Saturday, May 26, 2012

Texas Cliche

Ever been to Texas? What's the first animal you associate with my home state? Umm, besides the longhorn--something much smaller. 








Mountain lion? 
Rattlesnake? 
Scorpion? 
Although all 3 of these lovely animals can be found where I live in Central Texas, the critter I'm thinking of is pretty much harmless.







Anybody guess this little guy?


Even though I've lived in Texas my entire life, the only armadillos I ever saw growing up were on the side of the road.  
UPSIDE.   DOWN.            NOT.   MOVING.  
You know, like this:
The picture of the dead armadillo I almost used was just too much;
I decided to rotate the pic and let you use your imagination!


We call them Texas speed bumps. So I find it extremely weird that I've recently had 2 encounters with armadillos in my back yard
The first one happened about a month ago when I went outside to bring my dogs in from their pen. Every night I do this without incident, but this time I walked through the gate and almost stepped on a DEAD armadillo! On his back, claws up and everything! To make matters worse, just a couple feet away was another one! I'm not gonna lie, I let out a little scream. And then I looked at my dogs and they just smiled, like this:
Samson

Butterball




Fast forward to incident #2: Yesterday morning I was putting the dogs back outside for the day. We have a routine--on my command they go into the pen and then I follow with their food. They've been trained to wait until I give them the sign to eat. Can you tell that we are big "Dog Whisperer" fans at my house?


Anyway, they go inside the pen and start running around sniffing and acting all crazy until Butterball darts out with an armadillo in her mouth. And then I forget everything I've learned from Cesar Milan about being calm and start running around yelling for them to drop it and come back inside the pen to eat. And then they DO come in the pen and drop the very much alive armadillo right by my feet! Ewww--I continue screaming and running around and believe it or not, this worked because the armadillo shuffled right out of the pen! Hopefully he is smart enough to stay away from the crazy screaming lady and her dogs next time.


All in all, it was a very exciting start to the last day of school for me! The rest of the day was spent scanning books for my yearly library inventory, which is the exact opposite of exciting. One good thing about doing inventory is that I am reminded of all the fabulous books in the library, so I'd like to leave you with a great read-aloud recommendation:


"Armadilly Chili" (by one of my favorite children's authors, Helen Ketteman) is a Texas-style adaptation of "The Little Red Hen".  Go out and get yourself a copy if you don't already have one! And if you ever want to see a real, live armadillo, stop by my back yard. Sam and Butterball would be happy to find one for you!
~Swersty

14 comments:

  1. I love your story and the faces on those two wonderful dogs is priceless. They both have such adorable, irresistible faces. Thanks for sharing the story and the book! I am still laughing!!!

    Deb at Fabulously First

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    1. Don't let those adorable little faces fool you. They are rascals!

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  2. Oh my goodness I can't believe that!

    2 things:
    I need a dog pen!
    I need a dog whisperer!

    I am fascinated by armadillos, but DO NOT want to meet one up close on my feet!

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    1. You probably have some armadillos living close to your yard, too! (You just don't know it.)

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  3. That book looks adorable. I've never seen an armadillo before.
    Heading over to check them out... Have the margaritas ready. :D
    ❤Dragonflies in First ❤

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    1. Come on--we'd love to have you here in the Lone Star State!

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  4. Glad to be follower 100!! Love the armadillo book and Yay me!! I guessed it right about being an armadillo, I promise I did not look!!
    Love your blog!

    Teresa

    2nd Grade Pig Pen

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  5. Yay, follower #100! Thanks for helping me reach this milestone!

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  6. ha! That's the only way I've seen armadillos too, here in FL....oh wait - the zoo...we have them alive in the zoo! lol
    And I have to check out that book!
    and yay for 100 followers!!

    ♥ Jen
    The Teacher's Cauldron

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  7. OK, did she also write Armadillo Tattletale? Her name is familiar . . . anywhooooo, thanks for stopping by the Corner on Character. Yes, you HAVE to get Milo . . . too sweet . . . Tallulah does NOT want an armadillo, she wants a bunny and the poor little fellah decides to unravel himself . . . . ooooo, kids can ToTaLlY relate to trying to be something they're not!

    Thanks for being such a fun, engaging librarian!

    Barbara
    The Corner On Character

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    1. Yes, she wrote "Armadillo Tattletale" and quite a few other western/Texas-themed fractured fairy tales. Another book of hers that I love is a Cinderella story called "Bubba the Cowboy Prince". She is a very talented lady!

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    2. ha! During my Cinderella week - I read Bubba!! The kids LOVED it!! And I talked with a twang for the rest of the day...lol..it comes to me very easily though, since I lived in WV until I was 6...I even posted about it!
      http://theteacherscauldron.blogspot.com/2012/05/texan-cinderella.html

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  8. Hahahah! This was a great post! I loved your dogs' pictures! I just looked at my dogs and they smiled at me like this...Haha, too funny! I would totally scream and run around too...Maybe I should watch some Dog Whisperer and get some tips.

    ~Heidi V.

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  9. Too funny! We don't have any "wild" armadillos here in Canada.... that must have been exciting! I love the dog pictures... so cute!! :)

    Amanda
    First Grade Garden

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