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Once Bitten

April 28th, 2014

Recently I became aware of two museums in nearby Elmhurst that we’ve never visited before. Better yet, admission is free on Fridays, so Joe took the day off this past Friday so we could check them out. The first museum we visited was The Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art which features an awesome collection of minerals and carvings. While small, it was very interesting, even more so than either of us anticipated.

Jade Carving

Castle Lizzadro

Connected to the same parking lot is a tiny conservatory that recently opened after renovation so we stopped inside to check out the flowers. The columbine in particular were very pretty, and I impressed myself by knowing what they were called. ;)

Columbine

We then made our way over to the Elmhurst Art Museum which was severely disappointing. It didn’t have many exhibits and we were only there for fifteen minutes at the most. I think we spent more time in the nearby library in awe of its size. I wish our local library was as inviting and had a cafe inside!

We stopped at Back Alley Burger for lunch but weren’t impressed with the burgers. The gravy fries, however, were pretty damn good. I need to find a recipe to make my own gravy because the packaged ones I’ve bought so far have been disappointing.

Since it was such a lovely day we went to the arboretum. It was Arbor Day after all! The daffodils are in full bloom so I grabbed a couple of photos of them. We also hiked on one of their shorter trails (baby steps).

Daffodils

Our evening included an impromptu trip to Target to take advantage of the one day sale on rotisserie chicken which we had for dinner. Side note: the Great Value (Walmart) frozen broccoli florets we had as a side are pretty damn tasty; we ended up buying three more bags later that evening.

After dinner we settled down for a night of TV but ended running back out to Walmart so I could get extra points from my shopkick app. I now have enough points for a $6 Target gift card, woot! On the way back we stopped at Walgreens to use the free Snickers coupons I won from their Facebook contest because Target doesn’t carry the size allowable in the coupons’ terms.

Saturday we headed over to an Earth Day festival and farmers market which was kinda lame. I did score a free chip clip from Nicor Gas and a magnet from the Forest Preserve of DuPage County, though. I enjoyed speaking to their staff and telling them about the Caspian Tern I spotted at a local park last weekend. I had never spotted one of them before but apparently they are becoming more prevalent in the area.

We stopped at the liquor store and I decided I had a taste for a Bloody Mary so we were looking at mixes when I turned to the internet for advice, and the internet had concluded that making one from scratch is the right way to go so we shelved the mixes and went in search of the necessary ingredients which included another stop at Walmart as well as the produce market. We picked up some lunch meat and cheese as well and had sandwiches for lunch. One of my new faves is roast beef with Gouda and horseradish sauce. It’ll make your nose run from the heat but it’s worth it.

As we were eating lunch we saw an explosion of feathers outside the window – a peregrine falcon had captured a mourning dove. He landed nearby with his kill and proceeded to pluck its feathers and devour him while we watched in awe. On one level it was gross but on another it was really amazing. Did you know that the peregrine falcon can reach speeds up to 200 mph while diving for his prey? I also didn’t know that they feed on medium birds almost exclusively. I felt bad for the mourning dove but it was cool to see such a large falcon up close, although not close enough to get a photo, unfortunately. We used our binoculars to watch the action, in fact. It made me wish we had a good pair, and also a telescope. I love nature so much and enjoy any opportunity to observe it.

Sunday we decided to skip our normal Target shopping routine and had a lazy morning before heading to Petsmart for a few supplies. We stopped at the Dollar Tree, which is quickly becoming a favorite store, on the way home. I worked on cleaning the rat cage while Joe worked out with his weights.

About two hours later after everything was how I wanted it, I had my hand against the cage bars where the two boys were hanging out and one bit my finger, hard! I was so shocked that it didn’t even hurt that much but it immediately started bleeding like crazy. I ran it under water and told Joe that to be safe I should get a tetanus shot since my last one, also when I got bit by a pet (hamster), was over 15 years ago. We ended up finding an urgent care center close to home that takes our insurance and they were great. They not only gave me the shot but they cleaned and wrapped my wound and called in a prescription for a 4-day dose of antibiotics to ward off any potential infection. Between the copay and medicine the visit cost less than $20 and they were more thorough than my primary care doctor! I wonder if I can just use them whenever I want instead of driving all the way to see my doctor who is great but has limited office hours. Hmmm…

I can’t believe after all this time of owning rats the ones who were supposed to be the friendliest bit me. I don’t know if it was out of confusion (although I never feed them through the cage bars) or aggression, but I wasn’t too thrilled about it and didn’t end up letting them out to play last night. I’m not even sure which one bit me since they both were standing so close together. Steve is more aggressive than Doug but Doug bit Bella’s tongue when he was in the cage the week she was staying with us so who knows. At the time when she was bleeding I thought maybe he had scratched her but after what happened to me now I’m going to say he bit her. I’m not really scared of them (they have never bitten outside the cage), but I definitely will be careful and not put my hands against the cage bars again. Lesson learned.

Joe was sweet and did some of my weekly cleaning last night so I can let my finger heal today. I’m still doing some laundry but I don’t have to worry about vacuuming or cleaning the toilets.

It’s raining out and will be doing so all day. I love lazy gloomy days so I’m ok with that. Although so far I haven’t been all that lazy with the laundry and cleaning I’ve been doing. I really need to stop, though, because I keep making my finger bleed.

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