Neighborhood Nature is our family’s nature blog. It’s about the nature my children and I find near our home — the animals, plants, fungi, and rocks we encounter in our neighborhood in south Oak Park, Illinois. And it’s also about the passionate, almost obsessive interests that my kids have developed in birds, bugs, fossils, and other natural things as they’ve grown.
So, Neighborhood Nature is also a parenting blog. It’s about the choices we’ve made in parenting our passionately interested kids. Other parents may find value in some of our choices, but there are others they will probably want to avoid.
Going further, we should turn that around and admit that Neighborhood Nature is about being the child of a parent who is passionately interested in the natural world. At any point in time Ethan and Aaron tend to be specialists, interested in only turtles or mostly fossils or just birds for months or years at a time. But I remain a generalist, interested in all aspects of nature, all at once. They have to deal with that, as I have to deal with their special interests. I take them birding, but sometimes they have to wait while I look closely at the trees. Sometimes I get frustrated when my kids don’t share my interests — but now I can share them with you!
We hope this blog will become an inspiration (and sometimes a warning) for other families who want to explore the nature in their neighborhoods — especially families who share our passionate interests in these sorts of things.
Youalso can find me on Twitter as @NearbyNature, where I post frequent, really short reports on the nature seen in our neighborhood (and elsewhere). These Nature Updates are also listed in the upper right corner of this blog. Here’s the direct link to my Twitter stream: http://twitter.com/NearbyNature
All photos and text on this blog by Eric D. Gyllenhaal, unless otherwise noted.
The contents of this blog copyright 2009 by Eric D. Gyllenhaal.
Please contact the author < firstname.lastname@example.org > for permission to publish elsewhere.
NYTimes editorial Sept 23 1941 about an editorial my Dad wrote, Sept 23 1941