The Life and Times of a Curious Conservationist

including environmentalism, explorations, and any extraordinary thoughts that occur along the way

Lake Crabtree

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A note to social butterflies, from an introvert.

Dear Social Butterflies (you know who you are),

I enjoy being with people.  I love seeing my family when I visit home, and nothing makes me happier than spending a night with close friends and laughing so hard my cheeks hurt, or reconnecting with friends that I haven’t seen in a while.  I love meeting new people (when they’re nice) and I have always made friends very easily.

Now that all that is out on the table, I want to clarify a few things.  I am, and have always been, an introvert.  A lot of people are surprised when I tell them this, because I’m pretty outgoing and I have lots of friends (not to get braggy, but it’s true).  However, I have always been perfectly happy spending time alone.

When I was a child I could spend hours playing by myself.  I didn’t even need an imaginary friend to be happy; I was completely content on my own.  As I’ve grown up I’ve maintained an exciting social life, but have noticed more often that I need time on my own.  If I don’t get that time to myself, I feel drained (not to mention, I get very cranky). Being around other people takes energy, which I am most willing to give, but in return, every once in a while I just need some time away.

Now to my next point…needing to be alone does not make me boring.  It does not mean that I don’t like being around people, or that I’m socially anxious.  It is not in any way meant as a personal affront to you, Social Butterflies.  I know that you love being with people, and some of you feel the need to be around people all the time.  I don’t mean to offend you when I leave a party early or sneak into another room to read National Geographic instead of staying to chat after family dinner.  I just need to recharge my batteries. I promise I’m not leaving forever.

And most importantly, doing this one little thing for myself does not make me a selfish person.  It’s common knowledge that resting your mind can improve productivity, mood, and creativity.  It just happens that my mind is most peaceful when I’m alone.  Whether you call it R&R, re-centering, or just vegging out, taking time to rest is important for everyone.  Most people don’t make time for it, and therefore end up cranky, tired, stressed and unhappy, but I can recognize when I’m reaching that point, and I make an effort to recharge.  That’s not to say that I don’t have stress, but doing this little thing is one way I can live a more relaxed, happy life.

So please, don’t get upset when I turn down an invitation, or say I just need a night in to watch Downton Abbey.  I still love hanging out with you!  And please don’t stop inviting me to things either.  I’ll make it to the next one, promise.



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Fashion Friday: what I’m obsessing over this week

I’ve always been a Disney girl.  I frequently daydream about visiting Disney World, I’ve spent countless hours trying to figure out when my favorite films will be coming “out of the vault” and it’s very likely I could quote you any given scene from pretty much any of those films. (I also wake up to Circle of Life as my alarm every morning.)

So when I saw the latest winter collection from RED Valentino…well let’s just say I found my happily ever after.  These Disney-inspired pieces were absolutely made to be in my closet (not that they would spend any time in there, since I would be wearing them ALL THE TIME).

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These gorgeous looks work so well because they have that touch of fairy-tale whimsy, but still have an edge.  It’s a match made in fashion heaven.  So go ahead, window shop away (or real shop, if you can afford)!  Just don’t take any apples from strangers…


Happy Friday!


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Fashion Friday: what I’m obsessing over this week

Fashion Friday is back!

For my second post in this series, I’d like to pay tribute to…capes!  They’re no longer just for fairy tale characters and superheroes, you can wear one too (or several, who am I to stop you?)!  I personally am loving the brightly colored and patterned ones, they make a statement in the midst of all the black and gray peacoats of winter.  Here are a few of my favorites:

English Nights Cape, Nasty Gal

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Helene Berman Cape, Asos

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Wool Capelette, kate spade new york

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Show your fairy tale side!  And enjoy some bright colors during the gray winter months with these beautiful capes!

Happy Friday!


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Fashion Friday: what I’m obsessing over this week

Welcome to Fashion Friday!

I’m a compulsive Internet window shopper, and absolutely, entirely, crazy obsessed with fashion.  In order to share this obsession with the world, I’ll be dedicating each of my Friday posts to a new fashion trend or product that is making my heart race that week.

This week I am addicted to JumpFromPaper’s line of bags that (no joke) look like they’re straight out of a cartoon.  Literally, they are designed to look pretend, as if they’re part of a 2D hand-drawn cartoon world.  In my humble opinion, this is the single most creative take on bags and backpacks since…well zippers.

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Now it just so happens that if I could choose any other world to live in, it would be the world of cartoons.  The colors are bright, the injuries don’t really hurt you, and the heros always live happily ever after.  Sounds like a pretty fabulous world to me!  So I’ll be taking every opportunity to put a bit of that world into my world!

Happy Friday!


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Life in the Shadow…(a short view of a total lunar eclipse)


“Blood moon” full lunar eclipse, Oct. 8, 2014.

This morning a rare event occurred.  I’m not referring to the full lunar eclipse that happened (for once) at a time when many people were awake to see it…I’m talking about me, getting out of bed before the sun was up.  Yes, I managed to drag myself out of bed before the crack of dawn to view the eclipse for a full twelve minutes before it dipped below the tree line.  (It’s a good thing I live on the third floor or I’d have missed it entirely.)

Although I don’t have the best camera in the world, I took a few photos (for the benefit of my roomie, who couldn’t get out of bed in time). I hear that some very lucky people will get to see an even rarer event…the eclipsed moon and the rising sun at the same time.  Sadly, due to aforementioned trees, I will not be part of that club.  But the eclipse was still an extraordinary event to watch.

One time when I was young, there was a full eclipse visible from the area in which I grew up.  My parents explained the day before that sometime during the night the moon was going to disappear (I now know that’s not exactly true, but I understand the difficulty in explaining an eclipse to a four-year old).  I woke up once during the night and the moon was still shining brightly…back to bed for me.  Of course then when my parents did try to wake me to see the show, I wasn’t having it.  And so I slept through the first full lunar eclipse of my life.  The disappointment the next morning was palpable.

Now, as an adult, I’ve come full circle.  I’ve managed to wake myself up and stay awake for the eclipse…a magical experience! Of course it helps that the universe decided to align the Earth and moon at a decent hour.  And for those who didn’t make it out of bed…there’s always next time!

P.S. Did you get any pictures of the “blood moon”? If so, leave me comments with a link so I can check them out!

(If you’re interested in more about astronomy and science, check out Write Science.)


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