Saturday, 13 September 2014

Lindbergh and Leesburg

Our plan for today was a shopping trip to the Outlet Mall at Leesburg.

Firstly though we visited the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum - Steven F. Uzdar-Hazy Center.

Andrea and Steve found the local guide to be quite knowledgeable, particularly as far as the projects with connections to Bristol were concerned...

The star attraction as ever was the Space Shuttle Discovery..

(Although we admired the Lindbergh exhibit, I didn't actually take any pictures of it).

Friday, 12 September 2014

Pavement 'Art'

This evening we went into Reston for dinner at Passionfish, where we enjoyed sushi starters..

..which were very good, as were the main course fish dishes.

On leaving the restaurant we walked back to the car via a pedestrian street where, in front of the flower shop, there was a chalk pavement picture of sunflowers.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Young birds and new birds

This young male Cardinal bird has been visiting the garden regularly for a while now, with one or both of his parents.

Although he is now adult sized and is rapidly developing his full adult plumage, he is still quite happy to be fed if his parents will oblige!

This evening we had a new visitor, a small thrush.

According to our bird book he is a Grey-Cheeked Thrush, although there are other quite similar thrushes so it is difficult to be sure.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014


At last!  A hummingbird picture that I am happy with - though it could be sharper.

Today, although I only captured this one, we were visited by several different hummingbirds - and on one occasion several at once.

They are intriguing to watch but their visits are frustratingly brief!

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Birds on the Outer Banks

A quiet day at home catching up with chores and so here are a few more of David's pictures from the Outer Banks.

On our second evening we were walking on the beach at sunset.   Although the real colour was in the sky over the inland water, some colour was reflected in the sky over the beach, pier and sea.

There were a number of shorebirds that we watched each day and tried to identify.  Since arriving home and consulting our book, this bird appears to be a Willet, rather than a Sandpiper as we had thought.

The little bird below,  which spent much energy running into the very shallow water to find morsels of food on the incoming waves, then running away again, reminded us of the Turnstones that we have seen in Padstow and St Ives.  The book suggests that it is a Sanderling.

This bird, which we saw in a car park at the Bonner Bridge, remains a mystery.

We wanted it to be a road-runner, but we are not sure that it is..

The Brown Pelicans, sometimes in quite large flocks, were the most fascinating to watch.

Monday, 8 September 2014

The Art of Home Baking?

There is nothing, as we know, quite like a home-baked cake.

Except of course when you use these extraordinary packet cake mixes which are available at 'Giant' our local supermarket.

My particular favourites (though based on the packets, not having tried them) are these..

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Leaving the Outer Banks

We loved our time on the Outer Banks but it was time to leave this morning to come home .

After a night of thunderstorms and heavy rain the weather was calm and dry this morning.

We stopped off on the way home at Bonner Bridge which joins the Outer Banks to the mainland, over the Oregon Inlet.  It is an impressive bridge, just skimming the water except in one place where the arches are higher to allow for larger ships to pass through.

There were a number of fisherman in the water but we weren't entirely sure what they were hoping to catch!

A little further on we visited the memorial to the Wright Brothers at Kill Devil Hill, near Nag's Head and saw the site where they achieved their first powered flight in 1903.