Wonderful Wildlife In Spring: Trail Cam Videos 2024

Photo by John Thomas

Hello Friends,

Black bears are awake and active this Spring as well as other adorable creatures. Our trail cam has captured footage of opossums, deer, and even raccoons.

We have had lots of rain this spring in the woods of South Carolina. I feel there is a romantic quality to seeing deer walking around in the rain.

As always, enjoy the 42 mini trail cam clips that I spliced into one video.

Happy Spring!
Debra Roinestad

(c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024
The American stag or round-horned elk – Cervus Canadensis (1872), vintage wild animal illustration.
Original in the public domain.
Cerfs from L’animal dans la décoration (1897) illustrated by Maurice Pillard Verneuil.
Original from The New York Public Library. Image in the public domain.

The Many Moods of Table Rock Mountain S.C. Photo Gallery

Pink Moon over Table Rock Mountain
Pink Moon Over Table Rock Mountain by Debra Roinestad

Table Rock has so many moods, with the mountainscape changing ever so rapidly. This beloved monolith is located on the very southern edge of the Appalachian Mountains.

Here is a gallery of photos where I have captured Table Rock throughout the year.

All Photos by Debra Roinestad, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Video Short: The Many Moods of Table Rock Mountain, (c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024

More Information About Table Rock Mountain

Hiking Table Rock by Kayak 7 Seas

Table Rock Mountain Aireal Views by South Carolina ETV

Discover South Carolina: Table Rock Mountain
https://discoversouthcarolina.com/table-rock

Debra Roinestad

Cicada Apocalypse in the United States 2024

Cicada on a daisy
Photo by Wren Meinberg. Original in the public domain.

Since ancient times, the cicada has been seen as a symbol of resurrection. The newly hatched insects burrow into the ground and nourish themselves on tree roots for 17 years before emerging into the sunlight.

The earliest documented example of cicada folklore came from China. There is a stone carving of the bug dated 1500 BC. Even now, the cicada is celebrated as fine jewelry.

illustartion cicada on a tree
Cicada on tree (1900 – 1936) by Ohara Koson (1877-1945). Original from The Rijks museum.
cicada stone carving
Cicada stone carving.
Susan Shaw Cicada Earrings
Susan Shaw Cicada Earrings.

To purchase Susan Shaw Earrings click here

We are currently about to experience the cicada apocalypse here in South Carolina. It has been 17 years and all nature lovers are getting their cameras ready to photograph this fascinating insect.

Cicada on a branch
Photo by Jason Weingardt. Original in the public domain.

The last time the cicada apocalypse happened was in 1803. This is the first time since the 19th century that two broods of cicadas will merge at the same time. They will be looking for partners. The males will be singing extremely loud to attract the females. They are as loud as 110 decibels which is almost as loud as a chainsaw.

Cicadas
Photo by Ashley Riedel/USFWS. Original in the public domain.

They have a short life span so they need to find an ideal mate quickly. Some cicadas have a 13-year life cycle (Brood XIX) while others have a 17-year life cycle (Brood XIII). What makes this year so special is that both broods will be meeting. The dual emergence aligns every 221 years!

Cicadas: Why Do They Make the Sound They Do?

Interesting Fact: How Do Cicadas Make Their Sounds?

Many scientists and biologists want to study this unique event. You can download a free app called, ‘Cicada Safari’ and track this fascinating event. Plus, your tracking contributions will help many biologists and scientists understand this wonderful creature.

For more information visit https://cicadasafari.org/

FOX 5, Cicada Safari App.

Gian cicuda (Cicada speciosa) illustrated by Charles Dessalines D’ Orbigny (1806-1876).
Digitally enhanced from our own 1892 edition of Dictionnaire Universel D’histoire Naturelle.

Exploring the Vibrant Wildlife of Spring in South Carolina

Turkeys & Other Wildlife on Trail Cam

The warm weather has finally arrived here in South Carolina. All the wildlife are active now. Last night, we saw a black bear on our BLINK camera looking for food. 

First Bear of the season looking for food. (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Plus, there are many wild turkeys looking for food and simply being social. I’m very excited that our trail cameras captured this! I usually see them in my late morning walks crossing from one side of the woods to the other. I compiled 40 trail cam videos of turkeys, ravens and deer for your enjoyment.

