Monday, February 29, 2016


It is a different view when you look through the slats.  It was a sunny afternoon when I took the photo. It should be sunny most of today until the snow moves in this evening.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

A Brick Pattern.......

The bricks come from many sources.  Some were ones that I dug up from the ground that have been left buried on the property. Most of them are very old.  The oldest ones were probably made in local brick factories that are now long gone.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Shadows and Sunshine.....

A clear sky with the sun shining means we will warm up today.  The early morning sun casts different shadows as it rises in the east.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Phone Shot.......

I am out of shots of tree debris.  I need to start a new stock pile of photos but that isn't happening today.  It could happen as I have my phone with me at school but I don't think there is much that I want to share from here. We will see. As you can see there is no snow in this outdoor shot.  We do still have one pile of snow over by the alley where the city slickers pile it up.  We are suppose to have an interesting weather pattern coming through next Tuesday evening. It is still winter in Iowa.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Get s Truck..........

This is an ad for the company who has removed my trees.  They were nice people and they didn't damage anything as the cut down all my trees on the east side.  I assume they will take the trunks of the trees elsewhere to be shredded and other workers will cut them up to get that accomplished. They will actually return to day to clear up the rest of the fallen trees that are in our yard.  All will be gone by sundown.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Get the Glue......

The head was temporarily affixed to the statue but the winter weather made it become unglued.  I couldn't fix it all winter as the statue was frozen into the ground.  Now it has warmed just enough that I can bring it to the house.  It hasn't made it inside but it sitting on the table just outside the door.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Au Natural............

The moss grows well on my flagstone that is laying in the garden.  It is winter and the moss likes the weather. I think snow nourishes it.  The green ball is from a garden ornament that fell into pieces. I thought it made a small scaled sculptural sphere on my mossy spot. Creeping Charlie gets a does of spary when it warms up in the spring.  The fallen stick is evidence of all the sticks I have all over thr property.  I have a huge mess to clean up when we do get warm weather.  I will have to do it a section at a time as it the worse that I have ever seen.  A mower can't be pushed through all the storm debris.

Monday, February 22, 2016

In the Woods........

The tree is actually in my backyard and the red bellied woodpecker does do a lot of pecking on the trees in the area.  I guess there has to be insects under that bark as it is intently digging in the tree for something. The photo was lost on my wife's camera and I see snow is on the green branches in the background. I am glad that I finally caught this guy in the natural woods rather than on the suet cake.

Sunday, February 21, 2016


In the past we would believe that the Canada geese would be headed north when we would see and hear this.  In fact, the geese stay all year and they fly in formation to find open cornfields now that the snow has melted.  Those geese that do fly north must follow the waterways normally and we don't see it happening anymore.  It was a warmer day yesterday but from here on our we will be back to below freezing again.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Red Glow.......

From the upstairs hall window I saw this mysterious glow.  At that time the sun was shining through the reflector that is mounted on the bike.  I tried to take a shot and it worked. The twisted tree limbs in the foreground is the chokecherry tree. It has some growth forms on it that need to be cut out of there. The snow you see here was on Thursday afternoon.  It is all gone but a small pile next to the bike now.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Better than This.......

My morning coffee reminds me to appreciate my older dogs every single day.  Our old man Button needs a lot of help but when I get that old, I too will need a lot of help. The coffee tasted good this morning and I do really enjoy this cup.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Good and the Bad......All Sweet to Eat.

My wife received a box full of things from a friend and the sweet things are still in the box.  I thought it made an interesting composition.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Memory Lane......

A percolator is a thing of the past but this one sits in the stand at school where I am working to sell coffees with flavors.  The stand is the school concession stand in evenings. Someone must have brought it in to heat water.  I don't know if they sell coffee but I doubt it. Maybe they use it to heat water for oatmeal. My students just clarified that and yes it is the heater for instant oatmeal water.

I remember how coffee making was such a process.  Some people would not switch over the the drip coffee maker while others poured boiling water through a filter apparatus with coffee grounds in it.  I know I have stored somewhere one of the glass ones with all the glass parts.  It was in my early years of making coffee. One didn't make large amounts of coffee like one can do with the current drip coffeemakers.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Monday is a Start.........

A splash of color for you to use as a wake up call for Monday morning. The amaryllis is in decline now but I have a lot of shots of the bloom.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Red is a Good Color for Today.........

I hope everyone has a great Valentines day.  It is a good day to celebrate how much we care for each other and love each other.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Crossing the Bridge.....

I have an old fish pond the sits under the bridge.  Each summer I add more soil to pond until some summer it will all be filled in with soil.  The bridge is the second bridge that I built for the crossing as I had a different one with wood that eventually rotted.  I built a more simple one this time with no arch, just a flat straight across bridge. I was going to place a simple board railing on it for looks, but that never happened.

