Sunday, April 23, 2017

Spring around the farm

It is a good thing that I love spring. We have had it at least four times this year, so far. One of these days it will stick. No, really, I am sure of it. Look at the signs! The nuthatches are trying to fatten up for nesting season.
The ice went off the ponds last week and there is life coming back to them. This guy was out for a swim.
There are still some reminders of what was just recently waiting for us outside. Here is snow in the woods and snow in a protected (from the sun) corner of a pasture.

Sadly, I found what we had called "the mother of all birches" fell over this winter. She had been clinging to life and giving shelter and life to so many for so long. She was about 12 feet in circumference, but not too tall, and she stubbornly clung to life. We watched that struggle for well over twenty years, but now it is time for her to nourish the next generation. Her broken stump is about 10 feet (three meters) tall.

 Recently we have had nearly summer-like temperatures, but a cold front swings in two days later and we wake up to this:
It's a sobering slap in the face. At least it melts within a few days. The buds on the trees are starting to swell up and the rest of the vegetation is showing some green and other signs of life after six months of dormancy.

Very soon I go off to language camp again where I can work on my Norwegian language skills and hang out with the other kids who range in age from about 18 to 85. If the ice is out on that lake I am hoping the loons will serenade me to sleep with their haunting song. There are miles of trails there so I can walk off all the delicious food we get to eat.


  1. temps have been up and down here also, but NO SNOW! :)

    always reminds me of the old MST3K line "4th of july in minnesota", showing ice fishing and ice boating scenes.

  2. We've had several springs as well :) And, hey, your bird feeder in the photo is the same as the one I just bought two springs ago this year!

  3. Ugh, I feel your pain, brother. We woke up to a big dump of heavy, wet snow this morning too. Very discouraging.

  4. Hi Joni, it has been the craziest time weather-wise! We had Spring in February and now this week we are finally supposed to have warmer temps.
    Enjoy the warmer weather!

  5. Spring is an incorrigible flirt isn't she?
    I hope she settles down with you. Soon.
    Loved the bird, and the frog. Mourned for the tree down. It is always sad to see them lose the battle.

  6. Sad to see the fallen tree, but, as you say, she will nurture life in a different way now. Very springy here today, hooray! Sunshine and blue sky. A wonderful day for the local artist studio tour.
    Have fun at Norwegian camp. I had a Norwegian friend when I lived in England, his name was Freid Halvorsen, he was radio office on board Thoresen Ferries from England to France, he only had one leg. Freid where are you now?

  7. Summer-like weather followed by snow? Man, I don't know how you can bear that shit. It sounds like the climate in Yellowstone Park.

  8. Jono--Enjoy the language camp. And loons? We have those, but they're not the kind with wings, they're the kind that walk on two legs...

  9. anne marie, MST3K! That brings back some great memories. Thanks for the smile!

    jenny_o, That feeder has lasted awhile because we usually put it away in the summer. Less temptation for the bears, but the occasional raccoon will try to make off with it.

    Debra, it is such a see saw ride. It's almost like Mother Nature going through some manic-depressive times.

    Cat Lover, I wonder what day summer will come this year? will it stay or turn and run?

    Elephant's Child, You are going the other way seasonally which still astounds me even though I understand it. This is such a fun planet. I caressed Mother Birch while I visited her.

    Shammickite, Ma Birch will fulfill her mission in the world. Freid must have been amazing. I have two legs and it takes a bit to get my sea legs under me.

    Gorrilla B, I sometimes wonder how I can stand it, too. It does keep a lot of the riff-raff out. Driving over big mountains can give someone a handfull of climates in just one day.

    Sioux, We have both kinds of loons here, too. Jeg skal snakke mer norsk når jeg kommer hjem (I will speak more Norwegian when I get home).

  10. That Birch tree is amazing!

    I envy you going to language camp!

  11. we've had spring since Feb. supposed to be in the 90's end of this week

  12. JA, mer norsk i verlden! Til lykke!

  13. Summer-like weather followed by snow? Man, I don't know how you can bear that shit. It sounds like the climate in Yellowstone Park.

  14. I think we have finally reached spring. Raccoons stole my bird feeder a few days ago, the juncos are ground feeding and there is still a small patch of snow melting in my front yard. Mud season is definitely here and I have seen some flies on the front window.
    Camp sounds great. Enjoy
    the Ol'Buzzard

  15. Apparently we're having the longest, coldest winter on record here, and spring is just beginning. Near the coast the cherry trees and rhododendrons are in bloom, and on our property the alders are just beginning to put out little leaves. It's still raining nearly every day, but at least it's not snow!

    Hope you enjoy your language camp!

  16. The snow and cold weather after the teasers of spring are tough to take. It's like someone held a piece of chocolate in front of your nose and yanked it away...

  17. That birch tree is/was amazing. I guess it will still provide shelter just for other critters for a while.
    It has been a long cold wet April here with snow and rain showers for days on end. But it is officially summer today as the cuckoos are back. Tanya got the rest of the garden seeded today also, only the bedding plants to go out and that will wait a while.

  18. Here you're learning Norwegian and I'm still fumbling through English. What a boss.

    Here in Colorado is much the same, weatherwise. On Friday it was 60 degrees. Over the weekend it snowed 10 inches. Today it's 60 degrees and every drop of snow is gone. Who knows what to expect tomorrow? Maybe it'll be a hurricane.