Thursday, November 19, 2009

Agatha's back!

This afternoon, I heard a TERRIBLE commotion in the Meadow. Bluejays, wrens, titmice–they were all screaming at the top of their lungs while I sat in front of my computer, trying to write about beetles. Hmm, snake? Owl? Curiosity got the best of me, and I pushed away from my desk. I trekked outside, peered into the live oaks and scanned the branches. Meanwhile, the uproar continued. Some birds gathered near the owl box. Must be an owl, I thought.

This evening after dusk, James went outside with camera in hand. Sure enough, a little eastern screech owl perched in the box. Agatha! It has to be her! She probably returned a week or so ago when I heard the birds mobbing another time but couldn't find anything in the trees when I went outside to investigate.

Our eastern screech owl couple will roost in our two boxes during the winter. Nesting doesn't start up again until next March or so.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Lovely day

Mexican mint marigold

"Lovely day, lovely day, lovely day, LOVELY DAY!" Remember that old song by Bill Withers? Give it a listen, then go outside! The day is truly beautiful. And so are our golden flowers in bloom! The Mexican mint marigold's looks wonderful, and so does our copper canyon daisy. Wow, the butterflies are everywhere on it!

P.S. I asked James if he remembered the song, "Lovely Day," and he just gave me a blank look. Even after I "sang" a few bars. So then I played it for him on the Internet. Nothing, nada. "You don't remember THAT?" I asked, astounded. "You've never heard that song before?"

James shook his head. "Did they play it on AM?" he offered. "I never listened to that kind of stuff. It was ROCK for me."

Alas. We may have gone to high school together back when, but we were definitely on different planets musically speaking. (Pssst, I confess. I loved the Carpenters. James, I'm pretty sure, was a Metallica man.)

Lovely day to you!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Serenity and hope

We've had more rains, which is such a blessing. Tiny red columbine seedlings have sprung up everywhere beneath their "parents." I'm not sure if they'll survive frosts and freezes that are just around the corner. But do they do offer a lot of hope for a beautiful spring. Our Wildscape is so lush now, thanks to all the moisture brought by nature. What a difference rain makes! We barely kept our plants alive through the dry summer with faucet water. Then the rains came, and they seemed to rejoice with growth and GREEN GREEN GREEN! God is Good!