Currently... Mon, 22 Aug 2022 |
The summer heat has completely disrupted my daily
writing routine, and I still haven't gotten back to it.
So, again, there's just a handful of new entries...
2 thru 6 July. But there's some good, interesting
stuff there! :)
Wednesday 6 July 2022... Stewart Pond, No Robin Babies|
Oh my gosh, I just can't get over the colours at the
The pink flowers are a little too far away to see clearly
from the road, and I had assumed it was invasive Sweet Pea...
but look! It's actually Checker Mallow!
I walk thru the little forest.
And arrive at the Robin's nest.
Um? It's empty. It's obviously empty. And I guess it
was empty yesterday, when they were mowing as well.
What the heck? The babies I saw on Monday, were not giving
me the impression that they were ready to fledge. Did the
mowing force them out early? Or were they actually ready
to go? WAI! I don't know!
When I got home, I hit the internets! Whoa! From the time
they hatch, baby Robins are only in the nest for 14 days
and then they are ready to start flying.
Dang that's fast! I should have been paying more attention!
Here's a good page about it:
American Robins: All you need to know (with pictures)
The pics there are super cute!
Well. That's a bummer that I wasn't able to spend more
time with baby Robins. But their parents were irritated
with my anyway, so maybe it's for the best.
When I was looking thru my pics of the empty nest...
What in the world?!!!
Like, Seriously! Is that a tiny creature??!
She's looking down at me! ha!
Some kind of beetle, maybe? But how weird and wonderful!
Well. Here's a Robin, finally! One of the parents,
still keeping their evil eye on me? :)
I go round the corner. Oh! Beautiful! Butterfly!
A Western Tiger Swallowtail. Interested in the Himalayan
Blackberry blooms, again.
On the way back home, there was some kind of event going on
in the park behind the apartments. A storage pod and a
port-a-potty had been set up and there were kids all over
There were a couple kids at the edge of the park, I was
watching them as I walked, trying to figure out what was
going on. The oldest boy noticed me and turned around
shhh. I tilted my head in question,
and he whispered
We're playing hide and seek!
I looked it up when I got home. Eugene Rec has organized
For All to provide activities for kids at some of our
parks thru the summer. It runs 10am to 4pm M-F. It's free
and a free lunch is provided!
This is the kind of thing that makes me proud to live in
Tag: July 2022
Tuesday 5 July 2022... Chickadee Day|
Going out to Stewart Pond again to look at the baby Robins!
So artsy! This is a female River Jewelwing damselfly.
A Pacific Clubtail dragonfly, warming up on the bike path.
Oh, hey! Another River Jewlwing! This is the male.
Here we are at the Ponds.
oh Crud! They are mowing... The Robin's nest is in a tree
right on the edge of the little forest, and beyond it
is a field where
there's several Frisbee Golf target baskets. (It's also
mowed to control weeds like English Ivy and Himalayan
But they are mowing so close, and it's so loud! Everyone
is hunkering down in the nest, and no sign of either parent.
Well. That's disappointing that I didn't get to see the
babies today. But I go round the corner, and oh hey!
There's a handful of Chickadees, bouncing around in the
Poison Hemlocks. Maybe they are eating bugs on the flowers?
They are so cute. I wish I could catch them more often,
but they usually bounce around too quickly for the camera.
Oh my gosh, the new BWD Mag arrived today and I am so excited
Magazine Birds, Wonder & Delight! :)
Formerly Bird Watchers Digest, which suddenly and
unexpectedly went under in December 2021...
It was just tragic, especially after everything that had
happened to the Thompson family who started it. It made
me cry a lot.
But everyone involved with the magazine, loved it so
much, that they are working to make it happen again!
is Back! (Please Subscribe!)
23 April 2022 post at Julie Zickefoose's blog
Tag: July 2022
Monday 4 July 2022... Holiday|
Well. The 4th of July is Independence Day, here in the USA.
Unfortunately, women and others
here have lost the federal right to
bodily autonomy when SCOTUS overturned Roe v Wade, ten days
We are no longer independent. We can no longer make
decisions for ourselves about our health care.
The state now has the right to control people's uteruses.
Mama Doctor Jones has a brilliant video on this...
∞ Mama Doctor Jones:
Doctor Discusses Abortion & Roe Vs. Wade Overturn
Just 29 seconds, watch it!
(the longer and more involved video was made on May 16,
after the SCOTUS leak. It's over 28 minutes long...
Mama Doctor Jones:
Doctor Explains Roe vs Wade... What Overturning Means for Health & Autonomy in Pregnancy )
I am headed out to Stewart Pond to look at the Robin's nest
But first... for historical purposes!
Here we are! I just love the colours of the prairie!
And here's the Robin nest... two beaks and a lump! Yay!
I scoot around, thinking I could get a better view over
here. gah. Stupid stick. Stupid leaves! *laughs*
Hard to tell, but the above is actually four babies... the
two beaks on either side of the stick are two individuals!
Oh No! Here's one of the parents, and they are MAD at
me! Dang it, that glare down at me is like poison!
I wish I hadn't gotten on their bad side!
But I stick around to see a bit more.
Annnnd... This is what she thinks of me! (That's a poo
sack she's holding. She'll take away from the nest to keep
Okay, okay! I get the message! I'm moving on!
And a little piggy cuteness... Here's Dawn the Guinea Pig!
Tag: July 2022
Sunday 3 July 2022... Garden|
Our sweet Muscovy friend is hanging out with the Mallards
at Ducky Tree today.
um. hmm. This tomato plant was Supposed to be a big,
slicer called Celebrity. But these look like Roma tomatoes!
I wonder if I got them mixed up when I planted them?! ha.
Potatoes! They are so cute! They make me happy!
And Mama Bluebird!
Tag: July 2022
Friday 1 July 2022... Garden|
So. I arrive at the garden. And there's this mess at the
front, on the Evil Neighbor's side. What the hell?
The jerk has finally shown up, and weeded his front raised
beds... and threw some of the weeds in my plot and didn't
clean them up! GAH!
Just one of the reasons why he's the Evil Neighbor, ya know?!
But wait... haha, look what was under some of the weeds...
That's a dried up and pathetic looking Strawberry plant.
It might be too far gone, but heck,
I'm going to add it to my own
little strawberry patch and see what happens.
He's still a jerk, tho!
So, here's what I actually wanted to do today...
The big Comfrey plant is starting to sprawl all over the
poor little Sweet Potatoes.
So we give it a little trim. Wow, look at how much tidier
And never mind how little those two Sweet Potato plants are.
Yeah, I transplanted them a month ago, and they've not
grown at all since then. Stupid garden. But at least they
are still alive.
I'm letting this last volunteer Elephant Garlic bloom...
I had eaten the other ones as scapes! Yum!
Sighs, poor munched Spaghetti Squash.
Tag: July 2022
Friday 1 July 2022... Bluebird Fledglings!!|
A female River Jewelwing damselfly! and a bug! :)
Aw! The Bluebird babies from the nesting boxes
at the garden have fledged! Just two kids, this year.
Here's Papa with some food. You gotta be on the top rung,
There you go!
Dang they are CUTE!
Tag: July 2022
Thursday 30 June 2022... Garden|
Okay! The last of the planting today! I've got two
Zucchinis, which I'll put under row covers. And I've
got 6 Giant Marigolds, an impulse buy at the Farmers
Yay! Planting done! Grow, Garden! Grow!
The second row of Wax Beans is coming up! They are so cute,
when they are not munched by slugs!
Unfortunately, the Primary Lemon Cucumber patch, which I
uncovered at the beginning of the week, is not doing great.
The Cucs are still a bit droopy and the Cucumber Beetles
are eating the Spaghetti Squash leaves. Gah.
Well, that's my own fault for removing
the row cover too early.
Bluebird is a bit scruffy looking!
I wonder if he's getting tired of
taking care of those babies!
Tag: June 2022
Wednesday 29 June 2022... Garden|
Okay. Today I am weeding at the garden, to make room for
the rest of the stupid baby plants that are still sitting in the
porch room at home.
Here is the Before photo...
This is the row cover over the secondary Lemon Cucumber
patch, which I planted on jun23. And near the center, is
a mostly dead Squash plant.
And the After photo...
That was a lot of work... There were so many grass roots
in that little area.
Aw, look at the cute little potato plants coming up.
And, hey... The Wax Beans might grow faster than they can
Yesterday I didn't have my words... I was too mad to
Let's have another go at the Establishment Clause!
The Establishment Clause is part of the First Amendment
of the Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment
of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...
The courts have taken the
no law respecting bit
to mean (in part) that a
government official cannot endorse a religion. And, specific
to what I'm talking about today, a teacher in a public
school... who is paid by the state and therefore a
government employee... cannot
conduct religious exercises publicly, in their capacity
as a teacher.
So. This high school coach,
who is praying in the middle of the field...
And not necessarily forcing students to participate,
but there is def an implied message to
the football players...
Pray or don't play.
And the Supreme Court, again going against however many
years of precedent, ruled FOR this jerk of a football coach.
Yeah. And let's just follow the logic here. Promoting Christian
prayer in public, good good good! But... What if I'm a
Satanist, and I want to pray in the middle of the damn
field! (ha! Damning the field in the meantime!!! ;)
uh huh. That is NOT gonna fly.
How about a Muslim? A Jewish person?
Nope. None of this!
There's only one type who's going to be allowed to
publicly pray in a school setting, or on the high school
Just one religion.
Separation of Church and State? Dead and Dying.
America the theocracy? Just made a giant leap forward.
v Bremerton School Dist direct link to PDF of the opinion.
School Prayer Awesome, Establishment Clause For Decorative Purposes Only
A good write up about the decision.
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 28 June 2022... Stewart Pond Robin|
Heading out to check on the nesting Robin at Stewart Pond.
Dang it! The amazing Lazuli Buntings are always too far
away for photography.
The prairie is beautiful.
I think the pink flowers are a species of Checker Mallow.
The pond in the forest has finally dried up.
And here we are at the Robin's nest...
She still sits? Surely she has babies by now! Don't
you need to get up and feed your babies??
I walk around, trying to get a different view. oh... haha! :)
*laughs* not a very dignified pic of Mama Robin... but
this is what she gives me to work with!
Another SCOTUS Disaster
There's this thing in the US Constitution called the
... You know what? I can't do this today.
The separation of Church and State is very very
important to me and to our democracy, and I just
can't do this today.
Things are really getting hopeless around here.
Tag: June 2022
Monday 27 June 2022... More Garden Pics|
The news over the weekend, in response to the fall of
Roe v. Wade is just devastating.
And the one thing I keep hearing over and over is that
we need to get out and vote. ARG! This is so annoying
and it's all but insulting!
Supreme Court Justices do not get voted in. And, we actually
did NOT vote for the presidents who installed those Justices...
Those presidents all lost the popular vote.
So, yes, blah blah, voting is important. But a lack of
voting did not get us here. And voting
harder is not
going to get us out of here.
Tag: June 2022
Monday 26 June 2022... Gardening bummer|
It's hot, and the Lemon Cucumbers under the front row
cover look wilted. So I'm going to remove that row cover.
It's probably a mistake. There's still Striped Cucumber
I transplanted this Zucchini a couple days ago, and look.
It's munched already. Sighs.
I don't know why I keep hoping for good things to happen.
I should face facts and understand that I'm not going to
eat any Zucchini from the garden.
Here's Mama Bluebird.
And here's the lovely Muscovy girl.
Tag: June 2022
Saturday 25 June 2022... River Walk|
You know that feeling when you're driving to the beach,
for the first time in forever... and you first glimpse
the ocean, out past the dunes? So blue. So amazing.
Or when you're driving west on I-70 thru Kansas, and
you think you almost see the mountains... but maybe that's
When I get out to the river, and I first see the water
shining thru the trees... oh my! The weight of
everyday life is lifted and there's a sigh of relief.
I belong here. This is my happy place.
The Rose Garden is lovely.
Oh my gosh! I thought I was taking a pic of a bug...
it turns out, I was taking a pic of a bug being eaten up
by a camouflaged spider!!! WOW!
This new mural is amazing!
Still water coming over the spillover from the river into
the ponds! Usually this would dry up by April or May, it's
unbelievable the river is still high enough now, at the end
Good to see some older ducklings at the ponds... Avian
Flu has killed almost all the babies this spring.
Ducklings and goslings. There were four children in this
Hops on over to the next tree!
So goofy! This must be a fledgling, out practicing their
flying and landing skills.
And off we go.
Turtles! These are all invasive Red Ear Sliders.
But look at the little one trying to get on board! haha,
you are little, but there's no room for you, kid!
Aww! Look at their precious face!
Wow. What an awesome walk today!
Tag: June 2022
Friday 24 June 2022... Today|
Dang it, little bird!
Couple more Sugar Snap Peas to eat. They are so good!
In the past, the Love in a Mist self-seeded itself all
over the place. But I must have layered the winter mulch
too thick, and hardly any have come up this year. foo.
The End of Roe v Wade
Court overturns Roe v. Wade; states can ban abortion
at AP News
v. Jackson Women's Health Org
(Direct link to the PDF of SCOTUS opinion.)
And so it begins. The Supreme Court has started taking
away rights. and it's the end of the United States.
So. Women and people with uteruses no longer have a federal
right to bodily autonomy. Without bodily autonomy, our
other rights are useless. We have become 2nd class citizens.
We will die. Pregnancy complications will disable us.
There will be more unwanted children. They apparently
can't understand the tragedy of this.
No mention of the men in this mathematical equation, of
course. weird, huh?
With the fall of the right to privacy, a lot of other human
rights will fall as well. It sounds like Justice Clarence
Thomas is all about ending those rights... He writes in
his concurring opinion that the SCOTUS should
Griswold (contraception), Lawrence (gay sex),
and Obergefell (same-sex marriage).
And why isn't Loving v. Virginia (interracial marriage)
in that list? hmmm? (Justice Thomas is a Black man
married to a white woman.) Loving is also classified as a
substantive due process case in the exact same way
as those other rulings.
Tag: June 2022
Thursday 23 June 2022... Gardening and Dragonflies|
Day Four of Sunshine!
Okay! Finally ready to transplant the rest of the Lemon
Cucumbers! They've been sitting in the porch room at
home, languishing but avoiding the evil Cucumber Beetles!
And all covered up...
The first batch of kinda slug-munched Wax Beans were
planted two weeks ago. Since they actually grew, I
decided to add a few more seeds to the bean patch!
There's a green Zucchini plant next to the beans... it was
eaten up by the Cucumber Beetles, but it's acting like
it wants to live!
And there are four plants left in the squash patch which
are Technically still alive, after being mostly
munched to death by the Cucumber Beetles. I think it's
two Crook Necks and two Spaghetti Squash. I'm not sure
because I planted a bunch of different squashes here
but then I gave up on them when they got decimated by the
bugs! Most were just eaten to death, but if they had
partial leaves left, I didn't pull them out.
I guess we'll see if the survivors will do anything.
Oh! Is this a potato? It's the first one to come up!
Oh pretty damselfly! and an awesome name... Vivid Dancer!
Damselflies hold their wings over their backs, and are
usually smaller. Dragonflies hold their wings out...
A dragonfly with a boring name... Pacific Clubtail.
Tag: June 2022
Wednesday 22 June 2022... The Morning Chorus|
Something woke me up at 4am.
It's still dark, but the
Morning Chorus has already begun, if you call one
bird... unidentified and non-melodious,
singing a tapping sound... a
But then I heard what must have woken me up...
A Screech Owl!
They are talking over each other for a couple rounds!
Screech Owls have the most amazing song, called a
bouncing ball song! Here it is, go check it out!
Screech Owl Sounds at AllAboutBirds.
So cool! The second owl didn't sing for long, but the
first kept going for a couple minutes. I noticed the
time... After I woke, they started at 4:06am and they
were done at 4:09am.
Day Three of Sunshine... and the tomato plants are definitely
starting to perk up! Yay!
I finish weeding the section I started yesterday, for the
The Wax Beans are still alive, but really getting munched
by the slugs.
And the slugs have bitten into all of the Strawberries,
so far. But I'm still glad I planted them, they are pretty,
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 21 June 2022... Gardening|
Okay. Day two of Sunshine. So I'm back at the Community
Garden plot to do some work!
Each garden plot gets it's own water tap, and there's pipes
coming up in the corner where four plots meet. No one
weeds around our taps, and there's some Creeping Buttercup
that's starting to take over. So that's where I start.
I forgot to take a "Before" pic, so here is the "After" pic
with the pile of weeds I've dug up...
The back left plot is showing Horseradish, which is
invasive at our garden. You can eat it, and it is healthy...
but I hate it! *laughs* I chop it down where ever it
appears in my plot, it's easy to identify,
but impossible to get rid of permanently!
And the back right plot is Opium Poppies. They are beautiful
and I love taking photos of them and the European Honey Bees.
I am sad that they have yet to self seed into my plot.
Next up... need to make room for the 2nd row cover!
Here's the spot, I'm going to break up the soil and pull
out grass roots.
The long sticks are last year's Sunflowers, dried up and
maybe useful for marking areas! And to the left of the
sticks are a couple of surviving Fava, the winter cover crop.
And on the right is the back of the Mammoth Clover patch.
A good square done! But not quite big enough for the
row cover... I'll have to finish it tomorrow.
You can't really see it, but there's a lone, mostly dead
Spaghetti Squash in the middle of that square. I was going
to pull it up, it's not going to do anything after being
ravaged by the Cucumber Beetles. But the poor thing...
I just couldn't kill it. I weeded around
it and will put it under the row cover with the Lemon
Okay. Let's go have fun...
Oh, yay, a new dragonfly to look up! This one took me
a while to find in my book. But I learned stuff as I
searched! Skimmers have a fat body type, and Clubtails
of course are fatter at the end of their tail, so I had
narrowed this one down to a Darner...
I had to double check with some pictures online,
but I finally figured out she's a California Darner!
Tag: June 2022
Monday 20 June 2022... Stewart Pond|
Cool artwork someone has chalked on the bike path!
I just can't get over how beautiful the grass is...
ha! A Swallow and a Vulture!
What the...? A Red Tail Hawk... with a red tail!
Ha! That's weird!
um, I am NOT being sarcastic about the red tail!
All the Red Tail Hawks I've seen here have brown tails,
the same colour as their body.
Definitely not red.
I assumed it was a regional difference. but now
I wonder if I've only been seeing juveniles?
That seems... statistically unlikely.
Still a pond in the forest.
And the Robin still sits.
oh, lovely! A Twelve Spotted Skimmer.
ha, do they see each other???
A couple of articles I want to share with you today.
Trash traps chew at huge ocean plastics problem
I love this! Turning Trash Traps into big, cute
and lovable characters is fun!
Trash Wheel has his own website, and there are a couple
other Trash Traps in his family.
They run on a water wheel or solar power!
I support Abortion Access Front, and they support
independent abortion clinics. The newsletter I got
today highlights a clinic in a city that spans the
border between Tennessee and Virginia. The clinic
needs to move to the Virginia side of the town...
∞ Go Fund Me,
Keep Abortion Safe and Legal in Bristol
they are at $37,753 and looking to get 75K.
(update... They hit their original target, but had to
raise it to 125,000$ due to unanticipated expenses.)
I suppose that many abortion clinics will be doing this...
moving out of state so they can keep going.
It just infuriates me that we have to do this.
This clinic is just moving across town, but many will
have to move hundreds of miles away.
And their patients? Where will they go for their
reproductive health care? These clinics provide more
than just abortion care, you know. Where will people
go every three months for their Depo shot or birth
control pills? Pap smears are incredibly important,
and absolutely saves lives! How are we going to get
that done, when we don't have a regular doctor?
Tag: June 2022
Sunday 19 June 2022... Postcards to Swing States!|
I went to the Post Office today and picked up my order
of postcards! I'm very excited and plus they put my box
in Parcel Locker Number ONE! *laughs*
to Swing States
I'm a little bit disappointed by the boring design on
the postcards I got... The picture on the website is
So anyway! I've got 500 postcards that need to be sent
on 10 October.
Let's do the math... if I start writing tomorrow,
that will be 16 weeks to the deadline. I will have to
write 31.25 postcards per week,
which is 6.25 postcards written five days a week
(so I can take time off on the weekend) (or catch up if
I need to!).
A significant daily effort, for a long period of time!
I think I can do it! Yeah!!
And some puttering around the garden...
I had planted some Wax Bean seeds, directly into the
ground a couple weeks ago. I never do this because seeds
just don't do anything in the garden plot. But they are
actually starting to come up!
Yeah, the baby bean leaves have holes in them. And a
couple are munched down to the stem. Slugs.
And only a few Sugar Snap Pea plants survived the slugs
this spring... but the couple of snap peas that I've eaten
have been SOOOO good!
Dang it, I wish I had planted more snap peas,
I just can't survive on three or four peas a week!
Looks like the Lemon Cucumbers are doing okay under the
row cover. That's good!
The bottom leaves off ALL the tomato plants are getting
When I talked to my Mom, she said
Too Much Water.
So that's just great. It's raining so much, it's starting
to kill my tomato plants.
The Squash plants are already dead of cold and slugs and
Cucumber Beetles. and now the tomato plants. Am I going
to get ANY vegetables this year???
Wai!! Hopeless Despair!
Well. At least the bees are happy in the plot behind.
And the Garden Pinks in another neighboring plot are
But still. Hopeless Despair!
Tag: June 2022
Saturday 18 June 2022... Downtown Riverfront, 2nd Time!|
Another day of rain! And I want to look at the new park
again! I park at the Rose Garden...
A parent at the Osprey nest.
And other people are building their nests!
And then it starts Pouring down rain
as soon as I get to the new park! ha!
A different view of the SubSubpra art pavilion.
The art continues with bands of metal in the sidewalks.
The abandoned Steam plant. That building definitely has
I'm not walking all the way to the next bridge today.
I turn around and go back the way I came.
Under the Defazio walking bridge... ha! I didn't realize
you could see the Sun from here! (that yellow ball on the
The bike path includes an art installation of a scale
Solar System. The Sun and inner planets are in Alton
Baker park, and the outer planets are along the Ruth
Bascom Riverbank trail. Pluto is a tiny dot, over 3.5
It's really cool and I love it! :)
And of course the rain quits after I come out of the new
But I get to see one of the kids at the Osprey nest...
(and the photo is a little better with some sun shining
Tag: June 2022
Friday 17 June 2022... Stewart Pond|
The rain is back again today,
so the garden is back on pause.
I'm out to Stewart Pond, to check on the nesting Robin!
On the way, a walk thru the neighborhoods...
And here we are. The wet prairie winter pond
is turning into a summertime prairie... and oh my gosh,
I just love the different greens of all the grasses!!
It's pouring rain now!
It's rained so much, there's still a pond in the forest!
And here's our beautiful nesting Robin. *laughs*
A little flock of Bushtits!!
Ha! They're all over the place!
Female Bushtits have pale eyes, other than that they look
the same as the males.
Tag: June 2022
Thursday 16 June 2022... Gardening Continued...|
Planted the Lemon Cucumbers and a Spaghetti Squash,
and the first row cover is ready to be pulled over!
And here's the reason for the row covers...
Sure enough, the Cucumber Beetles are coming out
again now that the rain has stopped and things are
Damn you to hell, little bug!
Okay. All covered up!
To the right of the row cover are some baby Leeks. That's
my backpack, leaning against one of Evil Neighbor's raised
beds... he hasn't started gardening yet this year, so his
beds are just full of grass that's approaching a meter tall.
I hope he doesn't come back. Because. You know.
In the middle, there are several volunteer Elephant Garlics,
in front of the big patch of Mammoth Clover. ha, elephants
and mammoths! :)
and the green on the left is another, smaller patch of
Mammoth Clover. You can't really see it but there's
a couple tomato plants, in front of and between the two
I've got several Sun Gold cherry tomato plants. An
heirloom Yellow Pear tomato, a Roma Tomato, and a full
size tomato called Celebrity. I don't know about the
Celebrity... I just realized one day at the Farmers
Market that I didn't have any big tomatoes, so I just
grabbed that one.
And no Brandywines for the first time in years. I LOVE
Brandywines. But the plants are not very productive...
only five or ten tomatoes grow on a single plant. They
just need a longer season, maybe, and that's not going
to happen this year with the cold and wet spring we've
had. sighs. maybe next year.
The Opium Poppies in the garden plot behind ours, are
They are so pretty, I love all the different colours!
The European Honey Bees love the Poppies as well.
Tag: June 2022
Wednesday 15 June 2022... Flag|
Okay. This is more than a pet peeve, and more than an
This is something that makes me angry. I am pissed off
This is the back porch of a neighborhood townhouse...
I'm sure some Proud Boy Patriots are living here.
You can tell by their extreme ignorance.
They've got some kind of tent frame around their porch.
And they are using a huge American flag as... what? a
THE FLAG IS DRAGGING ON THE GROUND!
Let me repeat.
The American flag is dragging on the ground!
ARG! ARG! ARG!
Having a flag even touch the ground briefly is not good,
but leaving it to drag in the dirt 24/7 is the height of
I am almost tempted to print up the Flag Code and drop it
off at their front door. hmmm. Or. Here's a decent
American Flag at USA.gov.
And, having said all that... if you are at a protest and
you feel the need to burn an American flag in order to
make your statement? Yep. Go right ahead! Have at it!
Burning a flag in protest is part of our First Amendment
rights. It is freedom of speech.
And yep, I am one of those people who take this to heart...
I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.
Altho, I rather like this rendering better...
I may not agree with you, but I will defend to the death your right to make an ass of yourself.
Tag: June 2022
Wednesday 15 June 2022... Gardening|
I have finally decided what to do with all the millions
of Squash and Lemon Cucumber plants that are sitting in the
porch room at home!
Okay. It's not millions. There are 8 Lemon Cucs,
2 Spaghetti Squash, and a couple of Zucchinis. But when
you have to water them all twice a day, it seems like
The Cucumber Beetles don't seems quite as multitudinous now.
But that's just because they've eaten most everything.
If I plant some new baby squashes in the garden, I'm sure
they'll be back to eat everything yet again.
So I've got some row covers. When I pulled out the package
that was leftover from a couple years ago, I realized the
sheet I'd gotten was pretty small. Only 10x12 feet. I
figured if I cut it in half, I could separate the baby
plants into two rows with 4 Lemon Cucs and 1 Spaghetti
Squash in each. And I'll worry about the Zucs later.
But the place I had in mind for the Cucs has some weeds
encroaching. So that's what I'm going to work on today.
Here's the front right of our garden plot...
The black circle is part of a patch of Mammoth Clover...
which was our cover crop from two seasons ago. I am happy
that it still hangs around, it's good for the garden and
I like diversity! But I'm going to cut some of it down to
make room for the row cover.
The red oval is some invasive Creeping Buttercup. It has
gotten established in the pathway and has set roots in
the plot. It just needs to go. And I'll dig it out of
the pathway, as much as I can as well. (They were very
healthy plants... I pulled up several runners that were
over 5 feet / 1.5 meters long!)
Yay! A good space for one of the row covers! Plus there's
some breathing room for a couple volunteer Elephant Garlics
that are growing in the Clover patch.
The Creeping Buttercup that I pulled out will go to the
Community Garden compost heap. But the clover I cut down
will stay in the plot. I just dumped it in the Mostly Dead
Squash patch. The nutrients and biomass can return to
the dirt... with the rain we've been getting, it'll break
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 14 June 2022... Wildlife at the River (part 2)|
This was the only sign of wildlife at the new park today.
An intrepid Eastern Fox Squirrel...
Maybe once things calm down, more wildlife will come
Back in the old park, there's some happy creatures. This
is one of our native squirrels, a Western Grey.
Happy Robin. Poor little worm.
Whoa! Swallows that worm almost instantly!
And now we're looking for the next worm!
And back at the Osprey nest. Looks like two children,
still... two lumps of heads...
Ooooh! Nope! That's Three! Two heads and a body behind
Check! Three babies and a parent! Awesome!
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 14 June 2022... New Downtown Riverfront Park|
The grand opening for Eugene's newest park took place over
the weekend, and I'm excited to go and see it!
Downtown Riverfront Park
And, of course! It's raining off and on again today.
ha. The weather this spring is just insane!
I park at the Rose Garden, the new park is a bit over a mile
But you can't walk thru the Rose Garden without taking
photos of roses!!
This Silver Lining is one of my favorites. Such
a unique shade!
And the new Twilight Zone now has an official tag labeling
it... so I guess it's a keeper! :)
And I pass by the Osprey nest that's on the other side of the
river... hmm. A parent and two lumps?
And here we are at the new park...
The crowning glory (right now, there's more art on the way)
is this amazing art pavilion. It's
called SubSupra and the metal ribbons mimic the topography
of the riverbed...
The stainless steel is polished to a mirror shine! *laughs*
How fun is that!
The bike path splits into several parallel paths.
I suppose the outside one is for bikers who just want to
ride thru. There's a boardwalk right next to the river
and extra benches and seating for people who just want
to hang out.
The building in the background is the old EWEB Steam Plant.
It took water from the river and heated the entire downtown,
back in the day. But it's been abandoned for a long time.
The plan is to develop it and put in restaurants and gift
shops! This place will be amazing when that happens!
The next walking bridge is another mile upriver... I think
I'll go check that out!
Two miles from the Rose Garden, and huh... I didn't realize
the path was so close to the University. Not sure how many
blocks away it is, and you do have to cross a major road.
I will have to check that out another time!!
And here I am on Autzen walking bridge looking upriver.
Interstate 5 is over there somewhere, but there's another
walking bridge just before it.
That was my turn around spot today... I'm heading back.
I'll put the rest of the wildlife in today's Part 2 post!
Tag: June 2022
Monday 13 June 2022... Colour at the Garden|
Cloudy, but just a couple sprinkles today.
This is someone's yard, officially designated as a
Pollinator Habitat! I love to watch and see how it
changes thru the year!
I don't know why people have Sweet Peas in their garden
plot... Sweet Pea
is poisonous! Not to mention really invasive.
Oh my gosh, what an amazing splash of colour!
Let's see... the pink and white flowers are Garden Pinks,
the orange is Calendula, and the blues are Bachelor Buttons...
Hang on... we've got a photo bomber...
And then on the way home. Oh sheesh... you gotta stand
right next to some trash?!
okay, that's better. Thanks!
Tag: June 2022
Sunday 12 June 2022... RAIN!|
Still with the rain that started on the 10th! Yay!
I walked in the rain but didn't take many photos.
So here's a piggy for you instead!
Dawn the Guinea Pig!
Tag: June 2022
Saturday 11 June 2022... The State of the Squash|
Rain started yesterday and still raining today...
It's just unheard of that it rains this
late in the year! But it makes some of us happy...
The rain has driven away the Striped Cucumber Beetles.
They'll be back, but it hardly matters... we won't be
able to bounce back from this...
So a bunch of new plants from the Farmers Market
populate the porch room. But when can I plant them to
avoid death by Cucumber Beetle? I don't know.
I mentioned the Cucumber Beetles to my farmer and she
starts, "There are some organic pesticides..."
I shake my head, "I'm vegan. I don't want to kill anybody."
But it's more than that. Bugs are so very very important
in our world... and we've been killing them at such a rate
that we have to contemplate pollinating our crops with
our own hand. Life without bugs is going to be near
impossible, but that's where we are headed.
And I refuse to add to the problem just because I'm
annoyed at what's happening in my own garden.
I will never use pesticides or any other poison.
Tag: June 2022
Friday 10 June 2022... Awesomeness at Stewart Pond|
Oh wow! This is a Western Tiger Swallowtail. And they
hardly ever sit down!
But this one was really happy about the Blackberry blooms!
So Lovely! They are one of our native species. Wing span
about 3 inches.
And off we go! Thank you!
xxx ... more pics here!
Tag: xxx 2022
Thursday 9 June 2022... More Gardening|
I am ignoring the dying squash plants today.
Let the weeding begin...
I planted some Wax Bean seeds here.
Ha, so funny thing.
Last year I had grown Wax Beans for the first time ever.
The little bean patch did well, and I wanted to do that
again this year.
So I picked out some seeds to plant at my favorite local
nursery. They sat in my cart for a few days because I didn't
want to just buy beans, you know. I picked out a few other
seeds to get.
But then, the nursery had a sale to get rid of the last
few seed packets of the year! And so I switched from the
Wax Beans that I had so carefully picked out, to some of
these Wax Beans that were on sale.
When they arrived, I realized my mistake. I had wanted
bush beans, which are short and will stand up on their own.
