Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring!



The first picture is from today and the second picture is from Tuesday! They are both shots of the beaver lodge, just slightly different angles. What a difference a few warm days will make. A few Mallard pairs as well as Wood Ducks, all of whom are adept at hiding when I pull out the camera. This fellow surprised me!Also saw a Bluebird (below) and a Brown Creeper, Hawk, and Redwinged Blackbirds.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

View From the Swamp: Turf Wars and Can You Help With an ID?




After a long winter, I finally ventured down to the swamp to see what changes may have taken place. Last year brought drastic changes to my entrance to the swamp as the ice storm brought down many trees. The deer had remained active, although some of their paths have been re-routed. The swamp is still under cover of ice! Usually it is mostly thawed out by now, but with the weather forecasters calling for temps in the 60's the next three or four days with mostly sunshine, it should be thawing quite nicely. The geese are back and two pair are already battling over this prime real estate. I have seen one pair nest year after year, but never any goslings. It was quite the scene. First insults were muttered and then hurled across the swamp. Then it grew quiet. The male of the pair in the top picture started to make his way across the ice, toward the rock. The female was much slower following him, gently placing each foot on the ice. She'd stop by openings in the ice to get a drink. The two eventually made it across to the rock and were settling onto the ice nearby. Suddenly there was much "yelling," and the male went right up to the other pair to challenge them. When there is no ice on the swamp, the splashing is what captures your attention, as the geese fly at each other beating their wings and land with big spalshes. With the ice cover, it is the beating of the wings that is thunderously loud! It went on for a short while, one pair retreating just a smidge, the other pair returning to the ice around the rock.

As if that weren't enough, I heard a song bird I have not heard before. Just the most gently sound, at first it made me think of kittens, but then I realized it was getting louder. In an instant, two raptors on silent wings landed in a tree top next to me. A third tried to land but the branch gave way, breaking off and landing with a splash in the swamp. All three flew out of site. Did I get a picture??? No. Can I identify them?....No. They were very light, a lot of white from what I remember, the striping underneath as they flew away. They were not big, I wouldn't say even crow sized, maybe. Their voicing was not something I've ever heard and not what I would ever associate with a hawk. Anybody out there who can help with such a pathetic description??

Monday, March 15, 2010

Provisions

My God provides...in so many ways, and over and over again.

Through this time of deployment, I thought I would take a light-hearted look at the things that seem to fall apart and play "Deployment Bingo." The premise is that you (1) play with other spouses, and (2) that you have prepared a bingo card in advance of things that can happen negatively during deployment (things not people) and the first to make bingo wins something like some much needed pampering. Well, I'm not playing with anybody, but I've just humorously started keeping track. Before my main Warrior had left the country, the washing machine broke, the snow blower - in the midst of a heavy, wet snowfall, and then the pump to our well! These have all been minor set-backs and inconveniences, but nothing that couldn't be fixed. One evening with a group of people, I mentioned the pump and having no water for 24 hours. Someone I don't even know well said "Everyone's got problems." I was taken aback!...but not offended. It was a reminder I needed, to take my eyes off me.

A day or two later, I happened to read a quote on someone's blog or facebook page: "Count your blessings, not your problems."

ok.....two times...am I listening??

Our choir anthem this Sunday was the third gentle and loving reminder. "Through His love the Lord provided a place for us to rest; A place to find the answer in the hour of distress; Now there's never any reason for you to give up in despair; Just slip away and breathe His name, for He will surely meet you there. In the presence of Jehovah, God Almighty, Prince of Peace; Troubles vanish, hearts are mended in the presence of the King."

Saturday, March 6, 2010

A Missed Anniversary


I missed my very own anniversary! One year ago this past week, I ventured into the world of blogging. This was my inspiration and this my motivation and this my source of encouragement. I have met some amazing people along the way and bumped into old friends as well. An eclectic smattering of posts is what I have to show for a year, not even one a week! I have no idea how I'll do for the year ahead...dare I set a goal?....no, not going to do it!

While I was neglecting my blogging anniversary, I was enjoying a day at the Indianapolis Museum of Art with my beloved warrior before he heads out. What a day and we didn't get to see it all, so a future trip to plan.