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Thursday, November 24, 2011

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

OLIVE THE BARN OWL
Olive will land on my arm and take food from my hand. LOVE IT!


As a nation and as individuals, we have had some struggles this year. But, as the old song goes, "I still think the good things outweigh the bad."

I am thankful to have my two part-time jobs. I love working with children and animals and that's just what I do. I also have friends at both workplaces - Cochran Mill Nature Center and Central High School in Carroll County, GA., who make going to work each day a pleasure.

Below are some photos of the things I give thanks to God for each day.



KENDA
GREAT HORNED OWL

We had two "Circle of Life" events this week at Cochran Mill Nature Center. Sadly, our Great Horned Owl, Kenda, left us on Wednesday. Kenda enriched the lives of thousands of children (and adults) who viewed her up close and heard her story. Rescued from a barbed-wire fence, Kenda lost one eye, but lived at CMNC for years in comfort and dignity. When I worked in her enclosure, it was thrilling to feel the whoosh of her great, silent wings as she flew over me. We miss you, Kenda.



EMPEROR SCORPIONS

On a happier "Circle of Life" moment, our Emperor Scorpions are having babies! Lots of babies! They average one to two dozen per event. In the photo you can see the white babies on their mother's back. They sort of come out of her chest and crawl up. She defends them until they become independent. Even scorpions are cute when they are babies!


CLOSE-UP VIEW OF BABIES




MY LITTLE BUDDY

I give thanks for all the baby animals that I helped feed, who survived and were released. My little buddy is (as far as I know) still living on the CMNC property, maybe married by now with a family.

A YOUNG ROBIN BEING RELEASED



A SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENT AND PEARL, THE BEARDED DRAGON.

Pearl visited my school and the students loved her! This is one of my favorite photos, showing the first tentative touch. This student became so enthralled with Pearl that I had to hide her!




MICHELLE, THE POODLE

As you might know, we lost our little Silvie this summer. She was a tiny poodle who was 17 years old. Still miss her. But I am grateful for Michelle, who is 13 years old. She is loving and, though she seems to miss Silvie, we believe she is enjoying being an only child (the cat doesn't count!).




BETH, AUNT HELEN, HOLLY

Lastly, but mostly, I am so grateful for my family. My husband is doing pretty well, healthwise. My daughter, Holly, is happily married and working. My Aunt Helen is 88 and doing very well. Above is a photo at Helen's home from this summer.

I am grateful for my three step-children -- Danny, Steve, and Darla -- and their families, including grandchildren and great-grandchildren. I am thankful for my "Russian son" Misha and his lovely wife and 2 children. Also for my "Texas daughter" Heather and her husband and 3 children, and the several kids who lived with us at times throughout our lives and blessed our home.

I am also thankful for my entire extended family, especially my nieces, Angie and April, and their families.

I am also most grateful for living in the United States. I pray for our nation daily.

I hope all of you have many things to be thankful for this year and in the years to come. I wish you health and contentment, safety and peace. May God bless you.

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