Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The table is set

Today I hung the Hummingbird Feeder, hoping to see hungry visitors soon. The chickadees are busy at the seed feeders in the meantime.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Yes, it is emotional

I think of Dad everyday, but today would have been his 93rd birthday.  
It stings that he is gone for so many reasons, one of which is we would have been planning a celebration.  I took this picture of daffodils by my front door this morning, it does look like a celebration of Spring.

I stopped at the cemetery yesterday afternoon and was pleased to see the military marker had been placed on Dad & Ev's grave-site.  
The bench and the marker make for a very nice tribute to those two.
Once the grass greens up and the trees leaf out, this will be a sweet spot to sit a spell.

It's an emotional day.
I wish, I wish, I wish.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

This is gonna look good!

Last Monday I visited my friends The Erickson's 
who have a massive day lily garden in memory of their son, Todd.  
We dug up many clumps of lilies, some for me and some for Glenn and Kathy.

Today, it was finally warm enough to be outside to get them into the ground.  

9 clumps of lilies now line the East side of the driveway, 
I had already done the same on the West side over the past few years.

9 clumps of day lily
Now the fun of waiting for the first blooms to see what color ended up where.
I can't wait until a few years from now when these are really established, it's going to be good!

Friday, April 24, 2015

A lull

It's that in-between time of year.  Too cold to do much outside, some of the plants are starting to show growth, a few new a bird varieties are appearing in the yard, but mostly, everything is on hold.
It's kind of how I feel too.  I don't have much ambition to tackle projects that need done around the house or in the yard, so I'm waiting.  

A few signs of the change over to warmer weather and real Springtime are noticed though.

The daffodils are in full bloom and seem to be thriving this year.

A white-throated sparrow has taken to scratching under the feeders 
and was seen checking out the brushpile, perhaps for housing.

The American Crows are everywhere, making lots of noise and probably working on nesting.

One of my favorite 'quiet' birds has been here off and on all winter, 
but is still a welcome sight at the feeder.  
The Mourning Dove's coo is a soothing sound.

The migration radar reports show clouds of birds heading our way, 
hummingbirds and orioles should be here soon.

Now, if I would just notice a little Spring motivation in me.
Maybe soon.

Monday, April 20, 2015


The temperature has taken a swing downward but today was the day we planned to dig the day lilies at Erickson's.  Every year since I moved to Rice Lake, Gary & Mary have offered that I can come and dig some lilies out of their gardens and plant them in my yard.  
Day lilies are the best, they grow with very little encouragement
 and the blooms are so pretty and go on and on.  
So, today I dug for my own yard, 
for Glenn & Kathy's lake cottage yard 
and some for Lois's yard in Luck as well.  
Bruce met me there and he took home lilies for his yard and delivered the ones to Lois.
 Gary insisted that we use the chart this year and pick certain colors.
Seriously, I don't care what colors I get but he asked that we humor him.
And so we did.
It's hard to see in these photos but the bed where Gary is standing, has about 1200 lily plants.
He wants that bed to be gone next year, so he's actively giving away the flowers.
I probably took 20 clumps and Bruce got about the same, 
and you could not see that we had even been there.
It was so cold outside, we nearly froze.  
It was 'almost' too cold to drink beer after we were done with our work.  
These tubs are full of clumps of lilies, 1/2 for me, 1/2 for Glenn and Kathy.
I hope to plant tomorrow, it's too cold for me to spend any more time out in the wind,
and I think the lilies will appreciate a warm night in the car, inside the garage.
My hops came back, second year for these guys and they are doing great.
It won't be long before they can catch the strings and start their climbing activity.
Nuggets ornamental hops, I hope I can find more this year, 
I have a few other spots in the yard that could use a pretty vine.
I'm settled in the house with the fireplace one.
I'm warming up and the kitties are happy.

