Sunday, September 28, 2008

Kitchen Fixin's

Back wall of kitchen

I’m the first to admit, I do things a little differently than most.
Take, for example, our kitchen windows.

When September arrives and others are shedding summer’s customs for the buttoned-up look of fall, I drag the screens out of the garage, hose them off, and get ready to put them up.
It’s all part of the plan--and goes hand in hand with feeding and watching the birds in the woods adjacent to our kitchen.

Ohio Valley summers are moist and muggy—hovering close to the 90-degree mark for weeks at a time.
And although air conditioning would not be my choice, mildew and mold grow faster than we can contain it, were we to use only screens and fans.
In fact, the windows remain closed for most of the summer, open only a crack in the evening, if the night air promises to be cool.
Screens seem unnecessary, and darken the already shaded kitchen—just feet from a large, leafy hickory.

With more bird activity in the burgeoning fields, we take the seed feeders down, too.
By the first week of April, hummingbird feeders fill the empty spaces.
And hang, well-visited, until September arrives, once again.

So, why drag the screens out now?
As the days are already showing signs of autumn’s chill?

Window strike 2007

They’re for the birds--our system of window strike prevention, over those that receive the greatest traffic and number of hits in previous years.
Those within feet of the feeders, and facing the hickory woods.
A sort of “airbag” to cushion the impact of a strike.

Now, doesn’t that look better?

In trying to photograph the kitchen window screens, I found I caught much more!
From the reflected images in the glass directly behind it, to what can be seen inside and through the window on the other side!

Daddy Long Legs on screen

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Adventure girl wanna be said...

What an awesome system! I need to get a screen on my kit window! Sometimes birds hit it;) Poor little things!

Mary said...

Nina, our summers are so hot that we haven't opened windows but maybe three times since April. One reason, and this may seem outrageous (because it is) - our community does not allow us to keep screens on the windows in front of our homes, facing the street. Without them, we don't have cross ventilation. Ridiculous, I know.

I have a reent window strike in the back of the house on a large bathroom window that doesn't open. It's clearly a mourning dove.

I understand your method!


Lisa at Greenbow said...

Great idea Nina. A mourning dove bounced off our garage window when I startled it the other day. A testament that this method works.

nina said...

I know they make all sorts of feathery hanging jobbies, but we work with what we have. And screens seem to be an obvious improvement to flat glass.
Of course, it's not quite so nice a view, from the inside or out (Mary, I am too much the rebel to be admitted to your neighborhood, though I know what can happen if guidelines aren't in place) but, I always feel so guilty when one hits.
And, as much as we like to think bird feeding is for the birds, I know how much I get out of it.
I cringe each time I think I've lured them close without taking measures for their safety.

Rose said...

At first I thought, put up screens in autumn? But this makes perfect sense and how thoughtful of you to protect the birds. We have a large picture window, but the birds don't seem to have a problem running into it--it's too dirty,I think:)

Rebeckah said...

I like that you give them an airbag : ). You are nice!

The Tile Lady said...

What a sad, sad picture of the bird strike! Oh, poor thing! Well, I'm all for your preventative measure! I do dislike screens, but love open windows in the spring and fall, and the screens are such a necessity. But, I love your idea! It makes sense!

Susie said...

HI Nina,

Thanks for visiting my site. I love it when new people visit.

I've been checking out some of your posts. You have some beautiful pictures. Love the one of the canoes and kayaks. It looks so peaceful!

'JoAnn's-D-Eyes'NL said...

Great story and you KITCHEN windows are OK for me nice post:)

JoAnn's D Eyes /Holland

Reader Wil said...

That's a very great idea to put the screens up to prevent birds from hitting against your windows.

me ann my camera said...

Your explanation sound reasonable for sure, as we have many window hits on our large bay window This is the time of year, as the cold weather approaches when I take our screens off, so while leaving the windows closed I can take clearer picutres through our screenless windows.

Old Wom Tigley said...

It is of interest to read about your windows and how you prepare for the fall.. it is very different from us... we have it so easy over here and yet don't realise it at times.

Liz said...

They are great photos. And what a good motivation for your actions.

babooshka said...

I agree with Tom. We have bad weather, but it doesn't compare to the diverse conditions you have. A great k to illustrate this.

Kim from Hiraeth said...

I totally understand--we do the same thing. It was 50 degrees here this morning and the air conditioner was finally off and the windows open! Most people think of that as a sign of spring, but I think of it as a sign of fall.

Pam Croom said...

Good for you!
Screens are one of the things that Audubon recommends! Moving feeders close to the house or far away can help too.

Cathy said...

Hello, SW Ohio here also..We have our windows open getting some nice frest air too.

mrsnesbitt said...

A great idea! Looking after our garden visitors through the winter!

Bear Naked said...

What a wonderful thing that you do for the birds.
Good post for the letter K.

Bear((( )))

Alan said...

Nice way to help out the birds in a simple but effective way. Very cool. :)

Help choose a new name for my blog here!

photowannabe said...

Very interesting and something I had never heard of before. Good choice for the letter K.

spacedlaw said...

Clever and a nice though for the birds.
Greetings from Italy (got here via ABC)

Cicero Sings said...

I think of the screens as an air bag too! Only we leave our screens on year around ... mosquito prevention ... we never get THAT hot here, at our elevation.