Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.


33 Comments

Thank you

You are all so nice to be worried and I appreciate all the helpful suggestions about my lost pictures. I should have been more clear in telling you I do have all the pictures on the old laptop backed up on an external drive. I just never deleted the files on the laptop. I have a hard time deleting anything.

This is the way my birdfeeder looks when I’m shooting through the window, there are often reflections that bisect the feeder, but this was my first sighting of what I thought was a juvenile rose-breasted grosbeak. They love safflower seeds. Notice there are none on the feeder.

I also have most of the pictures over here on the new laptop too. So really, there was no reason not to delete a boatload of stuff off the old laptop to make room for the few pictures I wanted to find.

So I did.

I put some safflower seed out. And I waited. The cardinal was very pleased, it’s one of his favorites too.

I found most of what I remembered and downloaded those to the old laptop, then looked at them over there and emailed myself a few of them which I then downloaded to my new laptop.

I waited while other birds showed up looking for lunch.

Seems convaluted but it sort of worked. The hardest part was trying to find the photos I remembered from a couple weeks ago looking at little thumbnail images. But I got most of it.

I think.

Lots of other birds showed up.

I wonder why I have such a hard items deleting stuff when I know it’s being stored somewhere else and it’s just taking up valuable space.

And when I’m taking new pictures and sorting through them the image has to be really really bad for me to delete it. And if it’s family or Katie, well, even really really bad images get to stay.

Finally! See him down on the baffle, right at the level of the deck railing in this shot. See the beginning of the rose patch on his breast? He’s not at all sure about all the bird activity up above. In fact that might be another grosbeak landing!

Why is that?

I think one of the reasons I love taking pictures is that it preserves that moment in time, a moment that is already gone by the time the shutter shuts. And each moment seems so precious that even if the image is bad it’s still some sort of preservation.

Finally they both showed up. (This is the other one, and possibly an adult femail.)

I don’t think most people feel this way and I wonder where it comes from.

Anyway, today’s images are brought to you from deep in the memory card and a couple weeks ago when I had a juvinile rose brested grossbeak at the feeder. Maybe I had two, there’s one image with one on each end of the feeder.

They were adorable to watch.

They were only here for two days and I’m glad I got to watch them and capture their cuteness before they went on their way. I hope they come back next spring!

Immature male cardinal? Or just an older molting guy?


37 Comments

I wish things were easy

Hmmmm…that title makes it seem like this is going to be a deep, heavy conversation about something important.

It’s not.

It’s just that with my new laptop I have a steep learning curve and here’s my latest problem.

A couple weeks ago I took some pictures of my birds (not a surprise) and in particular a juvinile rose breasted grossbeak that was adorable. (I think anyway). And when I went to download those pictures to a specific folder on my laptop I found that some of the numbered images had the same number as older things in that file (maybe a new card, I don’t know) and I panicked and somehow hit something and the new images I just took went somewhere and I have no idea where.

This laptop downloads pretty automatically, I insert the card and it pulls the most recent and not already downloaded images up, I can then cut and paste those into a file of my choice. But once they’ve been downloaded the laptop won’t access them again. It only ever shows me the stuff that’s new.

My old laptop would show me everything on the card regardless of whether it had already been uploaded. Sometimes that was a pain. But sometimes it was handy. Like now.

So I thought about just using the old laptop, finding the image I wanted, uploading that to the old computer and then emailing it to myself for download onto the new computer.

Brilliant, right?

Except the reason I have a new computer is that the hard drive is filled on the old one. And it won’t let me download anything.

So…unless someone has a good idea, and I’m sure there is one out there, I think I have to delete a bunch of stuff on the old computer and then download the picture I want to it.

What do you think? Of course the longer I stall and the more pictures I take, the harder it will be for me to find the one I would like to salvage. So I better get a move on.

If you read all the way to the bottom of this ramble, I’ve posted a picture of a pretty barn as a reward.


18 Comments

Smiles guaranteed

We planted a little ‘wild flower’ garden this spring, and it’s in full bloom now. Lots of pretty blossoms, mostly annuals, reaching for the sky.

Our little bit of wildflowers.


This week three sunflowers began to bloom.

Promises of sun arriving soon.

Today one of them opened.

You are my sunshine…

I smile everytime I walk past this patch of flowers, but now with the sunflower I positively grin.

The details are amazing.

Hope you are smiling too!

Pink is pretty too.


14 Comments

Getting my furs cut

Katie here.

So like many of you I’ve had a hard time getting my beauty days scheduled. For months and months, maybe even years in dog math, mama couldn’t get an appointment for me to have my furs and nails done.

Then a couple of months ago she found a lady that lives not so far from us who said she’d clean me up at her house. Mama was very nervous handing me over to someone she didn’t know, but it turned out just fine.

Here’s me just home from my latest spa day.

The lady asked mama if she wanted to be able to tell I had a hair cut and mama said no, because she likes me with long flowing fur, she just wanted my nails done and my feet cleaned up and a little trim on my behind.

I came out beautiful, the lady got all my undercoat out, something that no one has ever done before, and my fur was still long and flowing. Mama decided she’d take me back there regularly.

You can see how my front furs got trimmed.

I’ve been there twice now, and this last time I came home with all my furs cut much shorter. Mama thinks the lady forgot that mama likes my fur long.

This is me with my furs long.

So I ask you. What do you think? Mama could take me back to my old groomer who has done my furs my whole life, she does a better job of cleaning up my feet and she leaves my fur long. But she never got my undercoat cleaned up so good as it is now.

Or mama can talk to the new lady and make sure she lets my leg flags grow back out and my front furs too.

This is me with my fur blowing in the wind back when it was longer.

