Thursday, November 24, 2011

a weaving arachnid & another misspelling

an orb weaver.

the first time i noticed one like this, was about a year ago.
she was on the front the same area as this one.
she was much bigger than the one who spins her web out there now.

these Orb Weavers are nocturnal.
the ones usually seen are females. they have bigger, rounder bodies.

top side

under side

she waits...night after night...not just for a meal...but for a male too.
the males are smaller, and their main purpose in life is to seek out a mate.
then, after mating, he will likely become her next meal. poor guy.

she spins her web after dark...consumes it around dawn...hides all day...
and then repeats her web making the next night. 

consuming her web...

getting ready to retreat into the wind chime's bell...

she will lay a large clutch of eggs. die at first frost. her babies will hatch in the spring.
Orb Weavers live approx. 1 - 2 years.

and there she goes...into the bell...until dusk.

the following is a video i saw on one of the blog's i read. cindy's blog: Bug Safari.
this is an unbelievable, amazing  5 minute  MACRO  3D  video. 

not for the squeamish...or arachnophobes!

a successful catch. 
Spider Catches Moth.

go to YouTube for LARGER version!
((just in case...when i publish this...the movie doesn't work, here's the link:))


i've had this picture of an email since before halloween.
since today's post is a spidery post...
i thought i should get this on here before too much more time passes.

i really felt sorry for Florida State Parks.
can you imagine how many people this email went to??

of course 'spell check' wouldn't fix this one...
because LOOSE IS A WORD.
just not the correct word for this sentence.

i don't think the state parks are on the loose...running around.
i think they are fearful of not enough money coming keep things going...
and florida might LOSE some of their parks.


well, for is the Thanksgiving celebration.
sam & i don't really 'celebrate'.
it's just us.

but since the stores are overloaded with turkeys...we always pick one up.
(well, we don't just pick it up to see what the dead weight of a turkey feels like...)

we buy one.
sam deep fries it.  always.

a turkey from the past...

if we should ever have company...

i plan to give sam a break,  and roast one to look like this...

(update! the boys...justin & travis are on their way up for a visit!
but it's too late for me to do one in that bikini. maybe next year!)

have a nice day.
if you're here in the states...enjoy the long weekend!

have a safe journey & enjoy the ride.

for more spider or orb weaver info:

Monday, November 21, 2011

the mole is dead. bones. scattered scat. and more!

yesterday (sunday),
the sky at 11:20 am...


if you're not new here...and you've wandered the woods with me before...
then you know i collect bones, feathers,  insect wings, rocks & stones.
you also know that months ago we found a dead Opossum and i buried him out back...
with plans to dig up the bones.
and i did. 
but i was surprised to find that the skeleton was not in one piece.
the bones are scattered.  
little by little i've unearthed some bones...

my latest find is one scapula...
views of the Opossum's left scapula
i've learned from a 'bone expert' that it's not unusual for the bones to be scattered. 
the shifting ground & insects tend to move them around.
raccoon prints all over the area i've been digging never occurred to me. i just assumed...bury the carcass...
and when i dig it up...VOILA! a opossum, minus the tissue, muscle, skin of course.

small red Azalea bush in bloom!

this expert told me i have a better chance of keeping the bones together 
if i bury the animal in a cardboard box with the top open.
so that's what i did with the little Mole i found.

while wandering....the trails out back...
i spotted snake skin...shedding.

then...i saw something fuzzy on the ground...not a foot away.
upon closer examination...i saw it was a little Mole!
dead. no bite marks. no obvious or visible cause of death.
it's unusual to see one. they live underground, making burrows & tunnels.
they're small...only about 4-6 inches in length.
they have no external eyes or ears.
underside of dead mole. mouth & nose to the left
perfect for digging

(read more about this Eastern Mole here!)

so, needless to say, i buried him in an open top cardboard box...
and marked my calender on December 18th,
UNearth the MOLE!

what would a walk in the forest be without fungi!
a mushroom colony!

and SCAT!

i always notice it.  and if i happen to miss a pile...sam will bring it to my attention. ha!
just yesterday, while he was outside working on his truck...he made a special trip
into the house to tell me he saw a pile of shit poop. droppings. feces. scat.

aaaaaaah. now THAT's love.  :)

first i  snap a picture, then i look it up in one of my handy scat books...

i wonder if this was left as gift to milo? (her new friend, introduced in previous post.)

raccoon scat. blunt ends. brown to black. large seeds present.

either Fox or Coyote. tapered ends. fur & seeds present.

i tend to think Fox, only because we see the foxes more often.

flies feasting on (LOOSE!) scat of unknown origin.

