Archive for November, 2016

black-capped chickadee-dee-dee


Yesterday’s Phenology: A damp gray chill, temps in the mid to lower upper thirties (?). I don’t believe it rained or snowed today, but it looked like it planned to. A quiet day.

Song of the day: Howard Tate/Jerry Ragavoy, Get it While You Can

autumn reflections


Yesterday’s Phenology: A pretty unusual day for late November. 52 degrees when I woke up, went out with Flynn. Got up to 55 during the day. (MPR Weather maven Paul Huttner says this November is 10 degrees warmer than usual. He also says that Waseca has set a new Minnesota record for highest annual precipitation, at 53.78 inches. Go Waseca!) Along with the balmy temperatures, we had dark cloudy skies, and thunderstorms that lasted much of the morning and dumped quite a lot of rain, almost an inch. Some places got some hail as well. Odd indeed.

Song of the Day: Ana Vidovic, Asturias

hidden moon


Yesterday’s Phenology: A chilly breeze, and cloudy. In the morning, fog, and frost on the grass and the bushes. The winter sky is owned by crows. This morning they were flying west to east, tree to tree, branch to branch, a crow parade, yakking it up the whole way. Out for a lengthy dog walk in the afternoon, the path a wet mat of brown leaves. Tonight it rains.

Song of the day: Gustav Holst, Neptune, the Mystic

bald eagle over the mississippi


Yesterday’s Phenology: 45 degrees; a perfect day for doing yard work, garage work, and walking the dog. Especially that last part. Gangs of crows are seen in the skies. (Technically I guess you’d call them a murder of crows, if you want to be persnickety about it.) What do you call a whole lot of sparrows? A host.  A host of sparrows gathered around our bird feeder, and bickered through out the day. A bicker of sparrows. A new term is born. Anyway, 45 degrees, a scrap of snow, here and there on the grass, a whole lotta drippin going on.

Song of the day: Los Lobos, That Train Don’t Stop Here Anymore

moon with fast moving clouds


Yesterday’s Phenology: a gray day. A little slushy snow lingers on. A good day for walking the dog, says Flynn, as he says everyday. Temp in the mid 30s. Damp.

Song of the day: Buena Vista Social Club, Chan Chan

redwing, and barn bluff


Yesterday’s phenology: a damp cold. A damp gray cold. A damp gray rainy cold. Sparrows and geese and a single flashing blue jay that swooped by on our way to the dog park.

Song of the day: Carole King – (You Make Me Feel Like A) Natural Woman

1160, Redwing


Yesterday’s Phenology: Another grey day hovering just over the ice line, 33, 34 degrees, mixed precipitation. This is suitably November-like weather. High of 35, 2 degrees below normal.

Song of the day: Aretha Franklin, (You Make Me Feel Like) a Natural Woman

leaf, redwing


Yesterday’s Phenology: a good day to be in-doors, even if at work. What they call “a wintery mix.” Rain, sleet, freezing rain, snow fell in varying degrees all day long, while the temperature hovered at about 33 degrees. A bit of slushy accumulation, slippery spots in the roads. Mostly people drove sensibly. (Though more sensible to not go anywhere.) Tonight they are predicting more of the same, though perhaps a bit more on the snow end of the spectrum. Where’s the shovel?

Song of the day: Aretha Franklin, (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman



Yesterday’s Phenology. A November day. Chilly early on, sunny and not so bad in the afternoon, sunset as I got off work, dark and getting colder when I got home.

Song of the day: Aretha Franklin, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You

monday moon


Yesterday’s Phenology: After a long stretch of October-like weather, we have come to November. Today was cold, don’t think it got above 30. It started out cloudy, but cleared, and felt like a pretty nice day as I was out walking the dog and doing chores. I finally got some bird seed in the bird feeder, and was rewarded less than an hour later by a crowd of sparrows. Yes. Sparrows. Don’t see them very often. Thirty or fifty brown little sparrows.

Song of the day: Elvis Presley, Blue Moon



Yesterday’s Phenology: A cold brrreeezy day, with a 28 degree temp that stayed there all day. Cloudy in the morning, sunny in the afternoon. Noted a hawk riding the winds over south minneapolis. Must be cold up there!

Song of the day: The Who, Baba O’Riley

one from the summer: family outing


Yesterday’s Phenology: Winter arrives. Arrives more north and west of us, where they got between one and two feet of snow, blizzard conditions, 50 mph winds. We missed much of that. Here we had thunderstorms move through in the morning, the sky grew incredibly dark and then poured down, a hard rain, about 10 in the morning or so. After that, a bit of rain, dark clouds, windy. Just as I was leaving work, just before, it started snowing, with 40  mph winds. But still warm enough so that all that stayed on the ground here was slushy snow on the grass. Now, bedtime, snow has stopped, but colder and still windy. I guess this is more like an appetizer here, a tast of winter. Up on the Iron Range, two feet of snow, there is winter.