Kind Regards,
Debra Roinestad 

Trail Cam Videos (c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Some fun facts about wild turkeys

Turkeys are quite active during spring in South Carolina. They are looking for acorns and seeds that dropped last fall under leaves and debris. Turkeys can run up to 25 miles per hour and fly as fast as 55 miles per hour. Also, turkeys will roost in trees overnight to protect themselves from predators. Read more here.

Brush turkey (Talegalla Lathamii) illustrated by Elizabeth Gould (1804-1841) for John Gould’s (1804-1881)
Birds of Australia (1972 Edition, 8 volumes).

A little bit of humor: Guy Raises Wild Turkeys

via GIPHY

Unraveling the Mystery of the Celtic Bird: The Raven

Raven Celtic Bird
Raven (1835), vintage bird illustration by Wilhelm von Wright. Image in the public domain.

Everyone is a little Irish on St. Patrick’s Day and the same holds true for the raven.

There has been much Irish Folklore about the raven. In Celtic mythology and legend, ravens were linked to death and dying.

Raven Antique Art
The Raven by Felix Bracquemond. Original in the public domain.

Folklore of the Raven

 The Celtic war goddess, Morrígan often took the form of a raven on the battlefield and carried away carrion. She was a cunning shapeshifter in Irish mythology and would seduce many men.

 Although ravens have a historical association with death and dying or ill omens, their symbolism is very complex. Ravens have been used as symbols for healing, prophecy and insights. There have been stories of ravens as psychopomp (spirit creatures) escorting newly deceased souls to the afterlife.  Ravens are considered magical and can represent both good and evil. 

Raven Rattle
Raven Rattle. Image in the public domain.

Historically, ravens have been guardians of the famous Tower of London.

The Ravens at the Tower of London

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day I am paying homage to the raven.  Ravens are intelligent birds with their own personality. They can mimics sounds, play games, and solve problems.

The Raven: Smartest Bird

Raven Cartoon

Here are 40 mini trail cam videos of this mysterious and mystical bird.

Trail Cam Videos (c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Debra Roinestad

Debra Roinestad

Delicious Sweet and Tangy Oven-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

roasted cherry tomatoes
Oven-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, (c) Debra Roinestad,
The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Discover the secret to making the perfect oven-roasted cherry tomatoes! They are quick and easy to prepare and will amplify any of your meals.

Roasted cherry tomatoes can be used in pasta dishes and salads. You can use roasted cherry tomatoes on avocado toast for an extra yummy breakfast, or pair it with an omelet. The possibilities are endless!

Store the leftovers in an air-tight jar in the refrigerator, and they will last for a week.

Ingredients

  • 2 pints Cherry tomatoes
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive Oil
cherry tomatoes
salt and pepper
olive oil

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Wash the cherry tomatoes and slice them in half.

Toss the tomatoes in a sheet pan with olive oil, about 4 tablespoons. Sprinkle salt and pepper generously.

Place the sheet pan on the bottom of your oven. Roast for 20 minutes or until tomatoes are soft. Note: I prefer using the bottom rack because the tomatoes will be crispy on the edges.

tomatoes in oven

Transfer the tomatoes on a serving plate and sprinkle extra salt and pepper. Add any of your favorite toppings if desired. Store left-overs in an air tight container for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.

Topping Suggestions:

Basil, garlic powder, rosemary, balsamic vinegar.

Oven-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Debra Roinestad -The Comfy Cabin
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine Mediterranean
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pints Cherry tomatoes
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive Oil

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Wash the cherry tomatoes and slice them in half.
  • Toss the tomatoes in a sheet pan with olive oil, about 4 tablespoons. Sprinkle salt and pepper generously.
  • Place the sheet pan on the bottom of your oven. Roast for 20 minutes or until tomatoes are soft. Note: I prefer using the bottom rack because the tomatoes will be crispy on the edges.
  • Transfer the tomatoes on a serving plate and sprinkle extra salt and pepper. Add any of your favorite toppings if desired. Store left-overs in an air tight container for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.
Keyword tomatoes
ripe red tomatoes poster
Ripe red tomatoes poster. Image in the public domain.
Debra Roinestad

Wildlife Trail Cam Videos: A Celebration Of Love

Deer Kissing
Deer kissing on trail cam, (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2024

Hello Friends & Animal Lovers,

Romance is in the air as Valentine’s Day draws near! I have seen deer kissing and ravens hanging out together and enjoying each other’s company. So, after reviewing  600 trail cam videos of these cuties, I have decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day a little bit early. I spliced together 30 Valentine’s Day Wildlife Trail Cam Videos for your enjoyment. 

