Posts Tagged ‘robin fledgling’

That old saying “Time flies when you’re having fun”  also applies to working hard.

I did indeed go to Alaska.  We cruised for three days up the Inside Passage to Juneau and Skagway.   It was beautiful.



We went whale watching and did see whales, both humpbacks and orcas.  All those amazing photos you see of whales?   Taken by professionals who got 5000 shots just like mine:


Out of focus and not very interesting.   But the experience was fantastic.

We also saw the Mendenhall Glacier.


There was a glacially carved pond along the walk way to the view point.   I loved this.


I was entranced by the moss/lichen forests.


The area right below the view point for the glacier was roped off from visitors.   The arctic terns were nesting there.   I watched a pair in their mating dance; the male flew down to the glacial lake and brought his intended a little tiny salmon.   She accepted it.   Farther down the beach there was a female who was deep in the process of incubation.


We went on a bus tour of the inland part of the state, starting in Canada and crossing into Alaska near Tok.   On to Fairbanks, where I did the tourist things I never did while I lived there:   sailing on the Riverboat Discovery on the Chena to the Tanana River, visiting a gold dredge and learning to pan for gold.   It was fun.

Then we took the Alaska Railroad to Denali National Park.   There were more mountains than it seems possible.   And wildlife.   Mostly moose.  This was taken on our wildlife tour in the park.   This mama had twin babies.   They were less than 24 hours old.


When I got back home, there was a 60th birthday to celebrate, which was done appropriately.   Apparently I am not quite done with my birthday.   Yesterday in the mail I received a beautiful ammonite fossil that someone anonymously ordered off Etsy and had shipped to me.   I feel special and loved.

While we were aboard the ship, we sat for professional portraits.   I believe this is a good way to demonstrate how 60 looks.


Back at home, I had plenty of work waiting for me.   I got my day lily bed north of the stroll garden cleaned out, much to the day lilies’ relief.  They were being swamped by goldenrod, violets, wild iris and sundry other volunteers.   That took a few days.

I also had to catch everyone up on their massages, and I have been very busy with that ever since we got home.

Last night Jim mentioned that he thought we ought to rake the algae out of the pond that has been forming.  I went out there to do some of that this afternoon.  I decided to be circumspect about it, rather than just wholesale rake in clumps of algae.   I am very glad I did.   It is being used by literally dozens of tiny salamander newts.   They were not too happy to be fondled and photographed by the local paparazzi.


You can see his gills and tiny legs.   I believe we may  be leaving the algae alone.

Of course the robins have been very busy too.  This fellow was outside my massage room window the other day, chirping loudly to his parents to induce them to feed him.   They were just as loudly exhorting him to move his butt off the juniper and learn to hunt for himself.   He won the day that afternoon, but I saw him out on the lawn a couple of days later, following his papa around and learning to find bugs for himself.   This is so gosh darned cute.


When I left in mid May, the vegetable garden only had the cool weather crops in, and so since the beginning of June I got the squash, beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and I don’t know what all else planted.   It is doing just fine.

We’ve been feasting on beautiful salads.


This is how the garden looks today.   Notice the wooden boxes rather in the middle.   Those are the potato towers.   I’ll let you know how the crop is.


Just in case I thought that all this belonged to me, the wren was there to set me straight.


Well, that catches you all up a bit, I hope.   It is a long summer still.   Now I believe I shall hang out ANOTHER load of laundry and then take Ruby for a walk.

It won’t be a moment too soon for Mallory, who is trying to take a nap on the chair behind me and wishing I would move my derriere off Her Chair so she can get comfortable.  Cats.   Always willing to put your importance into perspective.


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It’s hard to believe, but the time has come for the first Alaska cruise of my summer.  Yes, I did say the first, because I really am going on two!  This one is all paid for by my dear mother.   I am going along with her on a sea/land tour from Vancouver to Denali.   My two sisters will be on this expedition too.

Then in August, Jim and I are going on an Inside Passage cruise from Vancouver, which will be a mini family reunion for him: one of his brothers, his sister and their spouses will be attending that one.   I feel sort of like a jet setter this year.

So anyway, I will be off line for a couple of weeks.

I got busy and finished the top half of the son and daugher-in-law’s quilt.   I think it looks rather spectacular myself.


The two nests of baby robins I featured in the Snow in May post have developed nicely.  By the time I get home, they will be fledged and prancing about the lawn in youthful plumage.   Right now, they are rather cute.


The yard is wonderful.   The wisteria will be all done by the time I get home.  It is in the last flush of bloom right now.   When you stand under the pergola, it literally hums with bees.


There is a snowball bush in the stroll garden that is in full bloom right now.  Also, my clematis have begun their display.



And the rock garden is looking very nice.   I imagine I will have to dead head the candytuft when I get home.  And hopefully the dianthus will not be completely finished.  I just love to stand there and smell it when it’s in full bloom.


Well, you all stay healthy and happy while I’m off gallivanting, okay?

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I couldn’t think of anything to title this post.   I am considering that perhaps The Havens will need a name change in the near future.  Out in California, there is a city called Twentynine Palms because when it was settled there were 29 palm trees there.