Pileated Woodpecker

i also came across ANOTHER Owl Pellet. left by our frequent night time visitor, the Barred Owl.
this pellet is the BIGGEST one i've seen yet!

bones. fur. claws. teeth. the undigested parts.

and finally...back out of the woods...

lizard on the house

i did my first  page in my "Art Journal"...over two days. nov 16th & 17th.
at the time i was feeling a little down, as it was nearing my brother's birthday (19 nov).
he passed away 3 years ago.

watercolor. real leaves.some glitter.
(i'm aiming for once a month with my art journal entries.)

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures.  
~Henry Ward Beecher 

i leave you now, with a picture of the morning moon on the 19th of november.
19 november 2011    at  6:55am

have a good week. and if you celebrate, a happy thanksgiving!

be safe & stay cool.

Monday, November 14, 2011

a dog in the sky

a dog in the sky?
that title may sound a little off the wall...
but, you'll see. keep going...

milo is an indoor/outdoor cat.
she has her litter box inside, but rarely uses it.
she prefers to do her thing outside...digging a hole and then daintily squatting.

she usually comes inside just before dinner's ready, OUR dinner.
she sits patiently while we eat...hoping for leftovers.
she's especially partial to potatoes. mashed. french fries. cooked in a stew.
it doesn't matter.
miss potato head is just one of her nicknames.

so she eats a 2nd dinner...and it's not always the scraps on our plates...
but sam usually sets aside a portion of his dinner...just for her!

following supper, milo heads back outside for another hour or so.
the other night, when she didn't show up at the back door, even after we called out her name...

we decided to go on a milo hunt.

we opened the front door...
and there she was...sitting face to face with her new friend.
it's like we, the grown-ups, just walked in on something.
something they didn't want us to see.

they both had surprised looks on their faces.

(i ran to get the camera)

they both turned and looked up at us...a little annoyed.
then milo's new friend, all distracted & flustered...turned and crept 
down the porch steps. he turned as if to say goodnight
before strolling off into the darkness.

i'm not kidding!!
these two were like best friends...sitting on the front porch.
exchanging stories. (i THINK that's what they were exchanging)
i'm surprised they didn't send us back inside to fetch them a couple of beers.
or something stronger.
i wish i'd had my camera when we first opened the door!

we've been trying to sneak night time peeks...hoping to catch them together again!

"Most cats, when they are out want to be in, and visa versa, and often simultaneously."
~Louis J. Camuti 


a few other front porch visitors.

yellow rat snake climbing up the vine.

aaah. he's made it to the ceiling.
it's a wonder he didn't get all tangled up in that fancy string work.

then it was time to survey the perimeter...running along the lights.


i noticed this injured grasshopper...
it looks like she escaped from someone's hungry jaws...
and sadly, that's probably where she ended up anyway.


and here's a strange looking bug. i'm still not 100% sure what it is.
a wheel bug...i think.


with the cooler weather starting to ride in...
there aren't as many butterflies hanging around...
Gulf Fritillary

or dragonflies...'s cool enough to DIG without breaking into a sweat.

remember the spot where i've been trying to find the bones of the Opossum i buried?
well, i found a scapula and a few other assorted bones.

i also found a dead mole. some snake skin. the biggest owl pellet ever.
AND more yard scat (not milo's!)

well i'm sorry to leave you in such suspense...
all this next time.

have a happy week.


OH yeah, the dog in the sky!

do you see it? a dog...trying to catch a little something in his mouth?!

do i have to draw it out for you??  :)

"Logic will get you from A to B.   Imagination will take you everywhere."  
~Albert Einstein

Friday, November 11, 2011

just your typical 11.11.11 post. NOT! i'm one of those ridiculous bloggers who's shaping today's post to fit the date.


ever since sam & i met...the number SIX shows itself all over the place.

we met on the 16th of august. (well, it has a 6 in it!)
my 'lucky' number has always been 16. ( has that 6 in it!)
it seems that more often than not, when we go camping,
we always end up in spot #6 or 16...or 26.

our address 7215...add the numbers together and you get 15.   1 + 5 = 6.

my 'lifepath' or 'birth path' number...add up my birthdate: 
8 + 19 + 1953: 8+10+18  then  8+1+9=18  then  1+8=9
well, turn that 9 upside down and what do you have? a six.  6.
ha, i know...that was a little far fetched.

