wordsfromanneli

Thoughts, ideas, photos, and stories.


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Lincoln Cracks the Case

See how I can balance? Oh, my! Forget that. Look at the sunflower seeds in that jar.

You think I’m greedy because I took two? If I don’t, that Della will get them all.  What’s that? Oh, don’t worry. I left plenty for her.

But would you like to see how efficiently I can peel these sunflower seeds and get at the inside part? Just watch! Anneli made me a movie star.  She messed up about three seconds from the end, when SHE got greedy and wanted to zoom in on me, but please, watch me in my own show: Lincoln Cracks the Case.


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Surf’s Up

After the blizzards of the last few days, the sun came out for a few minutes, just long enough to bring the whole city out to the grocery stores and create desperate parking lot jostling and unprecedented lineups at the tills.

That all changed overnight when the wind switched direction and brought strong winds (littering our yard with branches large and small) and plenty of rain to help dissolve the snow.

Notice the larger branch that came down next to the woodshed and the smaller bits all over the rest of the ground.

I looked out at the water this morning. Our usually sheltered bay is a wee bit rough today, but … “Surf’s up!”

I’ll take a wet and windy day any time over the freezing snow blizzards we’ve had.


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Why Didn’t They Migrate?

As I look out my window and it starts to get dark, it is still lighter than usual outside because of the snow. It has been falling all last night and all day today and will probably continue all night tonight. Big avalanches of snow are falling from the fir branches that have now bent as far as they can under the weight of the snow. I hope no little birds get caught in the cascades.

In the previous post I told of having to thaw the hummingbird feeders alternately to keep the sugar water available for these tiny birds. They are very hungry and I’m sure they’re cold.

Here is a very short clip of one of them slurping a last drink before night sets in. You can see the ice beginning to form again in the middle of the feeder.

A hundred times today, I’ve thought about the little hummingbirds and asked myself, “Why didn’t they migrate?”

 


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Lincoln Guards his Lunch

It’s snowing furiously and the wind has made a mess of the yard, littering it with fir branches.

It’s cold enough to freeze the hummingbird feeders. I alternate between two of them, thawing one in a jug of warm water while the other is available to the birds.

The squirrels, Lincoln and Della, have been getting walnuts (partially shelled) and sunflower seeds. But now the jays have discovered the goodies in the woodshed and are giving the squirrels competition.

The video below is about a minute long. I took it from inside the house through the window. The snow is blurring the scene as much as my dirty dining room window is, but I didn’t want to miss the show. It’s not Oscar quality, but it might be mildly entertaining to watch as Lincoln defends his lunch.


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Aching Bones

The cold snap has hit us. The suddenness of the bitter cold was a shock to us west coasters. We’re tough when it comes to wild winds and torrents of  rain, even crashing trees and power outages, but drop the mercury a tiny bit and most of us coasties are wimps. We don’t like the cold.

That wind is supposed to be southeast. Every day, every day, all through the winter, it’s southeast. What a shock when it switched to northwest. I swear I could smell polar bear fur in the wind.

Ruby, our 13-year-old springer spaniel has done some retrieving while duck hunting in the last couple of weeks, using joints and muscles she hasn’t used in a long time. Now, old age is catching up to her. She’s been having trouble with the stairs, not wanting to put weight on her left shoulder.

Just now she is soaking up the warmth of the tiles in front of the woodstove in our family room.

She does have a nice soft dog bed, but the tiles have been warmed by the fire and it’s just what her shoulder needs, while she dreams of duck hunts of the past.

 


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The Chill Moves In

Mrs. Flicker is in a panic.

“Did you say the ‘S’ word? Did you say snow?”

 

The Steller’s jay mouths off as usual.

“Oh, I highly doubt that!”

The rufous-sided towhee is trying to be cool. Soon he’ll wish he weren’t quite so cool.

“Now what did I tell you about that? Getting the flocks all alarmed over something that may not even happen?!”

 

The hummingbird, also rufous, is hungry.

“I’m not taking any chances. Anneli doesn’t put this food out just because she’s bored. I think she’s trying to be sure we don’t starve.”

 

The chestnut-backed chickadee gets busy, eating all he can.

“Me too! I’m eating my breakfast to build up my strength. It’s dee-dee-dee-damned c-c-cold and it might snow.”

Above him, the nuthatch is getting impatient.

“Will ya hurry up, Chickie? There’s not much time before that hog, the starling moves in, and I haven’t had a turn at the suet block yet —– Oh too late. Here he comes, the bully!”

 

The starling isn’t shy. Far from it!

“Errr-hem! Move out you little squirts. That suet is mine, all mine.”

The golden-crowned sparrow does his best, singing about spring, but finally I heard him admit,

“I don’t think it’s working. I might have to move south — and fast!”

 

I hope the birds are wrong, but it sure feels like it will snow. I remember how cold and snowy it was last January, so I have plenty of birdseed and suet on hand, and of course I have walnuts and sunflower seeds for Lincoln and Della.

Last January! Brrrrrrr….

But someday it will be spring again.

(No, don’t get excited. This photo is from last May. I just wanted to remind myself that this cold weather won’t last forever.)

 


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Scraps

Bits and pieces are always left over no matter what project you sew. This year, our quilt guild suggested that we all try to make something out of the many scraps we have accumulated. I thought it was a perfect idea since my sewing room was loaded in “useless” bits of fabric.
Enthusiastically, I started putting the bits together. Hours (or maybe days and weeks) later, I realized what a huge job it would be to make a big quilt out of all these tiny pieces. So I began to think small.

I came up with four placemats made of scraps. Don’t look for perfection. They are only scraps.


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Lincoln Learns the Ropes

I’m not sure what’s going on, whether Della sent Lincoln out to find more bedding to make a cozier sleeping place in this stormy weather, or if she told him she’s expecting baby Lincolns sooner than we thought, but it seems that Lincoln has been sent on a mission.

“The house needs more insulation. Bring back stuff to make it cozier.”

There’s just one problem. Lincoln hasn’t figured out that sometimes loose ropes are tied on at the other end.

What got my attention was a squirrel swinging on a rope like in a Tarzan movie. By the time I got out there with the camera he had settled down considerably.