Posted tagged ‘bird seed’

“Few tasks are more like the torture of Sisyphus than housework, with its endless repetition: the clean becomes soiled, the soiled is made clean, over and over, day after day.”

February 8, 2018

Today is a beautiful day, chilly but still beautiful. Yesterday we had rain, a deluge at times. Off cape got snow so I was happy for the rain. We were just too warm for snow, 10˚ warmer than Boston.

I have nothing on my dance card for today. I’m going to stay around the house. I have some books to keep me busy, and the bird feeders need to be filled. Those are enough accomplishments for today.

My cleaning couple haven’t been here in a month. They usually come every two weeks, but they were in Florida for the second two weeks. Last night Lee called and said they couldn’t come today. I immediately panicked. Visions of the vacuum cleaner, dust rags and mops jumped into my head, and I was the one using them. It was a daytime nightmare. When I told Lee, he promised they’d come on Monday, and I was to do nothing. That’s when I stopped hyperventilating.

When I was little, the house was always vacuumed and dusted, and the dishes were always washed. When I left for school in the morning, my bed was a mess. When I came home, it was made. I never ran out of clean underwear. All day long my mother worked in the house and did the same things every single day. She washed the breakfast dishes, left them to dry in the strainer, made all the beds upstairs, collected laundry, brought the clothes to the cellar to wash, came back upstairs and cleaned the living room. Some time later, she’d go back down to the cellar and put the clothes through the wringer a couple of times. Finally she’d go outside and hang the clothes on the line.

I seldom saw my mother do all these things as I was usually in school. It seemed sort of like the elves and the shoemaker to me. Leave dirty clothes. Find clean clothes. It was a daily miracle I never appreciated until I was older.

“Sleep is good, he said, and books are better.”

October 3, 2017

Words are never enough. We can throw around sympathy, sadness, sorrow and tragedy, but none of those salve our feelings or change the situation. Sarah Huckabee Sanders at her press conference said, “And it would be premature for us to discuss policy when we don’t fully know all the facts, or what took place last night.” What more does she need to know? 59 people were killed and over 500 wounded by a man who had legal weapons according to Nevada law. She continued, “And this isn’t a time for us to go after individuals or organizations. I think that we can have those policy conversations, but today is not that day.” We know there will probably never be a day that strict gun control becomes the law of the land, especially now.

Last night I watched a variety of news programs until I couldn’t stand them any longer. I switched to Cozi TV and watched, of all things, The Munsters. Finally I just turned the TV off and read and tried to lose myself in the pages. That didn’t ‘work. It was a long night.

I slept late this morning. That put me way back. The house was cold when I woke up. I’m thinking it will be that way every morning for now on. Good thing I had my sweatshirt handy. I fed Gracie and Maddie and then took care of myself. I’m on my third cup of coffee. I had an English muffin slathered with butter and jelly. I shared with Gracie.

Tonight is game night, postponed from Sunday. It is my turn to bring food so I’m making Mexican. Yesterday I shopped for all the ingredients. That leaves most off my day free. I do have bird feeders needing to be filled, but that takes only a little time. I got a new book from the library yesterday but I’m working on another, the one I tried to read last night.

I’m thinking what I need is a B movie, a black and white science fiction movie from the 50’s. They hold my attention. They make me laugh. I’m going hunting. Talk to you on Thursday.

“With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.”

August 14, 2017

Gracie wanted out close to seven this morning so out we went. I was surprised at how cool it was. When she wanted out again, it was close to ten. I was surprised at how warm it had gotten. My house, though, still feels cool from the AC last night. I wanted to open doors this morning to all that cool air, but all I could hear from my neighbor’s yard was the beep-beep machinery makes when it goes backwards. Shutting the door helped, but I still had trouble getting back to sleep with all the noise, but I did manage. I’m a good sleeper.

We had game night last night and an early birthday for me as my friend will be out of town for my real birth date. I wore my Happy Birthday tiara and blew out the candles to a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday. To make the night perfect, I won all three games we played. I was the birthday girl and the champion.