Relax and recharge with these adorable critters on trail cam. 

Debra Roinestad

Lots Of Love,
Debra Roinestad

Trail Cam Videos

Valentine’s Day Trail Cam (c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024

“The Love For All Living Creatures Is The Most Noble Attribute Of Man.”
—Charles Darwin

Owl and Cupid Art
Can you keep a secret? Wise bird, tell me true? (1884) Cherub sitting on a tree branch, speaking to an owl illustration by Obpacher Bros., Original public domain image from the Library of Congress.
deer in love
two deer on trail cam
deer kissing
deer of south carolina
deer in the woods
deer in love on trail cam
All Trail Cam Photos (c) Debra Roinestad, The Comfy Cabin, 2024
fairy art kissing
Forest nymphs from ‘In Fairy Land’.
A Series Of Pictures From The Elf-World published by Longmans & Co. (1870).
Original from the British Library.

Delicious Steak Tacos Vegan (Beyond Meat)

steak tacos vegan

Here is a lighter version of steak tacos to help start the New Year. Steak tacos (vegan) are plant based from Beyond Meat and are very high in protein (21 grams).

Jump to Recipe
Beyond Steak

Steak tacos vegan style are amazing and it takes no time at all to prepare. Plus, are packed with delicious flavors. This dish is versatile; you can add any combination of beans, diced onions, fresh cilantro, diced avocado, or salsa. Also, depending on your diet restrictions you can add some shredded cheese or vegan cheese. The great thing about this recipe is that you will have plenty of left overs.

tacos art

Ingredients

  • Olive Oil
  • Beyond Steak
  • Yellow Onion
  • Bell Pepper
  • Tortillas (Use your favorite brand)
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Cumin powder
  • Paprika powder
  • Salt & Pepper

Add your favorite toppings.

  • Cheese (vegan or dairy)
  • Greek yogurt
  • Fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • Salsa
  • Diced onion (chopped)
  • Beans
  • Avocado (diced)
  • Lime (wedge)

Instructions

Add olive oil to a large skillet. Chop and cook the onions over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until browned.

Add the chopped bell peppers and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Then add onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir until well combined.

Add the entire package of Beyond Steak. Sear for 5 minutes. Serve with your favorite toppings. Also, rice is a great side dish with this recipe.

Vegan Steak tacos
(c) Steak Tacos Vegan, The Comfy Cabin, 2024

delicious tacos

Steak Tacos (Vegan)

Debra Roinestad (The Comfy Cabin)
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican, tacos
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 package of Beyond Steak (Beyond Meat)
  • 1 small yellow onion (chopped)
  • 1 bell pepper (chopped)
  • 1 package tortilla (your favorite brand)
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Add olive oil to a large skillet. Chop and cook the onions over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until browned.
  • Add the chopped bell peppers and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Then add onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir until well combined.
  • Add the entire package of Beyond Steak. Sear for 5 minutes. Serve with your favorite toppings.

Notes

Add your favorite toppings.
  • Cheese (vegan or your favorite brand)
  • Greek yogurt
  • Fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • Salsa
  • Diced onions (chopped)
  • Beans
  • Avocado (diced)
  • Lime (wedge)
Keyword vegan, steak
taco art

Christmas Wildlife Trail Cam Videos & Photo Gallery

Hey Friends,

The Holidays have been super busy for me and I’m sure they have been the same for you as well. There has been lots of cheer, fond memories, and new goals to accomplish as I reflect during this time of the year.

Our trail cam has recorded so much wildlife in the past few months! Here are some mini-videos that I compiled into one featuring black bears, deer, and ravens enjoying the Holiday Season in their own way. Also, I added a photo gallery as a special treat.
Relax and enjoy the video and photo gallery.

Lots of Love & Best Wishes for a Happy Holiday Season!
Debra Roinestad

Holiday Card (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2023

Christmas Wildlife Videos

TrailCam Video (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2023
Cabin in the woods  South Carolina
All Photos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2023
Christmas at the cabin
Christmas postcard of Santa Claus and his reindeer (1907) chromolithograph art by
Souvenir Post Card Company. Image in the public domain
Jas. S. Kirk & Co. Soap Makers, Chicago. “White Russian” (1870–1900), vintage soap advertisement.
Image in the public domain.

