Wednesday, 12 January 2022

Finger Ballet

Peaceful scenes at my bird birders often degrade into utter panic. The cause of the terror is usually this chap: 

A Cooper's Hawk scans for potential prey that have taken cover.

His head constantly swivels to spot possible hide-outs.
Feathers raised on a very cold January morning.
He spots me in the window -- not minding my own business.


Not worried about the Cooper's hawk are my neighbourhood crows. Any food I put out for them is quickly dispatched and when there are no handouts, they make do with fruit. I was fascinated to watch one of these guys daintily plucking seeds from sumac bobs.

He has a piece of sumac bob pinned under one foot ...
... and daintily picks off and swallows one seed at a time.
Usually more active at night, a cotton tail braves daylight for a snack.
A plump little red squirrel poses for a photo.



Just finished this ebook from the public library. Intrigued by the author's story in unravelling the mystery of her mother's brief disappearance, I read the story in a couple of days. And in the end, it all made sense. Well written and very interesting. A good read.


So agree with this quote from Mason Cooley. (illustrator unknown)


About this post's subject, Finger Ballet ...

I'm very much enjoying my ukulele as I learn how to play it. Soothing, tropical vibes are just the ticket for a winter's stay-cation. There are tons of ukulele YouTube tutorials and play alongs. My favourite teacher has a channel called 'Bernadette Teaches Music'. Fun and easy to follow. Because my finger tips were getting sore from string pressure, I bought some silicone finger guards. They work well for me. We are instructed to play on our finger tips (not the pads). The action reminds me of little ballet slippers whose on-point toes are striving to dance with precision.

Finger toes dancing out an F Major chord.
Mid-step on a G Major.


Anyway, 'Aloha' from my patch of the frozen North. 




  1. That Coopers Hawk is a daunting bird, I always enjoy your close-up wildlife photos Florence. Amazes me how you capture these critters! The book sounds most curious, now you have me intrigued. And I love your little silicone finger pads, you don't do anything halfway do you? 👍👍🙂♥️ I hope you're keeping warm, my friend.

    1. Doug, I can always depend on your kind words for encouragement to keep posting. Again, thank you. I did quite enjoy that book! It included pictures of the people involved and bore witness to community secrets. Won't spoil it for you in case you get to read it. Another non-fiction book I'm reading now is fascinating but scary. Written by a doctor, the title is 'Mortality'. Not for the faint of heart! Yes, staying warm thanks, and well entertained. Wishing the same for you, blog buddy. 🙂♥️

  2. I so enjoy your dinner guests. The hawk is a handsome bird and I know they need to eat too, just don't want to watch them do it. Interesting sounding book. I'll check my library for my Kindle. Great thing to do on a cold winter's day. Love those finger guards. I got a guitar a few years ago but couldn't bet past the sore fingers. Now maybe it can quit being a wall ornament. Thanks.
    Stay safe and warm.

    1. Oh, I hope you do give those finger guards a try! I've heard musicians say to just build calluses, but I want to maintain sensitivity. Clumsy enough now! Also, who needs more pain!?! I find chording along with You Tube videos fun and relaxing. Contorting my fingers on some tricky chords is a skill testing exercise. Satisfying when I get it right. I think you'd like that book, Patti. Yay for our public libraries!

  3. Hi Florence, you definitely keep yourself busy! Your critters are beautiful. We used to have a Coopers Hawk that hung around near our feeders but I haven’t seen him in awhile. The book you were reading sounds very interesting. I have started reading more non-fiction in the last couple years and love seeing what other people are reading. We have been having such cold weather this last week and I just noticed the weather network is calling for 15 to 20 cms of snow on Monday. I definitely will be snuggled up with a book that day!
    Take care!❤️

    1. Hi Robin! I also am leaning more towards non-fiction in my book choices these days. I'm curious about other people's lives while my own is, on whole, pretty mundane. Yes, very cold here yesterday. May have set some record low. My propane heating bill is pretty hefty, that's for sure. Looks like my snow blower is due for a work out the first of next week. Frankly, I'll enjoy the exercise. Enjoy your books and cheers for now, Florence. ❤️

  4. Keep that heater going, and the finger guards, a great idea.A good book, a ukulele, and some hearty soup, wonderful inside activities, if you can call eating or drinking soup just that.

    1. How right you are, Jean. Gotta keep our stomachs fuelled as well as our home furnaces. A hearty soup sounds like just the ticket! Paired with buttered toast! While you folk in NZ sip your cooling drinks in the shade. ❤️

  5. Must be fun to try learning to play the ukelele. My brother-in-law is doing that.


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