Feeding the birds and squirrels in the snow

Old Country Club Rd NW

Hello to you all,

I hope anyone who has had to deal with the snow and wind these past few days is safe and warm and with heat! I think we were really lucky here because the winds didn’t come as predicted. I never lost power and was stocked up with food and books. And being retired I didn’t have to worry about getting to work. I did go out for my morning walk today and am glad I don’t have to drive anywhere. The roads in our neighborhood have been sort of plowed once but now the snow is packed on them. At the top of each hill is a stop sign so that makes it a bit tricky. I’m glad Randal is home and his truck has 4 wheel drive. Once upon a time these snow-covered hilly roads wouldn’t have fazed me at all. But then I had a Volkswagen Bug which went everywhere when I lived in New York and worked up on a mountain. And I was 30 years younger and used to snow driving. Not now.

I spent the “Blizzard of 2016” clearing the walk and part of the driveway (hired neighborhood guys did some of it too), ‘praying’ the power would stay on, worrying when Randal would get home from his forced layover in Chicago, AND making sure the birds and squirrels had food during the storm. I kept clearing the patio table and refilling the bird feeder and cob holder and shoveling some of the patio so I could put out seed and then along the edge of the dining room sliding door which was covered just enough so the birds could feed. And given day we get at least 75 to 100 birds feeding. Some are repeat feeders but often during the day we’ll see a dozen cardinal and 20 or so mourning doves, several blue jays, nuthatches, titmouse, towhees several different woodpeckers and a variety of other small brown birds. Word has definitely gotten out about the Johnson Backyard Buffett. We have two feeders and two suet holders as well as the patio table where each morning I put out sunflower seeds and unsalted peanuts in their shell for the jays to carry off in two seconds flat. It’s all very entertaining.

I took some photos, but even standing in the house looking out the windows they sense I’m there and it scares them off. I hate doing that especially now so I didn’t take many photos. I even have to sneak quietly to wash the dishes because the patio table is just outside the window and my movements causes them to fly away.


Through the kitchen door windows.


One of the many cardinal families.


Red Bellied Wood Pecker at a suet feeder,

My sister and my niece unbeknownst to each other gave Randal and me tractor shaped suet holders and several cakes of suet for Christmas/Hanukkah.




Squirrels gotta eat too.

I put sunflower seeds in the flower pot. My brother-in-law Jim made the cob holder and the squirrels are so funny sitting there eating.


Looking across the road to the golf course. The Roanoke Country Club owns the road along the course. Sunday mid-day the grounds crew plowed the road also clearing away any snow blocking the entrance to our driveway and even finished the U-shape stretch between our driveway and next door too!