A couple weeks ago Michelle found some trees on sale at our local feed and garden supply, so we returned together and bought a Gala apple, an Asian pear, a Carpathian walnut, a fig, and several Muscadine grapes. Given the number of trees we had cut down for our pond, it certainly feels good to have planted these new trees. I was beginning to feel guilty that I was the man who cut down trees, rather than the one who was planting them. For a little more background, I would suggest watching the inspirational 30 minute animated film by Frédéric Back, The Man Who Planted Trees, from which I have taken the title of this post. I first watched this inspiring and relaxing movie in the course of our JustFaith program, but later found it on Google Video (as linked above) and have watched it several times since. And while it was hardly relaxing to have dug two foot deep holes three feet around in our clay soil, it was satisfying to bring new life to our place. At the same time I also transfered to the ground several sunflowers that Michelle grew from seeds Natasha had given us. I took several pictures of the trees.
Another aspect of new life that has emerged on our place is between four and six chicks, hatched by a pair of birds that had made their nest on our front porch. The nest had been there for some time and a few nights ago Michelle heard the chirping of new chicks. Michelle took some pictures of the chicks as well. In the week since their hatching, they have outgrown their nest and are now perched in a precarious fashion clinging to the safety of their nest.
In a strange way, then, all of the new life around here is susceptible to death: our cats perch on the front porch waiting for one of the chicks to make a wrong move, deer clipped the tops off all the transplanted sunflowers, and a mole threatened the roots of our freshly planted Asian pear tree. The latter was taken care of by our cats who managed to kill the mole the very same day we had bought a live trap to relocate the mole. An electric fence is in the works for tomorrow to combat the deer. And perhaps a little luck and a lapse in diligence on the part of our cats will save the chicks.