Setting off on a nature walk in our neighborhood with two of our very young grandchildren.
Look for things Mama will like and we’ll make her a birthday present out of them. If you see anything interesting lets take a clipping of it or pick it up and put it in our pockets.How bout this if it isn’t too pokey?
Yes, my love, what a good idea.Back at home we set all of our collected treasures out on a tray with some twine and a sturdy branch and begin to select items to tie on to the branch.
That’s it; put your finger right there while I tie the knot. Thank you. Let’s do the next one too. That’s so helpful. Let’s see, a bit of moss, some pinecones, a magnolia cone, and what else? Of course, the turkey feather, the rose hips, some twigs, and the heart rock. Those are all great choices! Where should we put the ribbons? Oh, Mama is sure to love this! What do you think?And here, hanging from a tree branch in their backyard, positioned right outside the kitchen window, is the nature mobile. I’m sure it brings a smile to her face and brightens her day each time my daughter in law looks out the window.Happy Birthday Danielle!
As you’re driving on Highway 50 toward South Lake Tahoe, just before you reach Echo Summit, take a look up to your left (way up!) and notice the breath taking sight of Horsetail Falls.
Starting out early in the day with good friends, we arrived when the parking lot was nearly empty, and set out for a day of laughter, adventure, exercise, and enormous doses of the healing only Mother Nature provides.
The hike is a mix of lovely wooded trails and wide open granite rocks, all along refreshing pools, small waterfalls and streams.
Don’t forget to stop every once in awhile just to soak up the stunning views in all directions.
The majority of the hike is not well marked and we found ourselves in search of the trail a number of times. Also, be prepared to do a bit of rock climbing rather than hiking during some parts of the hike.
Ahh, there’s a cairn. We’re on the right path.Be sure to notice all the love notes from nature along the way!Everywhere!
Without fail, spending time in nature is consistently the restorative tonic that fills up my soul! Where do you go when you need to refuel?
I think it’s safe to say that the best weekends involve some hiking, a chance for a little get away to the mountains or the shore, exhilarating fresh air and the incredibly beautiful vistas mother nature has to offer us.
We recently hiked the Glen Alpine Trail in South Lake Tahoe. To get there you must drive the long one lane road along the south shore of gorgeous Fallen Leaf Lake. I’m certainly not complaining; look at this incredible view from the car!We parked in the parking lot near the general store and walked a little over a mile to get to the trail head. There is limited parking closer to the trailhead, but we’ve always enjoyed the walk. Along the way we passed the lower falls which were just trickling, and the cozy Saint Francis of the Mountains chapel where a wedding was underway. I refrained from taking a photo, wanting to give them their privacy, but it was truly a lovely sight.Once we got to the trailhead we were gifted with meadows, springs, historical sites, rushing waterfalls, and stunning view of Mount Tallac all along this secluded mountain trail.John Muir was just one of the many hikers who found the trail unforgettable, writing that it “seems to me one of the most delightful places in all the famous Tahoe region. From no other valley, as far as I know, may excursions be made in a single day to see so many peaks, wild gardens, glacier lakes, glacier meadows, and alpine groves, cascades, etc.”His words are perfect. We found all of that and a whole lot of love!
South Lake Tahoe, only an hours drive from our home, is our favorite place to get away to. The list of things to do in and around Tahoe is unending, and no matter what we choose to do while we’re here, time spent in this piece of heaven on earth is always special. Here, our worries are cleared away, and our souls are soothed and rejuvenated.
Nearly thirty four years ago we got married here. Through the years there have been countless family camping trips and days spent on the shores. Anniversaries and special occasions have been celebrated here. This is where we often come to hike in warmer months and snowshoe during winter months. The scenery is astoundingly gorgeous any time of the year.
A week ago we came across this dazzling field of lupine right at the shoreline in Tahoe City while exploring around the Gatekeeper’s Museum. You can walk right out into the middle of all this magic. We learned that when the lake recedes, lupines take over the flat moist area at the edge of the lake. The beauty of this field takes my breath away!
And here we are, best friends and loves of each other’s lives celebrating, once again, in Tahoe. Our special occasion on this day? The first time we met thirty six years ago, on a late June night. Me, just twenty, while he was twenty two. How did we get so lucky to have found each other out of the vast amount of people in this big, wide world? Thirty six years of holding each others hands and hearts through all that life brings. All the while learning, compromising, growing, struggling, cherishing, forgiving, trusting, and encouraging. Most of all, loving.My heart overflows with gratitude and boundless love for this man. Here’s to many more years of celebrating life in Tahoe. Cheers!
Clearly there is a bit of magic happening along the American River parkway in Sacramento, as my dad and I observed during a recent morning walk.
The trails have everything necessary for fairies, elves, and leprechauns to set up housekeeping:
Cool, clear water from the river,branches of a tree that have grown together, creating whimsy,magnificent oaks to live in,heart shaped grape vine leaves, plenty of grapes, and wild blackberries,a heart shaped rock,and pretty wildflowers. Who could resist making their home right here surrounded by all of nature’s treasures?Open the door…
Wow! Special feathers, pebbles, and clear lids to use as stools.
A pretty painted rock,A peacock feather, sparkling jewels, stones for a path to the door, flower petals and a tiny little doorbell!Here’s a closer look. Open the door! Look how sweet!Here’s another little home.
And another!Someone’s having so much fun! I’d love to come across them as I’m out walking.
I’m going to be on the lookout for more fairy homes on my walks. Hope you’re lucky enough to find them too! And wouldn’t it be fun to make your own? Who knew that last week was International Build a Fairy House & Den Week? Earlier today I came across a free booklet, Build a Fairy House and Den to download. The author includes lots of great ideas. Have a look!
“Hand in hand, with fairy grace, we will sing and bless this place. ~William Shakespeare
Wildflowers? Why yes, indeed.Scenic views? Take a look!.Waterfalls? Yep, and some trickling streams.We weren’t the only ones to think that last Saturday was a perfect day to hike around Oroville’s Table Mountain. We arrived to a full parking lot and once we were inside the gate we saw many people picnicking, flying kites, taking photos, and yes, hiking and exploring.
The North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve is a nature reserve of 3,315 acres. With no established trails, you just make your way through the landscape of vernal pools, small streams, grasslands and woodlands. It’s a flat topped, table-like elevated basalt mesa, likely formed by an ancient volcanic eruption.
Last year at this time we made the drive to Oroville’s North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve only to be disappointed. We expected to see masses of wildflowers flourishing, but actually saw more on the drive than while here because of drought conditions. We’ll try to get here even earlier next year, perhaps mid to late March rather than mid April. We were greeted with a show of lupine and red clover, as well as buttercups and poppies, but have learned that the floral fields are even more abundant earlier in spring.What’s not to love? And the icing on the cake? A found heart rock!