Archive for August, 2010

Critters Everywhere!

I’m always surprised (even after 12+ years of living in Golden Valley) how many critters we have in our neighborhood.  It seems I’m always seeing something new.  Here’s a few that we’ve seen this summer:

Oops - he ran away when I tried to get closer

Oops - he ran away when I tried to get closer

The albino squirrel visits us a lot.  Just when I start to worry something has happened to him, he pops up in our yard again.  This time he was peering in the egress window at my while I worked on the computer.  When I tried to take a good picture of him he ran off.  But you can tell he does indeed have pink eyes!

Something hit the window - what is it?

Something hit the window - what is it?

Another day, Gabe and I were upstairs in my room when we heard a loud whump!  Something hit the window, and hard.  I looked out the window and down below but didn’t see anything on the patio so I figured it must have flown off.  A few minutes later Gabe started shouting, “A BIG BIRD!!! I SEE A HUGE BIRD!”  And sure enough – he was perched up above the window on the roof and you could just see his tail feathers.  I went outside to get a better look:

It's a huge hawk!

It's a huge hawk!

It was a hawk – a very big, yet still juvenile hawk.  A pair of hawks nested on Sweeney Lake near Jacquie’s house, and it looks like one of the young ones is trying out his hunting skills on our block.  We’ve seen him many times around our yard – on Gabe’s swingset, below the bird feeder with a squirrel in his grasp, and sitting in our maple tree out front.  I don’t mind him; I think he’s pretty neat looking.  Just don’t go and scare all the song birds away now!

How much wood could a woodchuck chuck?

How much wood could a woodchuck chuck?

Mr. Woodchuck is a newer visitor to our yard, and I’m not so sure I care for him.  About the time he started showing up, I notice my side yard by the tomatoes was all torn up with holes and tunnels.   Now, I’m not sure he did it, but something is wrecking the lawn, and it’s something bigger then just a little shrew…  Woodchucks like to live under sheds and in wood piles I’ve heard, so I’m going to have to clear those out to discourage him from staying around.

Check out the gallery below for more photos of the critters in our yard.

Critters

Pictures of the critters in our yard.

8 Photos

 
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St. Louis Park Aquatic Center

Gabe and I have season passes to the SLP Aquatic Center.  I wasn’t sure we’d get use out of them (and we may not, compared to other families) but they are working out perfectly.  Since we have season passes, I never feel obligated to spend “all day” there to get our day pass’ worth.  If we feel like just going for a couple hours one night, great!  Weather turns south, no worries!  It’s kind of nice.  And so is the park:

Gabe at the SLP Aquatic Center

Gabe figures out what the wheel does.

It is a zero depth entry pool, meaning it gradually deepens from zero to 24 (or 36, I’m not sure which), but is deeper yet after the ropes and in other areas of the pool.  It has slides for little kids and bigger kids, and plenty of sprayers, fountains, and splashy things.

Do you like my hat?

Do you like my hat?

Lily loves to hang out in water (with me) and splash and kick, while Gabe runs all around having a blast.  One of these times I need to get Mike or someone else to come with me so I can take Gabe on the bigger slides.  He’s not sure strong enough of a swimmer to do them completely on his own, and I can’t leave Lily on her own either.  Next time.

Gabe at the SLP Aquatic Center

Gabe at the SLP Aquatic Center

SLP Aquatic Center

Gabe and Lily at the SLP Aquatic Center

10 Photos

 
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Fishing!

Gabe and I went fishing last night at Jacquie and Carol’s.  We went for a canoe ride with Jacquie; I was in the front, Gabe sitting on a tackle box in the middle, and Jacquie in the back of the canoe.  We went to Hidden Lake rather then Sweeney Lake – Hidden doesn’t allow motorboats so it’s better fishing, at least at the time of day we went.  We caught so many fish!

Fishing on Hidden Lake

Fishing on Hidden Lake

Jacquie and Gabe’s poles were set up for crappie, and mine for blue gill and sunnies.  It turns out that’s where it’s at – as fast as I could cast I was pulling in fish!  So we switched over Gabe’s pole, and he was catching them too.  End of the night, Gabe caught the biggest crappie and sunny, while I caught the most fish, as well as the biggest fish – a nice small mouth bass.  Almost caught a wee little pike but he jumped off.  There is a nice variety of fish in Hidden and Sweeney Lake, and I look forward to fishing again!

Fishing on Hidden Lake

Fishing on Hidden Lake

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