Saturday, May 30, 2020

Things that FLY!

We have had an extraordinary week for 'things that fly'! 
Have you EVER seen one of these? We saw two of them and they buzzed around just like little miniature bumblebees.

Robber Fly (Mallophora Orcina)

But that's not what they are! They are not even a bee, they are a FLY! This was the best article I found online HERE

It's also called a Southern Bee Killer and eats all kinds of bees, including honeybees. It sure looks like something out of an old Sci-Fi movie, doesn't it?

I'll do another post of sightings at Blue Run later but I'll take a few 'flying objects' from different hikes this week.

Great White Egret ready for flight!

Great White Egret

A magical moment!

And no I didn't put a Christmas banner on my blog.

And I didn't go fishin'. My hubby took these two pics and they are straight out of the camera. 

It's a 'bobber' caught in the branches of a Cypress tree. It even had a little bit of Spanish moss coming off of it for added decoration. The photos are 'perfection'! (and if I DID go fishin', that's where my bobber would end up! lol)


Have you seen anything 'fly' in your corner of the world this week?

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’. 

Thursday, May 28, 2020

What can you buy for 68 cents?

We are still buying our groceries online at Walmart and then picking them up! It has worked great for us and we are getting most of what we need. We still shop at Publix for bakery bread and meat.

So when we looked at toilet paper on the Walmart site, we were surprised to see this for 68 cents, limit one! We put one in the cart! It's small....almost 'travel size' but it will be easy to store. We need to stay 'stocked up' on all the necessities!

I've had a quiet week but that's good. My big outing this week is a trip to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned. I'm overdue for my appointment and I really need to get them cleaned for healthy teeth and gums! I worried about going....but then decided it was necessary!

And we've prepared some good meals this week. I made hamburger buns again for our Memorial Day cookout. Recipe HERE! We had hamburgers and potato wedges with onions browned in the skillet. We shared with Aunt Helen and she enjoyed it too!

Another day, I made a chicken sandwich with melted Havarti cheese on a bun, potato chips with low salt on the side! 

How are you faring this week? Anything you've ventured out to do that was fun? My friend, L. sent me the photo of the ocean today! They are enjoying a few days at the beach. That's on my 'to do' list for SURE!!! (I started my post with the photo she sent instead of a package of toilet paper. Wasn't that nice of me?)

I’m joining Thankful Thursdays and

I like Thursdays HERE too!

Monday, May 25, 2020

Sometimes I wonder.....

I wonder what some people think it means to go deep into the forest on a hike. I know there are wild animals in the forest. (I hope I'll see one) And sometimes you get bit by a bug. (but not often) When the wind dies down it can get hot and humid. (but that's not a bad thing) And usually you do not encounter any other people deep in the forest. (but that's ok with me) 


(Reindeer Moss on the forest floor)

It's peaceful.

It's calming. 

You can lose yourself in the wonder of it all.

(hundreds of love bugs on the fragrant blooms of the palm trees)

Some might even say it's magical or mystical.

I would say it's altogether glorious.

And I know a lot of people understand what I'm talking about. I still like to walk around my neighborhood and speak to my neighbors and see what pretty flowers are blooming in their flower bed.

But for perfect harmony and joy....

I prefer a walk in the forest.

All photos taken on a 2 hour hike starting at Shangri-La trailhead, #65 for this year!

I hope you're able to get outside in nature this week. Breathe in the fresh air and stretch your legs! It's good for what ails you!

How are things going where you live? Are you feeling better about getting out in the big world? We're still taking precautions and being careful. Let's care for one another and stay healthy!

Happy Memorial Day!

I'm joining Angie for Mosaic Monday HERE . 

I'm linking with All Seasons at the Jesh Studio too!

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Black-crowned Night Heron and a scary critter

We haven't seen a Black-crowned Night Heron at Blue Run in a long time!

Of course the park was closed for a few weeks but I don't think we've seen one of these Herons at all this year. 

So this was exciting to spot. In fact, another hiker spotted it and told us where to look!

It's always a challenge to see through all the limbs and grasses to look down into the water.

