My Life is really in the Garden

Enjoying and sharing the daily discoveries of the beautiful nature that surrounds me in my lovely garden and everywhere else!


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An object forgotten leads me to Dallas Road and a lovely visit to the beach!

It’s a lightly raining day here .. and I decided to post some photos from yesterday.

Happy on this raining morning.. sipping on a mug of Yorkshire Tea, listening to John Mayo … some things don’t change over the years.  Memories of my younger self – listening to my LP’s on the great little turntable that I had, mugs of whatever kind of tea I favoured way back then.    Cannot remember what records I had  beside the Beatles!!  Something bluesy, though.

Listening now to the sound of the harmonica, I wonder if I still have my harmonica purchased a few years ago to try out . ..must look for that.  Either I donated it to charity or placed it on a shelf somewhere.

Sweet little Gold Crowned Sparrow perched on a tiny twig , feasting on some seeds from the nearby bird feeder.

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Skies from a few days ago .. I was in the backyard (where else!) happened to look up and noticed that these clouds seemed interesting, they seemed to be pointing downwards  .. had to run inside to fetch my camera and the effect in the photo isn’t as clear as it really was . .. but isn’t that the way, though.saturday-02

Had to run an errand yesterday, I’d forgotten something somewhere and since I was close to the ocean side of town – thought I would wander down to Dallas road and watch the water for awhile.  Such a restful place .. one of my all time favourites and I just haven’t been down there for awhile so this was a rare treat.  Met a few dogs, one young bulldog named Edgar, sweet little thing!   He was soaking wet from dashing into the ocean and was just a happy .. happy little dog!saturday-12

How lucky are we to just have this wild beauty so close .. a place to wander, relax, breathe in the sweet salty air and just totally chill out.   There is an upper pathway, to the right, along the grassy edge.  It was created a number of years ago, a place to walk and admire the ocean when the tide comes in.saturday-13

The little Gold Crowned Sparrow is not shy and is quite used to people wandering about.saturday-10

Big bundles of kelp washed up on shore.   Great stuff for gardens, I collect my seaweeds elsewhere though!  For the patient and artistic types, beautiful baskets can be woven from the dried kelp.   Don’t leave it out in the rain though!  🙂  Seaweeds have more than 60 minerals and add value to the soil.saturday-06

A big container ship sails slowly past .. objects in the distance have an allure that is missing closer up.  The mystery is delightful though.  Where is it going .. where did it set sail from .. what is it carrying in the hold .. saturday-07

A little island of kelp bobs about the water .. wonder if it will reach the shore or just stay floating out there?  So many questions!!!   saturday-09

A lovely section of sandstone … natural art ..saturday-15

Some interesting sea life creations live on a huge section of styro-foam topped cement that rests on the beach.saturday-14

I think these are Cormorants out on the water .. diving for food and enjoying a swim in their natural element.saturday-08

Cars park along the top at the left, there are marked spaces and lots of room for everyone.   Many people relax in their vehicles there and enjoy the sights of the water and the activity therein.  A little sports car has driven down the cement slope to get a closer view.  I love walking down and when the tide has been out .. you can wander out for quite a distance on the rocky outcropping that is currently covered with water.  Quite a lovely experience to do that .. but not today!saturday-03

I picked up a few stones and tried to skip them on the water .. that was fun.  Sometimes I collect special stones for memories and sometimes i just like to enjoy their beauty on the beach and leave them there for others to enjoy.  This photo is a good enough reminder of my relaxing time at the beach.saturday-11

One more look at this beautiful sight and then time to hop back in my car and get on with the day.  Glad that I had the opportunity to come down here for my little visit.saturday-05

Back home I glanced at my shadow and thought .. this is what it is like to be taller!  Well, my shadow was taller than me and it’s “me and my shadow” so that meant that I was tall.  (in my mind anyway) 🙂  Pretending is fun for a little bit.saturday-04

Time to get on with this day!  Much to do and time is rolling along.

Another batch of dehydrated apple slices (yum) to empty from the dehydrator and fill the trays with lovely cinnamon and nutmeg scented applesauce for fruit leather!

Leaves to rake.  Beads to pack up.  Violin to be practiced ( a lot! )

I do love the violin so very much and pleased that I’ve begun to learn.  Learning is a rocky road, I struggle with a lot but it is so satisfying to make the strings sound a bit more like some kind of music and not a screaming cry for help!!!

🙂


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More happy pics from a lovely frosty morning ..

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Yesterday was another beautiful sunny day!  And a busy one!   Went for my lovely long walk, taking various routes, walking as briskly as possible.  Breathing in the crisp fresh air .. sturdy walking shoes gripping the pathways along the way.   Started earlier in the day … fewer people out and about.  Lots of birds chirping.

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Frosty covered boardwalk … not slippery at all!  While on my walk, spoke with several other walkers who kindly warned me about slippery patches!  I was feeling so confident that I wouldn’t be affected.   And both times I thought this very thought .. well … I happened to be on icy patches and found myself gliding along and flailing my arms for balance.  Coincidence?  I think, perhaps, maybe.  So I stopped thinking about slipping and guess what!  It didn’t happen again.  The power of the mind!05

Saw the lovely Cormorant .. the one who escaped being the eagle’s lunch yesterday.  Noted that the Cormorant kept looking upwards at the sky.  Survival.  And he didn’t perch on the rail for grooming and he didn’t go for a flight .. at least while I was there.06

Love this stand of trees .. birches, I think.  Their silvery silhouettes were very striking and cool looking.07

Still waters .. watery reflections of the earthbound formations gazing down .. 09

And this Arbutus makes a willowy shapely form .. with the side branches outstretched, it appears that the tree is dancing very gracefully.

