Best laid plans…

A month ago, the flower buds were just tiny green seed pearls.  This is the best time to photograph the manzanita blooms.
A month ago, the flower buds were just tiny green seed pearls. This is the best time to photograph the manzanita blooms.

I started out on a high last week!  I was knocking things off the list, onto a new series of prints; I had a vision.  I had a plan.  In fact, I was so on top of it, I decided I could add a bit more.

Bad move.

It suddenly became imperative to 1) interview realtors for the eventual sale of our Bay Area home & studio, 2) guilt trip Tim into sprucing up and power washing cedar fence that surrounds the property, 4) stain said fence, 5) sign up to be the Team Parent for my daughter’s Varsity lacrosse team, 6) prune (with my awesome horticulturist sister) the Meyer lemon tree, two kiwi vines, the hydrangeas, the rest of the roses (including 2 vicious, but lovely climbers), the Mexican sage, and so on, that are in the way of power washing the fence, 7) thin & transplant the overgrown bed of agapanthus and at the Sierra house/studio, 8) grout the entry tile in the laid back in December, 7) install the Elfa system closets purchased in January and 8) commit to a cabinet maker for the kitchen. In one week.

I’m tired.

And not done.

(sigh)

The first finished bit of tile work ended up being the entryway.  Feels so good!
The first finished bit of tile work ended up being the entryway. Feels so good!

However, while up in the Sierras grouting, I did see several super cool things that I definitely wouldn’t have seen if I hadn’t gone up this week.  I forgave my self-sabotage and just enjoyed the weekend.  Strange as it seems, I have rarely spent any time up there in February, not being a really great camping season or building season for that matter!

I woke before dawn to the sound of sparring deer on my first morning!  I’ve seen, quite literally, hundreds of deer on our land, maybe thousands, but I’ve never seen them actually sparring!  The bucks with more than 6 points seemed to go about it pretty seriously, but even the little 2 pointers were trying out the moves.  Just like a David Attenborough film!  Was it wrong to hope one of them would leave an antler for me?

A mob of mule deer does stopped by for breakfast.
A mob of mule deer does stopped by for breakfast, their Tarsal glands showing on the hind legs.  Sparring males…  Spring has sprung!

The next morning, we had a mob of maybe 15 or 20 does outside the Great Room.  We spent a leisurely breakfast with them;  We enjoyed a basil & tomato frittata inside as they munched the tender new greens outside.

I had occasionally seen flashes of salmon flying through the woods up there, but could never get close enough to see what they actually were.  (I like to know my neighbors!)  I finally confirmed my suspicions that these elusive creatures were Northern Flickers, an absolutely glorious woodpecker, currently featured on the cover of the Jan-Feb issue of Audubon.  I took a lot of blurry photos of tail feathers, so if I want to work on a print of these polka-dotted beauties, I’ll have to get some better shots!

The elusive Northern Flicker!
The elusive Northern Flicker!

So, for now, I had better make a plan.

Or finish the old plan.

Or maybe just start sketching.

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