Perspective

 

“One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, ‘What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew I would never see it again?'”

~Rachel Carson, (1907-1964) American marine biologist and conservationist

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This is a young mule deer grazing in Bryce Canyon National Park.

Turkey Day is coming!

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Wild Turkeys are numerous and their populations have increased sharply since 1966, according to the North American Breeding Survey.  They live year-round in open forests with interspersed clearings in 49 states (excluding Alaska), parts of Mexico, and parts of southern Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan, Canada.  In the early twentieth century people tried unsuccessfully to use farm turkeys for restoring wild populations, but in the late 1940s they began to successfully transplant wild-caught turkeys into suitable habitat.

No other game bird has responded so well to the efforts of game managers. The birds are popular among hunters; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates 21 percent of all U.S. hunters (about 2.5 million people) pursue turkey, making it the second most-sought game after deer. Their expanding populations have made it possible for hunting seasons to be put in place in all 49 states in their range. (Source: allaboutbirds.org)

Isn’t this a handsome group of turkeys just strolling down the road?

A Conscious Choice

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“Both abundance and lack exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend… when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that’s present — love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature and personal pursuits that bring us pleasure — the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience heaven on earth.”

~Sarah Ban Breathnach, Author of Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy (first published in 1995)

Contentment

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This was the first time that I had ever viewed a real bison!  My husband and I were driving through Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota.  We happened upon this big guy basking  in the sun and stopped to take a photo.  It was only then that I noticed all of the sweet little prairie dogs running around him.  Such a contrast the two species were to one another, but both accepted the presence of the other.  They also seemed content with letting me and my husband just watch them for awhile.  So, there we all were — the humans, the bison, and the prairie dogs.  A pleasant moment for me permanently captured.

(Don’t worry!  I did not leave my car to approach this handsome animal. I have too much respect for his power.)

Howdy, Dusty Miller!

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Sometimes when I hear the name, “Dusty Miller,” I think of a sweet, old-fashioned cowboy with a heart of gold.  You know the type — someone who gets along with everybody.  And, in my humble opinion, this is also a pretty good description of the silvery gray plant with lacy foliage that goes by the same name.  White, wooly hairs cover the leaves and give them the appearance of having been dusted with flour.  Dusty miller is the perfect companion for just about every vibrant and flashy flower in a garden.  Only deer seem to take an exception to it and gardners often agree that this is probably for the best.
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Amidst the Simple Beauty

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“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As longs as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.”

~ Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

The Man in the Arena

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt, Citizenship in a Republic:  April 23, 1910,  Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, France

 

To read all of President Theodore Roosevelt’s speech, please visit:

http://www.theodore-roosevelt.com/trsorbonnespeech.html

 

Nature will…

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“If you are driven by fear, anger or pride nature will force you to compete. If you are guided by courage, awareness, tranquility and peace nature will serve you.”     ~ Amit Ray, Nonviolence: The Transforming Power

(Dr. Amit Ray is an Indian author, and spiritual master. He is best known for his Om meditation and integrated yoga and vipassana meditation techniques. He is author of several books on meditation and other spiritual topics.)

From a Distance

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From a distance the world looks blue and green,

     and the snow-capped mountains white.

From a distance the ocean meets the stream,

     and the eagle takes to flight.

From a distance, there is harmony,

     and it echoes through the land.

It’s the voice of hope, it’s the voice of peace,

     it’s the voice of every man.

from the lyrics for ‘From A Distance’ (Bette Midler)

Future Generations

“If future generations are to remember us with gratitude rather than contempt, we must leave them more than the miracles of technology. We must leave them a glimpse of the world as it was in the beginning, not just after we got through with it.”

~ President Lyndon B. Johnson, upon signing the Wilderness Act of 1964

The Green Heron

I once had the good fortune to discover a Green Heron living on a local pond.  I visited regularly over the course of one summer.  He/she became accustomed enough to me and my camera that I could sit quietly on the shore and watch its daily activities.  All of these shots were taken one beautiful summer afternoon on a pond in Minnesota.

According to allaboutbirds.com, Green Herons live around wooded ponds, marshes, rivers, reservoirs, and estuaries.  They are common and widespread, but can be difficult to notice at first. Whereas larger herons tend to stand prominently in open parts of wetlands, Green Herons tend to be at the edges, in shallow water, or concealed in vegetation. To find one, visit a wetland and carefully scan the banks looking for a small, hunch-backed bird with a long, straight bill staring intently at the water.

Green Herons stand motionless at the water’s edge as they hunt for fish and amphibians. They typically stand on vegetation or solid ground, and they don’t wade as often as larger herons.

The Green Heron is one of the world’s few tool-using bird species. It creates fishing lures with bread crusts, insects, earthworms, twigs, feathers, and other objects, dropping them on the surface of the water to entice small fish.

Water Wisely

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“The grass is not, in fact, always greener on the other side of the fence.  Fences have nothing to do with it.  The grass is greenest where it is watered.  When crossing over fences, carry water with you and tend the grass wherever you may be.”

~Robert Fulghum, American author

Source: It was on Fire When I Lay Down on it (1988)