Thursday, March 5, 2015

Clad with radiance are the woods

It has been snowing all day and the schools are closed again. I figure this is probably the last significant snowfall we’ll have because next week things are supposed to warm up considerably. Through my window in the living room, I can see that it’s practically blowing sideways. The DirecTV dish has been out for hours and the only thing working on it are a few of the music stations. For some reason, they’re the last to go.

 

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I stood at my front door earlier today and took the few photos you see below. At the base of these three trees, I could hear what sounded like animals screaming. There were more than one, and I’m wondering if it’s a fox den. I was going to upload it to Vimeo so that you could hear it, but unfortunately, it will suck down way too much of my data plan as I still don’t have the internet going at my house (am using my mobile hotspot on the cell phone to upload this post).

I miss it, but not nearly as much as I thought I would.

And I’m reading a lot more. I’m in the 5th book of the Outlander series, the Fiery Cross. It’s as good as the first and second books.

 

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When it snows like this, I really miss my husband. He loved a good snow and when he was well, he would spend much time plowing and clearing it on the horse farms where we lived. And when he became disabled and we moved here, he still loved it. He enjoyed having me home on snow days and when he could still cook, he would spend time in the kitchen and the whole house smelled wonderful.

I’m not sad. It would just be nice to have someone to share a snow day with is all. I’m fine by myself, though.

 

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This spruce has gotten even taller since we moved here in 2008.

 

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As has this hickory (to the right) and the holly (to the left).

 

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I shot a few bird photos from the kitchen window but nothing was really worth sharing here.

 

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Sometimes I’ll sit by the window and read, knocking it on it now and then to make the flocks of starlings go away.

They are so annoying. They scatter the regular visitors, like this little juncoe (above).

 

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George is at my feet, resting. He’s been trying to make friends with the new kitten, but Kitten is having nothing to do with him just yet. At least there is no more hissing, which is very promising.

And so, back to my book and the soothing music coming from the television. For supper tonight, I’m making Creamy Caprese Quinoa Bake, garden salad, and maybe some garlic bread. Yum.

Hope things are well in your neck of the woods ~

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There is nothing in the world more beautiful than the forest clothed to its very hollows in snow. It is the still ecstasy of nature, wherein every spray, every blade of grass, every spire of reed, every intricacy of twig, is clad with radiance. ~William Sharp

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Of sleet and a new kitty

As I write this, it’s raining ice. It’s been sleeting all day and everything is covered. The TV dish is thick with it, so only a few channels are coming through. I’m sure you must be shocked to see that I’ve published two posts so closely together. Yes, lately I’ve only been posting once a week or less. I still don’t have internet service but things seem to be getting a little better with my son and when he is gainfully employed again, then I will think about turning it back on. I hope I haven’t said too much.

I’m listening to the dripping of the roof into a bucket upstairs. We have two leaks that I discovered today and called the roofer and e-mailed the owner. It is depressing, frankly.

I have recovered from my fall on Friday afternoon. My arm and my hip still hurt, but thankfully nothing but a bottle of wine got broken!

 

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I bought this squirrel baffle over a month ago. The squirrels do not seem baffled by it at all. But it does help keep the birds dry when the weather is bad.

 

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This is pretty.

I took it this afternoon.

 

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I sat outside in the sunshine yesterday and it felt so good. Had to wear my gloves because my hands were cold, but that’s ok. It was a good day.

 

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The dang squirrels are varmints who raid my feeders, but they are still cute.

If you like varmints, that is.

 

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Mrs. Cardinal is all fluffed up, keeping warm.

 

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And someone was caught in an embarrassing pose.

:  :   :

As for the new kitty, he arrived yesterday afternoon. We haven’t named him yet and his current name is rather ridiculous. So we call him Kitty for now. Yes, we still have Miss Blackie. The kitty we took in was slated for a shelter and belonged to a friend. At first I said no, absolutely not. But when they could not find a home for it, I relented, thinking it could make a good friend for George (who loves cats) but more so for my son.

 

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He is a tiny little thing and his vet said that he won’t get much bigger. He is six months old with fur as soft as silk. And unlike Blackie, he loves being pet. He is full of energy when he’s awake and has mainly been living in my son’s room but this morning he went exploring in the house, and by this afternoon, he seems fairly comfortable.

 

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George watches as kitty explores my bedroom.

