Monday, January 29, 2018

A Lovely Visit with the Bluebirds

It's been a cold winter with quite a bit of snow up here by the Lake.  The temps warmed up this weekend, and the bluebirds came out in force.  I think they were as excited to feel the sunshine as I was.  Two pairs frolicked around my yard, checking out nesting sites and bird feeders.  
They were chattering and busy!  I had two successive nestings in one of my blue bird houses last summer, so I am hoping that they approve of the real estate and nest here again.  It's so interesting to watch the Mr. come and go, passing in worms and other little delights to the Mrs. on the nest, and then the babies when they hatch.

The males check on the birdhouses first, with the females also giving their opinion.   The females are a duller gray, but still beautiful in my opinion.   They do have some blue on their feathers, and the same rusty breast.

This photo is blurry, but you can see Mr. Bluebird surveying the real estate.  Mrs. Bluebird looked it over soon after this.  One couple would swoop in, and the other couple would brush them away, chattering the whole time with their opinions.  Then they would land on the overhead wire and talk things over some more.

I feed the birds year round.  I put dried meal worms in this lovely turquoise feeder and the blue birds love it.  Last summer I had 4 bluebirds (probably some of them juveniles) sitting on the feeder having a snack.  They also eat from the shelf feeder and the suet cakes.
This bit of bright sunshine, warmer weather and colorful bluebirds has really raised my spirits.  I suspect there will be more snow before spring arrives completely, but I am thrilled for this respite!  And I certainly enjoy the inspiration of these beautiful blue birds.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Goodbye Old Man

A very good dog died today. He belonged to my daughter and son-in-law and had guarded them with grace and love for 18 years. He came to them as a stray and quickly settled into their lives. He was a regular in my studio, enjoying time with his “cousins” and not seeming to mind being low man on the totem pole. They went out, he went out. They ran, he ran. And they all slept in a heap, arguing over who got the best bed. 

He became a Dunes dog when they moved up to Northwest Indiana. He learned to love the sand and kick it up while he ran. When a boxer mix named Zia joined his family, he was thrilled. Then babies came and he grew to be the elder statesman in this family, watching over all of them and loving them as only a loyal dog can. 


He will be missed. His grace and dignity as age took away his strength has touched us. The pup we loved still shone in his eyes and he still got excited for treats. Godspeed Indigo, we love you.