Friday, April 18, 2014

Haiku My Heart Friday: Patience

She sits on her nest
Waiting for the eggs to hatch,
Teaching us patience.
Tri coloured heron (with breeding plumage)

Haiku My Heart Fridays are hosted by recuerda_mi_corazon.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Birds and Iguanas

I've slowly been going through all the photos I took in Florida last week, close to 2,000 in all.  Still liking the bird photos from Wakodahatchee Wetlands the most, with the birds from the aviary at Butterfly World coming in a close second.  Now in the process of trying to identify the birds.  Like this little guy with the big yellow feet and striped neck:
A very lonnnggg neck when extended!
Update: I have since discovered the bird above is known as a least bittern, described here as "A tiny heron, furtive and surpassingly well camouflaged, the Least Bittern is one of the most difficult North American marsh birds to spot."  Sounds like I was pretty lucky to see this fellow!

And this pretty bird with the plume on his or her head:
Update:  This is a tri coloured heron with breeding plumage.

Both places had identifying signs posted, like this one:
which have been quite helpful to me after the fact, but the ones from the Wetlands don't show every bird that we saw that day. Which means I am Googling things like "bird with striped neck", hoping to match a name to the picture.

I went looking for "duck with orange beak" for this photo
and one of the results was (no surprise) this:

but it was quite easy to find out that these ducks are black bellied whistling ducks, thanks to this post by Kelly of Red and the Peanut (she has some great closeup shots of this breed).

What I didn't notice until I cropped this photo to get a closeup of the ducks was that there was a huge iguana in the grass right behind them, how cool is that??!
The same iguana we'd seen in a nearby tree earlier? Or a different one? Who knows? I did observe that they puff up that bit of skin under their chin when they are disturbed, as the one on the branch below only puffed up like that when a grackle landed on the end of the branch he was sitting on.
Before that, that piece of skin was nowhere in sight.
If you recognize either of the birds above, please leave a comment to help me out with this identification process! In the meantime, I'll keep looking.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Musical Pages

Here at the rest of the journal pages created by my fellow Journal Junkies, as revealed at our monthly meeting held at Bizzy B this past Monday night.

Laura's page contained all of the musicals she has seen performed live:
She also did a page of lyrics and read them out for us to see if we could identify which show they were from. We got most of them right and of course, had to sing the words!
Helen's page focused on Gilbert and Sullivan:
As usual, Marilyn did several journal pages.  One of her "Musicals" pages was based on The Wizard of Oz:
The second was devoted to musicals in general
and featured this image from the Internet of the first show ever performed on Broadway, "The Black Crook":
She also did a couple of pages using the alternate theme for April, fruits and vegetables:
My favourite was this one, "lettuce turnip the beat" - she is so clever!
Kelly's page was wickedly good:
Louise did Jesus Christ Superstar. Man, I loved that movie. I'm sure I wore the grooves out on that soundtrack, I played it over and over again back in the day.
Heather's pretty page featured The Sound of Music:
Donna's page had to do with an opera called "Tales of Hoffman".
Many thanks to Heather as well for bringing book pages for all of us to use in our artwork - much appreciated!

The theme for May is "accessories".  Can't wait to see what my artist friends come up with for that theme!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

No Worries

I know I said I would post photos of the journal pages of my fellow Journal a Junkies today but the evening was spent doing other things so it will have to wait until tomorrow. 

But no worries, here's a sneak peek at Bette's Lion King page, featuring the lyrics of Hakuna Matada, to tide you over until then. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Journal Junkies: April

Tonight was the April session of our Journal Junkies art journaling group.  This month's theme was "musicals".  Here's my page:
I used my Silhouette Cameo to make the musical notes and wrote the names of various musicals I have seen on each of them.  I used modelling paste and a stencil to add the stars in the corners.  The first layer was sheet music, then gel medium, then gold paint mixed with something to make it more translucent.  Then I drew on the lettering.  Notice the "Broadway font" I used for the word "Broadway"? ;)

Tomorrow I'll share photos of the journal pages created by my fellow JJ group members - stay tuned!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

3 Sure Signs of Spring

I went out for an early morning walk this morning, taking advantage of the sun and milder air.  Along the way, I saw three sure signs that spring is definitely here.

1.  Potholes
It has been a bumper crop for them this year, as a result of all the back and forth temperatures we've had.  I heard City crews filled 2,600 potholes last Thursday alone.  Crazy!

2.  Robins and Red-winged Blackbirds
It may be fuzzy in the picture above but it is definitely a robin.  I saw three of them this morning.  I didn't actually see any blackbirds, but I definitely heard their distinctive call.  The return of these two of our feathered friends has always been one of the first indicators of spring here in Ontario.  I realized last week in Florida how much I had been missing the sound of birdsong over this long, cold winter. It was so nice to hear it again this morning as I walked around my neighbourhood.

3.  Garage Sales
No question about it, the beginning of garage sale season definitely means that spring is here, although I must admit, seeing one in April was a surprise!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Haiku My Heart: From Above

From the sky, things look
different, once familiar
sights become new again.
I took some cool photos yesterday on the plane ride home.  It was a clear day, not too many clouds to block the view from the plane window to ground below. The colours of West Palm Beach were pleasing to the eye - the green grass and trees, the blue of the ocean.
Farther north, in Ontario, the ground cover was still brown, not yet warm enough for the grass to grow. The shores of Lake Erie are still saying goodbye to winter ice
while only a few miles away, Lake Ontario is already clear and blue.
We caught a glimpse of the CN Tower in the distance
and I could even see my own apartment building, only minutes away from landing at the airport.
Everything looks different from the sky.  I envy birds for their ability to glide above the Earth, looking down from a new vantage point at what we on the ground take for granted.

You will find more Haiku My Heart submissions here, hosted by recuerda mi corazon.