Do you like my furs better long or short? Mama doesn’t know what to do. Daddy thinks I look cute like this.

I’m not so sure.

Help mama decide…short fur or long?


8 Comments

A summer walk

I went out to one of my parks (not Katie’s, she doesn’t get to claim all of them) yesterday to go for a walk. It’s been too long since I’ve been there.

I think the last time I did four miles out there was late spring when the skunk cabbages were coming into their own and the air was fresh and little spring flowers were blooming along the edges of the forest.

Well, the air was still just fine, but the skunk cabbage is past it’s prime and now the flowers of late summer are in full bloom.

Four miles might have been a bit ambitious on a hot August morning. But I forget I’m not so young anymore, and only months ago I walked 4 miles regularly so it didn’t occur to me to be more conservative.

Heading out was marvelous, a breeze in my face, lots to look at. I didn’t really want to turn around at mile 2, but some part of my brain decided to be an adult and demanded I make the smart decision.

I was beginning to feel the need for a restroom break, and there was a bathroom at mile 3, only one more mile down the path. If I turned around I’d have two miles until I got to a toilet, but my brain calculated (it’s a proven fact that math is hard when you’re hot and sweaty and have to go to the bathroom) that if I went a mile further I’d have to walk six miles total, and six is a number much bigger then four.

So I turned around, and was doing just fine until that last 1.25 miles. Which is uphill and mostly in the sun. With no breeze. That mile was pretty miserable.

As I got to the steepest part of the walk, only a quarter mile long, but still, part of my brain began arguing with the other part. There was a lovely bench under a big old oak tree part of the way up.

I could sit on that bench for a spell. That’s why they put it there. For folks like me who could be categorized as elderly. Yep, could sit right there under that tree. Bet there’s a breeze there.

The other half of my brain argued back. Not going to sit on that d*#% bench. Sitting on the bench would delay arrival at the bathroom. And the car with it’s bottle of water.

But it’s a nice bench, there in the shade. No one else seems to want to sit there. It’s calling your name.

Not sitting on the d#*% bench.

Luckily my feet were not listening to the argument and just kept moving.

Oh but wait…there’s a big image of a painting from the Detroit Institute of Arts right there next to that bench. They’re advertising a collection being shown. There’s a short article next to it. You could go read all about it. In the shade. With the breeze. And you don’t have to sit on the bench.

A good solution, might even say a compromise, that pleased both parts of my brain and my feet didn’t mind either.

All the images in this post are from that walk, taken with my phone camera while moving along on a hot summer morning.


19 Comments

Random thoughts from the yard

Covid has made me random in many ways. Random meals put together from whatever is here rather then running to the store to pick up a missing item. Random camping trips to get away while remaining isolated. Random walks through the yard instead of parks to avoid running into other people.

The sugar water is getting a little low, lady!

That’s not all bad, you understand. Some things we’ve learned to do during this strange time would benefit us to continue once the world returns to normal. If that ever happens.

Things like eating at home together instead of catching a meal on the fly. Doing with what’s in the pantry and not wasting gas and engery rushing to the store every day. Talking to neighbors on walks through the neighborhood instead of waving at them from your car as you drive somewhere else.

Three stages of bloom.

Recognizing your home is not such a bad place to be, even while yearning for exploration and adventure.

I was weeding when I noticed a large monarch butterfly hovering around a hydranga tree filled with beautiful white blossoms. Such a pretty image I went inside and got the camera.

Pink zinnia impersonating purple coneflowers.

Of course he (or she) wasn’t anywhere to be found when I got back outside. But lots of other things were.

The images in this post were from that brief weeding interlude. I should be content in my yard, it’s a pretty amazing place.

In the wild part of the yard.

But the road has always, and continues to, call me.

I have a friend in the UP (Upper Peninsulia of Michigan for those of you not from around here) who has a group of women friends that gathers regulary to camp, along the shores of Lake Superior or the banks of a river. They kayak and sit around the fire and talk and I wish I could be there too.

Centering.

I think I need to put together a group like that down here in lower Michigan. A few other women who like to camp and would like to camp together somewhere once in awhile.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy my camping solitude too, and Katie and I love to spend that time together. But sometimes it would be nice to have a group of people who would like to explore together.

The light bounces.

So who’s in? Could we manage to socially distance while camping? Dogs or no dogs, tents or RVs, who’d like to go…and where?

Pink and green coexisting.

The possibilities are endless.

New possibilities.


30 Comments

Cedar waxwings redux

A couple weeks ago I posted about the flying bits of gold I saw across the street over the neighborhood pond. Cedar waxwings, birds we don’t see very often, were chasing insects in the fading evening light. (For this post you really should click on the images to see them larger.)

Such a beautiful bird.

Two nights ago while eating dinner I caught a glimpse of gold over the pond again.

Their golden color glowed in the setting sun.

Last time I struggled with the dim light and the quick slivers of golden wing.

Artsy fartsy image.

Focusing was pretty much impossible.

Heading out looking for dinner.

So this time when I headed over with my camera fitted with the long lens I knew better then to try to get them flying across the pond.

Incoming!

And I knew just where the dead tree was that they landed in regularly to rest between flights.

A fly-over.

So that’s where I stayed, right below that tree, catching them coming and going.

Whatcha doing down there lady?

Still, I had to move the ISO up very high so there’s quite a bit of grain, especially when they’re cropped.

The lowering sun lit the birds up as they rested.

I like to think of those as art. So many of them show the elegence of these birds, in an almost stylized manner. I think some of these look like paintings rather then photographs.

And I’m OK with that.

Juveniles joined in as well.

Each of these images makes me smile. I hope you’re smiing too.