Wordless Wednesday (Breaking Out of the Egg Edition)

A bird has built a nest in our garage (of all places):

Her baby is now with us and growing every day:

My “fledgling” isn’t nearly this helpless anymore.
Today we celebrate her 16th birthday!
Happy birthday, Tenley!
“I’m youth, I’m joy, I’m a little bird that has
broken out of the egg.”
– Sir James M. Barrie

Summer Daze Fun Photo Party

The Summer Daze Photo Party is the creation of Kristi from Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia from Project Alicia, and Rebecca from Bumbles and Light. The rules are pretty lax (it is summer after all!). Feel free to link up your summer images June 15 through July 20. The instructions are here.

Wordless Wednesday (Smile of Light Edition)

This is not going to be a summer of long, complicated, expensive trips.
That doesn’t mean I can’t find some summer fun and relaxation in the mix.
While Tenley and the other dancers watched La Nouba at Downtown Disney recently, I chilled at a nearby restaurant and enjoyed Chilean wine and a good book.
It was a night for being in the background while the girls bonded.
This summer’s moments may come in smaller increments, but I will
treasure them no matter what.
Summer Daze Fun Photo Party
The Summer Daze Photo Party is the creation of Kristi from Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia from Project Alicia, and Rebecca from Bumbles and Light. The rules are pretty lax (it is summer after all!). Feel free to link up your summer images June 15 through July 20. The instructions are here.

Wordless Wednesday (Trees > Blogs Edition)

<em>Leap Into Spring!</em> Photo Challenge”></a></p>
<p> <span style=

This is week six (the last week!) of the “Leap Into Spring” Photo Challenge.

We have a sago palm (technically, a cycas revoluta) in our front yard that has survived our hands-off approach to landscaping. Ours is doing its best to be king of the front flower bed.

It does not, however, appreciate my need for it to cooperate with my blogging schedule. Last fall there was a bird building a nest in it. I took picture after picture of the eggs, knowing that one day I would be able to do a cool post about the baby birds. I don’t know if an animal took them or the mama bird got tired of me disturbing her nest in order to take pictures of the eggs, but that didn’t work out so well.

A few weeks ago, the sago palm (which apparently is a boy sago) started the process of its male cone (seriously, this is the horticultural term) appearing. 

The symmetry of this thing is really gorgeous; I could stare at it for hours.

 
I actually used it as a backdrop for one of my #StyleMeMay pictures.

This eye-stopping feature of our sago palm has changed rapidly, from short and round to long and thin (seriously, it’s just a plant!). Here is this morning’s version:

But, alas, any hopes I had of it bursting forth with fronds of springlike grandeur are just that: hopes, not realities.

Dear Kristi (Live and Love Out Loud), Alicia (Project Alicia), and Rebecca (Bumbles and Light), thanks for hosting this challenge.Any chance of a summer photo challenge with a “amazing palm foliage that finally showed up” theme?

Epilogue – um, never mind Kristi, Alicia, Rebecca. Boys will be boys I guess:

June 6, 2012

(I used this source to understand my male sago palm better. Thank you Lynn McKamey.)

Wordless Wednesday (It’s Not Easy Being Green Edition)

<em>Leap Into Spring!</em> Photo Challenge”></a></p>
<p> <span style=

This is week five of the “Leap Into Spring” Photo Challenge. This challenge has two choices of prompts for each week. This week, the choices are “Grass” and “Green.” 

As Kermit the Frog sang, “It’s Not That Easy Being Green.” Green doesn’t always get top billing.

It floats along, its hue unnoticed by its occupant:

It gets sat on:

 
It is the “nice but not memorable” frame for important information:



And as our fun spring photo challenge winds down, it foretells the big ending ahead:

 
But we’re not done yet! Let’s see what’s down the trail for Finale week:

Thank you to Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light for hosting this challenge. The challenge will run from April 6th – May 18th and is open to everyone regardless of geographic location, skill level, time commitment or camera equipment. Simply stop by each Friday and share your favorite images inspired by the weekly prompts. It is going to have freebies, prizes and photography tips galore!

(Next week’s theme is Finale!. The linky will be up on Friday, May 11.)

(These pictures were taken at Maclay Gardens.)

Wordless Wednesday (Not Alone Edition)

<em>Leap Into Spring!</em> Photo Challenge”></a></p>
<p> <span style=

This is week three of the “Leap Into Spring” Photo Challenge. This challenge has two choices of prompts for each week. This week, the choices are “Blossom” and “Trees.” 

I have to be honest – as I prepare my post, my thoughts are very much with one of its sponsors, Kristi from Live and Love Out Loud, who underwent surgery yesterday for her breast lump.


Kristi is taking a break from her blog while she has the surgery and recovers, but we have heard reports here and there of how she is doing. It hurts. And that makes me sad. 


I wish she could just put her feet up:



In a pain-free, blossom-filled place:

 
Leaving behind thoughts of pathology, difficult decisions, and worry. 

Sometimes the sun is a bit obscured:
  

  
And it is the shadows that we see first:

But along this scary, frustrating, seemingly interminable journey, there’s always a space for someone else to come along and sit beside you.

 
You are not alone.

