In Your Words is a regular feature of Mass Audubon’s Explore member newsletter. Each issue, a Mass Audubon member, volunteer, staff member, or supporter shares his or her story—why Mass Audubon and protecting the nature of Massachusetts matters to them.
I’ve been a lover of nature my entire life. Growing up, my mother, a skilled birder, adorned our lawn with bird feeders and houses, so I quickly learned to recognize all the backyard birds. I love the idea of simply noticing the details of the world around me: catching a glimpse of a ruby-throated hummingbird or a warbler flitting around a treetop.
Birds may have brought me to Mass Audubon, but over the past few years, I’ve learned how far the community extends beyond that.
As a volunteer, I’ve weeded the strawberry patch at Drumlin Farm, which has allowed an urbanite like me to connect with the land. My fiancé and I have gone on countless nature walks at Wellfleet Bay, learning about everything from scrub oaks to horseshoe crabs. And in the fall, I love spending a night at the rustic Innermost House at Ipswich River, reveling in having a sanctuary all to myself.
The older I’ve become, the more I’ve realized how critical the natural world is to my fulfillment and enjoyment of life. It’s inspired me to support organizations that help preserve, nurture, and champion our environment.
Mass Audubon has already provided me with a myriad of remarkable experiences. And I can’t wait to instill the values of Mass Audubon in my future children, encouraging them to maintain a fascination with the world around them.
Jenny Villone is a Boston-based Photographer and Digital Producer and a Mass Audubon Member Since 2014.
Her article originally appeared in the Fall 2016 issue of Mass Audubon’s Explore member newsletter.