Friday Favorites: A New Frog, Backyard Visitors, a Sara Kays Song

Jackie Knight is an indefatigable gardener with a penchant for owl garden ornaments. On his blog, her husband Derrick Knight has noted that Jackie has 100 or so owls in her delightful gardens.

My penchant is for amphibians, primarily toads and frogs, and I have my own little collection of garden ornaments. Recently, I was inspired by Jackie’s example, and I ordered another frog to add to the group that hangs out by our porch in Toad Hollow. (Frogs are welcome, too!)

This new frog also has a solar light, which gives it an oh-so-lovely glow. I will never have as many amphibians as Jackie has owls. Unlike her, I have to bring my buddies in for the winter. But it’s fun to add a new one to the group every now and then. A simple pleasure, to be sure.

An even simpler pleasure is to sit on the patio in late afternoon and see the little visitors that come to our yard in the woods.

There are cardinals,

mourning doves,

and chipmunks. (This one is a particularly feisty critter who charged a pair of mourning doves. Wish I had gotten a picture of that.)

Watching over it all is Mei Ling, who bears strong resemblance to the chien-gardes, magical relics that are featured in my podcast Tales from the Other Green Door. 

For music for this week’s Friday Favorites, I chose Sara Kays, a very young singer—she’s twenty-two—who got her start on TikTok.   The song I’m featuring—“Remember that Night?”— deals with romantic love and loss, themes that are of central importance to teens and young adults. But even we older folks can cast our minds back to those days when someone we dearly loved stopped loving us. It happens to most people. And while we move on and usually find someone who suits us better, we can remember, with a bit of nostalgia and sadness, an early love that didn’t last. Kays reminds me of Joni Mitchell, a little, and Aimee Mann. I’m hoping to hear more from this talented, soulful newcomer.

Favorites and simple pleasures from blogging friends:

From Book Chat with Shane, his 10 Most Anticipated Books. Shane was once the Adult Services Librarian at our town’s library, and his devotion to books fills my heart with joy. Shane’s favorite genres are literary fiction, thrillers, and mysteries, but from time to time he also adds a dash of fantasy to his reading.

The Curious Introvert, in Today’s Musings, takes solace in both nature and culture. Michigan, where she lives, has been designated as the country’s Covid-19 epicenter. Sigh. Let’s hope that spring and vaccinations soon put a stop to this rampaging virus.

Thistles and Kiwis rejoices in fall colors, food, and an Easter celebration.

And Ju-Lyn, from Touring My Backyard, is fascinated by the art of the staff.


69 thoughts on “Friday Favorites: A New Frog, Backyard Visitors, a Sara Kays Song”

  1. I am THRILLED to see some of the visitors to your yard! As for frogs and toads … this is the time of the year when some of them try to come into our house to shelter from the oncoming chill of winter. I had to remove one from my pantry the other morning and for the last two nights I have found two outside the kitchen door – I make sure to keep it shut 🙂

  2. What a fun frog! And great to see the wildlife in your garden, Thanks for the mention and must listen to the music – I haven’t heard of her so someone new to try.

  3. Lovely to see your garden visitors Laurie and to meet your adorable new frog! 🐸 Thank you for sharing the Sara Kays video too, she’s got a wonderful soulful voice 💜

  4. We have the cardinals and doves, but that chipmunk is a charmer. If we had chipmunks, I’d be willing to have them as garden decoration, too!

  5. My Mom-in-law loved to collect frogs when she was alive – hers ranged from jewellery to a grand old dude who sat at her front door. I have a special affinity for both frogs and toads although I don’t spot them as often these days, on account of the growing Red JungleFowl population in the botanic gardens next door.

      1. I am pretty confident that a significant number have survived – I can still hear them at times. But I think they just stay hidden to keep safe.

  6. A lovely post, Laurie – although I would say that, wouldn’t I? Thanks very much for the mention. Some of Jackie’s owls have solar lights. She says she should put them inside over winter, but gets away with not doing so. You probably know she also has dragons in the dragon bed. I enjoyed the Sara Kays video and certainly hear the Joni Mitchell similarity.

    1. Yes, love that dragon bed, too. But back to owls—I love them too—the other night when we were on the patio, we heard bard owls calling to each other in the woods. A lovely, haunting sound.

