#Write Photo – The Guardian

The Guardian poem #writephoto photo prompt from Sue Vincent.
THE GUARDIAN

close your eyes for a moment
hear the birds sing
lapping of the ocean waves
everything nature brings

upon the highest mountain peak
fresh air in the breeze
euphoria envelopes the soul
unearthed to appease

peace to the condemned being
hope rests in unease
gather your thoughts in prayer
the moment must be seized

the guardian bellows justice
to all the world's maker
love conquers the beast
forgiving sins of the taker

destiny placates the arrival
protectors of the realm
misjudgment darkens all
conquered grievance overwhelms

shining of the light
breaking of the clouds
the guardian lets loose
released tension allowed

only the protector
can honor these rights
be free to the heavens
spread your wings in flight

by:  Lisa Coleman


 
Sue Vincent is the host of Thursday Photo Prompt.  "Guardian"

FOTD – Orchid Smile- Haiku

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Just a little kiss
Come closer to my center
Softly pucker up.

Smile for the camera
My pleasure is your passion
Speak gently to me.


Cee's Flower of the Day logo

Macro Monday – Gone Fishin’

Great Egret gone fishing at Fort Desoto Park, Pinellas County, Florida

There’s a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore like an idiot.

-Steven Wright

While having a picnic lunch at the Arrowhead picnic area located at Fort Desoto Park, Tierra Verde, Florida in Pinellas County, we saw this Great Egret fishing for his own lunch. He could care less that I was there taking photos which is great for me but scary in that the birds are not afraid of humans at all in this area.

We were there on an absolutely beautiful day in January, 2020 before COVID-19 landed us at home and unemployed. Traveling from Jacksonville to Tampa for a late Christmas visit with the kids and grandkids proved to be a perfect winter day with temperatures in the 80’s with blue skies.

Apalachee Bay – St. Marks Wildlife Refuge

During the COVID-19 lockdown, we have been fortunate enough to be able to get outdoors. The weather was cool and perfect during the early weeks of spring migration so hiking and birding was a real treat. On this day, we drove over to the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge near Tallahassee, Florida.

St. Marks is a 3 1/2 hour drive for us one way, but with no B&B, hotels or campgrounds open, we had to settle for a day trip. It was so worth the getting up super early and taking the road trip.

See the St. Marks Lighthouse in the background?

Written for Jez’s Water Water Everywhere.

Silent Sunday – Beach

SLS – “Peppermint Twist” By Joey Dee & The Starliters

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with the spice of life, Cinnamon | Mint | Parsley | Pepper | Rosemary | Sage | Salt | Thyme for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday. Cinnamon is my favorite spice. I use it in a lot of my regular diet such as yogurt, oatmeal and cinnamon toast. Then it gets added to cobblers and cookies, YUM for Snickerdoodles. I didn’t choose cinnamon, just thought I’d share my eating habits a bit. However, today I combined two, Pepper and Mint (a herb and a spice, well technically…peppermint is a herb of its own) and came up with the 60s classic “Peppermint Twist”.

Let’s see if this inspires you to get up and dance! I’ll be exercising with my hula hoop shortly and “Peppermint Twist” is on my playlist.

The original recording of the 45 single was determined to be too long so they cut it into 2 parts. Side A was “Peppermint Twist” (Part 1) and Side B was “Peppermint Twist” (Part 2), mostly instrumental.

SONG FACTS

  • Co-written by Joey Dee and Henry Glover.
  • Released in 1961 in response to “The Twist” dance craze that was inspired by rock and roll music beginning in 1959 with Chubby Checker.
  • Reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early 1962 and replaced “The Twist” at the number one position.
  • Bill Haley & His Comets recorded it for Armed Forces Radio in 1962, however the song wasn’t released until 2000.
  • It was covered by 70’s glam rock band The Sweet in 1974 and topped the Australian singles chart.

The British rock band The Sweet speeds up the tempo a bit to “Peppermint Twist”.

“Peppermint Twist”

Well, they've got a new dance and it goes like this
(Bop shoo-op, a bop bop shoo-op)
Yeah, the name of the dance is Peppermint Twist
(Bop shoo-op, a bop bop shoo-op)
Well, you like it like this, the Peppermint Twist
It goes round and round, up and down
Round and round, up and down
Round and round and a up and down
And a one, two, three, kick, one, two, three, jump
Well, meet me baby down at 45th street
Where the Peppermint Twisters meet
And you'll learn to do this, the Peppermint Twist
It's alright, all night, it's alright
It's okay, all day, it's okay
You'll learn to do this, the Peppermint Twist
Yeah, yeah, etc
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Henry Glover / Joseph Di Nicola
Peppermint Twist lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, BMG Rights Management

Leaving Idaho – Back to Yellowstone

DISCLAIMER….This post documents our vacation from September, 2019. We continue to write while being at home because of social distancing due to the coronavirus. This post takes us on a drive back to Bozeman, Montana with a little stop back into the west entrance of Yellowstone National Park (Day 10 of our vacation). I encourage you and yours to visit all the beautiful places that the USA has to offer once our great nation overcomes this terrible obstacle in front of us. If you missed any of the Living in the Moment posts from this series, the links are listed at the bottom of this blog. Stay safe and God bless, we are getting through this!

Rolling hills in Idaho with low storm clouds kissing the hills as a storm approaches.

As we ate our last delicious breakfast at DreamCatcher B&B in Victor, Idaho, we were filled with mixed emotions. Like everyday on our vacation we woke up excited to see what the day would bring. But this day was different. We felt like we had just gotten to Driggs, Idaho and now we were leaving. Actually that was only part of the truth. The other part was that today was the day we were taking the long drive back to Bozeman, Montana. It signaled the beginning of the end of our vacation adventures. We still had two days left before we flew back to Jacksonville, Florida, but it felt like we would have to board the plane and leave any moment. As we pulled out of the DreamCatcher’s driveway, we said goodbye to another wonderful experience and we fully expect to stay at this great B&B on a return trip. It was raining off and on this late morning as we drove through Driggs and took the highway headed north.

Map of Idaho, Montana, Wyoming showing the West Yellowstone entrance into Yellowstone National Park.
Image compliments of The North American Fly Fishing Forum

We checked the map and our time and decided to go back into Yellowstone for one last fore-ray. The drive through Idaho was beautiful. It was a mixture of mountain views, forests, rolling hills and farmland. A wonderful mixture of natural patterns that a map can not accurately depict. The constant change of scenery made the drive go by quickly and re-emphasized what a beautiful state Idaho really is. Storm clouds started rolling in, but we didn’t care, we were prepared to take it as it came and enjoy the ride.

The Madison River on the west side of Yellowstone National Park just outside of West Yellowstone where you cross from Montana into Wyoming.
Madison River, Yellowstone National Park

After a nice trip with very little traffic through the country roads, we experienced crowded roads again driving through West Yellowstone, Montana, only a few miles from the West Yellowstone entrance. All the storms had blown through and we entered the park on an absolutely gorgeous afternoon. It was a little chilly and windy and you could see some spots where snow had fallen as the weather had come through the area.

West Yellowstone

Our stomachs were growling and we looked for another scenic spot for one of our famous vacation lunches. We were winging it and needed a little luck to find a great location to enjoy our last meal in Yellowstone. Bingo, there was a picnic area right on the Madison River and a picnic table only a stone’s throw away from the water. We were on a tight schedule and it was chilly, so we didn’t record our usual video and I only took this one photo. We did enjoy some delicious grilled cheese sandwiches courtesy of our MSR Pocket Rocket. We paired them with a locally grown organic apple that we purchased at the grocery store in Driggs, and an organic mixed green salad from the local greens we bought at the Driggs Farmers Market. While savoring our last meal in this amazing park, we watched two bald eagles fishing over the river and one lone fly-fisherman wading in the icy waters. Neither the birds or the human were having much luck.

With full bellies and broad smiles, we decided to venture further into the park and see a couple of the geothermal features we had missed on our drive through the park days earlier. Driving along the river in the afternoon light, we were hit again by how beautiful Yellowstone really is.

Bull Elk with his heard bugling for them to do exactly what he wants.  Seen moving along the fields near the West Yellowstone entrance in September 2019.

As we approached a parking area along the highway parallel to the Madison River, the traffic had backed up. The parking lot was full and there were cars parked all along the side of the road. People were outside of their cars with binoculars and cameras in hand. In the middle of all this commotion was a park ranger and we soon found out why. Moving along the river with his cows, was the biggest bull elk we had seen in either Yellowstone or Grand Teton. We had seen some big bulls but this guy was a monster. If a large bull elk weighs 700 lbs, this bull would have been at least 800 lbs. The elk were further away than this picture looks. All the shots we took of the elk, and we took a lot of shots, were taken with 200mm lenses.

The park ranger was there to make sure nobody did anything stupid. Like, walking down to the river to get up close to the bull and trying to get a better picture. There was this beautiful majestic bull elk in all his glory, with all his cows, bugling away. This was the middle of rutting season and he was telling any bull or cow within listening range, “if you want some of this, come and get it”.

To see theses elk moving down by the river, oblivious to the human zoo up along the highway, was a truly special moment and one of many favorites during our trip.

After our unscheduled and truly mesmerizing stop, it was time to head toward the geyser basins. We were looking forward to seeing some of Yellowstone’s geothermal features we hadn’t seen on our way to Old Faithful, but nothing was going to top what we had just experienced.

10 point bull elk moving in the opposite direction of the large herd near the Madison River just off the west entrance road of Yellowstone National Park.

