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Monday, August 31, 2020

Monday's Memo: Give Thanks

HOUSE FINCHES HAVE A STORY IN VOL ONE

A pair of Haemorhous mexicanus (AKA House finches) say grace before a meal (as evidenced in the photograph of them posted above which was taken when they visited my garden earlier this year). They have much to be thankful for.

After all, their bird type was nearly wiped off the Eastern seaboard by a conjunctivitis pandemic that rendered them nearly blind, hence they were unable to see their food sources, and nearly starved to death, which is how their entire bird type population was nearly dissolved.

This story re the fate of members of the Haemorhous mexicanus family is included in volume one of my book series, Words In Our Beak.

MY BOOK SERIES

Like the  Haemorhous mexicanus, I have much to be #thankful for too, and this bird type, whenever they grace me with their presence, is a good reminder to #givethanksinallthings.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Some Characteristics of Young Robins

ROBINS HAVE A STORY IN VOLUME THREE
ROBINS HAVE A STORY IN VOLUME THREE

This past Friday here on Blogger, I published an entry re a fact about young Northern cardinals, as one (much to my delight) has been visiting my rooftop garden.

However, that adorable creature is not the only young bird who is spending time in my place. A number of young American robins have also spent a lot of time here and one of them is featured in the picture atop this entry.

Young Robins initially have speckled plumage and no red breast, but as their post-juvenile molt progresses, the orange-red feathering of the breast starts to appear, as well as their pale belly.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Popcorn Can Be Offered to Squirrels & Birds (Thursday's Testimony)

THIS SQUIRREL IS FEATURED IN MANY BLOG POSTS
THIS SQUIRREL IS FEATURED IN MANY BLOG POSTS
THIS SQUIRREL IS FEATURED IN MANY BLOG POSTS

I recently read, "squirrels eat popcorn and they enjoy it too. Popcorn contains vitamins and minerals such as copper, manganese, vitamin B1 vitamin B3, zinc and others. Popcorn is also a good source of fibre. Leave a bowl of popcorn out in squirrel populated areas and allow squirrels to freely come and eat as they please."

Upon my reading this information I did an experiment to see if the squirrel who has been visiting my garden since July 8th (I know he/she is the same one because of the broken skin on his/her forehead) would nibble on popcorn if I shared mine with him/her; and as you can see from the photographs atop this entry of a squirrel enjoying this taste treat, I apparently did not come across fake news in terms of squirrels liking popcorn.

Monday, August 24, 2020

Monday Musings: August 24th

MY GRANDPARENTS ARE FEATURED IN MANY POSTS

Today is my birthday and if truth be told for the most part, I have always disliked the fact that it falls on August 24th. This is because in college days (which were not good for me) orientations and class registration were taking place. Moreover, I've had an aversion to to the date, August 24th, as it is often the day either the RNC or DNC begins (or began).

BUT when unpleasant thoughts occur surrounding the date of August 24th, I think of one reason (and IT'S A GOOD ONE), to have been born on this day: I am my maternal grandparents first grandchild and I was born on their anniversary.

They can be seen in the picture (atop this entry) celebrating my birthday in bygone (way bygone) years as my dearly departed maternal aunt watches me open a gift.

Many people now know of my grandparents through posts on this blog and because the narrator of my book series, Words In Our Beak, (pictured below) is a female cardinal named Cam.

MY BOOK SERIES

The name Cam is in honor of my maternal grandparents, a fact I've mentioned  in my cyber-venues over the years, where I've explained the "C" in Cam's name is for my grandmother, Clara. The "a" in Cam's name is for my maternal grandfather, Albert. And the "m" in Cam's name is for their surname, Melahn.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Look what I found!

CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES

I have a question for you, dear reader: Did you ever look for something in your closet only to discover items that you liked/loved but forgot you had?

I had a recent experience that reminded me of this scenario but it was not looking through my closet and finding items that I liked/loved but forgot I had, rather it was looking for a particular photo I had taken and stored on an external drive.

