Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Week Before Christmas and all through the house

No one was stirring. Not even me.  I was sitting here by the fire trying to thaw out, feeling so lucky to have the tree trimmed, the house straightened (as much as usual), gifts bought and wrapped. Yes, life is good now.
We have even taken time to do the first of the Christmas Bird Counts that we participate in this time of year.  The sky was so beautiful at dawn. The fact that it was only 2degreesF to start the morning didn't dampen our spirits. 
 Owls were out on this cold morning looking for the last morsel to keep them warm through out the day. The skies turned to buttermilk as the morning wore on. There wasn't any more of the sun to be seen for the rest of the day as the clouds congealed and filled with ice and snow to be later dumped on the area.
 We won't complain because we saw 60 species of birds. Quite good for these kind of weather conditions. We were a small part of a team of 45 hard core birders at the Goose Pond Christmas Count this year. When all was totaled there were 104 species of birds seen. One of the teams found a Ross's Goose in with a flock of Canada Geese. This was a first for this count. While this was a special find since this bird is a rare species for this area my favorites are always the more common birds. The Short-eared Owls flying around barking at each other and a Tundra Swan taking flight from a pond edge that was open. These usual characters make me think it is all worth getting out on a cold winter day.
If you would like to read more about last year's count you can go here. It will be a few days before this year's official numbers and species are counted and published. I hope everyone is doing the fun things they want to do on these cold winter days. Take care and keep warm.

29 comments:

Balisha said...

I've always wanted to participate in the bird count. Your pictures are beautiful...Thanks for telling us about it...Balisha

Liz said...

Hi,

Wow, how very dedicated of you to venture out for your bird count!

Wonderful sky photos, although cold the sunsets/rises are often very impressive at this time of year :)

The Wessex Reiver said...

Fabulous dawn photos and I'm with you, get out there and experience the wildlife. Hope the bird count went well.

Cicero Sings said...

I don't know why but I had you living in a warmer climate. 2F is about what it was here this morning when I arose. A heavy fog/frost on all of the trees. Very pretty.

I've never done a bird count. Good for you. We just get chickadees and nuthatches here in the winter ... oh and some woodpeckers: downy, hairy and pileated.

Rose said...

Lisa, you are indeed a brave soul! I have been watching the birds...from my living room window:) So far just a few of the usual winter visitors like the dark-eyed juncos have come to visit. But I sure could use you or DB to help me i.d. a few I can't make out.

Your photos of the early sunrise are beautiful, Lisa, and I'm glad you had such a good time. Enjoy the holidays!

Phillip said...

Your house looks so warm and cozy. The decorations are beautiful!

Dee @ Red Dirt Ramblings said...

That bird count is plenty to be grateful for. Add in the trimmings and presents, and you've got it whipped my friend. Meanwhile, I'll send you some warmer weather from Guthrie.~~Dee

Kerri said...

Lucky you to be organized enough to fit in the Christmas Bird Count. Brrr...I'm glad it was worth your while to brave the cold temps. 60 different species is a great count!
Your tree looks cozy and festive...beautiful!
We've had very cold temps again this weekend but the snow has let up a bit...thank heavens. Stay warm!

Julie said...

Your home is beautiful, Lisa! All decked out for Christmas! The bird count is such a great thing to be involved with! One of the nurses I used to work with spent summers in Alaska, and winters here in south Florida...and she and her husband did a bird count every year there in Alaska. I was always jealous!!! :) You sure have beautiful skies this time of year!!!

Laurrie said...

Those sky pictures are beautiful. I could just feel the bitter dawn cold! But your fascination and delight with the birds you saw certainly kept you warm. A lovely winter post.

Kate said...

I've always wanted to get involved with a bird count. The Great Salt Lake is an amazing bird habitat, about 50 miles from my home. Don't know why I haven't motivated myself to participate. Other than getting up in the wee hours is never very fun for a night owl such as myself.

Stay warm! Enjoy the holidays! Merry Christmas. ;)

Jayne said...

