The 2011 Prairie Sagebrush Awards for blogging

The Prairie Sagebrush Award 2011 is given for fine writing, photography and art in the blogosphere.  From my blogroll, I select a post, photograph or art piece from 2010-2011, early 2012.   For each comment that is entered on this ‘The 2011 Prairie Sagebrush Awards for blogging’ post, I will donate a buck ($1.00) to a wildlife corridor in Texas or New Mexico.  I set a limit of $100.00 — not that I am going to have more than fifty comments, but who knows?

I have excerpted portions of these fine writings and art into my post in respect for their blogs and copyright.  Please click on the links to obtain the full text of these really fine bloggers.

Please feel free to copy the Prairie Sagebrush Award 2011 design-image and put it on your blog to link back to this post or to one of the blogs below.  (No, I’m not trying to pump up my numbers, just trying to illustrate the high quality of work performed on blogosphere.)

[Wild Bill, Wild Ramblings blog, ‘Conifer Encounter.’…On the way back I asked him, and this was one of the few times I had spoken, how he knew so much about the woods. He answered that he was a biology professor at Springfield College, but had grown up in the pine barrens in New Jersey. He surmised that most of his knowledge he had learned as a boy wandering those Mid-Atlantic swamps, coupled with reading a lot of books about nature. And then he laughed out loud, almost in a boisterous way. “And once I met an old man in the woods,” he declared, and he laughed again, this time even more loudly….

[Grethe, Thyra blog, ‘Goodbye to King Winter.…The next week-end was foggy and raw and the sun seemed so far, far away. It was nice to see that the people at the restaurant of  Skovmøllen (the old Water Mill-restaurant) saw to that the little birds were fed with Danish bread and fat-bowls. There was also morning bread with cinnamon and the birds seemed to like it!  Notice the little blue tit. It is so ruffled. I hope it will cope….

[Photograph: Montucky, Montana Outdoors blog, ‘A visit to an old painting.]

Montucky, 'A visit to an old painting,' January 24, 2011.

[Cirrelda, Color of Sand blog, ‘Ides of January — yard observations.’…I stood for a while looking at my pobrecito pinon tree tilting away from the drooping elm limbs above it. Then those elm limbs were golden – the light was coming at them directly from that western mesa edge (miles away) and the whole damn wild elm tree was shining in its massive shagginess. (I so curse that tree at times since its roots tangle into every vegetable bed.) Smoke on my hands and clothes, I stand and gaze at the afternoon in my yard….

[Martie, Taos Sunflower blog, ‘Photos from my hood.’ …This morning I was down in Arroyo Seco (the nearest village to my home, where my yarn shop used to be) and had a few moments alone with my camera.  I thought I’d go look for beautiful flowers, but alas, in this drought, they were not to be found.  Then I looked up at the beautiful clouds in the sky over the old church behind our building, and thought it has probably been years since I’ve shared photos of it with you.  It was a ready reminder of why so many people come here to study art and paint the local scenery.  I’m sorry there aren’t any flowers for you, but hope you enjoy the rest…

[Shoreacres, The Task at Hand blog, ‘Promises Made, Promises Kept.’…My extraordinary good fortune was to be born into a family more than willing to make and keep promises.  My father took promises especially seriously. The eldest of six children, he was one of those increasingly rare creatures – a man of his word. Whether it was a work colleague, a neighbor, a family member or his tiny daughter coming to him with a request, if he said he would do it, he did….

[Wrensong, Writings from Wild Soul blog, ‘Waiting for the Sun.’  See also the female cardinal photograph associated with this winning post.]  Everything so still/ in this windless dawn/ Ice hangs from every twig/ air cold as stone/ Sun arrives like hope/ and hunger. ~wrensong

[Marie, The Rambling Wren blog, ‘The Red Fox.’…The fox stood stock still in the middle of the lane. We watched each other silently for 10 or 15 seconds, then the fox turned to go. But she paused, then sat down and looked back at me. She seemed unsure how to proceed, and kept looking up the secondary driveway we use for moving trailers and the RV. There’s a large woodpile there, an old barn the previous owners had dismantled elsewhere and brought here, planning to reconstruct. But the project was never finished, and we now have habitat for all sorts of critters–rabbits and woodchucks, chipmunks, feral cats, and now, perhaps, red fox. Had she moved her kits there, I wondered?…

[Kittie Howard, Kittie’s Stories, ‘Shopping at Best Buy.’…Best Buy, that big box store, re-entered my life.  I didn’t want to buy a new computer just yet.  The plan was to limp along with what I had until the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays. Last Saturday night, the motherboard died….

