Memory Cues on a Father’s Day Walk

This morning, a Sunday that is also Father’s Day, my dogs and I did what we do most Sunday mornings: we went for a walk in the valley. Our walk was followed by another typical weekend activity, taking household garbage to the nearby transfer station. Much about the morning sparked memories of my father, who… Continue reading Memory Cues on a Father’s Day Walk

So Long, Spring, ‘Till Next Time

Spring officially ends June 19th this year. It's always a little sad saying goodbye, watching nature's exuberant bursts of growth and color wane during the hotter and drier months of summer. Where I live, at 4,000 feet in the mountains of central Idaho, spring starts arriving in April and doesn't really gain steam until May… Continue reading So Long, Spring, ‘Till Next Time

Pollen: Strong Reactions

I have a love-hate relationship with pollen. It’s been that way most of my life. I love pollen because of its crucial role in propagating a vast array of plants, including many of the fruits, nuts and grains we rely upon for food. Plus, lots of pollen is produced by the beautiful forest trees and… Continue reading Pollen: Strong Reactions

Thrilled by Trillium

I first became acquainted with trillium wildflowers in the forests of western Washington. At the lower elevations of the Cascade foothills where I did so much trail running before moving to Idaho, they were the first wildflower of spring, adding bright splashes of white and green near the ground where they grew under the tall… Continue reading Thrilled by Trillium

Flax: A Mix of Beauty and History

My second summer here in Idaho, in 2006, I bought some wildflower seed meant for mountain climates and tossed it out along my driveway. I didn’t know what to expect. I hoped for the best, especially since it was ridiculously expensive and I was living on borrowed funds. I was disappointed. That first summer very… Continue reading Flax: A Mix of Beauty and History

Bumbling Bumble Bees

One afternoon last March, one of those early “false spring” days when the sun warms the air up to the low 60s F while there’s still snow on the ground, I hauled the deck furniture out of the garage. Several days of unseasonable warmth had already melted the snow off the deck, so why not?… Continue reading Bumbling Bumble Bees

Dog Photobombs III

Whenever I stop to photograph wildflowers, trees, streams, cairns or vistas in the forest, my dogs patiently wait nearby, following their noses, until I'm ready to continue our run or hike. They often end up unexpectedly in the frame of my photo in classic photobombing style. This third installment of dog photobombs carries the sub-theme:… Continue reading Dog Photobombs III

Bird Updates: Sandhill Cranes and Tree Swallows

Some of the local birds have been busy lately, fascinating to watch. Some updates to previous posts. Cranes The boys monitoring the ditch on the west side of the road. Earlier this month while walking my dogs on our usual valley road, I heard sandhill cranes making more than their usual ruckus. (I wrote about… Continue reading Bird Updates: Sandhill Cranes and Tree Swallows

Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable

A book review. Sort of. First published in Britain in 1870, this curious dictionary is now in its 20th edition. Reading a reference to it recently, somewhere, I was intrigued and found a used copy via Amazon. It arrived from London a few days ago. At 2.5 inches thick, for this confessed etymologist it contains… Continue reading Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable

Tree Swallows: Nature’s Fighter Pilots

I’m not a “birder.” Haven’t been in the past, am not now, and…well, maybe at some point in the future I will be. I do like birds, but I’m not patient enough to be a birder. A birder is, by definition, a bird watcher. Someone dedicated to bird watching. I’m an observer. Amused by birds,… Continue reading Tree Swallows: Nature’s Fighter Pilots