Sept. 26, 2014

The other day my daughter noticed  this Praying Mantis in my Zinnia  garden  – not a sight that I’ve seen before, I’m sure due to their great camouflage.   It was fascinating because it  had captured a big bee and was trying to eat it.  Except the bee was still alive!   In my curiosity about this critter, I discovered  they can turn their head a full 180 degrees and the female sometimes will cannibalize her mate. They mostly eat insects ( alive)  although have been known to  also eat small frogs, birds, snakes and rodents.  The females  lay hundreds of eggs in a small case, and nymphs hatch looking much like tiny versions of their parents.  Is your skin crawling yet????



INDIANAPOLIS WEEKEND – Day 2 – The Children’s Museum

indy childrens museum

The outside of Indy’s Children Museum

Our 2nd day was spent at the Children’s Museum, even though we didn’t have any children with us. What a SUPER place for kids of any age!  Our major reason for going was because the Museum has 8 of  China’s Terra Cotta Warriors on display.  But we also enjoyed the rest of the Museum as well. There was a train,  doll house, vintage toy and  ship wreck display  plus  a large display on what’s it’s like to live in China.  There was even a  glass tower and ceiling by Chihuly and lots, lots more to see !

Two great places to eat in Indy  that we discovered was the Mellow Mushroom, a casual pizza place, and Divvy’s, a tad fancier  but not stuffy,  with great food served in tapas style.

Indy was a fun mini vacation spot!


This is the inside of the museum where the dinosaur is looking in – very clever!


One of China’s Terra Cotta Warriors and his horse. ( There were 8 on display ). Experts believe there are 8000 soldiers, 130 chariots and 670 horses ( plus many more smaller artifacts) in the 5 acre tomb of China’s 1st emperor. They believe it took 700,000 laborers 40 years to create this tomb that would protect the emperor in his after life.


Originally it is thought that the Warriors were all painted bright colors like this example.


The warriors are life size and restored wonderfully.


This is Reuben Well, the 35 foot, 55 ton steam engine that conquered the railroad’s steepest grade in the US in the 1890’s.

vintage toy display

Vintage toy exhibit

43 ft 18000 lbs

Chihuly glass tower is made from 3200 pieces of blown glass , is 43 feet tall and weighs 8000 pounds and is beautiful !.


Chihuly glass ceiling is also beautiful and you can sit below it on a revolving circular bench to comfortably lean back and gaze above you to enjoy and study all of the shapes and colors .

Thanks for traveling with me!



Loved the symmetry of this passageway at the IMA.

Next stop after the Zoo  was the Indianapolis Museum of Art, or IMA as it is commonly referred to.    We only saw about half of it before it closed but  what we did see, we loved.   Besides the  variety of art  pieces, the setting  is  a beautiful building that  sits on about 100 acres with a lake and woods and a path of outdoor sculpture pieces.   We strolled for a bit outside  and enjoyed the serene surrounding and interesting and funny  sculptures.


Cute little angel although I’m sure of the condition of the duck….


Beautiful painting by Impressionist Frederick Carl Frieseke called “Afternoon-Yellow Room”

american bowl

America Cut Glass Bowl – my Mom would have loved this!!


Not the best photo but I had to include this anyway. If you look close ( or enlarge the photo by clicking on it) this glass floor is being held up by millions of very small clay people. The view on the top is the millions of hands supporting the glass. You have to appreciate the imagination of this artist!

funky bones IMA

Outside sculpture ” Funky Bones”


interesting “live” art seen in the sculpture gardens…


black capped  lories

Black Capped Lorie

August, 2014

Recently my daughter and I spent a weekend  in Indianapolis, Indiana.   Indy was a delightful city with lots to see  although  we  barely scratched the surface.   We started  with  the Zoo.   Small, easy to navigate and  the animals shows are included in the price of admission.  We  watched  the dog show , with  all of the stars  being rescues – very impressive and proof that you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Being a bird watcher, I have to say  the Bird Aviary was my favorite.  I enjoyed  observing  the beautiful and unusual birds close up.  There was even an option to feed some, as food being a handy magnet to get really close.

The Zoo also has a Botanical Gardens of sorts on the grounds and included in the same admission price. The different gardens were set up in separate sections and all enjoyable and peaceful.

rainbow lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeet

superb starling

Superb Starling

taveta golden weaver

Taveta Golden Weaver


This is the Weavers “nest”. The opening is at the bottom!


I also love Lemurs – you gotta love how they like to cuddle!

indy botanical gardens

Whimsical frogs at the Botanical Garden


Small surprises at the Gardens also.

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