Weekly Photo Challenge: Point of View / Update

Cancerous Aphids
Cancerous Aphids, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (click on photo to enlarge)

voracious monsters
destroying vitality
metastatic cancer

Cancer – Any evil condition or thing that spreads destructively.

These voracious, ravenous aphids extracted so many nutrients and vitality from some of our plants, that they became very, very sick.  We saw more aphids than we had ever seen before in our yard, and as a result, we also saw more ladybugs than we have ever seen, attacking the cancerous aphids.


As I wrote previously, we are in the middle of a frightening cancer battle.  My mother was recently diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer…4 out of 4.  What is Stage 4?  Per our surgeon, it means cancer has metastasized from it’s original site to other organs.

Each doctor visit and surgery result over the last two months brought worse news, showing more and more spread, and leaving us in an endless nightmare.  The cancer is extremely rare, aggressive, and high-grade, for which there is NO standard treatment and no clinical trials because of its rarity.  There is no known cause.  It is not curable.  The prognosis is……….well….…all I will say is that people have been known to beat the odds and we are hopeful and determined that she will beat it.  It is a very scary time.

Cancer treatments began this week.  Two weeks ago, we made a quick trip to another high rated cancer hospital for a second opinion, and were more assured we are headed down the right path with her initial treatment plan.  Because of the cancer’s aggressiveness, we needed to start as soon as possible after recovery from her last surgery.  The treatments are a rigorous regimen of two days of chemotherapy every two weeks for a minimum of six months.  It’s too soon to see what the actual side effects will be since everyone reacts differently to the drugs, but we know what the common side effects are.

Hopefully the treatments will turn out to be a swarm of ladybugs focused on and succeeding in obliterating the cancer!

Again, I will not be as active in the blogging world but will do my best.  Thank you for all of the wonderful well wishes you continue to send for my mother and for staying with me through these tough times.

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is Point of View.  I’ve used the theme in two ways – one in the photo itself, and one regarding focused treatment.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: In the Background

Triple Opportunity
Triple Opportunity, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (click on photo to enlarge)

unplanned camouflage
invisible in plain sight
background activity

Refocus your attention to reveal a new perspective, or a new world!
(Did you also notice the little black bee in the photo?  I felt quite lucky to have captured a shot with three little critters!)

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge encourages us to
share a picture that says In the Background.

Linking up with:

Weekly Photo Challenge: Unique

Ladybug Handstand
Ladybug Handstand, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (click on photo to enlarge)

have you ever seen
a ladybug in a handstand
dare to be different

Glad to be participating in the Weekly Photo Challenge after being absent for a couple of months.
Post-processing done in Photoshop Elements 10.  Here is the original photo:

Ladybug Handstand photo

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is to share a photo
that says unique to you.

Linking up with:


Weekly Photo Challenge: Green

“The photo challenge this week is GREEN?!?!  Are you kidding me?
Why isn’t it BROWN…or better yet…SQUIRREL?”


I wanted to be the star of the show…the main attraction!
Ya know what I mean?”


“Hey Dude…just relax…chill out!
You ARE the center of attention now with all your griping!”


This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is to share pictures
that mean green to you.

 Linking up with:

“R” Challenge: Residence (nature), Residents

Haunted House
Haunted House, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  Click on photo to enlarge.

residence for spooks
sporting indelible costumes
haunted house

Does this look spooky to you, even without seeing any of its residents?

This nest is a residence for the Bald Faced Hornet and was in my mother’s yard in her large Asian Pear tree.  It was about 3-feet off the ground and larger than a football in diameter.  When she told me about it last week while I was visiting her, curiosity motivated me to have a quick look and snap a couple of photos.  However, fear of having a painfully potent encounter with lots of small black spooky-looking things drove me away very quickly.  I have been stung before by yellowjackets and bees, and I’ve stepped on a bumble bee nest by accident – big owwwwwie for several days!!  So I decided to use Wikipedia’s photo below so you can see what the little critter looks like up close.

