Beloved Red Milkweed Beetle and Damselfly 6/11/17

It has been a super windy day and I’m excited to report my first sighting of my beloved red milkweed beetle.  I’ve been eagerly awaiting my friends.
This bright damselfly made an appearance, too.
pretty dragonfly
holding on to lavender
you ride the breezes
~ Raven Ariana Simons ©2017
it’s early summer
one of my favorite beetles
makes an appearance
~ Raven Ariana Simons ©2017

Namaste, Namu Amida Butsu, Bright Blessings,
Our hearts give thanks for the Grace in the Universe!
~ Raven


At Home With Hummingbirds and Milkweed Friends 10/3/15

10:3:15 L hum 1 sig“It just may be that the most radical act we can commit is to stay home,” says Terry Tempest Williams. ~ From Terri Windling’s October 1st blog post
10:3:15 mb 1 sigSaturday, October 3, 2015 – Mostly overcast with some rain today for the 3rd day of OcPoWriMo.  While I rarely follow the prompts, in part because my poetry follows my picture project and it seems haiku (as I play with it) a nice fit, I will say that lately my biggest blocks to my creativity and writing have been more physical than emotional (though there are emotional components that arise out of the physical).  They have ranged from dsl connection issues (as most of my writing is here on this blog and on pollinator/earth activism pages I manage on fb), old equipment and failed software, and health issues.  It is kind of ironic because this blog originally arose from a daily photo project I started on Facebook on January 4, 2012 to help get me up and about after an extended period of illness and being abed.  I do have some chronic health issues, like too many people I know, that stem from what I believe to be the way humans live in and treat the earth and all of its creatures (including the plant people).  One of the types I have takes down my immune system and it can take quite some time to get better (I’m still in an activation phase of this one).  When we live in a world where humans spray poisons to get rid of the plants and animals that they don’t want, we tend to forget that we are poisoning ourselves as well as the creatures we love.  All of life is necessary and I believe we need to find our way back to a sacred re-connection to our world and all in it.  This includes a connection to where we live and to all of our neighbors (including the plant and other beings).  Terri Windling’s blog, Myth and Moor, has been examining the connection to the places we live, our communities, and how we relate to the sacred in these places over the last couple of weeks (September and October).  I encourage you to go check it out 🙂
10:3:15 L hum 5 sig“my friends are still here
while the milkweed is turning
it’s migration time”
~ Raven Ariana Simons
10:3:15 lb best sig 10:3:15 mb 2 sig“This is my living faith, an active faith, a faith of verbs: to question, explore, experiment, experience, walk, run, dance, play, eat, love, learn, dare, taste, touch, smell, listen, speak, write, read, draw, provoke, emote, scream, sin, repent, cry, kneel, pray, bow, rise, stand, look, laugh, cajole, create, confront, confound, walk back, walk forward, circle, hide, and seek.”
~ Terri Tempest Williams
10:3:15 L hum sig 10:3:15 mb sig“connecting with home
I am tender to spider
and my other friends”
~ Raven Ariana Simons
10:3:15 js sigNamaste, Bright Blessings, Namu Amida Butsu ~ Raven

Spider in the Milkweed 9/16/14

“Nothing is more precious than being in the present moment.  Fully alive, fully aware.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh
9:16:14 rmb 1 sigFlashback Sunday, September 16, 2014 – This is my pick photo for today and stars a Monarch butterfly. I love the intense colors of the open wings!
September 16, 2012 sig
Flashback Monday, September 16, 2014 – This is my pick photo for today and it stars a Monarch on my buddleia. I saw four early this evening before sundown.
September 16, 2013 sigTuesday, September 16, 2014 – A large spider posed for me in the milkweed today 🙂
9:16:14 spidey sig
9:16:14 close spidey sig 9:16:14 milkweed tube spidey sig“Some will be scared by
your portrait in the milkweed,
large garden spider.”
~ Raven Ariana Simons
9:16:14 closest spidey sig 9:16:14 nice spidey sig“Waiting patiently
in a web spun of milkweed.
Why are you hiding?”
~ Raven Ariana Simons
9:16:14 fab spidey sig

