Life Through a Virginia Window

Through the Window

A Slide Show of the photos

I have made a slide show on Youtube of these photos so that you can view the photos full screen in the video. I hope you enjoy them.

Through the Window

When I wrote this hub I had just come back from visiting my daughter and family in Fredericksburg Virginia.

During my stay I became fascinated by the wildlife that I could see through the window that looked out onto the deck and garden (is it called a yard in America?).

I took to looking through the window as I sat and consumed some of the many cups of tea that we English deem necessary to sustain us throughout the day.

This window turned out to be one of the highlights of my holiday, because through it I was able to witness a variety of birds and squirrels going about their business, taking no notice of me or of the ever watchful cats.

I hope through this article to share this delightful time with you and I hope that you will get the same enjoyment that I did as you now peer into my world through the lens of my camera.

Pickle

If I could only get out there I could catch that Blue Jay no problem.
If I could only get out there I could catch that Blue Jay no problem.

Pickle watches with me

My daughter has three cats, one which she brought with her from England and two that she has rescued since coming to live in America.

Each of these cats took a turn staring through the window with me though for very different reasons I suspect.

The first to join me on watch was the youngest cat Pickle he is a handsome cat and I think that he knows it.

Blue Jay

Now right up front I am going to tell you the truth before you find it out for yourselves, I know nothing at all about birds, that’s right nothing nada.

However, I have made a stab at identifying the ones on the photographs that you will see on this hub.

If I have got any wrong then please help me out by dropping me a line and putting me right.

The first bird that caught my attention was the Blue Jay its beautiful colouration is very eyecatching and I am pretty confident that I have identified this one correctly.

I took all my photographs with a fairly high zoom so as to get as close up and detailed a photograph as possible.

Unfortunately I took the photographs without the aid of my tripod because I didn't bring it with me. Because of this some of the photos are not as crisp and clean as I would like them to be and so they don’t do the birds justice but I think you will get some enjoyment from looking at them anyway.

In a lighthearted way, I have tried to get inside the heads of the wildlife out side, and the cats inside, as each photograph was taken. You will see what I thought they might be thinking written underneath each photograph.

If you think of something better then I would love to hear please post it in my comments below so we can enjoy it too.

Blue Jay

That cat is there again looking at me through the window.
That cat is there again looking at me through the window.
Now there is a woman pointing a camera at me hold on girl this is my best side snap me now.
Now there is a woman pointing a camera at me hold on girl this is my best side snap me now.

Snow arrives on the deck

A few days after we arrived Fredericksburg was in the grip of one of its worst snow storms in more than a  decade and we had eighteen inches of snow fall in about a twelve  hour period.

Snow covered deck

Taken through another of the windows the morning after the snow storm.
Taken through another of the windows the morning after the snow storm.

Food and lodgings available here

My daughter is a bit of a softy when it comes to birds and animals and even in the good weather a bird can find food and lodgings in her back yard.

When the snow came the first thing she did was to open the window I look through and throw handfuls of seed onto the snow topped table, her husband able to throw further managed to get some as far as the fence rail surrounding the deck.

While the snow was piled up high we didn’t see any wildlife near the deck, but when the snow melted it left a layer of bird seed on the table, deck and fence rail that drew all sorts of hungry critters. The Blue Jay above is eating seed from the fence rail that is round the deck.

Rooms going cheep!

There seems to be at least one of these birdhouses on every tree in the back yard.
There seems to be at least one of these birdhouses on every tree in the back yard.

Freak on Watch

What are all these birds doing on my deck, just let me at them I'll sort them
What are all these birds doing on my deck, just let me at them I'll sort them

Freak watches with me

The next to join me at the window is Freak the other rescue cat, she is a very loving cat and loves to be stroked, unlike Pickle who is very distrustful of most people.

When my daughter brought the young sickly and neglected Pickle home he was just a kitten.

Freaky adopted him and cared for him like her own kitten but as she gazes at the birds I don't think that it is adoption that is on her mind at the moment.

Brown-headed Cowbirds

As freak and I made ourselves comfortable at the window it seemed like a whole flock of Brown-headed Cowbirds swooped down out of the sky.

