rearranging his cage and the shredded paper!!!), my grandson finally gave them to a friend.  The two ‘feeder mice’ had become pets….forever.

And so, Dear Heart, if you Do name these robin children are you prepared to  sit and wait to catch whichever chick falls from the nest first?  Or, run with them when they are first learning to fly, just in case they get hurt?  And without a ‘bird egg ultra-sound’, how many are ‘boys’, and how many are ‘girls.’  And, when they leave home, then what?

Oh, what the heck!  I am going to start a list of names!  And, I am going to tell Mary to do the same!  Might as well have as much fun with this as humanly possible, right?

So, Robin Momma seems to be content to just be sitting….maybe with a quick lunch, and a potty break or two…waiting..waiting..waiting…

Quiet, peaceful...waiting photo by John

Look at her!  She doesn’t even change her facial expression!  Whatever is she thinking ?  What is she hiding?  Then, after the photos of the beautiful flowers to bring up my spirits,  I got another e-mail from Mary…..

.....and then, there were 4... photo by Mary

Omg, Mary!  I had no idea robins even Had 4 eggs in one nesting!

Mary:  “She is having herself quite a time  looks like to me!”

I had 4 kids…drove me nuts!  She is going to have her wings and beak full!  And Robin Daddy better not turn out to be one of those “absent parents!”

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I really had expected no more ‘robin’ pictures from Mary and John for a while.  Imagined Robin Momma exhausted by the first 3 eggs, and just opting to roost for a bit.

So Mary, think there will be more eggs or pictures in the next couple of days?  Or do you and John think we are done for a while?  At any rate, keep me posted, ok?

Mary:  “Stay tuned for continuous coverage!”  (…says my “Reporter in the Field” !)

Ok, will do!  Laters, Luv!

The Buzzzzz

My grandson and I lived in an old farm house for 6 years.  Being on the edges of town, and surrounded by fields, we were entertained by an outstanding variety of wildlife.  There were  hawks, owls, ground hogs, raccoons, rabbits, deer…and much more.  We never knew what we would experience next…which is why we stayed as long as we did.  It was a never-ending display of what a small section of this universe has to offer.  And, about 4 years ago we were given the opportunity to learn about honey bees.

We were never much aware of bees…just avoided the stings when we were out exploring.  Then, for some reason, a swarm of them gathered near the back, upstairs wall.  And, they did NOT leave.  Apparently they felt as if they had found themselves a  Home, and had no intention of leaving.  There were a lot of them, though, and they began getting into some of the very old cracks and poorly sealed windows.  We weren’t too worried yet, since we did not use the upper floor…except for storage.  So, we just let them be.

The following summer the swarm was still there…and had gotten way too big.  They had found their way into the room where that wall was, and were getting loud and a little scary.  So I told the owner of the house maybe it was time to fix the problem before it got any bigger.  I suggested that perhaps he could get a bee keeper to get them out of there.  By now you could smell the honey, but as wonderful as it was I knew they had to find another place to live.

His ‘cure’ was to Call An Exterminator!  Oh, No You Don’t!  I begged him to give me a couple of weeks to take care of it myself.  I then went to a local bee keeper. He lived about a mile away, and when I told him what had happened he laughed and said, “So That is where my bees went!”  Seems one of his swarms had left home.

This is when I learned of the dying-off of a lot of our honey bees.  He, himself,  had lost quite a few before this swarm left.  He was more than willing to come get his fuzzy friends, and a little relieved that they were still alive.  He could not, however, retrieve the queen, so the rest would follow, without knocking a hole in the wall of  the house.  So What?!  It was old, and falling apart anyway.  We need our bees!  The owner of the farm house should KNOW that…he is a farmer, for crying out loud!

Well, I got the owner to put the extermination on “hold” for a while, but there would be No Knocking Any Holes In The Walls.  The bees would just have to leave on their own, or be killed.  Well, they were safe for the time being, at least.  They would get one more summer.  I prayed all season that our ‘guests’ would just get up and leave.  Then, my grandson and I moved to another location and I never heard the rest of that sad story.  I am just hoping they made it.

Not a lot of people seem to realize the importance of NOT DESTROYING  one of natures most perfect helpers.  I have felt for some time that we need to be made more aware of this impending crisis.  Then today it happened, again.   Another story about Honey Bees in the news. Thank goodness the word is finally getting loud voices behind it. Our little friends are still dying off in huge numbersas they have been  for a while, now.  I really don’t think people understand how devastating this could be if not stopped…and soon. People, are you not at all concerned?  Why Not?!  Honey bees are not only a really efficient source of honey, they are directly responsible for the pollination of a lot of our food source.  Without them we would not have…NOT HAVE…a lot of the  fruits and vegetables we so take for granted.

I can hear you!  You are thinking that ‘someone’ will invent ‘something’ to do the pollinating so necessary to our very survival on this planet. Perhaps you are thinking that we don’t really need bees what with ‘all our technology and stuff.’  Well, just stop your “It’s not My problem.”  thinking….you are giving me a royal headache!  No one is going to save us….but US!  Protect your very future on this planet!  Push for the answers before it is too late.