Our hearts give thanks for the Grace in the Universe!
Namaste ~ Raven

Carry On My Wayward Sun(flower) 9/4/14

Flashback Tuesday, September 4, 2012 – This is my pick photo of the day and I love the color and the way this volunteer cosmos is coming up in my gourds 🙂
September 4, 2012 sigFlashback Wednesday, September 4, 2013 – This is my pick photo for today and it stars one of our resident hummingbirds.
September 4, 2013 sigThursday, September 4, 2014 – The season is winding down and some of the hummingbirds have hit the migration trail.  I have a few left, but not the numbers I had.  I only have a couple of red milkweed beetles left, too, though these don’t migrate.  I am aware of the change in the season and the shorter days and that soon my little garden friends will be gone for the year.  Some will have passed away and some gone into hibernation and some flown away to other lands for the winter.  Sunflowers and milkweed will sleep in their seeds.

“Carry on my wayward son
There’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more

9:4:14 hummy 1 sig 9:4:14 honeybee sig 9:4:14 tiny beetle sig 9:4:14 rmb back 2 sig  9:4:14 mayfly? sigOnce I rose above the noise and confusion
Just to get a glimpse beyond this illusion
I was soaring ever higher, but I flew too high

Though my eyes could see I still was a blind man
Though my mind could think I still was a mad man
I hear the voices when I’m dreaming,
I can hear them say

Carry on my wayward son,
There’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more
9:4:14 close up tiny beetle sig 9:4:14 rmb close sig9:4:14 tres melissodes sig

9:4:14 mayfly?1 sigMasquerading as a man with a reason
My charade is the event of the season
And if I claim to be a wise man,
Well, it surely means that I don’t know

On a stormy sea of moving emotion
Tossed about, I’m like a ship on the ocean
I set a course for winds of fortune,
But I hear the voices say

Carry on my wayward son
There’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more no!
9:4:14 rmb on chewed leaf sig 9:4:14 melissodes sig 9:4:14 hummy sigCarry on,
You will always remember
Carry on,
Nothing equals the splendor
Now your life’s no longer empty
Surely heaven waits for you

Carry on my wayward son
There’ll be peace when you are done
Lay your weary head to rest
Don’t you cry no more.”
~ Kerry Livgren
9:4:14 tiny beetle back sigOur hearts give thanks for the Grace in  the Universe!
Namaste ~ Raven

First Milkweed Seeds 8/9/14

Flashback Thursday, August 9, 2012 – This is my pick photo for today and it stars a honeybee on the pretty orange flowers (butterfly weed – Asclepias tuberosa) in my neighbors’ parking strip. Love the clear shot of the bee with the vibrant greens and oranges!
August 9, 2012 sig
Flashback Friday, August 9, 2013 – This is my pick photo for today and hubby got to choose as today celebrates 22 years of marriage together 🙂
August 9, 2013 sigSaturday, August 9, 2014 – A few milkweed pods have ripened and the red milkweed beetles are continuing to feed.  The insect in the pod is a milkweed bug, though these seem to eat more than just milkweed because I see them in the backyard where I don’t have any milkweed yet.  Spearmint and fennel also grow in my milkweed strip and here is a tiny little native bee and a honeybee enjoying the blossoms.  Happy Anniversary to my honey for 23 years of marriage!  I love you 🙂
8:9:14 pod sig 8:9:14 mseeds sig 8:9:14 mbug sig“You are an explorer, and you represent our species, and the greatest good you can do is to bring back a new idea, because our world is endangered by the absence of good ideas. Our world is in crisis because of the absence of consciousness.”
~Terence McKenna
8:9:14 tiny native sig 8:9:14 hb 1 sig 8:9:14 tiny native close sig“Nature loves courage. You make the commitment and nature will respond to that commitment by removing impossible obstacles. Dream the impossible dream and the world will not grind you under, it will lift you up. This is the trick. This is what all these teachers and philosophers who really counted, who really touched the alchemical gold, this is what they understood. This is the shamanic dance in the waterfall. This is how magic is done. By hurling yourself into the abyss and discovering its a feather bed.”
~ Terence McKenna
8:9:14 mb lunch sig 8:9:14 dinner time sig“You are a divine being. You matter, you count. You come from realms of unimaginable power and light, and you will return to those realms.”
~ Terence McKenna
8:9:14 mb sigOur hearts give thanks for the Grace in the Universe!
Bright Bee Blessings and Namaste ~ Raven