[Rebecca, Rebecca in the Woods, ‘On Not Hearing a Boreal Owl.’…Then yesterday GrrlScientist had to go and write a blog post about about Wilson’s Snipe and mention that the “winnowing” sound created by its tail feathers during its courtship display sounds very similar to the call of a Boreal Owl. And that courting males “fly in circles.” And that they do this “long into the evening.” And sometimes even at night, I suppose? Sigh. No one likes deleting a species from their life list…. [Bold added.]

[Photograph and recipe: Karen Rivera, New Mexico Photography, ‘Green Pumpkin and Green Chili Pueblo Stew.’]

Karen Rivera, 'Road between Cimarron and Taos, New Mexico,' March 8, 2011.

[Debra, Find an Outlet blog, ‘Death’s Mementos.’…Every day I am moved by roadside memorials to people who weren’t ready to die. People who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. They’re a constant reminder of how fragile we are—bits of bone wrapped in a flimsy shroud of a ridiculously unsuitable hide. We’re anything but fierce when up against poison, bullet, disease, or 3,000 pounds of steel, glass and chrome….

[Wildstorm, Backroads Photo blog, ‘North Texas Desert.’…There is no such thing–the North Texas desert. Yet it seems like it when you glance across the dry roasted pastures where nothing grows. What is green? The cedar trees. Even the oak trees have burned up leaves….

[Bunnyterry, I Love New Mexico blog, ‘Gardening in New Mexico.’…As I stand here with the garden hose in my hand, I’m reminded of a paper I wrote on personal landscapes for that particular history class.  The instructor’s goal throughout the class was to get us to tie our own personal histories to history in the broader sense, which, if I were teaching history today, would be my goal as well…

[Teresa, Teresa Evangeline blog, ‘At Home in My One Room Schoolhouse.’ …I almost forgot to tell you: when I crossed over into New Mexico from Utah on Sunday, in less than a quarter of a mile there were two crows and a coyote. The crows were standing over their dinner in the ditch, whoever the poor critter had been, and the coyote was trotting away from them, down in a hollow, across a snow-covered field….

[Annie, Anniepickens’s blog, ‘Spring Garlic.’…Sunday I got to the Farmers’ Market later than usual, it was already packed with people but choices were still good. The first thing I wanted to do was find the egg guy and trade in my used cartons. It seems like the only time I remember that I’m going to take them back is when I am at the market buying more eggs. Very happy with myself for finally remembering….

[Photograph: Jeff Lynch, Serious Amateur Photography, ‘Those Spanish Skirts.’]

Jeff Lynch, Palo Duro Canyon, 'Spanish Skirts,' January 2011.

[Photograph: Evangeline Chavez, Evangeline Art Photography blog, ‘Dia de Los Muertos.’]

Evangeline Chavez, 'Dia de Los Muertos,' posted November 6, 2011.

[Poster image and environmental work: Chris Clarke, Coyote Crossing blog, ‘Desert Biodiversity.’]

Desert Biodiversity poster, Chris Clarke, December 2011.

[Bonnie Bardos, Bohemian Artist: Painting and Thought blog, ‘New Sculpture.’]

Bonnie Bardos, 'New Sculpture,' May 2011.

[Photograph: Steven Schwartzman, Portraits of Wildflowers blog, ‘Welcome to the Texas Hill Country.’]

Steven Schwartzman, 'Clammyweed flowering,' June 2011.


