You are currently browsing the monthly archive for May 2012.

The owls watching me watching them (and the moon!)

The owls watch me from their tree.  I in turn watch them and take lots of photographs, hoping for one good one.  One day I will own a camera with a function that compensates for my shaky hands.  Really, I will.  I look forward to that.

The sky tonight was beautiful, and the color held while I ran back across the bridge to get my camera again.

It was brilliant tangerine and the pink streaks were like weaves of cotton candy.  That is one thing about living here, I have never seen such beautiful sky.

I am worn out and going to bed.  Here is the best long shot of the calmer of the two kid owls.  This is the one that I had to help out of the wire the other night.  I just realized I can see his feather “ears” growing!!!

GHO fledgling May 2012

Goodnight all!

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Same type of shot as the previous post, but taken in the partial light of the sun. Eclipse light!

There was weirdness about when the eclipse was in full swing.  I was outside, fascinated by the light (I am all about light with my photography) when I realized I was hearing a cricket begin to chirp.  I went near the garage by mom’s house and thought my eyes were acting up.  In fact, I was sure they were.  Even to the point of taking off the glasses and rubbing my eyes.  Our shadows are always crisp, especially when silhouetted on something like the side of the garage.  Or onto a concrete path.

My shadow wasn’t.  Crisp that is.  Not at all.

My shadow on the garage wall. With almost a double image around my shape. Eclipse shadow!

I had to go and get mom.  Told her she really had to see this, because I had never heard of this before.  She had to see it too.  I had never heard shadows mentioned with the eclipse going on.  Hmm.  We goofed around and then I took this photo.  Both our hands in shadow/silhouette on the concrete.  Scary weirdness of light!

Eclipse shadows, my hand on top, mom’s on the bottom. SO STRANGE!

We put together hand-held viewers, cardboard with a pinhole and a white sheet of paper (or the wall, or the dining room curtain) and had a great time keeping track of what the sun was doing, all from the comfort of the dining room.  Hmm.  I have to transfer the photographs I took with my cell phone camera to this computer –  so perhaps I will post that another time.

The lilacs had to be included.  Well really only because I kept walking past them, enjoying the fact the %&#@ bees are gone 🙂 And they are lilacs.

Lilacs in eclipse light.

And can’t leave the Great Horned Owl out.

The owl surveying his domain. He kindly looked my direction when I addressed him.

I heard ravens acting obnoxious this morning.  I went outside and sure enough, they were doing their “tag, you’re IT” on one of the adult owls in a tree across the street.  Just bugging the stuffing out of the owl.  I went over and clapped my hands three or four times and yelled at them, so they left 🙂 But MY owl will you? I don’t think so!  Have a good day all, cooling off, might be really nice for a few days.

Now the butterflies are here!

Just so pretty.  Now I am off to get an enclosure ready for the kittens.  They are wild and almost 5 weeks old by their looks.  Their mom moved them to my barn in back.  I do NOT need wild cats in such numbers.  So, they will join the bottle fed one (the tiny one passed away this morning) and they can be tamed and rehomed in about a month.

Never boring here!  Enjoy the day all!

Lilacs of course

The lilacs are fading.  Today for the first time since the bloom really got into full swing, there were not a million bees present.  Whew! There were things about today that have been difficult.  The day began too early (like 3:30 am, never got back to sleep really)  Gave up and got up before six.  Which I prefer, except when I don’t sleep.   First, sadly and beyond my comprehension, the people across the road had yet another animal struck on the road and it died.  Right in front of neighbors daughter.  I went out and stood by, being there until her dad got home to be there with her.  Sad.  The girl did not seem to see that she herself was too close to the road.  I wanted to be there for her and make sure nothing else bad happened.  The girl was so upset, the family has been really trying to keep the animals safe.  Heartbreaking and avoidable. Agh!