OH, and guess what the temp outside is as i start this?!!
NO...not SIX degrees...but 42.  4+2=6.

this all leads me up to  today...
11 + 11 + 11.   each 11 is 1+1=2    so    2 + 2 +2 = SIX.
today is a good day.

today i thought i'd say a little about me.
just a few things with pictures mixed in that i took during the week.

let's start off with a 'family collage'.
i hope sam doesn't mind...but our picture has been on the sidebar forever...
so what's a few more.
also in this collage are my 2 sons, justin (30) & travis (27)...fairly recent pic's and older ones;
milo, of course; me (then & now); 
my brother andy (1955-2008); my sister sally (1956-2007); my dad (1917-2001).
(i have no pictures of me & my mom together)

let's talk music.
more specifically, the ipod. i have one...i bought it a few years ago...
and it's one of those things i NEVER regretted doling out the bucks for.
mine is a  4GB. i've added hundreds of songs, with room to spare.
i have 2 playlists on it. one is my 'every day' music and the other for work.
when i listen to my ipod i always mix the playlists together...
for a little R&R...Rock & Relaxation.  
so...let me turn this amazing invention on...
and list the first 11 songs that come up in no particular order.
1. Ænema.  by Tool
2. Annihilation.  by a Perfect Circle
3. What I've Done.  by Linkin Park
4. The Peace Within.  by Karunesh
5. December.  by Collective Soul
6. Sacred River.  by Gandalf
7. Ziricote.  by Coyote Oldman
8. Break My Fall.  by Breaking Benjamin
9. Andvari  by Sigur Rós
10. Disenchanted.  by My Chemical Romance
11. Until It Sleeps.  by Metallica

Florida Native - Rattlesnake Master

i like anchovies on my pizza.
i cut off the collars on some T-shirts. i feel suffocated, strangled.
i don't like turtlenecks.
when i get upset...i become a cleaning machine and/or i turn the music up louder than LOUD!

Indian Pipe fungi/Monotropa uniflora

i love to read. mysteries and all that 'new age' stuff. metaphysical.
i don't mind cooking, but i'm not a 'baker' and don't like to spend all day in the kitchen.
i don't care for cakes. i don't like icing. but i do like fruit pies. the tarter, the better! 

i don't like to fly. in airplanes. i DO like to fly in my dreams.
i like tattoos. i have a few. 
i don't like closed minds, prejudice...or people who PUSH religion on you.
i hate shopping. i don't like crowds.
i can be pretty goofy. so goofy it's scary.

Fence Lizard

i like shades of purple.  and earth tones.  and black.
i've never worn a pair of HIGH HEELS.
i don't like to get dressed up.  never have.
i don't wear make-up (except for maybe a touch of color on my lips now & then).
i pick a (random)  tarot card almost every morning. today's was the Hermit. #9.
very fitting really. 
in short- it's about letting go of the past. creating harmony & order in my life.

a pile o' tiny mushrooms growing on a dead tree

i'm NOT a picky eater...but i don't like raw oysters, 
and i won't touch a piece of meat unless it's well done! charred! cooked to a crisp!
i believe in ancient aliens. 
i saw a UFO (at night) when i was 20.  it was a V-shaped formation of lights that moved 
from one side of the sky to the other faster than the blink of an eye.

Long-tailed Skipper  feeding on Lantana flower

6  november  2011  at  5:33pm

OH...let's see...
not personal enough?  you want the nitty-gritty, eh?  ok...but this is it...

i was born in Columbia, South Carolina. the couple who adopted me took the train
down to SC and picked me up when i was a few weeks old. 
i never felt like i fit in. 
i hated family get-togethers. 
my mother was a wee bit psycho. 
my dad moved out when i was 9. i was crushed.
i started running away from home at 12 and never stopped. 
i moved out, on my own when i was 15.
i dropped out of high school, but got my GED a year or so later.
i spent a good part of my life...searching...wanting to be loved...
needing the attention but not knowing what to do when i got it.
molding myself into what i thought other people wanted me to be. 
i would sabotage relationships for fear of being abandoned...
or because i thought i wasn't worthy.
i searched for my birth mother when i was 20. within 3 months, i had located her.
although i was always outgoing & friendly...i couldn't let anyone get too close.

whew. well, THAT was just a little TOO serious. i'm starting to get depressed.
no...really...i've learned a lot about myself  over the past 15 years. i started to know me.
(15.  1+5=6.  there we go again!)

AAAaaaahhhhh. that's better. a little sunflower. to make me smile.

One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.  
~Friedrich Nietzsche 

so, where ever you are...
be safe. have a nice journey & enjoy the ride.