What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Saturday, June 29, 2024

Saturday "WONDERING" Where I've Been?

I'm sure you are "wondering" why I would put a picture of a naked chicken on my post?  Well read on to find out.

 Hello friends...Here is it Saturday, and instead of my usual Saturday "Wanderings", I bet you may be having a Saturday "WONDERING" where I've been?  Yes, I've been MIA pretty much this week.  I did manage to get the Tuesday 4 post done, but that was the end of my activity here in blogland. Why? you may ask... well if you're a Facebook friend you may have noticed this picture posted earlier in the week:

Psalm 118:14 NKJV
14 The Lord is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation.

I had previously posted a little blurb about "being under the weather" on Facebook...and so I was.  It started actually late Monday night with a scratchy throat, which strangely developed during a very fierce thunderstorm just as we were getting ready for bed.  Not that the storm could have had anything to do with that as we keep our windows closed and have the AC on, but still, that's how I remember it.  I figured it was an allergy because we had mowed the grass that day and at that time it was pretty dry and dusty and I breathed a lot of dust and grass pollen, etc.  But anyway, I went to bed, and woke up the next day thinking I should probably take an allergy pill because my throat still felt kind of funny, and my glands were kind of swollen.  Our son called and said he and Rose had sore throats and felt like they were getting bad colds, and it had started for them the night before as well, with a scratchy throat during that storm! Weird, huh? I thought so too.   But as the day progressed I started feeling worse, like a really bad cold was coming on. Hubby said he felt fine.

Then I started hearing from different ones at church that others were sick with bad colds, and then one lady reported she tested positive for that dread word, covid.   Uh Oh! Now we were on high alert! Benton and Rose had helped serve communion on Sunday morning, and we do it in our church where everyone comes forward and is served at the altar, so they had contact with everyone in the church. John and I also served communion to the people sitting in the choir and those who are unable to come forward from their seats to be served. We do this every week, and I look forward to serving some very special dear ones face to face.  But that was Sunday, and none of us felt sick or had any sign of any symptoms then.  

As a matter of fact, here is a picture I took of Benton and Rose on Sunday after church at our house. They looked so nice and we are so proud of them and thankful for the sweet dear couple they are. They are actually getting ready to take a trip to Minnesota for a few weeks, but their departure had to be delayed because of this development. Thankfully they are both pretty much well now and hope to be able to leave by Monday, Lord willing.  We will certainly miss them.

So to make a long story short, as the week progressed, I got worse and worse, and finally went to the Doctor for a Covid Test, which was positive. They do the testing in the parking lot and don't allow you inside the building unless you test negative. So they gave me some packets of supplements to help build the immune system and gave me prescriptions for both my hubby and me for a zpack, even though at that moment he was not yet symptomatic, but they said he would be, and yes, he is now and is pretty much miserable, but we are SO thankful for the advances they have made in the treatment of this nasty virus.  God is good, and we are so very glad.  

And so today is actually the first day I have even felt like doing anything here on the computer. Oh, and back to this:

So,  I woke up this morning thinking how much I wished I had a "boiled chicken".  You know, where you boil (or stew) a whole chicken in a pot with celery and onions and maybe a carrot, until it is falling off the bone tender and delicious? And then you can either make your own chicken noodle soup (so much better than the canned stuff I've been eating this week), or chicken and dumplings or some other wonderful chicken dish.  But of course there was not a piece of chicken to be found in my freezer! I usually keep some breasts or thighs, but there was not a one. 

 I thought I was feeling so much better this morning so that I could get dressed and run to the store, wear a mask and run in and out so fast no one would recognize me, and get a nice plump chicken to stew.  But I soon discovered that just going out to our mailbox and back was about as much "running" I could manage today.  So a little later I was talking to Benton and Rose on the phone and they said they had a few little errands they had to run today to get ready for their trip, and I mentioned how much I wish I had a whole chicken to boil. I thought my son would never stop laughing at how funny that sounded to him, but he said he would be happy to go get me a chicken to boil.  And sure enough, he showed up at our door a little later with a sack and said, "Here's your chicken to boil! Enjoy!"   Gotta love him!

