Tuesday, May 31, 2011


~ the dots/bumps on the heart read LOVE in braille ~


Monday, May 30, 2011


"May the members of our armed forces be supplied with courage to face each day and may they trust in the Lord's mighty power to accomplish each task. Let our military brothers and sisters feel our love and support."
Thank you for all you do.

It's a Memorial Day Marco Monday over @ Lisa's Chaos.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


On our last morning on the island, we awoke early. The sun was on the rise, the air was heavy with moisture and thick with insects. We took one last driving through the refuge. The birds were busy swooping and diving in an effort to gather breakfast. The few ponies we saw were barely visible through the dense fog.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Ponies of Chincoteague ~

I am not certain of the exact age of the foals we saw but they were still nursing. Since most foals are weaned by the age of 3 or 4 months of age, I would venture to say they were about 2 months old. The little guys were never a step away from their mamas.

Friday, May 27, 2011


The small island of Chincoteague became well known when, in 1947, Maguerite Henry wrote “Misty of Chincoteague” . Her book became well read, won the Newbery Honor and in 1961was made into movie. The feral ponies actually live on island of Assateague where they live under the watchful eye of the Volunteer Fire Company. By order of federal law, no more than 150 ponies are allowed to live on the VA side of this island.

To maintain the herd, the Fire Company, annually, rounds up the ponies and auctions they off. This has been proven to be a winning arrangement. The population stays under control and the money raised benefit the Fire Company and in turn the island.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


We started our VA travels by taking the Cape May, NJ/ Lewes, DE ferry. We drove the car on to the ferry and ran up to the front deck and took a seat in one of deck chairs. While this ferry doesn’t cut much time off the travel time, it does allow for a nice hour break in the driving. It was a bit overcast, with a strong cool breeze. It was the start of a few days of relaxation.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I missed a day. Oh no, I missed a day of posting. I can assure you, I did not miss a day of photography. Quite the contrary, I took many, many photos. B and I had a few days off and decided a much needed vacation was in order. We packed our bags, I grab my camera and we drove south to Chincoteague VA, home of the feral ponies. Have you read “Misty of Chincoteague”? The popular children’s book.

More on the trip later, first things first. On the morning of our departure, we released our five painted lady butterflies. They had been successful in completing the metaphoric transformation from caterpillar to butterfly. This one was a bit hesitant to leave the place it had called home.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


The American Oystercatcher, true to it’s name, specializes in eating bivalves. While they are fair commonly seen here during the summer months, come Fall they move farther south, seeking warmer temperatures. Upon their Spring arrival they get busy building nests and preparing to rise their young. Nests are scratched out in the sand, lined with peddles and sit along the high tide line. The clutch generally contains 2 -4 eggs. Many of eggs fall victim to the seagulls and are disturbed by many other predators, including man. These birds are of concern and are currently listed on the “yellow” list by the Audubon.


The Marsh Wren being only about 4” is among one of the smaller North American birds. They build enclosed, oval shape nests, made of dry grass, and anchor them to vegetation, only several feet off the ground. Wrens will build upwards of 20 “dummy” nests in an effort to avoid predators.

It is one difficult bird to photograph, it is not seen for long as it forages amidst the dense vegetation. I listened to this little one for hours several minutes before spotting him.

Monday, May 23, 2011


There is just something wonderful about the bright cheerful colors of the sippy straws.

for more Marco Monday fun head over to Lisa's Chaos.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


I hope I am not boring you with all of the avian photos. It is the Spring migration and for the next several weeks the refuge will become a flurry of feathers. These long distance flyers stop here but once a year. This affords me the opportunity to photograph many different birds, some who call this home and others which normally are not seen in our area. I continue to frequent their stopping ground with the hopes of not missing a chance to see them. Today’s bird ~ the Common Yellowthroat Warbler.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


I continue to celebrate National Migratory Bird week day. Although, Redwing Black birds are plentiful at the refuge, I have the most difficult time capturing a photo of one. They are easily frightened and fast to fly off. Yesterday, I was able to sneak up on this little feathered fellow.

Friday, May 20, 2011


It has been raining on and off all week. I mean raining buckets and then as quickly as it started it would stop, the sun would come shining through and moments later the rain would start up again. This crazy weather lasted all week long. Late this afternoon the sun finally made a lasting appearance. B and I decided a walk on the boardwalk would be good for our souls.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


This last Saturday was National Migratory Bird day and in celebration I decided to frequent the refuge. Today being the second trip this week. I talked Phriend into joining me on today’s birding adventure. After bragging hearing about and seeing the photo of the Red Tail Hawk I was able to capture during my last visit, we was hoping to see him again. To our delight, he was perched up on a tree branch.

We walked a small trail where we found 100s of Barn Swallows and Purple Martins. What I later learned was Barn Swallows frequently built their nests directly below that of an Osprey and live in a mutualist relationship with them. While the Barn Swallow often fall prey to many other raptures, the Osprey are exclusively fish-eater. Osprey are alerted to the presence of predators by the alarm calls of the swallows.

Pictured Barn Swallow ~

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


As my neighbor was preparing to remove a tree, she noticed a Robin’s nest. She halted the operation and called me over. Indeed there were two little hatchlings. At this point they weight less than a quarter and instinctually know to remain very quite while mama is away from the nest. In about two weeks they will take their maiden flight and my neighbor can continue with her uprooting of the tree they now call home.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I was uncertain as to what subject to use for today’s photo. I had taken several photos late last evening but I wasn’t really happy with the results. So after promising B dinner at one of our favorite restaurants, he agreed on going to the refuge with me. As we entered the 8 mile road there sat this Red-Tailed Hawk.