The sale beans were pole beans. They'll be 8 or 10 feet
tall... And I simply do not have a trellis that big!!
Yay, a new dragonfly!
I love going thru my book to learn about dragonflies and
damselflies! This one is a male Pacific Clubtail...
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 7 June 2022... Up Hidden Trail|
Oh, cool bug! This is a Lady Bug larva sitting in a
Oh, Dang it you Robin! Look at that amazing background with
all those interesting colours. This would have been a
beautiful picture, if only you were agreeable!! *laughs*
Been a while since I've gotten to take a pic of our
native Western Grey Squirrel! It's not that I don't see
them... it's more that they don't stick around for
I come around the corner, from the forest back into a
neighborhood... and we surprise each other!
I say hello, and he's such a sweet gentleman, he replies
with his gentle voice. We have a good conversation!
Oh, here comes another one!
He doesn't have as much to say as my friend. That's okay!
I walk on, and then happen to turn around and look back...
oh, ha! Just sprawled out in someone's back yard.
He was singing a good song... but oh! I wonder if his
beak gives him trouble.
We start with a pink flower, and we end with some pink
Tag: June 2022
Monday 6 June 2022... River, Delta Ponds way|
Oh, I wish this portrait came out better! Fish are so
cool! My Dad says this is a carp.
Dang it... there was a Swallow going in and out of the
bigger hole in this snag. She was too fast for me, tho,
and I didn't get her picture. Foo.
Tag: June 2022
Monday 6 June 2022... River, Rose Garden way|
It's 100% rain today and I really really do not want to
bother with the stupid garden.
So I'm out to the river. I want to check out the Osprey
nest... Looks like a parent is standing up there!
But I don't see anybody else, not even a lump. foo.
Then coming back thru the Rose Garden!
This one is new this year, and is an instant favorite.
*laughs* I'm such a sucker for the roses!
Oh my gosh! This Bushtit was yelling at a Scrub Jay...
I think the Jay was just way too close to Mr Bushtit's
nest. The nest was hidden, I didn't see it, but it was
obviously buried in some nearby shrubbery, just outside
the Rose Garden fence!
Tag: June 2022
Saturday 4 June 2022... Stewart Pond in the rain|
Oh my gosh... A Robin is building a nest!!!
She is very very nervous about me looking at her. Ha!
I tell her, she's the one who decided to build a nest a
few feet over the path!
But I am respectful, of course. I take a few pics, wipe
the raindrops off the lens with my shirt, and move on.
Tag: June 2022
Friday 3 June 2022... Death and Destruction at the Garden|
Cucumber Beetles are in the process of murdering ALL
the squash plants. There were seven, all different
kinds of summer squash, that had survived the cold and wet.
And now it looks like there will be none.
I am so sad and frustrated. I just can't make the
garden work this year.
But... I have chores to do, so I can't mope and whine about
the damn squashes.
I had run into our new plot neighbors, across the pathway,
a couple times... Emily, Lee, and their kid who has an
interesting name that I never remember!
And they awesomely gave us some seed
potatoes! (Dang, that's a lot!)
I've not grown regular potatoes before, altho I have dug
up a few volunteers from Evil Neighbor's overflowing
So I'm eager to get these going... It might be the one
thing that I CAN grow this year! ha.
So, here's where I want to put them. I get out my hand
fork and start weeding!
On the left is the big happy Comfrey plant, making the
Honey Bees happy. and one of the Sweet Potatoes. In the
weedy area, there's a couple surviving Favas and some of
last year's Beets which are going to seed. I'll keep some
Weed, weed, weed... and dig holes, and more holes... and
Okay! You can Grow now!
I also planted a couple basil plants. That was an
impulse buy from the Farmers Market... I usually can't
keep basil alive, but hope springs eternal, huh.
And a third Sun Gold... because the 1st Sun Gold was sun
burned almost to death, and the 2nd Sun Gold isn't really
Oh, of course... the female House Sparrow, who was using
one of the Bluebird nesting boxes at the Garden. I didn't
realize the females looked so very different from the males!
And here's her scruffy baby. :)
She's sweet, I like her!
oh! haha! so silly! run! Catch up with Mama!
Tag: June 2022
Thursday 2 June 2022... Today's Pics|
Oh, wow... how cool is this! Minnows!
Pretty, pretty Wood Sorrel...
On the walk back home, I stop off at the garden. Our
new neighbors across the path offered us some potatoes
the other day. And yep, there's a box in our plot with
a bunch of sprouted potatoes! Cool.
But then I look around at the other stuff...
Oh HELL AND DAMNATION!
Those are Striped Cucumber Beetles. Eating up
what used to be one of my squash plants.
ARG! Goodbye squash plants. It was nice knowing you...
too bad I threw away all that money on you.
Okay... this is kind of interesting!
I'm pretty sure this male Bluebird is holding a baby's
poo sack! ha! Yuck! *laughs*
:) Some baby songbirds make poo sacks so that the parents
can take them away easily. This not only keeps the nest
clean, but extra poo around might alert predators
to the location of the nest!
Nature is pretty amazing, huh?!
But that guy really should drop that thing somewhere...
not just sit with it. I mean, I'm happy to get an
interesting photo... but still!
Tag: June 2022
Wednesday 1 June 2022... Ducks!|
Hey Mama! You want to show off your babies?
Yes! and she brings them out into the open. :)
So adorable! Thank you, Mama!
I'm working at the garden again today.
Again... I try to ignore the fact that I'm down to two
Lemon Cucumbers of batch #2. sighs.
The project today... Weed this area...
And plant two Sweet Potato starts!
Sweet Potatoes are such beautiful plants!
And then walking home, I see this one again!
She's so sweet! And this is, what, the third time I've
seen her in the past month or so? (yep... First sighting
was may8, then again on
Probably time to look
up who she is! *laughs*
Duck at AllAboutBirds
huh, super interesting!
They are from South America and
are one of the oldest domesticated
ducks, they were kept by the native people in Peru and
Paraguay. The claws on their feet are used for perching
in trees! I guess I'll have to look up every once in a
while. I would love to see a duck in a tree!
Annnd... hmmm... Not sure if she's a girl or not! ha!
There's a major size difference, the males are much bigger.
But we've got nobody to compare to, out here! I'm gonna
keep calling her a her! :)
Tag: June 2022
Tuesday 31 May 2022... at the Garden|
Well. The stupid baby Lemon Cucumbers continue to die.
But today I'm planting a couple more Squash...
A Green Patty Pan and a Spaghetti Squash!
They look so happy when you first put them into the ground!
I hope they live!
In the afternoon, my partner drove me out to a little
flower shop. All the colours are delightful!
and 4$ for this cute little Heliotrope!
Tag: May 2022
Monday 30 May 2022... Nature's Failures|
Hmmm. Well this is weird. I thought for sure the next time
I saw the Wood Ducks at the creek,
they would have babies with them.
But here's the female, no partner, no children.
Sighs... nesting failure, probably. H5N1. :(
I read in the newspaper that our spring has been so
chilly and wet that the bees weren't able to get out
and do their thing with the tree blossoms. The entire
crop of Plums has been lost!
So, I'm looking around. There are some Apple pomes
growing in a few places. But, yeah, when I checked
a known plum tree on AP Road... it had no little fruits
on it at all! crazy!
And at the garden plot... looks like I'm losing the
Lemon Cucumbers again. One by one, they are getting
eaten up, by whoever, and there's nothing but a stem
Well. Here's one of Nature's Successes. This is a
In this pic, you can kinda see her blue eye and a bit
She has both parents caring for her.
When one of the parents came back, apparently without food,
the youngster was begging a bit... but her voice was so
sweet. A soft "Maah? Maah?"
Oh, wow! This Great Blue Heron flew by so low I actually
got a pic of her!
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 28 May 2022... Skinner Butte|
A big run at the Saturday Farmers Market... I'm hoping
this will be the last time I have to buy squash plants.
Also get another Sun Gold to replace the sunburned one
(which is technically still alive).
Lemon Cucumbers, which will bring the total up to nine...
That might be enough to sustain me thru the summer. Last
year I had ten plants.
And some Sweet Potatoes and Leeks.
It started sprinkling as I left, but I wasn't planning
to go to the garden anyway... I head for the river and
park at the Rose Garden. It's cool enough that the baby
plants will be fine in the car while I go for a walk!
Oh wow, I just love these fancy Columbines!
It's just pouring down rain, now! I'm wrapped up in my
rain jacket and decide to go up Skinner Butte. It's a
small park and ordinarily I would never hike up on a
weekend day... too many humans!
But the rain will keep the humans away today!
Ha! After seeing the fancy Columbines in the Rose Garden,
here's our native Columbine, out in the forest!
Huh... it's been a long while since I've been on this part
of the trail!
The rain makes the view from the summit even more
I go all the way around on the Mid-Elevation trail.
Skinner Butte is an incredible little park, but there's
no escaping civilization on this trail. You can hear
the traffic on the highway.
A good hike, and now I'm headed back. Just sprinkling
now so I'm able to take some pics of the Osprey platform
nest on the other side of the river!
Hmmm. A parent... and a lump. dang it, I'm not sure
who the lump is!
oh well, try again next time! and back at the Rose Garden.
heh. I'm such a sucker for the roses! :)
Tag: May 2022
Friday 27 May 2022... to the Garden|
Artsy Heron! We were walking past the Camas Lilies!
The Red Ossier Dogwoods are blooming, down at the
Aren't the leaves just lovely?
Okay. At the garden...
There is just one Lemon Cucumber still living from the
1st batch of cucs I planted. So today I'm planting the
2nd batch. Three Lemon Cucs and one Striped Armenian
There were a couple of freebie Squash plants as well, that
I grabbed and planted. They are wilted and pathetic looking,
tho, so I'm not going to give them any hope.
These are Pinks, in someone else's garden plot...
The really cool thing about Pinks is their name! You think
they are called Pinks because they are pink? haha! Nope...
Pinks got their name before there was a colour called pink!!
It turns out, the colour pink was named for these flowers!
And the flowers were probably named after pinking shears,
for the serrated edges on the blooms!
First harvest from the garden!
*laughs* Elephant Garlic blooms can be eaten! They have
a very mild flavor, and can be chopped up and added to
Tag: May 2022
Thursday 26 May 2022... H5N1 death at the River|
Spillover is dry again.
Red Eared Sliders are terribly invasive, but dang it,
turtles are just so cute!
Mama Mallard watching over her single, sleeping duckling.
I think this is the only duckling I've seen at
the Delta Ponds this spring. And there haven't
been that many goslings, either.
And then I see.
There's a dead Canada Goose, floating in the water.
The H5N1 Avian Flu must be killing off most of the babies as
well, I suppose.
Sighs. Well, I take a picture so I can report it at the
website on the sign. Sighs.
Extra time at my meditation spot.
And maybe just contemplate the river some more.
On the walk back, our one baby is awake.
And there is a family of Canada Geese with goslings.
And, oh my gosh. Nutria Babies!
Tag: May 2022
Wednesday 25 May 2022... Today at the Garden|
Today I ignored the dead and dying plants at the garden,
and did some weeding around the living plants... The three
strawberry plants I put in at the beginning of the month,
are looking good! (Never mind the sunburned Snap Peas
next to them!)
and After Photo:
Tag: May 2022
Tuesday 24 May 2022... Stupid Garden|
It has been unusually rainy and cloudy all thru May.
And now there's been a couple days of sun... And several of
my poor stupid plants in the garden have been sunburned!
Sunburned! I just can't win!
I don't think the Sun Gold is going to live. And
Look! These Dead Nettles are totally fried! GAH.
I'm just so frustrated. Not to mention the squash plants,
which have bug eaten holes in the leaves. I never see the
bugs, so I don't know who is doing the damage.
It's been a couple of weeks, but here is that new duck
at the creek again! Dang, she's just lovely!
Aww! So sweet!
Tag: May 2022
Monday 23 May 2022... So Sad... Injured Mama Duck :(|
Aww! Ducklings! There's seven in this family.
But then I get a look at Mama. Oh My God!
She doesn't have a tail and her wings are messed up!
And a wound on the back of her head.
Poor Mama. Just barely escaped from being eaten, and now
she's got seven babies to take care of. Sighs. Her
injuries are pretty severe, I doubt I will see her again.
And here's some more horrible stuff, from SCOTUS...
court guts lifeline for prisoners who claim wrongful convictions
Decision bars federal courts from hearing new evidence
not presented in a state court as a result of ineffective
What in the fresh hell is this? I cannot even understand.
What is the point of a trial if you can't look at ALL the
evidence??! and why would ANYone want to hide evidence?
Like truth doesn't matter in this world?!
What makes this even more terrifying... My state of Oregon
has a serious lack of public defenders. We need a couple
thousand extra lawyers (Literally!!)
in order to get thru all the cases!
And if you actually get a public defender, and they can't
do their job because they have a hundred other clients
they are working with as well? Your public defender simply
doesn't have the time to work for you. The chances of
getting wrongfully convicted skyrockets, and now... what?
we can't even do anything about it?
So. Americans do not have the right to competent lawyers.
In his opinion, Thomas presented the case as one of
states rights. He said that federal courts should not
be allowed to override the states
core power to enforce criminal law.
States rights again. What in the hell is wrong with
these five judges. Precedent doesn't exist for them.
They can't remember the civil war. And goodbye United
States... SCOTUS is ripping our country apart.
Later... here's an article about this that I wanted to add.
It was written 29 June, and I think it's important.
just quietly slashed your Sixth Amendment rights
(apologies, there are about 700,000 ads on that page,
but the article is still readable.)
Ugh, ugh, ugh.
So here are some happier photos to cheer us up.
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 21 May 2022... Gardening, ARG!|
I picked up more baby vege plants at the Saturday
Farmers Market, but once I get to the garden I'm
annoyed to see that the squash plants and Lemon Cucumbers
are dying right and left.
Well. I transplant some of what I bought today...
a Crook Neck and two Spaghetti Squash, and a Roma tomato plant.
And I try to focus on the things which are alive.
And on the way home, I marveled at the Cow Parsnip...
Cow Parsnip is related to carrots, and parts of it are
edible... But it will give you a rash...
And Giant Hogweed is a look-alike and is poisonous,
so you really, really need to know what you're doing.
∞ Cow Parsnip... cooking
Tag: May 2022
Friday 20 May 2022... Rose Garden and River|
Just past the Rose Garden on the Ruth Bascom Riverbank
path, there's an Osprey nest platform on the other side
of the river. A pair of Ospreys have been using that
nest, for I don't know how many years!
haha! One of the parents is up there. You can just
barely see a black and white striped face.
Just a couple of very early roses are blooming at the
Rose Garden, but there's always something interesting
to look at! Here's the Owen Cherry Tree, possibly
planted in 1847.
And then back to the Delta ponds... Happy to see the
Hmm. This might be a Western Pond Turtle. I wonder why
she has so much green stuff growing on her.
This one is a Red Ear Slider... a pet store turtle who is
dangerously invasive, unfortunately: They reproduce
so much that everyone suffers.
My meditation spot...
And now for the song birds!
uh oh. This is not a sign about feeding the ducks...
this is a sign about Bird Flu... :(
Don't feed the ducks or geese!
Feeding birds and contact with avian feces can
increase spread of avian flu. City staff cannot
regularly clean avian feces from surfaces.
Wash avian feces off your shoes. Limit cross
contamination with domestic chicken and ducks.
In Eugene Parks:
If you see sick birds, call...
If you see dead birds, please report...
Tag: May 2022
Thursday 19 May 2022... to the Garden|
Mama Hummer said Hello!!
Just before I got to the place on the bike path where
she had her nest, somebody buzzed me... It was Mama,
and she hovered in front of me for several seconds,
making sure I saw her!! I sing-sang my usual greeting
for her and then she flew by me, going into the flowery
Aww! So awesome that I got to see her again!
This is a pretty weed from Europe, and I have to look up
the name of it every year! Salsify... it's pronounced
Cute lil Wood Pewee!
And a lovely Mallard couple, resting in the Lawn Daisies!
And at the garden to check on the baby plants. Here's
the 2nd set of Lemon Cucumbers, looking good. (Never mind
about the 1st set of Lemon Cucumbers... they are quite
Oh, Naughty! Look at your face! You've been digging
in someones garden plot! haha!
Tag: May 2022
Wednesday 18 May 2022... Walk West|
Our Little Free Pantry is in a good neighborhood. :)
The exposure on the pic below is awful, dang it.
But this is kind of cool! These are House Finches,
Mama on the left and two fledglings.
That fluffy feather on the kids heads, means they are
fledglings. There are many different species of song
birds who might have this fluffy feather when they are
growing up! I guess it's just the way the new feathers
are coming in, but I don't know for sure!
And here we are at the wet prairie at Stewart Pond Park.
There are swallows swooping over the water...
Mostly Barn Swallows,
I can see their red feathers. But there's Tree or Violet
Green Swallows as well... I wish there was an easy way to
tell them apart!
What the... ? Ha! Why are her feathers like that?
It looks like she's got a hoodie on her head!
It took me a while to figure out who she was... the shape
of the beak was making me think. But then, oh! Of course!
She's a Red Wing Blackbird!
This stuff is growing up all over the place here, with
umbrellas of little white flowers... and I decided to
finally look it up. huh. Poison Hemlock.
Oh cute little bird! Another one I have to look up!!
He's a Common Yellowthroat.
And one I def do not have to look up. ha! Towhees are
one of my favorites!
Tag: May 2022
Tuesday 17 May 2022... Gardening|
Got all of the baby plants from Saturday Farmers Market
transplanted into the ground today! Yay!
A 2nd Sun Gold and and heirloom Yellow Pear Tomato.
Two Zucchinis, two Spaghetti Squash and three tiny
Tag: May 2022
Monday 16 May 2022... Happy Pics|
Green Herons are so shy, I'm always excited when I get
to take their portrait!
hmm. Are those white feathers normal for Barn Swallows?
Or is this a bit of leucism? ... Not sure. There is a
pic of one
with white on wikipedia, but no talk about it. So
maybe it is just normal.
Oh, the Checker Mallow is blooming!
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 14 May 2022... Starling series|
There are Starling parents and fledglings all over the
place at the Community Garden today!!
The youngster is begging at her dad!
It's normal for birds to continue to take care of their
kids after they've fledged. The youngsters can fly but
they have lots to learn about flying and finding food and
about life in general!
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 14 May 2022... to the Garden, but not gardening|
Ha! I love it when the wildlife greets me, right out
the door! Two sweet girls!
We go to the Saturday Farmers Market to buy more plants...
but the garden is a swamp! So I'm not planting anything
I've got two big Comfrey plants growing this year and
they are blooming like crazy!
Done looking at the garden, but I need more exercise,
so I take the long way home. Here's Blazey, the bike
path ambassador, in his spot.
Lucky pic of a Chickadee!!
Tag: May 2022
Friday 13 May 2022... SCOTUS|
Thomas warns Supreme Court can't be bullied
As a society, we are becoming addicted to wanting
particular outcomes, not living with the outcomes we
don't like, Thomas said.
Did you just say that? Are you fucking serious?!
When the federal right to legal abortion goes away...
people WILL DIE!
They will die of botched & illegal abortions,
they will die of pregnancy because the US has a
high Maternal Mortality, and they will die because
they've had a miscarriage and are too scared to go
to a hospital.
Not Living with the outcome...
is LITERALLY TRUE!!
Tag: xxx 2022
Thursday 12 May 2022... Garden and Flicker series!|
Just stopping by to check on the veges I planted yesterday.
It is raining, like they said it would, and the baby plants
are happy about that!
Northern Flickers are woodpeckers... but their favorite
meal is ants. So pretty often, you'll see them on the
ground, digging up an ant nest!
Thank you for letting me take your portrait!!
Tag: May 2022
Wednesday 11 May 2022... Gardening|
There's more rain on the way, so I want to get some
plants in the ground at the garden! Some squash, a
Sun Gold cherry tomato, and the first set of Lemon Cucumbers!
And also a third Albion Strawberry plant!
The baby squash plants keep dying of the slugs,
but at least the strawberries will live.
One of the Columbines is thinking about blooming!
A Starling showing off his colours on the Community
And cake for my birthday! :)
Tag: May 2022
Tuesday 10 May 2022... Flowers at Hendricks Park|
Well, this is kind of exciting... the car I'm driving out
to the park hit 180,000 miles!
And then I arrive at the Rhododendron Garden! So lovely!
I didn't notice when I was taking this photo... but this
trillium bloom is getting old... and buggy... and sluggy!!
Oh my gosh! These ferns look like Sea Horses!!
Pretty shadows on a Fringe Cup.
Well, this would have been a pretty photo to have...
except for the blurry bird part! ha. oh well.
He's a Western Tanager.
This one again. Sighs. She is very beautiful, tho.
I'll have to see if I can read her tag next time to
find out her name.
I love the Song Sparrows!
Looks like there are babies to be fed!
Tag: May 2022
Sunday 8 May 2022... New Duck!|
Translation: Dear Chief Roberts, Please, please, please!
Do not let Roe v. Wade fall! Breaking 49 years of
precedent? Weakening our right to privacy? How many other
rights will we lose in the aftermath? I am terrified.
Please don't let this happen. Sincerely, rift
I'd like to send a postcard to Justice Alito, as well.
But really. What do you say to a person, a man, who
a witch trial judge. What do you say, besides cussing
Hey, cool! a new duck is hanging out at the creek!
Weird face, but a sweet look. I hope she sticks around!
Western Bluebird. So fluffy!
Oh, hey! Another cool bird!
Um, could you move over just a little bit... ?
This is a Yellow Rump Audubon Warbler, the western version
of the species. The eastern version is called Yellow Rump
Myrtle Warbler and has a white throat. These little birds
are summer visitors here.
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 7 May 2022... Rose Garden and River|
Bought a few vege starts at the Saturday Farmers Market,
then parked at the Rose Garden to walk along the river.
It's a lovely, dreary day and it's sprinkling now and then.
A quick check of the nest platform, across the river...
but no sign of the Ospreys today.
I back track and go over the river on the Greenway walking
bridge... There are swallows swooping above the water,
scooping up bugs! I love to watch them!
But I can't tell if they are Violet Green Swallows or
Wow, check out the spillover!!!
Wow, they're everywhere! I eventually counted 13... but then
I saw more in the trees on the other side of the main pond!
I wonder what's going on!
Oh the cuteness!
Ha. A Red Wing Blackbird... with rather orange epaulettes!
Tree Swallow. But I'm guessing the swooping swallows
above are a mixed group of Tree, Violet Green and maybe
Tag: xxx 2022
Friday 6 May 2022... Good Bird Day at the Garden|
Oh Wow! A Wilson Warbler!! Awesome!
A bad pic of a female Violet Green Swallow. are they
using one of the Bluebird nesting box as well??
The male is here, too.
At the garden,
the squash plants are getting eaten up by slugs. Sighs.
But the strawberry plants look good!
Hopefully the strawberries will pull me thru the sadness
of the dying squash!
And the comfrey is blooming!
*laughs* a perfect fit... Comfrey and Honey Bees are both
invasive from Europe, so they have evolved together to get
that good fit!!
And then on the way home, a Western Wood Pewee!
Silly name, but cute little bird!
Tag: May 2022
Thursday 5 May 2022... Rain!|
Happily raining today!
After one of the driest Februarys in over a hundred years...
April was the 7th wettest on record!!
We're up to 12.60 inches for the year now.
We have not caught up to normal... which is 18.68 inches
for the end of April. But, like I said, at least we've
not fallen further behind on the rainfall.
And, even better that the rain is continuing into May!
With the rain, the camera is mostly tucked under my
rain jacket, during my walk.
But I've taken a couple photos today!
The news this week is of Supreme Court Justice Alito's
horrifying leaked opinion about abortion rights. sighs.
If Roe falls... this country will no longer be the
United States of America. We will be divided
by States Rights... a horror from the times of the
American Civil War.
There will be states where people can get health care.
And there will be states where it will be intolerable for
women, LGBTQIA, BIPOC, AAPI and other minorities to live...
It starts with the
loss of reproductive health care, including contraception,
and (of course) including puberty blockers for trans kids.
They are also working to take away voting rights, in these
states as well. We'll go back to Legalized discrimination.
Where does it end? I guess we'll find out.
If Roe falls... this will no longer be a democracy.
Half the population doesn't have a federal right to
Bodily Autonomy is the foundation of all other rights.
You can't enjoy the pursuit of happiness when you're dead.
Oh, you didn't know?
Mortality in the US is bad. Really really bad.
Tag: May 2022
Wednesday 4 May 2022... at the Garden|
Today I took a couple of baby squash plants to the garden...
a Yellow Zucchini and a Green Patty Pan. I love summer
squash in many different forms!
The Strawberries are still happy.
These tiny little weeds are perpetual in the plot during
the growing season. I had always thought they were
Baby Blue Eyes
because I had a seed mix that included them, ages ago.
But no... Baby Blue Eyes have five petals on their flowers,
and this only has four.
Funny name! and native to Europe and Asia, but not an
invasive problem in my garden plot.
And then, walking home, a Hawthorn is blooming along the
Tag: May 2022
Tuesday 3 May 2022... Bus Experiment|
So! I might have Jury Duty on Thursday!
That's exciting. Or maybe nerve racking. *laughs*
I'm not sure which!
Anyway. If you have to go in, you have to stay the
entire day, from 8:15am to 5:30ish. So they make sure
you can get to the court house without too much trouble...
they will validate your parking at the two nearby
parking structures, and they include a free bus pass
for the day.
There is a stop for the EmX, our rapid transit, at the end of the
street, about a block away. It's been ages since I've
ridden the bus, so I wanted to do a trial run today!
I got up early. I was super nervous walking down to the
bus stop. There was something wrong with the fare machine
at the stop, and I couldn't pay to get a ticket.
After a couple attempts, I gave up.
And the bus had arrived anyway.
They never check your ticket...
I had a good excuse for not having a ticket, but it was moot!
Once I was on the bus and on the way... I was suddenly
having fun! I should do this more often, being driven
around without a care is Awesome!!
But then, getting closer,
I realized I didn't know when to pull the cord for my
stop! Ack, that was dumb! Fortunately, the bus made
my stop for others, regardless of my dumb-ness
and I got off at the right place.
The courthouse is about a block away, and I am there
well before my assigned time! I go inside, look at where
I'm supposed to go for my jury duty. I'm not terribly
early but there's just a couple of other humans around...
Maybe they don't do jury things every day.
Then I head across the street... If I'm here the same time
on Thursday, I can go drink my coffee at the Park Blocks!
Which is exactly what I'm doing right now! I feel better,
knowing exactly how to get here and where to go!
I go back to my bus stop to go home... but the return stop
is not in the place where I think it should be! Ack, again!
Dang it, why isn't it just across the street?!
It's never easy! I wander around, fortunately I happen to
walk in the correct direction... and I find the bus stop
going the other way. Yay! I did it!
I get home. Eat breakfast. and realize I need more
exercise! A couple of blocks of walking to and from the
bus stops just isn't going to cut it!
You think it's an artsy pic of a Periwinkle... but
actually there are two teeny tiny bugs in there! :)
Tag: May 2022
Monday 2 May 2022... Cool Birds|
Bushtits are so cute! I wish I could get decent pics
of them, but they bounce around too quickly.
Our Wood Duck friends.
um, what? What's Praxis??
hmm, Merriam Webster says
or practice of an art, science, or skill but
has a whole page dedicated to the word!!
Aw, it's a little one!
Hunting under the bridge...
Oh, hey! Caught someone!
Toss it down!
Yum, a tasty snack!
Poor little minnow.
Tag: May 2022
Sunday 1 May 2022... Garden|
Our invasive friend, the House Sparrow is still hanging
around one of the nesting boxes.
And there's a family of native House Finches strolling
I planted the two strawberries in the back of the plot,
next to the pea and lettuce patch. I hope they will
be happy here!
Tag: May 2022
Saturday 30 April 2022... Pretty Parks at the River|
A quick run to the Saturday Farmers Market... where I
Strawberries aren't going to mind the cold or the damp!
Slugs don't usually eat the leaves (tho they will eat
the fruit). But maybe I can keep a couple of Strawberry
plants alive in the garden!
The kind I got are called
Strawberries which are supposed to be everbearing.
We shall see how it goes!
Too muddy to plant anything today, so I head to the
Rose Garden along the river. No roses yet, of course,
but it is still lovely there!
And then out to walk along the river...
Def time to check out the Osprey nest platform...
Oh Yeah! You can just see a parent's head up there!
I walk all the way to Alton Baker Park. That round
yellow thing is the Sun, part of a scale model of the
There are several families with goslings! There are
The fence surrounds a duck pond to keep the birds safe
from dogs... the babies can just barely get under the
There's tree stuff that's fallen on the sidewalk that
the babies are interested in.
The parents keep their eyes on me...
Hey human, you be good!
Yep, I'm good. I stay still and quiet and the babies
come closer to me.
oop! The dog on the leash is kept far away, but the
goose parents are worried. They gather up the babies
quickly. Back to the Water my children!
And then walk back. So peaceful.
oh, haha! It's really too muddy, my dear, to be digging
up saved nuts! What a mess you've made of your hands and
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 29 April 2022... Cool Spider!|
An artsy starling. And the next photos are of a spider...
you have been warned! :)
Here's someone who caught my attention on the bike path.
Wow, isn't she beautiful! And because of her colour and
shape, I was able to figure out her species!
A Woodlouse Spider!
oh... but she's also called a Pill Bug Hunter! Poor
little Roly Polies!!
She was using her arm to cover up her face, but
you can kind of see how huge her jaws are in this
pic. She needs that power to cut thru the Roly Poly
So interesting and amazing!!
And ducklings! I am pretty sure this is the same
family of three
where the one baby was squinting.
I also went into the Community Garden to gaze at the
stupid dead plants. I need to plan my attack... what
vege starts will I buy at Saturday Farmers Market tomorrow,
are the nights warm enough yet to actually plant anything,
Tag: Apr 2022
Thursday 28 April 2022... at the River|
A bit of water coming over the spillway!
So round and fluffy!
And... oh my god!
Bottom family has 13 babies, top family has 27!
Twenty-Seven!!! This is insane!
My meditation spot.
I just love the Big Leaf Maples!
I've not seen anything of the Bushtits, the last couple
times I've been out. And so I figured the nest was done.
oh. opps! Nest is def not done. Here's the male to
yell at me again!
Sorry! Sorry! That was so rude of me! Sorry!
Tag: Apr 2022
Wednesday 27 April 2022... Camas Lilies|
Oh! A White one!
Camas Lily bulbs are edible and nutritious... and
ALL the foraging websites say to NEVER eat the white
Camas Lily bulbs, because that's the poisonous Death Camas!
But when I looked it up... Death Camas looks NOTHING like
a white Camas Lily. Ha!
I get that they are trying to keep stupid people alive.
but, lordy lordy! Stupid people should def not be
foraging for their food!
If you are not 100% sure about what something is, out in
the wild... DO NOT EAT it! If you even have a shadow of
a doubt, if you are even 99% sure... DON'T EAT it!
That's my soapbox, and you should def listen to what
I'm saying!! :)
Oh, hey... There's a new male Anna Hummingbird on the
other side of the Community Garden!
And I haven't seen our Wood Duck friends in a couple days!
Tag: Apr 2022
Tuesday 26 April 2022... Hidden Trail|
I LOVE the colours in this photo!!
The Maple keys and the new leaves and the pale blue sky
and the fluffy cloud.
But little dude needs some pants! Bahaha!!
Okay... here we are at the Hidden Trail, which follows
a little waterfall up the hill.
The Fawn Lilies are still blooming!
And Forget Me Not.
And Fringe Cups.
Tag: Apr 2022
Monday 25 April 2022... Blurry Birds|
A moody pic of the clouds over the Community Garden
fence... but look at the pair of sweet House Finches!
hmmm? Who's this?
Oh, haha, you gave me a clue! Yellow Rumped Warbler!
Must be a youngster!
Ducklings! But, oh no... that baby in the back is squinting
his eye. Poor Baby! I wonder if he has that H5N1 bird flu
that's going around. There haven't been any
in Oregon yet, but that doesn't mean it's not going around!
Tag: Apr 2022
Sunday 24 April 2022... Garden Failure|
ARG! Last night it got down in the 30's... and the
cold has killed most of the plants I put in yesterday!
Wai! The Eggplant!
So much for that experiment. The Eggplant will not
recover, and most of the squashes are in the same state.
