One of the bluebonnets that bloomed in our front yard this spring is all white. 🙂
I visited Commons Ford Ranch Metropolitan Park today. There are some short trails that go down by Lake Austin, through a bit of woods, and around a beautiful, recently re-established prairie with native grasses and flowers. I saw about 10 different species of birds, including my first Eastern Bluebird. The bluebonnets are everywhere.
We cut the cord last year. And it has been ok. Amazon Prime and a Roku streaming player give us lots of viewing options. We also have a Channel Master DVR+ digital DVR with which we can record shows from over-the-air (OTA) channels, which is what we do 95% of the time. It downloads schedule info for 2 weeks for each channel via a wifi connection to your home network, so you have a nice channel guide to browse what’s coming up. There are a surprising number of OTA channels which we can get at our house, the majority of them are HD. You can enter your location at antennaweb.org and they’ll tell you what OTA channels you might be able to get where you live.
I can get my Seahawks fix by paying for Tune-in Premium month-to-month during the football season for live game audio broadcasts.
It’s all good.
But today we buried our TV. It died a slow death. I wonder how long it will take to fill this space. 🙂
It was a wet one yesterday – it rained all day here. Even the squirrels were trying to keep dry!
The backyard is getting quite crowded with bird-thingies. The latest one is a bark butter feeder that I hung up a couple of weeks ago. Bark butter is a spreadable kind of bird food that you can mush onto the bark of a tree, or onto a hanging feeder. You can buy both bark butter and bark butter feeders. But, I decided to try my hand at making both myself. Long story short, the birdies like it! This is a Bewick’s wren snacking on it. I have also seen black crested titmice and woodpeckers try it out.
To make the feeder, I grabbed a couple of pieces of cedar scrap from the shop, drilled shallow holes in each side with a forstner bit. I staggered the holes on each side so they were not directly opposite each other, so that I wouldn’t accidentally drill all the way through the board. Then I glued and nailed a piece of wood on top as an awning. I didn’t measure, but I’d say that my board is about 16″ long and 6″ wide.
There are recipes on the web for bark butter that contain lard and corn meal and peanut butter and bird seed. I simply got some all-natural peanut butter and mixed it with my current bird seed mix (mine is a mix of peanuts and whole sunflower seeds and millet) until it was spreadable. Then I stirred in some cayenne pepper to dissuade the squirrels. I spread some into each of the holes on the feeder and hung it up. Within a week I saw some birds feeding off of it; which made me smile.
Today is the 7 year anniversary of starting this Sheila365 photoblog! I’ve enjoyed it. I hope you have too.
Big day at the ranch today. I saw so many different species of birds. Even so, I missed a few of the regulars, but, hey, I can’t stand in front of that window ALL DAY. 🙂
- House Finch male (M) & female (F)
- Orange Crowned Warbler
- Northern Cardinal M&F
- Downy Woodpecker M
- House Sparrow M&F
- Red Winged Blackbird M&F
- Bewick’s Wren
- White Winged Dove
- Blue Jay
- Chipping Sparrow
- Yellow Rumped Warbler
- Carolina Wren
- Red Bellied Woodpecker M&F
- Northern Mockingbird
- European Starling M
- American Robin
- Lesser Goldfinch M&F
- Carolina Chickadee
- Black Crested Titmouse
I got some ok bird photos, but I’ll share a few of the garden, instead.
About 8 or 9 years ago, a neighbor gave me a dozen or so purple iris cuttings when she was thinning out her beds. I’ve had them in the ground since then but rarely have they bloomed. A year or so ago I moved them to a few different beds that get much more direct sunlight. This year I’m thrilled to see them in bloom! I love these short-lived flowers.
We have bluebonnets coming up in the front and back yards. Nothing says central texas like these beautiful wildflowers.
Monte’s got baby salad greens planted. Fresh lettuce every night!
I simply love spring. Oh, wait, we have 2 weeks to go before spring. I can’t wait!
We met up with friends tonight for trivia night at a nearby bar. Whew! 22 teams. 8 rounds. Very tough. We think we might have made it into the top ten.
But fun, though! Check out Geeks Who Drink to find one of their trivia nights near you.
After a very rainy weekend the sun finally came out Sunday afternoon. We decided to check out a couple breweries nearby. Austin Beerworks has a new and expanded tasting room and patio area that opened recently — kid and dog friendly. My Pearl Snap was great!
In a post earlier this year, I shared a visit to the Blanton Museum that we took, to see an Andy Warhol visiting exhibit that ended in January. When we went, we didn’t know that the museum’s permanent exhibits were temporarily closed, due to a total revamp of the permanent gallery areas upstairs. Even so, we enjoyed the visiting exhibit.
The museum’s permanent collection galleries are now open again, so I stopped by this week to check it out. They have an interesting mix of art – Latin American, early American Western, Contemporary, European, Native American, Modern, Spanish American, Ancient Greek and Roman, Film and Paper/Documents. The gallery remodel was nicely done.
I recommend a trip to the museum. I enjoyed it. Check out their website for days & hours. And keep in mind that every Thursday admission is free, and every 3rd Thursday the museum is open late – until 9pm. Parking is easy at the nearby Brazos garage. If you bring your parking stub into the museum, they can give you a discounted parking rate.
A macro view of the nectar oozing out of some lilies that I brought home the other day. If I was a bee I’d be pretty excited about it. 🙂
Sooo, in the process of googling what that part of the lily is, I found waaaay too much information. But I’ll summarize by saying that I believe the central prong-like thing sticking out is the pistil, and the end of it is its lady-part, called the stigma, and the nectar it is oozing is there to catch bits of pollen from the worker bees as they fly in and out. There you go – botany lesson of the day.
I’ve been observing my backyard especially carefully over the past several months. I love that I was able to observe several Bewick’s wrens among the frequent visitors. I recently hung a couple of new birdhouses up under the eaves, hoping to get some takers this year. We also have a number of older birdhouses that have been hanging out there for several years, including one that I made and hung in the backyard over six years ago. As I have been stalking my backyard birds more carefully, I’ve watched two pairs of Bewick’s wrens pick out houses in which they have built nests.
Rest assured, I will keep an eye on them and report back. 🙂 This is one of the residents of a new house that I hung a few weeks ago. I bought it at Joann’s – it had the desirable-to-bewicks dimensions. I drilled holes in the bottom for airflow, and I also cut off the perch. So cute!
This is the one of the new residents of the seasoned peek-a-boo bird house I made in December of 2011. Happy to see it in use.
I’ll be watching to see what develops.
We went to Kurt and Barbara’s Oscar watching party Sunday night – complete with red carpet, paparazzi, and bubbly.
At the beginning of the night, we each had a ballot to fill out with our guesses for winner of each category. Then we marked which ones we got right as the night went on. I got 7 out of 24 right. Not bad having only watched 2 of the nominated movies. But then my hopes were dashed as the best picture winner mixup unfolded. And my score fell to 6 out of 24. Sniffle.
But I took the blow with grace and poise. Life will go on. Somehow.