It Pays To Be Outside

“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Summer is officially upon us if not evident by the hot temps and muggy mornings. While others may be enjoying cool temps brought on by wacky weather patterns and record rainfalls, the best we get is 95 degrees in the shade.

Favorite Resting Spot

Where I Live — OUTSIDE

It’s been a wet, wet summer so far, and that’s just okay by me. My days are spent outside.

I found what I thought to be an anole egg while hand-edging the St. Augustine runners at the edge of the garden space. Curious, I put it into the incubator with the turtle egg, checking it occasionally with the flash light.

Turned out I was right!

Green Anole Hatchling

I let him go in the space where I found him, naturally. I figured his Mama knew that that was a good spot for an anole to make a good living. Only a temporary steward, his life is better lived wild, away from my ‘care-giving.’

Summer with four kids at home means the big slow down. They are kept busy doing odd jobs around the house, working on Khan Academy’s computer coding lessons, and reading. Entertaining kids is not at all what I like to do; by August, they are wishing for school to start again.

Nature does the chore of entertaining for me. They come outside to pick fruits, tend their carnivorous plant collection (yes, they have one of these), and then return to the preferred air-conditioned indoor space.

Good. It’s quieter for me when they stay indoors. Hot or no, I like it outside.

Walks in the garden are daily, picking fruits where applicable. Unlike tomato, eggplant, zucchini, the okra has taken a break from production. Um, I take back what I said about deer not liking anything in my garden space.

Naked Okra

Naked Okra

So far, the melon is unscathed. We’ll put the leftover rinds out for the deer under the fig trees, though, because we’re nice like that.

Watermelon Vine

Run Over Like A Watermelon Vine
(Now I really know what that means!
That’s ONE plant, 20 fruit. Delish, by the way.)

Meanwhile, several lilies have popped up all over the yard. I recognize the foliage and am careful not to accidentally weed-whip them. This one is framed by the water of the creek.

Unknown Lily Variety
They’re everywhere!

For the most part, the DSLR camera and big lens stays in its bag in the cooler indoor temps most days. The spring bird migrants have come and gone and resident yard birds are now busy raising their families. Chickadees, Titmouse, Cardinals, Wrens, Mockingbirds, back and forth between the birdbath, porch feeder, and tree canopy, feeding hungry broods. Sometimes its best just to sit on the swing, binoculars in hand, and watch the whole show play out live rather than fiddling with settings on a camera on my face.

There are exceptions. As I was taking a picture of this…

Northern Cardinal, Juv

First Year Male Cardinal

…guess who very nearly ran into my leg when a neighbor suddenly cranked up his lawn mower? I stayed still — he never even saw me.

Kelly, Hiding  Iin The Garden

‘Kelly’ the Fawn

This is the same little guy (a few posts back) I nearly ran over with the lawn tractor, temporarily put into a box, then replaced him to the exact spot for when Mama came back. (And she did.) Since then, we have witnessed Kelly (my kids have named it) nursing Mama right from the windows indoors. Such a treat!

Our yard is his nursery.

Maybe it’s time to grow the garden space a bit. I apparently have a few more mouths to feed.

PS – #7 turtle egg is starting to hatch.
Stay tuned!


13 thoughts on “It Pays To Be Outside

  1. Excellent post!! I was originally just going to comment on the MLK post as it’s one of my favs, but one of your sentences was more deserving. I love your comment, “Nature does the chore of entertaining for me.” That’s powerful, insightful, and above all true! Great writing Shannon!!!


    1. Though I miss blog-reading and interacting with virtual friends from around the world, immersing myself in nature is best for my well-being. Water, air, food, love…nature! It’s nice to know the virtual friends understand the absence. Cheers, Matthew!


    1. That is just the most pleasant comment I’ve read in a long time. It is always prudent that posts here bring as much joy to others as they do to me. Glad to see you back!

      Liked by 1 person

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