Monday, February 28, 2022

Sweet Sparrows

 During a recent dusting of snow,
this sweet sparrow couple took up residence in my spectacular birdhouse by the front door.
Made from all recycled elements, it is a favorite of mine and the birds.

- it takes hands and strength to build a house but only love can build a home -

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Saturday's Critters #428

 Good morning friends...
A spin or two around Lake of the Lilies always provides some excitement and picture opportunities.
I saw a total of four Killdeer

these two appeared to be a couple.
Always staying close together, I read that they are often monogamous. 
Even though they may not necessarily mate for life, mated pairs form close bonds,
and remain together for the entire year, even when not breeding, or for several years after.

This one appeared to be sitting on a nest or eggs, and that seemed quite early in the season to me.
I read that they breed in spring, and can breed as early as March.
Killdeer don't really build nests, they often just lay their eggs in the middle of a grass field or lawn.
I observed both protecting this area, right behind the branch.

There were two on the other side of the lake, sitting in the overgrown grass, of course!
Neither moved so once again I have twenty two pictures that look just like this.

There was one group of about five or six Northern Shovelers...
none interested in having their picture taken.
This is a male.
This duck really stands out because of it's long, flattened bill.
Sexes are dissimilar, the female looks similar to a female mallard.
In flight the male shows a blue forewing panel and white bordered green speculum.

There is one Great Blue Heron that hangs out around the lake.
Most of the time it hides and on this day it was far off, center of the lake, out of the reach of my lens.
Still, I enjoy seeing it and the challenge of capturing one or two images of it, 
even if they are not very good.

- dear diary, i'll take sitting by a lake over shopping at the mall any day of the week -

Sharing today's images with Eileen at 
for Saturday Critters

Friday, February 25, 2022

Getting Organized

Nows a good time to get the house organized, 
before spring comes and you want to spend your time outdoors.
Much of what we do in spring and summer are Covid safe outdoor activities,
and when away from home but indoors, you can wear a mask and try to social distance.
Maybe come summer, it will all be in the rear view mirror.

A great place to start getting organized,
"Declutter Your Drawers" 
I am sure it needs to be done and it really helps pass the time 
while we are indoors during the cold weather.
When I clean out drawers, I set aside a block of time & clean several each day.

I do not really enjoy cleaning but I do enjoy a good organizing project.
I think drawers are a great place to start.
They are small, 
you can do one or ten, depending on how you feel and how much time you have.

- when your environment is clean and organized, you feel motivated, happy and inspired -

Thursday, February 24, 2022

The Hooded Mergansers

Swimming around Spring Lake 
the Hooded Mergansers played hard to get as they often do...the boys more so than the girls.
This lake has two pedestrian bridges over it,
standing midway on the bridge made capturing these images a little easier.

The Hooded Mergansers are small ducks with a thin bill and collapsable crest
 that makes the head look oversized and oblong.

Sexes are dissimilar.
For those who do not know, the female is on the left, the male on the right.

- the girls stuck together -

- it's not the cry but the flight of a duck that leads the flock to fly and follow -

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Random Fun Things...

 Good Morning friends, I have just a few fun things to share...
I have not been spending much time at the window with camera in hand, but I did capture this 

Male Cardinal
as he sat in the tree and waited for his turn at the feeder.

I finished my latest coloring project, two Bluebirds in a wheelbarrow. 
This picture came from a book my friend Liz bought me last year and I really love it.
Splash of Color

Speaking of Liz, she got me started on the game Wordle, 
is anyone else playing?
Wordle is a free game in which you have six chances to guess a five letter word.
There is one word per day and everyone has the same word.
Each time you guess a word, the letters turn green, yellow or gray to indicate if it is a correct letter, 
or in the correct spot.
I have never played a game on my phone, this one is great.

I ordered this book...

Adventures From Scratch
I am just getting in to the book, I'll let you know more about it as I scan through the pages.

I watched an excellent documentary...

The Case Against Boeing
This Documentary reveals how Boeing's alleged priority of profit over safety could have 
contributed to two catastrophic crashes within months of each other.
Watch it on Netflix if you subscribe, or it can also be downloaded and viewed on-line.

It is suppose to be a very warm day in New Jersey today, we have a picnic planned!

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

January's Recipe

 Is it February already? 
oh man, we are two weeks in to February and I have not prepared nor shared January's recipe.
I am not off to a great start but today, all of that changes because today, I made January's recipe.
For those that do not have a clue what I am talking about, 
I bought a recipe calendar and vowed to make the featured recipe each month.

The Ingredients for White Minestrone Soup

The Recipe

I pretty much followed the recipe.
I don't eat peas, added extra pasta because I wanted to be sure I got a lot,
and I did not add a cup of Italian vegetable medley, 
because, quite frankly, I have no idea what that means.
This was so easy and very tasty.
Not my favorite because I like cream soups but it was very good.
I served it with crackers and crusty bread.

- there are many reasons why I love winter, and the best one is soup -

Monday, February 21, 2022

Pop-Up Luminaries At Longwood Gardens Part II

 On this special evening in 
and for two nights only, thousands of luminaries lit the garden paths both
 inside the conservatory and outdoors along the walking trails.

Some of the trees outdoors were decorated with clear lights.

There were luminaries outdoors also, but it was too crowded
to get pictures of those.
It was quite a magical evening.

- once in a while, right in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairy tail - 

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Saturday's Critters #427

 This tiny, home grown farm is one we pass all the time while out on our adventures.
I have often thought about stopping to take pictures but have been afraid of being chased,
or being accused of trespassing, as it feels a bit private.
But it is so cute, I just could not resist...
so I stopped

Two sweet little homes... 

for two adorable Billy Goats,

and a Donkey as well.

The three live happily together.

I want to come back at night,
 to see these colorful lights and all of the clear lights on the farm illuminated.
There were a lot of chickens, roosters and ducks waddling about.

This cute little farm was set up on the side yard of the peoples home.
It is on a main road, but the house has neighbors on both sides.

- live like someone left the gate open - 

Sharing today's images with Eileen at 
for Saturday Critters