Love the Lord your God, listen to His voice and hold fast to Him, for the Lord is your life! Deut. 30:20

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Arkansas Trick or Treating and birthdays

Jill's family drove to Arkansas to be with the cousins for Halloween.

 Both Emeri and Hannah were Elsas.  At the church Trunk or Treat, there were probably more Elsas than any other character!  She is really popular this year!
A few days later, Eli asked his mom "can I have my health bar?". 
She kept asking him what he meant and then he brought her this. 
He said, " it says its healthy!". 
You'd think with the shirt he is wearing, Staci would melt and give in?  Cute huh?


The next day, Emeri and Eli celebrated their birthdays.
Their birthdays are 2 days apart and some years they have "together" birthday parties.

 Aunt Jill likes to make number shirts!
 Emeri and Eli are really "into" the Dragons movie!

After opening gifts and eating cake, movie time!

Happy birthday, Emeri and Elijah!!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

"Pic or Peat!"

The grandchildren - or should I say - Elsa, Anna, Olaf and Sven, the reindeer
came to trick or treat the day before Halloween.

1.  Because they were going to Arkansas for Halloween (the next day)
2.  Because we had Judgement House on Halloween and we wouldn't be home to answer the door anyway!
3.  Because our church had Trunk or Treat!  Lots of goodies to be had!

Claire called out "Pic or Peat!"

Nana had lots of goodies for them! 
 Before coming to Nana and Papa's house, they had stopped at Grandma Lois' for yummies too.

Since we (the grown-ups) decided candy wasn't the best supper, we went to the Pizza Hut!

Then off to our church for Trunk or Treat!






                                                               A fun evening!!

Monday, November 3, 2014

November Birding

We've had a mild fall.
Trees are turning.  (insert - family joke)

But last night we had a hard frost. 
BRRRR cold!

Birding is the 1st Saturday of the month and I wasn't sure if anyone would turn up.
But 3 other brave souls did!  Off we took to listen and see what birds were out and about on this nice, cold November morning.

 The first bird we saw was a Carolina wren.  They are one of my favorite birds!

The photos of birds in this post I got off the web since I didn't bring my camera.  And because even when I bring my camera, I'm not the best photographer and don't have the BIG zoom lens you need to get these shots).
Wrens are just so adorable!  I love their chatter!   You can listen here:

Wrens are such good subjects for paintings.

We continued our 3 mile hike.

Some places sell hedgeballs but in this state they grow in abundance for anyone to pick!
 They make for pretty decorations.
or to get rid of crickets in your garage or home.

Hannah, can you see the horses off in the distance?

Sometime we will only spot a bird and they won't sing.  
Or we will hear the song but not see the bird.

There were quite a few birds this day.
A neck can only take so much craning!! 
And a lot of craning we did!
 Next month there will be more leaves off the trees and we'll be able to see more birds, hopefully!

We could see a brown creeper in this tree.  It just blends right into the bark.  Just a tiny, cute little bird!  Without a zoom lens, I couldn't capture it.  The camera phone doesn't do justice.

See how he would blend in?  They climb up the trees, often passing downward-facing nuthatches.

 white breasted nut hatch
(we saw these too)

Another little tiny bird we saw was the golden crowned kinglet.  
Our guide first heard it and then we spotted it.

You can hear their song here:

Little bird, little bird
I wonder at how thou art.
Though high on the tips
of branching boughs,
I on the ground a-creeping!
                                                    Old Celtic poem

The white throated sparrow makes the sound 
"Old Sam Peabody, Peabody, Peabody"
or "Old sweet Canada, Canada, Canada"  (for Kendall and Pastor Dave)

Besides having a professional birder who guides us, we also have a botanist and he tells us things about the plants and trees we see along the way. 
 This tree is a Kentucky coffee tree.
"The seed may be roasted and used as a substitute for coffee beans; however, unroasted pods and seeds are toxic. The wood from the tree is used by cabinetmakers and carpenters."

We were told that these berries are eaten by birds only as a last choice.

We were at the end of the trail when we saw a flock of cedar waxwings!
We counted 20!

Aren't they a beautiful bird?!

What a fun bird walk!  I was cold and ready to go home for a nice cup of jo!