Love your header Lisa! So pretty!! And your tree is beautiful too. That's dedication to be outside in those temps. Glad it was a good count and hope you and yours have a wonderful Christmas.

Babara said...

Lucky you, you're indeed ready for Christmas. Wishing you merry Christmas days and all the best for the coming new year. It always is a pleasure to visit your blog and participate a little in your daily life.
Barbara

Geraldine said...

What beautiful images. You do indeed sound like you are so blessed.

http://mypoeticpath.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/the-miracle-of-the-season/

Q said...

Brrr......so cold. I bet it was worth it since you saw so many different birds. The Swans would have been a huge delight for me as would the owls. My husband loves owls.
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas.
Your tree looks lovely.
Stay warm.
Sherry

shirl said...

Hi there Lisa, sounds a fun time counting in a group as you did. You all must really know your birds to have a count as high :-)

Your tree looks very nice and great to hear of someone so well organised too. My organisation is well out this year. I agree with Andrew, great dawn photos. Good to hear you’ll be joining in with his competition too :-D

Just wanted to pop by tonight to wish you a Merry Christmas and all my best wishes for 2011 :-)

guild-rez said...

Love your picture!!
Bird count? I should participate too.
May the Christmas season
fill your home with joy,
your heart with love
and your life with laughter.
Wishing you peace, prosperity and health for 2011.

vasanthalathika said...

merry 'x'mas & happy new year...

cyndy said...

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Your dawn sky photographs are wonderful, it must have been breathtaking to see in person...and from the weather report of the rest of the day it seems that the old adage "red sky at morning-sailors take warning" proved itself to be true!

How very exciting to find a Ross's Goose in with the Canada flock!

Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

Dear Lisa,

A Merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy New Year to you and yours.

Love your header, so very festive. Glad to read that you are all enjoying yourselves chez Greenbow.

We are going to have a bird count in Dutchland soon too.

Yolanda and the Bliss Team

Naturegirl said...

Lisa! Wishing you a Merry Christmas! "The skies turned to buttermilk"..love this description!

Commonweeder said...

I am so impressed by birdwatchers and think the bird count is a thrilling event. Unfortunately, I have never gotten beyond distinguishing between the big birds and the little birds. Unless it is a robin, a goldfinch or a cardinal.

Jan@Thanks for today. said...

Those pink skies are beautiful. It must have been so cold out there so early in the morning! There is a local bird count on Jan 2nd that I'm thinking of participating in for the first time this year. I've only done the backyard birdcounts in the past.

SandyCarlson said...

You have me feeling determined to learn more about our birds and to note their numbers. You are an inspiration.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

I think it would be fascinating to participate in a bird count like that! I know that I would prefer warmer temperatures!

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

yoon see said...

Hello Lisa, I need to appologise to drop by late here. Please forgive me.

We have bird count here in Malaysia. My sister in-law is very active in travelling!
She travelled to another states in Malaysia called Fraser Hill and Port Dickson, just to do bird's observation and bird count!

How interesting and one needs the patience...Indeed!

I also been to Fraser Hill this September for only my church camp purpose, not the bird count....

I do look forward to witnessing the joy in bird count!

Undestandable the super cold weather over your place Lisa....and I am surprise that you still got the high spirit to be positive! Yeah, you have inspired me again!

Good to give and receive, Christmas is not just giving and receiving presents. It's a thanksgiving time to reflect on the second coming of Jesus!

The rendition of the sky line is especially beautiful with diffrent colour shades of colour on! It's so interesting and I could imagine life is great....Yeah....

yoon see said...

Love your Christmas blog header, for it's still Christmas mood here, eventhough just after a few days!

Yeah, love your tall tall Christmas tree Lisa, I used to have one at home...but now no more!

My wish list for next Christmas is to get a brand new one!!!

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

You had a new post but I can't find it, Lisa, so I'll pause here to say that I hope you had a wonderful Cjhristmas, and here's to a happy New Year to everyone at Greenbow.

Lynn said...

Wow. you have a whole other life /blog I didn't know about! No wonder you draw such wonderful birds! ;0
Lovely home too...inviting.