Thursday, July 29, 2010

Party in the woods?

Brownie was nosing around the tree line and I glanced down and there was a purple plastic top hat. Interesting. Just what was happening in the woods?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Button Flowers and Mad Science Mushrooms

These are the gorgeous silver and black mushrooms. The top picture reminds me of cute button flowers and the bottom two pictures look like mad science mushrooms (you know, where the electricity is jumping up off whatever they have it jumping off of in mad science). So cute and fun!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Orange and Red Flowers

I love it when these flowers come into bloom. I don't know what kind of tree these grow on, but they are here by the river and I've seen them in some yards around town. It sure makes a beautiful orangey red flower!

These are new on our trail this year as after they finished re-doing it, they planted a bunch of new trees in the middle and on either side of the new paths (one path for pedestrians, one path for bicycles). Again, I don't know what kind of trees these are (and not all of the trees are this kind), but these produce such beautiful red flowers with yellow centers. I love seeing all the splashes of color here and there on our walks.

Where's Brownie?

I love the pictures where you almost can't see her because she is walking through tall stuff. Here's a view of the "small mountain" that blocks my view of the sunsets, although it sure makes a pretty view looking at it across the river.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Glorious Sunset

I think the sunsets are slightly more glorious from the Panhandle. I only say that because you have a clear 360 degree view of the sky out there. Here in the city my view of the sunsets is blocked by my house, then apartments, then a small mountain. Kind of hard to see glorious sunsets from my vantage point in my backyard. I took these pictures when I was home late last month for my great-uncle's funeral. I especially loved the beautiful clouds and how majestic and glorious this sunset felt. A beautiful end to a day that contained a sad event and a reminder that truly, all is well.

Simplicity of a Mushroom

Here it is. Just a mushroom in all its simplicity which makes it so beautiful. I think I'm nearing the end of my mushroom pictures for a little while (still have a few more to get around to posting) unless it rains again this weekend. We've been in a heat wave and I think the ground also has to be moist which then makes it optimal for mushrooms. Plus, they keep letting the grass grow up to ten inches before they cut it which makes seeing the mushrooms hard. Then when they do cut it, there goes the mushrooms, too. So now that it is cut and with the tiny chance of rain this weekend, maybe I'll start seeing more mushrooms. I hope so as the thought of that being all the mushrooms I see this summer makes me a little sad.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Caterpillar with orange spots

I'm not sure that I quite captured the brilliant orange spots on this caterpillar's back, but this little fellow was moving pretty fast and I was happy to catch a picture of him at all (with having to dig around for my camera, pull it out, turn it on, and get down there to get his picture).

Butterflies, Butterflies Everywhere!

The woods by the trail are filled with butterflies, mainly ones that look like these. It is so beautiful to see them all fluttering around eating from the flowers.

Sunglasses caught on a log

We found these sunglasses caught on a log while we were walking down by the river! This is right after some of the heavy rains and the river was really full (and moving swiftly). I'd think someone lost them in the river somehow rather than someone was walking down by the river and set them down and forgot them. I say that because someone wearing these sunglasses wouldn't be the type of person I'd peg to walk through the foliage, down the embankment, and walk in the mud by the river!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Mushroom Flower with Chocolate Shavings on top

This mushroom flower looks like it has chocolate shavings on top (reminds me of the chocolate shavings one puts on top of chocolate delight to add that little extra something special).

Yellow Flowers by the River

These wild yellow flowers growing by the river are really beautiful. They are kind of exotic looking and if one just looked at these pictures, you'd think we lived in Hawaii or some other wild island paradise.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hot, Hot Summer Days

It has been horribly hot lately. You'd think with all the rain we had a week ago that it wouldn't be so hot. Instead, that just added an extra mugginess to the humidity we normally have and you've got so hot that even your wrists (and the top of your hands) sweat when you step outside. We've had temperatures around 100 degrees (or over) for the past four or five days. I don't know how long this heat wave will be, but am now kind of wanting it to rain again to get some relief.

This is what Brownie and I do to cool off a little. She loves playing in the sprinkler (especially if someone is watching as she'll look over her shoulder to make sure you are still there). She likes the motion of it and how the water squirts out and she wants to "bite" it and she'll do it over and over. In the early summer, she'd be right out and up at the sprinkler, but with it being so hot now she'll just stand under the trampoline and let the water come to her! Every so often, she'll want her head wiped off with the towel and I'll towel her head off. We haven't been staying out to play too long and I almost just don't come out from under the umbrella on my patio table or the canopy of the porch swing. My internal temperature runs pretty hot, so too much of this type of heat is more than I can handle. I'd normally sit here and work on some crafts, but it is too hot to even do that outside. Paper and canvas don't hold up well under this kind of heat. I took 4 showers yesterday because I was so hot and sweaty. That was at least two too many, but it had to be done. Stay cool this summer, peeps!

