Friday, December 30, 2011

20.12% Off Sale!

My Zazzle shop is having a 20.12% off sale today in honor of the coming new year. Just type in the code "2012NEWYEARS" at checkout to get your discount!

Here's a picture that I recently added to my shop. My friend calls them "moon snail" shells. She collected them from the remote beach of the island where she used to live. I love their spiral designs.

Coombs on Vancouver Island

This past summer we took a couple of camping trips over to Vancouver Island, British Columbia. That's on the west coast of Canada, in case you didn't know!

Eventually we ended up in Coombs, which is famous for some goats who live on the grass roof of a marketplace/restaurant. They have a shed up there where they can hang out, get fed up there, and generally seem perfectly content to be there.

Why put goats on the roof? Good question! Apparently a man named Kristian Graaten, who emigrated from Norway in the 1950's, got the idea of  incorporating a sod roof in the design of the marketplace. These sorts of roofs were common in the small community where Kristian grew up. Legend has it that some goats were put on the roof to mow the lawn on the weekend of the Coombs Fall. The goats were a hit and successive generations have been up there ever since.

Not all the goats in Coombs are on rooftops, however. I found one or two that were earthbound...

Goats aren't the only wildlife around Coombs though. We spotted a few wild rabbits around too. They let you get pretty close to them. 

Vancouver Island in general is overrun with wild rabbits. I'm pretty sure these generations of rabbits started off as pets that were set free. The rabbit you see pictured above looks very much like a Dutch Dwarf, which is a kind of rabbit that you can buy in a pet store. Over the years I've had a couple of bunnies as pets and they were great. You can litter-train rabbits easily and they're easy to care for in general. They're affectionate too! But please, if you're considering getting a rabbit for a pet, give it careful thought. They live about eight years on average, so make sure you're willing to put in the time and give it the attention it deserves.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Photo Gifts on Sale

If you're looking for photo gifts after Christmas, my Zazzle shop is having terrific sales on this week. Today's sale is 50% off cards and shirts. A great price for quality products! Just type in the code "SHIRTSNCARDS" at checkout and you'll get 50% off.

Here are just a few of the products that I've added to my Zazzle shop recently. The photos are available on all kinds of products and anything can be personalized (with added text, for example).

Don't forget...I have dozens of photos in my shop and they're available on many different products, but today's deal is for 50% off of shirts and cards only.

Friday, December 23, 2011

One Squirrel Goes and Another Arrives

People are starting to call me the Squirrel Lady, and with good reason. I've gone kind of nutty about squirrels (if you'll excuse the expression). Squirrel pictures take up a good part of my table at the art fairs and farmer's markets where I sell my photographs most of the year.

We get the cute Douglas squirrels here on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. They aren't as aggressive as their bigger grey brothers and sisters. Despite the occasional battle, I usually have only one squirrel that comes around for the nuts and seeds that I put out. And I always get very attached to that one squirrel.

My first squirrel was Squiggy, who visited me for over three years. Squiggy got me started in my career as a squirrel photographer...

Tipsy came next. I introduced you to Tipsy in a previous post. Tipsy was an amazing model and would do anything for a peanut.

Unfortunately Tipsy was only around for about six months. I still miss her terribly.

I was without any squirrel friends for a couple of months until finally a new one started showing up. She's very nervous so I call her Nellie (as in Nervous Nellie). I've been courting her with peanuts stashed behind a broom on my back deck. I have to hide the peanuts because if I don't, the ever-watchful and greedy jays will gobble them up. I know it's Nellie who's getting the peanuts because she usually leaves little pee puddles behind. Please don't think less of her because of this habit though. As you can see, she's really quite adorable.

I'm slowly but surely getting Nellie used to me and only have a few pictures of her so far. Here's another shot of her soon after she discovered that I carry a mug full of peanuts around for the chickadees.

A few years ago I decided to make a calendar of some of my squirrel pictures. At that time all of my photos were of Squiggy, my first squirrel. But now I've had the pleasure of being entertained by quite a few different squirrels and so of course I have many more squirrel pictures to show for it. I hope that Nellie eventually loses her shyness and becomes a regular model!

Here are my 2012 squirrel calendars...
Please click on the calendars to get a closer look. You can flip through their pages online and you can even rearrange the pages any way you like to personalize your calendar.

Happy 2012, from the Squirrel Lady!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Feeding the Chickadees

Wow, has it really been since July that I posted anything to my blog? I don't know where the time went but I promise to do better!

I've been having a blast lately feeding the Chestnut-Backed Chickadees that visit my feeders. Could anything be more perfect that a chickadee?

One thing that's always sure to lighten my mood is to feed the chickadees peanuts by hand. I've got quite the crew this year and they land one after the other, often taking their time choosing the perfect peanut. Sometimes they toss nuts onto the ground because they're not quite right in their eyes. Sometimes they even have the nerve to peck my hand. And yes, the final indignity happened just the other of them left me a tiny Christmas gift. But I'd forgive a chickadee anything...I mean, look at them!

Well, I just wanted to drop in and wish you Happy Holidays this Christmas season and all the very best in 2012. I hope that the coming year is as magical as feeding chickadees peanuts from your hands!