Monday, March 31, 2008

Big Weekend commitment and birding!

Photo courtesy of Voices of Central Pennsylvania-- yes, Kat is really that tall.
The commitment ceremony was incredible; thank you so much for your good wishes! There must've been at least 500 people there, cheering us on.

Here's a list of links you can follow to read the local (and not-so-local) coverage of the event:

Local TV Channel 6 coverage

PSU's paper's coverage

Some other web site's coverage

Centre Daily Times coverage (State College's newspaper)

Altoona Mirror coverage

YouTube - Pride Commitment Ceremony at Penn State University -- these kids and their internets

The official site for the event -- contains stories about a lot of the pre-event publicity, both positive and not-so-positive

I'm supposed to get a bunch of photos from the million different photographers who were covering the event, so I'll post more photos when I get them!

The geographically closest Flock members Susan Gets Native and Laura H Somewhere in New Jersey were able to drive in for the event and we went birding on Sunday morning! They've both got coverage of our trip to the marsh as well, so be sure to check that out.

Unfortunately, I haven't even had a chance to download my photos from the camera, so I'll have pics later. For now, I'll tell you that the marsh really showed off for these Flock members! We saw
-wood ducks--at least 50 of them! of course, we were being bad birders and laughing and talking the whole time, so we only saw them as they flew up in terror!

-two sharp-shinned hawks, a male and a much larger female, trying to get it on in mid-air! The male was chasing the female, but only once did it look like they came close to a talon-lock; after that, the female played extremely hard-to-get.

-first-of-year tree swallows -- several pairs were arguing over the few nest boxes out there on the marsh. I'm thinking I need to make a couple of nest boxes tonight and mount them on the other side of the marsh, nearer the house

-Northern pintails -- from far away enough so we saw them on the water

-Great blue heron -- also fleeing in terror, but with those huge slow-motion elegant wingbeats

-mallards -- flying and honking at us for scaring them

-American coot -- in a driveby! We were on the boardwalk, and he half-flew/half-ran across a clearing in the loosestrife and cattails right in front of us

-red-tailed hawk soaring over the hill across from the marsh

-Carolina wren, calling a lot

-spring peepers, peeping even during the day

-muskrat -- a life mammal for Susan

-coyote poo, complete with little bones and fur in it--courtesy of Susan pulling it apart

I think that's everything we saw; an important development came when Susan and Laura informed me that you can call any bird that you can see from your backyard a "yard bird," which increases my yard bird number bigtime! I'll have to update my lists and see what I get.

We also discussed the possibility of having a birding festival right there on the marsh -- and you won't believe it, but Creeped-Out-by-Birds-Kat (COBBK?) came up with that idea! We could camp out in the backyard in tents and bird all over Penns Valley. Or who knows? Maybe I can swing something with the owners of the marsh and the very nice old bed-and-breakfast right next to it! This idea has definite possibilities, so stay in touch! We have a lot of great birding areas in this area, including a couple of hawk watches. Hmm...

Susan lobbied long and hard to make our next Flock gathering at Magee Marsh in May. Interesting--they have "garlic mustard pulling parties" there; perhaps we should have "purple loosestrife pulling parties" on the marsh. Believe me, now's the time; it's all dead and easy to grab, and then we could have margaritas in the backyard.


Earl Cootie said...

Congratulations! Sounds great! The whole weekend.

Splotchy said...

Congratulations D and Kat!!!!

John B. said...

Congratulations, Delia and Kat!

By the way, I spotted an aptonym in the Centre Daily article: the Rev. Gary Dull, of Faith Baptist Church in Altoona. Normally I would assume a name like that was fictional.

Patrick B. said...

CONGRATS!!! This is terrific. The Kat got some serious face time on one video!

dguzman said...

Thank you for your good wishes--we had a wonderful time, though we were exhausted by it all!

"aptonym"--a new word for me! Indeed, that was his name. I heard the "rally" he held was rather anti-climactic, as there were only a few dozen people there (not 500, as he had promised). Still, I also heard his petition had over 5,000 signatures on it--wow.

Claire said...

Congratulations again!
I had no idea tha Kat was creeped out by birds. So is my sister. We grew up in the city, so we didn't see much other than pigeons and starlings, and she's been in the suburbs for years, but she's still freaked out by the quantity and variety of birds. She REALLY hates that I have bird feeders..."why not just put out rat feeders, too?"

Paul said...

I am here via FranIAm, just happy to know of your love and joy. Very best wishes!!!!!!!

(Also, I have a phobia about birds--got chased by a bantam hen when a very young child--but I love bird watching and being able to identify species; just can't let them too near me. Known to have put out bird seed.)

Again, all the best!!!

Ubermilf said...

I know this is an incredibly shallow comment to make about a very meaningful occasion, but...

I really like the outfits you two picked to wear. I love that shade of blue.

And best wishes for a long and happy future together!

susankay said...

Also sent from Fran's -- I love people in love. You two look WONDERFUL!

barbie2be said...

congratulations to you both, from california!

Mary said...

This is wonderful! Congratulations to you Delia, and Kat. Your big birding event afterwards was icing on the cake! Kat will eventually overcome her aversion to birds, hopefully :o)

Hugs to you both,

two crows said...

may your life together be as wonderful as you anticipate.

Caminante said...

Over here from Franiam's place.

Many many good wishes for future years of happiness (and working at it, too)... Congratulations. And, yes, great photos.

KGMom said...

Delia--I read an article in our local paper (the Patriot) and thought to myself--hhmmmm--wonder if this is Delia's big day. And it is. I am so proud of you (all).
And again congrats--love the pic. You are a great looking couple.

Jan said...

From Fran's--Congratulations and best wishes. Wonderful pictures!

Anonymous said...

Great pictures and I hope that you all have a great life together. It is really cool.

Joe said...


What a lovely event, and a beautiful picture! Best wishes to the both of you for a long and happy life together!

Wish we could have been there. Funny coincidence though, we did do some birding (not as thoroughly as you do, though) while we were in the swamp down in Louisiana. Very cool.

Mel said...

What a weekend, love, friends, laughs, what else can you wish for?
Hugs and kisses from Peru!!!

dguzman said...

Thank you all for your sweet comments, and welcome to the newcomers from Fran's page!

We had such a blast. It was amazing to say our vows in front of so many people, and then have them all stand up and cheer. I'm still hearing about little blurbs in several newspapers, including a mention in USA Today!

That's funny, CDP, about putting out rat feeders--if I even mention that to Kat, that's what she'll say from now on -- "going to fill your rat feeders too?" Sheesh!

Richard said...

Congratulations !!! May you have many years of happiness.

Cecilia said...

Blessings to you both! And upon your powerful witness.

Pax, C.

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Dear Delia,
I'm sorry I'm late to offer my congratulations to both you and Kat. I wish you all the best, lots of love and endless laughs.
I'm happy for you.

Anonymous said...

Congrats DG. I heard about this from the blog friends we have in common and have been meaning to leave you a message. I am so happy for you. May you and Kat enjoy many years of happiness.