Sunday, April 3, 2016

Juvenile Cooper Hawk

       Taking pictures of a hawk took some time and effort, but it was worth it.

 This hawk was in a redbud tree near us... it had been on the fence first, but I wasn't able to get any photos while it was there. When it flew to the redbud tree, I went outside and started to click the camera. Obviously, he was quite hard to see and the pictures were not very satisfying.

So, I moved closer... and came up a bit behind him. To do this, I had to go across the road and move slowly around him.  I was surprised that he stayed there. I figured it must be a young hawk. 

It seems to be a Cooper's Hawk.  What a privilege to see one so close like this. 

I was able to get pictures of a young hawk another time and you can see those here:
Young Hawk Pictures

I think this hawk may be younger than the one in my other post. The reason I say this is that I found out that a juvenile Cooper's Hawk has yellow eyes and the adult has red eyes. The hawk in this post has very yellow eyes, while the one in the other one has darker yellow eyes, which makes me think the color must be changing. However, this is just a guess as I am no expert on hawks!   :)  

It was amazing to see so much detail of this beautiful bird. We found out that neighbors down the street see a hawk often and though they love the beauty of the bird, they hate the mess they leave behind after a meal. I agree that we would really rather not have that.

As I was clicking away on my camera, I noticed a large hawk circling way up in the sky. It was beautiful, but I couldn't get pictures. I also realized it was possibly the mother hawk and I hurried up with the photo shoot, so she wouldn't get alarmed and dive at us.

Thankfully, the circling hawk didn't attack and the young hawk stayed for the photo shoot, then flew off. Every few days, we see a hawk fly through the area, but we haven't been able to get more pictures. We'll keep trying, though as we do enjoy watching these beautiful birds.  :) 

 Thank you for visiting. I hope you have a wonderful week. 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Baby Birds and Baby Humans

It's almost time to see baby birds again. Every year we watch for them and enjoy the glimpses of the little birds that we sometimes find hidden close to us in unexpected places. The birds are very clever in concealing a nest for their young.

Those little birds do what little birds have done before-they cry out for food, they grow, they learn to fly, they leave the nest, and so on. 

It happens every year, so what is the big deal?

The eggs vary in color, size and pattern. The nests vary in their construction and where they are placed.

 This one was in a burning bush right beside our deck...we had walked by it many times before we even realized it was there. What fun to watch the process from such a great vantage point.

How nice to see the faithful  guarding this robin does for the young...we watched the alertness and the ongoing return to feed those little birds. Eventually they grew and went on their way, to do what God had created them to do...  

This poor young bird on the right, isn't the cutest baby bird I've ever seen. In fact, he? isn't very appealing at all... and yet it was still fun to see a young bird in a needy and clumsy state, knowing that God created this process.

 This little guy was on one of my pots on the deck.... he or she, hopped and jumped around the yard, but then stayed perched here for quite a while... even with us close by. Unusual to be that close, but it was fun for an impromptu home school lesson. :) 

Again I ask, What's the big deal? This happens every year... and they are only birds. That's true, yet the wonderful view of new life and of the orderly creation God has made are such a blessing and we will enjoy it again and again. Some of those birds will be cute and grow to be birds many will admire and enjoy having in their yards. Some will be rather ugly and will grow to be more of a pest in the yard and become something we don't want and are pleased when they move on to a park or somewhere else, where they do what they were created to do. I still find myself amazed at God's creative hand that has made birds and given them the knowledge of when to nest, when to migrate, when to shelter little ones, when to stand guard, when to teach independence.

What about human babies? I am greatly saddened that human babies are thought of by many, as a nuisance... an interference in a life, a piece of tissue to be removed. I am saddened that many see more value in a baby bird than in a baby human. How precious to see a human mother shielding, guarding and protecting her little one as she cares for the needs of that little one. How sad to see a human mother go to take that little one to be removed from being a bother to her, when she should be protecting and shielding that little one, even while the baby is still in the womb. How sad to see the carnage left behind of little ones not loved or protected.

