Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. My Header this month was taken in December of 2018 in the Antler Hill Village area of Biltmore on our visit to see and enjoy "Christmas at Biltmore".

Monday, March 27, 2017

Spring in Tennessee 3/24/17

FORTISSIMO DAFFODILS surrounded by PERIWINKLE
I took time this week to 'walk the yard'... It's the first time I have done it this year...  One doesn't realize how much beauty there is outside in Spring until he/she takes a camera and begins taking pictures... We have had a mild winter followed by a 3 day horrible freeze.  SO---until now,  we weren't sure when we would have anything blooming.

Because of the mild winter after a horrible drought all Fall,  most of our Crocuses,  Hyacinths and Daffodils  bloomed early.  Many of these little beauties got 'zapped' during the freeze....BUT--there are still quite a few Daffodils blooming now.    Daffodils are hearty little flowers and there are so many varieties.  Today I'll show you several different ones that are still showing off their beauty in our yard now.

BUT---Daffodils are not the only thing blooming.   Our Tulips are beginning to bloom and the ground cover,  Periwinkle,  is showing off its blue flowers... Hope you enjoy seeing some of the blooms in our yard... All of these pictures were taken on 3/24/17.

Here's an interesting point (showing how different one year can be to the next):  This time last year,  we had lots of Irises blooming now.  This year so far,  NONE.   AND,  this time last year,  our RedBud trees were blooming... This year,  nothing yet.  I think I mentioned before,  that the horrible drought really hurt the Forsythias in our area.. Some are trying to bloom a little this year,  but none are as pretty as they usually are...  At least,  they are alive. The drought also hurt many Rhododendrons --including ours... We have almost lost our big one (BOO HOO) and have lost one of our little ones totally we think...  BUT--life goes on!!!!  That's just part of Gardening --but not necessarily the part we like!


These are called GRAPE HYACINTHS --and are very small... Most people don't even see or notice them since they are tiny.... I love them though!!!



COLOSSAL DAFFODILS  (these are the typical and common yellow ones we all grew up with and love)



HYACINTH  blooms;  I wanted to show you the cute little Hyacinth blooms up close and personal.  Hyacinths are also small flowers --but oh so gorgeous!



DAD ADAMS DAFFODILS;  These little guys have my heart since George's Daddy gave them to us and they were among the first little flowers we planted when we moved here.



Our Pink PHLOX are blooming now and so pretty mixed in the the blue Periwinkle...   (The white Candy Tuft in that same bed hasn't bloomed yet this year.)



I love the colors of this pretty little Daffodil.  (I've seen several names for this one --so I won't even try to guess.)  I do like it though.



Love this Pink TULIP named  BRIGHT PINK LADY;  Right now,  this one is the only Tulip blooming in that bed... But--she doesn't seem to mind since she is so gorgeous.



Our ground cover,  the PERIWINKLE;   I always love their little blue flowers.



TAHITI Double DAFFODIL



PURISSIMA TULIP;  This one is a pale yellow with a darker yellow inside and in strips along the outside.  It is a gorgeous Tulip.



ACCENT DAFFODIL;  I love this pastel Daffodil with that pretty peachy trumpet.



FORTISSIMO  DAFFODIL  (one of the larger Daffodils in our yard)



My favorite group of Daffodils,  MT HOOD DAFFODILS;  These are almost white --with some yellow on the inside.
Hope you are having a good spring (or whatever season you are in now).  Spring is always a favorite of mine because I love seeing winter end and all of the greens pop out along with all of the beautiful colors...  It is so nice to see the freshness of Spring --after a drab winter!!!!   What is your favorite season?

Have a great week, my Friends...

Hugs,

Monday, March 20, 2017

Birds-Birds-Birds

I got this picture/quote from Facebook --and loved it.  Just had to share!!!
I realized that I haven't taken time to do a Bird Blog Post in awhile.   I still feed my Backyard Birds  year 'round --and love watching them.  Now that Spring is coming (I hope),  I'll soon get to see some of the Moms/Dads bring their little ones to the feeders..  I LOVE that!!!!!

My Bird Kitchen (on the deck) offers a nice menu for the birds:  Suet,  Black Sunflower Seeds,  Fruit and Nut Blend,  Finch Lovers/Nyjer,  Peanuts in the shell,  and Mealworms....

Today I'll share with you some of my little cuties... We probably have over 30 different varieties off and on throughout the year --but today I'll only show you about half of them.  The pictures have been taken off and on throughout several years and seasons.


Hairy Woodpecker;  We don't have many of these --but do have lots of the smaller ones,  the Downy Woodpeckers.



Our BlueJays are only with us from Spring-Fall --but I love these guys!!!  Some people say they are 'bully birds' --but that doesn't seem to be the case here.



Robins LOVE visiting the deck especially during winter when they can't dig for worms...



Mockingbird;   We don't see too many of these.   They have beautiful songs to share!!!  BUT--they can be a little domineering in trying to 'hog' the plate feeder!!!! 



RoadRunner;   We don't have these guys here ---but did see him when we were in Arkansas recently.  I hope they will make it to Tennessee sometime!!!!



Papa Cardinal;  These beauties bring their little ones to the feeders... Such wonderful birds!



Rose-Breasted Grosbeak;  These gorgeous birds visit us twice during the year during migration.   They come in April or May and then again in late Fall....



Brown Thrasher;   They are here  from Spring-Fall ---and they nest here.  One year I was trimming a bush and Mama Thrasher wanted to take a bite out of me.  Scared me to death since I didn't know there was a nest in that bush.



