There was one other unexpected special thing that happened in the sequoias. There was a nature presentation at our campground on carnivorous birds. When I first saw it listed on a flyer, I wanted to go, expecting to see some photos of birds and just learn at little. I was so surprised when we arrived to find a presentation with real live birds: a red tailed hawk, a great horned owl and a prairie falcon.
Each bird was presented with such caring by Diane. I was in awe of not only the beauty of these creatures, but also how she cared for them; delicately straightening ruffled feathers and cooing to them when they were nervous.
I feel very fortunate to have been able to see these birds up close, though I wish there was a way they could have not been hurt in the first place. It was amazing to hear about what amazing hunters these birds are, in particular the owl. Though I’ve known since childhood they’re carnivorous, I usually just think about owls docilely perched in a tree. Of course, they kill all manner of creatures, crushing them with tank like force. It’s a big reminder that not all cute animals are so cute and cuddly.
Now let’s be honest, one of the most fun things about camping is camp food. Shawn did a lot of preparation for our trip and even found us vintage Girl Scout and Boy Scout utensil kits. He also got us some LunchSkins for sandwiches on our first day. Another little treat was getting a camp stove toaster. We cooked all out meals on this little table that Shawn made. The legs are detachable, so it can pack flat.
Random fun thing from this trip: we took part in a travel study. A park volunteer handed over a few gps units which we toted around with us and returned when we left the park. Not sure what they’ll be used for, but I thought it was fun nonetheless.
We made lots of s’mores. It’s always a struggle to find vegan graham crackers but Shawn came up with a superior solution: SPECULOOS COOKIES. Paired with dark chocolate and dandies vegan marshmallows I can easily say they were the most enjoyable s’mores I’ve had to date.
I have wanted to go camping in the sequoias for years and this weekend Shawn and I finally made the trek up north. To say it is a magical place is an understatement. It is sincerely one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. Being in the presence of massive trees that have been living for centuries had a great effect on me, especially seeing the destruction humans have caused. I’m thankful that at least the trees within the national park are protected and that conservation efforts continue.
Beyond that, it was really nice to get out into nature and camp for the weekend. Sometimes it’s a great relief to be totally self sufficient and without cell phone service. I loved being surrounded by little creatures and birds all weekend. I even spotted a flying squirrel in a tree above our campsite one night. We cooked some delicious camp meals, did some hiking and really just enjoyed ourselves. I honestly can’t wait to go back. It really solidified for me how important it is to be able spend more time in nature; it makes me feel like a more complete human being.
I’ll have some more to share later in the week, but for now, check out one of the largest trees on the planet.
It’s baby season, which means I’m at it again with the handmade gifts. I’ve mentioned before that I really enjoy knitting for kids because you get the satisfaction of making something somewhat complex but on a smaller scale. This sweater took me quite a lot longer than the grey sweater I knit last year since it was made with a smaller garter stitch. The hood is by far my favorite part.
I also love these handmade buttons I found at The Little Knittery. They weren’t too cutesy and with the burned wood, they have just enough character. Off this will go to some happy new parents (Who hopefully don’t read this blog. I don’t think they do.) just in time for the cooler months.
I can’t believe it’s been a year since we rescued Weetzie Cat. It feels like we’ve had her all along. I can tell she’ll forever be my little baby kitten. It took the better part of the year for all the cats to get adjusted to each other. Mochi still isn’t a fan of Weetzie at all, but usually ignores her unless Weetzie is having too much fun running around the apartment. Weetzie has picked out lots of hiding places where the other cats won’t go so she has her own little territories. Her favorites are on top of the fridge, in the back of one of the kitchen cabinets and her little suitcase bed. She loves that little bed. She sleeps there every night. Sometimes I wish she had a buddy cat to cuddle and play with but I know that wouldn’t go over well with the other lady cats (and 4 cats would officially be a lot of cats).
Weetzie makes me happy every day and I’m so glad we found her and that she’s a part of our lives.