Monday, October 31, 2011

Top 10 November is Write a Novel in a Month

It is that time of year again, November is the month of "Write a Novel in a Month".

You have one day to prepare.  Go to

Contrary to unpopular belief, I am a winner, lol. I have read some of the more flattering comments on my blog. So here is my dispute to "the truth".

Therefore, I believe there is hope for everyone.

1. Beginning on November 1st, you can create your own novel.  Everybody has a story to tell or thoughts of one spinning around in their head.

2. You do not have to be a professional writer only have the desire to achieve. Grammar and spelling do not matter at this point.

3. The rules are intense, yet simple. You have to write daily 1,667 words. It can be a lot and grueling. I found on the average I could do it in 1 ½ hours a day. At times my count was higher, you can get lost in your own thoughts and words.(smile) Make sure you do periodic backups of your work.

4. Who has that kind of time? If you have no interest or desire, you don’t and you may miss a few reality TV shows.

5. The other tough rule is, you could not use any written material you previously had. It had to be fresh thoughts each day.

6. At first, I found this to be a challenge because I had begun my own novel back in 2006 and have put it aside and never finished it. I thought this would be an opportunity to bring that back and clear out the cobwebs.

7. My mistake was, I waited until late in the evening to begin and at times I felt it was a chore rather then a pleasure. I watched the clock and constantly checked my word count. You can check the word count on MS Word by going to Tools and clicking on word count. I don’t however recommend that because it is only a distraction.

8. The website last year claimed if you do this you will achieve writings the size of Pride and Prejudice. If you have never read that book, it’s pretty big! You do not have to come out with a Pulitzer Prize, this time. You don’t really have to have a concrete story, just write.

9. By being a part of the contest, I did receive periodic pep talk emails from other writers and you will receive a certificate at the end to download. I framed mine. It was an accomplishment.  It is a Not a published novel. The emails are clever in their own way, playing up the psychological negative side. Many of these emails began with go ahead and quit……… One was from a NY Times writer who has published many of his own novels.

10. My theory is you never know what your talents are until you give something a try Check out this website for further instruction and if anyone is up for the challenge, I give my personal best wishes.  Good Luck.  I will be right there with you.  Hoping to earn the winner status by proving something to myself, no one else, that I can do it!

By all means get the T-shirt at the end if they offer one.  You earned it! It is not free of course, nothing is in life.  Everything has a cost.

I am always looking for guest bloggers.  If you have an idea for a Top 10 list send it to me at I'll publish it on my blog and give you full credit. Personal attacks will not be accepted, unless of course they are creative.  I have a sense of humor but remember, people will be reading them and will have opinions. Your real name must also be used, just as it is required of me.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Top 10 Concert Alert Lucinda Williams at the Keswick October 29th

She does use some creative language.  I'm just warning you.

 (see October 29th at the Keswick set list below)

1. Righteously

2. Right in Time

3. 2 Cool 2 Be Forgotten

4. Learning How To Live

5. Blessed

6. Wrap My Head Around That

7. Buttercup

8. Changed the Locks

9. World Without Tears

10. Come On

The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States for outstanding achievements in the record industry. Williams has received three awards from 14 nominations and the last news I heard about her is, she is part of the various artists that perform on The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams. Lucinda Williams latest album is Blessed.

Keswick Theater linkAccording to the box office.  Blake Mills will be opening the show.

also check out:

October 29th set list at the Keswick Theater in Pennsylvania

1. Drunkand Angel a great song to open with.

2. Pineola (lyrics:Sonny shot himself) You could just tell how she oulled those lyrics from a personal experience. I never heard the song before.  It is great and very moving.

3. I Lost It  Lucinda Williams explained to the audience, she wrote ths song from seeing a bumper sticker in Houston, Texas, "I Found It".

