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Archive for the ‘Birds’ Category

Goose Convention

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Happy Valentine’s Day from Virginia!

Love Birds

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Winter's Fingerprint January 2016

Looks like we got about 18 inches of snow in my part of Virginia during the first big snow storm in 2016!

I am grateful that we did not lose power.

I tried to help clear the deck but my toes got wet and cold in the big boot for the Big Foot. The boot is more of a summer variety with open toes vulnerable to snowflakes (even when protected by a sock).

I did finally clear a path to the bird feeder though since the little sweethearts were in a frenzy for food.

20160123_091058

Special appreciation to our friend, neighbor, and President of our neighborhood, Pete Holladay, who never fails to clear these back-country lanes during almost any snowstorm.  He came out twice this time to assure we can all get out if there is an emergency.   Thank you Pete!

And finally, “Ain’t snow grand?”

Being Florida born and bred, I still love the feeling of living in a magical white world!

 

 

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I thought that Autumn came and went

as winter spread its clenching hand
Blue Ridge Autumn Best

but Indian summer lingered

 

Remember

leaving love notes upon the land.

Vacated Bluebird House

I am here.  Please don’t forget me.  I am here.

FallFoliageFenceline

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Watchin the Girls Go By

It was a rainy day the day before we left for a European river cruise called The Highlights of Germany.  I was packed, ready, and gazing out the window when four boy turkeys sitting on the fence began spreading their wings in a show for a bevy of delicate females.

They evidently did not make much of an impression because the girls just walked on by.

Ah well!  I could almost hear the guys sigh as they watched opportunity passing.

But then dinner called and they were happily distracted.

And that reminded me of a song called Standing on the Corner (watchin’ all the girls go by).  I loved the Dean Martin rendition.

From en.wikipedia.org:
“Standing on the Corner is a popular song written by Frank Loesser and published in 1956.  It was introduced by Shorty Long, Alan Gilbert, John Henson, and Roy Lazarus in the Broadway musical, The Most Happy Fella.  

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Which Way to Venezuela

Now is the time of year when our fascinating “hummers” start to overeat because Hummingbirds need to fuel up for a long grueling journey to Venezuela.

I heard that on the radio once – the thing about Venezuela being their ultimate destination.

And I tend to believe everything I hear.

This little traveller resting on top of my umbrella has doubts though.

He evidently doesn’t believe what he heard about directions to Venezuela.

He keeps landing and looking north and then looking south.

Meanwhile, six more of his family ignore him and are busy swooping and arguing in a deafening buzz.

They are making a big fuss with all that fighting, and wasting energy over who gets “first dibs”/dips at the feeder.

Ah, I know it will not be long now when they will all take off for Venezuela.

Bon Voyage my little friends!  Fare thee well!

And please –

Listen to the radio next Spring and find your way back to Virginia!

 

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Pond Fountain 2

You bird lovers out there probably already knew the answer to the question in yesterday’s post about  Ridgely Historic Gardens. 

That ghostly hanging thing was a clump of sheep’s wool!Wool for Birds'NestsBest

Songbirds love this well-insulating, all-weather fiber that’s ideal for their nests and there for the pickin’!

Ridgely Gardens is a historic two-acre mountainside property overlooking the town of Clifton Forge in the Alleghany Highlands of Virginia.  This week my friend, Norma, and I had a private tour with Donald Roberts, the current owner and gardener!

View from gardenThe Roberts believe gardens are to be shared and welcome visitors, including groups, garden clubs, and folks like Norma and me, who are just curious.

These beautiful gardens were first started in 1902, professionally landscaped in 1932, and now the original detailed plans and blueprints are on display.Aerial of upper pond--2012

Donald Roberts Owner

Donald Roberts – Ridgely Historic Gardens

Mr. Roberts cleared, managed, maintained and stuck closely to the original plans and plantings which included a boxwood maze, a large variety of heirloom plants and extensive Depression era stonework.  Fishponds, fountains, a stone pagoda, a greenhouse, a sunken stone hothouse, and a gardener’s cabin are other features of this remarkable place.

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Stonewall Jackson House Lexington, Virginia

Stonewall Jackson House
Lexington, Virginia en.wikipedia.org

There is a scarecrow at the Stonewall Jackson House in Lexington, Virginia.    Thomas Johnathan Jackson was a Confederate general in the American Civil War.  But, before the war he lived in a nice little house in downtown Lexington, Virginia and he had a productive garden “out back”.

This is an old fashioned scarecrow (made with a potato).  It is hanging in the Jackson House garden now.

I could do that!  Easier than crocheting.

 

Old Time Scarecrow

 

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366px-My-bird-feeder 2

How to Choose the Right Bird Feeder: 9 Steps (with Pictures) http://www.wikihow.com My bird feeder.jpg

 

I knew the bird feeder was hanging from a slightly loose screw.

No time to tighten or re-position it under the eaves because we were just returning from vacation and facing shopping, laundry, and re-connections with humans.  I filled it that morning and thought to adjust things later in the day.  At least the birds would have a first meal after weeks of missing me.

 But, in an hour or so when I returned the feeder was gone.  Well, it must have simply dropped from that loose screw onto the ground but it was nowhere to be found.

The Mystery of the Disappearing Feeder

There’s a thief here in Virginia

who stole my perfect feeder

depriving me of viewing pleasure

and the birds their welcome dinner.

A search below deck, round and round

– no feeder was in sight.

Who planned the cunning caper

and not even in the night?

Who was the canny critter with all that derring-do,

who took such great advantage of a little loose screw?

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Whiteout View

Look at the whiteout!

There is a new storm coming.

Five cell phone Warnings came this morning,

and even more emails.

I  avoided the grocery store.

Who wants to risk drowning in starving crowds?

Forecasters call for rain, sleet, snow,  mostly snow,

maybe ice;

some say the heaviest snow yet.

Water buckets are filled.

It’s a habit really.

Mom used to fill the bathtub.

Is there really a storm coming?

Only the dove knows for sure.

 

 

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