Friday, May 31, 2019


Last Saturday we decided to visit the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia.  We were in Charlottesville for a wedding and we had a few hours on our own before we joined our family.  The information on the sculpture reads "Oriform - stainless steel - modeled 1962, fabricated 1977 - Jean Arp, 1886 to 1996 - Courtesy of the National Gallery of Art, Washington to the American People in gratitude - Leon Chalette, Arthur Lejwa and Madeleine Chalette Lejwa, 1978.22.1.
There were other works of art on the grounds.  Above you can see The Fralin Bull (I have tried to find out who created it with no success), and pieces of old columns...
Also no information on these.
There were two planters on each side of the entrance...
and these very pretty Oak-leaf Hydrangeas on the street before you walk up the steps to the building.
According to the website, the Oakleaf Hydrangea is one of the few hydrangeas native to the United States (H. arborescens being the only other native they are aware of). 
The Oakleaf gets its name from the shape of its leaves, which turn into beautiful autumn colors later on in the year, red, orange, yellow and burgundy.  More information at the links I have provided.
I will share exhibits inside the museum on Monday.  

Have a great weekend everyone, and thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, May 30, 2019


Rita Dove  

I saw this on a wall in Charlottesville, when we were driving around town.  I was in the passenger seat and saw that it was writing, but didn't actually see that it was a poem until I got back that night and read it on a larger screen.  I really liked this poem.

"Back when the earth was new
and heaven just a whisper,
back when the names of things
hadn't had time to stick;

back when the smallest breezes 
melted summer into autumn
when all the poplars quivered
sweetly in rank and file...

the world called, and I answered.
Each glance ignited to a gaze.
I caught my breath and called that life,
swooned between spoonfuls of lemon sorbet

I was pirouette and flourish,
I was filigree and flame.
How could I count my blessings
when I didn't know their names?

Back when everything was still to come,
luck leaked out everywhere.
I gave my promise to the world,
and the world followed me here."

You can learn more about Rita Dove here.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019


This is a continuation of the photos taken of the deer in yesterday's post.  We found them at the house we were invited to for the weekend.  

When we first arrived, a family of four deer were on the grounds in front of the house.  The trees were well established and looked many years old.  They offered a welcoming shade with lots of tasty grass, an idyllic place for these pretty animals.  

The next day when I was told one was back, I grabbed our other camera with the zoom.   She was aware of my presence but didn't appear threatened.  Her ears twitched a few times but when I didn't move towards her, she settled back to eating her grass, I took my photos and left her in peace.
"From all kinds of flowers,
Seek teachings everywhere,
Like a deer that finds
A quiet place to graze,
Seek seclusion to digest
All you have gathered."

~Namkhai Norbu~

Did you know that deer can swim at up to 15 miles per hour?  Our nephew told us that he saw a deer swimming across the river near his house the other day. They can also run up to speeds of 30 to 40 miles per hour, and can jump up to six to eight feet high.

Thank you for looking at today's post, and have a great day.  

Tuesday, May 28, 2019


on a trip this past weekend.  We were with family and we all attended a dear friend's wedding of her daughter.  I'm sorry I can't share any of those as I want to maintain their anonymity, but it was a wonderful wedding, one we truly enjoyed.  What a blessing it is to be with people you like, love and admire.
 I decided to take the motion camera we use on our deck for the birds, thinking you never know.  When we pulled up to the house where we were staying, the yard had several trees.  Under two of the trees resting from the sun, there was a small herd of deer.  Our welcome party got up and left shortly afterwards, but the very next day we hooked up the camera on one of the trees.  The trunk was very thick and our strap barely made it around (the camera could have done with being a foot lower but it was impossible to do that).  However, we got some interesting sights.  Not as sharp as we would like in some, but at least it was something, and fun to download on our return.
 The deer definitely noticed that something was up.  A spider came along and spun a web which made for an interesting set of photos.

