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Monday, April 29, 2013

Spring's Here, Despite the Snows

And my kids have to be out in it. All of it.
Alas, as much as I love spring it's the time of year for my car to smell of wet dog.
I say this like I don't love any time of year. There are weather patterns in certain places of the world I grow weary of but over all I love any beautiful day whether the beauty comes from sun, rain, or snow.
The other morning (I'm about to head out with them this morning) I remembered to take my camera and got a few shots of them at the park.
It was a beautiful warm day with a sun strong enough that the extra time I got stuck there due to an accident at the entry that I sun burnt my balding head. At least I got some pictures to make it worth it.
It's amazing to me in the spring days like these that there was snow on the ground just a week ago.
And this week the trees are starting to push out leaf buds that will probably burst by next week at this time. Several of our bushes around the house that are protected by the eves will have leaves in a couple days. I noticed when I got home from work last night that some of the buds were already open.
I was walking by some bushes that I have walked by time and time again I have never noticed it's little blossoms. Last year there were some of these on the back trail that had berries for the first time that any of us could remember so I think perhaps only once every several years or when conditions are just right they bloom and berry. This year is this ones turn.
A gentleman that runs down at the park with his little dogs called them buffalo berries but  have no idea what they truly are. They are very tart and of the bushes that had them last year they came in yellow and red.
And as usual, on the river yesterday was a day of birds. These little chickadees were adamant about not giving me good picture opportunities.
And the surprise tern was just as bad. I have never seen a turn on the river before but others have said they have.
I was glad to see a mourning dove as we took one of the back trails. These gentle and quietly calling birds are so pretty in their tones of blushed grays.
We have Eurasian Doves that are an invasive species that was feared to be pushing these beautiful quieter birds out but as far as I can tell, we still have many of these ones around as well. If you ask me the Eurasians ones are to stupid to compete too much. I've walked almost right up to them, and both our dogs and the cat have caught many who just sit there and watch them come. It's time for Darwin to catch up. As you can see from above this one did not wait for my dogs to get that close although I've broken the dogs from catching birds, but squirrels are still a temptation to hunt.
These birds normally travel in groups of two or in mid summer in family groups of a few so this one on it's own looking for nest materials and food gave me hope it had a mate somewhere sitting on a clutch of eggs.
The dogs and I also ran across the first butterfly of the year.
Sorry, it was in a thicket and they are truly terrible pictures. Like the Chickadees it seemed determined not to give me a good photograph.
This is one of those things that irritates me about the dog park. We have a certain group of people that insist on feeding the squirrels. Now, in your own yard and even on less used trails I wouldn't get horribly irritated by this but I think it's cruel to bait the squirrels, especially this time of year with the young dumb ones to the ground with a bunch of pointed eared, sharp nosed fanged squirrel hunters on the loose. Much less, take a good look at the squirrels at the dog park. The adults are so overweight it's somewhat disgusting because of this crap that is left for them. It's often bread, or peanuts, and a whole assortment of things like this corn that these squirrels don't eat in the wild. The summer die off is just around the corner. Every summer you find many of these fat squirrels just dead under the trees. Not from being preyed upon, just dead. I think it's heat stress and heart failure form being fat and it just gets worse with nicer weather and all the crooked old people that can get back to the river for the summer months.
After work last night I decided to play with the light box a bit more.
These are just some fiber samples I spun up. The middle stuff that is seen close here is a 50% merino, 25% bamboo, and 25% silk that has beautiful shine and spins smooth as can be. I must order some.
And here is the last finished yarn I worked on all knit up. You may recall I was working on the Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief which is a triangular scarf. Not big enough to call a shawl.
It was a quick knit that I had blocking yesterday.
And today is all done and ready for gifting. You certainly can see the difference between the blocking area and the light box pictures, can't you?
And I'm back to working on some already started items. I have three things I really need to get off the needles before I can't stand to look at them anymore.
Well, I better get dressed and the kids out before I need to clean up for work. Hope you all have a great day. I'll leave the camera at home so I don't bore you all with pictures again tomorrow.

And bonus points to anyone who can tell me what this plant is we found while walking. It's obviously from last year.


  1. Great sharing the walk with you, Q. And the lovely yarns and knitted items. As for the bonus points...I'm thinking that those are milkweed pods that have popped open. - Joe

    1. Are milkweed that big? Those pods are larger than the palm of my hand. Sorry there's nothing to offer perspective.

  2. Hi! I stumbled on your website from Ravelry. Beautiful photos! That plant is milkweed, beloved of monarch butterflies, alright. It grows everywhere here in the Northeast. The pods are usually between four and six inches long, but can vary quite a bit due to weather conditions, etc.