Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.



For months I’ve been watcing a Facebook page filled with wonderful professional and amature photographs of Michigan birds and wildlife. Lots of them have been taken at Kensington, my favorite park, and each time I see something amazing that was shot there I vow to get myself out the door.

The sun was up by the time I got out to the park, but the fog off the lake was still hanging around.

But every morning this week when I’ve considered heading out, I’ve yawned and rolled back over to sleep a couple more hours.

The lighting gave everything a vintage look.

Friday the weather guy said that next week it will be colder and rainier and maybe even snowier than the wonderful weather we’ve been enjoying. I figured if I was going to get going I better get going.

So I did.

Reflections were nice along the shore.

Now my problem is that I have over 300 photos taken on my 3.5 mile walk through the woods. I saw so many different things, any one set of photos could be a blog post. Should I try to share it all with you? Or just a tiny bit? Maybe it will turn into multiple blogs.

Guess we won’t know until I start posting. I will say that you might want to click on the images, because there’s a whole lot of detail you don’t want to miss, especially if you’re reading this on your phone.

If I hadn’t made the choice to get off the sofa I would have missed the golden light that filled my first stop at the park. I stayed there for several minutes, then drove over to the nature trails.

The usual parking lot attendants were apparently off duty, hanging out down near a pond.

When I arrived there the parking lot was half full and I knew I was later than I like to be. I considered heading out in my typical direction, but decided at the last minute to focus on the trails at the back of the park. So I made the choice to turn right instead of left, and almost instantly noticed a whole lot of photographers, complete with very expensive gear, pointing their cameras up.

It was a pretty day to be out with a camera.

When you come across a gagle of photographers it’s best to look where they’re looking. So I did. And this is what I saw first:

A female red tailed hawk, enjoying the morning sun.

I didn’t know what it was for sure, but I knew it was really big and beautiful. Most of the photographers were frustrated because the branches of the tree were hiding her face. I just climbed over a bench and a fence near the nature center to get a different angle.

Then someone said there was another one around the next bend in the trail. Over there were even more photographers, all pointing their huge lenses at a very sleepy, obviously well fed male.

He and his tree were both really beautiful against the blue sky.

I took plenty of pictures, thrilled to be there, in the right place at the right time for once.

He watched the people below him and seemed amused.

I just about skipped back to check on the female, getting a shot from behind that was OK, but not as interesting as this shot from below her.

She’s all puffed up against the chill.

And then she tucked her head under her wing for a quick nap.

Not concerned by all of us at all.

So much excitement and I hadn’t even started my walk yet! So I reluctantly left the big birds and headed out toward the back of the park.

The light was so pretty that morning as the fog burned off.

And almost immediately ran into the merry band of turkeys.

This was the first one I saw. There were probably 10 more wandering in the trees near the trail.

I kept taking pictures because they were so pretty. They weren’t paying much attention to me, and there was a young family complete with kids running around that was approaching from my left. I wanted to get my pictures taken before they arrived.

Look at the difference in coloring between these two!

The family was coming and I wondered if they realized these big birds can be pretty assertive if they figure out you have food.

Isn’t he stunning?

I figured I’d move on before they figured out I had seed in my pocket.

I thought you might want to see these colors up close.

I turned right to go up a path that would connect me with the trail in the back, leaving the birds behind. I was concentrated on this cute squirrel…

Hey lady! Quick, look behind you!

…when I hear multiple pairs of feet rushing toward me.

Hey!!!! Wait for us!!!

Apparently they had figured out the lunch lady was leaving. It was sort of intimidating to have they rush me like that, so I threw two handfuls of seed as far as I could away from me, and race walked (casually of course) to the next corner and turned into the woods. Luckily brush blocked me from their view and I got away.

So what do you think I found in the woods? I guess you’ll have to wait, because this is long enough already. And there’s so much more to see.

Stay tuned.

What? How does this relate to the woods??

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

39 thoughts on “Choices

  1. Oh, Dawn….that last photo! Are these the guys who watched you reach into your pocket for food once before? What a riot! The turkeys are pretty, but the golden lighting on that squirrel is beautiful. Can’t wait for more of your adventures in the woods.
    Katie is OK with this??


