24 February, 2012

The Heavens Declare His Handiwork...

Tonight's nature study

Jupiter, Venus, and The Moon

What a gorgeous finish to a very good week.

I hope you had a clear sky and took time to take it in the beauty!


17 February, 2012

First Day of GBBC - Cedar Waxwings!

This has been the winter of Cedar Waxwings here at the cottage.

And this is the closest they have gotten to the house.

(all rights reserved. Photos by Javamom copyright 2012)

There was not better day for them to show up to be counted!

It is day one of The Great Backyard Bird Count.

And this was about 1/5th of the group that visited today. They drank together

and even seemed to wait 'patiently' in line for a second turn at the bird bath.

I don't mind that they left quite a mess behind. It will rain and wash it all away tomorrow.

We have enjoyed these interesting birds. I had no visual idea of how small they actually are. I thought they would be the size of a blue jay, but they are more the size of a female cardinal.

Are any of you participating in the GBBC this year??

Let me know!


12 February, 2012

Northern Flicker

I have never noticed a Northern Flicker in our neighborhood or yard before.

This morning, I spotted a large bird moving about in the neighbor's yard, so I grabbed the telephoto lens to check it out. Imagine my surprise and joy upon seeing this Flicker!

More exciting is that the Annual Great Backyard Bird Count begins soon! Check it out and count the birds in your yard.


07 February, 2012

Snow Moon

I couldn't resist getting outside this evening and snapping a few shots of this gorgeous Snow Moon.

This was shot with a Canon T2i and a Tamron 400mm zoom lens.

If I was smart, I'd photograph it through some wintry, bare tree branches. Time to put my gloves back on...


03 February, 2012

Befores and Afters

It feels like Spring. What happens when Spring arrives? That unrelenting desire arrives...you know the one. That urge to beat the dust off the furniture, open up the house, give everything a good washing, and throw away the winter clutter. The problem (if you could call it that) is that it is mid-winter, and NOT a Bleak Midwinter, at that! The grass is even turning green and lush again, and the tulip bulbs are shooting up stems. The cottonwood trees at the back of our yard are blossoming, as well. Yes, it is far too soon, and I'm guessing that they will get frozen back within the month.

And yet! While it is so lovely outside, I've done a little rearranging of a few "stations" in the house. Since I can't get into some huge project a la Pinterest just yet, this will suffice!         

Before -->


I used to use the small table to grade and do simple lesson planning while at the computer. I don't do that anymore, so it needed to go!

After -->

Printer station Before -->

Organized, but not very pretty.

and after -->

Now I failed to take photos of these two stations. They were flip-flopped and the toaster oven area was a catch-all for everything from bowls of miscellany, to bread, to napkins and pot holders. The bread and the pot holders are back in their drawers on the right, and I put all the coffee things here instead. I also dropped the side-bar down for more walking space in the cottage kitchen. Note the coffee and espresso accessories on the shelf above, from the french press, Italian espresso maker, Italian coffee cups, antique coffee mill, beans tin, and the creamer whipper. I also switched out our older water dispenser for this glass carafe that had been stored unused for over a year. I will eventually be painting that kitchen wall, if hubby doesn't knock it out completely one day, or create a real breakfast bar in that area.

This is where the coffee things used to be. It always stayed pretty neat, but I wanted a change.

I know it will get cold again. We need it to kill the bugs. But when it does, I can sit back with a good book and a mug of mocha and feel great about the decluttered spaces. Now if my guys will help keep them that way...

Are any of my readers getting spring fever and tackling projects or spring cleaning?