Archive for the ‘creatures’ Category

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Zoo Visit

May 25, 2012

Last week a friend and I took our kids to the zoo. It was a perfect day because it was warm, but not hot, and there was a light breeze. It also wasn’t mobbed with people, so we had a great time. Here are my captures for the day.

She just LOVES having her picture taken!

Sunning herself, or major attitude?

This is, I suppose, what I get for asking the (almost) teen to pose as a butterfly…

My friend’s daughter was much more compliant!

She also decided to be a turtle. Mine wouldn’t get in the turtle shell. She said she wouldn’t fit, but I have seen grown men inside that turtle shell, so I am sure she would have fit. If husband had been with us, I am pretty sure he would have gotten in it, although he would not have let me photograph him!

Outside the rhino enclosure; I couldn’t resist…

There is a new Africa exhibit and I found the lions to be pretty awesome! Perfect caption for this one, “Isn’t my mane incredible?!”

Safari girls!

Joe’s relative The seals thoroughly enjoyed playing to the small crowd that had gathered to watch them. This one was playing coy, then went inside.  The other one came up out of the water, looked around at all the people, then sort of fell over into the water. It was obviously enjoying the attention. 

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GCVM Fiddler’s Fair

August 16, 2010

Typically, the Fiddler’s Fair at the Genesee Country Village and museum is on the weekend around my Mom’s birthday. For some reason, it was a week early this year. One of my out-of-town friends and I decided a few weeks ago that we should meet there this weekend, so she and her family and my Mom and her family, and Erin and I all met there around noon. There were 12 of us in all, so we split up and checked everything out.

I have to apologize for the ridiculous number of photos, but I absolutely love taking pictures in the village there. I’ll start with some of the buildings in the village.

The next few pictures are from the Cooper’s shop. They were working on repairing the garbage barrels. Not terribly romantic (in the words of the Cooper) but necessary. This is one of my favorite places in the village because of the wood shavings everywhere and the smell of the wood.

After visiting the Cooper, we wandered over to the Blacksmith. Fortunately, Erin and I went early in the day before it got terribly hot and humid. I imagine it would have been intolerably hot otherwise.

This enormous bellows is connected to a pipe that runs down the side (outside) the chimney and then through the chimney to deliver air to the fire burning on a huge fireplace. The blacksmith told us that in order to work the metal they sometimes need a fire in excess of 2000 degrees F, which would not be attainable without the help of the bellows.

He had some interesting pieces on display, but the one that caught my attention was a horse shoe on a horse’s hoof…

…without the horse attached. This particular piece was rather disturbing to both my sister and my daughter. Silly girls!

The Mercantile is where Erin was most interested in going, as she remembered that they sell candy there. What once was penny candy, now costs 3/25

This was from the Doctor’s office.

I thought this pitcher, in the back of the doctor’s office was pretty cool.

Stone fences always get my attention and there are a few of them in the village. This one was right outside of a little church.

These were 2 windows that were in the church and I must say, I am very pleased with how these pictures turned out.

Pretty cool organ in the back of the church too.

This insanely tall (at least 10 feet) corn was behind the Blacksmith’s shop. I guess that’s corn on steroids, or something!

A trip to the village wouldn’t be complete without a peek at all the animals. There were two young (yearlings maybe?) cows in a field by themselves and they were a lot of fun. They apparently like people, so they came right over to us.

After offering several types of grass and plants nearby, Michelle discovered that these guys really like one particular plant…

…a lot!

Across the road from the youngsters were these guys. Not so excited to see people. They just kept eating, paying us no mind at all.

As we wandered down to the barn, we saw some ducks and geese and decided to stop and look at them. The ducks were very cute and nice. The geese, on the other hand, not so much.

This one may look all innocent, but it tried to goose my knee!

Then it hissed at Michelle. It was actually pretty funny because Michelle took a picture on her cell phone, just as I jumped back from the nasty thing, so she has a pretty funny picture of me and the goose.

We used to have geese, when I was a kid, and they were the absolute best guard “dogs” we ever had! They would hiss and chase and if they didn’t get close enough to bite, it was fairly likely that you’d step on at least one of their “land mines.” Great animals for keeping people away, lol!

The ducks were much more enjoyable to look at.

As were the sheep, even though they were so warm they were panting.

Since I took so many pictures that I want to share, I think I will add another post, or two, later today with the rest of the pictures.

