Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Day 365 - 31st December 2014 - Sunrise, Ice, Woodpecker and Blue Jay

It's cold again this morning, -13. This is my 3rd anniversary writing the blog. I started off as a 1 year, take a photo everyday kind of project and I'm still writing. Thanks to all of you who follow me regularly and those who stop in once in a while. I guess we will be going on to 2015 together!
Time to say good bye to another month and to 2014. Wow, can't believe tomorrow is the beginning of a new year. Where did the time go? As years go it had it's ups and downs - but I guess that's probably normal. Met some great new friends and spent time with some great old friends.  We lost a couple of good people this year as well, taken too soon, but death does that and there is no point in dwelling on it. I remember them fondly,  not every day but often enough. I think 2014 was when the birding addiction really took hold - it's a fun  activity  - sometimes drives you a little crazy but Larry and I both enjoy it. The girls and I did our annual weekend in the "bitch mobile" at Harmony Bazaar in Lockeport, last July. A good weekend of music and laughter.  I hope we are able to go for many years to come. We had Hurricane Arthur in July - that wasn't much fun - no power for 5 1/2 days, although with it came a few unusual birds. Overall it was a busy year.
Any thoughts of New Year's resolutions? I never much bother with those as a rule - they last the first week then we forget. I am going to try to keep a better record of what birds I see, etc. Maybe use e-bird more often than I have in the past. I've got to keep myself on track with exercise class and walking in between. I should try to curb my food intake....well we'll see. Maybe after I've eaten all the boxes of chocolates. Oh well, we can try.

The sun came through the trees like a ball of fire yesterday morning.
It was cold, not like we've become used to. Winter has arrived.
Patches of swamp had ice, giving the sun something to reflect on.
I like the drops of ice around the reeds.

Even the lake had a few patches of ice.
Like feathers.
This female Woodpecker is fun to watch. She's like an acrobat some days.
The Blue Bandit!

Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Day 364 - 30th December 2014 - Clouds, Mallards and Goldfinches

Brrr, seems we've got our first really cold morning, temperature is -7. I know those of you in the west just laugh at our "cold weather".  I think we'll be home most of the day, Larry is going to help out a neighbour with a project late this morning which will take most of the afternoon I'm sure. I'm hoping Susan comes up later and we can walk into her camp and maybe get some pictures along the river. Other than that I don't see anything exciting happening.
Monday gave us another fine day. Temperatures warmed up as the day went on. It was mostly a stay at home day, took the tree down - way too many spills were falling and it was beginning to look a little sad. I did put it up earlier than usual and my favourite time to enjoy it is before Christmas not after so I tackled that job. It's now outside tied to a post next to a feeder so the birds can enjoy it. They weren't long finding it as I spied a few Goldfinches sitting on it's limbs in the late afternoon. It will provide shelter from the weather for them and a place to hang out. We tackled a long over due job after lunch - well I didn't Larry and Kenny did - the foot valve in the well needed to be replaced. Now I've been after DH to do this for several months or more, but in the normal man way it was put off til no other solution could be found. It was done in a jiffy and the pump is now running when it should instead of coming on all the time.  I'm making a great effort to walk more these days, although there isn't much in the way of birds to chase after in the hood, but the exercise is good.

 The clouds were certainly unusual early in the morning.
 Reflections in the swamp.
 It was feeding time at Myrna's.
They were a riot to watch.
 Goldfinches were around home in the afternoon.
 The Christmas Tree, where it will spend the rest of the winter.
They are happy with this feeder, but the squirrels and Blue Jays aren't.

Enjoy your fay!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Day 363- 29th December 2014 - Reflections, Pine Siskin, Sunrise and Mallards

Weather looks pretty good today, temperature is -1, outside, so it's a little cooler than we've had lately. I think today's activity may involve a little  plumbing. Either today or tomorrow I've got to run in town, pay a few  bills before the end of the month, etc. Life is more or less back to normal again. Thursday will be a holiday but not as much fan fare as Christmas. It must be the mild weather, but the feeders are not as exciting as they normally are - we have all the regulars - Chickadees, BlueJays, Mourning Doves, Juncos, Goldfinches and I'm seeing a few Pine Siskins. Haven't seen any Evening Grosbeaks for a long time.
It was  a wet Sunday but not torrential downpours; mostly a steady light rain. Lexi and I got out a couple of times, only because I figured we both needed the exercise and  were getting a little stir crazy for some fresh air. Gifts were all put away, some laundry caught up. Decided I'd try the soft pretzel recipe that I had  found  some time ago - they were tasty,but would tweak a few things next time. I made those for lunch and then moved on to pizza for supper. A good reason for a little extra walking.  It did stop around supper time. Larry couldn't resist any longer and dug out the old card table and started a jigsaw puzzle. Usually we have one on the go during the winter.
This is actually the reflection of the tree branch in the lake.
A plump Pine Siskin, there are several regular ones at the feeders most days.
Saturday morning's sunrise through the trees.
In the woodpile.
There was just a little ice along the edge of the swamps and puddles.
Love those roadside weeds.

