Things that soar - turkey vultures, eagles, monarch butterflies - always make me think of freedom. They look so calm and effortless riding the wind currents in the sky.
This year, I was able to lead more than 70 people in monarch tagging programs. We only caught and tagged a few, but just being out there chasing monarchs with nets with families brings me joy. People are laughing and smiling as they try to outrun these amazing flyers. Many times they are starting to care for these little creatures from this experience and usually experience awe and wonder when they hear about their life cycle and learn about migration - an amazing natural phenomenon.
I personally don't have as much interest in tagging monarchs on my own these days. I would rather watch them nectar on plants that I planted or have taken care of just for that purpose. Or watch them as they soar over a hayfield in a southwestly direction - counting them, so I can report how many I've seen on Journey North.
Some joy in my life has been renewed by spending time with small humans and their caretakers as we laugh and learn about monarchs and migration.