Friday, March 18, 2011

Foto Friday - Spring Break

Spring break . . . and a little piece of our paradise! We live only 25 miles from the Gulf of Mexico and a day at the beach can feel like a vacation! It's fun, refreshing and a really good place for finding the center of your soul. 

"Paradise is seldom recognized as such until it is considered from the outside."
-Hermann Hesse 

Now, everyday at the beach is an adventure sometimes bringing with it the unexpected along with a little risk.

These blue-ish blobs are called Portuguese Man-o'-war and are completely fascinating from a safe distance that is. These are not a true jelly-fish but a siphonophore, and  instead of being a single organism are made up of a colony of many small individuals called zooids who on their own would not be able to survive.  Now that's what I call teamwork! And because they have no means of self-propulsion their (rare argon) gas filled bladders depend entirely on the winds, tides and currents to get around. Unfortunately for them and for us a whole heap of them were brought in by strong winds. I contacted the State Park and they said that this is not at all a usual occurrence to have this many at one time. I was amazed at the people who were still in the water despite seeing these everywhere. Did I mention that these have tentacles that average 30 ft and sting, injecting a neurotoxin? You do have to be careful though when walking the beach because the tentacles can still sting if stepped on for several weeks after they die. But fear not, this is not a normal find on the beach here, and we did not let it stop us from having a great time anyway.

Overcome, adapt, and improvise!!
(the Stevens' motto)

We did find an abandoned treasure . . .

And then it was time for the birds. I saved my cheddar sun chips since they liked those so much last time. Did I mention they don't like cucumbers? haha  Not sure how I managed to get this shot before the chip even hit the ground?

I tried to get them to take it out of my hands but they wanted nothing to do with it this time. They wouldn't even entertain the idea . . .  so I just threw them hoping I could be as fast with my shots as they were at grabbing them. It was fairly late in the day and I just love the lighting and shadows in the next several pictures.

Here we were on our way home and the light was beautiful and there was a haze over the sun and of course I was in the car! So I had my daughter hand me the camera and I had to get some shots off pretty quick as the light was now green and traffic was moving. Where's that red light when you need one?

In this one I just didn't have much time to get a correct exposure, but I really like it!

So this week is coming to a close and spring break is almost over, but paradise is always around the corner.

And remember, paradise is only lost to those who look but do not see.

Have a great weekend in your paradise!

Love, Kim

P.S. What or where is your piece of paradise?


katherine said...

right now paradise is in my studio, as long as the sun is shining outdoors

Kim Stevens said...

Ahhh yes, the studio is a great place for paradise too!

Janet Bocciardi said...

Spring break? - looks marvelous! We're having rain and cold and more to come... And this is CA!

I'll stop and stare at your photos knowing warmer days are coming. : )

Emilee said...

Beautiful - I have 3 places of paradise - the ocean, the mountains and the back yard with my hands in the earth (whether it is planting or weeding). Love your pics, Kim!

mosaicmom said...

Wow, love the umbrella in the first photo. Have heard about the man-o-war, never saw one, not even a pic. I like the bird photos a lot, especially the shadows. And the last one looks like he's saying "look at me!". What a great place to spend the day!

SKC said...

Beautiful images. Love the second one.

Serline said...

Gorgeous sunset pics, and thanks for the tip on those pretty creatures that could still pack a painful punch after they die.

Anonymous said...

Well, today...this was my paradise. It is cold and grey and looking still like winter here. I love the sunset with the sail boat and palms-lovely.

Janet Bocciardi said...

I had to come back and look at the photos... soak in some of the sunshine through my eyes. : )

You know - I never knew the man-o-wars were not jelly fish.

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