Winter birds

I’ve been really enjoying the winter weather this past week. I’ve especially enjoyed all the birds flocking to the feeders outside our dining room. Here’s a few of them, though the list includes black-capped chickadees, chestnut-backed chickadees (a new one for me), goldfinches, house sparrows, juncos, and small little wren-like birds that move way too quickly about the birch tendrils.

Frozen chicken

Even with the ceramic heat lamp, the coop dipped down to 33F overnight. Their water dish had frozen, so I swapped it out with a warm bottle this morning. They seem to be in high spirits, though I suspect it’s hard to seem lazy when you’re cold. I’m going to look for some bricks to heat in the oven and stick out there tonight, though they’ll lose their heat rather quickly. Maybe it’s time to upgrade the ceramic bulb or reinvestigate insulation options.

The cold

We lucked out with an early cold snap over the weekend, and because of the perils of ice on the road and unprepared drivers, that weekend was extended by a day. It wasn’t quite the snow day I had hoped for though, because the 30 mph winds meant that it was unpleasant to be out in, and freezing a two year old is still too young to have it build her character. So instead, we stayed in and enjoyed most of Sunday at home and most of Monday as well.

Yesterday we did set out to run a few errands and get the wheels changed. The estimated 5 hour wait at Les Schwab was enough that it meant we’ll be switching wheels another time. I was going to do it myself, but after hitting my head on the jack, realizing the wheels have a security lug nut and seeing how lame the jack is, I decided to spend my snow day doing something else.

The worst part of the weekend was when an envelope with checks blew away. We’ve searched the neighborhood, but ironically, the white envelope on white snow makes for a challenge. (Ironic because we never have snow) That and the huge gusts yesterday that ensured that the letter is long gone. Hopefully someone will find the addressed and stamped envelope and put it in the mail.

Zoo Lights

Last night Michelle, Ella, Grandpa, Aunt Hilary and I went out to see Zoo Lights. Although I’m sure it’s supposed to be more of a “kids thing,” us “adults” found ourselves enjoying it as well. The seasonally appropriate cold really helped the mood, as did the clear skies and 1-day shy full moon. I had fun taking photos without a flash (D90 rock!) and I think everyone just enjoyed gawking at the miles of lights. If you do consider going, try getting there right at 5, as the crowd seems to pick up from then.

Not many animals were out or visible at night with exception of the Siberian tigers (What? You call this cold?), and the elephants. We missed Samudra last time (the baby), but we were able to see him sleeping and “curled up” on the floor. “Curled up” is a bit of an exaggeration, as he’s apparently already 630 pounds.