Monday 28 February 2022

What a treat!

And, finally, due to circumstances beyond our control, we celebrated Christmas and my birthday (Dec. 26), as well as Josephine's 14th birthday (Dec. 9th) on Saturday, February 26th. 

Things are settling down, COVID numbers are down, and we felt safe enough to see the kids. It's been lonely, despite Facetime and phone calls.

JB set the scene. I hauled the presents out of the closet, where they have sat for months.

They arrived early, prior to lunch. Josephine had a Zoom call for a leadership camp. They used to do it in person, with overnighters at the high school, but that wasn't possible this year. She was on from 12:30 until 6, then back on from 7:30 to 10:30.

We had lunch. Lunchtime was the birthday celebrations, and dinner was 'Christmas' one! I'd asked for carrot cake. The candles were obvious. Between '14' and '65' they had it covered. Isabelle was in charge of lighting said candles. It was hilarious. We have an open concept kitchen/dining area. We could hear everything they were doing.
We debriefed after I blew the candles out. Izzy had lit most of them, had to light another match, it was nearing her fingers so she blew it out. She snorted when she accidentally blew them all out! It was good to have fun and laugh. We've been feeling so dreary.

Josephine had fun with my camera. 

We took turns wearing the birthday hat. My SIL, JL, took the camera and recorded the event!

Tomorrow I shall post about our Dinner and Christmas! 

Sunday 27 February 2022

Snowy, snowy day!

Well, Saturday was a fun day. I'll tell you all about it once I curate the photos. We had so much fun with the kids visiting, finally. 

Rabbit has been busy in the backyard. I love spotting their tracks in the snow. It's such a fun track, with their long back legs.

 We had a big snowstorm on Friday. What a mess. It snowed and snowed, with blowing winds. At one point it was so dark that the bears lit themselves up. They are on a timer that does this once it gets to dusk!

I tried for another window photo. Lots of snow!

The cats keep watching their cat TV. Those squirrels, we've three red squirrels!

I tried for video out front, but set it improperly, again. I had a series of 681 photos of this deer! 

I love watching them! mice friends   

The snow kept falling. We had a robin, as well as the cardinals and many chickadees.


snowy bird feeder from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

It's more than gently falling, the snow.

snowy day Feb.25 from Jennifer Jilks on Vimeo.

I did the driveway, just before the storm ended, it snowed much of the day. We had about 11 cm, and it was a challenge. 

Saturday 26 February 2022

Saturday's Critters

Our critters have been limited. The walking is just awful, with a frozen layer of ice on top. I have to be content with birds and mice friends, and our strange visitor, Oregano.

I'm having trouble with this trail camera. Of course, it is -20 ˚ C. this morning, and I don't want to be fiddling around with it! I was a bit tired after doing the driveway. The blowing snow was awful, and there were lots of drifts. I had dozens of videos of the birds. The mourning dove is a favourite.

This is so much fun! I've hung a feeder at the back door. The icicles from the upper deck are a bit daunting. I am glad I shovelled the deck last week. We had knee-deep snow on it. The rain did its thing.

Under the feeder there has been some traffic. The deer mice have been happy. They are ubiquitous. Here is one from the summer!

On the Facebook group for trailcameras, people give all these instructions on locking up the cameras, how to camouflage their cameras, or how to mount their cameras. This one, I just put it on the ground outside my back door!

Mice friends were slipping around under the feeder.
We know what Oregano is after! The poor mice on a slab of ice.


Oregano and the mice: he was there 21:43, and the mice showed up at 22:35. 

There hasn't been much action on the front deck. The cats were let out early. Nutmeg and Cinnamon didn't last too long outside. Again, I just popped it on the deck.


 Then, Feb. 24th, feral (?) Oregano showed up. I'm having trouble remembering to redo the time and date stamps. This is Oregano out back. He was out front, too.



We had our largest group of deer Friday. There were 17!


For more critters: visit Eileen at Saturday's Critters # 428!
Saturday's Critters # 428

Friday 25 February 2022

Oh, February, give me strength!

 Here we be. Friday again. Tomorrow is Christmas in February! The kids are coming, finally, now that COVID numbers are down. We will celebrate my 65th, as well as Josephine's 14th birthday from December, too. 

The news is still horrid. Twas ever thus. Canada has a lot of Ukranians, and people of Ukranian descent, many with loved ones there. Our Prime Minister was joined by Deputy Minister Chrystia Freeland, Defence Minister Anita Ananda, and Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly to announce a second tranche of sanctions. During the press conference Trudeau and our three female ministers said that we were with the Ukranian people. Minister Freeland, with a B.A. in Russian history (Harvard), also has her Master's in slavonic studies from Oxford. She speaks 5 languages, including Ukranian. She said some comforting words in that language to the people. 

