Sunday, August 31, 2014

Gray Catbird perched in the park

I herd something meowing in the dogwood bush, and what do you know, but if it wasn't a gray catbird?  Truth be told it didn't quite meow, but did have something of a unique call.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Victory-Robins 4H garden

Earlier in the week the Victory-Robins 4H club gathered and donated 74 pounds of vegetables to the PRISM foodshelf.  Thus far 222 pounds have been collected for PRISM, with much more on the way! What a great service these young people and their parents are providing for those in need within our community.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Humming bird

It was a special treat to see a humming bird enjoying a neighbor's flowers, while on an evening walk.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Minnesota State Fair

4-H Musical 
Prairie Woman
Drum Corps
Newborn Chicks

Feeding Piglets
Princess Kay Butter Statue

Deep Fried Twinkies

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A few of life's interesting paradoxes

Youthful drummer at the
Minnesota State Fair parade
More of life's paradoxes... 

1. To have wealth: create value for others 
2. To obtain freedom: adopt discipline 
3. To gain tomorrow: sacrifice today 
4. To be secure: take risks 
5. To lead: serve 
6. To get up: lift another 
7. To get revenge: forgive 
8. To win: find the lessons in every loss 
9. To fly: fall often 
10. To change the world: change yourself

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Monday, August 25, 2014


Big clouds were passing through last evening.  This is a reflection from the pond at Bassett Creek Park.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Monarch on chives blossom

A monarch butterfly visited the chives in our backyard garden yesterday.  It added some nice color!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Trip to Iowa

On a trip down to Iowa yesterday we saw miles and miles of corn and soybean fields.

While visiting the campus of Luther College we were surprised to discover a doe and her two fawns resting nearby the physical education facility.  They seemed fearless.  What a friendly campus!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Great Blue Heron in the rain

After many dry weeks we finally received 0.8" of rain yesterday.  The trees and plants are no doubt rejoicing, as might be a few farmers and gardeners around the state.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Duck feather with reflection

When you know, to know you know. 
When you don't know, to know you don't know.
That's what knowing is.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014



Some Wisconsin north woods plants, and a poplar leaf.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

"Up North"

Some pictures taken while away for a short trip to Wisconsin's lake country.  Upper pictures are from lake plants and their reflections in the morning fog.  I also experienced a fish attack by "sunnies" while shooting some of these pictures.

The loon, pictured above, was seemly unafraid of the kayak that I used to take pictures from.

Pictured right is a roadside field of sunflowers that we discovered on the way up to the north woods cabin.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Monarch Caterpillar and Swallowtail Butterfly

Seems that both the Eastern Swallowtail butterfly and the Monarch caterpillar both enjoyed this form of milkweed, Asclepias tuberosa, in our front yard.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Insects in the park

I sat by the pond at Bassett Creek and simply looked around a bit.  I discovered within a couple of feet of where I was sitting this beautiful monarch butterfly caterpillar and a red dragonfly.  Both seemed to be enjoying their time on swamp milkweed. It is amazing how much one can discover simply by being still and looking around.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Great Egrets enjoying the park

The Great Egrets have been enjoying fishing at
Bassett Creek Park.  Sometimes they also perch in a tree, preen and sun themselves.  Other times it seems they chase each other around.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Morning fog

 The early morning fog, combined with the rising sun made for a spectacular scene at Bassett Creek Park.

Heron fishing in the fog

Yesterday morning there was a fog over the pond, as the water was warmer than the cool morning temperature.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


If this heron is going to eat, it has to focus.

One of the reasons I like shooting Great Blue Herons is that they aren't easily bothered by a photographer when they are fishing for their meal.

This picture was taken close to the shore of the pond at Bassett Creek Park.  

Monday, August 11, 2014

Eastern Redbud leaves

The Eastern Redbud in our yard seems to be enjoying this summer, and is producing many new leaves.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Words to live by

If you are depressed,
you are living in the past.
If you are anxious,
you are living in the future.
If you are at peace,
you are living in the present.
   - Lao Tzu

The first to apologize is the bravest.
The first to forgive is the strongest.
And the first to forget is the happiest.
 - Unknown

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Heron house sitter

This Great Blue Heron took a little time to enjoy the morning sun and do some preening atop of this wood duck house at Bassett Creek Park yesterday morning.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Monarch in flight

I took a little time shooting pictures of the monarch enjoying the swamp milkweed in our front yard, hoping to get a good action shot.  Thankfully, with digital photography, it allows one to snap away.  I don't think that I would have even tried this years ago with a film camera.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Ducklings in the evening

Ducklings enjoyed an evening swim with mama mallard. There numbers are down from seven to five.  It could be those large snapping turtles or possibly the fox have been reducing their numbers.  Survival really isn't all that easy in the wild.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


Big booming clouds of white, gray and purple made for a pretty awesome evening presentation earlier in the week.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Beautiful butterfly

I happened to notice this female Eastern Tiger Swallowtail - black form butterfly pass by while mowing the front yard.  Thanks to some flowers we planted, it decided to stop and pay a visit.

These swallowtails are often yellow in color, but as shown above, also have a dark morphed variation, making them a dimorphic species.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Nature still finding victories over humankind

Giant Ragweed
(left and right of guy in center)
An article in yesterday's StarTribune, 'Superweeds' emerge to challenge farmers, noted how new large varieties of weeds are developing a resistance to traditional herbicides.

I discovered some super large ragweed along the shores of Bassett Creek Park yesterday.

Another article about the Ebola virus noted how we still haven't figured out a medical treatment for this deadly disease.

So it seems nature is still evolving and picking up a few wins against our best efforts to foil her.

Saturday, August 2, 2014