  It's done boiling now, but I am waiting for it to cool so I can take care of the rest...it smells SO good! That's real comfort food!

Oh, and earlier today I actually enjoyed taking some pictures of some real live birds, the Bluebirds and others. I haven't even hardly looked out the window all week, but today I know I am getting better because I am enjoying seeing all the beauty God has provided around us once again:

Mr. and Mrs. Bluebird have been quite active the past few days actually feeding the babies inside the house. I know they must be getting bigger, because the parents are bringing food and then taking some back away in order  to entice them to follow them out of the nest. This is how they do it when the babies are ready to leave the nest...

Here's Mrs. Bluebird  looking out the window and looking rather grumpy, I might say. It must be getting too crowded inside that little hot house!

Here comes Daddy with a juicy bug...
Hey! This is my bug!  You can't have it!    LOL.
My that looks tasty...
Not sure what that is...is it a wasp or a bee or a spider? Whatever it is, it's what's for dinner!
Here's Mama with another juicy tidbit for her family.

Earlier these small white Egrets were out on Still Waters Pond looking for something good to eat.  
Yes, the pond is still very shallow and almost dry in places. Although it is raining right now as I write, it will take a lot more rain than what we've been getting lately to fill this pond back up. All those lily pads  are probably going to die and become the next layer of muck on the bottom of the pond when we do finally get some significant rainfall.
The Egrets don't seem to mind at all. This is their kind of place!

Well, friends. I know I've missed out on all of your posts this past week, and I know I probably won't be able to get caught up anytime soon, so I'll just have to start where I can and say hello as I go. I've missed you and pray that you are all well.  

I am VERY thankful to God for His kindness and care and healing. That I am most sure of.

Isaiah 40:29 NKJV

29 He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.

Praise God from Whom ALL blessings flow!!

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Tuesday 4~ Childhood


Welcome to Toni's Tuesday 4 and another chance to learn more about yourself and your fellow bloggers.

This week is all about you …

1. Were you an adventurous child at all?  
Yes, I'd say I was quite adventurous.
I've shown this picture before, but when I think of me as a child, my mind always goes back to this picture.  Our home was out in the country/woods, and we didn't really have any close neighbors for me to play with, and I was the "baby" of the family, so my older siblings were often too busy to spend much time with me, so I had to entertain myself a lot. But I didn't mind. I loved being outdoors and exploring the woods. My sister Doris, although a few years older, did like to build forts with me in the woods, and so we did do that until she became a teenager and had better things to do. The thing is, the woods in Florida back then were still quite dense and wild, and diamond back rattlesnakes and coral snakes were very prolific at that time.  However, God was certainly watching over us as we played in the woods many times and were often barefooted, and we never saw a snake in the woods, but we did see them quite often out in the open in the yard or on the dirt road.  Thankfully either my father or my big brothers were usually around at those times to "take care of them".  It was wise to keep a hoe handy for such times.

Sometimes I did have some girlfriends come and camp out with me in a pup tent in our yard.  I loved camping out, and often did so with the Girl Scouts as well as with my family. Every summer our family would camp on our way up north to visit our relatives in Ohio and Pennsylvania. Those are some of my best childhood memories.

My friends Sue, Carol, and yours truly, probably in 8th grade...Not sure how we all three fit in that pup tent all night, along with all our "stuff"!  

