Friday, December 4, 2009

The Eagles Have Landed




Every year in December, Bald Eagles come to Squaw Creek Wildlife Refuge to feed. This year is no exception. The most recent count shows 58 eagles on hand at the refuge. I have never seen an eagle in real life, just in photos, and I wasn't anticipating seeing any this trip. Things  like that just don't happen for me. But, I had a happy surprise. I saw quite a few, male and female. It was very exciting and I want to go back next week. We were able to get quite a few shots of this handsome guy. I think he is very regal!




It was truly a day for the birds, or should I say geese. Over 100,000 geese and mallard ducks will make an appearance.




We were fortunate to see a splendid cardinal and at least 5 pheasant that flew across the road in front of us, too quickly to get a photo. They are splendid fowl with beautiful plumage.




Squaw Creek is a very peaceful place, very relaxing. I could go back and will go back as often as possible.




It was around 29〫but felt much colder. I actually felt colder at Squaw Creek than I did in the Grand Tetons in October. Parts of the water area are already skimmed with ice. Rather a surreal setting, but beautiful. We left before they closed the gates and headed home. I do hope we can go back next week and maybe get more photos of the eagles.



Tuesday, November 17, 2009

First Snow of the Season





I had trouble sleeping this morning and, after tossing and turning for an hour, I finally got up. Imagine my surprise when I looked outside and saw snow! The first snow of the season! It's not deep and won't be here long, but it's still pretty! Snow always makes a scene look like it has been
freshly painted.

I'll be glad when I can get outside and take better photos!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, November 16, 2009

Winter is here

I don't care what the calendar says, winter is here. We have sleet! So much for going out today.





If it stops soon, we can still go to Costco or Sam's and do some of our shopping. We like to go to Costco and we were thinking about visiting the one by the Plaza. I just have to be careful because of my knee.

Sleet, sleet, go away
Come again some other day




- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Benjamin Button

David and I just watched "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button". I
thought it was very good and sad. David liked it except for the length
and one other thing, for some reason he thought that Benjamin should
show up at the hospital before Daisy dies and should be this big man
with a Gerber baby head. Hilarious. Can you imagine this big man with
a smiling baby's face and a curl on top of his head. You have to say
one thing for David.....he has a wicked sense of humor!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fall is Here.....


The leaves have almost all fallen and I've missed it.





Yesterday, I went to the doctor's office to have the staples removed from my knee, and after two weeks at home without going outside, it felt really strange to be out in the open. Now, I can understand why some of the elderly in nursing homes will not go outside. There is an immenceness to the great outdoors that you get used to in everyday life, but after confinement, it can feel intimidating.

It is a beautiful day and I have nowhere to go! The therapist will be here soon and after that, I won't want to go anywhere but the sofa, which brings up another subject.

Why have David and I waited so long to buy new furniture? This sofa is at least 20 years old, it has no support, and it has lost it's plumpness! In short, I'm embarrassed to have anyone see it. One of the first things I will do when I get back on my feet is get some new furniture!


Thursday, October 29, 2009

11th Day

It's the 11th day of my recovery and today I feel strange, like I have
just awakened from a deep sleep. Since I still don't sleep well, why
do I feel this way? I miss my photography and editing sessions!! Now
I see all the missed opportunities. I have been so blind!

It is gloomy and rainy outside and rather cool in the house this
morning. David is up and was sweet to bring my coffee. That first cup
of coffee in the morning is always the most satisfying. It's when you
can taste the chocolate, or syrup sweetness of the coffee on your
tongue. The best. I try to always have my first cup with real cream,
half and half is all right for later, but that first cup needs the
finest accompaniment....real cream.

