Silent Sunday – Moon

Almost full moon

The almost full moon last night just ahead of Tropical Storm Isaias. Wasn’t sure I would get it tonight.

Song Lyric Sunday – Shall We Gather At the River

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with choosing songs involving Acquire | Collect | Gather | Secure for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

In the time that we are living with a pandemic that has killed over 658,000 souls around the world as of this post, we are not gathering much these days. If you are, you are literally taking your life into your own hands. But for today, let’s celebrate the times that we did gather to be with loved ones and family members. Remember those days? Seems like a lifetime ago. While we gather at our computers to be company to other bloggers, we are secure in our homes so as to not acquire or collect COVID-19.

“Shall We Gather at the River” is also known simply as “At the River” and are the popular names for the traditional Christian hymn titled “Hanson Place”. The title “Hanson Place” is referred to the original Hanson Place Baptist Church in Brooklyn, New York. This was a hymn we sang in church when I was a kid. I was raised and baptised in the Bridgeport Church of Christ in Texas and one of the beliefs was that we had to sing acapella in church. Musical instruments were not allowed in our church. This proved to be difficult for me as I can’t carry a tune, but I tried. As I got older, I began playing the coronet (trumpet) and moved on to the French Horn. I could read music and play, but never could sing.

The song was written in 1864 by American poet & gospel music composer Robert Lowry.

I chose to share the 1977 version from the Hee Haw Gospel Quartet. Members include from left to right in the video, Kenny Price, Grandpa Jones, Roy Clark & Buck Owens.

Hee Haw was an American television variety show featuring country music and humor as portrayed by the folks from fictional Kornfield Kounty. It was hosted by Roy Clark & Buck Owens. Each week, the characters on the show would entertain us with their skits and jokes. They became household names. Country music stars were special guests, performing their current singles. Sometimes, Hee Haw would bring in an up-and-coming artist that would propel their career. During the final segment of each show, the Hee Haw Gospel Quartet performed a gospel song. Hee Haw was on prime time CBS for the first two seasons in 1969-1970. Beginning in the fall of 1971, Hee Haw switched to first-run syndication style distribution where it remained for 21 more seasons. Every Saturday night, we watched Hee Haw followed by The Porter Wagoner Show and the Grand Ole Opry!

You can find full episodes of Hee Haw on YouTube.

“Shall We Gather at the River”

Shall we gather at the river
Where bright angel feet have trod
With its crystal tide forever
Flowing by the throne of God?
Yes, we'll gather at the river
The beautiful, the beautiful river
Gather with the saints at the river
That flows by the throne of God
Soon we'll reach the shining river
Soon our pilgrimage will cease
Soon our happy hearts will quiver
With the melody of peace
Yes, we'll gather at the river
The beautiful, the beautiful river
Gather with the saints at the river
That flows by the throne of God
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Robert Lowry / Mark Hayes
Shall We Gather at the River lyrics © Word Music Llc, Two Fine Boys Music, Jrm Music, Word Music, Llc

CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Lighting of Any Kind

Lighted Angel Christmas Tree Topper

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge

Chandelier at Hightower Falls in Cedartown, Georgia. Attended a wedding there in October, 2019.
St. Marks Lighthouse in St. Marks, Florida
Street Light at the end of our driveway.
Garage Light
Lamp atop the brick wall separating our driveway from our neighbor’s house.
Vintage Victorian Lamp in the bedroom.
Lighted Angel Christmas Tree Topper
Lighted Angel Christmas Tree Topper – She is 28 Years Old

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

SQUAREs – Perspective – SeaGull

I started July with a Seagull, a Laughing Gull…and I’m ending the July Squares, Perspective with a Seagull, a Laughing Gull. This was another moment I got down on my knees in the sand to capture a bird at eye level. He or she was a tricky one as he or she couldn’t make up his or her mind as to which way he or she wanted to go. The waves changed and started crashing up against him or her before he or she could retreat. It was a lot of patience and humorous to watch.

Close up of the non-breeding adult with the tongue sticking out. Photo was taken along the west coast of Florida at Fort Desoto Park on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico in January, 2020.

Day 31 – Squares – Perspective

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Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Birds at the Feeder

Welcome to Week #8 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #8 challenge is Birds at the Feeder. I did not set this challenge with myself in mind. We don’t put seed in our feeders during our summer months. Why, you ask? Well…it’s because the Swallow-tailed & Mississippi Kites are prominent in our neighborhood during the summer. Since they like to swoop in and eat small birds, chicks and eggs, we don’t advertise for dinner! I know they gotta eat too, but they can do it elsewhere….not on my watch! This was more about seeing what all you have going on in your neck of the woods. You may have seen some of these photos in other posts, but I’m going to have to go with what I have right now. Happy Birding!

Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

The feature image is a pair of Carolina Wrens eating mealworms from our homemade driftwood feeder. There is a small bowl-like area in the middle of the wood piece where we place the mealworms and they go absolutely crazy when we drop them in there.

Brown Thrasher

Brown Thrashers forage in wooded areas, mostly on the ground. They are similar to the Mockingbird in that they sing loudly in a string of different musical tunes they copy from other birds. They don’t tend to hang around in the same area for long. They are a friend to our backyard for short periods of time even though they live in the Southeast of the United States & Florida year-round. They breed throughout the middle to northeastern United States. They will spend some winter months in parts of Texas and New Mexico.

American Goldfinch

The American Goldfinch is the state bird of New Jersey. They are the only finch that molts its body feathers twice a year, once in late winter and then again in the late summer. The yellow on the male is remarkable and we don’t get to see them in their full glory. They are here for a few weeks in the winter during migration and then they are gone until around January the next year. Did you know these birds are strictly vegetarian? They will swallow an insect if it inadvertently gets in their beak. Can you imagine the face they make? YUK!

Northern Cardinal

If you live in the Central to Eastern United States (North & South), parts of Canada & Mexico, you are likely to see the splendor of the Northern Cardinal. If you put out a feeder, you increase those chances. They enjoy sunflower seeds and mealworms. Mealworms (found at Wild Birds Unlimited) are expensive, but we have them as a treat for the Carolina Wrens and Cardinals when they have chicks in their nest. The Northern Cardinal, both male and female are a little defensive attacking their reflection in a window, car mirror or shiny bumper. They are very territorial but work together with the Carolina Wrens. It is almost like they communicate together and watch each others fledglings during that crucial time of teaching. At least, that is how they act in our yard.

Carolina Wren pigging out on Mealworms… Cardinal Swoops in! The wrens had babies about to fledge and the cardinals had eggs that had not hatched at that time.

Carolina Wren

The male Carolina Wren builds the nest. The female inspects it when completed. If she is not happy with the location or it isn’t to her fine standards, she will pull it out with her beak and toss it to the ground. We have witnessed this many times in our yard. Poor guy! But he learns to build the nest properly giving them a much higher survival rate for the chicks. This guy was enjoying the mealworms put out in the driftwood bird feeder made by my hubby.