2. What were some of your favorite places to go when you were a child? Amusement parks, movies, restaurants,. zoo, etc.?
There were no amusement parks near us when I was growing up in Florida in the pre-Disney World days. But we did have some wonderful natural Old Florida scenic attractions that were much better than the artificial places in Florida now. I know at some point we did go to Cypress Gardens and watch the water-skiers and see all the beautiful young ladies in their  gorgeous gowns. I also remember going to Silver Springs and seeing Ross Allen with the rattlesnake show and the glass bottom boats.  We also used to go to places like Rock Springs, Alexander Springs and Juniper Springs to swim.   I do remember going to the Saturday matinee' movies with my cousins when I'd stay with them for a week at their home near Neptune beach, where we would also go swimming in the ocean and search for shark's teeth and seashells on the beach.  Also my family would pack a picnic lunch and go to Daytona Beach for the day, which was about an hour away from our home. We'd come home sunburnt and tired and cranky, but we always had a great time. Restaurants? That was a very rare occurrence when I was growing up. With a family of six, eating out was a luxury that we could not afford, and besides, we didn't have fast food places like they do now.  I do remember while traveling on vacation that we would sometimes stop at an A&W Root Beer place
Internet Photo

and they would bring the food to us on a little tray that attached to the window of the car. We'd get ice cold A&W Root Beer in a frosty mug, and that was always SO good!!
Internet photo

3. What games did you play outdoors? indoors?
My cousin Becky and I would set up the Monopoly game and play it for days at a time in the summer when I'd spend the night at her house.  Seems like we played card games like "Old Maid". Oh, we played Clue and Scrabble too, and checkers. We also played with our Barbie dolls and built houses for them and made clothes for them. Outdoor games with friends were games like Red Light/Green Light, Mother May I?, Red Rover, Hide and Go Seek.  I sometimes went to my friend Rhonda's house, and she had a tree house and we spent a LOT of time up there. We also started our own sea-shells, rocks and fossils collection/museum in her parents' shed. I think we even charged admission to come see it. LOL.   

4. Where did you grow up and do you think it affected who you are today?
I grew up in a very small town in central Florida named Tavares. * If you want to read the link below that I wrote a few years ago about my home town, it will give more details and answer some of these questions.
*That link above about "Tavares" is how it is today. If you read the history of Tavares, it may be a little more like it was when I was growing up. The town today is NOTHING like it was when I was growing up. It's still a nice town, but its whole focus has changed over the years. I still prefer it the way it was...

I am very thankful for growing up in my hometown. Because our school was small, our teachers knew us and literally cared about us.  I feel like I had more opportunities to do things there than I ever would have had in a bigger school or city, where I would have been a very small fish in a big pond.  I was able to participate in many school activities like cheerleading, drama, the school chorus, Future Homemakers of America, and other extra-curricular activities.  Also my home church was very instrumental in helping to form me into a strong believer.  I was very active in my Sunday School and Youth Group, and sang in the church Junior Choir.  I went to church camp and even became a youth counselor at the camp. Much of this experience helped to prepare me to become a Pastor's Wife, youth leader and Sunday School teacher and choir member as an adult. I am very thankful for the town, school and church where I grew up.  I definitely believe that it helped prepare me for the life God had planned for me.

1 Corinthians 13:11-12 NKJV

11 "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, 
I put away childish things. 
12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known."

Isaiah 26:12 NIV
"Lord, you establish peace for us;
all that we have accomplished you have done for us."

Jeremiah 29:11  NKJV
"11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope."

I hope you enjoyed reading this post about my childhood. Now let us go visit over at the Tuesday 4 site and see what others are sharing!

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Saturday Wanderings

 Here it is Saturday again...and really there isn't much new to report, except the great news that we finally got some good rain this evening!  I was enjoying it so much I had to take a few pictures, of course!

I always enjoy watching the rain coming down on Still Waters Pond...every drop helps replenish the waters in the pond, reviving and restoring it to good health once again.

I went out and sat on the porch to listen to the rain, but I soon discovered that I was bothering the local birds by my presence there. This is Mrs. Bluebird, waiting for me to leave so she can go back inside her nest in the birdhouse. They don't like to enter the birdhouse when anyone (or any other creature) is watching. It's a security thing. They don't want anyone to know they are feeding babies in there, but I definitely do believe they are.

And then, Mrs. Ruby Throated Hummingbird kept flying up to the birdfeeder, but wouldn't come any closer when she saw me sitting there on the porch. She flew back and forth a few times, but wouldn't eat as long as I was there.
So, I finally had to leave the porch and go back inside the house to watch the rain so the wildlife could carry on without interference.   
The rain lasted for a nice little while and then finally stopped, but if my phone weather app is correct, we can expect more later on tonight, which will be very much appreciated.

