Bird Nest

For a few years now small birds have attempted to build a nest under the edge of the roof


on this small ledge.


Most of the time they give up. This year however two birds

Little Bird.jpg
Busy collecting stuff for the nest.


worked really hard to get the job done:


Up close it seems like a small and unusual location to have a nest. However from a distance it makes sense:

Can you spot the nest?

It’s a well hidden covered area in which to have their young.



This post was inspired by the Photo Challenge: Unusual

What a Wonderful World

An absolutely wonderful rendition of the song “What a wonderful world”.  Enjoy.


Link: (


Sugar Ants

Sugar ants seem to stake out their territory; as much as I stake out mine. Once they find a food source them come out in a dense pack to gobble it all up. Battling them is an ongoing challenge. The other day I put down some maple syrup to get them to go to one spot:

Mmmm maple syrup

In a few days I will add a few drops of ant poison. Once the flood of ants slows down I will clean up the area to remove their pathway. It seems to be a good method to combat the sugar ants.

Since ant poison is a poison I only put it in locations where my dog won’t get access.



Ant Conference (

Post Inspired by:


I have a lot of house plants. Instead of going out and buying a saucer to put under them; I use clean microwavable meal dishes. They work great and if they get dirty I can toss them in the washer or just recycle them. The black and white/clear ones are easier to hide from view.


A few more ideas:

  • Yogurt containers for starting seeds for the garden. I punch a few holes into the bottom and then fill with dirt. They are a great size and can be reused from one season to the next.
  • Using old jeans to make pot holders.


  • Using an old coffee cup as a pen holder.
  • Cutting up old towels and using them as rags.

Finding a new use for old items also saves money; and keeps some items from just filling up a landfill.



Post inspired by the Photo Challenge: Repurpose


Today I looked outside and saw that the deer have returned. They appear so graceful as they munch on my neighbors blackberry bush:

Yummy blackberry bush

Then after all that hard work they look peaceful resting:

“I’m resting here. Enough pictures.”



Inspired by the photo challenge, “Graceful” (


After years of the weather people predicting snow I had little hope that we would get any. Then one day they forecast an inch of snow and we got a little dusting instead. At that point it was a bit tempting to believe that maybe the weather people might be capable of being right. The small dusting of snow melted away and the cold weather clung onto the area. Every day they seemed to forecast snow, they were resilient that some day it would show up in the quantity that they predicted. Really it would. Only it didn’t. The anticipation of a genuine snow day came and went. Then they forecast a day of freezing rain followed by light snow. Instead I woke up to find this seemingly infinite amount of snow on the ground:


Lots of snow.

Okay it wasn’t infinite, yet it sure seemed like it when it didn’t stop snowing for a day.  The weather people scrambled to catch up to mother nature. The weather coverage seemed endless, as did the “breaking news updates” that restated what they said the last time. On the rare occasion there was something new; like kids waving and playing in the background as the news person tried to be serious.

At every turn mother nature proved the weather person wrong. They would claim it would stop by noon. Noon would come and go and there was not only more snow; it was snowing harder. As the snow piled up a path was dug in the yard for my puppy dog to use.

Small pathway.

He uses the path at times and at others he doesn’t:

Path, what path? This is more fun.

The snow clings to his fur in a very uneven, clumpy, manner. While he is playing outside he sometimes ignores when his name is being called to come back inside. Once inside he wants to get warm and dried with the hairdryer. My shoes end up relaxing against the fireplace bricks to get dry and warm.

Nice and warm.

All of the snow creates a vastly different horizon than before. Looking out the window as the sun shines down and reflects off the snow it provides for a relaxing ambiance.

Pretty snow.



This post was inspired by the daily prompts: CapableSomeday, Cling, Uneven, Shine, Infinite, Specific, Tempted, Year, and Hopeful. It was also inspired by the weekly photo challenges: Ambiance, Names, Resilient, Path, Anticipation, New Horizon, and Relax.



Electricity Usage Monitor

The other day at the library I saw on display an electricity usage monitor so I grabbed it, checked it out, and brought it home. An electricity usage meter allows the user to plug in devices and determine how much it costs to run household appliances.

I had thought for sure that I knew what would cost the most in electricity usage. However I was absolutely shocked when it came back that the water filter and the heater on the 50 gallon fish tank cost around $45 a month to operate. This doesn’t even include the cost of fish food, the light on the tank, water, and chemicals that have to be used to treat the water. I was absolutely shocked. Other appliances I thought for sure would use a ton of energy when on or off barely used any energy.

I highly recommend anyone to check out an electricity usage monitor and find out what items in your house are sucking up the energy and causing your bill to be high. Maybe like me you will be surprised as to what the culprits really turn out to be.

Earth Day Coloring Contests

Earth Day is celebrated on April 22 of every year.  The day is credited to Gaylord Nelson from Wisconsin who witnessed the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill and took inspiration by the student anti-war movement. He called for an environmental teach in day to be held on April 22, 1970. 20 million people participated that year. Gaylord Nelson wrote about the day:

I am convinced that all we need to do to bring an overwhelming insistence of the new generation that we stem the tide of environmental disaster is to present the facts clearly and dramatically. To marshal such an effort, I am proposing a national teach-in on the crisis of the environment to be held next spring on every university campus across the Nation. The crisis is so imminent, in my opinion, that every university should set aside 1 day in the school year-the same day across the Nation-for the teach-in.”

It was adopted by the United Nations in 2009 and is celebrated in more than 192 countries.  The day even has its own anthem set to Ludwig van Beethovens Ode to Joy that talks about protecting nature and the world.

Earth Day is a day to inspire conservation and good stewardship of the planet. After all this is the only one that we have. Usually the coloring contests are around the theme of reducing, recycling and reusing as are the displays that kids put on in schools. The sponsors are usually organizations and groups dedicated to saving the environment.

Usually. Except for the state of Utah. This is the second year in a row that the sponsors of one of the coloring contests for children in schools has been the Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining; as well as other petroleum companies. The theme for 2012 was “How Do YOU Use Oil, Gas, and Mining?” The theme for this year, “Where Would WE Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?” The objectives listed for this year include:

  • Improving students and the public’s awareness of the important role that oil, gas, and mining play in our everyday lives
  • To highlight how modern mining and petroleum extraction techniques and reclamation methods minimize environmental impacts while providing society with the raw materials required to have our high standard of living.

Where society would not be what it is today without all the products that oil, gas, and mining have provided to us; that is not the point of Earth Day. Earth Day is about conservation, recycling, reusing, and thinking about ways to move forward without such a dependence on oil, gas and mining for the products that we use. Maybe someone in Utah missed the memo?