Camping, changing times, finding my way, following the rules, home, life goes on, perseverance, photography, unintended consequences

Obsessions…

I don’t know how others have endured their time in quarantine these last couple of months but in my frustration over needing something to do I became obsessed with the desire to sew.  I mean that literally, I was dying to sew but absolutely couldn’t settle on a project.  In the back of my mind were the collage quilts that I came across in a tiny little quilt shop in the tiny little town of Fairlee, VT while I was camping last summer.  The patterns they had were so cute, and the concept uses your scraps of fabrics from all your other projects, finished and unfinished, and that appealed to me too.  But the downfall was that this process yields art quilts.  Quilts to be hung on the wall and admired, but with little wall space in my house, and lots of doubt in my ability to match the jaw-dropping ones I saw online, I dropped the idea once I got home.

But along came a quarantine and my need to do something besides bake (and eat), but I couldn’t make myself decide on a project until I thought of a log cabin quilt with the theme of doorways, and embellish them with little elements, a la collage quilting.  And so I started cutting and sewing, using only fabrics that I already owned.  I used up tons of fabric, spools of thread, and a quilt batt that I had bought but never used.  And somewhere along the way I realized that we are behind closed doors, and I here I was working on happy little doorways.  I didn’t do it on purpose, but once I saw the connection I was fearful that it would be yet another project that would remain forever unfinished when it could be something to remind me of this strange time.  Days and days of rain came at just the right time to keep me home and and sewing, and as of this morning its finished!  I will take it with me when I head out in a couple of weeks.  Not a piece of art, but a warm reminder of a time like no other in my life.  A time we probably won’t forget anytime soon…06-09-20quilt

I thought I had finished this post, but then I looked out my door and saw my uncle come out of his front door, so I recruited him to hold the quilt for me.  It’s simple and silly, but I like it.06-09-20quiltray

 

adventure, bucket list, Camping, changing times, coping, courage, facing facts, faith, finding my way, Just do it, life, life goes on, making memories, perseverance, road trip

Plans…

Oh come on, don’t tell me that you haven’t fried yourself a nice piece of quiche for breakfast before.  Or ever.  Especially when your brilliant idea from the day before didn’t turn out as you’d planned.  I wanted to use up the spinach that I’d left a few days in the refrigerator, and I had potatoes I hadn’t used, so I thought they would make a dandy hash brown crusted quiche.  There may be a reason that the online recipes I saw called for frozen hash browns, perhaps they magically don’t turn brown the way potatoes usually do.  I know that mine were turning brown faster than I could grate them.  But I was committed (don’t say it) at that point so on I went, browning the hash brown crust first, and even though the bottom crust looked more soggy than crusty I went ahead and poured in the filling and baked it.  Which didn’t improve the bottom crust any, but it was edible.  Faced with trying to figure out what to do with it the next day I knew I had nothing to lose so I resorted to my little frying pan, and when I saw it was browning quickly I covered the pan, even though I imagined a volcano erupting in there, but surprisingly it was quite good.

I’ve been feeling rather scatter-brained lately  Not able to sit down and make a plan for what I might want to do this summer, even if it’s just a fantasy.  I opened the maps function of the computer and put in the farthest possible destination for myself, and now I stare at the map of the US with that blue line that would lead me there.  And there are choices, not one blue line but two, and infinitely more really.  Last year going to New England felt cozy, but looking at that map, that blue line, makes me feel like I’d be traveling naked.  Exposed.  So my mind boggles even as I try to use up the stuff in the refrigerator and tell myself to start making lists.  Making plans, and frying my quiche…

changing times, Florida wildlife, following the rules, leap of faith, losing it, nature, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, sunset

Back to the beaches…

Florida’s beaches have been reopened, and that makes me happy because a quick trip to Green Key Beach for the sunset was easy enough to do.  But I have this nagging feeling of guilt for being ready to get back to normal.  Several of my closest friends are very concerned about a rush to normalcy, and with very good reason.  Boredom on my part doesn’t seem like much of a counterpoint to their worries.  But I went to the beach anyhow, and the closest I came to anyone was this night heron.  I don’t know who was more surprised, him or me.05-15-20nightheron

These birds are usually hard to see in the shrubbery, not standing beside you all of a sudden after you went back to the car for bug spray.  I had walked to the farthest end of the beach where it meets shrubbery to get this shot and then retreated for bug spray. 05-15-20sunset2Between high tide and the landscaping that has been done to this beach in the last year positioning yourself for a nice angle on the sunset was a challenge.  The no-see-ums didn’t seem to be phased by my bug spray, and people were clustered closer together to watch the sunset at the other end of the beach, so I headed for home as soon as the sun disappeared.  Somehow the days pass…05-15-20sunset305-15-20sunset

a second look, adventure, birds, changing times, nature, nesting, perseverance, photography, reality check

Life’s ups and downs…

Any complaints I have about today have nothing to do with social isolation and have everything to do with technology and how I don’t get it.  There was a time when I thought I did get it, but I was kidding myself.  Seems like a lot of people are frustrated over needing haircuts, but at the rate I’ve been tearing my hair out over my computer issues I’m thinking that that won’t be a problem for me for a while yet.  It was a struggle, but for the moment I have a nice back up drive installed on the desktop computer, and that means my editing program is back to working like a charm.  And I enjoyed using some new editing tips learned in the last few days in our online photography classes.  Thank you to Fearless Leader Jeff.

