Nature Friday ~ January 22, 2021

Welcome to Friday, our favorite day of the week. It’s been another unseasonable week of pleasant weather in the Mile High which means the season of brown and drab is very much alive and well. As we typically do on Friday’s, we’re joining our friends, Rosy, Sunny, Arty and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard for another Nature Friday blog hop. Don’t forget to “hop” over to their backyard by clicking on the link and check out all the great images of nature that folks found this week.

Let’s get started, eh? As I mentioned, it’s pretty brown around here. Brown trees, brown leaves and grass, shrubs, and perennials. But that doesn’t mean nature doesn’t have beauty and interest. Take for instance, tree bark.

We walk passed a very small park in our neighborhood every day. Evergreen and deciduous trees line the outside border of this park and were featured in a post last June here after a severe wind storm. When we walk past this little park, we’re more alert for dogs off leash than any botany but a recent morning there were no dogs or peeps so we ventured in the interior a bit where some trees caught my eye. They caught the eyes of the Ranch hands too.

There are a small handful of shorter trees which I think are some sort of crab apple. They aren’t overly tall and the leaves aren’t overly flashy in the summer, but the bark…now that’s another story. Just check out the texture and shape of these babies!


This tree looks as though it’s seen a thing or two and it caught our eye.  It almost reminded me of ancient Greek olive trees. It just reminds Elsa to stay vigilant for tree rats who seem to instinctively know that she has a fierce prey drive but who are willing to tempt her anyway. How is it they seem to understand exactly how long her leash is and take advantage when taunting her?


That gnarled shape and textured bark remind me it’s good to keep your eyes open as you routinely walk through your neighborhood.


The bark reminds me of tiny shingles overlaying one another in rich and various shades of brown, grey, and tan.


All is not lost in the ‘Hood; yesterday we passed  by one front garden that is beginning to show subtle signs that spring bulbs are engaged in their annual emerging journey. Like other scenes seen from this week, there’s hope and a fresh newness in the air and in our souls (if you didn’t watch the inauguration, I would direct your attention to America’s first national youth poet laureate, Amanda Gorman. What an amazing and inspiring young woman. You can watch a video about her appearance here).


Notice that tiny emerging columbine on the upper right side next to the rock? I don’t know about you, but that made me grin with optimism for the days ahead.

We are still hoping for snow to fill the watershed this weekend but know that January is the driest month yet remain hopeful nonetheless. It’s been a dry winter which won’t bode well for summer time but are keeping our paws crossed.

In a rare Saturday post, I hope you’ll join us tomorrow for a look at a certain Ranch hand’s Gotcha Day celebration. Till then enjoy a beautiful Friday and a terrific weekend.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

60 thoughts on “Nature Friday ~ January 22, 2021

  1. Well our week has been interesting – to say the very least – 33c / 38c/38c/37c/40c/44c/ We did fundraising on Saturday and cancelled all the fundraising events for Sunday (45c). We have never really had a hot weather policy before and played things by ear. However, some of the newer – and younger – members believe we should have a hot weather policy. I suppose since they will eventually take over the running as we dinosaurs fade away, we need to discuss the matter and come to some decision .

      1. Actually, it’s 2pm on a Monday afternoon and it’s chucking it down – really hard and bouncing off the concrete. That kind of wakens our ideas up a bit – heatwave – rainstorm – verra strange.

  2. The same knowledge of math, physics and aerodynamics that allows them to jump through the trees also allows squirrels to know exactly where the safety zone begins with a leashed doggie…

  3. Since it is January and brown and muddy out, I haven’t even checked the front flowerbed. I’ll go look for our columbines! It should be too early for any of them…

  4. Unlike you, we got dumped with a good bit of the white stuff. The temps were mild so the previous dumping was that heavy snowman-making, heart-attack inducing stuff. Then we got another good dusting on top of that so that we have to pay attention particularly on our walks. Zeke is having more and more trouble following along 🙁
    And what the hell? How can you be seeing signs of spring in JANUARY?? Sigh. The benefits of living where you do, eh?
    Have a fantabulous weekend Monika!

    1. Mother Nature is definitely confused. Hopefully we’ll get some snow soon. It heartbreaking when they struggle on walks as they hit their twilight years. We want them to stay with us indefinitely.

      1. That’s for sure.
        And it is oh so hard right now. I’m at the seriously contemplating the next step. But then I bought a big bag of kibble coz… I’m not quite ready, yet.

        1. You’ll know when the time is right. So long as he’s still enjoying life even if somewhat diminished. It’s hard for me to move around easily in cold snowy weather. 🙂

          1. He has pains. His mouth, a paw and his hind legs. He doesn’t say a word but to watch him get up is painful. I’m wondering how much he is, right now. I have to bring him round the back to go take his walk because he can’t do the stairs anymore. Sigh.

