Doubled My Birding, Doubled My Pleasure

So, I tell my dear sweet husband, I'm finished with my blog vacation, I have material, I have renewed enthusiasm...and then life hits. We have the best mechanic--we go to Amigo (I chose them because of they had bird houses and a bird calendar in their waiting area--you can trust mechanics who watch birds, plus they have good trusty worthy names like Todd and Pete). Anyway, the boys have been warning NBB and I that we need a new car and once it started making a very loud noise, Pete informed me that it's a repair and it would be better to put that money towards a new car rather than investing in this one. Ah, it was nice not having a car payment while it lasted. Now, I have to look for a new car (blah) and time for blogging goes toward car research and a car broker.

In the meantime, birding has been fabulous. Last time I was at Carpenter Nature Center, we had a great day. Cedar waxwings were still out in force--although the dogwoods that been bursting with berries that were ravenously devoured by bluebirds and lurking native sparrows are now bare and quiet.

The flocks were mix of hatch year and adult birds--the birds with vertical stripes on their belly where hatched this year. They hung out in the trees and periodically flew out for the few insects that were out or down to the pond for sip and a quick bathe. The insects are taking advantage of the rare November warm weather we have going on right now (what a change from the three inches of snow we had a month previous).

We had quite the nuthatch day! Earlier in the season when I was at Frank Taylor's blind in northern MN, the trees sounded like they were dripping with red-breasted nuthatches. It was great to see some arriving in big numbers in and around the Twin Cities. We had a fun comparison with a male white-breasted nuthatch and a female red-breasted nuthatch. The male has a dark cap, the female has a lighter cap.

Here's another comparison--this time of two red-breasted nuthatches. A make (again with the dark cap) and a female (again with the light cap).

We also had the joy of two male ruby-crowned kinglets hitting the nets at the same time. Love the double ruby crowns! They will be just about gone here soon. Sigh.

The other thing that has gotten in the way of my blogging this week is that I'm rehearsing a show with NBB's new theater project: Theatre Arlo (they do whatever the Guthrie is doing but on a $50 budget). After over a 5 year hiatus, I'm returning to the stage as an actor! When Bill and his partner Matthew Foster announced that they were going to produce A Christmas Carol in the style of a Golden Girls episode (yes, that Golden Girls), I said, "I'm not traveling much this fall, I'd like to audition."

Next thing I know, Matthew said, "You can be Sophia's sister!"

And there it is, I'm kind of like the "special guest star" or the Nancy Walker of the show (which make me incredibly happy). It's a hilarious show and the cast for the main four leads is hilarious. If you're in the Twin Cities and love the Golden Girls, come see us at the Bryant Lake Bowl. NBB has a part in it too, so you can see us both act. Yes, all my friends who have met NBB and noted how quiet he is...he can be chatty and funny on stage.