The arrival of these birds on the deck en masse frightened all the other birds away. Initially there was quite a feeding frenzy going on, the female bird in the middle of the second photograph seemed unable to keep her eyes off Freak who was peering intently at them through the window.

Brown-headed Cowbirds

A whole flock of these birds seemed to swoop down some on the table like these and others on the deck itself.
A whole flock of these birds seemed to swoop down some on the table like these and others on the deck itself.
Eat up fast that cat has it's beady eyes on us.
Eat up fast that cat has it's beady eyes on us.

Keep the noise down

There were dozens of these Brown-headed Cowbirds and you could see from Freak’s pose that she was just itching to get out there among them and sort them out for daring to land on her deck.

Freak was not the only one who was put out by their noisy arrival, the sparrow who lived in the birdhouse on the deck was not too pleased either. As he stands one foot on the perch outside his own front door he seemed to be saying ‘Keep the noise down’ well that’s what it looks like to me.

Who is making all that noise outside my house?

Lets eat up quick before that blinking cat comes out here
Lets eat up quick before that blinking cat comes out here
Keep the noise down mates some of us are trying to sleep.
Keep the noise down mates some of us are trying to sleep.

Dark-eyed Junco

The Brown-headed Cowbirds departed just as they arrived en masse, one moment they were there the next it was like someone had thrown a hidden switch somewhere that said time’s up and off they went.

Once the coast was clear other birds started to come back in dribs and drabs, the closest I could find to the birds in these photographs were the Dark-eyed Junco but I could just as easily be wrong about that, if you know different please let me know.

Freak soon got bored with the dribs and drabs and soon after the Brown-Headed Cowbirds had left Freak got up and left too.

 

Dark-eyed Junco

Zuzu

It's that pesky squirrel again. as soon as they open this door for me I'm going to have him
It's that pesky squirrel again. as soon as they open this door for me I'm going to have him

Zuzu’s turn to watch

Zuzu is the cat that came to America from Newcastle with my daughter. My daughter has had Zuzu from a tiny kitten and there was no way she was going to leave her behind, even though you could have flown a family of four out to the States for the cost of the cat's flight.

Now Newcastle cats are tough cats and you wouldn’t want to mess with one, you are just as likely to get a growl and the swish of the tail from Zuzu as you would a purr, it all depends on her mood.

Try to move her when she doesn’t want to be moved and you wouldn’t believe how much noise comes out of this little cat with the big attitude.

Upset her and she hisses growls and takes swipes at you with her opened clawed paw and she has even been known to bite. As I said Newcastle cats are hard and tough.

The Squirrel

I first saw the squirrel jumping from tree to tree in the yard and the speed with which he moved I doubt that Zuzu could catch him if she tried.

Slowly but surely this squirrel edged closer and closer to the deck area until he was in the tree nearest to the deck. He is a very pretty squirrel I think but I know many people consider these animals pesky critters even vermin, I have heard the term tree rats used to describe them, but they have a safe haven here in Sally’s yard.

The Squirrel

Who has been saying I'm a tree rat?
Who has been saying I'm a tree rat?
What's that cat looking at?
What's that cat looking at?

Then there were two cats watching

Zuzu was busy intently watching through the glass door every move that the squirrel made when Pickle wandered up to see what she was looking at.

Pickle soon located what was holding Zuzu’s gaze and with a swift bound he turned and jumped to his favourite spot on the chair by the window so that he could also watch.

Zuzu after all is not a cat who wants to share her viewing place or anything else with others.

Pickle

What's Zuzu looking at? It's that squirrel back again
What's Zuzu looking at? It's that squirrel back again
You can keep your spot, I don't care,anyhow I've got a much better view from this window Zuzu
You can keep your spot, I don't care,anyhow I've got a much better view from this window Zuzu

Squirrel under surveillance

Both cats watched fascinated as the squirrel finally jumped down off the tree onto the deck fence rail.

You could almost hear their little minds whirring with the plans of what they would do to that poor squirrel if only they could get outside.

