Lifelong Passion

Author; C. Parnapy
My sense of wonder with the natural world began at an early age.  My father, who I must admit has the mind of an inventor, would take my younger brother and myself out to streams in Vermont to go prospecting for gold.  It was not the hope of actually finding anything that drew us out to the waters; however a few specks would show up now and then, it was the experience and the hunt!  While my father was busy trying his latest invention to draw those golden flakes out of the substrate, I was searching under rocks, watching fish and falling deeply in love.   I have always felt more at home in the natural world, than on any city street. 

I was fortunate to grow up with family who lived near Lake George.  I have fond memories of excursions onto the lake, into the lake and playing in streams.  One pivotal memory for me, was fishing for Native Brook Trout with my grandfather.  I was so excited to get the fish back to the house and look at what they had been eating.  Not the thoughts of a normal 6 year old. 

Author: C. Parnapy
My father a certified scuba diver would take the family out snorkeling into bodies of water, while he used an underwater metal detector that he had built (like I said, inventor.) It is amazing the things people loose in the depths.   From those trips, I learned to observe fish, algae, and find sunken treasure.  The most exciting treasure find for me was an old wooden boat about 20 feet down in Trout Lake.  I felt like I was treasure hunting off the Caribbean. My young mind made up all sorts of stories behind the boat being there, from a giant fish taking it down to the bottom, or maybe a getaway boat for some villain, uhm pirate.   Who doesn't wish they still had the imagination from their childhood?

That same summer, I saw a catfish and its ball of young.  It was amazing to watch the tiny school of fish swirling under the watchful eye of their parent.  Those same fry where the object of my amusement when they moved near shore within the littoral plants.  I would sit in the water with my snorkel and mask and just watch them, trying really hard not to grab them. To this day I want to handle all things cute.

My husband Jeremy
In high school, I joined FFA and 4-H, both generally considered agricultural groups. I was lucky enough to be in an area that while having some agriculture, there were plenty of environmental opportunities.   Because my school was small, I was able to work very closely with my technology teacher. We still stay in touch.  In an effort to broaden her students minds, my teacher purchased water testing kits and setup a tilapia tank for us to rear fish in. 

When I was 16, I went on a 4-H winter camping trip.  Yup WINTER.  I was all snug in the warm cabin; mind you we had to use an outhouse.  That is when I met the man I eventually married.  We started dating 7 months after we met, and then got married 10 years later.  After many wonderful camping trips, hikes, and outdoor adventures we now have our own two year old son to enjoy these amazing life experiences with.   Thank goodness my son is as obsessed with nature as his father and I are. 

Our son William
My love of the natural world lead me to a degree in environmental studies focusing on fisheries, and another in biology focusing on limnology.

One aspect we try to instill into our son is to observe nature, see how life interacts with each other.  There are relationships between everything.  By instilling a sense of place within the natural world for our son, I have re-awoken my sense of wonder, and the enjoyment that can be experienced by just observing and taking note of our surroundings.  

My boys
It is my hope that by showcasing and exploring the natural world through essays, music, art and personal experience, I can create this sense and wonder for others.

Corrina lives in Schroon Lake NY, within the Adirondack Park with her husband Jeremy and their son William.  

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