The Postscript - Aug 1, 2019 - The Wren House

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Nobody was using the old wren house.

My grandfather built it. Grandpa started building birdhouses when he retired from milking cows and his second oldest son took over. That son, my mother’s brother, is now 87 and retired 20 years ago. It’s a pretty old birdhouse. 

“My dad never built fancy birdhouses,” my mother explained. Grandpa put on a tarpaper roof and, if you needed to clean it out, you had to unscrew the back. But they were sweet little birdhouses, painted bright blue with a little perch outside the round door. I always assumed they were mostly for decoration. 

My parents had one of grandpa’s birdhouses hanging outside their cabin for years and they got wondering, one day over coffee, why this perfectly serviceable house never got any use. (My parents do some of their best thinking over coffee.)

“Well, there are a lot of trees with woodpecker holes in them,” my father offered. Maybe the wrens just didn’t need any additional housing. 

“Maybe we’re putting it out too late,” my mother suggested. They put the birdhouse in the basement every winter and spent early spring in Florida. 

So this year, just to be on the safe side, my parents left the birdhouse out all winter so it would be ready for the wrens first thing in the spring. But winter was hard on the old birdhouse and my father noticed the perch had fallen out. 

“Maybe no one will use it because it doesn’t have a perch!” my mother reasoned, so my father set about finding a suitable dowel to replace the 50-year-old missing perch. 

Dad took the old birdhouse down to his workshop in the basement. The dowel he’d found was a little too stout for the existing hole, so he laid the birdhouse on its back, got out his drill, and widened the hole a bit. Then he gave the dowel a whack with a hammer until it fit in just right. 

Dad looked in the round door. The birdhouse was filled with nest. 

“Maybe nobody’s using it because it’s too dirty,” my father thought. So dad flipped the birdhouse on its side, got out his drill again, and removed the screws so he could clean out the debris. 

But as my dad started to lift the back, he heard a flapping noise. 

“Oh no!” my father said.

Dad’s vision is not the best, so he called my mom for back-up. 

“Jonie, come downstairs!” dad hollered. “I think there are bats in the birdhouse!” Mom came running and they carefully lifted the back off the birdhouse. 

Three baby wrens looked up at my mom and dad. 

“Oh no!” my mother said.

Dad quickly reassembled the birdhouse and they hung it back outside. Mom said she felt terrible. She knew those baby birds would likely be abandoned. 

But a few days later, my mom saw the mother bird come out of the house and fly off. Later, dad heard the chirping of wrens coming from the house. Then one day it was quiet. My mom peeked inside. All the little birds had flown. 

So now my parents have something new to wonder about as they have their coffee. Was mother wren gone while her three children were hauled down to the workshop? Did she return to the tree and find her house and offspring missing? Was she surprised by their miraculous return? And what about that fancy new perch?

My parents are still mulling this over, as they have their coffee. I think it’s good the old birdhouse is finally getting some use.

Till next time, 

Carrie  

POSTSCRIPT

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The Postscript - Jan 16, 2020 - Unexpected Cowboy

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The Postscript - Jan 9, 2020 - A Night at the Funeral Home

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The Postscript - Jan 2, 2020 - Sparkles

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The Postscript - Dec 26, 2019 - Caleb, the Christmas Tree

I went with my parents to get a Christmas tree.  All the trees were wearing hangtags shaped like bells and all the bells had hand-lettered names on them. At first, I assumed these trees were spoken for and the names indicated the person who had reserved the tree. Then... [More]

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The Postscript - Dec 19, 2019 - Christmas at the Greenhouse

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The Postscript - Dec 12, 2019 - The Cookie Situation

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The Postscript - Dec 5, 2019 - Transatlantic Turnaround

My husband, Peter, and I are returning from Spain by boat. The whole idea started when Peter read a book about the sinking of the Lusitania.  “That sounds like fun!” Peter told me, as he read. “Death at sea?” I asked. “No, the part before... [More]

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COURT

Traffic Court September-December

Forman, David Scott, Miami Fla, driving 78 mph in a 50 mph zone. Fines $177 Court Cost $108. Hagan, Audrey Ann, Columbia Mo, driving 78 mph in a 65 mph zone. Deferred. Court Cost $108. Pfeffer, Samuel Tyler, Sharon Springs, Reckless Driving.  Bench Trial – Not... [More]

Traffic Court up to September 2019

Turner, Philip Russell II, driving 85 mph in a 65 mph zone, deferred adjudication, court costs $108. Patton, Amanda, driving 93 mph in a 65 mph zone, deferred adjudication, court costs $108. Ramey, Tyler Ray, failure to stop or obey railroad crossing signal, fines $195, court... [More]

Wallace County District Court Sentencings

On May 15th, Vance Diamond Halsey appeared in the Wallace County District Court with court appointed attorney, Christopher Rohr, Colby for sentencing in the matter of case 2019-CR-03.  Halsey was charged with Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer on March 12, 2019, ... [More]

Traffic Court for May-June 2019

May Traffic Report Thomas, Dyami R, Bellingham, Wash, driving 85 mph in a 65 mph zone, fines $105, court cost $108. Araujo Pompa, Almedio, Coral Gables, Fla, driving 85 mph in a 65 mph zone, fines $105, court cost $108. Lennon, Jake Owen, Pittsburg, Penn, driving 93 mph... [More]

Traffic Court for April 2019

James Manuel Phillips, Gardner, Colo, driving 77 mph in a 65 mph zone, fines $57 and court costs $108. Kenzie Marie Spreier, Colby, Kans, diving 80 in a 65 mph zone, fines $75 and court costs $108. Erick Edward Jarosz, Canon City, Colo, driving 84 mph in a 65 mph zone,... [More]

