Hello Friends and Family,

1976 - North Oaks, MN, Part 1

Link to this year's index by clicking here.

I have shared photos of Minnesota during the wintertime and I stumbled across some ones I have not yet shared. Since the outside temperatures here in Arizona are a touch away from triple digits, I thought it might make us all feel a bit cooler.

You may recall my home in North Oaks. Just for fun, I used Google Earth to take a quick look to see how it looks now. No surprise that the trees are all much bigger. It also appears that my old crushed limestone driveway has been paved over in asphalt. The house itself looked much the same.

Back in the mid-1970s, the garden which was shut down for winter has a guest. It looks like a pheasant of some sort looking for a meal. Slim pickings would be my guess.

The trees that are full-grown now started as nursery stock (no surprise there) but I like the look of them struggling to survive the Minnesota winter snow. Way to go, little trees.

This poor baby was almost buried in snow. Mother Nature made them extra hardy to be able to not only survive but to thrive in these conditions.

As I wondered about, camera in hand, I heard the whistle of the freight train that passed less than a quarter mile from my house. Got a nice photo out of it. I was lucky that very few trains passed this way each day — even fewer at night. They can be noisy and definitely may disturb your sleep.

Love the caboose.

More trees — they rather look like oak trees — which would be fitting in a community like North Oaks.

It looks like we are on the edge of a lake — North Oaks has many lakes — although they are a bit more challenging to locate in winter. Just be careful where you step.

All the lots there were large — I believe I mentioned that mine was 1.6 acres. This does not look anything like my neighborhood in Arizona where homes stand close together.

Minnesota residents have to decide whether they will pay someone to plow their driveways, use a snowblower, or just let it be. The folks appear to be the "Let it be" variety.

I don't know (and didn't know then) if this tree was still alive. But, dead or alive, it was rather picturesque and I still like it.

One of the delights of sharing nature with wildlife is the gathering of ducks in a spot where the water seems a bit warmer than the snowpack would suggest. Way cool, a duck convention!

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com