 The web disappeared and in the shot below we saw the unmistable design of rings on the tail, identifying a racoon running by, mostly out of frame unfortunately.
Morning breaks and they scurry away.
The camera took numerous shots as there was a lot of coming and going over the weekend, with cars going back and forth along the driveway that leads up to the house.  Also there was a strong breeze and the leaves did their part.  In the photo below you will be able to see a deer in the bottom right-hand corner.
 Who knows what else the camera could have given us if we had stayed longer, but for a first time taking it away from home, I was delighted with what it picked up.
 A practice session for future trips.
We just had to keep reminding ourselves to pick up the deck cam before we left for home.

Now for the videos.

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your week.

Sunday, May 26, 2019


Looking across the large green as we make our way around the walking path, we see a family sitting on a blanket in the shade of the trees.  This would be a great place to bring a picnic, as I have seen people do several times on previous visits.
The gazebo is a very short walk from the Visitor Center where I saw this vase of pretty peonies.
The ground covering of small pansies were lovely,
as were the Trumpet Vines starting to cover this arbor.
We didn't see many birds to take photos of, but early in our walk we noticed that House Sparrows had taken up residence in the multi-story birdhouse high on the pole (left of the photo below).

Another small section of landscaped garden to enjoy...
and information on how to help our feathered friends.
Our bees are also mentioned.
I'm sure the frogs weren't left out.  I probably missed that sign.
By this time we are at the path that leads down to the ponds.  We leave the more manicured area and make our way down the hill.  The path here is gravel and a little uneven, so I always take extra care.  
I love this wooded area.  Everything is so lush and green.  Old trees are left to slowly decay, adding nutrients back into the soil.  They also give homes to countless species of wildlife.  

I read here that there are those who believe "the removal of dead material from forests can mean a loss of habitat for up to one fifth of the animals in the ecosystem."  Quite a sobering thought.  There is a lot of interesting information at this link regarding dead trees and how important they are.  Here is another link with more interesting information.
By this time we had walked down the gravel path, crossed over a small creek, turned left and headed towards the two ponds.  We stopped at the second one, sat on a bench under a shady tree, and enjoyed looking across the water.  Again there weren't many people here, but we noticed a family across the way, making use of another shady tree.  
A couple walked by with a small dog being transported in a pet carrier.  I was so curious about this carrier that I looked on Amazon when I got home, and found one here, which is very similar to the one this lady had. A cute little dog who seemed very comfortable and enjoying his ride.

We sat on the bench for a while after little dog and lady left, enjoying our surroundings very much.  It wasn't long before we saw a flash of red flying from one tree to another, almost above our heads.

A male Cardinal put on a performance.  I found a website where you can hear its call - at this link - if you click on their video.

It is always enjoyable to explore our local parks and gardens.  We have been to many of them and had some great walks.

Thank you for coming along with us on this one.  Enjoy your day.

Friday, May 24, 2019


I know of at least two gardens where they have set aside a children's area, Meadowlark and here.  There must be more of course but I haven't as yet been to those.  I enjoy them for their whimsical, charmingly decorative features.
You can see a very large chalkboard, well used.  Even someone I know decided to sign someone's name.  I smiled when that someone pointed it out. 
There are gardening classes and camps for children to attend here

"This is the real secret of life - to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now.  And instead of calling it work, realize it is play."
~Alan W. Watts~
"For a small child there is no division between playing and learning; between the things he or she does 'just for fun' and things that are 'educational.'  The child learns while living and any part of living that is enjoyable is also play."
~Penelope Leach~
"Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning."
~Mr. Rogers~
I will finish with a poem I found recently.  Unfortunately there was no author's name.  I will keep searching.

"I tried to teach my child with books,
He gave me only puzzled looks.
I tried to teach my child with words,
They passed by him often unheard.
Despairingly, I turned aside,
'How shall I teach this child,' I cried?
Into my hands he put the key,
'Come,' he said, 'play with me."

Have a great weekend everyone, and thank you so much for stopping by.