Friday, April 24, 2009

A walk in the woods

The kidlet and I returned to one of our favourite spring haunts today. The trails at Wellesley Island State Park are, simply put, the best science lab and the best gym a homeschooling family could ever hope to find. We find it to be most beautiful in the spring of the year, when everything is waking up again after the long, cold winter.

The Ospreys, whose regional population was nearly decimated in the middle of the 20th century, is clearly thriving in the region now. One swooped in front of our windshield as we crossed the Thousand Islands bridge this morning, the closest we have ever come to this bird of prey.

After dozens of excursions to the beaver pond, we finally spotted the busy engineer at work, and were treated to its iconic slap of the tail against the surface of the water.

The Canada Geese appear to be settling in to their nesting grounds, and may have already begun to lose their flight feathers. This one made no effort to fly away as we walked past its section of the marsh.

No sooner did I wonder aloud if the garter snakes were awake yet, did the first of a dozen rustle through the leaves and taste the air.

The chipmunks entertained us with their Napoleonic posturing.

And, to our utter, utter surprise and delight, we saw the season's first ~

~ wildwood flower, ~

~ butterfly, and, ~


Saturday, April 18, 2009

They're back!

Some of my favourite birds are back, much to my delight!

The delightful harbinger of spring, ready to make her nest.

The Great Blue Heron was patiently waiting for the pickerel.

The ospreys have returned to their nest near the Lennox Power Generating Station.

And away they go ...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Great minds think alike

As I have previously mentioned in these pixellated ramblings, I greatly admire the President and the First Lady. I was especially impressed by Mrs. Obama's initiative in planting a Victory Garden on the South Lawn of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and I was charmed by the fact that the President and the Secretary of State held a meeting at the picnic table adjacent to Sasha and Malia's swing set. What a breath of fresh air, eh?

The other day, as I was blissfully hanging the laundry out to soak up the sun, I mused that it would be awesome if the First Family started using a clothesline as well. Surely, if anyone deserved the God-given luxury of sleeping on line-dried sheets, it's our President and our lovely First Lady.

It appears that I am not the only person who is so obsessed with clotheslines. There is already an online petition to ask the First Family of the United States to dry their clothes on the White House lawn during a one day photo op. This symbolic act will send the message to America and the world that our nation is ready to regain energy independence.

I urge all of my friends to go and sign the petition. Let the fresh breezes continue to blow through this great land.

Monday, April 06, 2009

This is as it should be

As a Canadian citizen married to a (now retired) American soldier, I have often lamented the vastly different ways in which the media of our respective homelands have covered the deaths of soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq. While the Canadian media puts the relatively rare casualties of Operation Enduring Freedom at the top of the newscast and often breaks into regularly scheduled programming to cover the repatriation of fallen soldiers at CFB Trenton, its American counterparts were prevented from doing the same for the fallen soldiers of OIF and OEF.

Until now.

President Obama directed Secretary Gates to review the ban on media coverage of the repatriation ceremonies at Dover Air Force Base. Now, with the approval of family members, the media is able to observe and report about the return of our fallen heroes.

The first hero to be honoured in this manner is Air Force Staff Sgt Philip Myers. May he rest in peace.