Turnback!

It’s Memorial Day weekend, and you know what that means!   Yep, the annual Turnback Canyon Regatta; a two day sailboat race up the river from the Austin Yacht Club to Lago Vista and back.  We didn’t race, but our friends Kurt, Kevin and Gordon did, so we cruised up and anchored overnight with them.   There is a festival on-shore with live music and food, and it’s just a fun weekend overall.  Marty & Sue and Lori & Mike joined us, which made it all the more fun.   Memorial Day weekend is when we all say it is time to get in the water.  Lake temps were about 74 degrees, so we all jumped in.   It only gets warmer from here on out.   Good times await.

It was a tad humid and hazy, but any day on the water is a good day.

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The view anchored off of Bar K Park for the night.   We tried to count all the masts, but never we ended up with the same number twice.   Consensus was anywhere from 40-45 sailboats.

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From the Sunday sail home.   I count 32-ish sails in this one shot.

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More Bewicks. 

I have shared my excitement throughout this entire Spring for our nesting Bewick’s wrens.  The same pair have nested in two different houses on the patio.  Their first brood was four babies.  A second brood fledged Thursday; three more!   The birdhouse is about 5 feet from where I sit while drinking my coffee each morning outside.   The little wren parents were used to me and would fly back and forth to feed the babies while I was sitting there.  So sweet. 

This is the second of the three that fledged.

Kite spotting.

While hiking at Pedernales Falls this week, I brought my camera along.  I wasn’t really birding, but I was keeping an eye out for them.  We saw a number of species of birds.  This one was a lifer for me – a mississippi kite.  I am really surprised this turned out, the bird was at least 200 feet away, way atop a dead, scraggly tree.  The sky was very overcast and the light was flat.   After severely cropping and adjusting the exposure, I like how this one turned out.  The kite is a cool looking bird.

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Happy trails.  

I went to Pedernales Falls State Park today to hike with a couple friends.  They had never been, so it was fun to show them the different sights and trails.  

We walked a bunch.  After six hours or so, my Fitbit had logged almost nine miles.  Whew!

Cuties.

We have birds nesting in a number of places in our yard.   You’ve already heard a lot about the Bewick’s Wrens.  A Carolina Wren also nested – in one of the aloe plants out back.   The babies are out of the nest today, and I got a picture of mom/dad feeding one of the fledglings.   I counted four babies at one point.  You can see another one on the left edge of the bench in this shot.  I hung the bark butter up again nearby and the parent bird is going to it every few minutes to feed the little ones.  Such cuties.  Their tails are so stubby right now, I don’t know how they get around.

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Class of 2017.

I attended one of the many University of Texas at Austin convocation ceremonies today.   The daughter of a college roommate of mine graduated.   Being on a university campus always feels a bit like home to me, no matter how brief my visit might be.

Seeing these young people graduate college and turn to take the next significant step in their lives makes me nostalgic.   I can recall the excitement of the prospect of having your entire future before you.   For me, that day was 30 years ago.   I feel older; but not old.  A little part of me wishes I could do it all again.  The rest of me is content to look back on a life that’s more than half way lived, enjoy the memories, and cherish the remainder.

Congratulations to the all the graduates of 2017!!!

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Deer blind.

While cooking lunch yesterday, Monte saw a doe and her fawn right outside the kitchen window.  Mom seemed to be standing guard while baby was walking around in the planting bed around the big red oak.

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After a few minutes mom slowly wandered out of view.   We couldn’t see baby either, but thought maybe mom had been putting the fawn in a safe place so she could go off to find food.   We have seen similar behavior before several years ago – I posted about that time here.   Apparently, a doe will leave a healthy fawn on its own in a safe place for up to as much as twelve hours, while they forage for food.

Turns out that is exactly what was going on.  I walked out front to see if I could spy the fawn, and sure enough, it had tucked itself in a deep hollow in the planting bed created by a new row of limestone Monte had placed there a few weeks back.  Safe and sound.

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It was a pretty good hiding place.  When driving by the house later that night, I could only see the tips of the fawn’s ears above the limestone.   At 1 AM, I walked outside to check, and, sure enough, baby was gone.  Mom came back as promised.

 

Red yucca blooms.

Pretty flowers.  I have four red yucca plants in the yard, each one seems to bloom every other year.   But luckily for me they are not all on the same schedule, so I’ve had at least one in bloom every year.  My next plant on the wish list for the yard is a white yucca.  Stay tuned.

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This little piggy went to market…

I can’t believe it has taken me so long, but today I visited Texas Farmers’ Market at Lakeline Mall this morning – open 9am to 1pm every Saturday.  They set up right in front of Dillard’s in the parking lot.  I really enjoyed it, and the beautiful day that came with it.  They have all sorts of fare:  veggies, cheese, meat, eggs, bread, sweets, olive oil, pasta, flowers, doggie treats, live music, sweet smelling pamper products, a little place to sit down and rest, and more.  I’ll be back.

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Hold still!

Scissor-tailed flycatcher, in motion.  They say the male’s tail is longer than the female’s, so I’m guessing this is a she.

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Taken at Commons Ford park.