bugs, dragonflies, flowers, fun, moments, nature, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, pond creatures, road trip, simple things, travel, weather

Sunflower daze…

My husband called it the ‘6 Ps’.  Proper Preparation Prevents Piss-Poor Performance.  Not very eloquent but he made his point.  Yesterday our planned trip to Coppal Farm for the Sunflower Festival turned out to have been perfectly planned.  Or we were just lucky.  I wondered ahead of time how many pictures I’d get out of a trip to see just a single type of flower.  Only it turned out that there is more than one kind of sunflower.AugNHpalesunflowerAugNHredsunflowerAugNHsunflower1AugNHsunflower5

But the vast fields of sunflowers at Coppal Farm were the traditional variety that comes to mind at the mention of the word sunflower.  Except for one little face in the crowd.AugNHwhere'sWaldo

The farm itself was picture-worthy also.AugNHcoppalfarmAugNHcoppalfarm2AugNHpowerlinesAugNHsunflower4AugNHsunflower3AugNHsunflower2

Honestly, I don’t set out to take pictures of bugs, it just happens.  There were two varieties of black dragonflies at the pond next to the sunflower field.  They are so different from the blue ones I so commonly see that I was determined to get a decent picture.  But not to worry, the blue ones were there too.AugNHdragonfly1AugNHdragonfly2AugNHdragonfly3

a second look, birds, bugs, flowers, gardens, Nature's beautiful creatures, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

The unexpected…

It’s not that I was lost exactly.  I was attempting to follow the maps and signs within the Heritage Museum grounds in order to see everything, but I still hadn’t found the treehouse.  I started down the winding path and spotted a hummingbird flitting among the red flowers beside the path.  This was my opportunity to try for photos of a hummingbird on flowers instead of a feeder.  And then I noticed a hummingbird moth also set on feeding from the red flowers and I was really excited.  That has been a rare sight for me.  The flowers were quite close to the path, but these hummingbirds and moths must have been so used to people that having me there zooming in with my camera didn’t appear to bother them at all.  What a fun and unexpected finale to this amazing day.HPmoth1HPmoth3HPmoth4HPhummer2HPhummer3HPhummer4HPhummer5HPhummer6

 

'scene' along the way, bugs, butterflies, dragonflies, flowers, fun, gardens, kids, life goes on, moments, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, second chances, travel, weather

Kids Day…

It did occur to me that going to a venue such as the Heritage Museum and Gardens might not be the best choice for a weekend visit.  But it was supposed to be such a nice day, and I hadn’t been out for several days before, so even realizing that it was ‘kids day’ didn’t stop me.  Kids got in free on Saturday, and lots of activities were set up for them to enjoy while they were there.  Maybe everyone had as much trouble with the maps as I did, because yes, we entered together, but as I walked the paths I had no problem seeing the gorgeous landscapes and taking pictures without lots of people in the shots.  And I started taking pictures before I had even bought my ticket.  I was attracted to the flowers, but as I looked more closely at the flowers it was the bees that caught my attention, and then the butterflies, and even a little moth. HPpinkflowerbeeHPblackbutterflyHPblueflowerbeeHPorangeflowermothHPearlybee

It was the carousel that I had spotted on the map that I had set out to see.  But there were numerous paths intersecting each other, and signs pointing this way and that way, enough so that I kept getting distracted.  Almost right away I heard a waterfall off to my right.  I attempted several pictures but quickly realized that there was a lily pond at the bottom, and yes, there were paths to go there.  So I set off down the hill to take pictures, hoping there would be dragonflies.  And yes, there were dragonflies, but I got ridiculously excited to see the little turtles on the lily pads.  When some kids showed up I think I totally forgot that I’m not a kid and got excited to point out the turtles.  That got the kids excited, and they all were standing precariously close to the rock edge of the pond, switching positions, trying to see.  And when I spotted a frog on a lily pad the excitement level went up a bit more.  Now they were quite excited to be pointing out things to me, and for several moments I was that five-year-old self I’ve been looking for.  Then I noticed one of the moms standing beside me and I had to apologize since they were probably wishing the kids were watching a little more calmly.  She said it was fine.  I thought it was fun.  ‘Kids day’, in more ways than one.HPwaterfall.jpgHPturtleHPdragonflyHPfrog2HP2turtles

 

'scene' along the way, boats, bugs, flowers, go with the flow, moments, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel, weather

