Oh, I love foggy mornings! Yesterday was deliciously foggy – and my day off – so I happily headed out early before the sun had a chance to burn through. I stopped at a little fishing trail to the creek, and just a few steps in I came across these-
They’re fairy mushrooms – aren’t they adorable? Like tiny umbrellas for woodland creatures!
Wildflowers were blooming prettily along the trail, and the air smelled wonderful with that sweet, rich scent of late summer here in the Ozarks.
Another thing I enjoy about this time of year are the spider webs everywhere – on the ground, festooned from tree branches, even on sign posts along the road.
What I really love is when they’re decorated with dewdrops that look like tiny beaded necklaces!
As I got closer to the water the fog grew thicker, and I stopped at a part of the creek with lots of dead trees and strange growth close to the water that has a cool, mysterious look to it all year long. I love it, and one of these days I’m gonna see if my son can get me out there in his boat.
That’s a Great Blue Heron on that branch in the distance. So glad I caught him – right after this he took off with a rusty squawk and several flaps of his huge wings.
From here I decided to drive over to Empire Park on Lake Taneycomo. I just had to take a picture of my favorite trees – cottonwoods. I love how their leaves sparkle and rustle with the slightest of breezes!
As I walked along the lake I saw ducks paddling in the water, and was surprised to see another heron standing motionless by the shore-
All in all, it was an hour well spent – thanks for coming along!
Apparently all babies love to play peekaboo – even equine babies! I was hoping to get some pictures of a couple of foals at a neighbor’s ranch, so I just sat on the ground with my camera and waited, hoping that curiosity would bring them close enough. The little guy here is a Missouri Foxtrotter, and he’s 3 weeks old.
His mama, bless her heart, brought him right to me – but he was shy and kept trying to hide behind her. At first he peeked at me through the cover of her tail-
Then he inched around her and peeked under her belly-
Finally, he got brave enough to come closer!
Have you ever seen such a sweet face – he’s so adorable!
But now the game was over, and with a saucy flip of his tail and what looked for all the world like a wink of his eye, he and his mama moved off to the far side of the pasture. I’ll have to stop by and see if he wants to play again in a few days!
Mother Nature gave us a gift today – a beautiful 60 degree day that seemed more like mid September than mid January! We decided to take advantage of it and get outside, and since we’re just minutes away from Arkansas we headed to the Buffalo River area which is endlessly beautiful. Missouri is gorgeous too, but when you get into the hills in northwestern Arkansas you really know you’re in the Ozarks! We ended up at Steel Creek, which is a state park we hadn’t visited yet.
When we got to the park at the bottom of a steep, winding road we were rewarded with views of huge bluffs decorated with frozen waterfalls like this one.
Below the bluff is the creek – quiet, shady and very cold at the area where the mountain blocks the sun, and bright and sunny just around the bend.
There’s a horse camp there also, and we saw a group of riders enjoying the trail and crossing the stream – what could be more fun than that!
Warm sun, clear skies and driving with my husband through the beautiful blue hills of the Ozarks equals a perfect day off and a great way to shake the mid -winter blues!
It’s the reason why I’ve gotten into the habit of taking my camera everywhere I go – even if my only planned destination is Walmart or the gas station. I never know when something will catch my eye – the way the sunlight hits a leaf or a field of dandelions, the quiet dignity of an abandoned house or my favorite! – the glow of the plump full moon as it suddenly appears over the hills. I’ve come to think of it as looking for magic, and I never know when it’ll happen. When it does though, my heart beats faster, I jump out of the car and lose myself in trying to capture it.
I don’t have an expensive camera, and I have so much to learn about photography but now and then I manage to get a shot that sparks my imagination and gives me a little feeling of that magic. Here are a few of my favorites-
Weeds decorated with caps of frost.
Sunday morning sunlight bursting through the trees.
Just some cows in a field, but the sun and the mist give it the look of an old painting.
A suddenly bright sunset reflected in the rain slicked street right after a thunderstorm.
The sun rising through heavy lake mist, making it look more like a full moon.
The sunset lighting the window of an abandoned farmhouse, making it look lived in again, even if just for a moment.
Huge fluffy dandelions!
And the moon – always the moon!
When I looked out this morning and saw that it was both foggy and frosty, I forgot all about my coffee and grabbed my camera. Knowing it wouldn’t last long, I drove to Swan Creek, which is just a few minutes away. It was so pretty and I hoped I could get some good shots!
