Sleepless nights and wildlife spottings

It is 2 a.m. Great time for more adventures of a housewife (apartmentwife?)

I got up an hour ago because I couldn’t sleep. Michael fell asleep in the recliner around 7:30 and I put him to bed at 11:45. I joined him for a while, hoping the dark room would make me drowsy. No luck. This particular bout of insomnia probably has something to do with last night, when I accidentally slept for about 15 hours. We went to bed at 9:30. I got up briefly to see Michael off to work and then went back to bed until 1 p.m. My alarm did me no good. I was tied up in dreams. Now my body has a sleep surplus and doesn’t want to shut down.

Since I’m awake, I figured I’d get some things done. I’m making stuffed green peppers tomorrow and I want to get them in the crock pot before I leave for 8:15 church. So I prepped the peppers and mixed the filling except for the bread crumbs and rice. Then I cooked some chicken breast strips that were left from last night’s dinner (not enough room in the pan). So we can use those for a salad topper. At least this time isn’t a total waste.

My inability to sleep is especially unfortunate since Michael is working the day shift this week. It should be as easy as ever to keep normal hours. But alas…

Yesterday was fantastic. We’ve been getting nothing but rain lately. The sun finally decided to come out and it was in the 60s. Michael was off work for his pseudo-weekend in between shifts. We went hiking at Imagination Glen Park in Portage. Some large puddles stood from the rain, but the trails weren’t too muddy. We hiked a few of the mountain biking routes and then moved to the gravel Iron Horse Heritage Trail. Like the Katy Trail I so loved in Missouri, the Iron Horse is a former train track, a product of the Rails to Trails Conservancy. My bike hasn’t made it to Indiana from Missouri yet; I’m quite eager to retrieve it.

We finished our hike so Michael could go golfing with our friend Nathan. I don’t understand the appeal of golf, but I guess I can’t bash it since I’ve never tried it. I decided to do some more hiking on my own. The weather was far too perfect to stay inside. I chose Rogers-Lakewood Park, which is just a short distance from our apartment. It reminds me of Stephens Lake Park in Columbia, but even better. Hiking trails wind throughout the woods and around the perimeter of the lake. Fishermen ply the lake year-round. The park has a skate park and disc golf course along with concession stand and several gazebos. We’ve been enjoying the park for free in the off-season. Once summer kicks in, we’ll apparently have to buy season passes or pay an entrance fee. What a bummer. Don’t my taxes pay for my entrance to the park? We may be able to avoid the fees by walking to the park and entering on foot, as the pass seems to be for vehicles.

On this particular trip to the park, I enjoyed all kinds of wildlife. Schools of small blue gill basked in the sun just off shore. Evidence of beaver abounded along the lake. It seems they’ve been busy chewing down all the trees. Rounding a bend in the trail, I came face to face with a raccoon. The paths I walked were imprinted with deer tracks. I startled a water bird I couldn’t identify. It was solid blue, about the size of a large sand piper. Besides the usual robins, I saw two woodpeckers and several blue or yellow finches. Two black snakes were coiled up together on a rock retaining wall beside a bridge. A water mammal swam under the bridge. It looked just like a beaver until it dove, displaying a rat-like tail. I’m assuming it was a muskrat or a nutria. I was really hoping for a beaver. They’re like the platypus of North America…not quite as cool, but still pretty great.

In the writing of the previous paragraph, I researched water birds of Indiana, snakes of Indiana, beavers, muskrats and nutria. And yet I wasn’t able to definitively identify any of the creatures I didn’t already know. I did spend a good bit of time and am now somewhat more knowledgeable about the native animals of Indiana. Sometime when it isn’t 3:30 a.m., I’ll have to look into the matter further. I do love wildlife.

Well, that’s enough for now. I’m going to read a little. Hopefully then I’ll be ready to sleep.

About Nicole

Daughter of God, wife, mother, volunteer youth leader, substitute teacher, aspiring writer, rabbit owner, nature lover. These are some of my titles.
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One Response to Sleepless nights and wildlife spottings

  1. Fleastiff says:

    I’ve never quite understood golf either. It seems playful if a kitten knocks a ball of thread around a bit and then chases after it, doesn’t seem quite so sensible for a grown man to be doing it. Perhaps its simply a rite to be performed prior to going to the 19th hole. Or, perhaps its just an excuse to place bets on something. Golf courses seem to bring in alot of money and enhance real estate values for some reason, but I sure can’t figure out why. I seem to recall the opening pages of The Idiot was a description of a golf game from the idiot’s viewpoint. Alas, I am an uneducated fool and have never read it.

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