I told you recently that I have a new list of things that life is too short to live with. One of those things is tree branches that you have to duck under. Low tree branches must be dealt with promptly and without regard to anything other than my head. I have proven that I can dish out enough blows on my own. So, with hand saw in hand, I set out to accomplish this task.
I assess the first tree. Considering the branch to height ratio, which is the deciding factor in determining my removal selections, I quickly get to work. I have had my hand saw for about 12 years, and it is surprisingly sharp and still in relatively good shape. This is a miracle on it's own, because I am not usually good at keeping up with my things. The Man In Charge will attest to this, and it is one of his biggest pet peeves. It is also the primary reason that he doesn't like sharing tools with me.
I know. Rude, right?
First tree, first branch, and wait, "What is that?"
I run inside and get the camera, and well, you decide.
On the very day that I decide to take extra precautions against self-inflicted head injuries, these little guys decide to come into the world. Here is a closer view.
The thing that really caught my attention was the color. It was such a gray day, and to see these bright orange things moving around, it really was almost pretty. Strange to say about spiders, but true, and unlike most people, I have to stop what I am doing and get the camera. I can't help it. Then I have to shoot as many pictures as I think I need, and then stop to go put the camera up. This last step being the most critical step because I have learned my lesson about expensive photography and video equipment the hard way.
Prior to buying my camera, we had a nice video camera. We bought it back in 2002 when our horse foaled and we all became blooming idiots, finding every excuse possible to sit outside and watch the baby. If you look at this picture of my mare...
You can see that it is not a great quality shot. This is because this is actually from a video. It is a good shot of her because she is squared up nicely, but resolution/pixel/and all the other technical terms, this is lacking. Still, it was a good camera when we bought it, and it was a good camera right up until the time that I killed it.
Public Service Announcement: Once you are finished taking picture or video, you must stop what you are doing and put the equipment up inside the house.
I learned this lesson on one of those weather days when I leave my horses in their stalls for various reasons. After one of these weather events, they can get a little frisky and want out to have a run. It is usually during these times that you can get great video of them doing what they do naturally. This will include all of their crazy antics and the absolute raw explosive power contained within them. They are truly athletic and can move in ways that look effortless.
It was on one of these days that I had the video camera out. I was shooting video of our stallion at his best. He was running and loving life. When he had calmed down and began grazing, we stood outside and watched him for a bit longer and then the Man in Charge wanted something from the little BBQ/Gas Station/Grill that is in our town. I had one more thing to do in the barn, so I sat the camera down on the rear bumper of his truck, and headed to the barn to knock it out. When I came back, I jumped in his truck to run to the store. My Full-Timer was with me on this excursion, and we made it all the way back home before I was like, "Where is the camera?"
Well, you can only imagine the panic when I realized where I had left it. We jumped back in the truck and started re-tracing our route, all the while looking along the side of the road with a spot-light. I was seriously panicking when we had gone more than a few miles and still hadn't seen it. When we came to a highway intersection, that we had turned left at, I spotted it. It had made it all that way, and then when I had turned it fell off.
There it was.
Smashed into a million pieces.
I will say that the Man in Charge took it a lot better than I did. I was sick about it.
So, I have learned to keep my camera in the house. I go get it when I need it, and then I put it up when I am done with it. This makes it really hard to get things done because I always see stuff that I want to share with you. Stuff like the little guys up there, and stuff like this...
I was doing a little weeding in an area that I wanted to plant, and I stumbled upon these little things. At first I didn't know what they were. Then when it dawned on me that they were little baby Lady Bugs...
I threw down my tools and gloves and went for the camera. It is a little hard to judge the size, so I did something to help you out with this.
This is not for the squeamish.
I know it is gross, but it was the only thing around, so I placed a dead June Bug in the shot to give you an idea how small these little things were. No, I did not kill the June Bug, I found it that way. I did not feel bad because I do not like June Bugs and it is only April and they are already here, but that is beside the point.
Mom was close by also.
Or, it could have been Dad.
Probably was Dad because he got the heck out of there.
This may not be very exciting news to some of you, but I was ecstatic. It may help you understand why, if I explain to you that I have actually purchased Lady Bugs before.
Yes! That is correct!
I have paid cold-hard cash for bugs.
Some of you just grabbed your wallets.
It may sound crazy, but Lady Bugs feed on aphids and aphids are an enemy of The Farmer. To see that I am actually breeding my own bugs was great news. I did see this several times in the area that I was working. I made every effort not to disturb them too much, and to leave some weeds around so that they will have something to feed on.
I could be in the Lady Bug business if I only knew how to ship them.
Did you know that you can mail order Lady Bugs?
This is why there are some days that it doesn't look like I have done anything at all.