We experienced a bout of cold weather in January so, taking inspiration from our relatives in Norway, I decided to help feed the birds during this unusually frosty period. It was also a fun activity to do with the kids.

First, we put plates with a cut-up orange, apple and some peanuts. The peanuts were hands down the favorite.

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Deciding that the plates were not enough, I went to my favorite garden store (www.intratuin.nl) and bought a small bird house. Then, at the hardware store of all places, I bought a bag of black sunflower seeds for 3 euros. Well, I think we had a few fans…

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I noticed two magpies starting to build a nest here. They are noisy sometimes but very pretty.

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And here is a bird that got my attention last month when the grass was still green. I was setting up a mole trap and carrying dirt when I noticed that this chunky brown bird did not fly away when I passed it. Grappig (funny).

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I decided to see how close it would allow me to sit and watch. It was eating worms and I ended up sitting about 5 feet away from it. It just looked at me but didn’t seem one bit scared. ┬áThat was neat.

Now, if only I could capture a picture of the blue heron in our neighborhood… There is one that hangs around the canal trying to catch fish. It’s quite beautiful up close but it definitely doesn’t like to be stared at.