Friday, July 11, 2003

I think Mrs. Quackers has moved out. Yesterday, when I got home, there was an egg out of the nest and broken open. It was filling with ants and I told E we should get rid of it before it started to stink. We didn't want to scare Mrs. Quackers so we waited. This morning, she was not in her nest and there were 2 or 3 more eggs shoved out of the nest and broken open. E went out, got rid of the shells (which were now empty and not yolky anymore), filled up her little dish with some more cracked corn (we think she was nibbling at it some) and watered the shrubs (which is hard to do when you have a duck sitting in them). He saw her waddling back to the nest when he left for work. When I got home this afternoon, she was not in the nest but it was covered as we have seen it before so I just figured she was out for lunch (or wherever she goes). It is 4 hours later and she has not returned. Also I noticed some of the mulch is dug up and scattered around. I don't know if she came back and noticed the shells missing and smelled our scent and has now abandoned her nest. I hope not. I will be very sad if Mrs. Quackers does not come back. I will be very sad if we don't get to see some cute little ducklings in our yard.

Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Reading: I just found 2 more books that I could be reading! I have such a pile of books now to read but none are beckoning me. These 2 are ones that I have borrowed from other people who probably want them back sometime, don't you Deb?

Eating: The Easy Pasta Skillet last night was good. E gave it the rating, "good, I would request it again, but not on a Sunday." Let me explain the rating system: "I would not eat it if you made it again" is the lowest rating. "I would eat it if you made it again" is a slightly higher rating. "I would request it" is a more encouraging endorsement. And "I would request it on a Sunday" meaning it is good and worthy of serving to guests.

Here's the very simple recipe: Brown 1 lb ground beef in a large skillet and drain. Add 2 1/2 C. water and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium low. Stir in 3 C. pasta (they say mostaccioli, I used penne); cover. Simmer 15 minutes or until pasta is tender. Stir in 1 jar of spaghetti sauce and 1 C. shredded mozzarella ( says to use Kraft cheese, I used Crystal Farms. I am probably going to Kraft hell now.). Sprinkle more mozzarella and 1/2 C. grated Parmesan (I cut back on some of this cheese 'cuz we don't need more cheese in our lives.). Cover and cook 3 minutes or until cheese is melted. Only one pan to clean and no need to drain the noodles (like Hamburger Helper but hopefully a little less sodium).

Tonight is Cashew Chicken from the Pampered Chef Casual Cooking Cookbook.

Gardening: Mrs. Quackers is now incubating her eggs. We gave her a dish of cracked corn yesterday which freaked her out (she was freaked by us giving her the dish, not the corn itself) and she waddled over in front of the steps and pretended to be dead until she was sure we were gone. She has not yet eaten any corn. I hope she doesn't die of starvation. I don't want to raise these ducklings myself. I can't swim.

Today I peeked out the window to check on her and she was carefully turning the eggs. Then she bustled up her skirts and settled back in, pulling the wood chip nest in around her with her beak, as if pulling the comforter up on her bed. She fussed with the wood chips until they were just right, then tucked her head around backwards (looking back at her behind) and appeared to go to sleep. I have this idea that she is bored and maybe would like something to read while she sits. Any recommendations? Maybe "What to expect when you're expecting"? "Make Way for Ducklings"?

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Reading: I am feeling restless and can't decide what I want to read. I have started 3 different books in the last couple of days but none are holding my attention.

Eating: Tonight we are trying a new recipe I got from It is a ground beef skillet dinner. Will let you know recipe once we try it.

Gardening: The sunflowers are coming in! Well, some of them anyway. I don't know if something ate the seeds or nibbled the plants or what but there is a section where none of them came up.

I planted some new flowers to replace the verbena that didn't really take. They are white vinca. They are really very pretty and seem to love their new sunny home. I also planted the rest of the dusty miller I bought way back when and then didn't get planted. I filled my 2 deck boxes with them. They look pretty cool.

Mrs. Quackers is doing well. She left for a while yesterday afternoon but was back before sundown so maybe she is back to stay? It may be time to incubate!

We had our second application of organic weed control applied yesterday. It is sticky (something about being made of molasses) and smells like something, though I have not yet figured out what. One more application--I will let you know how it works. There is a woman who lives along the bus route who was out with a blow-torch, burning her dandelions down to the root. Apparently she is opposed to chemicals. I didn't see her do it but a guy on my bus did. I had just seen the aftermath and thought that a terrible fungus or something had infested her lawn. It looked like big ugly blackheads. The grass has filled in now and it looks much better so she may be on to something.

Monday, July 07, 2003

Reading: I finished Harry Potter over the weekend. Oh my gosh! I loved it! I can't wait for the next one. I think I will go back and re-read the others because there is a lot I have forgotten (for example, is Wingardium Leviosa the spell for opening doors or for making things float?). Anyway, my recommendation is for everyone to read this series! Run now and get started!

Other than another book for work (trying to squeeze one last exam in before I get laid off), I do not have anything new started. I may re-read The Cliff Walk which we read for bookclub a few years back. It is the memoir of an English professor who is not granted tenure (laid off) and how, after 100 rejections, he gets a job helping build houses, something that he never would have considered before. The full title is The Cliff Walk: A Memoir of a Job Lost and a Life Found.

Eating: We had lots of wonderful food for the Fourth. As soon as I get the recipes, I will share.

Gardening: We have a duck who has made a nest and laid at least 8 eggs in our new landscaping! We have named her Mrs. Quackers and are now learning more about ducks. I found this site about the reproduction of ducks (see the section titled "April and May"). We discovered the nest last week when Eric scared the duck (and she scared him) while turning on the spigot to water the shrubs. We called the Humane Society because we were afraid we had scared her off while she was incubating the eggs (there were 7 eggs at the time). We learned that they can only lay 1 egg per day (so she had been there a week without us knowing!) and that they do not starting incubating until they have a full "clutch" which is 8 to 13 eggs and at that time she will sit there until they hatch (29-31 days!). We thought it was a little late in the season to be laying eggs but the Humane Society guy said that maybe her previous nest got disturbed or destroyed. I will keep you updated on Mrs. Quackers and her family.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...