Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday landscape: Our courtyard

Due to unforeseen circumstances involving me being torn up about giving away my precious kitten, Lasagna, and taking my other cat, Suki, to the vet for an apparent urinary tract infection, I was unable to see a play today.  Like I said yesterday, when I am sad about something, I am even more vulnerable to stimulation than usual, so I had to give up my plans to see a play in favor of something more calming.

Although I am not an outdoorsy person, I do appreciate all forms of beauty, and the world outside is truly beautiful.  I would love to share what I see everyday when I go outside, and I figured the best place to start is my own backyard, or in this case, my own courtyard.

When we first moved into this house, the courtyard was very bare, desolate.  Just dirt, a path, a tree, a few cacti here and there.  Over the years since we've been here, my mom has really transformed the courtyard into something really lovely.  There's so much to look at, and it's obvious a lot of care was put into every aspect of it.

It's usually too hot to sit out here for long, but it's really nice when it storms or in the winter.
This sign was my grandmother's.  We just want to remind everyone when they come over!
My parents are quite conservative.  This was apparently a real sign from some sort of workplace.
That glaring light is a motion sensor light.
My dad made this for my mom one Christmas.  She saw one just like it that was quite expensive, and my dad insisted that he could make the same thing himself for much cheaper.  He was right!
Time to fill up the bird feeder!
Snake!  Snake!  Ooh, it's a snaaaaaake!
Yes.
We have these little animal statues everywhere!  Usually desert animals.

When you first walk in, this turtle is here to welcome you but to also remind you to close the gate.  Otherwise, the real turtles who actually live in our courtyard might escape!
This path of rocks doesn't really lead anywhere.  Just for looks!
Some years ago, we painted some rocks.  I'm pretty sure we had more than this, but maybe the rain or sun faded some of them?
My mom loves feeding hummingbirds.
I think my little sister, Saydee, made this.
Okay, this was new.  I have no idea what this thing is.  It seems like something that would've belonged to my grandmother!
Our desert turtles usually hang out under here, especially in the winter when they're hibernating.  I didn't see any as I was walking about this evening, but I sometimes hear them clawing at the front door wanting to get in.  We have at least five out here.  They all belonged to my grandmother before she died.  Although it's not legal to take desert turtles from the wild and keep them as pets, it's okay if they were already bred in captivity as these turtles were.  In fact, these turtles would not be able to survive on their own, so they must continue to be kept in captivity.
Hello!
Birds have definitely nested in this one.
We've had owls nest in this area.  There don't seem to be any birds nesting here now.
I don't really know what animal this is supposed to be, haha.
I'll be moving into my own house at the beginning of next year.  I won't have enough money to decorate my courtyard as nicely as this, but little by little, I hope to get there someday!