1. greenness, especially of fresh, flourishing vegetation.
  2. green vegetation, especially grass or herbage.
  3. freshness in general; flourishing condition; vigor.

The long, almost-blogless, weekend was wonderful.  I did so many things that I don’t know where to start.  Perhaps the best place to start is with what I did not do.

Azaleas on a rainy day

I did not give in to the temptation to blog.  There were quite a few times when I wanted to share what I’d seen or done.  The Addams Family (the musical), for instance, was a lot of fun.  I’d highly recommend it.  Now that it’s four days or so after the fact, I don’t really want to write about it so I’ll leave it at that.

The most interesting thing about the temptation to blog was that it served as a reminder of why I began (and continued) blogging in the first place.  The purpose, which really hasn’t changed, was to record our various adventures in life.

There are times, however, when I don’t feel up to putting together a stellar (heh) blog post on our latest hike or trip or whatever it is M and I happen to be doing.  I think I may have solved that problem with the decision to blog privately when all I want to do is quickly record where I’ve been or what I’ve been doing.  No pressure to perform, so to speak, or to put together something that will make sense to others.

Path moving into the woods

Early on Friday I saw my doc (for a long-scheduled appointment), prompting me to make some changes that I’ve been working towards for a while.  I make a little headway and then I do a little backslide, and well, I’m getting where I need to be, but it would be nice if I could stay on track for a while.  I’ve set up a 100-day challenge for myself in hopes that by the end of the 100 days I will be well established in my lifestyle changes.

Heron Rookery

When I finished at the doc’s, I went to see something I have never seen before:  A heronry or heron rookery.  What an amazing sight!  It’s located within the Cuyahoga Valley National Park (on West Bath Road, in case you’re nearby and want to visit).  There are 140 nests this year, up from previous years.  My photos are not good at all (the light at that time of day — near noon — was not ideal and the distance was a bit much for my camera’s capabilities).

One of the unusual things about this rookery is that it is located alongside a very busy road with a lot of traffic.  The herons don’t seem to mind the traffic or the people who come to gawk at them.

On the Salamander Trail (formerly My Mountain Trail), Brecksville Reservation, Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Following the visit to the rookery, I had a picnic lunch and then went for a 3+ mile hike.  It was a very warm day, and it didn’t take long to work up a sweat.  I’ll tell you more about the hike (with pictures, of course) soon.

A man and his dog

On Friday evening, M the Younger, his wife, and their doggy companion Bo arrived for a weekend visit.  M the Younger helped M out with quite a bit of work over the weekend, including installing shelves and cabinets in our “library” (a spare bedroom we converted, more or less, into a library with a futon available for overnight guests), and mowing the meadows with a brush hog.  It seemed odd to be mowing down brush, grasses, and trees on Earth Day weekend, but mowing the meadows every few years seems to keep them healthier.

The photos in the collage above are not exactly taken from the same angle, but you can see how bare it looks without the long grasses, trees, etc. surrounding the pond (in the front and on the left).  Everything will grow back fairly quickly, once again providing both food and shelter for some of the small critters around here.

Bringing out the swim platform

M and M the Younger also brought out the boats and the swim platform, getting us ready for warmer days ahead.  We must have been tempting Mother Nature by getting them out so early in the season as the weather turned quite chilly with snow in the forecast for tonight, tomorrow, and tomorrow night.  The much-needed rain arrived on Friday night and has continued off and on since then.  The newly planted trees (hemlocks and sequoia) are very happy about that.

Azaleas in bloom

Well, I think that pretty well sums things up.  In between the hiking and visiting, I did spend some time reading, walking, writing in my journal, and just plain old relaxing.  I will be busy over the next 5-6 weeks, getting myself in shape for our vacation (as part of my 100-day challenge).  I’d like to be at least 10 pounds down by the time we leave for Maine and the Eastern Canadian Provinces, as well as capable of long hikes.