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Catching Up

July 4, 2010

So many things have happened since my lens went in to be fixed. Nikon is amazing! I think the lens was gone for just over a week. They looked at it, fixed it, and returned it, all under warranty within 10 days! It works like when it was new. Yay! I will attempt to catch up on my blogging with events from the last month and a half…we’ll see though…

During the Lilac Festival, the week I sent in my lens for repairs, we went to check out the Master Gardeners’ tent, thinking Erin might find a plant she wanted. While we were there, they were giving away butterfly larvae. They came with instructions for how to care for them, so I decided we could raise a batch of them. The instructions were fairly simple, but I had a hard time imagining that it would actually work and all those fuzzy caterpillars would turn into painted lady butterflies. We followed all the directions carefully, except that instead of putting the cocoons into a small cardboard box with netting covered windows, I made them a 2′ x 3′ screened box out of scrap wood. We bought a couple of butterfly attracting flowers and put in some oranges and moistened sponges for them. After a couple of weeks, we had nothing but cocoons. A short time later, the butterflies began to emerge. It had to be one of the coolest things. Erin had made a light box for some seeds she started in early spring, so we set the light box near the butterfly enclosure with the flaps open so the butterflies would have lots of light. They only live a couple of weeks, but they sure were neat to watch.

Once all of them had emerged, they numbered  just over 20.

One of the conditions of taking them was that they could not be released into the local population. This was because they had been “bred” in a lab in So. Cal. so they were not native to the area and could potentially introduce something bad to the local population. At first my kids thought that was cruel, but I pointed out that our butterflies were safe from predators, would not have to worry about wind, rain, drought, etc. Their only worry was a nosey dachshund poking his nose at the screen on occasion, lol! They finally agreed that our butterflies were probably happier than those in the wild.

All in all it was a fun learning experience. The only downside is that the butterflies do, in fact, stink after a while!

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Fabulous Mother’s Day Weekend

May 12, 2010

On Saturday, when we went to Canada, I told Jeff that all I really wanted for Mother’s Day was to go out to eat at Montana’s. You may remember a post from a couple years ago about Butterflies in which I mentioned Montana’s. Since that time, that location has closed and the only Montana’s restaurants are in Canada. Since we were only going to be 30 minutes from one of them, I asked if we could have dinner there. My inlaws went with us, so we all had a delicious early dinner at Montana’s. We decided that would be our Mother’s Day celebration with Jeff’s mom, then we’d both relax on Sunday.

My family decided that I should choose what I wanted to do for Mother’s Day, so we went to Starbucks and Panera, then to the lake in Webster Park. Erin had part of a bagel left over from breakfast, so when a curious squirrel came near, Kyle threw out a piece of Erin’s bagel. The result was pretty funny. I suppose I should mention that the winds from Saturday hadn’t slowed down much and it was only 40 degrees F.

The squirrel was not holding its tail that way, the wind was blowing it that way! At one point the piece of bagel that was on the ground began blowing away, so the squirrel grabbed it back.

Apparently this squirrel understood from whence its food had come, for it strolled over to the Jeep, sat up on its haunches, and reached up with its arms, batting toward me as I hung out the window taking pictures. Good thing it didn’t decide to jump up onto the camera or something! I am convinced that if the wind hadn’t been blowing so hard, I could have heard what it was saying, lol!

Once we stopped feeding the poor creature, it apparently got annoyed and decided to look threatening from a post that was directly in front of the Jeep.

Perhaps it was just preparing to pray…

The wind was blowing really hard and the silly seagulls couldn’t fly very well. They would dive down, pluck a fish from the water, then get blown backwards and drop the fish. It was absolutely hysterical! I imagined the fish saying “I’m caught, I’m freee, I’m caught, I’m free, oh just kill me now!”

As we were giggling at the silly squirrel, I was keeping an eye on two men with sailboards. They appeared to have arrived shortly before we did and were putting their boards together as we sat there. Eventually they donned their wetsuits and launched out into the angry cold water. I sat shivering just thinking about the temperature of the water! Even though they were in wetsuits, their faces and fingertips were still exposed, brrr!

Call me crazy, but that just doesn’t seem like a good idea! Too cold and too windy!

After leaving the lake, we went to a garden shop and wandered a bit, then stopped at Wegmans to get a snack. I was getting tired and sore, so we headed home, but we still wanted to go to the park to take a picture. I took a short nap, then we headed back out to get a Mother’s Day picture.

Erin found a tree that looked like a chair, so she sat and asked me to take a picture. She’s so funny! She is sitting on the ground with her arms resting on two “armrests.”

My Mother’s Day was quite relaxing and enjoyable. Thanks Jeff, you are awesome and wonderful and I love you soooo much! Oh yeah, I didn’t post the picture of you either!

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Easter Sunday Dinner

April 4, 2010

After our backyard work this morning, described in my previous post, we went over to Jeff’s parents for dinner. We arrived shortly after 1 PM and ate around 1:30 or 2 PM. The spread was awesome.

There were little potatoes, two variaties of lamb, roasted veggies…

…asparagus…

…and fruit salad.

