Sunday, January 5, 2014

milkweed, mourning doves, and our winter waterfalls

post #171, 
       and my first post of 2014!  Since I post once a week, that makes Sideway Views 3 1/4 years old!  I may be amazed by how long I have been doing this blog, by current standards, but I realize that all my life I stay amazed by how each new season feels unique and new.  I am one who can liken herself to a goose -- I wake up every morning in a brand new world!

      This winter's wonders are no exception.  Of course, this year, wonder can have two meanings -- finding wonder-filled aspects of the season OR wondering how all this seriously dramatic weather can be happening.  So, to celebrate this new year, here are some photos from this past week.

      First, the milkweed report, current views of the two milkweed plants I have been following since July, one on our driveway and the other on the side of our road to town:


      Next are some of the photos I took of a mourning dove who seemed to be seeking snow storm shelter in the bushes below our living room window, puffing up the body, staying still, opening and shutting its eyes.  A second dove then joined in these activities.  The photos are made through two panes of glass, which dulls things a bit, and I apologize.  In any case these birds are not known for being colorful, though they are so less flighty than most other birds, a definite compensation for the photographer.
       To start, look at the eyes in the next pair of photos:

    And now, in the following pair of photos, look at the pair of doves, first back to back and then side by side:

       The blinking and the visiting went on for quite a while, which helped, since there were other things going on in the house I had to take time to deal with as well!

      On New Year's Day, I went for a walk in our woods and was down near the waterfalls.  Here are two photos showing the lay of the land in that area.  I would have shown more of the water falling (in the second photo), but it is steep there and the leaves were slippery from recent snow, and, sorry again, at that point I was not ready to risk my life.  
       I'd like to give a shout out to Chris who works in the Middle East but who is from this ridge.  These woods photos are for you. 

     The coming bitter temperatures will cause this waterfall area to freeze up.  This can be spectacular to see.  I will hope to be able to take some photos of it all to post next week. 
     I hope for warmth and safety for everyone affected by the storms in the USA this week, and in other places in our world as well.

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