Monday, August 31, 2015


I found these small Sumac trees by the side of the road where I usually go to look for buffalo. I believe these are the non-poisonous variety, but then again I know very little about them except the few things I've read around the blogging world.

The last time I saw sumac was back in Michigan at one of my favorite nature parks. There was a small shelter there on a big hill where I used to look down to see the tops of acres and acres of these sumac trees. All of those red spots within the green of the leaves looked really nice. I loved going there.

Here's a more closeup look at the sumac. I don't want to go much closer because I took these pictures with my phone. You get a good look with this picture though.

Somebody told me that you can make tea with the red stuff. I'm guessing that there are probably plenty of uses for sumac. I won't go into that too now, but I'm sure you can find out more with a simple web search. I just did. I guess it makes a good spice too.

This is a plant that I never thought I'd see again. I've been to that area many times and I haven't seen sumac there until now.I thought maybe it didn't grow in this part of the country. I'm really glad it does. I kind of missed it. I'll talk to you later.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Wildflowers On The Prairie Trail

I have lots of pictures of wildflowers for you today. I don't know that they are very good though. The bright Sun kind of made it hard to get the focus on my camera right. You still get a good look at what I was seeing as long as you examine the pictures a bit though.

 Here's a closer look at that plant's flowers from the first picture. I did the best I could, but the Sun was probably just a little too bright.

Here's the other kind of wildflower I found there. I said I had lots of pictures, I didn't say I had lots of different kinds of flowers. The many pictures are here to help give you an idea of what I was seeing. These were all each different plants I encountered along the trail. It was kind of fun struggling to get decent pictures with each one.

As you can see, each picture got a little better, and I guess a little closer. Now you can finally get an okay look at what these flowers look like. I like them. They have an interesting shape.

By the end of the trail the dog and I found a crude old bench made of two by fours. I decided to take a little rest for my back and because my poor out of shape dog was huffing and puffing. She really should be in better shape. It's not as if she isn't constantly outside chasing anything that moves.

This grass is what I saw while I was resting on that bench. I just thought it looked nice because of the way it turned white at the ends. You can see it well in the picture, but pictures never really compare to the real thing.

One last thing I want to say. As you know I started a new blog Strange Dreams Of The Rat. I don't get many comments there yet, but I'm getting lots more readers than I anticipated. The great thing is that it really writes itself, so it doesn't interfere with this blog. I just wanted to mention it because it's been really fun so far writing about that insane stuff. I'll talk to you later.

Monday, August 24, 2015

The Prairie Trail

My little nature park has two main trails.This time I decided to visit the one I usually avoid, the prairie trail. I don't usually go on this trail because there aren't any trees along it. It cuts through the grass. There's usually not much here except that grass and a long walk, but I found a little bit to share this time.

This trail used to go in a circle back into the woods and join up to the other trail, but a fallen tree across the path at the edge of the woods stopped them from maintaining the trail in that area for some reason. These trails have really deteriorated since that first year I visited this place. It's a shame. I just have to assume they had no choice in the matter.

The first things I saw were lots of rabbits relaxing in the shade of some of the few trees on this side of the park. These pictures were cropped heavily because the rabbits weren't nearly as close as they look here. I had to do something so you could see them as more than dots. The rabbits ran as soon as I got anywhere close to them.

here's another rabbit that wasn't far from the first one. I have to say that the rabbits weren't limited to this area. You can find them all over the park. This just happened to be where I was this time. Many of these rabbits are juveniles. The rabbit parents were apparently very busy last spring.

This gnarled old tree is probably the main attraction on this trail. It makes kind of a nice looking picture, but there isn't much more on the trail. Now maybe you understand why I usually go the other direction. This trail is nice to hike everyonce in a while though.

This last picture shows the same tree from the other side. From here I am standing near the woods at the end of the trail. I really hoped I could get through there to the other trail, but the path is blocked too well to make it.

I even tried to go a little farther in the woods to maybe find the trail on the other side. My poor nonathletic dog protested greatly when I made her climb over that really big fallen tree. She hated it even more when only a few minutes later she had to climb back again.

Maybe this post sounds kind of bleak, but I really did see more on this trail. I'll show some of it in my next post. It really was worth the hike. I think I'll be going the other direction for awhile though. I keep hoping I'll see a deer or something one of these times. I'll talk to you later.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Sunflowers By The Side Of The Road

Even though it was a rainy day I decided to take a little drive around the countryside. I found lots of things to take pictures of, but my favorites were these roadside sunflowers. I took all of these pictures with my phone, but I cropped the wide edges off of three of them so the flowers showed up a little bigger.