Blue-and-Gold Macaw

Macaws are giant parrots.They have a powerful beak that can break anything that gets near it. In the United States, they are pets. This guy was hanging out at the clubhouse of Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp Resort that we visited last October, hence the pumpkin decor in the background. I would eventually love to see them in the wild.

Our Feeder System

Frank has built a fabulous 3 pole feeding system for our front yard. He has taken tree branches that have fallen from our vast number of trees in the backyard and created extra perches for the birds. He needs to do some repair, but with the possibility of Hurricane Isaias heading our way, it won’t get done in the next few days. Note: we have baffles on all three poles to keep the squirrels from eating us out of house & home. They get plenty when we have food in them that gets thrown to the ground. The birds love the perches year-round. The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds perch up on the branches as well. Haven’t gotten a photo of that yet or I would have shared.

Swallow-tailed Kite

Why we can’t have birds at the feeder during the Summer. More on this bird next week!


Until next week…Week #9 – Birds of Prey.

Bird Weekly Round-Up – Week #7

Week #7 challenge was Any bird (your choice) in black & white or sepia tone. What a great week it was. I think this was my favorite so far. This week’s topic was inspired by Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge. We had some regulars and a few newbies this week!

I encourage you to visit their blogs and see what amazing things they have going on. If I missed your post or there was a problem with a pingback, please let me know and I will be glad to add you to the list. Remember to pingback from my post of that week and not my page. Liking my page is encouraged!

Next up: Week #8: Birds at the Feeder.

VISIT MY BIRD WEEKLY PAGE FOR A FULL LIST OF UPCOMING CHALLENGES AND RULES!

I look forward to seeing your creations this week!

SQUARES – Perspective – Rays of Light

Let the heavens open up! Layers of clouds with multi shades of warm yellows illuminate behind a dark storm cloud. The light opens up touching the earth below. I have attached the full image to open up the perspective of the full moment.

Day 30 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – Elephant Booty

Is this my good side? Check us out in black and white on Cee’s Black & White Challenge – Backs of Things from earlier this week. We can be found in person at the Jacksonville Zoo.

Day 29 – Squares – Perspective

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#Write Photo – DARKNESS Looms

Photo courtesy of Sue Vincent
DARKNESS LOOMS

shadows cast over the field
nothing to protect or shield
crack of lightning, thunder booms
air is changing, darkness looms

long before the setting sun
closer to a smoking gun
not a building or shelter in sight
will this be alright?

above...clouds close blue skies
moments tortured, will i die?
gods ticked off for no reason
or maybe it's their season

season for the disturbed
followed by being perturbed
over more than nature needs
stop the torture, death impedes

open your heart, let heaven in
shadows lift the clouds then
splashes of rain slowly subside
carry on the happy ride

a ride the horse can proudly stand
relax and enjoy the open land
breathe fresh air in your haste
your steed gallops, gets a taste

by:  Lisa Coleman

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

SQUARES – Perspective – Crowded?

Toto, I don’t think we are in Kansas anymore!?!

I took this photo several years ago at a Heart Walk fundraising event in Tampa, Florida. Quite the turnout, but are we seeing this today? In most places, no! While the riots are still going on, yes! The sad part about this perspective is no one needed to worry about wearing a mask, keeping their social distance or whether or not they would survive another day!

I’ve added a video clip to in hopes you feel like this is all make believe! Will we ever get over the rainbow?

Day 28 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – Boat Docks

Storm moving in and the Gulf of Mexico is beginning to get churned up. Some of these older docks don’t always withstand hurricanes, but they often get rebuilt until the next time. It is really nice to be standing out there feeling the breeze on your face, smelling the impending rain heading your way.

Day 27 – Squares – Perspective

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Also for Jez’s Water Water Everywhere.

Song Lyric Sunday – Hello

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with choosing songs involving Same | Different for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

I went outside the box on the theme this week and chose “Hello” by Lionel Richie and Adele. The same title, two completely different song melody and lyrics. Each song was written by their singer, respectively. Not feeling well today so this will be short & sweet.

Both songs and artist hold their place in the musical history books!

SONG FACTS – Lionel’s Hello

  • Written by Lionel Richie
  • Topped the charts all over the world in 1984. Reached #1 on three U.S. Billboard charts (Pop, R&B & Adult Contemporary). Reached #1 in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Switzerland & the UK Singles chart. Top 10 in Belgium, Germany, Norway, Poland, South Africa & Sweden.
  • It was the 3rd single on Richie’s second solo album “Can’t Slow Down” released in 1983.
  • Certified Platinum in Belgium & Netherlands.
  • Certified Gold in the UK & United States.

“Hello” by Lionel Richie

I've been alone with you inside my mind
And in my dreams I've kissed your lips a thousand times
I sometimes see you pass outside my door
Hello, is it me you're looking for?
I can see it in your eyes, I can see it in your smile
You're all I've ever wanted and my arms are open wide
'Cause you know just what to say, and you know just what to do
And I want to tell you so much, I love you
I long to see the sunlight in your hair
And tell you time and time again how much I care
Sometimes I feel my heart will overflow
Hello, I've just got to let you know
'Cause I wonder where you are and I wonder what you do
Are you somewhere feeling lonely or is someone loving you?
Tell me how to win your heart, for I haven't got a clue
But let me start by saying, I love you
Hello, is it me you're looking for?
'Cause I wonder where you are and I wonder what you do
Are you somewhere feeling lonely or is someone loving you?
Tell me how to win your heart, for I haven't got a clue
But let me start by saying, I love you
I love you
I love you
Is it me you're looking for?
Hello, is it me you're looking for?
'Cause I wonder where you are and I wonder what you do
Are you somewhere feeling lonely or is someone loving you?
Tell me how to win your heart, for I haven't got a clue
But let me start by saying, I love you
I love you
I love you
Hello, is it me you're looking for?
Is it me, is it me, is it me
Is it me you're looking for?
Is it me, is it me
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Lionel Richie
Hello lyrics © Brockman Music, Brenda Richie Publishing

SONG FACTS – Adele’s Hello

  • Written by Adele Laurie Blue Adkins / Gregory Allen Kurstin
  • Released on October 23, 2015 by XL Recordings as the lead single from Adele’s third album, “25”.
  • Cleaned up on the awards trail but won the most prestigious of them all, 2017 winner of 3 Grammys for Record of the Year, Song of the Year & Best Pop Solo Performance.
  • Reached #1 on 53 charts all over the world.
  • Certified Platinum in 9 countries (many multiple times).
  • Certified Diamond in the Canada & Mexico.

