Saturday, June 7, 2008

Babies everywhere

First, my grown-up babies...

The first picture was taken after DD's fundraising recital for her band trip to Europe this summer, with DS. I love this picture; it captures their personalities, right down to the bizarrely tie-dyed shirt and the cute white dress. The second is from the junior prom, with her best friend. (More prom and recital pictures at my Flickr set.)

As for other babies, there's a lot of baby-making going on in our backyard. A few years ago, inspired by the National Wildlife Federation's backyard wildlife habitat program, we decided to do what we could to attract birds, butterflies, bees, and other wildlife to our garden. We planted a lot of native plants, added a water fountain and a birdbath, and put up a couple of bird feeders. It's worked great, and now our yard is a frequent stop of migratory birds, and a regular home to many common backyard birds. Here's some of the evidence.

First, a mourning dove doing some kind of a display. Although it's a common bird which I've seen many times, I was particularly struck this time by the beautiful blues on its head, side, and tail feathers.

A white-crowned sparrow among the lilacs, another migratory visitor.

A white-throated sparrow; we always get several every May, their arrival announced by their song, which sounds like, "Oh, Sam Peabody, Peabody, Peabody." Hence, T. and I call them the "Sam Peabodies." They don't nest near our backyard though; they move on after a couple of weeks, and we mourn the loss of their clear whistled song.

Although I'd be hard-pressed to call the starlings "wildlife," given the fact that they're a non-native, invasive species crowding out native birds, we're stuck with them, so we might as well enjoy them taking a bath.

These chickadees are residents of our yard. The female (on the right)seems to be missing some feathers from the top of her head, so we can easily recognize her. We know she's a female because we've seen her mate feeding her (during courtship and breeding, male birds often bring food to the females).

And this rose-breasted grosbeak hung around for a few days. We were hopeful when the female and male both arrived, that they might make a nest nearby, but they, too, moved on. Oh, well, we'll undoubtedly have sparrow, robin, starling, and cardinal babies to watch. Not to mention the chick babies which will be arriving to our home shortly (more on that neighbor has dubbed me "chicken momma"...I love it!).

Finally, some baby booties, for a colleague, from this pattern by Susan B. Anderson. They are simply six knitted garter stitch squares, sewn together to shape booties. The yarn is thrifted from a local craft consignment shop, Craft Bits and Pieces. The ribbon is thrifted from my local Goodwill and woven through the stitches, with a couple of knots to hold it in place. I will definitely make these again.

One of my ideas for this blog is to write reviews of local thrift/consignment shops, so after my next trip to Craft Bits and Pieces, I'll write more! And speaking of thrifted items, DD's prom dress was also from a consignment shop, and you can pretty much guarantee that anything that DS is wearing is thrifted!


Anonymous said...

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Doodlebug said...

Love the booties! I'll have to check out the Craft Bits store when I'm up that way; it sounds like a great resource.

And I would love to read reviews of thrift stores!


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