Tag Archives: birds

Getting out of Dodge for 24 hours

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Cornbread Cafe

The all-vegan Cornbread Cafe

I needed to get out of Dodge. Badly. So I took the opportunity Friday to drive the kids to meet their mom, and then drive on to Eugene to visit a friend. I drove a little further than normal to swap the kids at Sweet Home, and then another 45 miles or so to Eugene. I hadn’t been to Eugene for years, but a friend of mine lives there who has come to Bend a couple of times, so it seemed like time for me to take a visit. She graciously let me spend the night, so we’d have a little more time to hang out and so I didn’t have to drive back the same night.

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The Eugenwich and Me

The Eugenwich and Me

The Eugenewich at Cornbread Cafe

The Eugenewich at Cornbread Cafe

It was fun. I got to eat at the all-vegan Cornbread Cafe, and meet and chat with the awesome owner and staff. {Our waitress was somebody I had met previously while in Portland for VegFest—so that was a nice surprise!} The food was so good. I’ll be doing a review for the show, so won’t go on about it too much here, but damn!, how can you go wrong with battered tofu and carrot bacon? (Try: the Eugenewich.)

We spent the rest of the evening watching a Rush concert video with my friend’s hubby (strange but true: I had never previously heard any of their songs—that I can remember, anyway). This morning we went to the Eugene farmer’s market, which is huge and has both craft and food sections. And also to the rose garden. And of course back to the Cornbread Cafe for some chocolate croissants to go.

I left around 1p in no rush, letting anyone pass me who felt the need. I ended up stopping for a while at both Belknap Hot Springs and Sahalie Falls. It was nice to get out, stretch, feel the warm sun, and enjoy the beautiful Mackenzie river. I was chided by a chipmunk at Belknap and given the wary eye by numerous boisterous Stellar’s Jays at Sahalie.

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This evening back at home, after relaxing for a while with all the animals, I walked Pilot Butte. The sweetest bunny with the huge ears was out again, around the same spot that I saw him/her the last time. And tons of lbb’s.

Later, hubby and I had a great brainstorming session.

It was certainly a nice 24+ hours. I’m both beat and energized. I didn’t have a chance to go through all of my photos yet, but I may add some photos back into this post tomorrow or put them in tomorrow’s post. My friend also took some good ones that she’s promised to email me…

Trying to save the Canada Geese in Bend. Again.

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I spoke during the 3-minute public comment section at the Park Board meeting tonight, along with sending an email to the board earlier today. It’s the second year in a row that the board has been waffle-y about whether or not they plan to kill Canada Geese, or at what number of geese the decision will be made. Two years ago they killed 109 geese with very little opportunity for public comment.  The problem is good poop in the parks, and a perceived overpopulation of resident geese. Since then, due to lots of pressure and help from Goose Watch Alliance, they have initiated strong programs of egg oiling and dog hazing, which have been very successful in keeping the number of resident geese in check.

A week ago they said they had “no intention” of “euthanizing” geese this year. But one soon-to-retire board member has since made comments that they are still keeping it “on the table” as a last resort, and this same board member changed the target number of geese a few times.

As usual, when we showed up in person, the board seemed very friendly and open to suggestions, at the same time implying that rumors had gotten out of hand, and that, again, they have no intention of killing any geese this year. That they had to get the “depredation” permit months in advance, and that they need that permit to relocate the juvenile geese to a Southern Oregon reserve (which they still plan to do).

They all smile and nod and act like the information we give them is new to them (even though most of it was the same info that we gave them last year.) Sigh. It gets old. But hopefully due to public pressure the geese will be spared another year.

Walnuts and carrots

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I miss my bird friend.

  • Walnuts and carrots make me sad (her favorite foods)
  • When I see a cardboard tube or a sturdy cardboard box, I want to give them to her to chew into shreds
  • When  I have cut veggie leftovers, an apple core, or a heel of bread, I want to put them in her dishes and hear that excited call
  • I want to fill her water dish with fresh water and watch her cram her entire body in and bathe, one more time
  • I want to hear her say “Baby Bird” and “Oooohhhh” one more time
  • I want to feel her pokey feet and her soft feathers, and kiss her warm soft head, one more time
  • I want to hear her laughter, once more time
  • I even want her to fly around and chew on the kitchen cupboards, just once more

Poor thing. She went so quickly and took a piece of me with her.

My favorite post about Caesar.

Now I know why the parrot was so quiet

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I’ve been dealing with a sick parrot today. When I went to get her out of her cage, she was just laying there on the bottom. She’s been sitting down there a lot, ever since laying her first eggs a month or so ago. Today, though, she didn’t get up, and it became immediately clear that something is wrong with her legs—they are mostly paralyzed and one of them developed a swelling as the day went on. 

