I truly think that there is more beauty in imperfection than perfection, for it is the imperfect things that truly make us beautiful. --me
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Aug 29, 2008

Toad Away

Well this is the last of the critters from my trip. I had hoped to have more critters but they just weren't there. Although, I will have a post about the doe that my son helped feed a bit later. I was disappointed that I did not see more birds and such, they just were not in to mood to be seen or when they were visible it was so fast that you did not have the time to move the camera into position before they were out of sight again. I could hear them everywhere and I think that is why I was so disappointed that I didn't see many of them. This toad is actually a little toad that we saw on the trip home. He was in the rocks at the gas station that we had to pull over in because my baby was hungry and since we switched him to the big boy car seat he doesn't do well drinking his bottle without someone holding it. He sits up more in the seat and doesn't tip the bottle back far enough. Needless to say we have a mess right now when he does it himself. Now that I have bored you with that bit of information let's get back to the toad. At first I thought he might be one of the rocks so I had my two cousins go over and check it out, sure enough I was right he was a toad and not a rock. So my youngest cousin picked him up and hence we have her hand in the picture. This is the second toad that I have seen this year but I have to admit I don't really look for frogs and toads. At least not yet I don't. I remember growing up I saw them everywhere. We lived next to a crick (drainage ditch). It actually ran right through our backyard cutting it in half well actually it cut the back yard up so that we had one fourth of the yard behind the house and three fourths of the back yard on the other side. We actually owned one of the largest lots on the street but it seemed so much smaller because the majority of our yard was not easily accessible. The way the crick ran through there was actually room to have put another house on the land between the house on the west side of us and us but the crick would have ran in the front yard so we each had a lot and a half of land. But now that I said all that we would have frogs and toads all around when I was younger. I loved hearing the bullfrogs growing up. And as I was searching for the type of toad this was I realized listening to the sounds that some of the noise I remember from childhood were actually from the frogs and toads and not the cicada bugs like I had thought they always were. Oh and I found out this is an American Toad.

The sign is from the Sarett Nature Center and the toad was found at the Galesburg gas station exit 85 off I-94. I loved the sign when I saw it and thought I would share it with you. Also if you hadn't figured it out I am a stream of conscious writer, so forgive me for my ramblings.

Camera Critters
For more critter pictures click the icon.

Aug 28, 2008

Calico Pennant

Here is a different flier for me. This lovely dragonfly was kind enough not to fly away as I was taking his picture. He did reposition himself though. I was within a few feet of this guy. He was in the same area as the first two butterflies that I took pictures of that day. I believe that this dragonfly is called a Calico Pennant. He was much easier to narrow down. There are not near the amount of dragonflies and damselflies as there are butterflies and moths.

I have never photographed dragonflies before but after viewing them on a few of the blogs that I read regularly - Virtua Gallery and The Ohio Nature Blog. So when I saw this guy I thought why not and gave it a shot. I am very pleased with my results. Also I am learning that the camera I have at the moment is great for shooting these macro type shots. This is great for me since I enjoy the close up shots.

Aug 27, 2008

Another Gray Comma

Here is another picture of the Gray Comma Butterfly. Well I am pretty sure this is a Gray Comma. The only other possibility in my mind is the Hoary Comma Butterfly. This image concludes my butterfly images from this trip. I have a couple other critter images, then onto the flower images. I am trying to find a good link to help with identification of the floral images that I have. If anyone has any suggestions of sites they like to use please feel free to share I would greatly appreciate it. Have a great evening.

Aug 26, 2008

Black Swallowtail

I could have spent hours and taken countless pictures of the butterflies out at the Sarett Nature Center. And this was all within steps of where I parked the car. I saw at least five of these beautiful Black Swallowtail butterflies fluttering around. I was in awe of the fact that I saw them all at the same time. I also saw a Hummingbird Clearwing Moth but was unable to get a clear picture of it. While there were not many different types of butterflies and moths around that day, I could have take a memory card full of the few that were there had I allowed myself. It was great and I look forward to my next trip to a nature center in hopes of seeing more butterflies and possibly some birds on this future trip. I could hear birds everywhere but was unable to spot them except for the few that zipped by so quickly you almost didn't notice them until they were gone. Have a happy Tuesday.

