November Blooms

I cannot believe these beautiful days that just keep coming.  And though last Friday it was pretty cold on the playground after school, the sun was shining and that makes all the difference.  It is November and I suspect those raw, damp, dark days will arrive sooner than later, we’ve all been enjoying the gift these days have been.


So of course I spent some time outside, walking about enjoying whatever caught my eye.  The leaves are for the most part, on the ground, and those are beautiful too, it was the berries on this day that were in abundance.  This first picture was taken in our backyard of a porcelain berry vine.  The berries don’t stay this color for long but I think they are just so beautiful.  Some are a delicate blue,

and some are a deep, rich purple while others are green.    They don’t last long, between the birds finding them and the threat of a hard frost which turns the leaves brown and shrivels the berries.

These next photos were taken at the farm, all on the same day.  I don’t know what the first two trees are but they grow right next to each other.    I noticed some little bird’s nests in nearby trees now that the leaves are gone, so these must be a favorite treat.


This orange berried bush is pyracantha, or Fire Thorn.  It is growing here in a great tangle so I didn’t get too close but it is so pretty hanging in dense bunches against bare branches, and thorns.  Did I mention the thorns?

This last photo is a variety of cranberry bush (though not edible to us) and again the berries don’t last long once the birds discover them.

That is all this Monday morning.  Enjoy this lovely weather to start the week!

Published in: on November 8, 2010 at 7:10 am  Leave a Comment  
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Happy November

Hard to believe we are here already.  Happens every year though, doesn’t it?  October was lovely.  Many nice days to spend outdoors.  Here is how we spent some of ours.

Some evenings were spent outdoors too.  Wish I could say those are the beautiful stars on this clear, crisp night, but alas, it is a dusty camera lens.

Same night, same corn field, with an amazingly huge corn maze.  P and I made it out just as the night came.  I would not have wanted to have been in the middle of this as the darkness settled.  Some where behind us are the boy cousins and their uncle, lost in the maze for at least another twenty minutes.  Remember, no flashlights allowed.

So much to enjoy from nature.

And a Saturday afternoon discovering a new source for crafty endeavors.  Now I can make more wooly acorns.

Beautiful color in early October.

And the same tree this past Sunday.

Published in: on November 3, 2010 at 8:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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Last Weekend’s Leaves


Though I know there have been a lot of photos of pretty fall leaves out there lately, I had to share mine, especially now that most of them have been blown off the trees in the wind storm.


Just standing on the ground looking up does not capture how beautiful and tall these trees are.



These are all at the farm and are old and majestic.  There are places for seventeen people to swing at one time, if they wanted.  We have spent countless hours swinging.  Some of them are good for climbing too.  Every time we get a big wind storm like yesterday, I think of those trees standing strong, hoping none of them topple.



Had to photograph this Burning Bush too.


Just beautiful.

Published in: on October 27, 2010 at 5:58 am  Leave a Comment  
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Needle Felted Autumn

Thought I would share some photos of the pretty shelf my mother-in-law recently purchased and hung in her dining room.  She saw it in an antique shop and knew it would be perfect for this collection of china.  (Click to enlarge the photo.)  These very few pieces were her grandmother’s and now have a perfect place to be appreciated.


After one of our fun Saturdays spent running around the countryside, trying to find a certain barn sale, which we never found, and a quick apple cider donut at an orchard, we stopped at Esther’s Place in Big Rock.    She waited in the car with P, who had fallen asleep, while I poked my head in.  But I knew they both would enjoy it as well, and before we knew it an hour had passed.  After I narrowed my choices down to four balls of wool (all in shades of green), we arrived home and decorated the shelf with the little pumpkins we bought at the orchard.



I thought the shelf could use some needle felted acorns (with real acorn hats) and pumpkins, so I made more and delivered them to her the next day.



A fun reminder of the day.


Happy Friday!

Published in: on October 22, 2010 at 9:11 am  Comments (1)  
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Another Beautiful Weekend At The Farm

Think I snapped about 240 photos this past weekend at the farm.  So many pretty things just beginning their show.  And while I love a pretty flower garden, I have been drawn to the structural parts of the garden lately.  The rustling grasses that were so lush and full all summer and stood by while the flowers got their attention, are now the focus.




When the sun shines just so, they are truly beautiful, golden and crackley in a gentle breeze.



And some of them have grown very, very tall.   The grasses that is.




The branches of this bush-like tree is a natural trellis for fall gourds to grow up.  We couldn’t really see that they were even there until the leaves began falling a couple weeks ago.    When the gourds dry up we stomp them to release the seeds back into the ground to ensure more grow next year.



