Sandbox forum: a comfy chair with lucy, the bear and friends

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Name: Sylvain Forest
Delray Beach, FL (Zone 10a)
Almost like Lucy and me.
Orchids Plant and/or Seed Trader Plumerias Ponds Region: Florida Tropicals
Container Gardener
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lourspolaire
Jan 14, 2016 8:30 PM CST
Welcome, my friends to the show that never ends. Old friends, new friends, makes no difference here. This is a discussion thread where we laugh together, cry together, keep up with the goings-on in our lives. It's a place where never is heard a discouraging word and the sunshine is always present in our hearts.

My name is Sylvain, aka The Polar Bear, also known as eiwamanamana. I'm a married, 60 year-old man, married 39 blissful years. I have a snake, a ball python named Lucy, whom both my wife and I cherish dearly. We also keep South-American cichlids in a 40-gallon aquarium. I love growing various aroids, desert roses, orchids and water lilies. I had a lotus but racoons pulled it out of the pond and ate it all. Down here, we garden outside year-round and we love it here for exactly that reason.

I am an expat from (Let's call it) Dave's Jardin, where life had simply become unbearable after their recent refurbishment, updates and other "improvements". They run their show the way they see fit and malcontents such as myself can just buzz off, as far as they seem to be concerned. So, I buzzed off.

I made homemade bagels today. They are overnighting in the refrigerator right now. I will bake them tomorrow morning. As I type this, I am dehydrating onion flakes and garlic flakes. The house smells heavenly. I'll boil the bagels in honeyed water tomorrow morning, seed and garnish them and bake them in time for breakfast with cream cheese and smoked salmon: the breakfast of kings.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that our cichlids had a clutch of about 50 babies swimming around yesterday. Cichlids are examplary parents, with the female and the male taking care of the babies and protecting them around the clock. The rest of the cichlids in the aquariums see those babies as ultra-fresh sushi with fins. Serious fights and chases ensue. There's always something happening in a cichlid aquarium.

Our snake (Lucy) seems to have started a hunger strike, as Lucy does every year just about this time of the year. The principle is easy: offer food and if it doesn't get eaten, throw it away. Lucy eats thawed little white mice. Yes, there are mice in my freezer. It's a surprise the first times you open the freezer, but you get used to them. Each one is individually wrapped in its own freezer bag and gets thawed 3 or 4 hours before feeding time. Lucy is an exquisite animal with gorgeous patterns of ebony, brass, silver and mother-of-pearl scales. We raised her like a baby and I often refer to her as The Baby. I also call myself The Daddy on occasion.

So, join in and say Hi. There's always a chair available for you to take a load off your feet. I hope this thread will be a happy and chatty place.

Take care, everyone.
Sylvain.
Thumb of 2016-01-15/lourspolaire/9f9a39

Name: Amanda
KC metro area, Missouri (Zone 6a)
Region: Missouri Cat Lover Dog Lover
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pepper23
Jan 14, 2016 8:57 PM CST
Hi Sylvain!!! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! Welcome! Welcome!
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Jan 14, 2016 9:09 PM CST
How did you teach Lucy to eat frozen mice? Some years back I had a 6-ft Red-tailed boa and he insisted on live food. Beautiful baby, whom I also called "Baby." (Officially he was "Baby-nakes")
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Terese
Central Florida, zone9b (Zone 9b)
Wisconsin Dells Area, zone4
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Butterflies Cat Lover Bee Lover
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tcs1366
Jan 14, 2016 9:10 PM CST
Howdy Sylvain.

Hope "winter" has not reached that far south yet... we've been chilly, but not too bad for coats here in Central FL.
Terese --Leesburg, FL & Lake Delton, Wi

Madison, Alabama (formerly NC)
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stillwood
Jan 15, 2016 7:15 AM CST
Sylvain - I was TOTALLY delighted to see this thread early this AM - I have participated in Chair on DG for some time and have loved your Lucy, Gail, and Dad adventures. There were only two people that I felt I would really, really miss hearing about and you were one of them (flattery, flattery), but I truly welcome you and your gang. As I have said before, it used to be possible to be on both sites and that may be true again (not so today - DG is off the active air) and one did not have to choose. So it is good to have you here and I know many people will enjoy getting to know you and Lucy. This really makes my day!!
Name: Barb Jenkins
Hillsborough, NH
Birds Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
Container Gardener Clematis Cat Lover Amaryllis
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quilter5
Jan 15, 2016 11:18 AM CST
Good morning Sylvain!! Thumbs up Thumbs up