Tag: Apr 2022
Saturday 23 April 2022... Farmers Market!|
The nights have been warmer, and there's a break in the
rain... and I am eager to get going with the garden!
At the beginning of April,
I had planted Sugar Snap Peas, Lettuce, and Beets.
The slugs ate a couple Lettuces to
death, and of course the peas leaves look like postage
stamps from munching... But that little patch of life in
the back is actually doing pretty good, with the chill and
Today I visited my favorite farmer at Saturday Market
and bought some baby plants. I got several kinds of
squash... Zuc, Patty Pan, and Crook Neck. Another set
of Sugar Snap Peas.
And an impulse buy... Eggplant!
I'm not a huge fan of eggplant fruit, but it might be
interesting to grow. Plus, it's fun to say Aubergine! *laughs*
I got all the little plants into the ground and then I
Lilac is fixin' to bloom
And the Apple blossoms, again.
And the ornamental Cherry blossoms!
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 22 April 2022... part 2, Preparing for the Next Generation!|
Wow, look how cobwebby this lamp is... I can just imagine
all the flying bugs swarming there at night!
Are we going after spiders for lunch?
Ah! No, not lunch! She's gathering nesting material!
Ha. So many blurry photos, and I still can't tell who
this bird is! Is it the same Orange Crown Warbler
that I saw the other day??
A European Honey Bee hive is swarming, right next to the
bike path! There are bees in the air everywhere!
I wish I had paused longer to get more photos... this is
so interesting. And I love being surrounded by the bees,
who obviously have other things on their minds!
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 22 April 2022... part 1, Garden|
Tulips at one Community Garden plot.
And Pansies at another Community Garden plot.
uh oh! A House Sparrow... not someone we want moving in
at the Bluebird nesting boxes at the garden!
The House Sparrows are invasive. That's not their fault,
of course, but supposedly they take over the prime nesting
But it's not a problem this time! Because there's several
nesting boxes, and I think this pair of Western
Bluebirds is using one.
A building storm cloud...
There's an apple tree, just outside the Community
Tag: Apr 2022
Wednesday 20 April 2022... and More Rain!|
Another rainy day, and I am so pleased even tho I'm
not able to take as many photos. February was so, so
very dry... we won't catch up, I don't think, but at
least we won't fall farther behind on rainfall.
Oh. This is interesting. I don't know who this is!
I had to get my book out! This is an Orange Crowned
Warbler... and just like Ruby Crown Kinglets, their
crowns are ordinarily hidden.
This is the most common western warbler and
The very lack of conspicuous field marks is an aid
to its identification! haha!
Field Guide to North American Birds, Western Region
I have several field guides, but this one is my go-to
when I don't have a clue about the bird!
It's easy to page thru the photos to find a new bird,
and then I've got a starting point to learn more on
Tag: Apr 2022
Tuesday 19 April 2022... Rain|
Raining today, so I'm just walking in the neighborhood,
taking pics of yards. I just love this one... so much
And a Song Sparrow, who shakes off the rain and sings
Tag: Apr 2022
Monday 18 April 2022... Funny Ducks|
Oh, cool! Here's a female Green Wing Teal who gets to
choose between two suitors!
They choose new partners each year and the males have
a funny little dancing bow they do to show off
to the females.
I also came across our Wood Duck pair... right when the
group of three female Mergansers happened to paddle by.
The male Wood Duck isn't sure about the little Mergansers and
he's kind of pushing them away. But the Mergansers are
messing with him... One of them dives underneath the Wood
Duck and comes up behind him!
Nah nah! I'm not touching
Long suffering, but oh so pretty.
And on the way home...
Tag: Apr 2022
Sunday 17 April 2022... todays pics|
I was looking at the oh so empty Hummingbird nest...
... And then I turned around and caught a glimpse of
two hummers, who quickly buzzed back into the Rhody bushes!
Aw! Were they the babies who wanted to tell me
We can fly! :)
A cute little Downy Woodpecker.
This will be the second year the Wood Ducks have stayed at the
creek. (to make babies!) But they are still so shy... when
they see me, they go and hide behind the nearest shrubbery!
Dang it, some more!
The Ornamental Cherry Blossoms have started blooming!
I love this article about swearing and language
for Ukraine against Russia...
swearing became a weapon of resistance for Ukrainians
Their enthusiastic use of bad language contrasts
with Putin's linguistic prissiness... and shows that Russia
doesn't own Russian
So interesting about cursing in the Russian language culture!
And how Ukrainians and the Ukraine government is using
swearing as another avenue to fight back ...
and somehow it's dignified and
funny and the whole world understands that
Putin is a dickhead!
Tag: Apr 2022
Saturday 16 April 2022... at the River|
Storms forecast today, but currently
the water isn't quite high
enough to get over the spillover.
Aww! The first Goslings!!
*laughs* The Towhees are everywhere!
My meditation spot along the river...
The sun is shining right now, but just wait!
What the... ??! There's a Bushtit nest, right on the path!
I mean RIGHT on the path!!
Literally, except for the blackberry vine hanging down, if
I could walk at the edge of the path, I would bump my
head on their nest!
This is crazy! What were the parents thinking?!
Here's Papa Bushtit, who has been angrily cheeping at me
while I'm looking at their nest! Mama pops into the nest
while I'm distracted. So it's definitely an active nest!
On my way back, I decide to keep walking instead of
heading to the car.
oops. I'm wandering thru the Rose Garden when it starts
hailing! Just small hails, and then it's pouring down
rain! I walk fast and take shelter under the nearby
highway bridge, along with a few other people.
A three legged dog, Border Collie type,
went around gathering pats from everyone,
before she and her human moved on, out in the rain.
:) I wish I'd taken a photo of that sweet dog!
The hard rain doesn't last long, and soon rain turns to
sprinkles. And I head home.
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 15 April 2022... Mixed Feelings|
The Hummingbird nest is empty! The babies have
successfully fledged! Mama will continue to feed
the kids, away from the nest, for another week or so.
Oh no! These ducklings look like they've just been born...
and their Mama is being harassed by a male duck. She
is trying to get away from the jerk, but can't just fly
away from her babies. And the babies
are all bunched up because they are scared and they are
peeping in distress. :(
Wai! I wish I could just grab that drake and take him
away so this family could have some peace.
Oh. Hello Mx Red Shoulder... would you like to eat a duck?
(Just kidding. The hawk would more likely eat the babies!)
Tag: Apr 2022
Thursday 14 April 2022... out to hilly Hendricks Park|
Well! This looks fun! I wish I had the guts to ask to
oh my gosh, what a goof!
The Rhododendron Garden is starting to fill up with colour!
And wildflowers out in the forest!
Hey! Who's this??! Dang it people! Keep the kitties
Kitty? Oh Cute Kitty? Please go home...
It's fixin' to rain!
Tag: Apr 2022
Wednesday 13 April 2022... Hummingbird Family|
Oh my gosh! Here's Mama Hummer with some extra fluff
for the nest?
oh, haha... it's almost a family portrait.
Family with fluff! :)
Okay. You babies need to scoot over just a little bit...
Mama tucks the fluff into the bottom of the nest.
But I'm wondering why! The babies are almost ready
to go... why do nest repairs now?
Mama leaves and the babies have to squirm around to get
Back to my walk. The pair of Killdeers are still at the
One more look at the hummers on the way home.
Oh, haha. The one wants a look at me, too!
Tag: Apr 2022
Tueday 12 April 2022... Hummers and Killdeers|
And look at their feathers! Wow! I bet they start flying
any day now!
Oh! First Camas Lilies are blooming!
And look who's watching me as I take pics of the Camas...
Oh, cool! There's a pair of killdeers running around
in the parking lot behind the Events Center!
They were scooping up worms who had crawled up out of the
Those eyebrows make them so worried looking!
Tag: Apr 2022
Monday 11 April 2022... April Showers|
It rained over a half inch yesterday, and a bit more
sprinkles today... and Look! The bike path under 11th
I can't walk that way, but that's okay. I'll take pics
of the yards in the neighborhood.
Our friend the Nutria is out on land... her burrows have
probably flooded as well.
The wet prairie ponds have filled back up!
Just a glimpse of the pair of Wood Ducks.
I wish they were less shy!
Tag: Apr 2022
Sunday 10 April 2022... to the Garden|
The little patch of plantings at the Community Garden plot.
There's Sugar Snap Peas, both green and purple leaf lettuces,
and some beets.
But the slugs have found the Sugar Snap Peas...
And someone else is munching on the lettuce, which is
weird! I don't remember ever having a problem with the
ha. Oh well, that's about how it goes in my garden plot!
And then I go visit the Hummer Nest...
I see Mama Hummer! It's the first time I've seen her
in about two weeks... She's just been so busy getting
the babies fed!
No pics, but she hovers and acknowledges my presence! :)
Tag: Apr 2022
Saturday 9 April 2022... at the River... Part 1|
Oh wow, I love all the colours and textures in this
Oh, cool! The Sliders never come this close to the
bridge! He got a good look at me and then sank himself
and walked along the bottom of the pond!
My meditation spot...
A blurry Bushtit.
And a less blurry but more upside down Bushtit! haha.
Just a pretty day!
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 8 April 2022... All Kinds of Babies!|
Oh my gosh! The Hummer babies are starting to look
like real birds (instead of little monsters)!! *laughs*
We gotta strech! Blurry, but so adorable!
Gosh, it's hard to get comfortable anymore!
Cracks me up that the baby on the left is closing her
one eye... Don't hit me in the face, please! heh.
Some baby leaves.
And the first ducklings of the season! Yay the cute-ness!
There were 6 babies all together!
Teaching how to dabble...
And then on the way back, the Hummer babies have finally
arranged themselves comfortably.
Tag: Apr 2022
Thursday 7 April 2022... at the Community Garden|
The peas I planted on the 2nd are still alive!
This garden plot at the back of the Community Garden has
an Easter Tree, and a cool variety of Daffodils!
Are the Bluebirds nesting here or not? I can't tell.
And then I continue my walk.
Tag: Apr 2022
Wednesday 6 April 2022... Hidden Trail|
I'm going up Hidden Trail today... but to get there I have
to walk over a mile thru the neighborhoods. And I am
happy to take pics of flowers in people's yards!
And here we are at the Hidden Trail.
Fawn Lilies are blooming!
This Flicker was so intent on whatever bugs he was finding,
he barely noticed me, even tho I must have been watching him
for five minutes or so!
Tag: Apr 2022
Tuesday 5 April 2022... Hummer Babies Milestones|
Some blue green feathers are starting to come out on the
backs of the hummer babies!
Pretty Apple Blossoms.
And more Artsy!
The Crows are very social with me today.
And then, on the way back home... AWWW! Look!
Babies eyes are starting to open!!
Tag: Apr 2022
Monday 4 April 2022... pics|
Happy that there's some rain today!
And Happy to keep seeing the Wood Duck pair at the creek.
I haven't seen Mama Hummer lately.
But she's obviously doing
her job! Our babies are growing!
Ha. Just hanging out on the bench.
Here's a Eurasian Collared Dove.
You can't see their collar because it is just on the back
of their neck. Invasive, of course. But I don't know if
they cause any problems.
All doves are beautiful and have lovely songs. But the
song of the Collared Dove makes me laugh sometimes! They
are just so frantic about it! They try to coo as fast as
Tag: Apr 2022
Sunday 3 April 2022... lots o pics|
Forget Me Not's are blooming.
I go into the Community Garden to check on the veges I
planted yesterday. They are good!
Oh! a Black Phoebe! (dang it, a blurry photo.)
I've been seeing Black Phoebes now and then, this year...
it's interesting because they are a bit outside their
range which is all thru Mexico and up the coast of
California. I suppose they are shifting north due to
Okay, these are so pretty I really need to look them
up! They came in all kinds of colours, pinks and reds
and purples and mixed with white.
Ah! here we are...
Two beaks and a pile of baby feathers.
Tag: Apr 2022
Saturday 2 April 2022... First Saturday Market|
Yay! It's the first Saturday Market of the year... which
means I'm heading out to the Farmers Market to buy Vegetable
starts for the Community Garden plot!
The nights are still pretty chilly, so I'm sticking with
cool season crops... Sugar Snap Peas, Lettuce, and Beets.
I scraped away the winter covering of mulch, and you can
see how muddy it is, even with no rain!
This fellow came to check on me. *laughs* I think I'll
call him Silhouette Hummer!
I wonder if he's the father of our nest of babies.
and, yep. No doubt now, there's two of them...
(Be sure to right-click and Open Image in New Tab, to see
a bigger version of that pic... it's kind of hard to tell
what you're looking at here, but that's an open beak behind
the front baby hummer's face sticking up!)
Tag: Apr 2022
Friday 1 April 2022... Blurry Birds at Stewart Pond|
Still a wet prairie pond out in front of Stewart Pond Park,
but there was just this lone shorebird hanging out there.
A far, far away Red Wing Blackbird.
And a bad pic of a Bewick Wren.
Sighs. There are just some days when I just can't get
a good pic of any wildlife that comes along!
Good luck finding the Ruby Crowned Kinglet in this pic!
At least I can take decent pics of the plants!
Here's some blooming trillium.
I really like the pink tulips.
And I really like these two, who were barking at me while
I took pictures of tulips!
Aww, this is awesome!
These second-graders helped shelter pups find their fur-ever homes
And the drawings are amazing!
Tag: Apr 2022
Thursday 31 March 2022... Surprise at the Hummer Nest|
I saw this photo and I'm all Ohh! How cute!
A beak and a tail!
But then I looked closer. I think that's actually
two beaks! Two baby hummers!?!
*laughs* It's normal for Anna Hummingbirds to have two
babies... but since I'd only just seen the one, I assumed
there was just one!
Today is International Transgender Day of Visibility!
Tag: Mar 2022
Wednesday 30 March 2022... Into the Garden|
I had planted a couple patches of Fava Beans as a winter
cover crop. At some point we got some freezing weather
which killed most of the Fava plants, but a couple survived...
But look how chewed up it is. The slugs have been munching
on it. And I didn't really mean to provide a dinner salad
buffet for them all thru the winter! *laughs*
Oop, another little Creeping Buttercup to dig out.
Pretty, pretty! Grape Hyacinths.
And our cute little baby hummingbird is all set for
Mama to come back.
I wonder when her eyes will open.
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 28 March 2022... part 2|
Our Manky Mallard friend at the creek...
She does have a boyfriend, I wonder if she will pass on
her dark colour to her children!
Ha, Artsy Crow! Interesting colours, huh! I like!
A weeping cherry tree drapes blossoms over some tulips!
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 28 March 2022... Hummer Baby Series|
Mom's out getting food. But you can see a bit of baby
feather fluff in the nest!
Ah, here she is!
Hey! Hello! Hungry here!
Holy Moly... does that beak full of food go directly
into the stomach?! sheesh!
Ha, trying to get comfortable... we are sitting on the
nest more than in the nest!
Tag: Mar 2022
Sunday 27 March 2022... Proof of Baby!|
And then she flies away. hmmm... is that somebody in there?
Yes! There's someone moving around!
Oh my gosh! That's a blurry baby! YAY!
Funny how short her beak is!
And now she's in prime position for when Mama comes back
Aww! Just Too Cute!
Tag: Mar 2022
Sunday 27 March 2022... Chickadee Series|
Another one who needs to fix their feathers!
And what the heck is going on here? A blurry bird series!
ummm... Are Chickadees cavity nesters? Yep! They are!
I learned something new today!
But she keeps looking over at me. I'm not close, but
I'm obviously bothering her.
But I can't resist taking a couple more blurry pics.
Such cute little birds. I wish I could take decent pics
of Chickadees, but it is never to be!
(Later) The Chickadees decided not to use this hole in
the snag, after all... I didn't see them at the snag again.
Undoubtedly my fault for staring at them and bothering
the female while she's trying to do cleanup.
Sighs. Sorry, little ones!
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 26 March 2022... at the River|
I park behind a soccer field, and these guys have been
practicing every saturday morning...
The game is Irish Hurling! And it looks crazy!
I am glad to see helmets... probably easy to get
wacked in the face!
Traditional Irish Game Hurling info and a showcase video
Lots of Vultures out today, I wish I could have gotten
a decent pic.
Warm enough for the turtles to come out. These are the
invasive Red Ear Sliders, but isn't that shell beautiful!
The Willamette River and Skinner Butte...
Tag: Mar 2022
Friday 25 March 2022... Wow! Raccoon of a different colour!|
Oh my gosh! This is amazing! A Blonde Raccoon!!!
Sorry about the blurry pics, but I didn't get the chance
the spend time with this lovely but shy and anxious person...
I did a little research. The Blonde colour in raccoons is
a simple recessive trait, but it's incredibly rare. Not
quite as rare as Albino, but rare!
XXX (more info to follow!)
This web site has some good, interesting information:
blond raccoon spotted on small island
And, incidently... since I've been chatting about
the invasives in the garden... You see the yellow
flowers in the top two photos? The raccoon is walking
across a bad Lesser Celadine infestation. This is on
the bank of the creek, and you can see how the evil
things have killed a lot of the grass. Grass which is
needed to stablize the creek bank. sighs.
And in book related news... (yeah, remember how I was
going to chat about
books and reading on fridays?
haha, that was end of January and hasn't happened since!)
A head librarian in Texas has been fired for making good
trouble. She refused to remove the 800+ books that Texas
wants banned. She worked at a PUBLIC library
Kos: Texas librarian fired for not pulling books
off the shelves in banned book purge
librarian fired amid controversy over advisory board
So. This is bad. Really really bad.
I am utterly disgusted at what republican politicians
are trying to do across the country, taking away everyone's
And it's devastating to watch our democracy crumble.
Tag: Mar 2022
Thursday 24 March 2022... Community Garden|
Keeping the baby warm...
I decide to go into the Garden again today, instead of just
walking past it. That neighbor's Hyacinths are still
And I have another invasive to yank out of our garden plot.
This is Creeping Buttercup...
is not as problematic as the Lesser Celadine, I mentioned
the other day. It's more just annoyiing. It has the
typical yellow flowers of buttercups and spreads with
seed and stems which creep along the ground and root at
nodes to create new plants.
That's what this one is... a node at the back of the plot,
right up against the neighbor's raised bed. There's also
some Creeping Buttercup in the grassy pathway at the front
of the plot... I really should get my dandelion tool and
just pry all of that up, since it creates a perpetual
The crown of the plant goes down a little bit,
and if you just grab the leaves, they will break off
and leave the crown in the dirt.
Which, of course, will just keep growing! So that
dandelion tool works well to get under the crown so you
can get all the important bits out. It's okay to leave
the roots, they'll die without the crown.
Technically, Comfrey is an invasive weed as well... But it's
slow to spread, and has pretty flowers.
It does get big, tho, so it's probably annoying if it's
growing where you don't want it. But that is the
definition of a weed, after all!
Oh, look how lovely!
I've scared him, but isn't he pretty!
oop! haha! Off she goes!
Oh Little Baaabbby? Don't you want to stick your head up??
*laughs* nope. bummer.
Tag: Mar 2022
Wednesday 23 March 2022... pics|
Looking up at the sky... I wonder what she sees.
These are pretty. They remind me of Poppies, but these
are short, low to the ground, and it's way too early
for Opium Poppies to be blooming.
oh good! The male Wood Duck has returned as well!
I didn't see him with the female yesterday.
Tag: Mar 2022
Tuesday 22 March 2022... Exciting Hummer Day|
Oh, hey! a Wood Duck! Has she returned to the creek
for a second year?!
I don't ususally do selfies, but today Blazey, the bike
path ambassador, climbed up into my lap for cuddles and
just couldn't resist!
I set Blazey down and I got up to move on.
There was a woman with pink hair, who had seen me
taking photos with Blazey and we grinned at each other...
Maybe we are both closeted cat people. :)
I said, "He's ready for his next
customer!" and we laughed together.
Bad explosure on this pic of the Hummer nest today. But
I'm positive I saw somebody moving around in there!!
I think we have a baby!
And then Mama Hummer came back... and oh my gosh, she's
feeding somebody! Her back is turned to me and I can't
see past her. And there's still no photographic proof,
either, darn it. But we definitely have a baby today!
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 21 March 2022... bad pics|
Not a great day for photos, kind of dreary and drizzly.
So here's a couple blurry birds for ya!
But then... Look at the colour varieties in all these
trees! This makes me happy, when blurry birds do not! :)
Tag: Mar 2022
Sunday 20 March 2022... pics|
Could you please fix your feathers!
This is currently the only Manky Mallard at the nearby
Every time I first glimpse her, behind some shrubbery or
whatever, all I see is a dark or black duck. And I get
excited because I think I'm looking at a new species!
And then I walk around the shrubs and
Oh. It's just
you again. *laughs*
You can see how much darker she is from a standard
Our Mama Hummer still sits.
Oh pretty, Forsythia is blooming.
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 19 March 2022... Oddness at the River|
Still no rain, and a dry spillover.
What the... ???
Um. Yeah. That's a human skeleton foot on a fence post.
Why did someone leave their skeleton foot at the
Delta Ponds? Why did someone Bring their skeleton
foot to the Delta Ponds? heh, who knows... it's Eugene!
Getting artsy with some Grape Hyacinths!
church-goers and TV addicts are considered dull
All these hobbies
were judged to be worse even
Fortunately, the least boring are
actors, scientists and
journalists (and in particular science journalists)
So since I'm a Naturalist
who writes about the birds I see... I'm
in the exciting category rather
than the boring category.
Tag: Mar 2022
Friday 18 March 2022... Garden and Pens|
I decided to go into the Community Garden today, to see
if I needed to yank up any weeds in our plot.
Oh, pretty! Someone has Hyacinths blooming in their plot!
And a Seven Spot Ladybug on a cool leaf.
uh oh! Here's the EVIL Lesser Celadine, in a neighboring
That stuff is super invasive, kills everything around it,
even the grass!
And spreads with seeds and tubers and these horrid little
If you let it get established... yeah, when it
gets to the point of blooming, it's established... it's
extremely difficult to get rid of it. You have to dig
it out, and scoop out all the dirt around it. You cannot
put plants or dirt into the compost, it will survive and
reproduce there! You have to haul the dirt to the
Crazy! But the first leaves are easily recognized. I
always have a couple that try to grow in my plot, which
is why I check the plot thru the winter. I dig them out
when they've just got a leaf or two... They've grown up
from seeds, so there aren't any tubers or bulblets I
need to worry about.
Here's another invasive, tho this one is much more
benign... Red Dead Nettle.
Dead part of it's
name means it doesn't sting like it's cousin,
Stinging Nettle! Dead Nettle is so soft, it's
actually a pleasure to run your hand thru a patch!
My Pen Loving Friend decides to count her pens... !!
next post she's laid down some rules... it's a PEN
... not refills (I don't really do refills, so okay!)
... not pencils (I've got a good drafting mechanical pencil,
and a set of coloured pencils in my writing area, but I
never use them to write).
... and not markers. (hmm. I have a big collection of Copics,
which I do use to write, but only addresses on envelopes,
nothing else. So, okay, that can be a separate count!)
Not pens in her
infirmary... oh my gosh, I hate it
when there's still ink but the nib is clogged or something
and the ink flows unevenly!! I will move the pen to
less demanding work area (like the kitchen where my partner
and I write notes to each other) but if the problem persists,
it goes to the trash!
And we're not counting decorative pens which are just
eye candy and not actually used. Ah. I don't really
buy this kind of pen. I do have one good fountain pen,
which has a green barrel which delights me... but I
bought that to use! For me, it's enough to just see a
good, wild variety of pens in my workspace and that
makes me happy! :)
So, I think that's all the rules of our game!
Tag: Mar 2022
Thursday 17 March 2022... pics|
Oh awesome! I always get excited when I can fit more
than one individual into a photo! :)
This is a Fox Sparrow and a Golden Crown Sparrow. Even more
exciting since I don't see Fox Sparrows very often!
Mama Hummer takes a look at me, and then goes back to
I am pretty sure there's a baby in the nest today. One
of my photos of the nest, when Mama is away, shows the
tiniest bit of red-ish brown, maybe naked baby bird skin.
I was on my way home, just walking the last bit of the
bike path before I turn off onto my street. There's a
little boy with his skateboard on the bike path and when
he sees me, he motions for me to Hurry Up!
He's looking down into the creek, but I have to walk
past some trees and bushes to see what he sees.
A Great Blue Heron!
We chat, I tell him the name of the bird and he tells me
he's practicing his skateboarding here because there's a
tiny incline he can roll down.
Tag: Mar 2022
Tuesday 15 March 2022... pics|
I walked west today and after I passed 11th, I heard
frogs singing! I investigated, and ha! I didn't know
there was a little pond here, it's hidden behind a little
I wonder if it's a permanent pond or a wet prairie pond!
Will have to check it out again thru the summer.
:) Something Artsy...
Ha, their closed eyelids look funny!
Hmmm... actually I think I like those sweet Sleeping Teals
well enough to make a postcard our of that pic! :)
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 14 March 2022... Series: a Heron eats|
um. Holy Moly!
The poor fish has been stabbed, and the Heron is
maneuvering it around to eat whole...
is a bit bloody.
eee. Carnivores. bleh.
And that fish was still alive as he went down. I wonder
what he dies of... maybe lack of air? Sucks that he has
to deal with hopelessness and stomach acid as he dies tho.
Sorry. Gruesome thoughts there. But, that's carnivores
for ya. Herons can't go vegan... but we can!
Think about it.
Tag: Mar 2022
Sunday 13 March 2022... Hummer and Waterdogs|
A bit of rain this morning. That's nice.
Not sure how my Hummer friend feels about it!
Mama goes to get a snack... But we can't see what's
in the nest...
Here's a cool thing in today's comics...
∞ Go Comics,
Jump Start 03.13.2022
The Neuse River Waterdog was featured in the February
edition of Scientific American, and I was totally
fascinated by the article!!
DNA Deforms Salamander Bodies
Their DNA is so very very long that the cells of the
Waterdog are so big you can almost see them! Their DNA
is 38 times longer than humans!
Turns out, having that much DNA really messes you up!
It takes so long to copy the DNA, only to have to snip
out all the junk to make it usable, that parts of Salamanders
aren't able to
grow up all the way... Their legs
don't grow out and their toes
are just buds, like a fetus, their brain stays in the
embryonic stage, their optic nerves don't get myelin sheaths.
There's craziness all around!
But because their growth stops here and there,
before they are actually
they're also filled with stem cells.
So, yep! Salamanders can re-grow any bits of themselves
that get chewed off, or you know maliciously chopped off
in the laboratory. (Scientists really are assholes.)
Good bits of their brains, grow back. Their heart gets
chopped up, quits beating... but they live thru it and
ha! that stupid broken heart grows back too!!!
Like I said. It's a really good article, and you should
go read it! Because that Jump Start Comic is an invitation!
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 12 March 2022... at the River part 2 Everyone Else!|
(I like the birds with the red eyes!)
A Northern Flicker.
He was drumming on the top of this street lamp, and it
was a surprisingly beautiful and resonate sound!
My Manky Mallard friend...
A male Gadwall.
And a female Gadwall!
What an awesome day for photos!!
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 12 March 2022... at the River, part 1 Critter!|
Spillover is still dry. :(
I'm walking along the bridge which raises the path over
the Delta Ponds, and I look down at this creature...
What in the world? But look at her cute face...
Huh, turns out this is a Muskrat. They are native here in
the Willamette Valley... and all across the US and Canada!
Here's something cool that you can kind of see in this
photo. Muskrats tails are slightly flattened for swimming,
but they are flattened vertically,
in the opposite way that Beavers tails are!
So Beavers can slap their tail, but Muskrats wave their
tail side to side!
Tag: Mar 2022
Thursday 10 March 2022... National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers|
Yay Abortion Providers!
Everyone who works and volunteers
at abortion clinics is AWESOME!!
The last couple of years, I have sent out postcards to
all the independent abortion clinics in the US. There's
just over 100 of them, and it takes me around 9 months.
I did my first round in 2019. This postcard art was
provided by Abortion
Access Front, Thank Bank. (Unfortunately, the postcard
art isn't linked any more.)
In 2020, I made my own appreciative postcard...
And in 2021, I did a third round!
I love sending out these postcards!
I hope that sending a pretty picture and an encouraging
and loving message, it makes people feel appreciated!
March 10th was chosen as Provider Appreciation Day because
on this day,
in 1993, Dr. David Gunn was the first abortion
provider to be assassinated by an anti-abortion extremist.
Since then ten
more abortion providers have been murdered,
and there have been 26 attempted murders. Not to mention
hundreds of arson and bomb crimes and other threats to
abortion clinics and the amazing people who work there.
Provider Appreciation Day at National Abortion Federation
Send a Thank You Note to abortion providers.
Provider Appreciation Day at Abortion Care Network
Links to some good articles.
Art & Appreciation for Abortion Providers Project
Oh my gosh, this is awesome! Go check out this site!!
Back to the blurry birds. Here's a cute little Bewick Wren.
Oh! The Pacific Chorus Frogs are singing at this
little wet prairie puddle!
I've been worrying about our frogs... they usually start
singing in December and I haven't heard any.
puts these frogs conservation status at
Least Concern... but I'm concerned!
Oh, nice. A Bewick Wren gave me a second chance!
Tag: Mar 2022
Tuesday 8 March 2022... pics|
I always say Hi to the nesting Hummer when I come in and
she checks me out and then she half closes her eyes, back
in nap mode!
I am going to start making a concerted effort to
make my stay near the nest as short as possible...
Today I was there for 1 minute 10 seconds.
That's too long. I don't want to disturb Mama.
But also I don't want to have to explain myself to any
humans who happen to pass by behind me. They would see
how focused I am taking pictures,
and maybe ask, "what do you see?"
I am usually happy to share information about nature and
the birds I see. But in this case, I don't want extra
humans knowing about a vulnerable nest, which is so close
to the bike path!
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 7 March 2022... pics|
I stopped by the Community Garden today. I suppose this
is the new Garden Supervisor... but he's messing with me!
Because their beautiful red-violet feathers on their face
only flash at a certain angle with the sun, male Anna
Hummingbirds are very aware of sun position. They aren't
going to get any girls if they can't show them how beautiful
they are, after all.
So this male knew exactly what he was doing when he put
himself between me and the sun so I could only see his
ha, Blue on Blue...
And that blue, blue sky... which makes me sad during the
Still making a few adjustments to the nest...
She is just so sweet to let me take photos of her.
Tag: Mar 2022
Sunday 6 March 2022... pics|
oh! haha. Not a great angle! But I don't get to take
pics of Juncos very often... they mostly bounce around on
the ground, in the deepest shade they can find!
Dark Eye Juncos are cool because they come in all different
colours... there are 15 races across North America, and
several of those used to be considered separate species!
So interesting! Of course, ours are called Oregon Juncos.
Here's a male Greenwing Teal and maybe an immature male
And I walked by the Hummingbird nest. Check out those
blue-ish fibers on the inside. The white on the left side,
on the outside, that's actually spider web.
Um, hang on... is that... ?
It is! Oh my gosh! An Egg!!!!
I had to hold the camera over my head to get that last picture,
so it's pretty blurry because I couldn't see what I was
doing! *laughs* But that is def the curve of a
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 5 March 2022... Continued... at the river|
Little bit of rain, little bit of spillover...
A Spotted Towhee, was singing right next to the
path. He gave me a look! *laughs*
A cool bug on some Osoberry leaves...
Not sure who that is, but it was a bit chilly for them
to be out and they weren't moving around like they should
Tag: Mar 2022
Saturday 5 March 2022... Brown Creeper Series|
I just love it when I'm able to watch a bird for a couple
minutes and capture a little bit of their day!
Today I got to watch a Brown Creeper...
They are cute little birds who bounce up the trunks
of trees, finding bugs in the bark. They are beautifully
Oh! We found a bug!
Oh, hey, it's a spider!
Choking it down!
*laughs* So cool!
Tag: Mar 2022
Friday 4 March 2022... pics|
Hooded Mergansers are winter visitors at our little creek.
Hummer is still working on her nest...
And someone who's thinking about napping rather than working!
Tag: Mar 2022
Thursday 3 March 2022... pics and the Free Press!|
There was enough rain to put some water into the Wet
Prairie Ponds... but this is nowhere near normal for
this time of year. That puddle should be three or four
Our Anna Hummingbird friend was away from the nest today.
But dang, look at how camouflaged that nest is!
I had trouble finding it again! The thorns you see are
of an invasive Himalayan Blackberry.
