What is the best time of day for you to work? For me reading and writing is essential and early morning is the best time. I must admit though, reading usually wins. I am trying to change this. Reading is automatic; writing is a habit.
A place that beckons. One of these days….
I have helpers that readers of this blog don’t ever hear from and who I don’t thank enough. They send me corrections when I’ve misidentified plants, reveal the names of plants that I don’t know, and pass along tips about places that might be worth a visit. One of the places mentioned recently was Dickinson Memorial Forest in Swanzey, which was once owned by a prominent local family. Since I’d heard of it but had never been I decided to visit.
When you’ve reached this point you have a choice to make; you can turn right and follow the trail into the forest or you can follow this old road into Muster Field, so named because volunteer firemen used to muster and train here. I followed both but my first choice was through these old gate posts.
I chose the old road because it follows the Ashuelot River which is…
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I saw a fly on a milkweed leaf and he was open to posing, so here he is. I think he’s a tachinid fly because of his bristly abdomen. Some of these flies can be very helpful in the garden, controlling squash bugs and stinkbugs. Others aren’t so helpful, and parasitize moths and butterflies, including monarchs. This one was a little lumpy up around the shoulders and looked like it had been parasitized too.
As I seem to do every year I stumbled into a red winged blackbird nesting site recently. The female shown here flew off half way across a pond to sit on a cattail and wait for me to leave while the male hovered above my head screeching at me. The same thing happened last year so I’ve learned that male red winged blackbirds can get angry very quickly, and they don’t easily back down when you’re…
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always good, welcome to spring NH
Cheery little Johnny jump ups (Viola cornuta) have done just that; it seems like one day they weren’t there and the next day they were. The unusual spring heat is causing some plants to bloom two weeks or more ahead of when they normally do and it has been hard to keep up with them.
I was surprised to see a painted trillium (Trillium undulatum) already past its prime. You can see how the bright white has gone out of the petals and how they have become translucent. These are sure signs of age even though it should be just starting to bloom. Each white petal has a pink V at its base and that’s how it comes by its common name. Painted trilliums grow north to Ontario and south to northern Georgia. They also travel west to Michigan and east to Nova Scotia. I hope…
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It is where I live.
If you’re tired of all things winter then this post isn’t for you because it’s about being in a freezer of sorts; a man made canyon blasted out of solid rock where seeping groundwater freezes into icicles that grow to the height and diameter of tree trunks. I visited this place last week because I thought that, since this was just about the coldest February that we had ever seen, I’d be able to see some big ice. I wasn’t disappointed.
I think this is the biggest “icicle” that I’ve ever seen. It had to have been 15-20 feet out from the rock face and 40-50 feet tall. It is the sweetheart of the ice climbers who come here and, if you look carefully at the very top of the photo, you can see the legs of two ice climbers dressed in blue who were tying off their ropes, preparing to…
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Hadden’ s haven
Our pal the barred owl was back yesterday afternoon, making himself (herself?) very comfortable on the top of our feeder stand for a good two hours. He seemed to be most interested in the goings on right below the feeder, no doubt waiting for a juicy mouse or other rodent to make its appearance. At times it looked like he was napping. Interestingly, none of the little birds seemed to mind too much that he was there, as the chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, and even cardinals happily munched at our other feeders just a few feet away from the owl.
Nikon D600, Sigma 120-400mm lens @ 330mm, ISO 1250, f/5.6, 1/200″ exposure.
Great picture Irene, writing too.
“Children can’t come in.” The woman in uniform crossed her arms as she barred the entrance.
“But Matron, we’ve driven over a hundred miles to see the baby.”
“You go in and these two stay on the verandah. Can’t risk newborns with children’s germs.
“I’ll be quick.”
“Don’t worry Mum. We’ll play hopscotch in the shadows.”
Unobserved the figure watched from the shadows of the red bench, approaching the verandah when the adults had gone.
“I’ll show you the baby.”
“But the germs.”
“You ain’t got germs.” Trusting they followed, fulfilling the cycle of life and death.
In response to Friday Fictioneers. The photo is the PROMPT. Where does it take you? Tell me in a hundred words or less.
Great pictures and love the quote at the end. My wife’s from California. And don’t forget that Florida has hurricanes and Arizona heat.
There’s a high pressure system sitting and spinning in Canada that’s dragging down bitter cold air and one snowstorm after another, sometimes as many as three in a single week. With nothing but cold weather between the storms the snow doesn’t melt but instead just builds up. I tried taking a photo of the trees in my backyard during one storm. Judging by the blurry spot on the right one of the flakes landed on my lens, but I didn’t see it until just now. I never have great luck taking photos when it’s snowing but I wanted to try to show you what it was like.
I didn’t realize I had cropped this photo so the yardstick said “the finest pain” but it fit so I left it that way. Actually, I don’t know if I could call the pains I have from shoveling my roof “the finest,” but…
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What to do on a snow day
Excerpts from Paul Jarvis’ commentary titled Why You Should Take A Social Media Sabbatical:
One of my clients told me that social media sabbaticals are the new treks through Nepal. Taking a social media sabbatical is trendy, takes some courage, and for most westerners, it’s outside the realm of possibility. But (thankfully for me), it doesn’t require as much physical fitness as a hiking the Himalayas…
When all the small gaps in our days are filled with refreshing or sharing, there’s no room left to just sit and breathe and let whatever thoughts that want to happen… just happen. There are more ideas—not fewer—when you remove noise…
There is no longer space in our lives. We can’t wait in line without getting on our phones. Or sit on a bus. Or eat. Or wake up. Or wait for an elevator. Or watch a sunset…
Extra, dangling seconds force most…
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