Tuesday, January 1, 2013

January 1, 2013 Happy New Year!

It's another year!  I hope it will be a happy one for everyone out there.  For sure, I am guessing there will be no end to new things happening and changes.  But, change is the constant these days.
Heck, I am starting out the new year ok.  I got my first pay stub of the new year yesterday and I got a cost of living increase to start out the year.  Do you know how long it had been since I got a COLA?  A long time!  The USPS dropped that for Postmasters years ago.  However, I remained a Civil Service employee, which is what I started under, and they pay me now.  Many people that started after me switched to FERS.  I had the option but it didn't seem like a good plan.  I am so glad I didn't.  Ok, it is only $25 a month more......but hey, up here with the high costs of living, it all counts up. 
It is starting out the new year as a clear sunny day.  That big red sun was so gorgeous when it came up this morning.  It was also -2 degrees with a stiff wind.  So, a bit nippy out there on the morning walk with Toby.....after I had gotten all the alfalfa out for the deer and their corn.  Boy, on the cold or snowy winter mornings, they are ready for their breakfast.  And, they are a joy to see and have them all greet you in the mornings.  My favorite boy, "Skinny Butt," still hasn't been late for breakfast since he came back.  He is the first one I feed every morning.  Shadow isn't quite as inclined to get up so early.  But, if she is, she runs to meet me when I fill the first bird feeder on the other side of the house and get a treat of sunflower seeds instead.  She really loves those little black oil seeds.  And, "her" alfalfa!  She comes on the run when she sees the alfalfa come out.  Such cheerful creatures....they make my day.  We have more new deer, including several shed bucks, showing up regularly now.  However, I still haven't seen two of the old timers (bucks) that I had hoped, for a change, would get here before they shed.  It is still a bit early for them to appear, so....my chances of seeing them with their antlers is looking pretty slim now.
This birch tree was a new find, the other day, on my beach walk too.  I always find the fungi forms on trees interesting.  However, this tree had a serious crack running all the way up the side.  The fungi were fairly evenly spaced all the way up the tree, in the crack.  This was something I hadn't seen before.  I will have to remember to go back and check on this to see how it develops.
When it comes to nature, there is always, always......something new to discover.  If you can't find it, you probably aren't looking.
There isn't too much that stays exactly the same out there either.
Another thing you will notice, if something is moved, or fairly seriously changed, the critters will stand and stare at it....trying to figure it out.  Is it now a threat?  Why does it look like that?  Even my big fountain, that stands here in front of the house, now with the bowl on its side, leaning against the pedestal.....it looks strange to them.  They drink out of it most of the year.   But, now that part of it is moved, although in the same place, they have to stop and stare at it to make sure it is still an ok thing. 
So,  go out and enjoy your new year.  Open your eyes to the observations to be had around you.  You never know what you might see!

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