Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Going up Nort

The first part of my mini vacation in Minnesota was driving up North (or up Nort as they say in Minnesota speak) to visit my niece Meagan who is a naturalist. She lives in an area where I think the loons outnumber the people. She and her adorable dog, Abby, live in a cute house on a lake with no neighbors in sight. I often think of myself as quite an independent woman, but I'm no match for Meagan. She is a true Woodswoman.

A view of her dock from Meagan's back yard. We heard loons that evening and in the morning.

For an example of her woodswomaness, a few winters ago she was driving home from work on a dark and snowy night. She struck a deer. The deer did major damage to the front of her car and was still alive but in critical condition. Meagan called the highway patrol. While waiting for them to arrive she sat down and put the deer's head on her lap and softly stroked it. The patrolman came and put the poor animal out of its misery. She asked if she could take the deer and the patrolman helped get the deer into her vehicle. When she arrived home, she dragged it to the barn on her property, hoisted it up, gutted it and made deer jerky. She then skinned it and she now has a beautiful tanned deerskin on her rocker. What a gal!

Ms Abby, getting ready to give us some lovin

Abby lounging on the back porch

We toured her place of work, the Long Lake Conservation Center. Schools around the state send students to spend overnight or a few days for intensive environmental and conservation education. Not in your school's budget? Check out the link for possible funding from a grant from the Jeffers Foundation. They also have occasional weekend retreats for adults. Any Minnesota nature photogs out there--Lynne, I'm looking at you! They are hosting a Fall Photography Retreat, October 2-4. An incredible resource smack dab in the middle of nowhere.

Meagan's house view from the back. I slept on that back porch. While lying there trying to get to sleep amongst all the quiet, I saw a huge shooting star streak across the sky.

Here she is! A woman who can charm the scales off a snake (whose name is Stan by the way). Check out that t-shirt!

Meagan was a wonderful host to her mom and three aunts, cooking up a tasty grilled chicken kabob dinner with sweet potato fries and a salad made from her own greens with a maple vinaigrette (made with her homemade maple syrup she harvested from sugar maples on her property.)

We left the next morning for a stop in Duluth then onto Grand Marais.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Out of Touch

Yes, that's me.

Possumlady has returned from the land of sky blue water. I came back a week ago from Minnesota where I spent a few glorious days celebrating my 50th birthday with my sisters. Oh, fyi, my actual birthday isn't until tomorrow. Just sayin....

Still on vacation until Wednesday, so without home internet service have not been able to post or comment (am borrowing someone's wireless right now---sshh!)

Anywho, thought I'd say hey. Will be back to posting when I return to work. I'll leave you with a photo of Lake Superior at Tettegouche State Park.