We were still talking about how cool it was to see that beautiful bull and his harem when we got another surprise. About 1/4 mile down the road. we spotted this guy. He was on the other side of the highway and tucked into the woods. An impressive young ten point bull to be sure, but nothing like what we had just seen. He wasn’t even thinking about crossing the road and heading down toward the river. He knew what was down there. That big majestic bull had probably already pushed him around enough to send a clear message. “Don’t bring that weak sh*% back over here again!” So there he was, foraging in the woods by himself and listening to the king of the river valley bugle away with his ladies.

This great day just kept getting better and better. Now we were ready to spend a couple of hours exploring some of Yellowstone’s featured geothermal areas (next post) that we missed when heading to Old Faithful a couple of days before. Geyser basin and Grand Prismatic Spring here we come.

Living in the Moment is what we do while enjoying our time in nature. If you missed any of the other Living in the Moment Series, you can click on them here. Just After Take Off, Day 1, Day 2 Mammoth Hot Spring, Day 2 Traffic Jam, Day 2 Undine Falls and Lava Creek, Lamar Valley – Slough Creek, Day 2 Trout Lake, Lunch at Otter Creek, Mount Washburn, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Paddling the Yellowstone River, The Tiny House, Old Yellowstone Trail, Gibbon Falls – Drive to Old Faithful, Old Faithful, The Lakes, Jackson Hole, String Lake, Colter Bay, Paddle on String Lake, Jenny Lake Sunset, DreamCatcher Bed & Breakfast, Caribou-Targhee National Forest. Please look forward to our next post as the adventure continues. Only a few more to finish up this vacation of a lifetime!

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – All About Nature

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – It’s All About Nature.

8-9 foot (didn’t measure) gator hanging out on the opposite bank at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge.
Carolina Wren bringing meal worms to the nest of 3 chicks in our backyard.
Moon coming up over the palm trees at Gemini Springs Park in DeBary, Florida (near Orlando).
Red-winged Blackbird at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge near Tallahassee, Florida.
Cypress Trees reflecting off the water at Gemini Springs Park, Florida
Cypress Tree Reflection, Gemini Springs Park, DeBary, Florida
Reddish Egret prancing around for food at Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Titusville, Florida.
Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

FOTD – African Lily- Haiku

Agapanthus African Lily

We had to go to the bank yesterday and these African Lily flowers were in full bloom and beautiful. Don’t worry, all our transactions were done from the parking lot and we had masks on and so did the bank manager.

Agapanthus (African Lily) in full bloom at SunTrust Bank in Jacksonville, Florida.  Purplish blue pedals bringing joy to those who visit.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Lily of the Nile
Brilliant blue in purple style
Bowing in glory.

Green leaves I spout off
Saying hello to my friends
Peace presenting truth.

Cee's Flower of the Day logo

#WordlessWednesday – Mammoth Hot Springs – Yellowstone

Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park

Wordless Wednesday

Let it Rain – Welcome to our Jungle

More greener….What was I talking about? (Play Video) Well, it is amazing that just yesterday I was talking to a lady who was watering the plants at the church a block away from our house. Standing about 20 feet away while chatting with her, but still got to talk to someone outside…and told her I was going to go home and do a rain dance. I did and today it has been raining all day! Woop Woop! I haven’t even turned on The Weather Channel in a week. They always says it’s going to rain and it hasn’t, not at our house anyway.

I couldn’t get a good video of the wind chimes today. They were moving a little, but would stop when I started recording. The wind chimes video below was shot during Hurricane Dorian in September and is the sound I was hearing but couldn’t capture. Well, anyway…this is our backyard. A bit overgrown, but with Frank healing from his broken collarbone, not much has gotten done this spring. I suffer from allergies and don’t get to participate in the cutting, mowing and weed eating. He is back to doing some yard work, but hasn’t gotten to the back yet. The front looks great!

I enjoyed listening to the rain coming down, with a light breeze sometimes giving my wind chimes a little ting. Hurricane Dorian made them sing in September. Enjoyable is an understatement!

Frank built the fountain. The birds love it! Carolina Wren and Mourning Dove seen here.

#Write Photo – The Bridge

THE BRIDGE

hear the frogs croak
looking for a mate
birds singing in the wind
meditative calming state

nature embraces
sweet moments in time
alone with one's self
to the bridge I will climb

the red bridge overlooks
much greenery in calm
such peaceful moments
open hands to the palm

breathe in the purest air
painted path doeth take
lovely lilies in the pond
eyes open for mercy's sake

crossing over to the other side
last moments begin
say goodbye to the earth
death always wins


by:  Lisa Coleman


 
Sue Vincent is the host of Thursday Photo Prompt.  "Painted"

Wildflower in Idaho

Mountain Flower found going up the Caribou-Targhee mountain.

High in the elevation of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest lies this mountain side of purple wildflowers. I have no idea what this flower is called, but found it quite beautiful. Taken on the 21st day of September, 2019 while on the backside of the Grand Tetons in Idaho before the snow started coming down. We were fortunate enough to capture this beauty while hiking along the trail.

Sunshine’s Macro Monday & Cee’s Flower of the Day

Plenty of Water on the Yellowstone River

Looking towards the mountains on the Yellowstone River in Montana just as a storm is approaching.
Yellowstone River towards the end of the paddle.

Looking back at some of my photos from our vacation last September, I had a few images I didn’t use in my post that were perfect for Water Water Everywhere. We took a 12 1/2 mile paddle in our Sea Eagle inflatable whitewater kayak that took us 12 hours to paddle through strong winds. We had never paddle this river before and didn’t know it at all. We went ALL IN! It was bright sunny blue skies when we began, but by the time we approached our destination, storm clouds were edging closer and we had no idea how close we were to that final takeout at the Paradise Gateway Bed & Breakfast. The scene was surreal looking out over the mountains, feeling the breeze and hearing the lap of the waves hitting the boat. The original Living in the Moment post can be found here if you would like to read the full story. How did we get our kayak from Florida to Montana? Click the link above to find out.

Written for Jez’s Water Water Everywhere.

Sunday Stills – #Waterworld

No Lifeguard on Duty, Swim at Own Risk Sign on the boardwalk.

Happy Memorial Day everyone! I’m writing in response to TERRI WEBSTER SCHRANDT Sunday Stills challenge – Live in a #WATERWORLD.

High tide and beach more crowded than normal, Little Talbot Island State Park, Jacksonville, Florida.
Beach was beginning to get crowded at 9:30am.

Since I live in Florida and our state parks have opened back up, I thought I would share my photos from yesterday’s beach fun at Little Talbot Island State Park. They are open at a 50% capacity which has been reaching maximum capacity by 10am on the weekends. This is the second Saturday we have driven out there and the same thing has occurred. Even though people are not 100% back to work, it is a holiday weekend and the amount of vehicles and people showing up was a testament to that fact. We got there at 9:15 and the park was packed by our standards.

I got my first decent shot of a Sanderling yesterday. I’ve been trying to get a good shot of this fast-paced little bird for 20 years. I finally got close to one that was scurrying about and clicked a few pictures. The Laughing Gull showed up when we started getting our lunch out. GO FIGURE!

There were many people out there fishing. We talked to one guy who had brought in two Pompano and I asked him what time was dinner? That is some good eating fish. Frank kept the umbrellas moving to keep us in the shade. We have a large beach umbrella but it doesn’t fit in the Prius very well so we MacGyvered it with our two rain umbrellas.

Me, Lisa Coleman sitting under the umbrellas on the beach at Little Talbot Island State Park on Memorial Day Weekend, 2020.
I was relaxing and enjoying the day.

SLS – “I Don’t Want This Night To end” By Luke Bryan

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with End/Finish/Over/Stop for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday. Appropriate for the craziness we have lived with for the past few months. I don’t think COVID-19 is OVER. I don’t think it is FINISHED and I don’t think this is the END even though states are beginning to open like Florida who was barely closed a month. Make it STOP!

So, I brought back a somewhat older tune belonging to Luke Bryan, “I Don’t Want This Night To End” about a guy meeting a girl and it being a magical first night together hanging out.

Who doesn’t love Luke Bryan? Anyone? He is a hot American country music singer who began his career as a songwriter for other country music icons like Travis Tritt and Billy Currington before signing with Capital Nashville in 2007. Luke has had a string of hits (23) as of this post and continues to put out new music. In 2013, Luke was named “Entertainer of the Year” by both the Academy of Country Music Awards (ACM) and the Country Music Association (CMA). The two most prestigious awards in country music and the top honor for both.

Luke continues to entertain us while being a judge on American Idol alongside Lionel Richie and Katy Perry. He is a good looking country boy from Georgia that brings flare and harmony to the show. His current “Proud to be Right Here” tour has been postponed or rescheduled through July and and sporadically through the rest of the year. Several dates have no current update. I guess only time will tell if the show will go on anytime in 2020.

