Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Tufted Titmouse

Well as the weatherman accurately predicted, it snowed-lots. And even though it has snowed and reached below average temperatures before this our bird feeder hasn't had very many patrons this winter. I don't know why they've been absent but they're making up for it these last few days. The nice thing about it is that we're seeing a lot of different varieties that we don't normally see. Along with this Tufted Titmouse the regulars include a Red Headed Woodpecker, a Downy Woodpecker, several Dark-eyed Juncos and plenty of Cardinals.
I sat inside behind the sliding glass doors and got a few good shots over the weekend - I guess that's a testament to my wife's window cleaning.
Anyway I hope that they'll stick around for awhile because we really enjoy watching them.
And by the way, I did refill the feeder after this shot!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Makin' a Fog Run

Here's a spot I stumbled across when I made my last "fog run"- I believe that I mentioned it last week. Anyway I'm not sure that I could get back to this place without a little searching. I was on Hwy. 13 trying to go fast enough that the traffic would not barrel down upon me and slow enough to spot any possible shots. The fog was thick- so thick that I decided that it wasn't really safe to be going 50-60 mph like everyone else seemed to think it was so at first chance I peeled off of the highway onto a side farm road. Fortunately this pond caught my eye fairly soon after my exit from 13 and I was able to pull far enough off the road that I wasn't too worried about any traffic coming over the hill. It's a cool place to be sure. I think that there's a house on the other side of the pond which makes me a little envious to say the least. I'm sure that I'll find it again when the weather changes maybe in the spring but who knows- it's supposed to snow again tomorrow...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Beauty of Winter

The snow's all gone for now and that's fine by me. After the big freeze we all had and the subsequent thaw I'm ready for springtime. It's too easy to forget that we're still in winter and it's supposed to be cold when the temps start to rise into the 50's. I'm sure that we'll have to endure another bout of frigid cold and probably some more snow before springtime actually does arrive and I know that some followers are thinking that I don't know what real cold weather is and that's just fine by me too. But in the meantime I'm thankful as always that there are places like this that only tend to magnify the beauty of winter and I'm around to see it and hopefully capture a part of it.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Burnin' Ball of Fire!

This is our dog Tabasco. The "book" says that a true chihuahua should be 6 lbs. or under- I didn't know that and apparently he doesn't either because he's a chihuahua and he weighs a whopping 7.5 lbs.! Now, normally he's a burnin' ball of fire. No really he is. It's just that in this picture he's just got finished being a burning ball of fire and he's letting his jets cool a little. Probably plotting how to cut his angle next time he's going after that smart alec cat, or that sneaky 'possum or that really unfriendly skunk that for some reason didn't turn tail and run-he just turned tail! I guess that's another story for another day...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Lake Drummond

This is Lake Drummond in Close Memorial Park on Springfield's south(west) side. We awoke to a
heavy fog the other morning so I decided to try and get some shots of the lake (I call it a pond...)with the fog hanging over it. Unfortunately by the time I got around and made my way across town the fog had lifted. The weatherman said that there would be a heavy fog advisory until mid morning! I'm really ill prepared some days to be an actual nature photographer but it was a nice walk in the park. The frigid temperatures that had enveloped the nation were finally rising (which, in turn, brought on the fog) and people were coming out of their cubby holes.
Not to worry though, it was foggy again this morning and I hopped straight out of bed to wander through the back roads in search of "the shot".
I'll share them another time.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Before "Civilization" Arrived...

I'm not sure where my head was at last night. For some reason getting a new post up completely slipped my mind. I think maybe it was the fact that my son had a test today that he needed a little nudge to study for. Social Studies- the American Revolution and the French and Indian War to be more precise. I like that stuff.
A lot of the time when I'm out in the woods I tend to think about life in the early stages of our country. And every now and then I find myself in a spot that makes it easy to imagine what life was like there before "civilization" arrived. I'm sure the spirits of early settlers and the Native Americans that once roamed the hills, valleys and forests of this land of ours are still there and probably thankful that "civilization" hasn't made it there yet...

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge

One of the very cool things we did on our New Years vacation was to go to Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, just down the road from Eureka Springs Ark. What makes this place so cool is their mission. It is, and I quote, "To provide lifetime refuge for abandoned, abused and neglected "Big Cats" with emphasis on Tigers, Lions, Leopards and Cougars."
There really is way too much information to tell you everything so please look it up and check out what they have to offer. One thing that we found interesting though, is the on site lodging. I'm thinking that it would be mighty awesome to fall asleep with the big cats roaring off in the distance.
I do have a friend though, that related a funny story to me about his family stay there when the power went off and his wife and kids hearing the lions' constant roaring had visions of a Jurassic Park type breakout and spent the night in the attic while he sat on the deck and enjoyed the night...

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A Day Too Soon...

In my opinion the only thing that makes winter bearable (other than Thanksgiving, Christmas and my birthday) is when it snows. It seems that most days it's dreary and gray with highlights of brown. I think that most of you know that I find beauty in everything so I hope that you can sense the sarcasm in that last statement but still when it snows everything transforms into a whole new dimension. This was the view from our balcony during our visit to Arkansas. Unfortunately, it came during our last night so our excitement was short lived.Thanks to a few reluctant drivers though, the drive home through the winding, hilly highways was at a snail's pace so we didn't miss a bit of the beautiful Arkansas landscape!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Still Life

I don't have too much to say tonight. We just got back from our New Year's vacation down in the Arkansas Mountains. I do want to say though, that we had a great time- a very relaxing time- and I shot bunches of pictures that I'll be sharing with you all soon.
It's a new year-2010. Let's all make the best of this one!