Category Nature

The Return of the Skunk

I thought I’d seen the last of our skunk visitor after it spent a day in our chicken pen with a peanut butter jar stuck on its head. Alas, that was not the case: It came back for another involuntary sojourn in the pen. Paul had set out a live trap to capture the raccoon […]

More Rainbows and Giant Pumpkins

Another spectacular rainbow visited us recently. Alas, neither Emery nor her phone was here to enjoy it. That was especially unfortunate since this rainbow seemed to be ending in the field behind our house; I could almost imagine the pot of gold nestled in the grass. I may not have any gold, but I DO […]

A Good Day to Be a Duck

Last week, I arrived at the Owen Park Band Shell a little early; I play oboe in the Eau Claire Municipal Band, and we weren’t supposed to be set up and ready to play until 7:00 pm. That gave me about 15 minutes to wander around the park. Actually, the more accurate verb was “slosh.” […]

Little Doe

For the past two months, a deer has been grazing placidly alongside the sheep in a neighboring field. When she first appeared, I thought it was a fluke, a lovely four-legged passerby who would vanish within days. But she’s still there, and she’s gone from being “the little doe in Toby’s field” to “Little Doe.” […]

City Mice Invade the Countryside

Recently, my dear urban-dwelling friend the City Mouse visited us with her two Little Mice in tow. Their sojourn here in the countryside was not only a great chance to reunite with people (or mice) that I love, but it reminded me how important it is for kids to have some chances to bond with […]

The Snow Day

The warnings were almost apocalyptic last Tuesday morning: “Almost a foot of snow!” “Blowing!” “Drifting” “Treacherous roads!” “White out conditions!” Although the world was calm and lovely, trees coated in hoarfrost, valleys distant and dreamlike under their spell, local meteorologists were adamant that the peace was only temporary. The world was holding its breath, waiting […]

The Birthday Walk

I took my first Birthday Walk last year, a long meandering journey through the back roads near my house. To be honest, it was more of a Birthday Escape than a Birthday Walk; I was feeling tired, overwhelmed, and unwilling to speak to anyone. But nobody could have remained cranky when brightly clad trees were […]