I like squirrels. For most urban dwellers this is a controversial opinion. I find them entertaining. I think their bushy tails are adorable. I know others feel differently.
I have seen uncounted number of articles, heard radio interviews and other communications on how how to protect your bulbs from squirrels. Everyone else it seems are trying to protect their tulip bulbs from squirrels. I don't care for tulips. One good wind and the display is done. Instead, I plant daffodils. Squirrels leave them alone. Daffodils are toxic to squirrels and they know it. Daffodils also happen to be my favourite flower. So sorry if yours are tulips.
I laugh at the various displays of squirrel proof bird feeders. From the myriad of articles etc I have come to the conclusion that none of them are successful and are a waste of money. I don't mind the squirrels at my bird feeder. After all they got to eat too. But I make them earn their keep. My dog Reba thinks the squirrels should stay out of the yard. She is entitled to her opinion and I am entitled to mine. I let the squirrels take a snack before I open the door and let Reba out. She takes off after the squirrel. She is entitled to her fun too. There is no chance my 12 year old overweight terrier is going to catch one - ever. But she is happy; she protected the back yard. I am happy; Reba got a little extra exercise. The squirrel should be happy; he/she gets fed.
She came close once though. The squirrel was used to having a head start. Sometimes it takes Reba too long to spot the squirrel. Well this one dawdled and Reba didn't. She flew off the back deck and added a burst of speed. Pretty impressive for an old girl. The squirrel made a second mistake. He did not head for the tree; he headed for the fence. Reba had extra time to gain speed and she did. If the squirrel had been fatter he never would have made it through the chain link. Reba stretched out her neck and bit down on the tail before it cleared the wire. Good thing for the squirrel she has no front teeth. The tail just slid through.
I can see the bird feeder from where I sit to write this. The gang of 3 grey squirrels are back. They chase each other around the feeder. They only act in concert to chase away the black squirrel. I let him eat a little longer before letting Reba out. He does not get as many chances at the feeder as the greys.
I also put food out specifically for the squirrels. I dye wool with black walnuts. I do not bother hulling them first I just put the whole walnut in the pot to extract the dye from the hull. After I am done I put the walnuts out for the squirrels. Mine now have a real liking for boiled walnuts. If the squirrel buries the nut there is no chance I will have a tree growing where I don't want one.
There was one time I collected a bag of walnuts for dyeing but a string of circumstances prevented me from using them right away. I left them in a bag in the garage. One day I found the bag in the yard empty. The garage door had been left open; the squirrels made their way inside and helped themselves. Oh well, at least someone put the walnuts to good use.
I anyone complains to me about squirrels. I tell them to get a terrier.
Knitting Content (so the squirrel haters know to stop scrolling)
I have finished the Doodler shawl. It still needs its finishing bath and blocking. I will do that later. I prefer to photograph the items dry. The i-cord bind-off took me most of yesterday to complete. There were more that 500 stitches to cast off. The pattern has 3 choices for binding off this shawl. I wanted to do the third option but I ran out of colour C (the dark purple) before finishing the fourth wedge of Clue 3 thus eliminating option 3 for casting off. I did not think that the second option would enhance the shawl with my colour choices and would likely highlight the fact I ran out of colour C so I chose option 1. I like it.
One more entry completed. Now to concentrate on the sweater for my brother. I want to have it at a stage where he can try it on at Christmas. Then I can make any adjustments before doing the finishing (collar and front bands).
If at all possible I want to get at least the front or back of the man's vest done before Christmas as well. I can get a better idea of how it will fit my niece's boyfriend when I see him.
I am probably delusional to think I can accomplish this much knitting before December 24.