Hello” by Adele

Hello, it's me
I was wondering if after all these years you'd like to meet
To go over everything
They say that time's supposed to heal ya
But I ain't done much healing
Hello, can you hear me?
I'm in California dreaming about who we used to be
When we were younger and free
I've forgotten how it felt before the world fell at our feet
There's such a difference between us
And a million miles
Hello from the other side
I must've called a thousand times
To tell you I'm sorry
For everything that I've done
But when I call you never
Seem to be home
Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I've tried
To tell you I'm sorry
For breaking your heart
But it don't matter, it clearly
Doesn't tear you apart anymore
Hello, how are you?
It's so typical of me to talk about myself, I'm sorry
I hope that you're well
Did you ever make it out of that town
Where nothing ever happened?
It's no secret
That the both of us
Are running out of time
So hello from the other side (other side)
I must've called a thousand times (thousand times)
To tell you I'm sorry
For everything that I've done
But when I call you never
Seem to be home
Hello from the outside (outside)
At least I can say that I've tried (I've tried)
To tell you I'm sorry
For breaking your heart
But it don't matter, it clearly
Doesn't tear you apart anymore
Ooooohh, anymore
Ooooohh, anymore
Ooooohh, anymore
Anymore
Hello from the other side (other side)
I must've called a thousand times (thousand times)
To tell you I'm sorry
For everything that I've done
But when I call you never
Seem to be home
Hello from the outside (outside)
At least I can say that I've tried (I've tried)
To tell you I'm sorry
For breaking your heart
But it don't matter, it clearly
Doesn't tear you apart anymore
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Adele Laurie Blue Adkins / Gregory Allen Kurstin
Hello lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

SQUARES – Perspective – Florida Palm Trees

Sun is beginning to set stationed just behind the left palm tree over an inlet of the Gulf of Mexico near Fort Myers, Florida a few years ago. This is paradise! Until a hurricane comes around. Enjoy it while you can because it will look totally different during a tropical storm or hurricane. Take the good with the bad!

Day 26 – Squares – Perspective

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CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Backs of Things

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge

Kaela climbing a rock wall.

In Tampa, Florida, my daughter, Kaela was climbing a rock wall at the Florida State Fair with Flat Stanley on her back. Flat Stanley was sent to us by my nephew in Texas. We had Flat Stanley for 2 weeks and took him on all sorts of adventures. c.2006. “Flat Stanley” is a children’s book by Jeff Brown that began as a bedtime story for his sons which recounts the adventures of Stanley Lambchop after he is squashed flat by a bulletin board while sleeping. It was originally published in 1964. In 1995, Dale Hubert, a third grade school teacher in London, Ontario, Canada began “The Flat Stanley Project” which was designed to improve reading & writing skills in elementary school students. More about that project here and the reason we got lucky enough to take him on some of our adventures.

Wood Storks building a nest at the Alligator Farm in St. Augustine, Florida.

Elephants at the Jacksonville Zoo a few years ago!

Backside of a Little Blue Heron.

Kids being kids! I miss those days!

Anhinga drying out it’s wings.
Frank just ahead of me on Little Talbot Island.

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

SQUARES – Perspective – Ponce Lighthouse

For April Squares I posted the bottom photo of the Ponce de Leon Lighthouse for Becky’s Top Squares. Now perspective comes around and I have several photos to present of the lighthouse on a different day and from different perspectives. If you ever travel to Florida, I encourage you to stay in New Smyrna and visit this lighthouse that is located at 4931 S. Peninsula Dr., Ponce Inlet, Florida 32127. Ponce de Leon Lighthouse is the tallest in Florida at 175 feet (53.34 meters) high and the second tallest in the United States behind the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in North Carolina. It is equipped with a Third Order Fresnel lens and shines out 17 nautical miles (32 kilometers or 20 miles).

Full View

For a small fee, visitors can climb to the top of this lighthouse plus walk around all the buildings on the grounds. One building has a seating area where you can watch a video about the history. Don’t forget to check out the Lens Exhibit building. On your way out, you can visit the gift shop with all kinds of nifty souvenirs.

It was a bit cloudy on this day that we visited.

Day 25 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – FOTD – Chrysanthemum

How about this beauty? This gorgeous sweet smelling mum (the flower) was part of a bouquet at my mom’s funeral 6 years ago, but I found this photo while scouring through my archives and thought how pretty! I find the layers of this flower show the perspective of the living organism within.

As an added bonus: (Mum | Mom – Depends on your perspective of where you live).

Day 24 – Squares – Perspective

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Also for Cee’s Flower of the Day Challenge

Cee's Flower of the Day (FOTD) Challenge Badge

Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Black & White – Sepia

Welcome to Week #7 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #7 challenge is Any bird (your choice) in black & white or sepia tone. Post as many or little as you choose. Have fun with your settings, filters or get creative in Photoshop. Leave a splash a color if you would like as long as the majority is black and white. Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

The feature image is a Sandhill Crane. They are a tall lanky bird often found in pairs. If a chick survives, you may see three or four together depending on whether one or both chicks make it. They are known for their dancing skills. Courting cranes stretch their wings, pump their heads, bow and leap into the air gracefully with a wonderful energetic dance.

Wood Stork

An important fact about the wood stork is they will regurgitate water over their nestlings to keep them cool. Just like going to a water park! These birds are found along the coast in Florida, South Carolina & Georgia.

Laughing Gull

The Laughing Gull can be found at the beach mostly. I’ve actually seen flocks fly over my house in town. If you are enjoying a picnic, they will find you! The male and female will build their nest together. Talk about an equal partnership. If a male cannot find a mate, he may start building a nest platform to attract a female. Nothing wrong with having a good handyman around!

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Herons can hunt day and night because of a high percentage of rod-type photoreceptors in their eyes that improve their night vision. Move over Mr. Owl, there’s a new Sheriff in town!

Yellow-rumped Warbler

The Yellow-rump Warbler tends to forage with other warblers such as the Palm, Magnolia and Black-throated Green Warblers but get aggressive around the Pine and Blackburnian Warblers. Guess there is a pecking order in the Warbler species afterall.

Black-crowned Night Heron

Black-crowned Night Herons are common in the wetlands all across North America. They do most of their feeding at night. They spend most of their day hunched on a branch or in trees at the water’s edge. They are easy to find if you know where to look and a wonderfully photogenic!

Tricolored Heron

Tricolored Herons are sneaky and while fishing, they will sneak up behind Double-crested Cormorants or Pied-billed Grebes snapping up fish they stir up. The juvenile (teenagers) are much like human teens…they will often lunge and snap at their parents when they arrive with food. To appease the youngsters, the parents greet them with a bow. This isn’t the only species that does this, but was worth a mention.

Tweety posed up on some driftwood!

Until next week…Week #8 – Birds at the Feeder.

Bird Weekly Round-Up – Week #6

Week #6 challenge was WOODPECKERS | SAPSUCKERS | FLICKERS. Had some real peckers this week! LOL!

I encourage you to visit their blogs and see what amazing things they have going on. If I missed your post or there was a problem with a pingback, please let me know and I will be glad to add you to the list. Remember to pingback from my post of that week and not my page. Liking my page is encouraged!

