Comments from my life, family, and projects I enjoy.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

One of those really wonderfull mornings.











I got an early start on the day this morning. Breakfast was shrimp and grits with scrambled eggs and black coffee. Mmmm, thanks Becky. I went outside and decided to walk the yard. The garlic and onions in the garden are looking good and will soon be ready to harvest. Our roses are in bloom and everything around us has leafed out and is growing like crazy. I could not resist snapping some picture of all the plants in bloom and things of beauty. We don't keep our plantings cut back and shaped like many of our neighbors. I'm sure the garden club will never award us yard of the month and the neighborhood association probably has my name on a hit list, but what the hell, I like things to look natural and a little shabby. Besides, it provides lots of cover and habitat for birds and I like that. Every neighborhood has one and in mine, I'm him. In a few more weeks, once everything has stopped blooming, we will trim things up a bit, mainly to keep the plants healthy and to avoid some of the larger plantings from shading the smaller stuff. Enjoy the pictures.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Nature All Around Us

I am constantly amazed with the diversity of wildlife that can be found practically underfoot in urban and suburban areas. This evening while returning from our walk at the Cayce River-walk, we could hear some little voices off in the brush between the walkway and the railroad siding. Kit-wau! Kit-wau! As we got closer to the sound a gray fox darted out into the middle of the walk and then turned around darting back into the brush. We found ourselves between her and her kits. After a moment of indecision, we quickly walked past where her kits were crying, while looking back to watch for her to cross. Of course the mother fox was too clever to reveal the location of her den and she walked another 25 feet or so further down the path keeping a wary eye on us before disappearing into the brush. Within a second or two of her disappearing into the brush, her kits quited and we knew mother fox was back with her young. I returned home feeling just a little more at peace after a reminder that nature continues to take it's course and mothers continue to nurture their young. Wikepedia has a nice article on the Gray fox here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gray_fox

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Trash Pickings

Today while driving to the riverwalk for some well deserved recreation I spotted one of those cheap pedestal fans out by the road for trash pick-up. These are the el-cheapo type that are frequently offered by the discount retailers. I grabbed it up and took it home. Typical of these cheap Chinese fans, the motor bearings are a simple sleeve bearing. I don't even think they are bronze. Of course the rotor would barely turn. I pulled the little motor apart, chucked the rotor in my drill press and polished the shaft where the bearings ride. I then lubed the shaft with some light oil and put everything back together. Works like a champ and even came with a remote.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Pollen Pollen Pollen!



It is pollen season here in South Carolina, and I think this is the worst year in recent memory. The pollen from the pines is so thick it creates a yellow/green haze in the air that settles on everything and gets everywhere. I'm looking forward to some rain to get some relief. Here is a picture of my pollen coated car.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Wet Furry Beaver Pics






Before anyone gets all upset; Yes this is still a family friendly blog. This afternoon we went to check out a site near the house where some beavers have set up residence. I was quite surprised to see them in this location. There is a busy rail line on one side of their little pond, and a bustling residential neighborhood on the other side. Just beyond the rail line is a cold roll steel mill and a busy highway overpass is above. I parked the car and we took a little stroll up the tracks to have a look. Much to my delight I got a good look at two of the residents. One was quite curious and swam right up to us to check us out. It's really amazing the amount of wildlife that is right under our noses if we just slow down to take a look.

We then went for a stroll at the river walk. Everything is starting to green up and bloom. The wisteria is in bloom and the air is heavy with it's sweet scent. Tomorrow we plan on getting an early start on some garden chores. Perhaps I will post some pics from that project if we are not too tired.

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Midlands of South Carolina, United States
Husband, Father, Quality Engineer, Electronics Professional, and tinkerer. Facinated by old technology and well made old tools. Old iron is good.