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Friday, July 3, 2015

Inspired by . . . front porch ramblings

After a few hours glued to the computer screen, nothing lifts the spirits and un-clouds the mind like stepping out onto my front porch. I’m not quite ready to quote Bilbo Baggins on the matter, but there is always something {or someone} going on within viewing distance of our front door.

Contrary to my initial observations the mockingbirds are extremely attentive and cautious parents.

 

Mockingbird_bug

I haven’t gotten a look at the babies yet, but there are regular feedings going on. If the parents see me watching they will wait several minutes before approaching the nest and always enter and exit from a different point. Dinner, anyone ?

 

Mockingbird_closeup

 

With all the rain we’ve had there is an abundance of bugs this year, which leads to an abundance of other critters as well!  I haven’t been able to identify this toad, yet, please feel free to offer an id in the comments if you have one.  There are a ton of them hopping around, some so tiny you can barely see them! I’m being very careful where I step!

 

Toad

 

The Texas Spiny Lizard is always a favorite! I don’t mind being watched by a reptilian eye when it’s on a critter this size.

 

Texas_Spiny_Lizard

 

These are a type of squash bug, I think, although I couldn’t positively id them. They are swarming the stalks of Common Mullein right now.

 

Common_Mullein

 

This lady-bird was a surprise! I am pretty sure she is a female Eastern Bluebird, or perhaps an immature male? I have never seen bluebirds here before, although I know they’re around. I didn’t realize they were such big birds, but allaboutbirds.org lists them at 6-8inches. I guess I’ve always seen pictures of them perched contently with their feathers fluffed.

 

EasternBluebird

 

EasternBluebird2

 

One afternoon I looked out the window and saw this guy hopping across the lawn. At first I thought he was a baby fawn. This picture doesn’t give you the best gauge of his size, especially with his ears down, but the Jackrabbits in Texas are BIG! We have a lot of these guys, and gals running around, but usually not this close to the house during the day. I was as surprised to see him as he was to see me! The black-tailed jackrabbit is actually a hare and the only one native to Texas.

 

JackRabbit

 

Speaking of fawns, we have quite a few of those running around here, too!

 

Fawn

 

Thank goodness they grow into the those ears!

I read a quote on a friend’s blog recently that gave me pause:

 

Summer is the time when one sheds one’s tensions with one’s clothes,

and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit.

A few of those days and you can become drunk

with the belief that all’s right with the world.

~Ada Louise Huxtable

 

It’s true, summer can be a “jeweled balm for the battered spirit.” But not this summer. Not in this country anyway, and certainly not in many other places in the world. It’s also true that there is a strong tendency to immerse oneself in nature and become “drunk with the belief that all’s right with the world.” But that is the equivalent of burying one’s head in the sand, because, clearly, all is not right with the world.

Rather, it is my hope that nature, the images shared here along with your personal experiences, serve to remind you that there is HOPE. That creations manifesto will point you to the One who will walk beside you, at times even carry you, through life’s tragedies. The One who will right every wrong, and dry every tear. The One who gives wisdom and grace. The One, the only One, who brings PEACE.

 

Wishing those in the US

a safe and happy 4th of July -

and to all, peace in your

hearts this summer.

 

Shalom,

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Sharing inspiration here:

Little by Little

NatureNotes

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If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June