Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Sights and sounds from my gazebo

When I retired from the PO in 2007, I was paid a lump sum for my unused annual leave, I was going to build a pond in the back yard and wanted a gazebo also. I looked at Amish Country gazebos and there was one that was $100 either more or less, I don't remember now, than that check. I took it as a sign from God that I was to get that gazebo. I look for those signs a lot. It came in a big 8 foot by 8 foot shrink wrapped package, delivered to my back yard by a big truck from Pennsylvania.

Sometimes a product that 'requires assembly' can be a nightmare, not so this gazebo, it went together like it should and it has become my favorite place to sit on the farm. On the rare occasion that I get up at the butt crack of dawn, I love having my coffee out there and caught Bruce spraying a young cornfield.

This clematis grows on the outside and blooms very early.

I've spent a lot of time watching the courting ritual of wrens, after I put up this wren house, there was a flurry of activity but after this little guy successfully built a nest, his mate decided she didn't want to live there after all. I felt bad for him but he never gave up and just lately I see love is in the air as he has convinced another woman to check out the new digs and it looks as though this one is going to take. They are spending a lot of time picking out carpet and furniture and arranging it inside the house. She seems as excited as he is.

Right outside the gazebo is a picnic table, some people eat on their tables. 

The chickens keep me entertained with their antics from inside the gazebo, when I first put it up, they circled the structure, trying to figure out how to get in, "BBRRWWRRAACK, BRWAACK." Thank heavens I had it screened in, it would be full of cats and chickens.  Here the little red hen is attempting to corral her three active chicks.

Mollie looks like she is loving her good buddy, Stinky, but in reality she is waiting for me to give her the sign to 'Get Him!' Stinky is a very naughty boy who beats up the other cats and when I catch him in the act, Mollie gets to chase him. The only problem is, he won't run from her unless I'm there because he and Mollie are buddies, he sleeps with her in the winter.

"C'mon, make him run, please, please, please??"

And then there is the love struck, bachelor cardinal, in all the years I've lived her, we have never had one despite all the trees around. This spring, Bruce asked me if I heard the cardinal but he always sung early in the morning when I was usually getting some zzzzzz's. But soon he started getting desperate and was singing all day long.

I love hearing him and hope he gets a mate soon so he doesn't leave, unlike the cardinal at my sister in law's house in WI. Jean wishes her bird would move on because he is infatuated with his reflection in the house windows and for a year has bashed himself into the glass over and over again. I told her about the designs on the window that my friend, Lisa, painted to discourage the same thing from happening.

Jean was not impressed, "He's going to die," was her response.

Edited to add: if anyone is interested in adding one of these lovely structures to your own place, this is where I got mine - amishgazebos.com and I will stress that this was not a paid advertisement. But when a company produces quality merchandise in the US, I want people to know about it.


  1. Well, that makes me sound cold and unfeeling...I just meant that I'd have to paint every window in my house; and how long does a cardinal live, anyway?Unless he's taught the trick to others..can't believe it's been one cardinal doing this multiple times a day for over a year now! Oh, well it keeps me entertained!

  2. Oh, Jean, we all know you are about self sufficiency, don't mess with Mother Nature and all that stuff. "Stupid Bird!"

  3. Julie, thank you for sharing! Love the gazebo story and we hope your cardinal sticks around! Could you send me an email at krystal @ amishgazebos . com (without the spaces)? We'd love to share some pictures of your gazebo and/or your story, etc., with your permission. Look forward to hearing from you! - Krystal, Amish Country Gazebos