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March 30, 2012 / staceyj

Wild…

It’s wild around here.  It really is.  It is wild in both literal ways and in not-so-literal ways.  Here’s what I mean.

Literal.  Rose-breasted grosbeaks enjoying a little lunch outside our kitchen window.

Beau was so excited when they showed up for the first time he just started snapping away.

We also get red-winged blackbirds (pictured), two different types of orioles, blue jays, nut hatches…

…bluebirds (pictured), sparrows of all stripes and swallows.

Also feasting at our restaurant are red-bellied woodpeckers (pictured).  I have never quite understood their name since their head is so obviously red and their belly is so not.  But who am I to argue with the ‘Bird of Iowa Field Guide’?

Goldfinches, house finches, juncos and cowbirds join us too.  And last year for my hubby’s birthday the kids and I got him this hummingbird feeder.

It didn’t take long for these beautiful, amazing and petite creatures to join us.  They inhale that sugar water.

And my personal favorite?  The cardinals.  Here they are dining on the fallen seeds after a snowfall.  Beautiful and tidy.  That’s why I love them so!

And if you’re wondering if by wild I only meant birds you would be wrong my friend.  Very wrong.

Meet Jumpy.  Beaut.one named our backyard squirrel because he literally jumps across the yard.  Except when Tag chases him.  Then he runs like he’s running for his life.  Which he is.  Jumpy pillages our bird restaurant daily.

Our only contiguous neighbor, other than corn and bean fields, is this beauty.  Sweet Sophia.  I just love her.  And she loves the camera.

Oh, and all the fish.  Some friends in the neighborhood have an amazing pond that they are so gracious to let us fish whenever we want.  My son looks absolutely mesmerized by the fresh catch dangling in front of him.

Wrong-o!  Scratch that.  Make that terrified!

And then there are the coyotes.  Yes, that’s right.  Coyotes.  Up until this moment I had only occasionally heard them howl at night.  But never had I seen one.  In the foreground of the photo you can see our burn pile and the end of our backyard.  He looks far away but he really isn’t at all.  We didn’t have our telephoto lens on (too freaked out to move) and this is shot from inside the safety of our home.  The wild beast was taking a moments rest in the field directly behind our backyard.  Directly behind where my beauties play on their swing set and chase each other.

A little too close for comfort for me (the boys and my girl thought it was super cool!) so we I was relieved when he moseyed on.  I realize these photos aren’t the best…a little like a fuzzy ‘Big Foot sighting’…but I promise you it was very, very real.

Bugs!  We grow them big out here.  Look at the intricacy of this death trap.  It really is beautiful…in a macabre sort of way.  I did NOT stick around to meet the architect of this web.

And this is the wildest visitor we’ve had yet.  You should have seen my surprise when I woke up to this face outside my window one Saturday morning.  He normally hangs out closer to our trees but I don’t think he was any too happy that we had slept in.  We call this guy Grodd.  You would only know the deep meaning of his name if you are a huge comic book fan and chances are if you are a huge comic book fan you aren’t reading this blog.  Moving on.

In all seriousness, if this was anywhere near my house, my car, my person, my anything I would never be the same.  These animals terrify me.  I snapped this photo at the Omaha Zoo and then quickly moved along to look at something, anything else.

And now for the not-so-literal wildness of my life.

I mean seriously.  What a crack up!  You may think that this is a rare occurrence for my daughter, out of character or something.  Nope.  We are hard-pressed to find a family photo that doesn’t have this face or one of its many versions front and center.

See what I mean.  Wild, crazy, lovely.

And then there’s this one.  Wild with roars, wild with endless energy, wild with…well, you can see the hair.

My young ones driving a jeep or a tractor is also common around here.  A toddler manning any type of vehicle is just pure madness.

And then there’s this guy.  He lives here too.

Man of mystery.  Comic book lover.  Action hero, clearly.

It is a mighty miracle I am as normal and pulled together as I am.  See?  Totally normal.

I really do love the wildness of this life.  It makes me crazy, it keeps me on my toes, it makes me thankful and it definitely keeps me laughing.

What brings wildness to your life?

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