Archive for October, 2010


October 26, 2010

About ten days ago we began to see a cream-colored object flashing around the garden. After a few days we figured out it was a stray kitty so we put some food and water out and went inside. He began to “slink” around the back patio when he smelled the food. Eventually he worked his courage up and took a few nibbles. If we came out he’d be gone in a heartbeat. But now “Slinky” will slowly make his way to the dinner plate while we are sitting in our rockers. Maybe one of these days he will let us pet him!

MMMMMMMM, something smells good. Think I’ll check it out.

But wait, is it safe? Are Mikki and Jack going to move out of those chairs? I’m just going to  have to sit here awhile and make sure.

I guess they are going to stay put. I’ll slink over and take a bite.

With a full tummy it’s time for a nap. Now, here is my question to you: Have we been adopted or WHAT?  Please let us know what you think. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik

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A Swing Built for Two

October 16, 2010

I apologize to all of you reading my blog for not having any posts for a few days. I am working on a couple of commissions that are surprise gifts. So I can’t show them until after Christmas! But I can share our latest garden project with you. Our local grocery store had a two-seater swing on sale which we purchased a few months ago. We had some extra Pavestones to make a patio, we’ve just been waiting for cooler weather to proceed. Fortunately the patio is at the bottom of the hill near the edge of the pond. I can load the heavy dirt and pavers in the front of our garden cart and it literally pulls me down the slope!

Whew, we’re done! I’ve just checked the floor and it’s level in all directions.

Jack is finishing putting soil in the planter on the back of the patio. We will plant some of those yellow flowers called Green Thread shown on my blog October 4.

We moved the swing to its new place and Jack is putting it to the test. It must be good, he’s giving the high sign with the water bottle!

Of course I had to join him. Shortly after I got seated some of our Least Grebe Ducks appeared.

We heard the chatter of the Black Bellied Whistling Ducks long before they flew by! These are part of the family of 31 ducklings we posted pictures on my blog June 23rd. A Kingfisher Bird was also about but we weren’t fast enough to photograph him. Thanks for your patience. Shortly I’ll be starting on a new painting that I can post. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik


A Sigh of Relief

October 4, 2010

Summer has past and the cooler weather of fall is well appreciated. I swear we heard all the plants in our garden give a collective sigh of relief! One thing for sure, they look a lot perkier. In our front patio above the blue mist (front right) and the Mexican Bush Sage (left) are in full bloom. That’s Penelope, the Pig, on our weathervane.

The plants with the yellow flowers are called Green Thread. When we lived on North Padre Island, on the Texas coast near Corpus Christi, they grew wild. We collected seeds and brought them with us when we moved. They are foolproof, blooming from the time they come up in the spring until they freeze in late December or January.

A Red Knockout Rose and Canna Lilies are in the background to the left. Blue Mist is on the right foreground, they cast such great shadows. The butterflies love it, rising in a cloud of fluttering wings when we walk by. You can see our pond in the distance.

Our back patio glows in the late afternoon light. If you look beyond the trees you can see the pond and maybe a fish or two jumping (smile). The plant in the right foreground is Bat Face Cuphea. The flowers are beautiful, with tiny little red bat faces. Remember, if you want to enlarge an image just click on the picture. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik



Gone Fishing

October 2, 2010

Jack and I did something today we’ve never done. We “bagged some fish!” We have a small pond behind our studio/home, about 2 acres in size. This summer we had a lot of algae in the water so I called the Wilson County Agriculture Extension Agency and they said, “You need some Grass Carp.” Like we would know what they are. The agent went on to explain the fish will eat their weight daily in all of the nuisance water weeds and algae. We would have to submit an official, notarized application and have our pond inspected before we would be approved. We couldn’t believe this, these have to be some pretty special fish. Turns out they are sterile, the young fish are injected with an extra chromosome so they won’t reproduce and they grow to be 60 pounds. So they will eat A LOT of water weeds! The fish are only sold by certified dealers, fortunately Herrmann Fish Farm comes to a feed store relatively close by several times a year. AND, today was the day. You can see the special trailer with the fish tanks above.

We also want to stock our pond with Bass. In order to do this we have to start this fall with minnows and native bluegill. The minnows multiple rapidly and are food for the bluegill. Which in turn will grow and multiply to be dinner for the bass we get next spring. I never knew there was so much to know about fish. So today we got 2000 minnows and 300 bluegill along with our 10 grass carp. My first question was how do they count the minnows? As you can see  in the picture above, they weigh them!

Remember when you were a kid and brought home a goldfish in a little bag with water from the five and dime store? Well, this is basically the same thing, just on a bigger scale. Our 300 bluegill are in the bag the man is holding. The bags are filled with air to oxygenate the water so the fish will live longer.

After a sloshing trip home it was time to take the fish to the pond. Our property is very sandy so we had to transport the fish from the SUV to the water in our yard cart. The plastic crates help support the bags so they won’t break.

The next step in the procedure was to place the bags of fish in the shallow water for about 10 minutes so the fish could become acclimatized to the temperature of the pond. I imagine they also needed to stop jostling around and get their equilibrium!

Here I’m pouring the minnows into the water. All of our fish made it safely to their new home. As Jack was taking pictures he noticed a Great Blue Heron watching from a tree across the pond. I just hope those fish swim fast and deep. I’ll be back painting tomorrow. See you then. Hugs, Mikki Senkarik