We got back from our long drive to lower Michigan for a family reunion to find more progress on the house. Beautiful!

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It looks like our builder kept himself busy all weekend. All of the windows are in, and the roof has sheathing and tar paper. For all that excitement, a bit of disappointment followed in quick order. Remember that pear tree that I so lovingly uncovered and restaked after the digger buried it in fill dirt from the house? Well, the large rocks I put around it weren’t enough to save it from the big, bad machinery. A four year old tree, probably one winter away from its first blossoms and fruits… and now it will never produce for us.

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That tree will be missed. Maybe this means I can order some more fruit trees for the orchard. What do you think, dear hubby? *wink wink* Can I please use this tragedy on top of the loss of one cherry and one peach tree earlier this year in order to get, say, a dozen new trees? While I’m in the asking mode, can I also get some strawberries, cranberries, gooseberries, currants, rhubarb, grapes, and raspberries? I know, I’m an incorrigible fruit addict.

While we were up there, we decided to release our five-lined skink, Heidi. He’ll be busy burrowing for the winter now, after gorging on only the finest grasshopper legs and cricket abdomens courtesy of our eldest son all summer long. Check out the barbed tail on him. When I caught him initially, I accidentally pinched his tail near the end. It turned black and part of it fell off, but part stayed on. The new tail grew out below the old part, giving him a look reminiscent of one of Hagrid’s magical creatures in the Harry Potter series. We’ll keep an eye out for that unique tail when we’re out catching critters to fill the terrarium next summer! Sweet dreams and pleasant hibernation, Heidi!

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