From January to now we've changed seasons, seen heavy snow, very warm days, and finally today the springtime rain, so refreshing you can almost hear the flowers sing.
Life, like the seasons, is always changing. We take different paths, explore new areas, never fully knowing where each path will lead. Even taking old paths, it's never as it was before - perhaps a new tree, or erosion, or a secondary trail has become the choice route.
I don't know where this is going, or where I'm going, or if I need to go anywhere. Isn't life just a smattering of experiences, if we're lucky most of them will be good.
Let's do a quick catch-up/recap and see where that leads us!
February I started recording some of my walks, they can be found on my youtube channel. This was also the month that I started selling my Hiker's Guides at Local Roots.
It was a very cold, snowy, icy month. We found otter tracks in the marsh, skunks began making their appearances late in the month, witch hazel getting ready to bloom but not quite there yet.
March brought us the changing season - spring has arrived.
The spring Adventure Pack was sent out finishing the full year cycle of the Adventure Pack. I'm happy with how it all came together and I think, now that its done, it's going to evolve into something new. Ideas are brewing, I just need to find the time to sit with it.
This month we also put together a spring marsh clean-up day! With 10 volunteers over 3 hrs we were able to gather up 30 bags of trash! I'm a big believer in if you see a problem, don't complain, don't wait for someone else to fix it, take responsibility for your world and act to make it better! I'm so thankful for all of our volunteers for their hard work and ODNR for providing supplies and dumpsters.
March brought some wildly fluctuating temperatures, the migratory ducks came through, early blooming flowers like the witch hazel and skunk cabbage bloomed early in the. month. The redwing blackbirds, spring peepers, and beavers made regular appearances through the month. At the end the forsythia and daffodils and maples were blooming. The rains really started turning things green.
This time next week I'll be hanging an exhibition of my nature photography - on display and open to the public - at Wooster Community Hospital's Outpatient Pavilion. Show will be up from Earth day (April 22nd) through the end of June. All the pieces are available for purchase through this site Info Here (the hospital does not do any art sales). This will be my first solo show since 2013 and I'm so excited to see it all come together!
Although we're not even half ways through, April changes so fast there's lots to note.
April 1st brought a great snow storm that thankfully melted the next day. Out in the parks the spring ephemerals have started waking up. Cutleaf toothwort, spring beauties, trout lily greens, and dutchman's breeches greens all up in the snow. About one week later all but the trout lily are in bloom (although now they may be). It's been a hot and dry April (sounds funny saying that after noting the snow storm).
The marshes are very low right now. While out in the marsh I was watching a cormorant (diving bird) float on the water, all of a sudden 3 turkey vultures glided over in their casual manner and the cormorant got really (upset?) (excited?) and while in the water spread its wings out wide (like they do to dry) then started hopping on top of the water (trying to fly? trying to frighten them?). Eventually the turkey vultures left the area and the cormorant calmed down and continued floating.
This year I don't have a "one year study" started, or one in mind. Perhaps if I find just the right spot but until then I don't want to force a project and make this thing that I love to do a chore. You can go check out the archives at the link above, so many wonderful years recorded.
Since 2015 we have been exploring and sharing all the amazing things we’ve found in nature.
Emily is an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist who is most often found out in the woods.