If God gave the birds the ability to take care of their little ones, surely He also gives the ability to human mothers to care for their little ones and not sacrifice them to further their own "happiness".  
 Searching For Happiness

How sad to see the guilt and pain in the hearts of those mothers who believed the lies and sacrificed their child... not because some person says it was wrong, but because deep in their hearts, they know they have lost something precious.

If you have neglected to protect your child, if you have killed your children through abortion, God does forgive and there are those who can help you through the grieving process. If you are considering killing your child, please remember that the precious life you carry needs to be protected, cared for and loved. If you are unable to raise your child, please don't kill him or her... there are places who will help you explore the options that don't lead to murder. 

God can and does give us the strength and courage to defend and protect our children. What a blessing to see a mother faithfully and carefully guarding her little one. That protection begins before the baby is born and a mother is a mother before the baby is born. I hope we will each be the mother God created us to be and that we will protect the young ones who are unable to protect themselves. Thank you for visiting my blog today. 

Friday, January 1, 2016

Top 10 Gentle Joy Photography 2015

These are the top 10 posts published in 2015
here on Gentle Joy Photography 

There are links to each post if you would like to visit them....just click the link and you will get to the post.

   Number 10

The Beauty of Being Known

     Number 9

Feeling Sympathy For Farmer McGregor 

 Number 8

 Pigtails and French Braids

    Number 7

Saving Money-Part 3-Buying Used 

    Number 6

Polycarp Movie Review-Trailer Included 

   Number 5

Allergy Tea-Homemade Herb Tea 

Number 4

Two More French Braid Hairstyles 


    Number 3

Saving Money-Part 2-Grocery Shopping 

  Number 2

Hidden In The Woods 

   Number 1 for   2015

The Number ONE Way I Save Money! 

 What a year it has been... filled with good times and challenging ones also. Thank you for joining me through the year... and I hope we find that 2016 will be even better. 

Shared on:
Tumbleweed Contessa

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

A Little Snow.....

Snow can be so beautiful.....

 We just had some snow.... actually mostly ice and sleet... but it was exciting as it was the "first snow".. and it was white.  It's pretty... but I am sharing pictures from previous snows that were even prettier... and are the kind my kids are hoping for.  :)  I haven't been outside yet to take pictures of this snow... only from inside the house as it is so cold and I have a cough.

 I did enjoy looking back through these snowy pictures. :)  I hope you enjoy them also.

 I am looking forward to getting over this cough and getting out in the current snow. :)   The cold makes me cough more, so I am inside for now... and enjoying the older pictures.  

I love how different and peaceful everything looks with a blanket of snow over it... even in the city.  :) 

 I love the snow on the pine trees and the pine cones.  

The shadows on the snow are beautiful... and they make ordinary scenes look different than the normal. 

Thank you for visiting... 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Easy Edible Doors!

It's fun to make snacks that are a bit different from the normal.... these are doors. They aren't fancy or hard, but they are a bit unique. I saw the idea elsewhere, but these are the ones we made.  :)

These just started out with a rectangular sugar cookie.... and some frosting and decorations.

      The candy cane pieces on the doors came from another project we were making. On that project, we only needed the U-shape of the little candy cane, so we had pieces left... and they fit on the doors.

These were made very quickly. After doing the other project, we were in a hurry and tired!  You can see pictures and read about the other project here:

Hot Cocoa Cup Cookies

If you had more time, these could be made very elegant, rustic, or in other ways. I love the idea and will probably use it again and make them even cuter. They would work for other holidays or fun times.

Thank you for visiting today... I hope you have a wonderful Christmas as you remember the reason we celebrate this season.... Jesus.   :) 


Monday, December 7, 2015

Black Swans

Black swans are beautiful.....

    and  graceful.......

        creations, made by God.

They are native to Australia and other areas near there, but they have been introduced to the U.S. This pair is in a park and seems to be thriving there.

Information says they mate for life..... I love that.  

   Black swans will make a floating nest for their eggs...  I hope to return to see if I can spot one in the spring.

Their color is not as brilliant and striking, maybe, as white swans would be, but these have their own beauty.... their own appeal.

 What a treat to see this pair as they live their quiet life where I can easily observe them.

       Thank you for visiting my blog today..... I hope you are enjoying your week.... and enjoying God's beautiful creations.