SONG FACTS

  • Co-written by Luke Bryan with Rhett Akins, Dallas Davidson and Ben Hayslip.
  • Released in September, 2011 as the second single to Luke’s album “Tailgates & Tanlines”.
  • It was Luke’s third number one hit.
  • Reached # 1 U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs and Country Airplay.
  • Reached #22 on the Billboard Hot 100 as a crossover hit.
  • It was certified Platinum 4 times with the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

“I Don’t Want This Night To End”

Girl, I know I don't know you
But your pretty little eyes so blue
Are pulling me in like the moon on your skin
I'm so glad you trusted me, this light up on this dusty sea
And let your hair down, and get outta town
Got the stars comin' out
Over my hood
And all I know now
Is it's going good
You got your hands up
You're rocking in my truck
You got the radio on
You're singing every song
I'm set on cruise control
I'm slowing losing hold of everything I got
You're looking so damn hot
And I don't know what road we're on
Or where we've been from starin' at you
Girl, all I know is I don't want this night to end
Gonna cuss the morning
When it comes
'Cause I know that the rising sun
Ain't no good for me
'Cause you'll have to leave
Gonna make the most of every mile
Do anything to make your smile
Land on my lips
And get drunk on your kiss
The clock on the dash
Says 3:35
There's plenty of gas
And the night's still alive
You got your hands up
You're rocking in my truck
You got the radio on
You're singing every song
I'm set on cruise control
I'm slowing losing hold of everything I got
You're looking so damn hot
And I don't know what road we're on
Or where we've been from starin' at you
Girl, all I know is I don't want this night to end
You got your hands up
You're rocking in my truck
You got the radio on
You're singing every song
I'm set on cruise control
I'm slowing losing hold of everything I've got
You're looking so damn hot
And I don't know what road we're on
Or where we've been from starin' at you
Girl, all I know is I don't want this night to end
I don't want this night to end
No I don't want this night to end
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Ben Hayslip / Luke Bryan / Dallas Davidson / Rhett Akins
I Don't Want This Night to End lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner Chappell Music, Inc

FOTD – Pretty in Pink Lily- Haiku

Pink Lily in the garden in springtime.

Lily from our garden a few year’s ago.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Spotted pink pedals
Smiling in all my glory
Basking in the spring.

Loving the garden
With other's like me to share
Pollination rules.

Cee's Flower of the Day logo

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Things that are Short

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Things that are Short.

Wooden Birds in my dining room. Short guy is in color.
Heaven got a very SHORT haircut a couple of days ago.
Piglets at the Jacksonville Agricultural Fair, November 2019, Jacksonville, Florida.
Frank is short, I’m shorter! All 5′ 1″ of me! Photo was taken at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone.
Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

Caribou-Targhee National Forest

DISCLAIMER….This post documents our vacation from September, 2019. We continue to write while being at home because of social distancing due to the coronavirus. This post takes us to Driggs, Idaho (Day 8-9 of our vacation) where we arrived on the other side of the pass from Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I encourage you and yours to visit all the beautiful places that the USA has to offer once our great nation overcomes this terrible obstacle in front of us. If you missed any of the Living in the Moment posts from this series, the links are listed at the bottom of this blog. Stay safe and God bless, we are getting through this!

Panoramic of the Targhee Valley in Alta, Idaho on the backside of the Grand Teton mountain range.

We woke from a wonderful nights sleep at DreamCatcher Bed and Breakfast in Victor, Idaho on the backside of the Tetons. We were well rested and ready for our next adventure. As we walked the property that morning it was obvious that the weather had changed and we had more weather coming our way. We started talking about the possibility of changing our plans for the day and headed inside for a delicious breakfast.

Fruits and vegetables.
Photo License: Full rights as a Premium User – Freepiks

Leaving DreamCatcher that morning. we had broken clouds and a mix of sun and rain. We decided to play it by ear and start our day by exploring the quaint little town of Driggs. We really fell in love with this place and our first stop was to a local real estate office, just to see what the housing market looked like. Then we drove down Main Street into the center of town to find the small organic grocery store we’d heard about, Barrels and Bins Natural Market which turned out to be a real treat. As an added bonus, the weekly farmers market was taking place in the parking lot across the street, double score!

Looking down into the valley from Caribou-Targhee National Forest.  Storm clouds were moving in.

Having checked out the town, it was time for a little play time. As we were heading up the mountain towards Grand Targhee Resort, we spied a local outdoor adventure store and a nice artsy gift shop. Two quick stops and a new pair of winter gloves for my birthday from my hubby (couple days late, but who’s counting… thank you very much), we were on our way to play in the mountains, YAY!

It was raining when we left town and began our climb toward Grand Targhee. As we drove up the mountain, we watched the temperature in the van dip lower and lower the higher we went. At this point we wondered when the rain would turn to snow. Our estimate was that when the air temperature hit 35 degrees, we would see snow. By the time we got to 38 degrees, we started seeing small ice crystals in the rain…come on snow. At 37 degrees a little more of the ice crystals…come on snow. At 36 degrees we had rain and snow mix…come on snow. At 35 degrees…viola, snow was falling. We hadn’t gotten to the top at this point so we knew we had the possibility of seeing real snow the rest of the way.

It may seem funny that we were excited to experience snow in September but there were a couple of reasons why. First, there wasn’t anything we could do about it. We could have pissed and moaned about not being able to hike and see the views of the backside of the Tetons. But, that wouldn’t have done any good. And second, we live in Florida. It was still over 90 degrees at home and we had just dodged a major hurricane. Let’s live in the moment and enjoy this for what it is. Like the song says ” Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!”

At the end of the road was the Grand Targhee Ski Resort. All the lodging and the restaurants were closed, but as we walked through the falling snow, we found an open door into one of the offices in the resort. There were a couple of seasonal employees there along with the summer manager, who was accommodating enough, to give us information on the resort. And, she gave us maps of the mountain, which had the hiking trails and of course ski runs. It was good information for the next time we visit the Potato State. As we left the lodge it was still snowing. We checked our time and knew we’d be playing in the snow a bit more before heading back down the mountain.

Dark-eyed Junco perched in a tree.  We saw at least 30 on our drive up the mountain.
Dark-eyed Junco

In the end, it was another magical day for us. We got a chance to spend time in an awesome little town and meet some very nice people, plus we had an incredible day outside. We saw more Dark-eyed Juncos than we had ever seen in our lives, plus got a couple of good photos. We had sun and rain with all shapes of broken and moving clouds. And we had snow, yep it was cool, hah hah.

Living in the Moment is what we do while enjoying our time in nature. If you missed any of the other Living in the Moment Series, you can click on them here. Just After Take Off, Day 1, Day 2 Mammoth Hot Spring, Day 2 Traffic Jam, Day 2 Undine Falls and Lava Creek, Lamar Valley – Slough Creek, Day 2 Trout Lake, Lunch at Otter Creek, Mount Washburn, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Paddling the Yellowstone River, The Tiny House, Old Yellowstone Trail, Gibbon Falls – Drive to Old Faithful, Old Faithful, The Lakes, Jackson Hole, String Lake, Colter Bay, Paddle on String Lake, Jenny Lake Sunset, DreamCatcher Bed & Breakfast. Please look forward to our next post as the adventure continues. Only a few more to finish up this vacation of a lifetime!

#WordlessWednesday – Lava Creek – Yellowstone

Lava Creek located in Yellowstone National Park.

#Write Photo – Daybreak

DAYBREAK

follow the sacred path to ruin
sunrise struggles to reach the dune
joining the circle of prayer
stone reminders we were there

sing and dance to days gone by
memories to bask with a sigh
heavens struggle to break free
sullen clouds tampered degree

fog feels the air with unknown
bequesting rhythm with the tone
fiddles play faintly heard
 cross the line which is blurred

in formation standing stones
hear the hollow ghostly moans
in the field we feel them prance
saying thanks with a dance


by:  Lisa Coleman


 
Sue Vincent is the host of Thursday Photo Prompt.  "Dance"

FOTD – Wild Flowers- Haiku

Wildflowers growing rampant at the Orlando Wetlands, Florida.

Field of wildflowers in the Orlando Wetlands in Christmas, Florida

Yellow Wildflowers growing in the marsh lands of the Orlando Wetlands, Christmas, Florida.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Colors of yellow
As far as the eye can see
Brightened by the sun.

Blowing in the breeze
The fortress hides special birds
Gallinule cackles

Common or purple
Moorhens that is, not flowers
Swim in the open.

Wildflowers bring joy
To those who seek nature's gift
Fresh air ignites hope.




Cee's Flower of the Day logo

Mount St. Helens – 40 Years Later

Where were you 40 years ago today, May 18, 1980?

MY VIEW

I was 14, at school in an 8th grade classroom in Decatur, Texas anxiously awaiting for summer to begin. At 8:32 am Pacific Time | 10:32 am Central Time (the time of the eruption), we were completely into our lessons. By the time our afternoon classes were in full swing, word was spreading through the classrooms about this massive eruption of Mt. St. Helens in Washington. I had no idea what this meant as I had never been around an active volcano, but when I saw the explosion on television that evening, I was in awe! The main thing that was going on in my mind was how many people would suffer or die because of this. Only months before, I visited the museum in Fort Worth that had the Pompeii exhibit from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. I was horrified and could envision the entombed bodies like I had seen at the exhibit!

Story from CBS Sunday Morning. We are faithful viewers every Sunday.

FRANK’S VIEW

Frank, on the other hand was living in Arizona at the time and this is his story….in his words.

I was 24 years old and managing a branch office for a national company. They had transferred me from Florida to Phoenix, Arizona that past Christmas and I was excited to be living around the mountains. I spent as much time in the mountains as I could and anything mountain or geologically related fascinated me.

That day, May 18th, I was sitting across the street from the office having lunch when I saw the news on Mt. St. Helens. To say I was enthralled would be an understatement. The truth is, I’ve been in love with Mt. St. Helens ever since. I had no idea at that time, that in the next 30 years, I would end up living around the Seattle area twice, and that I would be lucky enough to spend so many hours exploring Louwala-Clough (smoking mountain) the Native American name for this incredible volcano.

Mt St. Helens became and is, one of my favorite places to visit. I spent nights in it’s treeless environment watching meteor showers. I went to Spirit Lake and saw the millions of huge logs floating in it’s crystal clear waters. I did some spelunking and hiked the ancient lava tubes coming off the mountain, called the Ape Caves. This is a must, especially in the summer. If it’s unseasonably hot in August, (one of the years I went, it was approaching 100 degrees) it’s always in the 50’s in the Ape Caves. I even was lucky enough to back-country ski in the monument during the winter time. I wasn’t lucky enough to get a permit to hike to the rim but, I hope that’s an adventure I can undertake with Lisa when we visit the Evergreen State in the near future.

