Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Empty Nest

Sadly, after 3 months of anticipation and weeks of observation, there is no eagle baby. The female eagle sat on the nest for 3 months and then one day left and didn't come back. Raccoons may have climbed up the tree and ate the egg or killed the baby chick. The nest and around the tree has a strong odor of fish and raccoons love fish. Dozens of people have been watching the eagles since the snow melted. I saw the eagle pair bringing big clumps of soft nesting material to the nest every day in April. The male eagle also brought large branches to stabilize the nest. I bought new binnoculars to watch all the activity. I hardly missed a day.
Two years ago owls took over the nest and drove the eagles out. This year no chick survived. Eagles have a tough time here in Vermont. But there are an incredible amount of eagle watchers here. Hopefully other eagles in the area faired better.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Raindrops & Roses

We are now officially the Seattle of the East. Three weeks of rain and no end in sight. The usually "babbling" streams are loud with the ongoing deluge of water and the flowers are soaking it all up and blooming like crazy. All kinds of roses are now opening in delightful colors. Cloudy days make every photo great.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Food Renegade

 Attention lovers of SOLE (Sustainable, Organic, Local, and Ethical) food, traditional food, primal food, REAL food... Go to http://www.foodrenegade.com/ and join the Fight Back Fridays challenge.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Dairy Queen

Meet Rosie. She supplies me with all the raw fresh milk, yogurt, sour cream & cheesecake that I could possibly want or desire. She is a heavy milking Jersey cow. Her daughter, Janus, born last year is on her left. Janus is a twin. Not only did Rosie produce tons of milk last year, but she also gave birth to twins and fed them as well. I owe my improved health to this cow. Raw milk has vitamins my body needs to function. Pasturization kills all the necessary vitamins and enzymes our body needs from milk. Since I have been drinking Rosie's milk and making keifer, my fatigue and stomach issues have been reduced drastically. I am a walking poster child for why we all need to drink unadulterated milk products. Thanks Rosie.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Trying to get across 4 lanes of traffic to get to the swamp is hard enough for adult turtles, never mind a 6 inch baby snapping turtle. I quickly got this baby off the road right after someone almost ran him over in the second lane. He looked like a glob of mud in the road. After the lunch hour traffic subsided a little, I trotted across the road to the swamp and made a deposit.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Yummy Pleasure

I'm still picking enough strawberries to feed 6-9 people. The berries are getting bigger and more plentiful every time it rains and its been raining off and on for 7 days~! Oh Lucky Me~!!

Golden Memories

 There is nothing sunnier or brighter than yellow daylillies in the middle of nowhere, in June. The green grass is lush around them, adding to their brightness. This wild bunch is in an abandoned farming community that was flooded to build a dam 60 years ago. They stand in quiet solitude to the vibrant community that once thrived in this valley. The barns, covered bridges and cemetaries were all removed before the area was flooded. All that is left are a dozen bronze location markers and this wild group of yellow daylillies.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Meatless MONDAYS

Former Beatle Paul McCartney is launching a new campaign calling for meat-free Mondays, which encourages people to have one meat-free day a week to help slow climate change. The campaign includes a Web site, supportMFM.org, that features vegetarian recipes and other ways to get involved. "Having one designated meat-free day a week is actually a meaningful change that everyone can make, that goes to the heart of several important political, environmental and ethical issues all at once," McCartney said. "It not only addresses pollution, but better health, the ethical treatment of animals, global hunger and community and political activism."

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Look what found me today~!! This morning I drove a difficult 4 miles on a remote timber trail, then hiked in another mile + , then I had to ford a few streams and a small river to get to a small sandbar in the middle of a river to fish for the biggest trout I have ever seen. After about an hour I heard a strange noise, but didn't think anything of it until I heard sniffing on my right side. Lo & behold THIS is what was sitting on my right side, in the middle of NOWHERE. He was wet, thin, tired and a bit timid. He somehow sniffed my trail all the way through the woods and over the beaver dams. Amazing. Looks like a purebred Bernese Mountain Dog or one of those livestock guardian mastiff dogs. Just a puppy, about 16 weeks old. Loves to swim. I was so nervous this pup would get even further lost, that I couldn't concentrate on fishing anymore. I guess he will be my big "catch of the day."