Next up: Week #7: Any bird (your choice) in black & white or sepia tone. This week’s topic was inspired by Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge.

VISIT MY BIRD WEEKLY PAGE FOR A FULL LIST OF UPCOMING CHALLENGES AND RULES!

I look forward to seeing your creations this week!

SQUARES – Perspective – Fort Matanzas

Fort Matanzas is a part of the National Park Service and was built from coquina, a local shellstone. Work started on the tower in the fall of 1740 by the Spanish to guard the Matanzas Inlet which was at the mouth of the Matanzas River and could provide a backdoor to the City Of St. Augustine. St. Augustine’s primary defense system was centered around Castillo de San Marcos, the main fort in the now historic district of St. Augustine. The British and their Indian allies tried to stop the progress and attempted several attacks, unsuccessfully. You can read more stories here.

Today, the fort still stands and is a great place to visit and learn some Florida history, however, the visitor center, ferry service to the fort and all nature trails have been closed since March due to the pandemic and have no reopen date at this time. Take take a virtual tour here.

Take your pic on perspective for this one. Colonial life? Humans wage War? Having a Defense on lands vs. virus? COVID-19 Rocks our World? Travel has ceased for the most part?

Day 23 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – Double Rainbow

Double rainbow over the treetops with storm clouds to the East and the sun brightly shining from the West. Looking out over the St. Johns River in Jacksonville, Florida.

Day 22 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – Paddling the St. Johns River

Perspective comes in many different forms. In the photos attached, there are 4 different perspective shots at different moments while Frank and my youngest daughter Kaela were paddling the St. Johns River looking for bait to go fishing. The perspective for me is that this was taken 13 1/2 years ago. Frank looked so young!

Kaela was 14. She will be 28 this fall. THAT’S PERSPECTIVE!

Where did the time go?

Day 21 – Squares – Perspective

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CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Cameras or Photographers

Lisa Coleman posed up for a shot just before taking a photo.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge

That would be me!

My friend and coworker took some photos of me one late afternoon when we stopped at Gemini Springs Park outside of Sanford, Florida. We had attended a trade show in Orlando earlier in the day back in January. She had my Nikon and got some pics of me before I knew what she was doing. In the feature image, I gave up after telling her I didn’t like to be the subject and offered up a silly pose.

And me again!
Okay…some White Ibis’ with me in the foreground.

A rare bird…Frank getting shots of a driftwood tree at high tide on Little Talbot Island Beach.

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

SQUAREs – Perspective – Red-Bellied Woodpecker

How would you like to eat hanging upside down?

This Red-bellied Woodpecker is an acrobatic wizard when it comes to hunting for food. Surrounded by spanish moss in the large live oak tree, this woodpecker was within 12 feet of where I was at eye level. Totally oblivious that I was there, or maybe just didn’t care…from my perspective, I’d say, just didn’t care!

“You can run, but you can not hide even from underneath the bark you have crawled under”.

Woodpeckers are featured in my Bird Weekly Photo Challenge this week if you would like to check out that post on Woodpeckers, Flickers & Sapsuckers.

Day 20 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUAREs – Perspective – Flock of Nandays

In January, we went to see the kids and grandkids in Tampa for the holidays. We always go after Christmas because my brother-in-law visits from Baltimore during the week of Christmas. On an outing to Fort Desoto Park in Tierra Verde near St. Petersburg, Florida, I made it my mission to get the Nanday Parakeet onto my life list. I had seen them years earlier in St. Pete, but I wasn’t recording birds back then. Within 20 minutes of driving into the park, I heard them long before I saw them. They flew directly over our car which we had just parked in one of the many parking areas. I jumped out and headed towards the beach where I found them. There were 28 in all. What a lucky moment because we didn’t see them the rest of the day and was there for over 8 hours. Bird of the Day…You Betcha!

Day 19 – Squares – Perspective

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Song Lyric Sunday – “If I knew You Were Comin’ I’d’ve Baked A Cake”

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with choosing songs involving Baking | Bread | Cake | Pie | Picnic for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

I chose “If I Knew You Were Comin’ I’d’ve Baked a Cake performed by Ernie for Cookie Monster on the first episode of Sesame Street in 1950. Let me know if you think Ernie added a little too much baking powder.

Ernie with Cookie Monster

SONG FACTS

  • Written by Al Hoffman, Bob Merrill and Clem Watts
  • Originally recorded by Eileen Barton in January of 1950. Lasted 15 weeks on the Billboard charts, peaking at #1
  • A British version was recorded by Dame Gracie Fields in 1950 and was used on a British television ad campaign for Rightmove in 2007
  • Ethel Merman put it on her “The World is Your Balloon” album in 1950 featuring Ray Bolger who played the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz. You can hear his voice clearly in the video below
Ethel Merman featuring Ray Bolger & Sy Oliver

“If I Knew You Were Comin’ I’d’ve Baked a Cake”

Well, well, well, look who's here.
I haven't seen you in many a year.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake,
baked a cake, baked a cake.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake.
How-ja do. How-ja do, How-ja do.
Had you dropped me a letter I'd 've hired a band,
grandest band in the land.
Had you dropped me a letter I'd 've hired a band
and spread the welcome mat for you.
Now I don't know where you came from
'cause I don't know where you've been.
But it really doesn't matter
grab a chair and fill your platter
and dig dig dig right in.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake,
hired a band, goodness sake.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake.
How-ja do. How-ja do. How-ja do.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake,
baked a cake, baked a cake.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake.
How-ja do. How-ja do, How-ja do.
Had you dropped me a letter I'd 've hired a hall,
great big hall, band and all.
Had you dropped me a letter I'd 've hired a hall
and spread the welcome mat for you.
Now I don't know where you came from
'cause I don't know where you've been.
But it really doesn't matter
grab a chair and fill your platter
and dig dig dig right in.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've kept the pot,
coffee pot nice and hot.
If I knew you were comin' I'd 've baked a cake.
How-ja do. How-ja do. How-ja do.
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Al Hoffman / Bob Merrill / Clem Watts
If I Knew You Were Comin' I'd've Baked a Cake lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc, Music & Media Int'l, Inc, Music Sales Corporation

SQUAREs – Perspective – Along the River

Kayaking paddles in the foreground with the mountains in the background near Emigrant, Montana along the Yellowstone River.

Last September we took an epic trip to Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. On the 4th day of our vacation, we paddled the Yellowstone River in Montana in our inflatable Sea Eagle kayak that we brought with us on the trip. At one point, we had a problem with water coming into the boat. We pulled over along the river rocks, unloaded and fixed the scupper. Loaded back up and away we went. But before we did, I took this shot of us being stranded in a beautiful natural environment.

To view the full post of that wild ride, click here on Living in the Moment – Paddling the Yellowstone River.

