I was blessed with many opportunities to travel this year and, of course, with a new camera and a new blog, I took a lot of photos. Oh, it was so much fun! Last night I was reviewing some of my photos and reliving special memories when I decided to post a few of my favorite photos of 2008. Many of the shots have been on this blog, but others never made it.
Do you also have posts in your head which never make it to the page? I've written before about finding a rhythm to blogging, but I still continue to search for my flow. For example, I can't believe I never posted about my trips to Florida and California! It is rare for me to travel so much and these trips were a big deal for me - HUGH, in fact, and yet, no blog entries.
Well, I will still plan to post entries about those warmer climates, probably in January or February when those of us who are snowbound and freezing could use a visit to a sunny beach! For now, I hope you enjoy a few of my favorite, photographic memories of 2008. The photos are from Florida, California, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands, and my favorite place in the whole world, my backyard in southwestern Pennsylvania.
The year of travel and adventure began, for me, in February when I went to Florida. One of my favorite places is now Ft. Desoto State Park. I felt like I was on a film set. Everything was grey when I arrived very early in the morning. My car was the only one in the parking lot. The beach was covered in a heavy fog. I could hear the surf, but I could not see it. Honestly, I was bit afraid. I was alone and it was eerie. As the fog lifted I could see a few walkers in the distance. I never saw a beach like this and the sand was in ridges.
I may not be able to id them all, but I could sit and watch sea birds for days.
and a Ring-billed Gull.
There were more sea birds to visit while on a March trip to California. I especially enjoyed my time with this lovely Black-necked Stilt as it hunted in tide pools at Dana Point.
The cliffs at Laguna Beach provided a beautiful overlook of the Pacific. I can almost feel the sun on my face when I look at this photo.
June brought a trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands that took a year and a half to plan. I loved Ecaudor and I want to return someday. My favorite place in Ecuador was the Pululahua Volcano. It was a mystical place and looking into the crater is something I will never forget.
It is true. The Galapagos Islands are enchanting. I snorkeled for the first time, swam with a giant sea turtle, and added many birds to my life list.
A Blue-footed Booby,
Darwin's Galapagos Warbler,
and Espanola Mockingbirds.
My favorite island was Espanola. We were the last group to leave the island and found ourselves with a hike ahead of us as the sun was setting. The light had a rosey glow. It gave everything a pinkish-orange tint that reminded me of how King Arthur described Camelot.
Sunset was always gorgeous.
The trips were wonderful, but as Dorothy said, "There's no place like home."
I look onto my neighbor's cornfield and pasture from my bedroom window. There is a spring which bubbles up on his property and it trickles down through the pasture into a small creek. I was suprised last winter to see dozens of Canada Geese lined up along the edges of this year-round, flow of water. It must have been a tasty treat!
One of my first blog entries was about Cedar Waxwings. I rejoiced that a pair decided to use the wool I hung out as nesting material.
This is a photo of my favorite bird. I don't mean the Red-bellied Woodpecker is my favorite species. I mean this particular bird has captured my heart. I call him Handsome.
I am grateful for the magic that came into my life in 2008. It was a year filled with new places, new friends, new birds and a whole lot of new knowledge! It was a gift!