Migrating Birds and Summer Residents

Every summer we have a couple of resident Blue Herons that stay until it gets too cold.  I was able to get a shot of one of them in flight.  He looks pretty cool in flight.

IMG_2442 (640x427)


IMG_2443 (640x427)

For the last three years we have had Crested Cormorants stop here on their annual Spring migration North, maybe heading to Minnesota.  I was so surprised the first time I saw these water birds that look similar to ducks roost in trees.  They are black with a crest on top of their heads with an orangish red shade on their lower bills.  They swim very low in the water and have long necks.

IMG_2451 (640x427)


IMG_2452 (640x427)

These shots were taken with my Canon Rebel using a 55 – 250mm lens.




More Evidence that Spring is Finally Here

This morning as I walked out the front door to get the morning paper, I startled a Robin nearby.  Nothing new about that, we have tons of Robins here.  But as the bird flew away I noticed a bird’s nest in our hibiscus bush.  Curious, I walked up to it there in the bottom of the nest lay three blue Robin’s eggs.  I had disturbed Mom as she was keeping the eggs warm.

I couldn’t help myself, even though I know to stay away so that the parents don’t abandon the nest, I grabbed my camera and quickly took some photos of the nest and Mom sitting there.  Until the eggs hatch the front door will be off limits.  Good thing we have three others to choose from.


IMG_2392 (640x427)

Mama Robin keeping her eggs warm

IMG_2395 (640x427)

Another shot of the Mama Robin

IMG_2397 (640x427)

The three Robin eggs.  The reason for color “Robin’s Egg Blue”

Photos taken with my Canon Rebel.

The Calm Before the Storm

It’s too quiet here.  It’s been almost two months since Mitch finished installing the dishwasher.  He has been busy with work and local city demands and hasn’t had a chance to cut the cabinet that will install next to the dishwasher filling the gaping hole left when we removed the existing cabinet to install the dishwasher.  I have not bugged him about filling the space because I know how busy he has been

I think part of his reticence to start the project is that there will be multiple “Mitch Fit” watches that can quickly go to “Mitch Fit” warnings and even “Mitch Fit” imminent crises.   Cutting down a thirty-six inch cabinet to a twelve inch cabinet is probably a bit of a challenge, especially shrinking the cabinet door, but I have faith that Mitch will figure it out.  (If not, I know where I can buy a twelve inch cabinet brand new in the box.)  That’s what scares him the most.  If I buy a new cabinet, I will have to re-stain or paint all of the cabinets so all will match and look the same.   Painting wood is sacrilege to him.  Wood only comes in stained colors if you ask him.

Finally this afternoon after a consultation with a seasoned cabinetmaker Mitch is finally de-constructing the cabinet and preparing it to become a third of its’ original size.  WooHoo.  What’s the worst that can happen?  It looks really sad and we go buy a new one.  Mitch doesn’t look at it that way, though.  He thinks it has to be perfect.

The de-constructing is the easy part; it’s the reconstructing part that will be tricky.  But it’s okay, I have my ear plugs.  I am definitely a glutton for punishment.

Call 911 Are You Kidding Me?

Real men don’t call 911.  Lacerations, contusions or amputations are only emergencies for mere mortals.  Men will refuse to call or seek help for any illness, accident or even heart attack unless forced to do so by an outside party, such as a spouse or partner.    The only reason a man will willingly seek out emergency help or call 911 is if he needs help finding a missing appendage in case of an amputation.  Then he will try to shake off any help by the paramedics except to maybe reattach the amputated limb.

Believe me I know this from experience.  Mitch has refused to seek medical attention even under threat of physical force to drag him to the hospital.  I came home from work one day and no one was waiting at the door to greet me, which was very odd.  I walked into the house and still no dog or man came to say hi, getting weirder.  As I walked into the bedroom there was Mitch laying on the bed, his right thumb and forefinger wrapped in blood soaked bandages.  I asked what happened and he just pointed skyward.  I looked at the ceiling and saw a hole about the size of a silver dollar with more pellets imbedded around the main hole.

There were bloodstains on his jeans and my first thought was that those are not going to come out.  There were bits of ceiling and insulation on the floor next to the bed.  Again I asked what happened.

