Tag Archives: Minnesota

Saturday Morning Reflections: on Butterflies, Birthdays, Blooms & Babies

Warning:  Long post.  But it’s mostly pictures, so it shouldn’t take too much time to get through.  😉

It’s a wonderfully rainy morning here!  Well, I think it’s wonderful.  I’m sure for some people a rainy Saturday is a real bummer, but I’m finding it the perfect time to sit and reflect…

I celebrated my birthday recently and thought I would share a lot few of the photos I snapped of the 3-day event.  Hey, 3 days is keeping it at a minimum – there’s been times over the years when my family’s birthday celebrations last an entire week.

I started it off at our local zoo.  But not to see the animals (although I would have enjoyed that too), I went to check out their new butterfly exhibit, and it did not disappoint.  It was so wonderful to see all of the lovely varieties of butterflies and to walk amidst them whilst surrounded by beautiful flowers.  I snapped oodles of pictures of them with my phone.

Forgive me for sharing so many, but they’re all just so beautiful, even with my phone camera…








A highlight for me was when this little beauty landed on my arm!


Another highlight was watching my sweet little granddaughter enjoy herself, she really loved it there too, and got so excited by all the butterflies fluttering around.  She may only be 6 months old, but she is very aware of her surroundings.


 I bring her outside to my garden every day when she’s home when weather permits and she loves plants, she’s completely mesmerized by them actually.  I see a future fellow nature lover in this precious little human.  ❤

And I greatly appreciate these humans for coming along too.  Although it was cloudy that day, it was very humid out and it got mighty hot inside that butterfly house, but they were such troopers.


 Gosh, I love them, aren’t they adorable?  They’re my favorites!  ❤


The following day I went on a little road trip with my mom and a friend of mine for a picnic by some falls.  Our picnic was very nice, but the falls were a bit of a disappointment.  Plus, we had to hike a great distance to get to the falls, and for me with my arthritic knees, my friend with her broken ankle, and my nearly 80 year old mom who also has limited mobility, it proved to be quite a strain for all of us.  But with a name like “Hidden Falls” what else did we expect?  😉

The pathway to the falls was lovely even despite our pain…



Mmm so green…


I love trees…


Oh, and we heard an owl along the way!

The falls themselves were mediocre, and with them being near a campground, they were completely overrun with people, so it wasn’t the peaceful experience I was hoping for.  But even so, being near water is always a win, and we did our best to enjoy ourselves despite all the people.

Here are a couple of shots I managed to capture without any people in them…



My friend had less luck getting photos without any people in them… this weird lady totally got in the way of this shot.  😉


That evening that same friend and I went to a nearby State Park to attend a meteor shower party to watch the Perseids.  That also ended up being a bit of a disappointment.  The “party” only went until 10pm and it’s not even dark enough out yet at that time to see anything, the best time for viewing is well after midnight.

 They had a campfire and a story teller sharing some stories from Greek mythology about how the Perseids came into being.  I love that sort of thing and tried really hard to get into the spirit of it all, but unfortunately it was just really lame.  His gestures were so severely overly exaggerated, and they were never at the appropriate times during the story.  But I gotta give the guy credit for his effort.  They also had a student from the University of Minnesota who gave a talk about the real source of the Perseids, but he was so nervous that he couldn’t get his words out and barely made any sense, I felt sorry him.

However, one highlight was that I got an amazing up close look at my moon through a very powerful telescope they had there, and it was sooo beautiful!  I LOVE the moon!  ❤

Another “high”light was when my friend found a bag of weed in the parking lot…


I’m sure whoever dropped it was pretty bummed out to have lost their little stash, but it’s not like we could have turned it in to the lost and found.  Don’t worry, we didn’t smoke it… who knows where it’s been?  😉

We stopped by my sister’s place on the way home with the intention of watching the meteor shower from her deck, but just as we got all set up, the clouds started rolling in.  I did manage to see one shooting star though, so it wasn’t a complete loss.   And besides… seeing only one makes it that much more special anyways.


The following day was my actual birthday, and I decided to spend part of it at a local rose garden like I have in the past.  It smelled absolutely amazing there!  It was another hot summer day though, so we were all melting, but once again everyone rallied so I could do something that I enjoy on my birthday.

Here are a few pictures I snapped of the roses while I was there…




And it’s not only roses they have there.  They have little sections of plantings that are color themed.  This isn’t the greatest shot of it, but I loved this planting made up of all purples.  Purple is my favorite color…


What I loved the most though, was having all my favorite people there with me.  I’m so truly grateful for my family and for good friends.  ❤

And my whole birthday was made all that much more special having this new little precious one in my life now…


She is such a joy to me!

