Sunday, November 30, 2014

Overland Park Arboretum

 Greeted at the entrance of the arboretum by this little Titmouse
 So sad to see the beautiful garden with so little life....remembering June and the beautiful colors, scents and hummingbirds. 
 Beauty berry bush
 After a bit of searching, I found my hidden trail leading to the bird blind.....the problem with all the trails, they are all uphill coming back...a real slog. Anyway, it was a lovely sunny day and I enjoyed the fresh air.

 Bird blind
 "Look Ma, no hands"
 Last year I came to Kansas for least this November the water isn't frozen.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Carney Family Thanksgiving

 Just kidding
 I love men in the kitchen

 This was suppose to be a conversation piece but no one said a word about our big pumpkin

 The skinny kid table
 Hoping for a crumb to drop through the glass

Thank you Mike and Twin for a wonderful Thanksgiving meal! It was so nice to be with you and the boys.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Backyard Birds Kansas

Since I was in Kansas last year, my son has hung a bird feeder in his backyard, I couldn't  believe the variety of birds seen from the back window,,,in fact some of these photos were taken from inside (after a through cleaning was done of the window). There were cardinals, robins, sparrows, jays, a downy, chickadees, juncos, doves and not a bird, but my son's nemesis the neighborhood squirrel.
 Common House Sparrow
 Mourning Dove
Dark-eyed Junco

Black-capped Chickadee
Blue Jay

 He's the man
 Downy Woodpecker

 Dark-eyed Junco

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Going to the Dogs

 These are my daughter-in-law's dogs,,,,hard for me to tell them apart but this is Saki
 Saki and Ginger 
Saki, guard dog.....we are safe!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

A Thanksgiving Story

 Due to circumstances that I won't go into here, I usually am alone on Thanksgiving. It was easier when I was working. I would volunteer to work...the pay was great and a few of us would bring in our own Thanksgiving dinner. I really enjoyed that. Since I have retired I have had to be creative with making the day special for myself. A few years I cooked and spent time working in the garden (in milder weather), or I have gone to the movies. Two years ago (remember that very mild winter?) I went downtown to the parade with some friends and was then treated to a lovely Thanksgiving dinner at the MGM Grand. Last year I got in the holiday spirit and fought off the crowd and ate at Cracker Barrel. Not ideal, but the food was great and after that I walked at Lower Huron.
The reason for this story is to tell you that this year I will be spending the holiday with my son and his family. I am really looking forward to this but quite frankly, I don't know how to act. Should I don an apron and help with the bird? What is expected? Well, whatever, I am looking forward to seeing Mike, Twin, Sean and Mikey and also Ginger and Saki (the family dogs). Taking my camera and will be following my grandsons around like the paparazzi. ;-)  I also hope to go to the of my favorite places.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Took these turkey photos last year at Kensington my work on these shots and the wild turkeys.

Friday, November 21, 2014


 I love the way Bittersweet lights up the woods in the fall. A park interpreter told me that the vine is very invasive and will cover a wood with it's growth...on the positive side the berries are bright and beautiful and are food for birds and small mammals. I didn't see that many at Lake Erie but I know that they are a problem at Oakwoods.
In my last post I mentioned the other invasive plant, Phragmites.You see them everywhere...along roadside ditches and marsh areas, even in cities. Lake Erie was loaded with them but the DNR sprayed and some areas need burning as well. Some native species and wildlife will be sacrificed but that is the only way to get rid of this intruder.....let's get rid of Mute Swans as well....another invasive and destructive species.
Hoping that this weather will take a warmer turn soon. This is way to early in the season to be trapped inside.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Trapper's Run Trail

A few weeks ago (before the snow and bitter cold) I had a lovely walk on Trapper's Run Trail at Lake Erie Metropark. Didn't see any deer...I think that they are all in hiding. I did see lots of Cardinals, a pair of Downy Woodpeckers and several Blue Jays. There was still some color and a few scenic opportunities as the photo above.

 Baltimore Oriole nest (I think)

 Male Mallards

 Empty nest


 I never met a park bench that I didn't like...this is one of my favorites

 Last Spring this area was full of Phragmites ( and you couldn't see a thing at the end of the walk....was surprised at the vista now that this invasive plant has been sprayed.

 Drove over to the Lake Erie end of the park and saw this barge heading north to the Detroit River and also these duck hunters (below)
In the far right of this photo you can see the Detroit lighthouse