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It all started with a birdbath.

Our backyard has become wild kingdom. Some of the things we've seen could be material for the discovery channel, and it all started with a birdbath. Over the years we've added to this habitat more for aesthetics than anything, but ,'if you build it they will come.' And come they did.

I'm not a champion of minimalism. The 'less is more' theory hasn't sunk into my being when it comes to decor. I'm not a hoarder, I just like artsy, eclectic things. No need to call A&E to sign me up for an episode just yet. Put your phone down.

We added two more birdbaths. We bought a hummingbird feeder, but one wasn't enough, so we added more. I've planted numerous flowers along the pool deck. A bird feeder joined the group. Hub even bought a hummingbird swing at Petals from the Past last spring. A hummingbird swing? Mercy.

On any given morning, you can hear woodpeckers, see two or three hawks soaring overhead, and view species of birds from cardinals to crows. In the evening, you might hear owls or see bats fluttering around eating mosquitos. (Go bats, go!) We've seen the hawks on the patio, they're bigger than you think, and witnessed them swooping down and catching a squirrel. That was incredible, but the hummingbirds steal the show. These tiny creatures will zoom so close to your head that you can hear their wings flapping. They fight over the feeders with fury. It's an amazing spectacle to behold, just stay alert.

I like to name things. I don't know why. Maybe it's a yearning for others' to feel a sense of acceptance or inclusiveness. Maybe I'm just a middle aged cat lady that's started to go off her rocker. Nevertheless, living or nonliving, the backyard clan gets named. The hawks are 'Thor' and 'Isis' and their baby is 'Hercules'. The cardinal is 'Louie'. There's a frog we call 'Henri', a pelican named 'Louis', a pig named 'Wilbur', and a flamingo named 'Pheobe'. I refuse to name the squirrels. Apologies to my Alpha Gam sisters, but once you've had them in your attic, they're not so cute anymore. Trust me.

Now that the roof is fixed, we're finally getting to design flower beds for the front yard. I'm happier than a pig in mud. I'm leaving room for additions to our yard art family. I've googled so many blooms and their growing zones that I feel like a botanist. The landscapers won't know what's hit them when they read my ideas. I've attached pictures for reference, scientific and common names, specific get the idea. I went hog wild. Poor guys. They'll probably all run screaming from the crazy lady. I'll post more on that this fall. It should be quite the adventure as I create a quirky english garden in Montgomery Alabama. God bless whoever signs on for this job.

Do you name things other than pets and children? Am I alone in this anomaly? Please share your clan and their names on if you're in this peculiar club, if only to make me feel a smidge of normalcy. My "family portraits" are below, enjoy! By the way, Phoebe's eyes light up at night, she's a solar beauty!

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