works-in-progress wednesday: join me!

Hello!  Happy Wednesday!  I hope you’ll join me (aka keep me accountable!) in my new endeavor here-“works-in-progress wednesday”-as a replacement for Ginny’s Yarn Along which ended a couple weeks ago.  I think my knitting was greatly improved or at least furthered because of Ginny’s Wednesday link-up (many many thanks to her for all those years of Yarn Alongs!).  I could join a yarn along on another blog, but I feel a bit weird just jumping in somewhere else–like a yarn bully, ha!  So here I’ll stay & attempt to keep my own knitting & other projects going.  If you’d like to join me, please leave me either a link to your own blog in the comments or just a comment telling me what you’re up to this week & I promise to head over to your blog and/or reply to your comment. xx

I am currently knitting a pair of short trousers with suspenders (overalls-a Debbie Bliss pattern) for Harmon in (yes, again!) Quince & Co Chickadee, colorway Belize.  I’ve bought this color sooooo many times Quince might as well just change the name to Bodeker Blue. 😉 Coralee & I moved most of our seedlings outside onto the newly-spring-cleaned 3-season porch on Sunday (thank you, Brian, for helping me set up the porch!).  I love how the stems and underside of the leaves of our German Pink tomato seedlings have a hint of purple.  I cannot wait to eat a garden fresh tomato in a few months.

Coralee dug a few purple violets from the yard & potted them up for me.  Another big thanks to my eldest for always doing so much to make our house a home!

Harmon is looooving the porch.  Also this orange golf ball he found outside on Sunday.  He has slept with it every night & nap since Sunday.  Must be a good ball.

He’s very much into getting in & out of this kid-sized Adirondack chair my uncle Ron made for Coralee when she was a toddler.  He also is working on going in & out of the porch door to the house.  It’s one step, but it’s giving him trouble going back out–he tries to just walk right off it like a plank into the ocean.

Rubrubrubrub RUB the face.  We’re also deep deep deep in the midst of working with our pediatrician to figure out what on earth Harmon can eat & can’t eat.  Allergies, intolerances, auto immune disorders, weight loss, failure to thrive…this has been our life practically since birth & it continues…

I thought his issues were only food-related, but after spending several hours outside Sunday afternoon on the lawn (but around the cats & chickens & dogs & not up in the carrier), his arms and torso flared considerably & his nose & eyes became green-goo infested.  Poor hobbit, he cannot win it seems!  We are most definitely a work-in-progress.

(Above photo of Harmon taken during a brief, glorious few days of no allergy/intolerance-issues early last week!  He was so genial & happy!  All the work we’re doing to manage whatever it is he has going on is worth it, I know.) 

Hope you’ll join us here on a future works-in-progress wednesday sometime soon!



Coralee & Brian repaired our Eastern Bluebird nest box this weekend & also built a nest box for an Eastern Screech-owl. The kids have spotted our female red-morph Eastern Screech-owl a couple times in the cedar trees beside the creek since my initial posting about our owl pair. Coralee has been collecting owl pellets from below their roosting spots for about a week. I think she plans to dissect the pellets soon.  Lots of fun to be had for a budding scientist!

Brian hung the owl box last night, but I think we need to move it as it is supposed to be near a branch for the young to climb upon when they begin to fledge.  We just placed it on the sturdiest tree near their roost site.  I’m not particularly optimistic about the owls using the box this year, but hopefully they will next year.  I think we just put it up too late.

Bluebird nest box.

Our Bluebird nest box.


Coralee & her homemade Screech-owl nest box (also works for American Kestrels & Buffleheads).



Our house & the new Screech-owl house.

Our house & the new Screech-owl house.

Cedar trees beyond the box where the owls have been roosting.

Cedar trees beyond the box where the owls have been roosting.

Within a few hours of cleaning out last year’s {unfortunate} wren nest from the bluebird box & giving the box a new lid, a group of bluebirds showed up! This was our yard’s FOY Eastern Bluebird (first of the year). Did the birds show up because we spruced up the box or did we spruce up the box because we somehow sensed the birds were about to arrive? A thought to ponder…like the tree falling in the forest.

We spotted two mating pairs & from our observations with the scope; the pairs were squirmishing over the box.  I hope one of the pairs was the victor.  We are planning to build a couple more boxes this year–need to get on that endeavor soon, I guess!  We have not seen any bluebirds today, but the weather has gone from spring sunshine & warmth to dreary wet cold rain sleet snow YUCK.  I hope these bluebirds were a sign spring is truly here & today is just a momentary weather hiccup!

©Coralee Bodeker

 ©Coralee Bodeker

©Coralee Bodeker

Male Eastern Bluebird, Benton County, IA;  ©Coralee Bodeker

Male Eastern Bluebird, Benton County, IA; ©Coralee Bodeker

Nest box plans for Eastern Bluebirds.
Nest box plans for Eastern Screech-owls.

Do you put up nest boxes in your yard?

Sidenote: Coralee & I have now found TWO Bald Eagle nests in our county to monitor!  Benton County represent!