Milkweed the Next Generation 7/7/14

Flashback Saturday, July 7, 2012 – This is my pick photo for today and stars one of my resident robins. For some reason the pair have stayed active driving off newcomers (robins) from their territory. I’m not sure why there has been so much encroachment this year. In years past I haven’t noticed this much territorial issues this late in the summer.
July 7, 2012 sigFlashback Sunday, July 7, 2013 – This is my pick photo for today and it stars a nice portrait of the blossoms on my yucca plant. White flowers are tricky and I’m pleased by how you can see some of the blossom details before they brown and fade.
July 7, 2013 sigMonday, July 7, 2014 – Pods are developing on my milkweed, demonstrated they have been pollinated.
7:7:14 a pod sig 7:7:14 two pods sig 7:7:14 pod cluster sig7:7:14 sunlit pod close sig“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
~ Robert Louis Stevenson
7:7:14 two pods sun sig 7:7:14 sunlit pod sig
7:7:14 beetles sig 7:7:14 leaves v sig
“Inside that tiny seed, lives the roots, branches, bark, trunk, leaves, twigs and apple fruit of that apple tree. You can’t see, feel, hear, taste or smell any of that yet; nevertheless, it is all inside that seed. The moment the seed is in your hand— all of that is in your hand, too, from the root to the bark to the fruit! All you have to do is to push the seed into the soil. And what makes anyone plant any apple seed? It is the belief that in the seed, there is the tree. So, believe. To have a seed, is to have everything.”
~ C. Joybell C.
7:7:14 beetle sigOur hearts give thanks for the Grace in the Universe!
Namaste ~ Raven

Fading Milkweed Blossoms 6/27/14

Flashback Wednesday, June 27, 2012 – I caught this robin eating berries and you can tell that she knows I’ve spied her out! Hubby loves this picture and I’ve let him influence today’s choice for pick photo of the day. Yes, I’m trying to be sly behind the shrubberies (in this case ivy) but this female robin has caught me taking her picture.
June 27, 2012 sigFlashback Thursday, June 27, 2013 – This is my pick photo for today and it stars one of my ladies on some of my catnip.

June 27, 2013 sigFriday, June 27, 2014 – The milkweed blossoms are fading and a few pods are beginning.  I didn’t find the monarch caterpillar, but I did see some red milkweed beetles.
6:27:14 fading sig 6:27:14 shriveling sig 6:27:14 side beetle sig 6:27:14 beetle eye sig 6:27:14 overall sig“Why should we tolerate a diet of weak poisons, a home in insipid surroundings, a circle of acquaintances who are not quite our enemies, the noise of motors with just enough relief to prevent insanity? Who would want to live in a world which is just not quite fatal?”
~ Rachel Carson
6:27:14 starting to droop sig 6:27:14 stalk riding sig 6:27:14 little pod sig 6:27:14 milkweeds pod beetle sig 6:27:14 forming pods sig “One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, “What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew i would never see it again?”
~ Rachel Carson
6:27:14 milkweed fades sigOur hearts give thanks for the Grace in the Universe!
Namaste and Kind Regards ~ Raven