Squirrel! The green on the right is Camas Lily leaves...
but it'll be a while before they bloom.
But the Cherry Blossoms are doing their thing!
I've been thinking about how important Journalism and
the free press is, and I've decided to contribute a
monthly donation to
I already pay for my local newspaper... It costs about
35$/month and then I include a big tip for my delivery
person. So I typically spend around 550$ a year.
It's a 6 day paper delivery...
they are going to quit delivering the
Saturday paper, tho they will publish it online.
I'm a bit annoyed, since I enjoy the dead-tree version.
But every day, there's
a good page of comics, and decent puzzles. It's part
of USA TODAY Network.
But I also read a ton of news online. The Guardian being
one of those news sites. I like The Guardian specifically
because there's not a pay wall,
but it does let you know how many articles
you've read. I'd gotten up to 86, I think! :)
I can't afford another newspaper subscription...
The Guardian is 20$/month, or 200$/year.
But, like I said, Journalism is important. I want more
journalism in the world. And it's important enough to me
that I want to support journalism financially, especially
journalism without a paywall!
Tag: Mar 2022
Wednesday 2 March 2022... Pics|
Rain today, YAY!
With the little bit we got yesterday, we got
around 1.3 inches... a decent and normal amount
for this time of year. But barely makes a dent
in our super dry
We just had
of the driest Februarys in
over 100 years, with less than an inch of rain falling
during the month!
The 1.3 inches we just got
brings our accumulation total to 6.36 inches.
Normal would be 11.06 inches of rainfall.
4.7 inches behind. sighs.
I only got a couple of pics in the rain. So here's
the rest of yesterday's photos which are not a
nesting hummingbird!! :)
A pair of Brewer Blackbirds. These are the ones who
hang out with the European Starlings.
Dark brown female at the top and the male in the background.
They are so cute. They always hang out with themselves in
a huge flock... couple hundred maybe? And I've seen them
many times out in the elementary schools fields! And then
the children come out to play, and the flock rises up
noisily to find a new place to hang out!
Tag: Mar 2022
Tuesday 1 March 2022... OH MY GOSH!|
An Anna Hummingbird's Nest!!!
My brain made a Lot of assumptions when I saw her flying in...
I saw a red-violet flash, and assumed she was a male.
Simultaneously, I saw something on her beak.
But when she came in for a landing, understanding
dawned on me!
She does have a patch of the shiny red-violet feathers,
which happened to flash at me from her neck. This is a
normal trait for Annas, but I don't think females of
any other species of hummer have a flashy
In male Annas, their entire face is covered with those iridescent
feathers, tho it looks black if the sun is not in the
And she didn't have something ON her beak! She was carrying
nesting material IN her beak! The bit of fluff was placed
as soon as she landed. And then she was off for more!
oh how awesome!
Tag: Mar 2022
Monday 28 February 2022... Red Tail Hawk series|
oh wow. Look who's up on one of the street lamps along
the bike path! a Red Tail Hawk!
foo, I miss the
pounce, but our Red Tail friend
thought she or he saw somebody moving in the grass...
Did we catch somebody? Nope... Empty handed...
And then we go to stand on the next street lamp. :)
And then, on the way home, two crows were cawing and
swooping at a tree. Are they just goofing off, or are
they mobbing someone in the tree? I can't see anything
and I keep walking.
I pass the tree, and the crows start yelling again.
I turn around and now I can see what's happening!
Wait. I'm pretty sure that's a Red Tail. Is it the
same Red Tail??! *laughs* maybe!
Tag: Feb 2022
Sunday 27 February 2022... Pics + Countries and Capitals|
In light of the Russian invasion of Ukraine that started
last Thursday, I have been trying to learn the proper
pronunciation of Kyiv.
The old way of saying it was Kiev... Key-ehv. But this is
the stupid Russian pronunciation! I didn't know! (and it
kind of amuses me that a country has a dead-name. ha.)
So, the Ukrainian way to write it is Kyiv,
and it's kind of pronounced Krreeev.
There's really two syllables, but they are jammed in so tightly
it sounds like a single syllable.
do you pronounce Kyiv
This was a helpful video!
Anyway. Countries and Capitals have been on my mind, and
so when I couldn't sleep last night I started thinking about
my old project to memorize all the countries of the world.
I had memorized all the countries and capitals in the
Americas, including island countries of the Caribbean.
And those were still firmly in place in my brain!
But I had forgotten almost all of the capitals of Eastern
Europe. I remembered Poland and Warsaw. Sarajevo is fun
to say, but I couldn't remember what country it went with.
I had a good visual of a Mink ringing a rusty old church
bell... so the capital of Belarus is Minsk! *laughs* Too
bad I can't make more visuals like that!
So I turned on a light and pulled out my atlas and I studied
some maps in the middle of the night.
It's good to learn things!
Tag: Feb 2022
Saturday 26 February 2022... At the River|
Dry as a bone...
The Willamette River at the top, the first of the Delta
Ponds at the bottom. You see that rocky bit of land in
between? That is supposed to be where the river is filling
up the ponds. It's our rainy season, and it should be
pouring in water.
What? Kittens at the river? Well, I guess technically
they are kittens outside a river-side apartment complex.
Someone had set out food for them, so they'll probably
be caught and homed soon!
A Red Shoulder Hawk, being mobbed by a Crow.
Red Flowering Currant, a native shrub and a lovely
splash of colour on a dreary day!
Tag: Feb 2022
Thursday 24 February 2022... todays pics|
... And here's what the inside of that Little Free Pantry
from yesterday looks like...
Kinda empty today. On the bottom shelf is a package of
menstrual pads, my contribution today. It's def something
that people need, the package is always gone in
less than 24 hours.
The Nutria is out again today. Maybe she's getting used
to me... she didn't run for the water as soon as she saw me!
Oh, awesome! A White Throat Sparrow!!
They are winter visitors here but I hardly ever see them!
This one is a juvenile: stripes on chest and lacks the bit
of yellow on their face.
And the first Osoberry blooms...
A native shrub, here in the Pacific Northwest. Since it
blooms so early, it's an important source of nectar to
our Anna Hummingbirds.
Tag: Feb 2022
Wednesday 23 February 2022... Little Free Pantry art|
Another clear and cold day. There's even ice in the
wet prairie ponds!
This month's writing topic for the Postcard Exchange
that I run at Goodreads, is Little Free Libraries.
I've been trying to get photos of the two that are
in our neighborhood... no luck today... the sun is too
bright and it turns the shady parts too black to see into.
Oh well. Try again another day.
The above crow art is actually on a nearby Little Free
I tried to get artsy with it...
Tag: Feb 2022
Tuesday 22 February 2022... Today|
Clear and Cold... and there's some snow on the hills.
Oh dang it!
I always forget the name of this bird... Townsend Warbler!
They are winter visitors here and I don't get to see them
Tag: Feb 2022
Sunday 20 February 2022... Out to the Community Garden|
I like to visit my Community Garden throughout the
winter. I check our plot for anything invasive: I yanked
up some Creeping Buttercup today. Unfortunately, instead
of coming out cleanly like I meant, the crown broke. So
I'll be pulling up that plant again, soon! ha!
And there's usually something interesting going on there...
Perhaps a new Garden Supervisor?
You can see in the pics that the sun is beating down.
It's our rainy season and it's not been raining. We got
just over 3 inches from the flooding at the
beginning of january. But since then we've
not gotten hardly any rain... at this point we are
supposed to have 9.39 inches of rainfall, but we've
only accumulated 4.33 inches. Five inches behind,
and not looking to get better any time soon. sighs.
The river is low. The lakes are shrinking. The wet
prairie ponds are drying up. I've not heard any
Pacific Choral Frogs singing...
winter is their mating season.
I'm scared for the future. How many trees are going to die?
What will the wildfires look like?
Tag: Feb 2022
Saturday 19 February 2022... Out to the River|
A big event out at the river this morning!
A Polar Plunge...
Well. It's chilly, but I don't think that water that's
46°F (8°C) really qualifies as
The air temperature was around 50° (10°C) but there was a
big of a breeze. So I'm sure those guys were cold. But
lots of fun to be had by all!
And then I went for my regular walk, thru the Delta Ponds
and along the river!
A Double Crested Cormorant. These birds are shy and are
usually too far away to get decent pics. But oh my gosh,
their beautiful eyes...
I love the Manky Mallards I come across!!
You can read more about these crazy ducks at these websites:
Domestic or Manky Mallards
lists some of the breeds of Mallards and lots of pics.
Manky Mallard Portraits, They Are Oddly Beautiful
Awesome pics here!
A Manky blond girl!
I like the Mankies because they stand out from the crowd.
They become individuals!
And this weird looking boy.
You can tell he's a male from the curled feathers on his
tail. Females don't have that.
Tag: Feb 2022
Friday 18 February 2022... Awesome!!!|
Another Starling Gathering! Except...
In this section, almost all of these birds are somebody else!
Ha! They are Brewer Blackbirds! The black-black ones
are the males and the plain, dark brownish ones are female.
The Blackbirds are a bit more round, whereas the Starlings
are more sleek.
There are a couple of starlings, just north of center, you
can see his "stars".
But cool! Since I've never really taken pics of Starling
Gatherings, I never knew that they were joined by Brewer
Blackbirds. I'm so glad to learn new things!!
But here's someone even awesomer! A Turkey Vulture,
on the ground, eating some dead creature!!
He seems small to me, so I'm going to call him a male...
I'm assuming, like raptors, the females are bigger.
When I first saw him, I couldn't figure out who he was
eating. The creamy white fur made me think a cat had
died, but I really couldn't see past the grass and stuff.
(Warning: dead animal!) shows hands, not paws. Who has
hands like that? It's not a raccoon... *thinking* OH!
an Opossum. Poor Critter. I wonder how he/she died.
Vultures are so cool, and they are def my favorite of
the big birds. When they look at you, you can see that
they are definitely a person!
They are kind of outside the
food chain... They
don't kill anyone for food, and one one kills them for
food. And their role of cleaning up the dead is really
so important for ecosystems.
Vultures are just awesome! :)
Tag: Feb 2022
Thursday 17 March 2022... Starlings and a Hawk!|
A Starling Gathering! I love this and think I could stand
under a Gathering Tree all day to listen to the Starlings
chat with each other.
I imagine they are having important conversations:
String Theory, probably. And of course they are
telling their friends where they found some new food.
Or, Be Careful, there's a cat prowling over at our regular
bird feeder. After that, it's just gossip until they
come back around to String Theory!
I don't take pics of the starlings very often. They are
always up in the tree, so the light and background is crappy.
But also, Starlings are invasive from Europe, and so many
bird people hate them. I think this is sad. Starlings are
beautiful and definitely have character.
Their populations are declining in Europe, so we should
be happy to have them, even if the Starlings mess with
other birds. That's the nature of Nature.
oh wow. a Cooper Hawk! So happy to see this species
again! S/He was flying along just above the creek.
Tag: Feb 2022
Wednesday 16 February 2022... Covid + Todays Walk|
An even better picture showing the size difference between
the little Green Wing Teals and Mallards...
(Last comparison photo was on
26 Jan 2022, Day of Ducks)
Green Wing Teals are the smallest ducks in North America!
Another Hawk! Red Shoulder Hawk, again today. S/He was
being mobbed by a crow, and they made an inelegant landing
in the tree right above me!
Blazey, the bike path ambassador, sprawled next to his
decorated spot on the path.
Tag: Feb 2022
Tuesday 15 February 2022... a Two Hawk day|
Hey! Helloooo? sighs.
A Red Shoulder Hawk at the Community Garden!
Sees something moving in the grass? And Dives for it!
But turns up empty handed. Bummer. (but nice for the
mouse or whoever who got away!)
And then, on the way home... Another Hawk?! How Awesome!
This one is a Red Tail Hawk.
What a great day for photos!!
Tag: Feb 2022
Monday 14 February 2022... Blurry Birds|
I walked quite a bit further today! Over two miles and
the birds were def out to greet me!
A Downy Woodpecker. Look at the funny way she's sitting
on the branch! But she was pecking a lot at the stick, so
must have been getting good bugs there.
Is this the same heron I've been seeing for the last few
Tag: Feb 2022
Sunday 13 February 2022... Heron Naps|
Same Heron as yesterday, standing on a different branch
today! Naps in the sun.
This was just a very short walk in the neighborhood, again
today. Still sleeping in, in the morning, still need a
nap in the afternoon, and walking still causes nausea.
The brain fog is terrible. For instance, today I got out
of the shower, dried off. Then realized there was still
shampoo in my hair. what the hell?! Little stupid things
like that, all the time.
Tag: Feb 2022
Saturday 12 February 2022... Still getting better|
Still so tired, but I've got more energy in between
naps! This afternoon I went for a very short walk in
the neighborhood. The walking sets off the nausea again.
I love this pic, below!
The Song Sparrow is blurry of course,
but the green building in the background is such a wonderful
colour, and all the sticks are just perfect! *laughs*
I took a shower when I got home and then took a nap.
But it was good to get out of the house, even if it killed
Tag: Feb 2022
Thursday 10 February 2022... covid recovery|
Still with the headache and the nausea, tho it's better
than it was. Mostly it's exhaustion.
I sleep in. Then get up and take a shower. then I have
to lie back down for a while. I get up and read some news
on the Internets. then I have to take a nap.
I'm a bit more lively in the late afternoon...
I can get a bite to eat and maybe write a few postcards.
A little more internetting and then I go to bed early.
It's not much of a life, but we'll get there!
Tag: Feb 2022
Tuesday 8 February 2022... Covid day 3|
Sunday night continued to be terrible. In the middle of
the night, and around hour five of the ibuprofen pills I'd
taken, the body pain spiked horribly for about an hour.
That was the worst. The Worst.
Monday, I just felt
regular sick. Exhausted, achy,
still a bit with the nausea. Plus new symptom: sweating.
I'd wake up, just soaked. Yuck. I stayed in bed all day,
and was actually able to sleep for part of the day,
not just lay there and suffer like I did on Sunday.
Today is Tuesday, and now I'm dealing with diarrhea. It's
constant. I am just barely able to keep up with drinking
water. But as the day goes on, I get really worried about
my poor little microbes. You know, my gut microbiome.
The only fermented food I have is miso, and I will be happy
to make up some miso soup. As a backup,
I ask amz to bring me some vegan probiotics, a brand that
I'm familiar with. I have no idea if I need them, and I
have no idea if they'll help. But the pills will be here
on friday, and I am fine about leaning on the placebo effect.
I stay in bed most all day, but get some energy in the late
afternoon. I'm up and about for a few hours and feel like
I'm coming alive again!
Tag: Feb 2022
Sunday 6 February 2022... Covid Misery|
Yep, I've got break-thru covid and it is just terrible.
Saturday night I had a massive headache. I took pills and
went to bed. I woke up a couple hours later, "I feel weird."
Ha. That was the least of it!
Still felt the headache. Horrible body pain, especially my
back and right shoulder and arm. Serious nausea. And
chills, so I had a fever.
During the day, today: Minor chills continued
along with all the pain. I thought
I might eat something, in the afternoon...
but I just threw it up.
It's just awful. Every part of it.
And yet, I feel lucky. My lungs and sinuses are clear.
I'm not coughing or sniffling. But I can imagine how
that would have added tremendously to the suffering.
I am fully vax'd with all three shots,
and this is just a
mild case of omicron covid.
I may want to die, but I don't have to go to the hospital.
non-severe is a better word...
COVID Doesn't Mean What You Think It Does
Tag: Feb 2022
Friday 4 February 2022... pics at the river|
A Western Grey Squirrel!! This is one of our native
squirrels. While the Eastern Fox Squirrels have taken
over all of the urban areas, Western Greys can still be
found in the bigger parks!
Oh! The Witch Hazel is blooming.
This is such a beautiful park! The Ruth Bascom Riverbank
Trail runs 7 or 8 miles on both sides of the Willamette
River, with several walking bridges going across.
Alton Baker park is almost 2 miles from where I parked.
I'm coming in on the walking bridge from the other side
of the river.
The yellow ball on the other side of the bridge is the Sun!
It's part of a scale model of the solar system... the inner
planets are here in Alton Baker, and the outer planets are
out along the Riverbank trail. The Sun is 4.5 feet in
diameter and Pluto is a tiny dot over 3.5 miles away!
The scale is 1:1 billion!
Tag: Feb 2022
Wednesday 2 February 2022... Covid numbers |
Down to 3million new covid cases in the US this week...
a total of 3,371,518 averages to 481,645 every day.
2,642 people died every day... slightly more that last
week which was 2,506. Hopefully that number will start
coming down next week?
Oregon seems to be swirling with new cases, rather than
coming down. We had 7,379 new cases every day.
19 people died every day, and Oregon also hit 6000 total
covid deaths last thursday.
In my town there are 2,422 active covid cases, 88 are
hospitalized. 69.3% of those are unvax'd.
Unknown how many people died here in town... The newspaper
reported that a bunch of deaths going back to October were
added to the tally. So the numbers say 43 people were added
this week, but normally only 3 or 4 actually die in a week.
song sparrow might be nature's best DJ
Just a cool article about my favorite sparrow! :)
Tag: Feb 2022
Tuesday 1 February 2022... Just some pics at Stewart Pond|
A blurry Song Sparrow with a cool background...
A Turkey Vulture? That's odd! They migrate outta here
for winter... and February First still sounds like winter
Huh. Well, I guess they know what they're doing! :)
I'm a person who loves rodents, so of course I think
Nutrias are kinda cute. Mostly people around here don't
like them. I think they don't like them simply because
they are rodents. And the tail. I think if they just
had a furry tail, it would help their image. *laughs*
What in the world?!
I could not see what s/he was looking at. And this was
a hard stare, so I assume they are hunting somebody.
Tag: Feb 2022
Monday 31 January 2022... Kinglet|
Oh cool... it's a tree planting party at the creek!
That's nice. We need more trees.
This kinglet Almost sat for a portrait!
*laughs* And look! He's showing off... a bit of his
Ruby Crown is peeking out. They usually keep it hidden,
but we are heading into spring-time!
Tag: Jan 2022
Sunday 30 January 2022... a duck and Comm Garden|
Someone new at the creek...
American Wigeons are winter visitors in our area.
I've never seen one at our creek, tho. I hope he
sticks around for a while!
I also went into the Community Garden to see how things
are going there. Those Calendulas are still hanging on...
Really think I should get some for my plot!
We've had a week of air stagnation... which means sunny,
clear days and cold nights. It's gotten below freezing
every night and the patches of Fava cover crop are
looking a bit pathetic!
Tag: Jan 2022
Friday 28 January 2022... Books|
I'm thinking about doing a Books and Reading topic
I have been making an effort to keep up with my book
reviews over at Goodreads. It's been years since I've
been serious about recording my reading there. And I
hope that having a regular day to type about Reading,
will help keep me on the
surprising reason teachers want to get To Kill a Mockingbird out of the classroom
Well. It's not any kind of surprising to those of us who read.
I did not read
Kill a Mockingbird
in school. I read it much later, as an adult and I loved
it. I've referred to it ever since as
the perfect novel.
Yeah. Unfortunately, there's this big problem with the
white savior and stereotypical Black people.
Ugh. I knew all this. And the perfect novel... it is NOT!
What it is...
A white author, writing directly to white people, about
the white supremacist society we live in.
I apologize for ever praising this book!
But banning this book? Never. It's important to talk
about and understand all the different ways racism shows
up in our society. And in our
A cold day... there's still some frost in the shade where
the sun hasn't hit yet.
Hey, a Nutria!
Nutrias are invasive here... after stupid white men killed
off most of the otters and beavers,
they wanted to kill more animals. So
they brought up some Nutrias from South America.
They are big semi-aquatic rodents,
about 15 to 20 pounds and usually just
under 2 feet long, not including their naked tail.
I didn't think Nutria did much damage as invasive species
here, but I've looked it up,
and found out that as they eat and over-eat
vegetation, they destroy wetlands.
They eat all the plants in a spot, and then erosion happens
since there's nothing to keep the mud in place.
And humans get all upset when other animals are able
to change their environment, just like we can! ha.
Cool! A Nuthatch!
They are so cute! Here's a crappy pic of the classic Nuthatch
Great Blue Heron up in a tree. But look at all the
beautiful fir cones!
Tag: Jan 2022
Thursday 27 January 2022... Little Free Pantry|
I recently found out there's a second Little Free Pantry
in the neighborhood! Today I went looking for it...
It lacks the brilliant art of the one that's closer to home.
But it's maintained by the same group,
and the neighbors.
This one has about the same stuff in it, tho this one is
a bit more full.
Maybe because it's further from the bike path?
(here's the Little Free Pantry that's closer to home,
I went out to Stewart Pond, to see if I could find a hawk.
This is what I get...
*laughs* I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do with that
pic. I think I can assume it's a Red Tail Hawk. But it'd
be nice to have a better photo!
ha, it's pretty obvious,
better photos don't always happen around here!!
Tag: Jan 2022
Wednesday 26 January 2022... Day of Ducks|
Loaf, 74, Rock Star, unvaxxed, dead from COVID.
If I die, I die. sighs.
The US had 4.6million new cases of covid this week... we
are definitely coming down from the 5million we had two
A total of 4,605,333 new cases averages to 657,904 every day.
Unfortunately there are 2,506 people dying every day of covid,
a big jump from last weeks 1,854. How bad will it get?
Oregon has dropped slightly with new cases as well:
6,537 every day, rather than 7,888 of last week.
15 people died every day.
About the same in my town, 3,180 active covid cases,
63 people hospitalized. Four people died of covid this week.
Well, he was thinking about napping...
Ahh, there's your face! Thank you Mr. Northern Shoveler!
Northern Shovelers are winter visitors in our area... but
I don't think I've ever seen one at our little creek! This
one was just hanging out with the Mallards!
Wow, look at the size difference... a Mallard and a little
Green Wing Teal.
*laughs* Duck, duck, duck...
Lead by the woman. As it should be.
Tag: Jan 2022
Tuesday 25 January 2022... Hidden Trail|
Sometimes it makes me sad to walk up this hiking trail.
It really really needs some energetic volunteers to take
care of the forest.
Not only does it have the ubiquitous English Ivy and
extensive Himalayan Blackberry... there's also some very
established English Holly.
You can see the trunk of this bush at the top of the pic...
The base is a good five or six inches diameter!
It'll be very difficult to remove. If anyone ever bothers.
It's pretty, I guess. But ugh. I wish it weren't in my
haha... found this in someone's yard...
Don't sit there! :) The logs with the Turkey Tail are
pretty cool tho!!
Tag: Jan 2022
Monday 24 January 2022... pics of the day|
Nice to see such a vivid colour on a dreary day!
Might be Flowering Quince.
And then the fog and clouds broke up and the sun came out!
Haha, someone needs to fix their hair-do!
A blurry pic of a Downy Woodpecker. He's looking for
bugs, I suppose.
Ha! A funny angle for the American Robin... but I like
the colours in this pic!
Tag: Jan 2022
Saturday 22 January 2021... Blurry Birds at the River|
A beautiful and dreary day at the river...
But a cloudy day means the camera has trouble.
So let me introduce you to a few blurry birds!
This little shore bird was bouncing around and making
Shorebirds are quite impossible to identify unless you spend
some serious time with them. I would love to see more of them!!
But I only see a couple in the winter, so I have no chance.
This might be a
Spotted Sandpiper with no spots. But probably not, there's
dozens of other shore birds with oh-so different winter plumage!
A Greater... or a Lesser... Scaup?!
Ha! I don't know. Greaters have a rounded head, and this
one looks pretty round. Lessers have a little peak at the
back of their head, no peak here.
But Lesser Scaups are much more
common around here... the local Audubon Christmas Count had
66 Lesser Scaups and only 1 Greater Scaup.
One! Do you think I just happened to find the single one?!
or Lesser Scaup? Here Are the Biggest Differences Between the Two
And today's final Blurry Bird... Which I actually Can
identify! A Kinglet!
Okay, more blurry than usual. But he was def showing off
He's a Ruby Crowned Kinglet... and they ordinarily hide their
crown. But his was coming out as he bounced around in his
I wish I could get better pics of this species, because
they are so cute and tiny! But there's just too much
bouncing, even in good light the camera can't focus quick
enough. And then, too, I have to look up to see where
they've bounced to!
There is a drive-thru covid testing spot at the back of
the mall, which I walk past on the way to the Delta Ponds
Before omicron, there would be six or eight cars lined up
when they opened in the morning.
Today there were 22 cars at 10:45am... and when I came back
there were cars lined up around the corner and thru the
mall parking lot. I counted 31 cars at 11:45.
Tag: Jan 2022
Wednesday 19 January 2022... Covid and masks|
Just under 5million new cases this week in the US...
maybe we've hit the peak.
4,906,684 total, which averages to 700,955 every day.
1,854 people died every day. That number has been steadily
coming up since the beginning of the year:
It was 1,632 last week,
and 1,247 the week before.
Oregon is reporting 7,888 new cases every day. 11 people
There are 3,113 active covid cases in my town, and 53 people
are hospitalized. Four people have died this past week.
Apparently this article that I read yesterday...
didn't mask despite Sotomayor's COVID worries, leading her to telework
... About Justice Neil Gorsuch refusing to wear a mask
in chambers, and Justice Sonia Sotomayor
calling in from her office because she doesn't want
to sit next to the germ-spewing asshole.
... Apparently, that article really pissed me off.
Translation: Dear Justice Gorsuch, Put on a damn mask you stupid jerk!
You know what being maskless in a room full of masked up
people says? It says you're a Trump Republican. You
probably believe conspiracy theories. You can't be
trusted as a judge and I demand you resign!
Not very polite, huh? Well, I'm sick of these maskless
morons! And I hope I get his attention.
Follow-up, 20 January...
reporting on Supreme Court mask controversy merits clarification
Justices are trying to retain their dignity. But the dignity
is in shreds because of the majority's decisions. Maskless
morons just add to the dumpster fire.
*laughs* Maybe I should just call this place the
Blurry Bird Blog!
Kind of has a ring to it, actually! :D
Tag: Jan 2022
Tuesday 18 January 2022... Hooded Mergansers|
AllAboutBirds mentions that
male Hooded Mergansers have yellow eyes and a cinnamon
brown crest. And I'm wondering if the Hooded Merganser on
the right is a male.
His eyes aren't yellow, but they are def lighter than the
female's. And his crest is def more colourful, as are the
feathers on the rest of his body.
I also wonder what
nonbreeding male actually means.
Because there are males with the usual black and white
hooded plumage at this time of year.
I think it actually means that this is his first year. He
was born last summer and he still has his immature feathers.
So he's really just a juvenile.
Nonbreeding male technically
refers to all the males in the winter-time! :)
Tag: Jan 2022
Monday 17 January 2022... Munching|
hmm. A Beaver, probably.
Two trees down.
heh, I wonder if those tree people who are trying to get
Eugene's Canopy Cover from 22% to 30% are annoyed that a
beaver has chopped down two trees pointlessly! That first
tree is probably not going to live, either.
Not to mention all the other tooth marks along the creek!!
Me? Dead trees do make me sad. But a Beaver's got to chew!
I would assume this is a young beaver, venturing out into
the world. He doesn't know what he's doing, and doesn't
know where he's going. And he's trying to figure it out
and experiment, along the way!
Blazey, the bike path ambassador.
First sighting of teals, winter visitors at the creek.
(it's a crappy pic!)
Tag: Jan 2022
Sunday 16 January 2022... The Long Lost Cooper Hawk|
Sometime I wish my crappy photos were less crappy!
Some cute but blurry Golden Crowned Sparrows in a cool
looking but unidentified bush. *laughs*
A Cooper Hawk! Wow, it's been ages and ages since I've
seen one! I hope s/he finds this area an appropriate place
to live because I'd love to see them again.
This is a juvenile, you can tell by the three white dots
on their shoulder.
It's weird to see how small Cooper Hawks are -- about the
size of a crow -- when all I've seen lately is Red
Shoulder Hawks -- quite a bit larger!
Well, well, well... this is a surprise...
Little Mrs Belted Kingfisher decided to let me take a
photo. Not a great photo, of course. But still, it was
terribly kind of her to take a moment with me... instead
of teasing me! :)
Tag: Jan 2022
Saturday 15 January 2022... Shooting in Eugene|
There was a mass shooting downtown last night.
Six people wounded, one of them went directly into
surgery and is in critical condition. The bad guy
ran away and was not captured.
6 people have been injured in a mass shooting in Oregon
Wow Hall Shooting
So. I was upset this morning. I don't know what is
happening with my town. This is not my Eugene.
A trip out to the river... Nature can fix me.
A juvenile Bald Eagle.
Funny thing is, I knew this was a juvenile even before I
was sure of his species!
I was too far away and his back was to me.
All I could tell was that he was dark and big, I wondered
if he was a Turkey Vulture!
I could see he was hunched over, playing with something
at his feet? or maybe eating something? Not sure. And
then he dropped it!
It fell, fell out of his tree and hit the ground with a
thud. And that was the moment that I knew this was a kid!
(And I don't know what he dropped, I couldn't get close
enough to see it.) (And he didn't fly down to retrieve
the thing either.) (Goofy kid!) :)
An artsy Oregon Grape. And, yep, these bushes are starting
to bloom here and there!
Tag: Jan 2022
Friday 14 January 2022... Community Garden... and a surprise!|
I thought the snow at the end of December had
finished off the Calendulas at the garden... but some
The sun is in the wrong spot, so this guy's red-violet
face is showing black instead. But what a sweet song he
sings at me!
uh. What The ??
Did someone just lay an egg on the bike path?!
ha! Well, that's one way to do it if you're
not ready to be a mom! And seriously! It's mid-January.
No ducks are thinking about making a nest in freaking
January! It's winter!
I do feel bad about this girl's overactive reproductive
I resisted the urge to see if the egg was still warm.
Because if it was warm... there was nothing to keep me from
just carefully picking it up and bringing it home!
I don't have an incubator or anything.
And how would I care for a baby duck, anyway!
*laughs* It is fun imagining, tho!!
Dream of a duckling!
Tag: Jan 2022
Thursday 13 January 2022... pics|
Always good to see Blazey at his spot on the bike path!
And someone -- our little friend the hummingbird --
decided to get artsy with their portrait...
After the fact, I noticed...
Haha, everybody is facing left today! :)
Tag: Jan 2022
Wednesday 12 January 2022... Covid and Stewart Park|
We are up to 5million new covid cases this week, omicron
variant still doing it's thing. 5,081,232 all together which
averages to 725,890 new cases every day. 1,632 people died
Oregon continues to smash thru records. Remember when I said
the single-day new case count high was 3,207. Well, this
week our average was 7,250 new cases. Every. Single. Day.
... lordy. 15 people died of covid every day.
And of course, my town reflects the crazy numbers as well.
We've got 2,744 active cases right now... the highest active
count from the last round was 1,222 reported on 21 Aug 2021.
There are 85 people hospitalized here in town.
Even will all those people in the hospital, just three
people died in the past week.
I've had stuff on my mind the last week or so. And since
my brain is preoccupied, when I go out for my walk, my
auto-pilot heads me in the same direction every day.
East, towards the Community Garden.
It's a nice walk. There's green space. The bike path
is close to the creek for much of the way. There's a
little loop at the end of the bike path. And the entire
walk is 3.75 miles, a good distance!
But doing that walk over and over, every single day? heh.
It's not so much that I get bored... it's more that I just
So today I walk in the opposite direction! Stewart Park
is a bit over a mile away and is a lovely Wet Prairie, the
ponds currently hosting some wintering ducks, geese,
and shorebirds like sandpipers and such!
These are Cackling Geese, the smaller cousins of Canada
You see how short their beaks are? That's the major
major give-away for Cackling Geese.
There is a pretty big flock of them wintering here, and I've
seen them hanging out in a variety of fields... School
grounds, behind the Events Center, and now out on the wet
prairie by Stewart Pond!
There's also a little forest, where I've caught a few birds
I don't usually get to see. Here's a Black Phoebe.
Black Phoebes are a little bit north of their usual
range, here. But that's to be expected with climate change.
Tag: Jan 2022
Tuesday 11 January 2022... Hooded Mergansers|
There's a handful of Hooded Mergansers who stay at the
creek during the winter every year. I always have trouble
getting their pics, tho.
They are shy. And as soon as they see me, they power
paddle to get behind the shrubbery!
So most of my photos are pretty blurry. But these two
females were pretty calm and I was able to get slightly
better than usual pics.
