Thursday was a very exciting day.  A trip into the city resulted in a few goodies for me, or rather for the birds in my winter garden. As it’s Christmas, my loving husband’s greatest gift to me was a spree in the Birds Unlimited store. I bought a bird-bath heater for the deck, a vertical suet-feeder and some peanut-butter suet. To be honest, I could have gone mad, there was that much amazing stuff on offer.

As if that weren’t enough, we happened upon a craft-store in an old house on a corner lot, that was going out of business and I found a charming fence feeder made entirely from reclaimed materials. Wait until you see it!

We’ve been in and out doing Christmassy things, but I’ve cleared the deck and scattered seed each day. We now have about six regular juncos, a trio of chipping sparrows and yesterday we had a pair of house finches. A visit from a dove was encouraging, despite its facing the wrong way on the fence and flying off without hanging around. My husband witnessed the rabbit on the deck first thing this morning, so I’ll be putting out carrots tonight.

We had some sad news the other day. Our neighbour who lived directly behind us (on the other side of the cedars) passed away quite suddenly. She was a friend to the birds as well, and always kept her silo feeders full of nyjer seed for the goldfinches in the summertime. She had an immaculate garden with lots of trees and perennials. I am hopeful that the next owner of her home will care for the garden and its inhabitants as conscientiously as she did.

Well, I don’t know if I’ll have time to share with you for a few days. This evening we will be singing in our church choir for Christmas Eve, and again in the morning. It’s a busy time for all.

However you spend the holiday, may you be blessed with peace and joy.

All the best from us here at the winter garden.



Snow on Snow



It just keeps coming. We had a bit of a reprieve yesterday, but it snowed again overnight and a light powder is falling as I write this.

At 7:30 a.m., I dragged myself out of bed, put on my winter gear and went outside to shovel the deck.  It was about a foot deep and my small red shovel was really no match for it.

Almost right away, the juncos started making noises as if from the ether.  I could hear their cheeping in the distance and when I looked up, a trio of them were in the Ash and the Chokecherry trees.

I spoke to them in a hushed voice, yet they still hesitated to come any closer. They seemed quite perturbed that I was in their domain. Little do they know that I’m setting it up for them.

Yesterday, one of them discovered the silo feeder I had stashed in the corner of the deck by the wall. Though they are exclusively ground feeders, juncos will, apparently, eat from a feeder if it is placed on the ground. Who knew? A few of them were pretty happy to have this new food resource, while others jockeyed for position in and around the bunker.

Things are hopping around here! I counted seven of them yesterday.

(By the way, if I have a heart attack while shoveling, this blog may not get off the ground.:))