One person on Twitter wrote:

"Putin just got told off by three Canadian women and a leader better looking than him."

Here is advice from author and trauma survivor, Julie Lalonde, a woman who was stalked for 10 years. 

That said, things are bad in Texas, where their governor is having an all-out war on gay and trans people (Tweet). Abbott is all about charging parents of trans kids with child abuse. He wants teachers, doctors, and caregivers to snitch on them. This is 2022, right? 


Things have been active here. Lots of birds. They know a storm is coming, I think! Today, more snow. 

🎾 JB has been watching tennis. Happy man. 

I've been watching some other things. For Black History Month, I decided to PVR the Women of the Movement (2022) series (6 episodes) that has been on W channel. It is an atrocious story, but one white people must watch to understand a piece of black history. It tells the story of Emmett Till, a young black kid murdered in the south by racists in 1955. His mother was empowered to make change in those horrid times of Jack Crow. She helped spur the Civil Rights Movement. We don't know how much freedom we have, we white people.

💘I've been balancing that emotional story with the February RomComs. This one, Mix up in the Mediterranean (2021), is a light plot, a competition by chefs, filmed in Malta. The scenery is grand! Nice to see beaches from this frozen north.

🧊Going to fetch the mail, the ice accretion sparkles in the sun. The trees are happier in the sunshine, although you can hear them creaking and clacking as the wind blows. 

It is crusty snow cover, but the land is covered which is important for the flora and fauna in these temperatures and freeze-thaw cycles. The mailbox had a goodly amount of ice on it. I couldn't bash off the ice at the back. It'll melt. Someday.

The sidewalk is icy, since the warmth of the February sun melted the snow and ice rain. I put some salt down for safety.

I had a plan with the bird bath. I ordered a replacement heater, but they were out of stock. I recalled that John gave me a heated bird bath he wasn't using. (Thank you, John, I couldn't find the right place for it till now.) Anyway, we'll give this a try for now. It's -13 C. this morning, and despite the sun I don't want to fool around too long with the water. 

📱Has anyone been totally bothered by ridiculous phone calls? I had three Wednesday, and another Thursday. Most of them don't engage, and hang up. The one told me there were bad charges on my credit card, press 1 to get them cancelled, 2 you accept these charges. Both numbers are blocked.

I hope you have a descent day. I have some house cleaning to do, although I did bathroom and kitchen floors, there is more to be done with actual family coming! 

Thursday 24 February 2022

Bird bath, ice rain, and snow

 What a miserable morning! Rain, freezing rain, frozen rain, and Wednesday morning it snowed on top of all that. Coffee was called for. With parliament cleared, we are breathing easier in Ottawa. PM Trudeau has rescinded the Emergency Act, and we will hope the 4 breakout camps, on private farmland 100 km outside Ottawa, will slowly disperse. It's - 17 C. in Ottawa, I hope they go home soon. Numbers are dwindling.

COID–19 seems to be slowing down. There is that. However, Joseph Brian was right, Putin waited until after the Olympics were over to attack Ukraine. Russia and China are hoping for world domination. The Kyiv airport is abandoned. No air traffic. I feel so badly. 

JB went downstairs for a workout, and put on the TV for the cats. (He opened the curtains!) I put the globe feeder here. It attracts black squirrel, red squirrel, as well as the birds. The squirrels are their favourites, I believe.

It was pretty dreary! Droopy trees were sad to see. I turned my light out at 10:15 Tuesday night. Awake at 5:30 a.m.

Then, it began to snow.

The birds were busy, awaiting their turn at the feeders and the bird bath. Can you spot them?!

The feeders are pretty, in a weird sort of way. We still have them today, Thursday, as we are in a deep freeze. 

Then, the deer arrived. They were covered in snow!

The cardinal is a bright spot in the day. He glared at the chickadee!

We had a reprise of  🐻SNUGGLE Bears!

There was a bit of a panic attack. The water was freezing over in the bird bath. This isn't good. Bringing in the heater, I popped it into vinegar water and cleaned it like mad. Placing it back into the bath, it did not do the job. I watched it for a half hour and it was obviously not working. I had to drain it.

I ordered a new one for pickup. We'll go for a drive to Almonte once the order is ready.

Under the feeder, the birds were happy for food. At this point, unable to muster the energy to walk on the frozen snow, I placed the trailcam on the ground. You can hear the rain dripping from above.