Of the considerable time I was fortunate enough to spend at Mt. St. Helens, the picture above depicts my favorite. It was in the middle of July 2000. I took off from Johnston Ridge Visitors Center (another absolute must see) around 5pm. I was going to be spending the night inside the monument so time was a non factor. That year, they had opened up the trail that went through the blast zone right in front of the volcano. I had waited years to have a chance to hike this trail. A couple of hours later, I was standing on the remains of the largest recorded landslide in history, staring into this amazing crater. With only wild flowers, sparse shrubs and very young trees to keep me company, it was a perfect moment of solitude and togetherness with nature.

I took out my snack and one of two ice cold beers, that had been frozen when I started my hike, and had myself a picnic and happy hour. Two beers and two hours later, the light was fading and it was time to head back. I had only seen two people on the trail out from the visitors center. On the trail back, I didn’t see a single soul.

Hiking up the ridge about two miles from the visitors center parking lot, I heard my first coyote howl. It was like he gave everybody else permission to start singing. I have no idea how many coyotes there were that night and I never saw a single one. But during the last hour of my hike, the howling was constant and from every direction. Somewhere amongst all the howling, I heard the lone bugling of a bull elk. He was probably saying “you can howl all you want but don’t even think about bringing your butt over here”. All the sound echoing through the mountains and valleys of this national treasure was incredibly cool and really eerie at the same time.

Back at the parking lot, I opened up the tailgate of my little Toyota pickup, sat down and cracked open my last beer. As the coyotes continued their serenade, I finished my beer crawled into my camper shell, unrolled my thermarest, opened my sleeping bag and got ready for bed. I celebrated how wondrously wild the monument can be and fell asleep to the sound of coyotes howling.

Seashell by the Seashore

Seashell in the surf at Little Talbot Island State Park, Jacksonville, Florida.

Our first day back to the beach on May 16, 2020 was spectacular. While there were plenty of humans visiting Little Talbot Island State Park, it was not overcrowded as the park is only allowed to be at 50% capacity. When you have a 5 1/2 mile stretch of beach with no hotels, bars or other commercial structures, it is easy to maintain social distancing safely while enjoying what nature has to offer. I found this seashell by the seashore for my friend Morgan and played with it while the tide was washing ashore to see what I could get for Sunshine’s Macro Monday and Jez’s Water Water Everywhere. The wind was blowing out of the east and allowed for a beautiful crystal clear Atlantic Ocean as it approached the sandy beach.

SLS – “1814 Battle of New Orleans”

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with SONG THAT INCLUDES A NUMBER for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday. I chose “1814 Battle of New Orleans”.

In March, I wrote about another Johnny Horton song, North to Alaska for Song Lyric Sunday which also included the bizarre history of his death if you would like to read it here.

Jimmy Driftwood Photo credit: Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=24761685

“1814 Battle of New Orleans” was written by Jimmy Driftwood who was a high school principal in Arkansas and had a passion for history. The melody is based on a well-know American fiddle song “The 8th of January” which is the date of the Battle of New Orleans. Driftwood wanted to interest the students in history and this was his attempt of doing so by putting the account of the battle into music form.

Great Britain had defeated Napoleon in Europe earlier in 1814 and had redoubled its efforts against its former colonies to launch a three-pronged invasion on the United States. The Battle of Baltimore which was the inspiration of the Francis Scott Key’s “Star-Spangled Banner”, now (The National Anthem of the United States) and The Battle of Plattsburgh were instrumental in ending the invasions and began the peace negotiations with the war ending in a stalemate. Congress ratified the Treaty of Ghent on February 16, 1815 and the War of 1812 came to an official end.

History of the Battle of New Orleans.

The major assault for the Battle of New Orleans was fought on January 8, 1815 which was the result of a month long series of skirmishes between the United States and British forces. It is a battle that should have never taken place because the Treaty of Ghent was signed on December 24, 1814 in Ghent, Belgium between the British and American officials, a major step to end the war. Because of the amount of time for news to travel across the globe, the news did not reach New Orleans until March, 1815. Technically, both countries were still in a state of war.

Battle of New Orleans – Illustration by Frederick Coffay Yohn, c 1922 – Library of Congress

The Battle of New Orleans began with a full on assault on US troops commanded by Major General Edward Pakenham. Major General Andrew Jackson (nicknamed as Old Hickory) declared martial law in New Orleans once British forces were sighted near Lake Borgne, ordering every available weapon and able-bodied man to defend the city. His forces soon grew to 4,500 – army regulars, frontier militiamen, free blacks, New Orleans aristocrats and Choctaw tribesmen. After some time, Jackson accepted help from the pirate smuggler Jean Lafitte after agreeing to pardon some of his men that had been arrested in the United States.

The fighting actually began on December 23, 1814, just one day before the peace treaty had been signed. Jackson’s pieced together army took on 8,000 British soldiers. After many small skirmishes, the major fighting began on January 8, 1815 with the British losing 2,000 men which included three generals and seven colonels in the span of 30 minutes. The US casualties were considerably less, fewer than 100 men. The Battle of New Orleans wasn’t the final time the British and American forces would exchange fire. Once the British were driven out of New Orleans, the fleet sailed east along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico and launched an amphibious attack on Fort Bowyer on February 8, 1815. The fort guarded the entrance to Mobile Bay in Alabama. The fort’s commander surrendered to the British three days after the attack. British plans to seize the port city of Mobile were abandoned when the news of the peace treaty finally arrived.

SONG FACTS

  • It is often played at sporting events in North America.
  • Commonly heard at the home games of the National Hockey League’s Calgary Flames.
  • Reached #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and stayed there for 6 weeks.
  • Reached # 1 on the Australian Singles Chart, Canadian RPM Top Singles, U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles and the U.S. Cash Box Top 100.
  • Reached #16 on the U.K. Singles Chart.
  • It was # 1 on the 1959 Year-end chart on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.
  • It is #37 on the All-time U.S. Billboard Hot 100 charts from 1958-2018

“1814 Battle of New Orleans”

In 1814 we took a little trip
Along with Colonel Jackson down the mighty Mississippi
We took a little bacon and we took a little beans
And we caught the bloody British in the town of New Orleans
We fired our guns and the British kept a-comin'
There wasn't nigh as many as there was a while ago
We fired once more and they began to runnin'
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
We looked down the river and we seed the British come
And there must have been a hundred of 'em beatin' on the drum
They stepped so high and they made their bugles ring
We stood behind our cotton bales and didn't say a thing
We fired our guns and the British kept a-comin'
There wasn't nigh as many as there was a while ago
We fired once more and they began to runnin'
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
Old Hickory said we could take 'em by surprise
If we didn't fire our muskets till we looked 'em in the eyes
We held our fire till we seed their faces well
Then we opened up our squirrel guns and gave 'em
Well, we
Fired our guns and the British kept a-comin'
There wasn't nigh as many as there was a while ago
We fired once more and they began to runnin'
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
Yeah they ran through the briers and they ran through the brambles
And they ran through the bushes where a rabbit couldn't go
They ran so fast that the hounds couldn't catch 'em
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
We fired our cannon till the barrel melted down
So we grabbed an alligator and we fought another round
We filled his head with cannonballs 'n' powdered his behind
And when we touched the powder off, the gator lost his mind
We fired our guns and the British kept a-comin'
There wasn't nigh as many as there was a while ago
We fired once more and they began to runnin'
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
Yeah they ran through the briers and they ran through the brambles
And they ran through the bushes where a rabbit couldn't go
They ran so fast that the hounds couldn't catch 'em
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico
Hut, hut, three, four
Sound off, three, four
Hut, hut, three, four
Sound off, three, four
Hut, hut, three, four
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Jimmy Driftwood / James Corbitt Morris

Beach is Open – Fun in the Sun

Little Talbot Island State Park opened on Thursday, May 14, 2020. It is a 5 1/2 mile stretch of beach with no commercial structures. They are open to 50% capacity so we got there early. What a treat! When we left the park around 3pm, the cones were up at the Ranger Station and the beach was closed to incoming traffic.

Today….May, 15, 2020….FIRST trip to the beach since the LOCKDOWN began.

Once you play the video, it won’t be sideways. Gotta love WP!

Brown Pelicans flew over in flocks!

Plenty of wonderful sunshine, blue skies with patches of white clouds and the wind blowing at approximately 15 mph from the northeast provided a wonderful breeze with temperatures hovering around 78 F (26C) all morning. The tide was going out and water was crystal clear.

Jacksonville has been one of the ports to allow cruise lines to dock their ships in our berths and anchor them offshore during the shutdown. There was another one anchored way offshore behind this one. It was quite hazy at times this morning so I couldn’t make out which cruise line this was.

Me and Morgan hanging out at the beach!

One of my best friends from the Tampa Bay area came to Jacksonville this weekend for a visit. Her and her husband have been staying in like so many of us and we are all well. She hadn’t left her house in 6 weeks and has been working from home. It is great having them here.

Please note: I’m very anxious about the state re-opening so soon and we are continuing to do our part with social distancing and wearing our masks when contact is too close for comfort. We went to the restrooms and had to wear those awful wonderful masks to keep us safe. It was excruciatingly hot and hard to breathe but at least we were at the beach!

DreamCatcher B&B, Victor, Idaho

DISCLAIMER….This post documents our vacation from September, 2019. We continue to write while being at home because of social distancing due to the coronavirus. This post takes us to Victor, Idaho (Day 8 of our vacation) where we arrived on the other side of the pass from Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I encourage you and yours to visit all the beautiful places that the USA has to offer once our great nation overcomes this terrible obstacle in front of us. If you missed any of the Living in the Moment posts from this series, the links are listed at the bottom of this blog. Stay safe and God bless, we will get through this!