I thought about bragging how I had to walk for miles over rivers, hills, and valleys to find these flowers, but at the last minute I just decided to tell you the truth of how I got these pictures. I didn't even get out of my truck. I just leaned out the window with my phone and got the closest flowers at the side of the road.

I thought this picture above looked kind of artsy. That's why I included it. Maybe I'm wrong and it's just a lonely little sunflower in the wind.

I liked this one because of the branches of the flowers sticking up. That's why I didn't crop it like I did the others.

These sunflowers grow in small groups at the side of the roads around here. Sometimes the small groups can actually get gigantic, but I just saw small groups today. The group in the picture was bigger than I show, but these flowers were the closest together.

Maybe I should have cropped this last picture to center the flower a little better or something. But I didn't. I don't remember why. I liked all the yellow seeds, or whatever they are, in the flower.

I'm not usually a big fan of flowers, but I have come to really like sunflowers. Maybe it's because they grow so well around here. It's partly because they get so big. I like other flowers just fine I guess, especially when I am looking right at them, but I quickly forget most of them when they're gone. I remember sunflowers.

These sunflowers brightened up otherwise gloomy pictures. Sometimes being out in the rain is good.

I'm going to stop this post right here. I am watching a very strange movie while I write this. Maybe a little bit of that got into my writing in the post. That'll work. I'll talk to you later.

Monday, August 17, 2015

A Look At The Park

I'll try to give you a look at my little nature park this time. There's more grass than anything else here. That's really what everywhere looks like in my area, grass. There are scattered clumps of trees, and if you get in a good place you can pretend you're in a regular old forest sometimes.

I haven't seen much in the park on my last few visits, but something will come. Right now I'm just trying to get used to walking nature trails again. Ever since that old car accident I can't walk very far before my back starts acting up, but I hope with repetition I'll get better.

My back has been getting worse and worse over the last few years until now I can only walk partway in this little park before I have to give up. I used to go for miles and miles. Once I get back to traveling this whole park I'll be much happier.

 The picture above shows the main entrance to the trails in the park.

You can see above how the trails are cut into the grass by a riding mower. All the trails in all the parks in the area are done this way because of all the grass. There aren't many dirt trails.

I hear lots of birds in these trees but I almost never see them. I'm watching very closely for them so I can get a few pictures, but so far they've eluded me easily.

I think that's really all I have to say today about this. Nothing rewally eventful has been happening at the nature park. One of these times I'm sure I'll walk right up on a deer or something.

One other thing. I've started a new little blog. It's just a little thing I'm doing for fun. I've had very strange dreams ever since I can remember. I've decided to start writing down what I can remember of them when they happen. I thought it might be an interesting look into a person's subconscious mind. Just in case you want to take a look you can find it here at this link: Strange Dreams Of The Rat

You don't have to visit it. Like I said, I'm just doing it for a little fun. I don't really care if I never get any visitors there, but that would be fun too and comments are free. I'll talk to you later.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Things I Found On The Nature Trail

I'm a little later than I intended with this post because of multiple doctor visits, but I have lots of enjoyable pictures for you. My new policy is that sometimes extra pictures are fine as long as I don't talk to much if I can help it. So I'm going to show you some things I found on the trail at my little nature park.

I found lots of wildflowers, which were kind of unexpected for me because I haven't really seen any before this. I guess you start to really see things when you actually take the time to visit a place more than once, or even multiple times.

There are small patches of  wildflowers scattered all over the park. I was going to do a post with just the flowers, but I decided to expand it a little.

Here's that expansion I mentioned. I would have made a full post about this little bird if I had actually gotten a good picture, but this is the best I could do. I'm extremely out of practice getting pictures of moving animals. At one time I would have been able to brag about the excellent pictures I got and how hard it was to get them. Now I got this one, and it's at least a start to getting the good ones again.

I used to know the name of this flower, but just like the other flowers in my post I have unfortunately forgotten names of flowers over the past several years of seeing nothing. With the proper motivation I may regain at least some of my knowledge eventually.

Helicopter plant! Of course that's not its real name, which I don't know. I just like finding these seed pods on the ground and throwing them up into the air and watching them twirl down around me.

And now we come to the end of the pictures. See, I didn't talk too much, I think. I did get what I needed to say out of the way though. I'll try to keep the number of pictures down a little next time, but who knows what might happen.

I haven't been getting to my little nature park quite as often as I've been hoping. Things like doctor visits, other trips to town, and bad weather seem to be conspiring against me. But I'm still getting my fair share of nature visits. I'm becoming somewhat familiar with the park, which has been my goal. I'll talk to you later.