Archive | June, 2007

The Birds and I

30 Jun

Black Phoebe in flight

Originally uploaded by egret’s nest

A couple of businessy things first . . .

If you haven’t yet read this month’s I and the Bird . . . go forth and do so. I didn’t manage to make a contribution this time around but it’s is a wonderful, quirky, funny carnival! {click!}

Secondly, guess who one IATB51’s contest? Can you guess? Can you? Yup. It was ME! I won! I won! I won! I’m getting an autographed copy of a really cool book — yippee-skippee!

So, with all that out of the way, have I mentioned lately how much I love my camera? My poor much abused much neglected camera? I love it. I was snapping shots of a Black Phoebe sitting on a reed through a chainlink fence way too far away on full zoom in burst mode. And, I caught this shot. Isn’t it cool? I love my camera.

The squirrels have been decimating my feeders lately. We are under seige from juvenile delinquent squirrels. They don’t just come and steel seed and bird food, they knock down the feeders, break them up, and I think I caught one about to spray paint the side of the house with his little gang tags. Rotten little JDs. Thankfully, Sheriff Ruby is on the job! She keeps them away for the most part but it’s not easy! They are persistent and destructive. Occasionally, Sheriff Ruby takes her frustration out on other backyard wildlife. I found another dead mole in the backyard. We are so grateful that our yard is safe from the Vicious MolePeople. I can’t tell you what a blessing that is.

Life continues. I had another job interview and am actually expecting an offer of a job on Monday so that’s good. I’m trying to be excited about it but it’s not, of course, where I want to work. It will be a long, hard year for us if I get it but that’s part of paying one’s dues, right? Right.


A Two Green Heron Day

27 Jun

There is so much I want to blog about today. However, it’s 11:48pm. My alarm goes off at 5:35 am (those 5 minutes make all the difference!) and I just don’t have time. Go see my Flickr pics {click!} for more details.

Basically Gage’s group was nearly two hours late from a trip to the water slides. I wasn’t worried (well, anymore than I always am when one of the kids is driving with someone else) and took advantage of the time to grocery shop and, of course, bird watch. His camp is at my old high school which has improved rather dramatically since I went there (back in the olden days!). In exploring, I found an Aquaculture area with ponds, salmon tanks, and a Green Heron that flew in while I was watching. Amazing! I also found a Green Heron roosting site while I was grocery shopping seriously — I parked under it. Bizarre. These secretive skittish birds chose a busy shopping center to roost in. Amazing!

Young Green Heron in roosting tree

Wordless Wednesday . . . now with words!

27 Jun

Online Dating

Ladybird, ladybird (One Deep Breath)

25 Jun

Ladybird, ladybird

Originally uploaded by egret’s nest.

Ladybird fly home
Your gossamer wings will hold
against the strong wind


Your children are safe
Relax now


nine black spots
adorn your red back

Creative Commons License

licensed under a
Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 License

Still alive and well

25 Jun

The Coast off 17 Mile Drive

Life continues to be swamped. Pretty much seems that the 2 hour per day commute kills my blogging and chore time. So, then on the weekends, I’m so busy making up chores that I am just not getting the blogging done then. What to do, what to do?

School is going well. I have about the sweetest, most well-behaved class I can imagine. My issues with them are on such a point of refinement that I can’t believe it. It’s amazing. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again . . . I love teaching 2nd grade!

His favorite dessert!
Greg’s favorite dessert — his grandmother’s famous cheesepie!

The kids are doing well. They are loving their summer programs which is wonderful. Greg just had his birthday — thankfully he’s older than I am again so I can resume giving him a hard time about how old he is now.

Greg’s dad is still doing okay but is, honestly, fading daily now. It’s very sad to see. I stopped by to see them for a few minutes on my way home today and left there feeling very sad. He’s starting to be in a lot of pain and that’s hard — living from pain pill to pain pill. We’re seeing changes but no changes for the better anymore.

I had let my feeders get empty — even the birds are feeling the effects of my commute and schedule. I filled everything up this morning. I even made some Zick Dough for them. They were so glad. A pair of Pygmy Nuthatches came into the feeder while Ruthie and I were sitting on the deck basically under the feeders.

When the gulls and crows team up

When Gulls and Crows are willing to beg together for food,
you know there are some quality scraps being handed out!

The picture above was taken on the famous 17 Mile Drive between Pacific Grove and Carmel, California. 17 Mile Drive is a closed, gated community that includes the Pebble Beach Golf Club — among many others. It is also a preserved forest however. The Del Monte Perserve. The trees are Monterey Cypress. It’s amazingly beautiful which beaches, views, birds galore, fancy-schmancy houses, and shopping opportunities at The Lodge at Pebble Beach — sure, I can afford a picnic basket from The Market at Pebble Beach — can you imagine why the birds vie for the leftovers? And, you pay $9 for the privelege of driving through — that said, it was pretty gorgeous and since I haven’t done it in about 20 years, I can’t honestly mind. We were on our way to have dinner in Carmel with one of Greg’s business associates from the DC area. He and his wife were on an anniversary trip to Big Sur. We had an utterly fantastic dinner with them — great food, great wine, and even better — great conversation. Oh, and great dessert!

