Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Biking on Monday and Hiking on Tuesday!

Ken and I were up at 7, did some reading, and I was on the pickleball court by 8:30.  It was another cool, windy morning with the temperature in the 50's.  It was one of those frustrating days where it felt like I had never played this game. The 1st match went fairly well, but after that it was all downhill and somehow when you start playing poorly, it is so hard to improve your game.  After 4 games I was done.  I couldn't imagine getting any worse, but I wasn't going to take that chance!

Ken spent that time reading and writing in his journal.  When I returned I worked on this blog and then got out the necessary items for making sea glass pictures, painted some unfinished wooden frames, and made one small flower picture.  

I talked to Cindy and Mom before Ernie, Noela, Ken and I left for a bike ride on the Venetian Waterway Trail that goes from downtown Venice to Caspersen Beach.  But, first things first - we biked to the Upper Crust Bakery for our 1st scone of the season.  Oh no!!!  They were sold out for the day!  So, we had to get a raspberry crumb bar - not a scone, but it was delicious!

Then the bike ride to Caspersen Beach began and what a beautiful ride it was. 

Pretty trail!

Then you get to ride along the intracoastal waterway!

You get to see some very nice boats during the ride!

The "boys" stopped to watch some commercial fisherman using a net to catch lots of fish. 

Bringing in the net!

 Quite a job!
Looks like a good catch!

Ernie tried to entice the Florida Scrub Jays with peanuts, but we didn't see any of them.

I don't think the scrub jays are hungry today!

When we got to the beach we took a short walk looking for shells and sharks teeth. 

Several years ago, Caspersen Beach was very wide.
Beach erosion has certainly changed this shoreline!

Back on our bikes to complete the 11 mile ride back to the truck.  After dinner, Ken and I went to Edgewater Church to Celebrate Recovery. On the way, I talked to Jackie, a close friend from back home, who graciously took my mother out for lunch and shopping last Wednesday.  Mom, Ken and I so appreciate her willingness to give of her time to do such a nice thing for my mother.  

At church, the lady minister that had spoken there a week ago was giving her testimony at Celebrate Recovery and we were both excited to hear her.  It was a very moving evening and she is one amazing lady.  When Ken went to his small group, I sat in the lobby and did some reading and chatted with Kaylee, the minister of social programs at the church. It was a fantastic evening.
Tuesday morning it was chilly and windy again. I decided not to play pickleball. I think I was a bit "tramatized from yesterdays poor play.  So, I spent time reading and studying the Purpose Driven Life Book.  Our 1st meeting with our Life Group from back home will be this Friday morning.  We are meeting for breakfast and then coming to Wilbur for the book study which Ken and I are leading. Amazing how many hours you spend in preparation when you are the leaders, but you learn a lot in the process.   

After breakfast, I spent the morning making 6 sea glass pictures.  Ken cleaned up including vacuuming Wilbur and set-up outside again.  We had put many of the outside things away when it was so windy.  He encourages me to work on my crafts and is more than willing to do the "chores".  After all, Ken says, I am earning gas money for Wilbur!  I had a lot of fun making the pictures.

After lunch, the 4 of us drove about 45 minutes towards Punta Gorda to the Charlotte Flatlands Preserve.  Ernie and Noela had been there recently and saw some interesting birds and found lots of apple snail shells.  Limpkins, wading birds that are brown and spotted, eat the snails and then leave all of the shells behind.  We began by picking up the empty apple snail shells and we found lots of them.  Some of them are quite large. 

The hunt for the apple snail shells has begun!

I find them very interesting!

By the time we stopped hunting for the shells, my green
bag was over 1/2 full!

There were so many!

While walking the 2 1/2 mile trail we saw limpkins, wading birds we had never seen.  After doing some research, they only go as far north as southern Georgia. Almost exclusively, they feed on apple snails. 

I like their coloring!

They are well camaflouged in these swampy areas!

herons and egrets - (Ken did a great job getting their reflections in the water)

In flight!

 a bald eagle -

The 1st photo Ken has taken of an eagle in flight!

 and an armadillo -

Don't you just love his ears and armor!!!

Thought you might enjoy the butterfly and water lily too -

This butterfly could fly well considering that part of his
wing was missing!

What an interesting walk!!!

We returned to Waldo around 5:45, showered, made salads, and then went to Ernie and Noela's for some delicious pulled pork that Noela had cooked all day in her crockpot.  We played Uno and the men won "big time"!  Lately Noela and I are having a tough time winning any of the games!  To bed by 9:30.

I did talk to Mom today and Dad seems to be doing okay.  I also talked to Nancy and Neil Savage and we made a "date" to meet and have lunch together on Pine Island when Ken and I will be doing a craft show at a local church the 2nd Saturday of February.  Looking forward to seeing them again.

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