Sunday Stills: Under (And Over) the #Trees

suburban pine forest

Welcome back to Sunday Stills! I took a weekend break over the July 4th holiday, but I managed to publish two posts between July 2 and 7…whaaatt? I do like my once a week blogging schedule, but I enjoy mixing it up a little now and then, so thanks for reading.

Most of you know I love all types of pine trees, and finally moved to Eastern Washington last December where I am surrounded by Ponderosa pines. Having spent most of my childhood in San Diego surrounded by palm trees (which I love, by the way), my preference for pines was undoubtedly influenced by our two-year stay in Portland, Oregon. We lived on the corner of this Beaverton suburb and you can see the gorgeous view of the Sugar Pines (taken recently while there for a family memorial service).

suburban pine forest
Childhood home under the trees

While we were in the Beaverton area, we stayed in a lovely AirB&B and I discovered a wonderful suburban trail….

pathway under the trees
Suburban trail in Beaverton, OR

…That led to this pocket forest.

Suburban pocket forest

How wonderful to find a surprise forest in this neighborhood!

“Between every two pines is a doorway to a new world.”

John Muir

Tree images are shared for Johnbo’s Cellpic Sunday and Becky B’s July Tree Squares.

I am still inviting links to Marsha’s Writers’ Quotes Wednesdays Writer’s Challenge while she is out and about exploring trees! Please link to THIS POST until next Tuesday–your choice of theme.

“But Don’t the Trees Seem Nice and Full?”

You may have read last Friday’s Bird weekly post where I shared our neighborhood eagle “Journey,” and my former home’s sweet hummingbirds. Journey, the young eagle is still being monitored at the Birds of Prey Northwest facility in nearby Couer d’Alene, Idaho, and is progressing nicely. He is housed with another adult eagle who can mentor him until he is ready to be released. The temps are still very hot, in fact record breaking for this area and time of year, so he will stay at the facility a while longer. The parents are still visiting and maintaining the nest which is a really good sign.

Partially inspired by Lisa’s Bird Weekly (common birds found in your neighborhood), I have three species of birds that can be found over and under the trees.

R-rr-rr–Raven

On my morning walks with my dogs, I take a tree-lined path off the main road. A huge family of ravens inhabit the area and seem rather tame. They are certainly not bothered by my presence even when I creep toward one to take a pic! Of course one will scold me for getting too close! Now that I know the heat caused many young birds to fledge early, perhaps they were keeping track of the fledglings (none that I saw).

High Above the Trees

Birds of prey abound here in Eastern Washington and especially in our rural area of Nine Mile Falls, 20 miles north of Spokane. On any given day one can look up…way up, and see a variety of birds circling. The best times to see them are early mornings and twilight as they search for food.

Hoping to see more eagles, I was surprised to see this particular bird, the Turkey Vulture, also seen in California, circling the skies here. They soar over 300 feet up but I got this shot with my Lumix!

Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture

Another busy bird around these parts is the Western Osprey, a member of the hawk family. Lately a family of three soars the morning and evening skies, often heading back and forth between the forest and the nearby Spokane River (Long Lake). The osprey has distinctive face marking, like a black mask across its eyes. A really stunning bird and fun to capture in flight with my Lumix.

Western Osprey
Western Osprey

I’m always a little worried that these huge birds might see my little dog Aero as a tasty treat, but luckily, the Osprey prefers fish while the Turkey Vulture feasts on carrion.

So what does my heading have to do with this section? Let me explain:

The quote in the heading was inspired by an old Andy Griffith TV show from the 60s starring Andy Griffith as the Mayberry, North Carolina sheriff and Ron Howard as his son Opie Taylor.

In the 1963 episode “Opie the Birdman,” Opie accidentally kills a mother bird, then he becomes a foster parent to its three orphaned nestlings and hand-raises them, naming them Winkin, Blinken and Nod. After successfully releasing the birds, Opie sadly remarks, “The cage sure looks awful empty, don’t it, Pa?

Andy Taylor replies, “Yes son, it sure does… but don’t the trees seem nice and full?”

Awwww….I love that reply and the whole episode! And isn’t that how it should be with our birds?

Join me for Sunday Stills the rest of the month:

  • July 18 Monthly Color Challenge: Evergreen (yes, more trees if you wish)
  • July 25 Geometric–think triangles, lines, squares, etc

Great Outdoors Bloggers links

Sunday Stills is a wonderful community of bloggers and photographers who desire to connect with one another. With 32 link-ups, you ‘all seem to love the great outdoors! Previously shared on last Wednesday’s Writers Quotes Wednesday, in case you missed the list.

