I Heart Faces: Best Face Photo from Summer 2011

The theme at “I Heart Faces” this week is “Best Face Photo from Summer 2011”.  The photo I shot of my sweet grandbaby on the Lake Michigan beach at Glen Arbor, Michigan this past August was the first to pop into my mind.  Such a cute little beach bum!!!

LOVE those sunglasses!

Since this is “People’s Choice” week, anyone can vote on the entries beginning on Wednesday!  Check out all the great entries now at:

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Finally…….

………seeing a few monarchs flying through my backyard.  Way, way fewer than last year since the population is down this year due to the cool, rainy spring we had.  So many caterpillars just couldn’t survive it!  So it’s a real treat to have one nectaring in my yard, such as this beauty:

I usually see an Eastern tiger swallowtail in my yard every day.  Here’s one dining on coneflower:

I was very excited the other day to have a giant swallowtail spend quite a bit of time nectaring on my coneflowers and swamp milkweed.  Such a beautiful butterfly, and huge too!  It’s the largest butterfly in North America with a wingspan of up to six inches.  Here’s the one that visited my backyard:

Other butterfly visitors have included the oh-so-common cabbage whites as well as skippers and blues.  I keep planting more and more butterfly plants in hopes of getting a greater variety of these winged beauties!

I Heart Faces: Let’s Hear It For The Boys!

Having just celebrated Father’s Day this past Sunday, this week’s photo challenge at I ♥ Faces is “Let’s hear it for the boys”.  I immediately knew which photo I had to enter: that of my good friend’s grandson.  He’s a sweet little two-year-old who’s always on the move so capturing a good picture of him is a challenge in itself.  I was so happy when he stopped long enough for me to shoot this endearing portrait:

              Check out more pictures of the important men and boys in people’s lives at:

Baby Bunnies!

A large bunny was spotted a couple of times by my husband and daughter last week just sitting in the flowers that are under the crabapple tree on our front lawn.  It was a picture perfect scene but neither of them had a camera handy.  A few days ago, we found out why the bunny was just sitting there: she was actually on the nest which was home to her three babies!  By the time we discovered this, the bunnies were a day away from leaving the nest but at least I was able to capture some pictures of them.  Here’s one peeking out of the nest:

Another bunny was just sitting in my “White Nancy” lamium:

The third one was hopping about on our lawn and then went to hide in the shrubs.  The next day, none of them could be found anywhere.  Even though they were as cute as can be, I’m glad they moved on!  I sure don’t want them munching on my flowers and veggie plants!

I Heart Faces Photo Challenge ~ May Flowers

This week’s theme at I ♥ Faces is May Flowers.  Since May is my absolute favorite month out of the entire year and the flowers of May are one of the reasons why, I knew I had to jump right in.  Fortunately, this is a non-contest week so everyone posts for fun and there’s no limit to the number of images you can post.  Good thing, since I have too many favorites!!!  Here are some of them:

Virginia bluebells from my woodland wildflower garden:

Hepatica, also from my woodland wildflower garden:

Several images of trillium, one of my most favorite of all the spring ephemerals:

Bloodroot, one of the first woodland wildflowers to emerge in the spring, is also a big favorite of mine:

Trout Lily, so named because of the resemblance of it’s mottled leaves to the coloring of brook trout:

Love those Jack-in-the-Pulpits!

The flowers of spring beauty are so tiny and delicate

Switching from woodland wildflowers to spring bulbs, here are some of my favorite shots of tulips:

Check out more beautiful spring flowers at:

First “Big” Butterfly of the Season!

Looking out my kitchen window today, I noticed how the blossoms on my lilac had opened practically overnight.  Such pretty light purple blooms!  Suddenly I spotted a butterfly with bright yellow wings flying from lilac bloom to lilac bloom, nectaring away!  It was a beautiful Eastern tiger swallowtail!  Can summer be far off?!!!  Although I couldn’t be quick enough to run outside to shoot a few pictures of the butterfly, here’s a few shots of a tiger swallowtail from a few summers ago:

Hopefully soon I’ll be spotting monarchs; every day they get closer and closer to Michigan.  My milkweed has sprouted and is quickly growing so it will be ready for them when they arrive!