Covid Hair Styles

It’s Haircut Day!

We’re way more excited than we should be, but it’s my first haircut in almost six months, and Jack’s first in over a year, so cut us some slack with those split ends 😉


Post appointment update:

Semi-Annual COVID Haircut
The purple’s back! Feels like a great spring refresh! Thanks Patty at Make Me Fabulous for making me feel just that!
Today’s Buzz

First honey bee sighting! Snapped two yesterday, milking the pollen from the random clumps of mini iris by the kitchen door. I was going to remove or at least relocate these odd little flowers, but their incredibly early mid-March bloom has me thinking otherwise—the bees seem to love them. Should I worry these weird little (surely genetically modified) mutants are detrimental to the bees?

Northern Harrier

Besides the excitement provided by yesterday’s unexpected visitor, we also had another tourist of note: a Northern Harrier in the back field. It never let me get close with the camera but I watched it hunt and eat it’s lunch for a while.

My Status Update

Huge Mother Skunker

This is what happens when you use a bigger trap than you need trying to catch a pair of delinquent red squirrels, and then forgetfully leave it out overnight. (Learn from me friends!)

After several minutes of staring at it and cussing like a longshoreman, a call into the game warden provided guidance. I don’t know what provided the courage to actually try his suggestion.

It never occurred to me that the nocturnal critter would have no interest in exiting in the middle of the day. After I opened the door, it turned right around and went back to sleep. It slept for more than an hour before it was awakened by a truck using engine breaks and finally wandered out, taking its own sweet time. Easily the biggest skunk I’ve ever seen. I watched it burrow into the brush pile, where it spent the day. I will not be trying to film it when it re-emerges.

I will not be leaving the traps out overnight. skunk

Eastern Meadowlark in the back meadow. First of the Year - FOY

Our First Eastern Meadowlark of the Season

Jack spotted something moving out in the back meadow and came in for the binoculars. Honestly I assumed it was another European Starling but was delighted to see the Eastern Meadowlark instead. We’ve yet to hear it’s captivating song—one of the most beautiful sounds on earth.

Whirlpool Galaxy

Dancing With The Stars

If you want to freak out, in a good way, try messing around with astrophotography. It’s science magic.

We attached my camera to the telescope, pointed it at a specific star in the Big Dipper (Ursa Major) and opened the shutter for three minutes. Voilà! When the camera was done, we had this. The Whirlpool Galaxy. And I did a little happy dance in the back yard.

This is out there. In the sky. And thanks to technology I can see what Galileo dreamed about, and understood far better than I ever might.

Did You See That?

I saw a meteor. Well, I’m almost fully convinced it was a meteor. I saw a thing that could only be explained as being a meteor. I want to be completely convinced.

We were outside doing astrophotography when I saw it in the western sky, 90 degrees from where the telescope was pointed. It appeared as a weird sort of shooting star, but it didn’t disappear. The tail seemed to evaporate, leaving only a ball of light that was falling in the night sky and it was ultimately snuffed out. It wasn’t a normal shooting star. It was big. It was a meteor.

I saw a meteor. Convince me I didn’t.

Is this how faith works?

NYT-Spelling Bee Genius

Genius for a day. Or not.

NYT-Spelling Bee Genius

I learned that I do not know enough words that include the letters

ABCGILO

I am addicted to the daily NY Times Game Spelling Bee, so much so that I subscribe (translate: pay extra.)

I use it with their other games to help keep the synapses firing and not to sound braggy, I regularly score somewhere in the Genius level, at the very least Awesome. Until yesterday. Yesterday I capped out at Great. Great? Really? Not even Amazing? Great sucks.

The goal of Spelling Bee is simple: create as many words as possible with the seven letters provided. You can used each letter multiple times but each word must include the designated letter. In the case of yesterday’s puzzle, A.

The unchecked words below are all the words I did not get – and 99% of them I don’t even know. Laical? Bacilli?

Do you know some of these words? If so I will not be inviting you to play competitively, which I’m considering 🙂

New York Times Spelling Bee Addiction
Fox Sparrow

Not Another Little Brown Bird – Fox Sparrow

Jack is a birding enthusiast, not a die-hard birder, so he lumps most sparrows and wrens together as another little brown bird. But yesterday when he opened the window shutters he knew that the bird he was looking at was special enough to ask, “what kind of little brown bird are you?” Which translates into: Christine have I seen this bird before?

There, beneath our most concealed feeder was a gorgeous little bird with rich brown and gray feathers and a boldly striped white chest. I guessed Fox Sparrow and consulting the field guide confirmed it, including the notation that Fox Sparrows will often befriend flocks of White-Throated Sparrows—one of those was there too.

This guy was passing through – likely headed to northern Canada to breed after a winter respite in the southeastern US perhaps. Jack’s sure he saw two Fox Sparrows. I saw only one but was so transfixed on it I could have easily missed others.

It’s a Lifer Bird for me. Lifer birds make any day great.

Are you a bird nerd too? I’d love to know about your favorite online sites. Leave a link in the comments.

The Birthday Cartwheel

Status Update – The Birthday Cartwheel

Well, here it is. The cartwheel marking my 59th birthday. It’s not the best ever, but let’s consider it was freakin’ ten degrees below zero with windchill. (I so appreciate the years when this was carried out in Arizona)

And I’ll not comment on the sloppy landing or the ill-fitting COVID-wear jeans except to say I’m grateful for both. And for you.