In the process of looking for a certain image, I came across the picture of a male Northern cardinal visiting my garden and a copy of it can be seen atop this entry.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

The Anemones, the Onion flowers and the Crepe myrtle, are all in bloom again! (Tuesday's Truths WK 193)

ANEMONES ARE FEATURED IN A FEW POSTS ON THIS BLOG 
ANEMONES ARE FEATURED IN A FEW POSTS ON THIS BLOG 

For this week's episode (which is #193) of my Tuesday's Truths series, I'd like to tell you that a sign indicating the fall season is well on its way to NYC —albeit not officially until over one month from now on September 22 2020 — is appearing in my rooftop garden: My autumn Anemones are starting to bloom again, as evidenced by the photo-ops atop this entry which I took this past Saturday morning, August 15 2020.

As you may know, dear reader, this garden is the setting for my book series, Words In Our Beak and numerous varieties of flora are discussed within them...

MY BOOK SERIES

... however, at the time of these books were published, I was not growing Anemones but during those years I did admire this flower variety whenever I was it flourishing within gardens in my 'hood and nearby parks.

Finally in late 2018 and throughout 2019, I began to grow my own and continue to be awestruck by their appearance in my place. I'm hardly alone in my feelings about this flower type.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Still Taking Time to Watch the Leaves Turn

THIS JAPANESE MAPLE IS FEATURED IN VOL 1
THIS JAPANESE MAPLE IS FEATURED IN VOL 1
THIS JAPANESE MAPLE IS FEATURED IN VOL 1

Raindrops keep falling on my leaves, but that, as the song (sung by B.J. Thomas) goes, "doesn't mean my eyes will be turning red, no cryings not for me..."

Instead I am continuing to heed the wisdom of Elizabeth Lawrence when I spend time in my garden — even on rainy days, which is a fact I've mentioned in previous posts here on Blogger.

Ms. Lawrence is known to remind folks that "even if something is left undone, everyone must take time to sit still and watch the leaves turn."

Not only have I taken the time to watch the leaves turn, I've taken the time to appreciate "raindrops on foliage," as evidenced in the pictures accompanying this entry featuring leaves from my Japanese Maple (AKA 'Tamukeyama').

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Another Suspect...

CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES
CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES
CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES

In yesterday's (8-12-2020) post here on Blogger, I spoke about what creature might have been responsible for bringing down the string lights which provide a canopy over my rooftop garden.

During this morning's thunderstorm, I saw someone (and I'm not naming names but he is pictured in the images directly above and below) who can now be added to the list of suspects.

CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES 
CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES 
CARDINALS ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOK SERIES

For your inquiring mind's satisfaction, this particular bird type (a male Northern cardinal) is featured in all three volumes of my book series, Words In Our Beak.

MY BOOK SERIES

All of the stories are set in my garden and told from the perspective of Cam, a FEMALE Northern  cardinal.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Who-dun-it?

MY GARDEN IS THE SETTING FOR MY BOOK SERIES

This past Monday (8-10-2020) when I arrived home after my follow-up appointment with the surgeon (re the procedure I had on 8-4 -2020), I discovered a portion of the string lights which provide a canopy over my garden, had come down and I knew it wasn't storm related....so my question was Who-dun-it?

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Tuesday's Truths Week 192: What a difference a week makes!

IMAGE CREDIT

As many of you may know, a number of people were impacted by Hurricane Isaias, which took place in NYC, one week ago (on August 4th 2020) and I was no exception, in fact I had a Wizard of Oz moment.

Sunday, August 9, 2020

World Listening Day 2020 was 3 WKS ago.

AMERICAN ROBINS ARE  FEATURED IN VOL 3 OF WIOB
AMERICAN ROBINS ARE  FEATURED IN VOL 3 OF WIOB
AMERICAN ROBINS ARE  FEATURED IN VOL 3 OF WIOB
AMERICAN ROBINS ARE  FEATURED IN VOL 3 OF WIOB
AMERICAN ROBINS ARE  FEATURED IN VOL 3 OF WIOB

World Listening Day (WLD) was three weeks ago (July 18 2020). According to National Today (NT) it is an event which "is put on every year by the World Listening Project, a nonprofit organization that is 'devoted to understanding the world and its natural environment, societies and cultures through the practice of listening and field recording.' They explore acoustic ecology, a discipline that studies the relationship between humans and the natural world as mediated through sound. It falls on July 18 to honor the birthday of Raymond Murray Schafer, a Canadian composer and environmentalist who is seen as the founder of acoustic ecology. World Listening Day was established in 2010, and each year the holiday has a specific theme tied to it... 