Mallards were skimming across the lake.

Enjoy your day!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Day 362 - 28th December 2014 - Bald Eagle, Song Sparrow, Waves and Eiders

Looks like it's going to be a mostly inside day. Rain on the way - seems it will be over with before the day's out, so that's not bad. A good time to put gifts away from the tree and maybe make some pretzels and pizza. Got a new shorebird book for Christmas, will start studying that up a bit too. I think Larry is about ready to start one of his new jigsaw puzzles - I found one with a Green Heron - looks like the one we saw this fall.
Another fine weather day - good for another trip to the beach! We headed in the opposite direction yesterday. Went down through West Sable River, Johnson's Pond, Jones' Harbour. Back and down to  Louis Head,  Little Harbour, Hemeon's Head then towards Shelburne again. So it was a good jaunt. The tide was high and Larry's limping more than usual these days so I didn't walk down to Matthews Lake. I figured the headland would be pretty wet as well with some very good water holes along the way.  Larry had gotten a few loads of wood in the basement before we left, so he piled those up, while Lexi and I went for a run. All in all a great adventure day.
Eagle soaring high - found him in West Sable River.
Song Sparrow hanging out around the wharf at Jone's Harbour.
I startled this Great Blue Heron by the wharf and he headed off to a tree.
Waves were fabulous at Johnson's Pond. Another one of those great secrets in Shelburne County.

This one reminded me more of a waterfall than a wave.
Should have been a day for surfers.

I think this is the back side of the wave.

There are still some Rosehips around.

Eiders at Pleasant Point.

Enjoy your day!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Day 361 - 27th December 2014 -Sunrise, Waves, Snowy Owl and American Pipit

Looks like another sunny day on it's way. Not what you would call typical Christmas weather but great for people who have had family and friends travelling to visit. I think we could find a beach to visit in the other direction today, maybe Hemeon's Head or Johnson's Pond. Been a while since we've traveled to either spot. Haven't seen the Harlequin Ducks this year so that would be a great sighting and better photos would be a bonus. Sometimes it's just best to go without a lot of plans in place. Larry will probably want to put some more wood in so maybe we'll go early and come home early today. Stores are open again today - "Boxing Day Sales", think I'll stay far away!
Boxing day was nice. I took a jaunt around the hood, Larry put some wood in the basement (time to start replacing what we've used) and then we headed off to Cape Sable Island for a little birding. Found a couple of our birding friends and a few American Pipits. The Sanderlings they had found were leaving just as we arrived. Was a fabulous day for waves and spray on the beach. There is never a bad time to visit the beaches in Shelburne County. Saw the Snowy Owl at Daniel's Head and a few domestic Geese and Mallards as well. Gulls of course were abundant.
 Soft sunrise over the lake when Lexi and I were out.
 The ducks were all at Myrna's yesterday morning, by afternoon a few had made their way to Lois'.
 Great waves and spray!

 American Pipits at Stoney Island Beach.
 Larry with the bins.
 More waves.
 A gull with lunch.
 Not sure if it was bath time or they were feeding.
 The Snowy Owl at Daniel's Head.
Some domestic Geese.

Enjoy your day!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Day 360 - 26th December 2014 - Terns, Wild Roses and Beaches

Looks like it's going to be a great day - weather wise - sunny but a little cooler. I see a day with some birding for us. Wonder which way we should go? Sometimes it's a case of when we get to the intersection we decide. Also depends on whether we are going a full day or part day, Larry mentioned something about working in the wood pile the other day. Might be half and half.
We had a great Christmas - lots of lovely gifts and as predicted lots of great food and family to spend the day with.  Weather was definitely the pits - torrential rain most of the day and you could see it rising in the ditches and woods. However, the sky was pink by sundown with promises of a nicer day ahead.
Grandmother's Journal:
25 Dec 1976:Xmas Day - a beautiful day, sunny and mild early. Clouded over but mild. Went up to see Catherine & family. Mother, Ruth, Albert & I. New house is lovely. We had a lovely Christmas. Had a delicious dinner with Bettie, Bobbie & kids.
26 Dec 1976: Overcast. Rain started around noon or sooner. Bob, Bobbie, Mike & Tom, looking snares. High winds and showers tonight. Jimmie dropped in this evening. Kim up for supper. I went down with Bettie & Sidney for noon lunch. 
Well it certainly wasn't a day for taking photos here, so I've gone back and dug out a few  from warmer days spent at the beach.

 Terns were great fun to watch if we didn't get too close. They liked to dive bomb us!
Crow's Neck Beach - beautiful spot on a summer days.
 Wild roses bloom everywhere.
 Blue skies and fluffy clouds like cotton candy.
 Walking through the Drowned Forest at the Hawk.

At the Hawk Beach.

Enjoy your day!