His explanation so plausible to another man was just as ludicrous to a woman.  He was working on one of his shotguns by cycling a single shotgun shell in the chamber when the gun went off.  Of course the shell had to be live.  What was I thinking?  Obviously a stupid question.  His thumb and forefinger were wrapped around the end of the barrel of the gun holding it steady.  Once he realized that he had not blown off his thumb and forefinger, then it became just another cut, no big deal.   The shot caused a nickel sized laceration on his thumb and forefinger that looked like someone had taken a grapefruit spoon and scooped out a section of flesh.  Needless to say both fingers bled profusely.

I told him that I wanted to look at the wounds and he said, “No the blood would be too much for you.”  That I couldn’t take it.  Me – who has raised two boys through broken bones, broken noses and visits to the ER for stitches.  After examining the wounds and re-dressing them, I asked why he didn’t call 911.

“Call 911 are you kidding me?  It’s just a small cut almost a scratch.

Living with a Serial Killer

I live with a serial killer.  Although I’m not afraid for myself, others should be terrified.  I’ve watched enough episodes of Criminal Minds to know how to profile this serial killer.  Serial killers torture and kill small animals.  That fits him to a tee. He is remorseless.  He lives for the kill.  He loves to stalk, capture and murder squirrels, rabbits and moles, killing them with a viciousness only a true murderer can master.  This killer especially loves to hunt and kill lizards and snakes.  Charlie will stand motionless for minutes listening and staring intently at one spot waiting for some slight noise or movement.  As soon as the victim makes any sound or movement Charlie strikes with lightning speed and deadly accuracy, snatching the hapless reptile up, shaking the life out of the snake then slamming it to the ground for good measure.  How he does that always surprises me, those lizards are fast.  Who would think a dog would enjoy catching and killing snakes? Most snakes move pretty fast and disappear in the rocks.  His speed of execution is poetry in motion.  Deadly fluid poetry none the less.

Charlie will run down squirrels and rabbits, snatching them up on the fly, shaking and slamming the animal to the ground.  He will do this repeatedly until the poor creature is dead or wishes he was.  The mark of a true killer.  Moles are a particularly favorite victim of his.  I’m not sure if he hears the moles in the ground or smells them, but he will stand stock still for a moment, then start digging and without fail pull a mole out of the ground to torture and kill.  Charlie feels that it’s his purpose in life to rid the world of moles, snakes and lizards.  The moles I don’t care about, because of the damage done to our yard.  We even have friends that want us to rent him out to them.

I can see the ads now, “Serial Killer for Rent” “Mole Assassin for Hire” or “You Got Varmints – We Got Charlie, The Serial Killer”.

Early Spring Morning Hike

We disturbed a very large bird from its’ perch on top of a power line.

  I didn’t get a good look at before it flew off, but it was big.

IMG_2200 (640x427)

Charlie was busy hunting in a dead cattail marsh.

IMG_2258 (640x427)

The creeks are still very low.  Pretty but we need more rain.

IMG_2271 (640x427)

Orso coudn’t get enough running around.

IMG_2231 (640x427)

It was a beautiful morning just after sunshine.  The dogs didn’t

stop running the whole time.  They had so much fun, they didn’t really

even mind getting a bath when we got home.

Now I have tired happy and clean babies.

A great start for an early Spring Sunday morning.

These photos were taken with my Canon using a 55-250mm lens.

April Fool

This is probably the one day of the year I hate.  This is the day that glorifies all infantile people.   I don’t like pranksters and people that can only have fun at the expense of others.  Pranksters either have never had a prank pulled on them or feel that they have to continually one up the previous “joke”.  They don’t understand how humiliating and hurtful practical jokes can and are to the recipient of the practical joke.

I love to have fun as much as the next person, but mostly I only poke fun at myself.  Mitch and the dogs get a small dose of poking, but I would never intentionally hurt someone’s feelings for my pleasure.  I know too many people that have no sense of humor and the consequences of being the butt of the joke could be quote dire to the protagonist.  Now that might be funny.

I am holding out hope that I don’t get caught in an April Fool’s joke today, but I probably will.  Thank goodness it’s only one day long.

April Fool jokesters don’t realize that the biggest Fool is them.