4. Lake Charles Lucinda Williams grew up in Lake Charles, Louisiana.  I just read that today.

5. Price to Pay Another new one to me, great message to a heartbreaker.  Loved this song.

6. 2 Cool 2 Be Forgotten Without a doubt Lucinda Williams is just that!

7. Stowaway In Your Heart is a new song that wil be on her next album.

8. Copenhagen written after hearing of the death of her manager while she was on tour in Europe.

9. Fruits of My Labor I'm thinking was the first song mentioned by one of the two guys sitting behind me saying this was his all time favorite song of hers. They gave commentary thoughout the entire concert.  I didn't mind.  After this song, every third one was his favorite. 

10. Born To Be Loved just a beautiful song to listen to with her soothing voice.

11. Trying To Get To Heaven, Before Thy Close The Gates a Bob Dylan cover song.  She remarked, yeah, there's always something about a Dyland song. She said she loves it but is still trying to figure out what it is all about.

12. Out of Touch

13. Come On

14. Seeing Black

15. Essence on of her many sexy, sultry songs.  The guys behind me were kinda quite.  I think they were capitivated.

16. Unlock My Love

17. Real Live Bleeding Fingers on Broken Guitar Strings

18. Joy she said she heard was used during the Wisconsin demonstrations and she herself dedicated it to the Occupy Wall Street Movement.

19. Honey Bee Someone in the audience had a sign that read "Please do Honey Bee".  She acknowledged the sign and said that is a beautiful, I definitely plan on doing that song.  The sign was confiscated and moved on the stage for all to see, while Lucinda Williams played, "Honey Be".

Encore Songs

Blessed from her new album just another beautiful heartfelt song, comforted by her soothing voice.

Ain't My Cross To Bear great great song.

These cover songs she dedicated to "The Movement", what she called a healthy sign of patriotic

Marching the Hate Machine a Flaming Lips song.

What It Is Worth Buffalo Springstein

Lucinda Williams was named by TIME magazine America's "best songwriter" in 2002.  She is without a doubt some one with a story to tell.  Well worth putting on your bucket list of musical artists to see live, in the meantime get a cd or two.  I seem to gravitate to the songs on "West" but unlike the uys sitting behind me, last niht they were all "my favorite".  She never disappointed me. Loved them all!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Top 10 Spiders Decorate for Free

1. Arachnology is the scientific study of spiders and related animals such as scorpions, daddy long legs, and ticks all considered arachnids, not insects. I learned everything I needed to know about spiders in first grade. We placed our heads down on the desk and Sister St. Christine read the story of Charlotte's Web to us. You are very impressionable in first grade. It was a story about friendship, compassion, support, love and death. I attended catholic school but it was through this book that I learned "thou shalt not kill" and I have never killed a spider since. I have eaten pig but I never slaughtered one.

2. Spiders rarely attack humans.  Typically, they need to be provoked before they will bite. I find that interesting because it is just the opposite for humans. We like to immediately attack all crawly defenseless creatures that are smaller then us. What is this fear? Arachnophobia is the fear of spiders and all arachnids. An evolutionary reason for phobias, such as arachnophobia, claustrophobia, fear of snakes or mice, etc. remains unresolved. One view, especially held in evolutionary psychology, is that the presence of venomous spiders led to the evolution of a fear of spiders or made acquisition of a fear of spiders especially easy.  Got that?

3. I read somewhere once that we are constantly within 10 feet of a spider at all times.  I believe I am accurate in the recollection but I could have dreamed it also. There are only a few kinds of spiders that are harmful to humans. In North America beware of the brown recluse, the black widow, the brown widow, the red widow and the varied widow.

4. All Spiders have eight legs.  The eyes vary among the 40,000 or more known species. Most have eight eyes as well, arranged as two rows of four on each side. A lot of them have poor eye sight.  With all those eyes it is no wonder. Which eye do you believe?

