Monday, February 11, 2019

Mostly Bob

 Since Jon's birthday, this town has gotten a LOT of snow. If it keeps up, there might be as much as there was in the late 80's. However, as I type, it is turning back to pellets and will probably become freezing rain. Piffle.
Sunday, Feb 10, the bird feeders were mostly empty of seed, one had a mix of seed and snow. I did empty it out on Monday, though. In spite of the snow in the seed, juncos were eager to snack.

Just prior to Sunday we had what Jon called soft hail. This, thankfully, turned to real snow. A great deal of real snow and Jon decided it needed removed using Bob. 
 So, he drove it down from Grandma's. Kids and their toys!!!!!!

After he finished our area, he came in to warm up and then zipped over to where he works to clear out their drive. 

 I'm not entirely sure how effective Jon's Bobcat work was. The amount of snow we got overnight probably added 4 more inches of lovely fluffy down. He's going to go back after work on Monday. I did notice that with the wind and extra white stuff, the projector in the yard is covered again. I reckon the giant snowflakes will remain in the sky and not on the house, unless I go out with a broom again! It is about in the middle of the hollow next to the mostly cleared sidewalk. (thank you to our neighbor, Gary!!)

I'm so glad for winter and snow. I just wish it would stay fluffy and not turn into that icky melty rainy stuff that makes people slide. Although, I could do with the sort that can be made into a snowman. I've not made one this year. 

Snow Birds

 The title isn't actually accurate. A snowbird is a person who travels from the north to the south and back with the seasons. However, we did drive in snow and we did see many birds. So, there you are! After Jon's birthday snow, I wanted to go out driving. I prefer to do this with someone as I can get lost on a straight line and there are a LOT of straight line roads in this area. Jon decided one day last week would be perfect, it was sunny and bright and off we went. We ended up on a different road due to others who were out, too. Jon and I prefer anonymity!
The 'city' of Athena from across the fields. We did see a hawk in winter colors just prior to this, but it flew way too fast. Gorgeous creature! 
 Red Wing Blackbirds!!

 Jon took almost all of these pictures. I took the one below. A single shot where I hoped I'd get what I thought I saw. It worked!!! It looks like calligraphy at the base of the 'flower'.

 I asked Jon to take this one. His side of the rig had a better view. Sunset in the trees. He tried to capture the quail in the branches, but they were too camouflaged.

 We drove out a bit further, making a loop. Most of the fields were white, others had taller yellow stubble poking through.

 I wanted a photo of these baby mountains. The Blue Mountains. You can see why they are called blue!!!
It was a fun excursion. I'm glad Jon took me out, I hope we go again. Maybe we can find some other birds. With all the snow we've been getting, they are much braver than they normally are. As long as we avoid most of the starlings. I like those birds, but they are rather annoying in number!

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

A tale of two birthdays

I wanted a photo of the two of us, but the last picture like that is from Jon's visit to Alaska in September of 2017. So, I found this and figured it was just as good!!!! 
My birthday was Friday, Feb 1. Steve bought me my favorite flowers and they are looking absolutely GREAT in the kitchen window. Both he and Jon also got me Amazon gift cards, too. The cute noisy card is also from Steve, it has a high enough pitch in the singing meows that Maxwell can hear it! 

We went out for Jon's birthday on Saturday and then on his real birthday we got snow!!!! Moses and Maxwell were absolutely not impressed. I love their footprints, though! 

I had no real plan for Jon's birthday cake. I did know I wanted to make cupcakes and take them to  his work. Other than that, I wasn't sure. So, the snow inspired me to use these molds mum bought me ages past. They didn't work very well with the poppy seed chocolate chip mix I made up. 

 The regular cupcakes DID turn out ok. They, too, have the butter mix with added in bits.
I had envisioned a chocolate cake with white frosting and a chocolate sort of ganache over the top and the snowflake cupcakes on top of that. I even decided I'd pipe the lines on the snowflake cupcakes. It wasn't working. After a lot of powdered sugar and some tub frosting, I realised I had a bit of a mess on my hands and needed a new plan. 
 I finally decided to just marble the thing. It looked ok, tasted good, but it wasn't as spectacular as some of the other cakes I've made.Jon did say it looked like a zebra cake and he had some in his room I could have used.
I, thankfully, used letter candles the guys bought last year for a cookie cake they had bought and taken photos of for my birthday. (I didn't make a cake for me. I made a roast with bread, burned my finger on the gravy, and had a simple dessert! Chocolate pudding with whipped topping) I also didn't have 25, even adding the pink candles I had in the boxes still. So, I just stayed with letters. I must admit, I was a bit confused when I looked at this H. I thought it was backwards. Jon reminded me it is one of those ambidextrous letters! 
 Jon had asked for CS Lewis for his birthday, so that is what he was given. There were 9 books total. it should last him a while. He just finished a selection by Jack London, so Lewis is a good way to shake off those dark, cold stories.. We also had a few visitors, in spite of the almost 4 inches of fluffy powder. Larry and Suzanne, Dorothy, Beverly, Delbert, Kayla, Justin, and Mike L. came to celebrate!!
 The guys also started up the Jukebox, encouraging Larry and Suzanne to spin in their socks for a bar or two! I hadn't planned a 'party', but we had cake and ice cream and presents and music and dancing and so, I reckon it was!

This  month is full of so many good things, the difficult ones are there to add savor to the joy. May you find blessings all around!