Spring turned out really well here in Rochester. It was a little cool, but mostly sunny. I think this was perfect lilac season, as our lilacs started blooming around the 16th of June, and they are still blooming 2 weeks later. We got a lot of really nice blooms this year, and our one lilac (the primrose) that got hit with the pesticide last year is growing bigger than ever. Looks like a full recovery. Our cherry trees and dogwood we planted last summer survived the winter and are doing great. Everything is blooming and still looks nice. Our blueberry plants made it through the winter too, and this year we planted some pepper plants and a watermelon too. Here’s a few photos.
We’ve been catching more and more creatures on our critter cam this spring. This time we think we saw a skunk, and one of the pictures may have a fox visiting our bird bath for water. One night a deer showed up and “trimmed” Tracy’s bonsai plants! Still exciting, still a lot of cats around, and some bunnies as well.
Since it is still the middle of winter in the North East, and there isn’t much to do outside, and all I’ve been up to is taking photos of hockey games, today I bring you more offerings from the critter camera. These are some of our best shots yet I’d say, as now we know for sure there are plenty of outdoor cats prowling the area.
Ah the excitement, this game camera has paid for itself!
Tracy and I have been doing our part to help the economy again with the installation of our new floors a few weeks ago. We went with the same company that did our dinning room floors last year. This time we got the entry way, bathroom, kitchen and sun room done. It was a full week job, and they did a great job. There is a 5″ border, followed by a thin light colored strip, dark strip, and then light strip again. The main area is filled with 16″ x 16″ squares. The border follows the outside of the room, around the cabinets, and the island. Here’s some photos, click for a larger view.
We have a few squirrels that like to hop from our lilac bush, run across the screen on our window and hop onto our bird feeders near the house. At one point I thought one of the neighborhood cats did us a favor and “took him out” for us, but either others have learned or he got a different squirrel. This morning one particular squirrel was getting on my nerves. The solution? Remove the screen from the window. Hilarity ensues!
The day after our first snowfall here in Rochester, I snapped this photo of what I think is an Eastern Bluebird in the tree near our house. The bluebird is actually the state bird of New York and Missouri. This is the first bluebird that I can remember seeing in New York State. I saw one last summer in Pennsylvania. There were a couple at the house, but I never saw them get any seed from our feeder. I hope they came back and were fed.
This fall Tracy noticed that some of the crabapples had been disappearing off of her bonsai tree. We found the culprit this weekend, and the kitties found him too.
I snapped these photos of a helper we have for keeping the bushes at the back of our lot in check. There are actually 2 of these little guys, and their mom. We’ve seen them a few times this summer. One time the two young ones took turns running through the neighbors swing set. They were dodging back and forth through the swings. Most of the bushes in back are nothing special, but we keep an eye on our lilac bushes, they’ve been fine so far. I really like the stripe down its neck.
This past weekend Tracy and I landscaped the area where we planted two dogwood trees a few years ago. We wanted to let them grow and settle in a little bit before we did the mulching. Now we have a cherry tree added in and a hydrangea plus bee balm for the humming birds and a daisy too. Tracy did a really good job with the edging and mulching. Me? I did the digging.
Well Spring is here, and home improvements too. Tracy’s Bonsai seem to have made it through the winter mostly intact. Her Cherry Tree is in full bloom. Thanks in part to the record temperatures the last 2 days of 86 and 87 degrees.
And with the holiday season over it was time for more home improvements to the house. This time we upgraded the kitchen. Some new lights, kitchen counters, faucet, and plumbing (still fixing those leaks actually). It came out really nice, and Tracy did a terrific job with the painting. Before and after pictures…
A little less noticeable is that the breakfast bar area has been lowered about 4 inches, and there is some lighting put in over it. We also have replaced a light that would be over the head of the photographer, with a sweet blue glowing light. New sinks too.