Speaking of wildlife...This very young gray squirrel was sitting up in the tree like this for quite a while yesterday afternoon.  I just thought he was cute like this, with his tail curled up over his head.

I mentioned the neighborhood cat in my last Tuesday 4 post HERE the other day, and said I was concerned that she might be "expecting".  Well, I still don't know about that, but I discovered her (him?) hiding in these bushes yesterday afternoon, just lazily sleeping on this log. She wouldn't come out because actually the kids were here and they were taking the pups for a walk just then, so she stayed hidden here.
She really didn't seem to care one way or the other and just relaxed there on that log.

And then early this morning we looked out on our back porch, and there she was!

Actually, I think she was keeping her eye on that birdhouse, because I know there are baby birds in there now as mama and papa Bluebird keep coming and going, apparently feeding some new youngsters.
She just kept a close watch on the birdhouse...

And then suddenly she jumped down off the porch onto the ground and caught something and ate it. It wasn't a bird, but it may have been a frog or a lizard or some kind of tiny critter that only she could see. She sure has good eyesight!

So anyway, I debated on shooing her away, but after a little while she disappeared and I haven't seen her since all day, so I guess here again I just have to let nature do what nature does and leave well enough alone.  Besides, I think Mama and Papa Bluebird will drive her away if she gets too close to their nest. They are very vigilant!  

Thank you for those who asked about my hubby's eye exam yesterday. We had a good visit with the eye surgeon and she gave him a more thorough examination. However, she is going to be referring him to a different surgeon as it does appear that he is going to have to have some surgery on the cornea, and she doesn't do that particular kind of surgery. They will have to address this issue before they can tackle the cataracts.  After examining his eye she said she was surprised he could see out of that eye at all, but praise God, yes,  he can see pretty well, all things considered. Had our optometrist not referred him to this Ophthalmologist, we would have never known that he had this problem at all. So I give thanks to the Lord for His leading us before things progressed too far along.

Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good
 to those who love God, 
to those who are the called according to His purpose."

Well, tomorrow is Sunday, and it will be another full day with Sunday School and church, and then the kids are coming over after church and we are going to make spaghetti for lunch.  We always enjoy these family times together and are so very thankful they are nearby to spend time with.  Actually, they will be heading out to Minnesota for a few weeks, to go visit Rose's Dad and extended family there,  so we will be missing them while they are gone. We are happy they are able to do this and pray for their traveling mercies.   (but we will be happy when they get safely back home again).

After the rain...
Well, "Day is dying in the west..."   reminded me of this old hymn:

Day is dying in the west,
Heav’n is touching earth with rest,
Wait and worship while the night
Sets her evening lamps alight
Through all the sky.

Holy, holy, holy,
Lord God of Hosts!
Heav’n and earth are full of Thee!
Heav’n and earth are praising Thee,
O Lord, most high!

Lord of life, beneath the dome
Of the universe, Thy home,
Gather us, who seek Thy face,
To the fold of Thy embrace,
For Thou art nigh.

Holy, holy, holy,
Lord God of Hosts!
Heav’n and earth are full of Thee!
Heav’n and earth are praising Thee,
O Lord, most high!

While the deepening shadows fall,
Heart of love, enfolding all,
Through the glory and the grace
Of the stars that veil Thy face,
Our hearts ascend.

Holy, holy, holy,
Lord God of Hosts!
Heav’n and earth are full of Thee!
Heav’n and earth are praising Thee,
O Lord, most high!

When forever from our sight
pass the stars, the day, the night,
Lord of angels, on our eyes
let eternal morning rise
and shadows end.

Holy, holy, holy,
Lord God of Hosts!
Heav’n and earth are full of Thee!
Heav’n and earth are praising Thee,
O Lord, most high!

Good Night!

