life's surprise


I love to go for walks outside, and lately the weather in my part of the world has been all kinds of amazing.

So, I’ve taken my winter exercise routine of marching in front of the TV (why is this not an Olympic sport?) to the road.

And the scenery has been awesome, because spring is breathing new life–and color–into everything…


nature's beauty

Tulip tree in Historic Fredericksburg

maymont children's farm

Rooster at children’s farm in Maymont

surprises in nature

Robin’s egg

nature walk surprises

Koi in the Japanese garden

walk surprises

A trail of Goldfish (in the wild)

See? Surprises at every turn.

Because spring is bursting with new life…it’s dangling from the branches by silvery threads…


Flying on the breeze, inchworms made their way to my head, shoulders, and knees.

Eventually, I perfected the walk and dodge, a.k.a. the Inchworm Limbo.

inchworm infestation

nature's surprises

Surprise! This inchworm hitched a ride home with one of my kids. 

I quickly took him back outside (note: no inchworms were harmed in the making of this post).


What spring surprises have you encountered? Do you have inchworms dangling from your trees? What is your favorite thing to do outdoors?


Here’s to happy adventures this week!


P.S.-There are five signed copies of my YA debut, Come Back to Me, up for grabs at Goodreads. Contest runs through May, 14th–check out the link in my sidebar or click   HERE.


Be sure to check out the thoughtful and heartfelt posts by Pat O’Dea Rosen at her blog Reading, Writing, & Rambling.


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40 thoughts on “Each Turn in the Road of Life Reveals a Surprise

  1. Beth K.Vogt

    My 12 y.o. thought the inchworm was cute — and said she would have kept him. Now how she knew the inchworm was a “him,” I don’t know. Thanks for taking us along on your walk.

  2. Catherine Johnson

    It looks lovely for wandering about there. I go for two dog walks a day, nowhere that interesting. We just bought Wii Fit yesterday so I hope to hop on there sometime today 🙂 I’m so thrilled my BMI is 23 it used to be 28 ack! but it said my age thingy was 47! Naughty screen, I hadn’t even done one of their exercise programs yet, how dare they lol.
    Catherine Johnson recently posted..Window KnightMy Profile

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      I’ve considered buying the Wii, especially for cold, wintry days. I remember a family friend saying that it actually comments on your size??? That kinda fell in the con category for me. LOL

  3. Marcy Kennedy

    I love those inchworms 🙂 So cute! I don’t think we have them around here. At least if we do, I haven’t seen them. In about another month, we will have fruit flies/June bugs. I don’t know how to describe them except to say they’re small bugs with wings and they’re very fragile and short-lived.
    Marcy Kennedy recently posted..Is the World Becoming More Evil All the Time?My Profile

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      I remember some strange bugs that would be everywhere early summer when we lived in Michigan. They had very big wings and liked to sit on door and window screens. The inchworm is cute, I just didn’t like feeling the tiny thump when they’d land on my head. 🙂

  4. Patricia Tilton

    Lovely spring post with some beautiful photos. You know how to see through the camera lens. My favorite time of the year. I don’t see inchworms here. Didn’t know there are so many in the spring. It’s very springy here too. My favrite time of the year!

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      Thank you, Patricia! Fall has always been my favorite, but something about spring this year has been SO enjoyable. There really is so much around to smile about.

  5. Jess Witkins

    Love the photos, Coleen! So beautiful! I wouldn’t do well with the inchworms though, I’m NOT a bug person. Oy. Some of those look insanely long. *grimace*

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      Not a bug person either, but somehow I felt sorry for them dangling there in the breeze. They are technically food on a string for the birds. 🙂

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      So funny you should mention Sesame Street! That’s my first inchworm reference too. There was a Slimey song that my kids liked that was all about wiggling. 🙂

  6. Pat O'Dea Rosen

    Coleen! You are so nice to mention my blog and use the words thoughtful and heartfelt. My heartfelt thanks for your thoughtfulness! Meanwhile, that tulip tree wowed me. So did the robin’s egg, and the rooster, the koi, and the goldfish. The inchworms? Ewww! The chance to see something new gets me out walking, too. I look forward to seeing another blue heron at the park near me.

  7. Joanna

    I have never heard of a tulip tree! Love these spring pics. I have been amazed how just one week made a huge difference in the blossom and flowers blooming in Central Park. I enjoyed finding a hen house in the front yard in Brooklyn this week whilst out walking.

  8. Susanna Leonard Hill

    Love your little inchworms, Coleen! we don’t seem to have those… at least not yet… maybe it needs to get a little warmer? Our trees aren’t blooming like yours yet either, so maybe we need another week or two. Hmm… favorite thing to see in spring? Sunshine, flowers, new leaves, and baby animals 🙂 My friend’s horse just had a colt. He’s 5 days old now and just the cutest thing you ever saw!

    1. Coleen Patrick Post author

      I feel like the inchworms are a new thing around here, unless that’s just faulty memory on my part! I’d love to see a baby horse–i had so much fun exploring the children’s farm. I used to take my kids when they were young, different experiences, but equally fun. 🙂

  9. Patricia

    Absolutely lovely photos. I too have taken to living in the outdoors when possible. This past Sunday I set up my card table on my deck and got 2,200 new words on my current WIP. I was also covered in inchworms by the end of the day, but they shake off easily. I had to dodge flies and bees, but overall, it was a very rewarding experience. Can’t wait to do it again before it gets too hot.

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt
    Patricia recently posted..Meet NY Times Bestselling Author Brenda Novak and Help Find a Cure For Juvenile DiabetesMy Profile

    1. Coleen Patrick

      They do shake off easily, it’s just that initial thump as they land on me, that gets me…ergh. 🙂 Enjoy your outdoor writing, it is nice, isn’t it?

  10. Kristy Shen

    Wow, Coleen! These are gorgeous photos 🙂 Your entire post makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Like a warm blanket or a cup of hot chocolate.

    Oh and you published a book!!! How could I possible have missed this?! *kicks self* CONGRATS!!!!

    PS. I see that it’s available for the kindle but I have an Ipad. Can kindle eBooks be downloaded and read on an Ipad? (Please please say “yes”)

  11. Lynn Kelley

    Wow, Coleen, these pictures are gorgeous! You’re so gifted with photography, and your writing is beautiful, too. I enjoyed your book so much! I’m way behind on Goodreads and Amazon with the reviews and ratings, but I’ll catch up as soon as I get some time off! Have a wonderful week.

    1. Coleen Patrick

      Thanks, Lynn! Your support means a ton and I know what you mean about catching up! I’ve been scattered with my reviews too. This week I did one for a book I just read and one for a book I read over a year ago. Not so organized on that front…LOL 🙂

  12. Lisa Hall-Wilson

    I’ve never seen an inchworm – nor did I realize Slimey was a real kind of worm! Huh. I love spring and love walking. As I was walking my kids to school today, I looked up and there was a kitten hiding in the crook of a maple tree. Not what I expected to see. lol Too cute! Great photos!
    Lisa Hall-Wilson recently posted..Yes – We Did It On Purpose!My Profile

    1. Coleen Patrick

      Aw that is cute!
      And as surprising as those inchworms can be, I like that they make me think of Slimey and wehn my kids watched Sesame Street. Thanks, Lisa!

  13. Kourtney

    I can’t believe how quickly spring has sprung. Everyday I went out with my dog and we watched the buds burst on a tree in our front yard. It was so fast and so lovely. Glad the inch worm found a new home in your back yard. 🙂

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