Recipe : Fruit and White Wine Cocktail – “White Wine Sangria”
Bird Watching in the City : Spring 2021 Toronto
Hello hello! I hope you're well.
We have a window in our kitchen that looks directly out into the top of an old maple tree. Unfortunately, the tree is slowly dying and there's nothing we can do to stop it. At this point about half of the branches have leaves and half are dead. We've had an arborist look at it and they've told up that it's just nature taking its course and the tree has simply come to the end of its life cycle.
There's an upside to this sad demise, though, in that birds, insects and squirrels really enjoy hanging out on its leafless limbs. We've always had birds in the tree, but now it seems like there are more of them and a wider variety. It could be because we can see them better now without the leaves, or it could be that the animals are really drawn to whatever food they're finding on the dead wood. We've seen them munching away out there, on who knows what.
Since I'm not an experienced birder, I'm afraid I can't tell you exactly what all of these are. I really tried to identify them but it's hard because there are so many variables that come into play with birds, such as their age (a chick looks different than a fledgling of the same species, and adults look different again), gender (sometimes males and females are hard to distinguish from one another, as with American Robins for example, but sometimes they'll look quite different from one another), time of year (some birds look quite different in the winter/spring than they do in other seasons). Also, there are a lot of different birds flying around our province, especially in the spring and summer, when many species migrate up here to breed. A recent count by the "Ontario Birds Records Committee" determined there are 501 species in the province, including those who visit from the south. Anyway, I've spent too much time trying to figure these all out and just had to give up on some of them.
While doing the research, I came upon a new-to-me term used within the birdwatching community -- "Lifer" : (noun) The very first sighting of a bird species that had never been seen before by the observer.
Amoungst these photos, there are a few lifers for me and perhaps there are for you, too.
I'll begin with those ...
A Spring Garden with a Frosty Twist
Hello. Happy Earth Day! In honour of the day I'm sharing some photos of our spring garden.
These shots were taken yesterday, April 21st. While we've certainly had snow on the flowers before, I can't recall ever seeing a snowfall as abundant as this one, this far into the year. When we were warned about it in the weather forecast the day before, we couldn’t imagine that it would happen to the degree they said it would. Then, we awoke the next morning to so much snow!
A New Crocheted Wreath and an Easter Decorating Video
Hello hello! I won't pretend that times aren't dire, but I'll try to cheer you with my home's attire. Groan? Ok, moving along. (For future readers, this was posted during the covid pandemic).
Here's a new seasonal wreath I crocheted, following this tutorial.
St. Patrick’s Day Decorating : Assembling a Tiered Tray
Hello! I hope you're doing ok. (Well, I hope you're doing better than ok, but during these difficult times, ok is perfectly ok!)
Last autumn my friend Leslie offered me a two tiered dessert tray that she wasn't using anymore. I took her up on it, specifically to try decorating it, something I'd seen done on YouTube.
So, here's my first try at “Tiered Tray Decorating” -- a little something for St. Patrick's Day. I used things that I had around the house, including an old postcard that I got from Ebay last year.
I recorded a "Decorate With Me" video, if you'd like to see how it came together.