            1. At least you’re making it as easy as possible. Sending loving thoughts your way. It’s a hard decision and not one to take lightly. It came down to my realizing I wasn’t keeping my furbaby around for my sake since they will never complain. 💖

              1. Yes I am. Now I think I’ll have to solidify the “ramp” I made in the back yard as he has taken to sleeping on the top stoop. Dammit. No, they never complain, making it all the harder. 💞

  5. That tree looks like something out of a fairy tale. I would be watching it dusk to see if any fairy-type creatures emerge from it. Of course, Lucy and Xena would be watching to see if any furry-type creatures emerge from it. Poor, ill-fated daffodils.
    We’ll be back this afternoon after my grooms are done to celebrate with you, Elsa and Norman.

    1. Those trees are very Hobbit-like in appearance. Maybe on St. Patrick’s Day a leprechaun will emerge from one of those holes?!

  6. Those sure are some very interesting trees and bark patterns. We don’t have any snow either, and we are amazed at how green our grass still is despite the cold temps. We will probably get snow in may:(

    Woos – Lightning, Misty, and Timber

  7. These trees look great!
    Have a great weekend,
    P.S.: We’re enjoying the Gulf Coast. It was a wonderful day today, but tomorrow and Sunday it’s supposed to be overcast and rainy. Never mind: we’ll enjoy “island time” anyway

  8. Meee-yow wow Miss Monika an Elsa those treess are furry kewl. LadyMew an mee reely like THE fotoss..yore rite THE bark iss furry suttel colorss an innterestin.
    An that wee Columbine an Daffydill are lovelee to see as wee get a snowfall here……
    Wishin all of youss’ a lovelee weekend.
    ***purrss*** BellaDharma an ((huggiess)) LadyMew

    1. Thanks, dear kitty. Feel free to send the snow back this way. We’ll happily accept it COD. 😁

    1. If it weren’t for the ever decreasing little pile of snow on the north side of the house, I’d have forgotten what it looks like. Have a super weekend enjoying some mild weather.

  9. I’m still rejoicing about Wednesday’s – and Tuesday evening’s – proceedings! I’ve finally gotten two good nights’ worth of sleep! At last there’s a ray of sunshine and a rainbow over the country again! And it’s nice to be able to watch the news without wanting to throw a brick at the tv every 30 seconds!

    1. I know, right. The sound of no Tweet rants is deafening and so very welcome. Calm vs. chaos I’ll take calm every. single. time.

    1. Thank you! We hope you get a chance to see some great elements of nature this weekend.

  10. Good job looking beyond the obvious search for color, and finding some interesting trees to observe! Those first trees especially are quite unique.
    Despite a lot of dreariness here, endless snow (it doesn’t pile up, but the gray sky just won’t stop snowing the last couple days!), we did find our hope and joy in Wednesday’s proceedings. ♥

    1. I don’t even think grey skies could have muted my joy on Wednesday. Clear blue sunny skies have made it even more special.

  11. Very considerate of you to put a sign by the daffodils, when they poke their head out of the ground they just look at the sign and they know what they are/

    1. Daffodils can be daffy and can use all the help they can get. I mean, who in their right mind pokes their head out in the middle of Winter?

  12. I love holes in trees and holes in the ground. I like to investigate them thoroughly. Mom says a rat or a skunk will bite my face off one of these days. #rude

    Love and licks,

    1. Elsa says not a problem. Norman kind of looked the other way and started whistling the Scottish national anthem.

    1. Those bulbs give me such hope for more pleasant weather (though it’s hard to fault 60 degrees in January!). Have a great weekend.

  13. Gorman was mind-blowing (in a good way) and the whole Inauguration Day was amazing. It is so wonderful to get up in the morning now and not have to cringe at what crazy stuff may have happened overnight. So much work to do, but at least there is the willingness to do it now.

  14. Winter everything looks so drab. I’m ready for some color. I’m ready for spring.

    I usually don’t blog on the weekends, but if there’s a gotcha day to celebrate I’ll have to make an exception. I do love to sing you know.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend. Scritches to the pups. ♥

    1. Aww thanks, Sandee. We always look forward to your visits. Winter can be a bit depressing but when you look closely you can see subtle signs of beauty.

  15. Our winter has been very mild here. We had very little snow which didn’t hang around. I’m grateful as we are prepping for a move. Next week we may get some snow but as the forecasters say, it’s too soon to predict the amount. You can always find beauty even in gray. It’s just not as showy.

    1. They don’t call ’em neutrals for nothing. 😉 We’ll keep our fingers crossed your move is not impacted by the weather.

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