Day 106, Friday, April 16th, 2021
In Daddy’s Arms Again
Curtis took his first business trip in more than a year and a half last week. He left Wednesday and got back Friday evening. Anna especially missed him and rushed into him arms as soon as he walked in the door. It’s nice to have him home! I love how strong his hand looks holding his daughter.
Day 107, Saturday, April 17th, 2021
The Dogs Descend
Dominic had his friend Mary over on Saturday. They worked on a jigsaw puzzle most of the afternoon. As soon as Mary sat down on the couch, the dogs descended like a plague of locusts. She was a good sport about it! I love that he’s able to have friends over again.
Day 108, Sunday, April 18th, 2021
Jenny’s Gift to Dominic
Jenny follows her little brother on Instagram and noticed that Dominic was stressing about an upcoming SAT. She put together a care package for him and came down Sunday for an impromptu visit. The care package included his fave candies (a variety of gummy bears and starburst), some new books, a hat, and a stuffed bunny to snuggle. Dominic did great on the test, by the way. We should have results in the next six weeks or so. I love that they are close. Jenny’s visit also gave us a chance to celebrate her new position starting May 1st as Criminal Analyst with the Homeland Security division of DPS. She is taking her new career by storm earning all kinds of accolades. We are so proud!!!
Day 109, Monday, April 19th, 2021
The Grill Master
Curtis is a big meat-eater and grills out about once a week. Here he’s making bbq chicken breasts which he sometimes chops up and puts on his salads. He’s being cute, trying to look serious and purposeful in his pose. LOL. Isn’t it funny how (generally speaking) the inside cooking falls to women and the outside cooking to men? I wonder why and how that started?
Day 110, Tuesday, April 20th, 2021
The Inner Workings of a Daisy
I purchased some red and white daisies last week to use in a photo project that I never got around to doing. When I didn’t have anything to photograph on Tuesday, I thought I’d take a few macro shots of them (to at least get something!) only to find that all had wilted except for one. I’ve always been fascinated by the very center of flowers, the beginning of their life. I love the tiny curls and tendrils. It’s amazing to me that one seed is all it takes to create this.
Getting in even closer on the edge of the daisy’s center shows the yellow pollen scattered around like so much detritus. I thought it looked so cool in black and white… you can really see all the tiny bits. If these were planted outside, I’d be trying to photograph a bee swollen on the nectar dragging its pollen-laded legs around behind it as it buzzed away. I was trying to chose just one of these to share but I liked them both so here you go.
Day 111, Wednesday, April 21st, 2021
Wednesday was a dreary day, the first of several that I was as of yet unaware. I went outside to explore while I waited for Anna’s bus. I was curious about our dead sago palm plants. The hard freeze and near-zero temperatures we had with our snowfall in February killed all of them around the perimeter of the house. But did life still live within the fallen fronds? Yes. I found lots of snails inching their way up and down the branches, exploring and resting.
Immature Robber Fly
I think this is an immature robber fly (Diptera, Asilidae) based on its eyes and proboscis but I’m hoping some of the fabulous insect identifiers can help me solidify my guess. It was quite long and slender in the body, almost the size of a small black wasp. I love how its poised on the end of the dead sago palm branch with just the tips of the leaves curling inward.
This little ladybug positively jumps off the screen with its bright red shell set against the hay-colored sago palm leaf. I was shocked by how much life was still moving around amongst the dead plant. The overcast conditions lent perfect lighting to the scene.
Day 112, Thursday, April 22nd, 2021
Thursday was another dreary day but I noticed a ton of milkweed blooming in our empty lot when Anna and I took Lola for a walk before school. I went out later that morning and took over a hundred photos of these milkweeds and again found oodles of life teeming in and on the flowers. This little spider skittered away almost as soon as I noticed him but I got one good shot before he went into full hiding. I wish I had more of the only open blossom in the frame but I like its juxtaposition with the spider escaping away out of frame. I also like how you can see a single blade of grass coming up on the right.
Spotted Cucumber Beetle
About 0.5cm long, this cute ladybug-lookalike is actually a spotted cucumber beetle and is considered a pest. Their larvae eat the roots of agricultural plants while the adults eat flowers, leaves, stems, and the fruits of many plants. This one is enjoying the fruit of the milkweed bloom. If you zoom in, you can see its mandible grasping the flower.
Dogbane Leaf Beetle
This shiny iridescent beetle is known as a dogbane leaf beetle. With the milkweed flower in full bloom, this is probably one of my most favorite macro insect photos I’ve ever taken. I think the straight on composition of the insect is quite striking. I spent about 20 minutes photographing this one beetle as it made its way around the milkweed. Several times it would come to the end of a bloom and wave at me before turning around and trundling back another way. Did you know this insect will mate over 50 times in its lifespan?
I wasn’t going to share this one but I loved it too. The iridescence of the shell, the way the beetle is perched right at the top of the flower, and how you can even see my reflection in its shell just captivate me!
Thanks for looking!