Entries to Win Afghan

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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Flyover and March Report


On my walk the other day I saw the first sandhill cranes of the year. I'd seen footprints in the snow, but not the birds yet. And you might remember the place where the cranes nest. The lady who owns that property was outside, and I asked her if they still nested there. She said they do!

I've gotten much better pictures of the cranes other times, but this one is current, and so will be featured.

sandhill cranes

And now, in other news. My 300 days is half up (of course, I'm fudging and giving myself a year). Not nearly halfway on most goals, but I think I'm still doing more than I might have without any goals.

54 in 300, report on day 159
1WRITINGbegin working on North Country Quest againnothing this monthstill about 5 chapters done
2WRITINGedit Kiss of the Butterfly, submit for publicationnothingnothing
3WRITING100 NC History pagesnothingjust the planning in Nov
4WRITINGblog about 8 wild foodsnonenone
5WRITINGfinish Dead Mule Swamp Druggistchapters 27-2810 chapters added
6WRITINGdo 10 book promotion things1 the big afghan giveaway is in progress (have you entered?)6
7WRITINGwriting schedule day 50 times0 (this doesn't mean I didn't write, but this refers to a particular disciplined schedule, and I didn't do any)9
8WRITING5 entries in Off the Sanctuary Wallnonenone
9WRITINGpursue a contract I can't name yetfollow up contactno results
10WRITINGtalk to 5 bookstores about carrying mysteriesnonenone
11HOUSEfix kitchen drawerDONEDONE
12HOUSEcut down 5 autumn olive treesnonenone
13HOUSEclean refrigerator twicenot so soon yet1
14HOUSEreplace kitchen faucetnothingnothing
15HOUSEget lawnmower fixednothingnothing
16HOUSEclean terracenothingnothing
17HOUSEkitchen light electric boxnothingnothing
18HOUSEreplace faucet by washing machinenothingnothing
19HOUSEput away model railroad stuffnonenone
20HOUSEspend 10 hours sorting booksnone2 total
21FITNESSincrease to 30 pushups24increase of 1 since February
22FITNESSincrease to 100 jumping jacks75increase of 5 since February
23FITNESSincrease to 2 min planking70 secno increase
24FITNESSwalk, bike, ski or snowshoe 200 times2069, better
25HIKINGNCT Hike 100 Challenge for 20163.5total of 12.5 miles on three SPW hikes
26HIKINGvisit 5 new MI counties to explore trailsnonenone
27HIKINGhike 100 more miles of the Buckeye Trailmaps orderedthis spring
28HIKINGclear my trail better0total of 13 days, wrong season now
29PERSONALSavings Goaladded some77% to goal
30PERSONALFinancial Goal #2nothingnothing
31PERSONALlose 10 pounds0I'm back to where I was when I started, even the longer walks don't seem to bring results
32PERSONALplay music 50 times418
33PERSONALother #1 (200 times)337, not good
34PERSONALother #201, not on track
35MISCmake 21 quarts juice07 total
36MISCtry 10 new wild foodsnonenone
37MISCsome genealogy stuffreviewed site I started on a while agojust the review
38MISC100 more pix on Shark Shots88 total
39MISC2 photo cards documentednothingnothing, but backed up some more stuff
40MISCgive 10 gifts from my kitchen14
41MISCeat at Brenda's Burgerswith EsterDONE
42MISCeat at Country Crittersnothingbut I'd better, because it's for sale
43MISCtake my trailer on 2 tripsnonenone
44MISCfinish monkey booties1DONE
45MISCget two programs NCT and Kitchen Sinknonebut I have a short program next week
46MISCget rid of 100 things19
47MISCread or listen to 100 books1742
Best one was He Who Hesitates by Ed McBain. This was billed as a simple mystery, but it is almost literary and would make a great play.
48MISCmove NCC from Josh's garagenothingnothing
49MISCshort bios of 5 relativesnonenone
50MISCsort my fabricnothingnothing
51MISCdo something inside my trailernothingnothing
52MISCadd 50 things to family heritage listnonenone
53MISCsome VCR tapes to DVDnonenone
54MISCsome cassette tapes to CDnonenone

See february Report
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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Kale- It's What's for Dinner(s)


Kale soup- this afternoon's project. Not quite as good as I'd expected, but good enough. And, I made my biggest pot full, so this means there are about 15 future days (probably not in a row- some will go in the freezer) I won't have to do anything except heat some up.

kale soup

See Houston, We Have Soup
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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

First Turtles of 2016

Today was beautiful. Just the right temperature, about 50 degrees, sun shining. I took a 5-mile walk.

There is a small pond/wetland that used to be quite hidden, but there's been some recent timber harvesting that has opened the area up more. Don't know what that will mean for the wildlife in general, but the turtles were sure out catching the rays this afternoon.

Most of them were painted turtles. I saw probably ten of those. However, the best find was a big guy, sharing the same log with one of the painted ones. This is another Blanding's turtle. Considered endangered in general and of special concern in Michigan.

Blanding's turtle

I wasn't sure what it was until I got home and could see the pictures on the computer. They don't usually extend their necks so far out. But when I saw the spots on the shell, that was kind of definitive.

Blanding's turtle

This was the clincher, however. I managed to sneak around and get a shot from the front without scaring it off the log. That yellow chin is the absolute key. Blanding's turtle. No doubt. Also notice the spots on the leg.

This one is not as big as the one I saw a few years ago that I'm pretty sure was bigger than the state record. But this one was cleaner (easier to see features) and closer (better pictures).

You can see the big one at the link below.