Funnel Web Grass Spider

5. Generally, orb-weaving spiders are three-clawed builders of flat webs with sticky spiral capture silk. The building of a web is an engineering feat, begun when the spider floats a line on the wind to another surface. The spider secures the line and then drops another line from the center, making a "Y". The rest of the scaffolding follows with many radii of non-sticky silk being constructed before a final spiral of sticky capture silk. The third claw is used to walk on the non-sticky part of the web. Characteristically, the prey insect that blunders into the sticky lines is stunned by a quick bite and then wrapped in silk. If the prey is a venomous insect, such as a wasp, wrapping may precede biting.

6. Many orb-weavers build a new web each day. Generally, towards evening, the spider will consume the old web, rest for approximately an hour, then spin a new web in the same general location. Thus, the webs of orb-weavers are generally free of the accumulation of detritus common to other species such as black widow spiders.

7. Spiders eat more insects than birds and bats combined. They should be considered one of humans best friends. They play a major role in controlling insect populations, chemical free.

8. There are two types of spiders hunting spiders that creep up on their victims.  The hunters would be jumping spiders, water spiders, fisher spiders wolf spiders and tarantulas. The other type and the ones most visible in our area are web-spinning spiders. They can not hunt their prey due to poor vision.  They spin webs to trap insects.

9. Orb weavers build the most beautiful and complicated of all webs.  Nothing like walking out your front door hanging a right and walking into a web. The decoration in the web of some orb-weaving spiders serves a variety of purposes: It can be a warning so birds don't fly into the web, an attractant so insect-prey fly in on purpose, or  to shade the spider from the hot sun information.

10. Each species of spider has a different life span.  Most only live for a year, as in the story of Charlotte's web. Some mate in the fall and die during the winter. At the end of last month, I started noticing an accumulation of webbed material outside my front door.  I figure word is out Scary Mary lives here and she won't kill a spider.  Let's help her out and do a little Halloween decorating while we are here. I was most impressed.

I am a big advocate against cruelty to animals, insects, arachnoid's etc. but there is this gnat that has been flying around in my house for the last couple of days.  I think he/she reads my blog.  He gets right in front of the screen.  I have always admitted, I am not perfect. We are adapting but at times, I would like to show him the door.

I certainly don't recommend becoming best friends with a spider, they do bite and some of the venom is lethal. The same applies to people doesn't it?

If you are interested in spiders here is some additional filming I did at night.  It is not National Geographic quality but it is still kinda cool if you have an interest in spiders and how they work.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Top 10 Local Haunts

1. City Tavern in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is said to be haunted by a waiter and his young bride. If they have anything to do with the bread tray you are served before your meal or the recipe for the sampler beers, two thumbs up from me and well worth the potential scare. source: wikipedia

2. Eastern Penitentary is reported to have apparitions, perhaps hundreds, walk its corridors. Infamous resident Al Capone was said to be haunted by the ghost of James Clark, slain under orders of Capone in the Saint Valentine's Day massacre. The guard tower is reputed to be haunted by the ghost of a guard. Cell Block 12 is credited as the site's most haunted location featuring shadow mass figures. source wikipedia. I can't speak of the ghosts of the past but I have experienced the current actors that portray them at this time of year....very scary.

3. First Bank of the United States, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury is said to hangout there. referenced in wikipedia, haunted places.

4. Fort Mifflin is said to be haunted by the ghosts of Colonial soldiers, notably 'Amos' that has reportedly been seen multiple times cleaning his gun by the artillery shed and a lamplighter that strides about the soldiers barracks, reportedly sounds can be heard that blacksmith Jacob Sauer continues to apply his trade in his shop, the screaming lady of the officers' quarters, and in the Casemates with ghosts of the American Civil War, one allegedly faceless.

5. The General Wayne Inn is alleged to have poltergeist activity (generally of a mischievous nature), disembodied screams, and the manifestation of a Hessian soldier, a British officer seeking a locket, a severed head, and Edgar Allan Poe (a frequent patron in life) according to investigations by Unsolved Mysteries and Haunted History.

