Category Archives: Writing

Little Yellow Dots

Teeny, tiny yellow dots
are moving on the plants.
Little pinprick holes in spots
like sticky, icky ants.

These pollen looking pests all
crowd and gather on the stem.
Around the leaves they all crawl
and munch and crunch on them.

What are these nasty vermin?
And from where did they come?
Milkweed aphids have moved in
and made us all feel glum.

How far will this army go
with their full-blown attack?
Stripping leaves to my great woe,
they eat their milkweed snack.

Green Tomatoes

It’s quiet in the garden,
and yet I can’t explain.
All of my tomatoes seem
to stay a shade of green.

Some are jade with yellow stripes
and some with darker hues.
Some are trying hard to change
while others just refuse.

On the vine they linger,
a feast for all the bugs.
I gnash my teeth in anger
and watch the slimy slugs.

As one last hopeless effort,
I check back to the day
I planted these tomatoes.
What do the packets say?

When I looked at the pictures,
chagrined, I shook my head.
All were green and yellow striped,
not one of them was red!

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A Pile of Weeds

I look around my garden
and everywhere I spy,
a pile of weeds.

I gaze around my homestead
and suddenly I see,
so many needs.

My veggie patch needs tending,
my roses overgrown,
the vines grow tall.

My vineyard weeds exploded.
The mint attacks the grapes.
I see it all.

And then I hear a giggle,
I walk around the back…
and what a sight!

Two boys are in my garden.
They play a made up game.
Their eyes so bright.

Best Laid Plans

The caterpillars climb up high
to make a chrysalis.
They slowly knit,
they never quit,
until they make it fit.

As butterflies begin to fly,
they flutter in the breeze.
They flit and flee
around each tree,
each flower, bud and me.

Yet sometimes plans will go astray,
and transformations fail.
Poor wrinkled things,
with dark wet strings,
and withered soggy wings.

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But Mother Nature marches on.
The sun will rise again.
More butterflies
will soar and rise
and float up in the skies.

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Too Many Weeds

There are too many weeds in my garden, Mom.
I don’t know where to begin.

There are too many weeds in my garden, Mom.
Can we just start over again?

There are too many weeds in my garden, Mom.
I can’t tell a weed from a sprout.

There are too many weeds in my garden, Mom.
Please, can you help a kid out?

There are too many weeds in my garden, Son.
The dock has grown wild and untamed.

There are too many weeds in my garden, Son.
The thistles have made me ashamed.

There are too many weeds in my garden, Son.
If we work together we’ll win.

There are too many weeds in my garden, Son.
It’s too late to start over again!

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My Beans

In his little garden plot
Jacob planted seeds.
A flower here, an onion there
and 3 or 4 green beans.

Daily, hourly he would ask,
When will my garden sprout?
Feed them water, chop the weeds.
The sun will pull them out

One day Jacob found a vine
growing way up high.
He pointed and he jumped around
“My beans can touch the sky!”

 

 

Something New

Spring has zipped right into summer and the boys are outdoor explorers once again.

I bought little notebooks at the Dollar Tree last week. I thought they could use them as their Nature Journals. They’re small and easy to pop in their pocket for their outdoor explorations.

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As soon as they’d personalized their notebooks, they headed outside to hike the swales and search the property for something new to record.

Joe hopped on his scooter and hunt for milkweed.

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Jake waded through the tall grass searching for carrots.

 

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They both enjoyed showing me what they’d found and recorded in their journals.

Last night, while hunting for wild mulberries, we made quite the discovery.

“Mom! Come here and look at this! Hurry!”

Joe was by a large milkweed bouncing on his toes. “Look! A monarch butterfly caterpillar!”

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Jake, who’d been hunting for carrots again, ran over to join us. He was just as excited as Joe and both boys recorded the find in their journals.

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We contemplated putting it in our bug house, but ultimately decided to leave it in its natural habitat and observe it daily.

Joe added more detail to his milkweed drawing on the spot.

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We continued on our trek through the swales, once again in search of wild mulberries.

