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Almost Like the Old Days

Every few days I see a notice from facebook with new photos added to the Greenwood Cemetery eagles nest group, far superior to mine by the way, and they get me both motivated, and excited. Yesterday morning, for the first time in what seems like forever, I saw "our eagle" on the nest in Harbour Island, and yes, that is how they spell it, in case you are wondering. At any rate, when I returned home from my ride I thought maybe I would take the Nikon over to Greenwood to see what I could see.

As to the Nikon, I now remember why I quit using it, and that is because the Tamron lens I'd had on it for the longest time is erratic at focusing, to say the least. So, where could I have put the 55-200 Nikon lens? Thus began a wild search in my office closet, which at first, appeared fruitless. Could I have given the camera to someone? I'm prone to do that sort of thing. Just when I'd decided that I had given it away, there was one more box to unpack, and lo and behold, there it was. Meanwhile I'd made a big fat mess in my office that's for sure!
The camera in front is my very first super zoom Panasonic, now 10 years old! Packing both the Nikon and the Olympus, the baby car and I went in search of great photographic opportunities, something that I did many, many times, not so long ago.

The cemetery is really only about 3.5 miles away, so no biggie there. Arriving, immediately I saw one of the eagles on the nest, a tiny bit of an eaglet's head, and chattering like you could not believe.
I walked all around the area below the nest, eventually coming across someone else with a camera. His name was John, or so I think that is what it was. I should have committed it to memory because he alerted me to an owl sighting he'd had a day or so before. Apparently he lives a few streets away and comes often. Anyone who alerts me to owls should definitely be remembered.

As we were chatting, the eagle mate came flying into the big pine, pretty much staying put, so I went in search of the owl, telling him I like eagles but I love owls! Using his directions, I walked diagonally, crossed the little street, and looked for the stand of three oak trees in section H.

Holy Cow!!

Right before my eyes was the owl in a hole in the tree, presumably the nest is is there. According to this helpful summary from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, they don't do much in the way of a nest once they find an appropriate tree cavity. I'm still dying over this.
As has been so often the case, when you are out in search of a photograph, something else, even better comes along!  The fellow came over and we both just marveled at the sight. Eventually, off he/she flew and I reluctantly took one last look at the eagle's nest from afar.

Coming home, I began fooling around with the Nikon, just like I used to nearly every day.
Same daisy that I posted a week ago today! 

If you know me very well, you know that seeing the owl once was just not enough. Gathering the cameras, I motored back over after lunch for a second look, only to be disappointed. No surprise there. As I was driving home, I decided to take a peek over at Lake Cherokee because, well, lakes have birds!
No disappointment there---shore birds a plenty.
In case you are wondering, yes that is downtown Orlando, and secondly, those are Cypress trees, some whose needles have yet to drop. Pictured are a Wood Stork, Great Blue Heron, and a bunch of Snowy Egrets. So, that was good, but let's keep driving around the lake, okay?

Wonder of wonders, I saw this hawk having a rest.
I pretty much love this photo...

What actually made me go ahead and drive around was the sight of some white shorebirds I spotted from the south side of the lake. While there may be some folks that love a good Wood Stork, I am not exactly one of them, but still, there is a certain regalness about them, in spite of their scaly heads.
They actually allowed me to come quite close before, one by one, they took off, showing their magnificent wings and tail feathers.
As it turns out, all of the above were taken with my good old Olympus using the Panasonic lens. :)
It was a day like so many others I had in the past while selling photography; out and about looking for good stuff. These days, it is mostly documentary, but I still love taking photographs for any purpose.

On the quilting front, Wednesday was the guild meeting. My favorite part, aside from meeting new people, is the show and tell. In December I'm pretty sure I showed in this space the tumbling block I'd made for the "block of the month" lottery. The woman who won all of the blocks showed off what she'd made with them....WOW!
Look for the brightest one in the quilt for mine. And no it is not orange, it is coral.

Talk about serendipity...while sewing at Days for Girls, I was chatting with the woman sitting next to me. The conversation turned to family, well, as it always does. Anyway, she mentioned that one of her sisters, Marcia Derse, designs fabric for a company called Windham.  Among quilters, the designers are like rock stars are to music lovers. I called Sarah over to tell her, and lo and behold she'd just finished a quilt using a few of those fabrics! So, that was cool, but what really adds to this story is that this woman got up for show and tell and, you guessed it, all of the fabrics are by Marcia!
How crazy is that? Pretty crazy!

Meanwhile, I've been in communication with Orlando Utilities and they are willing to work with us on a credit for the water usage. Score! Here is the offending part that, seems to me, has been wearing away for years as it is darn thick metal.
Would it be possible for me to stay away from the owl nest today? Why no, it wouldn't! This time, amidst my errands, I drove in and just as I arrived Roxanne called. I glanced over and thought about asking her if I could call her back...but I did not, instead taking this photo through the open passenger side window.
If you happened to read the link regarding Barred Owls habitat, you already know that sometimes they use abandoned squirrel nests, which begs the question, which of these guys was here first? It did not take long before our owl friend flew into the adjacent tree, which you and I both know is a magnet for me. Finishing the conversation, I booked it over, and look who is just as cute as a button in the tree.
Madness I tell you...this woman and her camera.

Finally, should you be the praying kind, our dear son David and his wife Michelle are so sad right now, and could use uplifting in prayer. Their dog Ginger came into their life 13 years ago, and because they don't have children, you know how much she means to them. The awful news came from the vet yesterday that she has a very serious form of cancer, that may, or may not, be operable. Monday they meet with the surgeon for their options. Do what you can, will you?

yours truly,

Gail

p.s. I am loving the MINI!
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