I left my bed this morning feeling achy and not quite stable on my
feet. Thank goodness for my walker. I made coffee and opened my
computer, checked my email, facebook.....all those things I normally
do first thing in the morning, but then, I suddenly realized I didn't
know what I was going to do next. I'm housebound for the next few
weeks and I had nothing to work on, nothing! I can't do all the chores
I used to try to find ways to avoid and I don't feel like doing much
of anything, knowing that physical therapy will start up pretty soon.
Generally, when I feel like this, I will get my computer and edit a
few photos, now it is difficult to do this because it hurts to have my
computer in my lap. I sure miss photography. I like to have photos,
lots of photos, but this time I have picked just one that pretty much
describes me...a little worn and needing repair! :)



Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Recuperation

It's bowling league day, the 8th day after my knee surgery, and I'm
wondering what this day will bring (as far as pain). Yesterday, I had
a hard workout with the physical therapist. There was one exercise she
added that I simply could not do. It's called the bridge and I think
my bridge is broken. :) Every time I tried to do it, my calf and back
thigh muscles would cramp. It's been too long since I have used these
muscles.
Sleeping last night was difficult. I could not find a comfortable
position and my pain pills made me thirsty, which made me have to go to
the bathroom. One good thing about this, I'm finally, fully, hydrated!
My schedule: take my pain medication with water, lie down, just get
comfortable, get up and go to the bathroom, drink water before
climbing back into bed because now I'm thirsty, lie down, flip flop
around trying to get comfortable, just get comfortable, have to get up
to go to the bathroom.....and so on until time to take pain
medication, then repeat cycle.
If today runs like those in the past, it should be a good day. I
usually have a good day, then a bad day with little sleep, then a good
day. I will know when I am really on the road to recovery when I sleep
a full 4 hours without a pit stop.
I know David wants me to be able to bowl, but it isn't going to happen
today!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Home Again

Home again and unwinding! My bed felt so good last night. It doesn't
matter how good the beds are in the hotels/condos/motels we stay at
while traveling, there is no bed better than my own.

We put away all the items needing refrigeration and those going to the
pantry, unloaded suitcases and put the dirty clothes in the laundry
room. Today will be spent doing the laundry and making sure everything
is in good order, grocery shopping, and planning next year's return
trip to the Tetons. I miss the views of the mountains. It feels colder
here in Kansas City than it did in the mountains. Why?

I better get started with my to do list before it is afternoon and I
have accomplished nothing!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

So Long, Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Adieu





David and I have had a wonderful stay in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I hate to leave, it is so beautiful; but we have to go home. I will take many memories with me, and lots of photos to carry me over to our return trip, hopefully, next year!

We took our last drive to our favorite spot, Jenny Lake. I will miss the quiet and peaceful serenity of the lake. Oh, to have this in my neck of the woods.



It's really hard to say good-bye.



We have explored the area from the Maude Noble Cabin...



to Jenny's Lake in the snow....



to Signal Mountain....



to Coulter Bay....



and to Gros Ventre (pronounced Grow Vaunt)....




Some would think the snowfall would mar our vacation, but that was not so. If anything, the snow added a new dimension to the Tetons and the park. I am so glad we came this week and I can't wait to come again.

Hurry up next year!!








Mule Deer and Bears and Moose, Oh My!!

The last few days we have seen a lot of wildlife and it has been fun taking photos of everything we've seen. The hard part is selecting the photos to put out here on my blog.

I've seen mama bears.....








and baby bears.....




mama moose.....









and baby moose.




Every day we have seen elk and mule deer but never took photos. Since we are leaving tomorrow, we decided to take a few photos. I think the mule deer are pretty and they always look so inquisitive....




But when they have checked you out completely and don't view you as a threat, they let you know in no uncertain terms.....




The elk always have several individuals keeping watch....




and the bull is ready to lead them away from danger when necessary




All the animals are beautiful and free. I hope they always stay that way!

Welcome to Yellowstone National Park

My Mother has told me a number of times that I did visit Yellowstone. Of course, she then told me I was a baby. So, the park was all new to me. I had seen photos and videos, but the reality is something altogether different. Since there have been so many photos of the geysers and mud pots, I wanted to show some different scenes, Yellowstone the way I will remember it.




One of my favorite shots is one of David walking on the boardwalk. I always seemed to capture him in the steam and mist of the geysers. I like that.




