Garden Visitor – Green Darner Dragonfly

This morning as I was taking in the garden and enjoying its progress, I happened to notice a visitor hiding among the pumpkin leaves.


This Green Darner Dragonfly stayed all day under the leaves.


Before I headed inside this evening for the night, I checked one last time to see if my visitor had moved on.


Nope, still hanging out in the pumpkin patch.


Even if I don’t get a single pumpkin this year, finding this beautiful wonder of nature taking refuge under the leaves makes planting the patch worthwhile. There is a reason for everything, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.


Their Love Can Weather Any Storm


This afternoon we had some severe thunderstorms hit our area. The rain came down in buckets, thunder and lightning filled the sky, and the streets quickly filled with water.

As I sat listening to the storm in our great room, I suddenly heard the distinct cooing of a morning dove. I carefully opened the shade on the window overlooking the A-frame in the cucumber garden and there on top of the structure were two soaking wet morning doves.

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This couple must have gotten stuck in the storm.  I am not sure if it’s true, but I heard that birds will not fly in a storm. Seeing this pair of birds patiently sitting in the rain, not daring to fly, makes me think this may be so.

For more than an hour the rain pounded them, but neither made any move to leave.

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Not until the rain stopped and they had fluffed themselves somewhat dry, did they take flight.


The most wonderful part of watching this scene was that when this couple did take flight, they did it together. First they flew to a fence just beyond the A-frame, then to a fence at the end of my neighbors property,


and then finally into the safety of a pine tree.  All the while, they were together, never faltering, as one.

Love can be found everywhere, but today it was right outside my window and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

Loving The Lilacs

One of the best things about May is that this is the month our lilac bushes bloom.  Not every year, mind you, because for some reason they tend to skip a year every couple of years, forcing me to wait for them to return the following year.  This year though, both our bushes bloomed.


Bell loves sitting right by the lilac bush in the warm sun. I’m not sure if she too likes the smell of the lilacs or if it’s just the full sun on her back — either way, she’s enjoying something!


This afternoon I cut the first two bouquets from the bushes. The bushes are loaded with partially bloomed lilacs, but I managed to find two vasefuls of fully open lilacs. One for my neighbor Karen who absolutely loves lilacs, and the other for Grace.

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I’m glad I cut them today because frost is predicted for tonight which might brown all the remaining. Thankfully the house will protect the ones I cut, filling the great room with the sweet scent that only comes round once a year, if I’m lucky, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.



Yep, it’s finally happened!  The plum tree is in full bloom.  Not quite as many flowers this year as last, but then again we pruned much of the tree back when we picked the fruit last year.  As it is, if the weather doesn’t somehow damage the blossoms, we should have a fairly bountiful harvest.


See the visitor tucked among the clusters of flowers?

See the visitor tucked among the clusters of flowers?


I wonder what type of butterfly this is?



The bees have busy buzzing around the blossoms nonstop for the past couple of days.  Can’t wait to see how many plums we’ll get this year.

The spring has been wonderful for fruit trees so far this spring here in Michigan.  It has been mild, just rainy enough, and a bit warmer than usual, perfect for growing fruit, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

Sneaking Out For Some Spring

I’m really not very good at this resting thing.  Sitting in the house with my leg elevated and an ice pack set squarely on my knee, is pretty hard to take when outside the world is budding with color and life.

After finishing up dinner this afternoon (we eat dinner at 3:00 Tuesdays and Thursdays), I stole out of the house while Hubby was in the shower and checked out all the flowers in the yard. Spring has definitely sprung!

The plum tree has hundreds of tiny white blossoms itching to explode from their shells.

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The lilac bushes are packed with growing flower stems.

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A wild violet popped up out of the blue.


The hyacinth will probably be in full bloom this weekend.

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I transplanted the flower Grace gave me last week, and “Fifi” is doing just fine.  I wanted to name it Daisy, but that choice was vetoed.


And keeping me company, or shall I say keeping watch to make sure no one caught me as I enjoyed a stint in the fresh air, Bell checked out all the flowers in the yard too.



So, here I am, sitting back on the couch with my leg up, my new knee brace firmly pulled around my leg, and Bell sleeping at me feet.  It was great to get out and enjoy a bit of the wonderful day we’re having.  Tomorrow is supposed to be even nicer, so perhaps I’ll sit on the lounge chair and bird watch for a bit.

It’s difficult being laid up, even if it is only temporarily (I hope), but getting out for a few minutes to get some fresh air and enjoy the day made all the difference, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.



In Need Of Some Spring

The weather here in Michigan continues to be bitter, unrelenting, and completely disheartening. With the cold pounding at the windows and snow piled high against the house, I needed a bit of spring this afternoon.  For a few glorious moments, I basked in the beauty of spring’s past.

2013 096 2013 099 2013 110 2013 117I can’t wait for warmer weather, longer days, and budding flowers to fill the air with the sweet scent of spring.  For now, a moments reprieve from winter’s arctic blast will get me through the day, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

Not So Itsy Spider!

I know spiders are an important part of our ecosystem, but that doesn’t make me like them in the least.  I’m not an arachnophobe, but when spiders wander into our house, out comes the vacuum and bye-bye goes the spider.


While checking for more strawberries I happened to notice a wonderful web strung between the arborvitae and the lilac bush.  It was unfortunate that the spider was there, but it did make taking pictures of the web easier.  I have never been able to get my camera to focus on the silvery, clear threads of a web.  The spider at least made it possible to capture a glimpse of yet another wonder of nature.

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Even the scariest of God’s creatures have beauty to share, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.