Saturday, May 31, 2014

May's Feathered Friends and Forgotten Flowers

 May is already gone.  What a month.  So many things bloomed, hatched, grew, arrived.  Our little Crab apple Tree was fabulous this year, and so fragrant.  The perfume pervaded the whole yard!

 Back in our enormous Crab Apple bush (at least that is what we think it is) a little Robin's nest was tucked amongst the branches.  We actually had multiple robins nest in the various trees around the house, but this one was the only nest that didn't require a precarious position on a ladder to photograph. :)

The bush too, was overloaded with blossoms.   

Mamma Robin was rather protective of her fledglings, and kept hopping around the bush scolding me, and looking beautiful among the blossoms.  

The first batch of dandelions bloomed and have gone to seed.....  they were actually quite beautiful, white and fluffy.  

The front flower bed is overtaken with Columbines right now, their little bell shaped heads nodding downwards and swaying in the breeze. 

And the Poppies!!!  They might be short lived, but they are so vivid and full of life.  I love their feathery, paper like petals, and the way the stems grow in crazy shapes till they bloom. 

The Lily of the Valley is done now, but in its peak it was such a treat to walk along the front of the house, they smelled so lovely! 

Bird voices are everywhere.  Singing, quarreling, warning, fighting, or just warbling away in pure delight!

The gold finches are officially gold....

And the Humming Birds are back.  They are such personable little birds.  They actually let us know when their feeder is low.  Last year we had a nest in the front maple tree. Maybe they will stick around again! 

 The warblers have come through, and tease us from the tippy top of the trees,

 and the flashy Oriole made an appearance, multiple ones showing up at our orange many times each day.  They have now laid off coming (it might have something to do with the fact that we forgot to refresh their oranges) and most likely are out seriously setting up house keeping.

So there is a little re-cap on some of the beauty that has been around us during May.  Looking forward to what June will bring!!


Sweeter than Honey

The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul;
The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple;
The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes;
 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.
More to be desired are they than gold, Yea than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb,
Moreover by them Your servant is warned, 
And in keeping them there is great reward.

~Psalm 19:7-11

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Sunday Strolls

The past few Sunday afternoons, Faith, Josiah and I, have been taking advantage of the lovely weather and with Sadie Rose along, have headed off to enjoy God's beautiful creation.
Spring flowers are at their peak right now, new ones popping up each week!

The ferns are uncurling, the trees budding out; such an exciting time of year.

"Sun warmed pine needles - - - (deep breath) - - - One of the best smells in the world!!" ~FaithAnn

Jack in the pulpits were probably my favorite wild flowers as a child; some thing about the idea of a little man up in his green striped pulpit grabbed my active imagination. 

So many hidden beauties, waiting to be discovered.

Sadie, our faithful companion on all our adventures, usually takes off far ahead and round about, but she always comes and checks on her people to make sure they are alright. :)

Seas of May apples wave in the breeze.  They were not quite blooming on this walk (they are just starting now) but their big signature umbrella leaves are beautiful in and of themselves.

The birds were also abundant in the woods. We heard more than we saw (sneaky little birdies) but this adorable Blue-Winged-Warbler was so intent on "licking" the leaves that he let me capture some rather good pictures of him.

These darling pale pink blossoms, are just so precious, and really what makes a spring wood, just right.  Spring Beauty, so aptly named.

We were escorted across a bridge by mounded sentinels of Marsh Marigolds.  

(please excuse the tilted head... it's what happens when you tell one person to "un-tilt" and the other one does it just to be funny! *sigh* :)


 Marsh Marigolds make lovely bouquets, shiny and yellow.
Sadie was persuaded to smile for a picture. (Josiah has an obligatory stick smile, no picture can be just right) 

Another week we went to Beaver Lake Trails.  The Trillium was EVERYWHERE!  and in some spots, they were so huge.  Must have loved the soil there.  So pure and simple. 

Bran' new, just born, too adorable, wrinkly little leaves.  So sweet! 

We found a bed of Wild Ginger along one of the pond paths; haven't seen these since Riverview! (we named our current van after the color of these little flowers).

Right after the patch of Ginger there was a stand of small bushy trees along the pond, and they were full of little birds.  Mainly warblers that preferred staying hidden in the underbrush (or way up in the tippy-tops) to getting their photos taken. 

We saw: a Magnolia Warbler, a Black-throated-blue Warbler, a Common Yellow Warbler, a Chestnut Sided Warbler, as well as a few elusive ones that were unidentified.  Of course those were just the warblers, the trees were alive with all sorts of bird songs that day!

We have so enjoyed our Sunday strolls, and hope to keep them up even through the busy summer.  God's world is so achingly beautiful, it deserves to be noticed and appreciated!!


Saturday, May 17, 2014

More than the Sparrow

"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.  Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will.  But the very hairs of your head are all numbered."

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Broody Birds

Things are always better the way God made and intended them.  This could not be more true than regarding chickens.  As fun as it is to hatch chicks out in the incubator and raise them by hand, they are much healthier, happier, and less work if the mothers raise them!
Charity's Bantam hen, Nina, decided she wanted to go broody and since we really don't need any more Bantys, Charity purchased some polish and silkie hatching eggs.

They are absolutely adorable!

Little "Zorro"!

Out in the big coop Winona has her hands full with 16 little active fuzzballs.  We hatched them out ourselves in the incubator but gave them to this willing broody, who had been sitting on a few eggs.

One of her adorable chickies.

In the Maran coop there is a bunch of little gray and black fluffies running around after Margeruite our beautiful blue French Maran hen.

But we aren't done yet. We have two more hens sitting on eggs right this moment!

So if anyone would like to come see some little chickies, visiting hours are open! :)


Monday, May 12, 2014

May Beauties

I love it when the world comes alive in spring.

Everything blooms in a furious display of color, 

 and a mist of green spreads across the trees and bushes.

 If you look around enough there are hidden bits of May beauties everywhere.


Thursday, May 08, 2014

The Sounds of Music

 Last week, in the midst of everything else, we were able to spend one relaxing evening listening to some calming strains of music.
 Earlier this year, Faith joined the Lapeer County Concert Choir, and Friday saw us attending their performance, "All Creation Sings".

It was a lovely time, as the choir masterfully sang through pieces like the magnificent Handel's "Awake the Trumpet's Lofty Sounds" and Haydn's melodious "The Heavens are Telling".

Their selections also included some entertaining and amusing moments, for instance the trio of short songs which made up the "Animal Crackers" and the poem Jabberwocky creatively put to music.

Some of my favorite songs were the more moving and thoughtful airs. "Sure on this Shining Night" was so beautiful, and the pieces from the Broadway Secret Garden, were absolutely marvelous.  They also sang "Shenandoah" and "Down to the River to Pray" plus a few others, including a selection of solos, one of which Faith sang!

It was so nice to be able to sit down and listen to some first class music for an evening. I would definitely recommend anyone attending the Lapeer County Concert Choirs events in the future.