That of course was not going to happen anytime soon, at least not while Sally was around to ensure the safety of the wildlife that ate on her deck.

Squirrel under surveillance

There is a cat watching me through that glass door
There is a cat watching me through that glass door
Now there is a cat at the window, I got two of the blighters watching me now
Now there is a cat at the window, I got two of the blighters watching me now

Who is afraid of the two cats?

Who is afraid of the two cats watching through the window? One thing is for sure it certainly wasn’t this squirrel.

The squirrel was definitely aware of the two cats following his every move but he didn’t seem at all fazed by this.

In fact he was so unfazed that in full view of both cats, he jumped down off the rail onto the deck and took up a boxing stance which seemed to say,  come on then if you want a fight then I’ll give you one.

Ok come on then you two if you think you're hard enough, I'll take you both on at the same time.
Ok come on then you two if you think you're hard enough, I'll take you both on at the same time.

Just me and the Sparrows

After the challenging posturing of the squirrel the cats seemed to lose interest and they both wandered off leaving me and my camera all alone with the sparrows, at least I think they are sparrows.

Sparrows

Don't look now but I think we are having our photos taken, I said don't look!
Don't look now but I think we are having our photos taken, I said don't look!

I hope that you have enjoyed this little peek through a window in Virginia; by the way you don’t think that squirrel frightened the cats do you?


As winter approaches, I am looking forward to when I shall take up my place at this window once again, hopefully my view will be as exciting and varied as it was this time. I now have a new camera, and hope that I will be able to capture even better shots with it than I have here. When I do I will post some of them on this post, for you to enjoy.

More by this Author


Comments 48 comments

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

Thank lovely to read and to see. I envy her. Thank you for posting it.


myownworld profile image

myownworld 6 years ago from uk

wow! Such a lovely hub! I felt I was looking out through that window with you....beautiful pics! (have you tried professional photography?) That blue jay and the squirrels were my favorite. Thank you so much for sharing these!


alekhouse profile image

alekhouse 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

Delightful hub. You did a great job with photographing the birds. You really should frame a couple of them.


Watch Tower profile image

Watch Tower 6 years ago from New Zealand

Hi Maggs

well I really can't tell you enough, about how much I enjoyed your hub, and totally love all the photos you shared.

thanks for a very delightful adventure with your writing and photos big thumbs up


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hello hello, thanks for your kind comments, yes she has a view to envy, that deck certainly gets lots of visitors. I saw far more birds than I managed to capture with my camera, there was a lovely Northern Cardinal and its mate every time I tried to focus my camera it moved. Lol


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Myownworld, thanks for the compliment, in answer to your question no I haven’t tried professional photography; I still have trouble getting to grips with the amateur kind. Lol


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Alekhouse, glad you enjoyed it, I think I might do that at some point, I love the ones of the squirrel in the tree with him in sharp focus and the background in soft focus.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Watch Tower, thanks for the big thumbs up, I am so glad that you enjoyed it.


HubCrafter profile image

HubCrafter 6 years ago from Arizona

Hi maggs224:

I just ate up this hub!

Beautiful pictures and wonderful, humorous captions. What a delightful, enjoyable time spent with you today. Thank you so much.

My basic and merely serviceable digital camera could never get these shots. These animals are just delightful to watch, aren't they?

We have 3 indoor cats and an indoor dog...plus about 10 feral cats we feed also. Plenty of antics around here!

Outdoors we have a feeder to attract the hummingbirds. Beautiful little creatures!

Some of the cats climb into the uppermost branches of our orange tree. They wait for hours, expecting to catch a hummingbird, I think.

Silly nits. The hummingbirds always sit on the most tip-top tiny branch on the tree. No cat could ever be supported by it's neighboring branch. And the sound of snapping twigs would be an instant give-away of approaching danger to the bird, lol.

Thanks again for a delightful visit. Hope you'll stop by. Perhaps catch a read about cats or desert travel with a camera in hand.

My wife, Linda, will put the kettle on. We'll keep an eye out for you.