Strawberry Season

I have been picking strawberries for a few days, fresh from the garden. This year the berrys are larger, plumper and more abundant than they have have been in the past. And they are much EARLIER too~!! Heavens gift to berry lovers. My berry patch is heavily netted to keep the birds out but the chipmunks have managed to get in and eat their fill every day. I have fed 6 adults with my berrys and I imagine the chips have fed dozens with their stolen berry loot as well. There is enough for all, thanks to the heavy winter snow, the torential spring rain, good composted manure and careful weeding.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Fish Tales

On my usual trek to check on the eagle nest the other day, I noticed alot of commotion IN the waters around the eagle tree. The water was errupting in dozens of areas and the continual noise of splashing could be heard from all areas of the pond. From a distance I could see shadows in the crystal clear water, but I wasn't sure of exactly what was going on. I kicked off my boots and waded into the water as far as I could go and then stood there in witness to a spring ritual that has been going on for eternity. The life cycle of the pond is continual. Adult fish make nests, find a mate, spawn and fertilize The young that are born feed the larger fish, turtles, herons and other waterlife. Two weeks ago turtles were walking everywhere burying their eggs. This week its the fishs turn to enlarge their families. Spawn on~!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thought for the Day

 Who you really are speaks volumes over what you do for a job.
Many people are very functional at their job, but create chaos in their real life. Even the Pilgrims knew this.
Click on the photo to enlarge and read it.

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Spain has its infamous Running of the Bulls and Vermont has its Strolling of the Heifers. This event is a "must see" family affair that is in its 8th year of enjoyment. Main Street becomes engorged with cows as far as the eye can see. Animal lovers, farmers, 4-H'ers, musicians, food vendors and the general public are packed into the downtown area like sardines for the once a year celebration of "Dairy Month." There is a variety of free food--all Vermont grown, raised, made and loved-at the common area. I ate my way through the 3 cheese tables, the Stoneyfield Yogurt booth and the relish and preserves table. All free. I was too full to go to the artesinal bread tables, the salsa cooking booth, the grilled cheese cook off grill area and the free coffee booth. However, I did save room for the new Ben & Jerry's upside down ice cream. Politicians tried to milk cows, kids patted an assortment of animals at the barnyard area and adults listened to wonderful music while they ate their way from one end of the giant park to the other. I came home with a reusable canvas bag full of great foods, gifts and surprises. Vermont does a great job of practicing its renewable, reusable and recyclable motto and today was no different. Recycle bins and many renewable resource business were at vendors tables handing out brochures and more really cool free items. This is my favorite public cow event year after year. This year was even better than last year. June is dairy month. Make a cow happy, drink milk, eat cheese and try all the flavors of ice cream.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Birds of a Feather

100 Blue Heron nests, some filled with 2 chicks and some filled with 3 chicks, lined a hidden swamp on a recent adventure to find this place. The nests were full with fast growing chicks. The nests with 3 chicks had only a few inches of room to stand. Every few minutes the stealth bomber sized mother herons would return quickly to their individual nests to feed their babies. The noise of 200+ chicks waiting to be fed was an unusual sound to my ears. The swamp echoed loudly with many sounds of different birds and frogs. A Piliated Woodpecker pecked away at a dead tree while I snapped photos of the chicks balancing precariously on the edges of their nests.
The beavers did a magnificent job flooding this area so that eventually Blue Herons would have a maternity area to raise their young, out of view of the public. Every heron within 20 miles nests at this rookery and travels that far to find food for their growing chicks. By the end of June these nests will be empty and the newly feathered chicks will take flight all around this swamp.