"Holy, holy, holy,
Lord God of Hosts!
Heav’n and earth are full of Thee!
Heav’n and earth are praising Thee,
O Lord, most high!"

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Thursday Thankfulness and More

 Happy first day of Summer!  Not sure how I really feel about that...summer is not one of my favorite seasons since we live here in the "Sunshine State", and summer is HOT, HOT, and MORE HOT! And HUMID too!  But if I can list at least one thing I am very thankful for, it would be our central air conditioning...and also the fact that since we replaced our old AC unit last June, we have noticed that our electricity consumption so far in these past few warmer months has been considerably less, and our electric bill has literally been cut in half from what it was during the same period of time last year!! Now that is a blessing I can really be thankful for! It also goes to show you how much electricity the older less efficient appliances really use, and when at all possible, it is worth the expense of replacing them with newer models.  

It sure beats having to fan ourselves with hand fans and other kinds of fans...Like I wrote about HERE a few years ago when our AC broke down.  However, we were thankful then and would be thankful now to have those fans if we needed them again.  

That hand made fan above belonged to my husband's grandmother, and I expect it is quite old, but it still works!  And those coasters that say "Life is BETTER on the porch!" would be true, if it wasn't 90 degrees outside! LOL. Our porch sitting season is actually in the fall, some of winter, and spring. But definitely not summer!

Because it has been so hot, we haven't been outside much. We did take an early walk this morning before it got too hot, and yesterday we went to Walmart and walked around the store doing our shopping for a while, so that was our exercise for that day! 

This week has been rather quiet compared to most weeks lately. Tomorrow we do have to travel all the way to St. Augustine for hubby's eye appointment with the Ophthalmologist. They are still trying to determine if he needs to have his cataracts removed yet, or if they need to treat another eye condition first that could be more serious than the cataracts. Hopefully we will get some answers tomorrow. Praying for clarity. (Hey! That's a good word to use in this situation! LOL).

Speaking of hubby, this past Sunday was Father's Day.  I've already posted these photos on Facebook, but not here.  

Here he is with his gifts from the kids...new lights for the yard. He LOVES these lights.  He has them all around the yard, and he loves to go outside at night and look at them. So they couldn't have given him a better gift!

2 Corinthians 4:6 NKJV
6 For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Our family gathered for lunch after church...Scott, Benton, Rose, John and yours truly. We had a Chinese Stir Fry dinner...partly cooked by me, and partly picked up at the local Chinese take out place. They provided the egg rolls, rice, and crab rangoons and fortune cookies. I cooked a chicken and vegetable stir fry, which was very good. We had that peach cobbler that I baked the night before for dessert.

Here's "Daddy" and his boys...well two of them. We always miss our dear son Matthew on these special days (and every day).

Here is a favorite very old picture of Daddy and his three sons, taken during the Bible Story reading time at bedtime each night.  This is a priceless and precious picture  to me. As you can see, Scotty was just a baby, and Benton and Matthew were in Kindergarten and Pre-school. Those were such sweet times. 

(Sorry for the reflections on the glass...I didn't want to take it out of the frame)

Proverbs 22:6 KJV

 "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, 
he will not depart from it."

I am very thankful that our sons have a Daddy who loves them and who took the time to teach them about Jesus from a very young age. They were given a strong foundation on which to grow and develop and build their lives. Were they always perfect? No, they were normal little boys and teens and young men who tested the waters and sometimes made wrong choices in life, but when all is said and done, they have a faith that still sustains them in their adult years, and also that carried our son Matthew into heaven when he was 41 years old.  I am so thankful that he knew and believed what Jesus said:

"6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."  John 14:6 KJV

I have no doubt that we will see Matthew again one day in heaven.

I guess I will sign off for tonight with those thoughts.  I don't have any new photos yet for "Friday Foto Friends", so we shall see what develops tomorrow. We have to take that ride over to St. Augustine for the eye appointment, but there won't be any time for doing anything extra as hubby will probably have his eyes dilated and we will want to come straight home after the appointment. The sun will be too bright for him to do any sightseeing! (And I will probably be driving home, so no chance for me to take pictures along the way!)

