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Spring is Near

The weather here continues to be, “unpredictable,” with occasional bursts of sunshine amid much longer stretches of rain, snow, and, yes, even, hail. Today’s weather forecast calls for “increasing rain and winds,” though it’s presently 32 degrees and sunny at the moment.

Hardly conducive to pleasant trips in the wilderness on photographic quests. So I’ve been distracting myself by organizing photos and searching for suitable photos to donate to my daughter’s art school auction to raise funds for next year. I actually found it rather traumatic trying to pick out one or two suitable shots and to print them to my standards.

Let’s just say that even with a $1,000 plus color printer I’ve never found it easy to reproduce pictures that meet my photographic expectations. Until I downloaded a new driver for my printer, I could not print at all, even though I’ve been doing so irregularly for a year or so now. There’s nothing like a deadline to bring out the worst in computer equipment.

Still, I’ve saved time to go out and enjoy the flowers that have somehow managed to thrive in our uneven weather conditions, most notably our camelia bush:

Camelia

With a little Aperture spotting here and there, I thought this one cleaned up rather spiffily. It looks nearly as good as the one Leslie managed to find to attach to Lael’s birthday package yesterday.

After five years here, I finally managed to plant a few daffodil bulbs last year, and the ones that weren’t eaten by the ever-present squirrels are just now blooming, a sure sign of good things to come.

Daffodil

I still manage to keep the feeder full, despite the constant onslaught of Starlings and our resident family of Crows, which is even more efficient than the squirrels at emptying a feeder.

I’ve been rewarded by my first sighting of Pine Siskins, a bird I was only able to distinguish from the ever-present House Finches by the brilliant yellow streak on the male’s wings when it flies.

Pine Siskin