Day 18 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUAREs – Perspective – St. Peters

St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Fernandina, Florida.

While taking a Sunday drive last weekend, we drove up to Fernandina, Florida to see how people were handling the mask situation. It was wonderful to see most people with a mask on or in their hands in case they got close to another human being. There were still a handful of folks that did not have any face covering on or available at a quick moment to cover themselves. IRRITATING! We didn’t get out of the car except for me to take these photos and there was no one around.

St. Peter’s Episcopal Church is on the main road leading into downtown Fernandina where all the gifts shops are located. The light was perfect so I had Frank drop me off while I took some photos of this very beautiful chapel. Walked all the way around and got all the angles.

Sign for St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Fernandina, Florida.  Established 1858.
They are still holding service.

I love the fact that they have a Celtic service one a month!

St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Fernandina, Florida.

I did have to include the full vision of the photo from the top of the blog just so you could get the complete reality of its beauty. It has always looked like a castle to me.

Day 17 – Squares – Perspective

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Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Woodpeckers | Sapsuckers | Flickers

Welcome to Week #6 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #6 challenge is Woodpeckers | Sapsuckers | Flickers. Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

The feature image is a Red-bellied Woodpecker that seemed oblivious while I stood at eye level about 12 feet from where this bird was feeding. The same bird is in the first two photos below. All images were taken at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge in April, 2020.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Red-bellied Woodpeckers do not have a red belly. Their belly is a yellowish cream color. Don’t understand that one. If you are not a birder, you may think this is a red-headed woodpecker. This woodpecker’s redhead is more of an orange-red rather than the distinctive dark red head associated with the Red-headed Woodpecker (see him further below). They will come to your feeder for peanuts. In the winter, you may attract them with suet. A really cool fact about this woodpecker is that it can stick out its tongue 2 inches past the end of its beak. Talented little critter, huh? This bird can be spotted year round from eastern Texas northward into Michigan and most all the states eastward from New Hampshire down to Florida. They have been known to be found all the way into southern Canada.

Red-bellied Woodpecker
Red-bellied Woodpecker at the feeder.

Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker

Northern Flickers are a large woodpecker that can often be seen on the ground because they eat ants and beetles. The one above was perched high in this snag at the Bridger Creek Golf Course in Bozeman, Montana. When looking for this bird, look for the white rump patch in flight. You also can’t miss their loud ringing call & piercing yelp. The Northern Flicker is one of the few North American woodpeckers that are migratory. Flickers in the north often move south for the winter, however, some stay in the winter to stick it out. Mostly, Northern Flickers nest in holes in trees like woodpeckers but they have been found in vacated nests of Belted Kingfishers or Bank Swallows.

Red-headed Woodpecker

Red-headed Woodpecker

The Red-headed Woodpecker is a natural redhead. They are distinguished with the solid crimson head, almost solid black and white on their back. This woodpecker doesn’t act like most woodpecker breeds. They will knock out bugs on a tree, but they are quite skilled at catching flying insects in mid-flight. Similar to a flycatcher or gnatcatcher. They will also enjoy acorns and beech nuts, often hoarding the extra food in tree crevices for later, much like a squirrel. They are the only known woodpeckers to cover the stored food with wood or bark. The red-headed woodpecker had declined in numbers over the past fifty years due to habitat loss. They are starting to make a come back in wildlife refuge areas which is where we saw at least 15 of them on this day at Okefenokee Wildlife Management Area in Georgia. Another nifty fact is the Cherokee Indians used the species as a war symbol and it is mentioned in Longfellow’s epic poem, The Song of Hiawatha, telling how a grateful Hiawatha gave the bird its red head in thanks for its service.

Pileated Woodpecker

Woody Woodpecker

The Pileated Woodpecker is the largest common woodpecker in North America and Woody Woodpecker’s character is based on this bird. The Ivory-billed Woodpecker & Mexico’s Imperial Woodpecker are the largest species of woodpeckers in North America, but both may be extinct or near extinction. The Pileated Woodpecker has a loud knocker. Much more noisy than other woodpeckers. Their beak is like a jackhammer. Their excavation ability will net many insects and will often attract other woodpeckers, as well as House Wrens to feed.

Downy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

The Downy Woodpecker is an active little woodpecker. It moves around and can climb quickly up thin or thick tree branches. This woodpecker is quite acrobatic when feeding. For beginning birders, one of the challenges to identify this bird is the look alike woodpecker, the Hairy Woodpecker. Their features are almost identical, however, the Downy Woodpecker is 5.5-6.7 inches in length and the Hairy Woodpecker is 7.1-10.2 inches in length. When they are together, there is no mistaking which one is which. I don’t have a good photo of the Hairy, but thought it was worth mentioning. The male Downy has a small red patch on the back of his head. The female does not. The photo above is of a female.


Until next week…Week #7 – Any bird (your choice) in black & white or sepia tone.

Bird Weekly Round-Up – Week #5

Week #5 challenge was Feathers of Blue. What a remarkable week of birds!

I encourage you to visit their blogs and see what amazing things they have going on. If I missed your post or there was a problem with a pingback, please let me know and I will be glad to add you to the list. Remember to pingback from my post of that week and not my page. Liking my page is encouraged!

Next up: Week #6: Woodpeckers | Sapsuckers | Flickers

VISIT MY BIRD WEEKLY PAGE FOR A FULL LIST OF UPCOMING CHALLENGES AND RULES!

I can’t wait to see your wonderful choices this week! I’d like to say this is my favorite week, but really…every week is my favorite week!

#Write Photo – Lonely Sands

Sue Vincent Shimmer Photo
Image of a beach taken by Sue Vincent for #WritePhoto challenge.
Photo courtesy of Sue Vincent
LONELY SANDS

Take a walk down the coast
As the water rises to our feet
The cool wind blows
Our body's filled with chill.

As the sun sets with a glow
The light off the ocean bay
Blinds our thoughts
Rays of sunlight glistening.

The tide rises to our ankles
The cool becomes cold
A break in the waves
Sends chills down our spines.

The sun fades to night
The moon interferes
With a cast of light
Across the deep blue.

Holding hands in the moonlight
The tender touch of our lips
The tide rises to our knees
Within many moments
Our lives will melt away.

In the straight path, we continue forth
The breaking of the waves
Crash upon our temples
Our breath comes short.

With love in our heart
Clutched forever in spirit
Together we will always be
In the magical sand and sea.


by:  Lisa Coleman

Another poem I wrote over 37 years ago and felt it was the perfect time to share, but I added a line to work with the prompt. Looking back, I guess I was in a rough place.


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

SQUAREs – Perspective – Fossil Shell

Fossilized Tulip Shell that was once home to a living creature. It lost its luster a long time ago.

Since I’m no Paleontologist, I can’t tell you much about this except is it OLD! I found this fossilized tulip shell on Little Talbot Island last Sunday and it called me over to take some photos. There was so much character in this shell that I had to stop and take notice. I shot its front side and then turned it over and shot the back side. Looks like a heart, not just in shape, but possibly with the valves pumping life. This shell hasn’t seen much action in years, maybe centuries!