CURRENTLY CLOSED DUE TO COVID-19

Fire Pit at DreamCatchers Bed and Breakfast in Victor, Idaho.

As of the date of this blog, DreamCatchers B&B is closed for the summer season 2020 because of COVID-19. Visitors are encouraged to visit their website for any changes. It’s unfortunate that this wonderful B&B is closed because it’s a real treat to stay there. The house has large vaulted ceilings in the family room and lots of tall windows that let in abundant light and picturesque views of the mountains and valley. The outside space is just as impressive with beautiful decks, patios, well maintained grounds and 360 degree views of the beautiful natural surroundings. I hope you will be able to visit this beautiful B&B situated in the Teton Valley between Victor and Driggs, Idaho sometime in the near future.

Bella is the assistant innkeeper and is the companion to Andrew the innkeeper.  She is a sweet German Sheperd
Bella (Assistant Innkeeper)

Even with cloudy and cold rainy days, the stay was perfect. Each morning, Andrew (Innkeeper and Chef) would cook a fabulous gourmet breakfast for us to get our day started. I wished I had taken pictures of our food, but I was living in the moment and it slipped my mind. Bella, the innkeeper’s assistant offered her help beside him in a most enthusiastic way. She loved all the guests and made sure to give kisses and love whenever she could.

We stayed in the Coeur d’Alene (the honeymoon suite), which is the most private and largest of all the rooms in the house, with a magnificent en-suite, complete with double sink vanity, private walk-in shower and a clawfoot copper tub perfect for soaking your aches and pains away. The innkeeper provided some eucalyptus salts and for the two nights we stayed there, I indulged, feeling relaxed with silky skin. The epitome of luxury. What a splurge! A real treat after spending the day in the snow and rain.

DreamCatchers Bed & Breakfast honeymoon suite stand up shower in Victor, Idaho.

We certainly enjoyed the firepit out back and spent some time out there in the chilly weather. Frank took the MSR Pocket Rocket that we brought with us and made some Claude’s Hot Chocolate. One of the things that was a constant for us, on this entire vacation, was to be able to cook a hot meal or make hot chocolate anywhere we wanted. It was always a real treat and one of the most enjoyable things we did. The freedom it gave us to control our schedule, so we could eat or have a treat whenever or where ever we wanted, was great!

I am so blessed to have a wonderful husband that takes me away on adventures to explore the unknown while we are Living in the Moment.

Living in the Moment is what we do while enjoying our time in nature. If you missed any of the other Living in the Moment Series, you can click on them here. Just After Take Off, Day 1, Day 2 Mammoth Hot Spring, Day 2 Traffic Jam, Day 2 Undine Falls and Lava Creek, Lamar Valley – Slough Creek, Day 2 Trout Lake, Lunch at Otter Creek, Mount Washburn, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Paddling the Yellowstone River, The Tiny House, Old Yellowstone Trail, Gibbon Falls – Drive to Old Faithful, Old Faithful, The Lakes, Jackson Hole, String Lake, Colter Bay, Paddle on String Lake, Jenny Lake Sunset. Please look forward to our next post as the adventure continues. Only a few more to finish up this vacation of a lifetime!

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Things that are Long

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Things that are Long.

Volleyball net at Carney Island Park in Ocklawaha, Florida.
Volleyball net at Carney Island, Ocklawaha, Florida.
Traffic light attached to an overpass in Jacksonville, Florida.
Long light attached to an overpass in Jacksonville, Florida
Danes Point Bridge in Jacksonville, Florida.
Danes Point Bridge in Jacksonville, Florida.
Chesser Island Boardwalk Sign at the trailhead in the Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge in South George. At the end of the boardwalk is a 4-story covered lookout tower.
Sign at the trailhead in Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge, Georgia.
Chesser Island Boardwalk at Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge in South George. At the end of the boardwalk is a 4-story covered lookout tower.
Chesser Island Boardwalk, Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge.
Alligator sitting on a log.

The log wasn’t long enough for the 2 of us. The gator wins today! This photo is for my buddy, Jim Borden who has made it apparent that he does not like alligators. Check out his website by clicking on the above link.

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

FOTD – Palmetto- Haiku

Palmetto in the middle of Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge in Georgia.

I kinda went out on a limb this week, well a palmetto frond. The challenge says I can use leaves and foliage so here you go. I captured this last week when we went to Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge in Georgia.

Palmetto fronds in many shades of green in the foreground with tall pine trees in the background.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Reaching for the light
Raise my fingers to nurture
One frond at a time

Tough as any rock
Fan shaped leaves puncture at tips
Into the skins touch

Pines stand guard today
Fanning covers for the birds
In natures daylight

Cee's Flower of the Day logo

#Write Photo – Storm Brews

A STORM BREWS

slippery slope in my mind
mossy texture unwinds
subtle breeze takes hold
release to unmold.

beyond the horizon matters
dark luminous clouds gather
brewing storm barrels close
isn't that the way it goes?

mother nature decides the fate
furry lies within her wake
her anger will unleash
go quickly, begging, beseech.

declaration to the lands
pounding its body through the sands
a body of water deep and high
mixed with color of the sky.

hours later it's all over
caressed by its urgent lover
sun rays shone brightly, a new day dawn
renewed life it will spawn.

by:  Lisa Coleman









 
Sue Vincent is the host of Thursday Photo Prompt.  "Causeway"

FOTD – Magnolia Cycle- Haiku

The conelike receptacle that once held the blossom of a magnolia flower.

The end of the magnolia’s life.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Silky remembrance
Soft breeze carries the future
Beauty no longer

Seeds pollinate birth
The eulogy has been read
Rejoicing the life

Cee's Flower of the Day logo

Water Water Everywhere Tampa Bay

Intercoastal waterway in Tampa Bay.

Photos by Jez is the new host of WWE that is a weekly challenge posted on Monday.

View of a palm tree in the foreground and the Intercoastal Waterway, Tampa Bay (background) shot from Arrowhead picnic area, Fort Desoto Park, Pinellas County, Florida.

Arrowhead picnic area Fort Desoto Park, Pinellas County, Florida taken in January, 2020. This overlooks the intercoastal of Tampa Bay connecting it to the Gulf of Mexico. The temperature was about 80 F (27 C) and perfect with a light breeze to keep the bugs down. The water was calm and a few locals were fishing. It was a perfect winter day in Florida.

Lily – Macro

Lily in the garden.

For Sunshine’s Marco Monday and Cee’s Flower of the Day.

FOTD – Happy Mother’s Day

I would like to extend a wonderful Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there who sacrifice so much for their children. I want to say Happy Mother’s Day to Frank’s mom and my mom who are looking down on us from Heaven.

Alice Good (Frank’s mom) (1922-1977)
Wanda Snow (My mom) (1946-2014)

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

MOM

A MOM protects her child
Whether human or animal
It's part of their DNA
Adore their efforts as you are capable.

MOM should be celebrated
All through the year
Her everyday sacrifices
Deserve praise while we hold her near.

Cheer for MOM
With our whole heart
For never letting us down
Each and every part.

Every part of our lives
Have come to this moment
Love MOM today
Always as if it were the last spent.

A flower to MOMs everywhere
Heros you truly are
Honoring you in every way
Close by or from afar.

By:  Lisa Coleman

Happy Mother's Day!
Cee's Flower of the Day logo

SLS – Happy Together by The Turtles

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with Couple/Together/Us for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

As some of you know or maybe you don’t, Frank and I have been together 15 years and just celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary. I needed to give you a song that represents us. I usually stay in the Country genre, but have been known to color outside the lines. Today I pay homage to my Rock n’ Roll husband with “Happy Together” by The Turtles. The lyrics really speak volumes of our relationship.

The Turtles were an American rock band that included lead vocalists Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman, later known as Flo & Eddie. Other band members included Al Nichol, Chip Douglas, John Barbata and Jim Tucker. The band broke up in 1970.

SONG FACTS

  • Written by Garry Bonner and Alan Gordon.
  • Released in March, 1967 on their third studio album of the same name.
  • Reached #1 on the US Billboard Hot 100, knocking “Penny Lane” by the Beatles out of the number one spot.
  • Stayed at the #1 slot on the US Billboard Hot 100 for 3 weeks and was the groups only chart-topper in the U.S.
  • Reached #2 on the Canada RPM Top Singles.
  • Reached #12 on the UK Singles Chart.

OTHER SUCCESSES

  • Jason Donovan had the most successful cover version in the UK reaching #10.
  • T.G. Sheppard covered the song in 1979, putting it into the top 10 of the Country charts.
  • David Cook performed the song on February 19, 2008 and Brooke White performed it on February 20, 2008 while contestants for American Idol. Both versions were released as live singles on the iTune Store.
  • In 2015, Miley Cyrus promoted her Backyard Sessions to raise awareness and support for her new (at the time) non-profit Happy Hippie Foundation to fight for the injustices of homeless youth and LGBT youth. She released the video above from her own back garden along with several other songs.
Imagine me and you, I do
I think about you day and night, it's only right
To think about the girl you love and hold her tight
So happy together
If I should call you up, invest a dime
And you say you belong to me and ease my mind
Imagine how the world could be, so very fine
So happy together
I can't see me lovin' nobody but you
For all my life
When you're with me, baby the skies'll be blue
For all my life
Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together
I can't see me lovin' nobody but you
For all my life
When you're with me, baby the skies'll be blue
For all my life
Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together
Ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba
Ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba
Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together
So happy together
How is the weather
So happy together
We're happy together
So happy together
Happy together
So happy together
So happy together (ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba)
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Alan Gordon / Garry Bonner
Happy Together lyrics © Round Hill Music Big Loud Songs, BMG Rights Management, Carlin America Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group

Living In The Moment – Grand Tetons National Park – Jenny Lake – Sunset

DISCLAIMER….This post documents our vacation from September, 2019. We continue to write while being at home because of social distancing due to the coronavirus. This post takes us into Grand Teton National Park on Day 2 of the park (Day 7 of our vacation) where we had just finished up our second paddle and stopped at Jenny Lake for the sunset before heading to Victor, Idaho for the night. I encourage you and yours to visit all the beautiful places that the USA has to offer once our great nation overcomes this terrible obstacle in front of us. If you missed any of the Living in the Moment posts from this series, the links are listed at the bottom of this blog. Stay safe and God bless, we will get through this!