On a side note, for those of you who notice I've mainly been posting during the week and not on the weekends, it is because Pooker has monopolized this computer during the weekends and I couldn't get on to post on my blog. Yes, he got me my own computer but I haven't got all the programs on it yet that this one has, hence my adobe photoshop is on this one and therefore any pictures that I want to post. So until I can get around and do that, postings on weekends may be pretty sparse.

Hi There, Turtle!

I like it when we come across turtles in our path. Brownie gives 'em a good once over as well. This way, they are close enough to get really good pictures of.

I had a wistful fleeting wish for a good zoom as when we went over this little bridge this morning. There were turtles down below sunning themselves on the rocks that stick up above the water. There was a little tiny one on a rock by itself, then there were three turtles in a row on another rock nearby. The three in a row looked like the first one had crawled up the rock and was nosed from behind to go up a little higher, then the third one came behind the second and nosed him and he nosed the first and they crawled up a little higher to let the third one on the rock. Too cute.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Found a Lost Debit Card

We were having our usual walk this morning. Each morning, we can either head north or south. We chose north today and were walking down towards this little lookout point that we use to walk up and through and turn back towards the way we came. Brownie frequently stops and takes in all the smells. She stopped at what I call a point of interest (a little area, right off the path, that is bordered by rocks and flowers and may or may not contain benches and chairs although this one had chairs) and was sniffing around. I caught sight of something in the tall grass (the grass is getting pretty tall again due to all the rain) behind one of the chairs out of the corner of my eye and thought I'd better check it out. It turned out to be someone's debit card. There wasn't anything else in the grass around it, so my assumption was it must have fallen out of someone's pocket or purse when they stopped to rest. This is not one of those things that you can just ignore and leave because I sure wouldn't want my debit card falling into the wrong hands, so I picked it up. We went ahead and turned around there and headed back instead of going further. I decided I'd take it back to the bank that issued the debit card in the hopes they could get it back to Melissa or at least let her know they had it so she wouldn't have to worry (or cancel that one or order a new one).

I dropped Brownie off at home and went to run a few errands, plus stopping by the bank. I get to the bank and there is one teller and she is helping a guy in the business lane. I pull in and sit there and wait for her to have time so I could explain what I had found and where. She sees me sitting there and says, "Yes?" and I start to say "I found this debit card on my walk this morning..." and she interrupts and says "Huh?" I look at her and she isn't even looking at me, she is busy with her hands trying to finish up the guy at the window. I said, "I really need to talk to you" and she said, "I'm listening" in the same tone you'd say duh, but she still wasn't looking at me and wasn't hearing me. I told her, "Go ahead and finish up with him." She kind of huffed and rolled her eyes, but finished with him and then finally looked at me. Once again, I explained I had found a debit card while walking down by the trail, where I had found it, and that I hoped she could inform Melissa so she wouldn't have worry about it. She didn't say anything as I put the debit card into the round thing and poked the button to send it to her. As I was preparing to drive away she said "Thanks" in this tone of voice that was so insincere and I left wondering if Melissa would really get notified that her debit card was there or even if this teller would note it in her account that her debit card was turned in. I just don't know.

It's no wonder people don't go out of their way to try to help anyone else out anymore. It's not like I was wanting a pat on the back, but a teller that so obviously just didn't care leaves this good samaritan wondering if turning it in did any good at all. The only thing that makes me feel better is knowing it isn't out there falling into someone's hands who would drain her account, etc. But we all know what a hassle it is to close an account and open a new one and wait for a new card in the mail (usually takes over a week or two), so I really hope the teller is able to do something to notify her. I just don't know. I hope Melissa hasn't been a victim of foul play because my prints are now all over that card and I really don't want my good deed to turn into something else just because I tried to do the right thing. Hmmm, this is where my mind indeed has the writer's bent.....

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Wooden Mushroom Flowers

These mushrooms remind me of beautifully carved wooden mushroom flowers! You know how people make roses out of wood shavings and sell them? These kind of looked carved out of wood like that and planted here in a wood chip pile to have their picture taken. So gorgeous!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Brownie loved her new soccer ball

This little girl loves balls. Nothing thrills her more than a ball. We were in the store a few weeks ago and I wanted to get a new one for her and I didn't want to spend too much because all her balls end up being torn apart. I don't have a problem with that as toys are meant to be played with and enjoyed (and boy, does she!). We ended up with this soccer ball. When we came home with it, Pooker got down on her level and told her he had something for her. She was so excited to see what he pulled out of the sack and when she saw it was a new ball, she put her paw out to pat it. He opened the package for her and she was off and playing with her new ball. Pooker opened the door so she could take it outside (because we were coming out to sit and relax) and she growled at him. She didn't want him taking the ball away from her (he was trying to get it from her to take outside). I told Pooker that she'd bring it outside whenever she was ready. A few minutes later, she trots outside with it. When she wasn't playing with it and rolling it around, she was sitting in the shade panting with one paw on the top of the ball. It was pretty cute. She was so happy to have it. She ended up chewing it up, probably within three hours, but oh, how glorious those three hours were!

