May is Busting Out!

A recent walk through the gardens reveals that yes, indeed, spring has sprung!  If I’m not careful, I’m gonna miss it!  It’s amazing to me how fleeting this season is.  I look forward, as I’m sure you do as well, to the blooming of the flowers.  They don’t last long, though!

The crabapple bloomed just in time for prom season.

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Roses for prom

Brittany looked simply divine, and I was so pleased that the crabapple waited until the weekend of May 3 to burst into bloom.

Amazingly, the blooms lasted all of a week, until a strong wind storm blew all the blossoms all over the neighborhood.

The azaleas have passed their prime, little over a week did they stay.

And now I’m thoroughly enjoying the irises.

A few years back, I found a lonely bag of irises under a bench at the softball field.  I’m sure one of the other softball moms brought them to share, but they were left behind.  I kept my eye on that bag until after the game, and when no one claimed them, I rescued them myself.

It has taken a few years, and a few relocations, but I think I’ve finally hit the jackpot with the current location.

I will never forget the excitement that first year waiting for the irises to bloom.  I had no idea what variety I had found.  I was secretly hoping for a blue one, but these purple ones were not a disappointment!  And I could not beat that price!

I did not have much hope that any of them were going to bloom this year.  Every day, I would go out and take a peep between the greens.  I hope they do forgive me, for I did feel a bit aggressive checking under the hood, so to speak.  But quite magically, one day I went out to an array of spikes that must have shot up overnight, I kid you not!

And seriously, these guys bloom at night.  I was watching the buds getting ready to burst one evening late last week, and the next morning I woke up to a purple garden that took my breath away!

And Beverly Sills has made her appearance as well.  She was the lone bloomer last year, and I do believe she really appreciates some company at the party this year.

I’m sorry to say that a heavy rain storm yesterday afternoon may have ruined these beautiful blooms, but there are more to come.  Hopefully, the rain will hold off long enough for me to catch my breath, as well as a few more pictures to share.

The Bachelor’s button is so much fun to photograph.  I got a little daring with the macro lens this past weekend, and got some truly amazing shots.

No wonder we look forward to spring, all year long!  But as I said, take a moment to enjoy it.  It won’t be around for long.

A cardinal moment . . .

In response to the Weekly Photo Challenge – Rule of Thirds 

My dad was famous for giving me items that I could seldom use.  I could never quite figure out his gift at my baby shower – an old tool he found that I probably needed while creating the nursery.  A reamer.  Really, dad?

But there are many things he did give me that I will always be thankful for.  He was pretty good at photography, long before DSLR cameras.  He taught me about ISO – when it dealt with film (actual film) speed.  A tripod.  And a table tripod.

I remembered the table tripod recently when I realized the new macro lens I bought was ultra-sensitive to movement.  How was I ever going to capture the birds in the feeder with my shaky hands?

I figured out how to attach the table tripod to my camera’s body.  I realized I could take closeup shots of the birds in the Stained Glass Birdfeeder from INSIDE (the dirty windows aren’t in the field of focus – yea!!)

And just look at this!

at the feeder

at the feeder

The visitors to the feeder are very efficient – leaving me very little time to focus and shoot!  In fact, this cardinal was a one-time visitor, and I was lucky enough to capture him.

It’s not the best of shots, and I do realize that I need lots more practice with this lens.  But I’m so happy with this shot.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Contrast

As I enjoy these gloriously sunny, warm and (mildly, please) humid days of summer, I change the perpetual calendar and realize that only six months from now, we will be in the throes of bitter cold January.  I should get rid of that perpetual calendar!

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a winter surprise

I’m reminded of a recent October snow shower that surprised me, and provided a true test in contrast.  I love to sit out on the deck in the evenings, far into October, so I usually wait to ‘clear the deck’ until at least mid October.

Winter was certainly impatient that year!

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Horizons

Struggling with how to incorporate this, my favorite shot of all time, with my garden theme.

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Sea grass, yes, we can talk about sea grass!!

This secret spot on the Outer Banks of North Carolina is in the 4×4-only northern region of Corolla.  My family loves this place, and I’m sure you can see why.

Weekly Photo Challenge: The Hue of You

I owe Autumn an apology.

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I’ve never been much of a fan, basically because of his habit of heralding in Winter.  This displeasure has blinded me to the truly spectacular display of color these few weeks bring.

Every afternoon as I travel home along the Laurel Mountain foothills, I witness a display of some of the most incredible colors.  In spite of myself, I’m enjoying the reds, golds, oranges, and even brown shades of the season.

If only the end weren’t so near.