Thursday, December 18, 2014

Park? ... Park? .... Did someone say Park!

Last night Old Man Winter returned to Kansas City in the form of snow.  Perhaps this was expected, as the polar vortex of early November let go to mild days and included 60 degree days near the end of November and early December. This is the story of one such unseasonably warm weekend day.

Trying to get our girls out early in the morning can be a challenge, and on weekends we are rarely out the door before 10. Thus on this fine day I left early to meet a birder from Manhattan at the Overland Park Arboretum. Birds were cooperative and the his desired Purple Finches appeared at the feeders.  I even tried to take a few photos, laying on the ground and almost dozing in the warm sun.

A Dark-eyed Junco and Tufted Titmouse from the Overland Park Arboretum feeder station.

Waiting in the garage?
Returning home around 10, Christine and I agreed we needed to get outside to enjoy the lovely warmth and lack of wind. After lunch we told the girls of this plan, with the intention of looking for winter gulls and finding a new park near Nelson Island.  Somehow they put shoes on and were ready quickly, hoping in the car in anticipation.  Perhaps it was the new movie, or the warm weather, but this observed behavior was completely unexpected.  Christine and I packed up in peace and quite, enjoying the time to have a conversation and catch up on with each other. We must have taken too long, as Michaela came in asking if we had forgotten about them.

We whiffed on winter gulls at Nelson Island but found a neat climbing tree.
We put all my bird search endeavors on hold as the family got distracted by park. Even though it was small in comparison, the new layout seemed to captivate the girls imagination. It also happened to be quite busy, being on a frequently used trail-head.

It doesn't seem natural yet to be laying in grass at the end of November in a short-sleeved shirt....but looking back man was it nice.