When I was a kid and it was close to my birthday, I’d sit on the front steps waiting for the mailman. I was hoping for birthday cards with money tucked inside. Usually it was a dollar, a huge amount in those days when even a quarter went a long way and my fifty cent allowance every week made me rich. One grandmother sent money while the other usually gave gifts. I still have a couple of Bobbsey Twin books with a Happy Birthday message from my grandmother. I was eight.

It was sunny earlier but is now cloudy. The weather says partly sunny today. I figure that’s an optimist’s view like the half full glass.

Today is a quiet day for me, on purpose. I am foregoing a dump run. I’m just not in the mood though I’d be hard-pressed to define a no dump mood. It is just a sense of it. I will go to Agway as I need small cans of Gracie food, the ones she has in the morning. I am also going to buy some plants on sale to fill in empty spots in the front garden. The bird feeders need filling again. The hungry avians emptied them in two days.

That’s all. I got nothing else. Oops, one more thing: tomorrow I am having my other eye done so no Coffee. I’ll see you on Thursday.

“If a doctor treats your cold, it will go away in fourteen days. If you leave it alone, it will go away in two weeks.

March 10, 2016

My mood and the day are too similar to ignore. It rained earlier. The ground is still wet. The sky is a light grey. My mood is just a bit darker. I woke up very late and did not want to get out of bed. Gracie and Fern adjusted their respective positions on the bed, and we all went back to sleep. I had to force myself to get up. Two cups of coffee are just not enough today.

My house is clean. Roseana and Lee came yesterday. Dump day is tomorrow. I checked and the bird feeders still have seeds though I did have to replace the suet in both of those feeders. The clothes are all washed. There are no dirty dishes. I got books at the library yesterday. I finished the newspaper’s crossword puzzle. As all of this sounds like paradise, why the mood?

My voice is raspy. I have a headache. I am exhausted (spell check came up with a better word: exhumed) for no reason. All I can think of is maybe the cold I avoided knows spring is upon us and wants to get me before winter takes its final bow. This makes me unhappy. It also makes me grumpy.

I figure to loll in bed, take whatever medication I have and read the day away. That actually sounds inviting. The only thing missing is the maid and a bell by my bed to summon her.

This will last a day or two as I’m not coughing or blowing my nose. On the measurement of colds, something I just made up, I’m about a 3 or a 4 out of 10. If I were a little kid, my mother would have sent me to school: two symptoms do not a cold make.

The worst part of a kid’s cold is a runny nose. I hated having a runny nose. My mother used to stuff my pockets with Kleenex. That left a dilemma. Where do I put the used Kleenex? I couldn’t keep getting up from my desk to put them in the trash so I’d stash them in my school bag or the pocket of my sweater if I happened to be wearing one. Nothing is worse than a used Kleenex.

My mother usually had a Kleenex or two in her handbag. The problems were the Kleenex was a crumbled mess, often had lipstick on it and brown bits of tobacco from my mother’s cigarette package clung to it. I had no choice but to use that Kleenex. It was always a mystery to me why my mother didn’t want it back. To me, it sort of fit right into her bag.

“As to Bell’s talking telegraph, it only creates interest in scientific circles, and, as a toy it is beautiful; but … its commercial value will be limited. “

July 7, 2015

Summer, I believe, has finally arrived. It has brought beautiful mornings, hot and humid afternoons and tolerable nights for sleeping, at least tolerable so far. Yesterday afternoon, though, the humidity became stifling. No breeze blew to push away the moisture. I turned on the air conditioner, and the house became comfortable. Gracie and I both settled in for an afternoon nap in the coolness of the bedroom.

This morning I turned the AC off and opened all the windows. I didn’t want to miss the smell of morning with its scent of flowers and mowed grass and sometimes even the salt air of the sea. Through the opened windows, I heard the songs of the different birds from trees in the front yard and easily recognized the song of the chickadees, my most frequent visitors, then I heard a metal clank sound which I ignored. When I heard it a second time, I recognized the sound as coming from the half-sized metal barrel where I keep the bird seed. I went on the deck to check it out, and the red spawn scurried away from the barrel and off the deck. The barrel cover was off and was lying beside the barrel. Several sunflower kernels were strewn around the bottom of the barrel. The spawn had found the mother lode. I put the cover back on the barrel and put two bricks on it. I figured that would keep the spawn away unless he platooned his buddies, and they all lent their paws to the effort.