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Little birds quickly taking advantage of quiet to take a little drink of water .. so I stopped to let them enjoy a few minutes without interruption.

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This stately willow never gets tired .. always beautiful in rain, sun, all seasons .. magnificent.

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Here is the shadow me .. taking a photo of the shadowy bench .. talk about another dimension!12

Way up in the tree sits a little grey squirrel.   Softly nestled on a bed of moss, the branch is high enough to avoid close encounters of the human kind.13

Ok, he’s seen me and really wants me to continue on my way .. so he crouches down to wait till I do.14

Saw a flock of tiny birds feeding away at the little pine cones.  Their cheerful chatter was quite delightful as they frolicked about the branches .. eating delicacies.   Don’t know what kind of birds they area .. but very sweet.   Felt very fortunate to see them.15

Back home .. Mrs. Downy Woodpecker is nibbling away.  Don’t know what was in the air yesterday .. maybe the birds thought it was spring or something.  Noticed some huge Robins having flying altercations and tumbles in the trees.  Then I saw the Downy Woodpeckers going through a troublesome patch also.  Think there were 4 of them ….they seemed to choose a feeder then change their minds.  In the end, though, peace and quiet.16

Sigh …17

The bulbs are emerging … the weather has them fooled into thinking that spring has arrived.  No such luck.18

And here they are .. delightful little Bush-tits …. there are quite a few this year.  And I think that they are slowly getting used to me.  19

Love them …20

Wonder who is in the plane .. where is it going …

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The consensus is good for the new feeder.  03

And my garlic .. growing greens up through a very thick layer of ground oak leaves and seaweed….02

And on this note … that’s it for the day .. 01


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Thursday, blue skies, Mallards, Eagles, Cormorants … not a bad day, really!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Ah .. 2013 .. after only a few weeks .. it just rolls off the tongue.  As if time had always been 2013.  No thinking about the trepidation of a new year.  This is the new year .. a time for new things .. new starts .. new hobbies .. interests .. everything!

And this would include .. new skies .. of course!  How wonderful Thursdays skies were .. I couldn’t keep my eyes off of them!

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So cheerful and bright … they really look like summer skies!02

Quite a lovely early morning walk .. and I was surprised (and happy) to see this little garden gnome guy … looks like he’d just stepped outside to enjoy the sun … he didn’t appear to notice me .. quite a happy kind of gnome he seems to be .. a good neighbour, wouldn’t you say?

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Noticed some colourful looking mushrooms growing merrily on a tree branch.  Wonder if the gnome has relatives living in similar places?

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And nature’s most beautiful art …. 05

Farther along .. I reached the main walkway over Swan Lake .. and stopped for a while.   Very quiet this time of day.  No one rushing along.  Noticed this Cormorant and Mallard Drake companionably resting on the railing.   Quite a relaxed little scene.  The Drake is settling down for a snooze.  The Cormorant is drying off his wings … he’d been for a swim and took some time to shake the excess water out of his feathers.

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I moved a little bit closer as my camera has limited range and I really wanted to take some photos closer.   The Cormorant noticed me and kept a wary eye out!

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Well .. umm … his body language seemed to convey that I was a little too close .. or perhaps it was time to somewhere .. for he swiftly dove into the air and flew over me .. a wide circle …. way up high (I didn’t try to get a photo .. it would only be a dot in the sky).  And then he just settled in the water, maybe 100 yards or so away … calmly paddling away.  Totally oblivious to what was happening in the skies above him.

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And he was being watched.   The two resident eagles were keeping a close watch on him.  Then … omg .. one of them swooped down from their viewing tree and in mere seconds, he’d (she’d?) zoomed over to the lake and was flying towards the Cormorant!!!

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Closer .. and closer .. oh (expletive) I said, involuntarily … no … don’t go after the Cormorant.  I’d just spent ages watching him (her?) meticulously grooming all the feathers and relaxing in the quiet of the morning … Please .. please .. don’t … the eagle has very strong wings and can fly so fast and cover so much territory quickly …did the Cormorant have a chance?

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I know this is nature and that eagles don’t have shopping stores and must fetch their meals to live .. however .. I just don’t like this part of the food chain.  I watched as the Cormorant made his way to the thick marshes on the other side of the lake.  The eagle swooped and dove and finally .. oh, thank goodness!  Flew away empty. The Cormorant lives for another day.  For as beautiful as these nature sanctuaries are and as lovely and magical the birds are, that we see .. theirs is a savage world.  Survival is the key word.

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I hoisted my binoculars to my eyes and saw that the two eagles were once again perched in their viewing tree.  Ready to zoom down and collect their 11 am lunch.  They do look very regal, wild and strong sitting way up there.

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So I continued on my merry way … relishing the sheer beauty up above …

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The recent rains had been very heavy .. lots of signage warning everyone not to take certain trails.

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And I soon found that one of the warning signs was particularly true!  This is the far end of the long walkway over the Lake (away from the Nature House) and this explains why there was no one there when I visited this area.

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Just loved the look of the trees forming a sort of framed area of the pathway … lovely contrast of tree bark, leafless branches forming a lovely arch for all of us to walk beneath.

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Someone cared enough for the birds, wanted them to have food during the heavy rain .. sweet.

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Nelthorpe .. this is the area where we are directed when the rains are too heavy.  Lots of lovely plans for butterflies .. etc.

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See the roped off areas .. this is for the wildlife, butterflies etc.  Lovely.

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Wonderful .. felt so happy to be outside, walking beneath such beautiful skies ..

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Little birdies .. I stopped for a few minutes so that they could continue their little puddle baths ..24

oh .. happy days … 23

Blue skies ….

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Thursday .. a lovely day … sigh .