Archive | April, 2009

Powers Wins

27 Apr

Late last  year I wrote about Ursula LeGuin’s Annal of the Western Shore series.

Seems I am not the only one who thinks they are great.  She has won the 2008 Nebula Award for the novel “Powers” from that series.

And WALL-E won best script.  Yay!  We really like WALL-E.


26 Apr

The hot weather yesterday–high 80’s–impelled many plants to come into bloom overnight, including  one of the plum trees,


several species of narcissus,

narc2and many wildflowers in the woods, trout lilies, for instance:


Ripple Returns?

25 Apr

Since the robins’ return there has been one noticeably smaller, delicate  robin who is much less skittish than the others.  She flies into the plum tree with me 15 feet away.  She stays put on the lawn even if I walk past 10 feet away.

She seems to listen if you talk.  I think, we think, she may be Ripple.  If so, she went with the other robins in the fall, lived through the winter and flew all the way back.  No mean feat for a hand-reared robin.


24 Apr

Tuesday Jay was cutting up a dead cherry when he and Isabelle came upon this cache in the heart of the tree.

grubsThe large white larvae are as long as my little finger but as big around as my forefinger.  The dark ovoid objects are not chocolate truffles even though they certainly look l as if they could be.  What an April Fool’s joke that would be!

No, they seem to be made at least partly of wood pulp. I do not know if they could be called cocoons as no thread seems to be involved.   They are unlike any case I have ever seen before.


After I contacted him with a couple ideas about what kind of beetle these larvae may become,   Mr. E.R. Hoebeke, an Extension entomologist at Cornell, gave me the correct answer: a type of Osmoderma, the largest scarab beetle found in the Northeastern US.

We put our finds back in mulch in a pot and hope to someday in the not too distant future to see at least one of them as an adult.

Woodcock nest

24 Apr

The weather seems to have finally turned for the better.  At least marginally.  It was below freezing this morning.  So we have been outsied a lot: Jay has been cutting and hauling and splitting and hauling and stacking wood with the help of the children.  An I have been weeding and hauling mulch.

This morning while Jay was moving some large pieces of hickory to a splitting site where he  now works with a neighbor he accidently ran over a woodcock nest.  The hen flushed at the last minute and he could not stop until after he had run right over the nest.  Two eggs with no sign of blood, so we hope she was just laying them and will nest again.  Elsewhere.

Sunday Lunch

20 Apr

Lest I forget, let me note here that Sunday’s lunch was smoked pheasant breast, beer Henry made a few years ago– malty, dark and rich and flavorful–the best brew I have had in a long time, and an apple for dessert.

I am Sir Percy!

19 Apr

A certain young lady who reads the Scarlet Pimpernel series online got me started.  I have finished the first two books.  I just took the quiz.

You are the Scarlet Pimpernel! You are a brave, heroic, and very clever Englishman with a philanthropic streak. Your enemies hate you. Everyone else adores you.  You’re a snappy dresser, and like every true Englishman,  you just hate mushy sentimentality.  You are the leader of fashion in London, live in a very big house, have a very beautiful wife, and a lot of lolly. When you’re not playing the social fop, you enjoy organizing and carrying out dash-cunning rescues of poor little Frenchies from the scummy hands of the evil Revolutionary Government.

Which Scarlet Pimpernel character are you?

%d bloggers like this: