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Come Walk in the Woods With Me

Sunday, April 11, 2010

I want to share with you the wildflower walk I took today. I think it will take more than 1 blog, so if you enjoy the walk, please watch for my second blog. We did get some clouds today, so I have another altocumulus cloud photo to add to my cloud journal.

As you can see, it was another exquisite day in Ohio!

As I had hoped to, I was able to take a walk in the nature preserve this afternoon. Last year, I timed it wrong and missed the early spring blooms, but this year, I hit it just right. Many of my favorite wildflowers were in bloom; I hope you will enjoy them as much as I do.

One of the flowers I was really hoping not to miss was the giant trillium - they are so beautiful!

This is its humbler cousin, the toad trillium, which I am also very fond of.


This is a cut leaf toothwort, which as positively gleaming in the sun today.

I love the way the Virginia bluebells can grow so precipitously along the rocky outcroppings.

Another flower that I was very happy not to have missed is the hepatica. They have tiny blooms and tuck themselves in so you have to watch for them.

The marsh marigold adds brilliant splashes of yellow to the woodland floor.

The sweet yellow violet adds it's bright color in little sparks instead of the blanket of color offered by the marsh marigold.

The Dutchman's britches bloom in graceful arcs.

They squeeze into nooks and crannies, rocky ledges, tree roots, their delicate flowers brighten any part of the woods.

The bell worts offer a subtle touch of yellow.

The trout lilies are almost at the end of their blooming season, so I was very happy to find some still in bloom.

If you have enjoyed these, watch for my next Spring Walk blog.

This has been a very satisfying and inspirational day for me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STARLASUE 4/14/2010 8:24AM


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MEOWMAMA3 4/12/2010 7:47PM


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LORIAPO 4/12/2010 9:55AM

    LOVED this blog!!!
There are sure a lot that I am just seeing for the first time and thank you for labeling them all...
I really got a kick out of the Dutchman's britches bloom
and of course, the bluebells on the rock outcropping because somehow I have a fondness for rock and flowers!
I am looking forward to the next one!
emoticon emoticon

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LAURIES_PLACE 4/11/2010 11:00PM

  Ah, wonderful! I love doing just what you did today. Off to read #2!

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ANNIEBLOSSOM 4/11/2010 8:30PM

    Thank you for the lovely walk! I enjoyed learning the names of the different types of wildflowers. :) Just the right inspiration I needed for today! emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 4/11/2010 7:31PM

    This is lovely -- and I absolutely want to see the next instalment! Our spring is a little later and so far the only wildflower I've seen blooming is bright yellow colts' foot. But while on the golf course today, I was checking the deciduous forest floor. Trillium is the provincial flower for Ontario and in addition to the big white ones (which mature to a soft pink) we also have a quite large deep red trillium with the traditional trillium leaf, generally referred to as a "wake robin". And very occasionally I've seen a double hybrid hepatica: like a small white rosette! Bluebell doesn't occur naturally here, but I did plant some bulbs in a sheltered corner of my garden: nothing yet.

Thank you!

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0309COOKIE 4/11/2010 7:25PM

    Your blogs are always such a pleasant surprise. This one was great. What a wonderful variety of flowers are depicted. I don't know which one I like the best. They're all pretty cool in their own way. Thanks for a picturesque walk in the woods.

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JUST_TRI_IT 4/11/2010 6:44PM

    How nice! Not only are the photos wonderful, but thanks for including all the names! I'll come back for more later :)

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SCIFIREADER 4/11/2010 6:38PM

    Thanks for sharing, enjoyed the pictures alot.

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OLDERDANDRT 4/11/2010 6:29PM

    Just lovely! I felt almost as if I was with you on your walk! You are quite a photographer, too!! I waill definitely be looking for your next Spring walk blog!! Beautiful! Thank you for posting this wonderful pictorial.


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LUVSBULLDOGS 4/11/2010 6:14PM

    Very nice. Thanks for posting.

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PENNYAN45 4/11/2010 6:04PM

    A beautiful walk in the woods! Thanks for taking us along!
Your photos are lovely.


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The Domestic Help

Saturday, April 10, 2010

emoticon Oh, I forgot - I'm a school teacher!

My domestic help are my trees, flowers, vegetables, birds, deer, coyotes - all of the things around me that bring joy to my life. "Coyotes?" you say? I love to hear them sing at night. They run along the creek banks yodeling. They are, however, the reason I needed a more secure chicken coop before getting the babies.

Yesterday was wildflower day, so today, it is the domestic help:

Redbud blossoms against a perfect sky


More Narcissus

And yet another



On a more serene note, this is my granddaughter, Lilee's, memorial tree. Below is a detail of the buds.

Below her tree is a lily garden, and close by is my meditation garden with water lilies. The water garden photo is from last year.

I look forward to spending time in my meditation garden this summer.

Have a very lovely Saturday. Find time to enjoy friends and family, take in the world around you, play, laugh, and breathe in spring.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STARLASUE 4/14/2010 8:26AM

    Don't you just love spring????? AAAHHHHHHH

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EVLOBOS310 4/12/2010 8:28PM

    Absolutely beautiful pictures, thank you for sharing them with us!

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MEOWMAMA3 4/12/2010 7:44PM

    Delightful! Love the baby bird! I hope you enjoy looooooong quiet moments relaxing and meditating in your special spot this summer!

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LUVSBULLDOGS 4/11/2010 10:59PM

    We have cayotes and owls, no chickens.

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KATIEGLEN012 4/11/2010 5:52PM


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SM-ARTGIRL 4/11/2010 8:47AM

    Spring is just so breathtakingly beautiful, beautiful, beautiful where you live!
Awesome blog, glad I dropped in!

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    Thanks for sharing your pictures. I enjoyed viewing you photos. Visiting your main photos I found much we have in common. I was raised in a musical houshold (bluegrass/ barbershop/ theater). Dad made furniture, Mom's art was singing and baking.
My girls also, one is music teacher and vocalist.
Art makes life more fun.

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    Gorgeous! We have coyotes, bobcats and owls that I need to protect my chickens from.

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MARY1313 4/11/2010 12:58AM

    Beautiful! Our redbuds are in full bloom and also the dogwoods. The tulip trees are on the wane. I love the awakening of the world!!!!

Thanks for this. I loved the bird!


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BILLTMAN 4/10/2010 6:01PM

    Beautiful photography. I used to do a lot of photography but just haven't found the time lately. I will get back to it eventually.

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AIMFOR32 4/10/2010 5:19PM

    Thanks for sharing your pics! They're lovely...especially your meditation garden.

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JUST_TRI_IT 4/10/2010 2:15PM

    LOVELY!!! The lily pad is a wonder.. so tranquil :)

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0309COOKIE 4/10/2010 2:06PM

    I was so focused on the flowers that I almost missed the beautiful little bird. Wonderful blog.

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BUNNYSPAL 4/10/2010 1:07PM

    Beautiful pictures. Obviously not from northern Ontario. We had snow and freezing rain the last two days. I really liked the picture with the little bird.

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PINETREEGIRL 4/10/2010 12:42PM

    Ah, we have coyotes also--two of them who come by time to time and sleep under our cedar tree. I love them, and this winter had a very child-like urge to feed them! They howl if they're in the neighborhood and there is an emergency vehicle dispatched (We're just a couple miles away from a fire station). I think that they hear a siren and consider it to be a friend or kindred spirit!

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MARYMAC45 4/10/2010 11:31AM

    Oh I just love your pictures. I love flowers & shrubs. Have a lot of them here. We have a Mmagnolia memorial tree for our daughter. Enjoy you day and the rest of the weekend.

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RASTUS55 4/10/2010 11:31AM

    Beautiful SPRING pictures....we are getting there slow but sure. We have some beauties peaking out but we had a couple nights of frost again. I hope that didn't get my lilac buds again this year!! Thanks for sharing!

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What's Up?

Friday, April 09, 2010

What's up?

Well, a most magnificently blue sky dappled with altocumulus clouds. The wind is blowing clod today, but it has been impossible to stay inside any longer than necessary. It is an exquisitely beautiful day.

My walk revealed an array of wildflowers emerging from the rich loamy soil of the woods.

Pale, almost white, violets are up..

Dark violet violets are up..

Spring beauties are up...

Trout lilies are up..

May apples are up..

Solomon's seal is up..

Wild ginger is up..

Ramps are up..

Green dragons are up..

My mood is up...

The clouds and sky inspired and motivated me today. I think I may start a cloud and bloom journal, at least for a while. Perhaps because the winter sky was relentlessly gray with looming, dark, low slung clouds I am so enthralled with the drama of the changes of cloud formations and the different hues and depths of color of the sky.

Hidden under the snow accumulations, protected by the insulating thick blanket of snow, the first flowers lay dormant, waiting for just such changes in the weather. It is so gratifying to see my old friends emerge each spring. I have been watching for my jack-in-the-pulpits and the first fronds of the woodland ferns, but they are still waiting for the perfect conditions for them.

I also took photographs of the first buds of the flowering trees and of some of the narcissus gracing the borders. They will have to have their own page though.

I am looking forward to having time to walk in the nature preserve this weekend, to relaxing, to getting my hands into the vegetable garden dirt, and to having time to play music.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PUDLECRAZY 4/12/2010 9:26PM

I'm a total flower geek!

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MEOWMAMA3 4/12/2010 7:42PM

    Oh Chris, I enjoyed this walk in the woods!!! I'm impressed with your horticultural knowledge! I remember jack in the pulpits from living on the edge of the woods when I was a kid! emoticon

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SM-ARTGIRL 4/11/2010 8:53AM

    I think your smile is as fresh and uplifting as the Spring emerging around you.

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    I always look down on walks for things to make me look up. I've many a bloom in my albums. You've encouraged me to spend some time out to day, looking down to look up!

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LUVSBULLDOGS 4/10/2010 6:14PM

    Thanks for posting this. Very nice pictures.

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KRITTERKEEPERS 4/10/2010 10:13AM

    Beautiful photos! Thank you for getting my day started with beauty!

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JUST_TRI_IT 4/10/2010 9:11AM

    Lovely blog!! :) Getting down low we notice so much coming up!

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MARY1313 4/10/2010 12:55AM

    Oh I love love love this blog! And you are quite beautiful in your self portrait, I see the joy of being alive in Spring on yuor pretty face!!!


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OLDERDANDRT 4/9/2010 10:44PM

    Sounds perfect! You have a way with words and love the pictures!!! Have a great night and a beautiful weekend!!

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WATERMELLEN 4/9/2010 9:47PM

    I've got lots of scylla in bloom right now too -- and I love them -- just not seeing the scylla-ness of your image, I guess! Thanks.

And: thanks for adding me back!!

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PUDLECRAZY 4/9/2010 9:44PM

    The blue flower on my wallpaper is a scilla. It is one of my earliest blooms.

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WATERMELLEN 4/9/2010 9:35PM

    What a glorious blog -- what a glorious smile -- you inspire me to head out looking for spring beauties tomorrow (although it may be a bit too cold here just yet).

Don't recognize the blue flower in your wallpaper --- can you help?

Comment edited on: 4/9/2010 9:36:32 PM

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PENNYAN45 4/9/2010 9:21PM

    A beautiful springtime photo blog!! Thanks for sharing it with us. Have a GREAT weekend!!!

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0309COOKIE 4/9/2010 8:54PM

    What a great story you tell. Loved learning all the different plant names.

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KELRAJ 4/9/2010 8:42PM

    You pictures are a fresh of breathe air!! I just love seeing all the fresh new plants as well. Enjoy your weekend! emoticon

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FREELADY 4/9/2010 6:48PM

    What a delight to find out the names of all the plants!

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LMB-ESQ 4/9/2010 6:42PM

    Beautiful, Chris! Happy Spring!

My mother has May apples growing all over her woods, but I never knew that's what they were called.

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MARYMAC45 4/9/2010 6:39PM

    Great photo's. Love your plants. OH how I love Spring, a new surprise every day on your walk. ENJOY!

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Chicks 'N All

Thursday, April 08, 2010

The babies are really growing! They are really feathering out; it is now so easy to tell the barred rocks from the australorps as the barred rocks are developing distinctive striping. Denty is an australorp hen - I am so happy that she is a girl!

One of the barred rock babies.

Denty - the little chick that hatched from the egg that almost didn't make it.

The student concert went very well. The children were exuberant, and the parents delighted. The parent who emailed me wondering if her child was required to come, arrived right on time with her child and had a ball. All of their research reports and projects (which were really cool) were on display in the hall, so parents had a great time looking over the results of everyone's hard work after the concert. It was a very pleasant evening.

As I mentioned in yesterday's blog, I have been hectically busy, so it's been hard to get in all of my exercise routines. However, I have been getting in my 10,000 steps, and sometimes more that that each day. I have been enjoying my long walks with Stella in the morning before work, one when I get home, and our evening walks together. This evening, it was a bit chilly after being unseasonably hot for the past week, but the evening was lovely nonetheless.

Really, the beauty around me can take my breath away. It is hard to stay fixed on daily irritations when put in the perspective of the grander scheme of things. I love my walks for that more than any other benefits - they are a moving meditation. They center me and offer balance to the busy 'noise' of the day and of my mind.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEOWMAMA3 4/12/2010 7:45PM

    Peep, peep! The sunset is incredible! Where do you live?

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SIRIRADHA 4/9/2010 5:16PM

    I want your chick babies!!! They're just darling.

Stella's lucky to have such a good mom! All that walking really adds up. You are doing an absolutely amazing job sticking with it while you're so busy. If you're worried about getting in the strength training, just do an exercise or two every time you visit the restroom. That's another area where a whole lot of little bits makes a big difference.

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OLDERDANDRT 4/9/2010 1:58PM

    You are busy, but you're doing great! So glad that Denty is turning out so nicely!! So cute!
Getting in those steps and some exercise, you just keep it up, b/c I tink you're doing something right!!!

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    Love the chick photos. They are soooo cute! I'm so happy to hear Denty is doing well!

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SILVERWITCH59 4/9/2010 9:19AM

    emoticonthey are getting big! Denty looks great :)

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0309COOKIE 4/9/2010 12:28AM

    The baby chicks are adorable. I always look forward to your blogs. They always have some fun and inspiration.

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STARLASUE 4/8/2010 10:02PM

    Too sweet.

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ANITA_66 4/8/2010 9:50PM

    Aww the baby chicks are soo cute! Thanks for sharing..
Every bit of exercise helps even the 10,000 steps..they count..lol..

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Wednesday, April 07, 2010

*Faculty meeting plus parent conferences today
*Student concert Thursday
*Parent conferences Friday
*Finding new theater for spring musical production after getting a raw deal from the original theater
*Rehearsing the children (cast of 30)
*Dishwasher kapput
*Chicks (doing very well - growing by leaps and bounds)
*Stella the goofball (who was a total princess today in class - I'm so proud of her!)
*Getting in my walks, yoga, and strength training

The sacrificial lambs: playing my guitar, keeping the house organized

Ahhh, spring, glorious spring! I love it, but this is only the tip of the Being Busy Iceberg until June, which is a very funny month because everything comes to a screeching halt after the rapidly increasing demands of April and May.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MEOWMAMA3 4/12/2010 7:40PM

    Ah, the teacher's life! I know just what you mean!!! The dust bunny family reunion is being held at my house this year (who am I kidding, every year!). We just had a meeting today and our school has been given the resources and support for an edible garden and I stayed to be part of it and I'm really excited on the one hand but sat there saying "What are you getting yourself into now???" on the other hand. Glad I have no theatrical productions in the works this year....how well I know THAT stress! Good news, it always works out in the end! Good luck and when is Stella coming to Philly to be MY student teacher????

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SILVERWITCH59 4/8/2010 8:26PM

    emoticon emoticon

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OLDERDANDRT 4/8/2010 2:44PM

    Enjoy your rat race of Spring. June is not far off! Busy, busy, busy!!! Just remember not to burn your candle at both ends so you can enjoy the relaxation of the Summer months!! Special commendations to the 'diva' for being soo good. I'm sure she always is, though.


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MARY1313 4/8/2010 1:29AM

    whew!!!! emoticon

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PENNYAN45 4/8/2010 12:33AM

    It was knowing that June was just around the corner that would keep me going in April and May as the tempo increased and the demands piled high.

Summer was always a time for relaxing and recharging my battery and reading books!!

Summer was always the light at the end of the tunnel.


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