Fur and Feathers on a Snowy Day

Last night it snowed, and we got enough—several inches—so that the plow has roared past our house. A true sign of winter. Here is a picture of our house tucked in the snow, and it always looks so cozy to me. (For supper, Clif is making Snowy Day Potato, Cabbage Soup, a perfect meal for a cold day.)

I always like the sight of dried plants—in this case, ferns—against the white snow.

The remaining garden ornaments take on a different look.

The backyard, with its feeders, draws in woodland creatures with fur and feathers.

One of my favorites is the chickadee, a jaunty little bird.

My friend Barbara, who passed away thirteen years ago, once noted that while chickadees might be plentiful, they are never common. How right she was! I recently learned that in the fall, the brains of chickadees increase in size so that they can remember where they cache seeds. And in the spring, when the chickadees no longer need to remember, their brains shrink in size. Here is a link for the Audubon site for more information about the incredible brains of chickadees.

What a wonder nature is!

And British blogging friends, do you think chickadees resemble coal tits? I know I sure do.

Advertisements

All Dancing Together

Despite the chilly, rainy day—or maybe because of it—despite the sorrows of the world—which are many–today,  a week after the election, is a day for music, for celebrating because gosh darn it there was a blue wave. And blue is my favorite cover.

This song, by the terrific band R.E.M, captures how I feel on this drizzly day. Not only do I love the catchy, upbeat tune and words, but I also love the diversity featured in the video—young people, old people, black, brown, Asian, white, thin, plump. All dancing together.

And if I’m ever reincarnated, I want a voice just like Kate Pierson’s.

Brisk and Invigorating

Yesterday was a fine, brisk day. The sun was shining, but the air smelled cold and fresh, and if it weren’t for creaky knees, I would have been positively frisky. What can I say? I’m a Mainer, and for me the first touch of winter is always invigorating.

Even with creaky knees, I got a fair amount done. Up the road, where the winter berries grow, I clipped quite a few branches of these red beauties to use in a winter arrangement for the front deck.

On the way to get the Sunday paper, I stopped at Maranacook Lake to take a few pictures.

I found blue sky, blue water, and a beached boat

as well as golden and dried plants against the rippling lake.

When I got home, I raked the driveway, perhaps for the last time, but we shall see.

At the end of the short day, I was tucked on the couch with the orange cat on my lap and a cup of hot cocoa nearby. I am going back and forth between two books—A Manuel for Cleaning Women, a collection of  sad, moving, short stories by Lucia Berlin; and Tyrant: Shakespeare on Politics by Stephen Greenblatt. Of the latter book, in brief, let’s just say that Shakespeare knew.

Now There Is Hope

No two ways about it. The recent elections threw me in a tizzy, and I am oh so glad that overall there was more good than bad. I am also coming down the homestretch with Library Lost. Between those two things, I don’t have much energy for anything else.

But yesterday afternoon in the front yard,  the light was so beautiful that I did make time to take a few pictures.

Looking up, there are oak leaves.

Looking down, ditto.

Little Minerva is nearly buried.

And one lone phlox flower hangs on.

Finally, this captures how I feel after Tuesday’s elections. So light, so grateful.

While the work certainly isn’t done—we can never say, “There! Finished!”—after the past two miserable years, there is now hope.

Bursts of Yellow and Russet on a Rainy Election Day

A brief note about the election: For Maine, it was a very good night. The Democrats now control all three branches of government. Finally, finally, 70,000 low-income folks soon will receive good, affordable health care and not have to resort to going to the emergency room when they are ill. Nationally, there are many states that switched from Republican  to Democratic, and Democrats now control the House. Unfortunately, the tide did not turn in Florida, Georgia, and Texas, and the Republicans gained more seats in the Senate. So, Trump’s scare tactics worked to some degree, and we are still a very divided nation. However, real gains were made. Because of all the election brouhaha, I won’t be getting much work done, but I will allow myself to be happy on this day.

And onward, ho!

A blog about nature, home, community, books, writing, the environment, food, and rural life.