Monday, July 29, 2013

Beautiful Moth

I almost stepped on this moth on the path last night.
The field guide says he is a polyphemus moth.
 "Because of the conspicuous eyespot on each hind wing, it is named after Polyphemus,
 the one eyed giant of Greek myth."

Friday, July 26, 2013

County Fair

Our county fair was last week and the grandkids enjoyed it.

Littlest granddaughter enjoyed meeting all the animals.

 Heidi loved the cotton candy!

This was the eldest granddaughter's first year of showing at he fair.
She rented a llama and entered him in several classes including costume.
She did well, earning lots of blue ribbons and even a championship ribbon!

Somebody got her face painted!

 Everyone sat still long enough for a photo,
then it was back to the fun.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Day Trip

Wednesday dawned unseasonably cool and we decided to take a day trip.
We headed to north central Indiana.

First stop was Bass Lake, where we found donuts at the Fingerhut Bakery
and we drove around the lake, checking out the quaint cottages.

Next stop was Culver, Indiana.
Culver s right on the banks of Lake Maxinkuckee, a natural lake.
We drove around the lake, spotting the famed Culver Military Academy
 and looking at the lavish lake homes.
We also found a root beer stand and had lunch.

After lunch, we also stopped at nearby Tippecanoe River State Park.
The park is along 7 miles of the Tippecanoe River.

We took two hikes, hiking trails 3,4 & 6.
The soil is sandy and there are boggy areas and we came home with a few mosquito bites.

 We saw herons, geese & this turtle in this unusual pose, sunning himself.
Otters have been released in the area, but we didn't spot any.

Last stop before heading home was the park's fire tower.

 A lovely summer day with beautiful blue skies.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Leaf or Moth?

This moth was clinging just inside of the barn.
At first I thought it was a leaf caught in a spider web.
But a closer look revealed a Virginia-creeper sphinx moth.
I probably never would have noticed it on a tree.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Giant Tadpole

I spotted this giant tadpole in the creek.  
He is about 5 inches long and already has his back legs. 
I think he's going to be a bullfrog.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Its that time of year when its hot and muggy,
so what do you do?
Creekstomp, of course!

I can't think of a more fun way to cool off!
Everyone loves it.
 The two year olds loved splashing and digging in the sand.

Heidi found a waterfall.

Liddy searched for crawdads.

She had great success, catching 18 of them.

Maggie tried catching them, but mostly caught rocks.

While Ryan was busy having a squirt gun fight with Grandpa.

Now that's refreshing!


Monday, July 8, 2013

Cruising Lake Michigan

The next port of call is Charlevoix, Michigan.

 The Charlevoix lighthouse greets us as we enter the channel to Round Lake & Lake Charlevoix.

As we enter Round Lake, we float under a drawbridge.

Charlevoix is another quaint Michigan town.

We took a tour and saw the hobbit houses designed by local architect, Earl Young.
He is known for undulating cedar shake roofs,
 stacked rock walls and fireplaces made of local boulders.
It was a fun day, but we had one more port to see,
Mackinac Island.

Approaching the island, we pass the historic Grand Hotel.

It was a beautiful day at Mackinac Island.
Our ship is moored in the distance.

No motorized vehicles are used on the island
so transportation is by horse, bicycle or on foot.
We had to take a carraige ride to see the sights.

We got an up close look at the Grand Hotel,

And stopped to peer through Arch Rock.

As the sun set, we left the island cruising past the Mackinac Island lighthouse,

And under the mighty Mackinac Bridge back to Chicago.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Small Town, USA

Our first port of call was Saugatuck, Michigan,
a perfect small town to spend Independence Day in.
 We kayaked on the Kalamazoo River,
Seeing baby gulls on an old abandoned tugboat.
The tug ran aground  several years ago and sits in the river, a haven for gulls.
In addition to shopping, art galleries & checking out the boats,
 we watched the Saugatuck Chain Ferry transport people across the river.
One dollar will get you to the other side.
As we departed, we had a patriotic send-off from the townspeople
with music & the waving of a large flag.
 Lots of smaller vessels escorted our ship back to the big lake.

Good night & happy birthday America!