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:


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.


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

8 thoughts on “Spring is Near”

  1. When you say squirrels eat daffodils are we talking here of the bulbs, the flowers, the leaves or all the lot, Loren?
    I love your camellia flower – exquisite.

  2. I’m talking about the bulbs, though it’s not quite clear if they actually eat them or just dig them up.

    Right after we planted bulbs in the fall we started finding holes all over the garden. At first we blamed the dog, ‘cuz he’s easy to blame when it comes to digging.

    But then as I was watching the birdfeeder I saw the squirrel digging up bulbs.

  3. We have so many moles and gophers that it’s not unusual to find little pockets of daffodils and our other bulbs pop up several feet from where we planted them. It makes gardening a little more of a challenge!

  4. It’s heartening to see these beautiful signs of spring on your blog. The daffodils are still coming up here. No sign of flowers yet. Pine siskins are dear to me because they are the first little brown bird I was able to distinguished from other little brown birds. I had forgotten about the brilliant yellow streak.

    Will you let us know which photos you chose for the art auction? It is challenging to try to reproduce on paper the luminosity that a photo has on a computer screen. I wish you success in your printing project for a good cause!

  5. wow loren!! the flowers glow from inside!!! i’m so glad to see flowers – nothing is growing yet here in peterborough (ontario), not even buds on the bushes or trees. the skies are filled with birds flying north. birdsong fills the air. so i know that soon i’ll be able to post some flower pictures on the golden fish!!! steven

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