 

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So far, we’ve had some hissing. Kitty has never seen a dog before. He was interested in Miss Blackie but she made it clear in no uncertain terms that this is HER house and she was not going to tolerate a newcomer so easily. And it IS her house. The newcomer is just going to have to get used to that fact. George would like to sniff kitty, but can’t get near him for fear of being swatted. So we’ll see how things go. But so far, I like the little cat. And my son really likes him.

Oh – I can hear him coming now. I like that he wears a little bell.

Hope your week is a good one.

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Current events

Hello my friends. It’s been a long week, culminating this evening when I arrived home, flush wish joy because it was the weekend . . . and sunny. I reached to open my back door, and in doing so, slipped on the ice that had accumulated there and fell, shocking myself, ramming my elbow into the concrete walk, and subsequently bursting into tears. I tried to get up, but kept sliding on the ice – so I laid there. Crying.

Good grief.

I am not a crybaby, but damnit – it hurt. I had an armful of things including the mail, my lunchbox and another bag I take to work. I eventually made it to a standing position after seeing a puddle of what I thought was blood. OMG – I’m bleeding!! (this was my first thought). On closer inspection, however, I saw that I’d broken the bottle of wine I had just bought. And I was now lying in the puddle that it had caused.

Oh, good grief.

But despite that unfortunate turn of events, things have actually begun to take a positive turn – or so it seems. It’s maybe too soon to celebrate over, but a lot of little things have been conspiring into something akin to joy. Yes, it’s true. And while I’m at it, I think I’ll share with you now some photos I’ve taken during the past week. Just because, you know?

 

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Cold and ice can be beautiful, you know.

 

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I keep the feeders filled because I can’t have my bird friends hungry.

 

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This was the view out my kitchen window at one point this week.

 

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I buy myself flowers because they make me happy.

And a bunch of tulips are currently $4.87 at the local WalMart.

Win. Win.

 

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Crazy blur.

Took this last weekend sitting in the sunshine in the freezing temps.

As long as you’re dressed properly, it ain’t so cold. And the warmth of the sun is the nectar of the gods.

 

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The tufted titmouse is one of the loudest visitors to my feeders.

Seriously.

Shut up already.

(good thing they’re cute)

 

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Wing action on a nuthatch.

Say that three times real fast.

 

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In other news . . . things seem better with my son.

We are getting a new kitty tomorrow.

I have been selected by a juried committee to have my work shown in a local gallery.

I love hawaiian pizza.

I bought two bottles of wine today (and only one was destroyed).

And spring is coming.

So how are things in your neck of the woods?

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Saturday, February 21, 2015

Visitors to my feeders

The winter continues to hold us in its icy grasp, but I’m thankful I don’t live in New England. Sorry, my New England friends. I just can’t handle that much snow at this point in my life. I’ve seen pictures and heard the news and winter this year has been brutal to so many in this country. So far, ours here in Maryland has been much less severe than last year – and for that, I am grateful.

We’ve had some snow, though. And it’s been rather pretty. But it’s been terribly cold lately and when I woke up yesterday morning, the temperature was –1. With the wind, it felt a lot colder.

I still don’t have internet at the house, but am using my mobile hotspot on my cell phone to post some photos I’ve taken over the past week or so. I keep the feeders filled but this past week, have been inundated with the damn starlings and they have eaten me out of house and home. I have to go out today to get more bird feed because we’re expecting more snow tonight. Starlings annoy me because they arrive in flocks and swoop down, ruining my feeders and scattering all the smaller birds.

 

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I always like to name the birds for you. This is one of my favorites ~ a female cardinal.

 

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Tufted titmouse.

 

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Ditto.

 

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And again.

They’re photogenic little things, aren’t they?

(so are the bare branches, imho)

 

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Male red-bellied woodpecker.

 

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They do have red (pink) bellies. The males sport a red head as well.

 

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I sat outside in my lawn chair last Sunday in the sunshine. It was cold, but the sun was warm. As long as I’m bundled up, it doesn’t bother me. And I was in a protected area from the wind. I sat there reading my book and looked up when I heard a pileated woodpecker calling. I went inside to get the camera after hearing the distinctive sound of him drilling in one of the tall trees on the property. It is a very loud drilling sound. He was eating the snow when I caught this photo of him. Guess he was a little thirsty.

 

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Downy woodpecker.

(I love this photo.)

 

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Border collie.

(I love this dog.)

 

Thank you for your continued visits despite my lackluster posting of late.

Stay warm, my friends ~

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