An Odor Found

If you recall from the end of my last post, Operation Parkify, I drew your attention to some tree branches overhanging the stream.  It might have even made you wonder why I would leave those branches hanging over the stream if my intent was to beautify the surroundings.  Well, there are two reasons for that.  One is to help prevent unwanted trees and limbs from making their way down to another project I’ll be posting on in the future.  The other is due to what was found on those branches.  I am only going to put this particular picture on the front of this post and let you make your own decision whether you want to figure out what is in it and whether you want to take the jump to see the better pictures.  Warning, not for the squeamish.

Sooooo, if you want to see more, hit the jump

Continue reading An Odor Found

Operation Parkify or What Was I Thinking

So this is a shot of our wooded lot when we bought it a few years back.  You will notice it is pretty rugged and was essentially virgin land that had never really been touched beyond the occasional hunter.  I can’t tell you how many times we got lost while checking out the area before we made the decision to purchase it.  We have always liked the country and this was a pretty big step up from our previous 2 acre lot in a country setting subdivision.  As it turned out, we were even a confused on the lot boundaries.  After numerous Google satellite searches and distance estimates we thought we had a pretty good idea of the back boundary which you can somewhat tell from the picture was a stream hidden amongst the trees, thorns and weeds.  A few days before we agreed to acquire it, we were questioning the previous owner about the lot lines and found out the stream was actually in the middle of the lot and not the end surprising us both.

The first couple of years my focus was on the house and the immediate landscaping.  Due to an opportunity to take a little extra time off from work this year, I decided to embark on sprucing up the stream area.  This idea was sparked after our trip out to Yellowstone this year.  With two week of vacation and just about every night after work for two months I worked on exposing the stream by cutting back the wild, trimming up the trees, yanking out the thorns and raking up all the brush so I could mow without damaging the blades.  This was a great 13 pound weight loss program if you are feeling the belt tightening over the holidays.  Armed with nothing more than a chainsaw, lopper, trimmer, steel rake and wheelbarrow I plodded happily along.

The amazing thing is just how much the stream has widened with the ridiculous amount of rain that has fallen this year.  Unfortunately, with the rain came a record horde of mosquitoes.  I can’t remember how many cans of Deep Woods Off that were drained during this effort but a wall of citronella torches kept most of them a bay until the sun started dropping under the trees.  Here is another shot from a different portion of the stream.

So what do you think, was it worth all the work?  It is definitely not a Yellowstone, but it is a nice place to take a stroll and unwind after a hectic day at work.  It also provides a nice setting for some bird watching and if you know this site, you know I am all about the birds.   In fact, one afternoon I was taking a break close to the right side of this picture when all of a sudden there was a swooshing noise and huge shadow crossed over me heading for the middle of the stream.  It turned out to be a Blue Heron who plopped down into the middle of the stream to fish for some frogs.  For about 5 minutes I just watched this majestic bird do his thing before he noticed me standing about 10 feet away.  Out came the huge wings and away he went leaving me in complete awe.  It’s times like these that make the work worth every bead of sweat.

Note:  besides showing off my lot, I  actually had a side motive for this particular post.  Take a mental note of the branches that are across the stream towards the top of the last picture and check back for the next post.  Warning though, you might be shocked a little if you are squeamish.