I would like to acquaint you with the amazing lady, my Grandmother, who shared her love of nature with me. Gram taught me to appreciate all the creatures; great and small! She also instilled in me a gratitude for the environment around me. I loved spending time with her. I have always believed we were soul mates.
When I was younger, we would take long walks in the fields behind her home and enjoy the sun, clouds, rain, whatever weather came our way! She taught me about the many plants that grew out in the fields, we especially loved finding wildflowers and my personal favorite; Japanese Lanterns. We also found some pretty interesting bugs and lots of grasshoppers! We would see mice and moles and she was never afraid of them. There were lots of bunnies and squirrels and we would sometimes take corn along for them, I was sure they knew her! The bird book and her gloves were always in her pocket on our walks, with a variety of birds to discover. There was a wood thrush that built a nest on our way up to the field and we would check on that family every time we walked. We never got too close because she didn’t want to scare them away. If a baby bird fell out of a nest, out came the gloves and she put the bird back. That was my Gram, she taught me to save the animals!
Gram and I had a special park we would visit to catch frogs and look for crayfish. Springs Park was full of them and we had so much fun looking. I often wonder how many pairs of tennis shoes I ruined at that park sloshing around in the springs.
Every summer, my sister and I would go on vacation with my grandparents up north to Lac Du Flambeau. We had a special hotel we stayed at and there were always dogs who visited the guests! This picture is one of the many dogs that my grandma made friends with on our trips!
One of the places we would visit was Jim Peck’s Wildwood. It was a wildlife utopia for a young girl like me. We fed baby raccoons, mink, opossums and even skunks. My favorites were the raccoons. They were so soft and loved to cuddle.
Yes, my Grandmother was a very unique lady and I learned to love every creature no matter big or small, even green lizards. My parents weren’t sure what to do with me when I brought home white rats, but that is a story for another day. I hope that I can help my grandchildren learn to love and appreciate nature the way my Gram did for me. I always thank the Lord for giving me my Grandmother, she was a true gift! I loved her with all my heart!
I am grateful for the mentorship and encouragement to blog by Artist/Photographer Karen Hanrahan.