Out From Under the Umbrella

playing in the rain


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Happy Valentine’s Day

floatondowntheriverI love the water.  Always have.  There’s something healing, something soothing, something so peaceful about it.  It makes me feel at one with nature and the universe.  That’s about as spiritual as it gets for me.

For Valentine’s Day, instead of swapping cheesy cards and overpriced flowers, TheBrit and I decided to have an experience.  We finally got to go on a kayaking trip a couple of weekends ago.

It was the perfect day for it, too.  It was breezy and sunny.  Not too hot.

As we paddled along the seven-mile course sounds of the kayaks and the oars gliding through the water ran through me and I felt so relaxed, so mellow, so at ease. It is truly medicinal.

Turtles were on nearly every log and every rock we passed by, stretching their necks and their legs as far as possible to soak up the warm sun.

fishingsunningturtlesGoing on down the river a bit we saw a hawk soaring overhead.  I turned my kayak to try to get a shot of this magnificent creature as he lit and perched on a branch nearby.

hawkhawk2Later, as I dangled my feet over the sides to do as the turtles had done, stretching myself to soak up the warmth of the sun, this damsel fly hitched a ride on my foot.

damselHe rode for quite a ways.  Then a green-eyed dragon fly decided to join the cruise.

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A damsel in distress!

The dragon fly decided it was lunch time and made a meal of the damsel. I watched with intrigue as the dragon fly started with the head and ate the whole thing.  Then he eyed me!

dragonfly2dragonfly3I wasn’t entirely sure the damsel wasn’t just an appetizer and he was sizing me up for the main course.  I guess he decided he couldn’t take me and eventually buzzed away.

We completed the journey by docking at a crystal clear natural spring filled with children splashing and laughing.

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427I love the water.  Always have.  Happy Valentine’s Day, MyBrit.


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Just Hum, Hum, Humming Along

So I’ve been hella busy lately.  I’ve got some posts in the works but haven’t had the time to polish them off like I’d like to.  I’ve been visiting around and commenting sparsely in the blogosphere.  In my down time I’ve been trying in vain to capture a blog-worthy photo of these busy little hummers that frequent our feeder.  After about a bazillion attempts these were the best I could come up with:

hummer4 hummer3 hummer2 hummerThese beautiful and awesome little creatures brighten my day so I’m putting them here for you to enjoy.


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A Bird in the Hand

On Christmas Day TheBrit came running into the house shouting for me.  I was upstairs getting dressed to go out to my sister’s house for Christmas dinner.  “Ruth! Ruth!! Come quick!”

“What in the world?  I’m trying to get ready.  Give me a minute,”  I responded standing at the top of the stairs looking down at TheBrit who has his hands cupped around something.

“I need your help!”  He opened his hands and exclaimed, “I just rescued this from Scamper and Stumpy.  They were out there fighting over it.”

Now, Stumpy you see, is a three legged cat.  Try as  he might he’s not quite fast enough to catch a bird.  But Scamper can, and does, on occasion.  When he does Stumpy tries to take his catch off him.

The poor little bird was a little shocked.  And one of his wings was…not broken, but not 100% either.

So I took the tiny bird from TheBrit’s hands, who immediately got the camera and started snapping pictures.

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A Bird in Shock

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Sweet little birdie

I’ve done a cursory search and haven’t been able to identify the species.

When TheBrit was done with his picture taking I took the little fellow a good ways away to a tree with some brush around it and let him go. We waited a bit and went back to check on him. He was still in the spot I’d left him.  I don’t know if that was a good thing or not.

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Then on New Year’s Day, as I was walking past the bird feeder to go and cut some flowers, there he was – that beautiful red cardinal.  I knew it was too much to hope for; that he would hang about long enough for me to go back in after the camera.  When I emerged ready to snap his visage he was gone.  Eluded me again!  One day…

By the time I’d returned there were these – everywhere –  which I’m fairly certain after a quick Google search are Brown House Sparrows:

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Here Comes the Sun

I’ve been playing with my camera a bit and happened to capture the sunrise one day this week.  In the fall we have spectacular sunrises and sunsets.  Photos cannot do them justice.  Have some Beatles to go with it!

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Here Comes the Sun – Photo Credit: Ruth

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Glorious Morning Photo Credit: Ruth

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The Silver Lining Photo Credit: Ruth