A Good Year Ahead

It was such a beautiful morning as the sun came up today on the first day of January, 2018. I hope it’s a sign of what a good year it promises to be.

Thank you, blogging friends, for visiting my blog posts and clicking Likes and commenting. Without you, there would be no point in posting anything.

I wish you all the very best of health and happiness for the coming year.

Regal Eagle at the Deli

Sometimes when I drive by this tree at the side of the estuary, it is loaded with bald eagles, decorating it like so many Christmas tree ornaments.

Today there was only one eagle — an immature one at that. The rest were busy foraging below the tree  and up the river mouth at the Regal Eagle Deli. The last putrefied chum salmon lie like wet paper towels on the banks, exposed by the dropping tide.

Perhaps this one had eaten his fill and couldn’t stomach one more mouthful of rotten fish.

“Oh rats!” he says. “Another bird watcher.”

“I’ll give her my Exorcist pose – body facing one way, head looking the other. That’ll confuse her so she won’t know which is front or back.”



“Now, where was I? Oh yeah … urp … trying to digest that disgusting fermenting fish.”

Regal eagle looks for food, 

Fish again? Not in the mood.

Chilly air, he shivers high

In the tree so he can spy

Rotten fish washed up below.

Better eat in case of snow.

Leaner times around the bend,

Need to eat or life could end.

Though he’d like fish still alive

Choosy eagles don’t survive.

Early Winter

On Wednesday I came home from a trip to Olympia, Washington. The maple tree in my yard had dropped a thick carpet of leaves which the Captain scooped up with the mower for mulch, hence the bare driveway. 

Thursday morning started with a bluebird sky and by mid-morning, the wind changed and we had a blizzard. But the snow wouldn’t cover the ground … would it?

Before noon, this was my front yard. I was SO glad I wasn’t driving home today instead of yesterday.

And this morning the bluebird sky is back, but the mountains are white and the air is still icy cold. I put more birdseed out but I still feel sorry for the little animals that have to live outside.

I hope it isn’t going to be a harsh winter. This snow is WAY too early.

What is the weather doing where you live?

Oh NO!

Just yesterday, I took the snowy header off my WP home page, replacing it with spring-like pussy willows. Did I anger the gods and they made it snow again? AARRGGHH!

I stuck my camera out the back door and snapped this picture without regard for settings. The snow is falling in streaks, which tells me that the shutter speed is too slow (I think!) but I thought I’d post it anyway because it shows how the snow is basically “streaming” out of the sky. AGAIN!

I’m leaving the spring header on. Maybe it will work some magic.

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NOW look at the backyard! Poor birds have to scramble for food all over again, just when they thought it was spring. All the snow was gone yesterday and today it’s back again. I could cry!

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Gentle snowflakes

Devastate me.

Gliding past 

They say, “Don’t hate me.”

I’m resigned.

It’s like this lately.

 

Easy Wind and Downy Flake

The snow kept coming, and coming, and coming. It covered the ground and the trees, and piled up on roofs and vehicles. How can it look so pretty while it covers up the food for animals that live out there?

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Our back patio table is partly under the roof overhang, but you can see which part was exposed to the elements.

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The bird feeder has been a busy place again today, but what worries me is the potential avalanche risk to the birds. Many of them spend the nights under shrubs, and they scratch for food there. When the huge clumps of snow let go, they could easily bury a little bird. I found several around the yard after the last snowfall which was not as bad as this one, although it was colder.

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It’s quiet out there and the snow coming down is peaceful, but I find it ironic that this lovely weather is so deadly for many birds. We who feed the birds will save many of them, and “survival of the fittest” will save the strongest, the brave, and the lucky.

I feel quite small and helpless against the power of nature. I do what I can to make my pets comfortable and to feed the birds. Beyond that, I do enjoy the special quality of a snowfall. I had to think of Robert Frost’s famous poem. There are two lines of “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” that I find especially appealing, and which stand out from that poem for me.

The only other sound’s the sweep   
Of easy wind and downy flake.  
 
I love the sound of the words. They are music to my ears. I wish I had thought of them first. 😉

They Lied!

The official weather groundhogs (marmots), Nova Scotia’s Shubenacadie Sam and Ontario’s Wiarton Willy have predicted an early spring this year when they did not see their shadows yesterday, February 2, Groundhog Day.

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Vancouver Island marmot photo above, borrowed from Vancouver Island Marmot Recovery Foundation.

Hurray, an early spring is on its way. Behold the sunshine on the masses of gray cloud moving in from the southeast. Yes, the sunshine is hopeful, BUT, I forgot to consider what is INSIDE those clouds.

I shouldn’t have believed a mere rodent when he predicted that early spring. In the last post I had sunshine brightening up pussywillows, and today, the very day after the early spring prediction, these glowing clouds opened up and ruined everything. They made liars of the marmots and Nervous Nellies out of all the wussy drivers of the rainy West Coast.

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Just LOOK at this mess!  Beautiful, isn’t it?

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The Front that Backed

In my younger days when I heard the weatherman talking about a front moving in, I had only a vague idea of what that meant. It was some “up in the sky” kind of condition involving air pressure and a lot of other complicated meteorological terms. Later, I clued in that sometimes you can see the effects of a “front.” I can more easily understand things that I can see.

This morning I saw a front in action in the sky outside my house. I used to think the front was the edge of the clouds moving in like a giant wall. Amazingly, the cloudy side was not advancing, as it usually seemed to do. This one was backing off. Instead, the edge of the blue sky was pushing away the wall of clouds. The wind was coming from the north, bringing clear, cold air into the valley.

The rising sun put a pink glow on the clouds and the snow on the hilltops.

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Just in case we’re all getting too happy about the sunny day, I need to let you know that later in the morning, the winds changed to southeast and precipitation is sure to follow sometime soon. If only I could save some of that rain for the summer when the drought is sure to hit again.