Cherish is my favorite word, and I cherish the ability of turning the routine into a beautiful moment.
Nature creates in me, a spiritual and meditative time to bring peace, harmony and balance, into an otherwise ordinary day~
Mary Howell Cromer

Sunday, February 16, 2014

My Little World, Tingsgrove and Beyond This Long Winter~

It is Sunday morning, as I write this entry.
Our seasonal average of snow is only 15" and this year, we have easily more than doubled that.  
Many more people have received more depths of snow, but we live in a rural community and our roads are not always treated, or plowed in a timely fashion, or if it is, they miss large patches.  
With a layer of solid ice on our driveway, there is no way to shovel it, and no snow melt anywhere... it was all sold out weeks ago.
  We have had very COLD temperatures and the snow that is on the ground has been there for 3 weeks now.  
Add in 1 1/2"of ice and you have real problems. 
A couple of weeks ago, I went back to check on the Barred Owl again.
The walking path was solid ice, and so I took a snow walk through the woods, it was magical, so quiet.   
 I had just about reached the favored perch tree, when up from the creek a large figure flew past me...oh my goodness it was the Owl.  
Whoosh, that was neat!
It flew to a near by tree and watched me for a bit and then flew to it's favored tree, where then I took my leave to allow it to rest in peace.
I have included many images of Red-Shouldered Hawks in our area and also of a little American Kestrel I captured one day out.
We had not walked out on our 2 acres following a nice snow fall and I wanted to take some snow images of our Tingsgrove property.
It looked so clean, pristine and magical.
Two days later we got our big icing and you will see just some of the devastation it has caused.  
The entire 2 acres is now strewn with limbs, branches and downed trees...a huge mess.  
Once the thaw has begun, I guess you can imagine where we will be.  
We feel blessed as our home was safe from the downed trees.
Nature at it best and worst...we move forward.
Have a great week wherever you are, stay safe and well~

Remember to double click on the image, to view a larger slide show of the images shared
 I will also be linking up with Mary at:

Mosaic Monday


As well as I am linking up with Stewart at:
   Wild Bird Wednesday

Solid ice.  
Even with good leather Winter boots, trek grids on your shoes, or boots are a must~

The Barred Owl flew up from the creek below~

Welcome to a Winter's Day on Tingsgrove, my home for over 33 years~

Can you see our home?  
It is not large at all, but very tall, 3 floors high~

This beautiful Red-Shouldered Hawk was photographed about 2 miles from here~

On our land, we have a creek that runs between the 2 acres as well as across the entirety of the back of property~

Now take a good look at the following images of the creek that flows behind our home.  
It looked so lovely and then in 2 days, the whole scene changed.

Another Red-Shouldered Hawk and an American Kestrel taken near our area called Borowick~

I was quite pleased to see this beauty, for the first time since last Summer.  
It was the lone survivor of last seasons nest near my home.  
There had been 3, but 2 had fallen to their death early on.  
This was taken beyond our property line several acres~

Then came the icing, the heavy glaze that brought trees down all over the area, as well as our Tingsgrove.  
You could hear crackling of branches and falling trees hitting the earth with loud crashing sounds.
There was not one thing that a person could do, but just to allow nature to take its course~

The creek with the walk bridge that you just saw up above...the images below, is what that scene looks like now and will for a very long while, until warmer weather gives us a chance to do the hard labor, of cleaning up
It is all good, we are all fine and our home is fine and many others were not so fortunate~


  1. Mary, your home and property is beautiful. I love living next to the woods, except when the trees falls. Awesome shots of the owl and hawk! Great post! Enjoy your new week ahead!

  2. Beautiful shots of the owl and hawk! I think most folks in this area are tired of the bad roads and below normal cold.

  3. loved the barreds. your woods is beautiful. i know the ice storms are so hard on trees.

  4. Mary, my goodness, I can't believe all those gorgeous trees, their delicate branches just tumbling down to the ground, creating such a bundle! Relieved to hear that you and your home were not directly affected and all is safe. As you said, one can only let nature take its course.

    On another note, you've captured such amazing images of the beautiful Barred Owl and the striking Red-Shouldered Hawk, both have such a strong presence, and it comes through in your photos. These birds seem like such solitary souls that when they do come into contact with people, even respectful admirers like yourself, they appear quite flustered, and instantly seek distance.

    Despite the destruction, your photos of the icing, the creek, your enchanting property, and the beautiful birds are dramatic notes to my otherwise, easygoing day. Thank you for sharing and stay safe!


  5. It's so beautiful where you live! I enjoyed all your photos/collages. So many nice ones. Love seeing that Barred Owl.

  6. Your pictures are just extraordinary!! Wishing well!!! Cathy

  7. What a beautiful area you live in. Love all the images of your owl and hawk, just lovely!

  8. The tour of your wintry property was lovely Mary, although all those trees and limbs down are going to be a lot of work to clean up.
    I enjoyed seeing the Barred Owl and others shared.

  9. The owl and hawk shots are so wonderful to see. And then the loveliness of your property in wintertime...oh my later on, so much devastation, yes. You do have your work cut out for you later on but as you said, your home was not damaged or anything like that and in the end that is what to be thankful for and focus on as you are rightly doing.

    We had ice last week but thankfully just 1/4 inch or so though I remember ice storms in past year that wreaked havoc in our area. They are beautiful and treacherous at the same time.

