Sunday, May 31, 2009

Here Today - Gone Tomorrow

My three sweet baby birds have flown the coop and left the nest. Early last evening I snapped this photo of them all squeezed together in their nest. Mama was still watching from a safe distance away. And this morning none of them were to be found. They are too big now scrunch down inside the nest, so there was no chance that they were sleeping. And Mama was no longer standing watch over them either. It was time for them to go - to fly - out on their own to make a life for themselves. I will miss checking in on them, but I'm so pleased that they survived their fragile time in the nest.
The photo below (courtesy of Wikipedia) shows what these little chicks looked like outside of the nest. I was not fortunate enough to get a shot like this one.
You can learn more about the American Robin by clicking here.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Dear Dad

Did you know that Father's Day is only 3 weeks from tomorrow? Better start preparing now! I just listed these cards in my Etsy Shop.  I'll be listing more things this week - both new items and recycled discards from my latest purge and sort around the house!

Friday, May 29, 2009


Sitting here not getting much done. It's been one of those weeks. You know, the kind where you have all the good intentions of accomplishing a lot when you firstnwake up, but then as the day goes on you realize you haven't done as much as you planned. I have been working in the garage trying to organize the mess that is in there. We don't have a basement, so a lot of the excess stuff gets dumped in there. I bought some of these drawer units to replace the crates that were stacked up and hard to get anything out of.  Hopefully they will make things easier to access and things will get used more frequently. 
I picked up a couple of new books at Barnes & Noble yesterday. I read about Style Statemenon Hope Wallace's blog here. Hope is working on a journal with Kari based on this book and I thought I might do the same thing. Creating Your Best Life is a book about self discovery and coming up with your ultimate life list.
Have to do some tidying up around here now as my SIL is coming in from Colorado for a visit. 

Monday, May 25, 2009

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Miracle of Birth

Remember this Mama robin I wrote about here and here? Well here she is watching her nest from a nearby tree as I snap a few more pictures. We hadn't seen any activity, so I got a little concerned and tip-toed up the the nest and aimed the camera lens inside to see if there were any eggs inside. No sign of eggs, but I found this instead. . . . . . .
My first thought was that the babies must have been still-born because they weren't making any noise nor were they moving. I had never seen newborn birdies sleeping - I thought they were always hungry and looking for food 24/7.  But two days later I was able to capture this pic while mama was out looking for some food. . . . . . .
It's not the sharpest photograph, (and neither is the one below), but I was so startled when I saw their little necks out-stretched waiting for Mama to return that it was the best I could do.
And I always wondered how does the Mama bird sit on the nest without suffacating her babies?
My question was answered below. . . . 

Here she is snuggling in with her babies!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

52Q and A New Addition

There's a new addition to our home. It's a Mac! Thanks to all your great advice and input, I made the plunge and got a MacBook and I LOVE IT!  And I couldn't be happier with my purchase. I love the size and portability and all the amazing and fun things this baby can do. I'm still finding my way around it and the One-to-One classes are going to help with that (I already had my first class yesterday with Joe at the Apple Store). But, just like when I was thrown in front of a desktop PC at work many, many years ago and was told how to turn the machine on and nothing else, I kind of enjoy trying to blindly find my way around on my own.  

I can't thank those of you who left all the helpful comments, cheering me on and letting me know just exactly how much you love your Macs. (You all should work for Apple!) Those testimonials are what made me confident that I was spending my money very wisely! THANK YOU!!!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Help Please!

My computer is on it's last legs. It is dying a slow death and before it gives up for good and I lose everything on it, I need to replace it. I currently have a laptop PC. Everyone who has a MAC always raves about it, so I am considering switching. I use my computer mostly for photo and graphic work, word processing, and internet. If you are reading this, could you please give me some advice? Thanks!
What do you LOVE or HATE about your PC or MAC?
What do you use for photo editing on a MAC? (I currently use Photoshop Elements - can you use it on a MAC?)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Successful Photo Shoot!