On another note, I am feeding two wild kittens.  One is fine, the other had never gotten enough milk from the mom and while it is still trying, well, I will help it try.  Tiny thing.  So at least that part of the day was uneventful.  Later on, this evening, I heard odd noises, my dogs were barking, but in a rather restrained way.  I went out the back door, and looked to my dogs.  First, there sat Kate in her kennel.

Uh oh, that isn’t right!!!

Above and behind Kate, (seeming in the tree) was one of the owlets.  Above Kate’s yard. To the other side was my other dog Molly (who did NOT think it was ok to have the owl so close.)  Kate.  Owlet.  Molly.  Really? I grabbed the camera and took this shot.  It was starting to get dark, and I realized that the parent owls were in the next tree, making concerned noise at the owlet.  From the back door, it looked like the baby was sitting on the spindly branches of the tree in the corner of Kate’s yard.  Kate by the way is an Anatolian shepherd.  I got her years ago as a goat guard dog.  She is unfortunately terrified of goats.  She is our pet dog 🙂  I wasn’t concerned about the owlet if it fell into Kate’s yard.  She would love something of ours to death before she hurt it.  She was unconcerned about the owlet, who once I got close enough to see, was in trouble.   Long ago, before we moved here, someone made those kennels.  Or maybe they were gardens.  At any rate, they are fenced below nicely, and above there are spans of 2″ chicken wire.  Very wide, not heavy wire.  It is not attached to the corner tightly any longer, as a deer did try to get in with Kate, or rather the dog feeder for the food.  Obviously in retrospect, it would be smart to remove the whole thing.

I think what happened was this.  When the owlet was going to land on the tree, it hit the upright wire which it didn’t see.  Then when it landed on the wire, the wire bent over and trapped the owlets feet.  It couldn’t push off because the wire was wobbling.  It couldn’t step out because the wire had bent over and trapped the owlets toes.   It wasn’t in a flap, it simply was standing there.  When I got closer, I saw it wobbling up and down and boy did I wish I  wasn’t seeing that.  I knew I would have to fix this.  It was trapped.  Owlet couldn’t stand on the wire long without hurting its feet, so there was that – and the fact it was getting darker by the minute.  The parent owls watched me. After a few minutes, the male flew off and the female perched on the neighbors electric pole watching me.  I fed the dogs as usual, water topped off.  Talked to the dogs like I do every day.  The owls have been witness to this many times.  I reason it that they all know my voice, admittedly I do talk to them 🙂  So, while the baby watched me from point-blank range – with the knowledge that the mom owl was on the ready watching me….I hoped they knew I was going to help.  I got a stiff forked branch and pushed it up under the baby’s feet.  Once it felt something solid, it jumped and flew off when it’s feet released.  Oh my.  We were all THRILLED 🙂 That could have been really difficult, but it worked out fine.

This photo I took a few nights ago.  The babies fledged and now sit in the dad’s day sleeping tree with one or both parents.

Owlet in May 2012

When I approached the owlet in the wire, I knew that I had to be successful at releasing it.  It is a daunting thing to know that somethings life is dependent upon your next decision and how you execute the solution.

To the owls credit, they must have thought it ok for me to help.  The baby didn’t even hiss or clack its beak at me.  Good thing, as there is just something about that noise that sets my nerves on edge.  I didn’t need any help in the nerve department!

So, the owls are safe, the kittens are fed and tucked in and I am way past sensible.  Goodnight all!

The kitchen windowsill yesterday morning.

Lilacs on the windowsill in an ancient glass vase.  A small iron rooster.  An odd silver-toned hair clip with rhinestones.  The lilac trees (and BEES) just outside.  I couldn’t resist taking a few photos.  I found it amusing when I was on Whidbey Island several years ago, that there was a GIANT iron rooster like this one.  The small one I bought in an odd little store off the beaten path on the way to nowhere in particular.  Here is the giant one 🙂

The giant iron rooster!

Whidbey Island is lovely.  Of course I always figured that once I got older, I would live on an island.  Or in Maine.  Neither of which has happened (yet!) But for now, I am back to work writing, enjoying the lilacs, not enjoying the #$%& bees.  Have a good day all!

