Nature and Travel

Lots of photos of guys like me in here!

For my Master Naturalist and other nature-loving friends, here’s a collection of writing about my nature sightings and travels.

A Visit from Storks!

This morning there’s thunder everywhere, so I went out early to feed the chickens. I’m glad I did, because when I looked into the pond behind the house, I saw something in addition to the usual great egret and blue heron: wood storks! They used to visit for a while periodically, but lately they just … Continue reading “A Visit from Storks!”

So Many Dead Things

I’ll write more in the Master Naturalist blog about this (update, I forgot to do so), but I did enjoy a visit to the Texas A&M Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections this morning. My friend Pamela and I drove over and met up with another Master Naturalist and her granddaughter, who’s high school age, and … Continue reading “So Many Dead Things”

Good to Be Home

One good thing about having to drive an additional hour to Pecos, TX because there was no water in the entire town on Van Horn, our drive home was easy. Wow, Pecos is a one-industry place. That industry is oil. We knew that, but it was impressive to see so many wells, tanks, and pipelines. … Continue reading “Good to Be Home”

Hermits Visit a Zoo

Both my spouse and I like animals. I like plants. The San Diego Zoo has lots of each. It also has crowds, though, and neither of us likes crowds. Especially with good ole COVID getting worse again. But we were nearby, and that’s one of the best zoos on earth, so we went. We survived … Continue reading “Hermits Visit a Zoo”

Traveling and Sizzling

Been traveling. Yesterday we took back roads through a very hot but beautiful Arizona day. We passed through many tribal lands, including Apache. Eventually we hit the ocean and stopped driving. The solitude washed over me like yesterday’s desert rain and the heat burned through my concerns. I was left empty in a good way. … Continue reading “Traveling and Sizzling”

Work Is Worky

I like my job a lot. I’m really lucky to be doing what I enjoy for great folks. But whew, sometimes I need to take a break. My eyes are throbbing from looking at my tiny laptop screen and trying to write software instructions for hours and hours. I finally stopped writing at 5:45 and … Continue reading “Work Is Worky”

An Artist I’m Not

After spilling my guts about no longer feeling free yesterday (and receiving some wonderful support and feedback), I was grateful to have something to do last night to take my mind off The State of the World. It involved “art” in a loose sense. I’d arranged with Sarah the Bartender to go try our hand … Continue reading “An Artist I’m Not”

Reptile Season

I’ve mentioned the snake that was in the henhouse last week and the snapping turtle that visited. The reptiles and their ilk have not stopped coming, though. This morning my son was mowing the back yard when I went out to feed the horses. He said to go get my camera, because he’d just seen … Continue reading “Reptile Season”

De-Fence-less

I didn’t work today and didn’t do too much, either. My biggest accomplishment was taking notes for a very long Master Naturalist Board meeting. I’m glad they were more boring when I was President. Much of the day was spent writing a blog post on the big mushroom, which is finally dying. Turns out, it’s … Continue reading “De-Fence-less”

I Am Elsewhere

Look at me! I’m doing an activity! For fun! In a different place. Alone. I’m going to a conference I attended Before COVID and really enjoyed, sponsored by the Bennett Trust and Texas Parks and Wildlife. So I’ll get Master Naturalist credits. The hotel in Kerrville (YO Ranch) is old but charming, and I have … Continue reading “I Am Elsewhere”

Ladies Day Out. At Last.

Wow. It’s been a really long time since I did anything with the family. Between COVID and family stresses, I’ve been on my own. So it was a pleasant surprise to have Kathleen coming back. More pleasant was a visit from her daughter-in-law, Moriah, and her baby Oaklynn (recipient of one of my baby blanket … Continue reading “Ladies Day Out. At Last.”

We Have New Neighbors

Yesterday, we hauled the stock trailer over to South Austin to pick up the large items that my son and his partner could not fit into their tiny car, so that they can be officially moved to the ranch community. Wow, we’re pushing double digits! There was a bit of a challenge getting to Austin. … Continue reading “We Have New Neighbors”

Shocked and Sad

When you live in a small town, things affect the whole community. We lost a friend yesterday. I’ll skip the gory details and just say it was a real shock to lose Christi. I have Christi to thank for Fiona. If she hadn’t remembered I wanted a little donkey, Fiona might not have gotten rescued … Continue reading “Shocked and Sad”

An Elevated Experience

Yet another day of fun and new sights happened yesterday, which was good. I’d gotten irritated that the Cowboys football game stopped showing on the television here, because the team was doing “too well.” I went off to climb the hills around here, and just when I discovered it was perhaps too muddy, Cathy asked … Continue reading “An Elevated Experience”

