Monday, May 24, 2010

Momma Ducks

We've been blessed with an abundance of momma ducks around our house this year.  It is especially exciting because the boys just finished a unit at daycare where they talked all about baby animals and their mommies and daddies.

Monkey and Moose spent several minutes watching a mating pair of mallards drink from our fountain in the front yard and scrounge for grubs in the garden soil.  "Mommy Daddy Ducks" they exclaimed with excitement.

A few weeks ago my dear husband happened upon a hen nesting in our compost bin.  I tried to take a picture, but scared her.  I was able to take a peek inside her nest and saw about 12 beautiful green eggs.  Having my compost bin as a nesting site has made spring clean up a little bit of a hassle, but it has been fun to sneak a peak at the momma every couple of days.  We haven't introduced her to the boys, I figure nesting is stressful enough without double trouble.    I've been really excited to see her ducklings swimming in the irrigation ditch.  I've learned that the eggs are incubated for about 30 days, so I think we might only have a week or so until they hatch.Fortunately for us, a neighbor boy knocked on our door last week to let us know that a hen mallard and her 14 ducklings were in our front yard.  He said that they had hatched the previous morning in another neighbor's yard. Momma and most of the ducklings were sunning themselves near our weigela. Six of the little ducklings were stuck in our unfinished fountain.  The water was four or five inches down from the top of the catch basin, and the baby ducks couldn't get out.  Sweet hubby brought the hose around, and quietly filled the basin, allowing the duckies to escape.  Momma and her brood stayed in the yard for several hours.Moose and Monkey enjoyed watching them.  They really wanted to touch and hold the ducklings.  We told the boys, "Stay back, you don't want to scare the ducks."  They both growled.  We had to drag them kicking and screaming back into the house.  "More ducks! More ducks!" they insisted.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Good Men

One recent Saturday afternoon, my sweet Moose asked about his great-grandmother.  He and Monkey had spent the previous night at a sleep over with his grandparents, and I'm sure that prompted the question.  "Gramma-Great" he said.  I asked him if he wanted to know about his great grandparents, and was surprised when he said, "Yes."

I started with my husband's side of the family, I told him that his "Grandma-Great" lives on the other side of town with "Grandpa-Great" and that they are his grandma's mommy and daddy.  I told him about great-grandpa who lives in Utah, and his great-grandma who lives with Heavenly Father, and that those are his grandpa's mommy and daddy.  "More" he told me. I was surprised at his attention and interest as I talked about his great-grandparents.

I continued on with my side of the family and told him about "GG", who lives in a nursing home in Washington.  I told him about when we visited her, and how excited she was to meet him, even though she didn't know who I was.  I told him about his great-grandpa who lived with Heavenly Father, that I never got to meet, because he died when my daddy, his papa, was just a boy.  I told him about his nana's mommy and daddy -- I talked about granny, who lives in Alaska.  We talked about my papa, his great-grandpa, who lives with Heavenly Father now.  I talked about how lucky I was to have such a good grandma and grandpa, and how wonderful they are and how much they loved me.  I told him how lucky he is to have such wonderful grandparents too, and how much they love him.

I shared with him my belief that his great-grandparents who aren't with us now, were with him and Monkey just before they came to live with us.   Finally, with a little sadness, I told him, "My papa was a good man."  He looked at me, and patted his chest and said, "Moose good man." 

In three sweet words, he summed up all my hopes and dreams.  As the mother of boys, I hope and pray that I can raise good men.