Tuesday, April 25, 2017

We're in Sedona, Arizona!!

Here with my eight college friends from Hollins.  We've been friends for 47 years and still going strong.   Sedona is a magnificent, serene, beautiful piece of heaven and we are having the time of our lives.  Here are a few photos - best viewed if you click on each photo:
From left:  Karen KK Kalergis, Martha Peter, Debra Abbott, Lynda Moore, Bev Catlin, Maryanne Bing Rowe, Kathy Cox, Read Phillips and yours truly.  We are wearing our protest shirts courtesy of Debra.

Hiking in the red rocks.  From Left: Kathy Cox, Martha Peter, Bev Catlin, Lynda Moore, Read Phillips and yours truly

In our living room and entertaining the wonderful Helen Delaney who is back in the back center.

The view from our swimming pool

Friday, April 21, 2017

Curious Bluebird in Valley Forge

This beautiful bluebird landed right next to me as I was standing in the woods in Valley Forge.  At first he didn't know I was there, but then I shifted my feet and pointed my big lens in his direction.  He, at first pretended he didn't see me, but then got brave and looked right at me.  We stared at each other for a while.  I took some photographs and after I while he said he really had to go.  I let him go.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Headlight Over the Horizon

I was taking a picture of the wildflowers at dusk tonight in Valley Forge when a car was coming my way.  Sometimes it just works.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Ken's Bench

It is Easter Weekend and Yumiko came home from New York to celebrate.  A few months ago we ordered a bench to be placed at Ken's grave site in Valley Forge.  It was recently installed and Yumiko, Barb Reid (Ken's first wife and dear friend) and I went to visit.  We planted three hyacinth - one from each of us.  And Yumiko brought three pennies and a dime to place on the bench because we think they are a sign from Ken.

It was a beautiful day and so many signs that Ken is home and happy.  One guilty pang I have had since I chose the grave site was that Ken told me (after it was chosen) he wanted to be in the sunshine and not in the shade.  There was a huge tree right next to our plot.  Today when we came we were so surprised to see that that tree had been cut down.  Ken, who loves all trees probably ordered that one to be taken out so he would have a little more sunshine.  (He always did get his way. ) Then as we were sitting on the bench I saw a man who resembled Ken on a bike riding through the grave yard.  It was so surprising and shocking to see - as Ken was such a biker.  The man got off his bike, took off his helmet, and walked right up to us but stopped short at another grave site.  I think he may have been visiting a relative of his.  The final sign was - while Yumiko, Barb and I were sitting on the bench a huge great horned owl flew right over our heads.  Although I see owls perched once in a while, never has one flown directly over our heads and so close! Oh that Ken.

Here are a few pictures from our visit.  Miss him so much. (Click on photos to get a better view of Ken's fan club.)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Babies Have Arrived!!

I may be arrested for this, but I brought home a few praying mantis egg sacs from the fields of Valley Forge last fall.  I've done this for the last several years.  Shhhhhhhhh.  I put them in a glass jar with a little saran wrap on top and punched little air holes so there would be good circulation.  I put the jar on the window sill in the guest room.  And today, as I went into the room to check on things - the jar was buzzing with about two hundred baby praying mantises.  A few had already escaped through the air holes.  I rescued them and took everybody outside, keeping them in the jar until they were ready for their release into the world and a little photo session.  Here are a few of the little beauties.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Mr. Handsome Coyote in Valley Forge this Morning

I had a spectacular hour this morning with a coyote in Valley Forge.  He was not the least bit shy - even a little bored.  My 600mm lens let me get mighty close.  A few horseback riders came through and he trotted off to the den he shares with Mrs. Coyote and their new litter of pups.  Hopefully more to follow when the pups grow up enough to come out and play. Click on photos to see just how handsome this boy really is.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Robins in Love

I often see robins fighting.  This pair however could have been a mating couple play fighting in Valley Forge.  They stayed together a long time.  At one point another robin flew into their territory and was chased away.  The first robin came back and they began their dance again.  See the kiss at the end.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Rain Rain Rain

It was raining cats and dogs yesterday, but I still had the itch to go out and take photographs.  So I put on all my rain gear, put the raincoat on my camera and lens and was totally blessed by the little and big critters who came out to say hello.  Here they are:  the little vole, the rain deer, the redwing blackbird, and the beautiful little Eastern Phoebe.  Click on each to see those rain drops.