This year we dipped our toes into Wisconsin in both the spring & summer.
As much as Minnesotans love to give Wisconsin (& Wisconsinites) a hard time, and we do, she truly is gorgeous. Rolling hills, magical springtimes, and full of life.
I explored while James played a round at Highbridge Hills with Noah Meitsma & Bryan Lagergren of Northern Lights Disc Golf. There are 5 full courses on the top of this enormous hill surrounded by sky, making it feel like its own planet.
We were lucky to spot a freshly hatched Tiger Swallowtail (peek at her wrinkled left wings) on a sprig of clover, and a rather shy painted turtle at the edge of the pond.
We also found a sneaky paper wasp nest hiding in a not-so-convenient place (& stayed clear of it).
It had rained the day before, and thousands of different greens were at their best for the whole day.
I couldn't stop staring at the leaves, if I'm honest.
In July, James played the Silver Cup near Two Rivers, Wisconsin.
We camped for the week with our friends in a lot right on Lake Michigan!
I still can't decide which I liked better, the lake views every morning & night, or the monarch butterflies hatching in the milkweed fifteen feet from our door.
This butterfly photo was taken about two minutes after the outdoor kitchen photo, in the bushes by the rocks (in the outdoor kitchen photo).
Here you can see tiny monarch butterfly eggs laid on the underside of the milkweed leaves.
When they hatch, they are these green, yellow, and black striped caterpillars and eat the milkweed they were born on.
When they get big enough, and 'ready', they form their chrysalis (often on a milkweed plant or piece of long grass) and continue their transformation into beautiful monarch butterflies!
If you look especially close in this photo, you can see a butterfly, a caterpillar's head, and an egg! There was something fascinatingly magical about capturing the different stages of the butterfly, all together. (There's got to be a metaphor about that, right?)
Please enjoy this protective stallion. I met he and his family somewhere in Kansas this summer & wow, were they beautiful.