Katie Coyote

On Wednesday the number of human visitors to the museum left a lot to be desired. But then we certainly enjoyed the presence of the animal visitors.

Just out of the kitchen window, between the building and driveway, we were treated to a show by Katie Coyote. I call her that because in her gyrations we could see female parts, but no male parts. Katie was probably an adolescent…not a pup, and certainly not an adult.

Katie Coyote

She rolled on her back and on her stomach, kicking her legs up into the air. She tossed one of the fallen apples around as though it were a miniature tennis ball. She was having a lot of fun, all by herself. Coyotes are solitary creatures; they don’t run in packs, although they will communicate by calling to each other at night. But except for mating purposes (and moms with pups) they don’t seem to hang out together. And Katie was showing that she could have a lot of fun by herself.

Katie Coyote

In fact, after about 15 minutes a City truck drove up the driveway. Katie stood up and faced the truck down. The truck driver stopped his vehicle. It was a stare down. Finally, she ambled off across the front of the museum, and took off toward the wooded area in the hills. Katie had her fun, out stared a truck, and she provided a ton of entertainment to us inside the museum.

Peach Blossoms

You Sure Those are Edible?

Getting back to nature took a whole new meaning recently when I found I needed to make a birthday cake and decorate it with only a couple hours notice.

The situation was that my husband found out at the last minute that a friend and neighbor was going to celebrate his 80th birthday the next day and he had no plans to celebrate.  Well, this was just not right!  Even though we had plans to be gone the next day, we invited our friend and his wife for dinner the next night.  In the morning we threw a roast and potatoes into the crock pot and ran off to our obligations.  When I got home a couple hours before our impromptu dinner party, I whipped up a chocolate “Crazy Cake”. Called that because only a few ingredients that go right into the baking pan – stir – and bake.  Cream cheese frosting was quick, easy and no-fail (my favorite kind).  When the cake had cooled enough to frost I did a quick job, but realized it was pretty plain. What to do?!  I don’t have cake decorating skills to make fancy trim and décor, especially on the fly.

Then, I remembered that all the fruit trees were blooming at the Museum.  The local newspaper had just sent their photographer up to take some photos and people had been posing all week in the Museum’s orchard for colorful photo memories.  Ah ha!  I ran to the computer to confirm that peach blossoms are edible.  Yes, it said – and the internet is always right, right?

So, to the orchard I ran and snipped some of the delicate white and pink blossoms.  The branches are actually fairly covered with these little, delicate individual blooms – one every place a peach will grow.  I took about 4 dozen of the little blossoms and arranged them around the base and across the top of the cake on a pretty cake pedestal.  A little coconut dyed green with food coloring made for a colorful base on the cake plate so the blossoms looked like they were lying in grass.  Eight candles, one for each decade of his life, finished this super quick birthday cake.

Peach Blossom Cake

We all ate the little blooms as we ate our cake and we all survived, so I can say that peach blossoms ARE edible.  Our friend said he couldn’t wait for his 90th birthday, as long as I made the same cake!