Aug 25, 2008

Great Spangled Fritillary

My first picture from my trip across state. I had planned to finish up my Petoskey images but I am to eager to share my images from my trip. The first images of my trip will be from the Sarett Nature Center in Benton Harbor, MI. The last of the photos will come from my cousin's yard in St. Joe. We had such a great time and are looking forward to returning in October sometime when we go to the apple orchard.

The butterfly is a new one for me to photograph. (If you would like more info on this butterfly look HERE.) I am so excited to add another image to my butterfly and moth collection. Have a great Monday.

Aug 23, 2008

My trip

Had a great day across state. Will be finishing up sharing my Petoskey images then I will start sharing the images from today. I took close to a 150 images both creative and family related. As always the creative outweigh the family but some of the creative also include family in them. My oldest was able to help feed a doe today. He was standing within feet of a doe. This was a sight to see. Also had lots of fun at the Sarett Nature Center in Benton Harbor. This is a very nice place. I will have a post on my family blog about the trip tomorrow evening. I will also be playing catch up with viewing my fellow skywatch participants. Have a great weekend.

Aug 21, 2008

Parasailing - Skywatch

Continuing with my photos from Petoskey. Here are some people parasailing. An excellent activity to do when you are out on the water. I wish I had a boat to be able to do things like this. Sigh, maybe someday.

For more skywatch posts click HERE.

History Museum

This is the history museum in Petoskey. Obviously by the name on the building it is kept by the Little Traverse Historical Society. This museum is a great little place to relax and learn some interesting facts about the Odawa Tribe. Most refer to them as the Ottawa but they prefer Odawa. Something I learned at the museum. I wish I had pictures of things from inside the museum. But this was before I joined the digital revolution and so while I took numerous pictures seven rolls to be exact I was conservative in what I took pictures of. This is little museum is an old train station. There is even a portion of the tracks running behind the museum. This is definitely a place to visit if you are ever in the Petoskey area. It is located close to downtown shopping and it is close to the local marina.

Aug 20, 2008

The Resort

This is the resort that I would love to stay at one day. Well at least I believe it is a resort. It is located right on the water and has all of the beach paraphernalia that you would expect to see at a resort. This is the area that I thought I might be trespassing on when I took the image of the chairs. Even though I was here in July the weather was very nice. Not too hot, not too cold. I think it has something to with the whole lake effect on the weather. It was perfect weather to go swimming in the early afternoon but by late afternoon the wind was so pleasant that you felt comfortable out in the full sun.

Aug 18, 2008

At The Docks

So I decided for this week to share some of my favorite Petoskey pictures. I have needed to wade through these images. Some of them will be straight forward others will be creatively enhanced such as the above image. Petoskey is one of my favorite places in Michigan. Yeah one out of like a hundred. Let's just say if it has beautiful nature views it is in my favorite places to go. Not that I don't enjoy some of the things that the cities have to offer, it is just that I enjoy my nature venues much more. I need to get out into the great outdoors more often. I know that as my boys get older this will happen. Right now it is difficult with two small boys and a husband who is working third shift. I look forward to this Friday though. I will trek across state to visit family and a nature center in the area to boot. I am so excited about this and I hope and pray that the weather is nice for us so that I do not have to cancel the nature center trip. Have a wonderful Tuesday.

Smiling Lily

This is my profile image. The flower is from my gran-granny's funeral this past February. This little flower survived being used in a floral arrangement, being plucked from that arrangement, then placed on the floor of my van (this was Thursday), it stayed in this spot until I got home on late Saturday night. Then on Sunday morning I placed it in a make shift vase and by Sunday night it was smiling at me, literally. Do you see the smile? I love this photo. There is no way for me to explain it but I love this photo. And in actuality it helped to place lilies as one of my top five favorite flowers.

To see other beautiful flowers click HERE.

Aug 14, 2008

The Mountain

My niece out on the "mountain" in my sister's back yard. It is so cute to me how my nieces and nephew refer to these mounds of dirt as mountains. There was something so simple and serene about this photo that I thought I would share it with all of my friends. Happy Skywatching.

For more skywatch posts click the icon.

