The robins are back!

May 24th, 2012

I returned home today from a quick trip to Boston (my wonderful nephew graduated from Hampshire College this past weekend — yay, Will!) to find this in my backyard:

Yes, folks, that is a robin’s nest.  Guess we won’t be sweeping off the back patio anytime soon…


Another weekend, another walk

May 15th, 2012

Over Mother’s Day weekend, we ventured out to another nearby nature area we’ve been meaning to explore for a while: the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge.  Once again, it was an eye-opener — all this amazing natural beauty within just a few miles of our home!

The vistas were completely different from last weekend’s hike. For one thing, it was mostly flat.  For another, there was water – lots of water.  Marshlands and wetlands and a river, which meant of course BIRDS!

We spotted a family of Canada geese on the path ahead, but the scooted into the water as we approached.  Here’s a better picture:

Aren’t they beautiful?  I’ve had a special place in my heart for Canada geese ever since I lived in Concord, Massachusetts. When I was growing up there, our house backed up to a conservation area called the “Old Calf Pasture.” My sisters and I could run out our back door, through the woods, and straight into 500 acres of meadows and forest nestled by a river.  Talk about the best backyard in the world!

One day, my dad went down to the river to go fishing, and came home with a goose instead.  It had gotten tangled in some nylon line of some sort and was scared to bits. Somehow, he managed to throw his jacket over it and carry it back to our house, where my sisters and I watched as he gently clipped it free.  We wanted to keep it as a pet, of course, but my father explained that it was a wild animal, and needed to go back to its family.

And if you’re wondering, yes, there’s quite a bit of Jess Delaney in me!

Our hike last weekend, which started out in the hot sun through meadows that reminded me of that pasture, ended up on a cooler, shadier trail through the forest.

Wish I was there again right about now…



Win a copy of ONCE UPON A TOAD!

May 14th, 2012

Today only, hop on over to Writer Mama Every-Day-in-May Book Giveaway for a chance to win a copy of ONCE UPON A TOAD!

Christina Katz is featuring my new book in her fun month-long giveaway, and today is my turn in the spotlight.  There’s a brief interview and then Christina poses a question (I totally ♥♥♥ the one she picked for you, and I can’t wait to read all your responses!).  Answer it ON HER BLOG (not here) to enter the giveaway.  Click here to head on over to Writer Mama.

Off you go — have fun!


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