Brandon and Fugate Sentenced

Jonathan Brandon appeared in Wallace County District Court on April 10th, 2019, with his court appointed attorney, Steve Cott, Garden City, for sentencing in cases 17 CR 51 and 17 CR 58. Each case charged Brandon with Distribution of Methamphetamine within 1000 feet of a school,... [More]

Traffic Court reports Apr 11, 2019

Chandler, Garrett Scott, Pueblo, Colo, driving 75 mph in a 65 mph zone, fines $69, court costs $108. Palmier, Joshua Quayshun, Birmingham, Ala, driving 84 mph in a 65 mph zone, fines $99, court costs $108. Chavez, Brenda Icilice, Denver, Colo, driving 85 mph in a 65 mph zone,... [More]

March District Court

On March 13th, 2019 Charlene Valdez appeared in Wallace County District Court with court appointed attorney Leslie Beims, Goodland in the matter of case number 2017 CR 42. Valdez had been charged with Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine, within 1,000’ of a school,... [More]

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NEWS

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Dollar General Grand Opening

The Grand Opening of the Dollar General will be this Saturday, January 25th from 8 to 10 am.  There will be  free totebags and cups, and the first 50 customers will recieve a $10 gift card.  Cake will be served.  

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Farm Credit Seeking Scholarship Applicants

The Board of Directors of Farm Credit of Western Kansas, ACA is pleased to announce the continuation of the Farm Credit Scholarship program.  Farm Credit has $8,000 available to High School Seniors, a $500 per semester scholarship, which is renewable for up-to four years... [More]

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Sharon Springs Wildcats Take On Weskan Coyotes

Jace Mackley shoots a basket for Weskan in the game between Wallace County High School and Weskan High School last Friday.  Weskan Boys won 71 - 51. JC Allen (WHS) shoots over Brookley Dinkel   (WCHS) during last week’s game.  The Lady Wildcats won... [More]

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FHSU Students Earn Fall Semester Honors

Grady Hammer and  Dalen See are among the 1,596 students named to the Deans Honor Roll for the fall 2019 semester by deans at Fort Hays State University. The Deans Honor Roll includes undergraduate students only. To be eligible, students must have completed 12 or more... [More]

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KSU Students Earn Fall Semester Honors

More than 4,220 Kansas State University students have earned semester honors for their academic performance in the fall 2019 semester. Students earning a grade point average for the semester of 3.75 or above on at least 12 graded credit hours receive semester honors along with... [More]

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Sexson Returns From Retreat For Rural Leaders

Lissa Sexson of the Wallace County Visitors Bureau attended the 27th Retreat for Rural Leaders facilitated by the Kansas Sampler Foundation and held at The Barn Bed and Breakfast Inn near Valley Falls. Lissa was one of 34 people from across the state to attend. The group was... [More]

My Favorite Hiding Spot

Sandi Kerr-Jordan’s 8th graders discus hiding spots as they learn about interactions between the Jews and the Nazis during World War II. Here are some of her student’s personal hiding spots - My hiding place is my room. It is really the only place in my house... [More]

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Acoustic Eidolon to Perform

Back for a third time in recent years, Acoustic Eidolon will perform for the Western Plains Arts Association, Sunday, Jan. 26 at the Wallace County High School Auditorium, 521 North Main, Sharon Springs. The program begins at 2 p.m. Mountain (3 p.m. Central).  Admission... [More]

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BUGLE NOTES

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Bugle Notes - Jan 16, 2020

This Sunday, the Fort Wallace Museum is looking forward to hosting Greg and Cee Heller from Kannapolis for the screening of the new documentary film “Fort Harker: Gateway Post to the Frontier.” Please join us at 2:00 pm MT for the 45-minute film, followed by discussion... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Jan 9, 2020

Happy New Year! The Fort Wallace Memorial Association is looking forward to a fun and full 2020; we invite everyone to join in and help make it our most successful year ever!  There are two ways to join our organization. “The Fort Wallace Memorial Association”... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Dec 12, 2019

Christmas arrived at the Fort Wallace Museum this past Sunday, with the annual “Candlelight Christmas” service, followed by a festive gathering inside the main building. The 1888 Bethany Lutheran Church was filled to capacity for the traditional service. Worship was... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Dec 5, 2019

In 1865, David Butterfield raised money from New York investors to create Butterfield’s Overland Despatch Stage Line along the Smoky Hill Trail - the shortest route from commerce centers near Atchison, Kansas to the gold fields near Denver Colorado. In 2019, Butterfield’s... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Nov 7, 2019

On Saturday, the Fort Wallace Museum welcomed author Chuck Warner and his wife Karen to the Museum to discuss his new book “Birds, Bones and Beetles,” about his grandfather Charles “Bunk” Bunker, who was a KU Naturalist that explored Wallace County and... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Oct 31, 2019

The 2019 Smoky Hill Trail Conference held at the Fort Wallace Museum is now in the rearview mirror! The event hosted 75 folks, including several national names in Western History research, as the role of Fort Wallace in Trail history was explored. Tours, lectures, networking,... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Oct 17, 2019

The Smoky Hill Trail Conference weekend is here, and we are excited to host folks from all over Kansas, Colorado and beyond! The theme of the weekend is “Fort Wallace - the Fightin’est Fort on the Smoky Hill Trail,” and presentations will explore the events,... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Oct 10, 2019

This Saturday night, we are delighted to welcome Rachel Garcia and Thu Tran “The Singer and the Songwriter” to the Fort Wallace Museum for an evening of live music at 7pm as part of the High Plains Public Radio Artists Series! The Singer and The Songwriter is the... [More]

More Bugle Notes