Bald Faced Hornet – Source: Wikipedia

Here is some information about the Bald Faced Hornet:

  • It belongs to a genus of wasps in North America called yellowjackets, but called a hornet because it builds paper nests.  It is not a true hornet.
  • Are large (greater than 15mm) with black and ivory coloring
  • Are common tree-nesting wasps
  • Are more aggressive than yellowjackets and other hornets
  • A nest can contain 400 to 700 workers
  • Will aggressively attack with little provocation, and anyone or anything that invades their space
  • Have smooth stingers, and will sting repeatedly if their nest is disturbed
  • Are known for their football-shaped paper nests
  • Nests are abandoned by winter and are not reused
  • Old nests provide good winter shelter for other insects and spiders since they are insulated from heat and cold
  • It is not considered safe to approach the nest for observation purposes
  • Their scary costumes and face masks are permanent!


This is for the letter “R” Story Challenge by Frizztext, to share a short story or reflection, even an aphorism using a word tagged with each letter of the alphabet.
Kim Klassen texture used – Providence

 Linking up with:

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“N” Challenge: Nectar, Nourishment

Nectar, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  Click on photo to enlarge.

calm reflection
sustains mind and body
emotional nectar

We still have a few honeybees buzzing around drinking in the last few drops of nectar from our flowers before they are done for the season.

What nourishes you?  What is the nectar that feeds your mind, body, and/or spirit?

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“K” Challenge: Kick Up Your Heels!

Kick Up Your Heels!
Kick Up Your Heels!, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  Click on photo to enlarge.

you’ve conquered hurdles
and rejuvenated the day
celebration kick

Don’t forget to kick up your heels and celebrate the small successes, too!

(Kick up your heels:  to celebrate, to have a wonderful time, to enjoy yourself)

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

Gladiolus Haven
Gladiolus Haven, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (click on photo to enlarge)
Linking up with Rural Thursday, Photo Art Friday, Camera CrittersFlower Art Friday, Weekend Flowers.

a soothing nestle
inside silk walls and blankets
gladiolus bloom

Gladiolus:  a widely cultivated plant of the iris family, with sword-shaped leaves and spikes of brightly colored flowers.

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is to share a photo that means INSIDE to you!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Close

Closeness, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on image to enlarge).
Linking up with Camera Critters and Macro Monday.

Here is another close-up photo from the ladybird world.  How does the saying go?…oh yeah…”two’s company, three’s a crowd!”
My response when I saw this was…”REALLY??!!??!!” Continue reading

V! Challenge: Voracious

Voracious, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on image to enlarge).
Linking up with Macro Monday.

a splendid banquet
satisfies the ravenous
nature’s pest control

Photo taken in our garden today.  This is the first year I’ve seen aphids on one of our lupine plants.  This ladybird was apparently famished.  I’ve seen most of the ladybirds go after the smaller aphids, but this one went after a large juicy one…and then ate several smaller ones afterwards!

This post is for the “V” Challenge by Frizztext (“V” is for Voracious – also Victor and Victim)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Today


“Hello, pleased to meet you!  Wanna Play?”


“Please don’t take my picture.  I’m very, very shy.”

…two different ladybugs, yet two different personalities captured today!

This week’s WordPress photo challenge theme is “today” – it’s about TODAY. This day. The day you’re reading and reacting to this post. No rules or guidance on what to post other than the photo must be taken today.

Q! Challenge: Quick and Quote

Quick, a photo by Fergiemoto on Flickr.  (Click on image to enlarge).

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.

~Lao Tzu

This insect was too quick for me to capture a shot of it in flight.  That was my intent.  The two shots above were taken back-to-back during continuous shooting, and I thought I had captured what I wanted.  Nature may not have been in a hurry, but I wasn’t quick enough with my camera.  Oh well, maybe next time.

Does anyone know the name of this insect?  I’ve been calling it an unspotted ladybug because I can’t find what it is.  It is about twice the size of any ladybug I’ve seen.

This post is for the “Q” Challenge by Frizztext (“Q” is for Quick and Quote)