Filed under Prairie Sagebrush Awards 2011

52 responses to “The 2011 Prairie Sagebrush Awards for blogging

  1. Pingback: on not hearing a boreal owl « Rebecca in the Woods

  2. Many thanks, Jack. I have updated the post you selected to include the award image and a link back to this post. When I have a little time later I’ll have to go through and read all of your selections from around the internet – I was taken by surprise by which of my posts you chose!

    • Rebecca: I selected your post because it showed the attention to field work and the intensity that goes with discovery. But, when the facts and data show different from your original conclusion, you change your life list. You change because you want to be correct, to be factual. That came out as well as the deep emotional attachment that you have with nature. I also like your continuing to learn and that you are in grad school studying ecology. We need legions of men and women like you that love the earth and all — snipes and boreal owls, notwithstanding — its creatures.

  3. Pingback: Good Company « Writings from Wild Soul

  4. Jack, I am so honored by your including one of my posts in this list. You are very generous. I look forward to spending time with each link you have included here.

    deepest thanks.

  5. Jack, I’m not only honored to be included, I’m looking forward to making my way through all of the blogs you’ve included here. There is so much talent in this world, so many people whose perspectives enrich my own.

    One thing I appreciate about those who gather here (and on the blogs you’ve listed) is the high degree of openness and civility. Some of us have quite different views in certain areas, but you can almost literally see people seeking out their common ground. If only we could persuade some of those responsible for the larger world in which we live that such a thing is possible!

    I’ve also posted this award blog at Weather Underground. There are quite a few people there who could enjoy and profit from it.

  6. CindyD

    Thanks for including my favorite blog, Rebecca in the Woods, and introducing me to some others I’m sure I’ll enjoy.

  7. Thank you so much for this fine award, Jack, I’m so honored being in the company of these bloggers. Kittie Howard introduced me “once upon a time” to this blogworld, and if it wasn’t for Kittie I would never have met so many clever, sweet and generous people. It has been such a wonderful experience to me all the way and I have learned a lot during that time. I hope I’m able to continue in blogville! And I have learned that besides all your other gifts, Jack, you are a true gentleman.

    I was in doubt how to do, but I looked at how Rebecca did. So I did the same until now! But right now I ‘d like to read and enjoy the bloggers I don’t know yet.

    Thank you, Jack.
    Grethe ´)

  8. Kittie Howard

    Wow, Jack, thank you. I’m honored to be among such esteemed bloggers and thank you for this lovely award!

  9. Jack, Thank you so much for including me. You make blogging a worthwhile endeavor, and I’m glad for our friendship. I will probably be posting tomorrow and will make a link back to your blog. You were an early “follower” of my blog and I remain very grateful.

    • Teresa: Yes, I was an early admirer of your work. You have so many fine posts. The one I still remember is that one from last year: hearing the music — dulcimer, was it? — down the lane in Crippled Creek, Colorado. The other post is the place at the end of the clothes line during Summer. I am glad for our friendship. Oh, Bonnie Bardos, who also got a Prairie Sagebrush Award, is showing in Santa Fe! On Canyon Road. On her blog, she has a link to the gallery.

  10. Thank you Jack. I agree that we are honest yet civil bloggers—which proves that it still can be done. Having a love for our country and all the creatures in it can give us joy or make us angry when we see it/them violated. All we can do is carry on…here’s to many more posts from all of us.

    • Debra: I know the anger; I know it well. I really have to throttle down on my blog the outrageous behaviors I see, actually see, in these parts that diminish life on this good earth. I know when I come to your blog, the rage with articulate expression is there, in you, in your blog. You go places in your critique that I shall follow, if asked. I hope that many of my ‘readers, followers,’ would give a look-see at your blog. Thanks for so many fine posts from you.

  11. It’s both thrilling and a deep honor to be one of your Prairie Sagebrush winners again, Jack! Thank you, thank you. Can we award YOU an award: for your love of nature, for your eloquent, poignant, succinct thoughts expressed so aptly? If so, you win my number one vote! It’s a pleasure to read your words, to see your photographs, and most of all, connect with your thought. Nature, art, creatures, kindness to the earth and each other: a part of the great circle of life. Yes, thank you, Jack Matthews!

  12. Thank you for thinking of me, Jack! I am honored! I am already familiar with many of the other recipients and will now start visiting the others.

