Brad's Blog
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April 1
Although the view today was:


There were buttercups, spring beauties and grass widows open!


April 6
In looking over the photos from my vacation, I thought I should also share this one, from the "lost coast" of California...


April 10

After 1.75 inches of rain in two days, the sun was out and so are the grass widows...   The garden seeds are planted in the greenhouse, and only the shady spots still harbor large snow and ice deposits...   Must be spring...

April 15
Beset by  frequent rains, we take comfort in the wildflowers that have resulted therefrom...


Grass widows are 99 % blue, but there are thousands of them so the albinos are easy to spot...


This seems like a good photo for Holy Week....  Today was the world tragedy of Notre Dame Cathedral burning....  The cross was erected on a point in the Mill Pond to commemorate a young boy who drowned trying to wade across the pond, over his head...  The bushes are still bleak but will look lovely in a few weeks...


We spotted this brown creeper yesterday at Priest Lake.  There's still quite a bit of snow on the ground in patches there...

April 18th
I had a colon screening yesterday, which, in the prep work, has to be my least favorite activity (no problems--cleared for 10 years).  I wouldn't mention it but for the other main activity after resuming life at the pottery, which was a different kind of colonoscopy...   The septic system is antique, and the pipe going to it was never sealed properly, so roots build up over time, and this was the time to do something.   Acid and poisons were considered after initial "rotorooting"  failed to clear it...  Then I had the idea to try putting the wirespring rooter inside an old garden hose, with only 6 inches exposed at the front for the attack zone.   This fed smoothly into the sewer pipe up to the obstruction, and a short application of a cordless drill to the rooter wound the root mass such that it could be easily removed...  Although the root mass was fairly large, it apparently gets in from small cracks that it can't enlargen, making it easy to detach...   While pondering other directions, we decided it's time to use a copper based root killer to prevent the too frequent recurrence...


Here are some spring beauties (that's their name) that pop up through the old needles and duff early in spring and have a surprisingly long season of bloom..



And here's the view of Spirit Lake from the ridge yesterday...

April 20



The glacier lilies have begun to bloom.  A local woman calls them yellow Easter lilies...  It's time to start bumblebee watching, but I think this one is not a bumble bee...

But this one is...   A female Bifarius....

Just in time for the Easter bunny, I dug the winter hold-over carrots today (to put into the fridge).  They currently taste as fresh as they did last fall,
but will soon exhaust their sugars trying to go to seed...   Garlic is coming up in the garden, and volunteer spinach, which we have also planted in
our greenhouse and have been having salads for a week or so now...

April 24
Spring is nearly too pleasant currently.  I planted peas the day before yesterday... 
Birrion and I hiked up Breakfast Creek today, and the small creek looked nice but the photos I took didn't, so no photo for today except this male common goldeneye:

This is a display as he approaches a female goldeneye...  Kind of a low rider vibe...
We saw a male chasing another male go from flying straight into diving underwater after the competitor...

April 25
Another day, another hike up the ridge...

Glacier lilies

Maiden Mary Blue-eyes.  Tiny flowers about 1/4 inch in size that carpet areas, and even attracted a large bumblebee today...

These are among the first shooting stars in our area...

April 29

The other  prominent spring flower of the north is Trillium, common in moist woods.


We had a number of fine calm days before the cool reprise blew in (and I got a reprise head cold as well)...

books read
To Have and Have Not by Ernest Hemingway.   Lots of racial pejoratives, nihilist plot, I prefer Dashiell Hammett.

The Wrath of Vajazzle by Barry J Hutchison  Highly amusing mashup of sci fi genres most like Guardians of the Galaxy, although Splurt also resembles a character from The Orville...

The Colors of All  the Cattle by Alexander McCall Smith.   Although I enjoy most of Smith's writing, I do wonder at times why all the characters including the married ones refer to each other by their full titles constantly.  It may be a Botswanan custom, but it does slow the pace of the conversations.  That's not all bad, since I often read in the night to get sleepy enough to return to sleep... The only other author to use full names consistently that I know of is Daniel Pinkwater, who generally used it for comic effect...
That said, this novel is a nice satire on small town politics as well as a couple minor mysteries thrown in...

Lessons from Lucy by Dave Barry,  Remarkably sincere homespun sentiment and pithy truth from a serial exaggerator...  And it's got a dog in it...

Pyramids by Terry Pratchett.  He wrote a lot of books because he had a whole world to parody--this one on the pyramids...  The love story reminded me of Star Wars for some reason...
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