There were also deviled eggs, green beans, and a variety of toppings and other things that I can’t really remember at the moment. It was a yummy meal! For dessert we had a lemony marscipone brie with raspberries or goat cheese on crackers.

After we ate, the weather was so gorgeous that we sat on the 3 season porch and visited while Erin soaked in the hot tub. She was a bit sore after her hockey adventures of the last few days.

I never would have said that Erin and Sarah look much alike, but I can definitely see the resmeblence in this picture!

This is a really cool wind thingy that is hanging in a tree in the backyard.

My mother-in-law puts bird seed out on the deck railing and in a muffin pan on the glider rocker on the deck. The birds, squirrels, and chipmunks love to come visit.

After eating for a little bit, the squirrel noticed me. He cautiously kept eating, with one eye on me.

Check out the cheek pouches on this chipmunk!

Just before we decided that it was time to go home, the kids started going through Jeff’s old hockey sticks to see if any of them were worth saving. A very small number of them came home, but most of them wound up in the trash. As we were in the Jeep, ready to leave, I mentioned that the garbage can looked funny. Jeff commented that every one of those sticks had a story. He had shared some of those stories as the kids were sorting through them. I suppose in a way it’s a little sad, but I suppose life goes on, and there are lots of other memories, not related to hockey sticks. Those stories related to the sticks will certainly last longer than the sticks did anyway!

We had a lovely relaxing day. The weather was beautiful, with the sun shining and the temperature hovering in the mid 60’s. Perfect for sitting on my in-law’s porch!

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Silly Squirrels

February 4, 2010

As I mentioned yesterday, the squirrels had me laughing pretty hard at their silly antics.  Apparently these squirrels are not afraid of people, but they are cautious of them. As we walked along the trail, the squirrels were in the middle of it, along with some cardinals, searching for seeds that had fallen. There was a bit of snow, so they had to search a little to find the hidden treasures.

When we got close, the squirrels scampered off to the sides of the trail. They really wanted those seeds though, so they would cautiously sneak toward the trail.

This little guy had me laughing so hard, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to take his picture. He’d scamper toward me, stop, and put his left paw across his chest and look. Then he’d move forward and repeat his actions.

He must have decided I wasn’t too much of a threat and he got within about 2 feet of me. Mr. Squirrel was after a small pile of bird seed that Kyle had left on the edge of the trail when he decided his fingers were too cold to hold it out for the birds any longer.

After several seconds of obvious debate over his own safety, he went for it, much to my delight!

If I had reached out, I could have bent over and patted his head. Not that I am quite crazy enough to do such a thing…

I thought this one looked like he was praying. Perhaps praying that he wouldn’t become prey, or maybe he was just thanking God for such a bounty! In actuality, he was eating a sunflower seed.

I think these next two squirrels read one to many Where’s Waldo books…

He looked very much like he was trying to, “be the tree.”

Very trusting of that really dead branch!

Normally I find squirrels annoying, especially when they are dangling upside-down from my squirrel-proof bird feeder trying to figure out why they can’t get to the seeds. However, when I encounter them in a park or somewhere more natural than my city backyard, I usually find their curiosity comical. My humor does not, however, extend to the very evil black Canadian squirrels! But that is an altogether different story, best forgotten!

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Jensen Stables XC 2009

October 18, 2009

I can’t believe it has been an entire month since I last posted!

Kyle had his insane XC race today at the horse stable this morning. This is the second time he has run the 12k. Last year he got lost and was nearly the last finisher. We were just hoping he’d finish without getting lost this year, which he was in fact successful in doing. I took over 600 pictures of the event, but I will only share a few of them here, lest I bore all (5) of my readers and scare them away, lol!

Kyle, as the race began.

Kyle, as the race began.

Very steep hill near the beginning of the race.

Very steep hill near the beginning of the race.

Just after the messy, muddy marsh...

Just after the marshy, muddy mess. Notice the muddy feet?

Still smiling. Last time we saw Kyle until the end of the race...

Still smiling. Last time we saw Kyle until the end of the race...

Even though these guys weren’t in the race, I couldn’t help but snap a few photos of them. It was pretty funny to watch them running up and down the pasture as the runners went past their paddock.

horse 1

Good day for a roll...

Good day for a roll...

...and a good chin rub on the grass...

...and a good chin rub on the grass...

Feet up...

Feet up...

Kyle with one last obstacle before the finish line.

Kyle with one last obstacle before the finish line.

Just before Kyle finished the race, the kids 2k race began. Erin decided this morning that she wanted to run the kid’s race, so we signed her up when we arrived.

Erin, shortly after the start of her race. Erin, shortly after the start of her race.
Erin, finishing her race. Erin, finishing her race.
All in all, both kids enjoyed themselves, my mother-in-law and I froze, and Kyle finished without getting lost. It was a good morning!