Do I remember the names of the geysers we visited? No, I don't, but I will always remember the look and smell and feel of the geysers, and their beauty.



I wish I could have had more time to really look at the different sites, but we had set our sights on what we wanted to see with the thought that we would come back and spend a week in Yellowstone....and that is probably not enough.




It was very windy the day we were in Yellowstone, and the clouds of vapor enveloped us in dampness and sulfurous odors. I don't think I will have hard boiled eggs for quite a while.



It's not just the power and beauty of the geysers that are appealing to the eye. The different areas have different attractions and you can pick and choose what is interesting to you.



David and I plan to go to Yellowstone next year. Meanwhile, I have my photos to remind me of this latest trip to one of our nation's great parks.



Tuesday, October 6, 2009

On The Way to Yellowstone National Park

I haven't made any blog entries on this trip to Jackson Hole and Yellowstone National Parks. I think I have just been overwhelmed by the beauty of these two parks, plus I have so many photos I just haven't been able to narrow my choices down to 3 or 4 per post.... that is, until today.




David and I started out for Yellowstone on a different road than we have been traveling visiting areas in Jackson Hole. We came over a rise and saw a peak rising above the clouds. Before I could get my camera ready, the clouds were starting to rise and cover the top. David got two photos and I got this one.




Another reason for taking this route was to get closer to the Snake River.




When we came to the Oxbow Bend of the Snake River, I had to take more photos.




We plan to go back to this area tomorrow, but today we are on to Yellowstone.

Friday, October 2, 2009

A lovely view.


This was taken with my iPhone today. Now I wish I had taken out my Canon 5D Mark II to take the photo, but we had just gotten to Jackson, Wyoming, we were tired and we still had the Nature Center near Moose, WY to visit. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the photo. I love it!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Iowa

We thought we were going to finally get some sunshine when we got to
Iowa, but the further we went, the darker it got, until,,,,,,voilà RAIN

Help I'm starting to sprout feathers! I think I'm turning into a duck!!

First rest stop!

We made it to Mound City, so David is entitled to a rest ATP

Leaving Kansas City!

We are on our way to Yellowstone and Jackson Hole, Wyoming; and, as
usual, it is raining. Well, it's a tradition now!!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

An Evening with Friends



David and I shared a delightful evening with friends, Steve and Lynne Bourn. Steve and Lynne are lots of fun and I hope we do something like this again.

We walked through the Art Fair and I found some photos and art work I liked very much, but David and I have quite a few photos that we have taken but never enlarged and framed. Why would I put up something that someone else had taken when I have something similar or better. David takes such beautiful photos and one of my number one projects (you can have more than one number one, right??) is to get them hanging on our walls.

There was a concert going on this evening, the Liverpool Beatles Tribute Band, and there were quite a lot of people attending.




You could bring your own chairs (which we happened to have in the car), sit on the grass, or you could sit on the walls and steps around the main courtyard in front of Bravo restaurant.




The band was entertaining and everyone was having a good time...




some more than others. :)


video

I enjoy watching people just let go and have a great time! No pretense, no hesitation, just let the music take you and get you moving. Age makes no difference. To dance with abandon in front of a bunch of strangers....that must feel wonderful and so confident. I have to say, I admire this man. He is doing what I dare not, even though I would like to at times.

During a break, we went to Tomfoolery's for a drink and ended up just staying there waiting for the second happy hour that started at 9:00pm. David and I had eaten a hearty lunch and weren't hungry at 6:00pm, but when it got to be 9:00 we were ready for some food. It was good food at a good price!

What a great night: good entertainment, good food, good weather, good friends. What more could you ask for?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Going Home



Well, the rain did us in, it just keeps pouring and the weather forecast is for rain the rest of the week. Granted, the chance of precipitation on Friday is only 20% but that also means no days with sunshine. So, we are headed home. Packing was fast and furious and we were out of the condo by 11:00. We're going to try to stop at Grand Gulf State Park in MO. Hopefully, the rain won't be as heavy in Missouri.

