Happy Holigoose

One of our neighbors, the same one who told us she had been looking in our windows, has wooden geese that she decorates for various holidays and events.  I used to just think it was tacky, but it has become somewhat endearing as the “welcome” to the neighborhood since her is the first yard you see when you come in.  And now I miss the geese when they are packed away and wait to see how they will re-emerge.  I thought it was just too funny not to share, so I will be sharing the holigeese with you throughout the year.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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I felt the earth move under my feet

When we bought our house 2 years ago, we were encouraged to buy earthquake insurance.  We didn’t really understand the need until we turned left out of our neighborhood one day to see that the very next street is called FAULT LINE ROAD.  great.  Aparently, this area is in fact on a fault line.  And aparently, there is a big huge earthquake every 200 years.  Aparently, the last one was in 1808.  great.

So this morning as I was enjoying a nice hot shower in my nice clean bathroom (I cleaned like a fiend yesterday), I heard/felt something akin to a large truck hitting our house.  I poked my head out of the shower to listen and look.  I didn’t hear or see anything, so I thought that maybe it was just the HVAC coming on – it was on the other side of the bathroom wall.  So I went back to showering.  Then my love runs into the bathroom carrying Piglet asking if I was ok.  So then I assumed that it was in fact not just the HVAC coming on.  So I finish and get out. 

My love had run outside and talked to our neighbor who said that it was an earthquake and that she used to live in California and that usually there is always an aftershock.  So my love is convinced that we all need to go stand outside until the aftershock comes.  I think this is silly and continue getting dressed.  He is a little flustered.

Then the radio people start talking about it – everyone is calling in to talk about it.  The radio people are also from California and act like Northerners who are hearing Southerners talke about snow.  You don’t get concerned about an earthquake until buildings start falling over.

But alas we did have an earthquake that registered 3.6 on the scale.  Fun Times.  I hope that all we get, I can do without the big huge earthquake that occurs every 200 years, thank you very much.

It’s a strange day in the neighborhood

List #28

Everyday is a strange day in the neighborhood.  There are just some odd people living in these parts.  Of course there are the redneck lovers and the farmers, but this is only the beginning:

  • The “welcome wagon” lady comes after we’ve been living here almost a year to give us a bag of travel brochures about the area and stale store bought cookies – gee I feel welcomed.  Then she proceeds to tell me that she has tried to come by before, but we were never home.  THEN, she says, but “I looked in your windows and it looks like y’all have been doing a lot of work to the house.”  1) Do not look in people’s windows – that’s creepy.  2) If you do, don’t tell them – weirdo!
  • This same lady has a duck obsession….so I guess she’s in duck heaven living in our neighborhood.  She has 12 or so wooden ducks in her yard that she dresses up and arranges according to the holiday or season.  For Valentines Day, they all had red hearts around their necks.  For St. Patrick’s Day, they were all circled around a pot of gold.  For Easter, they were all standing by giant Easter eggs.  For Halloween, they had ghost and gobblen costumes.  For football season, they were in formation for to make a play, one was even dressed as a ref.  For Christmas, they were reindeer pulling Santa’s sleigh.  For any patriotic holiday, they have flags and stand at attention like military ducks.  It’s really hilarious…and the best thing – this is the first yard you see when you come in the neighborhood.
  • There is another lady who “walks” her dogs.  Well, one dog walks, the other rides in a dog stroller – ummm….what’s the point of walking your dog in a stoller?
  • I could have sworn that our next door neighbors (the ones who had the pig and goat) had two kids (a girl and a boy) when they came to introduce themselves when we first moved in.  But now we only see one little boy running a muck…what happened to the girl?  Weird.
  • We have an overactive homeowner’s association.  The lady in charge of yard protocol drives around daily in her minivan citing people for non-edging, overgrown flower beds, boats, etc.   One day we get a citation saying, “It appears that your garage door has been vandalized, please repair the damage.”  1) thanks for your concern that we were vandalized and seeing if we were ok and wondering how you might help catch the perpetrator.  2)  that was rust preventer paint that was drying and is already covered by a fresh coat of paint, you moron.    And she also keeps sending a notice to one of neighbors telling him he can’t park his boat in the yard – he doesn’t have a boat.  way to be on top of things.
  • One of our neighbors sits in his yard in a folding card table chair weeding his yard. 
  • And then there are the people who had a big pile of broken tile in their driveway for a week – and that was after two days of ridiculously loud air compressor and air chissel noises into the late hours of the night.  They even left a dishwasher in their yard for a month.  And they didn’t have blinds for like a year – weird.  Oh wait, that’s us….i guess we fit right in.

Animal Adventures

Mondays stink – so here is another cheater post from MySpace a year ago…

I was telling someone this story last week, and she said I should write it down, so I thought this would be as good an option as any other.

In August of 2006, we moved into a new house.  We decided that we couldn’t afford to have any pets, but little did we know we would certainly not have a creature free home.

It began with the roaches and ants that invaded this crappy house we bought that needed some MAJOR work done.  So we set out roach/ant bait things all over the house, probably not the safest thing for us, but at least it got rid of all those critters.  (And since we didn’t have a bed – or any furniture for that matter –  for the first two weeks, the thought of critters crawling around on the floor was totally frightening).