Fossilized Tulip Shell that was once home to a living creature. It lost its luster a long time ago with lots of holes. It is shaped like a heart.

Imagine the lifeform that once lived in this palace!

I found the inside just as intriguing. When I got really close, I could make out the details and wondered where this shell had been!

Day 16 – Squares – Perspective

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CEE’S BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO CHALLENGE – Close Up/Macro

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge

Engine 1504 is sitting in it’s final resting spot behind the original Jacksonville Union Terminal which is now the Prime Osborne Convention Center in downtown Jacksonville, Florida. For anyone who wants to admire its beauty and take photos, the lot is open most days. The restoration which is near to “as-built” condition as when it went into service just after World War I is remarkable. A great article of the history of this train can be found here with some pre-restoration photos.

I originally featured this train on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – Trains and Tracks which I was a featured blogger for that post. Thank you again, Cee for featuring my Train blog! In case you missed it, click here for the original post.

Heirloom candy-striped lily.

Candy-striped heirloom lily. Original post was written for Becky’s July Squares & Cee’s FOTD & is here if you want to see it in color.

Black-crowned Night Heron at Lettuce Park in Tampa, Florida.

Black-crowned Night Heron taken at Lettuce Lake Park in Tampa, Florida.

Collection of shells on Little Talbot Island State Park beach, Jacksonville, Florida.

Shells on the Beach at Little Talbot Island State Park, Jacksonville, Florida. Shells are smaller than they appear.

Patterns in the sand at Little Talbot State Park in Jacksonville, Florida.  This one looked like a bird in flight.

Patterns in the sand at Little Talbot Island State Park, Jacksonville, Florida. This looked like a bird in flight to me. I had to get down really close to get this.

Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge logo.

SQUAREs – Perspective – Terror

Terrified granddaughter at a science museum in Cocoa Beach where there was a life size American Alligator made of resin.  It sure looked real!

While walking in one of the museums in Cocoa Beach many years ago, my granddaughter was walking ahead of us into another room. I went right and she went left with her mom (my daughter). I turned and was taking a photo of the life-size gator made of resin when she saw it and this was my perspective of her reaction. HER REACTION WAS REAL!

American Alligators can be terrifying. We have taught our kids and grandkids that they are dangerous just like some snakes or spiders. Education is the best way to keep them safe!

The American Alligator can be found in freshwater, brackish (fresh & saltwater) and have been known to get into saltwater as well. They can be found in the Southeastern United States, from Virginia & North Carolina to Florida. They also inhabit Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma & Tennessee.

Day 15 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUAREs – Perspective – Saying Hello!

Heaven saying hello to another dog by sniffing the butt of the friendly creature.
That is Heaven on the right offering up her greetings.

Everyone has their own way of greeting another, whether it is in the human form or the animal world. Dogs say hello by sniffing another dog’s butt. Can you imagine if we humans did that? Now with COVID19, we are not even shaking hands. Hand shaking dates back to the 5th century B.C. in Greece. A handshake during those times was a symbol of peace. Now it is a gesture of “how do you do?” or “nice to meet you” or “great seeing you again”. People seal deals with a simple handshake to show good faith. Now we have to give a thumbs up or a wave behind our masks. How about…”bring your own pen to sign the contract”.

Dogs continue their greetings of hello regardless of the pandemic. We haven’t allowed Heaven to be around other dogs, so she just has to live with it like we do. The photo above was taken a few years ago. Imagine this perspective if you lived through the eyes of a dog.

Day 14 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUAREs – Perspective – Osprey

Osprey perched on the top of the fencing at the Moss Bluff Lock & Dam in Ocklawaha, Florida waiting for a fishermen to discard his unwanted fish.

Just waiting for the fishermen to throw back those unwanted fish. Smart or Lazy? You be the judge!

Photo was taken at the Ocklawaha River, Moss Bluff Lock & Dam in Ocklawaha, Florida.

Day 13 – Squares – Perspective

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Silent Sunday – My Dad

This is my dad, Lester. He passed away from Alzheimer’s on this day, 5 years ago. He was an avid fisherman and could fry up some of the best bass, crappie and catfish of anyone I knew. Strangely enough, he would not share his recipe and took it to his grave.

SQUARES – Perspective – Sunset over St. Johns River

These sunset photos were taken almost 10 years ago when we lived on the St. Johns River. Within a matter of minutes, the colors changed from a pink and orange sky to more of a yellow and blue sky as some storm clouds moved in. It was amazing! I did not make any color changes to these images.

Day 12 – Squares – Perspective

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Song Lyric Sunday – “Back to Earth” By Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard

This week Jim Adams has prompted us with choosing songs involving Air | Earth | Fire | Water for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

I have chosen “Back to Earth” by Willie Nelson with him singing duets with Merle Haggard (first video) and Melonie Cannon (second video).

I couldn’t find much about this song, but I think it is such a lovely song and worth sharing today. There is no denying WIllie’s guitar and these lyrics fit so well with the mood of his melody.

Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard perform together.
Bluegrass singer Melonie Cannon performs with Willie Nelson.

SONG FACTS

  • Written by Willie Nelson
  • Released on October 31, 2006
  • It was the 3rd track on Disc One of a Two Disc album “Last of the Breed” compiled by Country Music Legends Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Ray Price.
  • Album reached #7 on the U.S. Billboard Top Country Albums
  • Album reached #64 on the U.S. Billboard 200
  • Album was ranked #33 on the Rolling Stone’s list of Top 50 albums of 2007

“Back to Earth”

I guess my heart just settled back to earth
I rode a dream so wild and free for all that dream was worth
True love is both a blessing and a curse
I guess my heart just settled back to earth

I remember what you said that night so long ago
My dream for you had ended and you let me know
So I bounced from sky to sky, tryin' to keep the dream alive
But everything I did just made it worse
I guess my heart just settled back to earth

The songs our love created, I still sing
And every night we'd make the rafters ring
And tonight I'll sing for everything I'm worth
For all the hearts that settle back to earth

The songs our love created, I still sing
And every night we'd make the rafters ring
And tonight I'll sing for everything I'm worth
For all the hearts that settle back to earth

Lyrics submitted by SongMeanings
"Back to Earth" as written by Willie Nelson
Lyrics © WARNER CHAPPELL MUSIC INC, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Lyrics powered by LyricFind

SQUARES – Perspective – St. Marks Lighthouse

This is the St. Marks Lighthouse in located on Apalachee Bay near Tallahassee, Florida. Photo taken looking up to the top of the lighthouse from the base.

While walking around the St. Marks Lighthouse in April, I got this notion to take a photo at the base. Due to social distancing, the lighthouse was closed inside for visitors, but we were still able to enjoy its majestic beauty from the outside. This is taken with my IPhone because I had my 200mm lens on my camera. It wouldn’t get the perspective I was going for.

