Monday, November 24, 2008

CVBS 2008

Lewis's Woodpecker, 11-21-08
CVBS field trip to Eastern Contra Costa County

We're back from the 12th Annual Central Valley Birding Symposium (CVBS, November 20-23, 2008) that is hosted by the Central Valley Bird Club.
Jack Laws, who wrote and illustrated the new field guide to the Sierra Nevada that I've mentioned several times (here, here, and here), gave a talk and several bird drawing workshops. He is a funny, goofy, enthusiastic naturalist.

More photos:

Another picture of the Lewis's Woodpecker
Webs with dew, CVBS Cosumnes River Preserve field trip, 11-22-08

A Pacific Treefrog is croaking outside of my window.

Ta ta for now, Sylvie.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

This weekend

I altered these photos of wild grape vines in Picasa (Saturation! Warmification!). They really were a rainbow of colors, but I, um, brightened them a bit :-) I took them near my husband's "office" yesterday, 11-15-08.

We birded the Sacramento County Delta today, 11-16-08. Here are some photos:

Nuttall's Woodpecker

Savannah Sparrow
A "Tufted" Duck swam up to us with his posse.

We saw lots of artichoke thistle (an invasive plant).
This plant is several feet wide and several feet tall.

Good night,

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Things that will lower your blood pressure

From Cute Overload: Hover Pup and Rick James Horse

The video of the day at was a crate full of puppies. Oh, their bellies and haunches and little legs that twitch when they sleep. You could even hear the cute sounds they made when they yawned. They had a big stuffed carrot toy. Speaking of watching puppies, do you remember this episode of This American Life?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Today and Sunday

Hermit Thrush, Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park, 11-11-08

We had today off (government holiday). We visited the Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park. It's nice -- lots of Black Oaks, cool lichen and moss, tons of woodpeckers (including a Red-breasted Sapsucker), and historical exhibits. I got a penny wooden doll kit from the park's gift shop. It comes with the doll, cloth, and a pattern to make her outfit. We'll see how the sewing goes :-)

Here are some more photos from today:

Web with dew
Lots of lichen and moss

We visited my in-laws on Sunday, 11/9. Here are some photos:

These holes are all over their property. Who lives in there? We don't know .

Here is their dog, Presto
(aka Prestorini, aka Hey Presto, aka Mr. Prestidigitation Jones; only I call him that last one :-)
Here is their dog, Dylan (after Bob!)
Ta ta for now,

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Environmentally preferable craft felt

Oooo, craft felt made from 100 percent postconsumer plastic bottles! I want the 28-color bundle. I found out about this product from the Craft magazine blog. I'll have to pick up their latest issue, which focuses on "green" crafting.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


A Pacific Treefrog just started croaking outside of the window!!!

Just sharing

Clouds, Placer County, 11.2.08

Today, 11-8-08, we visited the Gray Lodge Wildlife Area. I always enjoy the displays of avian profusion -- waterfowl by the gazillion, set against the backdrop of the Sutter Buttes (the world's smallest mountain range, they say).

My photos of the Snow Geese are crappy, but hopefully, you can get an idea of the numbers -- all of that white stuff in the water = Snow Geese.

We saw large groups of Ross's Geese and at least one Blue Goose. Greater White-fronted Geese and American Wigeons were plentiful, and we saw at least 10 Eurasian Wigeons.

I don't like hearing or seeing the hunters, but their dogs are cute.
It was funny to see a young hunter in full hunting garb, with his dog and gun, standing by the side of the road talking on a cell phone.

We saw a number of Tundras Swans on the drive there.

Ta ta for now,

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

About yesterday

To paraphrase a Chris Rock quote that I saw in The Nation a few months ago: George Bush fucked up so badly that he made it hard for a white man to run for president. But seriously, I was a little verklempt last night. Did you see Jesse Jackson start to cry numerous times? I know that everyone has been saying it, but I didn't think that I would live to see this day. I always thought that the only way we would get a woman and/or a person of color as a president is if they were some right-wing wacko.

After eight years of:

  • the president and his neocon death cult puppeteers using the Constitution as toilet paper and giving the rest of the world the middle finger (a gross understatement when you consider the baseless, preemptive war in Iraq)
  • my fellow citizens scaring the crap out of me with their acceptance of creeping fascism
  • having our country ruled (not governed) by a dumb ass (is that one word or two? should it be hyphenated? But I digress ...)
... it's beyond refreshing to look forward to a president who is not only brilliant and believes in giving diplomacy a try, but who is also not an ignorant, arrogant bastard. A deep thinker as president? Wow, what a concept.

I tend to be pretty cynical, but I am so relieved that this country is starting what I hope is a U-turn.

Good night,


Here is a snippet from the Billings Gazette (I heard about this from the Pharyngula blog):

HELENA - Republican gubernatorial candidate Roy Brown this week accused Democrats of spreading a false rumor that he is a vegetarian in this meat-loving state.

"I am not and have never been a vegetarian," Brown said.

"I am disgusted by the baseless allegation that I am a vegetarian and that my personal eating habits should somehow be construed as opposed to the economic interests of Montana's livestock industry."