Jenny Lake at Sunset

After a wonderful day on String Lake, the late afternoon light was kicking in and the wind picked up, as it usually does late in the day. As we were leaving the parking lot, we decided one more pitstop was in order to complete another one of the items on our bucket list. It was Jenny Lake time! We had looked forward to seeing this beauty before we left the Sunshine State. And luckily for us, we noticed the crowds around the lake had quieted from earlier in the day. We wouldn’t have a lot of time to spend because we still had a long drive ahead of us. We were staying that night in a great B&B in Victor, Idaho (more on that in our next post). So, we needed to drive from Grand Teton through Jackson Hole and over the pass to get there. In other words, our normal vacation schedule and…we loved it.

When we got to the lake, the sunset peaked through broken clouds with the wind blowing hard enough to almost knock me off my feet a few times. When you have strong winds in a mountain environment, it’s a lot like gusty winds in a city with tall buildings. The wind gets channeled into certain areas and greatly magnifies the force. So you can be walking in an area that has light winds and you walk out from around cover and wham, the wind hits you with a big invisible surprise. With the wind blowing and the sun saying hello and goodbye through the clouds, it was time to take a few moments and explore one of the crown jewels of Grand Teton.

We walked around the hiking area for a bit up top and then went down the trail to the shoreline. Waves were crashing over the rocky formation at the base. We got sprayed by icy cold water a couple of times but we had our rain gear on so no big deal. It was magical being there with Frank, breathing in the fresh mountain air, sitting on the large boulders and taking in every bit of this natural wonder.

The 2 days in Grand Teton National Park flew by so fast. We were not ready to let it go, but we had reservations and a pretty good drive to Idaho for the night. We’ve already penciled in a large list of places we want to explore when we pay this amazing place another visit in the not too distant future.

Before leaving, we stopped up on the rim of the lake for one last goodbye view. We saw a Bald Eagle flying like a fighter pilot in the winds, swooping, circling, banking and diving. It was amazing to see and a little puzzling until we looked down at the surface of the lake. We knew he wasn’t fishing with the waves on the lake being so chopped up, and he wasn’t. He wanted some water fowl for dinner. He was literally dancing in the air, circling, diving, banking, circling, diving and banking over and over trying to catch a Common Merganser. Every time the eagle dove, the Merganser submerged. The bird would come up for air, the eagle would dive down…over and over again. The Merganser won that round. After several minutes, the Bald Eagle gave up and flew away with an empty stomach.

With big smiles on our faces and thankfulness in our hearts, it was time to get going. Now I was ready to mark another state off my list on my way to get all 50. We’d be spending the night in the Spud State. Idaho here we come.

Next stop, Dreamcatchers Bed & Breakfast in Victor, Idaho.

Living in the Moment is what we do while enjoying our time in nature. If you missed any of the other Living in the Moment Series, you can click on them here. Just After Take Off, Day 1, Day 2 Mammoth Hot Spring, Day 2 Traffic Jam, Day 2 Undine Falls and Lava Creek, Lamar Valley – Slough Creek, Day 2 Trout Lake, Lunch at Otter Creek, Mount Washburn, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Paddling the Yellowstone River, The Tiny House, Old Yellowstone Trail, Gibbon Falls – Drive to Old Faithful, Old Faithful, The Lakes, Jackson Hole, String Lake, Colter Bay, Paddle on String Lake. Please look forward to our next post as the adventure continues.

FOTD – Floating Magnolia – Haiku

Magnolia leaf detached floating in a swimming pool.

My daughter, Kaela took this photo and sent it to me and I thought it would fit nicely with my week of Magnolia Flowers.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Winds pull me away
Floating by air, fresh water
Emerging in pool

Cast for all to see
Ripped from its home, float intact
Cool water refreshed
Cee's Flower of the Day logo

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Rust or Decay

Rusted out trailer hitch for the boat.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Decayed or Rusty.

Propane canister pulled from the St. Johns River.
Rusted out table base
Wheelbarrow has seen better days but still works.
Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

FOTD – Magnolia’s Perspective – Haiku

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

I got a little creative with my feature image today. Felt like doing some creative art. Hope you like it. It has been a while since I’ve let myself think in those terms. I’m a little rusty!

Looking underneath
Shadows reflect pure sunlight
Basking in my bloom
Cee's Flower of the Day logo

World Migratory Bird Day – Global Big Day – May 9, 2020

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 was created between the United States and Great Britain (for Canada) to protect the populations of all protected migratory birds and later amended between the U.S. and Mexico, U.S. and Japan, and the U.S. and the Soviet Union (now Russia). In North America the treaty was amended between the U.S. and Mexico in 1976 and Canada in 1995. Over the years this treaty has been instrumental in protecting these natural treasures. It could be argued that, through the years, this act has done more to protect birds than any other single factor.

Green Heron perched up looking for fish to nab. The green, blue and purple are vibrant throughout the feathers.
Green Heron

Unfortunately, the Trump administration has moved this year to gut the protections that migratory birds have had for over 100 years. The new Fish and Wildlife Services proposal means that the incidental killing of protected birds will no longer be prosecuted. As an example, oil and gas companies, builders and land developers, power companies and other industries would no longer be accountable for reckless practices that kill migratory birds. That’s over a thousand bird species we’re talking about.

Male Redhead

The Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill disaster in April of 2010 killed more than a million birds. BP subsequently paid more than $100 million dollars in fines for violating federal laws that protect birds. It didn’t bring the birds back but, helped put money into resources to clean and rebuild habitats while standing as a deterrent for possible future negligent acts by fossil fuel companies. The latest proposal by Fish and Wildlife Services would have eliminated any penalty for the killing of those million plus birds and the destruction of their habitat.

If you live in the United States, please let your members of Congress know that you do not support the weakening of this crucial Act that protects our feathered friends. If you have any questions, feel free to contact the head of your local Audubon Society.

THE BIRDS WILL THANK YOU!

What is World Migratory Bird day and when is it? Glad you asked. World Migratory Bird Day, which was created in 1993 by folks at the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center celebrates the bird migrations in North America. You can find out more here about the history. It takes place every year on the second Saturday in May for the United States and Canada and the second Saturday in October for Latin America and the Caribbean. It is now global with humans participating all over the world. For 2020, these dates fall on May 9th and October 10th.

Different bird species migrate at different times and while showing the love of this migratory phenomenon is recognized for one day, we should all be doing our part to maintain a high level of conservancy by sharing the importance of bird migration in America and all over the world every single day.

Most years, this day has people coming together to participate in different activities such as bird watching, bird-counting tours, educational workshops, festivals, exhibitions, art contests, and awareness fundraising events. This year, the festivities are online with “Bird Day Live”. This online festival is a 3-day event that starts tomorrow, May 7th. If you click on the link, you will see the countdown clock.

Birds Connect Our World

The Theme for 2020 is “Birds Connect Our World” which I see as very fitting for the spring migration of 2020 while the human population has endured the worst pandemic in world history and our connections have been limited, at least in person. Birds have not worried over the stay-at-home orders, wearing a mask when going out, watching the stats on television as the number of confirmed cases and unfortunate loss of life rise with each passing day, plus the complete lockdown of our world’s economy. Migration has continued with species moving from one home to another for short periods of time while they procreate and find food after flying for thousands of miles to reach their next destination.

American Oystercatcher feeding along the shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico at Fort Desoto Park in Pinellas County, Florida
American Oystercatcher

Protect our Birds – Do Your Part

The American Goldfinch migrates from mid-Alberta to North Carolina during breeding season and from Canada to Mexico during the winter.

The Northern Cardinal is not a migratory bird but has expanded its territory from the southern U.S. to other parts of the U.S. – further north and west.

The Downy Woodpecker is the smallest woodpecker in North America, foraging for insects in trees & creating holes for nesting. Knock…Knock…Knock!

The responsibility of protecting birds falls directly on our shoulders today to ensure future generations have the same ecosystem tomorrow.

13 things YOU can do to Help

  1. Plant a bird-friendly garden.
  2. Build a birdhouse so migrators have a safe place to build a nest.
  3. Put up feeders. Talk to the experts at your local Wild Birds Unlimited or online to get the best information on seed, suet and other food items such as mealworms. They will guide you on what will work best in your area.
  4. Install or build a water feature such as a bird bath or fountain.
  5. Keep an eye on your pets when they are outside. They are often curious and could kill a bird not knowing the consequences.
  6. Stop using single use plastic.
  7. Pick up litter when you are out on a hike. (Not everyone is responsible)
  8. Recycle…Recycle…Recycle.
  9. Educate yourself and your children to make sure birds are around for many generations.
  10. Reduce window kills by turning off bright lights or closing your blinds.
  11. Go birding and participate in The Cornell Lab of Ornithology by logging what you see on eBird.
  12. Support conservation initiatives by donating to the many organizations such as Audubon.
  13. CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSMAN TO VOICE YOUR CONCERNS WITH THE NEW LAWS.
Family of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks foraging for food in the Orlando Wetlands near Christmas, Florida.
Family of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks

May 9th, 2020 is also the biggest birding day of the year known as Global Big Day. Participation is simple and covers #11 on the list of things you can do to help with conservation of our birding world. Check out the info at the bottom of this post. Frank and I have participated in this event for 7 years now. Every day seems like a global birding day for us. We bird in our yard and try to go somewhere on a birding hike at least once a week. We are always on the lookout for new species, adding to our growing life list and observing avian behaviors. As I started writing this blog, I felt the need to do more and hope to encourage you to help save our feathered friends. We have done all 13 of the items that I suggested above in some capacity over the years and continue to make a conscious effort to give our children and grandchildren hope for the future.

