Yesterday there was actually a break in the rain, and my friend was in town and had her camera, so we went to Forest Park and took some pictures. Forest Park is a big place and it is mostly just greenery - no gardens or anything, so I always wondered why people wanted to photograph there...but, if you look in unusual places, you can find things.
About the raindrops shot - I've talked about the "macro" setting on most cameras (symbolized by a flower), which lets you get pretty close to things but doesn't, obviously, function as well as a specific macro lens. But if you want to simulate a macro shot, just make sure that you get as close as you can focus, and that the picture has very good clarity (as clear as you can get it, which is made easier with a tripod, which I didn't have on me yesterday). That way you will be able to crop the photo and sharpen it in post-processing.
When you do major cropping like this, it drastically reduces the size of the file, meaning you won't ever be able to make good quality large prints, but it's still something that's nice to know how to do while you're waiting on the money to actually purchase a macro lens. :-)