Thursday, July 9, 2009

Barn Swallow Babies

This spring, we have had the exciting experience of watching a pair of barn swallows build a mud nest on our front patio.
I wondered when we could expect chicks, and just last week, I saw one peeping it's head out of the nest.

I've been careful to leave them alone, though I've been very curious how many little chicks we had. I feared getting attacked by mom and dad, so I mostly stayed clear. Just yesterday, we saw three little heads peeking out the top.

Unfortunately, today when B came home, he found one sitting in the flower bed. It was still there when I brought the boys home after work. Mom and dad seem to be even more protective of this little chick then they were of the nest and eggs. Its siblings still appear to be safely in the nest, so I don't know if this little guy tried to fly, but couldn't. Or did it get pushed out of the nest by it's mates.

I'm trying to leave it alone, though I really want to put it back in it's nest. It seems a little frightened, and it really upsets the folks when I go out the front door. I was able to snap some pictures though.

Any thoughts on what I should do with the little guy?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Spinach Salad with Strawberries

I bought a flat of strawberries at Costco -- which I really hate to do, because I never finish them all before they go bad. After making a small batch of chocolate covered strawberries (hey, it's still fruit!), I had plenty left over.

I made a delicious spinach and strawberry salad to go with dinner last night. I topped it with the following dressing:

1/2 cup Olive Oil
1/4 cup Red Raspberry Vinegar
1/3 cup Sugar
1 TBSP Poppy Seeds
Dash of paprika

Place all ingredients into a dressing shaker, and shake until blended. The dressing is pretty sweet, so modify the amount of sugar to taste. The salad was just tossed baby spinach and sliced strawberries -- everyone loved it.

I also read up on Tray Freezing at a new favorite blog, Make and Takes. I'm definetly going to do that with rest of the strawberries (if any outlast the dressing). It's so much easier than freezer jam, it takes practically no time, and I'll actually do it.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Operation Beautiful

I often find myself talking negatively about myself. It's not actually very much fun, and often throws oneself into a huge pity party. Last time I hosted a pity party, I served myself a whole pan of brownies. Further self-loathing shortly followed.

During a Relief Society lessons, I was told that it takes like 7 seconds for a thought to become a feeling. I'm pretty sure it's not gospel, but I'll take it for what it is. The idea is that when we have negative thoughts about ourselves, we have seven seconds to turn them around, before we start to feel badly about them. Practicing this will keep us from throwing frequent pity parties.

I used to write in dry erase markers things like, "You are beautiful.", "You are worth it." and "You deserve the best." on my mirrors. Then I got married, and thought that B would think that was silly. But it's amazing to me how powerful simple messages like that can be. It's hard to look at yourself and analyze the dimples and creases on your belly when you are staring at the words "You are beautiful."

I found the Operation Beautiful website recently, check it out.

And remember...