Sunday, March 30, 2014


 A Sharp-shinned Hawk, the smallest male hawk in North America,
 made an appearance in our yard.
This Sub-adult (transitioning from juvenile to adult plumage),
 looked to be about 8-9 inches. The size range for males is 9 to 12 inches
Sharp-shinned Hawks look similar to a Cooper's Hawk. Overall, in size, Sharpie's are smaller. The head is smaller, less rectangular than a Cooper's, it's less heavy-bodied and muscular, the neck is less clearly defined, it has thinner yellow legs, and smaller feet.

The great majority of this hawk's prey are small birds, especially various songbirds such as sparrows (poor sparrow), wood-warblers, finches, wrens, nuthatches, tits, and thrushes. It plucks and scatters feathers as it eats.

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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Signs Of Spring?

Awwww, look at that ear!
Poor Stoney Braveheart has been in a tussle! More than likely from a courtship fight.
I think the ear notch just adds to his charm!

The goldfinches are "yellowing up".

The snow is melting, and it's a mess under the feeders!

 The grackles have arrived in hoards, but I don't mind.
They clean up a lot of that "under feeder" mess. 

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Friday, March 28, 2014

Faux Painting

1. Hubbers got me an iPad mini for my "it's not my birthday" day, which is actually on Saturday.

2. The mini is the perfect size for me. Smaller than the regular iPad, but with exactly the same functions, it fits into my purse perfectly!

3. Of course the first app I bought was 'Waterlogue', which will convert your photos to a watercolour like painting. I love it!
4. I think the app really appeals to me because I used to paint, which I can't do anymore, due to some disabilities from Multiple Sclerosis. My vision fluctuates from day to day, and I have intention tremors.

5. I picked up the camera when I had to put down the paint brushes. Photography became my new medium. 'Waterlogue' is obviously not painting, but converting some of my photos with it is fun, and makes me happy!

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Good Fences -1

I gots a peanut!

I'm joining in over at TexWisGirl's new meme, GOOD FENCES
Click on over to The Run *A* Round Ranch, have a look and join in!
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Monday, March 24, 2014

Out Back

Male Downy Woodpecker outside my window
Male House Finch in the yard
Juvenile Cooper's Hawk in the neighbour's yard
 Grey squirrel on the slide, eating and...
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It's still snowing off and on...I'd really like to know where the OFF button is!
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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Still Snowing

Everyone is really tired of the snow and cold, but as we all know,
"No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn." Hal Borland
I'm beginning to wonder!
Freezing rain and more snow expected today!
 Blue Jay
Grackle (has arrived a bit too early!)

Friday, March 21, 2014


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where you share 5 random facts about you, your day,
your pets, your kids, whatever
1. It was our 31st anniversary this week. Hubbers brought home a beautiful gerbera bouquet. They are a lovely pale pink colour with chocolate brown centres, but they didn't photograph well, so I did a little cross processing. I like the way it turned out.
2. He also got me that iPod I wanted! It's pretty cool! I have been spending time loading my CD's on it, and perusing the iTunes store. What a fun little gadget! 
3. I have another dentist appointment tomorrow. That iPod is going to come in handy, I'll just stick those buds in my ears, crank up the volume, and be blissfully unaware of the shrieking drill.
4. All my seeds have arrived from the online seed stores! I grow organic heritage veggies every year. I think I bought way too many tomato varieties, 10 in total. I guess I will be making a lot of tomato sauce after harvest!
5. It snowed yesterday, again. At this rate I may have to get Hubbers to build me a greenhouse if those seeds are going to ever get planted! 
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Thursday, March 20, 2014


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Beep (my granddaughter) is joining Skywatch Friday this week.
She's thrilled when people drop in to Beep's Blog (Click here)
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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Pole Sitting Poses

 American Tree Sparrow
Smartest Grey Squirrel in the yard, the pole is double baffled,
not close to trees or fences. I think he can fly!
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Monday, March 17, 2014

Beep's Break

Beep (my granddaughter) spent March break with me last week.
A few indoor activities.
Clockwise from top left:
Playing with her mom's old dollhouse.
About to sample the mini donuts she made.
Editing her photo for the Skywatch Friday meme.
Making her dad a birthday card.

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Friday, March 14, 2014


We had a major snowstorm on Wednesday (March 12), 10 inches of snow, then the temperature dropped to minus 29. It didn't seem to bother the birds, who are forging ahead with springtime activities.

The breeding season for blue jays is quite long, from March to July. In a given locale, mating pairs emerge from the courtship groups at any time during this five month season.

 This pair was courting in the protection of the cedar tree during the blizzard.
Male and female Blue Jays are almost identical in appearance.
 Males are just slightly larger than females.
Displaying quiet ritualistic feeding behaviors,
which indicates they will be a mating couple.

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Also braving the storm, a black squirrel.
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Beep (my granddaughter) is joining some memes this week.
She's thrilled when people drop in to Beep's Blog (Click here)
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Monday, March 10, 2014

Spring Break

It's Spring Break here in my part of Canada. That means, no school for the kids!
Beep (my granddaughter), will be spending her break time with me for the next 5 days.

We have lots of projects planned, sewing, baking, art, card making, a Super Mario Brother's tournament on Wii U, some camera lessons fun, and of course a nature walk or two (if the weather stays nice).

So...I won't have much time to post, or visit and comment on blogs.
I'll be back in a few days!

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Saturday, March 8, 2014

Shades Of Black And Grey

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Black-capped Chickadee
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Tree top territory
 Hey, what are you doing in my tree?
 It's my tree buddy, scram!
I'm taking over the tree!
That's what you think.
Foiled again!
Black and grey squirrels are the same species. A mutation in the gene that governs coat pigmentation is responsible for the black colouring. The testosterone-fuelled black squirrels are faster, fitter, fiercely territorial and more aggressive, beating greys to food and mates.

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Friday, March 7, 2014

Random Merfiness


1. Merfy turned 6 last week. That would be 38 in dog years. He is a "toy" breed, so his dog years are calculated accordingly. A dog's age is calculated according to size, not every dog year equals 7 human years.

2. His favourite dog treat is a yogurt dipped biscuit.

3. He only gets one on special occasions.
4. Merfy is very affectionate, and is a "kissy" dog.
5. Beep (our granddaughter) is his favourite person to kiss!
Thank goodness I brush his teeth regularly!
Here's a little chart explaining dog years
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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Three In The Tree

Another bitter cold morning yesterday, minus 35 .
Another day inside for me, lots of activity in the tree outside my window.
Female Northern Cardinal
 Blue Jay

Male Downy Woodpecker
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Saturday, March 1, 2014

Peanut Rustler

The sun was shinning, and the critters came out to play eat!

Blue Jay
A newcomer to the yard, Tuffles (black squirrel).
Huh...oh, they are for the Blue Jays?


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