Cheers, HubCrafter


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

I absolutely loved this hub as I enjoyed reading it and browsing through the photos. Made me appreciate life all the more. Thank you so much Maggs.


Benson Yeung profile image

Benson Yeung 6 years ago from Hong Kong

Thanks for taking me to where you sat and watched. A real treat.


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 6 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

Nice to see you back. I don't know what's the most beautiful the cats, birds or squirrels. That blue jay is very beautiful though.


tonymac04 profile image

tonymac04 6 years ago from South Africa

What wonderful pix and words - I loved this peek through your window in Virginia! I have just in the last week put up a bird feeder in my garden. One of my thoughts was to take photos of the birds taht came to it and write a Hub aboutthem. Have taken a few shots but the birds don't seem to have found the feeder yet, or atleast in any numbers. So I will wait patiently for a little longer.

Love and peace

Tony


lovelypaper profile image

lovelypaper 6 years ago from Virginia

These pictures are absolutely beautiful! What a lovely hub.


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 6 years ago from California Gold Country

The pictures are great-- I especially love the bluejay. You have become such a star on HubPages, contributing a lot of positive energy. Glad you had such a lovely visit.


oliversmum profile image

oliversmum 6 years ago from australia

Goodness me you have really made me feel like i was there,what a wonderful description, The pictures are absolutely beautiful,and i love the cats,also their names,Thank you. :)


Ann Nonymous profile image

Ann Nonymous 6 years ago from Virginia

Wow! I live in Virginia and even if I carried a camera around my neck 24/7 I could never capture anything so beautiful, Maggs. You truly have a gift. I also thoroughly enjoyed your interpretation of each picture and their “autobiography” you included. It was charming, captivating, entertaining and a joy...I hope you enjoyed your stay!


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi ripplemaker I am glad that you found this hub enjoyable, I certainly enjoyed doing it.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Benson, I am glad that you enjoyed the view thanks for leaving the positive feedback I really appreciate it.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi ethel being English where apart from the Kingfisher (and I was over thirty years old before I saw one of these birds) really colourful birds are not a common sight so the flash of colour immediately grabs my attention and it really was that blue there has been no digital enhancement on these photos. I saw a beautiful Northern Cardinal and its mate but I didn’t manage to get a good shot of them unfortunately.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Tony thanks for the encouraging words I am glad that you enjoyed your peek through the window. I look forward to reading your hub and seeing your pics after the birds come flocking to your feeder, it will no doubt be worth the wait.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi lovelypaper, I am glad that you loved the pictures and this little peek through the window.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Rochelle glad you enjoyed the pictures, the Blue Jay is a pretty bird, thanks for the praise you have made me bush. It was a wonderful visit we had a great time, especially the precious time I managed to grab where it was just mother and daughter time, I really miss that living so far away.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi oliversmum glad you liked the cats, they are real characters and a rich source of entertainment in the house.

Zuzu is named after a character in my daughter’s favourite film ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ with James Stewart.

Zuzu is the cute little girl who James Stewart holds at the end of the film and she says ‘Every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings’.

Zuzu was very cute and sweet when she was a kitten and the name was very appropriate not so sure about that now Lol as she is a very feisty miss.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Ann Nonymous, I had a wonderful time it is over six years since I have shared a Christmas with my daughter and it is the first American Christmas I have experienced.

My daughter’s husband and his family made our experience of an American Christmas really special.

We were included in the family Christmas Eve gathering where there must have been over fifty family members it was a magical evening.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi HubCrafter, I am glad you enjoyed your visit, that cuppa tea offer sounds very inviting, keep and eye out for me I will be visiting soon.


ParadiseForever profile image

ParadiseForever 6 years ago from Chennai, India.