Tag: Jan 2022
Monday 10 January 2022... pics|
A Golden Crowned Sparrow.
Oh, hey! I really love the colours in this pic of
Lenten Roses. Also, can you believe the Lenten Roses
are blooming already!
There was an article in the local newspaper today about the
tree canopy cover in Eugene. (Sorry, I can't link it. The
newspaper website has a paywall.)
It's kinda shocking and annoying to learn that Eugene only
has 22% tree canopy in the city, when the national average
is 27%. What the heck??
If there's one thing that western Oregon has, it's trees!
So why don't we have trees in the city? WHY?
It's nice to know that the city is aiming towards 30% tree
But it's a little bit late in the Climate Change
game... happy baby trees should have been planted years ago!
Now, baby trees have to fight for life thru drought and
Tag: Jan 2022
Sunday 9 January 2022... New Graffiti Artist|
A foggy and chilly morning, still just 34° when I left
for my walk at 10:30am.
Introducing new graffiti artist E.t., with an elephant
with butterfly ears!
And on the other side of the bridge, a dragon.
I think E.t. needs a bit of practice -- and to slow down and
look -- and it won't be long before they are making really
good art. For instance, just some simple changes to the
heavy black outline around that elephant, would make it
look a lot better.
Just... here. Just give me the can of black, and I'll fix
*laughs* just kidding!
Suspish mostly just leaves her cute modified angler fish.
But sometimes she does her name all fancy.
And then even fancier.
*laughs* Isn't it lovely!
(well, except the upside-down
moon. But that always drives me crazy, so never mind! :)
Tag: Jan 2022
Saturday 8 January 2022... not much|
I went out walking today, but didn't take many photos.
eh, sometimes it happens that way.
But here's a Pansy at the Community Garden.
I never remember what the difference is between Pansies
Between Pansies & Violets
Pansies have four petals that point upward and
one that points downward; violets have three petals
that point upward and two that point downward.
Tag: Jan 2022
Friday 7 January 2022... pics|
Just some pretty colours...
Not Canada Geese...
Those are Cackling Geese. This isn't one of their
usual winter stops. Our Cackling Geese are the smallest and
darkest of the subspecies, minima.
And a sweet crow, giving me a look...
Tag: Jan 2022
Wednesday 5 January 2022... Covid and squirrel|
Well over 3million new covid cases this week thanks to
the omicron variant. 3,726,136 in all and averaging
532,305 every day. 1,247 people died every day.
Oregon is breaking all kinds of records for highest
single-day new case count... The old record stood at
3,207 on 27 Aug 2021. Unfortunately, due to the holiday,
the Oregon covid website wasn't being updated, so there's
no telling what the daily counts were over the long weekend.
But there were 4,522 new cases reported today.
And Oregon had an average of 2,776 new cases every day this
past week (up from 1,136 of last week). 11 people died of
covid on average every day... holding steady from the 10
that were dying every day last week.
Active cases in my town shot up from 596 to 1,699 this week,
with 57 hospitalized. 77.2% hospitalized are not vax'd. Just
three people died of covid this past week.
Well, that's kind of a disdainful look...
Oh, wait! What's wrong with your face, Little One??
It's more clear in this pic:
Do squirrels get mange? ugh! Poor baby!
Tag: Jan 2022
Tuesday 4 January 2022... Bird Watcher's Digest|
Bird Watcher's Digest is closing its doors effective immediately.
This is so depressing, I cry.
This was such a great little magazine, I really loved it.
I can't believe it's suddenly gone.
Julie Zickefoose's eulogy for the mag...
Bird Watcher's Digest: 1978-2021, the Best Little Bird Magazine Ever
I first discovered Julie Zickefoose through her book,
The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds.
I read that at the end of 2016...
Book Review of The Bluebird Effect on GR
It's a beautiful book and I was thrilled to find out
she wrote regularly for Bird Watcher's Digest, and their
subsidiary publication Watching Backyard Birds. I subscribed
to both, and found Julie Zick's blog as well.
My subscriptions have lapsed in the past year or so. I wasn't
too worried about it... once I got some money together, I'd
just buy up the editions I missed or get them online.
Sighs. So crying sad.
The African Violet is blooming!
At the top of the pic is the back of a Polka Dot Begonia
leaf. and in the background, which you can't see very well,
is a Chinese Evergreen.
I love my house plants! It gives me comfort to sit with them.
Our Little Free Pantry has seen better days!
That white thing on the ground is the roof of the Pantry!
We had a wind advisory on Sunday night, maybe the wind ripped
Well. At least it's still full of food! But still with the
100% rain... I hope it doesn't leak too much without it's
Tag: Jan 2022
Monday 3 January 2022... And Then it Rained|
And rained and rained.
The bike path under all the bridges is flooded.
That hand railing is about 5 foot tall...
La Nina has brought the extra rain this winter.
We are smack dab in the middle of that green "wetter" area...
Tag: Jan 2022
Sunday 2 January 2022... Some Sunshine|
The Red Shoulder Hawk from yesterday seems to like sitting
in this area. This tree is a bit farther from the path, so
our new friend is blurry. I think it works as a
decent landscape pic tho with those beautiful layers of
Douglas Firs in the background!
The trees are coming alive already...
And that darned Kingfisher continues to mess with me. One or
the other of the pair fly up and down the creek every winter,
they are checking out nesting sites. But as soon as they
see me, they play a game of cat and mouse by hiding or
flying a circle around me or generally being jerks about
letting me take their portrait.
But this time I got proof of her existence!
They usually settle down behind a thick layer of bushes and
shrubbery, so all I can see is their bright white neck band.
This time she was just too far away, and flew off before I
could get the camera better situated.
Her partner was still laughing at me, in the distance!
Tag: Jan 2022
Sat 1 Jan 2022... Review and Revise|
Happy New Year!
Well. Another year of world-wide Covid.
And Another year of being a jobless bum!
Lots of photos taken, lots of postcards sent.
A crappy gardening year.
An awesome road trip to Utah.
But I seem to have lost some of my other hobbies.
Walking in 2021
At the end of 2020, I had dusted off my bicycle and was
going out to several parks in west Eugene. One day in
January, I got caught in a rain shower, and when I stopped
under a bridge, I slid in the mud and fell and broke my hand.
That put a damper on a lot of things at the beginning of
But other than that, I walked most every day,
rain or shine or whatever!
I walk mostly for the photo opportunities. But I'm happy
to get good exercise as well!
Photography in 2021
There was a lot of photography in 2021.
I'm unable to get a count right now,
like I usually do. But once I move into my new computer
I'll get on that.
So, for future reference...
in 2018... 11,570 pics, avg 964/month
in 2019... 15,124 pics, avg 1,260/month
in 2020... xxx pics, avg xxx/month
in 2021... xxx pics, avg xxx/month
Mailing and Postcards in 2021
in 2018... averaged 104 bits of mail every month
in 2019... averaged 76 bits of mail every month
in 2020... averaged 126 bits of mail every month.
in 2021... 1390 total, averaging 116 mailings every month
I did not exchange much mail for LetterMo last February,
I'm just so disappointed with that useless website.
I wish they would do something about it!
I was not able to keep up with the monthly postcard
exchange that I host on Goodreads. I didn't send out
postcards in August and October. Just a little burned out.
I sent 36 postcards at PostCrossing in 2021, bringing my total
there to 449. I hosted 51 swaps at Swap-Bot and participated
in a total of 101 swaps!
I only sent 10 Urgent Action cases in 2021 for Amnesty
International. But I did send protest letters to all ten
of the Write For Rights cases, Plus one card of encouragement.
I also sent happy postcards of encouragement to independent
Abortion Providers. There are just over 100 clinics
in the United States (not including Planned Parenthood),
and this is the 2nd year I've done this!
I've really fallen in love with the Epson SuperTank printer
that I bought in 2019. I only have to buy inks a couple
times a year! When I was buying cartridges, I'd be buying
a pack of colours every month. It is SO much nicer to not
have to think about ink all the time!! And SO much nicer
to not have all that plastic trash!!
Community Garden 2021
Worst year yet... had trouble growing zucs, toms, and
well, pretty much everything. I didn't
eat any Spaghetti Squash even tho I planted 8 plants. The
Cauliflowers were small but at least I got to eat a couple.
Beets are small, as well.
I suck as a gardener, obviously. But hope springs eternal
and we'll be keeping the garden plot for another year.
Writing and Drawing
There's lots of blog posts here. I'm not going to count
them because I'm actually still adding photos to random
The daily drawing practice ended in August, unfortunately.
I'd like to get back to it!
The New Year... 2022
Some stuff needs to happen this year. Unfortunately, if
I start listing it -- I need a new job, gotta get a car,
be nice to lose some weight, set up the new desktop
computer, etc, etc -- I get overwhelmed, want to
slam the door shut, lock it, crawl under the covers, and
sleep for 26 hours straight!
So. Let's focus on some stuff that I actually Want to
∞ Get back to daily posts here at S8.
∞ Also, catch up with old posts, and do some archiving!
∞ Get back to writing book reviews at GR.
∞ Ugh: Space Clearing, decluttering, cleaning.
Let's move forward!
Tag: Jan 2022
Wednesday 29 December 2021... covid and elephants|
Well, almost 2million new cases of covid in the US this
week... 1,848,809 which averages to 264,116 new cases every
day. And 1,502 people died of covid on average every day.
Oregon had 1,136 new cases every day on average... almost
twice what it was two weeks ago! And two weeks ago was
when omicron was first reported in Oregon. Just 10 people
died every day.
In my town active cases almost doubled from 307 to 596,
with 24 people hospitalized. Four people have died this week.
Wednesday 22 December 2021... covid numbers|
Yep, omicron is here in town, as of this past weekend...
they found the first cases on Monday.
Back over a million new cses of covid again this week:
1,151,320... which is an average of 164,474 every day.
and 1,724 people died every day, a significan rise from
last week's 1,046. :(
Oregon had 805 new cases every day on average (up from
596 last week), but just 13 people died every day (down
from 22 last week)!
In my town, we've got 307 active cases, 24 hospitalized.
And 8 people have died in the past week.
Tag: Dec 2021
Friday 17 December 2021... Happy Friday|
Oh yeah! Covid Booster Vax!
The drive-thru mass vax clinic had opened at 10
and I had a 10:15 appointment... and
since there were just a couple cars, way up at the front,
I needed help maneuvering thru all the cones! haha,
fortunately there were a couple volunteers to tell me
where to go!
I got to the first station where they hand you paperwork
(and uh, remind you to put on your stupid mask! oops!)
and then a guy directed me to the tents and I got to go
to the head of the line! (Again! I got to do that for
my 2nd shot as well!!)
I filled out the paperwork and got my covid card updated.
And then chatted with the doctor
for a minute. He asked how the first two shots had gone
for me. I said the first one, I only had a sore arm and
the second one I felt a bit achy the next day for a couple
He replied, "To help with that this time, you gotta
hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. And then you gotta drink..." he
paused here, and I smiled up at him wondering if he was
going to say something funny. heh, yep. "And then you
gotta drink some water!"
As I waited out in the parking lot to make sure I didn't
have a bad reaction, I saw the coned lanes that I had sped
thru alone, start to fill up. They only had 3 tents, vax'ing
two cars at a time in each.
The line seemed to be moving pretty
I was back home, and the whole trip was only half an hour!
And then I decided to go for a walk. And then I was like,
what if I have
Tag: Dec 2021
Wednesday 15 December 2021... covid numbers|
Well. The United states hit 800,000 dead sometime yesterday
afternoon, according to the
Hopkins website. (The
hit 800,000 on Monday 6 December, and is now at 810,665
people dead from covid.) :(
And the local newspaper reports that omicron is in Oregon.
They found a couple cases up in Portland. So it's not in
Eugene yet... but omicron is so contagious I think it will
be here in just a few minutes.
I've got my booster set up for Friday morning... I am mixing
and matching my shots. I can't wait!
Okay, so on to the numbers...
There were 721,210 new cases of Covid in the US this past
week, averaging 103,030 every day.
The US averaged 1,046 people dying of covid every day.
And since the omicron variant has been found here in Oregon,
I'm going to start keeping track of our state numbers as well...
Oregon had 596 new cases every day on avg, and 22 people
have died every day.
In my town there are 238 active cases of covid and 27 people
hospitalized. Four people have died in the past week.
Tag: Dec 2021
Monday 13 December 2021... Abortion Care|
I have been freaking out about Abortion Care in Texas and
all over the US since September 1, when SB8 banned almost
all abortions in Texas.
The courts tried to fix things,
but were bashed down by the 5th Circuit.
The Justice Department was no help at all.
The Supreme Court has turned evil,
and so they made things worse.
Translation: Dear President Biden. The current
Supreme Court terrifies me! Since when does the
court take away rights? Since Sept 1st women in
Texas have not been able to access full health
care. It's just a matter of time before more
states take away reproductive rights. Please!
But, here, FINALLY, is someone who is going to do something!
Future of Abortion Council Report
(this is a direct link to a PDF.)
I LIKE the recommendations of this council!
In fact, I like them so much, I think my state of
Oregon should join California in this!
Translation: Dear Governor Brown, I am terrified
at what Texas has done with SB8, and I'm terrified
that the Supreme Court has let it stand. I think
California has the right idea with it's Proclamation
on Reproductive Freedom and aiming to be a sanctuary
for abortion access. I think Oregon should follow
in Calif's footsteps! We need to fund and strengthen
Abortion Services here in Oregon -- Including for
people out of state!!
Tag: Dec 2021
I've started archiving the October posts.
You can see October 1st thru 10th right here:
∞ October 2021
I've archived the September posts.
You can see them all right here:
∞ September 2021
Monday 30 August 2021... A Car|
We rented a car from Enterprise for our Utah roadtrip.
I was expecting a four-door sedan with a big trunk,
but the rental car they gave me was a small SUV, a
The extra space behind the back seats,
was just barely big enough for our luggage
and fun stuff. The cooler and Dawn the Guinea Pig's
travel box took up the entire back seats. (Granted, the
travel box was pretty spacious!)
That all worked out, but the seats weren't very comfortable.
The drivers seat didn't have lumbar support, it may have
been broken. It wasn't terrible, but it kept my back
kinked up a little, as I drove.
There were five of us in Utah, including three men, and I
felt bad for my Mom... being the smallest,
she had to sit in the middle of the
back seat. The seat belt latches on either side couldn't be
moved and they were too close together.
So you had to scoot your butt way forward to avoid sitting
on them, and that was uncomfortable and probably unsafe.
Other than that,
the car was fine, and it got us to where we were going,
including up and down steep and curvy hills. But not a
car I would buy.
I returned the car on Saturday... And I was immediately
It's been a couple years since I've owned a car. and I
Sunday 29 August 2021... New Goals!|
Okay! Starting to come alive!
I think a holiday is a good disruption of established
routines. My regular schedule was great,
but as I mentioned during my
Porch Room Project,
there is no set time for tidying or cleaning.
Which really should be happening!
And, there was no set time for blogging.
Which I really want to be happening!
I had gotten a couple books over the summer, which I started
reading but didn't finish.
Your Habitat: You're Better Than Your Mess
by Rachel Hoffman
at the Speed of Life: Winning Your Never-Ending Battle with Stuff
by Dana K. White
Both books resonated with me and the first one actually
got me to clean a surface. Yeah, it was a single surface,
but still! :)
I should mention that Marie Kondo is just not my thing...
it's just too much.
I have done Stephanie Bennett Vogt's
in the past, including one of her year-long classes.
And I'm more of a "slow drip" and "pick up one
thing... even if it's just a paper clip" type person!!
I will def be applying that philosophy in my new efforts!
So anyway. My goals are to do at least 20mins of chores
every day. And One and a Half blog posts every day, and
maybe do some back-end work with the Utah trip.
Saturday 28 August 2021... Day of Exhaustion|
Yeah, ugh. Yesterday's drive home from Utah
just wiped me out. I slept
hard last night, but I just can't get my brain to turn on
today. And my patience is completely used up.
I did manage to get the rental car returned with partner's
help. And then I crashed back into my bed!
The house plants survived a week on their own. I usually
water the Peace Lily more than once a week, and so I had it
on a dripper... And it was so happy with the constant water
it made a flower while we were gone!
The recently potted Polka Dot Begonia had started making
leaves a couple weeks ago, and that's looking really good
And one of the African Violet leaves that I'm trying to clone,
started growing!! This makes me happy!
Thursday 12 August 2021... The latest heat wave|
My new favorite pastimes are standing in front of the
fan and drinking ice water.
Today's high temperature is
102° (39°C) but because it didn't cool down last
night, the apartment is miserable... 90° upstairs, and
poor Dawn the guinea pig has to deal with 82° in the
And, yeah. I think this is the third heat wave... but really.
when you only have one day of relief in between heat waves?
Maybe it's just all one heat wave. And I hate it.
Just get an air conditioner (and quit complaining!)
you say? But I say, this is just going to make climate
change worse!! I refuse! I opt out!
Wed 11 August 2021... covid numbers|
Yeah, so I was wondering if my state or city was going to DO
anything about these numbers... or just let the medical
people and unvaccinated suffer. Hello? how bad does
it need to get before we take action?
There's action today, according to the newspaper... We are
going back to masking mandates on Friday.
Wed 4 August 2021... covid numbers|
Well. delta variant is really making a mess of things.
Cases are up, hospitalizations are up, deaths are up.
And break thru infections for people who've been vaccinated.
Thanks for all that, anti-vax Republicans.
I read today that if you have the alpha variant, you will
probably infect two other unvaccinated people. But if you
have the delta variant, you will infect 5 other people.
There were 606,806 new covid cases in the US this week,
a huge jump from the 255,000 last week, which was a jump
from the 134,000 the week before, and the 85,000 and the
68,000 at the end of June.
86,687 new cases on
average every day. (ha, an every day total that's so
similar to the Entire WEEK total, just a few weeks ago!)
365 people died every day on avg.
In my town, active cases have shot up to 572 and 30 people
hospitalized. Before vaccinations started in earnest, the
worse we had was 526 active cases on 17 Dec 2020, and on
that day we had 47 people hospitalized.
The local hospitals are restricting visitors, again.
And I'm taking a good look at the local numbers for
active covid cases. Throughout this mess, we've had
awesome, daily reports for cases, hospitalizations,
ongoing active cases and deaths!
But mid-May, they started not reporting the sunday numbers.
And then the entire Memorial Day weekend. hey. fair enough!
But the next weekend, they also took three days off. And the next.
After that it was random days of not reporting during the
week, and still not reporting the three days of the weekends.
This is shoddy. and shitty. I really want better.
Becomes Largest US City To Require Proof Of Vaccination For Indoor Activities
Sunday 1 August 2021... Raccoon, dinner and dessert|
I saw a single Raccoon at the creek today... s/he was
eating a crawdad. Which kind of amazed me, I didn't
realize crawdads lived in our little creek!
When I glanced at one of the photos, pretty blurry, I was all,
"oh, funny Raccoon! You've got a bit of grass on your face!"
But when I saw better photos, I realized that was not grass...
that was a Dragonfly Nymph!!!
Poor, poor baby dragonfly is fixin' to be a light
dessert after the meal of that poor, poor crawdad. :|
Sat 31 July 2021... Happy Herons|
Out at the river today, and excited to see a Green Heron.
They are shy, and their camouflage is incredible, so I'm
always glad to get their portrait!
So that's a normal position for a Green Heron.
All of a sudden...
Holy! Where did all that neck come from??! That's crazy!
And here's a pretty pic of a Great Blue Heron in the flowers...
Friday 30 July 2021... Bug Excitement!|
So I'm on my 4 mile walk and there's this orange dragonfly,
flopping about at the edge of the sidewalk.
I look and see the dragonfly has caught a European Honey Bee,
who must be fighting back! The dragonfly is much bigger than
the bee, tho, so I'm pretty sure about the outcome...
But then suddenly, it's over. The dragonfly sits for a
second and then flies away. Wait! What just happened??!
Did I not notice that the bee got away? Or was the bee
eaten up in just a couple bites? oh Nature, why can't
you let me see the end of the story! *laughs*
And this is my lunch! That's the third Lemon Cucumber I've
gotten from our garden plot!!! LOVE!
And yes, I'm having a store-bought cucumber on homemade
bread... it's the black olives and the dollop of
that really makes this sandwich amazing.
(Yumm! Sauce is a form of Goddess Dressing, but of course,
And this is my front Lemon Cucumber patch, where that
beautiful Lemon Cuc came from...
You can see, it's just getting started! Look at all those
little yellow blossoms!!!
This year I have 10 Lemon Cucumber plants. This patch is
four plants and it's grown quite a bit bigger than the
back patch which has 6 plants. My goal is to have more
Lemon Cucumbers than I can eat... which I'm pretty sure is
Wed 28 July 2021... covid numbers|
There were 395,979 new cases of covid in the US in the last week,
averaging 56,568 cases every day.
239 people died every day, on average.
Active cases in my town have climbed to 309 today.
And three people have died in the past week.
I'm glad that the CDC has updated their Masking Recommendations
for the Delta variant... even fully vaxd people should
wear a mask in public indoor settings in areas of high
Areas of high transmission
doesn't include the entire United States...
just most of it!
And I'll be thrilled to see more vaccine requirements!
A pretty picture of invasive plants! :)
The purplish blue in focus is Chicory,
a happy plant from Europe and north Africa.
The roots can be roasted and ground and used
like coffee (minus the caffeine) or as a food additive.
The white flowers are Queen Anne Lace, another happy invasive,
from temperate Europe and southwest Asia. This is a member
of the carrot family and the tap root can be eaten like carrots.
Careful tho! this one has look-alikes which are toxic and
will kill you if you eat them! Queen Anne Lace roots smell
like carrots. If it smells like licorice, that's the toxic
Never, never eat stuff in the wild if you're not 100% sure
what it is!! Seriously, 100% with major research and a
naturalist who has helped you! NOT 90% sure!
If you even have a single question, "wait. is this thing normal?"
Do not eat that thing!
You must be 100% sure! Nothing less!
This is my public service announcement!! *laughs*
The pinkish purple is Sweet Pea... a toxic invasive from
Sicily and southern Italy. A very pretty scent, that many
people love! But toxic for eating, every which way!
um. Hang on! White Crowned Sparrows at the Community Garden?
What in the world???!
White Crowned Sparrows are winter visitors here. In other
words, they do nesting season up north, in Canada,
then come down for
some better winter weather. Since when is the end of
July past the nesting season?!
They must have had a major, tragic nest failure to be down
in their winter area in July! Or something else? What's
Hmmm... Studying the map.
All About Birds:
White Crowned Sparrow, Range Map
Maybe. You see that thin strip of purple "Year-Round" that
hugs the Pacific Coast? Maybe the sparrows are expanding
their year-round range further inland. Eugene is about
60miles from the coast. Not that far, for a little bird!
Will have to pay attention to the local sightings for this
beautiful little bird!!
Wed 21 July 2021... covid numbers|
There were 255,033 new cases of covid in the US in the last week,
averaging 36,433 every day.
The delta variant is now over 80% of new cases.
232 people died of covid every day.
Active cases of covid are at 117 today in my town.
Which can't really be referred to as "creeping up" since
that's almost double of last weeks active cases (61).
Friday 16 July 2021... ARG! + cuteness!|
Lately I've just been meh.
I seem to have lost my enthusiasm.
I'm not really excited about
my mailing projects. I've not been doing my daily drawing
practice. I've gotten behind on sorting photos and the
mail log. and I really,
really can't be bothered to do any chores or housework.
And you can see I've not updated this blog at all... a few
weeks ago, I thought by having a project, I'd want to type
here more often. And the blogging lasted precisely one day:
Porch Room Project! And the actual
Project didn't last much beyond that. sighs.
Unfortunately, I don't really have a plan besides "Get
It Together!" :)
hm... The same two I saw the other day? No, I don't think so.
But definitely siblings... Not quite grown up and turns
out there were a couple more in the bushes on the bank!
There was a wrestling match, and general happy
and well adjusted kid raccoon goings-on! So fun to watch!
and then... oh wait!
There's a fifth raccoon!! Is it Mum or another sibling?
Dang it, I can't tell. And then they're gone, slipped away
under the shrubbery.
Wed 14 July 2021... covid numbers|
There were 134,558 new cases of covid in the US in the last week,
averaging 19,227 every day.
236 people died every day on average...
Yep, Delta variant is starting to kill more people.
(The average last week was down to 132 people dead every day.)
And the only people dying of covid anymore, are the
In my town, Delta variant has officially arrived, there
were two cases recently detected.
Which is unfortunate. Because we have gotten all the
way down to 43 active cases last Saturday.
We are now at 61 active cases. How high
will Delta push our active cases, and for how long?
There are 54.8% people fully vaxd in Oregon and
48.1% of the total population fully vaxd in the US.
Wed 7 July 2021... covid numbers|
There were 85,084 new cases of covid in the US in the past week,
averaging 12,155 every day.
The Delta variant is now the dominate strain of covid in
the US and it's pushing the numbers back up... for new cases
and hospitalizations. The Delta variant arrived in the US
in March of this year, and was about 20% of new cases on
22 June, and is now well over 50%.
132 people died of covid on average every day in the US...
But assume this will be back on the upswing with Delta.
Because of the holiday, the local covid website hasn't
been updated. But we were still swirling around about
80 active cases of covid here in town.
Oregon has 54.3% of total population fully vaxd and
the USA has 47.5% fully vaxd.
Wed 30 June 2021... Covid and Porch Project 3|
There were 68,642 new cases of covid in the US in the past week,
averaging 9,806 every day. 242 people died of covid, on
average, every day.
Active covid cases in my town have been swirling around
And the governor of Oregon
has lifted covid restrictions today!
We aren't quite at 70% of the adult & over 16 vaccinated,
but we are so extremely close... 69.9%!
So, restaurants and businesses can be at full capacity,
and businesses can make their own decisions about masking.
I think you still
have to mask up in federal buildings... like the Post Office
still has their Mask signs up. Also masks on public
52.6% of the total population of Oregon is fully
vaxd, and 46.4% of the USA is.
Today I cut up and re-potted a Golden Pothos, along with
a lovely Polka Dot Begonia. I think they have similar
water needs, so they should be fine in the same pot.
Tues 29 June 2021... Porch Room Project Cont|
So! Today I fixed up the African violets.
I dumped the dead pots... ugh, yeah,
more than one that I managed
to kill. Pretty remarkable, since all you have to do to
keep African Violets alive is not over-water them! I don't
know what killed them off, but I'm really bummed because
one had such lovely flowers... white with purple edges.
I got cuttings from the last remaining living plant,
played with rooting gel -- probably not necessary, since
African Violets like to clone themselves at the drop of a
leaf (haha! you see what I did there?! ;)
-- and potted them up.
(Yep, you see one more dead one in the middle
Today's project, like yesterday, took about 40 minutes...
so it's not digging too much into my scheduled happy time.
And, yep, there are sunflowers blooming at the
Mon 28 June 2021... Porch Room Project|
So. I've been living my best life for a while now. But
my best life includes certain things like avoiding chores
and any stuff I don't feel like doing.
And it's starting to make me feel lazy! ha!
So I gave myself a project this week. What we call our
porch room is probably technically called a breakfast nook.
It's just the space on the other side of the kitchen, and
it also includes the sliding glass door out to the back
I have all of my house plants here. They are neglected and
have been slowly dying out. So it's probably time to fix
this. Not to mention the glass and floor are a dirty
disaster, from water splashing dirt and other day-to-day
accidents. And there's cobwebs.
Yes, it's pretty pathetic and if I could afford a maid
or a cleaning service, that would
definitely be money well spent!
So! Today I started with the Spider Plant. There is just
one struggling mama plant, and a bunch of babies hanging
off her. oh, hey! They are called spiderettes!
I dumped all the dirt... whoa! the roots!
Anyway. Some new dirt, the babies cut away and planted all
around. And we've got a nice new pot... of grass-looking
*laughs* Well, the new dirt will rejuvenate everybody
and it'll be a pretty hanging plant soon!
about spider plant stolons
This page says it's
very unusual for a spider plant
to flower and even more unusual for them to produce fruit.
That's funny... My Spider Plant used to flower all the time,
and it made tons of seeds. The seeds are kind of annoying
too, because they would get everywhere!
Well, anyway. Look who I found at the creek today!
It's been years since I've seen Raccoons at the creek, so
happy to welcome them back into the area!!
Mon 24 May 2021... random|
The camera can't keep up, but
I always try to take pics of the Turkey Vultures as they
glide past me in the sky!
Someone is offering some more freebies at the Community
Garden picnic table!
These are baby tomato plants,
I nabbed one that had a tag that said Orange Plum! Sounds
wonderful!! But I def have an excess of tomato plants now...
2 Sun Golds, 6 Brandywines, 1 heirloom Roma, 2 Aubrey Pinks,
and this new one. I am very excited about tomatoes this year!
On the walk home... a new bird!!
Yep, it's a crappy blurry pic. But I think this bird is
a Western Wood Pewee. What a name, huh?!
Sun 23 May 2021... Western Bluebirds|
Last year, someone set up Bluebird nesting boxes at the
Community Garden. A pair set up shop in one of them and
I was thrilled to see them coming and going, feeding their
babies. I didn't get to see the kids fledge, but the
parents did bring their kids back around, and I got pics
of the juveniles.
No one is using the nest boxes this year. A pair of
Violet Green Swallows had started organizing a nest, but
then the humans started showing up to garden. And the
Swallows changed their mind and went elsewhere.
But the Bluebirds are still coming and going at the
Community Garden! They must have a nest close by and use
the garden as a resting point...
Ha! I believe this is one family. The Mom on the left,
Dad in the middle, and the chubby one on the right is the
Crows do this... last year's child might help bring
up their siblings! Since Bluebirds are sexually dimorphic,
we can tell that the nest helper is always a male.
Which makes me wonder if the Crow's helper is male, too!
I think the green caterpillar the helper is holding is a
Cabbage White. These butterfies are fluttering all over
the place, I saw the first one back at the beginning of March!
Sat 22 May 2021... Countries and Creatures|
From the Postcrossing
Endangered national wildlife. Oh my gosh, this is a
Beautiful collection of art!!! Monaco has a seahorse, tho,
and my vote would go there.
Speaking of random tiny countries...
Monaco is a micro-state country
surrounded by France on the Mediterranean Sea, near Italy!
Last year, I decided to memorize all the countries in the
I tend to review the list when I can't sleep at night. There
are around 180 countries (hmm... I've never counted!) so it
does take a while.
But it's not the best activity for
sleepy time because it takes a lot of brain power. I
really have to be *awake* to do the whole list.
Anyway. I've gotten bored with just the countries of the
world! So I've decided to start memorizing all the
capitals of the countries of the world!!
*grins* Ottawa and Washington DC and Mexico City!
But okay! This is a much more difficult project. Because I
have never heard of the capital of Honduras,
Tegucigalpa... and I def don't know how to pronounce it!!
Western European countries will be easier... because we
all know London and Paris and Madrid. But I am really
looking forward to more long and complicated capital names!
Dawn the guinea pig has been munching on the first crops
from the garden since
There are only a couple Dandelion plants in my plot, so
this is a treat she gets once or twice a week.
Tho the sap makes it pretty bitter,
all parts of dandelions are quite nutritious!
Vitamins A, C, and K along with antioxidants and some minerals.
Now, check out this creature I found on the bike path!
Wow! Just nonchalantly cleaning their antenna, in the
middle of the bike path. Maybe not the place for that,
With those orange bits, I thought I'd be able to identify
their species without any trouble. But I couldn't find
them at all. bummer!
Fri, 11 Jun 2021
Yay! A friend identified this beetle for me! Thank you
He or she is a Flower Longhorn!!
Fri 21 May 2021... Happy Garden Time|
Mowing the grassy pathways at the Community Garden is a
volunteer job... and it's a huge job because the Garden
is so big. The path goes all the way around the Garden
and then there are two main aisles going thru the center,
and then a couple of shorter aisles on the west side.
Our Garden plot is on the 2nd aisle, and that one rarely
gets mowed. Since it's a volunteer thing, I can't really
complain... if I want it done I should do it myself, right?
heh, except the grass is about three feet high, now.
Well. It was three feet high... Some wonderful and
awesome person weed wacked the grass in front of our plot!!
Oh lovely person, I thank you a million times!!
Calendula. The blossom petals add a spicey taste to salad
and are used to add colour to other foods.