Chicken & Shrimp Spanish Paella- A Holiday Favorite!

Chicken & Shrimp Paella
All Photos (c) The Comfy Cabin, 2023

Here is the perfect Holiday recipe that is easy to make and delicious! Spanish chicken and shrimp paella is a crowd-pleaser because of the tasty flavor of saffron (threads) that amplifies this dish to another level. Recently, I made this dish for a Holiday potluck and everyone enjoyed it.

Jump to Recipe
saffron

SHOP NOW

Paella is a versatile dish because you can combine your favorite type protein and vegetables. For this particular recipe, I used chicken fingers, shrimp, chicken and sage sausage. Other protein options you might want to consider are grilled chicken, scallops, and clams. The possibilities are endless!

Ingredients

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe.

shrimp, chicken, sausage

Shrimps– Deveined, cleaned, and tails off.

Chicken Fingers-Sliced into small pieces. I used the entire bag.

Chicken Sausage– I used frozen Applegate chicken & sage sausage. Thaw and cut into small pieces. I used the entire box. Any of your favorite sausage will work perfectly.

Applegate chicken and sage sausage
green olives, capers, and sundried tomatoes

Green Olives-Use your favorite brand. I used the green olives with stuffed pimientos.

Capers-Adds a lovely salty flavor.

Sun-dried tomatoes-I love the sweet flavors of sun-dried tomatoes. I cut them into small strips. Grape tomatoes also work perfectly as a substitute.

white rice

White Wine -White Wine is perfect for a zesty flavor or you can substitute one lemon.

Tomato Paste-You can substitute your favorite tomato sauce if you don’t have any tomato paste in the kitchen pantry.

Chicken Broth-Another substitute that works well is beef or vegetable broth.

spices for paella

Spices: Salt, Pepper, Paprika, Garlic Powder & Saffron.

White Rice-Use your favorite brand of white rice. Feel free to use brown rice if you desire.

yellow onions

Yellow Onion-Chopped yellow onion works great with this recipe.

Instructions

Add olive oil in a large pot. Chop and cook onions until browned for about 5 minutes.

Add the prepped shrimps, cubed chicken fingers, and sliced chicken sausage. Cook for 3 minutes.

Add rice, with all the spices: garlic powder, paprika, saffron threads (2 pinches), salt and pepper. Continue to cook for 2 minutes.

Add 4 cups of chicken broth, tomato paste, and white wine. Gently stir.

Finally, add olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and capers.

How to make paella
Spanish Paella

Lower heat and cover your pot of paella. Cook for 25 minutes or until rice is soft.
Set aside on a cool burner to let rice paella cool down for 5 minutes.

Helpful Tips:

  • You can store the chicken and shrimp paella in the same pot for the next day. This process allows all the flavors to settle in more.
  • When reheating the paella add 1/4 cup of water or chicken broth so your rice won’t dry out.
  • Any extra left overs can be stored in an air-tight container and placed in the freezer for one month.

Chicken & Shrimp Spanish Paella

Debra Roinestad (The Comfy Cabin)
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Spanish
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion-quartered and sliced
  • 2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 pinches saffron threads
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 18 shrimps-deveined, cleaned, and tails off
  • 1 box chicken sausage-thaw and cut into small pieces
  • 1 bag chicken fingers
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups white rice
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • ¼ cup green olives-sliced in half
  • ¼ cup capers
  • ¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes

Instructions
 

  • Add olive oil in a large pot. Chop and cook onions until browned for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the prepped shrimps, cubed chicken fingers, and sliced chicken sausage. Cook for 3 minutes.
  • Add rice with all the spices: garlic powder, paprika, saffron threads (2 pinches), salt and pepper. Continue to cook for 2 minutes. 
  • Add 4 cups of chicken broth, tomato paste, and white wine.
    Gently stir.
  • Finally, add olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and capers. Lower heat and cover your pot of paella. Cook for 25 minutes or until rice is soft.
  • Set aside on a cool burner to let rice paella cool down for 5 minutes.
Keyword rice

Holiday Gift Ideas

Get just what they want, for less.

Beautiful 12pc Ceramic Non-Stick Cookware Set by Drew Barrymore

Drew Barrymore Cookware

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Ninja Foodi Possible Cooker 8.5qt Multi-Cooker, Cherry Tarte, MC1000WM

Ninja Slow Cooker

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Keurig K-Express Essentials Single Serve K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker

Keurig Coffee Maker

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