This is the St. Marks Lighthouse in located on Apalachee Bay near Tallahassee, Florida. Photo taken looking up to the top of the lighthouse from the base in full frame.
Full View

My fascination with lighthouses goes back over 15 years when I started collecting them. It wasn’t until this year that we actually drove over to the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge that I finally checked this off my bucket list. It was a two-fer because we went over looking for the American Flamingo. Finally spotted it on the 3rd trip. It is a 3 1/2 hour drive one-way from Jacksonville to St. Marks, Florida. Since there were no accommodations open, this meant a day trip. A very long day trip x3 over the course of a couple of weeks. I have included the full frame image for a wider perspective.

American Flamingo which is rare to see in north Florida has been in the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge for two years.  It is believed to have blown in with Cat 5 Hurricane Michael 2 years ago.

So, you may be wondering what was so special about finding the American Flamingo. I mentioned this in my Bird Weekly – Waders blog a couple of weeks ago. This bird has been in or around the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge park for 2 years. It is believed that he blew in with Hurricane Michael which was a Category 5 hurricane at landfall in the panhandle of Florida. It is rare for this flamingo to be here or pretty much anywhere in the state of Florida. They are yearly visitors to the Everglades National Park and the Florida Keys. This was the moment Frank & I observed this bird in the wild and added a lifer to our list.

I can’t tell you how excited I was to see the topic for this month’s challenge from Becky. I shoot with “perspective” in mind every day! Thank you Becky for landing this right in my wheelhouse.

Day 11 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – fotd – Heirloom lilies

These heirloom lilies are called Crinum x herbertii.

This candy-striped white and maroon lily is a rare milk and wine crinum and was first grown in American gardens in the early 1800’s. It becomes a large clump, as you can see in the photo above in one season and produces side bulbs for division.

This set of flowers were all taken on the same day from the front yard of my friend and neighbors home from different perspectives not knowing what the July Squares were going to be. YAY ME! This set bloomed at the beginning of June. They come up every year with what seems like more and more. Doesn’t it remind you of a candy cane?

Taken just as the sun was coming up over the tree line. Made for some interesting shadows.

Day 10 – Squares – Perspective

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

Also for Cee’s Flower of the Day Challenge

Cee's Flower of the Day (FOTD) Challenge Badge

Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Feathers of Blue

Welcome to Week #5 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #5 challenge is Feathers of Blue. Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

The feature image is a close up of a Black-crowned Night Heron taken at Lettuce Lake Park in Tampa, Florida. There was no cropping of this photo. He was that close, but keep in mind, I had my 200mm lens trained on him!

Florida Scrub-Jay

Florida Scrub-Jay found only in Florida in scrub oak areas.  This photo was taken at the Cape Canaveral National Seashore.

One of the most elusive birds ever! The Florida Scrub-Jay can only be found in…guess where? You got it! FLORIDA! Not all of Florida either. There are certain hotspots where you can find this beautiful shy bird. This photo was taken at Canaveral National Seashore that butts up to Cape Canaveral where it meets the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. They do not migrate and almost never travel more than a few miles from where they hatched. They can be found in low-growing scrub oak in sandy soils or perched up high with their long tail hanging down like in my photo. The Florida Scrub-Jay is on the federal endangered species list.

Black-throated Blue Warbler

Male Black-throated blue warbler during migration in April, 2020.  Photo was taken in my backyard in Jacksonville, Florida.

Black-throated blue warbler male and female are totally different in looks. The female is more of a buff colored with some light grayish blue tones in the wings and around the head. The photo above was taken in my backyard. The first time we’ve ever seen one in our yard was in April, 2020. They migrate through Florida and much of the Southeast. They breed in parts of Tennessee and northward in the United States.

Eastern Bluebird

Female Eastern Bluebird perched upon a manmade branch attached to our feeders.

This photo was taken 2 nights ago. It’s not a great photo as it was almost dark when this female landed on our manmade perch attached to our feeders. The male was just above on the electrical line going to the house. Did you know the male behavior seems to take on the 1950’s tradition. He chooses where they will make a home for their brood by bringing nest material to the nest cavity, wave his wings while perched above it for the female to see. That’s it! He leaves it to her to build the nest and incubate the eggs. What a guy?

Blue Jay

Blue Jay hanging out on top of a roof shed.  There were about 30 in the neighborhood and it was quite loud!

The Blue Jay is one of the noisiest birds there are around ones backyard. They are found in a large part of the United States and in the southern part of Canada. Afterall, Toronto named their Major League Baseball team the Blue Jays. If you are trying to attract them to your feeder, they prefer tray feeders with peanuts, sunflower seed and suet. I will watch them come to our feeder, pick out the peanut and fly off. On occasion, Blue Jays are known to take and eat eggs and nestlings of other birds, but scientist have no evidence of how common it is.

Black-crowned Night Heron

Black-crowned Night Heron posing beautifully on a log at Lettuce Lake Park in Tampa, Florida.

The Black-crowned night heron will brood any chick that is placed in its nest. Their young will often disgorge their stomach contents when approached…YUCK! These young will leave the nest in about a month but are unable to fly until they are 6 weeks old.

Little Blue Heron

Little Blue Heron with a wonderful reflection chilling out on the lake.

The Little Blue Heron often appears to have gray feathers that are considered to be a dark slaty-blue. The one above posed up nicely for me and is an adult. When they are feeding, they are patient eaters and will stand and wait for their food to get closer to them. You will often see them with other herons, egrets and woodstorks, plus they will build their nests in trees where these species are building or have built a nest.

Peach-faced Lovebird

Tweety the Love Bird loved the garden and his feathers were multiple shades of green, peach and teal blue.

Meet Tweety! He was our beloved Lovebird. For his short life, he was quite spoiled and imprinted on Frank. He tolerated me! Isn’t he beautiful? Unfortunately, Tweety met his untimely death at the grips of a Red-shouldered Hawk shortly after I had given him a bath. It happened within a matter of seconds before I could place him back into his cage. Devastated, I was and is an understatement! I WAS DISTRAUGHT! I would never get another as I didn’t like the caged part of the lifestyle. Plus, they are a commitment. They are in the parrot family, but unlike a Macaw who will live 50 years, lovebirds will still live 12-15 years as long as you can keep them away from getting snatched by a bird of prey.


Until next week…Week #5 – Feathers of Blue.

Bird Weekly Round-Up – Week #4

Week #4 challenge was Ducks and Geese. We had a great response this week!

I encourage you to visit their blogs and see what amazing things they have going on. If I missed your post or there was a problem with a pingback, please let me know and I will be glad to add you to the list.

Next up: Week #5: Feathers of Blue

VISIT MY BIRD WEEKLY PAGE FOR A FULL LIST OF UPCOMING CHALLENGES AND RULES!