Rose Garden

The Oregold is on the far left — looking wilted.
I pruned everything so its hard to tell the new from the old!

Today, I planted three roses in my yard. They were free so if I end up not liking them, I’ll be more than willing to tear them out. A neighbor of my in-law’s bought a new place and thinks that roses are too much work. Whatever. Her loss, my gain. My mother-in-law got 3 and I got 3. One is Oregold — a beautiful yellow. One is a thornless red that seems very hardy. I have no idea what the third is. They all had tags on them that seem not to have survived the transplanting process. Oh well. The Oregold is the most unhappy about being transplanted. They had to sit in my mother-in-law’s carport for a couple of hours waiting for me to get them today. I put them in the ground with a good cup of organic rose food. Then I pruned them pretty severely. They were wilty and had buds all over them. I want them to get themselves established — not work on making pretty flowers right now. So, I went from two roses to five in one day. I hope they make it. It was really nice to get out in the garden and water them in and water the rest of my plants. Everything looked so nice out there — although we have gotten NOTHING done on the backyard since we put in the drainage. Sigh. We’ll get there!

Ruby Tuesday — the oh who do I think I’m kidding edition

19 Jun

Ruby sunbathing

Originally uploaded by egret’s nest

A token post.

Thankfully my family treats my comings and goings much the way Ruby does . . . resigned acceptance to my leaving and gleeful greetings upon my arrival.

The kids are settled in camp although Gage is in a different camp than we’d planned. Oh joy! He’s thrilled and the curriculum is wonderful for him — science and nature!

I’m settling in at my summer school job and trying not to find myself thinking . . . only 4.5 weeks left . . . but seriously still counting down the hours! 🙂 The kids are great. It’s the commute. Yesterday was my frist day teaching and I had a job interview too. Do I need to tell you that I left the interview, got into my car and almost burst into tears with a migraine? That is an awful lot to deal with in one day.

Made today seem easy though! 🙂

Hope you are all enjoying summer. Me, I’m for a shower, amazing ice cream, and bed with Seabiscuit! (I”m nothing if not current — we watched Brokeback Mountain the other night for the first time so reading Seabiscuit for the first time shouldn’t be a huge surprise!)

Oh, and Greg and I had a brilliant parenting moment this week — brag alert! We Netflixed The Addams Family. The old, original black and white tv show. It’s on DVD and oh my goodness did they love it. Totally awesome stuff!

My impacted summer

16 Jun


Welcome to Hell . . . my life! Summer is insane.  I am teaching 45 minutes away from our house.  Greg was going to deal with the kids at home.  Friday was the first day of no school and no Mom.  We forgot about soccer.  I cam home totally frazzled.  The kids were bored to tears.  Greg was struggling to keep afloat with demanding clients and non-cooperative computers.  Clearly, this was not going to work.  The kids needed activity.  I needed a schedule.  Greg needed some peace.  And, let’s not even think about what would happen if his mom needed him suddenly.  Quelle le freak!


So, Friday night, I moved heaven and earth and got the kids in awesome camp programs.  Greg will deal with the drop-off and half the pick-up.  He’ll have the morning to himself.  The kids will be entertained, safe, challenged, and cared for — all I can hope for.   Then, today, I scheduled chores so that the dishwasher will get emptied, laundry will get sorted, the dog will get fed, and stuff like that.  I normally get up at 6am so that I can have an hour of quiet time before starting my day.  That is out the window now.  I get up, get dressed and go — I’ll be lucky to get my morning mochas on the way to work these days.  Wheeeee!  It’s only a month.  It’s only a month.  It’s only a month.


On the good side, things are cooler here.  It was over 100 earlier in the week and now we are back to our wonderful temperate Central California weather.  It gets up to 80 during the day and the fog comes in at night and cools things down.  Lovely.


Tonight, I was standing doing the dishes at dusk.  An entire family of grosbeaks appeared. Dad and baby (a boy!) came first.  Then Mom arrived and Dad flew over to the trampoline to keep watch.  Mom and Dad traded them.  Junior kept eating happily the whole time.  Mom let Dad eat awhile and then flew in and demanded her chance.  She ate while Dad watched.   After a couple of minutes, Mom got nervous and left.  Dad followed and finally Junior looked around and flew off after them.  I was able to breathe again.  This is the first time I’ve seen all of them together.  Dad brought Junior in earlier today but all three together.  It was so cool.  Still don’t have a good picture of any of them — the minute they see movement, they are gone!


And, lastly, if you haven’t read I and the Bird #51, you really must.  It’s very good and The Birdchaser is running a contest this time too — with a prize!

Western Tanager

14 Jun

Western Tanager

Originally uploaded by amkhosla

Bird #100. Look at this lovely creature. I saw one today as I was walking to my car for lunch. Too hungry to stop and get my camera out, I did not get a shot. Still, it counts!

(LIfe is insane right now — blogging will be brief until things settle down — please be patient!)

The Police

13 Jun


Originally uploaded by cavemusic

Went to see The Police tonight. Totally awesome! Too tired for a real review.

Wordless Wednesday

13 Jun

Quizzical Expression