Sunday, April 19, 2009

Mt Rainier, near Auburn

Taken while driving the freeway. A beautiful day, a stunning mountain. I couldn't resist - shot through the windshield (I wasn't driving!).  The mountain dominates the landscape.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Dead Wood

Or not dead, but the base of new life.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Spring Chicks

I wasn't planning to raise more chickens this year, but my hens have different plans from me.

I love watching hens teach their chicks what foods to eat, showing them the best tidbits.

This tiny hen will take on all comers. Fortunately with Charlie the Great Pyrenees on duty, there aren't a lot of threats. I am amazed, though, that she's managed to keep these guys safe from the many ravens, as they spend much of their time in the chicken yard, which is closed off from (although surrounded by) dogs. 

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Millie On Guard

Millie had joined me on my morning jaunt to find flowers, but got distracted by noises towards the road.

And of course she knew exactly where I was, and quickly checked that I was still OK.

And then checks out the rest of the area. All being well, she joined me again on the walk up the hill.

More Spring Flowers

Native plants are starting to grow and bloom. The early Indian Plum and Red Currant are pictured in previous posts. I took a stroll today to find some more bloomers.

This is salmon berry. The pink flowers are followed by fruit that starts yellow and turns to orange.
One of my very favorite spring natives, skunk cabbage grows in wet soil. In spring you can tell at a glance where seeps and bogs are, for they are filled with these large-leafed yellow flowered plants.

Aren't they pretty? And lined up along the seep. One of the seeps.

And yes, they are called skunk cabbage for a reason. Their aroma is somewhat reminiscent of their black and white namesake.

Spring Trees

Seemingly overnight trees are breaking out in leaf.

Aren't they a beautiful color?

And here's a young alder hiding at the edge of the woods.

Looking up to see who was serenading me, I caught a Towhee in full song.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Spring Fever

After weeks of cold, wet and wind that included two days of snow, warm and sunny weather arrived. Here in the NW everyone became an energizer bunny. The first warm here is always amazing, and this one more than most. Trees sprouted leaves as we watched, flowering cherries went from barely budded to full bloom in 2 days, and the people all looked like they've been mainlining sunshine. A spring in every walk, a smile on every face. Short sleeves and sandals and a lack of coats were notable. 

It's days like this that remind me why I live here. The pure joy of warm and sunny days becomes an airborne contagious elixir.  Two days later the temperature was 10 degrees cooler and clouds again filled the sky. The streets were still filled with lightly clad people, although now they shivered. Then it rained.

The trees are still on hyperdrive, leaves popping out overnight, blossoms appearing out of nowhere. Spring has arrived, and even the reappearance of coats and hats can't hold it back.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Hidden Sentry

Any time I come up the lane, I hear Charlie's barks from afar. I've never figured out where he was, but he was always at the lower gate by the time I got to it, ready to greet me or race the car up the hill. Today I found his spot.

From here he has a view of everything Millie can't patrol, and his back is to the upper chickens - where I'm taking photos from. In easy reach if he hears anything.

And he hears something, and gives it a bark. Not a big enough threat to run down the hill, but whatever it is, it's been warned.

Saturday, April 04, 2009


When the Sun Shines

When the sun shines, this is the most beautiful country. The recent cold weather and snow have covered the mountains in white. A lovely day I have to share.

And of course Mt. St. Helens is glowing in all her broken glory. A constant reminder of how powerful volcanos can be.

I'm loving my new camera with the great zoom!