Nuts to You

The squirrels are going nuts again.

The city of Eugene planted red oak trees all along the boulevard between our sidewalk and the street. And my back-fence neighbor, Bob, has an enormous walnut tree. So we're watching them scamper along the fence, scramble up the trees, bury treasure in the lawn. Every spring, I'm pulling up red oak saplings pretty much everywhere around the house. There's also two walnut wannabes in unfortunate locations that I just can't seem to uproot, and for a while, we had a filbert bush growing up from under the rain barrel. No idea where they got that particular nut to plant, but it didn't survive last summer's siding crew.

So yeah, they're pests. But entertaining to watch, both to us and the house cats. And if I have to collect one out of River Road and give it last rights, heck, I make some more paintbrushes.

And paint them on my pottery.

The original version is a rutile-gold adult that's been appearing on soup bowls and painted mugs for decades now. More recently, I found a photo of a grey-and-buff baby squirrel in a photoset online, and she's been appearing on pie plates, dessert plates, tall mugs and tumblers.

Painted, appropriately enough, with squirrel-tail brushes.