Snow Day!

Happy Wednesday!

It doesn’t matter how long I live in Virginia — I will never get used to having school cancelled with only 2 inches of snow on the ground!

Unlike my former home in Massachusetts, in Virginia they cancel school by county, not by town. Loudoun County spans an area from the Potomac River banks out to the fringe of the Blue Ridge Mountains, roughly 521 square miles. Within that area, you have a wide variation of terrain and temperatures. So, while it may be raining here closer to DC, they will have sleet and freezing rain in the western part of the county. Yesterday’s snowfall was a similar situation.

The photo above was taken this morning from my front door. Since our church administrative offices follow the local school cancellation policy, I have a snow day!


I’m happy to report that the birds — and squirrels — have all discovered our feeders. I have been enjoying my morning coffee while watching their antics.

Here are a few photos from this morning. I apologize for the poor quality, as sun had not yet made an appearance.

Yesterday, our birdbath saw as much activity as the feeders. At one point, there were American Robins, European Starlings and Mourning Doves, all trying to get a drink. Once a Bluejay arrived on the scene, all the others flew away. There is a clear “pecking order” in bird world. (Notice the lone Bluejay on the roof of the bird feeder.)

Many of my friends have given up feeding the birds because the squirrels are so persistent. We have managed to discourage them by using baffles on the feeder stands, and we try to locate the feeders away from trees. We also have one feeder with a weighted perch that closes when a larger bird or animal tries to get in. Squirrels are amazing acrobats though, and can launch themselves great distances to get to some feeders!

One other trick we’ve learned is to simply feed the squirrels. Costco carries large bags of unsalted peanuts in the shell. We always have a bag on hand, and we toss them out now and then. Northern Cardinals and Bluejays also love them! I’ve even seen a tiny Tufted Titmouse carry one away in its beak.

Signing off for now from the snowy tundra of Northern Virginia. 😀