Birds, Garden

Planning for Spring

Oh my goodness, where does the time go? January has already receded into the past while the first of the year seems as if it were yesterday. The positive side of this runaway timeline is that Spring is ever so much closer, which in turn means it is time to plan the garden. Some of the beds still need to be reworked and new ones made, but the garlic is already planted and waving its green scapes in the chilly air. Collards, broccoli, and cabbage are in the ground, but they seem to be at a standstill because of the cooler temperatures of January. In the next few days, seedlings will be started indoors and artichokes will be planted in the ground.

A second fruit orchard has been set up that includes Paw Paws, Fuji Apples, Mayhaws, Figs, Peach, and Plum trees. There is still a spot left for a couple of Elderberries for future batches of Elderberry Syrup. There are also two cooking Pear trees that have been producing quite well.

This year has been filled with birds coming to the “Breakfast Buffet” during morning coffee. They devour the seed and suet that is spread just outside the kitchen window. It is a joy watching them every day. Here are a few of the daily visitors.

Click on an image to see a larger picture!

It is evident that there is a lot of work to do to welcome Spring so wish me the blessings of Nature!

Don’t Judge the Moment, Live It!

Thoughts

New Year New Day New Way

Approach the New Year with resolve to find the opportunities hidden in each new day.
~ Michael Josephson

It is the last day of the old year and Father Time will be giving way to Baby New Year. We are programmed by the reigning society to set new affirmations at this time, but should we be doing this or should we be reinforcing the positive aspects in our lives that we are already working to master? Many of us are expert at beginning new projects however we are also adept at not finishing before we start a new activity or goal. This new year would be an excellent time for us to reflect on the positive blessings and achievements we have attained in the past year and at the same time jot down those items we would like to continue to improve. As our new year progresses new aspirations will arise and be added to our list in a natural manner.

I wish us all a spiritually blessed, prosperous, and happy new year!

Don’t Judge the Moment, LIVE IT!

Morning Moments

Nature Altering Her Robes

The chill of Winter is beginning to set into the Deep South, and I just want to sit by my window and watch Nature alter Her robes as I drink my morning coffee. It is interesting that as She removes Her coverings we increase ours, and as She envelopes Herself with heavier layerings we decrease ours.

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Buffalo Spirit Tree
Darlene Callahan Hohensee
Click for larger image

This morning as I scanned my small corner of Creation the leaves were dropping from my Buffalo Spirit Tree. I soon realized that leaves just don’t drop that heavily. That is when I spied a beautiful Pileated Woodpecker, and I just couldn’t resist grabbing my camera. Thanks to Audubon’s website I was able to identify him and find out what a wonderful companion he is for my garden and trees.

 

 

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Pileated Woodpecker
Darlene Callahan Hohensee
Click for larger image

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Pileated Woodpecker
Darlene Callahan Hohensee
Click for larger image

“A big, dashing bird with a flaming crest, the largest woodpecker in North America (except the Ivory-bill, which is almost certainly extinct).

Excavating deep into rotten wood to get at the nests of carpenter ants, the Pileated leaves characteristic rectangular holes in dead trees. This species became rare in eastern
North America with clearing of forests in centuries past, but has gradually increased in numbers again since about the beginning of the 20th century. Where unmolested, it even lives in parks and woodlots around the edges of large cities.”
~ Audubon Guide to North American Birds

May your day be equally and more abundantly blessed!

Garden

Elderberry Promises

Having a very good morning today! While getting ready to meet with a friend for lunch and some shopping I was stopped in my tracks by this beautiful site.

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Such wonderful promise of a large elderberry harvest.

For the first time last year, I made Elderberry Syrup and used it during the winter months to keep my immune system in high gear. I am amazed at the benefits of this delightful bush.

In an article from the University of Maryland Medical Center, that is no longer available on their site, the benefits of Elderberry were listed and explained. Thank goodness I saved a pdf file containing that information. It was stated in the article that,

Elderberry, or elder, has been used for centuries to treat wounds, when applied
to the skin. It is also taken by mouth to treat respiratory illnesses such as cold
and flu. Some evidence suggests that chemicals in elder flower and berries
may help reduce swelling in mucous membranes, including the sinuses, and
help relieve nasal congestion…

Elderberry also contains flavonoids, which have antioxidant properties and may
help prevent damage to the body’s cells. In fact, elderberry outranks
blueberries, cranberries, goji berries, and blackberries in terms of total flavonol
content.” Elderberry _ University of Maryland Medical Center

Of course, before you decide to use any natural products check with your physician for any interactions with your current medications.

Naturally, the dreaded disclaimer:

Any content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician or other health care worker.

Wishing you all a very blessed and beautiful day!