Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Monday, February 26, 2007
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
A memory of last spring: lilacs in bloom and my first rose-breasted grosbeak in the yard.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
The trees were full of woodpeckers. This little downy seemed to be winking while he posed at the suet feeder.
I watched this hairy woodpecker preening on a nearby tree and caught this silly picture. Art thinks it looks like he's taking a bow but John thinks it looks like he's sniffing his pits!
I'm off to bed with some Advil and American Idol.
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Friday, February 16, 2007
She posed so nicely, minding her own business, hunting the highway median. I could hear the crows but I was so focused on watching the hawk through my camera's view screen.
Whoa! This is my very favorite accidentally cool picture!!
No, it's not Photoshopped.She flew down to the median to escape the crows and I got a good long look at her. The crows perched on the wires but would not follow her to the ground. After a bit she flew off with the crows in pursuit. She tipped in the air and snatched her talons at them twice and then left for a more peaceful hunting ground.
Mary is right. It pays to take your camera.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Mom got lots of cards and gifts. One of her favorites was this crystal cross from my brother Charlie. Charlie gave her one just like it for Christmas the year after my Dad died. Mom loved it and kept the rosary from Dad's funeral draped across the arms of the cross. That cross accidentally fell off the table and broke and try as I did I could not get the pieces back together. Now she has a new one and she's thrilled. She called this morning to tell me that she'd all ready called the priest in her building to have the cross blessed. It will be three years in March since my Dad passed away and we all miss him.
Here's my Mom with about a third of all of her grandkids, and great-grandkids. If not for my Mom and Dad and God's blessings, none of my siblings and I nor any of these beautiful kids from the next generations would BE.
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
When our time has come we will be as one.
God bless our love, God bless our love.
Grow old along with me- two branches of one tree.
Face the setting sun when the day is done.
God bless our love, God bless our love.
Spending our lives together, man and wife together
World without end, world without end.
Grow old along with me whatever fate decrees
We will see it through for our love is true.
God bless our love,
God bless our love.
Monday, February 12, 2007
Sunday, February 11, 2007
I was lucky to spot this first bird on Hedbom very high in a birch tree.
A ruffed grouse!
We watched a bit as he would teeter out on tiny branches eating catkins dangling on the tips.
Here's one of my favorite pictures. A black spruce where an American three-toed woodpecker WAS! Watch out Stan Tekiela- professional nature photographer- here I come! Stan was great. He's a talented photographer who is the author of numerous beautiful field guides. His "Birds of Minnesota" was my first bird book and I've given several copies as gifts. (It's now autographed! Thank you Stan!) Stan is also a very knowledgeable naturalist. He showed us where the grubs live just under the bark of these trees. The grubs are the food source that the American three-toed and black-backed woodpeckers are after.
Here is another of my skilled photos. We saw several of both the black-backed and the rarer American three-toed, but I got a shot of the not-so elusive Hairy Woodpecker!
The first person I met at the beginning of the day was HellZiggy aka "the other Sharon" a frequent commenter on Birdchick's blog. She's a fun and interesting woman. We spent quite a few hours on the road, but there was lots of conversation, chocolate and laughs. Good company!
Our last stop before loading up to head home was the Coffee Cabin in Duluth. The field out back is where the northern hawk owl has been hanging out. Our two vans pulled in and there he was. This is undoubtedly the same northern hawk-owl that I saw in January. He was further away than my view of him in January so I just enjoyed watching him and didn't take any pictures.
Sorry Susan, I know my bird pictures are pretty lacking. Check out HellZiggy's blog though. She got some awesome photos. But I did get a picture of me with the Birdchick! Sharon is great fun, quick to laugh and generous in sharing her vast bird knowledge. That girl knows her birds!
After watching the hawk-owl out in the cold (the wind had picked up and temps were dropping) we ducked in to the Coffee Cabin for a hot cup of coffee and to warm our tushies in front of the fireplace. When we got back to the Cities four of us capped off the day with dinner. Sharon, HellZiggy the other Sharon, Kate (another sweet lady from the trip) and I had a great meal together, talked alot and laughed even more.
Great birding and even better company. Wonderful day.
edit: oops! I forgot the coolest woodpeckers (thanks HellZiggy!)