Wednesday Rain

Whatever happened to beautiful Arkansas days? This entire week has been rain, with more rain coming. It doesn't bother me, but I know that David is starting to feel cooped up and fidgety. This is especially hard when you know the weather in Kansas City is beautiful, which means the rain will probably follow us home.

So, what to do today? We'll have to wait awhile and see if there is a break in the weather. We can always go to the rec center and swim or get in the hot tub, which actually sounds good since I'm cold right now.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A Place to Retire?


David and I awoke to dreary skies and more rain, but we were not going to let that deter us from seeing all we could see while we are in the Ozarks. Our trip today was to Cherokee Village, a retirement and resort area close to Ash Flat and Hardy. I was pleasantly surprised at the beauty and wealth of opportunity to fish, play golf, canoe, participate in arts and crafts...whatever you want to do. There aren't any high rises or outlet malls or Saks in this area, but then you don't really need them to live here. You are surrounded by beauty and if shopping is your thing, you shouldn't retire to this area.

There are a number of golf courses here, enough to keep you busy, if that is what you like. There's also tennis and swimming if that is more your style. I have come to the conclusion that people in the Ozarks like to bowl. We have found more bowling establishments than you would expect in such a small area. I wonder if they have senior leagues??:)



It started raining pretty hard and these golfers decided to come in. I don't blame them.

There are quite a few lakes in this retirement area and the homes around the lakes are nice and well kept. I can just see us on our pontoon out in the evening tooling along and meeting other owners for cocktail hour! Works for me!


I picked up several information sheets about homes for sale, but by the time I had picked up 4, I was soaked. We may try to make it back to Cherokee Village to find out more about the community.


Mountain View and Calico Rock, AR





Time to write about yesterday's trip to Mountain View and Calico Rock, AR. I know I should post on the same day as the trip, but David had trouble with his computer and the air card. It's frustrating to have photos you want to post and your internet just won't coorperate.

The day started with pouring rain. What else? We always plan our trips to include rain. :) We waited it out and when the clouds lifted a little, we hopped in the car and took off. Our first stop was only about 25 miles or so from our condo, but the roads in this area of Arkansas have lots of tight turns and roller coaster hills. It is beautiful though.

Our first stop was Pepper Sauce.


This is an old ghost town behind Calico Rock. Pepper Sauce was very interesting and I wish we would have had better weather and could really get out and do some exploring. There is an area that looks like an industrial area, several old buildings and houses.......


another view....



and lots of "stuff" laying around (an old forklift, part of a car).



We did find some nice rental cabins up the hill, mountain, from Pepper Sauce with fantastic views of the countryside.

While in Calico Rock, we went down to the White River.


This river is a great place for fishermen. Lots of trout (some of the best trout fishing in the world), bass, catfish, walleye. You name it, it's probably in there. There was a huge bluff along the river but the trees were so close, it was difficult to really see the bluff.

Mountain View is a very nice town, clean and perky; not as big as Branson, MO, but it has lots of music and history. The musicians in Mountain View carry on the musical traditions of the past and teach others the true mountain music so that it will never be lost. We were not there at the right time of day to catch the music in the park and on the street, but there is always another day. If you want a hand made dulcimer, visit Mountain View and you can find one.

We made our way over to Blanchard Springs where I had a chance to use a remote on my camera.


It makes the water look soft and fluid...



I did get a few shots that I liked, but nothing fantastic...




I would like to have tried different lenses, like David did, but after perspiration dripped off my nose, I knew it was time for me to take a rest.


I watched David do his balletic moves, and that was entertainment enough.




Through the trees and over the bridge....just like a fairytale....






On the way home, we stopped a Mirror Lake. This was a nice spot and I would like to go back and spend more time here, maybe with a fishing pole!




We walked along the stream feeding into the lake and found an old mill....



The lakes and streams in the Ozarks are beautiful. If you like clear, cold water, this is the place to come. The Ozarks have some of the best canoeing rivers rated class one to the ultimate class five, the Cossatot. If you like spelunking, there are caves to be explored. There is so much to do here: hike, fish, canoe, kayak......you should never get bored (unless it rains...).