Tuesday, December 1, 2015

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 12/1/15

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The Nature In Us Newsletter
December 1, 2015
By Donna L. Watkins

"We hear voices in solitude we never hear in the hurry and turmoil of life; receive counsels and comforts we get under no other condition." -- Amelia Barr

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Hello Dear Friends!

Randal - 18 months old
Family - Doesn't this child look like one bad dude?  Maybe a would-be Sumo Wrestler?  This is Randal, my sweet husband, at 18 months old, born in Oklahoma City.  He just looks like trouble to me.  His mother says he was always busy.  But his personality turned to flexible, patient, and a no-hurry-worry attitude. I know he had a zillion questions to ask because he hasn't stopped that trait at all.  He's like a professional student ... always wanting to know something new.

I sure wish we were in summer clothes now as he was then.  I'm already tired of the cooler weather, but can't complain with the very mild winter we're having.  We had 20 days in November that were 60's and 70's.  I'm definitely not complaining here in Central Virginia.

I love being outside and can take the heat a lot better than the cold since I lived down south for 28 years before moving here.  Spring and Summer are on their way back in ... we just have to be patient.  I've asked for a totally mild winter this year and so far I'm in happy land being able to still do the screened porch on those warm days.

Tidbit - Digestive Comments - I had some comments from a Canadian friend, Genevieve, on the 7 Everyday Mistakes on Your Digestive System article which are great additions to the information presented in the article, so I asked for permission to share them with you.  She recently finished her schooling to become a Registered Holistic Nutritionist so is excited with her new area of expertise.  I remembered my own enthusiasm in those days, especially back in the early 80's.  Here's her comments:

"On the article regarding digestion, I believe the author missed one very important point:  Being mindful that we chew our food very well – digestion begins in the mouth.  Also, not drinking with meals is very important, but rather a half hour before or an hour afterwards.  Small sips of water are okay with a meal, if need be, but nothing else.  And then, many people – especially over a certain age – are deficient in digestive enzymes, and these can easily be supplemented. Just me rambling on ..."

View Enlarged Image
Elk Passing By - Yellowstone National Park Trip 2005
View Other Elk Photos
Critters - My email folder of "special things to keep" included a series of photos showing an elk giving birth to a calf right next to the Administration building at Yellowstone National Park headquarters in Mammoth Hot Springs.  It's absolutely awesome to see, so I checked online to see if it was posted anywhere and it is.  One thing I thought about as I viewed each picture is the amazing process of birth.  View Photos of Elk Giving Birth.

But I also thought about how wildlife has to be pretty ready to get up and go and quickly adapt to a different environment and become quite independent in a short period of time COMPARED TO human babies which take much more time to learn to walk, talk, form a vocabulary, and the whole process of just being able to develop into a person who is capable of taking care of themselves.  Wonder why God did it that way?  Any thoughts?  View Photos of Our Visit to Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons.

Tidbit - Tobacco For Energy - Tobacco is the most widely grown non-food crop in the world.  It grows in over 110 countries and is very adaptable to different climates.  This country was practically founded on tobacco at the Jamestown settlement in Virginia.

Some of the first exports back to mother England was leaf tobacco.  It's now a great idea to turn that plant over to bio-energy purposes since tobacco no longer has a good reputation.  The process removes nicotine from the energy tobacco so it cannot be used for smoking or chewing.  Combining Tyton BioEnergy Systems energy tobacco with a proven and patent-pending extraction process will unlock tremendous value for biorefineries and for farmers.  Check it out!

Inchworm on Mums
Bugs and Blooms - Back in September a friend left a small pot of yellow mums on the front porch.  How special.  Actually I only knew they were yellow mums from the tag in the pot.  It took weeks for those buds to swell up and turn into glorious blooms radiating the sunshine as it rested on its petals each day.  I had placed it on the screened porch where I basically live in the tolerable months of the year and sporadic days where I can grab any amount of hours out there. 

The blooms lasted such a very long time and during one cold week with a dip below freezing I had moved the pot inside to the kitchen table which becomes my office in winter.  After a few days I noticed fresh caterpillar poop on some leaves which showed me somewhere in that plant there was a caterpillar.

It took my quite awhile but I finally saw it.  An inchworm.  They so intrigue me.  So few legs with such a strong grip.  And that looper walk is totally cute!  So I was excited to have hosted some species of inchworm on to it's process of life.  When it warmed up, Randal planted the mums outside where I could see it from the breakfast window.  Hoping the little guy finished his cycle of life and is now a beautiful moth!