Song of the day: David Crosby, Music is Love

a Morgan 3 sighting, Maidenrock


Yesterday’s Phenology: a grey breezy day in the mid 50s again. Not a lotta sunshine today. There are rumors of rain and perhaps a slush storm, but today wasn’t bad.

Song of the day: Steve Miller Band, Livin’ in the USA

The Bard of Redwing


This Shakespere  fellow is up on the outside of the Sheldon Theater in Redwing. It kind of looks like he’s doing time up there.

Yesterday’s Phenology: A beautiful October day; sunny and in the mid 50s. Seemed a little bit breezy in the later afternoon. Needed to scrape ice of the car windows in the morning, which is never fun in the pre-dawn dark. Or ever, really. I’ve been looking extra hard for phenology the last couple days, but there’s not much to report. We are getting the last raspberries out of our garden, and they are very good. Same with the kale. Have we finished putting the winter storm windows up? No, we haven’t.

Song of the day: Joe Cocker, With a Little Help from my Friends

let’s take a moment to reflect


Yesterday’s Phenology: a beautiful day, sunny, calm, temps in the 50s. Everything in nature seems to be at a stand still. The leaves are down. There’s not much movement out there. The only birds I see are geese and ducks. The days keep getting incrementally shorter. We await the arrival of winter. Enjoying the last minutes of a very long fall.

Song of the day: Erik Satie, Gymnopedie No. 1

center for lost objects, minneapolis


Yesterday’s Phenology: Very pretty morning, sunrise coming up over the pond, through the bare trees. Then cloudy. 50s. Looked vaguelly like rain or perhaps sleet, but didn’t.

Song of the Day: the Beatles, She’s a Woman

one from the archives, september 2008, hunting hawk on the greenway in minneapolis


Yesterday’s Phenology: another nice October day. I can’t remember the last time I went for a bike ride in middish November, but I think it was probably never. Today: 10 miles. The sun is very low in the sky throughout the afternoon. I picked a few raspberries in the yard as I did some yard stuff. November raspberries. The trees are largely bare. The kale is still very pickable. The only birds I saw today were the fat little sparrows outside Isles Bun and Coffee, and the parakeets in the house. The dog park was very busy today.

Song of the day: Pete Seeger, Arlo Guthrie, Well May the World Go

Ehlers, Redwing


Yesterday’s Phenology: Frost on the pumpkin in the morning. A sunny clear October day, with a high in the 50s. 58, say? The leaves have fallen off our maple tree, at last, and were raked up today. Still a few more fall chores to be done. Winter is coming, they say. But they don’t say when.

Song of the day: the Doors, Light My Fire

another night another moon


Yesterday’s Phenology: Sunny and cool. An October-like day. A bit of a chill in the air. Formations of geese flying from pond to pond.

Song of the day: Leonard Cohen, The Partisan

sumac season


Yesterday’s Phenology: a sunny September day. 68 degrees. The leaves are down, and so am I.

Song of the Day: Bach, Cello Suite No. 1 in G



Yesterday’s Phenology: Frost on the grass in the morning. A sunny cheerless day.

Song of the Day: Pete Seeger, This Land is Your Land

moon in the clouds


Yesterday’s Phenology: Not much to say. A dark dark dark night.

Song of the Day: Simon and Garfunkel, America

mississippi river, maiden rock wisconsin


Yesterday’s Phenology: Going to work in the dark, coming home in the dark. Welcome back, central standard time.
In those brief moments I was outside today, it was pleasant, cloudy, in the fifties. We have set a record, here in the Twin Cities, for longest growing season. And a hard frost is not anywhere in sight. The radio whether guy said that fall temps in Minnesota have really shown the largest amount of climate change over the last few years. Especially this year, I would say.

Song of the Day: Judy Collins, Farewell to Tarwathie

a windy night, the moon slipping through the clouds


Yesterday’s Phenology: Well, it got up to about 70 today. A good day for yard chores, getting things done that should have been done a few weeks ago. Gentle breezes coax flurries of golden maples leaves into the air and away. Daylight Savings Time has ended, we’re back to not caring about saving any daylight. Hence, it got dark early tonight, and it will be brighter out in the early morning. Perhaps we should move the clocks ahead 30 minutes, and just stay there all year long. But no, you won’t get that sort of common sense solution today. Everyone is a true believer about their point of view, and no one is willing to compromise. My way or the highway, with us or against us. Either you want to save daylight or you don’t. This is why we are in the fix we’re in. There’s no middle ground.
But perhaps I digress.
Still picking raspberries. Saw some nice little black-capped chickadees at the dog park. Along with about 500 dogs. It was a perfect day to bring your human to the dog park, and a lot of dogs had the same idea. November 6th, and 70 degrees.

Song of the Day: Erik Satie, Gymnopedie 4