Master Naturalist Meeting: A Prairie and Wetland PLUS

I’m too tired to do much writing, but my first day of the 2022 Texas Master Naturalist conference in Houston was really fun. What a pleasant and educational day.

See how happy I was?

The day started out with a trip to Sheldon Lake State Park. If you are ever wherever it is, go visit! It’s even free and very easy for people with mobility challenges to enjoy.

Prairie area

This whole park has been reclaimed to have native plants through hard work of volunteers. So much digging and planting! We learned a lot from the park ranger and two really cool volunteers. They showed us what they did, how they propagate plants, and the history of the place.

I spent a lot of time taking pictures of plants and pollinators for the BioBlitz. I even got to see a new butterfly! I sure love learning new plants and insects.

After we got back (I was able to carpool with two nice folks) I ran into friends from home. We decided to go check out Buffalo bayou next to the Omni Hotel we’re staying at. I have to tell you, wandering the weedy area on the other side of the fancy office buildings was as fun as any organized field trip.

So many fun plants and insects! I swear the monarchs posed.

Ann and Jackie are always lots of fun, and Ann is so good with plants! We saw many native trees and so many vines. And though not much was blooming, some daisy-like plants attracted entire hives’ worth of bees and wasps. We had a blast!

Once we were done I came up and rested, then met up with folks from our chapter for dinner and drinks. This hotel has great food. And we went to the “whiskey bar” later. We had great conversations in such a warm and elegant atmosphere. A good day!

Book Report: Restoring Your Historic House

I saw a little blurb in This Old House magazine, saying this new book is a “must-read” for anyone restoring an old house. Why, I’m renovating an old house, which is close. So, I ordered two copies, one for me and one for Kathleen, of Restoring Your Historic House: The Comprehensive Guide for Homeowners, by Scott Hanson (2019). At 720 pages, it has a good chance of being comprehensive, anyway!

This post will have two parts, one in which I review the book, and the other in which I talk about the choices we have made on the Pope house that do or don’t follow Hanson’s recommendations.

By the way, we now have TWO stuffed animals for kids to find, and we’re going to put Easter eggs in the window, too. Look at that original stained glass! Look at that trim! Let’s keep it.
Continue reading “Book Report: Restoring Your Historic House”
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