Saturday, May 23, 2015

Charlie Brown Tree

What's so special about this Costa Rica Charlie Brown tree?

It harbored the cutest little nest.  And it was in use!

My husband was very concerned that I would disturb the nest with my obtrusive photography.  Doesn't he know me by now?  I always zoom in from a safe distance.  The birds and animals are much less likely to run/fly off.  And of course I don't want to disturb them.  Good grief hubbie.  Have you met me yet?  This little one was waiting for Mom.

Here she is.  I love how she is cocking her head, curious about her new found paparazzi.

The feeding session.

And the plea for More, More, More!

This is my first Costa Rica post from our 2015 trip.  Although, I included my new header shot in a group Scarlet Macaw post earlier this spring. I can't wait to share more of the exotic beauty, rolling landscapes, turquoise seascapes, fiery sunsets, golden sunrises, splashy flora and gentle fauna that we experienced this year. 

There are the grand travel experiences that overwhelm you, but if you keep your eyes open, there are the lowly Charlie Brown trees that charm you. 

 I hope you'll stay tuned for more over the coming year.

Next year it's Panama!

Happy Memorial Day!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Spring Fling!

Move over green.  Get ready for a color explosion!  I just wish crab apple season would never end.  It would be like living in a Thomas Kinkade painting.

A popular perch.  I count 11.

A Blue Jay nest.  I know because I saw them building it at Como Lake. 

A perky Robin.

The skies the limit at the Lake Harriet Rose Gardens.

Stroll here...

Look here...

Over yonder sits my new electric bike!

It's tulip time!  

At this point the last of the crab apple petals have fluttered to the ground. But there is still a whiff of sweet lilacs floating in the city air. Catch it while you can...

Friday, May 15, 2015

Pampered Pets

My moon phase.  Get it?

Pets is the theme over at this week.  I searched and searched and finally came up with an old image from the archives.  Ha!  It wasn't so much of a search, but more like navigating a flood of picks.  I selected my lowly couch kitty only because I haven't posted it in a span of 9 lives.  And everything else including the kitty and the kitchen sink, I have.  

Here's my very own couch kitty.  Hana doesn't like to get up from purrfectly good cat naps. I don't blame her.  But some of us have work to do!  On this occasion I vacummed all around and up and down before finally pulling the bottom cushion right out from under her.  There's one last cushion to clean.  Hmmmm.  I wonder which one that could be.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Spring Greening

These weeping willow vines caught my eye this Spring.  They were so luminous against a deep blue sky.

Reflections of wispy Aspens.

Some early migrants floated by almost out of camera range..

A newborn snapping turtle scuttled across the road.

Two dudes running...

Wood Lake then....

Wood Lake now.  Things are getting thicker, lush and super green.  I heard plenty of Spring frogs humming and croaking on this walk.  They can create a pretty deafening backdrop of sound. And Kermet would certainly approve of all this color.

Saturday, May 2, 2015


fish eye lens

I love the movement in this photo. I went on a Duluth waterfront photo safari while my husband was doing a 26.2 mile inline Marathon along the North shore last Fall.  It was a beautiful crisp morning.


There is no shortage of gulls to photograph.  This one caught my eye because he chose to sleep in the middle of an empty parking lot all alone.  

What lies beneath...

Can you guess what these are?  They light up the iconic lift bridge at night.

Some local color.

Something old.

I had some fun framing the lighthouse inside these loops.

A pigeon in a puddle.

Yikes!  This spider was even scarier in person.  In fact, I didn't even know Minnesota had such huge spiders.  He was at least 3 inches across.  Luckily, I'm on a new photo safari with the hubbs in tow.  At J. Cook State Park.  Hopefully he can save me from spider attacks.  Uff da.

Jungle shrooms.  O.K.  Minnesota doesn't have jungles or tarantulas.  But our woods are just as thick.

Raging Mountain rivers.  O.K. we might not have Mountains either.  Darn.  But we can be Minnesota Wild.

P.S. You can also find my favorite Duluth photos at my Up to the Duluth category over at My 3rd Eye  And just scroll down for more Duluth photos!

Piggly Wiggly

Have you ever been to a Piggly Wiggly?  Well, if you haven't and you don't know what a P.W. is, here's a hint...You can buy ham there.  And Kraft products if you are so inclined.  This illustrated recipe was done for a Sargento contest.  Oops, I mean Kraft.  Obviously. And the hula pigs are wiggling and waving and having a grand old beach day.  If only they knew what's in a sandwich.  Da Dum.  All hell would break loose.  They might even give the wraith of Pele a run for her money.

Wiggle is the theme for this week.

Monday, April 27, 2015


The Story of Stacked Rocks is hands down my most visited blog post.  It has accumulated 6,779 hits so far.  People just like Cairns I guess.  I call them stacked rocks.  And I always photograph them. They are also oddly controversial.  I received a negative and extremely long winded comment on stacked rocks in Hawaii. Too long to post here. But here's another short and to the point one.  And my reply...

S Wood said...
I REALLY wish people would stop this ridiculousness. National Parks are not ours to deface and destroy. If these 'stackers' can not appreciate natural beauty for what it is, the least they can do is leave it be for those of us that do.
Sharon Wagner said...
This is an old post. But I check it every once in awhile because it still gets so many hits. I've noticed I have another negative comment about stacked rocks. I'm leaving it on my blog because it is a different perspective to the beauty of stacked rocks. I agree that moving rocks around in National parks may be destructive. But then again, maybe there are more important things to worry about. I think the most important thing is that people are out really enjoying nature and our parks!

The above defacement of a beach (Ha!) was stacked in Canal Park, Duluth. It's a rock extravaganza up there.  If I wasn't so busy snapping photos I might stack some rocks myself.  I could manage that easy stack.

A rocks eye view.

A mini stack.

What a balancing act.

And such a beautiful sculpture.

A mighty and breathtaking stack!  I absolutely love this reflective photo.

It's so Duluth.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Wood Walks

The requisite shadow photo.

We had so many nice walks at Wood Lake last summer.  Evening and sunset walks are especially nice.  And I'm always happy if I haven't forgotten my camera. I missed a just hatched snapping turtle scuttling  beside a just hatched painted turtle last spring.  Shoot. (I would if I could)  And then there was the time we sat down right beside a baby swallow who was looking to the skies for his mom.  He was right by our feet.  No camera.

There were so many wildflowers, butterflies and bugs.  But speaking of bugs, the breeze and the mosquitoes prevented me from taking more photos. Someday I'd like to get a better camera with a great macro lens for times like these.  But for now I like the ease of a light weight automatic one.

This one turned out great even without a fancy lens.

A song sparrow (or female red winged black bird) has caught some dinner. 

Mallards swimming in the sun.

A big bird headed somewhere...

Sunset.  Another beautiful evening comes to an end. But since it is spring 2015 a new season of walks is just beginning.  Thank goodness!