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Got a good reason For taking the easy way out


Along Oso Creek and into the Botanical Gardens

 Please Note:  The 'special' beautiful bird I mentioned last week here at Hootin' Anni's, the one from Old Mexico that showed up in Texas, is shared on my birding blog this week!!!  Come see the photos! You'll most likely be startled by the pretty li'l thing ---link above in the tabled text area.

...and speaking of my birding blog, if you've ever paid a visit, you may have noticed on my sidebar a link to one of South Texas's birding sanctuaries. This particular site I share on my blog, I have completely become addicted!!  It has a live bird cam. I try to visit at least once early in the morning and then after dinner [I'll explain why after dinner in a bit]. But each day so many different birds that are not seen anywhere else in the USA [or world] show up at this feeder. Just this past morning I let it load for me and was thrilled to see such a variety at one time. I've seen cardinals, chachalacas, black crested titmice, jays, a whole slew of different species of doves, woodpeckers, orioles, and more. But what I'm getting at for this part of my post, I took a screenshot of the feeder. There was a very special bird there...at least I think it is --I may be misidentifying it, but I think it's an Altamira Oriole [an Old Mexico species] that happened to fly too far north into our borders! I guess it does show up in the extreme south Texas area, but this was a first for me. Now I want to drive there and sit by the feeder all day in hopes of seeing one myself in real time!...


The oriole is the yellow on the upright log...then, on the log's side, a golden fronted woodpecker, a couple of green jays in the seed box, on the ground to the left is a white tipped dove and on the right side, the ground, a thrasher [long billed I think]. As I was working on this screenshot to ready it for this post, a titmouse flitted in, grabbed one seed and vanished to the trees that quick!

copyright infringement not intended

Oh, and you're curious as to why I visit this site just after our dinner? When it becomes dark, and the birds roost, out come the racoons!! They clean up the leftovers and talk to one other. Sometimes they fight over the seeds and fruit...but they're comical. And I think I'd miss them if they didn't show up nightly!! [around 6-6:30 PM CST]
 

If you'd like the live cam link you can find it on my bird photo blog's sidebar.



[the photo above is Bud with his binoculars checking out the waterfowl at the first pond]

Bud  and I decided to try our birding luck at the Botanical Gardens just outside of town this past week. Of course I had to check out the orchid house, and check out all the bird cages [housing live birds of the exotic kind like parrots and such]. I took photos of the many orchids and parrots. The staff and volunteers that day we were there were working on replacing and improving the butterfly house, so we didn't bother to stop there and walked on past and into the trails that meander beside the pond, and over the long boardwalk with viewing stations here and there in the wetlands. Then, we traversed the circular path in the fields along Oso Creek. I saw one Blue Gray Gnatcather, but it never did turn to face me and the camera lens. Some day I'm gonna get a full view of that little beauty!! Along with the gnatcatcher, we spotted several male cardinals, one lone mourning dove, heard the sandhill cranes long before we finally spotted them high in the sky (their calls can be heard for miles ahead of them) white pelicans, shovelers, and American coots were busy in the marshes of the wetlands. One great egret and many coots and ducks were on the pond. After perusing the small gift shop, we prepared to leave. In the parking lot, I noticed along with the new learning center addition to the gardens, the Purple Martin Houses were active with sparrows and martins...I got a couple of photos of the Purple Martins too.

Purple Martins


...top left to right:
Great Egret [notice how its legs are bent at the 'knee'], Mourning Dove, Blue Grey Gnatcatcher [rear view is all I got!] and a flight of Sandhill Cranes in the clouds

...more photos to come from the orchid house and our walk in the near future!!! I confess, I probably took way too many orchid photos...but they were ALL so beautiful. And soon, I'll share them.




HODGEPODGE
hosted by Joyce


1. The expression 'mad as a March hare' originated with a fictional character who is distracted and frantic. When were you last 'mad as a March hare' and what was it that made you that way? Like the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland..."I'm late, I'm late...for a very important date!" But, those days are a long time in my past; meaning I can't remember the last time.

2. Mardi Gras this year falls on Tuesday, March 4th. Have you ever been to Mardi Gras, and if so what did you think? If not, do you have any interest in going? Purple, green, and gold are the colors of Mardi Gras. Which one is most prevalent in your wardrobe? How about in your home? Been! New Orleans is a city I could love, and hate! Crime is high, even in the corrupt city government...so many things to do culturally...pretty parks...but still a dirty city. I remember one year we were there, and I was nearly sickened with the smell of disinfectant and soap that was being sprayed up and down the streets of the famous area...Bourbon Street...the odor is something I will never forget! And I'm sure it was done [daily by the way] to clean up human waste if you get my drift! And as for colors---purple!!!

