Taking Refuge

Last Sunday the Gracious One and her husband invited me to go out with them for lunch, to be followed with a ride to the Wildlife Refuge, something we like to do every February – February being the month that many varieties of feathered beauties fly in on their migrations. This year we did not see as many eagles as we have in the past, nor did we see the numbers of ducks and geese possibly because we are in our third year of lower-than-normal precipitation and the water levels were very low, but it was a lovely way to spend an afternoon in good company. I want to share with you my pictures from that day, while my mind wanders and my fingers ramble across the keyboard with completely unrelated thoughts.

One of the bald eagles we saw:
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Although you probably do not care at all, I realized the other morning that my bed only ever gets really “made” when I change the sheets. It gets “straightened” every morning, but with only one person under the covers – my bed partners Lily and Shasta sleep above the covers – it’s never really messed up. That might be attributed, in part, to the fact that my bed partners like to sleep close to me so I have little opportunity to flail about.

Flocks of snow geese coming in:
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I try to eat a healthy diet, my dinner consisting largely of vegetables, grains and beans with meats being fish occasionally and chicken more often. Lunch is usually turkey, cheese, sliced tomato and fresh spinach on a healthy bread. When I eat chocolate, it’s almost always dark chocolate. I’m working on consuming more fruits besides grapes in their liquid form. But then I turn around and get a salt craving which usually results in buying salty potato chips and leads to me consuming half a bag at a sitting. I still get points for trying, right? And don’t the healthy meals offset the greasy, salty potato chips? Oh yes, I recently read that most of us don’t eat enough salt these days. That’s like the egg thing and the coffee thing – they’re good for you, no they’re bad for you, now they’re good for you.

Snow geese landing in their large groups:
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In the mornings, I am often surrounded by all four of my furry girls. There is comfort in their presence – at least I cannot be accused of talking to myself, because they listen very intently. They don’t always pay attention, but they listen. I wonder, though, why they deem the bathroom to be a good place for us to spend time together. It seems that once we women have children, it becomes impossible to actually spend time in that room alone. Our children grow up and leave home, but we have animals (or many of us do) and they feel obligated to take the place of those children. Bailey feels I’m a captive audience and brings her ball to be tossed to her. Shasta’s position is to try to intercept the ball. Lily feels it’s a good time to be petted and only Twiggy allows me privacy. Or what privacy there is left to be had.

Groups of snow geese with a few Greater White-fronted Geese, commonly called Specks, closer:
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Although the predictions called for light snowfall overnight, we had rain and now the sun has come out and is making the raindrops on the bird tree branches sparkle. Nature’s diamonds. The overnight rain means the pine needles that need to be raked will be heavy with wet and so I need not feel guilty if I don’t go out and gather more of them for burning. Perhaps I will spend my day, or part of it, in the kitchen.

A view of Mount Shasta:
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I will make Thai Chicken Curry with rice for my dinner, and I will start the process of cooking Bailey’s food which consists of chicken, rolled oats and sometimes quinoa and rice, carrots, peas, green beans, celery and often spinach, all chopped up and boiled together. Bailey has developed sour stomach problems and this concoction with a little dry dog food stirred in seems to work best for her. Shasta girl has an iron stomach so she is easier – she gets dry dog food topped with frozen green beans or peas. The discrimination does not seem to bother her at all.

While we didn’t see as many eagles, ducks and geese as usual, Sandhill Cranes were out in abundance, sometimes serenading us with their purr-like calls.
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So there you have it – the trip to the Refuge and my wandering, rambling thoughts. Perhaps I’ll go read my book for awhile. For you I wish a day of enough. What the heck, how about a whole weekend of enough?!

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About Carol

I'm me - nothing unusual, just me. Widowed, 2 grown children who are my best friends, 2 dogs, 1 cat, retired, loving being retired. I am woman, I am strong.
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19 Responses to Taking Refuge

  1. Heather says:

    A whole weekend of enough? It might just happen too, with these less frigid temps.
    Your bird refuge never fails to impress me. I think it’s great that the birds all know to show up right where we take our cameras 😉
    Your girls don’t pick the peas and beans out? We’ve had to blend the veggies up or Petey avoids them. Which is odd, because he rarely turns down anything I’m cooking, including raw broccoli.
    Enjoy your book and not raking those needles.

    Like

    • Carol says:

      Shasta will eat nearly anything and if the veggies are mixed into the other stuff and well-cooked, Bailey will eat them. I do chop everything fairly small for Bailey too.
      I’m hoping you’ll have a ‘heat wave’ this weekend.

      Like

  2. Dear Carol,
    I’m so glad you have The Gracious One to share an adventure with, a refuge to go to, and a girl herd to share your days (and nights) with. Thank you for bringing us along on your walk. It’s nice to see sunshine, even if it’s raining outside my window!

    Like

  3. melouisef says:

    Nice blog.
    Like what you eat, same here, although i make cheese biscuits which I prefer to chips. And salted nuts.

    Like

  4. jay53 says:

    What a great place to walk! I love the sandhill cranes. We get nothing like them here.

    Your dogs .. do they know how lucky they are? (I know I cook for my dogs, too, but I also know I’m in the minority). Ours don’t sleep on the bed, by their choice, which is fine by me because I’d be too hot, but Jeffie does try to come into the bathroom with me. If only it weren’t for that darned shiny floor, he’d do it. As it is, he stands at the door raising one foot after the other and stretching his neck towards me as far as it will go! Oh, and you’re so lucky they’re not envious of each other’s dinner. Mine get exactly the same and still go to investigate each other’s bowl to make sure!

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  5. Carol — As always, I love the photographs that you share. Bailey’s diet sounds fantastic! Our Willa is much more like your Shasta. She enjoys canned pumpkin on her food (not pumpkin pie filling, or pumpkin puree — just plain pumpkin, canned; I bet Shasta would enjoy it too).

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  6. Karma says:

    I enjoy your bird photos very much -as well as the ramblings of your mind.

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  7. The Refuge looks relaxing and the ramblings are interesting. I like the way you wander. 😉

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  8. Kathy says:

    I didn’t realize (remember) that you had four furry ones. Gosh, that’s a lot of love. It was fun reading about your day–even the small things like making the bed. 🙂

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  9. Dawn says:

    Very cool! I was just reading a friend’s blog, they’re somewhere in AZ now and they saw flocks of sandhills too! I think a few of those birds need to head north. I guess not right yet as it’s still really cold here. But soon. Soon.

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  10. I love to go to wildlife refuges and this one is particularly beautiful. I love your photos of the birds. It looks like a fun outing. It’s always interesting to read the “wandering of [your] elusive mind!” 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Lisa says:

    How did you get 7 unread posts in my Feedly? SEVEN!!?? Oh well, this sounds like a lovely afternoon’s outing. I’m working on consuming more fruits besides grapes in their liquid form. Aren’t we all….aren’t we all…..Love the eagle shot and Mount Shasta is stunning in the snow! Hope your having a wonderful week, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Carol says:

      It’s because it was too cold to work outside this past week, so I spent more time at the computer. I will soon be off on a road trip so it might slow down some.

      Like

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