Thursday, April 17, 2014

Lizards in Pictures: A Letter for Keller

Lizard in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. Photo by Darla Sue Dollman. This little fella lives beneath our rock wall. He is so small he just slides into cracks and disappears when the big birds come near so they won't eat him.

This is a lizard letter for my grandson, Keller Elway, from Mam Mam. Your mommy told me you like lizards. Well, Mam Mam loves lizards, too, and here's a few  pictures of her favorite lizards that she wants to share with you...

This is a funny story you might like to hear! I was walking to the park with your cousins, Layla and Eli Lou, and I told them that I wished they could visit Texas, where you live with your mommy and daddy, or New Mexico, where I live now, so they could see lizards, and while we were talking and walking down the sidewalk I looked at the sidewalk in front of us then stopped walking and said, "Oh my goodness! I think that is a lizard on the sidewalk!" So we walked up to it very slowly and it held still for a long time so I could take pictures.

So, I took his picture, and he moved around a bit and I took more pictures. He watched us watching him and held very still. Then after awhile I think he became bored and walked away. 

This lizard looks like a dinosaur, but he is just a different kind of lizard. He was lying in the sun working on his suntan in Texas. Mam Mam used to live in Texas when you were a baby. We had lots of lizards around our house and birds called Road Runners that liked to eat them. 


This is a Road Runner at my house in New Mexico. He likes my house because we have so many lizards and small birds. Road Runners are the fastest birds I've ever seen, but lizards are pretty fast, too! This Road Runner is young and still learning how to hunt. 

This is the lizard in Colorado again! My goodness he likes to have his picture taken! He just keeps popping in here, showing off! I think he must like us. 

This is a lizard sitting on a block of granite in Texas. Granite is a type of pink stone that is all over the part of Texas where Mam Mam used to live called The Hill Country.  Lizards like to lie on rocks in the sunshine to keep their bellies warm. They are fast, but they're kind of lazy, too, sometimes. Sometimes they like to just lie around and watch things. 

These are my neighbors. I did not show their faces because I did not ask their mommies. I told my neighbors that you like lizards, so every week they bring me lizards in cups. Lots and lots and lots of lizards. I tell them thank you very much, they are so kind. Then I take the lizards to my backyard and release them into my plants. 

I think it is nice of them to think of you, but there is no way I can send you lizards in the mail. They will not fit in an envelope, and  even if they did fit in an envelope, if the lizard started jumping in the envelope it might frighten the mailman and he would run down the street shouting  "EEK!" So, I let them go find their mommies again and they have a happy life in my backyard eating bugs. 

This lizard fell in my pond in Texas. He was upside down and grey, but I had a feeling he was still alive, so I held in my hands in the sunshine for a long time and pressed very gently on his tummy to try and press the water out--very, very gently--and after about an hour he started moving, so I set him on a rock and worked on my garden. The next time I checked on him he was walking around and finally crawled beneath the rocks by the pond. I think he had a house there with his mommy and daddy and brothers and sisters. 

I was having a garage sale in New Mexico, sitting in a chair, talking to a little girl when suddenly this lizard ran up my leg and onto my arm. It just sat there for a long time and all the little children in the neighborhood came to look at the lizard on my arm. Then one of the mommies took its picture for me. 

After we took his picture  I picked him up and placed him in the rocks by my feet because I think that's where he came from, so his family was probably looking for him. Sometimes those baby lizards like to explore, but they need their homes. 

This lizard lives at my neighbor's house. I walk my dogs every day and every time I walk past my neighbor's house, this lizard is lying in the sun, sleeping. When he hears my dogs he raises his head to make sure they are on leashes, then he goes back to sleep. 

Like I said before, I think they are very lazy. Fast, buy lazy. Or maybe they pretend to be lazy and hold really still so the bugs don't see them, then when the bugs aren't looking they jump on them and eat them up! Lizards like bugs. Yum. 

These next three pictures are of a beautiful lizard that lives on he side of my house. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but she is actually rather big. She has a lot of color on her. She's pretty. I like to look at her. She doesn't run away when she sees me. She may have eggs in her belly in this picture--her belly is kind of big. 

One time, s e let me pick her up and hold her for awhile. It felt funny. Her claws stuck to my hands. She held very still and stared up at me, then I put her back on the wall. 

Sometimes when I talk to lizards in a soft, quiet voice it turns its  head as if it is listening and it doesn't run away. You should try it sometime. In Texas, lizards used to come in our house all the time. 

One time our cat was chasing a lizard in my bedroom and grabbed its tail. The lizard's tail came right off! Lizards can grow new tails though, sometimes in only three or four months depending on the type of lizard. 

I caught that lizard before the cat did and held him in my hands. I talked to him real soft so he wouldn't try to run away and get hurt again and he looked at me sideways and held really still until I got him outside and let him go so he could find his mommy and daddy. 

Guess who this is? Yes, it is my neighbor's lazy lizard again. He looks a different color because he's on a different color of rock so he looks darker, but it's him. He lives between the three rocks--two pink ones and this big brown rock. 

On this day, when I walked by with my dogs, he didn't even raise his head to see who we were. He opened one eye and looked at us, then went right back to sleep! Silly lizard! 

This is a mommy and daddy lizard. The mommy might be the bigger lizard. It's just that way with some lizards. 

One time I was digging in my garden and I found a bunch of little white balls. I didn't know what they were at first, then I realized they were eggs! I quickly buried them back in the dirt and watched them for a few days to make sure no other creatures tried to dig them up because in nature, animals eat other animals. 

That is just the way God made them. So, I watched the eggs, then one day I saw the dirt moving and the eggs moving and the eggs cracked open and a bunch of baby lizards were stretching their legs and walking around my little garden. I ran inside to get Grampa Steve so he could watch, too. It was fun. 

Well, this is me, your Mam Mam! I've shown you lots of lizards, but I have many more pictures and when I find them I will send them to you. Uncle Aaron keeps my pictures at his house in case I lose them, so I will search through his pictures to find more for you. I love you so much! Love, Mam Mam

In the A to Z Bloggers Challenge L is for Lizard! 
All photos property of Darla Sue Dollman. Do not use without permission. 


Maria Dunn said...

What a sweet letter to your grandson, Keller, Mam Mam. I have seen my share of lizard, geckos, and skinks over the years, but how cool to find some eggs, protect them, and watch them hatch. I hope you'll be able to share some photos of that part sometime. I especially liked the shot of the road runner. I like visiting your blogs so much, that I mentioned it in my 'O' post. Enjoy. Maria from Delight Directed Living

Darla Sue Dollman said...

Oh Maria, I am flattered! I enjoy reading your blog, as well! I love God's creatures and feel so blessed to have seen so many in my days. I was surprised that the eggs hatched, to be honest. I've heard so many times that if the mother senses a human has been near she will not return to the eggs or babies, but my experience, from bunnies to lizards, has been that they always return and sometimes simply move the nest, in the case of bunnies.