3. Are you old fashioned? In so many ways...especially issues when it comes to family. I still believe in marriage [instead of just living together as so many couples do these days], I believe in having a meal with family at the table, being a disciplinarian with kids as they grow to adults, having family time and doing things as a whole, not going our separate ways all too often like I have noticed, being a role model. I also believe I'm old fashioned enough to say too many parents GIVE too much to their children --make them work and earn what they want/need - all too often they're doing their offspring an injustice and they grow up to expect it from others when grown [they don't know HOW to earn it]. And that includes higher education!!! Things like that.

4. Do you carefully plan your vacations, or do you prefer the days to be more spontaneous? I can say when travel comes into the picture, I plan. But, this time in my life, I'm on a permanent vacation, so spontaneity is part of my style also.

5. March is National Sauce Month...what's your favorite sauce, and what do you most often top with this sauce? Cheese sauce and/or hot sauce. When it comes to cheese sauces of all kinds, I top a lot of prepared dishes with that. Hot sauce [not picante, but salsa more so], I usually make my own with jalapeno peppers, fresh tomatoes, cilantro, etc. In the blender!!...topping burgers or Mexican food with it.

6. What's something that easily brings a tear to your eye? You may think this is callous and cold, but I tear up when I see animals suffer - more so than human suffering. Dunno why, but I do.

7. If you could own any sports team, which one would it be and why? Oh my, a toss up between the Yankees or the Broncos. But, never Boston Red Sox. LOL

8. Insert your own random thought here. ...this has really been a long, odd winter for South Texas. Sunday, it was 78 for high. A most beautiful spring-like afternoon after a foggy morning. Then, by early Monday morning [and I'm saying, like, 2 a.m.] the temp plummeted to 34 degrees. And Tuesday morning, early, I was awakened by thunder and slush - now it's raining heavily, and mighty cold still!! Another blast from the north. Now, all you northerners...please, just keep the cold up there will'ya?!!! It's not nice to tease us here like that!!  Addendum:  6a.m. ---Erik just texted me "Ice on the car this morning"!!  Nasty.


linking to: Wednesday Hodgepodge

104 comments :

  1. Sounds like your world is very active right now. Mine is still in winter mode.

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    Replies
    1. ...it's cold here! Darned cold.

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  2. I've never seen a green jay before, they're lovely! Are they as cheeky as the blues?

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    1. ...actually, they're quite the 'mocking bird'....you can hear a hawk far in the distance, look around close by and it's the green jay mocking the sound of a hawk. And they do that quite often.

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  3. I always enjoy your pictures. Looks like a fun place to visit, including the coons! I think seeing animals suffer is hard because they can't speak up for themselves.

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    1. ...you're so right. I knew there was a reason. ;-)

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  4. Those birds are so beautiful!! I can hardly wait for spring to arrive so all our colorful birds return.
    Fantastic.
    xo Catherine

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    1. ...enjoy your birthday Catherine!!
      Don't forget to get a good supply of ant-wrinkle cream.

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  5. I didn't think it ever got that cold in southern Texas! Brrrr! And the birds are such a treat. I'll check out that web cam in the evening. Thanks for the reminder about springing forward this weekend. I'd forgotten. :-)

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    1. ...it has snowed here on the coast...but didn't last more than a day. This year, tho, it's been unseasonably cold for a long time!!!!

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  6. This has been the most bipolar weather I can recall in a long time. Looking forward to spring! I love your bird pictures. I learn so much!

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    1. ....well, I'm ready to move to Hawai'i 'bout now. LOL

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  7. would love to see a green jay. :)

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    1. ,,,their colors are stunning.

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  8. Migration has begun! It's a little bit early but it has been fun here in Arizona watching the party get started. Love your Green Jays!

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    1. ...oh yes, the Sonoran Desert is a fabulous place for birds. I miss the cactus wrens.

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  9. Anni mom and I like question #2. WHY you ask. Well today is Fat Tuesday and as far as I'm concerned any day beginning with Fat is a good day.
    Mom has a ton of purple in her closet. Red is her favorite color but all in all she loves all the jewel colors
    Hugs madi and the old gray mare

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    1. rofl...you have me rollin' In FAT.