6. Pennhurst State School and Hospital in southeastern Pennsylvania is reported to have numerous accounts of paranormal activity and was featured on paranormal TV shows Ghost Adventures, Ghost Hunters and Extreme Paranormal.

7. Thornbury Farm in Chadds Ford Township is reputedly haunted by a mischievous little girl that is said can be heard sobbing.

8. It's claimed along U.S. Route 322 between Meadville and Radnor on New Year's Day, the ghost of Anthony Wayne rides a horse in search of his bones that were scattered along the route.

9. The USS Olympia stationed as part of the Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania reportedly has shadow figures, apparitions, and disembodied voices. reference wikipedia, haunted places.

10. Valley Forge National Historical Park. The ghosts of soldiers are claimed to be seen at the park. Two spirits claimed to have been witnessed are George Washington and Anthony Wayne.

 a full listing can be found at this link wikipedia,reportedhaunted locations in Pennsylvania

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Top 10 Haunted Places

The Alamo, located in San Antonio, Texas is reportedly haunted by the spirits of those who died during the Battle of the Alamo. The site has been the scene of many ghostly sightings, starting shortly after the battle and continuing up to modern times. The bodies of the victims were drug out of the fort and burned in piles nearby by order of Santa Ana.

Alcatraz is a former maximum security prison on an island in San Francisco Bay. It is no longer used as a prison. Visitors and tour guides have made claims of hearing screams, slamming cell doors, banjo music, and footsteps.

Barnegat Lighthouse, Barnegat, New Jersey The spirit of Lt. George Meade, famous for defeating Robert E. Lee at Gettysburg during the civil war is said to have been spotted atop the lighthouse that he designed and built 1856-1859. Found from an excerpt from the book
Haunted Jersey shore: ghosts and strange phenomena of the Garden State coast By Charles A. Stansfield, Heather Adel Wiggins link on An FYI to stick in your library of information George Meade was involved in the design of many lighthouses along the east coast.  Who knew? He was a pretty bright guy and Matthew Fox of the former television series "Lost" is a direct descendant.

Bust of George Meade that sits at the base of Barnegat Lighthouse

Coronado Hotel, San Diego California A famous resident of the hotel is the purported ghost of Kate Morgan. On November 24, 1892, she checked into room to meet with her husband who was a doctor and he was going to give her medicine for her stomach cancer, but he never arrived. She was found dead on the steps leading to the beach three days later. The case was declared a suicide. She had shot herself. Ever since then, some guests that have checked into that room have reported flickering lights and floating objects. 

Hollywood and the surrounding area have numerous sites that are believed to be inhabited by the spirits of deceased celebrities. For example, the ghost of actress Peg Entwistle, who committed suicide by jumping off the Hollywood Sign in the Hollywood Hills, has reportedly been seen near the sign. Some apparitions have been reported as being sighted at more than one location in the area.

Lorelei is the famous singing ghost that sits on a tall rock on the right bank of the Rhine River in Germany.

Mission San Juan Capistrano The tragedy of "The Great Stone Church" gave rise to its best-loved legend, that of a young native girl named Magdalena who was killed in the collapse. Magdalena lived on the Mission grounds and had fallen in love with an artist named Teófilo. However, the pair was deemed too young to marry by their elders and were forced to carry on their relationship in secret. On that fateful December morning, the repentant Magdalena walked ahead of the procession of worshipers carrying a penitent candle just as the earthquake struck. Teófilo rushed into the church as the walls and roof tumbled to the ground in a vain attempt to save his lover. When the rubble was cleared the pair was found among the dead, locked in a final embrace. It is said that on moonlit nights one can sometimes make out the face of a young girl, seemingly illuminated by candlelight, high up in the ruins.