I am waiting for Comcast to come to fix my phone line. During the conversation yesterday with Comcast I wished more times than I can remember that I had the power to put my hand through the receiver and grab the so-called Comcast technician and throttle him. I had opened the conversation with him by explaining that my phone line did not work. I told him I had tested the phone by connecting its line to the modem and the phone worked so I knew the problem was the line. He started to ask questions phrased as if to a five-year old. I interrupted him and said I had explained the problem and didn’t a walk-through from him. He then said he would reset the modem. I slowly explained it wasn’t the modem. It was the line coming from the wall. He then asked a few more questions, all of which had been answered in my first explanation. He then concluded my phone was not working. I told him I was talking to him on that non-working phone. He paused and then told me to remove the line from the modem and reconnect it to the wall. I explained the call would end once I did that. He took my cell number, and when the phone went dead, he called me back on my cell. It was 25 minutes from the start of the call when he said I think there is something wrong with your phone line.

“You have to accept the fact that sometimes you are the pigeon, and sometimes you are the statue.”

May 2, 2015

Cold again but sunny-the weather is in a rut.

The red spawn can fly. Yesterday I noticed he was at a different feeder and was sitting and dining al fresco on the backside so he couldn’t see me. I could see only his tail hanging below the feeder. I went slowly across the deck making no noise so he couldn’t hear me. When I got to the feeder, I was so close I could have touched him. His eyes got huge when he saw me and realized he was stuck. I was by the rail, his usual escape route. I stamped my foot to scare him, and he jumped off the feeder and sort of flew to the ground, two stories below. He landed on all fours then ran to the back part of the yard. Sadly, yesterday’s experience will have no affect on that spawn. He’ll be back. I just know he will.

When I was a little kid, feeding the squirrels on Boston Common was exciting. My dad would buy a couple of bags of peanuts and give us each some. I’d shell a few then I’d toss them. A stampede always ensued. Several of the grey squirrels would scurry over, stand in front of me, some on hind legs, and wait for a handout. I thought it was kind of neat to have wildlife so close to me, almost eating out of my hand. I swear the squirrels living on the Common had to waddle from place to place because they were so well fed.

I remember London and Trafalgar Square and the pigeons. My dad and I went touring a bit by ourselves one afternoon. I don’t remember where my mother was. We bought some seed, and the birds attacked. I swear they were Hitchcock extras, hungry and out of work. They jumped on our hands, shoulders and even our heads. I threw the seeds. My dad held on to his, and he was soon covered in pigeons. They were flying around him, and I took pictures. He was laughing in every picture. When he was finally out of seed, we sat on a bench for a bit and concocted a plan. We’d get my mother there, act innocent and have her hold some seeds in her outstretched hands. We did, and the pigeons attacked. I took pictures, great pictures of flapping wings circling around my mother. She was screaming as the birds settled on her head and shoulders. We yelled for her to save herself and throw the seeds. My mother was really upset. This was her first attack by birds. My dad and I acted innocent and solicitous, but I suspected she knew.

I took slides back then and we always had a slide night a month or two later. The pigeons pictures were hysterical, even my mother had to laugh.

“I have never listened to anyone who criticized my taste in space travel, sideshows or gorillas. When this occurs, I pack up my dinosaurs and leave the room.”

November 30, 2014

Yesterday I gave the local economy quite the boost as did so many others. Some shops were filled with people. One store, a small one, had too many shoppers. You could barely move or even get close to the displays, but I still managed to find a few treasures and some unique gifts including the perfect one for my friend. I also found small ornaments to dress the wrapped packages. I do that every year. It’s a small gift, a remembrance for the tree. The book store was a wonderful stop. I got help in choosing just the right books for my 8-year-old grand-nephew and a couple for the 2-year-old. I also bought myself one. Gracie and I were out for almost three hours. She napped in the backseat between trips to the stores and watched for me whenever I parked. I napped when we got home and so did she. Today I have a few things to get: cat food, coffee filters and candle bulbs for the windows, nothing fun, just utilitarian. I’ll go before the football game.

