The Blue Heron

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This Heron spent over thirty minutes preening its feathers (molting season) giving me ample time to set up a tripod and “shoot” away! Enjoy the photos. 🙂
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A beautiful bird, a striking pose!

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A Welcome Break!

Another school quarter ends. I now have three weeks to rest, reflect, recuperate, and do some fun stuff! I’ll be checking on your blogs, too. I apologize for not making the rounds. I’ve discovered however, that as my coursework progresses, the demands increase and blogging becomes a back-seat priority (except for posting photos now and then…I can’t completely give up blogging!)

Unfortunately this quarter ended on a rocky note; Richard was rushed to the hospital during my finals week. He is now home and back to his usual schedule, but he did give me a scare. The first thing we did when my school break finally began was pack the camera and head out to the woods. Nature is the best therapy in the world for both of us. At one point we ventured onto a wooden platform jutting over the edge of a lily pond and stood in silence as we took in the view. It was late afternoon and the animals were feeding or sitting on logs sunning themselves. Late in the afternoon, even as birds flitted from one spot to another, a lazy quietness permeated the place. It was a mellow time for us both.

A Black-Capped Chickadee wings past in a blur, the summer/autumn colors of the foliage in the background offering a contrast to the blue-gray/black of blurred feathers that formed fluid lines of a bird in flight.

In fact birds filled our day with delight as we watched them feed in different ways!!

Red Winged Black Bird

Then we watched as the Blue Heron caught its meal for the night!

Not only did we watch birds, but fall colors painted the landscape providing a hint of what is to come in the weeks ahead!

By now we were ready to pack it in! Thanks for joining us on our walk in the woods. 🙂

Girl Time ROCKS!

Every woman needs “girl time”  just because. Girl time, for those who don’t know, is a set-aside time for ‘girls’ to reconnect and let down their hair, figuratively and literally. It is a time to have fun with girlfriends and not worry about responsibilities and obligations, at least for an evening or a day. Every woman I know has her ‘girlfriends,’ her go-to female confidantes for support and nurture. Well, for me it was time for “girl time” again! It’s been six months since we last got together. Wednesday night my girls and I gathered at my place and “schmoozed” and enjoyed each other’s company. We smile a lot when we are together. Talking, eating, and laughing as good friends do, makes life a little sweeter when we return to our everyday responsibilities. Much to our delight, birds, squirrels, rabbits and chipmunks entertained us out on the deck. But best of all three fawns made an appearance, too! (Yes, there were three, but only two in this photo. . . The photo with all three is quite blurred.) By the end of the day we were all tired, happily so, and bid each other farewell, until next time. Heather was with us for this evening only. But Lori and I had the next day to spend together.

Lori and I started the day sitting on the deck once again enjoying the critters, all of which joined us on the deck at some point while we sat and chatted for a while. Later we drove (in an extremely round-about way) to North Chagrin Reservation. Although is was a hot and humid day, our spirits remained high and we thoroughly enjoyed the richness of nature.

Canada Geese abound at the Reservation. Here, two are enjoying the coolness of the lily pond.
Lilies and lily pads grow in abundance and cover large sections of the pond.

We saw LOTS of frogs!

Yes, this frog had dinner! When the frog decided the time was right, it happened so fast I almost missed it. This was the only photo I got.
Dragonflies and bugs of all descriptions thrive in places like this.

A hawk flew overhead.
Red-Winged Blackbird
Purple Martin ??????
The Great Blue Heron!

A baby bat that was saved by one of the park employees.

A last look back at the lily pond before heading home.

We spent just a few hours here on a hot and humid day,

Lori is loving every minute!

yet were amazed even in that short time, at the abundant activity and life that goes on in one small pond. We are not big partiers or shopaholics, but we are rich and happy enjoying friendships and nature when possible. Not even the heat and humidity could dampen our spirits. I think that Heather and Lori would agree with me when I say that girl time this week ROCKED. I look forward to the next time, and the next . . . and the next . . .