Tag Archives: wildlife photography

Where is our Virginia spring?

Yikes. In Virginia, spring is supposed to be in full swing by now! And yet the temperature fell to the high 20s overnight for the second night in a row. Which means I went out this morning all bundled up in my winter coat and scarf and insulated gloves instead of wearing, oh, say just a light fleece jacket.

But this is potentially bad news for our Virginia vineyards which are now checking to see just how much damage their vines have suffered. (You can read about one vineyard in the Monticello AVA here:  King Family is in the village of Crozet, just west of Charlottesville.) Breaux Vineyards, up in Loudoun County, did a controlled burn this weekend at the base of the slopes where their Nebbiolo and Viognier vines are planted in the hopes that the warmth would help prevent cold damage. (You can see photos here on their Facebook page.)

I’m hoping for the best, but the reality is this could translate to a reduced harvest and the need to replace vines later this year, particularly for the less cold-hardy varieties. (One vineyard we know, Ox-Eye in the Shenandoah, last year pulled up its Gewürztraminer and replaced it with the hardier Traminette for this reason.)

In the meantime, here are a few spring photos from northern Virginia, if only to prove to myself and other Virginians that yes, indeed, spring has officially begun, even if it doesn’t quite feel like it at the moment.

Forsythia bushes are everywhere and are the first to bloom, along with our famous flowering cherry trees.

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This is what our area looked like Continue reading

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Winter vacations!

Whew! We got back from our annual winter beach trip about three short weeks ago, and I already feel like I need another vacation! (Of course, rushing to pull together the last few documents for the tax preparer has a way of doing that, right?)

Beach vacations–actually, vacations in general–are special because they are so restorative, especially when everything you do is diametrically opposite of daily work and life.

For me, that means leaving schedules and structure behind, to the extent possible. In other words, it means setting the Fitbit aside (no 5:30 am silent alarms!), no scheduled writing time, no scheduled anything time. Just lazy mornings full of reading and walks and mugs of hot tea.

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Snowy beach stairs

And this year that hot tea came in handy because it snowed at the Outer Banks, as you can see from the beach stairs. We’ve seen snow there before, but never 2-plus inches that then stayed on the ground for a full two days, very unusual for the OBX! On my first morning walk, I found this heart that someone had traced out.

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A snowy Valentine’s heart

Vacations also mean Continue reading

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