Friday, March 14, 2014

An Ace in the Hole

Last Sunday was warm and sunny
after Friday into Saturday's 
cold snow and colder wind.

I kicked myself out the door
and down to the park along Piney Creek.

I was dragging my feet, 
Everything is brown and dead.

What could I possibly find to photograph
that interested or excited me?  
Same old same old. 

City of Aurora Park Along Piney Creek

The winter sun had burned off 
the thin cover of snow
except in the shadowy areas facing north.

An Ice-Covered Pond 
and Snow Lingering in the Shadowy Areas

I was feeling dreary myself ~
downright punky.

Bullrushes Along Piney Creek

I had to give myself a pep talk.
Here I was, alive and safe,
in this beautiful corner of the world,
and I was ~ whiny???

Swift self-kick to the tush,
and the hunt was on!

I challenged myself to find 
the beauty and the interesting 
hidden in brown and dead.

Here is some of what I discovered.

 Ponderosa Pines in the Ponderosa Preserve
Aurora, Colorado


Cottonwood Trunks

Water Plants in Piney Creek

Sere Cottonwood Leaves

A Mallard Couple
Middle Pond

A Quiet Small Pool
Along Piney Creek, Aurora
Signs of a flash flood that ravaged the creek bottom in 2012 are still visible.

A Scrim of Ice on the Creek

Sunday Afternoon Drive
Muzzle-Licking Fun!

Melting Ice on the Upper Pond

 Trail and Culvert Under Aurora Parkway
This was filled almost to the top during the flash flood in 2012.

Waiting on Spring

A Sparkle of Water

Sunbathing on a Roof

Sunbathing on a Cottonwood Tree

And sometimes you get lucky ~
and land an ace in the hole:

Walkers gather to photograph
a great-horned owl
nesting in a pot on a house deck!

Sometimes the cure for a punky mood
is a good, swift self-kick in the tush!


  1. YES there is so much beauty in winter if we only look isn't there?? Each season is beautiful in its own way. I have always said, trees don't need to hold leaves to hold beauty :)

    1. Hi Keith! I'm a tree hugger from way back! They are always beautiful! Have a good evening!

  2. Looks like you had a nice walk. Great shots of the owl - nesting in that pot! You can find beauty in most things if you care to look! Some nice shots. Well done.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

    1. Hi Andrew! Yes, I had a great walk. My husband was about to send out a search party because I was gone so long! I couldn't believe that great horned owl was sitting in the full sun in a pot on a deck! You just have to get out the door and engage! Have a great weekend!

  3. And just look what that 'swift kick' produced!!
    Louise, you found all the beauty to be found. I bet you felt a thousand times better when you got home.

    Ace in the hole alright! What great shots of that owl. And he/she looked bored with it all!! Have a great weekend.

    1. Hey Jimbo ~
      I didn't eat enough today so the merlot hit me hard at Parkway! LOL!
      I couldn't believe that owl. I was walking along shooting pictures, and this elderly lady in the park said, "Want to see something really interesting?"
      "Are you kidding ~ yes!!!!!" said I.
      I guess the owl has been there for a number of days. The house is empty right now. We're thinking its sitting on owlets. What a weird place to have a nest. She took the bank of photographers that gathered with aplomb!
      And, yes, I felt much better! Have a great weekend. I'm about to watch "Hawaii 5-O!" Tuesday can't come fast enough!

  4. What stunning pictures you ended up with. I know how you feel about the same old, same old but you really got some unique shots. The mallard one is worthy of a calendar and the owl....what a hoot! What a great eye.

    1. Peggy, you always make me feel awesome! Thank you! That prance male mallard was gorgeous! The light was so strong on Sunday. Well, it's always strong at 6,000 feet, which is our elevation! Have a happy weekend!

  5. Wow, I'd say you found a lot to photograph!
    The Pond ones are really cool.
    And I like the bullrushes. Nostalgic feel to them.

    1. Thanks, Alex! I love bullrushes too. I have fun memories of bullrush fights with my brother when I was a kid! Definite nostalgia! Happy weekend to you!

  6. I'd like to take a drive like that, could be fun. And yay, no snow. So much better haha

    1. Hey Pat! No snow! For now. My poor SIL up in the mountains has had 361 inches ~ 916 centimeters! LOL! epic. I wish I had seen it recently. I guess I won't anytime soon. On Wednesday I'll be catching a wave on Waikiki! Cannot wait! Have a great weekend!

  7. Replies
    1. Hi HGW! Spring for now ~ although we can get a lot of snow in April! Hope it's warming up where you are! I couldn't believe that owl ~ in broad daylight! I've heard them, but they're hard to find. I keep meaning to go to the park after dark ~ but with my luck, I'd run into a frisky skunk! Have a good one!

  8. I love all of these photos!!! The owl is sweet, the bulrushes are lovely and the mallard couple is delightful!

    1. You are so kind, Linda! I love the wildlife around here. I never tire of looking for it. we are definitely kindred spirits in this respect! Have a happy weekend!

  9. Hello Louise,
    Great pictures! The owl ones are wonderful! Thank you so much for your thoughts, I am good just trying to see 'that doctor' less but mostly preventative now (almost new!!). At the moment the garden is in a state from last year's neglect and as Spring has come early (strangely warm here!!) we are trying to whip it into shape! Have a great weekend!
    Ivan x

    1. Thanks, Ivan! I'm so glad to hear that you are doing better! Seeing any doctor less is awesome! We're off to Honolulu on early Tuesday morning, so I am getting quite excited! I've been working on my balance since last summer, and I am very excited about paddle boarding on Waikiki. Getting your garden in shape must feel great. You have such a lovely place. Hi to Mark, and a belly scratch or head scratch to Aston (whatever he prefers!) Take care, Ivan! It was great to hear from you! *hugs*

  10. You take great photos! I really like the Ponderosa Pine picture, but the owl nesting in the post is pretty unusual. I hear a howl in the trees nearby but rarely see it.

  11. Thank you, Vagabonde! What a treat to open up my post and see your comment. I have never seen an owl in a pot like that before! I'm sure glad I went for that walk! Have an awesome week!

  12. I have to say you found the beauty in the brown landscape. That owl is so sweet! It is hard to feel motivated this time of year. You are right, you just have to get up and go.

    1. Hi Michelle! Thank you for your kind comment I'm doing some catching up, during a break from the sun and water. I got out of dodge to find some inspiration! Take care!

  13. All one needs is an owl to change the mood, your mood......great feeling isn't it!

    Have a VUNDERBAR time on your vacay!!

    Sand between your toes and in your bathing suit.... LOL!!


    All the best and pictures please!!


  14. Just blogging around and found your blog. What beautiful pictures, I love pictures of nature. Thanks for letting me visit.

  15. Super shots! I felt like I was walking along with you!


Thank you for your comments! I appreciate them very much.