Theatre Royal/Haymarket on Drury Lane has been called one of the world's most haunted theatres.[56] The appearance of almost any one of the handful of ghosts that are said to frequent the theatre signals good luck for an actor or production. The most famous ghost is the "Man in Grey", who appears dressed as a nobleman of the late 18th century: powdered hair beneath a tricorner hat, a dress jacket and cloak or cape, riding boots and a sword. Legend says that the Man in Grey is the ghost of a knife-stabbed man whose skeletal remains were found within a walled-up side passage in 1848.

Tower of London located in London, UK is said to be the top haunted spot in London. Many people lost their lives there. One of the most famous would be Anne Boleyn, she actually lost her head there in 1536.

Versailles The entire court of Marie Antoinette appears in the gardens of Trianon in Versailles. Although the view pictured is taken from the Versailles Palace there is plenty of room on the property for almost the entire city of Paris to haunt. It caused a French Revolution, the place is massive. The gardens mentioned above would be approximately a mile or two down on the right.

These may not be the scariest places in the world but there have been reported haunts at each of them.  If I would have to pick, I would say Alcatraz was the creepiest to me.  It is a cold, cold dark place and the Tower of London, some bad stuff went down there.  I'm not sure I would ever return there, even if I were a ghost.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Top 10 Things to Do With That Pumpkin

1. Decorate with a cheery or evil face (pick your mood) and paint it. A little pumpkin told me acrylic works best.

2. Make your own Jack O Lantern. Carve it. It makes an excellent date night.  I hear the candlelight makes him glow.

3. Eat the Pumpkin seeds (roast them).

4. Pumpkin Pie (make two, freeze one for Thanksgiving).

5. Pumpkin Cake I (I revealed my secret last year). Actually scary, I am still here.

6. Pumpkin Muffins

7. Pumpkin Bread

8. Pumpkin Fudge

9. Pumpkin Beer

10. Save the seeds and plant them next year, just remember where you put them.

Reports say that due to the excessive rain this year there will be a pumpkin shortage, there still remains a vast majority of ways to be creative.

There are plenty of suggestions out on the Internet "google" one of them.  I am merely planting the seed.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Top 10 End of the World Songs

Today October 21, 2011 is another Doomsday Prediction

FYI Look to the Skies Orionid Meteor Shower to Peak This Weekend
Check out National Geographic's site for more info.

Every once in a while I contemplate "if this were the last day of your life, what would you do?"
Tough question, but I know it wouldn't be dishes or laundry.

1. End of the World R.E.M.

2. Undertow Genesis

3. End of the World The Cure

4. The End of the World Skeeter Davis

5. If Today Was Your Last Day Nickelback

6. Waiting for the End of the World Elvis Costello

7. Once In A Lifetime The Talking Heads

8. End Times The Eels

9. Eve of  Destruction Barry McGuire

10. The End The Doors is a great song but I do prefer When The Music Is Over The Doors

And if we are really lucky these are the "special events" we are looking for today.

The sun will rise in less then a minute.

and the sun will set without incident.

The world as we know it ends a little every day.

R.I.P. TJR 10-21-1980

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Top 10 Who or What Are the Knuckleheads?

1. Someone who is hardheaded, stubborn

2. Harley-Davidson Knucklehead engine

3. Knucklehead (band)

4. Knucklehead (film), a film produced by WWE Studios

5. "Knucklehead", B-side on the 1967 single "Soul Finger" by The Bar-Kays

6. "Knucklehead", song by Grover Washington, Jr. (Feels So Good, 1975)

7. Knuckleheads Indoor Amusement Park, at Wisconsin Dells Parkway, Lake Delton, Wisconsin, USA

8. Knuckleheads Saloon, Kansas City, Missouri, USA (where Karla Bonoff, Leon Redbone, and others have appeared)

9. Knucklehead Smiff was on of Paul Winchell's dummies.

10. Mr. Knucklehead was one of Pee Wee Herman's friends.

I am sure everyone knows a knucklehead or two but this list seems to be the more popular ones.

