I was searching through some old blogs the other day to look for some pictures of the Chickadees at Riverwood to send to a friend. This friend feeds Chickadees in her backyard and I was telling her that they would come and take the food right out of her hand if she stood still by the feeder long enough for the chickadees to get used to her.
I went on a hunt for the pictures of them gracing AC and I with their presence, and found them in our December 2004 and January 2005 blogs . On the hunt I got sidetracked with other pictures and blogs about our marvellous Christmas at Riverwood that year and decided to re-post some of the pics just in case you missed them the first time around. Even if you did see them, they are worth a second look.
2004 would be the first time we would celebrate Christmas without Thesha and that tore at our hearts. She is our Christmas baby, and loves the holiday in a very special way. It just wouldn't be the same without her. Sigh! Instead of sitting home and moping about it, we decided to do something completely different and go to Riverwood for the big day and celebrate Christmas with Mother Nature and the creatures in the forest. We would then meet Thesha after Christmas.
We set off for the five hour trip to the farm a few days before Christmas so we could get settled in before the big day. The area had lots of snow the day before our trip, so the scene that greeted us when we turned into Welcome Lane at the farm was like a picture out of a postcard.
As you can see in these pictures the trees and fields at Riverwood were all decked out in their prettiest winter garb and the whole area took on a magical air. I have never seen it as pretty before or after this winter. I really did feel like I was going to spend Christmas in a postcard setting.
Below is a picture of AC taking a picture looking across the road from the entrance to Welcome Lane.
At home I would usually have a big fancy Christmas tree in the living room all decorated in gold and silver with hundreds of lights. Below you see the Christmas tree we had at Riverwood that year. Quite the beauty huh? I loved it.
I made strings of popcorn and cranberries and put them on an old tree branch inside the farmhouse, and then on Christmas morning we transferred the festive strings to an old apple tree in the yard. We added slices of apple iced with peanut butter, and waited for the birds and squirrels to flock or scamper to the tree.
We hung seed and suet balls on other trees, set apples out along the forest path for any deer than might happen upon our snowshoe tracks on that day, and put carrots out for a Christmas morning snack for the rabbits. What fun!
We would go out each morning after that and put fresh peanut butter and apple slices in the tree. Pretty soon the Chickadees would dart all around me as soon as I ventured out the side door with fruit and peanut butter in hand to replenish the feast in the tree. I stood with an apple slice on my hand one day, and one little bird screwed up her courage to come and sit on my hand.
We had quite a little chat on this particular day, and every day thereafter.
My sister came for a visit in mid-January, and the birds graced her hand too. They were getting really bold by this time.
Even when we went walking on the frozen river, the birds followed us all along the walk chattering to us the whole way, watching to see if we might whip out an apple slice and some peanut butter.
AC got into the act too, and the birds were happy to sit and feast a while on his hands.
Nearing the end of our six week holiday at the farm we tried to see if we could get five birds at once perched on AC, but no such luck. I think he had three at one time, but we only managed to capture this picture with two birds. Yes, AC had a dollop of peanut butter on his head, along with apple slices on each shoulder and in each hand.
Oh what a magical Christmas and January that was at Riverwood. Maybe when we re-retire from our babysitting gig we will spend another long winter holiday at the farm. I don't know if we would ever be able to recapture the magic of that year though, but it would be fun to try.
To everyone who stops by to read my blog from time I wish you all a warm and wonderful Christmas this year. I'll "talk" to you all again some time next week.