Thursday, May 27, 2010

In The Dressing Room

I haven't come across this before. Is it softer than grownup camel-hair? Are we running out of angora? Is this from farm-raised camels? What if I took the sweater home and it spit at my other sweaters, could I return it? Too many questions. I put it back.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Baby Birds Update

I promised to leave them in peace this year, but I had to take one little peek to see if....yes! There was successful hatching! There were four eggs, and I can pick out just three heads here, but we'll see. I won't try for another shot for at least a week. It's harder to get the camera in the tree this year, because the nest is in the exact same place as last year, but the tree's branches have grown a few inches longer, making it harder to get the camera close. I don't want to risk rocking the cradle. Imagine the karmic toll that would be taken if I knocked a nest of baby birds out of a tree for the sake of a blog post...

Sunday, May 16, 2010

This'll Do

A day of beautiful weather here on the island shaped like a fishie.
Our good friend Al Fresco arrived for his annual four-to-five-month visit this morning, when the DH and I took advantage of the perfect weather to reinstall the gazebo canopy for its third season. Here, Queen Fiona inspects the Restoration Of The Summer Palace. That's what I'm calling it now. I never liked the word "gazebo" very much, and it's not exactly a, "The Summer Palace" it is. Queen Fi is very much looking forward to lazy, shady mornings spent lounging in a chair. She loves the thing.
It didn't take long to get the roof on, so while I put the curtains up, DH had time to dig out the big gnarly roots of the evergreen shrubs I cut down last week, and then mow our remaining area-rug-sized scrap of lawn. Then, we did a little outdoor reading to make it official: summer's here.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Silent Disapproval

Unlike the loudmouth avian tribe mentioned yesterday, these guys don't vocalize at all, at least as far as I can tell. But I'm pretty sure they're unhappy that I cut down two big old worn-out junipers in the side garden, as it gives them a little less cover. Don't feel too sorry for them, they still have ninety percent of the front yard, and a fair-sized bit of the backyard too. When I walk to the mailbox it disturbs their sunbathing and sends them skittering in all directions, like I'm Godzilla and they're a herd of tiny dinosaurs. So funny.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Small Body, Big Mouth

Such a racket this little guy can make. The melodious chirping and long, pretty warblings of courting season have given way to loud, repetitious squawking intended to assert authority and drive away competitors. A handful of these house sparrows, three or four starlings, and my robin couple all have been flying-and-crying, swooping-and-whooping all over the place today, letting everybody know whose territory is whose. This loud posturing is necessary, I guess, because they've all got to live within sight of each others' nests, inner suburbia being as crowded as it is, and trees being as scarce as they are around here.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother Goose

We met this big momma at Mill Pond early yesterday morning. She's got a brood of seven to keep track of. Click the link to watch the littlies scurry under her wing. So cute. Happy Mother's Day, and remember to check your shoes after leaving the park...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Other Nests in the Neighborhood

Kenny spotted this nest in Hendrickson Park. Not difficult to do, as it's out in plain sight, and marked with a red flag, so someone's watching it. It's a duck nest, according to our friend who saw a white duck sitting on it one day. In trying to find out what the red flag means, I came across this interesting article. That gives me an idea...

Friday, May 7, 2010

This Year's Clutch

Here they are, looking exactly like last year's photo.
I want to leave them in peace this year, so that's the only close-up I'm going to take. Otherwise, I'll just be observing them with binoculars from behind a lilac bush about 23 feet away. And unfortunately, that's just too far away for my zoom to pick out the nest, which is quite thoroughly hidden from almost every other vantage point.