Monday, March 31, 2008

Amazing What a Rain Can Produce....

We had a lot of rain this weekend, and things are popping everywhere... greens, yellows, colorful redbuds, little wild flowers everywhere. This was the view from our back yard after the rain Sunday.

Friday, March 21, 2008

A Walk on Good Friday

Today was beautiful... sunny and warm... and things are bursting out everywhere on the bluff. Spring has SPRUNG! I climbed down under the bluff outside our back door and snapped these pictures. It is amazing to me how the plants and delicate little flowers can grow out of those massive rocks. And the variety of ferns we have growing on this cliffside is astounding!

Back on top of the ridge, I turned and started down the road paralleling Mossy Bluff Trail and the Buckeye Trail, and I found amazing specimens of the buckeye tree in various stages of growth, depending on how much direct sunlight each received. Greg said some of the leaves looked like marijuana plants, but I assure you, they are from the buckeye tree!

And then there is the Serviceberry Tree... bursting with blooms all along the hillsides. The buds have fuzzy pink petals as they unfurl, and then they open into beautiful white blossoms that are really quite large. These trees are making our hillsides white these days, and they remind us that the dogwoods can't be far behind!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

A Hike to Bridal Veil Falls

Wednesday, March 12th, was a great day... sunny, warm... high temperature of about 75 degrees. Greg and I had been looking through some old pictures of my grandparents' and found some of Bridal Veil Falls. We decided that was the perfect location for our hike.

We drove to the west side of the falls and parked near the entrance to a YBMC park (which has been closed due to vandalism, sadly). I don't think I had ever hiked to the Falls from the west side... as a child we always went in from the east (behind what is now Southside Baptist Church). Once my Girl Scout troop hiked from the old First United Methodist Church on Spring Street... trekking up the creek to the Falls. Honestly, I can't see my nieces or little friends walking that far today! I definitely can't see them hiking BACK afterwards!

The falls are as spectacular as ever, and even more amazing is thinking of all of the people who have hiked to them, had a picnic, and enjoyed a warm sunny day on that same rocky bank that joins the pool of water at the base of the Falls. The first photo was taken on the west side from the top. The rest of the photos follow our path down the western slope to the creek, and then to the falls themselves. The last few pictures were taken back on top... Greg videotaping over the edge of the falls... the slick flat rocks where we entered from the east when I was a child... and even a beautiful smaller waterfall up creek of the main event.

It is hard to imagine that we were literally a few city blocks from town... less than a half mile from a major highway into town, and yet we were in a pristine, undeveloped area that was serene, relaxing, and breathtaking. It evoked such wonderful memories of times spent there in my childhood... and now I have wonderful NEW memories of time spent there on a beautiful spring day with Greg.

Before we left, I walked back up under the Falls to stand on the little pebbles at the edge of the pool underneath the waterfalls. I thanked God for such a beautiful day, and the ability to walk down the steep path just one year after my nasty fall. I thanked Him for so many blessings in my life, and I asked Him to bless every person in my family, my friends, and all of those who are in His care. I asked that whatever they were experiencing at that moment, He would be with them. And then I looked up. Do not miss the last two pictures of the tree that grows at the base of the waterfall. Don't miss what I saw as I finished my prayer! If you think God isn't in the smallest of details as well as the bigger ones, take a look at the last two photos and see if you still feel that way! I know I had a completely different perspective on the hike after that... and I will never forget that awesome spring day and our hike to Bridal Veil Falls.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Sunday Sunrise

Take a look at these pictures. I was up early Sunday morning - 6:00 a.m. CDT, but in actuality, it was only 5:00 a.m. This is looking east toward Wilburn. The mist and fog in the river valley made me feel like I was in the Smokies, and then the sky turned fiery red and the show ensued! Enjoy!!!

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Second Snow in First Week of March!

Thursday night into Friday, March 6th-7th, we got our second big snowfall. It wasn't the 6-10" predicted by the meteorologists - that went north and west of us - but it was at least 3" of fluffy, heavy snow - and really pretty. Greg's mother Elaine came Thursday evening and spent the night with us. We woke up to the second "winter wonderland" of the week, a bitterly cold blowing snow, and a fierce northeast wind. But we got out and walked to the overlook and around the neighborhood anyway and enjoyed about 45 minutes of winter fun.

The path in some of the pictures winds through the woods parallel to the entry road to our subdivision. It's really pretty back there. Early afternoon, we had more heavy snowfall, and I tried to capture it out the sunroom window. I did manage to catch a squirrel and beautiful male cardinal at and near the feeder.

Today the sun came out and most of the snow is gone. We're hoping spring is just around the corner!