Life Verse:

"...I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly." -- JESUS in John 10:10

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Quote of the Day -- 07/24/2014

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing – that's why we recommend it daily." – Zig Ziglar

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Mtn Creek Hike - Sat. 7/5/2014

Hike: Mountain Creek Park, AL, Saturday, 7/5/2014, 09:30-11:30CDT
Distance: 4 miles  Rating:  4.5/5  Difficulty:  Easy
Conditions:  Dry.  Light wind.  Hot & humid.  Met a young family leaving the trails as I was entering.  No other hikers.

Only one photo from the hike -- I was quite aggravated at myself when I realized I left the SD card in the reader rather than in my trail camera!  

Black-eyed Susans were in beautiful display (as evidenced in the cell phone picture) in the Pine Upland area.  The soothing sound of the wind rustling through the forest canopy accompanied the passerine choir throughout my hike.  This is perhaps the quietest, most peaceful, place that I routinely hike.  The trails are not long but it is a refreshing experience.

My companions today consisted of 1 cottontail rabbit, several squirrels, Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterflies, a ground wasp (i.e. Cow-killer), and numerous other insects.  Birds are always in abundance at this park and their combined chorus was as beautiful as ever.

It is easy for me to "be still" in this place of peace and solitude.  I hope you have a place too.

10 Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! -- Psalms 46:10 (NKJV)

Friday, July 04, 2014

Independence Day 2014 Hike

Hike: Portions of Red & Black Trails, Swayback Bridge TOLA, Wetumpka, AL, Sat. 7/4/2014, 09:30-12:30CDT
Distance: 8.7 miles  Rating: 5/5  Difficulty: Easy
Conditions: Mostly sunny.  Low 70s to upper 70s by end of hike.  Wind light.  Trails mostly dry.  Humidity lower than normal for this time of year.

Insects had the spotlight on this outing.  Dragonflies (my favorite insect) of green, blue, and black were my trail companions throughout most of the hike.  Blue Damselflies were present though not as prevalent as their cousins.  Several female Eastern Tiger Swallowtails (the dark version) graced the path.  (They almost never stay still long enough for a photo.)  Rounding out the roll call of insects today were June Bugs, wasps, hornets, gnats, and big black ants.

I met three special hikers on the trail -- all belonging to Canis lupus familiaris (dogs).  Brandi was a white Jack Russell terrier with a pink backpack!  She passed me a couple of times because she changed her mind and back-tracked once!  The other two (a beautiful black and tan German Shepherd and a brown mid sized mixed breed) were on-leash and well behaved.  Meeting these three made me miss hiking with Gracie.  

Mimosa perfume was a pleasant surprise along the shoreline portion of the hike.  Most of the Persian Silk Trees have passed their prime bloom time, I was not expecting this familiar and favorite scent.

Gray squirrels and chipmunks were busy doing what they do -- scampering around the forest floor.  A small otter was playing in the shallows of the big slough.  Countless small fish (bream and bass) can be seen in the bright morning sun as they hover near overhanging trees.  Usually the Blue Heron is here fishing, but I did not see him today.

Hikes are a time of worship and reflection for me and today was no different.  Two songs kept running through my mind... "We Believe" and "Write YOUR Story".

"Write YOUR Story"
They say
You're the King of everything
The One who taught the wind to sing
The Source of the rhythm my heart keeps beating
They say
You can give the blind their sight
And You can bring the dead to life
You can be the hope my soul's been seekin'
I wanna tell You now that I believe it
I wanna tell You now that I believe it
I do, that You can make me new, oh
I'm an empty page
I'm an open book
Write Your story on my heart
Come on and make Your mark
Author of my hope
Maker of the stars
Let me be Your work of art
Won't You write Your story on my heart
Write Your story, write Your story
Come on and write Your story, write Your story
Won't You write Your story on my heart

"We Believe"
In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only one foundation
We believe, we believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only one salvation
We believe, we believe

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He's given us new life
We believe in the crucifixion
We believe that He conquered death
We believe in the resurrection
And He's comin' back again, we believe
 -------12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, The people He has chosen as His own inheritance.
Psalms 33:12 (NKJV)

Happy Birthday America!