Hello there neighbors! Are you enjoying how everything is greening up? The rain really has helped change the landscape to many different shades of green. The birds over here sure have been talkative, they are building nests, flying around and just really loud at times! They are so much fun to watch and listen too. Even on the cooler days the first thing I do is throw the windows open and listen to the birds, I like in the evening to listen to the frogs - they have been loud too! I need to get a pair of binoculars and a bird book so that know what I am looking at- on thing I have learned is I always call the swallows Barn Swallows- that is where they always had their nest as a kid- however they really would be considered Tree Swallows! If you talk to the birders out there- they really know their stuff! I am by far just a novice! I would like to be able to keep a record of what comes by each year- so far this year we have had Swallows and I believe Grackles but the happiest day was when the Eastern Bluebirds came! I really like bluebirds- so I hope they do put a nest in one of the birdhouses so that I have more around here next year! Friends have said they have hummers back as well as Orioles- I have not seen any of those, but would love some hummingbirds as they are another on of my favorites. I came across a very cool website- www.nestwatch.org. You can go on there and sign-up to be a monitor and collect data for them. The site has different things on there - live bird cams, a newsletter, and some stats on different birds. It is worth checking out! Do you have some birding sites to let me know about. Or if you know som info on what kind of binoculars I should look for let me know!
While I am talking about outside things, who out there canoes or kayaks? Canoeing is one thing I really want to learn how to do. I should have learned how to do it years ago, however, its a new year and I plan on figuring it out! I really just have to get over my fear of wiping out in a canoe, hitting my head and being lost out in th woods not knowing where I am or who I am! Ok I have an over active imagination. So the first thing to do is get some information, we stopped over Namekagon River Visitor Center ( on Hwy 63, half mile east of Highway 53 in Trego), what a great resource we have in our area! The Ranger was awesome, she told us there was some great businesses in Trego that rent canoes or Kayaks, I am sure they would do lessons as well. She gave me a map of the Namekagon River and told us about some areas that would be easier to navigate, that had water that was not going to be too rough- so we can learn before we take on the harder areas! The Visitor Center has some displays to check out, a wonderful array of books, t-shirts and such. What a great idea to take Mom out for a hike and buy her something at the store! They even have a Junior Ranger booklet that you can ask for - it has activities in there that you do and check off and at the end when you turn it back in there is a gift to you. More info can be seen on www.nps.gov/webbrangers. It would really be a fun activity for the whole family- Mikhaila and I each got our own book to work on! If you want to check out the Namekagon River Center - www.nps.gov/sacn. Maybe we will see ya on the river!!
I heard from a former resident of Springbrook recently, her name is Judy (Reffue) Anderson. She wrote me a nice long e-mail talking about how she has enjoyed reading my column- this always surprises me, as too be quite honest, I feel as tho I am talking to myself and don't know if anything I am saying is connecting with anyone! LOL Judy says she went to the grade school in Springbroook and graduated from Spooner in 1966. She lived her early life in the wonderful stone house at the end of Lumbard Lane- which was so funny as I just had gone down that road the day before her e-mail and thought 'what a fantastic house!' Her father was a rural mail carrier and built a house out on Larson Lane, the house is no longer out there. Judy's mom played piano/organ for the Earl church. Seems like Judy does come up here to visit and see what is going on around the area she grew up in, she is excited to hear about the changes going on in Springbrook. I appreciate Judy getting a hold of me, it nice to b able to share a little of the Springbrook history with everyone.
Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary is having their Prairie Fling event this weekend- May 12, from 10-4pm. There will be food, music, some educational programs, artist booths, fun kids area, some community booths, tours, hikes and more! What a cool way to spend time with the family and especially mom! The cost $5.00/person Hunt Hill members and youth under 4 years old are free! More information www.hunthill.org or you can send an e-mail directly to firstname.lastname@example.org