They hang like Christmas ornaments.  Some are so high they can’t be reached.  But that’s ok.  They will become ornaments when the season changes.



This very heavy, bumply gourd (though it may be a squash) was not hanging in the tree.  Now it is decorating the porch.




Happy, happy Wednesday!


(Ok M, how many super-speller words did I use today?)

Published in: on October 20, 2010 at 9:17 am  Comments (1)  
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Brookfield Zoo Visit

Last Monday, Columbus Day, we went to the zoo, along with everyone else.  And though I knew there would be a lot of other families with the same thought, being a holiday and a gorgeous fall day, it wasn’t epically crowded.  The animals were particularly active too since it was quite comfortable for October.


Spent a lot of time saying hello to the camels.  We really like camels.



But the giraffes were our favorite on this day.  They are so beautiful and graceful.



Not afraid to come over and say hello before bending to take a nibble.




Oh, hello again.



The autumn grasses were just beautiful in the sunlight.



Of course we visited the  new bear habitat.   The polar bear jumped in the water for a cool-down and swam right up to the glass where P was standing, but of course that photo didn’t turn out.  It was amazing though.  After a visit to the veterinarian’s office in the Hamlin Children’s Zoo,



it was time for a ride on the merry-go-round.  I think that is P’s favorite thing at the zoo.  And we are very specific about the animal we ride.  This time, a penguin and then a kangaroo.




It was a great day out.

Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 9:13 am  Leave a Comment  
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Now In Bloom

If it’s fall, the sedum is blooming in our garden.  I think we may need a little more variety, though the color is just so pretty.


Took a little drive out to the farm and snapped about 300 photos.  As you can see, this little cosmo grew out of a crack in the concrete where a lot of farm equipment travels daily.



His little shadow.



And beautiful asters.  Thinks we need some in our own garden.



Back in our garden, the only California Poppy blooms happily amongst the sage.



Some of the herbs have finally found a happy home, literally right next to our house, where they are protected and   handy.  Here there is Italian parsley, thyme, chives, and lavender just out of the photo.  The fuzzy silver is Lamb’s Ear.   I will cover the parsley with a cloche again this winter to see if it will survive.



What’s in bloom where you live?

Published in: on October 14, 2010 at 6:20 am  Leave a Comment  
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Garden Fireworks

Just some photos taken over a few days to show the goldenrod beginning it’s autumn show in our garden. Taken two weeks ago,

Last week,

and yesterday.  That huge mass of green in the background on the fence is a porcelain berry vine.  I noticed yesterday also that the berries are beginning to turn blue.  The sedum is the most vibrant  I’ve seen it in a couple years.  So very pretty.

Close up of my very old and mossy, curb-side found birdbath, taken before the golden rod splashed yellow all over.  It is rather crumbly and no longer holds water.

But my iron frog prince statue seems content.

Lots of work to be done outside these days.  Need to move some things, remove others.  More photos of the garden next week.

Published in: on September 28, 2010 at 9:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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Felted Fall Decorations

A couple weeks ago, after a visit to a friends home (Hi Karen), and seeing her darling felted pumpkins and witch, I was inspired to get out my felting supplies and make  some myself.

In the end, I made five pumpkins and 20 little acorns with real acorn hats.  This is what I kept.  The rest have been given to family and friends.  This is seriously fun and easy, though I would not  let our seven year old try it.   Little fingers and sharp felting needles, not so good.   So I gave her complete artistic direction and ended up with some very colorful acorns, magenta, chartreuse, turquoise, gold, which were gifted to very specific family members.

Perhaps there is something you’d like to give a try.  Go ahead.  You may discover a new hobby.  And we all know what is just around the corner. . . .

Have a crafty weekend!

Published in: on September 17, 2010 at 6:26 am  Leave a Comment  
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Peeks of Home

This armoire is in the corner of our dining room.  For a long time these vintage suitcases lived there, hiding seasonal decor when not in use.  Great repurposing, huh?  Great, until one day when I just got tired of seeing them there, tall dark and a little foreboding in the corner.

So I changed things out to this  in the spring.  A little airier I thought at the time.  Didn’t stay this was for long.  One thing I need to learn is not to use everything and fill every space.  Simplified and breathing room are good.

Then it became this over the summer.  A little better.

And now we are here.

I love creating these little vignettes around our home with my thrifted and found treasures.  And it is expecially fun when I see something in a certain home decor catalogue and can recreate that feel at home with what I already have.  Or maybe I’ve already done something and then the catalogue arrives and I can see I’ve “done it right”.

Next week I hope to show you the brass lamp I refinished and how Autumn has arrived at our home.  So please some back!

Published in: on September 16, 2010 at 8:49 am  Leave a Comment  
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