Paddling In The Moonlight

 

rachelle siegrist1
I see the moon . . . and the moon sees me

 

Wes and I took a short break from the studio and office this past week, to go camping for a couple of days.  It was nearly perfect weather, so we filled our time with kayaking, swimming, fishing, and hiking. We started off each day with an early morning paddle while fishing and just plain relaxing.  At one point I found this Mayfly floating upside down atop the water, so I gently picked it up and placed it upright on my kayak, where it rode for some time before I placed it onto a maple leaf at the water’s edge.  It was quite striking in appearance and I enjoyed getting to take a close look at it!

 

mayfly
A gorgeous Mayfly resting on my kayak

 

While only Wes caught fish, I had fun trying with my flyrod and got a kick out of watching the schools of minnows in the clear water below, tearing at my wee fly each time it came close to my kayak!

 

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Wes having fun while fishing

 

The Joe Pye Weeds were covered with numerous puffy pink blossoms, which the insects and a variety of butterflies were greatly enjoying!

 

joe pye weed photo
A hornet feasts atop a Joe Pye Weed

 

We also enjoyed a relaxing hike each day and delighted in seeing an assortment of mushrooms and fungi as we walked along.  While many were bright orange or yellow, growing in all shapes and sizes, there was one in particular that really stood out.  As we walked, we began smelling something that smelled dead and like it was decaying and rotting.  After searching for a carcass lying around, and finding nothing, we soon realized that this yucky, earthy stench was coming from a certain medium to large size mushroom.  From then on, each time that familiar stench filled the air, we knew right away what it was!

 

fungi of the smokies
Clavulinopsis fusiformis, commonly known as golden spindle Coral

 

While afternoons were filled with swimming, we took the kayaks out during the evenings.  One evening we decided to stay out and watch the sunset while fishing and relaxing, and were rewarded with a most spectacular sunset that only God could paint!

 

sunset photo rachelle siegrist
The start of the beautiful Pink clouds

 

As the setting sun dipped lower and lower, it bathed the sky above in a stunning array of pinks, which turned to salmon, oranges, and yellows, and was truly breathtaking to watch and see!

 

rachelle siegrist2
And the world turned pink!

 

The bright colors quickly faded, turning the world into a black and white movie, as the nearly full moon grew higher in the darkening sky.  I have always wanted to paddle in the full moonlight, and must admit it was as magical as I dreamed it would be!  Many times I stopped paddling and sat back in the kayak while watching the brightly reflected moonlight dance across the rippled surface of the water, and it proved to be quite mesmerizing indeed!

rachelle siegrist full moon photo

Back at home, it’s been very hot and dry this past week, so we’ve traded our daily walk for an hour of swimming and snorkeling at the river nearby.  The water is unbelievably clear right now, making us feel as if we’re snorkeling in a huge aquarium, and I think the fish are starting to recognize my bright pink mask, and don’t seem to mind me invading their watery world at all anymore.  We have such fun starting at the base of a cascade which thrusts us forward at a good rate of speed, thus making us feel as if we’re flying through the air as we go downstream!

rachelle siegrist

We were delighted to be invited to dear friend David’s home to enjoy a fish fry with him and some of his family.  We’ve always so enjoyed spending time with David’s sweet parents and other family members, so it was truly a wonderful evening filled with delicious food, lots of great stories and many laughs, and we’re looking forward to getting to spend time with them again in the near future!

 

wes siegrist
David frying fish while Wes watches

 

~ In The Studio ~

In the studio this week, we have both been having fun at the easels.  I just finished my painting of an adorable squirrel sitting atop its nest, which I noticed while visiting Homosassa Springs in Florida last fall.  I watched as she made several trips whilst carrying small branches and mouthfuls of leaves into her nest.  She had stopped for a wee break when we caught her in this cute pose.

 

cute squirrel painting
My “Home Sweet Home”

 

Wes finished his miniature painting of an immature White Ibis, which we also saw during the same trip to Florida, as it searched for tasty treats below the water, with its long, curved bill.

 

Working-The-Weeds_by_Wes_Siegrist1
Wes’ “Working The Weeds”

 

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Until Next Time . . . 

~ Rachelle

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