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Erm, have we skipped a few months?

>> Sunday, March 18, 2012

Saturday dawned sunny, warm, and glorious, and feeling like May.  Alas, my husband, who is my usual woods walking companion, had to work.  However, my dear friend M also felt the itch to wander outdoors in all the sunshine with cameras.  He'd never been to Clark Reservation before, so I decided to take him there.

Clark Reservation was the perfect place to go.  I was afraid that some other parks (like Green Lakes) would be far, far too popular in that amazing weather, but Clark Reservation never seems overcrowded.  We had most of the trails to ourselves.

It was a glorious day for both the walk and the photography.  Poor M arrived there, took out his camera, and discovered he didn't have his SD card for it.  Oops.  Bless him, he still had infinite patience with my photography efforts, stopping and waiting for me without complaint.

I loved some of the shots that look like abstract art.

We found some very surprising early early flowers.  Bloodroot Hepatica (thanks Woodswalker!) (which according to this blog I believe the earliest I've ever seen is April 3):

some Trout Lilies just getting started but not in bloom,

and Myrtle,

which was in blossom on a prior visit to Clark Reservation on May 4, 2010.  I hope these poor brave flowers aren't shocked by a snowfall this year, but according to the forecasts I think they will shortly be joined by a lot of other early spring flowers, all at once.

Even the turtles had decided to emerge from their mud to sun themselves.

M gets the credit for spotting this shot of moss:

And M also gets the credit for being brave enough to wade into the stream to get this shot:

Here he is, just about to wade in:

All in all, it was a magnificent way to spend a Saturday afternoon.  The sunshine was positively good for my soul, and the company excellent.  I confess I am concerned about the implications of this weather relative to climate change.  But there's another part of me that is just basking in the glory of 70+ degree days and worrying about sunburn... in March.  I remember the blizzard of '93 happened in March.  What a contrast!

Enjoy the rest of my shots from the day.


A lovely May day.

>> Thursday, March 15, 2012

Wait, it's not May?  Only March?  This weather is beyond delicious!  I left work a little early this afternoon because the bright sunshine and 60+ degree weather was too enticing for me to focus.  My office was a ghost town with everyone having disappeared to watch the SU basketball game anyway, so I quietly faded toward the elevators and drifted to my car.

It was so lovely and warm that I decided to conduct my first proper spring inventory of the yard, to see what is coming up, what needs repair, and start planning which plants need what tending.  Here are some of my finds, both living and just picturesque.

The dogs thought this whole outside on the line with Mom thing was fantastic.  They warmed their bones in the sunshine and on the warm concrete.

I spent some time trying to photograph them, and noted that Phoebe has a lot of different looks.  Most of the time I think she looks like a complete mutt, with a bit of the Shar Pei evident.  Shar Pei wrinkles:

She's fairly delicately built, being about 50 pounds of sinew on a lean frame. Sometimes she reminds me of a bat, and I often think she looks like Zuul.  I tend to think of her as having a narrow head.  But in certain lights she looks very much like a stocky "Pit Bull" (one of the several varieties of them, anyway), which she isn't - not even a little bit.  But I suppose the Rottweiler and Bulldog are what are showing when she looks like this.

For all my efforts at photographing dogs, this was how I inevitably wound up.

But what better way to spend the early evening than with dogs and camera?  I didn't really mind the trip hazards.  Incidentally, the cats were also enjoying the weather.

Believe it or not, that's Tucker's happy expression, crotchety old man that he is.

Finally, I know it's officially spring because the boxelder bugs are out, partying and living it up on our front porch.

Frankly, I like boxelder bugs.  They seem like friendly critters to me and we share our house with them year round, inside and out. Friends tend to think we're nuts that we just let them wander about the house.  We tend to get strange looks and "Um, aren't you going to kill that bug?" But I haven't the heart.  There's no reason they can't share my house.  After all, it's already crowded with two humans and seven pets.  What are a few little bugs going to hurt?


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