Thank you to Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light for hosting this challenge. The challenge will run from April 6th – May 18th and is open to everyone regardless of geographic location, skill level, time commitment or camera equipment. Simply stop by each Friday and share your favorite images inspired by the weekly prompts. It is going to have freebies, prizes and photography tips galore!

(Next week’s theme is Rain/Water. The linky will be up on Friday, April 27)

These pictures were taken at Maclay Gardens, Tallahassee, Florida.




Wordless Wednesday (Blue Eggs and Pinwheels Edition)

<em>Leap Into Spring!</em> Photo Challenge”></a></p>
<p> <span style=

This is week two of the “Leap Into Spring” Photo Challenge. This challenge has two choices of prompts for each week. This week, the choices are Easter and Eggs. These are two choices that I found a lot easier when my children were younger!

I fully admit that I created this little Easter/Egg-themed image tonight, nine days after Easter.

BUT one thing we all need to keep in mind long past Easter is the fact that more than five children die every day as a result of child abuse.*

Did you see that blue pinwheel in the “Easter/Egg” picture? During the month of April, blue pinwheels represent prevention of child abuse. Patches of blue “pinwheels for prevention” are popping up all over our town (read more about Florida’s efforts here).

Thanks “Easter Bunny,” for bringing me a pinwheel so I can show my support of Pinwheels for Prevention.

Photo credit: Tenley Kiger

Visit the Pinwheels for Prevention Pinterest Board by clicking here.

Thank you to Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light for hosting this challenge. The challenge will run from April 6th – May 18th and is open to everyone regardless of geographic location, skill level, time commitment or camera equipment. Simply stop by each Friday and share your favorite images inspired by the weekly prompts. It is going to have freebies, prizes and photography tips galore!

(Next week’s theme is Blossom/Trees. The linky will be up on Friday, April 20)

*Source: ChildHelp

Wordless Wednesday (A Small Blue Light Edition)

<em>Leap Into Spring!</em> Photo Challenge”></a></p>
<p> <span style=

With this post, I Leap! into the “Leap Into Spring” Photo Challenge. This challenge has two choices of prompts for each week. This week, the choices are Sunshine and Light.

Each April 2, people all over the world observe World Autism Awareness Day. Families install special blue light bulbs in their homes; businesses light up their entire buildings. I lit a single blue candle.

My light was just one among many. No one saw it except my family. But a light doesn’t have to be big and dramatic to start to make a difference. A difference can start with one single candle, one conversation, one mile walked on behalf of a cause.

What cause in your life deserves a small light of support?

Thank you to Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light for hosting this challenge. The challenge will run from April 6th – May 18th and is open to everyone regardless of geographic location, skill level, time commitment or camera equipment. Simply stop by each Friday and share your favorite images inspired by the weekly prompts. It is going to have freebies, prizes and photography tips galore!

(Next week’s theme is Easter/Eggs. The linky will be up on Friday, April 13 (I think!).)

Wordless Wednesday (Shades of Autumn Finale Edition)

This is Week Eight of the Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge. It’s finale week!
For finale week, I am sharing images from the labyrinth garden at my church (Holy Comforter Episcopal). Last Saturday, I spent time in the labyrinth reflecting on the experiences I had and the images I captured during the Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge. As I walked the labyrinth, the main thing that came to mind is that although the focus was on images, there were also many special people involved in helping make those images happen, such as the rare opportunity to be with my friends Audrey and Kimmi that resulted in my green week post or the kind employee at Esposito’s who helped me pick out the perfect milkweed plant to attract monarch butterflies for orange week.

The Labyrinth, Autumn 2011:

If you are interested in learning more about labyrinths as spirtual tools, here is one resource.

Finally, thank you to Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light for coordinating this challenge. I can’t think of a week during the challenge when one of the organizers did not comment on my post. Thank you for your encouragement and the work each of you put into coordinating this challenge.

Wordless Wednesday (Within the Lines Edition)

This is Week Seven of the Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge. This week’s color is white. 
As a “Dance Mom,” I do a whole lot of waiting. In the car. Between white lines on the pavement. These white lines:
Life lived “between the lines” doesn’t have to be dull; we just have to look a little harder sometimes to see the beauty that is there to enjoy.
The Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge is hosted by Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light. The challenge welcomes photographers of all skill levels. Next week’s theme is FINALE! The linky for finale week will be up starting on Friday, November 25 (after which we will be on our own to think up Wordless Wednesday topics – it’s been a while!).

Wordless Wednesday (Brown Understudy Edition)

This is Week Six of the Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge. This week’s color is brown. 
We have a tree in our front yard that is (on first glance) pretty nondescript. I have hung the occasional bird feeder in it; I have driven past it thousands of times as I pulled into and out of our driveway. It’s green. Right now it has some red coloring. Fortunately, for brown week it has some cool brown nut-things hidden deep within the leaves.
To me, the brown nuts are like the understudy who knows a part backwards and forwards but has never gotten a chance to shine. This is your week, brown!
The Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge is hosted by Kristi of Live and Love Out Loud, Alicia of Project Alicia, and Rebecca of Bumbles and Light. The challenge welcomes photographers of all skill levels. Next week’s theme is white! The linky for white week will be up starting on Friday, November 18.