In 2002 we ran away from Illinois where we were born and raised, and started a new life in SW Florida. This blog is about me (an eccentric old artist), ROM (my Real Old Man), Isabella (our neurotic Standard Poodle) and Emmy (our crazy snake killing Jack Russell Terrier). Oh- and the neighborhood old people. Life is good in Florida!

_________________________________


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Summer Comes To An End Early...

I know, I'm so far behind on this blog. Everytime I get around to posting here I have good intentions to keep up and post more often. It just seems this poor little blog is doomed to be neglected. I'm sure it doesn't matter to anyone but me, but I like jotting down what we've been doing because it's fun to look back over it and great way to save photos in case my computer crashes and burns like my last one. I lost 4 years of photos in that disaster. Yes, I know I should put them on disks but never seem to get around to it. Anyway...


These photos were taken a couple of weeks ago. I didn't realize at the time it would be our last weekend to be swimming. I didn't dream the water would cool down so early this year. The Gulf water temp has now dropped down into the 70's and that's too cold for me. Unusally cool night time lows and a storm system that came through recently has really made the water chilly. Until next spring when the water warms up again, instead of beach photos I'll be posting pictures from shopping excursions, art festivals and area attractions. All the things we don't do during the heat of the summer...


Our last swimming day was gorgeous- sunny and warm... 



The best part of the day was watching this reddish egret feasting on little fish he stalked...







I read somewhere that they hold their wings out like this to make shade and lure fish in close to them...




And this my friends, was my last day of swimming in the Gulf for 2011...

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

As A Storm Builds Off Shore...

I can't seem to get caught up on this blog! These are some photos I took the weekend before last... 


Anna Maria Island is such a beautiful place, even the walk down to the beach is gorgeous...
(Click all photos to see full size)


Along the path are these flowering vines, the green foliage and purples blooms look so pretty against the white sand.

Angry storm clouds were building just off shore but we had sunshine for several hours before they reached land.


It was high tide and little shallow tidal pools formed on the beach. Along with the water that was washed into the tidal pools were numerous varieties of shells. I took this photo looking down into a tidal pool.

When I took it out of the water to photograph the other side, I discovered it was home to some little sea creature, as you can see in the opening. After taking my photo, I threw it as far as I could back out into the Gulf. I've found some amazing shells, starfish, and sand dollars that I realized were alive after I pulled them out of the water. I always throw live critters back to carry on with their lives.  One starfish in particular I remember- it was large, much larger than my hand and in perfect condition. Just as I was thinking what a great find it was, it began to squirm and move- scared the bejezzuz out of me! I flung that thing back into the water so fast!

This dunlin stayed busy feeding, trying to fill it's belly before the storm arrived. 




This little sandpiper was not the least bit interested in sharing it space with anyone and let the other birds know it.


Look at him digging deep- I thought he was going to stick his whole head under the sand.

This egret acted like he was afraid of the water, he'd rush out as the surf retreated and race to shore as it came back in


Towards the end of the afternoon as the storm was fast approaching, I watched a parasailor coming down...







He made into the boat and off they went to return to dock before the storm reached the island.


We packed up quickly and made it to the ice cream parlor just before it began to rain. The end to a perfect day, indulging in homemade ice cream. Life is good...