Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Clouds in Carthage

Last nights Clouds

1820 poem

"The Cloud"

by Percy Bysshe Shelley


I bring fresh showers for the thirsting flowers
From the seas and the streams;


I bear light shade for the leaves when laid
In their noonday dreams.


From my wings are shaken the dews that waken
The sweet buds every one,


When rocked to rest on their Mother's breast,
As she dances about the sun.


I wield the flail of the lashing hail,
And whiten the green plains under;


And then again I dissolve it in rain,
And laugh as I pass in thunder.


This was a wonderful cloud and Jeff and I watched it until the sun set..

The cloud and storm front brought rain soon after…

Carthage_044The rest of The Cloud poem here


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Aimless wanderings ….

Here we are…

Settled in on Sicksta and Ghetto boys side yard in

Carthage, North Carolina

We have been here a few weeks…

And I have a question…


What's going on with migration?

The Pine Siskins are staying much to long this spring and eating me out of house and homey..

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Look at them..

down there on the ground!

Little brown piglets..all 100 plus of them..

They should go north…

P1070030 They seem to enjoy eating while viewing the back of this naked lady..

Maybe that is why they are staying…

I am providing too much food and entertainment for them.

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Again…I say…

What's up with migration?

One lone Blue Grosbeak when we normally have a few more spring visitors…( see the post here from last year) along with Indigo Buntings, Rose-breasted Grosbeak…

We have seen a few warblers, vireos, Summer and Scarlet Tanager…

I am missing a few birds here and hoping they arrive soon.

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Besides looking for migrants..

Jeff and I have been doing some yard work around Sickstas and Craigys..

We took out a few Holly trees…(she has plenty more)

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We have had a few peeping toms here…..

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Most days I just wander around…

Jeff says “aimlessly”…

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I suppose he is right…

I take a few photos..

Notice the new gate and front fence?..

Craigy had to redo them..termites ate the old fence..

around carthage_108I stop and pull a few weeds..

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Take a few more photos..

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I wander into the woods to see if any more Morels are popping up..

I did find over 80 this year here in the back yard..

Banner year!!!


I check on the Black Vulture nesting in the abandoned shed in the nearby property..

I discovered her when searching for Morels..


She flew the first few times she saw me....

She had two eggs..


The last few days I have been to check up on her..

she stayed..

Either she is used to me, or she needs to stay on them..

I keep my distance..


I come out of the woods and wander around again..

I take more photos..

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I check the bird houses to see who is where..

The bluebirds have nested here the past few years..

something has enlarged the hole and they have chosen a new home..


P1070135_thumbThis carpenter bee is making a hole in the bottom of the bird house above..

I wonder…



I take a few more photos of Sickstas flowers..

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I  walk around to the other side of the house to

check out the Bluebirds new home….

Much nicer..


The chickadees have a new home as well…

For years they had a home in the moon..

the moon fell and broke over the winter..we found most of the pieces..a few were still missing on the top

I repaired the pieces we found with glue and patched the rest with trusty duct tape..

Guess the Chickadees didn’t like my repair job..


They decided this home was better.. P1070081

I take more flower photos …

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Then decide the cedars that we sculpted a few years earlier..

needed shaping..

I couldn’t finish this one…

a chipping sparrow has made a nest in the top ball..P1070068_thumb

She flew when she saw me..

these are her Lovely blue eggs..


I was going to take this old bird house down..

The side door hanging by a few threads..

I opened the door to check inside..

A titmouse is nesting here..

it will stay up and I will try and repair it in the fall if we are here.


I take a few more flower photos..

In case you didn’t know …

My Sicksta loves flowers and gardening..

around carthage_149every day she toils in the soil…

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And beautiful things pop out of the ground..

around carthage_133Sweet little things..with different colors and textures..

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A shrub gives birth to delicate papery flowers



Pansies fill pots in Sickstas winter garden…she is slowly replacing them with hardy summer annuals.

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I wander again…

I fill up this basket with seed.

This is for my evening visitors..

Flying squirrels.

right outside my bedroom window..


Photo from a few years ago..

I have not been able to get a photo this year..


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That’s my life here in Carthage NC….

I wander ..


in The Bird and Garden Capital

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Of here!


Stay tuned for more Aimless wanderings..

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Clingmans Dome

Clingmans Dome

Our last day on the Gatlinburg side of the Smokies we took a drive up to Clingmans Dome..stopping at Cove Hardwood trail on our way up.

When we arrived in the parking area I took out my camera to grab this Panorama of the area.

Wonderful clear views.

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At 6,643 feet, Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is the highest point in Tennessee, and the third highest mountain east of the Mississippi. Only Mt. Mitchell (6,684 feet) and Mt. Craig (6,647), both located in Mt. Mitchell State Park in western North Carolina, rise higher. The observation tower on the summit of Clingmans Dome offers spectacular 360° views of the Smokies and beyond for visitors willing to climb the steep half-mile walk to the tower at the top.


Clingmans dome_002I took a few photos while in the parking area..

Clingmans dome_004We then walked the steep half mile up to the observation tower.

Do you see a bird cloud or is it just me?

Clingmans dome_009Here we are..

The tower…

Clingmans dome_014Pathway to the tower..

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Records show that during the last half of the 20th century the average distance it is possible to see decreased by 40 percent in winter and 80 percent in summer.

On clear days views expand over a 100 miles. Unfortunately, air pollution often limits viewing distances to under 20 miles.

We were lucky to be here on a day with wonderful views.

I think we could see at least 100 miles away.

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I took this photo of the Appalachian trail thru hikers taking a break and catching cell signals to call home.

Little did we know at the time…we would be driving two of the hikers to Gatlinburg.

After a week on the trail these hikers were going into town to get a motel room, clean up, have a nice dinner and stock up on food supplies before heading out on the trail again.

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I found this interesting…

This park receives the highest sulfur and nitrogen deposits~from acid precipitation~found in any national park. It is most severe in higher elevations. The average acidity of rain and snow here is 5 to 10 times greater than natural precipitation.


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Panorama taken from the tower.

Clingmans dome_034We walked the half mile back to the car..

If you want great views with little hiking effort this is a great take.

Hopefully you will get a clear day like we did.

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Check out this Panorama I created with my 360 Ipod app