    Take care ! :)

  10. Lucky you to have seen the barred owl. We have heard there is one near where I live but as yet I have not seen it!

  11. Beautiful post! Lovely photos!

  12. You have a stunning property. Hope the storm did not cause too much damage. Have a wonderful week. Jen

  13. Wow, that OWL is beautiful, I couldn't take my eyes off it, I love it Mary.

  14. Beautiful images. I love visiting Tingsgrove through your camera. Mary What a magical winter wonderland - it looks like a park! - although I know you have had huge snow falls and storms, and it looks like there is a lot of cleaning up to do. I am glad to hear your and yours are safe. But for now I will enjoy your beautiful images. Stay warm and safe Mary. And have a wonderful week.

  15. Beautiful photos of your pretty snowy woods and the birds. I guess you'll have lots of firewood for next winter from the fallen trees. Stay cozy. ;)

  16. Wonderful photos of the Barred Owl. I had one I watched that perched near a beaver dam. A trapper caught the beaver out. The dam broke and the owl has not been there this year. Lots of clean up work.....sorry. The ice storm of 2009 totaled tow of our vehicles and damaged the other two. It was a couple years before I got all the broken limbs and fallen tress cleaned up.

  17. Wonderful photos of the Barred Owl. I had one I watched that perched near a beaver dam. A trapper caught the beaver out. The dam broke and the owl has not been there this year. Lots of clean up work.....sorry. The ice storm of 2009 totaled tow of our vehicles and damaged the other two. It was a couple years before I got all the broken limbs and fallen tress cleaned up.

  18. Terrific shots of great clarity.

  19. You certainly seem to have had more than your share of snow, ice and tumbling trees Mary. How briliant that you still managed to get out and take those lovely photos. Great pictures of the owl, hawk and kestrel. It sounds though that Spring may not be too far away.

  20. Great pictures - we have a cool southerly blowing this evening - its a relief.

    For all I have said that I would like to spend a winter with a lot of snow - I really do wonder how I would cope!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  21. Stunning shots of the owl. I hope that you don't lose too many trees!

  22. Mary,

    Your winter mosaic is just stunning! I adore the owl so much. My husband just loves them and I wish I could find one to photograph. Blessings to you.

  23. Wow such beautiful photos. I love the ice sparkling on the tree branches. I actually tried regular table salt this week on our ice and it worked but it took a whole box for a small area. It would not touch your long driveway with an nice and a half. I am amazed even with our temps in the 40s and 50s how slowly our pile of snow is melting. The owl photos are stunning. Isn't it interesting how quiet the snow makes the world around us?

  24. Mary, your photography is just amazing!! I love all the snow and ice pictures and the creek looks beautiful. I am so fascinated with all the bird images; I can't believe how you're able to get such good shots of the owl in the daytime. I love owls; we often hear them calling at night around our house, and it's such a comforting sound. I've never seen an American Kestrel, so that was interesting. We do have many hawks here, but I don't think we have the Red-shouldered variety.

    I'm sorry you've had such a rough time with the winter weather and now all the destruction to your trees. Thankfully your house was spared. This has definitely been a winter for the record books. Thanks for your visit, Mary, and I hope you get some Blue Birds. :)

    Denise at Forest Manor

  25. Beautiful photos, Mary, as always. Your home is wonderfully situated. I like the idea of a very tall house in the woods - something like living in a tree house. The owl and the hawk photos are so lovely. What a wild winter parts of the country have had. I hope the snow and ice melt soon for you.

  26. Your pictures take me to a better place .. so peaceful and beautiful. I love the Barred Owls ... you should soon be hearing conversations of the mating season. I get goosebumps when I hear them talking back and forth. I love your little female Kestrel as well ... all of your birds look healthy and strong ... Good to see in such a severe winter. Your wooded property and the beautiful stream are to die for, even with all of the snow and ice, Nature doesn't get any more beautiful. I am sorry for the hardships you have to endure and for all of the back breaking work that confronts you. Life seems to make us work for our happiness. We have similar problems with our roads. The county is running out of salt and there has been so much snow it is hard to keep up with. Our roads are safe once we get to the main highways, but out streets are treacherous. Be safe, be well and thank you so much for another wonderful journey, Mary ...

    Andrea @ From The Sol

  27. I know how it gets....weight on the tree limbs and lots of branches down everywhere. Add a little wind and ice.....and ooo joy:) Glad you are okay. You have lots of beautiful birds on that magnificent property. Spring is almost near. On the bright side, you'll have lots of kindle for your fire:)

  28. We have a creek that runs through our property and we feel so lucky to have it... brings around lots of wildlife.

    Feel so sad about the downed trees -- ice is so destructive. Take care!

  29. The winter photos are beautiful if a bit scary to me ... I am such a weather wimp. Our kids in Oregon had the same thing happen ... 10 inches of wet snow and then freezing rain on top of it...they lost quite a few branches and trees on their five acres....she described the noise just as you did. I haven't got an update this week yet...just hope most of their flowers and plants survive.

  30. You live in a very beautiful area, Mary! I loved seeing your photos of the owl. I hope there will be no further ice storms this winter. Spring is fast approaching!

  31. Wow that looks cold. I also sometimes use my spikes when the snow freezes............

  32. Well you are having fun over there arn't you, great set of pics, love the owl, and the Hawk. I hope things begin to improve for you soon.
    All the best Gordon.

  33. Your close encounter with the owl as it flew up past you sounds great. The snow on all the trees and bushes is beautiful but the ice has certainly caused havoc. I hope you will eventually be able to clean up all the mess and I hope the trees will not be permanently damaged.

  34. The owl photos are so beautiful. I love owls. Your property looks so peaceful. What a great place to live!


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