So, good night for now! I'll catch up with you later!

Happy First Day of Summer!
This was the end of the school year class picnic in 6th grade. I'm the crazy one on the left with the bubblegum cigar in my mouth and the feather in my hat. The other sweet girl is one of my best school buddies, Mary. We were both redheads, and when we got together, anything could happen.  "Those were the days, my friend. We thought they'd never end..."   Mary and I do still stay in touch via Facebook, but she lives in another state and it's been way too many years since we actually got to be together. Maybe one of these days we can make it happen. I hope so. We aren't getting any younger.

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Tuesday 4 ~Wildlife


Wild Life

Tuesday 4 is here once again.

(Per our hostess Annie:) I was thinking about wild life that is all around us. Summer brings us out of the house and we spend more time outdoors, weather permitting, and have an opportunity to see animals and birds that live around us.

1. Do you see many animals where you live? Is your answer a good or bad thing?
Well, people who follow my blog know that I have a lot of "wild-life" around where we live. Mostly birds and squirrels. But the variety of birds especially keeps us entertained all the time. It's not quite like it was when we lived in the Ocala National Forest (at our last house, which is just 30 miles from here), where we saw bears and deer on a regular basis, with a few coyote, raccoons and possums thrown in for extra fun, but we are thankful for what we do have here.  Here is a link to a post from our old house in the woods, with LOTS of wildlife!  I do kind of miss all of the excitement, but I guess we are better off without so much wild activity around us.  If you go back into my post archives, most anything between 2012 and 2019 will have some wildlife somewhere in there!

2. What kind of animals and birds are around your area?
Sand Hill Cranes, Hawks, Great Blue Heron, Bluebirds, Cardinals, woodpeckers, Wrens, to name a few of the birds.  Animals: we do have squirrels, possums and armadillos
Armadillo in our yard.

occasionally in our yard, along with neighborhood cats and sometimes a stray dog. Oh, and turtles. Gopher Tortoises are in the area, but thankfully not in our yard as they make a lot of tunnels. (and they are endangered and protected).

And there are deer in the woods, we just don't get to see them very often except occasionally where we take our walks one might venture out and cross our path if we are fortunate enough to see it. 

We did actually see a coyote run through the woods one evening when we were walking. That has made us much more cautious about when we go walking. 

Red Shouldered Hawk (juvenile)

One of our Sand Hill Crane Colts

Bluebirds having a chat at the birdbath

Canada Geese

Mama Sand Hill Crane and one of the colts earlier this spring

Ruby Throated Hummingbird (Male)

Great Blue Heron on Still Waters Pond

Turtles on the pond

3. What kind of animals and birds could you do without and what kind would you love to see more often?
Stray dogs...this area is ripe with stray dogs and cats. Fortunately they aren't right here in our neighborhood (the dogs), but you have to be very careful where you walk as they sometimes form packs out in the more wooded areas and have become not just a nuisance, but dangerous.  Our animal control system is not able to keep up with it. It is very sad that many of these dogs and cats come from thoughtless and careless people who dump off their unwanted litters of dogs and cats in the woods, and then they continue to breed and the problem is multiplied.  Sadly we had to bury a stray cat recently, who apparently just got sick and died on the edge of our lawn and pond. There was no sign of injury. It was like she just laid down and died. It was very sad.  We gave her a nice little burial and I even said a little prayer.  It made me very sad, but she was a stray and our neighbor, who feeds some of the strays in the area said she had never seen this one before.  So it could be someone dumped her off in the woods and left her to die. That makes me so angry.

4. Do you feed wild birds or animals ?
Yes, we feed the small wild birds that come to our bird feeder. We don't feed any animals or the bigger birds like the Cranes or Canada Geese. If you start to feed them, they will expect it every time they see you, and it really isn't good for them to be fed by humans, and it is actually against the law to feed them.  Our neighbor, as I mentioned above, does feed some stray cats in the neighborhood, but I noticed one came into our yard today and I am afraid she might be pregnant. I don't know much about cats, but she looks kind of fat in the belly, so time will tell.  I hope not, because that will mean more stray cats to run wild. At least she isn't really feral, and maybe the kittens can be taken to the humane shelter. Time will tell. I hope I'm wrong...

