January 28, Houston

Before arriving in Houston, we visited my cousin Sharon and her husband Doug in San Saba. A good visit and we bought pecans to use in Christmas baking, since San Saba is "the pecan capital of the world." We also made our normal stop in Austin to visit my brothers and see the Christmas tree at UT decorated with Richard's origami. We got an extra treat this time as Lloyd's classical guitar group was giving a concert, and we got to go listen. Good music, very talented people.

Doug & Sharon

Richard & Margie

Zazie, Leslie & Ben
We had our usual fine time in Houston visiting family and friends during the holiday season. My sister Nancy and her husband went to California for Christmas to visit daughter and grandchildren. So, for a change, I was in charge of Christmas dinner. My two brothers and their wives came and I had lots of help from them, so everything went well. Even my sister Gaynell in Seattle contributed recipes and a task list--couldn't have done it without her. Only one problem, we were so busy cooking and having a good time, we didn't take a single picture.

As Richard left Houston to go back to Austin, we went birding with him and Beverly at Brazos Bend State Park. Such a beautiful park and lots of birds, we had a good time. There is camping at the park and Riley and I may have to go back to camp there someday.

Nancy was back for New Year's Day and invited us out to her place to celebrate with her family. This time we took some pictures--even one of her goat. It's fun being out in the country and having someone else do the cooking. :-)

Jim & Riley

Nancy and sons, Steve & Jimmy

Mom & Eddie

Traci & Taylor

Beautiful Sarah
It is getting harder for Aubrey to take care of Mom during the times when aides are not present--mainly during the night and on Sundays. As a result, they are again talking of moving to my sister Nancy's home. This time I think it will happen.

On a personal note, my granddaughter Ashley has announced she is expecting a baby August 28--my first great grandchild! Riley and I plan to be in the San Diego area then, so we can be there to welcome the baby into the world and to give Ashley a hand if she needs it.

We left Houston on the 14th and have been traveling down the Texas coast visiting the places in our "Birding Hot Spots" book. We started out at Sea Rim State Park, only to find it closed due to hurricane damage, so continued on to High Island for a couple of days. We had a very good birding day at the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge even though it was raining. From there, we went to Galveston Island State Park for several days and then on down the coast to Corpus Christi, visiting wildlife refuges along the way. We are currently camped on the beach at Padre Island National Seashore where we are content to be beach bums for a while. The weather has been uniformly rainy and cold since we left Houston until a couple of days ago when the sun finally came out. Yea! We hope to take the boat tour out of Rockport to see the Whooping Cranes again now that the weather has improved. There are supposed to be a record number there this year--mild winter in Canada so more chicks survived than usual.

Love to all,
Margie & Riley

Bird Diary (* indicates new bird)
As of January 1, I started keeping our bird list in a different format, so
henceforth, only new birds for us will be listed here.

December 26, 2006 Brazos Bend S. P., TX with Richard & Beverly
Northern Mockingbird
Turkey Vulture
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Eastern Phebe
Yellow-rumped Warbler
American Coot
Common Moorhen
Snowy Egret
White Ibis
Great Blue Heron
American Pipit
Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
American Robin
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Northern Harrier
Pied-billed Grebe
Vermillion Flycatcher
Cooper's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
White-faced Ibis
Common Yellowthroat
Red-shouldered Hawk
Belted Kingfisher
American Crow
Orange-crowned Warbler
Tufted Titmouse
Little BLue Heron
Carolina Chickadee
Least Sandpiper
Black Vulture
Blue-winged Teal
White-crowned Sparrow

* Yellow-breasted Sapsucker1-15-07 Nancy's, Crosby, TX
* Glossy Ibis1-18-07 Anahuac NWR, TX
* Piping Plover1-21-07 Galveston SP, TX
* American Golden Plover1-26-07 Padre Island NS,TX

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