View Enlarged Image
Young Red Oak Tree Emerges From An Acorn
View More Oak Trees
Trees - We've been having mild weather as mentioned above and it's good for the wildlife also since we've not had a mast of acorns this year.  Had the same problem in 2013.  But 2014 sure made up for it.  Acorns are produced once a year during Autumn. The number of acorns fluctuates from year to year and no two successive years will have strong production, so it's not surprising we have none this year.  I've literally only heard a few with all the time I spend on the screened porch. In good years it sounds like it's raining golf balls.

Tree species such as oak, hickory, and beech produce a hard mast - acorns, hickory nuts, and beechnuts.  We have oaks, both red and white, so we're used to seeing a lot of acorns in good years. Acorn production doesn't even begin till the oak tree is 20 to 50 years old. Production of acorns will increase each year in proportion to the size of the oak tree's canopy.

The animals that eat acorns in our backyard are deer, gray squirrels, chipmunks, wild turkeys, crows, flying squirrels, rabbits, opossums, blue jays, and raccoons. Acorns can compose more than 75% of our white-tailed deer’s diet in late fall and early winter. Deer and other animals, including black bears, alter their distribution patterns in response to acorn production. When an acorn crop is especially good, deer may produce more twin fawns, thanks to improved nutrition. That certainly proves out from the heavy 2014 crop. We had a lot of females this year with twins. A failed acorn season can cause wildlife populations dependent on acorns to decline.

Spiritual - Do you know who you are in Christ? We have been given so many precious promises by God. Jesus died on the cross that we might have an abundant life, and yet we look at our physical realm and declare, "it ain't happening here." God's promises are given on a spirit level and we access them by faith (believing to be true), the same as we did to have our sins forgiven.

We allow a lot of things to get in the way and sometimes our thoughts and beliefs counter what we truly desire in life. Here's a few links to a blog by Clint Byars with posts, audios, videos, etc. If we renew our minds as we are told to do in Romans 12:2 and don't allow ourselves to be conformed to this physical world, we can get a glimpse of that abundant life which includes peace and joy to get you through the circumstances with the Presence of Christ within you. 

Choose NOT to make December a stressful month. You are confined only by the walls you build yourself. You may have circumstances that will require some lifestyle changes and a bit of time but you can make your life what you want it to be. It happens every day. Through Christ you can do all things. Make it a brand new year ... plan on a plan for 2016 and work your plan. Life goes by so very quickly and stress robs us of many things mental, physical and emotionally. (Read: It's Never Too Late To Be What You Might Have Been).

Christmas Day - 2012
It's not Santa, trees, food, gifts or partying. It's about Jesus. God coming to earth to save our souls and so much more! Remember what the holiday is celebrating.

Share The Wonders of the Manger Story - It's Christmas Time!

P.S. See anything in here that might help somebody you know?  Please share! 

Here's a link to the online version of this newsletter.

If you simply want to copy and paste the link into an email, here it is:  


Posts Since Last Newsletter

Thanksgiving at God's House

Dancing With Jesus

Thanksgiving ... Remembering

10 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Video: Canine Winter Boredom - What To Do

7 Everyday Mistakes on Your Digestive System

Receiving Healing

Plant With Purpose (DLW)

Energy Savings This Holiday Season

Pet Video: Holiday Pet Safety

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 11/15/15 (DLW)

Previous Posts You May Have Missed

Missing The Butterflies  (DLW)

Stop Trying to Believe and Rest

Healthy Holiday Gift Sets

Have You Heard of Medi-Share?  (DLW)

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 11/1/15 (DLW)

Filling Up With God's Love

It's Never Too Late To Be What You Might Have Been  (DLW)

How Hospital Gardens Help Patients Heal

Pets: Symptoms of Urinary Tract Illness

The Secret Place

Looking at Nature Can Help Your Brain Work Better

10 Tips to Improve Your Heart Health

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 10/15/15 (DLW)

Filling Up With God's Love

What Sleep Deprivation Does to Your Brain

Signs Your Pet Kid Has a Hormonal Problem

The Nature In Us Newsletter - 10/1/15 (DLW)

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Copyright and Reprint Information - All photos remain the property of Donna L. Watkins, but may be used with proper credit and link back to the website, TheNatureInUs.com. Articles written by Donna L. Watkins may also be reprinted with proper credit and link back to the website, TheNatureInUs.com.

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