Naming names and calling people names is not my style but The Three Stooges were the original Knuckleheads that come to mind when I hear the reference. I thought they were pretty funny.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Top 10 November Fundraisers

Plan ahead and save the date

1. Fall Festival Torch Run for Special Olympics, November 5th, Philadelphia Art Museum to Villanova.

2. Relay for Life Strath Haven High School In Memory of Diane McCormick November 5th.

3. AmerisourceBergen Greater Philadelphia Walk to Defeat ALS November 5th, Citizens Bank Park.

4. City 6 5K Charity Run, Turkey Trot and Fall Festival. November 5th, 9AM Drexel Campus 33rd and Market St. Philadelphia, PA.
5. 10th Annual Greyhound Freedom Run 5K race and 2 mile walk pledge. November 6th Tyler State Park Boat Pavilion, Newtown, PA.

6. Free to Breathe Philadelphia 2011 November 6th, Memorial Hall, West Fairmount Park.

7. WXPN Hosts for Hospitals Fundraiser November 6th World Cafe Live 6-10PM.

8. American Heart Association 2011 Philadelphia Heart Walk November 12th, Citizens Bank Park

9. WHYY Y12K Saturday, November 12, 2011 in Fairmount Park at 9 a.m. The Y12K is an annual fundraiser for the Philadelphia region's premiere public media organization, WHYY.

10. The Lemon Run to benefit Alex's Lemonade November 13 8:30-11 am. Fairmount Park, Philadelphia, PA.

    Tuesday, October 18, 2011

    Top 10 Ways to Support Hedgerow Theatre

    1. Agatha Christie's "Black Coffee" till Nov. 13th - a Hercule Poirot mystery! - get to vote "Who done it" and the winner gets a pair of free tickets after the show!!

    2. Constable cameo appearance during "Black Coffee" every night!

    3. Starbucks coffee and treats every Sunday in October at 2 p.m. matinee!

    4. "Snow White and the Little People" every Sat. at 11 a.m. till Nov. 19th get chosen as a little person to be on stage and help Snow White from the clutches of the Evil Queen!

    5. Hedgerow Musical Cabaret at the theatre on Oct. 16th at 7:30 p.m.

    6. "Snow White" performed on Oct. 23rd at Linvilla at 11 a.m.

    7. Halloween Costume Party and "Black Coffee" on Oct. 29th with prizes for best, scariest, funniest, most original!

    8. Last chance to enroll in show classes "A Little Princess" and Hedgerow's Glee Club!

    9. Enroll for "Best Christmas Pageant Ever" starting Nov. 14th!

    10. Two ways to celebrate the holidays - "A Christmas Carol" and "A Dickens Christmas" - book your holiday party now! - or tel. 610-5654211.

    Monday, October 17, 2011

    Top 10 Occupied in Philly

    This was my first experience attending what I would call a "be in".  There are photos and video of what it looked like on Saturday at City Hall in the city of Philadelphia.

    1. Occupy Philly began on October 6th at City Hall in Philadelphia in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.  It is a peaceful demonstration to raise public awareness and also in support of the Global Revolution that is popping up all around the world.

    2.  Where do you fall in the percentages? It was explained to me in this way, 99% of the population is working to make 1% of the population rich.  They are the haves and the have nots.

    3. Government of the People (1965-1976) a sculptor by Jacques Lipchitz sits across the street at the Municipal Services Building Plaza opposite City Hall where the "Occupy Philly" demonstration is on going. I found it to be an interesting correlation.  I was in town on Saturday afternoon so I decided to see what it was all about. 

    4. Many messages were displayed on the various signs. "I am mad as hell",  was a common chant and "They got bailed and we got sold out", was a sign I couldn't dispute.

