Male Pine Grosbeak
This young male forgot to dress! No tails! He hops and flies about without a care. Would love to know his story. Pine Grosbeaks are rare in our area of the world. They came last year about this time and stayed for over a month. Very entertaining colorful winter guests.
Cedar Waxwings also enjoy the crabapples in winter. They have mastered tossing and catching the tiny apples and add color and animation to the quiet garden.
I would highly recommend planting crabapples in your garden for both beauty and important food for birds. Bohemian Waxwings are more regular return guests but one never tires of their antics and beauty. Both the Grosbeaks and Waxwings fly in large flocks and become like winter blossoms in the trees while feeding. These photos were taken last year just outside my barn studio. The Bohemian Waxwings are very shy but the Grosbeaks will let me open the window and could not care less about my shutter speed.
Sunrises in winter paint a colorful sky and every dawn is different in its hues, tones and values. Here a sunrise from a few days ago casting rose lavender light about the Mount Holyoke Range and the atmosphere above it.
Mount Tom sitting further from the sunrise reflects a paler lavender.
Then there are days of clouds and gray, when light becomes quickly consumed by a blanketed sky. I am thankful for it all, for its ever changing beauty, mystery and inspirational awe.