Total Eclipse of the Heart: How a Lumpy Loveseat Led Me to Lunar Nirvana

I thank our loveseat for helping me to see Friday morning’s almost total lunar eclipse. Yes, our basement loveseat in all its cramped, lumpy glory. If I hadn’t unexpectedly fallen asleep on it and woke up stiff and sore at 2:15 a.m., I’d have never risen to see the longest lasting lunar eclipse since the … Continue reading Total Eclipse of the Heart: How a Lumpy Loveseat Led Me to Lunar Nirvana

The 8 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in July 2019

Great hiking and fantastic views of the Missipppi and Apple Rivers Beautiful, secluded beaches, towering sand dunes, and top-notch hiking trails just 50 miles from Chicago A beautiful nature center on the DuPage River that has easy hiking trails, live animals, a play area for children, and much more 8 places to see bison in … Continue reading The 8 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in July 2019

Thoughts on the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing and Why the Moon Still Makes Me Swoon

“Ice!,” my 2-year-old son once exclaimed as he pointed at the Moon in the heavens. I described the Moon as looking like a “communion wafer in the sky” in a poem I wrote about watching hundreds of thousands of bats emerge from a cave in Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico. Over the years, … Continue reading Thoughts on the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing and Why the Moon Still Makes Me Swoon

15 Nature in Chicagoland Stories to Check Out on a North Pole-Like Day

It’s so cold today in Chicagoland that [fill in your punch line here]. So, today is a perfect day to…stay inside and read some of my favorite all-time posts at Nature in Chicagoland and dream of warm weather, summer skies, forests of green, happy dancing deer (okay, maybe I have mental frostbite), and all the … Continue reading 15 Nature in Chicagoland Stories to Check Out on a North Pole-Like Day

Earthrise 1968: Thoughts on the Past and Future of the Environment and America

The beautiful blue Earth rising above the barren, chalky surface of the moon in the darkness of space. That’s what astronauts Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders saw on December 24, 1968, from the cockpit of the command module of Apollo 8. These men were tasked with completing a challenging mission that involved testing … Continue reading Earthrise 1968: Thoughts on the Past and Future of the Environment and America

Thanksgiving Day: On Escaping Chicago, Spending Time with Family, and Enjoying a Fire and the Stars

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Of course, it's a time for gratitude for good things such as one’s family, but I also love Thanksgiving because it allows me to escape densely packed Chicagoland with its 9 million+ people rushing to somewhere or nowhere, honking drivers, packed expressways, and light pollution, which makes it more likely … Continue reading Thanksgiving Day: On Escaping Chicago, Spending Time with Family, and Enjoying a Fire and the Stars

The Importance of Authenticity: On the Eclipse, Tom Skilling, and Being Oneself

We live in a world of Auto-Tune, Pollyannaish social media posts, and Z-list celebrities. A world that’s loaded with people looking the same, acting the same, and often thinking the same (lump me in there at times). Of reality TV- and social media-manufactured controversies and edginess. We crave authenticity, but we’re surrounded by cultural complicity. … Continue reading The Importance of Authenticity: On the Eclipse, Tom Skilling, and Being Oneself

Thoughts on The Great American Eclipse of 2017—and 10 Useful Websites to Learn More

The Great American Eclipse of 2017 is just two days away (August 21). In the path of totality, the moon will completely cover the sun. A black circle will appear in the sky where the sun once was, darkness will fall, the temperature will drop 10 to 15 degrees, flowers will close and animals will … Continue reading Thoughts on The Great American Eclipse of 2017—and 10 Useful Websites to Learn More