Archive for August, 2010

Three Woody’s!

Goodness! Look at this!  Three Wood Storks and an Egret all in the same corner of the pond!  This is the first time more than one Wood Stork came by at a time…

of course I had to get a close up of the one closest to me..

I don’t think I’ve told anyone yet but one of the Ibis now eats out of my hand… in fact he’s even aggressive!  I can play with him now… I can pretend to want to hold his very long beak closed and he doesn’t run away.  I can also now hold bread up high while standing up (vs crouching to feed the moorhens) and he will “fly up and grab it from my hand”…then come back for more.  It’s all very cute  …BUT…(big but!) the Ibis are “hollow”!  they can eat and eat and eat.. I am sure I could feed them a whole loaf of bread and they would want more!  So, I am glad only ONE Ibis has decided to be aggressive and eat from my hand.  Sometimes it’s funny… he might get a large piece of bread and then all the other Ibis chase HIM like they do the Moorhens!   There are times I feel he’s getting what he gives lol.

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Last night I went from my bedroom to the kitchen for something to drink..

On my way back I noticed something on my wall that didn’t belong there..

..I took a closer look.  Yup, it was a large dragonfly!  I have no idea how he/she got into the house, but I did know If I didn’t do anything he/she would become a snack for BooBoo Kitty!   So after taking a picture of it, I got a plastic glass and a piece of paper.  He/she obliged me by not flying away while I put the plastic cup over it, then slid a paper under it.  I went and opened my door and set it free!  It flew right to the hall wall and hung there like he was on my wall… I wondered if it knew it was no longer a snack for a cat!

The next morning was quiet also…  although daylight the moon seemed to just hang in the sky…

At first I saw no activity around the pond.. even DeadEye was not fishing…

…and the fountain was not working (again) and so the turtles were on it getting a little air…

The whole day has been rather quiet at the pond.

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I Am Bummed !!!

All week long ads have been on television saying that Avatar was going to come to movie screens again with more scenes that were cut from the movie.  It did say it would be in 3D and in Imax theaters …

.. I searched to see if it was ONLY Imax or any other theaters that had 3D… it seems it’s no where near Vero Beach!… arrrgghhhhhhhhhh!!!!

I want to see the extra footage!  I love this movie.. they could add another hour and I’d be ecstatic! (sore butt..but ecstatic all the same!)

I hope they release this copy to dvd FAST…because I can’t wait to see what I missed!  But dang it… I’d love to see it on the big screen again!

(I can’t wait to hear that they have begun a second Avatar movie!)

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Bad Froggy!

Look what I spotted out by my mailbox.. a Froggy! (toad?)

It was then I knew that some of what I saw on the cement was Froggy droppings! (ewww and I was barefooted!)

…He knew he was a bad froggy and so he punished himself  by sitting in the corner!

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Dragongirl by Todd McCaffrey

Hardcover: 512 pages
Publisher: Del Rey;(July 27, 2010)
ISBN-10: 0345491165

From Booklist

Young Fiona, rider of the gold queen dragon Talenth, has just returned from three years at the abandoned Weyr (or dragon domicile) Ingen, to which injured dragons and riders had gone to heal. The place is 10 Turns in the past, yet only days have passed at Fort Weyr when they return. The Weyr (dragons, riders, and support) are still fighting Thread shorthanded because the plague is still killing dragons, and dragons and riders are going down in battle. Suddenly all Telgar dragons and riders are lost Between. Since Talenth is the oldest queen who isn’t leading a Weyr, Fiona becomes Weyrwoman of Telgar, where she galvanizes the people and attracts dragon riders and healers to join. The constant Thread falls cause rapid attrition of dragons and riders, and the search for a cure for the plague and the fight for survival become ever more desperate. Adding fascination is the book’s exploration of the possibilities of dragons going Between from one time to another just as they go almost instantly from place to place on the planet.

In the case of Anne McCaffrey’s Pern books, I just never give up!  The first few books her son Todd wrote were not up to Anne’s but I keep getting them and reading them because (much like Pandora) I just don’t want to leave!

In other books I know part of the problem is ME.  You see, Todd is “keeping the planet and dragons and weyrs” but letting go of Anne’s fabulous characters from Benden like Lessa and F’Lar and many others like Masterharper Robinton, and Jaxom and Ruth… well…what can I say ?  It’s damn hard!

So..  I got Todd McCaffrey’s latest book, and I guess some of the characters are finally sinking in and becoming characters I like. (but it’s taken a few books to do this)  Anyway.. by page 140 I was thinking, “wow! I think he’s finally getting it right!”, and I was really enjoying the book!

But, (and I know you knew the “but” was coming)..as it went on I found myself thinking things I’ve never thought while reading a book before!  Not that it was awful (it wasn’t!) but it distracted me I guess.  I would read that Fiona was in love with Harper Kindan but “mated” to another… and her mate was in love with another. (huh? male dream? one man two women sharing him??)  Then I noticed it was pushed in my face many times over the rest of the book.  Men sharing two women, a woman sharing two men… it brought down my feelings of the people of Pern.  I think it was meant to bring love to everyone and that everyone can love each other, but it was too much in my face.

Then he had the dragons letting others ride them without the one who impressed them.  Again, under circumstances it was ok … but it was being done over and over with too many dragons.  He was changing too many things in one book.

Needless to say the book that began so good and had so much potential still wound up disappointing me.  Everything that he “changed” he repeatedly said it over and over and pushed it in my face… it was overkill.