But it's non-native,
coming from southwest Asia and the Mediterranean.
But very pretty!
*Laughs* This fellow was quite trusting, he stood on a
tomato cage while I watered right next to him!
Thurs 20 May 2021... River Walk|
Getting desperate to walk any place else other than to the
Community Garden every day...
Yes, I am happy to transplant new veges every couple of
days. But since the rain quit months ago, I've got to go
out and water those baby plants every day to keep them alive.
The Community Garden is one mile away, so it doesn't really
make sense to drive there all the time. So I'm walking.
But I need to look at something else!
Down at the river, I'm seeing a phenomenon with the ducklings
and goslings that I also see at the creek near my home.
Very small families, not very many older babies.
Last year there were goslings all over the place. Hundreds,
of all different ages.
This year? um... I think there's
a couple families, waaay over there.
And the Mallard families are small at the river, too.
Weird and interesting! Are the families small or nonexistent
because of the lack of rain this spring? Or is it because
there were so many babies last year, they just need to take
a break? A combination? Something else?
A Mama Mallard and her blond baby.
Aw, I just love this photo. The duckling, an only child,
is not the usual colour and I wonder what they will look
like as an adult.
Wed 19 May 2021... covid numbers|
There were 227,673 new cases of covid in the past week,
averaging 32,525 every day... that's over 5,000 less than
last week, EVERY DAY!!! 598 people died every day.
The active cases in my town have come down steadily
from 251 last wednesday to 189 today. It looks like
a good trend!
Also, 40.66% of the people in my county are fully vaccinated!
Oregon has 39.3% and the USA has 37.3% fully vaxd.
The Wild Roses are blooming and the cherries are ripening!
And the sky is being beautiful.
Sunday 16 May 2021... Vax Reaction|
I woke up this morning feeling fine, and I went for a 3mile
walk without trouble.
But a headache snuck up on me in the afternoon, with some
major brain fog. Ugh. And then my shoulders and neck got
achy and sore. ha, I couldn't turn my head properly for
a few hours!
But by the time I went to bed, I felt better! (And Monday
morning, I got up feeling fine!)
haha... he looks so regal up there on the roof top!
But when you think about
it, ducks are down in the water, never in the trees... they
are in the lowest places. So it must feel very strange to
stand on top of a building and look down at the world!! :)
Sat 15 May 2021... Vax Time!!|
Yipee! I got my second vaccination shot today and I am
on my way to being immunized!!
:) After you get your shot at a drive thru mass vax clinic,
you need to wait in the parking lot for 15min to make sure
you don't have a bad reaction. They write down the time you
can leave on the car's window. The times on the left are
mine and the heart time on the right is my partner's first
shot... he'll be up for his 2nd next week!
This clinic was similar to my first one, except it seemed
like they had more volunteers and they were jamming thru
cars faster! I drove in at 10:14am and went straight to
the head of the line in my lane. haha, the other lane had
six or seven cars in it!
I didn't have an appointment, and they directed me off to
the side where some people would help me start the digital
paperwork. They then directed me to the tents and I had just
enough time to fill out my paper paperwork.
They only had 8 drive-thrus, rather than the 12 they had the
last time I was there. But they were doing two cars at
a time at each tent, so it was actually going much faster!
The first tent got the medical portion of my paperwork filled
out and my vax card updated! And then at the 2nd tent, the
doctor got my paperwork and talked to me and gave me the shot.
I had turned away from the shot the first time. But this
time I made sure I watched!
I got my time written, but had to wait a couple minutes
before driving out to the parking lot...
the car in front of me had a couple people being vaccinated.
Haha... Car pooling to the vax clinic! How awesome is that?!
Everyone I talked to was Super nice and so happy when they
learned I was there for my 2nd shot! *laughs* It just gave
me a very good feeling and I was happy too!
Wed 12 May 2021... covid numbers|
There were 264,714 new cases of covid in the past week,
averaging 37,816 every day... still coming down, thank
goodness. 632 people died every day.
Eugene remains in the High Risk category and we are still
swirling between 250 and 300 active cases. Unfortunately,
our test positivity rate looks like it's rising... we are
now at 5.4% where we had been holding pretty steady at 2-3%
since the end of January. sighs.
But a good thing: we are a bit above the national average
for getting people vaccinated! The national rate is 35.1%
and our county is 38.9% fully vaxd!
Wed 5 May 2021... Covid numbers|
The United States added 310,532 new cases of covid in the
past week, averaging 44,362 every day. 720 people died
every day. Good to see both of those daily averages coming
My town is still swirling between 325 and 350 active covid
cases. Not coming down yet, even tho we're pretending to
do lockdown again. I say pretending, because we're
supposedly in Extreme Risk and there's no indoor dining,
but there are restaurants that are ignoring the rules and
there have been some college parties.
The photo of one of
the college parties... is just claustrophobic. And of course,
not a mask in sight.
Despite all this mess, Eugene is downgrading from Extreme
Risk -- No indoor dining, but we were only there for one week --
back down to High Risk -- indoor dining at 25% capacity
and indoor entertainment at 10%.
Wed 28 April 2021... covid complaintings|
Eugene is moving to Extreme Risk,
after being in the High Risk category for just a week!
Indoor dining from 25% in the High Risk, down to
absolutely prohibited in the Extreme Risk!
And I'm horrified to report that
Oregon now ranks first among the 50 states...
on a New York Times analysis of
where cases are increasing the fastest.
Remember when we were 48th or 47th, ALL LAST YEAR??!
What the heck just happened, people? People???!
So. There were 408,046 new covid cases last week, averaging
58,292 new every day. Again, still coming down from last
weeks average of 63,600 per day!! 814 people died of covid
every day, a bit higher than last week's 684.
Eugene hit a high of 373 active cases on Sunday 25 April,
and now we are swirling around 325 again.
That's something, I
guess, if that number continues to come down.
And another point of hope... The county had a couple of
incredible vaccination days! Over the weekend, they added
5,326 and 7,294 people fully vaccinated!! An ordinary
weekend is around 1,500 people. So, this is an awesome
thing and we are currently above the national rate...
USA is at 29.1% fully vaxd, and my county is at 31.1%!
Sat 24 April 2021... Awesome Awesome Day|
Haha, I never take photos of myself... but today is such a
proud day!! Covid vaccination has begun!!
I arrived at the mass vax clinic at 11:07 for my 11:15
appointment. There were two lanes of cars queued up and
we moved forward several car lengths every 10 to 20 seconds.
It didn't take long to get to the head of the line.
I showed my confirmation email that I had printed out,
and they typed the number into a tablet. I got
a clipboard and pen and paperwork and then got directed
to one of 12 vax stations. There were three cars in front
of me, I think. I filled out the front and back of the
paperwork, sat for maybe 1 more minute and then got to
the first tent.
They checked my paperwork and fixed it (oops! I missed
a line!), answered questions and filled out my new vaccination
card. And told me do NOT lose this! :)
The next tent had been empty for a minute or so, they were
waiting for me. I drove in, turned in my paperwork. They
quadruple checked who I was. (Verbally. I never had to
show my ID.)
I got my vaccination at 11:29am... 22 minutes after I showed
The shot itself was almost nothing.
That didn't hurt at
all! I said,
Did you even do anything??
The lady laughed.
Yeah, the needle is really small, she
And check this out! She showed me the syringe.
needle retracts into the syringe when you're done! huh!
She told me to go wait in the parking lot for 15 minutes
to make sure everything was okay. If I had trouble, I was
to honk the horn and open the car door, and there were people
going thru who would help me. She wrote the time I could
leave on the back seat window, 11:44.
And I was driving out at 11:45am. 38 minutes after I'd
Wed 21 April 2021... covid numbers|
I'm so, so, so, VERY Excited!! I managed to get a covid
vaccine appointment for this weekend!! Yipee!!! It was
just a fluke that I happened to be online right as they
opened up the appointment schedule. Incredibly lucky!
and I can't wait to do my civic duty!!
I'm just thrilled to pieces!
Now for this week's covid numbers...
There were 445,788 new covid cases in the US this week,
averaging 63,684 every day. 684 people died every day.
Both these averages are down from last week: 70,600 and 982!
In fact, it has been long ages since we've seen daily
deaths under 700 people per day...
According to The
Covid Tracking Project
that hasn't happened since 16 November 2020, and even then
the daily death count was swirling around randomly between
500 and 1,500 people dying every day.
Locally, it's a different story, unfortunately.
We are now well over 300 active cases.
And we are falling behind with getting people vaccinated!
Arg! The national rate is 26.0% fully vaccinated, and our
county is at 24.65%. We aren't that far behind, true. But
seeing that, just makes my heart sink.
And because we've had so many cases, our town will be moving
from the Low Risk catagory, back up to High Risk on friday.
Indoor dining and recreation is going from 75% back down
to 25% capacity. Blah, blah, blah.
Wed 14 April 2021... Covid Numbers|
There were 494,198 new covid cases in the US this past
week... and 70,600 on average every day. Significantly
higher than last week, which was 64,500 daily. sighs.
982 people died every day, also higher than last week,
which was 796.
Covid cases in my town continue their slow rise, since
we opened most everything up. We are now swirling just
under 250 active covid cases.
Our vax website finally came back online, and it was good
to see that our county has been keeping pace with the
national vaccinations... The USA is at 22.7% fully vaxd and
Lane county is at 22.4%
Mon 12 April 2021... Community Garden Score!|
There were freebie vege starts on the picnic table at the
front of the Community Garden today!
Vege Starts! Yay, exciting! Good size and healthy looking.
Cabbage? um, no thanks. Collards? yuck!
Cauliflower? Oh my gosh, how many can I have??!
*laughs* I took two trays with 6 plants each. Which
did put a dent in the freebie stock. But it was monday,
and I wasn't sure that very many people would see them
since the weekend had passed.
So, we have 12 wonderful Cauliflowers happily growing
in our plot!!
I love cauliflower... but to buy this many plants from
Saturday Market would cost a pretty penny!
Last year I had
tried planting cauliflower seeds directly into the garden.
Um. Why did I do that? Seeds don't grow in our garden
plot. I wasted an entire packet of seeds. Nothing even
tried to come up and grow!
bah. Also in the past,
I've bought a started cauliflower or two
at Saturday Market. But when there's only one
cauliflower in the whole garden... it's hard to cut it down
I have not tried starting cauliflower on my own, at home.
The tiny townhouse means there is not much room for such
things. Peas do okay. And this year I am experimenting
with wax beans. But anything that comes up tiny... like
beets or tomatoes... has trouble. There's just not enough
light for the little guys, and they just start leaning
towards the sun and then they don't really grow anymore.
So, yeah, I'm a terrible gardener. That's okay... I'm
mostly just there for the photo opportunities! But I do
hope, hope, hope to eat some vegetables, as well!
Wed 7 April 2021... covid complainings|
There were 451,661 new cases of covid in the US this past
week, 64,523 on average every day.
796 people died of covid, on average, every day.
Local covid cases are now swirling around 200 (up from last
week's 100). I'm really wondering when we will shut stuff
down again. What does it take?
On top of that, I am very ashamed to report that Oregon
ranked 36th among the states where coronavirus was spreading
the fastest on a per-person basis.
ALL last year we were between 49th and 46th of the
fastest spreading. And look how we've ruined that, just at
the last minute.
Oregon has 19.2% of our population fully vaccinated, which
is right at the national rate of 19%.
My county vax website has been down for a week now...
I'm not sure what to think of that.
Sun 4 April 2021... Wow, a nest!|
Walking out to the garden today, I found a pair of
Bushtits building a nest just a few feet from the bike
and dang! this is a terrible spot for a nest! It's too
close to the bike path, there's a road right there, and
the bush it's buried in is completely bare. The exposure
to humans is not ideal.
I watched them come and go for a while. They didn't seem
concerned about the situation at all! *laughs* first time
parents, probably! :)
This is the male. They look exactly alike except the
male has dark eyes and the female has pale eyes.
Except for nesting, Bushtits travel in flocks, so I
usually find a small bunch of them, flitting and
bouncing quickly thru the bushes.
And here's the female. She's looking at the entrance
into the nest, on the other side.
The nest is maybe 8 inches tall, including that
top bit and 3ish inches diameter.
It is really cool when they go down into it because
you can see them squirming around down at the bottom.
Trying to get the interior decorating just right!
For most birds, only one sits on the nest at a time.
But both Bushtits will spend the night in the nest!
Also, they sometimes have a helper, usually an adult male.
With crows, sometimes last year's child will help bring
up their siblings... I couldn't find any info if the
Bushtit help is related or just some random guy they
Sat 3 April 2021... Planting at the Garden|
The year's first Saturday Market! And I'm heading to
the Farmers Market for some vege starts...
The beets are tiny, but I get three trays of them
anyway. The lettuce looks good! And, even tho I've
started some Sugar Snap Peas at home, I buy one more.
Yeah, I don't even know what kind of lettuces I got.
I'll just call them Leaf Lettuce. Green Leaf Lettuce.
Pink Leaf Lettuce.
Fri 2 April 2021... umm... a chicken!|
On the way back home yesterday, aw, I caught sight of
An escapee! And definitely nervous and wondering,
"oh great. Now what do I do?"
And just something pretty that caught my eye...
Thurs 1 April 2021... New Park to Walk|
I had gone by this grassy area a few times when I was
riding my bike earlier this year. There was a wet prairie
pond and a few ducks and even some kind of sand piper-type,
and I wondered if there was a park there.
Eventually I looked it up, and sure enough, beyond the
ponds, there was a city park,
Stewart Pond, with a Frisbee Golf course
and some paths thru a tiny forest. That's where I was
Just minor trouble... the head of the trail is over 2 miles
away. Just getting there is a walk in itself!!
The first part of the trail lead thru the prairie, a
good place for hawks! Sure enough, a hawk flew by and I
had to back track because they landed in a tree and I needed
to know what species. ha!
A couple of bad pics is all I really needed...
Oh cool! I think it's a Red Tailed Hawk, light morph.
After all those Red Shouldered Hawks, it's good to see
I walked down to the forest and was delighted with all the
bird songs here! And is this Stewart "Pond"?
Laughs! More like a Wet Prairie puddle! Will probably
disappear in a couple days unless we get rain. How funny
to name a park as a pond which is only there half the year!
(oh. Actually I had walked by the pond named Stewart,
on the way in... it had already dried up into it's dry
Wed 31 March 2021... covid numbers|
Another tragic milestone...
Yesterday the United States hit 550,000 dead, according to the
Hopkins site. (The
hit that number ten days ago on 21 March.)
There were 458,587 new cases of covid in the US this past
week... averaging 65,512 every day.
996 people died every day.
Numbers coming down, and having less than a thousand people
die every day is ... better? But still! A
Thousand people are dying every day!
Active covid cases in my town have been swirling around
100. Yep, it didn't take long to ruin our numbers... we
had fallen to 58 active cases two weeks ago, and then we
opened most everything up, and look what happened: active
cases shot right back up. sighs.
And while we do have 16.47% of our local population fully
vaccinated (slightly better than the national average,
which is 15.5% of the population)...
The actual daily vaccinations have plateaued for the past
month or so.
Wed 24 March 2021... covid numbers|
Just 379,501 new cases of covid in the US this past week...
an average of 54,214 every day. 1,020 people died every day.
Yes, the numbers are coming down. And vaccinations are
going up. My town is right with the national average of
13.7% of population fully vaccinated.
The next question is, will we be able to avoid
one last surge?
In my town, active covid cases have been creeping up...
last wednesday we had 53 and now we have 73.
But, yesterday in the newspaper
New COVID-19 cases plummet
in Oregon. And today they announced our county would
be expanding re-opening and moving from Moderate Risk down
to Lower Risk. Restaurants and indoor entertainment will
be 50% capacity.
Well and good? or are we just setting up that last surge?
Or will the happy maskers continue avoiding risky situations?
I guess we'll find out soon enough.
Wow, the colour...
Tues 23 March 2021... Bird Bounce|
I often complain that the little birds bounce around too
quickly, and the focus on the camera can't keep up.
That is just the nature of some birds.
I am absolutely sure that some birds are just messing with
Like this Spotted Towhee. He sees me... and it's GAME ON!
Sun 21 March 2021... Just Ducky!|
A pair of Green Winged Teals...
They are just here for the winter. I wonder when they'll
be moving on.
Now here's somebody new!!
This is a Ring Necked Duck. And what a stupid name... you
can barely see that chestnut collar. Why not name them
for that pretty outlined bill?!
Here's the female.
map at AllAboutBirds says Ring Necks are winter visitors
here... but we are very close to a little bubble where
Year-round (Scarce). So it'll be interesting to see
if this pair sticks around!
Sat 20 March 2021... Mixed Up Manky Mallards|
Just like dogs and horses, Mallards have been domesticated
and have several interesting colour breeds. This one, with
a white bib, is called Duclair.
Because there's such a wide variety of breeds,
and they tend to escape into the wild on a regular basis,
to them collectively as Manky.
Manky is a British word which means
filthy and worthless...
Yeah, nice, huh? Humans create them and then disparage
and insult them. sighs. What is wrong with people??
So, I'm going to say Manky actually means something
more along the lines of
Here's the website where I got some of my info. It's
a great page with lots of pics, and the blog there looks
to be interesting as well...
or Manky Mallards at 10,000 birds
Now, this one...
A different breed? or something else entirely?
With a black head and the reddish along the
body, but with the signature Mallard feather curl
on his tail... ??? Who Knows!!
Only the duck knows his parents!
Fri 19 March 2021... Birds|
Aww! Poor baby. Their foot is messed up...
Why do I keep running into creatures who are hurt?
I wish I could wave a magic wand and make them better!
I keep wondering if this will be my last sighting of a
Red Shouldered Hawk, for the year. I just assumed that
they would migrate out of here. But it turns out the
Pacific Coast Red Shoulders do not migrate at all!
But, they have expanded their range... the
map on AllAboutBirds
shows Red Shoulders in southern Oregon. But Eugene is in
the middle of the state. And since I've been seeing
Red Shoulders on a regular basis since this past winter,
they have def moved in.
You know, climate change is bad. And shifting populations
aren't always a good thing, either. I've not seen a single
Cooper Hawk in the time I've been seeing the Red Shoulders,
even tho Coopers are here year round. Maybe just a
coincidence... but I want to see diversity!
Not a bird. Just pretty colours!
Thurs 18 March 2021... First Garden Treats!|
At the end of the season, last year, I was forking up the
weeds in the garden plot. Technically, I was also putting
down some clover seeds for a cover crop... but they never
grew. yep, my prowess as a gardener is making sure stuff
doesn't live! haha!
Anyway. As I was forking, I found some of
the crocus bulbs in the
front of the plot. I put them in a ziplock, thinking I'd
replant them once I got the area done.
But the rain started! And there was an 8foot section at
the front where I keep my flowers -- Columbine and Oregon
Sunshine along with the Crocuses -- that I never finished.
And I forgot about the bag of bulbs!
But then I found them... and there had been enough moisture
in the zipped up bag that they were growing. And a couple
even made flowers in there!!
So, yesterday, I took the bag to the garden and I put those
poor, neglected Crocuses back in the ground. I hope they
And while I was there, I picked a couple dandelion blooms
for a certain white furry person...
"You got something for me??!"
Wed 17 March 2021... covid numbers|
The US added 386,053 new cases of covid in the past week,
averaging 55,150 every day. 1,283 people died of covid
Glad to see both those numbers continue to come down!
Active cases in my town have steadily come down from the
90 of last wednesday, to 53 active cases today!
*laugh* Yep. That's a squirrel. Up in a tree.
Eating a corn chip.
Tues 16 March 2021... lovely colours|
oh little bird! If you could just sit there for a couple
seconds, this could be an amazing photo! Please?
... *Laughs* Are you kidding me??! ...
Okay... That's more like it... Thank You!!
Sun 14 Mar 2021... More pics from the River|
Some pretty Red Flowering Current, by the Willamette River.
And the usual spot where I love to listen to the water...
I met a California Ground Squirrel
(link doesn't work!)
at the river last year. An intrepid explorer into the city.
And apparently s/he decided to stay...
*laughs* A Ground Squirrel up in a tree? yep!
Sat 13 March 2021... Invasive Turtles|
Invasive is bad, but turtles are so awesome!
A warm day at the Delta Ponds and most of the available
logs are covered with turtles!
Unfortunately most of them are the very invasive
Red Eared Sliders...
These are pet store turtles who have been abandoned in
the wild. It doesn't take long and they will over populate
the pond... First pushing out our native species -- Western
Pond Turtles and Western Painted Turtles -- and then
becoming so numerous that there's not enough food to go
around for anybody.
It's sad. Sad for the wild places and sad because people
don't take care of their pets.
But, the turtles on the log in the top photo? The turtle
on the right is obviously a Pond Turtle --
no markings on the head or tail. But I looked a little bit
more carefully. hm! I think the turtle on the left AND
the third turtle with her hands on the big one -- I think
they are both Western Pond Turtles as well.
Unfortunately, three Western Pond Turtles, does not a
Fri 12 March 2021... birds|
Singing Song Sparrow and some Willow Tree catkins...
And, oh! I don't get to take portraits of Juncos very
And then there's my friend, the Red Shouldered Hawk.
I've been seeing them so regularly,
I start to worry if I don't see them for a few days! :)
Thurs 11 March 2021... Botanicals!|
A hike up Hidden Trail yesterday revealed some lovely
plants! The Red Flowering Currant is um flowering! :)
This is an important native in our area, which provides food
for all kinds of wildlife! Birds, Bugs, and the Furry Ones.
And the Fawn Lilies have come up... not long and they'll
Wed 10 March 2021... Covid|
The US added less than ½ a million covid cases again
this past week! We averaged 58,271 new cases every day.
1,633 people died of covid every day.
And Texas, which opened up completely and dropped all
mask mandates last week, is killing about 270 people
with covid every day.
COVID Tracking Project has come to an end.
That was where I was gathering my state data from:
covid cases, deaths, and current hospitalizations for
I am bummed that they had to quit. It was nice to have all
the information organized on one page!
I'm now using the
Map but they don't have numbers for current hospitalizations.
And I am not sure how long this page will last.
And unfortunately, I found a huge discrepancy in the numbers
between the old Tracking Project and the NPR map...
The number dead in New York was 39,029 on the last day of
Tracking, and it was 48,401 on NPR.
There are minor variations in the numbers for other states
that I've been tracking, but nothing else like the New York
Active covid cases in my town have been under 100 for the
past two days! And we will be coming down from High Risk --
down from Extreme Risk just a couple weeks ago --
and will be going to Moderate on Friday.
Masks and social distancing will continue, of course. But,
indoor eating is allowed at 50% capacity.
We have 9.46% of the county fully vaccinated, which is
right at the national average of 9.4%!
the White House Got 2 Pharma Rivals To Work Together On COVID-19 Vaccine
This gives me so much hope, you don't even know!!
Companies working together? Speeding up the vaccination
schedule in the US??! Every adult by end of May -- bumped
up from end of July! Awesome!
Kudos to Johnson & Johnson and Merck and the Defense Production
Act, finally invoked by President Biden (pres#45: F* You for
What a sweet face! I just love my wild turkey neighbors!
Tues 9 March 2021... bath time|
*Laughs* I seem to have a surfeit of crappy pictures,
but I do love sharing them anyway!
A group of Pine Siskins was happily using this tiny rill
for bath time!
Oh my gosh, they are cute...
And then they wondered how many Pine Siskins can fit
into one frame...
Six Pine Siskins and a blur! :)
Mon 8 March 2021... pic|
This is a terrible photo of a Lesser Goldfinch...
But the overall picture makes me happy.
Just look at all those wonderful colours!!
I think this is a blooming Red Maple.
Sun 7 March 2021... Stupid People|
And today I took a walk down by the river. But instead
of going to the wildlife area, I decided to hike up Skinner
Butte. First, I go past the Rose Garden... where the only
thing blooming is the Rhododendron bushes around the border
of the park...
Then across the street and up the hill! Oh sheesh, there's
a lot of people! It's sunday and the weather is nice, so it's
to be expected, even on the less popular trails.
And this trail is narrow. Very narrow. Every time I see
a human coming the other way, I mask up. And so do they!
It's 100% masking and I'm so proud of everyone!
For all the humans, there were still a few
birds bouncing around...
GAH! Yep, this is the evil Ruby Crowned Kinglet,
And those little white flowers were on shrubs all over the
They are Osoberry blooms! An important native in our area,
the small "plums" are food for many birds and animals.
Not to mention the very early nectar...
I saw an Anna Hummingbird visiting the flowers!!
And the first Trilliums...
So I went to the top of the hill and then I came back down
and I was happy with all the birds and botanicals!
I skipped the trail head that I came in on, and kept walking
at the base of the butte and the edge of the forest.
Which meant I could walk along the river for a bit further,
on the way back, too.
There was a couple with a cute dog at the trail head where
I was going to get off and go across the street to the river.
A black Cocker Spaniel, I love cockers!!
I put my mask on ... but they did not.
I wasn't worried about it, they
were obviously just starting out, and maybe hadn't noticed
me in time.
With my mask on, the lady probably didn't
see me grinning big at her dog,
but I did give her a nod and a Good Morning. The guy had paused
a few paces behind, and he was looking down at his phone,
so I didn't bother him. I walked a few more strides,
The lady started cussing me out about me wearing a mask.
F word like there's no tomorrow. Something about she has
to breathe my f-ing air over here where I hadn't masked up
yet. ??? Yeah, completely contradictory, since she wasn't
wearing a mask, at all!!
And, as I mentioned, loads of people around. She was making
a big scene, and apparently had no idea of how ridiculous
Lordy. I didn't feel threatened, since stupid lady was
well behind me and I was way more fit than she was!
And I didn't respond... I looked back once
and then I kept walking. I didn't know what to say, and
it's probably best I said nothing! I wondered if she was
going to shout at everyone she encountered on the trail.
And the walk back was ruined because I had to think about
the stupid people in the world. The anti-maskers. The
anti-vaxxers. The trump worshipers and their golden idol.
I stopped and took in the Willamette River, but all that
water flowing past couldn't heal me.
I need to know how we can bring
these people back to the light!
Song Sparrow says, "I don't know, either!"
Sat 6 March 2021... Nuthatch|
Hiking at hilly Hendrick's the other day!
This is a White Breasted Nuthatch, in the classic Nuthatch
pose. :) They go up and down the tree trunk upside-down!
This is a female... the males have black on their heads,
and are more blue, rather than grey.
This species is common across most of the US. In addition
to finding bugs in tree bark, they also visit bird feeders
for suet and seeds.
Thurs 4 March 2021... Hawk, Again|
I was on the last leg of my walk home, the other day, when
a hawk flew by me! I noted where she landed in the Lookout
Tree. And then I had to walk fast, to get past a bunch of
trees in the creek that were blocking my view.
When I finally saw her, it was obvious she was eating
somebody. No messing around or playing with her food this
time! I took pics from several different angles and was
eager to zoom in on the computer to see if I could tell
what she was eating.
She's eating a Garter Snake!
What the heck?
Is Snake the only thing on the menu when the sun is shining??
Or is this the favorite meal for this particular
Red Shouldered Hawk?
Either way, it's crazy that I've witnessed two separate
hawk dinners and they are both snake.
Wed 3 March 2021... Covid|
Less than ½ a million new cases of covid Again this week,
here in the USA. Yay masks!
The US averaged 65,666 new cases every day.
and 1,980 people died every day.
Active cases in my town are swirling around 180 to 160
people sick with covid...
A far cry from when we were swirling around 400 active
cases in November and December.
and had our high of 526 on 17 Dec.
The local newspaper reports that 5.91% people are fully
vaccinated in my county, on sunday. As of yesterday
we are at 6.13%. We are a bit under the
which is 7.9% of population with both doses.
So that's disappointing!
We have been vaccinating since 21 Dec.
and Mississippi To Lift COVID-19 Mask Mandates And Business Capacity Limits
We must now do more to restore livelihoods and normalcy
for Texans by opening Texas 100 percent. Make no mistake,
COVID-19 has not disappeared, but it is clear from the
recoveries, vaccinations, reduced hospitalizations,
and safe practices that Texans are using that state mandates
are no longer needed.
Huh. No longer needed.
I guess the 1,625 people who died of covid in Texas
in the past week... don't matter?
That's 232 people every day.
I just cannot understand. What is wrong with people??!
Tues 2 March 2021... Spring|
The focus is bad on this pic, but I still love it.
Little bird standing next to a budding Willow branch...
White Crowned Sparrows are winter visitors here.
But where the Golden Crowned Sparrows are wonderfully
human-friendly, the White Crowns are a lot more shy.
I'm glad I got a half decent pic before they fly home!
Mon 1 March 2021... Migrating Birds|
Our Turkey Vultures fly south for the winter, and it's
always nice to see them return! There were four, flying
high, high above the Delta Ponds this past weekend.
Tree Swallows also go south for winter, but I was
surprised to see a group zipping above the ponds... it
seems terribly early for these little bug eaters.
But I got my local Audubon newsletter, over the weekend.
has a list of all the current bird sightings along with
where they've been seen. and it says there have been small
numbers of Tree Swallows at the Delta Ponds since January!
Maybe just our super mild winter. Or maybe they are
starting to move their winter range to the north. It's not
too far... they are seen year round probably less than
100 miles south of the Oregon border.
But the field notes also mentioned that Barn Swallows
have also been seen. And they usually spend the winter
in south Mexico and down into South America... way, far away!
Sun 28 Feb 2021... Botanical|
Oregon Grapes are starting to bloom...
These flowers will turn into small, waxy-blue berries.
They are edible, ie not poisonous, but very tart and
mostly pit. I've never had Oregon Grape jelly, but
apparently it's pretty good.
Sat 27 Feb 2021... River Meeting|
I met someone at the river today...
Yikes! Poor, poor fellow! He's got no tail.
What happened?! Did the feathers get ripped out by a
predator in a very narrow escape? *cringe* probably was
Very painful. or was it
disease or malnutrition when the
feathers were growing? Something else?
He probably doesn't steer well when flying.
And another major problem...
He won't be growing the tail feathers back any time soon.
Probably not until Autumn, if he makes it that far.
Birds molt and replace their feathers on a strict schedule.
It takes a lot of energy to make new feathers, so it
happens before or after the breeding and migration seasons.
Fortunately, he doesn't particularly need his tail in
order to get food... Towhees eat on the ground, they
toss the leaf litter to get at bugs underneath.
They also show up at bird feeders.
So this guy is good for food!
And he was singing his trilling song as I was taking
his portrait... So he apparently has high hopes for
himself during the breeding season! :)
side note. My awareness of bird molts comes from
Jemima: Life and Love with a Hard-Luck Jay.
A beautiful book of art with an amazing story...
And relevant here:
Jemima lost her primary flight feathers.
She survived and lived to tell the tale!!
I only hope for the same for my Towhee friend.
Friday 26 February 2021... Floating along in my Rut|
UGH. I'm in a rut.
I'm doing all my favorite things... I'm drinking coffee :),
I'm going out walking every day, I'm being good about sorting
my photos, I'm reading good books, I'm sending out mail
every day, and I'm colouring a tiny drawing most days!
But I feel like I've been floating along, avoiding all the
small annoyances of life.
A good bit of this is because it is physically difficult
for me to do things with my messed up right hand. But I ditched
the wrap protecting my broken finger last weekend, since it
had been 6weeks. I'm doing exercises, and it is healing
tho I still can't curl the fingers to make a fist. But
we're getting there.
Another bit of the rut is stupid writer's block. I am
actively avoiding all kinds of writing opportunities.
And another bit is the rain. I like to walk in different
places. But if it's raining, it's pointless to drive to a
walk... There's not much wildlife out to take photos of,
and raindrops on the lens isn't really ideal!
So I keep to the neighborhood when it's raining. It's not
Always raining. But it's fixin' to rain. Or it just stopped
raining but we're not sure it's actually quit. or it's
misting. or it's 50% rain after 10am, or 40% or 60%, and
it's probably just going to rain anyway!
So I've been walking thru the neighborhoods very often and
I'm a little bit bored of it. Even tho I usually find
something interesting to take pictures of. And the exercise
is good. still. just a little bit bored.
So. What to do?
I think I just need to write!
Well. And maybe do some chores and Space Clearing.
Because I've been avoiding tidying up as well,
and the piles are interfering with my life!
Wed 24 Feb 2021... covid|
Less than ½ a million new cases of covid this week,
here in the US! But we hit ½ a million dead, on Monday
We averaged 67,740 new cases every day.
