Jemma completed her final two exams on Wednesday and can now breathe a little easier, for a while at least. She has not had much luck so far finding a summer job, but then jobs are pretty scarce in the valley (as Craig and I already know) We may well have to put a time limit on her laptop these school holidays, encouraging her to do other stuff, like this wonderful baking she busied herself with on Tuesday.
Amber has just a couple of days to go, she is a little nervous at the thought of starting ‘high school’ after the holidays. Or perhaps it’s the getting up at 6am to get ready for the early bus? Poor Amber, mornings are NOT her favourite time of day, she seems to naturally be a bit of a night owl and perks up in the early evening dancing and singing with bundles of energy.
My morning walks up to the wood have became ever so slightly less appealing recently, after the man who moves all the apple crates in the orchard told me he had spotted a big black bear on my regular route! Craig tells me reassuringly “You will be just fine, as long as you make lots of noise while walking”
I don’t think random lyrics, spontaneously blurted out mid song on my Ipod count somehow. I have been known to wear Archie’s collar around my ankle with bells on, perhaps not loud enough? More ideas anyone??
Moving on to smaller and somewhat less threatening furry friends.... (advance apologies for rambling)
Every year we have a resident racoon living up in the top floor of our barn, previously referred to as a ‘he’. It is in fact a ‘she’ we realised after the first year! Using the warm loft in the spring, whilst pregnant, before leaving to find herself and cubs a new home up in the woods. Each evening about the same time, she climbs down alone, rather precariously, avoiding the overhead electrical wires scaling the wall and then trots off to find food. This ritual is a great source of entertainment for Archie our cat, who sits watching on his stepping stool, glued to the window.
On Tuesday evening we spotted ‘two’ mummy racoons on the top of the roof with four babies!! (we had never seen little ones before) They had decided that this was the night for evacuation. We all watched, holding our breath as the sun was going down and the light was getting dimmer. First mummy, then two babies, trying desperately to copy, by clinging on to the side of the wall. One of them got caught in the wires, so mummy had to go back up and untangle the little guy. He was then so scared that he wouldn’t move for ages. Finally he completed the descent, followed a little too quickly by baby number two who lost his grip half way down and fell into the bushes luckily and not onto the concrete below! Mummy rushed around, followed by the other little one and we all smiled as she emerged with both racoonlets running alongside her - Ahhhh :)
I did a bit of machine sewing this week for a change, the Martha Stewart toile style cotton napkins that my friend Rhonda bought me about 2 years ago finally got opened up and utilized. Not for wiping tomato sauce from our mouths, instead I turned them into cushion covers for the outdoor chairs. They match the brolly and are nice and comfy on our botties too! We were invited across to our neighbours Tony and Marjorie today for a BBQ on their pretty patio. We don't get to see them during the winter, so it was lovely to catch up again.This evening at 10pm I can see the silhouettes of the second Mummy racoon and her two babies. They all chickened out on Tuesday, after watching the first lot struggle. Looks like tonight it’s their turn to brave the wall, they can't stay up there forever. Amber and I went out earlier and put a couple of soft duvets wrapped in garbage bags at the bottom of the wall, just in case! Yes I know, we are a couple of softies :D