The Grasshopper and The Toad

Oh wait that isn't the story, is it? Well in this case it is. About a week and a half ago we celebrated my youngest nephew's first birthday. While at my sister's house I walked around the yard taking pictures of the critters and the kids out in the yard. (The butterfly, moth and clover images are from this day.) I tried as hard as I might to get a photo of a grasshopper but was only able to capture this one image. Part of the reason for only one image was that every time I would get a grasshopper in my sights one of my nieces or nephews would come running up to me scaring the bug away. Well this was the routine all day. I know this is not the greatest but I loved the camouflage effect, so can you see him?

Another creature we saw was this toad. Or is it a frog? Either way he is still cute in that amphibian sort of way. My oldest nephew cracked me up because he was more than willing to try and get this toad but when we saw a tiny one no bigger than your thumb, I asked him to pick it up and I would take his picture with it. Well he simply informed me that he would hold it but he didn't want to touch it, meaning that he didn't want to pick it up. It cracked me up because he would hold it as long as someone else placed it in his hand. I on the other hand enjoy them on the ground. I am past my days of picking up the critters out in the yard. I know I am going to have to get past this to some extent or learn to hide some of the gross out factor as my boys get older and start to get into these types of things. Oh, the joys I have ahead of me if my boys are anything like their predecessors.

Aug 13, 2008

Two Butterflies

Black Swallowtail Butterfly

Cabbage White Butterfly

I have linked the names of the butterflies to their respected identification pages if you care to look at the info on them. Also if I have identified them wrong please let me know, I do appreciate it. I don't want to be errant in my information. I am not an expert and am just doing my best to inform myself on these wonderful creatures as I meet them in passing.

Aug 12, 2008

An apology

I want to apologize for missing the last two days. I had every intention of posting at the very least some pictures of butterflies that I have taken recently. Somehow the days have gotten past me. Part of this is due to my watching the Olympics. I enjoy watching the gymnastics, swimming and diving. I occasionally watch some of the other activities but these are my favorites. Also today we had a wellness check up for my youngest. He is now nine months old and weighs just under 22 pounds and measures in at 29.5 inches long. He is staying consistent between the 50-75 percentiles. Compared to my oldest, my yougest is a giant. My oldest (by one year and eleven days) was only in the 5-10 percentiles and still is in this range. I figure they will be the same size when the youngest reaches 18 months and by the time my youngest is 2 he will have passed his older brother in size. This is speculation based on what my dad and my uncle did as young children. Anyhow I said all this because I don't know why. Although if you would like to learn more about my life and my boys check out my other blog - Life with the Woods. I will have the butterfly pictures posted as soon as I can get blogger to cooperate and let me upload my pics. Thanks for the patience and for stopping by.

Aug 9, 2008

Chickweed Geometer Moth

I have reported this sighting. While trying to identify this little guy, I noticed that there was really no information other than a simple photo of what type of moth I believe him to be. Check it out here. So I looked into it and sent an email to the area coordinator. I am having a case of insomnia so I have nothing better to do while I wait for my body and mind to wind down and let me sleep. Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

Camera Critters
For more critter pictures click the icon.

Aug 8, 2008

Purple Clover - Watercolor

Another image that I liked when I took it but once I started working with it realized that it was not as I would have liked it to be. After playing with some of the filters in Photoshop I really like the way this looks. I always wished I could paint but for some reason or other I have never been able to connect my hands to what I see in my mind or for that matter in a photo. Now I have found a way to "paint" on my own.

Aug 6, 2008

Hidden Treasure

This beauty was tucked into a corner of the garden just peeking out over those leaves. As soon as I saw this hydrangea all I could think of is the emblem for the cabbage patch kid dolls. I realize that this dates me as a child of the eighties but that is who I am. Enjoy this little hidden treasure, I know I did.

Aug 4, 2008

Porcelain Pastels

The flower on this plant reminded me of delicate porcelain. The soft ivory color accented by the pastel pink and green. If I had only seen the buds of this plant, I never would have thought that these beautiful ivory flowers were inside.

Aug 3, 2008

Pink Passion

I have decided that I need to take a small break. I am going to try and set up some automatic posts. I am in dire need of getting a few things done around my house. I will be checking in periodically and viewing comments. I should be back on Thursday. Thanks for stopping by.

My First Blogging Recognition

My First Blogging Recognition
from Louise at Potted Frog

My Second Blogging Recognition

My Second Blogging Recognition
from Mom of 4 at Our "Lil" Family

My Third Blogging Recognition

My Third Blogging Recognition
from Pam at The Conley Family