Friday, April 11, 2008


No, it’s not Thanksgiving time. This is the noise that startled me this morning as I sat at my computer.

Only one animal that I know makes that noise. When I slowly peeked out the office window into the backyard, a wild turkey stared back at me! It was 12 to 15 feet from me, but with a window between us.

“Jacob, come quickly! Look out the back window!”

Homeschool lesson on wildlife? Not really. Seeing a wild turkey in the backyard on a weekday when others are in school or at work is just one of those little treats that we have because we are homeschooling.

In the 22 years I’ve lived in this suburban home, this is only the second time I’ve seen wild turkeys in our yard. The other time was when the children were still toddlers. Then we had two turkeys; this time just one came. He (or she) spent an entire hour walking around the backyard, which is bordered by acres of woods, pecking here and there in the lawn, even digging in my garden near those crocuses I photographed a few days ago.

Jacob grabbed his digital camera and took a picture.

The doorbell rang. It was Jacob’s Geometry classmate Danny, who is tutoring Jacob in math. (More on math woes another time.)

Danny and his mom also saw the turkey. Then when Jacob and Danny settled down at the dining room table, our school area, to study math. I took my Kodak EasyShare 7590 digital camera, which has a long telephoto, and pressing the lens against the window, I managed to steady it enough to get a few non-blurry shots of our rare visitor.

The turkey managed to brighten even this dreary, rainy day.

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What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”
— Albert Pike, Scottish Rite Freemason (1809-1891)