ABS and Brake light sound off intermittenly on Taurus

I own a 2004 Ford Taurus with 79k miles. I bought the car with 23k miles on it three years ago.
A few weeks ago the ABS and Brake warning lights would pop up a few
times a week along with that LOUD bell. The brakes seemed fine and my much more mechanically inclined friends thought it was just a sensor problem or something.
But then the frequency of the warning lights increased and started going off just about every time I applied the brakes. One day the battery warning light joined in and the car died. Fortunately, it started right back up.
My neighbor told me I needed new brake shoes for the front and so we replaced the much worn shoes with new ones. Even though I just had the car in for an oil change we noticed that the brake fluid and power steering fluid were low.
Everything was fine - for a whole week.
Then this past Sunday the lights started doing their thing again.
I pulled the car over and was astounded to find dozens of acorns under the hood. This baffled me since I drive my car every day of the week. I got as many of the acorns out as I could and the car was warning light free for the rest of the day.
Then Monday morning the warning lights came back on. I was able to borrow a leaf blower at work and the 11-mile trip home was nice and quiet.
Then this morning the warning lights came on after about 10 minutes of driving and then again about 15 minutes later. By the way, I checked under the hood before I started driving.
Any idea what is going on?
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