Lilacs, the big old tree May 6, 2012

As I stand by the lilacs this morning, I am in awe of their beauty.  Our biggest tree is HUGE.  It is getting ready to be fully in bloom.  The younger different varieties are already blooming.  The big tree is the largest I have ever seen.  It is of course made of a number of trunks as lilacs tend to do. Their scent is what I dream of at times.  Now it is ever present, that is until the blooms fade and they go back to being green trees.  Or tall wide bushes.  Not quite sure which.  The weather is warm finally.  I find myself wondering how this place can seem so perfect yet is for most of the year unpleasant.  I hear about tornados in the Midwest.  I say “why on earth would people stay there,  much less move there?”  So much for that attitude.  I have to turn that on myself.  It has now been 10 years since we moved here in a whirlwind of anxiety and unknown.  Within a short period of time, my husband was in liver failure (accidental poisoning with a wood preservative product) and the next several years passed with him being so sick it was heartbreaking.  I say I slept with my eyes open for that time, which isn’t untrue really.  He would go from being manageable pain wise to off the chart, call the ambulance, off to the ER again.  He never gave up hope for a transplant, but he was either too sick, or just above not quite dead and the fit and the call never came.  On Sunday, it will be 8 years since he died, here at home.  He told me on one of the last trips back from the hospital, that at least we moved to a beautiful place to die.  Sad.  True.

After that, I spent years slowly dying.  I was so shot emotionally, and trying to keep up with not giving up our dream of having a goat dairy…of not being able to even think clearly enough to disperse things in an expedient manner…. well things went to, well down the crapper per se.  I was sick too.  I have a laundry list of things “wrong” with me, I have a broken neck, not surgically stabilized.  I should have zero movement, my neck is totally snapped the other direction that it should be.  Two neuro docs have told me that they could try and fix it, but I would likely lose function.  And since no one who looks at my mri films can see how I have any motion at all, well, I will keep what I have thank you very much.  I have Rheumatoid Arthritis.  Then as I said, I was sick.   I was dying slowly.  Artificial sweetener toxicity.  Aspartame.  4 – 6 cans of diet Coke a day.  I didn’t drink coffee then.  That stuff, it will kill you people, it will. It mimics MS.  Look it up.  Stop consuming it if you want to live longer.   But like some people who smoke all their lives and die at 100 with no problems, there are some who have issues (me) and some who don’t.  It causes weight gain as it tricks our body into craving carbs.  Do you find it hard to lose weight and keep it off?  Duh!  Stay away from diet anything.  Eat food that was available, unaltered 100 years ago.  No processed stuff, if you must eat those Cheetos, get a small bag.  And be done with it.  There are healthier ways to live, and I have finally seen the light 🙂

The big moon the other night

So, now I am just me.  I write.  I take photos with the camera that makes me nuts.  Maybe next month I can get a battery for my old 35 mm camera.  That is a good plan.  So, I write, and I will refine and I will send my manuscript to other people.  Maybe by setting it free it will come back with a better future attached for us all.  That would be nice.

I would really appreciate it.

Have a good day all – and take the time to tell those you love how you feel.

Lilacs getting ready to bloom

Gee, lately we have had lilacs, owls and the big moon.  None of which I have taken much of the way of good photos of.  Grr.  I am going to have to find a battery for my old Canon AE1 camera.  35 mm film.  At least I could take the shots I want, without this infernal fuzzing or jumping around of this one I use now.

Daddy GHO and one of the babies.

Fuzzy telephoto.  It must be me. I don’t know, but this is half of the owl family that lives in the tree next to my house.

Lots to do, it is amazing.  During the nasty cold or wet weather, I am inside wanting to do things around the ranch.  Now that it is nice, I lack certain things to make those outdoor things happen.  Physical things are more and more difficult.  Lack of funds makes things drag on and on.  Just general botherment.  I finally make phone calls to get some things resolved, only to get voice mail and no calls back.  Is it just me?

Have a great day all, nice weather all week coming up!