Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Troubled Ducklings

I've had some extra hours building up for my work so I decided to take an extra long hike today. I was heading up Buttermilk Falls when I looked across the gorge and spotted a little duckling. It was obvious that it was stuck and didn't know how to get out of the gorge. It kept swimming upstream and then a few minutes later it was heading back down towards the waterfalls. The poor thing was exhausted and probably so scared. So I decided to try and get it. I took off my shoes and waded (illegally) into the stream and tried to catch it. But after about 5 minutes of really freaking it out, I decided that I best just let it go because I wasn't going to get it with my bare hands. And really, I was just wearing it out even more. So I continued on with my hike and thought about what, if anything, I could do. I then remembered that I had a net in my car and my puddle boots, so I got my gear and headed back into the gorge. I didn't even know though if it would still be there because it was a good 15 minutes for me to get to my car and then back into the gorge.
Once I arrived, I couldn't find him anywhere. I figured I was too late and he had been swept down even further. But as I looked around, I finally spotted him down stream past a few more waterfalls. At that moment I knew that he was too far and there was no way I could safely get to him.
I just stood there for a few minutes and sent him my best wishes to make it safely to the bottom. But then unexpectedly, he got out onto the bank and started making his way up the side of the gorge and closer back to where I could reach him. So off I went, crossing the water and climbed onto the wall on the other side. It was all so perfect, great footholds and I never even slipped. Then all of a sudden I saw him, getting situated under some ferns, probably for a little rest. I put my net over him and scooped him up! I couldn't believe it! I rescued him!! I felt so relieved. But then reality set in and I didn't know what to do with him. I had searched for his mother and other ducklings but couldn't find any. I then tried to think of other duck families around the area, but I really hadn't seen any. So I headed up to Lake Treman (in upper Buttermilk). But on my way I ran into a woman who had just come out of the gorge and had seen the mother and 7 other ducklings. She said they were stuck and there didn't seem to be anything that we could do.
So onto plan B - I drove down to the bottom of the gorge with the little duckling and started hiking up the gorge - looking for the mom and babies. At last, I did see them but they really were in a spot which was impossible to get to (downstream from where I found the first duckling.) I watched them for awhile but decided that there was really nothing I could do. Besides, I had to figure out what to do with the one I had (since it was going to be nearly impossible to get it back with the family.)
So back down the gorge - into my car and headed to the closest vet. They were nice and suggested calling the Cornell vet school - I guess they have a wildlife rescue unit. So that is what I did, and LONG story short, they found a person that does rehabilitation of wildlife at their own home. So hopefully the babe can find a new family and be ok.
I have to admit, even though I know that it would have been soo hard, I truly wanted to keep him and I'm now really sad that he is gone. I have always LOVED ducks - I think they are the most adorable creatures - so to have a sweet little duckling with me and sleeping in my hands - talk about being on cloud 9 (minus all the worrying parts).
But I know better and I am in NO situation at all to keep a duck, so he will be better off. I just hope the others make it out of the gorge ok.
Ah - the circle of life!

Isn't he the CUTEST little guy!!!

He didn't want to stay in his bin while I was driving and kept jumping out towards me. The only way he would relax was on my lap or in my hand. What a rough day for the poor guy!

This is right after I caught him.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Busy on the Homefront

Things have been a little hectic for us it seems, more so than usual, and it doesn't look like it's going to slow down for a couple of months. Traveling, busy seasons starting at our works, packing, moving and just living. So I might not be able to post again for awhile. I had a good run today though :). Although, after sitting on the computer for about 5 hours, I'm ready to do something different.

But before signing off, I just want to say Happy Mother's Day to our moms and all the moms out there! You are all amazing women and we are so grateful to have you in our lives!!!

Melting Kitties :)

Abner's getting excited about moving and having a new porch!

Even flash is getting into the moving spirit. Here he is outside for a field trip and here he is (below) trying to escape while I cleaned his tank - what a crazy turtle - doesn't he realize that he will never fit with that big shell on!!

And I almost forgot - I just added another slide show on the left with pictures of food - because lets be honest - food is awesome :) As many of you know, I am a little obsessed with taking pictures, in particular of food. So I think that most of the pictures in the slide show are things that Mike and I have made, but that might change in the future. For the most part it's salads, wraps, and stir-fries, our main food sources. And if you didn't already realize, you will soon after looking at the pictures, that in addition to my obsession of taking pictures, I am also obsessed with vegetables and need to have about a minimum of 5 in each dish. Yum!!!