Thank you for stopping by and getting caught up with me here in the Bogs.  I hope you had a happy and relaxing weekend, doing at least some of the things you love to do.  🙂

34 Comments on “Verdure”

  1. I love your monochrome azaleas.

  2. Joanne says:

    These are a really great range of photos Robin, which seem to cover all aspects of your weekend. It sounds as though you enjoyed your family time. 🙂

    I have the same problem (if it can be called a problem) as you; if the time passes and you haven’t written down what you had in your mind at the time, you lose the urge to record the incident. It happens to me all the time when I’m working!

    • Robin says:

      Thank you, Joanne. 🙂

      I suppose it’s not too much of a problem, not being able to write things down if the time passes. After all, who wants to read all of the details of another’s life? (Well, sometimes I find those small details pretty fascinating, but I’m guessing most people don’t.)

  3. Nifty processing on those first two. Great light.

  4. mobius faith says:

    wonderful images. I especially love the shots of the heron rookery. Really well done.

  5. Wow, things around your place really are beginning to look green. So glad to hear you had a great weekend, Robin!

  6. dadirri7 says:

    how extraordinary to see a heron rookery … i wonder if herons do that over here??? good luck with your lifestyle changes, sounds very inspiring 🙂

  7. aFrankAngle says:

    The first image was stunning … I simply starred at it!!! Wow!.

    In terms of blogging, you’ve gotta do what is best for you ….just as you do with establishing milestones for yourself. 🙂

  8. Robin.. you’re such a dedicated blogger, I just know you will be able to stick to your 100 days program! I love all of this today, especially the photo of the man and his dog.. it’s a beautiful portrait!!

  9. bearyweather says:

    I wish my spring looked like yours … it was white here again all weekend.
    I never heard of a heron rookery … very interesting. Best of luck with your lifestyle changes … I need to make some of my own this summer, too.

    • Robin says:

      I had heard of the rookery, Bearyweather, but it took me years to get over there and see it. It’s amazing to see all of those nests and herons gathered in one place. Apparently the herons like sycamore trees.

      Thank you. 🙂

  10. Chloe says:

    lovely series of photos, sometimes ‘away’ time to think is just what we need, i know i did x

  11. I love the photos, Robin! The heron rookery is amazing!

  12. Sallyann says:

    How on earth do the herons feel safe enough to nest on those branches in the tree, there are so many of them and the tree looks so “twiggy”. 🙂

  13. Herons are not fragile creatures…the one who regularly robs my pond of fish will stand in front of the onrushing dog until the last second, then launch himself onto a tree branch to laugh at her from a safe distance.
    I DO wonder where they nest around here….
    That photo of M the Younger and Bo needs to be in a frame on the wall…very expressive.

    • Robin says:

      It will be framed soon, Marie. 🙂

      Herons are not fragile, but our herons tend to be shy. As soon as I poke my head out the door, they take flight. We welcome them to our pond as it needs to be fished (we don’t take enough fish out and it gets overcrowded in there).

  14. I really liked the photo of the man and his dog! That’s so cool to have your own swimming pond!

  15. The first picture is really striking with those colors. And enjoyed the “before and after shots” – nicely arranged and presented

  16. Gracie says:

    Great photos, Robin. It’s nice to see how there’s lush greenery around you now. We’re still waiting for some warmer weather on my neck of the woods.

    • Robin says:

      Thank you, Gracie. 🙂

      It’s cold here today (we snow in the forecast). We’re still waffling back and forth between summer heat and winter cold.

  17. Dana says:

    We have a heron rookery here in Victoria as well. Like the one you photographed, it is situated right alongside a busy road and the herons don’t seem to be bothered by the chaos and noise at all. I’m not sure how many heron nests are there (it’s been a few years since I’ve stopped by, even though it’s all of 8 BLOCKS from where I work)… maybe I’ll have to take a short excursion there soon!

    • Robin says:

      Can’t wait to see your heron rookery if you do make it over there, Dana. It amazes me how the herons can be so shy about seeing people or cars here at the pond, but not at the rookery.

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