Tuesday, September 24, 2013

summer from the homefront

Time spent with family and friends makes summer! Just like everyone else, our summer flew right by. There were times of relaxing, hard work, reading, visiting, swimming, and yes, there were times that pestering occurred too (we just didn't take pictures of those times!)


The boys and their cousins were treated to an hour of horse back riding. How they loved it!
My friend Christine and I spent a day shopping and exploring in St. Jacobs. What a treat it was to talk and talk and not rush home to make dinner. We had such a wonderful day and were sad to hear that it burnt down at the end of summer.

Other friends told us about Geo-caching and that was a big hit. If you haven't heard about it, look it up. It is a great way to get outdoors and have everyone searching for a "treasure."  Just watch out for poison ivy.

Up north, we had a morning of fun with a skipping rope. There was high jump, partner jumping, push ups and skipping, and group skipping. The competition was fierce!
And then the rope became a finish line for human wheelbarrow races.
Apparently the races weren't just for the kids.


I had an "arrival moment" this summer. I heard the baby crying and all of a sudden he stopped. The boys picked him up and started playing with him. WOW! That has never happened before. Built in babysitters!

When Tyler turned 3 he still was not speaking. After some tests we found out that he had hearing loss. A quick little surgery corrected that and now we are finally able to communicate a little better. 
Good bye summer!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

my rant against bird bangers

Walking along the beautiful country road admiring the perfectly straight rows of grapes can be a serene experience until a loud KABOOM shatters the silence. The grapes are almost ready to be harvested, and the birds are busy feasting on these delicious grapes. Farmers watch their hard labours being eaten away so they go on bird-control by installing bird bangers throughout the grapes. A bird banger is a tripod sort of thing that has a telescope mounted on to the top. Fueled with a propane tank located below the tripod, the bird banger turns around and around and then randomly fires- KABOOM!! Very loudly. Usually three short blasts fill the air followed by a flock of birds quickly flying away for safety.
Normally it takes a few days to get used to these loud bangs but eventually you learn how to tune them out. The bird bangers even provide some amusement when guests who are visiting suddenly duck after they hear the first shot fired. To the visitors it feels like they are in enemy territory or are about to be hunted.
During the past few weeks we have had a bird banger in the field across the street that has had a maverick temperament. The banger started going off at 2:00 in the morning and shocked me awake. Ear plugs did nothing. Counting sheep could not get me back to sleep. Finally in desperation I woke up Adam who could sleep through an invasion and he wearily headed off into the night in search of this banger that was going off. I laid in bed worrying that he would be surrounded by a pack of furious coyotes. Adam was worried about a LOUD bang going off in his ear if he couldn't disconnect the bird banger quickly enough.
The next day I got the farmer's phone number and since then we have called him twice in the middle of the night because of this out of control bird banger. It is a little humorous hearing his golf cart riding up and down the road in the middle of the night.
There is another type of bird banger that is called a bird screecher. I think that the farmer was trying to be nice to us by putting this bird screecher right near our home instead of a bird banger. This bird screecher goes off every few minutes and it imitates different bird predators that scare the flocks of birds away from the grapes. What the farmer didn't know is that our boys are rapture lovers and have spent countless hours trying to perfect their red tail hawk call. Andrew does his red tail hawk call so well that the red tail hawk that lives by our house actually answers back. So in our house we have these loud screeches from our boys who are mastering their bird calls and then when I go outside there are more screeches!
I hardly dare to complain about these loud KABOOMS and screeches that go on during the grape harvest because after all we have chosen to live out in the country. In our defense, however, our family is so loud that if we lived in a subdivision, I would have to sleep with one eye open for fear of what our neighbours would do to us!