At some point on our slow weekends there's a good chance you'll find Sam and I walking in the woods adjacent to our backyard. We're really lucky to have a mini-greenbelt behind us, protected by local environmental laws.
Here's a look at some of my favorite sights along our trail.
Nandina berries give such a bright splash of red
against their dark green leaves.
Some people cut it down. A nuisance plant that sprouts up
everywhere. But I love to see it growing in my backyard.
A grand, old oak.
A dry creek bed common in our area. The limestone bedrock immediately beneath the soil means very little rainwater soaks into the ground. I'm determined, one of these rainy days, to put on a raincoat and umbrella and see this gully gushing with rain.
An abandoned deer blind.
My guess is they they saw more of the bottom of their beer bottles than deer sightings.
But that's really the point of hunting trips, isn't it?
Pretty sure their flavor of choice was Miller High Life.
Red tipped pencil cactus.
Look but don't touch.
Pencil cactus close up.
An old lantern of sorts.
Who put that there, we always wonder?
beer drinkers deer hunters?
Behind it we've seen evidence of what might have been a house or cabin.
Chile pequin (puh-keen) all exposed and nekkid of it's leaves.
Sam's dad used to fill a small jar with chile pequins and vinegar to make a hot sauce.
Something like this.
They won't present their deep blue and white splendor until March or April.
I'm not sure what this is. It grows in widespread clusters and looks like
a native baby's breath, only more golden in color. I love the texture this time of year.
Like a carpet of soft and inviting tumble weed.
A few prickly pear cactus bulbs left for the picking.
And eventually, the drinking.
Tall live oak trees circled by a coven of cedar trees. I'm not sure why they grow this way. Sam says it's because the birds sit in the tree and their, uh, droppings leave seeds behind. I prefer to think they are seeking shelter from the storm.
My own personal grapevine courrier.
What might he be saying to himself, do you think?:
(A) What's she taking a picture of now?
(B) She wonders why she can't lose any weight?
(C) Look at this crazy bitch.