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A couple of years ago I planted a Russian sage in my garden. This is the first year that the plant has topped 6 feet. The lovely lavender blossoms are a magnet for not only honeybees but bumblers too. I took some time the other day trying to capture some of these bees. So, today I share with you what I caught.

Russian sage attracts the bees

Russian sage attracts the bees

Heading to a blossom

Heading to a blossom

Some sweet nectar

Some sweet nectar

Seeing all parts

Seeing all parts

Harvesting

Harvesting


I wish you could smell the aroma of the plant. It is heady! Thanks for stopping by today and be well… ^..^

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Today, the start of a work week, is the day that I devote to hosting the Mondays Finish the Story flash fiction challenge. In the challenge, I ask that you use between 100-150 words that uses the opening line and the photo prompt to create your story. Today’s post features fellow writer Martin Furman who came up with this week’s opening line. Here is today’s photo and the opening line is in bold and italics. I hope that you enjoy my story.

© 2015, Barbara W. Beacham

© 2015, Barbara W. Beacham

“Delphine always wanted to pilot her father’s plane and when he forgot his keys on her tenth birthday, she knew that taking off would be easy.” She certainly had watched him often enough. Heading out of the house through the hangar, she opened the door to the cockpit. Climbing inside, she buckled in.

The key slid into the ignition. She pushed in the mixture knob in to send fuel to the engine. She followed this by pushing in the carburetor knob. She flipped the master switch up. Then she primed the engine. She then opened the throttle. Turning the keys, she heard to engine fire up.

Delphine headed onto the runway, excited as she took off. She saw the world below her get smaller. There was her house and the orchards. When flying with her dad, he always pulled on the little yellow button. She pulled it and heard a whoosh. Fluid sprayed out behind her.

Circling back, she flew over the house. There was her Dad in the driveway waving his arms wildly. “Uh-oh,” she thought.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Mondays Finish the Story

Mondays Finish the Story

You too can join in on this fun challenge! To get to the Mondays post, click HERE!

A huge thanks to Martin for taking on the challenge of coming up with an opening line!

I hope that you enjoyed my bit of flash, and I would like to thank you for taking the time to drop on by. Have a magnificent Monday and be well… ^..^

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It is past time that I feature, as I do every year, the pretty feet contest! This year we have a number of exciting contenders! You get to vote on whose feet you like the best and in a couple of weeks I will announce the winner! Are you ready to check out some really pretty feet? Let’s go!

Contestant #1 – Buffalo

Buffalo

Buffalo

Contestant #2 – Cougar

Cougar

Cougar

Contestant #3 – Elephant

Elephant

Elephant

Contestant #4 – Flamingo

Flamingo

Flamingo

Contestant #5 – Frog

Frog

Frog

Contestant #6 – Koala

Koala

Koala

Contestant #7 – Meerkat

Meerkat

Meerkat

Contestant #8 – Wallaby

Wallaby

Wallaby

There are the contestants for 2015, and now you get to vote! Just click on the button to register your vote.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend! Be well… ^..^

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This week Jen H. over at WordPress Photo Challenge has chosen the subject “symbol” for this week’s photo challenge. I kept thinking of the symbols that I have seen throughout my travels. Here we go!

An Alaskan native art symbol…

Native art

Native art

The lines shapes and designs in this glass roof, painted by Native Americans, are were found in the desert of AZ.

Lines, shapes, designs  - Geometry!

Lines, shapes, designs – Geometry!

Petroglyphs certainly tell a story! Click on this photo twice to get a close up of something that is thousands of years old.

Petroglyphs

Petroglyphs

Stained glass created to re-create a symbol.

Stained Glass - 2

Stained Glass – 2

Symbolic art…

Another piece of art on the outside of the building

Another piece of art on the outside of the building

There you have it! A variety of symbols…Have a terrific Friday and be well!

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The White Light - Photo by Stephen Baum

The White Light – Photo by Stephen Baum

She closed her eyes. Upon doing so, she saw a bright light. She heard the most beautiful music she had ever heard. It drew her in. Walking along the corridor the music grew louder, the light brighter. She shaded her eyes as she came into the light. There was a crowd of people, and they were smiling at her. A woman stepped forward, hand reaching out.

* * * * * * * * * *

Her family surrounded her bed. Her husband was holding her hand. A smile formed on her face as she drew her last breath. “Mom!”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I hope that you enjoyed my story written for the Friday Fictioneers flash fiction challenge. Thank you Rochelle for hosting this challenge and to Stephen for the photo that inspired my story. And, thank you dear reader for stopping by! Be well… ^..^

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In the late summer, early fall, the praying mantis lay their eggs. Over the winter to late spring, they do their thing inside the hard casing and finally emerge. They grace my garden and eat the pesky bugs no one wants on their plants.

Let’s start by checking out a praying mantis egg casing.