2,201 people died every day.
Active cases in my town have been swirling around
190 to 160.
Wed 17 Feb 2021... covid|
Over 1.5million new cases added this week in the US,
averaging 224,406 every day.
2,800 people died every day of covid.
And, AGAIN, over 5,000 dead in a single day.
Tracking Project says
5,427 people died of covid last friday, the 12th of Feb.
Active cases in my town are around 250 to 230
people sick with covid.
Wed 10 Feb 2021... covid|
Less than 775,000 new cases added in the US this week!
We averaged 110,432 new covid cases every day.
3,043 people died every day.
We had over 5,000 people die of covid last friday...
According to the
Tracking Project 5,212 people died on 4 Feb.
The active cases in my town are wobbling from 350 down
to 270 today.
Sat 6 Feb 2021... Too Quick|
Jeez, these little birds annoy me...
This is a Ruby Crowned Kinglet.
(Their crown is hidden!) They are common here in
the winter. They've migrated down from Canada and Alaska,
or they've moved down from the mountains.
They annoy me because, just like Chickadees, they bounce
around way too quickly. They don't give the camera enough
time to focus and most of the time I'm taking a pic of an
empty branch! ha!
They are def cute... but sheesh, maybe switch to decaf?
Thurs 4 Feb 2021... Red in Tooth and Claw|
Or rather, Nature: Red in Beak and Talon. oh, circle of life.
I saw a Red Shouldered Hawk in a tree on my walk home...
they were giving a hard stare at the ground. Then they
gave me a stern glance, telling me to stay put...
And then they swooped to the ground and obviously got
somebody! Whoa, maybe 25 feet, right in front of me!
They flew back up to the tree, with a mouse-sized
somebody in their talons!
But as I was looking, I could see a tail hanging down.
And that tail looked a lot longer than a mouse's tail. huh?
I had only seen a silhouette as they flew back to the tree, but
it didn't seem massive enough to be a rat with that length of
a tail. so, what the heck?
When I got home, zooming in on the photos...
Oh my gosh! A snake!
Poor little Garter Snake. And obviously still alive in
this pic. ugh.
Yeah, everybody has to eat, even the carnivores.
But I do feel bad for the prey when I have to watch them die.
Dear Snakes: Please stay tucked away in February, no matter
how bright and warm the sun looks! It's just not going to
Wed 3 Feb 2021... rant|
Some flowers for Piper.
Less than 1 million people caught covid this past week in
the USA! There were an average of
142,066 new cases every day and
3,185 people died every day.
In my town, a person died of covid yesterday, but that was
the only death since 22 Jan. Active cases are coming
down from 300, randomly swirling around 280.
So it seems like things continue to improve in covid land.
Fri 29 Jan 2021... sky|
Dang, look at that sky!
ha! It's the rainy season here... almost constant
grey skies and probably sprinkling. So a bit of blue
when we look up is cause for celebration!
Thurs 28 Jan 2021... Feb LetterMo?|
February's Month of Letters
is coming up quickly... and I have zero enthusiasm. :/
A little bit is that the LetterMo web site has almost
no functionality. You can't record your outgoing mail
anymore and you can't post pictures, except publicly
on the forums. You can't DM anyone
on the site. And it looks like Friending on the site is
even an issue this year. I'm sure that most of the action
happens on their private facebook page, but I'm anti-facebook!
And then the other part is my stupid broken hand.
Writing is awkward and uncomfortable... And I still have
over a week before I can take the wrap off and start
gentle exercises. and I'm not sure that the way I write
will be classified as
All that being said... I'm still sending out mail every day!
And I'll continue to send mail out every day. And I might
even send mail to LetterMo friends. I'm just not that
keen on actually participating in LetterMo.
Wed 27 Jan 2021... Covid|
Global Covid cases hit 100 million today... and the USA
has 25.34% of those cases, despite only having 4.22% of
the world population.
The USA added 1.2 million covid cases during the past week,
averaging 171,284 new cases every day.
3,441 people died of covid every day.
I've seen a couple of articles say that we've passed the
peak of the current outbreak in the USA. And it does seem
to be true, cases and hospitalizations are come down across
the country! Yay Masks!
Lots of big coronavirus! haha.
I'm not sure what this tree is... these fruits are not
like the normal Sweet Gum trees that we have around here.
Sun 24 Jan 2021... Rosalie Edge|
The book I'm currently reading is
Hawk of Mercy: The Activist Who Saved Nature from the Conservationists
A very slow beginning, but I'm almost 40% in, now and oh my
gosh. There is a bit of a history about an early version of
the Audubon Society, then called the National Association
of Audubon Societies... and dang, they were seriously
corrupt and evil!
I am glad that Rosalie Edge will step in and save the day.
In the meantime, I'm so interested, I'm doing a bit of
research online about it...
Nature Lover's Book Club
WHAT?! This is Awesome! How did I miss this? How have I
lived without this? I've not paged thru the entire website
yet, but along with
Edge featured in Sept 2020, I've also recently read
Buzz, Sting, Bite:
Why We Need Insects featured in March 2020.
I recognize only about ½ the titles listed there, and
I am so eager to go thru and read many!!
Wed 20 Jan 2021... Covid Rant|
According to the Johns Hopkins
dashboard, covid has killed over 400,000 people in the USA.
The US can claim 19.5% of the world's deaths by covid, even
tho we only have 4.2% of the world population.
The US added 1.46 million cases of covid in the past week,
averaging 208,939 new cases every day.
3,114 people died every day.
And it looks like total deaths in Texas (32,394)
will be over taking the total deaths in New York (33,224)
before too long.
(California over took NY on Jan 16th,
but I don't have family there,
so I'm not watching their numbers as closely.)
311 people die of covid in Texas every day.
And in my town, active covid cases are still swirling
around 350 to 400. And there have been some blunders?
bungles? with distributing vaccines within Oregon... last
week Lane County Public Health got 100 doses, when they
were expecting over a thousand, right when
they were trying to do a mass vaccination clinic.
ha, the local hospitals shared, and so all was not lost:
1,670 medical people were vaccinated in two days!
And then, even worse, so much worse...
After the federal government promised to release a
stockpile of vaccine doses to states, [Oregon] Gov. Kate Brown
announced early last week that seniors and school
employees would start getting vaccines Jan 23.
However, a few days later, Brown and other governors
found out that federal stockpile did not actually exist.
Did not actually exist. AND AND AND! Someone PROMISED
to send out from the nonexistent stockpile. WTH?
The Biden administration is taking over from that
twice impeached monster,
today. It will take a while to get things turned around.
And they have many many other things to fix.
But I have hopes.
Some happy things...
Leaders Express Hope As Biden And Harris Are Sworn In
The United States is back. Yay! And the image from
China has been deleted, but I laughed when I saw it.
Good Riddance, Donald Trump!
D.C., A Traditional South Indian Welcome Awaits Joe Biden And Kamala Harris
Oh my gosh, this is awesome!
Day More, of President Trump - Les Mis parody
I am such a sucker for anything Les Mis.... but this is
really, actually beautiful! :)
Fri 1 Jan 2021... Review and Revise|
Happy New Year!
Oh where to begin.
Through 2020, I extended my temporary retirement and
I'm still a jobless bum from being laid off in 2019.
There was covid in the world and more covid in the US.
But with all the time I had,
I accomplished a few things.
Walking in 2020
I figure I walked about 1,000 miles! *laughs* that's a
guess-timate, but a realistic one... Walking most every
day between 2 and 5.5miles, usually more than 2.
I discovered the Hidden Trail last January
and added it to my limited
walking places. Besides the neighborhood and the nearby
bike path, I've walked most of the Ruth Bascom Riverbank
trail and all of the Ridgeline at Hendrick's Park.
I blew out my knee in Aug, and I got tendonitis in my heel
in Dec. And so the bike got dusted off and I happily
headed west to the end of the bike trail. Along the way
is a tiny park, Tsanchiifin Walk, with a few new birds!
Photography in 2020
in 2018... 11,570 pics, avg 964/month
in 2019... 15,124 pics, avg 1,260/month
in 2020... xxx pics, avg xxx/month
In the past I've been extremely bad about going thru my
photos to pull out the good ones (or the interesting
ones!) for the web site and the
great ones for printing. But thru much of 2020, I've
been sitting down and sifting thru the days photos. It's
pretty tedious, and I don't particularly enjoy the process.
but it's nice to have pics ready to go for a blog entry.
Mailing and Postcards in 2020
in 2018... averaged 104 bits of mail every month
in 2019... averaged 76 bits of mail every month
in 2020... I sent out xxx total and averaged xx bits of mail every month.
I kept up with the monthly postcard exchange that I host
at GoodReads. I sent 43 PostCrossing pcs. I joined 101
swaps at Swap-Bot and hosted 50 TGIF swaps and 2 Photo and
a Note swaps. I completed another round of the postcard
project I started in 2019... I might chat about that another
The Epson SuperTank Printer
that I got in 2019 is still printing.
And I'm much happier with it, now that I've figured out
how to deal with it's issues.
Community Garden 2020
I guess I continue to be a terrible gardener...
Because of covid, I tried planting seeds last spring.
That has NEVER worked, but I had such hope! A couple
Sugar Snap Peas came up, but nothing else did. sighs.
Also, I couldn't even get the zucchini, or ANY summer squash
to do their usual excessive thing. sighs some more.
But I did have lots of Lemon Cucumbers for a while, so that
made everything good! :)
Experimented with a couple different types of tomatoes...
The Santiam set a ton of fruit, very early, which then
ripened all at the same time. It was good, but too much,
all at once and eventually I got tired of it. And the
Garden Peach Tomato... yuck. heh.
Brandywines are my all time favorite, and I actually grew
my own from seeds in pots! They did well in the garden,
after a long time under row covers... but
I started them too late and not all the fruits ripened before
a couple chilly nights. Will need to time that better, this
Writing and Drawing in 2020
I wrote at the blog a good deal more than I usually do!
Yay! But I quickly get frustrated with
block, and I wish I could be more consistent with
I have continued with almost daily ATC sketches and I've
filled up a 3 ring binder with 9-pocket sheets! Can't
really say that I've improved, tho, *laughs*! But it is
nice to look thru my pages.
I accomplished most of my intentions in 2020...
I'm better about keeping up with my Mail Log,
I blogged more, I kept up with drawing and of
course, I made and sent mail most every day!
The one thing I didn't manage: keeping up with
my GoodReads book reviews. I only posted 19 of
the more than 50 books that I read. Which is
better than the 7 books I posted in 2019.
But I really need to have all my books listed there!
So... 2021 intentions: GR book reviews!
Keep writing at the web site! Keep drawing!
Keep up with the Mail Log!
And keep going thru the photos!
My one major resolution for 2021 is to get more tidy.
I am still thinking about how to implement this, tho,
so I will talk about that later!
Thurs 31 Dec 2020... End of the Year!|
Today's forecast said it was going to be warm enough for
a bike ride, and just a tiny chance of rain. So I was
thinking a ride out to Tsan to see the birds there would
be a wonderful close to the year.
haha! It started misting right before I got out the door!
And it continued misting or sprinkling
for most of my ride. Not exactly
fun, not being able to see because the eye glasses are
beaded up with wet.
*laughs* oh well. I tried to get good exercise, but it's
been a while since I've been out on the bike. hard going!
and I finally decided to bump it down a gear to make it
a little easier. I know: such a wimp! :)
But I did stop at the Tsanchiifin Walk... oh weird, someone
had dumped a little pile of bird food at the viewing area
path. Golden Crowned Sparrows and a pair of Towhees were
Wed 30 Dec 2020... covid rant|
The US racked up 1.2 million cases of covid in the last
week, averaging 183,449 new cases every day.
(Not as much testing during the holidays means cases
2,215 people died every day.
Florida hit 6,000 people currently hospitalized today,
and still climbing. 95 people die in Florida every day.
Texas has 11,775 people hospitalize and 165 people die
there every day.
Of course California takes the cake with 21,240 current
hospitalizations. 229 people die every day.
They don't have enough nurses, and are beginning to
And still nothing from the federal government... that
impeached monster is moping on the golf course.
(haha, remember the stupid old days when monster was
annoyed that Obama golfed ...
Trump Golf Count.
But in better news, the active case count might finally be
coming down in my town!! This wave of covid hit 200 active
cases after the 2nd week of Nov, peaked on 25 Nov with
473 and peaked again on 17 Dec with 526. We're now down
to 250 active cases... but I'll assume it's a temporary
lull before it gets really bad from Christmas travel and
Individualism: Pandemic Politics Driving Health Care Workers From Small Towns
Yeah, good job people. Let's harass and threaten
our health care workers and then be surprised when they quit
and you've got no one to take care of the entire community.
Which reminds me... our local newspaper had an article about
pandemic fatigue and our amazing health care workers...
And it included addresses to our local hospitals where
your can send happy cards of support and encouragement!
How cool is that?! Beginning the postcard proliferation! :D
Thurs 24 Dec 2020... Merry Christmas Eve!|
Been a while since I've had a wildlife photo to show...
I tried another walk today, even tho I've still got a
tendonitis ache in my heel. I'm still pretty slow, I
can't take a full stride yet.
Wed 23 Dec 2020... covid rant|
The USA added over 1.6 million cases of covid this week,
with an average of 239,711 new cases every day.
2,905 people died every day.
And still the federal government does nothing... because
that impeached monster is still -- Still! -- trying to
overturn the election that he lost.
Seditious is a good word, and hopefully someone
will follow up with that.
Texas hit 10,000 hospitalizations yesterday. 209 people
are dying there every day.
New York hald the record for most hospitalizations...
18,825 on 13 April. Bad times. but now California
has broken that record, beginning yesterday, and
continuing to add 100s more people to the hospital every day.
Active cases in my town hit a new high of 526 on 17 Dec.
It's come down since then, but still hovering in the 400s.
Oh, and this...
From U.K. Shut Down As Nations Assess Threat Of New Coronavirus Strain
U.K. officials warn the new variant of the virus could
be as high as 70% more contagious than the various strains
already circulating. However, there's no evidence so
far suggesting the new variant is more deadly.
Um. Yeah. There's this thing called Math. Here's how it
works. 70% more people getting covid, means more people
are going to die of covid.
Tues 22 Dec 2020... Little Free Pantry update|
The tendonitis is letting up a little bit... instead of
the shooting pain, there's just an ache. So I decided to
experiment with a walk today.
Our Little Free Pantry is about a block away and I check
on it every time I walk that way. There's usually some
kind of bread, a couple cans of stuff, potatoes, fruit
like oranges and apples (grapes and dried fruit today!),
pasta, dried beans.
(not sure what's in today's tupperware!)
The things in there that warm my heart...
Dog food that has been packaged in zip locks.
And wrapped servings of homemade cookies, or made up
So far, I've not met anyone else who fills the Pantry.
I dropped off another package of menstrual pads, today.
I'm never sure if I should open the package, to make the
individual pads available, or keep it sealed. Either way,
they are gone in 24 hours, so I know someone is appreciative!
And by the way, Scotland is awesome!
first in world to make period products free
<sing song> Awe-Some!!!
fri 18 dec 2020... Tendonitis, arg|
Yep, Wednesday night I started feeling tendonitis pain
in my left heel. fah.
I've never had tendonitis in my heel before, but even with
that first little twinge, I recognized it and
knew I would not be able to
walk. So I knew I'd need a plan to help me get thru the
usual 2hours I spend walking every day for the next...
few days? week? more? who knows.
That's kind of the thing. Tendonitis is one of those
things where medical science has little to say.
You can take drugs, or you can avoid drugs.
You can do physical therapy, or not.
You can ice it, heat pad it, both, or neither.
And the tendonitis either goes away or it doesn't. There
is no real treatment, except
rest. And, let's get
real here. You want to avoid those spikes of pain at ALL
costs! No doctor type has to tell you that.
So anyway. No walking means I've got an extra 2 hours
every day. And without the exercise, it's really important
to do something ... meaningful and happy.
I decided to dust off my CSS skills and work on some
back-end stuff here at the web site.
Last year I had taken a couple HTML and CSS classes, with
the goal of cleaning up my web site and upgrading from
HTML Transitional to HTML 5. I learned good stuff, and
I finished my classes. But then I didn't actually work
on the web site.
Yesterday, I re-familiarized myself with the codes. And
put the finishing touches on an archive template that I
had started last year, with my class.
I had trouble figuring out how
to place images, those darn floats. But it turned out I
was screwing up the requirements for the Width attribute!
ha, a simple thing I was ignorant of! Being sloppy was
okay in HTML Transitional, not so much in HTML 5!
And today, I started clearing out some of the entries on
this main page. It took a while, for a relatively small
chunk I tackled... There's the physical
cut and paste, and then all those random Transitional
codes to repair!
And again, I am learning good stuff! This project def
keeps me occupied for a couple hours at a time. And
there's plenty to do...
Once I get all the super old journal entries moved to
the archives, in theory I'll be able to clean up this
front page: Moving to HTML 5 and giving it a new design!
I don't know how many millions of years I've had this
sunflower thing. But it would be nice to move on!
A new design is, of course, a lot more involved than just
archiving stuff. So, we'll see what happens...
(and if you scroll to the bottom of this page, you can
see the changes!!)
Wed 16 Dec 2020... Wednesday Rant|
The US added almost 1.5 million new covid cases this
week and averaged 210,374 new cases every day.
2,402 people died every day. And we hit 300,000 total
deaths yesterday, according to the
Florida hit 4,000 hospitalizations at the end of Nov,
has now hit 5,000 hospitalizations. And just over 100
people die in Florida every day.
Is What Happens When Government Does Nothing
oh poor, stupid Iowa. The hospitalizations there have
been coming down... but case count and deaths are starting
to look more like Colorado, a state with almost twice the
population of Iowa.
And the covid in my town has just been hovering around 450
active cases, altho we did hit a high of 500 last Thursday.
We have 55 people hospitalized, which is a current record
Okay, this is kind of funny. My order has been on a
Merry Go Round for a week, coming and going from the
Kansas City Distribution Center! making me laugh!
Except... I kinda need my stuff!
tues 15 dec 2020... Mink!|
Walking along the creek, I saw this mink swim
across to my side! She or he was nosing around so quickly,
I knew the camera didn't have a chance. ha, I just pointed
down and clicked as fast as I could, hoping for the best.
Of course the
best obviously did not happen, laughs,
but that's okay!
Mon 14 Dec 2020... GRRR!|
∞ <Not a link> Is There a Doctor in the White House? Not if You Need an M.D.
Jill Biden should think about dropping the honorific, which feels fraudulent, even comic.
by Joseph Epstein (nope, not dignifying this with a link)
I am fuming over this. Dr Biden has two masters and a
doctorate in education, EdD.
Sexist jerk, JE has a Bachelor of Arts.
Because he's a white man in a position of authority,
he occasionally gets called
And he apparently can't be bothered to correct the mistake,
instead he revels in it.
But Dr Biden shouldn't claim the Dr title for the doctorate
that she actually earned ... because
it sounds and
Just a comparison... A Bachelor of Arts takes 4 years of
collage. After that, it takes 1.5 to 2 years to get a
Masters. (A Masters. as in, ONE Masters Degree.)
and then it takes another 3 years to get a
Doctorate in Education.
And yes. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Bigots
can have an opinion. Racists can have an opinion. Sexist
jerks can have an opinion.
But bigots should not have a platform to spew their opinions.
This should never have been published! And it def should
not have been defended by the responsible editor. (Yeah,
another article I will not dignify with a URL.) (But Wall
Street Journal? You Suck!)
The editor says:
where Mr. Epstein taught for many years, did its part
by denouncing him in a statement and appearing to purge
his emeritus listing from its website.
This is how cancel culture works.
Um. Yeah. Do I have to tell you? Misogyny is NOT a
culture. It's a blight on civilization.
Sun 6 Dec 2020... Heron Yoga|
Okay. This is pretty awesome. I was walking at the
river today, and on the way back to the car, I realized
I hadn't taken pics of any herons, for whatever reason.
So, here's a heron, in the last side pond. And I decide
to take a moment to breathe.
And the Heron decides to breathe with me and
do some stretching exercises!
We start with the left wing and leg...
and then our neck...
and then the other wing and leg...
I am so pleased to be invited to the Heron Yoga session!!
Sat 5 Dec 2020... Another Misidentification|
So. funny story. (um?)
Remember how I mis-identified the
hawk to the mail man
the other day?
Yeah. Well, I did it again!
I saw the flash of yellow, and made my assumptions.
And a person walking on the bike path behind me, asks
what's up. And I'm all, "Oh, I'm just looking at some
And, again, at home, I'm looking at the photos on the
computer. And again, "What the Heck is This??!"
Nobody I know has stripes like that! So I def have to go
And the flower head that they apparently love to snack
on is Teasle, invasive from Europe and Asia. But very
pretty and useful when it's not taking over everything!
Thurs 3 Dec 2020... Heron Hunter|
Walking along the creek today, and found a heron.
For some reason, I pulled out the camera, even tho
it was a terrible angle, looking almost straight down.
And just as I was getting a couple pics... the hunter
They caught a minnow! how cool is that?!
Wed 2 Dec 2020... Wednesday Rant|
Again, well over 1 million new covid cases added this week, at
168,808 new cases every day on average.
and 1,476 people died every day.
Oregon has been in a "freeze" shut down for the past two
weeks, and today we are transitioning to a county by county
shut down based on risk levels.
My town, Eugene is still in the midst of a covid breakout
that started at the end of Sept, so we will continue in the
Extreme risk level... Outdoor entertainment will
open up a little bit, but stores go from 75% occupancy down
to 50%. Socializing remains capped at 6 people from 2
households. It goes without saying:
Masks are mandated everywhere.
Several businesses have been fined for not
following the rules!
The outbreak in Eugene, which topped on 8 Oct with 288
active cases, and then again on 25 Nov with 473 active
cases. Today our active cases have come down to 217...
however we have a record number of hospitalizations, 39.
I wonder if they've expanded the covid wing at the hospital.
And I'm shocked to see the testing positivity rate in
Oregon is 40%. What the heck? This is terrible. What will
it take to get some extra testing in here?!
Texas hit 9,000 hospitalized today. The daily deaths there
are extremely variable -- in the past week it's gone from
22 on one day to 170 the next -- so it's difficult to see
what's going on, except the big numbers are def getting
bigger. And obviously it'll be
easier to die with the hospitals full.
Florida looks ready to hit a million cases here, very
soon. They've got over 4,200 hospitalized and that number
has been steadily rising for a long time.
And back to Oregon... this is utterly shameful:
Oregon nurse bragged on TikTok about not wearing a mask outside of work. Shes now on administrative leave.
Salem Health has the highest employee-related [covid] count of any hospital in the state.
And this lady was contributing.
Found this next to the trail, yesterday! *happy!*
Mon 30 Nov 2020... Hawks are Hard|
So I was staring up at this beautiful hawk... and trying
to figure out what was up with the tail, because from my
angle, it seemed to be missing...
Everything's perfectly fine!
There was just a stick behind her/him, and they were
resting their tail feathers up on that!
The mail man was walking on the bike path behind me.
Well! he says.
What do we have here?
A Cooper Hawk! I replied.
Wow. That's cool. Yes, it is!
Except, no. No, it's not!
At home, I was going thru the photos, and I zoomed in
and saw the colour of the head...
oh shoot. That is def not a Cooper Hawk!
Cooper Hawks have a dark grey hood over their head. And
this one has a stripy brown and red head.
Ah ha. Red Shouldered Hawk, just beyond the very northern
edge of their accepted range!
But dang it! Hawks are so difficult to figure out, even
when you think you know what you're doing!!
Sunday 29 Nov 2020... one more|
Golden Crowned Sparrows are another winter visitor in our
Every single year, I am surprised at how human friendly
these sparrows are. I can get within 4 or 5 feet, and
they give me one "over the shoulder" glance like this...
and then they pay me no mind! :D
Sat 28 Nov 2020... Happy Migrations|
A trip out to the river today, and I was glad to see some
of our winter visitors. There are lots of birds who
migrate down from Canada and Alaska, to spend the winter
in our ponds...
Today I saw Cormorants, Hooded Mergansers, Green Wing Teals...
And some American Wigeons:
I just love the squiggles that the feathers make... so artsy! :)
I tried to stand in the approximate same place to get
this pic of my favorite spot on the river. I should
collect these pics into a single post so you can see the
seasons and the weather! :)
Friday 27 Nov 2020... Show Off!|
These two Northern Flickers were on the other side of
the creek, so I wasn't really sure what was going on
at the time. But they were talking to each other, and
Looking at the photos, I realized they were two males
(they both have a red mustache, which females lack) ...
They are showing off to each other! It's just practice,
at this time of year. But..
May the fittest for survival, win! :)
Wed 25 Nov 2020... Wednesday Rant|
Sighs. The US added more than 1.2 million cases in the
177,541 new cases on average every day, here in the US.
and 1,646 people dying every day.
Oregon has been in
freeze for a week now, but today we
have over 500 people hospitalized for the first time,
and a record 21 people died yesterday.
Eugene has broken records for active covid cases on
last wed (307), thurs (375), friday (420), saturday (450),
sunday (456), monday (469), and we skipped tuesday because
it was the same, and today with 473 active cases.
Wed 18 Nov 2020... It's Wednesday and we're doomed|
Well, the US hit 11 million covid cases this past weekend.
And it seems like just a couple days ago we hit 10 million.
oh. yeah. That's 'cause it was...
Hits 11 Million Coronavirus Cases, Adding 1 Million In A Week
And Texas hit 1 million cases on the 13th. That's Friday
the 13th. And California followed suit on the 14th.
New York has the most deaths of all the states, with
26,189. A lot of people died in the first wave this
spring because the hospitals were full -- 18,825 people
hospitalized in New York on 13 April 2020 -- and they didn't
have treatment options yet. But it looks like Texas
wants to challenge all this... 7,841 currently hospitalized
and 19,696 people dead.
Poor, stupid Iowa has a 51% positivity rate and they hit
1,000 people currently hospitalized a week ago, on the 10th.
And 1,500 currently hospitalized today.
And they are Finally doing
something about it...
Governor Reverses Course, Issues Mask Mandate As COVID-19 Cases Rise
Oregon ranked No. 45 among the states where coronavirus
was spreading the fastest. But the state has 13.7%
positivity rate and increasing hospitalizations:
445 currently hospitalized, 100 more than last week.
And we are doing something about it! You know,
something a bit more serious than a mask madate,
which we've had in place for a while now.
We've gone back to a partial shut down starting today!
Social gatherings are capped at 6 and limited to two
households. Restaurants are take-out only. Indoor and
outdoor entertainment and recreational facilities
(gyms and more) must close. Etc, Etc. There's a good
list, and there's a fine or arrest for those who aren't
And the little outbreak in my own town continues on it's
merry way. Active cases broke the old record of 288
on Sunday the 15th with 306 active
cases. And again today with 307 active cases.
We'll see how long it takes for the shut down to have
The 7-day average for the US...
159,691 new cases every day
and 1,291 people died every day last week.
The current record stands at 187,957 new cases on 13 Nov,
according to WoM.
Or on the Covid Tracking
site, it was 171,376 new cases.
A few states are returning to partial shut downs, but
there's no reason why we won't be breaking all the records
a few more times!
Sat 14 Nov 2020... Autumn Baby|
After the rain and wind of Thursday night, I woke up and
the trees outside my window were denuded. Poor naked trees.
All the leaves were down in the parking lot.
You know, autumn is my favorite season... But I'm missing
the summer already. The tomatoes from the garden are long
gone and the house is all closed up and it's too chilly for
an early morning walk.
But then I came home from my late-morning walk... and found
a baby squirrel lookin' at me!
*laughs* okay, Not a baby... a
Youngster, and out
on her own. But how cute can you be?
Fri 13 Nov 2020... Steller Jay|
Nothing scary today for Friday the 13th! oh well. :)
Steller Jays are our other blue-coloured jay,
here in western Oregon.
Scrub Jays: blue and white...
are a common theme on my postcards, tho I
don't post pics here very often for some reason.
But the Stellers? They are so beautiful with their black
fading down to blue, with a few decorated bits on their
And they are shy and bouncy. So the few times I do get
to see them... they jump too fast for the camera to focus.
*laughs* What a cheeky look! Ima gettin the side eye!
of course, that look could only come from a teenager! :)
You can tell this is a young one because they've still
got a little bit of gape left at the corner of their mouth.
I fell in love immediately. And then they flew away.
Thurs 12 Nov 2020... Garden|
There's a 100% chance of rain, starting tonight and going
thru tomorrow! So I wanted to get another patch of the
garden forked and weeded and seeded with cover crop.
Yes, I'm still working on that. (Started 20 Sept!)
Did I mention our garden plot is 600sqft? Maybe next year
I'll rent a tiller or something!!
Anyway. There's little baby clovers coming up in patches
here and there. There was also a patch of Nasturtium
seedlings, but they died off on the first cold night. It's
not quite cold enough to kill off the Borage seedlings, yet.
There's also some Love-in-a-Mist seedlings coming up, I
think. Not sure what they will do in the cold.
There's another plant coming up in droves that I feel like
I should recognize...
I just couldn't place the leaves at all. But today I
oh, haha! There's no mistaking that wonderfully velvet
softness! Dead Nettle!
Purple Dead Nettle is an invasive from Europe, but they are
easily chopped down and I don't think they present much of
a problem in gardens. And, since it can survive cool
temperatures, it can act as a cover crop! Yay!
It's quite pretty, I think, with it's greens and purples
and it's little purplish-pink flowers.
And if you ever get a chance to run your
hand thru a patch of Dead Nettle...
Oh, it's totally luxurious! :)
Wed 11 Nov 2020... It's Wednesday|
Hospitals are filling up across the country and
reports records set for new cases of covid on...
∞ Thursday 5 Nov with 123,952
∞ Friday 6 Nov with 132,836
∞ Tues 10 Nov with 144,807
We are adding 123,371 new cases every day on average.
1,018 people died every day.
The covid outbreak in my town is getting worse again.
After dropping to 126 active cases last Thursday,
we've been climing again. Today there are 251 active
Our record is 288 active cases, I suppose that will
be broken soon.
My brain is producing some serious snark when I am out
and see people without masks. It's starting to affect
my well-being, so I need to think nicer thoughts. After
all, if you're too stupid to believe in science (or apply
that science)... well, that's karma that'll
catch up with you eventually.
And that's sad. So my brain shouldn't be so harsh.
There should be some pity. And that's it.
Obscure To Sold Out: The Story Of Four Seasons Total
Landscaping In Just 4 Days
Apparently Four Seasons has an amazing marketing team!!
Ways To Get Your Point Across While Wearing a Mask
And Gold Star Families Granted Lifetime Passes To National Parks
What?! This is awesome! Great idea!
Sun 8 Nov 2020... Political Mail|
My anxiety about the election kept me from forming
coherent thoughts. (laughs) But, now I'm back at it.
I couldn't find an office address for Joe Biden, and
I couldn't get his exact home address. So I put down
what I knew and I'll trust that the US Postal Service
will get my note to where it needs to go.
Because USPS is AWESOME!
Dear Mr Biden,
I know you're going to be busy once you get to the White
House ;) But here's something you don't need to do...
Please do NOT pardon Donald Trump. I'm sure he'll try
to pardon himself - Don't let that happen either. That
guy needs to face the music for all the evil he's done.
Thanks and Happy Day,
Wed 4 Nov 2020... Rant and something cool|
So, as predicted a new record was set for new daily cases.
Saturday 31 Oct we had 101,461 new cases in the US,
according to WOM.
and the next record day... coming soon.
87,492 new cases added every day on average in the US.
874 people died every day on average.
New cases exploding, hospitals filling up, and the death
toll will continue to rise again.
Still coming down from our covid outbreak here in town, but
it's a very slow process... 8 Oct was our highest count,
with 288 active cases. Right now, we've got
142 active cases with 18 hospitalized.
And the results of the election are still pending, but
it looks like Biden will probably win. But why is it
so close? Why are people so loyal to that impeached
monster? I just cannot understand.
Haha, this Cooper Hawk has a close audience!
(11.30 oops! I think this is a Red Shouldered Hawk! ha.
see my 30 Nov, Hawks are Hard entry!)
Crows mob hawks, but the crows aren't so worried about it
right now since they don't have nestlings to protect.
But they are keeping an eye on the situation.
Funny how close they are. But great for size comparison!!