And a great help…. she also helped me pick out what to order at the restaurant that evening…


Hmm… pasta or… pasta?  Definitely pasta!  🙂

And helped me blow out the candles on my cake…


Yes… my cake does say “Happy Birthday Poop”


Well, I think I’ve probably taken up enough of your time, thank you for letting me share this with all of you.


Oh wait, one more thing… I also got these freaking awesome barefoot sandals as a birthday gift from my daughter…


Pay no attention to the worn off nail polish on my toes – these feet have been mighty busy lately


Have a wonderful weekend, my friends.  Hope you have some time to put your feet up and reflect on all that is good and lovely in your world…



✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1




Wordless Wednesday



Wishing you all a refreshing Wednesday…



✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Silent Sunday




✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

First Snow


First snow

falls fresh

embellishing evergreens


© Julie Rehnelt 2015



Thanksgiving morning brought our first snowfall here in Minnesota, it was a lovely sight to awake to, filling me with gratitude for nature’s simple pleasures and breathtaking beauty.  And it made the holiday feel all that much more festive.  🙂


Wishing you a bit of freshness, festivity and beauty today too…



✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Weekly Photo Challenge: Change


Autumn is happening!

I got my first glimpses of the autumn colors here in my area while out on a bike ride yesterday and thought this would fit perfectly for this week’s theme…




I can’t even tell you how delicious autumn colors are to me, such a beautiful feast for the eyes!  Autumn is one change I will always welcome in coming.


May your day be filled with the delicious kinds of changes too, and with…



✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1


WPC: Change

Seaside Serenade


Refreshing winds blow across a liquid expanse of blue

invigorating my senses

Air and water coalesce in a magnificent duet

serenading my soul

as the waves caress the shore


© Julie Rehnelt 2015





✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1

Farewell Winter


As the earth basks under a warm sun, winter grasses sway gently on a light breeze, waving farewell to cold white snow, and welcome to brisk blue waters

in joyous anticipation of spring.


© Julie Rehnelt 2015



Gosh, just lovely, lovely weather we’re having here, it’s been sooo wonderful!  With our warmer temps and bright sunshine, it really gives the sense that spring is coming soon!  Although it will still be quite some time yet before things begin to grow again, we’re definitely thawing out here!  😀

I was out enjoying the beautiful weather with my sister the other day and snapped a few photos during our adventures along Lake Como and the surrounding area.


This was my favorite one…


Although it’s not the best composition, I just think that bright blue sky with the white snow melting, and the beautiful bark of that birch tree with the green pine in the background is simply gorgeous.   It truly was just such a lovely day. ❤


Such a nice day in fact, that I couldn’t believe it when I saw there was an ice fishing house still out on the lake, along with some guy out there pulling his sled around on that clearly evident melting ice…


Crazy guy!

And this is no small lake, look at how far out there he was…


You can’t even see him!  I suppose he may have figured that since the ice was still supporting an ice house, it would be safe enough for him to be out there, but you wouldn’t catch me out there!  Hopefully he made out alright, we didn’t stick around long enough to find out.


As we continued on in our adventures, we came across this bridge…


I don’t usually take photos of structures, but I thought it was kinda pretty, so I took a photo of it.  I also took it because this bridge had an eerie feel to it and my sister, my daughter, and I have a private joke about seeing things as we’re out and about together and saying “I bet that’s haunted,” so I snapped a photo of it to show to my daughter because she wasn’t with us.  Then I tried to edit it to make it look more haunted, but I don’t really know what I’m doing, so think I failed…


But it was fun experimenting.  I don’t usually do much editing to my photos, I like leaving them in their natural state, it feels more authentic to me.  But sometimes I see the things other people do with editing and it looks kinda cool, so I may need to get myself more acquainted with photo editing at some point and see what I can come up with myself.

Not that I’ll have the time to do so right now as spring is rolling around – I heard we may hit near 70 degrees on Thursday!  So yeah… pretty sure I’ll be outside and not dinging around with trying to edit photos.  😉

Anyway, that’s all for now.  Hope the weather is nice where you are, and that you have fun things to ding around with.  I plan to ding around with getting my patio furniture and my bicycle out of storage.  Farewell winter!



✿~Peace & Love~✿

Peace and Love 1