I was a lurker on the DG thread and looked forward to your posts and Lucy/Gail/Dad adventures each day. I'm happy to have found you here and look forward once again to my Lucy fix and your wonderful menus... Settle right on in and let us know how Gail and Dad are doing with the latest puzzle!!
Name: Sylvain Forest
Delray Beach, FL (Zone 10a)
Almost like Lucy and me.
Orchids Plant and/or Seed Trader Plumerias Ponds Region: Florida Tropicals
Container Gardener
Image
lourspolaire
Jan 15, 2016 11:27 AM CST
Hi, everyone.

It's nice to see that people are discovering this new thread and participating: warms my old heart.

It's a rather nice day here in Delray-les-Bains, 76 degrees F, 79% relative humidity, partly sunny and windy. I tied the wind chimes together because they were making noise, rather than soothing sounds in the chord of G (major). Yes, my wind chimes are tuned in G. The weather outlook for this afternoon is bleak, with a violent storm in the forecast and a tornado watch that should be declared any time soon. Hurricane Alex has already formed off the Western coast of Africa, something that hasn't happened this early in the year since the late 1930s. The weather people here in Florida are always watching the Western coast of Africa because that's where our most damaging weather systems originate. A hurricane in January? The times, they are a-changing, as the song says.

Ah, a snake question. I love those. How did I get Lucy to eat thawed rodents? We were new to snake keeping 6 years ago. We were dog people before that. We knew nothing about reptiles. What a departure from dogs this was. Lucy was abandoned here by an irresponsible owner who picked up his clothes and returned to Indiana. When he left, we decreed that the snake would have only the best of care possible, even if it meant raising a snake. At feeding time, we would throw in a live mouse and the snake would eat it. Then, I found out that if the snake doesn't eat right away, the rodent might hurt the snake. I had to say Nay, Nay. Thawed mice started being fed to Lucy. At first, she didn't eat, but we were taking no risks and eventually, she ate them. There was no particular trick to it. Some people swing the rodent in front of their snake's nose, others hold it with tongs by the scruff of the neck and make it dance, puppet style, in front of the snake. I have no time or patience for that kind of nonsense. Plus, it reinforces the snake's attack instinct. Lucy is a well behaved ball python, with not a single mean scale on her body. She has learned to trust us and has never even tried to attack. She's a true baby. Don't get me started on Lucy's qualities.

I feel bad about leaving DG behind after 11+ years there. However, they done me wrong and Hades hath no fury like a polar bear scorned. I was there a few minutes ago. The whole site was as dead in the water as the Carnival Splendor after its engine room fire off the coast of Baja California. One of my bosses once told me: "I don't care how hard your team works on a problem. The only thing I care about is the end result.". Those two sentences were my motto for my whole career. I don't doubt that there are people working hard at DG to fix the problem. I don't care how hard they work, all I care is that the site is dead. It's callous, but I can live with myself.

I made homemade bagels yesterday. The dough rested in the refrigerator all night and I baked them for breakfast this morning. It's a bit more work than picking up a sleeve bagels at the grocery store, but the results: scrumptious. That recipe is a keeper.

Take care, everyone.
Sylvain.
Name: Kris Kelm
Texas (Zone 8a)
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earthling
Jan 15, 2016 11:35 AM CST
Sylvain, I was also a lurker on the other forum and enjoyed hearing the adventures of Lucy and the rest of the family. I was overjoyed this morning when I found you had started a thread here and look forward to many more Lucy stories.

Kris
Madison, Alabama (formerly NC)
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stillwood
Jan 15, 2016 11:51 AM CST
I really did not realize bagels are baked! I thought they were boiled somehow (maybe before baking?). You can tell I never saw a bagel until I went to college. We did not have bagels in Henderson, NC when I was growing up - they were exotic NY food. Now I only get a bagel occasionally from Breugger's (like a hot one with hazelnut coffee). So do you boil them first?
Name: Ginny
Harford Co. MD
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ginlyn
Jan 15, 2016 11:58 AM CST
Hi Sylvain, though I never participated in the " Chair " group, I too enjoyed reading about Lucy and what your menu was for the day. Your food always sounded so delicious. My husband for the most part, is a meat and potato guy. We've been married 58 years and he has learned to like more and more things. ( Still won't eat Chinese food though, and I love it ).