I can’t wait to see your wonderful choices this week! I’d like to say this is my favorite week, but really…every week is my favorite week!

SQUARES – Perspective – My Mom

In loving memory of my Mom, Wanda!

Today, July 9, 2020 is the 6th anniversary of my mom’s passing. I’m having a hard time today and can’t seem to get in a rhythm of anything. She died after having a massive stroke. My mom loved to do whatever she wanted, especially if it wasn’t good for her. She never kicked the habit of smoking cigarettes. Oh, she would stop for a while, but she kept going back to them. For over 50 years, they controlled her life. She passed away at the young age of 67. She was a diabetic, but enjoyed a donut with her diet Dr. Pepper.

In the photo above, she is wearing a T-shirt that my sister and I bought her. It was the perfect shirt that summed up her attitude. If you can’t read it, it says…”I’M JUST GONNA NOD AND ACT LIKE I’M LISTENING”. That was my mom in a nutshell. No matter how many times we talked to her about her bad habits, it went in one ear and out the other. I am thankful that she is not here to deal with this pandemic. As worried as I am about my kids, grandkids, other family members and my friends, I would probably get old quick worrying about my mom. Days like today, put our whole lives in perspective.

Mother is buried in the family cemetery.

She loved Elvis, her friends and family, and Jesus Christ! I know she is smiling from heaven!

Day 9 – Squares – Perspective

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#Write Photo – Fields of Thought

Photo courtesy of Sue Vincent
FIELDS OF THOUGHTS

In fields we roam
with weariness in our soul
as a painted picture
resembling our forefathers.

Centuries pass and time seems faint
life still continues and dies
we live in spirit
and the past...re-lives in memories.

Future holds light in hearts
minds seem strong
the confused suffer, which...
is not by fault, but for reason.

As we lie on a hill
looking through the sky
trying to see heaven
dreams come to thought.

Prayers are sang in forgiveness
but as we look into the blueness
are we heard?

If you leave the fields in praise
feelings show gratefulness
in the beauty of ourselves.


by:  Lisa Coleman

I wrote this about 30 years ago and felt it was the perfect time to share.


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

SQUARES – Perspective – Beach Rig

MacGyver rigged umbrellas for shade with our beach chairs, cooler and table on Little Talbot Island State Park beach in Jacksonville, Florida.
Man made contraption.

Recently, we bought a new beach umbrella, but a few weeks ago when we headed to the beach, we improvised…MacGyver style. With an old umbrella pole and old wooden curtain rod, plus velcro straps and bungees, we rigged up our own beach wonderland. We carry everything in our aluminum beach cart (seen behind the chairs). Our picnic lunch is in the cooler and we have our folding camping table to eat on.

Watching Pelicans ride the waves along the shoreline in the Atlantic Ocean as the tide was coming in.
My perspective from my comfy chair in the first photo.

Brown Pelicans entertained me throughout the day. The water temperature of the Atlantic Ocean was perfect and we were out there jumping the waves. We had walked about 2 miles down the beach to find this spot and settle in for a day of serenity.

We went on a weekday, not many people, plus the park is still at only 50% capacity with 5 1/2 miles of beach to distance yourself from anyone. Social distancing at its best!

Day 8 – Squares – Perspective

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SQUARES – Perspective – WAter lilies – Haiku

Looking out at the Water Lilies, everyone was a single flower except this pair. A special duo together. Taken at Okefenokee Wildlife Management in April along the boardwalk that I featured yesterday.

together we're one
pedals smooth as silken rain
opened for pleasure

Day 7 – Squares – Perspective

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

Also for Cee’s Flower of the Day Challenge

Cee's Flower of the Day (FOTD) Challenge Badge

Lower Brink – Grand Canyon of Yellowstone

Yellowstone River at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone.
Lower Brink Waterfall at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone.
Yellowstone National Park

This photo was a part of my “Living in the Moment” posts from our trip to Yellowstone National Park in September, 2019. Yellowstone Falls consists of 2 major waterfalls in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The Upper Falls which was closed during our visit and the Lower Falls. The Lower Falls is the largest volume of waterfall in the Rocky Mountains in the United States. The Lower Brink is 308 feet high, almost twice as high as Niagara Falls.

Thank goodness we took the trip when we did as things didn’t go so well once the pandemic got here. There were plenty of spots for social distancing, however, some of the must-see places were screaming with tourists (just like us). We did find some “out of the mainstream” places to find serenity.

The sound of the moving water was quite loud, even from a distance.

The original post is here and worth a look:

LIVING IN THE MOMENT – DAY 3 – YELLOWSTONE FALLS AND THE GRAND CANYON OF YELLOWSTONE

Written for Jez’s Water Water Everywhere.

SQUARES – Perspective – Okefenokee Boardwalk

In April, we visited the Okefenokee Wildlife Management park in Georgia several times. The outside temperature was perfect and it is only a 1 hour drive from our house. I originally took these photos for Square Tops, but didn’t use them. They seem so much more appropriate for July Squares, Perspective.

View along the Chesser Boardwalk in Okefenokee Wildlife Management Area in Georgia.  Cloudy skies loomed and it had been raining.
Rained stopped, but cloudy skies loomed.

It rained on us the entire hike out to the tower, but had stopped on our way back. There was no one in the parking lot when we arrived. We got up at 5:30 am so we could get our hike in before other people showed up so we could maintain social distancing.

I took this photo from the top of the 4 story tower looking down where the boardwalk connects to the tower on the Chesser Island Boardwalk in Okefenokee Wildlife Management area.
From the top of the 4 story tower

The Chesser Island Boardwalk is 3/4 of mile long and dead-ends at the 4 story tower.

Looking back up the boardwalk from the 4th story of the tower in Okefenokee Wildlife Management park in Georgia.
Looking back from where we just came.
Frank with his binoculars looking out at the wetlands for birds.  There were a few waders out there.
Frank looking for birds.

There were a few waders in the wetlands, but not a lot of birds out on this day. Just below where Frank stood, on the tree branches to his right side, was a Carolina Wren just singing up a storm.

Carolina Wren singing loudly while we observed from the 4th story of the tower at the end of Chesser Island Boardwalk in Okefenokee Wildlife Management area in Georgia.
Carolina Wren below the 4th story on the tower. This wren was in the treetop, but we were looking down.

Day 6 – Squares – Perspective

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

Photo prompt round-up: Darkness #writephoto

Enjoy all the writings of the bloggers in this round up and thanks to Sue Vincent who always brings the best out of all of us.

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Ever-changing skies

Dark clouds touch the horizon

Unexpected grace

Landscape cast in high relief

Light shines against the shadows

*

The photo for this week’s prompt was taken over the moors of the Derbyshire Dales, when we were out exploring some of the ancient sites that abound there.

*

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 below to read them and leave a comment for the author!

Pingbacks do not always come through… if you have written a post for this challenge and it does not appear in the round-up…

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