Girls to Atlanta

A little over a week ago, Sarah, Roxie and I headed south to Atlanta. We went to help Sarah with wedding plans, to meet her family and friends and to just have some quality time together. We stayed with Sarah's mom and had such a great time. It was a busy couple of days but we were able to accomplish a lot!!

There was also a shower thrown for Sarah on Sunday while we were there. It was really nice to meet all of her friends and to see her surrounded with so much love.

Here's Roxie, Sarah & Nancy (Sarah's mom)

Opening gifts

A toast to Sarah & Ryan

I made them this papercutting - Sarah really likes these birds - I thought it turned out nice :)

So Atlanta is obviously very different than Ithaca and there are several things that are there and not here. So one of Sarah's favorite food joints is Chick-fil-A, so we had to experience the chick :)
One thing that I am definitely envious of in big cities are there huge stores and extra selections. For example, we went into a Michael's craft store and it was amazing how many more things they had there to choose from. I guess I'll just have to save up for when we go back in November for their wedding :)

One other amazing thing that happened while we were there, Nancy's cat was pregnant and actually gave birth. It was so incredible! I had never seen an animal birth before so it was quite the learning experience. She ended up having 4 healthy kittens and they were sooo precious!

Older Than Dirt

Ha ha - just kidding - but I have finally crossed over into my 30's as of the end of March. That's right, I am now the big 3-0!
And I am so grateful because I was able to have such a long stretch of celebrations with so many of my dearest friends and family. It actually started the weekend before in State College when we were home for Easter. We had a fun birthday party/dinner at The Deli with my parent's, Mike's parents and David, Jeannie & the boys. It was really nice.

Then for my actual birthday weekend - two of my most favorite people in the world - Dana & Bret - came up from Delaware and spent the whole weekend with us! It was such a special treat to have them here with us, and they brought their new puppy pug - Teva with them. She is the sweetest little girl!

So Saturday we all got together with Mike and Nicole and went to the winery where Nicole works - Lucas Vineyards. We had a special tasting and mini tour of the facility. The wine was fabulous!!

Mike, Nicole, Mike, Chris, Teva, Bret, Dana

After our wine visit we headed over to Bill and Patina's house where Patina cooked the most fantastic dinner for us all. It was just a fun evening of great food, drinks and hilarious conversations :)

Mike even baked me a cake!! We brought it with us and by the end of the evening, we all felt no need for plates, so we just dug in. Then, and I can't say how it all came to be, a cake eating contest developed between Mike, Patina, Mike and Nicole. Quite the sight to say the least :)

And then things got really silly when Bill and Patina busted out these funny masks. There is no way to not laugh when you look at someone with one of these things on! Here's Mike and me :)
Too funny!! It was a great evening to say the least!

Then on Sunday, we got together for breakfast with Dana, Bret, Mike, Nicole, Ryan & Sarah. We went to the ABC Cafe, which was a really neat place.
Afterwards we went downtown for a little and then eventually had to say our good-byes to Dana & Bret.

It was a great birthday and I thank everyone for making it such a fun time!!!

Easter in May??

Nooo, I've just been so behind with my blogging, it's actually quite ridiculous. But I really want to catch up, so I might as well start where I left off.

We traveled to State College this year for Easter and got to visit with lots of family. It was a great weekend and well needed after the passing of my Grandma.

Saturday morning, Mike and I went to my parent's church for an Easter egg the snow! How funny - poor Conell, he just wasn't sure what to do about picking eggs out of the snow.

Here's Mike and Conell getting ready for "go time!"

He was pretty successful after all!

To say the least, both Evan and Conell made out pretty well. I guess the snow scared off a lot of people so they were allowed to get a crazy amount of eggs each.

Later that day we all dyed eggs - always a great tradition!

And then we had some fun in the snow - snowfamily making, sledding and even snowball fights!
(Here's Dave, Even, Chris, Jeannie & Conell)

My Mum with Evan and Conell

...and don't ever think that you are safe if you're holding a video camera... :)

Friday, May 2, 2008

Tap NY 2008

Last weekend, Ithaca Beer Co. attended a beer festival in Hunter, NY called Tap NY. Here is the website:
Tap NY Craft Beer and Fine Food Festival

And to say the least, they did pretty awesome!

Here are the Results

Flower Power IPA took the Silver!

Ten took the GOLD!

And Ithaca Beer Co. won the biggest award:
Best Craft Brewery in New York State!!

Pretty sweet!! :)