Life's Little Moments

By dbifulco

Tiny Surprise!

It was a scorcher of a day so I made short sorties outside to see what could be found in the garden.  I had my eyes on a Milkweed Tussock Moth Cat and was all set to go with that.  And then I spotted what looked like a little clump of dirt on the stem of my milkweed.  Putting the macro lens with Raynox150 lens attached didn't make the situation much clearer although I was able to faintly make out legs.  Then the task to try to photograph it even though I could barely see it.  Picture it... I'm sitting on the scorching hot pavers of the patio, one eye peeled for bears.  Camera mounted on monopod with Raynox attached, meaning a super short focal plane.  Sweat trickling down my back, and if I'm being totally honest, down my front and the side of my face too.  Trying to hold the plant steady with one hand while snapping the shot with the other.  Creative language.  Seven crappy shots...and this one!  

If you need some orientation, the eye is on the right side and that little fluff behind is decorative, as are all the bits and pieces on it's back.  .  It is less than 1/8 inch long. As best I can tell, it is the nymph form of Acanalonia bivittata.  As an adult, it will be a little larger and bright green and commonly called Two-striped Planthopper.  In all likelihood, gardeners won't like it although I never find that plant hoppers do much damage at all.  

When I went out early this morning to enjoy my tea on the deck before it got too hot, I was about 10 minutes into the zen when all hell broke loose.  Jax had spotted one of the yearling bears near the deck and was full of barking, growling and hackles with front feet on the railing of the deck.  Before I could even reach the airhorn, that bear was all the way back in the woods, running at full speed.  And Hubs was trying to drag us both in off the deck.  We were having none of it.  

Since it was so hot, I took Jax for an enrichment walk through PetSmart where he got to greet lots of people and two dogs.  One of the dogs was a young French Bulldog that literally jumped straight up into the air - Jax wasn't quite sure what to make of it.  I'm not even sure if he knew it was a dog at first.  But he was really a perfect gentleman.  He sat on command, even when he wanted nothing more than to jump on every person we saw.  I saw glimmers of the dog he will become and it made me feel very proud.  

My SIL has spent the day convalescing here.  She is able to get up and down the stairs although it's an awkward affair with her knee immobilized.  But she is not in any pain and I suspect she will recover fully and quickly.  She will be returning home tonight but will be off work for several weeks. 

Mom is still moving slow but mostly just dealing with fatigue now.  Due to test again today or tomorrow I think.  

My thoughts have been with Hillyblips today.  You may have seen that her father passed yesterday - a sad time for the whole family.  

Dark today with salted caramel.  And thanks to Osuzanna for hosting TinyTuesday this month.


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