I just returned from a short trip with my husband. How refreshing to get away from daily tasks and see new things. We saw the wonderful show of Manet’s portrait paintings at the Toledo Museum of Art. On the way home we explored the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge on the Lake Erie shoreline. It was a grey overcast day, snowless and unseasonably warm for December. My expectations for wildlife viewing were low because of the time of year. I was enjoying the subtle browns of the grasslands from a viewing platform, taking some reference pictures from which I can paint. Alerted by calls that were different in pitch than Canada Goose calls, I spotted a V of snow white birds and was lucky enough to snap this picture. Swans!