Prairie Daze >>

On my whirlwind trip back to Minnesota last week, one of the things I did was take a trip down to Southwestern MN with my mother in law. She had been talking up this little corner of the state for some time, so we decided to finally make the trip happen. It was short and sweet, but it definitely left an impression on me.

I love the look of silos against the flat prairie landscape. In a place where you can see for miles upon miles, and any slight rise in the land is considered a "feature," silos are dramatic and striking as they rise out of the horizon.
I've never actually spent much time in Southern MN. In my family, any and all vacation time was spent "up north," where the lakes and the forests are. Admittedly, that's probably why pine forests will always hold a special place in my heart. But, geography lesson time! Minnesota is a convergence of three major biomes: prairie, deciduous forest, and coniferous forest. All three feel so familiar and "home" like to me. Growing up, The Little House books were some of my very favorites, and I often imagined myself as a modern-day Laura, running out to help Ma with the washing or take a ride into town with Pa for supplies.
Well, well, what do we have here? Cactus! I was pretty surprised to come across these little guys. They are apparently brittle prickly pear, and they thrive in sandy rocky areas, like the Western plains.
This ridge is for sure something that would be considered a "feature" on the prairie. And when I looked up and saw the sun coming through the trees, I couldn't resist snapping a photo. There's something about sun flares that makes me all tingly inside.

The prairie is so quietly beautiful. It's nuanced, and thoughtful, and I think you have to work a bit harder to really connect with it. I think this is what makes it special and worth getting to know; it's a lot more like my own personality than the showy mountains and majestic woods that I am often drawn to. But the prairies will always hold a corner of my heart for it's own. If I had a little house on the prairie like Laura, I'm sure I'd be just as happy there as nestled next to a mountain lake.

I took so many pretty pictures that I want to share, so I'll be back soon with part 2 of my prairie trip!

shanti >> sondra

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  1. So gorgeous. Prairies are beautiful. I'd love to take a walk through their tall grasses. *dreamy sigh* I also love a good sun flare! :D

  2. Those are beautiful images! I am a "prairie girl" myself. I like hay bales and red barns. I haven't been wandering lately, but I made a goal with myself to do some before the summer is out!