Friday, May 11, 2018

Oriole photography

female rose breasted grosbeak

The pair was on the feeder at the same time. Alas the male was spooked but I could see his underwing red which I hadn't seen before

so I did get some plants, mainly vegetables which I've spent hours putting in

A bit of whimsy amongst my newly blooming lilacs. They smell so good

new orchid

new frame for my blue and orange room

I've seen five orioles today at once: two full pairs and either an immature male or a brightly colored female

They were ignoring the oranges. Let's try blueberries and figs

catbirds like blueberries too

It is a cold rainy day today. Mrs. Oriole looks waterlogged

May is bird month here. Only in May (and into a bit of June) do we see the chipping sparrows, the crown sparrows, the orioles, grosbeaks and once the above blossoms turn to fruit, cedar wax wings. Usually I see one of the orioles at a time even though I know I have a pair but while I was drinking my morning coffee, the feeder was covered with 4 of them. Later five could be seen at a time. They are nervous around humans so they are a bit hard to photograph. I tried to get photos with them all on the feeder at once but that turned out to be impossible. I got two at a time. The male grosbeak however continued to feed while I planted flowers a few feet away though he was giving warning chirps.

So much to do to get these gardens going. I've got most of the vegetables in though the place I went to didn't have the summer squash I wanted. And I should have looked at my beds before buying as some of the Swiss chard reseeded. The kale finally died. It lived through 2 relatively mild winters but last winter was a killer. I didn't eat it. I just harvested it for a friend.

A big cloud going into the week was my annual mammogram. Even when they don't find anything wrong, they have trouble angling my seroma just right so it matches up with the previous mammogram. Very painful. The seroma is the size of an egg and is very hard as it is a mass of calcium salts. On the mammogram. it looks identical to a tumor but as it is either hollow or filled with fluid, by ultrasound, it is not a tumor plus they have biopsied it in the past, a stressful and expensive procedure. I had a very sweet technician who kept apologizing for causing me pain. Other women who got there after me left way before me. They called me back, not a good sign. They wondered why the seroma now was a larger portion of my breast. Did I, by chance lose weight and if so, did I do it on purpose? I thought I had lost most of the weight before last year's mammogram so I didn't mention it.

It is strange that when people notice  have lost weight, the first thing they think is that it could be cancer though while having cancer, I gained most of my excess weight. Recently my former daughter-in-law noticed a recent picture of me and asked Josh if my cancer came back. I guess they wouldn't consider me disciplined enough to do this on my own. But eventually I got the all clear. Yay! So I don't have to deal with them for another year. Yay!

A plus, they replaced those nasty hospital gowns which I never could adequately tie despite all my experience with them with spa robes. One woman was so enamored, she walked out wearing one. She quickly came back for her street clothes saying it was a hectic week. A bigger plus, I had scheduled this close to my cooking class so I came early and they took me early so I got to the class on time. Subject: alternatives to dairy. We tasted milks from rice, almond, peas, goats, and coconut plus dishes made with them. Non dairy macaroni and cheese sucks especially with gluten free pasta. Cream of cauliflower soup was good however.

Still fine tuning our big trip. Big snag: Amtrak lets only so many bikes on each train. They are at their limit! We could check them in as luggage which means buying special packing boxes and partially disassembling them. We do have train reservations but we might cancel them and rent a truck. I have been able to bike a lot but he cold and rain came back. Sigh.

1 comment:

Elephant's Child said...

Love your birds. And am so glad the mammogram madness is done for another year.


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