Butterflies Prominent in Burnett County Wisconsin 8/4/23

This week my two favorite species of butterflies have joined the ever-present iconic Monarch species to bring stunning decorations to the meadow landscapes.

Yes, the White Admiral                                               and the Giant Swallowtail 


Butterflies have always fascinated me.  This poem perhaps will send you into the dreamy place that restores my soul.

One Day Butterfly

    Aren’t we all one-day butterflies,

not aware of time.

Searching for partners or honey

until Death kisses us.

Then in his arms, tenderly rocked,

waiting for a new chance

to fly away again

and join the dance

of the one-day butterfly

Check out this week’s Gillespie Creek Journal using this website Menu for more butterfly photos by JA, poems and sayings to sooth your soul.



Fireflies, A Summer Solstice Show

This National Geographic Photo dramatically shows what is going on in tall grass meadows where a pond, stream or marsh keeps the ecosystem moist and undisturbed.  Fireflies “Lightning Bugs” are actually beetles on the hunt for love. Check out the “Newsletter” button on this website for more details, posted 6-23-22.

“Here I Am. Where are You?”

June is busting out all over in West-central Wisconsin.  The Wild Plum trees are blooming as are wild flowers.  Red-eyed Vireos are singing their famous song ” Here I am, where are you?”  Click on the Newsletter button on my website to enjoy all of the excitement of spring at Gillespie Cree,.

Watching Nature Balance Neighborhoods

“What we must do, I suppose is to hope the world keeps its balance.”  This excerpt from Mary Oliver’s poem “The Owl Who Comes” provided an invitation to my followers.  In turn several living across the U.S. responded with photos and stories about their favorite resident backyard bird species.

This stunning picture of a Western Tanager came from Retta from Washougal, Washington.  Although named to belong to the Tanager family, recently it has become recognized to fit better within the Cardinal family.

The Western Tanager is the dried fruit clean-up specialist.

Click on the “Newsletter” menu button of my website to find photos and details on the Goldfinch, Robin, Blue-ray Gnatcatcher, Great White Heron and a Whip-tailed Lizard.  All are important members of Nature’s precision “Balancing” brigade, East to West coast America.

Earth Day II, Saving Pollinators in Sun City, Arizona

These past days I’ve been on a hunt for neighborhood habitats that are welcoming pollinators.  I have found several.  Of course complete and functional natural habitats not only benefit pollinators but human inhabitants as well.

Below you will find recipes for delicious pollinator connection foods and garnishes.

Paloverde Flowers attract bees.  The bright yellow flowers are delicate and mildly sweet.  As soon as possible after opening the flowers can be used fresh, cooked or as a garnish on salads or soups.

Try this Paloverde Flower Pudding Recipe

3 cups clean paloverde flowers

1/2 C water

1/2 C sugar

2 C milk

2 Tablespoons cornstarch

2 Lightly beaten egg yolks or 1 well-beaten egg

2 Tablespoons butter

1/4 Teaspoon salt

Simmer paloverde flowers in water until tender, approximately 10 minutes.  Drain well and measure liquid.  Add milk to make 1 cup.  Puree blossoms in blender.  In saucepan blend sugar, cornstarch, and salt.  Add milk and blossoms and cook while stirring over medium heat until thick and bubbly.  Cook 2 minutes more, and remove from heat.  Stir small amount of hot mixture into beaten egg. Return to hot mixture and cook 2 minutes more.  Remove from heat, and add butter.  Chill in dessert cups.  Garnish with fresh paloverde blossoms .


Paloverde Pancakes

Add 1 cup of fresh paloverde flowers to yips favorite pancake mix.

(Recipe by Arizona Highways “Desert Wildflowers” )

Saguaro trees are just beginning to bloom.  Check our Cactus Hotel, a children’s book favorite with your grandchildren to thoroughly appreciate the importance of Saguaros, Arizona’s state flower, to the natural life of this state.

Arizona Highway’s “Desert Wildflowers” magazine also offers this recipe for

Saguaro Seed Dressing

1/2 C mayonnaise

2 Tablespoons honey

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1 Tablespoon Saguaro seeds

Mix all ingredients together and toss with your Arizona citrus salad.


For more photos, recipes and to plan and build your own successful “Pollinator Garden” check out millionpollinatorgardens.org. and Arizona Highways publication “Desert Wildflowers.”

Earth Day 2022, Sharing Ambient Space

Wednesday, April 20, was the day I selected to become “My Personal Earth Day.”  I gathered binoculars and iPhone, put on comfortable shoes, greased up with sunscreen and drove off to be the first in line to pay my $7 to enter the White Tank Mountain Regional Park.  It was my intention to immerse myself into the ambient life of the desert by walking the Waterfall Trail.  With no schedule limitations I would take time to sit on memorial benches and tune all of my senses into the desert surrounding me.

The hike was an unexpected adventure: buzzing bees, scented shrubs, glistening rock walls, soaring hawks, whistling Wren and Swifts, lizards, a Painted Lady Butterfly and finally a young Diamond backed Rattlesnake.

Click the Menu bar of my website to select the Newsletter option for the hike presented Nature Notes 4-22-22.

Returning home, I discovered Yolanda Kondonassis’s newly released “Five Minutes for Earth” album being played on 99.5 FM radio station.  Yolanda is an Emmy nominated harpist who made it her mission to compose fifty, five minute pieces while isolated 2020 to 2021 by the COVID pandemic.

“Five Minutes” is the metaphor for the urgent and compressed timeframe that remains for our global community to find and implement solutions to the environmental crisis facing our planet Earth.

Yolanda ‘s project expanded as she invited fifteen of the world’s most innovative compositional voices to express their most powerful experience inspired by one of the Earth’s many conditions or atmospheres.

The completed “Five Minutes for Earth”  album became available on April 1.

As the my “Earth Day” came to a close I remained captured by the sights, sounds, scents, inventive creativity and hope of our planet’s natural inhabitants.

Just one more element was needed to complete my “Earth Day Discovery” experience.  I needed a bed time story.

Jean Craighead George’s nature writing has always been a favorite of mine.  The Maricopa Library System’s Overdrive app sent me to her latest and final publication, Ice Whale.  The novel completed by her sons posthumously in 2016  thoroughly edited and research for geographical, lingual, scientific and social accuracy is available in the audiobook format.

 I listened to the entire four hour long recording.  The captivating story tells the of the Eskimo community around Barrow, Alaska’s dependence on the whaling industry.  Beginning with the birth of a male Bowhead Whale with a distinctive marking on his chin and a young Eskimo he and his descendants  engage with the same whale through two hundreds years of social and climate change.