Flying Through Summer

I’m flying through summer sort of like this Purple Martin. 

It might not be prudent to fly for too long without looking where you are headed but when there is so much going on around you how do you even have time to look ahead to the next week?

Tonight was the first night in the 16 days the kids have been off school that I’ve had a breather to look around and start picking up the house… and the garage… and the yard… and the trucks…

It was like an archaeological dig.

On top of the couch was the bag of dress clothes I wore to the funeral of a family friend this morning. Hiding under that was the miscellaneous items the kids dropped on their way in the door from the summer solstice party we were at yesterday. The garage was heaped with the camping things from earlier in the week. And under it all was a thick layer of capoeira debris from a solid week of workshops and events. Drum making materials mixed with extra instruments on the mantel, cord dying equipment still on the table, boxes of un-sold shirts by the stove and stinky workout clothes in all the corners. Feed for the new goslings can be found under the camping equipment in the garage. And if you dig deep enough in the truck you can still find the remains of the tools we brought north to build bunk beds at the family cabin. Buried beneath it all on the table was a mountain of papers the girls brought home on the last day of school.

The fridge is mostly devoid of food and the laundry, clean and dirty, is piled high. But the good times have been plentiful and now I’ll have some time to work on the mess we left in our wake…

 

… but first I have two weddings to celebrate…

 

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Sky Full of Martins

As evening approaches, the wind dies and the cries of the purple martins ring out across the lake. purple martinsSitting in the grass, camera in hand, I watch the flock. Perched all over their gourds and supporting sticks, they twitter, preen and suddenly take to the air. Purple Martin ColonyCalling, swooping and diving, the sky is filled with purple martins, glowing orange in the light of the setting sun.

I’m again linking up with Northwest Frame of Mind  and her 1 Day 1 World project. Click over to see what else was happening around the world in the eight o’clock hour

Weekly Photo Challenge: Contrasts

Weekly Photo Challenge: Contrastschecking the purple martins

Grandpa’s been working on getting purple martins to nest in his gourds for years. Finally, after many years of empty nests, a few birds moved in. The colony has now grown and this year has been the best by far.

The picture shows my mom just starting to lower the colony in order to check the nests. In the few minutes it took us to peer in all the boxes, record what we saw and pull the whole works up again, we found twenty seven babies and forty one eggs!

All the data is collected, compiled and sent to Project Martin Watch which conducts a continent-wide survey of martins much of which is collected by volunteers.