Disclaimer: Listen people, I don't claim to be a good photographer, much less a landscape photographer, so bear with me here. The following pictures were taken by a nonprofessional with a cheap camera. Nevertheless, they were taken through a lens of affection for this place where I have known much peace and refreshment.
I'm afraid I've saved the worst pictures for last... sorry. One of the fun things we got to do while with Mom and Tom was a scavenger hunt they had prepared to take us all over the property and test our naturalists' skill. We had to find everything from a pinecone (ok, easy enough) to a feather (extremely elusive) to a thistle (ow) to a Joe-Pye weed (wuh?). Eventually our team (girls) found every item on the list, but we also stumbled over two unlisted treasures of the wildflower variety. I looooove wildflowers, and Mom let me borrow her Michigan wildflowers book to look these up. Then I went back later to try and get pictures of them.
Back to disclaiming: This is where the cheap camera and the lack of skill on my part really come in. I could not get that silly camera to focus on these flowers for THE LIFE of me. It really wanted to focus on the grass. Really, really. I have about 37 pictures of marvelously crisp, lovely grass with blurry wildflowers in the foreground. These are the very best of the lot here. If you happen to care, Google the flowers by name to find pictures that will allow you to appreciate their beauty more fully.
The bright blur there near the front (couldn't get any closer, as the blur only got worse) is an orange hawkweed. It was the only one I saw in all of my wanderings, and it seized my attention, it was so vivid and striking. This pictures does it a terrible injustice.
And these little beauties are birdsfoot trefoil, one of those quaintly named blooms that I have long known by name but never seen. I just adore them--they are so dainty and delicate and so vibrantly yellow. Again, my picture = serious shortfall.
But seriously now, can't you see why Mom and Tom have chosen to spend their retirement in the secluded splendor of The Ponds?