An ode to parks

Happy end of 2018 everyone! What a year! I know we all go through ups and downs in a single year and for me it helps to focus on what I am grateful for to give me perspective on life and find meaning.

Parks make me very grateful and restore my balance when I am feeling off in this crazy world. I have loved them since I was a kid and wanted to share two parks with you today that have touched my heart.

Huntley Meadows Park is a 1500+ acre wetland/forest/meadow park in Northern Virginia in the city of Alexandria. Here’s a website with more information: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/huntley-meadows

Our neighbor told my mother and I about Huntley in 2009 when we moved to Alexandria from Hawaii and were missing water. The neighbor said you can find water at Huntley! And we went and did find a beautiful place with water- a wetland full of birds, turtles, frogs, flowers, and so much more. If you believe in love at first sight, that is what I had for Huntley Meadows. From that moment we were hooked and walked there a lot and attended their awesome programs and learned a lot about the natural world.

I was fortunate to be able to volunteer and later work at Huntley and give back to a place that has given me so much- it has a kind and wonderful community of volunteers and staff that care about protecting it and sharing it with the world. I miss Huntley and the sweet folks there a lot and think of them often. Here are a few pictures from our visit back in June of this year.

Let us give back to parks since they give us so much! I enjoy volunteering currently in Portland at the Tryon Creek State Natural Area- it is really close to our apartment and it is a 650+ acre park in the middle of a busy city! They have a wonderful friends group as well that cares about protecting the park and Oregon State Park Rangers to help as well. Here’s a website with more info: https://tryonfriends.org/visit-tryon-creek/

And some pics I have taken of this beautiful place:

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It has been fun to learn about the Park Ranger system and greet visitors in their nature center. Volunteering and working at parks have changed my life and I will strive to always be an advocate and steward(someone who wants to care and help preserve parks). Will you join me in the new year in caring for our parks? Hope there is one you like to go to- I am excited about seeing Huntley again for our Christmas vacation. Happy Holidays everyone. See you in the blog world in 2019!

 

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