I Mean, Really, What Else To Do When It Is Blizzarding Outside?

For awhile earlier this morning I watched the juncos and a male cardinal raiding the feeders, although, the juncos spent more time sitting on the roof of the suet feeder than bothering to tug seeds out of the mixed seed feeder or the sunflower seed feeder; they didn’t even look at the thistle seed feeder. The cardinal steadily tugged at the sunflower seed feeder, sitting comfortably (?) on the horizontal rim that surrounds the feeder under cover of the clear plastic “umbrella” suspended over this feeder. Why do I not have protective covers over the thistle feeder and the mixed seed feeder as well? I don’t know. Perhaps soon I will.

We also have, I am sure I have mentioned, a resident cooper’s hawk. I will not detail his successes, only tell you, that he is persistent.

He sits patiently in the azalea bush, a favorite haunt of the sparrows, cardinals, juncos (when he is not there!)

The other day I had occasion to wander the banks of the Muddy River again. It was late in the afternoon. I caught sight of 7, yes SEVEN, great blue herons napping in the half frozen waters and among the reeds. I reported it on my e-bird daily sighting, and the algorithms that run that program immediately bounced back–“huh? (my rephrase of their automatic doubting response) Can’t be!” So I proved it!!

The actual photograph of the seven herons and some mallards and at the bottom of the picture some of the diverse footprints I also spied
The same photograph cropped to bring into clearer view the herons
And here’s a cropped photograph to show the range of bird prints –shape and size

Further along the river ten canada geese, four hooded mergansers, and four mallards were sharing one length of the water–the geese were drifting forward in a meticulous parade, the mergansers were diving and emerging diving and emerging around the geese and the mallards, the mallards were paddling in place–absolutely none of them was disturbed by the presence of the other in their space. Imagine.

And robins!! There were a couple dozen robins very busily nosing under the abundant leaf cover (mostly oak, which have such staying power that when I “mulch” my flower beds and shrub beds and vegetable garden in the fall, I first layer in birch and plum tree leaves, then dogwood leaves, and finally the oak leaves–the first three leaf types breakdown over the winter and become more of the dirt, while the oak leaves stay and are a cover all winter, which I rake up in very early spring so that the tiny buds can emerge and delight), nosing and chattering all along the sloped banks that rise on either side of the river. It was a sweet evening sound accompanying the setting sun.

So here we go. As I have typed this, this morning the snow has added probably another two inches to its depth; the weeping birch branches are swinging side to side under the winds and gusts; the sunflower bird feeder has become nearly inaccessible without pushing one’s beak through snowdrifts (despite the protective “umbrella!”); and I am second-guessing my original plan to go out and shovel periodically to make the final shoveling effort less. It is 16 degrees farenheit, the wind is wilding, the snow is so fluffy, why not wait? I think I’ll brew myself another coffee.

What, I wonder, would the best me of each of us be? Why is that so hard to achieve? Why do I find thoughts, actions, responses to regret each and every day? Then again, may I never not regret missteps.

Peace. I pray. Peace to you to all.

Author: Kate Hemenway

I like to explore, to observe. I like to be within what is around. There is always something to wonder about and to ponder. There is always something.. My favorite ways to get to places are bicycling and walking; or reading, or thinking, or asking. Please feel free to ask back, as I continue to wonder out loud, express joy or concern, or, sometimes, talk through my hat.

3 thoughts on “I Mean, Really, What Else To Do When It Is Blizzarding Outside?”

  1. What a great blog. I felt as though I was looking through your kitchen window at your great out doors. And herons. How amazing. I thought they went south for the winter. Sometimes I wish I did! Happy snow day. Thank you Beth Sent from my iPhone



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