Have yourself a merry critter Christmas . . . :-)


For several years now, we’ve opted for live trees that we could plant in the spring . . . here’s our little Xena standing guard, after I finished decorating. Had to be careful not to use glass ornaments or other breakables, thanks to our furry little helpers. πŸ˜‰

Fortunately, it’s still usually warm enough during the afternoon to open their favorite window a few inches: we call it ‘Smell-O-Vision.’ The cats love to watch the quail parade (and/or other local critters) go by — those quail have gotten so fat this year that they waddle; do they know it’s supposed to be a hard winter?

Xena again, with her sister, enjoying Smell-O-Vision:


And here’s Vin, with our resident Goofball-in-chief, Strider. Yes, that selfie-taking Strider some readers might remember.


Strider is surprisingly camera shy. Vin’s mom asked for pictures of the cats, since they all hid under the bed when she visited back in late October. OK, no biggie, I figured: can do in time for Christmas. But November was a busy month for us, with our going out of business at the brick and mortar store (which Vin and I both felt was increasingly an old ball and chain). It was in December when I finally got out the camera to take some snapshots of the cats, and it soon became apparent that Strider wasn’t going to be an easy subject — he’d run as soon as he saw the camera. So I’ve had to sneak up on him a few times to get any usable photos at all.

Strider is more Vin’s cat than mine, and (much as he hates being held) here seems as happy and comfortable as I’ve seen him on camera — so it feels like I successfully caught an intimate moment between my two favorite guys. Since so many Strider photos turn out hopelessly blurry, I’m ecstatic over this one. πŸ™‚


We’ve got lots of hummers, and for years have had two hummingbird feeders in the courtyard. Despite some territorial squabbles, the hummers seem to get along OK and take turns feeding amidst usually friendly rivalries. But this year, we have one hummer who decided it’s his (or her?) job to chase off any and all competitors. That little bird is determined! So Vin had the clever idea to hang a third feeder out front, and this aggressive hummer promptly adopted it — easier to guard ONE feeder than two simultaneously, I guess. πŸ™‚


That hummer takes up his post first thing in the morning, and occupies it — when not at the feeder, or chasing off interlopers (as he does frequently) — until dusk. It’s a great source of entertainment for the cats, who love to sit in the window and watch its antics. It’ll even buzz Vin and me, to warn us off if we get too close . . . that hummer buzzed me several times when I was trying to get a photo for this blog post.

Hopefully all of our hummers are happy now . . . πŸ˜‰

My next mission — I’m hoping to get a photo of our elusive roadrunner. We often see it out the window: I’m afraid I don’t have the patience to be a great nature photographer, but perhaps someday I’ll get lucky . . . πŸ™‚

Merry Christmas to all, including your furry and feathered friends!


5 Comments to “Have yourself a merry critter Christmas . . . :-)”

  1. Thomas Mitchell Says:

    Why do you think they call it a road runner?

  2. Steve Says:

    Almost 30 years ago, we bought a living Christmas Tree from K-Mart.
    Today that six dollar tree is almost 40 feet tall and provides wonderful shade in the front yard.
    May all your trees do as well as ours has.
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  3. R. Hartman Says:

    Wonderful article and great pictures! What would we do / be without our furry friends?

    We’re enjoying ours every single day.

    Have a memorable Christmas and a happy, healthy 2017!

  4. MamaLiberty Says:

    All the wild critters here are snug in their sheltered places. We’re having a blizzard today. I’ll be snowed in for a few days, so I’m glad to have a good fire, plenty to eat and my wonderful corgi companion. Can’t ask for more!

    Have a happy holiday and best wishes for a prosperous new year. πŸ™‚

  5. Vin's Brunette Says:

    Thank you all for the warm wishes! Hope everyone had a merry Christmas. πŸ™‚

    Yesterday my browser crashed while I was working on a comment here, and I lost it . . . including a bunch of links. (Grrr. Hate it when that happens!)

    Anyway, today I recovered one or two links and found some new ones. πŸ˜‰

    One of the things I loved most about Christmas growing up was driving around to look at light displays. (That’d be a waste of gas around here. πŸ™ ) Here are some great ones, courtesy of various YouTube users:

    Stone Mountain Christmas Lights 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-g5ISWNK2U (Pretty enough to make me want to visit. Almost.)

    Best Christmas Lights 2016, Kelowna BC Canada Candy Cane Lane: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMJxx52Pw3U (Wow, impressive!)

    Christmas Lights 2013, Amazing Grace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQkH_SmqScY

    Micheal Jackson Mix Christmas Lights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y4J3ZZ7NBIg

    Best Christmas Lights in Park Ridge, Tribute to Prince: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gbGZkS7fTMM (RIP, Prince!)

    And then there’s this (parental discretion advised, but fun for adults):

    Most funny and creative snowman ideas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZLOVa75miI

    We don’t miss shoveling the stuff, but I like the attitude of having fun with it if you are stuck with snow. πŸ˜‰

    May the (Christmas) Spirit stay with you! πŸ™‚

    Look out, 2017 . . . here we come . . . πŸ˜‰