Monday, May 16, 2011


Generally, I am fairly good at identifying flowers, plants, and trees.
However, I am clueless as to what this is. I just liked it.

for more Marco Monday fun head on over to Lisa's Chaos.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


As my sweet girl approaches 15 months, I know our days together are few.
 I expect Shyla to return, for formal harness training, in a month or two.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


I admit to it, I’m being a rule breaker. This photo was taken on May 11 and I’m posting it today but since Blogger was being a bugger, I have given myself permission. I really wanted to share at least one other statuette from my photo field trip to Ground for Sculpture. Here a young lady, in the early morning mist, sits by a lily pond. What is she dreaming, wondering, thinking about?

Friday, May 13, 2011


one of my favorites from the week ~

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Blogger has been a bugger and stated they needed to remove any post dated after 5/11. They deleted my posts from 5/12 & 5/13. I will repost ~

Phriend and I have been waiting for the weather to warm before taking a photo field trip to "Grounds for Sculpture", home to over 250 life size recreations of famous paintings and other abstract art pieces. The sculptures are scattered about and as you tour the grounds these masterpieces are placed in areas which make them appear to be "live" people. Several times we were taken by surprise and thought we had stumbled upon a young couple in a loving embrace.  A couple dines among the outside tables in the dining area, a young couple kisses good-bye at the lake, an older couple, under the cover of an umbrella, strolling about, there's a party happening at the yacht club. What a interesting but more importantly fun place. Pictured ~ Renoir's "Boating Party".

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


My butterfly metamorphosis experiment is progressing nicely. All five caterpillars have now entered the pupal stage, hardening into chrysalids. It is within this housing that their caterpillar body parts will undergo a remarkable change. This transformation will take between 7 - 10 days, at which time they will emerge as beautiful winged butterflies.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


I am hoping everyone's Mother's Day was relaxing and wonderful, filled with surprises and surrounded by the love of your children.

Saturday evening my son called to see if I would be home on Mother’s Day, (since we live hours apart, it is best to check first). To my delight he and his girlfriend would be coming to cook me dinner. My thoughts turned to hamburgers on the grill with a side of salad. Wonderful and fairly easy to prepare. This is my son cooking, after all.

Wow! Was I surprised when they started off with a glass of pinot noir which was a great compliment to the cheese/ tomato on a pastry shell. Oh, like eating an air pizza.

For dinner they whipped up one of the most delicious meals I have ever eaten:
Asparagus wrapped in prosciutto, cover in cheese and surrounded by a phyllo dough, orzo cooked in chicken stock and brandy, top with parsley, and filet mignon lightly rubbed in garlic, cooked so tender it was like butter, topped with a gorgonzola and corn pepper. For dessert, homemade chocolate cheese cake topped with chocolate ganache and chocolate oreo truffles with a hot cuppa of my favorite Earl Grey.

At what point did this three month premature, pound and half, baby boy turn into this amazing, thoughtful, kind and gentle, ex-Marine who can cook stir and over see while his girlfriend cooks a meal like this.  Sadly, my younger son is across the country but enjoyed the fun via a phone call.  I could not be prouder of my boys. XOXO

Monday, May 9, 2011


A number of years ago, I had the chance to attend a gathering at The Seeing Eye. One of the activities they arranged for us, was to spell our names out in braille letter charms. We were given jute and beads to make a necklace. I have always been fascinated by braille and treasure this unique piece of jewelery.

join the Marco Monday fun over @ Lisa's Chaos

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Happy Mother's Day ♥

Saturday, May 7, 2011


This is not one of the caterpillars I have been raising. I noticed this beauty fluttering around by the bay last evening. I watch for awhile and when it landed on the rocks I took the opportunity to capture a shot. I really like the contrast of the soft colors of the butterfly and the hard break colored rocks.

Friday, May 6, 2011


A Forsters tern preparing to have a snack.

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Since I don't get to see them very often and I was happy with the way the mini photo shoot turned out, you get to see them one more time. :)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


My son and his girlfriend came to visit and what could be better than an impromptu mini photo shoot. I have really been wanting to practice portrait photography, only problem is I need a model or two. Perfect! Michael and Amanda were more than happy to play along, they were patience and listened well to all my instructions; now look back, lean this way, no that way, ok a little more, sit up straight, lean in . . . They were thrilled with the results and I didn’t think the photos came out half bad.

 I just love the way they look at each other.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


The Spring migration is only a few weeks away. This morning I went to the refuge to see if there were any early arrivals. There were not and I will have to wait a week or two before this stopping ground becomes a furry of feathered friends. I did have the pleasure of witnessing a Bald Eagle having breakfast. However, he didn't get the memo informing him, I only have a 300mm. Perhaps next time he would be kind enough to carry the fish over a little closer, which would enable me to get some better shots, or perhaps I should just rent the 500mm.

Monday, May 2, 2011


It is my day.
 My day to celebrate and do what I want.
 I plan on spending it with family and friends, talking and laughing, and eating cupcakes and ice cream.
Yes, it is my day.

Join in the Marco Monday fun over @ Lisa's Chaos.

Sunday, May 1, 2011


B was out for the evening, which left me home alone and we all know what that can lead to. . . a text to Phriend, cameras in tow and a ride over to my favorite boardwalk. We were hoping the piers would be open and the amusement rides would be showing their full rainbow of colors, but it is still a little to early in the season. Those photos will have to wait. Instead, we practiced some panning. I have tried this before and found it to be one of the most difficult photograph challenges yet. We spent about 30 minutes taking many photos, all while the carousel went round and round and up and down. I still have much practicing to do before perfecting this skill. I found this was the best of the bunch.