Praying mantis egg case

Praying mantis egg case

Weird looking isn’t it? This casing was on the bottom side of one of the branches on my liquid amber tree.

Here is the praying mantis that I discovered, which let me know that they are back!

The praying mantis is back!

The praying mantis is back!

This is a baby and is about the size of a quarter. It will grow to a length of 3-3 1/2 inches long.

This is a baby

This is a baby

Now about the size of a quarter

Now about the size of a quarter

If you look closely at the photos you will see lots of detail. This little guy is watching me. Click on the photo so you can see the pupils in his eyes.

It watches me

It watches me

This one looks funny with its butt up in the air.

Sticking its butt up in the air

Sticking its butt up in the air

Because this is just a baby, it has not yet developed its wings.

You can tell the sex of the mantis by the wings. This next photo shows the typical stance of the praying mantis.

Typical stance of a mantis

Typical stance of a mantis

It has been watching me the entire time I took these photos, and as I try to get closer, it moves away from me.

It moves away

It moves away

I hope that you enjoyed today’s photos. Thanks for dropping by, and have a splendid Saturday. Be well… ^..^

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Today I wanted to share some photos taken yesterday morning. We had a jack rabbit in the yard, then a doe came along, followed by a turkey. Only in the foothills can you see such wonders! Ready to check out the doe? Here we go!

Hello!

Hello!

She hears a sound

She hears a sound

She has something to say

She has something to say

Got any apples?

Got any apples?

What's that over there?

What’s that over there?

Look - a lovely apple!

Look – a lovely apple!

Found one!

Found one!

Licking her lips

Licking her lips

Wasn’t that fun? Have a great day! Be well… ^..^

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My husband and I both enjoy the birds that visit us here at our home in the Sierra Foothills. They have been a great source of enjoyment, and the subject of many of my recent photos. So, for today, I thought that I would share with you some recent photos of these birds speaking out.

Are you looking at me?

Are you looking at me?

Check out all that food!

Check out all that food!

Where's the seed?

Where’s the seed?

He's hogging all the food!

He’s hogging all the food!

Are you listening to me?

Are you listening to me?

I hope that you enjoyed the photos! Thanks for stopping by and be well… ^..^

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We have had very odd weather here. Yesterday we had 3 tenths of an inch of rain accompanied by a huge lightning storm! I am posting the stills today that I shot yesterday. I have lots of video footage to review to find all the lightning that I was able to film. I will take stills from those videos to share the lightning with you at a later date. This storm was indeed impressive! Click on the photos to see greater detail. Ready to take a look?

The storm is coming our way…

The approaching storm

The approaching storm

Looking towards the west, you can see where the sky is clear with a few clouds heading that direction.

The leading edge heading west of us

The leading edge heading west of us

There are many layers which look really cool.

Layers

Layers

The storm slides in.

Sliding in

Sliding in

It gets really dark. It is early evening, around 5:30 p.m. It should be very bright still as sunset is around 8:00.

It got really dark

It got really dark

From where I sit, I take a photo looking up.

Looking up from my chair

Looking up from my chair

The clouds appear like a hand with fingers spreading out.

Fingers

Fingers

A bolt of lightning as it starts..

One bolt

One bolt

Then one more. This one spreads quite far.

Then another

Then another

Well, that is it for today. We are to have another storm come in this evening.

Thanks for stopping by today! Have an amazing Saturday and be well… ^..^

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As my husband and I have our evening cocktails, we observe one of the local natives: A western fence lizard. I decided that I would share photos I took the other night of this foothills critter. Please do click on the photos so that you can really see the detail on this amazing creature.

Meet the western fence lizard

Meet the western fence lizard

Did you see the blue stripe on his underbelly? This lizard hides in the night blooming jasmine in our front yard. We were please to see him out and about. Here is a photo of this little guy looking right at me. I think it was the sound of the camera as I snapped photos that attracted his attention.

He is looking at me

He is looking at me

Here is a photo where he is watching possible prey.

He spies prey

He spies prey

His prey: A honeybee.

Predator and prey

Predator and prey

He gives up on this bee and heads over to the hose.

Hiding on the hose

Hiding on the hose

While in this spot, he catches a wasp. I missed it, but I did get photos of him consuming his meal.

He caught a wasp

He caught a wasp

As his mouth is clamped down on the wasp, we watch the back end of the wasp wiggling. He quickly swallows and clamps down again.

It's almost gone

It’s almost gone

It now gone. He is smiling!

It's gone

It’s gone

What surprised us next was when he burped! If you look closely at this photo, you will see the hind legs of the wasp sticking out.

Burping after lunch

Burping after lunch

Satisfied after eating, he scratches an itchy spot by rubbing his head on the cement.

Taking care of an itchy spot

Taking care of an itchy spot

Well, there you have it. This is part of our early evening entertainment. We are very fortunate with what we get to see and experience here.

May you have a wonderful Wednesday, and thank you for stopping by. Be well… ^..^

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