There was a wonderful thick, white coating on everything – transforming even simple weeds into beautiful little sculptures.
The fog gave the creek a monochromatic dreamlike look – these look like black & white photos but they’re not!
Even barbed wire looked like it had grown soft white fur-
I so enjoyed taking these photos, and I’m glad I did – an hour or so later the sun came out and it all disappeared!
My husband and I took a much needed mini vacation last weekend and headed down the road to nearby Arkansas, taking our time and stopping here and there on the way to our hotel. First stop was Eureka Springs, where I did a little bead shopping (Czech glass, yay!) and where we saw two very different deities –
The Christ of the Ozarks, a seven story tall statue high atop Magnetic Mountain that overlooks the town below, and
the Goddess of Feminine Cosmic Energy, also known as Aza, or Adora Zelina Astra. Each was equally impressive in their own way!
As we continued on our way to Bentonville I spotted one of my favorite things to photograph – a fabulous abandoned farmhouse-
It’s hard to explain, but somehow I see a dignified beauty in the skeletal remains of old falling down buildings and always feel compelled to take their picture before they’re gone forever.
After a couple of days of relaxing (comfy hotel bed – yesss!) we headed back home – but on the way out we spent an afternoon at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. I’d heard a lot of good things about it, and they were right – it’s amazing! I’ll show you about that next time – stay tuned!
My husband and I took a few minutes this evening to walk by a nearby lake and enjoy the sunset. As we were headed back to the car, a trio of snow white ducks got out of the water and walked over to where I was standing. I assumed they were looking for a food handout and that they’d start squawking at me when they realized I didn’t have anything for them.
When they got to me though, they stopped.
And they just stood there, calmly regarding me with their dark eyes and cheerful orange feet. This went on for several moments, with me snapping picture after picture and with them just silently watching.
Then, they turned to each other and had a lengthy conversation amongst themselves while I stood there and laughed at how cute they were.
Finally, as quietly as they came, they turned in unison and headed back to the lake while I walked back to my husband feeling utterly charmed by my encounter with the welcoming committee of Rockaway Beach!
I’m kinda obsessed with the moon anyway, so I couldn’t resist the urge to try to capture it tonight. I drove out on some country roads nearby until I spotted it coming up over a farmer’s field.
It took several dozen shots to get these two halfway decent ones, but oh, it was gorgeous!
I’ve always loved the moon – I even remember standing in the back yard on July 20,1969 hoping to catch a glimpse of the astronauts walking around up there. ( hey, I was just a kid, ok?)
But lately it’s become an obsession. It started a month ago when my son called me outside to see a sight I’d never seen before – a perfect ring around the full moon!
I don’t know how to take photos at night so I was excited when I managed to get this shot. (I’m sure my neighbors were also amused if they happened to spot me laying in the middle of the driveway to shoot it!)
So, a couple nights later when my son’s girlfriend called to say the moon was coming up big and orange I hurried out to capture it. I had to drive a little ways to an open field but I did it!
So here we are, a month later and another full moon tempting me to try to catch it.
Last night I had mixed results – this picture of the moon shining through the woods behind our house isn’t as clear as I’d like but it does have kind of a spooky Halloween look to it, don’t you think?
I had another chance this morning though, when I spied it setting over an old barn. I especially liked the soft lighting from the sun that was just coming up.
Uh oh, it’s getting dark now – time to grab my camera!
Yeah, I know the name of my blog is “lilruby jewelry”, not “lilruby everything except jewelry” but to be honest, my jewelry mojo is in a lull right now and is on a short hiatus.
In the meantime, I’ve been enjoying the incredible beauty of these fall mornings. After the nasty drought we had this summer I wasn’t expecting a pretty fall, but it really has been! When I came upon this idyllic scene of the sun coming up over a pasture of Holstein cows this morning I just had to hit the brakes and pull over.
I expected these young cows to be skittish, but as soon as I walked up to the fence and started jabbering at them they came to see what I was up to.
Before long I had several wet noses sniffing at my camera while gorgeous chocolate brown eyes gazed at me from under long, girlish lashes!
She’s even wearing earrings!
After a few minutes I had to get back on my way to work, but I really enjoyed my visit with these bovine beauties!