Spring 2017 – Botany Semester

The last botany semester found me in an interesting spot. Over a ream worth of paper in botany handouts on top of a textbook. This upcoming semester, with the same professor, ill be looking at much the same. So, this semester sees me in Plant Anatomy and Morphology frequently with a beloved professor and in Plant Ecology with a professor I like quite a bit but have never had in a full semester official capacity.

My main botanical achievements thus far are this:

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Herbarium sheets. I’ve made herbarium sheets of the plants I collected and pressed via professional methods. I am able to take this skill into the future as it is apparent that I have the necessary skill to attractively press a plant with the appropriate identifying features present and visible. Its going to be a great skill.

It was a great semester, I’m expecting another great one.

Adventures in Climbing, and Coworkers!

I work at a nearby rock climbing gym. It was sheer luck that I got the job but I’m happy as hell to have it. I get to rock climb in the gym for free whenever I want, get deals on gear, and keep myself the fit I need to not have arthritis flares. I also get to train to be a mountaineer through winter and I can really not lose my shape (and become an arthritic lump again).

However, It was brought to my coworkers attention that I had never climbed outside. The way I got into climbing, well my friend found the gym and said “hey, lets try this out”. We didn’t know how to do anything or where to even start with outdoor climbing. We took intro classes and watched other gym climbers and absorbed as much knowledge as we could. Well, my coworkers found out and just couldn’t let me go on having never climbed outside, so two of them took me climbing. We went to Clear Creek and tried some easy stuff.

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I had a blast. It was exactly what I needed to remind me that my goal here is to climb mountains. And to climb them with people I like. I have such an amazing team of coworkers and such a fun sport to delve into, I cant wait for summer again. And its only November. This is really where my climbing adventure begins.

Fall

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Its Fall. the leaves are beginning to turn and fall, grass is getting drier, days are shorter and school gets harder. One thing that definitely happens in fall with the leaves dropping, we cant take tree canopy cover measurements anymore. We managed to successfully measure all the trees before the leaves did any significant dropping and the summer 2016 field season comes to a close. To mark that seasonal change is our Monarch butterfly larvae friend  here, chowing down on a milkweed leaf. This little guy will winter here on this plant. Maybe I’ll see a cocoon when we come out to take diameter and height measurements in a few months when the trees are nekkid. Happy Fall!