Friday, June 30, 2017

Visiting Dennis

We visited Doug's brother, Dennis, last Saturday. He lives a couple of hours from us, and we go about once a month to spend the afternoon with him. Going out to eat is always a part of those visits. Finding a restaurant that we all enjoy is sometimes a challenge, but we've recently discovered a place we can all agree on: a little truck stop with delicious food and a good variety of menu items.

Arlene's Truck Stop in Augusta, Michigan

Dennis with his western omelet, Doug with his wet burrito, and my chicken bacon ranch wrap

A sign on a wall in the restaurant.

After a very filling meal at Arlene's, we stopped at another place for ice cream. Then we found a little park where we could enjoy a little stroll and some time of conversation on a park bench. The following photos were taken at the John Wilson Park in Athens, Michigan.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

A New (To Me) Dragonfly

Doug found this little visitor on one of our shrubs Thursday night, about nine o'clock. I don't believe I've ever seen a dragonfly quite like this one and hope one of you might be able to identify it for me.

The images aren't the best quality because of the low-light situation and the movement of the dragonfly's perch in the evening breeze. In fact, I had to use a flash, which must have confused this poor little critter because those big eyes were rolling with my every move.

Update 6/25/17: Aha! Persistency in searching the internet has paid off.  I believe this is a female Eastern Pondhawk.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

June Days

This has been an unusual year (so far) for Doug and me. We've had more than the usual number of ailments, resulting in more than the usual number of medical appointments. There's been nothing too serious among our ailments, but they've clogged our calendar, kept us from doing much traveling, and contributed to my lapse in posting here.

But, lest you think I've abandoned the blog completely, here are some photos from some warm, sunny days in June.

Ouabache (pronounced WAH-bash) State Park is a favorite destination for quiet summer afternoons of relaxation, reading, and photography. 

Unfortunately, the lake in the park has been drained this year, to allow construction of a swimming beach. So our afternoons by the lake aren't quite the same this year. For one thing, there's a serious lack of dragonflies, one of my favorite subjects for photographs. And the Canada Geese are doing more hiking than swimming.

An Eastern Eyed Click Beetle (after I knocked it out of my hair)

The same beetle, with wings spread

Even though the lake has been drained, there is a small area with water in it. Doug and I walked out on the dry lake bed to reach the edge of the water and found several water snakes swimming at the water's edge and moving among the rocks on the shore. (And the park authorities are building a swimming beach???)

Water Snake

Cedar Waxwing

Brown-Headed Cow Bird

After our afternoon at the park, we drove over to Willshire, Ohio, for supper at the Willshire Drive-in, one of our very favorite places to go for ice cream in the summer.

Willshire Drive-in

While enjoying our meal (and dessert) at the drive-in, we watched a brave soul painting the town's water tower.

Painting the Willshire, Ohio Water Tower

Our drive home that day had to be rerouted due to a fire in what we think was a barn. We drove by the site a few days later. All that was left was a pile of charred debris. There was a house nearby, so we're pretty sure this was a barn.

Structure Fire

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