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Monday, January 21, 2013

It's A Bird Fest!

When January rolls around I love to spend my days bird watching.  I have a little table right outside the doors leading to the deck. I can sit in my chair and see birds flitting to and from the table.  Fun! I never tire of seeing the sweet visitors. It's not often that I even see any odd bird.  Just the usual titmice, wrens, cardinals and chickadees.  Usually I have Juncos in the winter, but they have not yet made their appearance this year.  I think I saw one the other day, but usually they visit in flocks.  I look forward to them arriving. Today I used up all my birdseed and had to put a little bread out just to get these pictures.  DH was going to bring me home some tonight, so they are being well fed again.

I've enjoyed my 3 day weekend, tomorrow it will be back to work for me.  Now I'm focused on my week off in February :) Thanks for stopping by, I hope you've had a great Monday.

Monday, January 14, 2013


Home is such a nice place to be lately! The weather, though warm, has been damp, at times drizzly. I would like it even better if we had some cooler temperatures. They'll be returning soon enough, but the rain will probably be gone by then.   I've been kind of vegetating here. I have several projects that need attention, but both require a trip to Michael's and some online shopping. Got to get in the groove! 

How has your day been? Seems crazy to think that Christmas was just 3 weeks ago. Time has swift wings! Thanks so much for stopping by, happy Monday!

Thursday, January 10, 2013


These are slow days, aren't they? After the bustle of Christmas, January can be a welcome relief! I enjoyed my decorations this year, but when the tree is removed and I can once again look out my back door and enjoy the birds and squirrels, I have a quieter sense of joy. I like to look out on the woods, too. Bare trees have a stark beauty, and isn't it exciting when a flock of migrating birds fill them! 
We are having unseasonably warm weather this week.  The rain started tonight, which really makes me giddy! Warmth and rain sure do bring thoughts of Spring. On a recent walk around the garden  I saw some of my bulbs starting to emerge! That really gets the old gardening engine going! My daffs usually bloom in February.  Muscari, too.
That's all for me today. I hope you're having a great Thursday. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Nature's Treasures

We are heading in to some nice mild weather this week. I might even be able to get outside and do a little cleanup.  We still have a ton of leaves covering everything.  Believe it or not, there is an oak tree that is stubbornly hanging on to it's leaves. Goodness, it seems like all we do is blow leaves!  A short walk in the woods recently offered up some pretty fungus and mosses.  I like the underside of the fungus; I think it's so pretty!

 My Tea Olive is blooming. It smells heavenly! It's flowers are so tiny, but it's delicious scent alerts as soon as you walk outside. I've kept my shrub rather small, yet it generates enough scent to be able to smell it in the front yard. Wonderful shrub, thick glossy leaves and tiny fragrant flowers. A real winner. It will grow large if you like.

I don't think I'm very pleased with my moss heart.  Drats! I'm wondering if I should have used soil inside instead of the sphagnum moss. I really don't want to try to change it out though, my fingers were sooo sore after I made it back in November. I also was using some moss that I collected on an outing, which is very different from the moss I have in my yard. I like my moss better, it's greener.

I'm joining Mosaic Monday and Outdoor Wednesday this week. I hope we all have a great week. Thanks so much for stopping by!

Saturday, January 5, 2013


I am so glad it is Saturday! I don't know why, but for some reason, when you have a short week at school, it seems like the longest week!  I guess you have to produce the same amount of work in a shorter period of time. Today is just for relaxing...and getting the tree down.  That's always a little sad, even though I'm ready. I hate having the tree sitting in the room all dark and empty. It might be tomorrow before they can actually get the tree back to the shed. 

Today I'm joining the fun at Mockingbird Hill today for Favorite Thing Saturday.   I'm showcasing a little photo box.   I love it when something you make turns out just like you want. If I remember correctly, I got the idea from a book by Heidi Swapp.   I bought the little plain wooden box at Michael's. Sadly, they no longer sell these and I never got to make one for pictures of my son.  I bought little wooden circles and painted them black and put a shiny finish on them. Then I used a circle cutter and cut out pictures of my daughter. The little discs have pictures on both sides. 

I stained the little box and put a finish on it. Then I stamped my daughter's name on the lid with a small alphabet stamp.  

On a different note, I was having trouble sleeping last night and decided to see if I could find some tips for better pictures. I have just a simple point and shoot camera that allows you to select a few preset situations (museum, snow, sunlight, etc...). I found two great tips that I will surely use. 
 With flash off, you can bring more light to your subject by focusing on the darkest area, then shooting your subject.  In the pictures below, you can see the difference.  In the second photograph, I first focused on the dark green of the pine, then moved to the little wooden cup.  You can see how much brighter that area is.  

The second tip was to help with blurry photos. It was suggested that you use your camera's timer. This is something that will be a big help to me.  Even when using a tripod my photos are often blurry. I don't think I'll ever get the really sharp photos, but hopefully I can at least overcome the hand-shakiness.

I hope you are having a great Saturday.  Thanks so much for stopping by!