See The Secret Pond and an Amazing Turtle
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Monday, March 28, 2016


Not mine, but I can still enjoy them.


Lots of deadlines this week. Catch you later!

See the last crocus to appear in my gardens
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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Springtime Colors- In Church Anyway

Happy Easter!

Still gray and brown outside, although most of the white stuff is gone again. It was really nice to have beautiful flowers in church this morning.




The theme for Lent has been caterpillars to butterflies, so today everyone came forward and stuck a little silk butterfly on a cross as a symbol of new life. Lots of great Easter music.


In the afternoon I took a five-mile walk. All gray and brown, but I did catch something lively. A red squirrel. Pretty sure not one of mine since it was over a mile away.

red squirrel

See Easter 2011
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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Author Promotion and Birthday Giveaway

Win this beautiful windowpane afghan, edged in the colors of your choice, on my birthday

windowpane afgan

In progress, made by me, finished size approximately 60" x 75"
Should be done by the end of April

Enter as many times as you like– here’s how
There are 2 parts to each entry: 1- do it, and 2- make sure I know you did it.

How to do it:
any of the following gets you 1 or 2 entries
      1 entry- share something about my books in a public place (Facebook, a blog, at your workplace, etc)
      2 entries- post a review of any of my books on Amazon, Smashwords, Goodreads, B&N, etc
      2 entries- buy one of my books, print or e-book

How to make sure I know you did it:
      Best method- email me at jhyshark@gmail.com
      2nd best method- leave a comment at Joan of Shark
      Not so good method- tell me in person
      Totally unacceptable- assume I saw that you did something

Example: Buy one of my books, write a review and publish it on Amazon and Goodreads; result, you get 6 chances for the afghan.
Example: Buy a book, share a picture of you reading it on Facebook, you get 3 chances
(a previously purchased book would only get you one entry for the share).
Example: Buy two books, get 4 chances
In all cases you MUST tell me what you did and how to contact you- I have no way of knowing who buys my books online, and I may miss something you share.
Many other combinations, or types of sharing will count

You have until midnight EDT April 24, 2016 (my birthday) to create entries.
Drawing will be held for the winning entry on Monday, April 25, 2016.
      1st place- windowpane afghan
      2nd place- one book of your choice

For all books by Joan H. Young visit Books Leaving Footprints

See Joan of Shark
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Friday, March 25, 2016

Beautiful Morning

Today was really lovely, at almost any moment. The ice and snow was melting from the time the first rays of sun hit. The sky was blue, and it all combined to great effect.

First was the sunrise.


Followed by light glowing on the far trees out back- have to be two more pictures in the series "Moods of My Backyard." I REALLY love that backyard.

light on trees

light on trees

Just for a little humor, the ice-coated weeds sticking up through the snow gleamed like popsicles.

light on ice

I'm off to work very soon.

See Moods of My Backyard
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Thursday, March 24, 2016

Little Pleasures

These two pictures are left over from Saturday's walk.

It's not that the snow and ice isn't pretty. It really is. But I wanted to share these with you, and so they win for today.

A little surprise like a very early English daisy, Bellis perennis, was easily enough to bring on a smile. I know they are considered by some to be a terrible nuisance in yards, but I love them.

English Daisy

I had to get help to identify the second little treat. I'm just not a very good birder. I saw a bird moving in the grass ahead of me, and it held still long enough for me to get a poor picture (which is a slight improvement on no picture!).

Well, I could do better than little brown bird. I knew it was a sparrow, but which one? My bird guy says song sparrow, Melospiza melodia. If he'd posed for me at a better angle, I would have known. If he'd sung for me, I would have known! I'm much better at botany than birds. Nevertheless, a little spark of spring wildlife was welcome.

song sparrow

See Song Sparrow
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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Well, it IS Michigan...



clothes on line



That is all.

See Nasty and Nice
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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Mrs. Shoveler

Look who was back on the little pond on my walking route.

northern shoveler duck

Yes, it's the northern shoveler duck. And he's not alone. She's not too distinctive, but you can certainly tell what she is from the big bill.

northern shoveler duck

I wonder if they are looking for a nesting spot, or just passing through.

See Northern Shoveler
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Monday, March 21, 2016

Switzer Lake

Found a new little lake today. And I do mean little! But it has a public access, so there must be some sort of fish in it.

This is Switzer Lake looking northeast.

Switzer Lake

And southeast.

Switzer Lake

A stream flows out the south end of it, and less than a half mile away that reaches the Middle Branch of (you knew I was going to say this) the Pere Marquette River.

This picture is taken from the nearest bridge, and the creek from the lake is coming in from the left, right at the very bottom of the picture. I took these first, and didn't realize I was going to want to show you the tiny creek.

Pere Marquette River

As you can see, the middle branch is smaller. The prettiest picture is looking downstream from the bridge.

Pere Marquette River

You know I love finding new places!

See Map of the Pere Marquette
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Sunday, March 20, 2016

Bark and No Bark

These are just some of the other pictures I took on my walk yesterday.

First is some bark from a fallen quaking aspen that has weathered and is being colonized by a fungus. In the gray and brown month of March, my eye is drawn to anything that shows some color.

aspen bark with fungus

The interesting thing about this apple branch is the lack of bark. Someone's been having a feast. My guess is a rabbit. No, not a tree-climbing rabbit. The tree had broken and this branch was on the ground although still living (maybe not for much longer).

chewed apple bark

Finally, I love the bark on this white cedar. This single tree should be in my series of polka-dots and stripes.

white cedar tree

How about those stripes? Wonder what caused them.

white cedar bark

See Six Miles, No Car, No Roads
See Polka Dots and Stripes 3
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