Have a wonderful week!

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Sunday Stills Color Challenge: A Portland Summer in #Pink

Painnted Rose
SS Banner Color

Welcome to the Sunday Stills Monthly Color challenge this week!

June’s color is any shade of pink.

“Pink is a beautiful color, because it is one of the colors that the sun makes at twilight and in the dawns.”

C. JoyBell

Depending on where you live geographically, you may be experiencing shades of pink all around you as we near summer here in the northern hemisphere. If the color pink escapes you in nature now, I’m sure your photo archives are full of pinks. And who needs nature to see pink, right?

Since summer is basically here, it’s time for water sports and I won’t be caught dead (poor pun, I know) without my pink life vests. More about water in a minute.

Security dressed in pink!

Before I begin sharing examples of pink, I’m joining Marsha from Always Write for her weekly feature WQW Writer’s Challenge. This week’s quotes focus on summer. Nothing says summer like the image above, or this quote:

Roses quote

Portland’s Parade of Pink

Portland, Oregon, is home to the Portland International Rose Test Garden. It has been a few years since I visited, but the gardens are stunning. Roses really love the climate and in fact, Portland is known as “the City of Roses.”

Last week we spent the weekend in Beaverton, a suburb of Portland, Oregon to gather with my cousin and our family as she put her beloved husband to rest. We stayed in an Airbnb in the Highland area and I had the chance to take a walk through this gorgeous neighborhood. It was a bit overcast so the various lush shades of green made the pink pop even more so! Please enjoy my gallery of pink roses and other pink florals.

I was THISCLOSE to visiting my blogger pal Cee but we didn’t have time. These florals are shared for Cee’s Flower of the Day challenge.

My mom’s birthday was this week (June 9th). She would have been 81. Turns out she shares her birthday with blogger Anne Leueen of Horse Addict! Anne shares her spot-on thoughts on aging and I miss my mom every day. My mom wanted to be healthy and she strove for an active lifestyle. But RA and dementia took their toll and she passed in March 2020. Before we sold mom’s house last August, my daughter attempted to rescue her beloved roses.

Mom's last rose

Sadly, the two plants did not survive our trip north. I intend to plant some roses in her honor once we figure out our backyard landscape plan.

As I continued my walk, I found the opening to the suburban trails that so uniquely define the Beaverton-Tigard neighborhoods. I happened along a youth baseball game in progress and stood for a moment to watch youth playing, as proud parents watched the game. Even this mom was in a pink mood to go watch her child play baseball!

Walking to the game
Wearing pink for the game!

I’m pleased to share this post for Denyse’s Life This Week Link-up!

Summer Hummer

Inspired by Lisa’s Bird Weekly challenge, at the 11th hour, I found a freckled hummingbird in my archives, interestingly surrounded in pink.

freckled hummingbird

No editing here (other than crop and exposure), just a trick of my camera and lighting I suppose!

Closer to Home

I felt I was in heaven on Memorial Day as we took the eight-minute drive to Tumtum, a lakeside resort area that sits on the oxbow of the Spokane River, dammed on either side to create Long Lake. This was our first time paddling in Washington waters and on my brand-new inflatable pinkish-purple SUP. Hans got in on the action, too, as we took turns watching the dogs.

Isn’t it a relief to see the world getting back to normal?

Sunday Stills Photo Challenge Reminders

  • Please create a new post for the theme or link a recent one.
  • Title your blog post a little differently than mine.
  • Don’t forget to create a pingback to this post so that other participants can read your post. I also recommend adding your post’s URL into the comments.
  • Entries for this theme can be posted all week.
  • Use hashtag #SundayStills for sharing on social media.

I hope you had as much fun posting your celestial images as I had to see them all. Many mentioned that this was quite the challenge but we had 19 links to the theme. Celestial moments in blog land indeed! Please take a moment and visit two or three if you haven’t already. Reminder, each week I share your posts on the following week’s post, so please link to my post by Saturday 5pm to make it onto the list!

Out of This World Bloggers!

Next week’s theme is “sunrise or sunset” as we celebrate the solstice. Did you notice that the solstice could be considered a celestial event and many sunrises/sunsets are pink? Cornfused? No worries, have fun, and have a wonderful week!

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