  2. Oh Dawn! How beautiful! Such wonderful photos! Thank you for posting them. So glad you made it out from under the cozy covers that morning.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You had me with photo #1! And then again with photo #2! etc! I enlarged the already enlarged photo of the turkey feathers … gosh those feathers look like ceramic tiles, and yes the colors are gorgeous. More please!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The morning light is awesome! I like the evening light also it turns everything golden. You got some great photos of the Turkeys! Fun stuff worth getting up for! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That was some walk! Eager to see more. My favorite was of the swans surrounded by the golden light. Such a magical photo.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh my goodness!! What beautiful photos and I’m waiting for more. Thanks for reminding to click on the photos as I’m always on my phone, and they are even better to view. And the colors are amazing of the turkeys! Oh the orange lighting gorgeous, all your photos are just WONDERFUL!! Can’t wait to hear about the ornament in the woods?? Fun, fun, fun!! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad you liked them. I think they look better on a laptop of desktop, so they can be big, but I get why everyone looks at them on their phone. And yes, the ornament in the woods…I’m sure that comes with a story…

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Fantastic outing and glorious results. I’d have been quite freaked out, too, being chased by a flock of large hungry turkeys!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So glad you ventured out. I am pretty sure if I lived in Michigan we would have some great outings together!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh for sure! I LOVE your backyard bird images. I’m thinking about how I can get outside to take more photos of mine. Almost all my backyard images are through the window. A couple weeks ago I did stand on the deck after I’d put food out. The feeders had been empty for a day because we’d been away and the birds were frantic enough they didn’t mind me being there. They didn’t even mind Katie wandering around on the deck. I tried to leave her in the house but she wasn’t having any of it. The woodpecker wouldn’t come down while we were out but of course the titmice and the chickadees had no issue. I’ve had a chickadee come down to my hand on a couple of occasions, both times when the feeder was empty and the only option was in my hand and they were hungry. They did a few fly-bys and then just gave it a shot. They were not at all sure of themselves, not like my birds out at the park, but I think it wouldn’t take much to bring them in regularly here at home if I want to. Thinking about the disadvantages for them if they learn I’m the feeding machine.


  9. I am so glad you were able to get out and about. It always makes us feel better to take lots of pictures of wildlife. Love the pics and the woods look amazing.


  10. You take amazing pictures. I love the coloration of the turkey plumage. Wish I could’ve seen them chase you!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Sometimes dragging yourself out of bed early is the hardest part of photography. You got some amazing things though!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • All week I was telling myself I’d go the next day, but you know that light is only the same once, and you can never recapture what you lost. If I hadn’t gone I’d have missed the hawks…and other things. But there would have been different beautiful things. There are always beautiful things at this park. Not mountain goat beautiful, but still really nice.


  12. So many beautiful photos here! I’m glad you made it out for the morning golden hour. The light is incredible. I love outings like this, when I come home with far too many photos. It means it was a good trip. Looking forward to seeing what else you found. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • It WAS a good trip even though I got a later start than I had intended. Still saw good stuff and if I’d been out there earlier I wouldn’t have seen the hawks. So that’s what I mean when I say choices….no matter what choice you make there will be something that wouldn’t have happened if you had chosen differently. Not necessarily good, not necessarily bad…just different.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh my gosh…I am so glad you got out of bed! Look at all the fabulous captures! Love every single one of them. Bravo!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Not sure I’d want a flock of turkeys chasing me but it looks like you had a amazing walk. Hard to find places for us to go now as most of the woodland parks belong to the National Capital Commission, where not only I can’t take all three dogs but now I can’t take any of them to many of the trails. Since after 30 Nov, we usually have snow and once they start grooming trails for skiers the dogs are not allowed.


    • Well I have to say I did have a few scared moments….there were so many of them and they’re pretty big. And assertive. I’m glad I had some seed in my pocket to distract them. I’m thinking now, if I hadn’t I wonder what they would have done. Hmmmmm… I think it would be hard to walk 3 dogs! Katie is enough for me though most of the time I think it would be fun to have 2. We have a favorite park here too that is groomed for skiing and the best parts of the park aren’t walkable once we get snow. Still, we get to enjoy it all spring, summer and fall so I guess I can handle not tromping all over their trails for winter. I used to cross country ski myself, many many years ago and I know it’s better not to have people messing up the groomed trail.


  15. Funny we both posted about hawks! They must be especially active at this time of year. And I’m amazed you’ve been able to roll over and catch a few more hours of sleep. I guess Daddy got Princess duty, right?? Beautiful colors, gorgeous photos!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I love your photographs of the beautiful, colorful turkeys! And the one you got of the hawk with the branches framing the face is perfect. Good choices!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Amazing photos, and the colors on those turkeys are stunning!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aren’t they amazing? I’ve noticed it before on turkeys, the colors are soooooo beautiful. If you painted them no one would think they are realistic! I was hoping one of them would spread out his tail feathers but I guess they were too busy harassing the tourists.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. So glad you took the walk and then shared it with us! I laughed at the phrase “merry band of turkeys”. Then, I laughed again when I saw that the merry band turned, …not so merry? lol!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Pingback: Into the woods we go | Change Is Hard

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