The introspective humdrum life of an eccentric hexagenarian.

Visit my other blogs: "Elderberry Bike Rides of Delaware
," organized bicycle rides for families, senior citizens, and anyone interested in getting back into biking; and "Cloister Voices," the collected thoughts of modern and ancient hermits, eccentrics, solitaires, wanderers, mystics, and others who inhabit the monastery within.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

My 4th Cousin Wiz


Yes, Wiz is my cousin, fourth removed and reported to be a White Crested Polish Chicken.  Wiz is only a couple of months old and is being raised by my 9 year old 3rd cousin, Lauren.  

I'll spare you the trip down genealogy lane and suffice it to say that Tom is my cousin who has a daughter, Tina (my 2nd cousin) whose youngest daughter is Lauren (my 3rd cousin) who has reared Wiz (my 4th cousin) from a hatchling for a 4H project in Newark, Delaware.

I consider Tom and his wife Nancy, their daughter Tina and her husband Don, and their kids Katie, Hailey, and Lauren to be a lovely family who makes me feel so very welcome every time I pedal on my bike from my house 3/4 of mile away to their suburban home where kids, dogs, gardens, charcoal grills, strawberry plants, mounted deer heads, the best iced tea on the planet, and love, laughter, and joy abound.  

I spent Memorial day with them for a picnic where I had a chance to get to know all of my cousins better, especially four of them who are of the poultry variety.


Two young ladies from the neighborhood dropped by to visit the chickens as well.  

 
 Lauren is very proud of her chickens.  The University of Delaware supplied the 4H with baby chicks from a variety of breeds.  The kids got to pick out the ones they wanted and Lauren and her family chose four very different breeds.  They all have names of course, Amy, Yoko, Wiz, of course, and I can't remember the 4th chicken's name since I'm so smitten with Wiz.  Here is a short audio recording of Lauren talking about her 4H project.  Oh wait!  I remember now.  The 4th chicken's name is Omelet.  But don't ask me who is who because my heart belongs to Wiz.

video
Press the arrow on the left to start the recording.

Lauren claims her chickens are unique; but I have to say that Lauren is equally unique.  She always has some project going whether it be raising chickens or setting up a very profitable vegetable stand in the front yard.  I stopped by tonight on my way home to notice a lemonade stand.  Also profitable.  Lauren hadn't come home from her softball game but that didn't stop a car from pulling up and asking if there was any lemonade left.

 

 Don's garden is a thing of beauty and bounty that will supply all of us with more tomatoes, lettuce, squash, cucumbers, and pumpkins than we will know what to do with.


 It's a wholly organic garden with a dump truck of mushroom soil worked into the soil that supplies all the fertilizer that is needed for the season. 


 Ummmmm, can't you just TASTE those lightly-battered, deep-fried squash blossoms...not to mention the thin slices of yellow crookneck squash sliced up in a salad.


 Along the side of the house is a very respectable strawberry bed which yields a quart or more of strawberries a day.  It's peak strawberry season now and the shortcake we had was delicious.


Meanwhile, Don was manning the grill with burgers and hot dogs.  Family and food just have a way of finding themselves together all the time.  It's another of my cousinly delights.


As the day wore down, Tom (my 1st cousin, in case you forgot) retired to a lawn chair to investigate my new iPad after he wrestled it away from the kids.


Let's all wish Lauren and Wiz good luck at the competition at the Delaware State Fair.  Naturally I will be following it closely with photos in a future blog.

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