Western Sunflowers

One of my favorite things about many western states is that you see these sunflowers growing along highways in abundance. Many regions of Colorado are dotted with these lovelies.

These two appear to be admiring each other.

They are such happy flowers. They brighten the landscape and never fail to make me smile so I couldn’t resist grabbing a picture from this parking lot at a waterfall called Treasure Falls.

Helen Keller once said “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow. It’s what sunflowers do.”

Great advice.

Sunflowers At McKean’s Farm

Last summer I was fortunate to visit three sunflower fields and shared likely way too many photos of them all. But I don’t apologize because these are happy flowers and I quickly became enamored by how lovely they are in person.

There’s a huge variety of colors, shapes and sizes that I knew nothing about until I started wandering around these fields.

Yesterday I closed my computer at the end of the work day, picked up my sun hat and headed down the road to Gallia County to visit a new-to-me field of sunflowers at McKean Farms.

It was less than an hour trip and just five bucks to get in. I had the place to myself, likely because it was so hot and because this was only day two of their season.

It is a working farm with chickens, barn cats, farm equipment and a delightful produce stand packed with homegrown fruits and veggies.

I had a nice time wandering the perimeter of this field, studying butterflies, crickets and bees.

It was indeed hot but a soft breeze caused the sunflowers to sway as they turned their happy faces toward the sun.

It’s just five bucks a person and $4 for four or more people. Stop but the produce stand to pay your admission and buy some goodies for later. They take cash and plastic.

Find them on Facebook for hours, address and other information by searching McKean’s Farm.

Ukrainian Easter Eggs

The local library here hosted a Pysanky workshop this weekend. This is a Ukrainian egg decorating technique that uses dye and wax. They tend to use traditional folk designs that are intricate and colorful.

Our instructor has 39 years of experience with this mind boggling art form because her Ukrainian grandmothers taught her beginning at a young age. Her skills and patience are admirable.

We were first given egg shapes on paper to sketch our designs in pencil. Crayons were used to experiment with the palette and inspiration came from books and an assortment of eggs she had on display. Once we had our ideas together, we chose an egg and were armed with a lit candle, block of wax and a little tool used to draw on the egg with the wax.

Given my obsession with sunflowers last summer, it was logical to do something with a sunflower pattern. Not only is the sunflower the national flower of Ukraine, it’s a captivating example of how imperfections can be beautiful. I strolled through three sunflower fields last summer and my favorite flowers were the ones that were flawed.

Here’s my egg.

It is incredibly flawed and the sunflower imperfect but I’m still quite proud of how it turned out. I love the palette I chose and the design too. The execution leaves a lot to be desired as working with wax on a real egg shell is one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done.

All the same, I managed to get it done and had fun in the process. It now is in a place of honor on my bookshelf, a pretty reminder that enjoying the creative process can be as rewarding as the outcome. Also a reminder that perfection is overrated and that imperfections can be beautiful.

I suspect and hope that this was not my last attempt. I will count on trying it again someday.

Here’s one more view of her gorgeous eggs.

Here’s something about imperfections from last year. I wrote about sunflower fields here, here and here. I would recommend finding one near you this summer! If you get a chance to try a new kind of art, I recommend you do that too!


There’s something beautiful about imperfection.

Check out this butterfly I met at Scioto Sunflowers Friday night. Look closely. It’s missing about half of one wing.

Yet, the way it flitted from one flower to the next was impressive and graceful. That chunk of missing wing really didn’t slow it down and it was still beautiful.

Here’s one more piece of imperfection from the natural world. This sunflower was just as striking and just as beautiful as all the other sunflowers even though it had a weird shape. In fact, it may be more beautiful because of the flaws.

The petals that appear to be missing are there. It has everything it needs to be a flower. They’re just folded backwards so that you can’t see them from this angle.

I think I liked it better because it was different.

Remember friends, your flaws and imperfections aren’t so bad. In fact they may make you stronger or more interesting and may not be something to fix.


Welcome to Thursday.

Today I’m dragging you back to the sunflower patch in Logan because I’m a bit obsessed with sunflowers right now. It’s funny because I have never been a huge fan of sunflowers but it’s hard not to be impressed when you’re standing in a sea of them.

Here are a few more glimpses of these happy flowers.

The coloring on this one is unusual.

Even the scarecrow is happy.

This lady seemed thrilled to wander around making a bouquet. You get one cut flower with your admission and then can buy more for a dollar each.

The yellow!

Did you miss the stories about my sunflower visits in Logan and Urbana? Click the links for more!

Sunflowers In The Hocking Hills

Let’s talk about sunflowers.

To be completely transparent, I had never paid that much attention to sunflowers until a couple of weeks ago when I wandered through a sunflower field near Urbana, Ohio.

I was immediately transfixed by the textures, shapes, colors and variety of these large, sunny flowers. It was great fun to lose myself among endless rows of the different varieties they had.

It was an unexpectedly joyful morning.

Imagine my glee when I learned that a sunflower field had opened close to home this weekend. Walker Farm is on St Rt. 180 near Logan, Ohio and they now have a patch for locals and Hocking Hills region visitors to enjoy.

They have a handful of varieties as well as props for photos and there’s plenty of room to roam away from other people.

Sunflowers have significance in some cultures. It’s the national flower of both Russia and Ukraine. In Chinese culture, sunflowers represent good luck and lasting happiness. In other cultures, these magnificent flowers represent positivity, admiration and strength.

With over eighty worldwide varieties, there are a ton of different colors and sizes. Regardless of the variety, the bees love them and that’s good for the environment. I also saw some hummingbirds in the field on Saturday.

At $5 per person or $20 for a family of four or more, this one is a bargain compared to most I have read about. Your admission includes one cut flower to take home and you can buy additional flowers for a buck apiece. Five and under get in free. You can visit on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 8 p.m. through Labor Day weekend. This same farm offers a pick your own pumpkin patch and corn maze starting mid September.

It’s well worth your time and a memorable experience. Like the other sunflower fields I have seen advertised in Ohio, it’s locally owned by a farm family and I’m sure your support means the world during these challenging economic times.

Check out my story from the Urbana field here and follow Walker Farm by searching them on Facebook.