dogs, home, life goes on, loneliness, photography, silliness

Night life…

On the way out for the sunrise the other day I found myself singing along with the radio, “I love the night life, I love to boogie”, and I cracked myself up. That would be true, I do love the night life, as long as it starts at 4 AM. And that’s if I’m lucky. Sometimes it starts at 3 AM, and this morning it started a little after 2 AM. That’s when I realized that the sound I was hearing wasn’t motorcycles, it was a helicopter. From the sound of it they were right overhead and circling. It seemed like they were concentrating on my house and my yard, even though I knew that that wasn’t likely. I also knew that the dogs would be awake soon, they seem to know when I’m awake and that will get them up and wanting to go out. But what was going on out there? I put all the outside lights on and let Ozzie out, but he didn’t seem worried about anything. I was glad Zoe didn’t want to go out because she wanders more and I really didn’t want to be outside in my pajamas with the helicopter overhead and a potential ax murderer out there. With my imagination in high gear it wasn’t likely that I was going back to sleep so I made coffee.

I must say that when I walked out of the bedroom I was greeted by the most wonderful smell. Clean, deodorized, no re-oderized, dogs! Ozzie got a bath, and Zoe got a bath, haircut, pedicure, and her ears done yesterday. I took a before picture of her, she was in full woolly mammoth mode and quite overdue for a trip to the beauty shop. I intended to take an after photo also, and I thought I might make the comment that if I thought that spending $100 on a haircut for myself would make as much of a difference in how I look as it does for Zoe then it would be worth the money. But when I picked them up Zoe was all dolled up with little pink bows in her ears and a coordinated scarf around her neck. She was too excited to stay still for much of a picture, and, quite frankly, I was embarrassed for her. She is the least girly girl ever, kind of like me, and she looked ridiculous. I left them on her however, because I had to head out last night and I hoped to get a better picture this morning. But those things are coming off before I take them for a walk this morning. A girl has her pride after all.

If there was an escaped convict on the loose out there this morning I wonder what he would have thought if he heard a savagely barking dog taking a bead on him, and when she came out of the darkness she was wearing tiny pink bows in her ears?2-24Zoeafter22-24Zoeafter

backyard visitors, dogs, fences, friends, home, home improvements, live and learn, neighbors, on closer examination, photography, squirrels, unintended consequences

Good fences…

If good fences make good neighbors then how is it that I just love my neighbors on both sides, one on the side without a fence, and the other with whom I shared a length of fence that my uncle remarked was more holes than fence?  He was right, it was pretty hole-y.  But my neighbor’s entire yard was surrounded by fence that was long past it’s prime, and so when some used fencing came her way she started patching the worst areas.  Which gave me an idea, a true light bulb moment.  Since they were putting up fencing anyhow, how about I buy new fencing for the section that we share, and they put it up.  I really am a genius sometimes, ask Ozzie if you don’t believe me.

I wish I had thought to take a picture when it was nice and clean.  Already it has acquired a coating of sand where the grass hasn’t filled in.  Or the chickens flung sand at it, they’ve been visiting lately.  I certainly admired it… at first.  But I’m over the novelty of it and now it just looks… boring.  There used to be more to look at.2-10fencetextureI went looking through my photos to see if the fence showed up in any of them.  I took this picture because I was trying to take photos of the wood texture.  You see it was a bit see-through.  Zoe liked that aspect of it because she could keep an eye on what was going on over there in case she was missing something.2-10fencesquirrelThe squirrels took to the top of the fence whenever Zoe came zooming out the back door.  Chasing them is her favorite thing to do.  Ozzie, not so much.2-10fencesquirrel2I was able to capture this image because that squirrel likes having his picture taken.  I’d see birds sitting there also, but they weren’t as cooperative so I don’t have a photo of them.  Not that I didn’t try.2-10fencedieselThen there is Diesel.  He has a girlfriend a few blocks away, and he discovered that those boards didn’t really offer much resistance, so every so often he’d make a break for it and they’d have to hunt him down.  Now they know where to look for him however.

