Living Green


"Whether we and our politicians know it or not,
Nature is party to all our deals and decisions,
and she has more votes, a longer memory,
and a sterner sense of justice than we do."
                            --- Wendell Berry


Get outside, my friends.  

Find a path and follow it.  Spend some time in a garden.  Look up at the sky.  Breathe the fresh air.  Listen to the water.  

Connect with your environment.

Sharing Space

My yard . . . supports a lot of wildlife.  Right now, we're sharing space with several bird families.

We've got a family of sparrows tucked into this nest under the eaves.


Originally, it was a robin's nest.  But they abandoned their yet-to-be-completed nest when they realized our patio is actually a Very Busy Place.  The sparrows moved in less than an hour later!

There's a finch family living in this Boston fern hanging on my patio.


You can't see the nest, but every time I water the plant, Mama finch flies out in a huff!

Another finch family just moved out of the Boston fern on the left -- this one on my front porch. 


I think of it as "graduation."

There are robins in the hawthorn.


I found the telltale blue eggshells under the tree.

And there are blue jays in my arborvitae.


And, of course, I got caught with finches in my Christmas wreath again!


At least it's a fake this year . . . but, still.  Maybe some year I'll remember to take down my wreath in a timely manner.  Like. . . before the finches move in!

Click to embiggen.
The baby finches are getting big -- nestled in with the bird poop plastered to my front door!

In the meantime, just know that I'm happy to share my space . . . with the neighborhood birds!

Buggin' Me!

Before the end of . . . bug season. . . I wanted to share these photos with you.  Bugs . . . from my world!

A dragonfly in my garden.


I seem to have had more visiting dragonflies this year than any other year I can remember.    (I didn't notice his damaged wings until I saw the photo on my computer.)

A spider (and shadow) on our pontoon boat.


This little guy was quite small, but kind of interesting there. . . in duplicate.

A cicada on the window screen.


While kind of creepy, nothing says "late summer" like the sound of cicadas.

I'm enjoying the "bugs" in my world. . . before the cold weather sends them into hibernation!

Have a great weekend.



Market Fresh


I love visiting the Farmer's Market here in Kalamazoo! 


On Saturdays, Tom and I like go to an early spinning class at the gym . . . and then head over to the Farmer's Market on our way home.


This week, Carole has us thinking about Ten Great Things About the Farmer's Market:

  1. Fresh, local, in-season fruits and vegetables (That's really what it's all about!)
  2. Supporting local farmers  ('Nuff said!)
  3. Fresh-baked pies and breads (Tom can never resist the baked goods.)
  4. Lovely cut flowers (I especially love to pick up bunches of gladiolas!)
  5. Home-baked dog treats (Jenny doesn't come with us to the market, but she is a Very Happy Dog when we come home.)
  6. Running into friends (Although it's always too crowded for more than a quick "hello.")
  7. Atmosphere (It's just such a pleasant way to spend a bit of time on a relaxed Saturday morning.)
  8. Inspired cooking and baking (Sometimes I shop with a specific list, sometimes I just let the veggies call to me!)
  9. Sense of community (There's more of a sense of . . . being with others and feeling part of a whole . . . at the Market; so different from the grocery store.)
  10. Sample trays (I love the booths that let you sample their berries and peaches and tomatoes as you shop.  Mmmmmm!)


How about YOU?  Are you a Farmer's Market shopper?  What do you especially enjoy?


 Join the fun!  Sign up for Ten on Tuesday here.

Green . . . Any Way You Look At It


Thinking Green!

I'm off today for Master Gardener College, a 3-day extravaganza of tours, conference sessions, and field trips.

Wearing Green! 

I found this little t-shirt today. . . perfect for wearing to a garden conference.


Spending Green!

Well.  Maybe.  I'll have plenty of opportunity to buy plants, garden gadgets, and garden-themed EVERYthing.

Enjoy your weekend!


PS -- In keeping with this week's Ten on Tuesday theme of book recommendations, check out this list of Ten Terrific Summer Reads from NPR.


Green Day

"There are no passengers on Spaceship Earth.  We are all crew." -- Marshall McLuhan


I'm taking a little break** from blog-as-travelogue today to celebrate Earth Day

Every year, on Earth Day, I make a personal commitment to doing . . . something . . . to show my commitment to the environment; to take responsibility for being part of the crew.  These are small acts of green, sure.  But my small acts of green turn into habits and change the way I live.

In the past, I've committed to composting, planting a tree every year, switching out my light bulbs, using cloth diapers, organic gardening, recycling, using more native plants in my landscape, feeding the birds, growing my own herbs, attracting bees to my garden.  Things like that.


This year?  Tom and I signed up for a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share.  We're committing to the "eating local" movement as much as we can.  We're really excited to be part of the Eater's Guild CSA in Bangor, Michigan -- and we're looking forward to picking up our weekly shares, beginning next month.


It's Earth Day.  Celebrate.  Make a commitment.  What can YOU do?  (And once you decide, visit Earth Day Network and log YOUR Act of Green.)

**The photos in my blog post today are from Claude Monet's garden at Giverny in France.  I'll do a post on that incredible place next week.  In the meantime, if the beauty of Monet's garden can't inspire us to make a commitment to the Earth, I don't know what can!