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  10. I'm excited to see what birds we will see in the next month or so! Lovely captures.

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    Replies
    1. ...ya, this is a great time of year for bird watching.

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  11. A great variety Anni! We should be seeing the Purple Martins returning here in the next couple of months.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ...they were sure busying around that day we were there.

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  12. Beautiful birds. I'll try to find time to check out your Bird Blog... SO many blogs to visit!!!!!

    I lived in Nawlins for about 4 yrs --and loved it there even though the crime was rampant. Got our car broken into a few times --and my son got his watch stolen on the streetcar one time... NOT FUN. We love Mardi Gras --but never went to the French Quarter (enjoying it on St. Charles Ave instead).

    I am old-fashioned in most of my beliefs also agreeing with everything you mentioned. Familes today are so broken... Very sad! I do hope that I am not too judgmental of others and their lifestyles--although it's hard for me at times to keep QUIET... ha

    We plan our vacations from top to bottom ... BUT--sometimes, we do have to be flexible and go to Plan B --or C... ha

    I am a cheese lover.. Give me cheese sauce anytime.

    Watching a soldier come home and have a reunion with his kids/family makes me teary.

    I'd never want to buy a sports team --nor get into that crazy world.... I love watching games from my couch --but that's about it...

    Yes, it has been a crazy winter ---and I'm SO ready for some SPRING.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
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    1. ...if you like viewing rare birds, then by all means try not to miss it Betsy.

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  13. You are so blessed to live in an area with so many birding opportunities.
    Like you I'm on permanent vacation status - love it and the spontaneity that affords me.
    The weather everywhere has been crazy this year. We awoke to three inches of snow yesterday and even though the temps this morning were in the single digits the sun is shining brightly for once. :)

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    1. ...permanent vacation....I'm lovin' it too.

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  14. Anni...the pintail duck was on my deck grabbing cracked corn with some mallards.... Lifer for me... Michelle

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    1. On your deck?!!! Wow!!!!

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    2. It must have followed the mallards as I have plenty visiting due to the harsh winter..we have lost hundreds and hundreds of ducks, especially diving ducks due to the frozen Great Lakes due to starvation..really sad out there so I am happy to see so many happy birds your way..Michelle

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    3. ...how sad!!!! I do hope it gets warmer...soon!!! I've been seeing and reading on the bird sighting site that migration has started...birds are heading north once again...hope it's not too early and they're gonna fly into extreme cold.

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  15. What a great set of birds around the feeder - I have seen my first woodpeckers in a long time this week - very excited.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Scottsdale, AZ (and Melbourne!)

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    1. I'm always excited with spotting woodpeckers too....what kind?

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  16. You are certainly seeing a variety of birds and I enjoy seeing them on your blog.

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    1. I'm happy to know you enjoy it Ruth.

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  17. Great variety of birds around your feeder.

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    1. ...thanks Neil. Wish it WAS my feeder.

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  18. The martins are very pretty birds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ...they are, in their own special way, I agree.

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  19. Hi "Anni," You had an active week of watching/photographing birds. The only ones I'm seeing around our house in the snow are the Gray and Blue Jays. The rest are in your yard, I guess. Also, I thought you said you wanted some of our snow, so I sent you some (sorry...).

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    1. ...just a misunderstanding. You can take back the cold to Breckenridge now, thank you very much.

      I would like to see the jays from the Rockies...you always make me yearn for the Colorful Colorado

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  20. This is such a fun time of year for birding! I'm trying to enjoy every single minute--when the weather allows. Today icicles are hanging from the limbs and just two days ago we ran the A/C. Those green jays are AMAZING!!! You are seeing so many cool birds and I am just a teensy weensy jealous. :) I'll have to check out the bird cam now. Thanks!

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    1. Icicles?!! Oh my, are you kiddin' me? You're a bit farther north than I am, but my goodness....Louisiana is quite a bit south in USA...icicles. Unimaginable.

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  21. That is such a pretty bird.
    We've had far too many days this winter with negative temperatures. I'm so ready for some warm weather

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    1. ...oh so am I!! Spring couldn't come here quick enough. I'm tired of the frigid, dampness. I'll take damp, but not so darned cold. Warm up a bit already!!!

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  22. When I was younger never gave birds much thought but now as I age with style. I enjoy such things as birds and flowers.
    Although my yard is cover with snow but the little birds does give me great Joy.

