Archive for the ‘Nature’ Category

Park Your Horse at the Minute Market

Saturday, July 9th, 2011

It’s not every day that I see horses parked at the Minute Market across the street from my office, but occasionally, I’ll see one or two horses quickly cross the busy highway, the rider parking her horse in the parking lot as she rushes in to purchase something at Oregon’s version of the 7 Eleven.

These horses seem quite used to this routine, unphased by the traffic and the curious stares of passersby.

Within a couple of minutes, one of the two riders returned and off they went.

Speaking of horses in unexpected places, I was taking a walk in my town, which is near the countryside, and saw a woman leaning over to brush what I thought was a young girls’ very long blonde hair.  But when I got closer, I was surprised at what it really was:

Here’s a close up of the same fellow, who I realized had just featured his show-off performance in the town’s recent parade:

Dark Mornings But What a Sunrise!

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Until we get our time change, it’s awfully dark driving to work in the mornings.

But earlier this week, after 24 hours of steady rain, I was greeted by this beautiful sunrise breaking through the dispersing clouds.  This photo doesn’t do the actual event justice, but it gives a small hint!

Equine Encounter

Friday, October 15th, 2010

As I was coming into a clearing this morning on my walk, I found a horse looking right at me through the madrones.  It was a beautiful sight!

Within seconds, another horse and its rider came galloping up a slope to meet its friend, and here they are rejoined.

Beautiful Fall

Monday, October 4th, 2010

There was a distinct nip in the air today and leaves are starting to turn colors everywhere.  I love the slant of the sun, especially in those “golden hours” between 4-6 pm.

I took a walk after work today and was treated to such lovely warm light.

On the home front, all continues very well with Steve’s acclimatization to his new home.

I had taken some days off to spend at home with Steve and his new flock, and by last night Steve had relaxed enough that the nail chewing was decreasing.  Another great sign of progress was that he was very active – moving all over the upper part of his cage, finding hidden pellets, and even choosing a new night perch.  And very best of all, he never took his eyes off me, coming to be close to me on his door perch, waiting for treats and to see what I might do next.  He was starting to engage with his surroundings and his new person!   As I sat next to his cage watching a DVD last night, I looked up at him and had the sense that he was beginning to feel happiness.  That made me smile – big time!

Fall Rains Begin

Saturday, September 18th, 2010

Rain-washed Madrone Trunk

Although Fall is not officially here till next week, it has arrived with some gentle rains that are soaking into a very parched landscape.  Unlike northern Oregon, which receives lots of rain throughout the year, southern Oregon has a summer like most areas in California:  very dry.

There are many madrone woods near my home, and I love how the rain brings out the intense colors of the inner bark (the lighter tan) and the darker outer bark that is currently shedding in long strips everywhere.  The madrone above went through quite a fire but grew new bark around the dead part.  It has amazing regenerative powers.

Another Madrone trunk

No two madrones look alike, though they share basic characteristics.


And then there are the mosses – give them a hint of rain or moisture, and they spring back to life.

I hope you are enjoying these Fall days as much as I am!

Fall is Coming

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

Poison Oak Leaves

I woke up several times early this morning, each time hearing flocks of geese honking above my head.

Around 7 am, another line of geese flew so close that I thought they were going to land on my roof – they were that loud!  It was absolutely wonderful.  I never lose the feeling of awe and thrill when I hear the geese migrating.  It really pulls at me on a deep level, and I always end up sending out thoughts of “go safe and come back in the spring”!

The leaves are beginning to turn.  We haven’t had any frosts here yet, but the nights are getting nippy, even though the days have been in the mid-80s F.

I love the slant of the sun in these pre-fall days and how it begins to turn golden as the afternoons shorten.

My walk today took me through the old Pioneer Cemetery in town.  I walked right past two does with their fawns.  The fawn’s spots are nearly gone, being quickly replaced by their first winter coats.

This is one of the trails I walked on today during the quiet of the morning.  It was lovely!

Early fall trail through the madrones and oaks

Dusk Visitor

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

I found this young skunk just outside my back door, foraging on seed fallen from the bird feeder.   He/she? wasn’t fussed by my presence, but just the same, I closed the door quickly and quietly!

Strutting Tom Turkey

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

I wish I’d had my camera with me when I came across this male turkey displaying his stuff to his female hangers-on!  He was quite gorgeous and Thanksgiving postcard perfect!  Unfortunately, I had only my phone camera to capture him, so the details are very poor.

It was taken around 4:30 pm after a day of heavy rainfall.  There was a brief break in the weather, the sun shone through, and there they were.  Next time, I’ll bring my camera!

Cherry Blossoms

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

I was in Ashland, Oregon today and wandered appreciatively through lovely Lithia Park, where tiny green leaves are sprouting everywhere, and some trees are blossoming – especially these beautiful cherry trees near the Zen garden.

The setting was so lovely!

Spring Has Sprung!

Sunday, March 21st, 2010

Now that we are officially in the spring season, spring has complied completely around here.  The plum trees are glorious, and with gusts of spring winds, the falling blossoms appear like pink snow.

The local Fawn Lilies (above) and Shooting Stars are making some dramatic appearances.

And it’s not just flowers that are busily blooming.  The bees in the local cemetery are hard at work tending to the flowers!  You don’t see them here, but they are busily humming in and out of the snag at the bottom of this Madrone tree. (Someone has kindly placed a warning to stay a respectful distance.)