December 14, 2019

Thursday on the Mountain, Today in the Valley.

I had an appointment in Front Royal on Thursday. It was one of those appointments that was frustrating: the doctor's office had failed to enter my appointment in the computer so I was not on the schedule. I pulled out the little appointment card they had given me and they admitted their mistake. They said they would work me in, but I wound up waiting a long time. Two and a half hours later, I finally finished my appointment. I went up to Skyline Drive to eat my delayed lunch and decompress.


The park was only open for the first five miles due to icy roads. Light was getting dim, but I saw several deer in the shadows on Dickey Ridge.

Then I saw a bear! He wasn't very big and he was heading into the forest, but he stopped for a few seconds and looked back. I got one decent photo before he ran up the hill.

Before leaving the mountain, I stopped at the first overlook and took a picture of Front Royal at dusk.


Near home, I tried to take a picture of the full moon rising, but I was shivering from the cold. Can you see the geese in the foreground? (Or should I say forewater?)
Weekend Reflections.
Saturday's Critters and I'd Rather Be Birdin'.

Today started out rainy and cold. Things cleared up this  afternoon. I photographed the cardinal pair through a window.

As the skies cleared, we headed to Strasburg for a Holiday Home Tour. We saw some cute dogs there.

We drove to John's Family Restaurant for dinner. I took a few pictures of the Christmas decor there.




December 13, 2019

Willy Nilly Friday the Thirteenth.

I don't really believe there's something unlucky about Friday the 13th. I'm not very superstitious. Well, maybe I avoid using 13% as an adjustment in Photoshop, but that's not something that makes a real difference.

Willy Nilly Friday presents an excuse to post some miscellaneous images and join a few blog hops.

1. Black and White Weekend: I took this at Dickey Ridge on Skyline Drive. The drive is closed right now due to ice, but it will reopen when the weather warms up.

2. Fences: This is the gate to Wolf Gap Vineyard in Shenandoah County.

3. Here's a farm not too far from there.


4. The country road is near Muse Vineyards.

5. Skywatch: I spotted the old travel trailer west of Strasburg.

6. Frank bought this little snowman-birb item. 


December 12, 2019

Signs and the Season



Strasburg, VA.
Middletown, Virginia.
For more signs, see the Backroads Traveller

December 11, 2019

Views from my Window, Birds in View.

We enjoy a great view from our window. Here I was behind a very small houseplant that Lynn gave me a few years ago. It is the single survivor in a dish garden. 

The lake is community-owned. Geese and ducks are always there.

Two Canada Geese are floating past a Great Blue Heron. You can see him better in the next photo.

I think I glimpsed an osprey today but I did not get his picture. 


The Carolina Wren turned his head away. That's okay because I got his profile later when he perched on the bird bath. 


The final picture shows a poinsettia that we bought last year. It has doubled in size but is more green than red. There are ways to get more red leaves but I did not bother with moving it to a cool dark place because I didn't really think it would live this long.

December 9, 2019

Recent Random-osity


Good: Star in the Valley has pretty wall murals and a great transom window! It is a winery in the hills of Little North Mountain.

Random: Not far from there we found a "Barn Sale" along Route 55.  They were selling wreaths and holiday sweets. The barn was crammed full of antiques and old stuff.

Sharing with Monday Murals and 



Fun: Frank's sister is visiting and their brother and his wife were here this weekend.
Bill, Deb, the other Linda, and Frank.

December 8, 2019

A Sunday Jaunt to Charles Town

We have house guests: Frank's sister, his brother, and his brother's wife. In order to entertain them today, I drove to Charles Town by way of White Post, Blandy, and Berryville. The point of interest in Charles Town was Happy Retreat, once home to Charles Washington, brother of our first president.

We then drove a little farther to Harpers Ferry. I took these pictures at Happy Retreat. It is not open on a regular basis but was the scene of a holiday open house today.



Inspired Sunday: This church is not far from Charles Town. It is the Holy Spirit Episcopal Church in Summit Point, WV.



December 7, 2019

Boxer, Squirrel, Birds


The dog was in a truck next to my car in a parking lot. I spoke to him before opening my door to get out, in order to assure him that I was not an enemy. He didn't bark or growl so I guess that stern look was nothing personal.

The squirrel is smaller than some, so I think he is young.

The goldfinches like the nyjer seeds in my feeder. I'll probably put other seeds out soon. The weather has gotten cold so the odds of a bear destroying the feeders has gotten smaller.
Saturday Critters | I'd Rather Be Birdin'.


The pair of sparrows look cute. I think they are youngsters.

Here's a filtered version of slightly different poses of those birds.
Sharing with Caturday.


December 6, 2019

Afternoon Scenes I Like.


1. Black and White: Our View in Late Day.

2. Tall grasses, Glen Burnie.

3. Skywatch: Golden hour at Petco.

4. Golden Hour on the Water.


5. View of Warren County from Skyline Drive.