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Springtime babies

April 17, 2008 - LLee Janssen

The spring of the year that empty nesting began in earnest for me started a trend of sorts ... babies. Not human babies, mind you, but babies of assorted types.

While I'm not fond of critters in my home, my maternal instincts always are touched by the sight of young ones. First there were the robins, after mama bird chose the wreath on the front door to build her nest. I didn't realize there were babies on board until after several nights of returning home from work and having a bird fly just over my head in the dark. Back then, I was on the night shift, putting the paper to bed and getting home well after midnight. It wasn't until the little ones hatched that I realized what was happening, and at that point I went so far as to stop using the front door until after they flew the nest.

This went on for a couple of years, the same nest being reused by mama robin, until I decided to replace the spring wreath with a new model that didn't include the bird nest.

And so we had kittens.

I'm terribly allergic to cats, and kittens in particular. Their dander causes my eyes to swell shut and then my respiratory system follows. I can't touch a feline without suffering the misery of an outbreak.

But when the neighborhood stray decided to give birth beneath my porch, I felt so badly for her and the young ones that I bought some cat food and milk for her so she could adequately nourish the young. The young ones ultimately started to wander off, which caught the attention of Maxie. Mama moved them at that point away from my backyard.

Now it's baby rabbits that has Max captivated. Have you ever heard a rabbit make a distress noise? Why can't Maxie just live and let live? Fortunately for the babies, all he really wants to do is stare at them while he wags his stubby tail 90 mph, perhaps while he's trying to coax them out to play. That won't happen, but maybe they'll get the idea to move away before I plant the garden.


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