However, things ended on a high note for me… it seems the next book due out next year will be a collaboration with his mother Anne McCaffrey!  I hope she can put him back on the right track!  Changes are needed when someone else takes over, but then again some things really need to stay the same.

If you are a Pern fan you should read this book… if for no other reason than to be able to know what’s going on when next years book gets released.

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The Odd Couple

I keep saying I’m not going to take more pictures of the same birds all the time… and then I do it anyway…today when I looked outside, there was the big Blue Heron right in front of my apartment..

Later when I went out to feed the Moorhens I saw the Heron again.. but he was tired and resting his legs …and..  umm… he had a guest with him..     (Woody!)  Now THIS is and Odd Couple!

…here’s a closer shot of them individually. (He has  his knees bent)

I think they were so hot they didn’t even care that I was sneaking up on them to get the photo’s, no one moved a feather!

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I will apologize up front for so many pictures… I doubted they would come out as I tried to snap pictures with one hand and feed the Moorhens at the same time.  But since yesterday when Papa Moorhen proved to me that he really REALLY trusts me I had to try to capture it!

Here’s what I got… Papa climbs on my knee to get his bread!

the other “red nose” is Mama (below)

Two teenagers waiting. (each photo was a different time Papa came on my leg) I only have to coax him a little the first time.

Those are some big feet!

I love this next one: that’s Mama in the back squawking at Papa to hurry up with the food! lol

Papa sure put a smile on my face by constantly climbing on my leg!

I’m sorry no pictures have the smaller babies in the background.. just the teenagers, mom and a few Ibis… oh, and before I went in the apartment the Loch Ness Monster swam by… otherwise known as the Anhinga !

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When a Heron decides it’s time for a bath…

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The Thief

The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Greenwillow Books (December 27, 2005)
ISBN-10: 0060824972

From School Library Journal

Grade 6 Up?Things are not what they seem in this story of wit, adventure, and philosophy. Gen, an accomplished thief incarcerated for stealing the king’s seal, is dragged from his cell by the king’s magus, who is on a quest. The prize is Hamiathes’s Gift, said to be a creation of the gods that confers the right of rule on the wearer. During the quest, the magus and Gen take turns telling the youngest member of their party myths about the Eddisian god of thieves. Turner does a phenomenal job of creating real people to range through her well-plotted, evenly paced story. No one is entirely evil or completely perfect. Gen is totally human in his lack of discipline, seeming lack of heroism, and need for sleep and food. The magus makes the transition from smug, superior scholar to decent guy in a believable fashion. Turner also does a neat job of puncturing lots of little prejudices. There are many deft lessons in this story. As absorbing as it is, the best part lies in the surprise ending. Though it is foreshadowed throughout, it is not obvious?its impact is more like morning sunlight than a lightning bolt. This book is sure to be a hot item with adventure and fantasy lovers, and YAs who like snide, quick-tempered, softhearted heroes will love Gen.?

What a surprise this book is.   .. and what a very good writer the author is!

I realize this book was read by many quite some time ago and I’ve had it in my tbr pile for a long time.  Wanting something short to read I picked this book out and wondered why I left it there so long. I was to find out at the very end that there are 2 more books out following this one, (which is most likely the reason I didn’t read it right away) but as much as I enjoyed this book I don’t think I will be getting them.  I know, strange thing to say, well.. I went and read the amazon review of the other two books and they get more into “war” and such and since this book concluded itself fairly well I think I will forgo the other.

Having said that I would still recommend this book!  I loved the main character of Gen.  There is just enough humor in him to carry the whole book.  I also liked the magus and the other characters that took the journey with Gen.. and the surprise twists at the end of the book!  I really did like the book and I think others will enjoy it too and would probably read the  two books that follow.

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Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy

(Illustrator: Tom Percival)

Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (April 3, 2007)
ISBN-10: 0061231150



From School Library Journal

When 12-year-old Stephanie’s eccentric Uncle Gordon dies, a mysterious man bundled in an overcoat, scarf, sunglasses, and a hat shows up at both the funeral and the reading of the will. This man, as it turns out, is Skulduggery Pleasant, a walking, talking skeleton who rescues Stephanie when she is attacked while alone in the house that she has just inherited. It seems that a particularly evil person named Serpine is trying to obtain a scepter that will allow him to rule the world. Stephanie is swept into a world of magic, secrets, power, and intrigue as she and Skulduggery try to keep one step ahead of Serpine and various other nefarious folk. Deadly hand-to-hand combat, nasty villains, magical derring-do, and traitorous allies will keep readers turning the pages, but it is the dynamic duo of Stephanie and Skulduggery who provide the real magic. The girl eagerly jumps into this new, dangerous, action-packed life, but she isn’t sure that she has the guts or the power to pull it off. Skulduggery Pleasant lives up to his name, performing amazing feats with such self-effacing drollness that readers will wish they had a similar skeletal friend. Give this one to fans of Eoin Colfer’s “Artemis Fowl” books (Hyperion) or to anyone who likes a dash of violence and danger served up with the magic.—

This was an enjoyable read.  It made it more pleasant by having a slightly larger print than most books and double spaced.  It is a quick read aimed at YA that like a little magic mixed in with an evil villain that needs to be exterminated in order to save the world.

I’m afraid I didn’t enjoy this as much as I could have had I not been coming off of reading the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society which was so good I didn’t want it to end!  When you come from reading a book you really, really liked (especially when you didn’t expect to like it THAT much!) it’s hard to wrap your head into whatever is the next book you pick up. But it is something I think young  people will enjoy.. and there are a number of Skulduggery Pleasant books out there!

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