    5. Along with "Hey, hey, Ho, Ho, Corporate Greed Has Got To Go". Protesters took to the street and switched sides crossing when traffic came to a stop at the traffic light. Police were in the vicinity on foot and bicycles but there were no clashes or interaction.

    6. "You look nice, let's work together", was another sign. It seemed like a non-violent crowd.

    7. This was an interesting twist, actor Bob Weick was performing dialogue from the play Marx in Soho, a play written by Howard Zinn.  Listening to him in this environment, you would never know these words weren't meant for today's events.  These were the words of Karl Marx in 1843.

    8. I found this to be a thought provoking sight, watching a patriot walking home from a day on the job, he was not involved in the protest. I couldn't help but wonder what he thought about all the commotion. He just kept on walking.

     9. Protesters seemed honkered down and ready to spend the night or the several days it will take to get some attention. I am not sure what resolution they are looking for

    10. I Got Mine, Screw You Is A Crappy Attitude, was posted on another sign. How many people actually feel this way? Could it possibly be 1% or 99%?  This one worries me, I think the percent is growing here, more people are worried about their own jobs, the rest, well you are on your own.

    The Global Revolution is taking place all over the world.  People are speaking out.  Is anyone listening? Here is a link to live streaming if you are interested. It is hard to say if these public displays can make a difference.  I used to think voting was the way to stand up and be counted. Does that still work or just pit us against one another? This is no party.  When is "enough is enough" no matter which side you are on. Another link

    Friday, October 14, 2011

    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    Top 10 Flying with the Monarch Butterfly at the Beach

    1. Monarch butterflies that live in North America, east of the Rocky Mountains migrate to Mexico for the winter months. Long Beach Island, New Jersey happens to be one of their stopping points on their way south to Mexico.

    2. Monarchs travel down the Atlantic coast to avoid the open ocean. Habitat on the shore can be critical for monarchs.

    3. The  wings of the monarch feature an easily recognizable orange and black pattern, with a wingspan of 8.9–10.2 centimetres (3½–4 in).

    4. Female Monarchs have darker veins on their wings, and the males have a spot called the "androconium" in the center of each hind wingfrom  which pheromones are released. Males are also slightly larger.

    5. The monarch butterfly is noted for their lengthy annual migration. It is the only butterfly species known to make annual north-south migrations like many bird species do.

    6. The wintering areas of the butterfly are located on the mountainous forests that stretch across far eastern Michoacán state and far western Mexico State, about 100 km northwest of Mexico City.

    7. The survival of the species depends on a large number of habitats from Canada, the United States and Mexico during its annual migration cycle. The three countries adopted a plan in 2008 for the conservation of the butterfly’s habitat through its migration routes. Inherited behavior allows the generation that will make the return trip know exactly where they will return.

    8. UNESCO declared the biosphere a World Heritage site in 2008 as a Natural Asset. This declaration was added to that which made San Miguel de Allende a World Heritage Site.

    9. During the winter 2008-2009, there were plans to tag as many of the wintering butterflies as possible using very light self-stick tracers as to not impede their flight. The purpose of this is to determine the butterflies exact migration route as they fly back north to the U.S. and Canada in the spring. Now I understand why they wouldn't let me get too close.  These monarch butterflies seem rather special or just real quick, not one that I saw had a small blue sticker on it.  Bravo! No doubt they like people, though. Every morning I emerged from the front door, one was waiting to guide me on my daily walk. It was very special.

    10.  The life span of the adult Monarch varies, depending on the season in which it emerged from the pupa and whether or not it belongs to a migratory group of Monarchs. Adults that emerged in early summer have the shortest life spans and live for about two to five weeks. Those that emerged in late summer survive over the winter months. The migratory Monarchs, which emerge from the pupa in late summer and then migrate south, live a much longer life, about 8-9 months.

    All photographs in the blog were taken the week of October 3rd - 7th on Long Beach Island, New Jersey in various spots.  The monarchs led the way and I followed with my camera, I didn't need a net to capture them.