Looking for Birds

It is true that I got invited back to the bird feeder where I saw the Steller’s Jay last week, since it was owned by my online friend, Elizabeth AKA Liz. I now envy her greatly, because I discovered she gets to see all sorts of wildlife right from her house. I only saw this … Continue reading “Looking for Birds”

Suna Seeks a Moose

I was sitting in my condo, knitting on my sad baby blanket and watching a very depressing football game. It occurred to me that I could do something fun instead. So, I set off for “a little walk” around the neighborhood, to go down the road I hadn’t been down yet. It was pleasant outside, … Continue reading “Suna Seeks a Moose”

Happy Reunion

Today’s highlight was a visit from a high school friend, Kathy Herzog Evans. I’m so glad these interesting people keep reappearing in my life! It was so kind of her to drive over to see me from where she lives. We had a great time catching up on the past 45 years and finding out … Continue reading “Happy Reunion”

Bye-Bye Bobcat

Dateline: Austin. Today was sorta hard in a few ways. For one, I worked on so many things that my head was spinning, plus I was trying to get packed for my next condo stay. Because of that, today’s brief visit with Anita was my last time in Bobcat when I own it. And, whoa, … Continue reading “Bye-Bye Bobcat”

Complaints? Nope.

Well, it’s been a nice couple of days, that’s for sure. The worse thing that happened to me was driving through the confusing world of Dallas, Texas traffic. But, I lived! So, what’s up? House News The first good thing is that the Bobcat Lair house finally sold! We were surprised it was on the … Continue reading “Complaints? Nope.”

Escaped to Another Ranch

To celebrate my job change and help me wind down, the family surprised me with a getaway to Bandera. It’s a different place than we went last year, though nearby. We are the first guests in the guesthouse at Farmer’s Daughter, so everything is fresh and new. Even the trees are new. But it’s also … Continue reading “Escaped to Another Ranch”

Random Goodness

Hey, isn’t it tine for a good day? I think it is. The main highlight is this here somewhat blurry dog. As we noted a couple days ago, Penney refused to go down the stairs. We never have figured out what caused her whining and groveling behavior. Lee was having to get her started, and … Continue reading “Random Goodness”

Home Again

No time to write a post, but we had a lovely drive down El Camino Real de Tejas today, and made it home. Ahh. We were glad to get back to familiar territory but thoroughly enjoyed the trip. Best thing? Dog reunion.

HGTV Tourism

Since we started the day in Montgomery and we’re taking back roads anyway, we decided it might be fun to see what the towns were the Napier family on HGTV do their renovations are actually like. Why not? So, we set out after the memorial visit for Wetumpka, Alabama, where Home Town Takeover is set. … Continue reading “HGTV Tourism”

A Sobering Memorial

We started our day by going to the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery. After all the reading I’ve done in the past year about the history of black people in the US after the Civil War, I thought this would be an appropriate place to go. The National Memorial for Peace and … Continue reading “A Sobering Memorial”

Heading Home, Day 1

Whew. Today was long, but quite fun. We took all back roads from Myrtle Beach to Montgomery, Alabama (actually we are in Prattville). It was fun seeing all the different small towns and industries as we drove. We were routed by our favorite SC place, Georgetown, so we stopped there for breakfast at a friendly … Continue reading “Heading Home, Day 1”

Pivoting…Again

I don’t have a lot of perky photos for this post, but I have to say I am proud of me and Lee. We had to pivot again, because we are still worried about finding enough gas to get back to Texas. That pipeline is only going five miles per hour, and the situation where … Continue reading “Pivoting…Again”

Spousal Pride

Yesterday I hinted that my spouse, Lee, was going to be surprised last night. We were hanging out watching television, when we got a phone call from the folks at our company who were attending the annual Cameron Chamber of Commerce Banquet. We put on speaker, and enjoyed our friend Melanie announce some nice awards. … Continue reading “Spousal Pride”

Sartorial Strategies

Here’s a quick one for you. Have you ever just been standing around, waiting in a line or a queue, when something about yourself hits you like a lightning bolt? I have, and it happened this morning when I was checking out and back in for another couple of days in South Carolina (more on … Continue reading “Sartorial Strategies”

Time to Pivot!

It’s been gloomy and uncharacteristically cold over here on the Eastern Seaboard today. I think it’s a record cool day. But, that’s okay. We always have something to do. One of the things I had to do today was pivot on our plans and see if we can stay here at the ole condo longer … Continue reading “Time to Pivot!”

Pancakes: The Odd Thing about South Carolina Dining Out

Yeah, many towns look exactly alike, with the same stores, same shopping areas, and same restaurants. But, still, you can find interesting local differences if you pay attention. Here are some random things we’ve been noticing in South Carolina. A Pancake and Waffle Obsession Apparently, these are most beloved. Photo by @lorenklein via Twenty20 There … Continue reading “Pancakes: The Odd Thing about South Carolina Dining Out”

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