Given the lockdowns and re-openings I'm not sure how the holiday was celebrated this year, however I did think of WLD when I saw American robins having a convo in my rooftop garden the other day. They can be seen in the series of images atop this entry.

Friday, August 7, 2020

National Lighthouse Day 2020

IMAGE CREDIT

Today is National Lighthouse Day and Snoopy knows how to celebrate as evidenced in the image of a Peanuts comic strip atop this entry).

I'm familiar with receiving that stare from birds visiting my garden when I have yet to fill my bird feeders or share my fruit with them (via plates placed atop an urban hedge (shelving) as well as a table.

Most likely anyone who has been around any animal knows "the lighthouse stare" as does anyone who has ever waited tables.

On another note, re lighthouses themselves, I love visiting them and two of the ones that I've taken pictures of can be seen are featured in the next set of images.

THE FIRE ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE VIEW ONE

THE FIRE ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE VIEW TWO

THE LITTLE RED LIGHTHOUSE

The Little Red Lighthouse is located in NYC under the George Washington Bridge, a bridge which is referenced in volume one of my three volume book series, Words In Our Beak.

MY BOOK SERIES

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Continue to keep your distance from others. Tuesday's Truths (WK 191)


#SocialDistancing. 
#PhysicalDistancing. 
#WellnessDistancing. 

Call it what you will, but take a lesson from birds (such as the two types seen below who are at a bird bath in my rooftop garden) and do it, especially as we go through this COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

THESE BIRD TYPES ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOKS
THESE BIRD TYPES ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOKS
THESE BIRD TYPES ARE FEATURED IN MY BOOKS

For your information, dear reader, the avian creatures (American robin and Mourning dove) seen here are in my book series, Words In Our Beak.

MY BOOK SERIES


American robins have a story in volume three amd Mourning doves have a story in volume one. And while you are adhering to where to be in relation to those around you, please remember to wear a face-mask.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Remembering Ellen McConnell Blakeman (Friend and Supporter of "Words In Our Beak")

DEDICATION PAGE FOR V-2OF MY BOOK SERIES

Today marks what would've been the "in life" birthday of my childhood friend, Ellen McConnell Blakeman had she not passed away a little over two years ago on February 2018.

Regular readers of this blog may recall her name from previous entries here on Blogger and those who have purchased copies of volume two of my book series, Words In Our Beak might have seen that it has been dedicated to her memory as seen in the image directly above.

WORDS IN OUR BEAK BIRD BOOK SERIES

Moreover, for those of you who follow my personal Facebook Page you may recall that I posted the picture directly below of her (from the 1970's) when she served as one of the first three female senate pages.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Let them eat grapes (Champagne grapes)!

IMAGE CREDIT

The photograph of Champagne grapes, also known as Black Corinth or Zante Currant, which is atop this entry comes  from a web-page within naturesproduce.com. Their page states this fruit is "a variety of grape that is grown in clusters that produce very small diameter grapes. It is a seedless grape that provides a very sweet flavor for salads, appetizers or as a snack with cheese. The stem, which is also very tiny and tender, is often consumed with the grape rather than attempting to detach the small connector from the main stem. This grape is very small, sweet and crisp. Wonderful as a garnish on cheese trays and a nice touch for fruit baskets."

While all of this may be true, I have found that this food is for the birds, especially those who happen to be an American robin.

Saturday, August 1, 2020

"A bird in the bath is the soul of enjoyment..."

AMERICAN ROBINS ARE FEATURED IN VOLUME 3

During our tremendous back to back heat waves in NYC which have come hot on the on the heels of lockdowns and gradual, partial re-openings (all due to the coronavirus pandemic), I'm most grateful to be able to provide relief for birds visiting my garden, including a young American robin, seen in the image atop this entry where he/she is taking refreshment from the brutal heat by spending time in one of my bird baths.

Seeing this sweet creature at my place has prompted me to do some research and one of the things I read, is, "Robins have hollow bones, so the are too light to submerge themselves. Instead, they bathe in shallow water and splash it up to wet their backs and heads," as one seems to be doing in the image atop this entry.