Thursday, August 21, 2014

Amazing Water Lilies and Lily Pads at the Italian Water Gardens at Biltmore 8/3/14

Hope you enjoy seeing all of the water lilies and lily pads today.
For my Birthday Trip this year,  George and I went to Blowing Rock,  North Carolina for a few days.  SO--on the day we traveled there,  we of course had to stop at Biltmore House and Gardens in Asheville,  North Carolina,  to see what was blooming in August...

SO--guess where we went first???  We had to check out the Italian Water Gardens --which are fantastic this time of year...  This year may have been the prettiest we have ever seen it... WOW!!!

Today I'll show you photos I took of the water lilies and lily pads.   I couldn't believe all of the amazing colors of the lily pads!!!!!  Hope you enjoy the pictures.  Be sure and click on them for enlargements. 

Lots of water lilies and beautiful lily pads!

I love the peachy/pink colors of this one.

I love the reflections in this one.

Don't know what these are --but they are so pretty!

More reflections

You can tell how much I love reflections.  But you can tell how much I love all of the different lily pads also.

This little beauty and the one below were mostly bloomed out when we were there,  but we managed to get a few photos.

Beautiful colors

So gorgeous and so much to see!!

See the BEE???

In love with PINK!!!

Look carefully at the reflections in this one... What do you see?????  It's a reflection of the Biltmore House nearby... Neat, huh?

Oh those amazing lily pads --and their colors!!!!!

The lighting on this one was pretty,  don't you think?

More reflections!

Little yellow flowers and their reflections

More gorgeous colors of the lily pads!

This last photo is NOT mine.  It is one which popped up on Facebook this past week...  I loved it --and since it was a Water Lily,  I decided to include it today... The quote says it all --don't you think?!!!

Have a wonderful remainder of the week.


Monday, August 18, 2014

Summer Backyard Birds

I've had a lot of fun this summer watching and taking pictures of my Backyard Birds when they visit the Bird Kitchen on my back deck.  All but one of today's pictures were taken in August of 2014.   The first batch are just a variety of some of our many visitors.. The last group are from my favorite little birds,  the EASTERN BLUEBIRDS....

Hope you enjoy the photos.. Be sure to click on them for enlargements....  SO---get another cuppa,  sit back and just enjoy!!!!!  Above is another of my favorites  (Ahhhh Shucks --they are ALL favorites!!!! ha),  the RED-HEADED WOODPECKER.. All of the woodpeckers love the no-melt Peanut Suet....

NORTHERN CARDINAL on the Plate Feeder


PILEATED WOODPECKER  (our biggest visitor, also at the Suet Feeder)

HA HA, What a Face!  Mr. PILEATED is giving ME the 'look'!!!!  I think I heard him tell me to "Get Outta Here" -----Ya think????

I bought this new bird feeder in July for peanuts for our Blue Jays (which we have many)... The new feeder is domed which protects the bird food when it rains.  It also helps protect (sorta) the food from the squirrels...  BUT--since buying this one,  I will say that the Blue Jays don't like that feeder... They are TOO large for it --and since it is light-weight,  it swings too much for them.  SO--I have made some adjustments this month.  The smaller birds love this feeder --so I now have Fruit and Nuts in this feeder.  The Blue Jays will continue to grab their peanuts from the Plate Feeder (which is heavier and larger)...  BUT--I do recommend this domed feeder --which is similar to the domed feeder I use for the mealworms for the Bluebirds.

Here  is a photo of part of my Bird Kitchen.  There's something new there.  Can you see it?  Look in the upper right corner.... We have a new bird feeder made with Stained Glass.  Isn't it gorgeous?  This actually came from an antique store --and was given to me for my birthday from son Jeff and daughter-in-law Dawn.  I love it!!!

We have a new bird house on the front porch  (also given to us by Jeff and Dawn).  I have been concerned about our little Carolina Wrens --who want to nest in the garage (a NO-NO)... Now they are nesting in the hanging basket you see there...  SO---hopefully they will use the new little nest box the next time they raise a family!!!!!

These last 6 pictures (some of which were taken by George when I was in the shower)  are my favorite ones.  I love our EASTERN BLUEBIRDS ---and they live here year 'round.  They begin nesting each year in Spring (in the nestbox we provide for them), and have had at least TWO families this year..   Sometimes they have THREE families ---but I'm not sure they will this year.  They are happy here and love the mealworms we provide.   I love this photo of Daddy in flight --as Baby is BEGGING.

Note that the Baby Blues are as big (or bigger) than the Daddy...

This one has been cropped --so it's not very clear.. BUT--I wanted you to see a close-up picture of this precious Baby Bluebird... They are very spotty --and full of little fuzz like so many baby birds are!!!!!  TOO adorable!!!!

YUM------Baby is enjoying some delicious mealworms!!!!   Daddy also tries to teach the little ones to feed themselves. 

Now we have TWO Babies begging for dinner!!!!  Is Daddy Blue looking at ME ---telling me to leave them alone??????

Both Little Blues are being patient while Daddy gets some more mealworms to share with them... Once Daddy turns around,  I wish you could hear and see those little ones.  They shake all over and make the cutest little tinkly sound!  It is truly awesome!

The other thing I wanted to share today was to tell you that the older brothers/sisters (from the first family born this spring) also help Daddy with caring for, feeding and teaching the young ones.  At some times,  there are 5-6 Bluebirds in or around the feeders.   They are SO much fun to watch.  Wish you were here!!!

Hope you had a good weekend and have a great week ahead.