Anyway, since girlcook's not here right now, she hasn't yet seen her Christmas gift in person: although we bought it in November, it was still hanging in a show when she left, and besides, it would have been a bit tough to fit in the bus and taxi to the lodge! We bought it for her because she really loves this painting, which we hung in our Vancouver apartment. It's called Totem, and it's by Leanne Brusatore, whose work you can see more of here.
Since Megan likes this painting so much, we thought she'd like another painting from Leanne's series exploring the crow. This one, especially, seems perfect for Meg who has been known to do a little shadow-boxing herself (the painting's titled Shadowboxing)
This is the same series, of course, that we also chose Bronwen and Adam's gift from. Their painting is called Refraction, and you can see it in the bottom row below, on the far left -- it's a marvel of almost watery greens with a feather suspended in the central bottom third. We've sent Megan a picture of hers, but I really want to be able to show it to her in person -- that's going to be a while, though, as she's got some serious travel plans lined up. Some days, I have a tough time with how far my little bird has flown, but I'm proud of how well she manages when she's out there and I look forward to hearing more about her adventures (apparently, she got to go up in the helicopter the other day!).
Meanwhile, crowds of these little guys -- Golden Crowned Kinglets -- have been cheering me up. Especially after a bout of wind and rain, they cluster on our mud roads, picking up seeds that have been knocked down, I suspect. They're quite tiny, fast-moving, and for me, getting close enough to really see that flash of gold that stripes their crown is a magical mood-lifter. So far, my favourite bird, plebian as this choice might be to birders, is the Red-Winged Blackbird, but I'd have to say the GC kinglet is coming up a close second -- and it has the advantage of providing welcome cheer in the dreariest part of winter. Won't bring my little girl home but does coax a smile. I'd love to catch a shot of one foraging on the dirt road, but meanwhile, thanks to Supercilium at Flickr here's a wee fellow in a tree.