Thursday, October 20, 2016

A Woodland Walk-about

Hello, Dear Friends, we are in between rainshowers,
here in the Pacific Northwest, so come along
with me as we venture out for a lovely woodland
walk-about while we have the chance. 

We'll keep our eyes open for some 
wildling sightings along the way.....

We begin by walking through one of two gates
that Ramblin' Man just built and replaced over the summer <3

Here is one before I stained it 'ebony'.

The old gates are now in my stash of garden 
recyclables - those wonderful 
things with years of patina that you just can't part with :)

Perhaps hung on a wall with a beautiful wreath someday.........

The first wildling we see is the Dark-eyed Junco
bathing in the bird-bath under the pear tree. 

These little birds travel in large flocks this time of year, 
often with several other species. This is a male
and he was with several others, including 
some sparrows, chickadees, and nuthatches. 
They are all year-round residents. 

The lawn is littered with leaves from my beautiful 
Russian Ash trees, which are now quite bare. 

They are the first to show color here. 

This is what they looked like before the wind
carried the leaves away. 

I gather several leaves in my little basket
that I take on woodland walks.
I am always on the look-out for pretty leaves and feathers.

Dappled sunlight shines through Big-leaf Maple 
as we enter the forest. 

The smaller Vine Maple glows.

When exposed to bright sunlight, as here
along the edge of a forest clearing,
the leaves take on a brighter hue. 

The second wildling we see is the ever-present 
Douglas squirrel. 
These little squirrels are just a bit larger than 
a chipmunk. We also have gray squirrels, 
but this year they have been scarce. 

I suspect predation, as they spend much more time
on the ground than the tiny and fast Douglas squirrels. 

Or perhaps they have been poisoned! Someone 
has been nibbling on this Amanita mushroom. 

Another smaller mushroom pokes through the dry leaves.

A ground beetle sits on a rock in an abandoned
entrance to a small burrow.

These are little predators that eat other bugs
and seem to be very numerous here.

A beautiful Spotted Towhee is the third wildling we spy.

These beautiful little birds have bright red eyes
 and spotted wings and sides.

A much clearer photo from my guide book.

They are slightly smaller than an American Robin
and nest in thick brush on the ground.
These are also year-round residents.

The ground is littered with Black Cottonwood leaves
as we reach the driveway gate.

Whitey Bear and Kai give each other acknowledging looks.
I've watched them do this and then take off running
 together towards something unheard or unseen
by my mere human senses.

A wild plum sapling shows beautiful deep colors
next to a wild hazelnut, still green, that will show
color later in the season.
A yellow willow hangs over all.

I am always amazed at the diversity of plants
and trees growing here, and continue to find
something new with each stroll.

An ivy climbs a Black Cottonwood
outside the gate, the result of a long
forgotten planter. The deer seem to like
this particular ivy and the leaves are always
nibbled as high as they can reach.

The neighbor's field across the road.

I don't venture past the gate when I am alone.
My own 5 acres are completely enclosed with
5 foot high, heavy wire fencing,
 which can't be climbed.

It is hunting season.

My perimeter fence was installed by my youngest
son, Dustin, in his last years of high school.

It was his precious, parting gift to me.

He knew that once he left home, I would be alone
frequently while Ramblin' Man was traveling for work.

We had hunters come too close to the house, one too many times.

Can you see the deer? This is the fourth wildling we see.
(Look to the left of the tree)
We have Black Tail Deer here,
which are quite numerous.

The ground is a tapestry this time of year.

The hills are also a tapestry of color.

Black Cottonwood, Maple and Alder stand out
against the deep greens of Douglas Fir.

This is a forest planted for timber harvesting,
 here in Washington State.

It's starting to rain, so we hurry back home
before we get too wet.

A sweet Wood-thrush, the 5th wildling we see,
sits on the fence surrounding the property.

This unassuming little bird has the most
beautiful song.

We approach the main gate to the house.....

These gates always stay shut unless we are outside.

Whitey Bear and Kai stay inside the lower
fenced area surrounding the house, with
free access through their pet-door during the day.

This is our little sanctuary from the wild, wild world.

Some feathers I found on my walks.

From left, a Spotted Towhee feather,
a Mourning Dove, and two Hawk feathers.

I add them to my collection inside my silver baby cup :)

The leaves I gathered are spread out to dry
before adding to my leather bound scrapbook for pressing.

I found this beautiful vintage scrapbook
on a visit to New Hampshire a few years ago.

It makes a perfect 'press' for autumn leaves
which I will use to decorate my Thanksgiving table.

It looks lovely on my table in the living room.

Thank you for coming along on my woodland walk-about,
Dear Friends!

I hope you have a chance to get outside
to enjoy these glorious days of fall, too!


Today I am linking with:

Good Fences
Five on Friday

Won't you join the fun?

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

October Blessings

As the garden gracefully declines in this 
beautiful month of October, we are still 
gifted with a few surprises......

These gifts are reminders of what has been, 
and the last bit of sustenance for 
delicate winged creatures preparing 
for the long sleep ahead. 

October brings the first storms of the season,
here in the foothills of the Cascade mountains. 

The push and pull of the long season of sweet comfort,
with the tempering winds of change, is 
a metaphor for life, perhaps...... 

Our hearts gather precious memories
in this golden season of harvest, 

to give us strength to weather the storms ahead. 

Nature's endless cycles remind us that 
Faith, Courage and Wisdom will carry us through
the storms of life. 

Sowing seeds of Love, Compassion and Kindness
 harvest the sweetest blessings of life. 

These last blossoms of October remind me that time 
moves very swiftly and does not wait......

As I celebrate another year older, I realize 
how very precious time is. 

I am now in the autumn of my own life,
and as I reflect on the time now past, 
I understand the value of the gifts I have gathered 
during the seasons that have come and gone. 

I realize now, that it wasn't the quiet, calm seasons of life, 
but rather, the turbulent storms that have tempered me the most. 

I've learned Fortitude, Resilience, and Courage
by standing strong against the winds of Adversity. 

Just as the vine clings, I have learned to find 
support through my Faith, Family and Friends. 

I have learned that Discernment goes hand in hand with 
Integrity. I've realized that surrounding myself 
with those who lift me up, reinforce 
my sense of value, and has allowed me to see 
a higher view. 

I can stand on my own when I use Discernment. 

The garden is a metaphor for all of life.....

I have learned to cultivate and nurture the garden 
to enjoy its lovely gifts. 

Cultivated with plenty of Faith 
and nurtured with Love, 
the garden, as does life, reaps a harvest 
of beautiful Blessings. 


Wishing you a harvest of beautiful blessings, too, 
Sweet Friends. 


Today I am linking with:
Flower Wednesday

Won't you join the fun? 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...