Hi maggs,

I love this hub very much since I am an animal lover first of all. Second is the animals talking is very nice interpretation for each photo. Third is really catchy photography work. The fourth one is beautifully crafted hub. Fifth one is....no end to it. I really enjoyed this hub. Keep writing. God Bless You.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

ParadiseForever thank you so much for the really nice compliments I appreciate them very much


MagicStarER profile image

MagicStarER 6 years ago from Western Kentucky

You really got some nice shots - you are a great photographer - and those blue jays are prettier than the ones I get on my back deck here in Kentucky! I like the one of the squirrel ready to take on the cats, it is awesome! So glad you enjoyed your stay! :)

btw: those cats really will get the squirrels! Mine got one last Spring - I had to rescue him - the cat hurt the poor little thing's hind leg so he couldn't jump or run. He let me pick him up by his tail and I put him in a bucket with soft rags and a dish of water in it and hung him from a deck rafter so the cats couldn't get to him and finish him off. He ate nuts and cracked corn, and drank water for a few days, then scampered off recovered.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

@ MagicStarER The speed with which these little creatures scamper about I really thought the cats wouldn't have stood a chance. Thanks to you I now know better.

I am so glad that you were there to rescue this little fellow, and that he lived to scamper another day!

It sounds like you are just as soft as my daughter and I when it comes to animals. Lol


thudord 6 years ago

very nice images.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

@ thudord thanks


RGraf profile image

RGraf 6 years ago from Wisconsin

Beautiful pictures. I can't wait to get my camera fixed.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

RGraf I am so pleased that you like the pictures, I love digital photography don't you?


oliversmum profile image

oliversmum 6 years ago from australia

Maggs224.Hi. Thank you for telling me how your cat was named,I am flattered, that movie was brilliant,we do have a video of it and have watched it many many times,and that line is absolutely adoreable Thank you again.:) :)


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Oliversmum It is the all time favourite Christmas film of my daughter and it is a film that no matter how many times she has watched it she never seems to get tired of. I love a good feel good movie where good triumphants over evil don´t you?


2patricias profile image

2patricias 6 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

Great photos! This is a very entertaining hub - glad we found it.

You are right - Zuzu looks a bit like Milo (in our hub The Cat Came Back).

We often wonder what our cats are looking at (both of us Patricias have a cat or cats).


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

@ 2patricias, Thanks for the kind comments, I am glad that you enjoyed the photos. Cats are very entertaining company, I know with three cats in my daughter’s house I was never at a loss for something to look at. I thought that you might see a likeness to your cat Milo, by the way I really enjoyed your Hub.

If you like cats and cat stories, then I think their hub is definitely one that you will enjoy, to see for yourself just click the link http://hubpages.com/animals/The-Cat-Came-Back It has a happy ending which I love.


Michael Shane profile image

Michael Shane 6 years ago from Gadsden, Alabama

Great Photos & Hub! Thanks....


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

I am glad that you enjoyed the hub and photos Michael.


Katelyn Weel profile image

Katelyn Weel 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

What great photos, Maggs!! I never really appreciated how pretty Blue Jays are, we used to see them everywhere and I didn't think anything of them.. they are actually beautiful. You have a knack for photography and the stories were great!


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 6 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Katelyn, I thought the cats and squirrels might appeal to you, glad you liked the photos.


Kinderhook 5 years ago

Lovely series, which I voted up and rated "beautiful."


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 5 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Kinderhook, thank you so much for popping over and taking a look. I also appreciate the voting up and the rating. I am glad that you enjoyed the Hub : )


Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 5 years ago from West Virginia

Wow! I just loved the story and the pictures. You take good pictures. I wish that I could take them as good as you.


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 5 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Thank you so much for your kind comments I am so glad that you enjoyed the Hub and the photographs.


Mekenzie profile image

Mekenzie 5 years ago from Michigan

Maggs, I so enjoyed the peek into your visit to Virginia. I can totally understand how that time with your daughter was so precious. You caught some awesome captivating pictures of God's creation. We have a deck too and I always marvel at the colors and antics of the birds and squirrels that come for a visit. Loved this hub, it gave my morning a lift .. Thank YOU and God bless YOU!

Mekenzie


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 5 years ago from Sunny Spain Author

Hi Mekenzie, I am so glad that you enjoyed your little virtual visit there was so much going on outside of that window even when the snow was piled high.

The antics of the wildlife kept the cats and me fascinated and my camera busy. It was an enjoyable time.

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