Thursday, July 23, 2015

There have been feathers and flowers in my life

I've been so remiss about posting.  I've certainly enjoyed everyone else's blogging but I've been missing in action. 

I did make my annual trip to the south Texas coast during the spring bird migration.  It took a while longer to get there because we drove through rain for about 90% of the trip.   I think we had thunderstorms every night of the week we were there and our house was rockin' and rollin'.  Since Hurricane Ike, all houses rebuilt on the Bolivar Peninsula are raised on pilings.    Days included some rain but we were able to be out and about most of the time.
Scissor-tail flycatcher
I did all the driving on this trip as we were on my vehicle, although my buddy Larry would have helped out had I asked.   The three of us have birded together so much that we all know how to move along or linger so that we're all happy.  We did trek through a lot of mud and puddles on some days.  My hiking shoes weren't the waterproof ones so my feet got wet.  I always wear wool socks with those shoes anyway so my feet didn't get cold.

Because I was driving and the drippy woods, I didn't take many pictures. 
Purple Gallinule 
Here on the homefront, I arranged for a local nursery to put in a new flower bed and a new raised bed.  Took for-ev-er to get it all done. 
New perennial bed newly planted
One month later
Of course, it looks differently now.  All in all, I'm pleased with it.  I thought there would be less weeds but I'm finding that we have to crawl up that hill every so often to pull grass or weeds.  Not fun, at least to me. 

The new raised bed at the end of the house is still a work in progress.  I have a few plants waiting to go in here and it'll need mulch once that's done.  
New raised bed
I can see this bed from my sewing room downstairs.  That was a primary reason for having it put in, so that I would be able to see flowers from there.  Although, I can see the other perennial bed through the side window.  I have a bird feeder out there and some days there are so many birds flitting around it looks like yellow snow.  Goldfinches.  And lots of other things too. 

Hope everybody has been well and is having a good summer, even with the weird weather all around. 

Y'all take care. 







Monday, June 15, 2015

Hello and Thanks

I'm still alive and well.  Seems my posts only appear in my head and never on here.  

I'll be back soon to try to catch up.   Thank you to all of you who have hung in with me.  

The view from below (on the walkway downstairs)
My knockouts came roaring back after being pruned severely.  Now, I'm afraid the Japanese Beetles have found them and I'm fighting that.

Y'all take care

Monday, April 27, 2015

A Room With a View

It's that time again and I'm loving my first spring as a resident of the north Georgia mountains. 
View from the front deck/porch
Hubby is suffering from the pollen levels but I'm not having too much trouble with it.  We both agree that its a small price to pay, however, for living in a place we love. 

The azaleas really put on a show.  Too bad the don't last longer. 

The hostas seemed to just burst from the ground. 
Hostas on April 9
Hostas on April 21

With spring comes the migration of little feathered friends, too. 
Flying little pigs 
First Rose Breasted Grosbeak of the season 
We're having a good number of Indigo Buntings but no picture worth sharing yet. 

Yesterday I counted fifteen different species of birds from either my sewing studio or the living room upstairs.  And I wasn't even looking toward the feeders farther out in the yard. 

Y'all take care. 




Tuesday, April 7, 2015

And here she is.........at last.

Hey, everybody. 

I've been fussing about my landscaping the last few week.  There are things I want done and the folks I've called are s-l-o-o-o-o-ow in getting back to me.  Finally, the nursery guy came today and started on the new raised bed I want.  


Please forgive the pictures.  It was dusk when I took these. 

I'm also going to have creeping phlox put on this bank near the mailbox. 

This'll serve as my before shot.  The hostas there along the wall are coming up nicely.  They were gorgeous last year and I'm hoping they'll be the same this year. 

I had a hard time holding off so long, but over the weekend I finally broke down and planted my garden.  A whole three tomato plants!!! 

They're in a narrow bed right beside where my husband parks his car but they get full sun there. 

We're seeing more buds and some leaves but we're still waiting for the big burst. 
Winter view 
I noticed tonight that the azaleas have buds and will be bursting out in a few days.  There are a few rogue clumps of creeping phlox around the yard and they're looking good. 


I've been sewing a bit but nothing I can show you at the moment.  I've been slow getting back in the groove.  The month of April is a very busy one for me and I'm in and out of town the whole time.  Poor hubby has to stay home.

I'll be doing fun stuff the next while and I'll try my best to take lots of pictures so I can share them with you. 

Y'all take care. 



