Saturday, January 31, 2015


This winter we've had our first sighting of the beautiful Steller's Jay up here at Angel Crest Manor (1900' elevation)! We actually have a whole squadron of them (I've counted 8 as they landed in the huge cedar trees in our neighbor's yard. Their intense hyacinth blue livery is so much darker than our everyday Scrub Jay. And yes, they do squawk every bit as loud as the regular jays.  

Thursday, January 29, 2015


 Every year at Angel Crest Manor our designated Downy Woodpecker reappears to peck out a new cavity in the old apple tree. Last year's hole was nice...

but this year's is huge...over 3" across and as deep. Maybe he's expecting company soon or planning on a big family. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015


 Okay, so it's the dead of winter in our valley. In desperation I trudge out in the garden looking for some "signs of life." Thanks to a normal amount of rain this season, there are some plants getting on with it. (I'd never make it in Zone 1-3, where the ground is frozen and covered with snow about now.) Periwinkle blue flowers are starting to open on the variegated creeping myrtle. What a cheerful sight!
 The Goldchild ivy is putting out lots of new tender yellow growth to help disguise my neighbor's ugly chain link fence. 
And potted up tulip bulbs are poking out...a hopeful sign for an early pink and green spring bloom! Maybe I CAN make it until the daphne and forsythia bloom next month!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Someone must have left the lights on too long and fooled the hens into thinking it was spring! Ordinarily I buy jumbo sized eggs...usually I can get them at Trader Joe's. They come from Washington State and are nicely fresh. In a dozen you'll usually get one double yolker but in the spring you get two or three. However this batch looks like goose eggs and so far all of 'em are double yolks. Good eating! Yeah, the yolks on me!

Sunday, January 11, 2015


 Jack has come a long way from his South Dakota roots...(circa mid 1940's)  
Shown here in the heyday of Saab rallye engine building (early 2000's)
 In the midst of a big "honeydo" (working on the foundation for my greenhouse in 2012)
                                        Doing client artwork in 2014
A big Happy 78th Birthday to mah honey!