Cedar Waxwing perched in our tree that was full of berries.  Once they were finished, the berries were wiped clean.
Cedar Waxwing

A new record was set on the 2019 Global Big Day with 92,284 checklists of birds collected in one day all around the world.

American White Pelicans feeding in a pond at Viera Wetlands, Viera, Florida.
American White Pelicans

How you can participate in Global Bird Day

  • Visit eBird.org and sign up for free. Download the free mobile app if you don’t have a computer.
  • Observe the birds in your yard or hit the trail (if you can) with your binoculars and camera.
  • To help you identify your birds, you can download the free Cornell Lab’s Merlin Bird ID.
  • Share what you see on social media. There are many bird groups you can participate in. Use these tags: #globalbigday! #BirdDay #MigratoryBirdDay
  • Have FUN!

FOTD – Magnolia – Haiku

Magnolia Flower opening its petals in spring.

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Silky white petals
Unfolded from the darkness
Say hello to you
Cee's Flower of the Day logo

FOTD – Bud – Haiku

Budding magnolia tree in Jacksonville, Florida

Cee’s FOTD Challenge

Magnolia bloom preparing to become a flower.  A critter has munched the leaf a bit.
Critters munched my leaf
Strength will allow for my bloom
Can you guess my name?
Cee's Flower of the Day logo

Water Water Everywhere Cypress Reflections

Photos by Jez is the new host of WWE that is a weekly challenge posted on Monday.

I wanted to dedicate this day, May 4, 2020 to the fact that the Florida State Parks are open effective today. This was taken before the lockdown as we travelled for a day trip to Ravine Gardens State Park in Palatka, Florida.

SLS – Tequila

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with Burrito/Fajita/Mexican/Tequila for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday. Since my drink of choice (back in my heyday of drinking) was Tequila, I wasn’t passing this up and maybe I took the easy way out, but you are getting me and my preferred spirit.

Mexican food is my favorite cuisine. I suppose that is because I was born and raised in Texas. Tex-Mex is really what I grew up on, but whenever I can find some true homemade authentic Mexican food, I’m as happy as can be…as long as it isn’t too spicy.

E-Club at Camp Pendleton – 1984. I’m far left pretending to hold up a tequila shot.

However, I’m still sticking with the Tequila. I’ve always preferred the taste of gold over the silver. Who needs Patron when you have Jose Cuervo at a reasonable price. Once when I was stationed at Camp Pendleton, California, me and a few of the guys took a trip down to Tijuana. It was safer to drink the tequila than it was to drink the water, so we indulged except for the one driving. That wasn’t me…driving that is, so I indulged. Scary place to be, Tijuana, but we were a bunch of Marines who thought we were invincible. In the photo above, I was fakin’ holding up a shot because the E-Club only sold beer and wine, hence the trip to Mexico.

“Jose Cuervo” the song was still very popular in the country bars and even the E-Club. There might have been a time or two that I found myself living out that song a bit. I will admit that I danced on a bar or two. I still dream of those days as an 18-19 year old who loved to party. BTW…the drinking age was 18 in 1984.

I love me some Tequila shots, Tequila Sunrise and my own creation Tequila Surprise.

Here is what happened….

A few years ago, I decided to make myself a Tequila Sunrise. I got out my ingredients…grenadine, handle of Cuervo, orange juice and ice. I poured in my tequila, added the orange juice, then the grenadine and went in for my taste test before adding the ice. It was not right! Something was dreadfully wrong! I turned the bottle around and realized I had grabbed the handle of Captain Morgan. Ooops! So, I put my concoction into a larger glass, added Jose Cuervo and viola…..Tequila Surprise. It was yummy! With both the rum and the tequila and once I added the ice and got it cold. Oh man! It became my drink of choice, but only I knew how to make it.

One Tequila…Two Tequila…Three Tequila…FLOOR!

The video above is from Halloween, 1986 while Shelly West performs on the Ralph Emery Show. Many of the band members, Ralph and all his guest that night were in costume and it made for a festive performance. I met Ralph in 2003 while working at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa, Florida and was able to sit down with him and chat for about an hour. He gave me a signed copy of his book after our visit. Really a top-notch, down to earth guy.

SONG FACTS

  • Written and originally recorded by Cindy Jordan in 1982
  • Shelly West released the single in February 1983
  • Reached #1 on the US Hot Country Songs Billboard
  • Reached #1 on the Canada Country Tracks (RPM)
  • Due to its commercial success, you can still find it on any karaoke list.
Well it's Sunday Mornin'
And the sun in shinin'
In my eye that is open
And my head is spinnin'
Was the life of the party
I can't stop grinnin'
I had to much Tequila last night
Jose Cuervo you are a friend of mine
I like to drink you with a little salt and lime
Did I kiss all the cowboys?
Did I shoot out the lights?
Did I dance on the bar?
Did I start a fight?
Now wait a minute
Things don't look to familiar
Who is this cowboy
Who's sleepin' beside me?
He's awful cute, but how'd I
Get his shirt on?
I had to much Tequila last night
Jose Cuervo you are a friend of mine
I like to drink you with a little salt and lime
Did I kiss all the cowboys?
Did I shoot out the lights?
Did I dance on the bar?
Did I start a fight?
All those little shooters
How I love to drink 'em down
Come on bartender
Let's have another round [Modulates]
Well the music is playing
And my spirits are high
Tomorrow might be painful
But tonight we're gonna fly
Jose Cuervo you are a friend of mine
I like to drink you with a little salt and lime
Every time we get together
I sure have a good time
You're my friend
You're the best
Mi amigo
(Tequila)
Jose Cuervo you are a friend of mine
I like to drink you with a little salt and lime
Did I kiss all the cowboys?
Did I shoot out the lights?
Did I dance on the bar?
Did I start a fight?
Jose Cuervo you are a friend of mine
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Cindy Jordan
Jose Cuervo lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Living In The Moment – Grand Tetons National Park – String Lake – Paddle

DISCLAIMER….This post documents our vacation from September, 2019. We continue to write while being at home because of social distancing due to the coronavirus. This post takes us into Grand Teton National Park on Day 2 of the park (Day 7 of our vacation) where we took our second paddle, this time on String Lake. I encourage you and yours to visit all the beautiful places that the USA has to offer once our great nation overcomes this terrible obstacle in front of us. If you missed any of the Living in the Moment posts from this series, the links are listed at the bottom of this blog. Stay safe and God bless, we will get through this!

Launching our kayak

Another glorious day at Grand Tetons National Park preparing to take an awesome paddle on String Lake in our inflatable Sea Eagle kayak. This was our second paddle of the trip, the first being on the Yellowstone River a few days prior. Check out that post here.

String Lake is a beautiful little stretch of water located between Jenny Lake and Leigh Lake. The smallest of the three, this little beauty is more protected from the wind than the other two, has a great picnic area and is a much less crowded alternative to Jenny Lake. We highly recommend a stop here!

Inflating our kayak

As soon as we arrived at String Lake, we unpacked the kayak from its suitcase and laid out the rest of the gear, the seats, paddles, dry bags and cooler. We made a time lapse video to show how quickly it is for us to inflate the kayak in only 3 minutes. You just need a strong leg motion to make it happen. Frank is the strong leg!

I can’t tell you how many times people have been amazed and dumbfounded by the fact that we brought our inflatable whitewater kayak on the plane from Florida for this vacation. Normal comments have been “I can’t believe it fit in the suitcase”. Actually it was two suitcases, one for the boat and a second one for the gear. In all fairness, the second suitcase did have a lot of our kitchen gear in it as well. The comment we’ve heard most often is something like “what a hassle, that’s too much trouble. I would never do that”.

Well, we would never have been able to take a thirteen plus mile, six hour paddle on the historic and beautiful Yellowstone River. Plus, since there are no kayak rentals at String Lake, we wouldn’t have been able to spend the day paddling and floating this amazing little jewel in the middle of Grand Teton.

The amount of freedom and enjoyment we experienced bringing our little boat with us can’t be measured in words. On a dream vacation filled with amazing adventures and incredible sights, our two paddles sit right there at the top of our list of “can’t believe we did and saw that”. And, all we had to do was bring two extra suitcases.

Taking the plunge into the depths of freezing water.

Before leaving Jacksonville some months earlier, Frank had decided he was going to swim in one of the lakes. He had been giddy over the thought of it and was surely going to make a splash when he did. He did make a splash alright, but what he really did was, freeze his butt off. I still laugh thinking about it. Armed with his long johns (thermal underwear), his wetsuit and booties, Frank prepared for his ice cold swim. I’ve read that the water here at String Lake is relatively warm in the summer months, but it was September and the outside temperature was in the 50’s and 60’s during the day. The water temperature was in the 40’s, not quite as frigid as the water on Deadliest Catch, but pretty darn cold

Frank has become one with nature.
Frank after his swim in ice cold water.

As we paddled, we followed a small flock of six Common Mergansers fishing together as a family. Watching them work together was amazing. We got some really nice pictures and the birds all got a nice meal! Many photos didn’t come out because the wind had picked up and to try to steady a shot with the boat moving up and down and side to side was quite difficult.