Butterflies and Bald Eagles

I really love butterflies. I consider them my personal symbol of freedom and hope. I've seen so many beautiful ones this summer-orange, brown, yellow, blue, white, and lavender!! I'll continue to share the ones that pause long enough to get their picture taken, but.... I've had one land in the middle of my chest this week and sit there for a few seconds before flying away. I kind of needed it. Every once in a while (okay, daily), I need a reminder that God is with me and everything is in his hands (I am in his hands) and I just don't need to worry about anything. I can live free, like the butterfly.

This morning as we were getting out of our vehicle to start our walk, there was a gorgeous bald eagle flying in this big beautiful circle right over the spot where we start our walk. I just watched him and thought how majestic the eagle is. Then I was reminded of the verse that says they who wait up on the Lord will renew their strength, they will mount up with wings as eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint. I kind of needed that, too. Life sometimes has a little drama, or just daily living, that leaves one tired and in need of that kind of strength and renewal. I can count on one hand how many bald eagles I've seen and to have seen one this morning tells me that everything will be okay.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Paratrooper Mushrooms

These mushrooms remind me of little tiny paratroopers who have jumped out of an airplane and landed on the grass. (This would be right as they hit the ground, before their chutes go limp because they aren't catching the air anymore.) I wonder what their mission is....

Friday, July 9, 2010

Flowers and more Flowers

You already know I can't resist taking pictures of the flowers. They seem to be new every morning (just like God's grace). These lavender/pink ones are by a new bronze statue they put in along the walking trail (suppose I could have shown you the cheetah statue, too, huh?) and the yellowish ones are by the Bear Fountain. Because of all the rain, everything is wonderfully green, but I need these colorful spots of beauty to start my day off with.

A Plethora of Rain

We have been getting A LOT of rain lately. Yesterday during the wee morning hours, it rained a whole bunch. When we got up, it was wet but soaked in. Then, in the afternoon, it poured AGAIN and it was just as much as we had gotten during the night. This time it couldn't soak in because the ground was already saturated and there was nowhere else for it to go. That's a crazy amount of rain and we are still forecasted for more rain today, tomorrow, and Sunday!!! Once all the low places in my yard are filled with standing water, I think that is enough rain for a bit. Although most of the water did finally soak in, I still have standing water under my trampoline. Maybe it will soak in before it rains again?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Elegant Silver and Black Mushrooms

These mushrooms are so elegant and classy. The gorgeous silver and black makes them look like they are ready to go to a black tie event (perhaps as a boutonnier or on a lovely wrist corsage?). These were really quite breathtaking, especially with the way the dew was sparkling on them and the morning light was highlighting them

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

View of the river and new fiscal year

And here is the actual view of the river on the day I took the picture of the mushrooms. It is really nice to see the river full as much of the year it is sadly lacking. I think it is because there is a dam somewhere up the river and they only let out the overflow and if there isn't any overflow, then we have more like a stream than a river.

Incidentally, the city's mowing budget was available again starting July 1st and the park near our house got mowed on July 1st and the trail by the river got mowed on July 2nd. At least they didn't waste any time starting to mow again. I'd say no grass grew under their feet, but since they didn't plan well enough to be able to mow it the last two months of their fiscal year, I'd say they better have been out there soon after July 1st because they had the whole two months to think about it and plan for it.

Lone mushroom overlooking the river

Here he is, just the one lone mushroom overlooking the river. Maybe he just needed some space or simply prefers the view from the top. At any rate, it truly was just this one lone mushroom with the great view.

More beautiful mushrooms

Because June was filled with thunderstorms and very humid, moist air, we have been treated to more beautiful mushrooms. These are delicate and beautiful, almost like flowers, but just not quite there.

Who doesn't love a good heartish shaped mushroom? Maybe this one would make a good photo for a Valentine's card. I could tint the mushroom red and say something like "I'm mushy over you" or "You turn my heart to mush." I'm kind of teasing, but it really could work.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Where's Brownie?

So maybe the first picture isn't so much a where's brownie, but she is in a field of flowers. I didn't know where else to put that picture and did want to share it, too. This second picture is definitely a where's brownie! She sometimes goes into places I definitely wouldn't and I have to keep my eyes peeled for movement (other than hers) to make sure it is a safe place to go poking your head into!

More flowers on the farm

I keep showing you the beautiful wildflowers from the farm because I ended up going home three times last month (Memorial Day weekend, middle of June, and this past week for my great uncle's funeral). These are the last of the pictures from my trip home in the middle of June. I've been trying to get all my pictures posted (and I like to do it somewhat chronologically). That's why you keep getting treated to some of the same flowers in different poses!