    Coffee is on

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    1. Birds are so fun to watch, I agree. And flowers always make the world brighter with color.

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  23. The Green Jay is high on my list of birds I want to see! They are beautiful. Great post and photos.

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    1. Come on down, I know a spot close to Corpus that have them nearly year 'round.

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  24. We are often on the same page Anni ... I always enjoy your comments and agree whole heartedly with your "old fasion" views. I also am brought to tears when I see an animal suffer ... and not so much when I see human suffering. I think maybe I learned to distance myself from human pain as a nurse, because you can't get emotional when you are treating a sick patient. I don't feel guilty about it ... I simply rely on my actions to compensate. I never walk away from someone who needs help ... that is more of who I am.

    Your birds are wonderful and Corpus Christi is on my Bucket list ... I will be grabbing your link as soon as I finish here. I, too, love to watch the goofy little racoons ... they are fun. Thank you for this enjoyable post ...

    Andrea @From The Sol

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    1. It's sad to know so many families these days can't see what they're missing!!! And like Mari said above, my tears and hurt for animals is because they can't speak for themselves...that just may be it.

      Glad you enjoyed the post Andrea.

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  25. I have to check out that webcam and see the raccons fight :-). I love those comical creatures and feel so sad when I see them lying dead on the road :-(....I am also very much like you-- I can't see the suffering of animals :-(...

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    1. Thanks KL...hope you enjoyed watching the webcam.

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  26. I always enjoy your photos, and your Hodgepodge!!

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    1. ...and I love that you enjoy my posts Terri. Thank you.

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  27. Not enjoying this cold blast either! I can't say I am ready for 77 degrees, either, but just some normal 60 degree highs and 40 degree lows would be nice. Unless, of course, by us suffering, our friends up north could get a respite.

    I, too, am one of the people who didn't appreciate birds when I was young....dead bird? Who cared? But now, I see them in an entirely different light. We have watched as they build nests in our bird house, then tend to those eggs and little ones until they fly away....and I now know they are not "bird brained" at all....but very smart and very fun to watch. I love birds now in my "golden years". I'll have to go take a look at that cam!

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    1. Well now, YOU certainly had two great birds and shared some awesome images on your post. Loved it.

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  28. Wonderful birds...I'm kind of addicted to the eagle cam here, even tho I can see it in real time pretty often, I can't go every minute of every day! (Darn.). So I can see how you'd want to check the one you mention often with all that great variety of wonderful birds.

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    1. ...Texas is a great state for birding...I think mainly 'cause we are in the migratory path of so many.

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  29. I need to remember the hodgepodge meme, though seems like I joined your bird meme, and then didn't to visit many. And you will laugh--I went to your I'd Rather be Birdin' blog to see the bird you were talking about, but also to click on the link to the live cam, got a phone call and totally forgot to click on that link, so now got to go back there to get it--it is apt to be something I like!

    And this post reminded me of this site: http://birdcam.xcelenergy.com/index.html

    I have not checked it out this year, but notice across the top at the different cams. Have watched eagles, owls, etc on their nests. And maybe you know about it. Just thought I would mention it.

    Going to hush now...before I write an entire book!

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    1. ....those webcams can certainly become addictive. That's why I tend to discipline myself and only go out to the site twice daily. LOL

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  30. some great birding opportunities there; I love the hides!

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    1. ....some are so very colorful, but to be honest, I think YOUR Aussie birds are super. Not only in color but highly unusual. And enjoyable.

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  31. HI Anni Greast series of birding shots and I especially the Green Jay.

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  32. You see an amazing amount and variety of birds, Anni. I love the Golden Fronted Woodpecker and the Purple Martins. I also love that I could still read your captions of the Great Egret (bent at the knee, that always fascinates me when I see this bird in the field!) with my ole lazerd eyes. Great post and wonderful blog!

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    1. I honestly didn't think bloggers read all that much of my babbling. Maybe I should make the text larger for the captions? LOL

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  33. Dearest Hootin Anni;
    It is funny that I never thought I'd learn or interested in birds until motivated by blog friends p;) Great varieties of them♡♡♡ Is it your husband with binoculars? Wonderful you two have same interests!