      1. I once heard such an exchange from my bedroom in France. The reply was very distant at first and gradually came closer and closer to the nearby caller.

  7. I love the cooing of mourning doves. When I first started learning about birds I thought the sound must be an owl. I’m better at birdcalls now but was just saying to a friend I should have spent the pandemic learning more of them. I guess I still can try.

  8. We might have to resort to frog and toad ornaments as we are very sad not to see any sign of real ones in our garden pond – although we do have newts.
    I enjoyed the Sara Kays song and it prompted me to listen to more but searched in vain for something a bit more upbeat. If I were still 22 and looked as gorgeous in a beanie hat and baggy parka I think I’d find something cheerful to sing about. Love her voice though.

  9. A little cute ornament frog and I like the solar light idea even more. Enjoy visits of cardinals, doves, chipmunks and many more. We have none of them here.

  10. Another whimsical treasure! I love seeing them tucked into the garden. Keeps us happy. 🙂
    Sara Kays has a wonderful voice, good share!

  11. Love your new frog and the backyard visitors! It’s been wonderful again to have the chipmunks darting around the deck. Loved the song (added her to my music library) and thanks for including Shane’s anticipated books list (added many of the books to my Want To Read list).

  12. I love your frog, especially as it is a solar light as well! I am fascinated by frogs but we get more toads here… I have a toad in my raised veg garden and it buries itself in the damp soil. Sometimes we both have a start when I unearth him by accident.

  13. That’s a very cheerful new frog. I don’t know if owls eat frogs, but if so it’s a good job yours and Jackie’s collections are 4,000 miles or so apart. I liked the song – nostalgic as you say. She has a light touch.

  14. Ah, another froggie fan. I have over a hundred froggie bits and pieces scattered throughout the house, mostly ceramic, but also some carved wood, some resin, a couple of little bronzes and even some plastic. Even, I must confess, a froggie toilet roll holder (wooden) and froggie toilet brush holder (plastic). Most are cheap, mass produced and of no great artistic merit. Isn’t this a bit excessive? Yes, for sure! Crazy? Quite possibly! But who cares, I’ve always loved frogs and toads and just enjoy having representations of them in my daily life.

    I’m also keen on chipmunks, so thank you for the image…happy memories of seeing them during our visits to the US.

    Thank you also for introducing me to Sara Kays. Never heard of her, but she’s got a good voice and writes well too (I assume she wrote the song?).

    And I shall follow up the link to Shane’s blog. Librarians are great people, and should be treasured (trust me on this! 🙂)

    1. Not crazy at all! These collections bring joy to our lives, a physical representation of what we love. Yes, Sara Kays did write the song. Finally, hooray for librarians.

  15. Owls, frogs, it’s a way of keeping active as you search for the next piece. I speak from experience – we are fielding many calls from colletors who want to visit as soon as we open up on 12th April.

    LOvely to see the chipmunks.

  16. That is a beautiful song by Sara Kays. I wish this new musical voice every success in life!

    I have a solar powered frog light, too. 🙂

  17. I love the little chipmunk chasing the birds… nice to watch the natural ways of nature… sorting things out! I enjoyed Sara Kay’s song.. very like Joni Mitchell. Have a happy week 😁

  18. I used to have 2 resin baby dragons curled up asleep in the garden but they disintegrated – I must get some more! Glad you are able to sit out more. We had hail on the ground when I woke on Saturday and yesterday there was a snow shower which luckily didn’t stick.

    1. I know there has been some rough weather across the pond. Hope warmer weather comes soon. If you get more baby dragons and have time, I would love to see pictures of them. Love baby dragons!

      1. I also love toads and frogs. I will look for a solar frog. We used to have one that was a motion detector and would croak when people entered our home. Every year as a teacher I would raise tadpoles to frogs in an aquarium for my kindergartens to see this magical metamorphosis. Then the frogs would go into our backyard pond. For years I had the biggest lovesick bullfrog croaking out my backdoor and it made me sad I wasn’t able to give him solace.
        Sarah Kay’s song reminded me of being 20 and romantic night drives through forests… Thank you for sharing!

      2. Neat project for those kindergartners! Magical metamorphosis is exactly the right description. I had the same experience when listening to Sarah Kay’s song. Took me back to my younger days and a failed relationship. Happens to most of us, doesn’t it?

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