And even though our neighborhood looked nice as you drove through, we soon realized there were several oddities.  First of all, the neighborhood was built on wetlands, so there are 5 or so retention ponds to prevent flooding.  And there is a HUGE flock of ducks/geese who live in these ponds and pretty much have their way of the neighborhood.  You have to stop to let them cross the street – even though I am seriously ready to begin “accidentally” hitting them to control population growth.  Our neighbor across the street is a funny old man who sits on his back porch (in his underwear no less) shooting them with a bee-bee gun, but it doesn’t keep them away for long.  And apparently the people who lived in our house before fed this flock.  The first morning I try to leave for work after we moved in, I was greeted by 5 huge geese (much like the geese at PC senior year for the Blue Hose who lived in the senior dorm).  They wouldn’t move and they were blocking the way out, I couldn’t get around them, and was quite afraid of them.  So I had to go out the garage.  Sad, I know, but you really should have seen how big they were.

So the insects were quickly taken care of, and the geese slowly learned that we weren’t going to feed them so they went away, but as we slept, we heard this strange noise that at times sounded like a baby crying and sometimes a duck or goose.  And then it sounded like a goat – but who would have a goat in a suburban neighborhood, so it couldn’t be a goat.  Finally curiosity got the best of us, and we walk out our back gate to find a large cage in our neighbor’s backyard with a goat and a pig inside – seriously?!  A goat and a pig in a suburban neighborhood, was that even legal?  But fortunately, a week later, we stopped hearing the noises – they had gotten rid of the animals!  YEA!  But then we worried because they hadn’t been over to introduce themselves yet, were they angry because they thought we called the police or animal control who made them get rid of them, which we were tempted to do, but didn’t.  But fortunately again, they came over to say hello and said that the animals were just too much trouble, so they took them back to the farm…duh!

Then a few weeks later, we were doing work in the yard, when my love asked me to go to the shed to get something.  I walk in, grab that something, then see something moving out of the corner of my eye.  It was a snake, too close to my home for my comfort.  Then I see something else out of the other corner of my eye, 5 baby rats.  I look back at the snake….it has a large bulge in it’s belly….apparently the mama rat.  EW!  So not knowing what kind of snake it was, I took a picture to show the head of staff at the church (he catches snakes for fun).  So the snake was not poisonous, and we thought it best to leave it alone, so it would eat the baby rats and then return to its home – most likely the creek behind our house.  We go in a week later and the snake and rats are all gone…fine with us!

But then a few months later, I am taking out the trash and see something sticking out from the first row of siding on the house.  I look closer – it’s a snake skin – which he apparently shed while slithering up behind the siding – OMG – where is this snake now?  I’m quite terrified and I call my love out and he is convinced that there is no way for the snake to get in the house from there, but I was still on edge for several weeks waiting to catch a glimpse of that snake in my house and fully prepared to scream in horror.

Back to this snake catching boss of mine.  One of the things the search committee failed to tell me when I came to interview was the fact that I would be learning more than I ever wanted about wildlife and reptiles.  The pastor is known in the town to be an expert on snakes, so whenever someone finds a snake, they call him…then he generally catches it and BRINGS IT TO THE OFFICE!!!  before letting it go in the 40 acre wildlife reserve behind the church.  So every so often I hear “Come in hear and see this”…I’ve learned to come in slowly.  And then there are the times when he calls all of us outside to see a certain kind of lizard or skenk or spider or snake.  Seriously not what I had in mind when I thought of what I would do at work.  I have also been warned that if there is a paper bag in his office, not to touch it, because more than likely there’s a snake in it.  Funtimes!

So God’s creatures are all around, in your own backyard, at your front door, in your shed, even in your office

UPDATE:  The pastor is soon retiring and the serpentarium – like an aquarium for just reptiles – who goes to that tourist attraction??  But apparently it is popular, the pastor even did a wedding there once – CRAZIES!  Anywho, the serpentarium has asked him, the resident snake handler, to come and be a quest speaker on occasion.  AND I found out that a newspaper once called the church and wanted to come by to interview the pastor and take a picture of him in his preacherly robe holding a snake – (he didn’t) – wouldn’t that be a fun picture caption – “Presbyterian Snake-Handling Minister”- not quite what we’re about.

And the neighbor with the bee-bee gun – someone complained about it, so he told my love that he was going to start using a bow and arrow instead because that wouldn’t make any noise…I have yet to see this thank goodness – I would be scared to leave my house for fear of being impaled.

And the neighbor with the pig and goat – they bought 4 white geese to have as pets – not sure why with all the stray geese wandering about.  But it actually was cute, the geese would follow the kids around the yard.  Unfortunately they met an untimely cruel death at the hands of trouble-maker teenagers.

maybe our neighborhood isn’t as nice as we thought…

Redneck Love

Just when I thought there would be nothing to write about…I forget that my neighborhood provides much material.  Today is Valentine’s Day – the day to express how much you love people in your life.  Piglet got two cards from her grandparents, and she can’t even read -we know she is loved. 

But our neighbors show us how it’s done.  We pull into the neighborhood, and I see a red truck parked on the street with red writing all over it – you know how people tell the world they’re “Just Married” or that “Seniors Rule” or “Happy Birthday” or on ADPi bid day “First and Finest”.  Today the owner was telling the world how much he/she loved someone – it said “Happy Valentine’s Day – I Love You!”  Then we get closer and I see a young couple sitting in the bed of the truck eating McDonald’s…how romantic!