May 29

Tuesday Savannah got her wisdom teeth out.  When she came out of the anesthesia she was crying.  It was just a side effect of the drugs.  She wasn’t in any pain.  She was pretty groggy, and didn’t even remember stopping at the drug store on the way home.  By the time we got home, she was back to her usual ornery self, except for not being able to talk.  She wrote on a note-pad.  We bought her some pudding cups and baby food to eat; that’s what she wanted.   The pain pills made her sick, and she urped her first meal while we were watching TV. 

This was the last day for the squabs.  They flew away, leaving behind a bucket of clothespins, twigs, and bird poop.

Wednesday I left on a field trip.  I drove from Canton, Missouri to Canton, Illinois.  There I met up with Mike Irwin, my friend and former student.  Our mission: to map the southwest edge of the distribution of Brood XIII periodical cicadas to determine the degree of overlap between these and Brood III which we (really, he) had mapped back in 1997.   Our first stop was only two miles away, where, incredibly, we found the cicadas in full chorus.  It had been 9 years since I’d heard any (the 1998 emergence of the Great Southern Brood).  It was like heaven for both of us, but then, we’re cicada freaks.  We found them at a few more places, once by using my bionic ear (parabolic microphone with amplifier).  Then we went on a long dry run.  We drove all the way up to Prophetstown, IL without finding any.  And all the way back to Peoria.  We did find them in several places in Peoria.  Naturally, we photographed them to death and collected a few.  Mostly, we were taking GPS coordinates for the mapping project.  I got some butterflies along the way.

The Hackberry Butterfly and the Pearly Eye.

Thursday we headed further west, then north to the Quad Cities.  We found the cicadas at Loud Thunder Forest Preserve, and stopped there awhile.  We found them a couple more places nearby, then none until we were much farther south near Viola.  Then we found no more all the way home.  According to the old published map, there should have been a lot more sites with cicadas.  But as we learned before, the lines on those maps lie.  We got home a bit earlier, and enjoyed pizza and beer.  We had the extraordinary convenience of staying in Mike’s Grandma’s house while she was away in Minnesota.  Thanks, Grandma! 

“The old me and the new me.”

“The flower lover.”

Meanwhile, Savannah was having pain and bleeding, and had trouble getting up in the morning, so Stacey came home early from work to take care of her.  She fed her and got her perked up again.

We had pretty much done what we wanted to accomplish, so I left Friday morning.  Mike was going to check a few more places before heading down to his Dad’s.  First we stopped at the nearby site and collected a bunch of cicadas alive, and took more photos, of course.   We had about as much fun as we can have together without fishing.  I brought the live bugs home to feed to my lizards, which really enjoyed them.  Boots ate one as well, but predictably played with his food. 

I took Savannah to her work as lifeguard, then I mowed the lawn.  She has the usual chipmunk cheeks of the wisdom tooth extraction victim.  I had to go back and give her a towel, so I decided to swim in the pool.  Might as well get some mileage out of my membership.  I asked her why she wasn’t using the umbrella over the lifeguard chair.  She was tanning. 

Saturday she was the proverbial lobster.  She was burnt in many places, and had blisters in some.  At least it took her mind off the pain in her jaws.  I stayed home and worked on some writing.  Stacey went to class.  Her paper was so good the professor had already given her an A, but he asked her to come to class as a formality.  They spent the whole time going over how to write a paper, presumably because those from most of the rest of the class were so bad. 

The robins on the downspout fledged, but a house finch has built a nest on the outside light by the front door.  Something is building in the mailbox up the tree in the back yard too.  Savannah got a babysitting job Saturday afternoon, and was gone until late.

Sunday Stacey had to run the Rose Tea at Chaddock, which is one of their big annual fundraising events.  Upon arriving, she noted that the florist had delivered two dozen carnations.  To a ROSE tea.  That and the threatening rain were the worst crises she had to deal with.   I went on a bike ride and took lots of pictures.  Savannah slept in, recovered, and went for lifeguarding duty in the afternoon.   I got mad at the bunnies eating my prairie so I got a new roll of rabbit fence and closed off the entire thing, and made it a bit bigger.

Moth mullein in yellow and white.  The syrphid fly is a bonus.

I hate multiflora rose, but it is pretty.

Two new butterflies: Large Copper and Variegated Fritillary

Red Admiral on rusty steel bridge.

Monday morning I stopped at the bank before heading out to Lowell’s when Savannah called.  She had just gotten home from spending the night at a friend’s and, surprisingly, wanted to come with me.  We started out fishing the main lake.  Savannah fished for half of one round, and actually caught a bass.  I caught a few, but Lowell was outfishing us both that day.  We had lunch in Lewistown.  When we returned we walked around looking at Lowell’s prairie and plantings.  I thought I had it tough with cottontails eating my prairie, but Lowell has deer mowing down his trees.  Savannah had a good time driving the Pug around.  She graduated to moderate level instruction, going over bridges, up and down hills, and through narrow trails.  She did great.  I had the first ever genuine allergy attack of my life.  I had uncontrollable sneezing and runny nose.  I got a nice rash from stinging nettle while fishing one of the ponds, too.   Could be worse.  A little girl from Lewistown just died from ehrlichiosis, the same tick-borne disease I got last year.  Guess I dodged a bullet there.  Anyway, I caught a couple of big bass out of the catfish pond, ending up with about 6 on the day.   Got some decent pics too.

Another new butterfly!  The Little Wood Satyr.

Bug in your face.

Blue dragonfly.

I took a nap when I got home.  Right after I woke up Nancy stopped by.  Perfect timing.  We went to her house and cut down a bunch of her boxelder maples.  They made a truckload of firewood and a LOT of brush. 

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