I stopped at the rookery this morning to see if the cattle egret chicks had hatched, and yes, there are chicks on one nest so far.  And two more nests that I could see.05-02=20catleegret2.jpg

So two new little guys and the three amigos are still standing in the nest and sounding off for someone to feed them.  They really seem to get to spend a lot of time on the nest.  I mean a LOT.  I suspect that with all my computer issues plus the online classes I may have missed the grand finale of the bluebirds in the bird house.  I read that they get kicked out of the nest in only 9 or 10 days, and I’ve seen no bluebird activity in the last couple of days.  Those wood stork teenagers don’t know how lucky they really are.05-02=20amigos.jpg

And how nice that when I got home I got word that the sandhill crane chicks in my old backyard had hatched.  They were less than 24 hours old, but I knew I had to go see them quickly because they will probably be marched off the nest for their first adventure tomorrow.

There was one more adventurous chick, Mr. Independent, off on his own a bit.  And he seemed to have plenty to say about life in general.05-02=20littlenewguy2.jpg

And then hidden in the grass close to mom a more cautious chick.  05-02=20littlenewguy.jpg

It was a good day.  Progress was made and time is passing.  The next county south of us is opening swimming pools next week.  I don’t know if I feel like it’s too soon, and I don’t know if I can resist when they open up here also.  We’ll see.

 

a second look, changing times, following the rules, leap of faith, life goes on, losing battles, losing it, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, reality check, unintended consequences

Feeling frazzled?

Haven’t had a haircut in a while?04-24-20gatorlandreeditfrazzled04-24-20gatorlandreeditfrazzled2

Or a color?04-24-20gatorlandreeditneedacolor.jpgAre the kids driving you nuts?04-24-20gatorlandreedit2.jpg

And what about a pedicure?04-24-20gatorlandreeditpedicure.jpg04-24-20gatorlandpedicure.jpg

And forget about teeth whitening.   And while you are at it save your money on braces.04-24-20gatorbraces.jpg

You can skip the eye take up too.04-24-20gatorlandeye.jpg

Leave those golden slippers in the closet, you’re not going anywhere.04-24-20gatorlandgoldenslippers

Because social distancing is the order of the day.04-24-20gatorlandreedit1.jpg

We are all in this together. But we can all hope that when this national nightmare is over we will be back to our gorgeous selves in no time.  Well, kinda gorgeous.04-24-20gatorlandparrot.jpg

a second look, changing times, Florida wildlife, life goes on, live and learn, nature, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, second chances, technology, unintended images

Fresh eyes…

Going through old photos in the computer is a little more complicated than just finding a box of old photos and looking through it.  If you come upon one that you like, as I did with the feature photo, but you get interrupted, then you decide you want to find more photos from that same day, it’s a bit frustrating.  And, according to the head of our photo group, one of the reasons for using Lightroom is because your original photos are preserved and you can get to them easily.  But I must have missed that class.  Or, more likely, it was over my head at the time.  When all this social distancing is behind us I plan on getting all this figured out, with help from a friend.

When I did eventually find the rest of the photos from that evening in Tarpon Springs I found I had a lot of pictures, but they were all of the same view.  I still do that.  If I’m there with the camera then I keep taking pictures, because that next one I take might just be the best one of all.  In reality they are all pretty much identical.

But I am consistent.  I would take these pictures I found from the botanical garden again today if they presented themselves.  I did just take pictures of the buds on this cactus recently, but I like this old picture better.04-19-cactusfloer04-19-20lizardsign

I also find that I make assumptions.  On this trip to Linda Pederson Park I saw manatees, lots of them.  Not only from the observation tower, but you could also see them as you stood along the edge of the inlet.  On later visits it was disappointing to discover that that’s not always the case at all. 04-19-20manatees2.jpg

It’s the reflections in the water that keeps you from seeing the manatees as they swim past you just a few yards away as you stand on the bank.  When I took these pictures two years ago I must have passed over them because I couldn’t see the manatees clearly.  Now I see the reflections in the water itself and in revisiting them these were my favorite shots from that day. 04-19-20manatees.jpg04-19-20manatees3.jpg

Funny how that works isn’t it?  What we failed to appreciate in the past becomes the thing that pleases us most when we look back with fresh eyes…