I’m thinking that we need to change the name of The Havens to Twentynine Thousand Elms:

You see all those little seedlings down along the driveway in this picture?   Those are sprouted elm seeds.   It is like that all over my gardens right now.    Like I need another project:   pulling up elm trees.

While I was throwing water at my lavender bed today, I noticed that one of the shrubs was shaking in a most emphatic manner.   When I moved the branches aside, this is what I saw.

That is a baby rabbit, that was stashed there for nursing purposes by its mamma.   I think it is very interesting that soon after rabbits get past the two inch stage, the mother separates them out of the nest and stashes them in various safe places, then visits them regularly for feeding.   I can see that this would be a good thing because if a predator comes across one baby, it has not come across the whole litter.   It must make for a very busy day for the mother, though.

Anyway, the burden of what this little guy was telling me was something like, “My mommy told me to stay put but it is so WET all of a sudden and I just don’t know what to do now!”

Yes, very wet behind the ears.   And everywhere else, too.   Despite the knowledge that in short order this little bunny will be eating my flowers, I did NOT snap its neck after this picture was taken.   I put him back down in the lavender for his mother to take care of.

I probably was feeling kindly towards all young wild ones this morning as I discovered that the robin nest under my window that I was featuring is empty this morning.   A skunk, raccoon, owl, cat, or snake cleaned it out in the last 24 hours.   Sad.   But we still have lots of robin nests around the place with kiddios, and the parents are starting over again already.   They have chosen and high place in the elm this time, probably it will be better luck for them than a shrub at nearly ground level.

 Out in the vegetable garden, the garter snake was hunting in the lettuces.

This is basically what my father thinks I am right now, since I am part and parcel of the conspiracy to “isolate” him at an apartment in town.    Like he isn’t isolated right now, at the end of a half mile driveway that crosses a hollow and is washed out so badly the only vehicle that can manage it should be a truck, preferably 4 wheel drive.   Like he isn’t isolated now, since all his friends are dead and no one around the neighborhood can stand him because he is so opinionated; even my mother lives in a separate house and doesn’t go to visit him, he goes to visit her.

Oh, he blows hot and cold.   He tells me that he can take care of himself, does just fine, and blows off the suggestion that the fact that he was admitted to the hospital malnourished and dehydrated belies this statement.  Then in the next breath he wants to know what he is going to do for food at the apartment  if he is” isolated” in town.  This is because deep in his heart he knows the only square meals he gets are the ones my mother prepares for him, and if he’s in town she won’t be catering for him.   Jim and I will be, but he doesn’t know that yet.

I am taking note of all this experience.   I will give Jesse a link to these blog posts so he can show them to me when I get old and difficult and need help and am insisting that I can do it all myself.

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Blessed event

Remember the nest full of blue eggs?

I’ve kept an eye on them, much to the dismay of the proud mama.

Yesterday, when I looked in the nest about 9 a.m., this is what I saw…

About an hour later, I looked again.   If you look closely, you can see that one of the eggs now has a little hole in it where the chick is pecking its way out.

I had to give a massage, so I went and did that.   As soon as the massage was over, I went out and found a freshly hatched chick.  Still wet.

Hungry too, it seems.

This morning, the last egg had hatched too.   There are four babies in this nest.

When we first moved to this place, my mother gave me some iris tubers.  One of them was pink.   It bloomed a couple of times, and then it disappeared for years.   Suddenly this spring, I noticed the tubers which had not bloomed for years made a reappearance.

This next one is one of a set of six different irises that Jim’s mother sent me the first year we lived here.   She lived in California, and the box of tubers arrived here in early November.   I found a place to put them in the ground, which was cold and wet.   A couple of days later it snowed.   I was pretty sure that those irises wouldn’t survive, but they certainly did.   And they bloomed the next spring, too.

They’ve been blooming every year since.

Odd how such an ephemeral and delicate blossom can be so very very hardy and durable.

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I guess I’ve been studying Syncopated Eyeball’s work for long enough now.   I was walking the dog at sundown the other night and captured the three day old waxing crescent.   While I was cropping it, I realized that I was tuned in to the textures and forms that I see in her photos and finding them in mine.

The clouds were pretty amazing that afternoon.   A big thunderstorm was just over and the front was blowing through as the sun went down.

One of the things I dislike about my town is its insistence on above ground power poles.   It makes it hard to get any “clean” shots of atmospheric phenomena.

In other news, we have the Iowa Niece living with us now.   We are very much enjoying her presence in our home, she is a lot of help and a willing worker.   Of course, we want her to eventually be able to get a job and pursue her education, but right now I am REALLY happy to have a minion to help me with the garden chores.

The dianthus are going nuts now.

Little robins not fledged yet.

The mother robin was on the nest when I went over there, and I was cussed up one side and down the other while I was getting that shot.

The bees have left the ajuga and have turned their attentions to the Ninebark.

And, I have done a few more journal pages.   These are actually two separate pages, done two days apart.   When I took the protective paper away from the left hand side I found that there were certain congruencies between the two that were interesting.

So, I’m off to the garden to do some pruning and weeding.

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