Today is still grey, but it’s warm, in the 50’s, and will be for the next few days. I called my factotum about putting my lights up, and he hopes to be here tomorrow. Last year it was in the teens when he was doing the lights.

Birds galore at the feeders this morning. There were even a few battles for space. One bird swooped in and the poor bird already perched at the feeder took off in a bit of a fright. I have yet to fill the thistle, and I have a bag of sunflowers seeds to fill the big feeders. From my kitchen window I get to watch the birds. I sometimes stand there for a while drinking my coffee.

Yesterday my Turner Classic movies arrived. I now have 6 different 1950’s science fiction movies to watch. It will be black and white movie heaven. One of the films, Them, is actually a fine movie which always gets 3 stars. The rest I haven’t seen, and they  tend to get one or maybe 2 stars: The characters in two movies, Beyond the Time Barrier and The Time Travelers, arrive in futures decimated by plague and nuclear war. Only a handful of normal humans survive. Satellite from the Sky is another one I have never seen. It is about the outer-space detonation of the feared tritonium bomb, but it doesn’t go as planned, of course. I figure a cold night, a howling wind, popcorn and maybe malted milks balls will make for a perfect evening to view those old science fiction B-movies I love.

“The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another. The difference between them is sometimes as great as a month.”

March 24, 2014

If I were to add up all my errands from this morning, today would be the most industrious of days, a day worthy of commendation. It was my annual physical first then three more stops. One stop was for the animals, including the birds, who now have enough seed, food and treats to last through the snowstorm. I stopped at the grocery store and bought all I need and a few things I didn’t need, like Twizzlers.

The roads were fairly empty without the usually frantic before the storm shopping. That will be tomorrow. Did I mention we are expecting a storm with blizzard conditions starting tomorrow night into Wednesday? The Cape will be the hardest hit and get the most snow. Predictions as to how much varies. The last one I saw said 6-8 inches. But by Saturday, though, we should be close to 60˚. I think Mother Nature is pulling a Gaslight, as in the movie, on all of us. The kindly, grandmotherly Mother Nature in bright clothes, a pretty cloak and flowers in her hair is beginning to look more like the Witch in Sleeping Beauty every time it snows, but I’m thinking this might just be winter’s last hurrah.

It’s cold today, no way around it. Everyone is bundled and back to puffy jackets and scarves. I saw a really old woman who could barely move her arms because of the layers.

I don’t really care. I grumble just because it seems the thing to do. Really, though, what’s one more snowstorm in a long line of snowstorms? It’s not stopping me from doing anything. I just sit in the house and wait for the plowman, Skip, to come. There are books to read, TV programs to watch and a comfy bed for a nap. I have Twizzlers. I’m happy.

“I don’t feed the birds because they need me; I feed the birds because I need them.”

January 12, 2014

This morning was a busy one. Gracie and I went to the dump, out to breakfast, and finally to the store to buy a few grocery items for my friends who are house-ridden. I figured I’d get everything done in one fell swoop so I can loll the rest of the day. It was pleasant driving around this morning with the sun shining and the day warm at 48˚. I think a ride would be nice later today.

The birds are back in force, most are house finches. I watched them for a while this morning. A few chickadees dropped by the largest feeder and the gold finches staked their claim on the thistle. I saw birds drinking from water along the side of the road, water leftover from yesterday’s tremendous rain storm. The roads are still damp in places, mostly under the shadows of the trees. One bird was singing this morning from a tree behind the window, and I thought it glorious like on a spring or summer day when the birds greet the morning. Maybe it was just thanks for the seeds.

Festivities are in short supply after Christmas. January, except for New’s Year’s, is a dull month. Valentine’s Day is the only February highlight though when I worked I did have a week’s vacation. March has St. Patrick’s Day, always an excuse to have a few friends over for corned beef and libations. April is my hopeful month when I look forward to a few warm days and a feeling that spring is not so far away. My friends and I go out to dinner on Easter, a wonderful tradition. We go to the same restaurant every year, right on the water, where the food and drinks are delicious. We take our time and enjoy each other’s company. Usually the sun is shining and the day warm, or warmer by comparison. I think of it as the harbinger of spring, hence the hopefulness.