Expect the Unexpected

Expect the Unexpected

Isn’t it strange how the most unexpected happens when we least expect it?  My TV remote recently demanded four new AA batteries. Finding only one AA in my battery drawer, I call my friend Peggy down the hall. Yes, she has batteries and will give them to me. This reminds me of my younger days when I’d walk across the street and ask Karnie for a cup of sugar. I should have expected an invitation for tea, but I didn’t. Peggy is known for offering a cup of tea and I notice two cups and saucers  already on the kitchen counter. Peggy has a whole kitchen drawer dedicated to tea bags. Choosing your flavor of the moment is a real task. As we sit in her living room in front of a set of windows we suddenly become conscious of movement behind us. I...

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The Beauty of Kansas

The Beauty of Kansas

Dazzling green surrounds the gravel roads through the Flint Hills. My sister, Pam and I exit I-35 at Emporia (KS) and drive south through Olpe. Continuing west and south of Olpe, our three-day journey to Arkansas City begins with adventure. We travel to visit life-long friends, but plan some back-road exploring on the way. Being alone with hills, curving roads, wild flowers and an occasional cow fills us with peace. Four killdeer cavorting in a creek provide the only distraction. We relish the perfect vistas, and soon see a sign to Teterville. Many years ago Rodney and I drove up the hill to Teterville and marveled at the view. Curiosity sent me to the internet: Teterville, a ghost town is located approximately 11 miles east of Cassoday. No buildings remain of...

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Absorbing Activity

Absorbing Activity

A trip to Minnesota with so many exciting moments means difficulty in knowing what to do next. A robin’s nest on a beam under the second story deck demands a lot of attention…both from the robin parents and us humans who like to watch.

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May Migration

May Migration

Every year in May, I ask myself why am I inside a building. This is the month of bird migration and any self-respecting birder is outside with binoculars at the ready. This morning I finally sat in a Prairie Village backyard for over an hour and had my “warbler fix” to start the migration season. I know it is only May 7, but that is still six days wasted. The yard I was in has a perfect small water drip in a little pond and it seems to draw colorful wings from the whole area. If you are interested, here are a few pictures. Nashville Warbler Yellow Warbler Tennessee Warbler Tennessee Warbler Tennessee Warblers Tennessee Warblers Robin Red-bellied Woodpecker Blackpoll Warbler Tennessee Warbler White-throat Sparrow White-throat Sparrow Blackpoll Warbler...

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Surprise Neighbors

Surprise Neighbors

There is something magical about watching large birds glide through the air from tree to tree.  Yellow Crown Night-Herons are rare in this part of the country. So why are they in a midwest suburban neighborhood? They’re most likely found in coastal marshes, barrier islands, and mangroves south of here. Their diet leans heavily on crabs and crayfish, so what do they find in our trees? Maybe this is another sign of global warming, nothing is staying “normal.” I’ve been birding for enough years to expect the unexpected, but still…  A friend showed me these night-herons  and said they have been returning to that tree for seven years. I counted six adults and two or three nests; a strange...

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Springtime at Claridge Court

Springtime at Claridge Court

Rodney and I spent many years together exclaiming every year, “Spring is my favorite time of the year.” Now I look out my apartment window at the glories of my fourth spring at Claridge Court and think once again how much he would love it here. The majestic colors of 2016 unfold. First a dash of yellow and purple close to the ground, followed by rows of trees blossoming white. Then unimaginable pinkish shades (deep pink, french rose, coral pink, salmon pink, fuchsia, magenta) join the parade in every direction. Suddenly Mallards discover free meals below my office window. Then a pair of house finches set up house right by Claridge’s front door. A camera doesn’t come close to capturing the wonder of it all…but I keep hoping it will....

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