Monday, April 28, 2008

Heart Stone

This cool stone is not Floridian. It turned up in a bag of Alabama River Rock that we were spreading onto the waterfolly paths.

It was full of metaphorical possibilities ...

Only a little battered on one side ...

Almost broken on the other.

In other news ...

The waterfolly is done, except for the continual tweaking that will go on. I'll post a picture this week.

A cold which had been building for a few days kicked in full bore yesterday so I spent the day in bed with a mild fever and a bunch of kleenex ... hence, no post Sunday. I still feel pretty icky today, but tomorrow is my annual marine science field trip out to Cedar Key and I need to give my "Castnet Throwing 101" class today to my high school students so they will feel confident tomorrow.

The field trip is always good for a few photo heavy posts, so look for that after Tuesday.

The science fair was last week at our school. I have mixed feelings about them and feel the need to express it here so there's probably a "chalk" post coming up soon.

The two giant swallowtail larvae that were devouring my baby citrus tree have vanished. They were pretty big, so perhaps they are pupating somewhere, but the free ranging banty chickens may have found them as they were in a very small potted tree at chicken level.

A pair of Mississippi Kites are wheeling and calling over PFHQ this week, as are the Swallowtail Kites. Last year, I posted pics of the Miss. Kites kinoodling in a dead pine tree ... I don't know if they will be so brazen this year.

The chickadees moved into a new nestbox almost as soon as I put it up and are busy scolding me while carrying things into their new home.

The bamboo mason bee houses I hung last year show signs of hatching and are now being plugged again so I remain convinced that these bees have a definite need for housing.
I would call that simple habitat enhancement project a success, based on the use and reuse with almost 100% occupancy.

Now, it's time for me and my Kleenex to get to school.
Have a great Monday!


threecollie said...

Hope you feel better soon. Looking forward to all those promised posts. Never a dull moment here!

Danielle Says Hello said...

Hope you feel better soon. Just stopping in to say that your blog is like a good book!!!! Comforting and a place you always want to come back to. And again...I love what I learn here. Thanks.

FloridaBoy said...

A quick perusal of the internet failed to reveal any mason bee species range maps, altho Wikipedia states they prefer northern climes where temps remain below zero for prolonged periods. Your blog indicates otherwise.

Any problems with mud daubers crashing the party? Not that there's anything wrong with mud daubers.

robin andrea said...

I love collecting heart-shaped stones. That one is a beauty. Very nice. Hope you are feeling better soon, fc.

Anonymous said...

Oooh--has been a nasty flu season. I got kicked good and hard by it. Hope you have a quick recovery. Love the heart-rock. I'm a big rockhound, but I only found my very first heart-rock a week ago when I was at the Lake of the Ozarks. Usually I'm surface hunting for Native American artifacts when I'm around rocks in an area that looks fruitful; but I always am on the look-out for unusual rocks. Living here in the big city you don't see much but gravel.

Dr. Know said...

Well, to paraphrase Slick Willy, I feel that rock's pain - interminably.

As for the flu, there are some really bad strains running about. Hope yours clears up promptly.

I'm interested in seeing your "waterfolly", having constructed a small garden pond a while back. I take it from the moniker you've assigned that you don't care for the effort? Humping innumerable (tons of) rocks does get pretty old. And trying to stack them into a faux, yet natural looking waterfall is exasperating. The tweaking is done on this end, other than when the neighbors 60lb dog decides to go swimming and can't get out without mucking it up.

The bee houses are a neat idea - we are running shy on pollinators. Perhaps they would help keep the bees from constantly boring into the house trim.

elpbulls said...

Hope you feel better Daddy! The great news is my last exam is today, the bad's math! I love ya and I'll see you soon.

Doug Taron said...

The upcoming trip to Cedar Key sounds very exciting. I hope that you're feeling well enough to enjoy it- and to take lots of pictures.

Hurricane Teen said...

Ew, I hope you feel better soon!! That race couldn't have helped.

Teach those kids well...Fewer and fewer people know how to use those nets...Nobody even knows what they are are here!

I'm looking forward to your post about science fairs. Enjoy your trip to Cedar Key!

Floridacracker said...

Thanks, I'm still waiting to feel better ... tomorrow could be a long day on the water.

What a nice thing to say. Thank you.

I first came across the idea of bundling bamboo while watching a show on orchard mason bees. I have used the term loosely ... I am soooo not an entomologist. I think most of my inhabitants are leafcutter bees.

Are they common? We have so few rocks here...

I hope it's a cold and not real flu. I know this years flu shots were not total protection so I may have had an end run done on me.

No, I'm just joking around. I really enjoyed this project. Anything having to do with water.

I'm making a big pot of chicken noodle soup right now. Sorry YOU are not here to help me eat it!
Love you!

I will be shooting as much as possible.It's usually good for a lot of different crustaceans.

We train with little 5 footers so they are easy to manage. The kids did great today in the bus parking lot!
Didn't catch anything tho!

kathy a. said...

i'm late! hope you are feeling better, hope the field trip is the usual roaring success! that is a mighty fine rock.

good luck, emma!

looking forward to the post on the science fair. unlike some other parents, we thought it was the kids' job to do the project, and ours to buy materials and badger them about getting the project done. my daughter once picked a completely lame experiment, but there were unanticipated developments. her grade definitely would have been worse if she hadn't accurately reported the data, which made almost every adult at the science fair laugh.

SophieMae said...

Sure hope your cold is short-lived. Cedar Key is so much nicer when you're up to snuff.

I'm so glad kite season is here again. I so look forward to that every year.

Ar your studeants allowed to keep any mullet they catch?

Floridacracker said...

Kathy A,
Unfortunately my fever is rising, so posts requiring actual thought may be on hold for a day or so.

Floridacracker said...

This may be more fluish than coldish ... we'll see.
I'm heading towards 102 F right now and I'm curious to see where this ends.

No mullet or edible size fish are kept. We do bring a few critters back to the classroom aquarium, but mostly it's look and release.

Cathy S. said...

So sorry you are sick. Youngest came home from school today with a bug and we are doctoring him up as Friday we leave for Pensacola for GRADUATION! And next Tuesday, youngest leaves for a mission trip to Brazil, 16 hours bu boat up the Amazon River from Manaus. He can't be sick, he has been looking forward to this for a long time and raised so much money to go.

Hope you feel better soon.

PS Cool rock. And good luck to Emma on her exams.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

You and your bugs: So busy!!

Floridacracker said...

Cathy S,
Congratulations to the graduate. How wonderful is that!

I hope all is well for the trip also. Sounds exciting.

These bugs are kicking my behind.

Deb said...

Aww, it doesn't sound good for the field trip tomorrow! If you're totally knocked out, can it be rescheduled? Hope you feel better soon.

And, I'm anxious to hear about your opinion on science fairs. I have mixed feelings myself, having looked at them from both sides now (hello Judy Collins!) as a judge and a parent. But get better first.

Sharon said...

I feel your pain with the cold, literally. I'm miserable...hope you are feeling a little better by now :)

Thunder Dave said...

Cool rock, hope you get to feeling better. The trees bloomed here a couple of weeks ago and sent me into a hay fever frenzy, so I feel your pain!

Floridacracker said...

Pretty much a one shot deal on the field trip,so off we go!
Science fair post to come when i feel better.

Sorry to hear that, hope you feel better soon too!

All new pollen huh?
Hey, find the donkey restaurant in Beijing ... I watched Zimmer eat there on tv the other night.

Thunder Dave said...

That's one of the places Lightnin wants to go too, but I'm having trouble locating it!