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October 14 - October 28, 2016
Andy Opperman's avatar

Andy Opperman

NJDEP EcoLogicals

"As a recent retiree I plan to use my new-found time to the benefit of nature and the environment, among other plans. On a daily basis, I will: 1) note 3 things I am thankful for, or send one email to a person letting them know I am thankful for him/her; and 2) spend 30 minutes per day outdoors enjoying the natural world. As a one-time challenge, I will explore at least one new nature trail or walk."


  • 0 TODAY
  • 236 TOTAL

participant impact

  • UP TO
    spent outdoors

Andy's actions


Explore my Area

I will explore at least one new hiking trail or nature walk in my area.




I will write down three things every day for two weeks that I am grateful for or send one email every day thanking or praising someone.



Spend Time Outside

I will replace 30 minute(s) per day typically spent inside (computer time, watching television, etc.) with quality time outside.


Participant Feed

Reflection, encouragement, and relationship building are all important aspects of getting a new habit to stick.
Share thoughts, encourage others, and reinforce positive new habits on the Feed.

To get started, share “your why.” Why did you join the challenge and choose the actions you did?

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/28/2016 8:10 PM
    Day 15 addendum - hey NJDEP EcoLogicals, check out "Friends of the NJ School of Conservation" on FaceBook!
    A great cause & a great group of dedicated folks & environmentalists,

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/28/2016 8:06 PM
    Day 15: a cool Fall day here in NJ; was able to complete 1 of my 2 daily challenges.  Couldn't hang outdoors for 30+ minutes due to having a medical procedure today.  I will make up for it in the coming days.
    Farewell 2016 EcoChallenge, hello EcoLifestyle continued!
    Thank you Louisa & team NJDEP EcoLogicals!!!

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/27/2016 6:03 PM
    Day 14: it was hard to get 30+ minutes outdoors & away from electronics (PC, TV, etc.) since the rains came earlier than forecasted but I squeaked it in.  Our Australian Shepherd, Tucker, helped - he was at the back door antsey to go out, that is, more than usual.  So I'm almost ready to let him go but something caught my eye.  Wild Turkeys were in our small backyard, 6 of them, scratching up seed that the songbirds have dropped & spread around.  One needs to be ever alert to the possibilities!

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/26/2016 6:27 PM
    Day 13: though the Challenge is coming to an official close, the environmental challenges will always be with us & we shall rise up to meet them.  I met my personal "one-time challenge" & got out & explored a new trail - walked around Rancocas State Park, the former Rancocas Powhatan Reservation.  Time spent outdoors included bird observations: saw & heard lots of Blue Jays, a couple of flocks of blackbirds, a Red-bellied Woodpecker, Mourning Doves, 8 Turkey Vultures soaring high up, a small accipiter soaring high & away from me, & a buteo, possibly an immature Red-tailed Hawk.  There was also a black & white cat staring me down from about 200 yards away, presumably a feral one.  I look forward to continued explorations in days & weeks to come.

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/25/2016 7:51 PM
    Day 12: continuing successfully with the challenges!  Emailed a former co-worker giving her praise & thanks for being her & for her commitment to environmental issues.  In return, she took it to the next level sending back praise & thanks to me - totally unexpected.
    Also did my 30+ minutes outdoors, away from my devices.  Filled the bird feeders & observed the activities with much enjoyment.  The squirrels like their feeding "tables" &, if you look close, you'll see a Black-capped Chickadee on the tube feeder (in the foreground).
    Fall weather is kicking in - high temp of about 55 F & wind s about 15 mph, gusting to 30 or more.  Brrrrrrr! 🌬

    • Carey  Compton's avatar
      Carey Compton 10/26/2016 4:03 AM
      Great photo Andy; you are reminding me to fill the bird bath with water and get outside more. Thanks 

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/24/2016 6:20 PM
    Day 11: I can't believe that it is Day 11 already, but it is!  Outdoor time included filling the bird feeders and watching the activity in and out of them.  White- and Red-breasted Nuthatches, Black-capped Chickadees, Blue Jays, Cardinals, Mourning Doves, House Finches, House Sparrows, and more enjoyed the seeds.  A load of squirrels (about 10) come and hog the seeds I put out for them as well.  I also observed Turkey Vultures and Black Vultures, Canada Geese, Starlings, Grackles and an accipiter, possibly a Cooper's Hawk, soaring about.  High temp for the day was 63 F with steady winds around 10 mph and gusts to 20+ mph.

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/23/2016 10:11 AM
    Day 10:  took a nice outdoor walk before noon EST with my wife, Jana, my buddy, Harry & Harry's grandson, Wil.  We're at the Jersey shore - Beach Haven to be exact - & walked to the bayside to check it out.  The temp is 57 F & winds are blowing hard, 20 mph or more.
    Not too many birds working the winds; did see Double-crested Cormorants, Ring-billed & Laughing Gulls, & a colorful but unidentified duck.

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/22/2016 2:46 PM
    Out birding LBI with my buddy, Harry, on a cold (54 F), windy (27 mph from the W) afternoon.
    Saw some goodies including: Great black-backed, Herring & Laughing Gulls; Sanderlings running along the surf; Brant; a Snowy Egret; an Osprey & a Peregrine Falcon!  Also saw a fisherman catch & release a skate.

    You never know what you'll see so it's always worth getting out & exploring! 

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/21/2016 8:02 PM
    Day 8: another beautiful day with temps high around 75; filled the bird feeders again & enjoyed the flurry of activities for quite a while.  Now I'm sitting on the back porch in Beach Haven Terrace, Long Beach Island (NJ) listening to the wind rustling the leaves.  A cold front is coming, the current temp is 65 (11 pm) & rain is coming overnight.

  • Andy Opperman's avatar
    Andy Opperman 10/20/2016 6:41 PM
    Day 7: so thankful for this beautiful weather that we are having in New Jersey in mid-October.  Raked leaves 2 days ago & now you would never know it!   ;<(   
    Just kidding, it's all part of the beauty of nature and having trees to shade the house from the sun's heating rays in the summer.  looking forward to the weekend and spending some quality time outdoors at the Jersey shore!
    As for the challenge, I am enjoying emailing friends and team mates, thanking and praising them for their environmental commitments and/or noting 3 things daily that I am thankful for.