Along the canal…

“Maybe you’ll see a big boat”, I said to myself as I headed to the canal again.  After several days of rain, and more than one tornado, it promised to be a sunny day with temperatures in the 70s, and the need to be outside was irresistible.  My knowledge of boats is rather limited, I can identify sail boats and speed boats, and sail boats are the prettier of the two.  But speed boats was what we had the most of.  And they were speeding, looking as if it was a race, and the little blue boat was in the lead, but not for long.Buzzard'sBayspeedy2Buzzard'sBayspeedersBuzzard'sBayblueboatBuzzard'sBaycatchingupThe wake that they created caused waves that caught these people off guard.  I had been watching them plucking things from among the rocks at the edge and collecting them in their bucket.  Mussels was the consensus of the people I spoke with as we enjoyed the day. Buzzard'sBaycanalpeopleFat dragonflies were zooming past me also, teasing me because they weren’t landing anywhere to give me a photo op.  I took a ridiculous number of photos just into the air in hopes that burst mode would give me an image, it didn’t.  But they did get me to pay attention to the hillside behind me with its flowers.Buzzard'sBayphotobombBuzzard'sBayseedy2Then I got interested in a little bird in the small tree right at the roadway.  It was singing it’s heart out but I had to hunt to spot it.  Merlin suggested several types of sparrow, but I decided that it was a Song Sparrow, for obvious reasons.Buzzard'sBaysparrowI spent a good bit of time looking for this bird, and taking photos, and when I finally thought to look back at the canal and see if anything was going on I got a surprise.  This was what was going on…Buzzard'sBaysbigboatBuzzard'sBaysbigboat2Buzzard'sBaybigboat3Yes, of course it made it under the bridge, but I still had to watch and see for myself, in case it didn’t.  Nothing much seemed to be going on after that, and after taking a few more flower shots, including a butt shot for a friend of mine, it was time to move on.Buzzard'sBaybutt

backyard visitors, birds, bugs, friends, fun, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip

When the cat’s away…

Here’s the version of Grannie’s gone wild when Kathy’s home, it involves the quilting version of cutting out paper dolls.  We’ve hit two quilt shops, and I’ve lost track of the number of fabric shops we’ve explored on this visit…granniesgonewildfBut I was left to my own devices yesterday, and the result is what you see in the feature photo.  There may have been a trip to Hobby Lobby early, but the rest of the day was spent on that wonderful porch.  I keep hearing mention of the extreme heat, but it was perfect porch-sitting weather here.  And there was hardly a moment to play with my fabric, what with watching all the varieties of birds at the feeder, until the blue jay came along and shooed them away.  I continued my binge watching of Dead Like Me on Prime video on the iPad, and then there were photos to edit on the laptop.  There may have been a beer involved, but not until after 5 PM, if Kathy was home it would have been wine.   We were shopping one day when I first came here, and as we drove through the booming metropolis of Franklin, NH I happened to see a shop called Granite State Hedgehogs.  Yes, you read that right.  I had to do a double take.  So when I drove past today I stopped in, and yes they are cute, but not so cuddly.  I had suggested getting one as a pet and dressing it up and taking pictures, which had Kathy doubting my sanity.  But when something is that cute you want to cuddle it, and I tried, but they are just plain prickly.  So I opted for this little plush Hedgie, he fills the bill nicely.

twobirdsprettybird3birdsredbirdbluejay

I almost wished I hadn’t noticed the very dramatic life-and-death struggle that went on all afternoon between a little tiny spider and his much bigger prey.  It was reminiscent of David and Goliath and I wasn’t sure who would prevail, but the more that bigger bug struggled to escape that web, the more entangled he became.  I could relate after trying to untangle a friend’s dog the other day.  It was a valiant effort though, and impossible not to watch.

spider1It’s not unheard of for a moose or a bear to visit this yard, but that didn’t happen.  I had my camera ready for anything just in case.  But I’m not complaining.  It was a lovely, quiet, porch-sitting kind of day, for me at least.  Not so much for that poor bug.

 

'scene' along the way, adventure, bugs, Camping, finding my way, natural wonders, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip

The Kancamagus Highway…

That was my goal Wednesday when I set out to take some pictures.  I think I just like to say Kancamagus, and it was too pretty out to stay home.  If you look at it on a map it looks like it goes in a diagonal line from where I am now, to Lincoln, NH.  That’s not true though.  You have to drive a bit to get to Rt. 112, and I discovered several distractions along the way that slowed me down and kept me from traveling the whole highway.  Which is okay because a friend of mine is most at home in the Lincoln area and I’m in hopes we’ll get back there together eventually.  This farm was a distraction along the way.  And when I stopped to take a picture this cow came over to say hi.farmagain6_12_19cowandbarn6_12_19cowandbarn26_12_19redbarnscene

Then the town of Bradford provided it’s own distraction.  Just a block long, but quaint, and good food.  A pastrami reuben at a little coffee shop called The Local Buzz.  What a great name, and a great sandwich.6_12_19waterfall1bradfordlibrary6_12_19townturretthelocalbuzzBuzzmap

Eventually I did make a run at the Kancamagus though, and I got there.  As promised by my cousin, the scenery is spectacular.  But pull-offs are too few and far between.  Which explains why I turned around after I passed the Beaver Pond scenic area and returned for photos there also.  But I turned out to be the main course for the black flies and mosquitos that were just hanging around waiting for an unsuspecting tourist to show up. When I told my cousin that I stopped at Beaver Pond he said that he and his wife hiked a trail there once and encountered a swarm of black flies that had them running to their car.  Glad to know it’s not just me being a wimp.  Nobody bothered my DEET infused legs, which was nice.  But too bad I didn’t think to spray my ears because they got gnawed on pretty fiercely.  Now my ears are burning, you aren’t talking about me are you?6_12_19beaverdamoverlook26_12_19beaverdamoverlook6_12_19beaverpondredux