This week I started making a new hooded cloak for our son. I made his first one when he was about four years old.
When he wore it outside, it dragged on the snow behind his heels. That little cloak now falls below his elbows and above his knees: time for a new one!
I've had the fabric for another for years. I used to work for an office furniture manufacturer where employees could buy upholstery and cubicle-wall fabrics for $1 a yard in the company store. 60" wool for $1 a yard!
It's done except for sewing on buttons and making a button tab to hold it shut. And it's long enough that if he outgrows this one, I can claim it for myself!
Here is another bit of excitement we've had this week. Monday I went into the living room and saw a bird in the rose tangle. At first I thought "Blue jay", but then it jumped inside the bush and I said, "You're not a blue jay - what are you?" and saw this!
I ran for my camera, and the bird flew out onto a dead sumac bush and preened itself, at first with its back to me.
Then it spotted me and turned around. After doing a couple of owl-like head dips, it went back to preening itself, while I alternated between trying to get good pictures and taking a good look at it with the binoculars.
Then I started flipping through my field guides, trying to decide whether I was seeing a Cooper's hawk, Accipiter cooperii, or a sharp-shinned hawk, Accipiter striatus.
Because of the very square tail, I'm leaning towards sharp-shinned. But even looking at Cornell's "Tricky Bird IDs: Sharp-shinned Hawk and Cooper's Hawk" page and Accipiter Photo Gallery, I'm still not 100% sure.
Needless to say, there were no other birds on the feeder!
Yesterday's excitement was a sunny, warm (60 F/16 C) day. We spent a lot of time outside, because today's forecast is for rain and fog (which you can see we are getting), with rain, light snow, and high winds tonight.
Weather records for today from the Grand Rapids National Weather Service include a record high of 69 F (about 20 C) in 1999 and a record low of -21 F (-29 C) in 1899.
Although we still have snow, even with all the rain and above-freezing weather, check this out: the daffodils still believe in spring.