Saturday, January 07, 2012

Aesop's fables in my backyard

Aesop wrote a lot of fables about foxes and in at least one of them, the fox was at odds with a crow.  Well, based on my very scientific sampling of one fox and three crows, it seems that there is a natural animosity between these two species of which I was unaware.

There has been a fox roaming our neighborhood for a few days now and he seems to be particularly fond of our backyard.  Since we still do not have the chickens which B. so desires and we have a larger than normal population of intelligence-impaired rabbits, we do not mind his presence.  He is actually quite fun to watch.  For those of us in rather urban environs, it's a bit like having a zoo in one's backyard.

Well, this afternoon he was back, sunning himself quite happily.  That is, until three crows decided to complain about his being there.  These crows would not let him alone.  They continually cawed at him, and while they didn't actually dive bomb him, they did fly over him at bit.  It evidently made him nervous and eventually he trotted off.  We have no idea what set the crows off.  Did he eat a friend?  Or do crows just not like foxes, perhaps seeing in them competition for the not-so-smart rabbits?  

Here is the foxy fellow:



And in an effort to tie up some loose ends, there were a couple of questions asked of me which I still have not answered.

First, about the stuffed nativity dolls.  They are called, CreaNativity:  a Nativity set designed for children.  It seems it is out of print because no company selling them new appeared when I did a Google search.  Since I got out the patterns to share this information, I realized that I never did buy the shepherd and sheep pattern.  (I guess I thought I had, but I should know better than to trust my memory.)  I am happy to tell you that you can still find these patterns for sale on eBay.  In fact, I found the shepherds I needed there and they will be arriving soon.  I think it will be a grand summer project to work on.  It seems the patterns were packaged separately or as a big group.  There are Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus, a donkey, three kings, a camel (which I discovered I have all cut-out, but not sewn), an angel, shepherds, sheep and an extra package of a shepherd's staff and wooden gifts for the kings, plus plans to build a wooden stable.  I'm glad a few of you asked about these because otherwise I would have never dug around for them.  I am motivated to finally finish this project.

Next, the books I've read.  (These were all free, by the way.)  I told you about Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie.  I have also read The Red House Mystery by A. A. Milne (I still like Pooh better), The Girl from Montana by Grace Livingston Hill, and Chasing China:  A Daughter's Quest for Truth by Kay Bratt.  Currently I'm in the middle of Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell (usually just referred to as Mrs. Gaskell).

A couple of notes about some of these.  I have to admit to being a Grace Livingston Hill junkie.  They are not fine literature and some may find them a bit overly sentimental, but I read them like candy because I like the story lines, I never have to wonder, "Should I really be reading this?", and I love her descriptions of things relating to home life.  They are often categorized under "Christian romance", which I think doesn't quite do them justice. This is perhaps one of my biggest reasons for loving my new Kindle... I can get as many Grace Livingston Hill books as I want for free.  I had tapped out the few the library had and just couldn't justify spending money on a book I could read in an evening.

The Chasing China book is new, though when I got it, Amazon was having a deal where the electronic version was free.  It is alright.  I read it because I was interested in adoption in China, but the book itself could have been edited a little better and the adoption information was a little didactic.  I would suggest it if it's a subject you are interested in.

The Mrs. Gaskell book is very long and I don't read her as quickly as some others, but so far I'm enjoying it.    I'll let you know what the final verdict is.

3 comments:

Sandpiper said...

Oh, I loved Wives & Daughters! However the ending is abrupt. They made a movie of it and it is quite well done.
I look forward to hearing what you think of it.

Anonymous said...

I, too, loved Wives & Daughters. The character development in it is so good--you just can't stand certain people, and wonder so much why others make the decisions they do, but as you get to know them throughout the book, you understand them more.

I have read most, if not all, of The Scarlet Pimpernel series on Kindle, as well as some of the others by Baroness Orczy (can't remember how to spell her name). I have enjoyed most all of hers as well, for light and fun reading.

Joan

thecurryseven said...

I am enjoying Wives and Daughters, but I completely agree about not being able to stand some of the characters. One of them just makes me want to scream!

I may try The Scarlet Pimpernel. It's one of those books I've always heard of but have never read.

Oh, how I love free (good) books!

e

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