Looking forward to keeping up with you.

Ginny


Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Jan 15, 2016 12:00 PM CST
Ah, our little snake would only turn down food if he was getting ready to shed, so his mice (and later rats) barely had time to get nervous. Smiling
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Judy
Mid Atlantic Coastal Plain USA (Zone 7b)
Butterflies
MariposaMaid
Jan 15, 2016 12:07 PM CST
Lurker three here. Was Lucy full grown when you took her in? Is she the same kind of snake that has become problematic in parts of Florida? Any baby pictures?

I hope I am correct in recalling that you enjoy fine garlic? Just made some split pea soup infused with two heads of Chesnok Red. Such a deep rich flavor.

It is early for a hurricane will be watching for it to start being talked about way up here along with the polar vortex, dip in the jet stream and el nino should keep the weather guessers busy

I'm sojourning here for the duration and enjoying the ambiance!
Name: Terri
virginia (Zone 7a)
Beekeeper Region: Virginia Dragonflies
dragonfly53
Jan 15, 2016 12:16 PM CST
Hi Sylvain,

Welcome aboard! I just sent you a Dmail as I was missing my daily dose of life in Delray-les-Bains and updates on Lucy, Le Serpent Belle!
Life is a rush into the unknown. You can duck down and hope nothing hits you, or you can stand tall, show it your teeth and say "Dish it up, Baby, and don't skimp on the jalapeƱos."
Name: Sally
Nichols, iowa (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Vegetable Grower Peonies Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Lilies Irises
Dog Lover Daylilies Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: Iowa
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billyporter
Jan 15, 2016 1:07 PM CST
Sylvain,
Thrilled to find you here!!!
A small town has no secrets except itself
Name: Anna Z.
Monroe, WI
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Cat Lover Raises cows Region: Wisconsin
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AnnaZ
Jan 15, 2016 1:32 PM CST
Since there seems to be no ability to post "over there"...........here I am to annoy you all another day. Green Grin!
Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Plumerias Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator Region: Florida Cat Lover Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
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Dutchlady1
Jan 15, 2016 1:45 PM CST
So Sylvain, you now have two profiles here Confused Confused Confused
Name: Sally
Nichols, iowa (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Vegetable Grower Peonies Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Lilies Irises
Dog Lover Daylilies Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: Iowa
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billyporter
Jan 15, 2016 1:46 PM CST
HUGS and happy dance all around for everyone showing up!!
A small town has no secrets except itself
Name: Ginger
Fountain, Florida (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Plays in the sandbox Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: Gulf Coast Tip Photographer The WITWIT Badge
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Native Plants and Wildflowers Birds Plumerias Hummingbirder Dog Lover
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gingin
Jan 15, 2016 1:52 PM CST
Hurray! Hurray!

No frozen rats or mice in my freezer, but while raising a baby bluejay I did keep crickets there. Was very tough...had to drive miles and miles to get them at a bait shop and by the time I got back home they had become part of my family...after all they "sang" to me all the way home. While standing in front of the freezer I would apologize to them and say it was for the love of Naked that I was fixin to freeze them and into the freezer they went.
Each cloud has a silver lineing if only you look for it.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
Image
woofie
Jan 15, 2016 2:39 PM CST
I saw what you did there, Gingin. Thought you'd just slip that little bluejay's name right by, didn't you? Hilarious!
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Celebrating Gardening: 2015 I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped beta test the first seed swap Region: United States of America Region: Michigan
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Birds Butterflies Dog Lover Cat Lover
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Weedwhacker
Jan 15, 2016 2:54 PM CST
Just popping in here to welcome you to All Things Plants, Sylvain -- so many of the recent "refugees" from DG have mentioned missing the people from the Chair forum there, and I applaud you for jumping right in and starting it back up here! I suspect that it won't be long (given the current turn from really bad to even worse at DG) that even more people will be finding their way over here -- and I'm looking forward to getting to know everyone!

Welcome!
"Blessed is he who has learned to laugh at himself, for he shall never cease to be entertained."
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