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Saturday, January 2, 2010

The Vacation to Florida Photos (Finally!).....Part ONE

We picked up our computer yesterday and I was a busy little bee downloading all of my vacation photos into my EXTERNAL drive (yep, this old dog CAN learn new tricks) and now I can show you the long-awaited vacation photos of our trip to Florida
that we took before Christmas.

For those of you that don't know, we live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (we residents are known as YOOPERS..get it? from the U.P.).
So to get to Florida, we have to travel from mid U.P. going west and then south to get to the mighty Mackinac Bridge and cross where the Great Lakes meet
to get into the Lower Peninsula of Michigan.
So off we started.

Before we got 100 miles from home, we were driving down the highway and saw a HUGE bird up in a tree.
We looked at each other, and my husband (knowing me WELL)
"So I am going to have to turn the car around now, aren't I?"

God, I love that man.

And we did.

So I could get THIS picture!:

He was just hangin' around the highway, watching traffic.

My husband waited in the nice, heated car while I braved wind and cold

to get more photos of him:

Gosh, he was gorgeous.
It is my theory that I wasn't the ONLY photographer that he has been patient with.
He didn't seem skiddish at all and just sat there and posed.
Of course I took many more photos of him other than the ones I am showing you today.
But here is one more (because I just can't help myself):
And just ONE close-up.
Because when you are THIS handsome, you deserve a closeup:

My husband was afraid I was going to be so distracted I would step out in the middle of the highway and get hit by a semi. So he was glad when I finally returned to the car and then I begged him to turn up the heater on the car because I don't think I could feel my fingers anymore.

About two hours later, we were in the south part of the U.P. and cruising along US 2, which parallels beautiful Lake Michigan:

As you can see, when we left on our trip, the U.P. did not have any snow yet.

Here is another shot of Lake Michigan:

As you drive along the Lake, you wait for a glimpse of the huge Mackinac Bridge.

I wanted to get out and get a picture of when you first see the bridge from the highway, but my husband wanted to keep on rolling (since the eagle photo shoot put us behind schedule), so since I had to travel with him for the next two weeks, I figured I better let him have that one, so everybody in the car would continue to be happy. :=}

So, when we got to the bridge, I took this shot through the car window:

Continuing on the bridge:

Almost half way!:

I loved this dark exposure of being almost under the arch with the dark, cloudy skies:

And the rest of the day, we made it all the way through lower Michigan and stopped for the night about 20 miles from the Michigan/Ohio border.

Since we didn't see anything thrilling all the way through Ohio, I didn't take any photos there....
tomorrow I will show you some shots from Kentucky and Georgia....
and then after that I will post all the Florida photographs.

I am so happy that I have my computer back, safe and sound and that they found all of my old photographs. I have them stored safely on my external hard drive, so we should be good to go now.
Remember everybody:
think about submitting a photo to the photo contest by Jan. 31st...this month's theme is "Something Rusty"......


Brian Miller said...

i wonder how many posts it will take to get to hubs is a nice guys for the stops along the way. smiles. love the bridge against that sky! remarkable pics!

DJan said...

What a gorgeous regal raptor your eagle is. Very stunning. Your comments on my blog touched my heart, and I hope you will write about it too. Love and hugs!

Wanda..... said...

I understand your happiness over these photos. My favorite is
"under the arch with the dark, cloudy skies", although the Eagle sure was majestic and grand!
Have a good year Joan!

Unknown said...

The eagle photos are especially amazing!!!

Lynn Kellan said...

Joan, your Eagle is magnificent! Awesome shot!!

The Retired One said...

Brian: I know...a whole post on JUST Michigan? ha Actually, I took very few other pictures until we hit you will probably have only one or two more posts before we get to the tropical ones. :-}

DJan: I doubt if I will ever blog about things I am just now pondering about my childhood..I think I need to process some things I have conveniently buried in private. I have had some talks with my brother to help sort out some things to get his perspective on how he remembers them too, which has helped. I cannot believe the pain you endured in your life. My mere struggles are nothing in comparison.

Wanda: Thanks! I loved that eagle and was happy they turned out so well. Funny, it turned out to be one of the highlights of our trip and it was within 100 miles of home.

Eva: Thanks. I love not only seeing an eagle in person, but photographing them too. We have some that live on our lake and it is such fun going out in our boat to see if we can find them on a nice summer day, too. But I rarely see any in winter, especially so close to a highway.

Lynn: thanks so much! I was thrilled to see him and to be able to catch a few shots of him so close!

RNSANE said...

Great photos of the beginning of your trip and I do think that majestic eagle was well worth making the turn around! Your husband has to agree. The bridge photos are nice but I still think our two bridges are supreme - the Golden Gate and the Oakland Bay Bridge. I'm looking forward to your entire trip!!

L. D. said...

I bet that bald eagle didn't know he was so special. Great shots of a wonderful bird. We are -17 degrees right now so any state south of here will feel warmer for me. I bet you have some fabulous photos of Florida.

Lesley said...

I love the fact that you just put your camera away for the entire state of Ohio! No offense to the Ohioans out there, I know parts of your state are beautiful. But that drive down I-75 from Detroit to Cincinnati ... snooze-ville all the way.

rainfield61 said...

Big beautiful bird. I am thrilled to see him as well.

Jeanette said...

Great pictures! I love that drive on Hwy. 2 and the view of Lake Michigan along the way. So awesoome and I took a ton of pictures when we were there last summer. We did not see any eagles though, darn it!

dreamwalker said...

Very handsome eagle. Now I'm off to see if I can find photos of something rusty...
Happy New Year!