On this day in the middle of September, you could see to the bottom of this crystal clear lake. Paddling String Lake was a relaxing paddle, very different than paddling the Yellowstone River. That had been a workout. Here, the waters were somewhat calm with a light breeze and of course, no white water. We had moments we were able to float, kick back and relax. Other times we would paddle with or against the wind to position us exactly were we wanted to be on the lake. We experienced freedom of movement in an environment with no trails, no roads, no map and no set destination. Capturing sights and sounds we would never have experienced if we had stayed on the land wishing we had a boat to go on the lake. We made that wish come true!

Mountain side across String Lake from where we put in the kayak.

There is nothing better than being in a kayak or other non-motorized boat experiencing the up close and personal environment of a place steeped in history and wonder like String Lake. Of course, the visual part of the experience is amazing but the sounds and feelings you assimilate are just as powerful. To hear only the sounds of nature and feel the movement of the water under you, makes you part of our natural world. It cleanses the soul and fills your spirit with a renewed sense of purpose. A purpose larger than anything you could possibly do at work or home while doing your daily tasks.

Please come join us on the next post as we make a pitstop to Jenny Lake to watch the sunset on this final day in Grand Teton National Park!

Living in the Moment is what we do while enjoying our time in nature. If you missed any of the other Living in the Moment Series, you can click on them here. Just After Take Off, Day 1, Day 2 Mammoth Hot Spring, Day 2 Traffic Jam, Day 2 Undine Falls and Lava Creek, Lamar Valley – Slough Creek, Day 2 Trout Lake, Lunch at Otter Creek, Mount Washburn, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, Paddling the Yellowstone River, The Tiny House, Old Yellowstone Trail, Gibbon Falls – Drive to Old Faithful, Old Faithful, The Lakes, Jackson Hole, String Lake, Colter Bay. Please look forward to our next post as the adventure continues.

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Head Facial/Features – The Grandkids

All of these photos were pulled out of my archives except Memphis and that was provided by my daughter. Everyone is smiling, well…most everyone. These are my loves!

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Head and Facial Features.

This is Heaven. Not a grandkid, but my little baby. She is 13 years old now. She was about 2 1/2 at the time of this photo. She loves Halloween and seeing all the trick or treaters come to the front door. How about that tongue and those eyes for facial features?

Memphis Jackson, one of my grandsons, not quite human. He is a one year old Brown Lab with tons of energy. Follow him on Instagram: @memphisjackson18

Memphis Jackson @memphisjackson18 on Instagram is a one year old brown lab who is full of energy.

This is my oldest granddaughter at her 14th birthday pool party last summer. She was in last week’s black and white photo challenge as a toddler in a pool. See a trend here? In case you missed it…See it here.

Oldest granddaughter getting ready to go for a swim in the pool at her 14th birthday party one year ago.

Let me present to you my human grandson who has my freckles. What a great facial feature they are! Sometimes he reminds me of Alfalfa from the Little Rascals, but so did his father as a kid. It’s a good thing!

My grandson at a waterslide birthday party. His face is covered in freckles.

My middle granddaughter has the same freckle features that adorn her face. She was opening up her gifts at her birthday party last summer after being in the water feature bouncy house they rented.

My middle granddaughter with a big smile on her face that is covered in freckles at her birthday party last summer.

My youngest granddaughter having a birthday gelato with lots of sprinkles on top. It gave me a nostalgic moment so I thought I’d make it look like a photo straight out of a 1950 diner.

My youngest granddaughter having a birthday gelato covered in colorful sprinkles.

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

#Write Photo – Cascade

Mindful of the cliffs
Tall trees lined each bank
Birds flit and sing
A caressing song
To my log I cling.

No fog or pollution
Clean air all around
Breath the perfume
Flowers hidden below
Clear thoughts resume.

Gurgling water flows down
Embankment delights
Faces on the stone
Smile lavishly debarking
Unspoken monotone.

Mystical dreams
River puddles flow deep
Spirit of the woods
Cleanses the soul
Blessings release the goods.

Rustle in the treetops
The sun going down
Reflection in the pool below
My time has concluded
Beauty cascading, oh what a show.


 
Sue Vincent is the host of Thursday Photo Prompt.  

SQUARE TOPS – ON TOP OF THE Tree – Wood Stork

For my last square top, of course it had to be a bird. This is a wood stork and is found in the southeastern part of the United States. This guy sat on top of this hollowed out tree that has several woodpecker nesting holes in it. They are beautiful when in the air with their white wings outlined by black feathers. The wood stork is 33.5-45.3 inches (85-115 cm) in length with a wingspan of 59-68 inches (150-75 cm) when in flight.

I want to say a big thank you to Becky for hosting this awesome challenge! Thank you for giving us a great venue to share some of our photography.

Click the panel below to visit Becky’s site and the April Squares Photo Challenge:

SQUARE TOPS – Tree Tops

Pine Tree tops stand straight(ish) in the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge at dusk as the sun was setting. We were on Scrub Jay Trail looking for the Florida Scrub Jay. Frank saw one peak out of the palmettos and we heard them calling all around us, but I think they did it to taunt us since we had our cameras with us. No bird photos this evening unless you want to count the black dots in the the sky. Those were seagulls flying over the Atlantic in the distance beyond the kaleidoscope of colors we were fortunate to witness.

Click the panel below to visit Becky’s site and the April Squares Photo Challenge:

FOTD & Square Top – Sunflower – Haiku

Cee’s FOTD Challenge & Becky’s April Squares

Sunflower capturing the essense of Spring.
The sun fuels my soul
Landscaping the future now
Beauty in yellow

This beautiful sunflower has popped up in my neighbor’s yard across the street. My neighbor passed away a few months ago at the ripe young age of 94. The house is now for sale. Her spirit was screaming at me when I passed by while walking my dog the other day. The video will show how hard it was to capture this flower open. I exercised extreme patiences. Now as I think about it, I believe she was just playing with me, teasing me to get the image because she had a wonderful sense of humor. We often laughed in her driveway at whatever small talk we conjured up. I later found out during her funeral service, she was quite the prankster in her youth. Her birthday was in September, the day after mine so she was a Virgo…an Earth sign.

Photo prompt round-up: Guardian #writephoto

Thank you Sue Vincent for another awesome photo prompt. Is the list getting longer?

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Ancestral faces

Ever-watchful guardians

Ward the shores of time

Ebb and flow of history

But the twinkling of an eye

*

The photo for this week’s prompt was taken on the Cornish coast near Carn Lês Boel, not far from Land’s End. It is an exceptionally beautiful place, but it was not the aesthetics that had drawn us to visit the prehistoric promontory fort there, but the fact that it is here that the ley known as the Michael Line makes landfall.

*

Thank you to everyone who took part, visited or reblogged the posts or left comments for their authors.

A new prompt will be published later today. As always, I will reblog as many contributions as space and time allows as they come in… and all of them will be featured in the round-up next Thursday.

All the posts are listed below, so please click on the links…

View original post 353 more words

Cee’s Friday Funny Finds – Week of May 29

Sharing Cee’s Friday funny finds and the video at the end is worth a watch especially if you love Freddie Mercury, Queen and Bohemian Rhapsody.

Cee's Photo Challenges

Chris and I always like to find little fun graphics and send them to each other.  I thought I would start posting some of them on Friday and share them with you.  Please join along if you would like.

And last but not least impactful a song about the seriousness of Coronavirus Rhapsody (based On Bohemian Rhapsody).  Please be safe everyone and stay smart and healthy.

I’ve gathered a list of challenges and their hosts.  So if you know a challenge host, please direct them to my blog.  Feel free to contact me anytime.  I hope everyone will be able to use my lists.

Qi (energy) hugs

Cee

View original post

Susan's Place

Flash Fiction, Poetry, and Short Stories

A Farm Girl's Life

Photography, Artsy Things, and Life on the Farm

Xine's Pack

Thoughts, Dreams and Ramblings of a Woman over 50

The_tenth_zodiac

I discover, motivate and rejuvenate here !!

Square One Notes

little ideas big pictures

Philosophy Through Photography

Do photos convey any philosophy?

Positive Side Of The Coin

Not just live and let live, but live and help live

Nut House Central

Lets Go Nuts Together

Heavens Sunshine

Capturing the beauty of God's creation through the lens of a camera

Mistyroads

Imagination Rocks

kimbladeswriting

poetry and short stories

Michigan Mary

Mary K. Eastman ~ Mary Kay Diffin

...i choose this...

joy, happiness, travel, adventure, gratitude

Eliza Waters

My Own Paradise: Life on Seven and a Half Acres

Photography OCD

A somewhat healthy obsession with photography

Graymand

Non Desistas. Non Exieris.

Seasons As Teachers

Kevy Michaels

BeBlossomBloom

Creative U

photographias

photography and life

Emotional Shadows

where all emotions are cared for!

eklastic

Refugees welcome - Flüchtlinge willkommen I am teaching German to refugees. Ich unterrichte geflüchtete Menschen in der deutschen Sprache. I am writing this blog in English and German because my friends speak English and German. Ich schreibe auf Deutsch und Englisch, weil meine Freunde Deutsch und Englisch sprechen.

The Reluctant Photographer

Life with my camera

Zimmerbitch

age is just a (biggish) number

michnavs

Poetry...in Motion

rivrvlogr

Looking ahead, without looking back (too often)

Butterfly Sand

Curiosity run amok . . .

freshdaisiesdotme

Smile;) Its daisy

Images by T.Dashfield Photography

The camera gave me an incredible freedom. It gave me the ability to parade through the world and look at people and things very, very closely. Carrie Mae Weems

%d bloggers like this: