It's cold. It's surprising how cold it is, actually. After a recent warm-up, I assumed we were done with all that shivering and piling on the thick coats and hats. I stacked the new seed catalogs on the table and placed an order for heirloom calendula and zinnias. But the cold returned, and it's been about 20 degrees in Bloomington and in the teens in Chicago.
Nevertheless, I think I see some signs of spring in southern Indiana. Here is a quick list:
1. TULIPS! coming up in the front flower bed. They're about 2 inches high.
2. Great blue heron hanging around the creek near our house. This is very unusual. I wonder if he got lost on the way to Lake Monroe?
3. Robins have been seen for the past couple of weeks in Bloomington, and they finally showed up in our yard.
4. Red-winged blackbirds are back.
5. Birdsong in the morning. Lots of it. Carolina wrens will sing all winter, but they've been joined by cardinals, titmice, and others.
6. The cardinals (I counted 7 pairs on Sunday) are chasing each other all over the yard. The males are getting pretty fiesty.
7. Twice I've seen birds checking out the nearest birdhouse in our yard. I'm not sure what the first bird was, but the 2nd was definitely a chickadee.
Note that this list does not include warmer weather. And I forgot to check for buds on the trees. I hope to update this list soon!