Friday, March 26, 2010

Little Bluebird in the Woods

Found this little guy on a tree limb by the side of the road while I was driving. Just stuck the camera out the window and took his picture. Love that blue!

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Hawk and the Snake

It was a rainy day today after a beautiful weekend. I decided to go back to Valley Forge and see if I could find my hawk. And lo and behold, there in the field at the edge of the woods was a lone hawk sitting in the grass waiting for his breakfast to appear. The following pictures - after this blog posting - give you a quick view of my friend searching and finding a snake, and then then after a few minutes, taking off with the snake in his mouth. The first photo is the hawk in a tree where he perched for a little while looking for movement in the grass. He was totally aware of me, but didn't seem to care if I was there or not. So much fun. Click on any of the photos to get a better view.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Graduation and Serving Pie

What a weekend for Yumiko Chan. On Saturday she graduated from Japanese School after nine long years. She received her diploma and gave a wonderful speech in Japanese with her fellow graduate Jona sitting by her side practicing. Then later that evening she served a little pie at the final performace of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory at Radnor Middle School. Oh....These are the days.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Hawk

On Tuesday morning I was walking through the woods and came across another photographer. We struck up a conversation and he ended showing me, via the screen on his camera, photographs of a hawk he had stalked for the last few hours. His photographs were breathtakingly good. The light was marvelous, the hawk had a snake in its mouth and a little mouse. He said it was easy, just come early in the morning and don't give up until you find the hawk.

Well, yesterday, I got up real early, left Ken and Yumiko to fend for themselves and stalked the hawk all morning. I saw him in the distance, but every time I got even close enough to set up my camera he flew to another part of the woods. I was disheartened, but thought, maybe another day. Today, I went back to the woods. For the first hour, nothing except a little chipmunk who was happy to pose. Then, as I was walking back to the parking lot, the hawk appeared. He looked right at me and basically said, "Come on, I'll show you where my breakfast is." Then the hawk flew right passed me and landed on a fallen tree. I crept towards him, and he paid me no attention. Then he jumped off the log, on to the ground, and found a little mole. He brought his catch back up to the log and ate it in front of me. I got as close as I wanted to. He just showed off. Oh what a thrill it was. Here are some of the photos.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Sunday Morning at the Franklin Institute

Ain't nothin as much fun as a Sunday Morning at the Benjamin Franklin Institute. Check out Yumiko on the High Wire!! And Ken (never touch sugar) eating an oatmeal raisin cookie AND a brownie. What's the world coming to?!!?

Robin on a Branch

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Let It Be

Three nights a week, every week, Yumiko has a ballet class in Narberth, PA. Narberth is a good 25 minute drive from our house on a few heavily traveled roads. I drove her there tonight for her 4:00 class. After dropping her off, I turned around to make the trip back home. On my way home I got stuck behind a couple of school buses waiting to turn left onto big old Montgomery Drive. Sitting there behind the buses I got a little sleepy and decided it might be best to switch the radio channel from National Public Radio to a rock station. The Beatles were singing "Let It Be." I love that song and began to sing at the top of my lungs just to wake myself up and stop worrying about the buses. I finally got through the intersection following a bus and just "Let it Be." After a few blocks the bus I was following turned off to the right and I took a quick look in the rear view mirror. There to my surprise was a policeman. I was sure he wasn't following me, but I slowed down anyway. As I slowed down he came up right behind me with flashers rolling. Ugh... I turned down the radio, pulled over to the side and wondered, what the heck did I do?

A young policeman walked up to my window and said in a very authoritative voice, "Do you realize you just passed a stopped school bus with its light blinking and the stop sign on?" I just stammered and said "I'm sorry." I had no recollection of passing the school bus, in fact the school bus had just turned off in front of me. I hadn't passed it, but I couldn't say that to this young tough policeman. He asked me for my license, car registration and insurance card. I handed it to him and then he asked me to drive my car into a nearby parking area where we could discuss this further. He followed me to the parking area and then stayed in his car doing his police thing for what seemed like forever.

Finally he came back to my car and told me the fine for doing what I did was $400 and would be five points on my record - AND he had the ability to suspend my license. My eyes widened and then he said "But I'm going to give you a break and just say the bus you passed was blinking amber" whatever that means. What that means is a $100 fine and no points. He told me the bus was on the other side of the street. Montgomery Avenue is a very wide four lane highway. I was totally oblivious to the other side of the street - just following my bus and singing "Let It Be." I actually told him I never saw the other bus and was singing a Beatles song at the time I passed it. He softened up quite a bit and said it was O.K. - Lots of people get distracted, but try to be a little more careful in the future. I told him he had a tough job and appreciated he didn't give me the big bad ticket. We said good bye and I limped on home. When I got home I told my sad story to my dear Ken and asked if he could please go back and pick up Yumiko. I just stayed home and let it be.

Monday, March 1, 2010

What Bird is This?

I came across a lot of these beautiful little bluebirds sitting on low branches this morning. They were watching out for worms or something moving on the ground, would jump down, gobble up the worm and jump back on the branch. One looked up at me while I was photographing and was a bit alarmed when he saw the camera looking right at him. (Click on him to see his alarm.) Does anybody know what kind of bird this is?