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Cowboy Coffee Cake & Redbirds

We're still snowed in and it seemed a perfect day to bake a cowboy coffee cake. It's a simple coffee cake recipe with streusel topping and anything can be added to the cake batter or to the top. Today in honor of the redbirds at our feeder I added big fat red cranberries on top, pecans of course, and a small drift of coconut, representing the drifting snow outside the big dining room window. R has been cleaning the driveway with the help of Sam and her four wheeler. She made a path for him to the bird feeders out back. Quite a job running the four wheeler up and down to create a four ft. wide path. He has one feeder on a rope pulley so he can pull it down to tractor level where he sits and fills the feeders and then he hoists it back up into the tree and out of range of the deer who roam through the fields here very night.
They emptied the feeders when they were at antler level - now he has the pulley method and no more deer eating bird seed. I feel sorry for the deer but even sorrier for the beautiful birds that depend on our food to make it through this rougher than usual winter. We've had chickadees, sparrows, many redbirds, a few blue birds, doves, wood peckers - though I haven't seen any of those for awhile, and a variety of blackbirds. R's feeders are not open to blackbirds, he feels they're too plentiful and big enough to fend for themselves and he shoos them away. I can't say anymore on this as I feel he's a bird racist - I'm sorry R but you are! BIRDS ARE BIRDS IN MY DICTIONARY. God bless all birds.
The timer just rang so the cowboy coffee cake with cranberries, pecans, coconut and the orange zest I added at the last minute must be done. Yum. Must get off here and check it for doneness. I use toothpicks but do you know there was a time many years ago when I saw my grandma use a piece of straw from the kitchen broom. Sweep a floor then check a cake... I swear. Blessings, B

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