    Sending you Lots of Love and Hugs from Japan, xoxo Miyako*

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    1. Yep, Bud is my hubby...of 46 years. Well, in May this year it'll be that long. Thanks Miyako

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  34. Love those Purple Martins, have never been able to photograph them, but there are people with luxurious Martin houses within 12 miles of here,,, I may need to make a visit~

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    1. Yes, yes Mary...go pay a visit!!

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  35. I don't think I've ever seen a Green Jay. In spite of our leafless shrubbery and our snow covered yard, my back hedge is full of birds. There is something there they love year round. Fun to see the nests with all the leaves missing too.

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    1. Oh, I bet it IS a great pleasure to watch the nest building and soon incubation.

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  36. Your answer to the old fashioned question is great! I feel the same way so if that makes me old fashioned I'll wear that title happily!

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  37. Enjoyed this post.

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  38. I agree with what you wrote about New Orleans...the smell on Bourbon St. was sickening to me. I never plan to go back. Just felt so dirty to me. I, also, agree with all the points you made about being old-fashioned. What do you think about that 18 year old girl in NJ who's suing her parent for the cost of her tuition? She moved out because she couldn't abide by their rules. I say...time to grow up, missy, and make your own way!

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    1. ...no, I have not heard or read about this 18 year old. If the judge sides with her, then this country's justice system has gone to hell in a hand basket.

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  39. Wow. Now I'm not so sure I want to visit New Orleans!

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    1. ...there are good parts of the city...if you know the area well enough. I guess. LOL

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  40. Actually, it would be a gingerbread with lemon sauce. When it's out of the oven and the sauce is poured on top, I'll invite you over. :-) (Do you have an email so you don't have to get these irrelevant comments of mine on your blog post?) :-)

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    1. I do have an email...but I rarely even check it...like maybe once a month if I ever get around to it. Blogging and commenting with the 'reply' button is more what I spend my time doing....but I will send you an email. No problem. Just know I don't often open my email account at all.

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  41. I'm just beginning to be able to identify bird varieties and the site you led me to is very helpful. I was never a "bird" person because I didn't like their pointy beaks and their scratchy looking toes! Now I like them. Go figure! Thanks for leading the way to a "new world" in my quest for nature and all of the wonderful life opportunities regarding birds - it brings.

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    1. I know that you'll enjoy your new world adventure. And hope you allow yourself to photograph at opportunities when they arise.

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  42. That Altamira Oriole would be something special to see!

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  43. I love and agree with your 'old-fashioned' thoughts, Anni.
    As for your random thought, out weather has been weird like that, too. Eighties one day, freezing the next! Crazy.

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    1. ...I'm so ready for Spring...this has been one of the 'weirdest' winters I can remember.

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  44. Love the bird photographs.
    I agree with your reply on #3. It seems like parents are afraid of their kids.
    I had some friends that were in your area last week, they emailed me some photos from port arankas, one was of a ship, I think you had posted one like it.
    34 here would feel like a heat wave to us,lol


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    1. ...yep, there are a LOT of ships coming in to our port from Port A.

      34 is bitter cold here, feels like a minus temp with the humidity and sea so close by.

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  45. Some lovely bird sightings Anni!

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    1. ...most always, it seems lately, I have some bird photos. LOL Glad you enjoyed them Laura.

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  46. I love these awesome bird photos. I am old fashioned and love to reflect on the Good Old Days. Love your blog!

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    1. ...thanks Brenda. You made my day with such positive feedback.

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  47. You may have answered this question, but being new to your blog I'll ask. How long have you been birding? How did you get started and has Bud always been interested with you? Thanks

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    1. Serious birding, with photographing and recording what we've seen has been a new hobby so to speak - for nearly two years. Tho, I've always been interested in birds and feeding them forever!! And I'm talking since childhood...so, it's been 'in my blood' all my life. It's just new with photography recently. Bud got 'into' birding with me since we moved here and retired.

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  48. Absolutely delightful, Annie :)

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  49. Love to check out your bird photos. Was at my son's yesterday and was entertained by the mourning doves, juncos, cardinals, chickadees and sparrows at the bird feeder.

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    1. ...what a great group of birds at the feeder!!!

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  50. Love Mardi Gras. Lived in LA as a kid. Dianne

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    1. I found a lot of negatives...and the negatives outweighed the positives for me.

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  51. I agree with the family thing. Actually if I did this meme we'd have similar answers.

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  52. How lucky to live in a place with so many bird watching activities! All we have around here are pigeons and mynas. We have to go up to the hills to spot those colorful ones.

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