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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Friday, May 01, 2009


We always try to keep water available to the birds, even in the winter months.

We have a heater that we put in our winter “birdbath” and it works quite well (other than the issue with seaweed and sunflower seeds that sprout). We do try to keep it clean through the winter.

This winter “birdbath” is actually a little pigs “dish” that we got at TSC. It is made out of a black hard rubber material, is about 8” in diameter, and about 7” deep. We wish it wasn’t so deep (due to the cleaning part). It sits nicely in an old sprinkling can. Dan made brackets for the handle of the sprinkling can and attached it to the pole that I put suet on in the winter and the hummer feeder in the summer. I guess it would be easier to take a photo than try to explain it, but I’m lazy today.

So, in the summer months, I have a terra cotta “bowl” that I set in that sprinkling can (by bowl, I mean the thing that goes underneath a planter that you put water in for the plant in the planter…clear as mud??). Last spring the terra cotta bowl froze so I had a plastic one but it doesn’t quite fit in the can. When the weather gets REALLY nice, then I put out the ground bird bath with the little water fall thing in it. I don’t get too anxious to put it out because it IS a pain in the back and knees to clean!

I put my little plastic fake terra cotta bowl in the can yesterday and added a couple of rocks so it hopefully wouldn’t blow away. Dan had to go to town for parts for the loader (AKA Casey) so I went along. I figured I’d stop at the drug store and get a new terra cotta bowl. The first 4 that we removed from the pile (they are stacked one on top of the other) either had chips or cracks. I moved on down the aisle a bit and found THE PERFECT BIRD BATH FOR THE INBETWEEN SEASON!! It is about 17” in diameter, is only 2” deep (perfect for the little birds) and IT HANGS FROM WHATEVER YOU WANT TO HANG IT FROM! It came complete with a rope already attached to 3 evenly spaced “brackets” which ran up to a hook where the ropes all came together. True, it was $11.99; not $1.99 but HEY! I LIKED IT!

Dan couldn’t drive fast enough to get home so I could put the new bird bath up! I moved one of the sunflower feeders over to the shepherd’s hook so I could put the bird bath where that feeder had been. I got a bucket of water, slowly poured it in the new birdbath and as I was pouring, it was running out the other side. I stopped pouring and pondered the problem.

Hmmmm…it is obvious that the thing doesn’t hang straight. So I started adjusting the ropes as best I could without untying them. It still didn’t hang straight.

Dan came out to lend a hand and we ended up untying the ropes and trying again…same problem. I bet we spent a good 15 minutes at this until I finally said “GIVE UP!! THE DAMN THING IS GOING BACK!!”

It is sitting on the table, all dried, all tags put back in their original locations….waiting for a trip to town.

So, word of warning, if you see one of these and are hot to trot to buy it DON’T. If you have one of these and know the secret to making it straight, please share….but do it before Tuesday because that is when I’ll be back in town.


  1. That's too bad your bird bath gadget didn't work out! (I've broken brand new bird feeders in less than 10 minutes!)

  2. Shellmo...HA! I can see you have a lot of patience for the same type of thing.

  3. sfeutz9:08 AM

    This one has me going Cathy! Either the ropes are different lengths or they aren't evenly spaced. Has to be! Or the bowl itself is warped! Or the whole world has tilted and we are all off kelter. Did you try hanging it and using a level? But then heaven help you if you get a really fat bird on one side. I think you need to call in an engineering firm. Or just let those darn birds find their own water this summer. The U P has thawed by now hasn't it????

  4. Sandy, we figured if we had to spend THAT much time on the damn thing it wasn't worth it. I have (should say HAD) a hummer feeder that tilted to one side but THAT was a mfg error (due to the threads on the "screw" part). It was an easy fix; put a clothespin on one side to counter balance it. BUT, hummers kept getting their little beaks caught in the feeding holes so I got rid of that one.

  5. How frustrating!
    Good thing your house is level. ha

    The Retirement Chronicles


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