a second look, adventure, birds, bugs, butterflies, Florida wildlife, flowers, friends, fun, live and learn, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip

Plan B…

‘Photography is like a box of chocolates’, to mis-quote Forrest Gump. You may go out knowing what shots you intend to take, but you might come home with entirely different shots altogether. We went to the Celery Fields on Friday, anticipating seeing all the birds on the feeders as we did last time. But not only were there no birds, but there were no feeders either. I guess a little research before you head out for a 90 minute drive would have been prudent. But as long as you get a few pictures it counts as a good day.

The birds were making a racket as we got out of the car. There was nothing to indicate that the feeders were absent. But instead there were Purple Martin houses up, and there was much chatter between the neighbors.
Such pretty birds.
We shake our heads over the huge apartment/condo buildings we see being built as we go about our business. In one case ten new (huge) buildings in addition to the ones already built and occupied. Perhaps single dwelling birdhouses aren’t the norm anymore either.
It seems that where there are flowers you will find butterflies.
And blue, um, bugs? Bee? I can’t decide.
Pollinator for sure.
He was busy.
Pink flowers too, he pollinates them all.
Watch out, he’s heading your way!
'scene' along the way, a second look, flowers, lend an ear, moments, nature, Nature Coast Botanical Gardens, perseverance, photography

Attempted macro…

I was on the other side of town today so I thought I’d go to the botanical garden and see if I could take some macro photos. We had a class on macro the other day, and I told myself that the lenses I already had would do just fine to try my hand at it. Flowers stay still you see, so you can even use your tripod and see how you do. But then a butterfly starts flitting around, and you spot a woodpecker in a far tree, and that’s the end of that. Had a very interesting conversation, well, I listened, the young man talked, about the miracle of nature and whether God is responsible. His time in the service has him struggling with this, he said. Words of wisdom didn’t come to me, I hope listening was enough…

This was the most beautiful flower I saw. Lots of pruning had gone on, and with our lack of rain the flower beds were sparse.
I absolutely love this little purple flower.
The lizards were plentiful, as always.
bugs, butterflies, flowers, fun, gardens, nature, Nature Coast Botanical Gardens, Nature's beautiful creatures, perseverance, photography, second chances

Buzzing by the gardens…

Yesterday I did what I used to do when I lived in Spring Hill, I dropped by the botanical garden rather than drive past it. I doubted that butterflies would be in abundance in this cooler weather, and I was right. But right there in the butterfly garden I found something I haven’t seen in ages, a big fat bumble bee. And the afternoon light was nice. What a treat.

I was amazed at how solid his wings look in this photo.
He was ignoring me completely as he flitted from flower to flower.
I wish I could claim to have set up this shot, but it was just lucky.
He was still busy when I left.

I love it when a spur of the moment inspiration turns out so well. Life is simple these days, all it takes is seeing a tiny little creature to make my day. Life is good.

attention to detail, attitude adjustments, flowers, gardens, go with the flow, growing old, home, perseverance, photography, rain, storms, weather

In the breeze…

Because even though the ‘breeze’ is whipping the rain against the house in sheets, and even though I was listening to it in the dark this morning, it just doesn’t sound like a tropical storm in this area. I hope it’s no worse in the areas that haven’t yet recovered from Hurricane Ian.

I’m told that there was a small opening in the corner of the fence when they moved into this house. And they had dogs, so they planted the bougainvillea in the feature photo to help keep the dogs in. And now it’s the bougainvillea that is threatening to eat Wesley Chapel. I used to prune the small one I had in Spring Hill and my arms would take a beating from the nasty thorns this plant is known for. I had my cat at the vet once and he looked at my scratched up arms and asked, with a horrified look on his face, if the cat had done that. It is a pretty sight, but it would be prettier if it attracted bees and butterflies. And right now it’s waving those deadly fronds like crazy.

I was leaving Sam’s Club the other day and noticed this Rain Tree as I waited to make my turn. I once drove around Spring Hill looking for these trees, always so shapely, for a blog post. My fall foliage, Florida style.
And a rose from the garden of the local library where I went to pick up a few books since I wouldn’t be out in the rain taking pictures for another day or so. Nice library with an unexpected Florida friendly garden.

I have books, actual physical books, to read while I listen to the wind and rain today. I say that I prefer a real book, I’d rather turn the pages, which I’ve been known to try to do when I’m reading on my iPad. But my vision hasn’t been tested since my cataract surgery, and my cheaters don’t seem to be doing the trick as well as I’d like. I’ll probably pull the lamp a little closer also. The joys of aging…

a second look, birds, bugs, Florida wildlife, flowers, fun, perseverance, photography, Pine Island, sunset

All about the birds…

It really was all about the birds last night at Pine Island. Surprising birds if you consider the 5 or 6 chickens that were milling around just outside the entry to the parking lot. They must have headed back to the coop before I could get a picture. But walking onto the beach I saw seagulls in the air, lots of them.

They weren’t flying all the time, but when they did!
Lots of clouds were rolling in.
A little solitude for this one.
I was looking at the sun dipping low and reflecting on the water when the birds started flying through my shots.
So I kept shooting.
Lots of shots.
It seems there is always something going on, and when I saw that this guy’s shirt said STAFF I thought there was an event happening. I guess he was just taking it easy at the end of his day.
This shrub was covered in these flowers that I thought were very pretty. So I looked around for a couple that were in the light and at a good height to get a picture, and this is what I found. I didn’t see the bug at first, and I wish it was a bee or a butterfly, but I guess it’ll have to do.

'scene' along the way, a second look, flowers, following the rules, gardens, nature, Nature Coast Botanical Gardens, Passing time, perseverance, photography, storms, weather


Another stop at the botanical garden up the road from me. This time there were no butterflies stopping for photos, but the flowers were gorgeous.

I noticed this bluebird as soon as I arrived. He must be new.
This looks like a firecracker to me.
How pretty is this?
You can be sure to find some shade should you decide to visit.
I thought the butterflies found these pagoda plants irresistible, but they didn’t seem interested in landing on them this day.
I absolutely love plumbago flowers.
This squirrel was at eye level and stayed totally still for me. I guess he thought he was hiding behind that branch.

My friend suggested that I work on all the photos I have and get them ready in case we lose electricity with a hurricane heading into the gulf. So I took his advice, but without electricity where will those photos go? I guess I will unplug the computer and hope they are waiting for me after the storm. But for now we watch the weather forecasts and get as ready as we can, and wait…