Tues 3 Nov 2020... vote.|
Today is the day. And
I've got some major anxiety about this evening.
AND the next couple of months, because that lame duck
So I went out to the river for a good walk. :)
Sat 31 Oct 2020... Thank You|
Please DONT Say Youre Welcome! Better responses to THANK YOU
The other month, I happened to run into the generous human
who was re-filling their sidewalk food pantry. I gave them
a very enthusiastic
Thank you for doing this!
And they replied,
I'd not heard that response to thank you before, and I
really liked it. It acknowledged that they weren't doing
this for me, even tho I was the one thanking them. And
it implied that their action was inevitable!
Fri 30 Oct 2020... Garden|
I've been going to the garden every day this week to water.
We've not had any rain, and I'm trying to give my little
clover seeds the best start on life... I think they turn the
water off on 1 nov.
The lack of rain is distressing
because our rainy season starts in October.
And we've had nothing but dew and high humidity. Which is
something, but not really... the dry cracks in the dirt that
I don't water are about 2inches wide!
That damn cat is still hanging out at the Garden,
scaring the birds away, and I am
very annoyed at his human family for letting him out.
I like to listen to the Goldfinches twitter while I fork,
and it makes me sad when they aren't around.
Wednesday 28 Oct 2020... Its Wednesday|
Looks like TX and CA are competing to get the first
1 million covid cases. sighs.
So, yep. Covid cases still rising, rising in the US.
says we got a new record of 81,422 new cases in a day
last friday, 23 Oct. (The old high of 79,024 happened
All the websites have different numbers, of course,
but I think they all hit a high within a day or so.
more than 83,000 new cases, they got their
numbers from the Johns Hopkins site.
And these numbers aren't leveling off, they continue to
rise. So will be hitting new records for the next, what?
There are 74,299 new cases added every day, on average, in the US.
844 people died on average every day in the US.
My town is slowly coming down from its outbreak... we had
almost 300 active cases on 8 Oct, and now we're down to 175.
Tues 27 Oct 2020... All the Countries in the World|
Last night, I pulled out my atlas to do some reviewing.
You remember I've made it my quest to memorize all the
countries in the world.
I'm almost done... I'm currently
committing the South Pacific Islands to memory.
Several of those I had to look up pronunciation,
so I'm taking my time to learn them correctly!
But, not all of the islands are actual countries,
so it's a little bit easier than it looks, at first glance.
And then I need to go back and catch all
the island countries in the Caribbean.
And then I'm done!
Anyway, back to my atlas review.
I thought I was mixing up Sierra Leone, in West
Africa and Sri Lanka off the coast of India. But I had
I was def mixing up a couple countries in Eastern Europe,
tho... Belarus is in the north, and Bulgaria is in the south.
Yeah, one of my memory tricks is to think about groups of
countries by their first letter. GINS is a good one:
Greenland (okay not a country!), Iceland, Norway, Sweden,
and then Finland and Russia are easy to tack on to the end!
So you can see how I might confuse the SLs of Sierra Leone
and Sri Lanka. And the B countries in eastern Europe!
But I think I got it, now! :)
195 countries in the world
Very close to having all those in my head!
Friday 23 Oct 2020... Garden|
This one has been stalking in the Community Garden,
this past week...
He is very beautiful, and there's def some mice to catch
in the Garden. But the birds have been avoiding the place
because of him.
We had our first below freezing night on Wednesday, and
the Nasturtium and remaining summer squashes promptly died.
Hopefully the Nasturtium didn't crowd out my baby clovers
too bad... I need those clovers to live!
The tomato plants are mostly dead now, as well. But look
how lovely these last few Brandywines look!
I had 4 different tomato plants this year... two that I
always love: Sungolds and Brandywines. And two new ones:
Garden Peach and Santiam.
The Garden Peach was... okay. but the "delicate" flavor
bored me quickly and I stopped eating it after the first
couple batches. Insipid is a word to use with this one.
The Santiam, on the other hand... set a ton of fruits when
it was still chilly in the spring! That was exciting to
see and I looked forward to them ripening. And I loved,
loved them at the beginning. But, I did get tired of eating
them, at some point.
There was a break before the Brandywine
tomatoes started ripening. The Brandywines are my favorite,
and I wondered if I would get sick of them like the others.
But I did not get tired of
eating those Brandywines, once they started happening.
In fact, I could eat more, and I miss them even tho I've
got a couple ripening in the kitchen!
Wed 21 Oct 2020... usual covid rant|
736 people died every day this past week, in the US.
And we are adding 60,016 new cases every day... that
number is still jumping up from last week's 51,761 new cases.
The covid outbreak in my town has plateaued, and is
not getting better. We currently have 209 active cases
and a couple more people have died, bringing our total
to 26. On monday we had a high of 19 people hospitalized.
I am watching the numbers for several states, and they've
all been going up... more cases, more hospitalizations.
And what are we doing about it? As far as I can tell:
Even in my town, after hitting a high of almost
300 infectuous people on 8 October, then
hovering around 220 active cases for a couple weeks since
then... nothing. We've been put on a "Watch List" by the
governor, and they tell us to wear our stupid masks. But
no actual action has taken place to do anything about the
says the US hit a high on 24 July, with 78,971 new cases.
It looks like we are trying to break that record.
Propublica published an article about how the CDC has
the Fall of the CDC
It's long and it's depressing.
and it just makes me cry for the USA.
It is despicable that this happened!
Of course, that impeached monster has corrupted every
agency of government... from Betsy DeVos destroying public
schools as Secretary of Education to Louis DeJoy destroying
the Postal Service. And soon the Supreme Court will be
added to the list.
Oregon Junco at the community garden.
Mon 19 Oct 2020... Urban Wildlife|
Walking home from the garden today...
A Mom with three children. Not the most flattering pic...
Mom's got her tongue out, and poor human is messing up my
shot. ha. But it's the only pic I got with all four of
I immediately wondered if Mom had adopted one of the kids.
Because 3 seems like a lot to carry to term with crappy
Sun 18 Oct 2020... River|
Walking out by the river today...
This is one of my favorite places to stop and listen to
the river. The water is tripping over some rocks, and
it just sounds so lovely.
I took a pic here, last month as well. The little oak
tree in the front was a bit more green back then. :)
Thurs 24 Sept, River
American Wigeons are winter visitors in our area,
and this was my first sighting of the season.
Fri 16 Oct 2020... pic|
Ha... This one has been greeting me as I walk out
the front door, this week. Not every day,
but it's so surprising when she's there!
We are about three feet apart in this pic.
I've encountered her so often, I decided to name her.
courteous goodwill or as the verb
do honor or credit to (someone or something) by one's presence
I am def honored by her presence! :)
Wed 14 Oct 2020... the usual|
51,761 new cases of covid added every day in the US
this past week.
738 people died of covid every day
The new daily cases have sky rocketted this week...
|9 Sept||36,808 new cases every day
|16 Sept ||39,309 new
|23 Sept||42,923 new
|30 Sept||43,845 new
|7 Oct||44,822 new
|14 Oct||51,761 new
And maybe this time the covid breakout in my town has
leveled off? We had a high last Thurs 8 Oct
with 288 active cases and 15 people hospitalized.
Today we're at 210 infectious people, and it's been
steadily dropping. But there are 14 people hospitalized.
Our testing postitivity is down from last weeks 8.6%...
now at 7.6%. Still higher than the state of Oregon at 5.9%.
a pair of sweet Lesser Goldfinches! awww!
(yep, that guy on the left might be familiar if you're
on my postcard list!!)
Sun 11 Oct 2020... Spelling|
It is not generally known that I am a bad speller, but
I don't try to hide it. Since I'm a reader, I know when
I've mis-spelled something. Between the spell-check and
the dictionary I keep next to my bed, I can usually get
Spelling has always been a problem for me. Some of my
not-so-fondest memories from childhood are of me
struggling with this problem... I must have been 7 or 8
years old? Studying for spelling tests with my Mom,
and then getting so many words wrong, despite all the
I am frustrated with myself, even now, 40 years later!
There are words that I consistently mis-spell...
Like consistently!! *laughs* I spell it with an
ANT instead of an ENT. Also label usually comes
out first as lable, I have to look it up every.
single. god. damned. time. (yep, even this time!)
Another good one is
accidentally. I pronounce
it without the Tally, it's accidently and that's not a
word and it's never going to be a word, despite all the
stupid people spelling it that way on the internets.
But, yeah, I still think it should be a word!
∞ Accidently or Accidentally
Oh, wow! this looks like an awesome website... just look
at all those Confusing Words in the right sidebar!
Nice! A good rabbit hole to fall down!
Wed 7 Oct 2020... the rant|
is the word of the day when it
comes to that impeached monster getting covid. He spent
three days in hospital, where the doctors apparently threw
every experimental treatment at him...
And then that piece of shit says
Don't be afraid of Covid.
Don't let it dominate your life.
(I am angry beyond words about this.)
44,822 new cases of covid added every day this past week...
still steadily going up, up, up.
698 people have died every day of covid this past week.
And the covid problem in my town hasn't gotten any better...
We currently have 262 active cases, a new high. But we
a new high every couple of days. And our Test
Positivity rate is up to 8.6%, horrible!
Can See Clearly Now, Singer Johnny Nash Has Died At 80
Aww. :( this is another Rain song that I love and know most
of the words to. There's a video embedded on the NPR page,
if you care to listen. RIP Mr. Nash.
Thurs 1 oct 2020... Draw!|
to Start Drawing
This Pocket Worthy article caught my attention, the
other day! But I don't really follow any of the tips,
except the "Start Small" one.
I have been drawing ATC or baseball card size, for about
a year. I'm keeping the drawings in 9-pocket pages.
My first three-ring binder is mostly full, with 30 pages!
Yep, I draw humans sometimes. I'm not very good, obviously.
But I think I'm getting better. or at least most
of the drawings aren't hideous. heh.
And the Grosbeak was giving me trouble... I just can't get
that big beak right!
Anyway. I usually draw from photos, sometimes my own,
sometimes pics out of calendars, magazines, newspaper.
I probably should branch out and
Draw from life
every once in a while, like the article says.
Wed 30 Sept 2020... the usual rant|
The Johns Hopkins website shows that the world hit 1 million
deaths from covid yesterday. sighs.
Here in the US, we've been adding 43,845 cases every day,
and 775 people are dying every day.
And it looks as tho our little problem with covid here in
town has topped off. Monday we had 202 active cases and
it's fallen to 179 today.
Unfortunately, the test positivity rate has jumped from
1 and 2% that we had thru the end of August,
to 7.1%... this is bad! and
This is the first time that
our percent positivity has been greater than the state
[Oregon], which is at 6.3%
And we've had steady containment on the Holiday Farm Fire...
they've got it 65% contained, and report only 6 minor
I can't remember if I've mentioned, but they did find
all of the 250 people who were unaccounted for. Just
one person died in the fire. Which amazes me, since the
fire blew up so incredibly quickly the first night, which
was Monday 7 Sept 8:20pm.
As far as I know, they don't know the cause of this fire
yet. But I would assume that it was downed power lines,
from the terrible wind storm that happened at the time.
It is standing at 173,094 Acres and has destroyed
over 700 buildings, including around 430 homes.
Mon 28 Sept 2020... Shoes, ha.|
Let me just say, I hate buying new shoes. I like my old
shoes. I don't want to get used to new shoes. I don't
want to spend 60$ on new shoes. I don't want to lace up
Unfortunately, with the amount of walking I do... well,
the comfortable old shoes eventually fall apart. sighs.
These were sooo comfortable! Yeah, they had holes in the
bottoms. Walk thru a puddle and my socks were wet. I didn't
even care! Yeah, dirt got in thru the holes in the sides.
Still didn't even care!
But last monday, the right heel lost it's attachment. It
dragged all the way home. Okay. That's one insult too far.
It's time to retire these.
I pulled out another old pair of shoes while I looked to
order a new pair. These were not so comfortable.
A bit tight, and they gave me a blister on my toe.
And I didn't realize how close to falling apart...
Yesterday, as I was leaving the garden, the tread fell
off the left shoe.
*laughs* Well, this is ridiculous! I had to walk on my
tippy toes in order to keep the inner lining in place!
Thurs 24 Sept 2020... Out!|
After working very hard at the Community Garden plot for
three days, trying to break up the concrete which is the
dirt... there was actual sweat involved and a pulled muscle
and everything! After all that, it rained on the tiny
section of cover crop seeds and I rewarded myself with a
trip out to the river.
I was actually giddy that I was walking in a beautiful
setting, and not forking myself to frustration!!
Unfortunately I didn't really get any good photos.
Sometimes it happens like that, just
gotta go out again another day! No problem, that! :)
There were Red Wing Blackbirds bouncing around all over
and a favorite place to stop and listen to the river!
Wed 23 Sept 2020... the rant|
Deaths in the US have gone down, but cases have gone up...
731 people died every day, and we've been adding
42,923 new cases every day.
Hopkins Covid Dashboard reports 200,000 dead in the
US, as of this morning.
Serious issues in my town... our active case count is 125,
we've been bouncing up steadily with no end in sight.
Newspaper says small gatherings are to blame and there
are now three assisted living facilities involved.
We hit 1,000 total cases yesterday.
White Crowned Sparrows are winter visitors in our area...
and this is the first sighting of one this season!
Mon 21 Sept 2020... Garden Work|
The food coming from the garden is def starting to slow
down. The Cucumbers gave up the ghost ages ago. A couple
of tomato plants died in the cool and smoky weather.
Still some Brandywines ripening, tho. And a couple of
Crooknecks are still on the vine, and some tiny Patty Pans,
I've got my cover crop seeds, and a promise of rain on
wednesday night... Let's see how much of the garden I can
clear, till and seed!
I started in the back corner, where I know the dirt needs
some serious help. Letting the cover crop grow the longest
there, will do it good!
I cleared the weeds with no trouble. Grass goes to the
community compost, as does the bind weed and the other
creeping vine that makes a
bajillion seeds that I've not identified yet.
And borage stays since it will break
down quickly and return nutrients to the dirt.
But when I tried to
fork the soil... haha, it was like concrete! Even tho
we had gotten good rain before the weekend, the dirt
was hard as a brick. sighs. But this is exactly
what I meant: this dirt needs Help!
Well, I finished and seeded a tiny 2 square feet and then
had to call it quits for the day! *laughs*
It's a start. I don't remember how long it took me to
complete the cover crop last year... 3weeks? a month?
I'll have to look it up!
Sat 19 Sept 2020... rip RBG|
I was shocked and devastated to hear of the death of
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, last night.
Our world has lost an amazing woman. And the US has lost
a significant power for good.
I am terrified about her replacement in the court.
Thurs 17 Sept 2020... Maybe...|
There's a 100% chance of rain tonight. So this might be
the last of the wildfire smog photography.
When I headed out this morning, the visibility was so much
better and the air quality was at 260. Still "Very
Unhealthy" but not "Hazardous"!
I was happy to see a little group of Bushtits. They are
too bouncy for my camera... I can't focus before they are
several branches away!
But then a little breeze kicked up. And suddenly the air
is smoky and yucky again. Probably up in the 400 range
The smoggy tree near the center of the photo is my
A White Oak, almost 2 miles from home, at the
end of the bike path, going east.
One of it's branches swoops down and is
horizontal right at a good writing desk level. :)
Yep, I've been known to pull out my little "Idea Journal"
that I carry in my jacket, to write there for a few!
Wed 16 Sept 2020... the usual wednesday rant|
6,735,588 USA cases of covid,
adding 39,309 new cases every day.
199,561 people have died,
913 every day this past week.
(Numbers are from the
and are slightly higher than the numbers from the
Johns Hopkins site,
which were 6,609,770 USA cases and 195,962 USA dead.)
And my town has a bit of a problem... we've got 65 active
cases right now. And 14 people have died, half of whom
have died in the last couple of weeks! Yikes! What the
heck is going on??!
And my state hit 500 dead on Saturday. :(
Official Michael Caputo Admits Warning Of 'Sedition' At CDC, Riots If Trump Wins
So, this guy is obviously not right in the head. Like,
maybe we need some Mental Health time. And maybe we need
to not be in charge of millions of dollars of advertising
money for an agency that needs to be saturated with science!
Okay, this got my goat...
administration has not paid USPS for COVID-19 postcards featuring Trump's name
uh huh. I remember that postcard. In fact, I scanned it
in at the time. The file name I gave it...
Looks like I might need to subscribe to a new magazine...
American Endorses Joe Biden
Back to local news, the Holiday Farm fire, just east of
town is now 6% contained. It covers 166,503 Acres
and we now have a whopping 767 fire fighters!
Aww! Sweet girl at the Community Garden!
:) Plus you don't hardly notice the
wildfire smog in this photo. The air quality was
at 320 when I took this pic!
Tues 15 Sept 2020... Update|
Web site update
It occurred to me that having separate
for the newest blog posts was stupid. *laughs* It was fine
when I was actually catching up with the older posts. But
I quit doing that. And it's dumb to maintain all those
So! This is the place! if I bother with filling in some
older posts, I'll be sure to let you know! :)
I am starting to walk more... further and more often.
Did I tell you? I walked 4.5 miles on Saturday!! Yay!
Since I've gotten used to riding my bike down the bike
path, I really enjoy going out to the Tsanchiifin Walk.
I'm still finding different birds there!
And then I ride the bike a bit further out! The bike
path ends about 5.5 miles away from home... I've not quite
gotten to the end, yet, but got to around 5 miles today!
There's more prairie, and not as many trees. But I can
hear Red Wing Blackbirds singing, so that's something
new and different. :)
Well, let's see... today the air quality is at 330.
Still in the Hazardous category. But still looks better
than it has been.
Mon 14 Sept 2020... still smoggy, but...|
Okay, this is just a fun photo...
I count 12 Goldfinches! I've made this pic a bit bigger than
usual so you can see them all.
(Right-Click for "View Image".
Then hit the back button to return.)
And I think they are eating the seeds of Basil! I had no
idea it was such a popular meal!! I'm not a huge fan, but
apparently I need to have a good patch of basil next year!! :)
This morning's Air Quality is 475 (Hazardous is 300 to 500),
but it actually looks a lot better than it's been.
Thurs 10 Sept 2020... Smog Photography|
Okay, this Smog Sun didn't turn out
as well as the one the other day with the tree leaves...
But this is a new endeavor, so you have to cut me some slack!
Here's a cute smog squirrel for ya...
Wed 9 Sept 2020... Covid Rant and Local Wildfire|
752 people died every day this week in the US
and we're adding 36,808 new cases of covid daily.
My town has 57 active cases, bringing our total count
Three people died recently, unprecedented, bringing
a total of 10 people who have died.
And the wind storm of Monday night has kicked up a
horrific wildfire, east of town. It's huge and completely
uncontained, so they're evacuating the eastern edge
of town. They don't have enough fire fighters, since
they're spread all across the state, and helping California.
Scary stuff. I live on the western side of town, so I
can't imagine that I'd be in danger. But so many hundreds
of people escaping the fire... :~(
Tues 8 Sept 2020... Update|
There was a good wind storm last night. That was exciting.
And this morning we woke up to a dark red sky and ash
The responsible wildfires aren't new, but the wind direction
is. Up until now, we've been very lucky about avoiding
the wildfire smog. But now we've got it in droves.
I walked 3½ miles today!
I blew out my knee at the beginning of August. After
two weeks of trying to take it easy, it felt better and I
started walking again.
But after a 4 mile hike up the hill, the knee was
inflamed again. Back to square one.
So when the knee started feeling better again last week, I
didn't take the bait! I continued biking and only walking
I started walking a bit over the weekend. Oh, it's nice to
walk without having to think about pain! But I'll try not
to push it. Tomorrow I'll bike, instead of walk, and
hopefully I'll keep the knee in one piece.
Sat 29 Aug 2020... Listening at the Tsan...|
Yep, I biked out to Tsanchiifin Walk yet again today...
hoping to meet some new birds.
Yes! There were some! Strange new song, strange new
bouncing around in the tree. And suddenly flying away,
before the camera can focus. heh. oh well.
maybe next time.
Far away I hear another new bird: "La La La, Chew Chew Chew".
huh, that's interesting! I hope I get to meet them soon!
A Spotted Towhee was calling their rusty door, "creeeeaak".
Several Goldfinches twittering, along with some Chickadees
"dee dee dee"ing.
And this scruffy one...
I knew the species when I was taking the pics, but I'd
forgotten when I was going thru my photos. Separate from
my experience, I couldn't figure out what this bird was!
Female House Finch? hum, doesn't really match up. So, not
female... is juvenile! Ahhh! The stripes on the face are
so faint, that's what tricked me!
A juvenile Song Sparrow. And then I remembered what this
one was saying as I took her/his portrait, "jeep. jeep."
Birds say so much! Sure, it's fun to learn their
spring time songs. But knowing their communication
words is much more important!
Fri 28 Aug 2020... A Frog!!|
Yay! Wildlife success at my new Tsanchiifin Walk, on the
2nd day I've been...
Oh my gosh, so tiny! This Pacific Chorus Frog was
teeny tiny!! Around ½ inch! (Adults are normally
almost 2 inches.)
I can't say she was a
baby because of course baby frogs are actually tadpoles!
But dang. So cute.
Plus she let me walk around so I could have the
sun behind me. So patient and kind! :D
So, she's a girl... you can't see it in this pic, but males
have a dark vocal sac on their throat. My other photos show
that her throat is entirely creamy white.
And it looks like she's starting to change into her autumn
brown colours! Summer frogs are bright green, Winter frogs
are grey and brown.
Thurs 27 Aug 2020... the knee and the bike|
At the beginning of the month, I blew out my knee. I
took it easy and after two weeks, it was cured.
Getting back to my usual walking, I started out slow:
I walked less than a mile, for a couple days. I walked
2 miles, no problem. A couple of 3 mile days.
And then I walked up to the Hidden Trail. It's a four
mile walk and the trail is short but steep. And it killed
So, I'm back where I was. Except now I don't have any
hope: as soon as the knee gets better, I will still have to
take it easy. And for how long should that be? *shrugs*
At some point in this saga, my partner fixed up my bike.
I've been biking to the garden every other day... to water
and bring home veges.
Biking doesn't bother the knee at all! There's no pain,
other than the usual ache,
when I'm riding. And I don't think there's any extra pain
in the afternoon, either.
So I've decided to experiment with a longer bike trip...
Yesterday, I headed out with the bike to a park on the
bike path about 3 miles away.
oh it was good to see different things!
But the park itself, Tsanchiifin Walk, was rather boring.
*laughs* This is to be expected...
The park is a wet prairie, which means it's a shallow pond
in the winter and a grassy prairie in the summer. I much
prefer to walk in forest or along water. And since I am
familiar with those ecosystems, I also know what kind of
wildlife I'll encounter, and their behavior!
I am not familiar with the prairie. I don't know who I
will come across, and I don't know what signals to look
for if someone is nearby!
This is fine. And good. I can learn.
Wed 26 Aug 2020... Covid Rant|
USA has had 5,907,397 covid cases as of this morning,
we've been adding 43,095 new cases every day this week.
181,468 people have died so far,
our current rate is 1,000 people every day.
My town has dropped down to 14 active cases, after hovering
at 35 to 40 for several weeks!
That impeached monster is touting his latest miracle
treatment, and has forced the FDA to push blood plasma.
∞ 97,000 People Got Convalescent Plasma. Who Knows if It Works?
treating 98,000 people with plasma and not
having conclusive data if it worked is problematic,
and we should have a more robust data set before we
give 98,000 people a product Yeah, no studies,
no science. :/
Oh, and the CDC and HHS have also become compromised
∞ Officials change virus testing advice, bewildering experts
Good idea! Let's NOT test people who have been
exposed to covid! Yeah!
??? um. GAH!
Thurs 20 Aug 2020... Little Free Pantry|
The park behind our apartment complex got a Little Free
Pantry installed recently!!
At the beginning of July, I learned that we were getting
a Little Free Pantry. And at first I was excited because
the boxes had some amazing art on them.
But then I discovered that the group who is working to get
these food boxes set up... is Vegan!!
∞ Burrito Brigade
providing nutritious vegan meals to hungry
individuals in Eugene and Springfield, and has
since expanded to Portland.
Yay! This is just all kinds of awesome, all the way around!
Our Little Free Pantry is #23 in Eugene. And our artist
is Wendi Kai...
∞ Moon Maiden Tattoo: Wendi Kai's paintings
Aww! she's arted a vulture!! All her art is beautiful!
Anyway. When I first learned about the Little Free Pantries
back in July, I had just finished re-reading
Data Bias in a World Designed for Men.
There is a ton of info in that book, including the hardship
of not including menstruation products in any services
for the homeless, refugees, people in jail, and kids
in school! You'd be hard pressed to find free products
even in specifically womens' spaces like domestic violence
shelters or Planned Parenthood.
It's crazy! Like crazy-crazy, not just plain crazy!
And when I learned about the Little Free Pantry, I knew
exactly what I wanted to contribute to it! :D
Mon 17 Aug 2020... Political Postcards|
I have been sending weekly postcards to Moscow Mitch
ever since Representative John Lewis died.
I've been requesting that
he get the Voting Rights Advancement Act passed in
John Lewis' name.
He's not responded, or done anything.
so I keep sending postcards to him.
I try... I try my best. To be respectful in my writing.
I do not call him Moscow Mitch. I use cheerful language.
I say please.
But, I must admit, some snark has wiggled into my writing.
After I wrote this week's postcard to MM...
I decided to have some words with the Postmaster General...
Update (Tue, 18 Aug 2020)...
∞ Post Office
Chief Suspends Controversial Changes Until After Election
I assume this is a good thing. But I also assume that guy
is a lying sack of shit... so who knows.
Oh, was that out loud? I'm sorry.
(Updated Thu, 20 Aug 2020)...
There have been several reports of mail sorting machines
being broken down and tossed. Wai! How much money is he
just throwing away? How much efficency is lost without
those machines? why, why, why?!
Thurs 13 Aug 2020... Knee|
So it's been a week and a half since my knee started
I've TRIED to rest it by staying home and not walking...
but it kills my soul. So I've been walking a little, not
every day, and less than a mile.
It is getting better. I'm still taking aspirin and
ibuprofen constantly, but it's easier to get around the
house. And the walking pain is no longer "oh no I'm going
to die." It's more like "well this sucks." heh.
And you'd think, oh, not walking 3 or 4 miles in a day means
I get an extra two hours to do stuff! So what have I been
Yeah, like I said, my soul is dying here!
But, my little walk around the neighborhood today lifted
Wed 12 Aug 2020... Covid and rnd|
The USA has 5,262,241 covid cases as of this morning and
we've been adding about 54,692 new cases every day.
167,028 people have died of covid,
at a rate of 1,064 every day.
And my town is still hovering at 35 active cases,
a level we've been at for a couple weeks now.
∞ Florida Sheriff Orders Deputies And Staff Not To Wear Face Masks
any individual walking in to any one of our lobbies ...
that is wearing a mask will be asked to remove it.
We can debate and argue all day of why and why not,
Woods added. The fact is, the amount of professionals that give the reason why we should, I can find the exact same amount of professionals that say why we shouldn't.
Oh, Florida. There's this thing called Science.
And from the other end of the emotional spectrum...
oh thank goodness. That impeached monster had rolled
back the protections of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act
back in Dec 2017...
Yesterday a judge upheld the intent of the MBTA...
a law which protects more than 1000 species of birds
and has been on the books since 1918!!
∞ Victory! Federal Judge Rules Administration's Bird-Killing Policy is Illegal
The process of suing to get the government to follow the
laws -- or not change laws randomly -- is tedious and time consuming. And why should we
need to?? But the monster has a scorched earth policy...
so I'm sure this scenario will play out again.
Yay, Kamala Harris!
We need more than a victory on Nov. 3; we need a mandate that proves the past few years do not represent who we are or who we aspire to be
Tues 11 Aug 2020... ABCs of the geography project|
A project that I started this year is memorizing all of
the countries of the world and knowing where they are on
a map! I started with Central and South America, then got
Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and now I'm into the rest
It's kinda funny to say, but I love doing this! Sure, it
makes me feel smart. And also, when something happens
in the news, in some random country most Americans have
never heard of, I'm all,
Oh! I know exactly where that is!
*laughs* okay, that might just be me being smug! But,
seriously, having this knowlege really does make me feel
good that my brain is still working!
Another game that I play,
now that I've got over half the world memorized,
is naming countries alphabetically!
The distribution across the alphabet is a little bit
surprising to me.
For instance, there are a bunch of
countries that start with the letter E -- Egypt, El Salvador,
Eritrea, there are 8 altogether. I is another surprising
letter, also with 8 countries.
There are 3 F countries -- Finland, France, Fiji.
And 3 J countries -- Japan, Jamaica, Jordon.
And 3 R countries -- Rawanda, Romania, Russia. This one
seems odd to me, you'd think there'd be more Rs!
There's one Q -- Qatar.
And one O -- Oman. A couple Ys, and a couple Zs.
And there are zero Ws!!
Technically, there's Western Sahara, which is
territory mostly controlled by Morocco. And there's
Wales, but that is part of the UK. (And of course, there
are probably other places like this that I don't know about!)
And, yeah. Since I'm well into Asia, I realize it won't be
long until I run out of countries!! ack!
But there's a bunch of islands in Southeast Asia.
And it turns out I was pretty sloppy when I only memorized
the bigger islands in the Caribbean.
So there's still stuff to keep me busy with this for a
Friday 7 Aug 2020... Sunchoke|
Our left side neighbor, at the Community Garden, has been
a no-show this year. But she did plant a winter cover
crop which has done well. The Fava got nice and tall, went
to seed and is now dying back.
In the back of her plot, I am interested to see some
Jerusalem Artichokes or Sunchoke. I've never grown or
eaten them... so I was excited when I saw one of the tall
plants had fallen over into our plot!
Yep, I took it. There were a couple, small tubers that I
nabbed, and asked google what to do with them.
You can eat them raw or treat them like potatoes with
roasting, steaming or boiling. Many people love them
and after the first frost they will have a sweet nutty flavor.
Also thrilled to learn that this plant, a species of
sunflower, is native to
North America and was cultivated by the Native Americans.
I cooked up the smallest ones with my pasta. Literally,
three bites... I have learned my lesson about trying new
veges! ie Fennel Root, meh. Dandelion Blooms, yuck.
I liked the texture of the Sunchoke, but they didn't have
much of a taste. I guess you have to wait for the frost.
And they don't store well, so I'll have to eat the other
They do store perfectly in the ground tho...
so I'm really interested in growing them in my own plot,
next year. Stealing from my neighbor, wasn't very nice
of me, after all!!
Wed 5 Aug 2020... Doom and Gloom|
The USA has 4,879,399 reported cases of covid,
and we've been adding 60,088 every day.
We're Number One!)
159,582 people have died of Covid in the US,
1105 every day.
My town has 40 active cases today, we've kind of leveled
here for a week or so.
This opinion article kind of struck a chord with me...
Cult of Selfishness Is Killing America By Paul Krugman
What they call
freedom is actually absence of responsibility.
With great freedom, comes great responsibility.
Wear your mask!
Tues 4 Aug 2020... Knee|
I have somehow managed to blow out my right knee.
I don't think I specifically injured it. But when I walked
to the garden, yesterday, it was a bit annoying at the
beginning, tho I was able to ignore it after a half mile
And today, every single step was painful.
Contemplating a life without walking in nature, terrified
me. But even taking a few days off, frustrates me to no
I guess I'll do it... I'm taking aspirin and I'm set up
with cold packs... but, gah!
2018... BLOG POSTS|
(Posted 18 Dec 2020...)
I have managed to move all of the 2018 journal entries
into an archive page. I did not write very much in 2018,
so I decided not to divide them up into months, like I usually do.
The new archive is HTML5, and completely validated!
2018 journal entries
2017... BLOG POSTS|
(Posted 19 Dec 2020...)
I have managed to move all of the 2017 journal entries
into an archive page.
And again, I didn't write very much, so the posts for
the entire year are on one page.
The new archive is HTML5, and completely validated!
2017 journal entries
I am rift vegan!|
I live in the Pacific Northwest of the USA,
with my Significant Other (SO) and
Dawn the Guinea Pig.
I am vegan for ethical and environmental reasons,
my love for animals and nature is
a very important part of my life.
This blog is occasionally about...
∞ Vegan Life
∞ Handmade Postcards
∞ Books, Reading & eBooks
∞ the Paper Journal
∞ Drawing & Art Projects
∞ Randomness :)