Lucy said...

What a catch with the Bald Eagle. They hunt over our house, but I can never get close enough to catch one with my camera.

wendyytb said...

Wonderful picture! Thanks for sharing!

Insanitykim said...

Oh, how I miss seeing Bald Eagles!

Bridge pix are so fun to play with too...those clouds are gorgeous!

Yay! The computer is fixed! External hard drives are simply required for gals like us! :)

Anonymous said...

Well, your photos are ALMOST making me miss da U.P. I sure wish I wasn't on dial up down here! I don't know what I'm gonna do when we get to Texas!!! I want to see all your photos but I'm limited on time on line!!! I'll keep trying to keep caught up with ya! Wonderful shots and give hubby a hug for being a trooper!

Betsy Banks Adams said...

Glad you got your computer back--with a new external hard drive.... Yeah!!!! AND--I'm anxious to see all of your trip pictures. That Eagle gave you a great way to BEGIN the trip... I think he was saying to you: "Drive carefully and hurry home soon."

Love that bridge also. There's a similar one in Texas near where I used to live. Beautiful!!!!

Have a great weekend, Joan. We're experiencing some of YOUR weather down here today. It was about 10 degrees early this morning... Yipes!!!


Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma said...

Congrats on getting your computer going again, using the external drive, and the gorgeous eagle photos!

Looking forward to more from your trip, at long last.

Bernie said...

So happy for you and for us, love the majestic eagle and of course the dark one on the bridge is another favorite....oh I love them all and I think your hubby is wonderful and patient with you as I am sure you are with him.....Hugs

The Retired One said...

RNSane: I would love to see the Golden Gate and take some photos of it someday!

L.D.: Wow, you guys got colder than us today! We only had about -3 when we woke up, but my sister-in-law in Duluth had -20 all day today and that is BEFORE the windchill factor, YIKES!

Lesley: Yes, for quite a few states,I put my camera away..only took about 6 more shots on the way down to Florida. ha I-75 is pretty boring for at least 1/2 the trip down.

Rainfield: you know, we have them on our lake, but it is still a thrill to see them, every single time.

Jeanette: yes, US 2 is very pretty along Lake Michigan, but I still think Lake Superior is prettier with all its rugged rocks shorelines.

Dreamwalker: Hope you find something rusty that is fabulous! Can't wait to see everybody's photos!

Lucy and Dick: I just bet if you are patient,you will catch one on camera too.

Wendytb: you are welcome! I was so happy he stayed so still and let me get several shots of him!

Insanity Kim: Yes, it was my saving grace!

Cathy: Yes, it will be great when you have unlimited access to faster internet..I am sure you still have a load of pictures to share with us too!

Betsy: Wow, that must seem really cold to you where you live! We had -3F this morning and it has remained in the teens all day...but better than Duluth, where they have -20F. Yikes!

Blissed Out: I am so relieved, I can't even express how much..I was so worried about my old photos and being able to post the new ones. Whew!

Bernie: I am so happy to be getting back to normal with all of this computer business too! I will be posting pictures of the trip for quite a few stay tuned!

Rick (Ratty) said...

I can picture posters made of your eagle pictures. They are so great. The eagle is so confident because he knows he is a king.

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

The eagle pictures are just amazing!
Glad you were able to get all your pictures back!

Joanna Jenkins said...

So glad you got your computer back.

The bald eagle was worth the wait. It takes my breath away!

Happy New Year!

The Retired One said...

Ratty: I just can't stop taking photos of eagles. My husband laughs at me because we have them on our lake and I get just as excited as the first time I photographed one whenever I see one again. They are just so majestic!

Catherine: AMEN! Thanks for all the well wishes when I was fretting over my computer problems..all those comments really helped me through it.

Joanna: Awww. What a sweet thing to say! Thanks!

Kearsie said...

Gosh I forgot how beautiful bald eagles are. And those bridge pics are amazing! I'm so glad your computer is fixed!

Sara said...

I love the dark clouds under the arches so beautiful!

The Retired One said...

Kearsie: Thanks, honey. I loved the eagle too...I just can't help taking photos of them when I see them.

Sara: I loved that too. Sometimes when the weather is bad out, you can get the best shots for "mood" in photographs.

Jientje said...

Loved both the eagle and the bridge pictures. The bridge reminded me of the Normandy bridge I photographed almost two years ago. I did the same thing, snapped them from the car!

The Retired One said...

Jientje: Thanks so much! I love bridges but there are some that you are not allowed to get out of your car to take pictures or you get arrested! So I guess for now, we have to be satisfied to just get them out of our car windows. :=}

SquirrelQueen said...

The eagle is a very handsome fellow. My hubby also gets worried sometimes that I might get so caught up in what I am photographing I might step into traffic.....just save the camera honey!

Love the bridges.

The Retired One said...

SquirrelQueen: I love all eagles and always get excited when I see them and HAVE to try and photo them. I agree, if I get hit in traffic, save MY CAMERA! haha

grannyann said...

What absolutely great pics. I am waiting for your snow pics as they are my favorite.

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I retired in June 2008 and started my blog in November 2008. I worked at several jobs as a Registered Nurse prior to retirement. I LOVE being retired! Blogging has offered me a whole new venue to start writing again and to share new hobbies such as gardening, birdwatching and sharing my nature photography. If you like my blog, PLEASE click on "follow this blog". Having a lot of followers reading my blog gives me incentive to continue to do photography and to continue to write. I also LOVE comments, so I encourage you to leave me a comment after you read my posts. Thanks everyone, for taking the time to read me!!

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