Friday, December 26, 2008

No Posts... Temporarily

My laptop is in a coma at present (I think it's either the power cord or battery, maybe both), and I can't get the little beggar looked at till Saturday morning. I'm writing this from work, which could potentially get me fired, but hey!

Unfortunately, the laptop is where all my photos are. Yes, by some strange miracle of timing - for which I am not famous - I actually did a backup the night before!

Anyway, there will be no Friday's Feathers nor Saturday PhotoHunt from me until at least Saturday afternoon. Sorry!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Yes, Matthew, those are Flamingos on Mrs. J's Christmas tree.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A Flamingo Chanukah/Christmas

Drumroll, please! The moment you've all been waiting for (or maybe not):

A Flamingo Christmas

Welcome! I hope Santa brings you lots of great prezzies and stockingsful of happiness.

Don't forget to put out the cookies - and no peeking!

Oh, and stop by Flamingo Musings for, what I think, is a great very last minute gift suggestion!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Happy Chanuka!

The Jewish holiday, Chanukah, begins this evening at sundown. It's an eight-day holiday celebrated by lighting candles (one the first night, two the second, and so on), giving gifts, and of course, eating!

A Chanukah menorah, the traditional candelabra or candleholder, is distinguished from a regular menorah by the number of candles it holds: eight plus one placed slightly higher or set off from the others. That is the "shamash" or servant candle, and is used to light the others. Okay, so technically, there are nine. These are the "fun" menorahs. They range from the beautiful, to the one made out of clay by your kindergartener. They can be simple or ornate, plain or colorful, and the whole gamut in between.

The photo above is of a whimsical cat-shaped menorah made by a metal artist, given to me by my sister-in-law a couple of years ago.

This is my little Chanukah tablescape. There are some holiday knickknacks, my dreidel lights (a dreidel is a four-sided top that is marked in Hebrew initials that stand for "a Great Miracle Happened There", referring to the story of the Maccabbees... Oh heck! This is my photoblog. If you want the rest of the story, come over to Flamingo Musings in about 30 minutes from now.

Happy Chanuka or Hannukkah, or Chanukah, or however you want to spell it!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

PhotoHunt: Wide

The PhotoHunt theme this week is "Wide"

As with some of the more recent stumpers, I didn't know what I wanted to do with this week's theme. I guess most of you have figured out by now that I'm just a little, um, what would be the polite term? Quirky.

So, yeah. This presented itself to me this week. I guess it's a little, um, quirky.

Then there's this (you really should click on it to really get the feeling:

Our true entry to the wide expanses of the universe.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday's Feathers: Female Cardinal

Today's Friday's Feathers belong to a female Northern Cardinal:

For a change, I wanted to show a photo of a bird that was actually standing still! No blur, no butts, no branches. Isn't she a beauty?

**I sometimes forget that there are people all over the world who might not be familiar with our flora and fauna. Oops!

Yes, the Northern Cardinal (another one of those birds with "Northern" in their names, who do not necessarily stay north) is actually quite common over much of the U.S. In fact, the cardinal is the "State Bird" of no fewer than seven different states! The male is more familiar to most people. He looks exactly like her, except that everywhere you see brown / buff, he is bright red all over. Very striking. I'd like to get an equally clear shot of him up soon for you.

Friday, December 12, 2008

PhotoHunt: Favorite

The PhotoHunt theme this week is "Favorite"

You've probably already seen some of my favorite birds, so I won't repeat myself; the tree's still not trimmed and the menorahs still not unpacked, so I can't show you those favorites; I need to replace the switch on the porch light, so I can't show you my favorite gift - a large pink feathered wreath made for my birthday two years ago by my girlfriend, BooBoo. I have lots of favorite things, so what shall I show you?

This is my Favorite Seat. This is where I collapse when I come home from work, where I watch TV, where MJ and I eat our dinner most of the time (his favorite seat is at the other end). This is where I read, nap, listen for the orioles, download and edit my photos, and this is where I blog. Both Flamingo Fotos and Flamingo Musings come to you courtesy of the left-hand end of the big brown couch. :-)

Happy Weekend!

Friday's Feathers: Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher

Today's Friday's Feathers belong to the Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher:

Isn't he adorable? Another bug-eater who loves the mystery tree(? tall shrub?) in my backyard. What can I tell you about him? Well, um, he's blue-gray and he eats bugs. He's also very tiny and always moving - like the warblers. Therefore, hard to get an in-focus shot of. Grrrrrr!

BTW, it's official: Said tree/shrub is a bona fide mystery. No one knows what it is. Not even the experts down at Fairchild Tropical Garden. Great.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Peacocks of East Ridge



I don't know how Peacocks were introduced into the several suburban neighborhoods where they've taken up residence, down here. The "why" is fairly obvious. Peacocks are very regal-looking birds, with their magnificent plumage and stately air, as they stroll, what were at the time, the lawns and estates of the wealthy folk who owned the town way back when.

The rich and famous of way back when are long gone, and the properties, for the most part, broken up into residential neighborhoods of every strata. But the Peacocks remain. You either love them or hate them. During mating season, especially, they are loud and the males become aggressive toward anything that moves. They're also not terribly particular about where they perform their, um, bathroom duties (no bird is, but their produce is much larger, messier, and liable to be on your car or the walkway to your door).

These photos were taken in an old part of South Dade, at a retirement community called East Ridge, and these are just two of a much larger flock that roams the grounds with impunity. It's not yet mating season, so all is peaceful at the moment...

Of course, you should click on the images to see them in their glory.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

PhotoHunt: Breakfast

The PhotoHunt theme this week is "Breakfast"

I know, I'm late! For me, anyway....

When this little guy sees me puttering around the backyard, he races across the utility lines, down one tree in my neighbor's yard, up another, leeeaaaps! into the mango tree canopy, down its trunk, and peers around from behind, until he sees I've dumped some "squirrel chow" onto the top of this old blue Rubbermaid container under it. Then, when I've turned my back and walked away a few feet, another great leap onto the container, and he'll munch away happily at his Breakfast.

At least it keeps him off the bird feeders for awhile. If you can't beat 'em, feed 'em.

Happy Weekend, all!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Friday's Feathers: Canary-winged Parakeets

Today's Friday's Feathers belong to the Canary-winged, or Yellow Chevroned, Parakeet:

I love these little parakeets - they're so animated!

They have the best natural camouflage I've ever seen. You can hear them up in the trees having loud, high-pitched conversation, but search as you might, you'll very rarely see them up there. When they're ready to be seen, anywhere between 4 and 24 of the little rascals will descend on the feeders as if by magic!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

JJ Commiserates With Daisy

I'm not playing "Wordless Wednesday", today, but I was just over at Daisy's blog, and I had to post this:

Daisy, JJ feels your pain...

Butterfly Wednesday: Dingy Purplewing

We have a lovely butterfly here called the Florida Purplewing. This isn't it. Of course not. What do I get? Its cousin, the Dingy Purplewing. Figures, right? Pretty cool, though. Do click on it to see it in all its furry magnificence!

Happy Wednesday!
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