Monday, April 20, 2015

Local Bounty

One of Marshal's patients brought him pounds of fresh Penn Cove mussels on ice.  Friday night, I referenced James Beard on how to steam and serve while Marshal and Lydia washed them for the pot.

A Bowl of Nettles - Put them in a brown bag to dry.  We'll see how that works out.

Showing Off Natural Beauty

Daisy Chains

Blood Sun

Counterpart to our recent Blood Moon sighting.

Such a dull, red color that you could watch it go down with the naked eye.

Camera lense picked up the fire ball rather than the muted tones, but here is a taste of the special effect.  Sun and plane merge in my lens in their descent.

More Birds and Blooms

Easter Bouquet of Jonquils bought at a roadside stand.

Birthday gift from "Grandma" and kids that they put together for me while gone.  Apron for garden seed packets that Ruth sewed and crafted with the kids with homemade stamps and paint.  Completed with seed packets and a trowel.  Gabe packaged it as a surprise delivery with shipping label.  Had me fooled until I gave it a more critical examination!  I loved it!

Calves at the fence on an April morning.

Flowering cherry blossoms.  So much like pink crepe.

Take 2

Lily of the Valley blossom among the Blue Bells.

Mock Orange?

Birds are so cute!

One collard plant gone to seed!

Old-fashioned little red apple blossoms.

Gabe property for lease.

Bird Furniture

Serious about Birds

Gabe was up Easter morning making sugar water for his hummingbirds.

Only refined sugar in the house and use; still concerned it is bird crack.  Yeah, they love it.

Gabe made himself a Birds of Washington State notebook.

Juvenile Bald Eagle in the weeping willow out the door.

Marking off birds and entering sighting and facts about them on corresponding pages.

Red Robin just off the deck.
Chicks growing into a promising young flock of laying hens.

Gabe let the grass grow and had broody Silkie in one tractor, growing pullets in another with tarp and light for chilly nights and rainy days, and brought the sheep into the yard with electric web fencing.
Silkie Rooster, Bunny.  Bonny stopped setting for her first time when Gabe reconfigured housing.  The growing pullets needed more space.  I assured him that Bonny would go broody again.

Finch feeders!  Gold finches are coming.  There are a few now.

Friday, April 17, 2015

From the Cabin over the North Cascades

We took an extended weekend trip around the state.  Didn't take my camera, but snapped some phone photos as we concluded our trip.  Trip defining a new chapter in our lives.  Started with family and future home, and ended by listing our cabin in the far northeastern mountains of the state with a realtor.  I packed whatever I wanted to keep for the  future and for the journey home and west over the North Cascade Hwy.  We spent one afternoon and evening in the cabin on Tuesday.  Brother Luke and Kim and Leroy joined us for a couple hours; Luke lended his skill and quick labor to spruce up the trees and views to the creeks.  He, Marshal, and Gabe made short work of tidying and making some small repairs.  I built a fire in the woodstove, heated some water and used some soap, and sorted through all my cabin wares.  In the evening, after a good cabin dinner, we sat by candlelight and I read our cabin journal, began in 2009.  We reminisced of bear sightings, hunting trips, numerous deer in the farmers' fields on summer evenings with their tails like white flags, floating down the Kettle River on tubes, cool dips in Lake Roosevelt at the end of a hot day, catching fish for dinner, and always tacos and ice cream at Meyer's Market among much more.  There were also accounts of pack rats, mosquito clouds, leaks in the roof..., but Kettle Falls will always be remembered with the best of memories.  And Marshal and Gabe are holding out secret hope that it won't ever sell and we'll be stuck with it forever.

Reheated piping bowls of soup and greens for dinner.

Looking through the back door screen.  Creek running below in front of the tree line.

Marshal grilling grass fed burgers on the back deck.
Cabin candlelight and firelight.  The trees are spruced up with a view to another year round creek running with nice fresh pools for drawing water.
North Cascade Beauty
First snow in hand this year!

Found a snow cave!!  Butt out.  :-)

"3D" Sheba coming at ya.

Kids running down the road in the distance.

Back on the road, over the mountains we go.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Gabe and the Birds

Pine Siskin on the finch feeder

Oops not a bird.  Gabe just thought this was funny of Dolly climbing the fence like a ladder to get to the willow leaves.  She has her front legs completely hooked over the fence.

Watching a rescued Chesnut-backed Chickadee recover to fly away.

First bird save by Gabe from a window hit.  I told him the trick is to keep the stunned bird warm and calm so it doesn't die of shock.  I'm no expert, but it worked once for me before.  Gabe held this one by the wood stove and stroked it's little head until it nearly purred like a kitten.  It was so peaceful, began to cock its little head around and give a perky eye.  Flew away not many minutes later after putting it down in the planter here.
Pretty spring morning.  This bird feeder can't stay supplied, as it gets bombarded with flocks of cowbirds and blackbirds in no time.

Gabe's been keeping an eye on all the nesting habitats.

Getting ready for goldfinches.  First sighting on Friday on his feeder.  He thought that was the best birding day of all, saving a chickadee and sighting a goldfinch in the same day!

And then today, he was shaking with excitement and glee, as a Chestnut-backed Chickadee ate out of his hand six times!  He announced that now it is official; he is a real bird man.

Looks like a real flock of cows and calves; I mean herd. :-)

Gabe has the place all set up as a bird sanctuary.