Wednesday, July 27, 2016


Monday was a very sad day at my house. 

Now there is a huge hole in our family, in our house, in our hearts.

We had to say good bye to Axel. Sunday he started downhill and by Monday morning.... he was in pretty sad shape. Axel already had a myriad of health issues, that we were keeping at bay with lots of work and some rather uncomfortable means, he wore an E-collar most of the time, but we really weren't ready to say goodbye so fast. We saw it coming... sort of like a train, but we thought we would be able to ease into goodbye.

Axel about 5 in Chicago
He was almost 13, which is not terribly old for a dog, but those 13 years felt like much longer. He was game for anything any time. He was almost my shadow. By that I mean he knew where I was all the time... but didn't have to be in my face or underfoot. If I left the house he waited for me to come home, and according the husband, he would howl and be very impatient for me to come in, when he heard the garage door go up. It didn't matter if I was gone for 10 minutes or 10 days.

He was my dog. 

Axel about 2 years old in Nebraska

These are my 2 favorite pictures of him. His presence or to be more precise the lack of his presence is palpable. I notice it. He was a big dog with a big personality. I know the pain of missing him will lessen, some day.

Of course we still have Linzi, and she seems relatively unaffected, although, I think she is just wondering when he will come home. I would like him to come home too.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Taking a Look Around

On the way to help dismantle the quilt section of the local fair... I left a little early to see if I could find a photo... I was hoping to catch a little something of the fair... rides, animals, people... nope not a thing that was interesting. So I went looking for something interesting in the country.

I found a lily pond... there was a fence between us... so I had to make do with what I could get from the road side of the fence.

I would have loved to get closer.... to some of the flowers... and it would have been much better if the sun had been shaded by a cloud... 

I just loved the leaves too. I can see this in a quilt..... might be something in my future. Just as soon as I finish the other 4 pieces for another project!!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Bird Lady

I feed the birds.... I like to watch and listen to them... when I have a few minutes or while at the sink. This house (as I may have mentioned) came with one of the those almost permanent swing sets. We tried to give it away, but folks would come and look, say yep they wanted it, would be back in a few days to dismantle and we'd never see them again. So we had a choice.... take it out with a chainsaw or turn it into an asset. 

We chose asset. We planted some grapes on one end and are starting to train them to grow on the frame. We added some bird feeders. Now we have several.... and several regular visitors, at least 4 varieties of woodpeckers,  titmouse, chickadees, grackles, starlings,  brown headed cow birds, mocking birds and several finches (goldfinch and house finches) and of course sparrows.

This is a mocking bird, we have 2 pair that live close and visit nearly every day.

This is one of the woodpeckers. It is a Hairy Woodpecker... and I always confuse it with the Downy.... and we  have both and they are all nick named Woody. Several are not afraid of us and we come and go in the yard.... with them close. They visit both the seeds and suet, although if given a choice... they like the suet best.
And who is the bird lady as referenced in the title. Me. This little house finch was not in the least afraid and was hanging out for hours .... on the feeders, just sitting for 2 days. At one point he flew in onto the grapes....right next to me and I reached out an picked him up. DH snapped this of him after he flew to my shoulder. He hasn't been back in a few days. We think he may have flown into a window and was just out of it for a couple of days. Hopefully he is back to being right and still alive, they all look alike.... when flitting about.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Big Yellow Flowers

On my visit to Florida in June.... (yes I have let this go.... for a month), I saw some big yellow flowers that looked much like sunflowers.

But they did not grow on regular plants, nope these were growing on a tree. These flowers were way over my head and this was the best photo... I could get of the whole tree. It was a cloudy overcast (rainy) day and the sun was already getting low in the sky.

If I lived this far south I would have several of these in my yard....

edit-I did a little research on this plant and it may become invasive and spread in the yard. It is called the Mexican or Bolivian or Honduran Sunflower tree.