HERE is a link to a post I wrote about that same neighborhood cat last fall.  At least I think it's the same cat...and maybe it's really just a chubby "he", and not a "she". As I said, time will tell. 

Well, that's it for my "wild life" here these days.  Now let's go see what other people are enjoying in their neck of the woods!  Here's the link!

Saturday, June 15, 2024

Saturday Wanderings...Some of Us need Rain, and Some Don't!

 Happy Saturday Morning everyone! (it was morning when I started writing this post, but it's been a long day! LOL)  No, we are not "wandering" all over the state of Florida, but I wanted to share this map to give some perspective on where we live as opposed to where all the flooding is going on in our state.  Many people have expressed their concern for us and those living in Florida this week, and we do appreciate it greatly.  However, where I live, we have not had any rain except for one nice rain shower early one morning this week, but that was it. Other than that it has been dry as a bone and there are even brush fires in the area because it has been so dry!

You may wonder how that can be when you've seen all the horrible flooding going on in our state this week.  Well, that's because all of the rain has been mostly in the southern third of the state, mostly south of the Tampa area.  We live in the north central portion of the state, east of Gainesville.  (see my circled area below on the map).

The state of Florida is very long, 447 miles from top to bottom. HERE is a link to the Wikipedia page on Florida for all the details.

We do pray for any of our friends who live in the flooded areas or who have loved ones there. And although we certainly do need the rain in our part of the state, we are thankful not to have it in such an overabundance.  However, the risk of fire is real, and so we pray for at least enough rain to stem the tide of drought that is creeping up on us.

I started writing this post this morning, and then got busy with other things and am just now getting back to it at 6:00 p.m.  Our blogging friend Linda at Just Linda, lives about an hour south of us. She wrote on her Facebook page a few minutes ago that they were finally getting some rain. I asked her to please send some up to us.  And within a 1/2 hour it started to rain here!  Not very heavy, but at least it is trying!  Thank you, Linda! LOL.  And thank You, God, for hearing our prayers!

Still Waters Pond, you can see how dry it is getting.

Rain clouds rolling in!  Praise the Lord for even a little bit!

A few minutes later it was coming down in earnest! Yay! Praise the Lord!

We truly are thankful for the rain!

So what did we do today? Well this morning before it got too hot we took a little ride back down to the boat ramp at Kenwood.  Here's a few pictures from this morning:

The Pickerel Weed seems to be in full bloom in the water now.

Isn't it pretty?

That bumblebee was checking out every flower. Sorry it's blurry, but he was in a hurry!

The Yellow Water Lilies were also popping up everywhere.

All shades of green reflecting in the water...so cool and pretty on this warm humid day...

And these are hatched turtle eggs!  These freshwater turtle eggs were buried in the dirt probably about two months ago, and now they are hatching and the baby turtles head for the water...
There were a lot of these all over the shore along the water canal. I wish I could've seen the baby turtles!
Oh, here comes a boat back into the boat ramp. He was coming quite fast...I'm glad he was able to slow down and stop in time!

I love this big old Live Oak tree. I posted this on my Facebook page today with this verse...

Psalm 46:10 NKJV
10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

So after that we headed back home for the rest of the day.  I had bought some fresh peaches at the grocery store yesterday and decided to make a peach cobbler to have for tomorrow after Sunday dinner. The kids are all coming over after church so we can be together for Father's Day.
However, hubby said he wanted sample it tonight, and so we did. It is very good! And there's still plenty left for tomorrow. LOL.

HERE's a link to a previous post about Father's Day.  Maybe I should wait and repost that tomorrow, but in case I get too busy and forget, here it is tonight.

Praying that tomorrow is a blessed day for you and yours and all the wonderful fathers out there.