Barney didn't like it for quite some time but now uses it often.  He can run around out there and if he wants to make a short cut he can cross the bridge.  The tracks on it looks like he was in a hurry as he left limited number of tracks.  That snow will still be around for a while.  It is to warm up to thawing by maybe Wednesday.Barney never has been in the pond or the tank next to it but in the winter you can see him out there on the ice, just standing there and looking around.  I can't imagine what he is thinking. I guess maybe he is wanting to get a drink of water and doesn't understand the freeze and thaw science.

Friday, February 12, 2016

White Birch Bark........

The contrast of the whites and darks of the birch bark is great to see any season.  It was a little cold to be out there but we unfortunately are getting use to it.  Iowans will probably run around with short sleeves when it gets up to 40 degrees F.  There is none of the powdery snow on the birch branches as the breezes blew that snow around a lot keeping it off of the trees.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Yard Art.......

Our town promotes the bike trail that is north of town by exhibiting bikes in the yards. Some put out antique bikes and others put out whatever they can find at a garage sale. I don't have a garage so if I were to remove this bike it would still be outside. The spent phlox stems are there to help give it a natural looking setting.  The snow will be staying put for another 6 to 8 days. It isn't going to go anywhere when it is 8 degrees F.  outside.  The wind chill temperatures I refuse to discuss.  We will be staying inside.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

I Am Boring.......

Looking through my files of photos I decided to go off base.  I am trying to keep things new and different and sometimes one can't do that. The pine corn on this commercial wreath is a curious thing. I don't know where the wreath was created for sale but someone had to import pine cones in order to make the wreath. The cone is the only real thing on the whole wreath The photo doesn't show the light glaze of glitter that was put on the pine cone but it is there. It keeps wearing off each year.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Fur Lined Coat..........

I have mixed feelings about these guys eating at my feeder. On a horrible day like yesterday I really thought he should have some food to keep him warm. I put out another feeder on the patio table so both squirrels and birds could keep eating.  I was having a difficult time getting his photo as he was keeping his back to the wind.  I couldn't capture how hard the wind was blowing as he had his tail braced on the top of the feeder.  I took two shots and this one with the partial face showing seemed to be the best one to share.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Red Bird........

Blizzard conditions for us means a very light snow with very strong winds.  I was able to clear the gray of the snow that was keeping this picture from being focused well but the bird gets a little distorted from the treatment.

I needed photos to share and it isn't so great to go out into a blizzard to take shots.  Everything that I can take has to be through the windows.  I had been seeing a female cardinal at the feeder the past few days but no male cardinal.  I was skeptical to think I would find anything too great out at the feeder.  I never saw the cardinal at the feeder but he was feeding off of something from the spirea bush.  I  zoomed in the best that I could with my wife's camera and the snow storm gave me some gray photos.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Wooden Finial Post Caps.......

The next storm in predicted and the last snow is still around in many places. The photo points out that I need to straighten the finial and base decoration so it is square with the rest of the works.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Surprixe Bloom.....

The first bloom on this amaryllis was disappointing.  It never did put out a full bloom.  The stem stayed short because it has already sprouted in the box before I bought it.  I didn't do much with it after it was planted and the first bloom that partially bloomed is still dead on the stem.  I noticed this morning that a second bud was hiding on the stem and here it is as a partial bloom. My half off deal gave me two half bloomed flowers.  I think the roots didn't have enough time to get established in the dirt before it bloomed. I should see leaves starting to sprout but nothing like that is happen yet.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Button Box......

It is a wooden box.  I assume it came from an old house that my dad had torn down.  It is a lot older yet stronger that the King Edwards cardboard cigar boxes that my dad bought when I was young. The buttons have a lot of history.  I don't think my mom ever retrieved a button from the box to fix anything. They were too old.  One just doesn't throw buttons away in the trash and you keep them in boxes.  I see an old button from a very old couch that we had in our farm house.  That would have been back in 1953 through 1958. I hadn't thought of this for a long time but people who had old clothes probably clipped the buttons off the garment so there wasn't any waste and made quilts or rags out of the garments.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Feeding the Flock.......

Starlings and a dove share a space for a while for some ground corn.  A few diehards were out on the feeder digging down in the snow to finding the loot from the day before hiding under there. The snow falling from the sky was so heavy you could only see specs out there among the drifts on the feeder.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

A Fluffy Coating.....

Around ten o'clock last night the wind stopped.  Also at the same time snow just started falling out of the sky in heavy batches.  It must have snowed off and on all night as we were facing a new 6 inches or more of snow this morning.

I had to immediately shovel for the little dog so he could go out.  He was impatient so he went on the top landing outside while I was shoveling him a path on the ground. I don't blame him as he really needed to go.  He doesn't hate snow as long as he doesn't have to trudge through it.  I have been out twice now and he has two paths to help him along.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Winter is Back........

The east side of everything is plastered with snow.  The wind is strong and as it roars it also splashes the snow up to the side of the house and trees. In the bird room I have one opening in the snow in which to view out.

Looking out west I see the snow coated on the trees.  The mound in the foreground is the car covered with a few inches of snow.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Sunshine for Now.......

The sun is bright right now and it will warm us up to thawing again today.  We have more snow still on the ground than most people just south of us.  Maybe we can lose some more before the next batch comes tonight.