I”m so worried about her. I don’t know if she’s egg bound or if something else is going on. But now I know why she was so unnaturally quiet earlier this week—she wasn’t feeling good! Poor thing. So I’ve been towelling her and cradling her a lot, and then also letting her sleep in a small cat carrier lined with blankets and heated with one of those bean neck thingies (we don’t have a hot water bottle or heating pad, later, I’ll need to heat that up for her again). Apparently, it’s very important to keep her warm as it takes so much energy to maintain body temperature. I had to move her into the carrier because even though I put cardboard and towels down for her on the bottom of her cage, she kept crawling off them and I found her laying there, both feet just dangling through the cage floor. At least now I can keep her upstairs in the bathroom and check on her frequently. Weird thing is, she seems fairly alert, and took food out of a dropper that I offered her a few different times. She even nibbled a bit of walnut, one of her favorite foods.

My vet wasn’t in today (the one that is good with birds), but we have an appointment for early tomorrow morning, so hopefully she’ll hold on until then.

Slow evening at home with hulu, books, and cats

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A slow evening at home (that 5 hours of sleep was rough). Made some vegan blueberry pancake comfort food.  Took a long hot bath while watching House and had a stack of books for after. Rotating kitties kept me company.

On my reading list this week:

A mad look in their eyes

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It’s a buggy time of year. A large and beautifully striped brown moth was hanging out on the front porch light the other day. It’s also bug hunting time of year for the cats. They like nothing better than to go out onto the latticed (but not screened) back porch for a few hours late into the summer night to hunt bugs.

Now I hate hunting, and I go out of my way to avoid harming bugs—often gently evicting them from the house. And I keep my cats indoors, except for short supervised backyard visits, and the occasional escape. This way they very rarely kill birds or rodents (unless one makes its way into the house, or strays within the porch lattice), or get eaten themselves by birds of prey, coyotes, or cars.

But I can’t help but appreciate the sheer delight they have in hunting and munching down on bugs, and they are so entertaining to watch when they leap like crazy in ungraceful poses, arms swinging wildly, a mad look in their eyes.

Circling back to homebody: family, bread, and Pilot Butte

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This week and last I’ve tried to circle back and concentrate on family, spending quite a bit less time on the radio show and other events in the evenings. My radio co-host is out-of-town, and we just finished a show, so that helps a little, but I need to find a way to strike a balance when it gets busy again too. The last two weeks with extra work and radio commitments colliding produced disastrous results, so this is a good time to step back and regroup.

An update on the breadmaking: We’re still going strong. We’ve made bread every day for the last week. We can get by making up the dough every other day and then baking one loaf a night. The cheap baking stone is working great and we’re getting by just fine without an oven thermometer. I now have Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day out from the library as well ( I ♥ our library). I’m going to figure out the cost per loaf the next time we buy flour. We should be saving quite a bit, but then again we’re buying organic flours and also eating more bread than normal. (Ordinarily, if we run out of bread between paychecks, then we have to substitute other things.) It’s been fun, though, so even if we’re not saving all that much, it’s worth it. And the convenience of always having various breads available is great. I still can’t believe that I had never tried this easy way to make bread before. I’m going to have to find the podcast I was listening to that mentioned the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day book and thank them. And then maybe mention the book in our next episode to pass it on. Most of the breads are already vegan, so it’s a natural fit for our Vegan Bite recipe segment.

The kids and I are back in our Pilot Butte habit again. My step-son and I have just gone 4 times in a row (every other day) and the girls 3 of those times. Ruby didn’t get to go the last few times, as she’s ripped a pad the last two times we walked the Butte. I don’t know if it’s the hot sand of the trail, or just tender paws from winter, but she also seemed extra tired both times as well. She‘s been so bummed out that she doesn’t get to go with! But I’m going to take it easy with her and only go on walks around the neighborhood for a while.

We’re already starting to take less time up and back—it’s a good free workout that is so much more challenging than walking around the neighborhood. I’m waiting for all of the kids to catch up to my fitness level, but it won’t be long. Even though it’s a high desert landscape, with lots of sage, junipers, and desert wildflowers, and very popular with people, there is plenty of wildlife. In the last week we’ve seen deer, lizards, chipmunks (or ground squirrels) and many bird species, including nuthatches, jays, robins, and sparrows. I’ve seen gray jays, ravens and birds of prey in the past. We even saw a nuthatch feeding a very noisy full-size baby the other day. And there are probably mountain lions, as they are seen once in a while in the surrounding area. So if we don’t come back one day… ;)