Dawn came pink and sparkly. An hour later, it was blue and white. Pretty is too bland a word for the world outside on this cold but still morning.

front yard

Yesterday, the chickens and goats were all safe and snug in their barns while the snow fell. This morning Steve shoveled a dry patch in their pens so that they could enjoy the day.

cozy barn

The fish move slowly through the pond.


It all looks peaceful, but look closely and you’ll see tales of wild animal comings and goings.

A fox trit-trotted past our back door.

by back door

It’s fox mating season, and Lily has been waking us at 5 am to let us know that the males are yipping in our woods. This fox cut through our front yard. For some reason, it make a half-loop. I wonder what caught it’s attention and caused it to swerve like that?


Near the stonewall is a high traffic area. I see meadow vole, fox and deer tracks. I doubt that they were all there at the same time.

many tracks

But, the animal that leaves the most tracks is Lily.


As I sat and wrote this, Lily’s barking alerted me to a fox cantering through the meadow across the street! I saw it’s plumed tail disappear into the woods.


  1. Beautiful, peaceful photos! I am a new follower to your blog and have enjoyed my time here. You are a talented writer and very informative for a newby like myself. I have a small flock of 6 hens; 4 Red Sex linked and 2 Barred Rocks. I had 2 roosters but they had to find new homes…too aggressive. I raised the 4 red “sisters” from chicks, but brought the Barred Rocks (Wilma and Betty) in as adults. After reading your blog from yesterday…I did it ALL wrong! I really didn’t realize the risk I was putting my girls at. I plan to get some Buff Orphington and Americana chicks this spring. We will be building a larger enclosure for the chicken math that is occuring :)

  2. The snow looks so beautiful! Do the foxes ever “hang out” by the chicken’s coop? It looks well fortified so your girls are safe :) Enjoy your bright and beautiful day.

    • Good dog Lily keeps them away. But, with the mating activity going on, and males checking out new territory, I’m not letting the hens out to free-range for awhile.

  3. Beautiful! Lily is such a good guard dog. It’s nice to see the goats trying to get the old ladies to come out for a chat. :-)

      • The morning after Candy died I happened to notice three of the girls under the closed door of her hutch, all three of them cocking their heads sideways and looking up. Perhaps they were wondering why Her Highness was making herself so scarce.

        • Well, hens don’t like change. So her cage being closed might be a puzzle to them. When I saw the snow this morning I thought of Candy and her playing and digging in it last winter.

  4. Been raining for days here in East Tn. Flooding and landslides have been our landscape. Snow on its way. Perhaps in a day or two we will see that bright golden globe. It will turn our world sparkly, the sky will turn coral and blue!

  5. Living in residential suburban Fort Worth, it is always a treat to see a fox. I used to see one as I went to the gym at 5:00 am. Being an early riser has it’s benefits. I love to see the foxes. What a treat to see their prints and speculate about them and the owners of other prints. Love that you shared it.

  6. My husband has an animal cam in our woods behind our house…last Monday night we had a coyote, a fox, a deer and a fisher cat…all in the same night. They don’t stick around long, our yard is used as a highway from one patch of land to a small pond.

  7. That’s a beautiful picture of the ice crystals on the pond. What a variety of tracks by the stone wall. Living in a rural area we have many wild animals too. I can hear the coyotes howling in the woods at night. Occasionally I’ll see deer, turkeys, coyote and even bears in the yard. Some days when I let my dogs out in the morning they’ll run around the yard sniffing all the strange odors in the yard so I know we had visitors during the night. I know that many more animals come into the yard that I don’t hear or see. But in the winter they leave behind the evidence in the snow.

  8. How gorgeous it looks. It’s a white blanket covering everything. I hope there is more of this to come.

  9. “Pretty is too bland a word for the world outside on this cold but still morning.”

    I have a word for those lovely trees and snow: “Ahhhh!” :-)

    It’s interesting that the harshest season is so tranquil in appearance.

  10. The happy moments in life involve noticing the small details. Thank you for bringing those to my attention in so many of your posts.