The recent spring snowfalls were a good incentive for the local birds to visit the bird feeder. I was trying to photograph the variety of birds and colors at the feeder and caught these couple images in the lot of them. They are pretty cute and I have to admit I got lucky too.
There are 5 or 6 holes at this feeder but I've never seen that many birds at it. Most birds seem to like a little space on each side of them.
Pictured here are the male and female American Goldfinch, a male House Finch and the bird in flight is a Dark-eyed Junco. At least I am pretty sure about that. I'm not an official "birder" but was able to match them up in a bird book.
I hope you are enjoying Spring wherever you are!
That is a question many people have never asked themselves until they shovel what is thought to be the heaviest snow ever deposited. Maybe you are thinking, well, it depends on the size of the shovel and how much snow it will hold. Or perhaps the temperature in the air is another variable. Warmer temperature tends to bring snow with a higher water content making it feel a lot heavier than dry snow. It can often mean the difference between snow that is good for making snowballs or snowmen as opposed to snow that is powdery and good for skiing and sledding.
To find out an answer for our current snowfall, let's use this orange shovel for an example. It weighs around 3 pounds.
Now let's fill it up with snow, a reasonable sized scoop, and weigh again.
This one is clocking in at an impressive 16 pounds, minus 3 for the shovel, and that is a hefty 13 pounds of snow. It felt much more like 25. It was a heavy one. But beautiful. The heaviness made it stick to the trees a little better. Too bad a big wind early this morning managed to bring a lot of it down. A little sunshine quickened the process as well. Still it was lovely. Here is a pano from my backyard. I enjoyed it but did not have to drive far in it. Maybe I'll be posting images of spring next time?
Originally published Dec. 9, 2012
I really love weekends in December. For me, and I think a lot of other people too, they are filled with shopping, decorating and holiday baking. I’m not sure if guys feel the same way. Now that I think about it, probably not so much. Not to be stereotypical…I’m sure there are some guys who do all of that and more. Speaking to the ones who do not, perhaps they at least get to enjoy the fruits of those labors, sneaking a caramel or cookie here and there and generally feeling the warmth emanating from the glow of holiday candles or lights, cards coming in the mail, the anticipation of opening presents, and the joy of giving a special gift.
Here are a few images I’ve made over the years. I hope you too are enjoying this time of year whether you are actively or passively participating in it!
Originally published Jan. 1, 2012
Finally, it snowed in Minnesota! We have had the brownest winter I can remember in ages. It almost feels like Old Man Winter is ignoring us for too much complaining about last year's snow. But last night I found myself enjoying the immense quiet outside that happens when it snows like that. Even on New Year's Eve, barely a car could be heard on the road except for the occasional loud mufflered auto puttering somewhere in the distance. I suppose if you lived in the outer ring suburbs or rural areas, you might not notice how quiet it can get, but it is very noticeable in the city (or in my case, mid-range suburb).
The oversized snowflakes coupled with the sheer peace and quiet added up to one thing for me - it felt magical and a beautiful way to ring in the New Year.
Speaking of New Year, I found myself last week trying to face up to about ten years of post it notes that have accumulated on my desk. Yes, ten years' worth. Passwords, account names, remember this, remember that, drawings from my kids, ideas. Every time I looked at that stack I would think...some other time and push it into a hidden recess on my desk. Then last week, I picked it up, all 2 inches of it, and took it to the library. Decisions would be made, one by one until the pile was eliminated, greatly reduced or at a bare minimum combined onto one sheet of paper.
I found inside those notes some worthwhile advice that I want to pass on to you as we start this New Year. I didn't write down the source of this information. These notes are so old I really can't even recall where I read it - the internet, newspaper, a book? I have no clue. So wherever credit is due, thank you for the excellent suggestions.
The post-its are titled "Make Your Own Luck".
*Be skilled at creating and noticing chance opportunities
*Make lucky decisions by listening to your own intuition
*Create self-fulfilling prophecies via positive expectations
*Adopt a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good luck
*Making your own luck will make others lucky too
*Have a growth Mind Set
-Need trial and error
-Failing is the best way to succeed next time
*Never stop learning. The entrepreneurial mind set does not see risk as danger. See it as heightened probability that there is a big range of possible outcomes.
-Losing is essential to winning
-Persistance and pursuit of knowledge leads to success
*Calculate your risk. If you are going to take big risks, you must believe to the core that you are going to succeed. Need that faith.
Here are some characteristics of the Classic Growth Mind Set:
*Weigh possibility of failure against chance of success
I love running into positive notes like this. What do you say? Are you ready for 2012 to be your luckiest year yet? I sure am!
I am a photographer who lives in Minnesota. I blog about Minnesota, photography, music, food and miscellaneous topics.