My FAVORITE Bird in our yard,  the Eastern Bluebirds;   As you can tell these are 3 babies begging Daddy for food....  The Bluebirds are nesting NOW --so we should be seeing some of these little ones soon.  They usually make 3 broods a year---and they are with us year 'round!



Beautiful colorful Goldfinch;   We have lots of finches (Pine Siskins,  House Finches, etc.) --but these are the prettiest I think--especially during mating season.



Purple Finch;  These Finches are rare around here ---so I was excited to see him on Jan. 26, 2017.   They are similar to the male House Finches --but much prettier I think.



Mourning Dove;   We have them around here all year ---but they have to work hard to stay away from the Hawks!!!!



Speaking of Hawks,  this young one visited the Food Kitchen on 3/3/17...  I'm no expert on hawks (I'd prefer they stay AWAY) --but he may be a young Cooper's --which are the ones we usually get here?????  (Luckily,  he did not catch anything when he visited.)



Red-bellied Woodpecker;   These guys who are quite vocal (like the Pileated Woodpeckers are) when they visit.  They are with us year 'round... 



Another hawk that visited our deck on Christmas Eve this past year;  He was a big one --and again I'm not sure what he was..  I assume a Cooper's Hawk??????   Look at the next picture to see what he got for lunch!!!!



Oh My.... The hawk caught a CHIPMUNK for his Christmas Eve Lunch.... (Not a good picture because I was inside trying not to disturb him --while I looked out through two panes of glass and a screen.)



Another of my favorite woodpeckers,  the  Yellow Shafted Northern Flicker;   These birds are so beautiful --and I"m thrilled when they come to the Bird Kitchen.



Red-Headed Woodpecker:  I LOVE LOVE LOVE these woodpeckers.   To me,  they are the prettiest of the woodpeckers that visit us...
Well---that is enough,  don't you think?    Oh how I love my sweet birdies ---and I apologize for not sharing them more often with you.

For those of you who have asked,  I am finally WELL (I hope).  My energy level is still ZILCH --but hopefully,  that too will get better gradually.  For someone who is NEVER sick,  that 'bug' really BIT me bigtime... It's so nice to sleep now without coughing....  And I'm so glad that George didn't get it.

Have a great week and thanks to those of you who take time each week to comment... Sometimes I am shocked when I read that my blog posts have been visited by over 200 people ---and yet,  so few bother to comment... Kinda sad,   isn't it???   BUT--that's just blogging (or any social media)... We all do what we can and what we are interested in doing!!!

Hugs,

Monday, March 13, 2017

Someone had a BIG Birthday --3/9/17

GEORGE EMERY ADAMS 
Dear Friends,  Click HERE to send a shout-out to GEORGE.  He turned 75 last Thursday!!!!!!   I wanted to make sure he had a great birthday --BUT because I had been so sick,  I didn't want to stray away from home for long... SO--- since he LOVES WATERFALLS,   we went to Cumberland Falls State Park in Kentucky.

Even though we only stayed there one night,   I think he had a great day ---and I did fine (although I truly took it easy since I still have lots of congestion and not much energy nor lung power)...  One of these days--I'll get totally well..?????

BUT--this post is about George...  I know that many of you don't care for Facebook --but we had so much fun for a couple of days communicating back and forth with friends/family --celebrating G's birthday...  I think he had over 100+  Happy Birthday messages...  Such a joy sharing this joy back and forth! One thing about Facebook is the 'current' communication that we can get.

SO---today I'll share some of those pictures I put on Facebook --along with pictures from Cumberland Falls...  Hope you enjoy this blog post... You can click on the pictures for enlargements...


My message to George on Facebook on his Birthday



Who is that Monkey climbing all over the rocks --trying to hide from ME?????  This picture was on Facebook.  (Arkansas 2/15/17)  



Someone is on top of the world!!!!    OR maybe  he is surrendering to the police????? ha ha ...  I asked the Facebook folks to come up with a good caption for this one ---and we got some GREAT ones!  (Arkansas, 2/16/17)



Us enjoying Cumberland Falls on 3/9/17



Love seeing the mist up close --at Cumberland Falls 



Lots of water coming over the falls at Cumberland Falls  (3/9/17)


The Birthday Boy has his tripod ready to get some great pictures at Cumberland Falls.




Rapids at Cumberland Falls



Good picture of Cumberland Falls  



The Birthday boy at Cumberland Falls ---with sunbeams coming down on him!!!!!!



We had hoped to see the MOONBOW (rainbow at night) that night ---and there WAS a moon up there trying to shine down...  BUT--as you can see,  there were enough thin clouds to keep that moon from being EXTREMELY bright... Because of that,  George could only get pictures of the moonbow with his camera (on a special setting).  We could not see it with the naked eye..



This  is part of the moonbow (captured by George's Canon) on 3/9/17.  Believe it or not but it was totally DARK when he took this picture... George will post an even better picture of the moonbow both on Facebook and on his blog.  (Remember that it was totally dark and that we couldn't see this with the naked eye.)



Two people in love enjoying a waterfall and celebrating George's Birthday (3/9/17)
Well,  besides enjoying Cumberland Falls both during the day and at night,  we also enjoyed a delicious Birthday Dinner at the state park lodge restaurant...  All in all,  it was a great day and I hope that my Sweetheart enjoyed it as much as I did...

We got home the next afternoon ---and guess what I did???????  Went to bed for a long nap!!!! ha

Have a great week, my Friends,  and don't miss seeing George's blog post today. Click HERE  to see a REALLY great Moonbow picture.

Hugs,