Life is good.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Chainsaws rock

Gotta love a nephew who is an ace with a chainsaw.
Ryan offered to do some tree trimming in exchange for a little computer maintenance, and I took him up on the trade.  I got the better deal!
Monday morning it worked out that Ryan could come over with his chainsaw.
We walked around the yard and looked at what I thought needed done and then I let him get to work as I had committed to play cards that afternoon.
When I got back, things were all cleaned up and he was working on loading wood into his pick up.
I told him to leave the brush for me, but he doesn't go for that, clean up is in his DNA.
The lawn mowing guys will be happy, no head knockers, lower branches gone.

Two trunked oak is now a single trunk and has space to grow into a mighty oak.
Trail cam - before photo of the maple clump to the East of the deck.
and a large kitty on the prowl.

The maple clump got a good downsizing and should be less apt to split in the wind.
I can't wait to see it with leaves, I bet it won't be that noticeable.
The trail cam caught Ryan pulling about 10 loads of branches to the brush pile.

Ryan's pickup was full by the end of the loading.
He thought this would heat his house for about a week, so I'm glad for that.

This brush pile will give the little birds cover and I'm betting there will be a few nests built there too.
I hope the weather warms up again as my yard needs more TLC but this was a very good start.
Thanks Ryan!!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

My Life as a Wedding Photographer

I survived my one and only gig as a wedding photographer!  Whew!
My good friends, The Rosenows, have been like a second family to me for the past 40+ years.
Yesterday, 04.11.2015, Paul Rosenow married Faye Moseley in Winona, MN 
and I was asked if I would take the photos.
I agreed, even though taking important pictures of people makes me very very nervous and I'm not very good at lighting and all of that other photography stuff.
Other than how badly I perspired, yikes!, it all went fine.

Here are a couple of shots of the happy couple.

The Wedding Party
Aunt Marlene, Faye, Paul and Uncle Dale

Faye and Paul
I'm so happy for them.
It was a fun day (I can say that now) and I'm enjoying editing the photos I took.

It was a short career as Wedding Photographer, 
and I'm very glad to go back to my more casual nature photography hobby.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Little update

Well, the weekend was all about The Badgers and the NCAA Tournament.  As you all know by now, our heroes lost in the championship game versus the Duke Bluedevils.  I've always been a 'duke hater', so the loss stings a little extra for me.  But life goes on, the Badgers players are already announcing their switch to professional status and next year's team is in the build mode I'm sure.
Our NCAA pool was won by great nephew, Jackson, 
this was his first year joining us for the tournament bracket fun.
We don't play for money, but for a picture of a trophy instead.
It's all in fun but make the tournament more interesting.
Nice going Jackson.


It's been raining and windy most of the week, good Spring weather.
I'm starting to see a few plants come to life.
The day lilies are up just a bit, chives are really growing and today I see sprouts from the two hops plants I added last year.
Yesterday, in the rain, a flock of purple finches visited the feeders.
It's always easy to confuse the house finch with the purple finch, but with the help of some birders on Facebook, I think I have it right.
Soggy Purple Finch
Today we have lots of sunshine and puffy white clouds.
The suet logs are on their last legs, I keep forgetting to pull them down and toss the remnants.
Today, the Pileated Woodpecker was back, working hard to get a nugget of suet.
This Pileated Woodpecker looks kind of mad about the suet supply.
I'm off to Herold this afternoon, in fact I should be packing up.
This weekend is the wedding of my other brother, Paul, in Winona.
I'm heading to the wedding and taking my camera.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter 2015

A cool and cloudy day, but a wonderful gathering of family and friends.
My sister-in-law's brother, Larry, & wife, Lois Skow,
kindly included me on their Easter invitations again this year.  
The food was wonderful, I forget how delicious ham can be!  
And Dairy Queen cake for dessert, my very best favorite!

But the big event for the little kids is the Easter egg hunting.
A few photos of the fun.

Ivan, Stella & Jens





Owen and Ruby told me that they were working as a team

 Happy Day!


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