Project 366: The End. I did it, woo hoo!!!!
When I started this project I had no idea the challenges we would face as a nation and globally. Each day I start my prayer thanking God for the day. This morning I saw a prayer on Twitter from @Corrynmb that is similar to my own prayers of late:
Thank you God for 2020, for every trial that brought me closer to you. For every obstacle that taught me to abide in you. For the love and peace that you cover me with. God, you are so good and faithful! May you be glorified in 2021 and continue to take us deeper in our relationship!
Happy New Year and may 2021 bring all of us peace and blessings. Let’s look forward, not backward. Cheers!
400mm | f/6.3 | ISO 400 | 1/800 sec
One more day of this project!! I have something “fiery” planned for tomorrow if it doesn’t rain. *fingers crossed*
After another restless night of sleep and two cups of coffee, I decided to drive to our local zoo. I’m not a fan of zoos in general, but I understand their role as a place for injured wildlife and education. Thankfully, they’ve made some improvements to our zoo, so I’ll start supporting them again.
I present to you the Black-handed Spider Monkey. This tree-dwelling creature has a prehensile tale that can be used like an extra hand. He and his gang of three put on quite a show. Even though it rained off and on, it was a fun afternoon.
400mm | f/5.6 | ISO 1600 | 1/1000 sec
This morning I got a wild hair and drove to Lacassine Wildlife Refuge, 2-1/2 hours southwest. It was a beautiful day and the place had been on my bucket list all year. The year is nearly over, as well as this project, so I thought ‘Why not?’
As I neared the refuge I saw a strange bird I had never seen before in some tall grass just off the road. I took some shots from the car window, and since that didn’t seem to scare him off, I crept out as stealthily as possible to get closer. Well, that was the wrong move! Buh-bye Crested Caracara. Out of 10 snaps, this is the best of the bunch. Hot dog, I have a new bird to add to my bird list!
I will definitely make a trip back to Lacassine. I saw hundreds if not thousands of ducks. When they’d all take flight at once it took my breath away. God’s creation in action is medicine for the soul.
400mm | f/5.6 | ISO 320 | 1/1600 sec
In between loads of laundry, I spotted a Chipping Sparrow in our crape myrtle tree. An unexpected GOD blessing which I always cherish.
400mm | f/5.6 | ISO 200 | 1/1250 sec
The husband returned with me to Ben Hur Rd., the latest birding hotspot in town. The Vermilion Flycatcher was still there and my husband was thrilled to see him so clearly with his binoculars. My job was to photograph the Savannah Sparrows, which were so plentiful the day before. Today, they were scarce. I lured this one out with my iBird Pro app. His expression seemed to say, “Who goes there?!”
400mm | f/6.3 | ISO 400 | 1/1600 sec
A couple days ago I received notice from a birding group that a Vermilion Flycatcher was spotted in south Baton Rouge, at a termite facility on Ben Hur Road. The area is a bit remote with an old two-lane road dividing the land which is mostly designated for the LSU Agricultural Center. The Vermilion Flycatcher rarely gets this far north, so it’s a big deal. I met over a dozen birders and photographers in the span of 2 hours.
As I drove there around 9AM, I had some quiet time with God, thanking Him for all our blessings, and for also helping me with this photo project. Even though there were ups and downs, I asked to end on a high note.
I named this guy ‘Ben Hur’ since that’s the road he’s currently residing on. It was fun watching him dive gracefully for insects and bring them back to his preferred perch: the ugly, rusty fence. I so wanted to get him perched on one of the many trees, or get a closer look, but he did not cooperate. I’m used to wildlife being uncooperative.
Cornell Lab of Ornithology describes the male as “A feathered ember.” This bird is very small, yet you can’t miss the vibrant red feathers, even from a great distance.
400mm | f/7.1 | ISO 400 | 1/1600 sec
For a child is born to us,
a son is given to us.
The government will rest on his shoulders.
And he will be called:
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
iPhone 11 Pro Max
Merry Christmas Eve! Our local restaurant, Dempsey’s, furnished our evening meal. Gotta support our restaurants these days. A dollop of potato salad (not shown) was added afterwards, along with a slice of French bread. A glass of wine to compliment the delicious food. The perfect comfort food for a cold evening served on my mother’s Montclair Lenox fine china.
Lord, in this holy season of prayer and song and laughter, we praise you for the great wonders you have sent us: for shining star and angel’s song, for infant’s cry in lowly manger. We praise you for the Word made flesh in a little Child. We behold His glory, and are bathed in its radiance. (Credit to catholic.org)
iPhone 11 Pro Max
Image of 12/23/2020
This is blooming in our neighbor’s yard. It’s some type of bulb, but I don’t know what kind. It’s Christmas Eve and I’m trying to get caught up with this project, so maybe I’ll remember to research later. That’s a big MAYBE.
iPhone 11 Pro Max
(the portrait mode makes pretty bokeh)
Image of 12/22/2020
The Black-bellied Whistling Ducks are multiplying like crazy. We used to see them mostly in bayous and swamps; now they are in abundance at city parks and ponds. They are so amusing, constantly playing while making their whistling noises. Fun to watch.
200mm | f/5 | ISO 320 | 1/1600 sec