Last weekend, the Wildlife Refuge was aflutter with activity---literally. While there weren't many people out, there were lots of birds! We walked around the lake without seeing more than just a few ducks, but once we got close tot he Nature center, the birds were everywhere. Especially cardinals!
Male and female.
In fact, I don't think I've ever seen so many cardinals in all the same place.
The bluebirds were busy as well. So busy that they were difficult to capture on film at first.
But eventually, one settled on a branch and posed for me.
There were tons of sparrows
and purple finches.
We caught sight of a hummingbird
a tufted titmouse
and a quick peek of an oriole (although I was only able to get a picture of his backside).
This goldfinch was very curious about us
----that is, until he realized his girlfriend was nearby.
This small mockingbird was quite busy building her nest.
At one point, I got up to go to the restroom for a few minutes and left my camera in the rocking chair. When I came back, Ron was trying his hand at capturing the cardinal perched nearby. He did a great job!!
When we looked at them on the computer screen, we both agreed that he looked a lot like Ron himself! They at least have the same hairdo. What do you think?
My sister-in-law, Kathryn, and niece, Laura, are in town for a few days for their spring break so we arranged to meet for dinner this evening. Their request was "Louisiana cuisine", so we met at Marilynn's Place, a relatively new local eatery that has great food. Callie was able to come by for a little while, too, before heading off to a rehearsal.
As usual our food was great--and there was plenty left for tomorrow. Laura gave her first beignets a "thumbs up" for yumminess!!
After dinner, they came over to the house for a little while to visit and to meet the pups. Naturally, Emmi and Joy were thrilled to have company!! And Laura was definitely their favorite!
This weekend ended up being pretty busy, but rewarding, too. Saturday morning, our church held its annual Easter Meal for the community. We've done it for years, and the attendance varies depending on whatever else is going on in town, but it is always a fun time for both attendees and volunteers.
Several of the men of the church work all night and morning to char-grill chicken and the trimmings and a free meal is served to anyone that attends. There are also clowns, bouncy houses, health screenings and all sorts of fun for families. This year, Ron and I both worked indoors greeting our neighbors and assisting them to the tables with their plates. (Ron got called to work just before the event, but he came as soon as he was finished with the job).
After the meal, we made a trip out to Home Depot for some supplies and happened upon this gorgeous display of spring flowers. I just love the colors and the aroma was just a beautiful as the flowers!
Once home, I began working on the back flowerbed while Ron set to work repairing the old garden bench that has literally been falling apart.
Whew! This looks SOO much better! I think we'll actually be able to sit in it now.
The other project was to finish up the trellises by the deck. The ones that we bought last year are no longer available, so I had to settle for something a little bit different. Of course, that meant that we had rearrange the ones we carefully set into place last weekend to make it look somewhat balanced. Of course, that was MY need, not necessarily Ron's, but he complied without too much fussing.
He had lots of help in the way from Emmi and Joy.
There, that looks so much better and I'm hoping it prevents dogs from running so freely through the flowerbed.
Our flowerbed work continued into the evening. We dug and pulled and spread until dark and were able to get about half of the bed ready for planting. The monkey grass that was under the fig tree had totally taken over, so it was hard work getting it all removed.
(While he got me started by breaking up some of the roots, I took a few pictures of my favorite things in the backyard)
I finished digging up all the weeds and breaking up the dirt, then together we laid out weed fabric and mulch. Here's a little "before" picture of that area:
And here is the "after":
The next (and hopefully last)backyard project for this spring is this end of the flowerbed. Perhaps we'll actually be able to sit back and enjoy it all when this is complete!