What's Your Nature?

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Just Our Nature - news, updates and insights

Four Fun Places to Snowshoe in the NoCo

By Kelsey Mattison on March 20, 2017
Happy Spring Equinox! Today may be the first day of spring, but spring hasn't sprung just yet in the North Country. One way you can take advantage of the snow this year is by getting outside and exploring on snowshoes.  Snowshoeing is fun for all ages and abilities, and is a great winter activity to share with friends or family. Plus, strapping on some snowshoes spreads out your weight on the…
Blog category: On the Trail

Snow Job

By Paul J. Hetzler on March 16, 2017
It is nice to know Mother Nature hasn’t forgotten how to make snow, but I suspect the recent dump we got was supposed to have been delivered in January. Probably it got held up at the border, or the packing slip got lost and the whole shipment has been sitting on a loading dock somewhere. Here we are a few days from the official start of spring, so maybe if we can find a tracking number we can…
Blog category: Just Our Nature

Leprechaun Trees

By Paul J. Hetzler on March 16, 2017
My earliest memory of St. Patrick’s Day is how angry it made my mother, who holds dual Irish-American citizenship and strongly identifies with her Celtic roots. It was not the day itself which got her Irish up, so to speak, but rather the way it was depicted in popular American culture: Green-beer drink specials at the bars and St. Patrick’s Day sales in every store, all endorsed by grinning,…
Blog category: Just Our Nature

An Ill Wind

By Paul J. Hetzler on March 7, 2017
Bad-hair days might be a personal frustration, possibly even a social calamity, but bad-air days can send the population of a whole region into a tailspin. Literally. By “bad air” I don’t mean urban smog, although that certainly merits an article, if not an actual solution. And while the fetid pong in one’s dorm room after an Oktoberfest all-you-can-drink bratwurst bash and sauerkraut-eating…
Blog category: Just Our Nature

Got Gas?

By Paul J. Hetzler on March 3, 2017
Some foods give you gas, but this is the time of year when gas gives you a really delicious food. Maple syrup, which is nutritious enough to be listed by the USDA as a food (I say it deserves its own Food Group designation), is gas-powered. Carbon dioxide-powered, to be specific. If it wasn’t for a bunch of little gas bubbles in the xylem tissue, maple sap would not flow. Who knew that wood was…
Blog category: Just Our Nature

Birds and Bees

By Paul J. Hetzler on February 24, 2017
Being a dad taught me that you can only put off addressing delicate but important topics for so long. Eventually you have to step up to the plate, face the music and take the metaphor by the horns. That said, it’s time we had the talk. You know, THAT talk. About the birds and the bees. Known for their resilience, and in many cases their astonishing physical endurance, birds and bees are also…
Blog category: Just Our Nature

DIY Valentine's Day Bird Feeders

By Amanda Brooks on February 17, 2017
Show some love to your local songbirds this Valentine's Day (or any time of the year) and make your own heart-shaped bird feeder! You can use any type of birdseed to attract different species. Cardinals tend to prefer black oil sunflower seeds, chickadees like sunflower and safflower, sparrows will flock to millet, or use a mix like we did in the video below to attract a whole range of birds.  …
Blog category: Just Our Nature

Road Salt's Distasteful Effect

By Molly McMasters on February 17, 2017
As anyone who lives in the North Country knows, winter can be tough on drivers. Slick black ice and quicksand-esque snow are a danger to everyone on the road, and should be taken seriously. Aside from plowing and driving with care, the use of calcium chloride, better known as road salt, leads the charge in combatting dangerous road conditions. Keeping the roads safe, however, comes at a cost.  …
Blog category: Just Our Nature

Get Outside!

By Jenna Levandowski on February 17, 2017
Stumbling upon a group of grown-ups in the midst of a snowball fight is a seldom sight to see. As we get older, we so easily fall into this concept of “adulthood” where all of a sudden engaging in play is no longer commonplace. There is this idea that you can only play like a kid if in fact you are a child or are in the presence of one. Earlier this year I was able to visit the Little River…
Kids at Little River Community School playing in the snow
Blog category: In the Schools

Water Wellness

By Paul J. Hetzler on February 7, 2017
If you don’t plan to send your water to college, why bother having it tested? Academic testing is in fact akin to water testing in the sense that they both can involve many diverse “subjects,” and that a passing grade in one department does not apply to other domains. Everyone knows that taking an algebra exam won’t determine your grade in anthropology, history or theatre class. But it isn’t as…
Blog category: Just Our Nature