Today, when my nieces came over, the boys could hardly wait to show them the caterpillar. As I finished making a fresh cup of coffee, Joe burst in the house with some sad news…the caterpillar had been killed.

“A spider is eating it right now!”

He was shocked. Angry. Absolutely heartbroken. This spider had destroyed his monarch butterfly caterpillar.

I followed the crew to the milkweed to see the carnage for myself.

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It was a sad and gruesome sight. Joe wanted to get rid of all the spiders.

“This is how nature works buddy. Why don’t we find out more about this spider?”

He perked up a little bit at that, but I think he was more eager to find out its weaknesses so he could retaliate. Either way, the distraction worked.

We spent some time looking at pictures of spiders on the internet. One was too brown, another too small. We searched and searched, comparing our picture of the predator with the Google results until…we found it.

The Crab Spider had eaten the caterpillar.

 

“Now that we know what it is, we can research it. Find its weaknesses.”

“Ok Mom. But right now I’m going to go find frogs with the girls.”

Just like nature, a little boy’s moods can change in an instant. Something new pops into their mind…and they’re off on another adventure.

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A world of danger
A world of discovery
A world of wonder

 

 

 

 

Diary of a Chicken Day 87

87 Days in Captivity

Dear Diary,

We continue our voyage across the green lake. The Stick Monsters are pushing us further and further away from the Big Box. We are not sure what purpose this serves, but it seems to make the Stick Monster happy.

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Every morning this week, when the guillotine door opens, the Stick Monster pelts vegetable peelings and strawberry tops at us as we exit. What fresh torture is this? My cellmates run squawking from the box in effort to escape these missiles.

Still no word from the raccoon. We sent Bertha out to talk to him before lock down, but she escaped and we have not heard from her since. The lucky hen is free now and has forgotten about her sisters in captivity.

Yesterday, the Stick Monsters cleaned the box, destroying our carefully made beds…again.

Fluffy and Mildred were so upset that they flapped around and knocked the temporary door off the cage. For a brief, blissful time, we escaped. Our freedom was short-lived, however. The Stick Monster sent the Twig Beasts after us and soon we were imprisoned once more.

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The Stick Monster installed a strange light outside the box. Once dark, it turns on every time we move. At first, we hated it, but then it brought a crunchy, flying snack. We stayed up all night catching these winged treats. This made the Stick Monster angry and the light was disabled.

Fluffy is going to try and hide behind the silver water tower tonight. Hopefully she can make contact with the raccoon so we can plan our escape. Maybe he can take us one at a time so as not to look so suspicious.

I guess we’ll see.

–Roadrunner, Imprisoned in the Prairie

 

 

Fresh Fruit…?

Last year, there were kiwi flowers on one of the first vines we planted. There weren’t many, but we were so excited. At last!

But…then the beetles came. In waves. In hordes. A blanket of shiny, greenish, brownish ick destroying our vines, our buds…our spirit.

Now the buds are back. I don’t want to count my berries before they fruit…but they are everywhere on the vines and, with a little luck and milky spore, hopefully the Japanese beetles will not be as bad this year.

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Flowers started forming
On last year’s kiwi vines
Teeny, tiny buds appeared
At last! On fruit we’d dine!

But then, in hordes the beetles came
And blanketed the rows
Holding on with sticky feet
Those munching, crunching foes

Our defenses were no match for them
We put up quite a fight
But still, they beat us easily
That horrid, evil blight

Again, small buds are forming
We’re hopeful that this time
The milky spore has done it’s job
And on fresh fruit we’ll dine!

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A Little Patch

May I have a garden, Mom
One that’s only mine?
A little patch is all I need
A corner would be fine

I want to plant 9 carrots
I’ll watch them while they grow
Two broccoli, one cabbage
Are all the seeds I’ll sow

I’ll have to put a path in
And build a little fence
An arch for beans to grow on
A “Welcome” sign makes sense

May I have a garden, Mom?
One that’s only mine?
A little patch is all I need
In the bright sunshine