Saturday, December 29, 2007

Saturday Morning at Home

Ooh, almost an entire Saturday morning to myself. You know my spousal unit's a pretty darn good guy, but sometimes a woman just needs some "me time" and that's exactly what I have this morning while he's at work. He just called me to say it's slow at work and he'll be home at 11:00, so I've got to get this post done before he gets home and we have to start running around on errands.

So, I got up at the regular time (4 AM) when my dear spousal unit got up for work and woke me up to come and see the deer out at the bird feeder. The deer have just this week started coming back into our yard. This is unusual behavior for them this time of the year as deer usually "herd up" into larger groups and head for deeper cover/shelter in larger woods. I'm happy to have them visiting again and have already started stocking up on corn.

I figured as long as I was up and it was too dark to see any birds yet, it would be a good time to watch a movie (Hairspray) and work on a knitting project. I enlisted Daisy to be the model for this completed neck warmer (another free pattern from the internet). I think it turned out really nice and that's another ball of yarn knitted up from my stash. (In case you're wondering, this neck warmer is for a human--not a dog, although I think this is a good color on Daisy!)

Once it got light, it was time to fill the bird feeders and see what else was going on out in the yard.

After years of having no squirrels, I finally have about 6 in the yard. They generally behave pretty good until the corn in the ground feeding trays runs out. Then they start exploring some of the other bird feeders--even the ones on the deck.

Hey, are those peanuts?

Silly human--does she think I can't figure this out?
I put the wire cover over the feeder to deter the starlings from the peanuts--I guess I'd better get the longer cover out now!

I guess squirrels like these apples I put out for bunnies and deer too.

Here's where I hope the squirrels will stay as long as there's enough corn for them.

It looks like the dogs will be getting some exercise this weekend chasing squirrels. They can't eat much birdseed as long as they're up here away from the dogs!

The crows paid an early morning visit also. If I don't have any food scraps to put out in their tray, they're perfectly happy to check out what's available in the backyard feeders.

I was lucky to catch a couple of tree sparrows in a moment of stillness.

Here's my first attempt at photographically capturing the red-breasted nuthatch--I definitely need to work on skills for getting a decent picture of this little guy.

Juncos abound in my yard.
Here are the deer tracks coming (left side) and going (right side) from my ground feeding tray. When we were watching them early this morning, I noticed that one of them was favoring her left hind leg. You can see from the tracks in the snow how that leg drags as she walks. Deer are pretty amazing animals and can adapt to life with an injury.

A downy woodpecker checks for insects on the dying birch tree in my front yard.

I hope you're enjoying your Saturday morning and get a few hours to do exactly what you want too!


mon@rch said...

Those Red-breasted Nuthatch are tricky ones to photograph! Sounds like a wonderful way to spend your Saturday and always seeing the bird in your backyard is always fun!

Lynne said...

I'm glad you're having a good morning! I met some work gals for breakfast earlier and soon I'm headed out to fill my feeders. I got a spiffy new camera from Art for Christmas so I hope to spend lots of time today figuring out the bells and whistles! I think Art and I are going to drive up to Hasty Brook tomorrow for the day. There have been several sharp-tailed grouse spotted in that area. We might even check out the Hedboom Road area for the black-backed and three-toed woodpeckers.

Meggie said...

Hey Ruthie: Onyx and I were enjoying a lazy Saturday morning also. I think Daisy needs a neck warmer of her very own. She does make a lovely model. We don't have much snow yet is western PA, but the deer come to eat from my birdfeeders nonetheless...even though they have their own supply of corn. I finally had to get up off the couch and head to the pharmacy to get medication for a hyperthyroid cat. I'm hoping for a peaceful Sunday,'s wishing you the same.

Anonymous said...

Boy there was a lot of activity in our yard this morning. Our squirrels were also very busy cleaning up under the feeders. There were lots of birds eating today, blue jays, cardinals, titmice, chickadees, rose breasted and white breasted nuthatches, downy and hairy woodpeckers, red bellied woodpecker, goldfinches,juncos starlings and of course sparrows.
I'm still saving my money to buy a digital camera then you can teach me how to put my stuff on the computer. With all of our feeders both in front and back of the house I'll have lots of pictures. Glad you had a nice Sat morning, I was surprised you didn't have to work too.

Trixie said...


I feel like I am finally de-compressing with a Saturday with no ski races. YIPPY!

Daisy's neck warmer is gorgeous. It is indeed a lovely color for her. What yarn is that?

Enjoy your day.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Mon@rch,
I was watching the juncos and heard the RB Nuthatch before I saw it. I'm still keeping watch for common Redpolls, but nothing yet...

Hi Lynne,
Congrats on the new camera--looking forward to some more good pictures from you. Happy trails tomorrow--maybe you'll see a Great Grey Owl too!

Hi Meggie,
While I was watching my movie, the pups were snoozing on the couch enjoying the warmth of the fireplace. We all love days like this! Do you see your deer in the daytime too?

Hi Mom,
The people I work with are all based in Thailand and/or Europe. They have enough sense to actually celebrate the holidays, so everything had to be to them by 12/28--also allowing me to enjoy the weekend off.
I still need to help you get a Google ID too--hopefully before you get your new camera.

Hi Trixie,
I figured you must have been busy lately with Christmas and other activities....
I don't think this ball of yarn had a wrapper on it anymore, but if my memory serves me correctly, it was called "Fluffy" by Unger (I'm not sure if that yarn company is even in business anymore!)

Anonymous said...

Don't know whether you got my phone message today but I had a brown creeper on my suet log this afternoon. I had a lazy day also after filling feeders and clearing snow off the trays. Lots of chickadees were seen in the yard today along with the usual woodpeckers, cardinals, RB and WB nuthatches, juncos, blue jays (lots), goldfinches, house finches and doves. It was a great day for birdwatching out the window :)
Your sissy.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Loved all of your pictures from your restful day. Today will be my restful day. I am looking forward to it too.

The neck warmer is pretty. Daisy is a good model.

Taking pictures of Redbreasted nuthatches is very difficult. I thnk they are even faster than Chickadees.

Jayne said...

We had such a good day. I slept until 0730 and after getting all my feeders filled, got all the Christmas stuff down. I even managed to talk myself into walking an hour on the treadmill before showering and leaving to take Sam to Outback Steakhouse to eat. We are always in awe of his ability to scarf down almost an entire Bloomin' Onion!

Love your neck warmer and all your feeder friends!

Richard said...

All those pictures in only a couple of hours. You'll have to get more storage on your camera if you get a whole day to yourself.

I spent about a hour watching a little Pine Squirrel that I swear was on speed. Some day I'll have to make a short movie so you can see how fast these little guys are.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Sissy,
I have never had a Brown Creeper in my yard--you're so lucky. It's been an awesome weekend for backyard birdwatching, hasn't it?

Hi Lisa,
Hope you're enjoying your restful day!
I put that neckwarmer on last night in the house because I was chilly--it felt really good!

Oh Jayne, you are good for walking on the treadmill--I hope you have it in a spot where you can watch birds outside...that makes it a little more enjoyable.
I love Bloomin' Onions! Way to go Sam!

Hi Richard,
I delete the pics from the flash card once I get them downloaded on my computer, so what I really need is to transfer the files from my computer to a CD or memory stick, but it's fun to look back at them--especially the summer ones.
I look forward to seeing the moving of your little Pine Squirrel--I don't have one in my yard this winter.

Mary said...

I love being alone in the house. It's a treat for me that I don't get often.

Great post, Ruthie.

Jennifer said...

Man oh man can I relate to the notion of needing time to yourself. Glad you enjoyed yours - and then shared it with us!