Winter Begins, NW Montana

Autumns often deep cold days
inspired the spirit and stance of hibernation early for me

the forest cloaked in snow is lovely 
with a deep sense of quiet

the little birds still come to me
inspiring joy and calm all at once

this mountain chickadee has a much narrower head than most of them 

sweet black capped chickadee
landing for a sunflower seed

chestnut-backed chickadee

These are the three chickadees that visit me

and then there is the nuthatch:

if it weren't for the tiny birds
a winter hush would be throughout the land


lovely holidays to you and yours

Sweet Solstice to one and all!

slowly our days will become longer......



Seasonal Glimpses

sweet little mountain chickadee

autumn raindrops

It has been a very cold autumn, more like winter cold.
snow a number of times
has come and gone

I love how the snow reveals who has walked by
in this case an elf....

(or possibly a skunk)

Ponderosa tree bark
artful and beautiful

occasional snowflakes

 as well as
beautiful frost



Such a Wonderful Critter Summer

On a hike...
this massive guy was napping in the woods
we got to see him stand up and just be.....
he stood still for a very long time

driving through the mountains
at the top of the world
endless huge beauty
(B7 Pillar)

this mountain chickadee
sat/stood a foot from me
on this branch for quite a long time
at first I thought it wanted seed (see my last post)
but it did not take any
so we simply stood and listened and looked
and relaxed into the day

In the woods, off trail, taking to heart the details of forest life. Spying a sylvan mushroom, brightly colored red. I must take it's portrait, a photograph. But how to get through the tangle of downed trees, scramble of branches. Ducking this and that, making my way to it, I hear a sound and look up to see a little tree squirrel scrambling up a spruce tree, with the mushroom, the very same mushroom in it's mouth, twice as big as the squirrels head. Up up up the tree trunk and then lays it on a branch to age and dry. The squirrel nearly flies to the earth in search of it's next foraged meal. 

What are the chances of that! The squirrel got to and took the mushroom before me. Still inspires a smile, as I remember. It was quite dark in the forest or I would have tried to video that busy squirrel for you.  

Lovely end of summer 
(or winter) to you!



Beautiful and Fun Nature

this is how it began

the little nuthatch got braver

seed accomplished

Hey! I don't like a mouse near my food!
(this, tiniest mouse I ever saw.... was nearly under my foot. Thank goodness I saw it)

then the mountain chickadees joined in

I have these wee birds following me around the forest for food
I would have never guessed this could happen

for food 

my favorite
recent sunset


It has been so long... since i posted

in early summer
a lovely lady slipper orchid

a single lemon mandala of lichen on rock

this green orchid was a lovely surprise
found it as i was harvesting wild huckleberries
always fun to meet a new wildlfower

our summer has been cooler than usual
with many rainstorms
dramatic thunder and lightning
inspiring mushrooms to fruit
you know I love that!

a young moose appeared on a trail
so sweet, mamma was near by

I love these little rock dwellers
the spotted saxifrage
found in the mountains

another new flower to me: Capnoides sempervirens
the rock harlequin

summer is also about waterfalls


a glimpse of a Montana summer

I hope you are enjoying summer wherever you are in the world!


Happy Solstice to You

spring has been beautiful
wild orchids sprinkle the woods
but you must look for them
as they are not plentiful or obvious

a visitor, only stayed a couple of minutes
(a black bear)

many days involved visiting flowers
(yep, that is me)

some days are spent chasing Red-napped sapsuckers off of my mountain ash tree, and letting them peck for sap on the alders that grow like weeds

fields of flowers make my heart swell with energy
appreciation for life

collecting wild roses and herbs for tea
a spiritual elixer

tiny green being, the size of an ant 
metallic and busy is a delight to see

bugs galore
visiting my sketch
while sitting in the grass
Spring was lovely!
Now to embrace summer and all the gifts it offers.

Lovely Solstice to you!
Be it Summer or Winter in your part of the world. 



Spring an expression of Joy

this little beauty landed near me
maybe 3/4" across
I think it is a female moth, maybe a looper
if you know, please tell me!

another tiny and first meeting
a pygmy bitterroot flower
so pretty

a lovely area of rock terraces
maybe an inch of moss covered soil
the home of vast amounts of flowers!

amongst a sea of colbalt purple larkspur
I found a few lovely white beauties

 walking along a forest path
one big puffball
became dinner:

wild orchids hold a special place in my heart
their season like most wildflowers is brief
the lovely fairy slipper:

spring is lush and green
sunny days and rainy days

wildfire smoke for a few days from Alberta is gone now

I do love all our seasons, 
taking to heart each and every day. 

I hope your spring or maybe your autumn is
offering delight to you, as well.



Glimpses of Early Spring, NW Montana

I have gotten to see the great gray owls a few times
one day there were two together!
(one hunting and one in a nearby tree)

the tiny world of lichen
looks big with my macro lens

Spring Beauties.....
an early spring flower

a tiny pool where fairies bathe:

found a few yellowbells on a cloudy day:

extra petals on this buttercup:

Last summer into autumn, someone made lacy pattern on all the alder tree's leaves.
The other day I found these tiny iridescent blue beetles on the wheelbarrow handles. 
Looking them up, I found their larvae eat alder leaves. 
Alder flea beetles:

spring is a fun time to explore
the tiny beginnings of new and continued life