  13. Rubia

    This is such a clever way to honor your blogger friends! You have gathered many beautiful paragraphs and photographs here. The work you put into this award is admirable. Congratulations to the winners!

  14. Thanks for including Annie, Jack. She is definitely honored to be included amongst such creative people. She is also a little embarrassed to be included since she has been somewhat of a slacker as of late when it comes to writing. Seems Spring fever has taken over and she can’t quite get herself focused on anything that doesn’t have to do with being outside and gardening.


    • I’m with you, Annie. Humbled and silent. Words not wanting to collect themselves around the shape of things these days. The full moon is coming. I’m reading the names of the moons. I ask my writing group: what is the name of your Moon this March? Fish Moon? Little Frog Moon? Much Lateness Moon? I think mine is Silent Moon. Maybe Listening Moon. Maybe Waiting for Words to Return Moon.

    • Spring fever affects us all. You are a fine writer and cook to boot. A lot of people have told me how much they linger over your blog posts.

  15. I read about this blog on shoreacre’s Wunderground blog. I truly find your blog to be of great interest. So far I have only glanced at the blog but I will be back to read and savor many of the entries.

    I totally concur with the award being given to a fine writer such as shoreacres.


  16. Pingback: ides of January – yard observations « Color of Sand

  17. What a rich resource you have created with this award list! I love Teresa Evangeline’s blog, and now I shall explore many of the others as well.

  18. I came via Teresa Evangeline’s blog. Thank you for the other offerings, as well.

    The Good Luck Duck

  19. I’ve wandered in via Teresa Evangeline’s blog today, coming in support and hopes of adding a buck to your cause. What a delight to find your blog and all it has to offer. I’ll be returning when I have a bit more time. In-the-meantime, thank you for your efforts in saving our wildlife.

  20. I’ll have to come back to peruse the rest of these blogs when I have more time, I’ve been enjoying Teresa’s blog for quite some time now and what a wonderful thing to do donating to a corridor for wildlife, whatever we can do helps.

  21. What a great way to lift up other bloggers and show the beauty of the prairie. Found you from Teresa’s blog.

  22. Thank you very much Jack! This is truly an honor and I really appreciate all the support you have provided throughout the last few years. I really like the wildlife corridor donation idea.

    I will copy the Sage to Meadow award image with pride (as soon as I figure out how to do it-not a problem copying it, just have to figure out where to put it!).

    Thanks, Jack!


    • You are welcome, Bill. I look forward to reading your work as it touches so many emotions about living with the land and all its creatures. Thank you for your work that is shared around the world.

  23. Hello Jack,
    It’s Friday night and I am resting up for a full day of teaching tomorrow. Hope you don’t have to – that it’s a day off for you (with plenty to do, right?).

    Had another working weekend last weekend and your award received last Sunday made me feel great. Audience is a crucial part of expression. Your simple activity (though a humongous amount of time on your part!) strengthens this online camaraderie. I am glad that I started to take part in reading your blogs a couple years ago – your attitude is fun, inspiring, open, broad and fair. Your connections to other sites have brought me such enjoyment on an otherwise impersonal contraption. Thank you very much for expanding each of our realities.

    I did post the beautiful label on my January 2011 post that you awarded, with a caption letting folks know the link back here.

    • Cirrelda: No, I am off for a week and glad of it. Thank you for your kind comments. I hope your teaching goes well today. I know the audience will learn much from you. Thanks again, Cirrelda.

  24. Jack: Thank you for including me in the 2011 Prairie Sagebrush Awards. It’s an honor, both to be chosen and to be in the company of such talented and fascinating bloggers. While my life (and my blog) are clearly all over the map right now in terms of topics, my heart is and always will be firmly planted in good old NM terra firma, It’s a privilege and I hope to be able to share more of it in this coming year’s postings. Best wishes, Martie

  25. Jack
    I am honored to be chosen for your Prairie Sagebrush Award. Looking back on the blogs of everyone, so much information, photographs, fine writers and many talented individuals it is nice to be able to visit everyone and see another world of art.

  26. awe inspiring and breath taking

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