Thursday, March 19, 2015

More Maui

I fell in love with the island of Maui when we were there.  Can't really explain why I like it so much, but I do.  We stayed in a lovely little free standing cottage just about a block and a half from the beach.   We could actually sit on the lanai out back and see the ocean in the distance.  We spent a lot of time out there looking at the birds and whale watching. 
High stress living
You could walk to the beach easily if you didn't want to drag along your chairs and stuff.  As it was, we drove down and parked in a PUBLIC parking lot next to a PUBLIC beach park.  What a surprise that was.   The other lovely surprise was there were trees along the beach and beachwalk.  If you wanted sun you had it.  If you wanted shade, you had that too.  Couldn't ask for better. 

I sat in the shade most of the time and watched the whales.  Never a dull moment for me. 

We took a day to drive the Road to Hana.  The actual distance is something like 60 miles but it took us more than four hours to drive it.  We stopped frequently along the way and due to the curves, we could only travel at maybe 20-25 mph most of the way.  




While there were breathtaking sights along the way as these photos attest, there were also long stretches when you saw only the curves of the road and the dense jungle like foliage on each side.

We did stop for fresh banana bread at one place and it was still warm.  I think that was a highlight of the road trip.  Now that we've made this trek, I don't think it is something I'd repeat.    We left our cottage at 7:30 a.m. and we got back home around 5 p.m.  

We couldn't go to Maui and not take a whale watching trip.  We booked an outing with the Pacific Whale Foundation on a rigid bottomed raft.  The raft held a maximum of 31 people and we were down near water level for the trip.   There were humpback whales everywhere!!  The strait between the islands of Maui, Lanai and Molokai is a primary breeding and calving location for humpbacks.  Thousands of them come there every winter.  In the summer they travel back to Alaska to feed.  They do not feed at all while in the Hawaiian waters.  



Coming back into Lahaina Harbor 

This was our second trip to Hawaii and I loved it.  The trip itself is a real bummer due to the length of it, though.   If you've never been, I'd highly recommend saving the pennies and going there at least once in your life. 

Y'all take care. 


Friday, March 6, 2015

Sun and Surf

I'm back!! 

We were fortunate to spend a couple of weeks in Hawaii and missed the whole winter storm affliction for our area!  We've had a very mild winter, actually, and it was merely a fluke that we were gone when the only bad weather of the winter came to town. 

Instead, we spend a lot of time in the sunshine.  It sure felt funny to put on sandals and capris instead of jeans and sweatshirts.   But, after a day or two it felt just right. 
Hubby in the surf
The first week, we were on the big island of Hawaii and stayed in a condo.  It was nice enough but it did not have air conditioning.  Since it faced due west and the daily temperatures were in the high 80's, it got hot in there every afternoon.  Thankfully, it did cool off at night and we slept with the windows and sliders open every night.  Loved that. 

We had wonderful birds come right to the edge of our patio and I added a couple to my life list. 
Saffron Finch
These guys are truly this bright and there were lots of them around.  I also saw Java Sparrows but could not get a picture of them.    In addition to these two, I saw Pacific Golden Plovers on several occasions. 
Pacific Golden Plover
I also saw Gray Francolins but, again, no pictures.  That made four life birds for me on this trip.

I'll be back with more.   Y'all take care. 





Thursday, February 12, 2015

Time is Flying


Where does the time go???  Seems every time I turn around another week has gone by. 

My birding pals, Birdlady and Larry, spent a few days with me.  We had a wonderful time.  Every day was filled with birds.   It was so good to see them.  We wandered all over the place, up mountains and over mountains and over to Tennessee. 

We took a day and went over to Hiawassee National Wildlife Refuge which is northeast of Chattanooga, Tennessee.  There we saw thousands of sandhill cranes.  These are just a few.  
Sandhill Cranes, photo by Larry Goodman
In flight, photo by Larry Goodman
Sandhill crane, photo by Larry Goodman
Both of them were just astonished at the number of birds that come to my feeders every day.  
Mourning Dove, photo by Larry Goodman



Carolina Chickadee, photo by Larry Goodman

White breasted nuthatch, photo by Larry Goodman
Northern Cardinal, photo by Larry Goodman 

Another of our forays was up to Brasstown Bald in search of ruffed grouse.  We hit heavy fog on the way up the hill but punched right through the layer and found bright sunshine up top. 
Sunshine and Ice 
It was bitterly cold due to the brisk wind.  The sun tried valiantly to warm the air but with no success.  The birds had better sense than to be out and about on that morning, so after a short stop, we headed back to the warm car.  
Lovely scene, but brutal




The warm was melting the ice just enough that the brisk wind had the ice coming down constantly. 

I'll be out and about the next couple of weeks, so may not be checking in too often.  Meanwhile, Happy Valentine's Day to all of you. 

Y'all take care.