So, a new fence.  A home improvement.  Charley was a coin collector, old, rare coins, and patients would bring their old coins in for him to see in hopes they would have a rare one worth lots of money.  He’d tell them whatever they did, don’t clean them.  The color that develops on the old coins is called toning, and the coins are more valuable if the toning isn’t disturbed.  It didn’t matter, they always cleaned the coins.  One did it with a pencil eraser.  Maybe he thought Charley wouldn’t notice.  I never understood the value of the toning, I just took Charley’s word for it.  But it has occurred to me that that’s what is missing from the new fence.  Toning!  A little something extra to look at…

finding my way, friends, growing old, home, life goes on, memories, natural wonders, photography, simple things, travel

New England girl…

I hadn’t even gotten the title written onto the page when Charley commented in my ear that I was a girl when Hollywood was a prairie.  That may be true, but what the heck.  My trips ‘up north’ usually result in running back and forth, trying to visit everyone, and not spending enough time with anyone.  Especially my life-long friend Kathy in New Hampshire.  But we had a BIG high school reunion a while back, the one where when your parents had it you realized how old they were getting.  And now it was our turn, and I went to New Hampshire and stayed put, and even then it wasn’t enough time together, we hadn’t run out of things to talk about.  Or places to photograph.  I was seeking stone walls, but found much more than that.  Old chimneys that once had families huddled in front of it, or a pot of stew simmering in it.  “Flower beds’ that would make you smile.  Old red barns, and rocky rivers, not unlike the rocky New England beaches, like Duxbury, that had Charley shaking his head.  Covered bridges, and hints of fall colors to come, but not while I was visiting.  Lake Sunapee, on a perfect day.  And the inevitable stone walls, some of them just outside Kathy’s door.

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And no, Ozzie wasn’t with me in New Hampshire.  I was playing with the Superimpose app and, like magic, there he was…

birds, Florida wildlife, home, nature, photography, pond creatures, turtles

Just ducky…

I was contemplating where I might go for photos yesterday when that elusive Tricolor Heron got me out back with the camera.  From the kitchen window I saw him land on my side of the lake, just down the hill.  But of course he flew all the way across the lake as soon as I got myself out there with the camera.  But the light was nice as sunset approached, and the ducks were causing a ruckus out there.  They were feeling frisky I think, must be that time of year.  I could see something on the far bank across the lake also, but had to look through the camera lens to see that it was a turtle.  I could see movement too, as if he had a creature trapped and was about to have lunch.  When I saw the photos it turns out he was just waving his right front leg around.  Not the photo op I thought I was getting.  Even Merlin let me down by not being able to identify the pretty ducks that were swimming in a patch of perfect light out there.  None of the choices suggested seemed to be the right bird.  And then they all flew off in a group.  After having had six days off you wouldn’t think that I’d feel the need for such a quiet night, but I did, and it was nice.



birds, Cranes, Florida wildlife, home, Ibis, nature, photography, Tricolored heron

More feathered neighbors….

The Tricolored Heron that spends time on the lake out back every day is a tricky little guy to photograph.  He is never still, he flits from place to place, and stays hidden in the weeds most of the time.  I think he’s gorgeous.


And the Ibis is present all the time, lots of them actually.  I hardly notice them because they are out there so often.  Zoe loves to run through the flock of them to make them fly.  They are too pretty to be ignored.


But the most exciting thing going on out back is that I think it’s official, we have a nest.  Well, the Sandhill cranes do at least.  They return to the neighborhood in the afternoon, and you know this because they announce their arrival as only they can.  Yesterday they wandered for a while, and then one flew to the nest site and the other one waded over to join him.  They rearranged for a bit, and they spent the night.  This morning they sounded like a couple of roosters out there, announcing the sunrise.  Will we have chicks eventually?  First we’ll need eggs, and then it will take a month.  Stay tuned…


dogs, home, life, life goes on, losing battles, photography

Who’s in charge here…

For a dog who doesn’t seem to have an aggressive bone in his body, Ozzie sure can boss me around. I once read something written by Caesar Milan, that said that any time your dog tells you what to do, like wants to go out when it wasn’t your idea to go out, then that’s aggression. And it shouldn’t be tolerated. Maybe allowed would be a better word. I remember thinking that if I ever had a big dog I wanted to be sure that they were trained perfectly, and incredibly well behaved. Okay, so now I have two big dogs that do nothing I say, unless I ask them if it’s cookie time, which will bring them galloping to the back door.
And the throw on the bed? That’s my side. I’ve always slept on that much of the bed, a little sliver on the side, so Ozzie really isn’t taking the bed over, that’s just his (now) side of the bed. I’ve had to resort to an extra throw these last few nights since it’s gotten cold, and seeing that makes me see how little of the king-sized bed I actually use. I took a picture because Ozzie was hiding his eyes since I came in and turned the light on to get ready to go to bed. Poor thing, I was disturbing him. I should do the same thing when he gets me up at 1:30, and 3:30 every night. I wonder what Caesar Milan would say about that?