If you read the previous post, you know that I've been trying to get a pic of mother robin sitting on her nest. Well, today was my lucky day! Next I'm hoping to snap a photo of the blue eggs
without upsetting Mama too much.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Signs of Spring

Today I thought I would share some signs of spring bursting forth in my backyard. We've had a long, long winter here in the midwest and spring has only really started here in the past few weeks. Above is one of the beautiful lilac bushes - my favorite fragrant flower. The bleeding hearts are in full bloom too.
As well as the beautiful blue grape hiacynths.

A basket of pretty pansies by the front door.

If you look closely you can see some violets popping up through the grass.
My DH is not exactly happy about this, but I think they look sweet.
This patch of Sweet Woodruff is over 25 years old. Many years ago I took an herb class with a friend at the Chicago Botanic Garden and the instructor introduced us to this ground cover plant and I just had to come home and plant some. It spreads like wildfire and always blooms in the month of May. As we learned in the class, you can can make the most delicious May Wine with it. Here's the recipe for any of you who'd like to try it.
(from article in Wall Street Journal)
Choose a light German white wine, the younger the better.
You don't want to spend much on this wine. Pour into a bowl.
Add a half-ounce of dried sweet woodruff (or four or five freshly dried sprigs)
and a couple of tablespoons of sugar, if you like. Cover it.
Let it rest in the refrigerator overnight so the wine is infused with the herb's essence.
Strain out the herb. Place the wine in a punch bowl, add strawberries and serve cold.
Or if you prefer, you can purchase bottles of May Wine through Gluntz Winery here.
Along with the flowering trees and perennials, I wanted to share this little nest as the last sign of spring in my yard. A mama robin built this nest on the old grapevine wreath which hangs on the door to my laundry room. I haven't been able to capture Mama sitting on the nest because she always flies away when she sees me sneaking up to snap a photo.
~Happy Springtime!~

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mother's Day Beauty

Every year around Mother's Day, the crabapple trees bloom around here. The beautiful shades of pinks and white are a gorgeous gift that everyone can enjoy.
This sweet little bird hanging was a Mother's Day gift from my daughter and her husband.
The four of us went to brunch and the resturant gave out pink roses to all the Moms.
Last year they gave me a rather wilted rose, but this year's was nothing but perfection!
And my DH surprised me with this beautiful bouquet of red roses as well.
I hope all you moms had a wonderfully special day!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day

My Mother kept a garden,
a garden of the heart.
She planted all the good things
that gave my life it's start.
She turned me to the sunshine
and encouraged me to dream,
Fostering and nurturing
the seeds of self-esteem...
And when the winds and rain came,
she protected me enough-
But not too much because she knew
I'd need to stand up strong and tough.
Her constant good example
always taught me right from wrong-
Markers for my pathway
that will last a lifetime long.
I am my Mother's garden.
I am her legacy-
And I hope today she feels the love
reflected back from me
~Author Unknown~

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Goodies in the Mailbox

Yesterday the postman brought me a little surprise! Well, it wasn't exactly an unexpected package, but the treat inside totally blew me away. This is the collage that Maija made for me as a part of Maria's Marie Antoinette Bits and Pieces Collage Swap that Maija and I participated in. Maria and I were both part of the altered book round robin featured in Stampington's MARIE Magazine currently on the newstands. (FYI - I noticed that some of the Barnes & Noble stores have this magazine in the Arts section of the magazine rack, as opposed to the Craft section where Stampington's magazines are usually located.) Anyway, don't you just love all the fabulous Marie inspired goodies that Maija included on this collage? She used lots of sparkle and bling - my favorite! I can't decide which square I like the most...I love it all!
And now that Maija has opened her collage from me, I can reveal the whole thing to all of you!

Friday, May 01, 2009

Excuses, Excuses

Ok, ok. . .I know I told you I was going to update my Etsy Shop this week. However it's taking a bit longer than I thought, so let's try for next week, ok? Have a great weekend!
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