And that is duckweed in the water. It is a plant that grows on the top of the water and is very beautiful.

We have to walk all the way to the bridge to look down and try to spot alligators!

And there he is! 

This young man had just started fishing very near the alligator but he didn't stay long. I don't mean the alligator ate him....I mean he rowed on down the Withlacoochee River!

One more pretty bird photo to leave you with something beautiful!

Do you have a river or lake you can drive to or hike to and take photos? It sure feels great to get outside!

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

I must have ORDER!

Well, I'm kidding just a little but I think we've all noticed 'changes' since we've been staying home more. I worked hard Spring cleaning at the beginning of this all. I had cleaned and taken things to donate before the pandemic. And then when we HAD to stay home, I worked even harder. And then when I did made something, I cleaned everything up just as soon as I finished. I like to sew and love to make cards and altered books. And I don't usually mind having an 'ongoing' mess while I work. But for some reason, I need order now.

One of the sewing projects I worked on was making pillow covers out of some old hand quilted pieces that I bought at a thrift store a long time ago. 

I loved the old fashioned fabric and they were all 18 by 18 square...more or less. 

I cut them to make them more perfectly square and then put some pretty gingham checks on the back in an envelope style. 

I'm not sure I can explain how to make the envelope but I'm sure there are directions if you search online.

I try to make covers because I already have so many throw pillows. So this way the pillow fits right inside!

I am using two of them in the lanai and one on my recliner in the living room. I think they look and feel cozy and comforting.

I think I'll get my sketchbook out next and see if I can do a little sketching or watercolors. Maybe I can stand a few more things on my desk and the rest of the room can stay clean for awhile longer.

Have you enjoyed doing your sewing or craft projects these past couple of months? I need some inspiration! What are you working on now?

I’m joining Thankful Thursdays and

I like Thursdays HERE too!

Monday, May 18, 2020

Horses in Florida

We live in a city that has the distinction of being 'The Horse Capitol of the World'. An article online HERE

And whenever we are out and about we see big horse farms and lots of beautiful horses.

I don't ride horses but I'm glad the horse trails have opened for those around here that do.

This was painted on the side of a horse trailer.

And I know they are happy to have places to park their horse trailers and unload the horses.

When we hike the Florida State Parks and forests, the horses have designated trails so that makes it nice for the hikers too. At the Shangri-La trailhead hikers, bikes and horses all have separate trails. 

(horse trail)

(hiking trail)

I thought this Jeep looked neat at the trailhead.

My youngest son knows how much I love the stickers and signs on vehicles so he took this photo for me! 

Do you ride horses? I wish I had learned when I was younger but I don't think I could manage it now. 

It may be hard to tell in this photo but this was the widest horse I've ever seen! 

I'm joining Angie for Mosaic Monday HERE . 

I'm linking with All Seasons at the Jesh Studio too!

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Bobolinks AND a Blue Grosbeak!

A flock of Bobolinks and a lone Blue Grosbeak....all in one week! We hiked one of our favorite trails, Halpata Tastanaki Preserve and saw 'rare' birds on 2 different hikes! And on both hikes there were a grand total of 0 people there! NO ONE!!! I know other Florida trails have opened but I'm still amazed that no one is hiking HTP this week!

We were hiking along the grassy trail and a flock of Bobolinks flew out of the grass into some bushes.

It was hard to get the camera to focus on the birds but the photos were good enough for a positive ID.

Bobolinks! The first time we've ever seen them!

In this photo, you can see the black breast of the male in breeding colors on the left, the back of a male on the right and in between females.

We didn't know what we were seeing when they flew!

Black birds with yellow on their nape? We couldn't figure that out.

These were taken in another tree. 

Not sure if they are juveniles or females.

How lucky we were to see them in breeding colors or they would have been even harder to ID!

Just one more!

And the Blue Grosbeak!

He was in the dark woods when we were almost back to our car on the same trail (2 days later).

It was hard to get good photos but we were thrilled!

Florida is a great place to see birds that are migrating. Have you seen any neat birds this week?

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’.