Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Ushering in October

The last few weeks have been very busy for me. 

Three of my children have celebrated birthdays. 

And my Blue Eyes and I just celebrated our 41st anniversary. 

We have also celebrated my eldest son's promotion at work and my younger son and his sweetheart's housewarming. 

Dustin and Jen on the porch of their new home - Sept. 2013

In between, I stained my deck, did lots of organizing and remembered my Dear Mother's birthday and  wedding anniversary, which brought up sad emotions. 

But a trip to the sea with my two daughter's ended September on a lovely note. 

Thank you for your dear comments - I wish I could have packed you all up and brought you along. Wouldn't we have fun? 

But it was so nice to have my two girls to myself. 

Now that October is here, I can slow down a bit. 

Can you see the snow on the foothills? 

It has been very stormy and cold here. 

Three weeks ago it was 90 degrees. Today I will be lucky to see 50 degrees in the foothills! And it has been downright cold at night!

We have had storm after storm circling down from the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. 

My Dad was stationed on Kodiak Island when he was in the Army/Air Corps back in the early 1950's during the Korean War. He told wonderful stories of his time there. But I will leave that for another time. 

The storms have brought wind and heavy rain. We even had a tornado not too far from where my daughter Heather and husband Eric live! A category 1, but nonetheless, powerful enough to tip a parked locomotive, knock down one of those huge parking lot light poles and rip up roofs and small trees. 

Living in the forest, we get lots of debris from the trees being blown about. This is unusual weather so early in the season and with the leaves still on the trees, they are being thrashed around quite dramatically. 

My newly stained deck needs a good sweeping! 

My crazy dog, Champ thinks this is great fun 
and bites the broom and attacks the leaves I throw up in the air. 

The other crazy one, Whitey, has a trick of his own. 

He waits until I sweep everything up into a neat little pile......

Check out that calculating gaze. 

And then he sits on it! No amount of coaxing will get him to move. If I coax too hard, he will lie down in it and get all dirty! He does this every time I sweep outside. I have no idea why. Both are rescue dogs so I don't know much about their past. 

So we allow their little 'quirks' with patience and love. 

Despite my little 'helpers', I managed to tidy things up before the next round of storms comes in tonight. 

There, now that looks better! 

Can you see the rear view of Miss Ling Ling sitting under the table? 

I have tossed all my hanging baskets in the compost heap. 

And now just the evergreens remain. 

Except for these - Double Impatiens, still going strong. 

Don't they look like miniature roses? 

I will be sure to look for these in the nursery again next year, 
as they are an annual and won't be returning this spring. 

I have gathered the remaining blooms together around the bird bath. There are tuberous begonia's in front and tall orange fuchsia behind the hosta. I will plant the fuchsia in the ground soon, and save the begonia corms for next year. 

The birdbath was empty before the storms. That is how much rain we have had! Soon this birdbath will be put away for the winter. I have another cement one for the winter birds out front. 

Another begonia blooms on the table and behind it a large pot of the same bright orange fuchsia. 

The Japanese Maple always turns such a beautiful shade of deep rose every fall. 

The yellow daisies are growing in the one remaining hanging basket. 

Goodbye summer! 

My cutting garden still has some color, but with all the rain I have not attended to it much. 

 The sedum contrasts nicely with the burgundy leaves of the non-flowering hibiscus. 

There are some Black-Eyed Susan still blooming, but I am letting them go to seed for the birds. 

If I am lucky, these will reseed. I will also gather some seed for next spring. 

The cool weather has turned my Nikko Blue Hydrangeas gorgeous shades of chartreuse tinged with rose. The next dry day I will gather large baskets of the now papery blooms to keep on top of my tall cupboards. 

Did you know that Western Red Cedar's old growth turns golden at the tips and drop, carpeting the ground? 

This keeps me busy sweeping the walkway from September through November. 

 Champ is waiting by my bag of potting soil, hoping I am going to sweep! He is ready to attack that broom! 

The golden needles create a lovely effect. Soon we will not see any bare ground. 

There is just a hint of color in the forest now. 

And the mosses are enjoying the fall rains.... 

Growing along the base of the mighty Douglas Fir. 

October is a wonderful time to reflect on the summer now passed and prepare for the long winter ahead. 

Nature rewards us with her fiery beauty and bountiful harvests this time of year, to ease the transition. 

I love this time of year with it's pumpkins, tall cornstalks, wood fires, falling leaves, 
warm sweaters, rosy cheeks and apple cider. 

Don't you just love October?

What is your favorite thing about fall? 



  1. What a beautiful place. I love the photo that gives the perspective of looking up the tree! And of course the dog sitting on the swept-up leaves made me laugh. :)
    I love the change of seasons. I especially like the colors of fall.

  2. champ and whitie are so funny! such great helpers. :)

  3. I do just love fall!!! Wow!!! Your shots are amazing!!!! That moss on the tree and the bark of that Douglas fir are gorgeous!!! Your garden still has so much pretty color!!! You have been busy indeed!!! Happy anniversary and happy birthday to all of your kids!!! Stay warm!!! Nicole xoxo

  4. Beautiful photos! I sure hope this weather isn't a sign of things to come this winter. It is way too early for all this wet and windy weather. Your dogs are a couple of little cuties. My calico cat was adopted as an adult cat and she is just a dolly. Have a wonderful evening!

  5. You still have so many beautiful blooming plants. Love your little helpers!
    My dad was in the Aleutian Islands but during WWII. He was too old to enlist so he signed on as a civilian worker. I will be interested in hearing your dad's stories. My dad never said much about being there.
    Enjoy October!

  6. Your yard and deck are wonderful - lovely photos. I have to say the my favorite thing about fall is when it turns to winter, so winter can turn to spring - there you have it. I like a good apple pie or a pumpkin pie too.

  7. Dearest Karen,
    Wish we could get into the minds of our pets at times...
    But they mean so well; helping you with all their being!
    You sure had a nasty storm that knocked down so many green leaves prematurely... But we cannot tame mother nature. Hope it will remain peaceful now and that you can keep it cozy inside. That was quite a drastic drop in temperature too.
    We still have high 80s every day with 60s at night. But one can feel the cooler nights no doubt. We took a lovely walk this afternoon!
    Hugs to you,

  8. Your weather and scenery are much like ours. When I drove to work this morning our road was coated in brown-gold from the cedars. I love this time of year - my favourite. We will celebrate our 40th in another week and the beautiful colours of fall remind me of our wedding day and the green of the bridesmaids' dresses and the groomsmen's uniforms, the burgundy and green plaidies and kilts - lovely memories of a lovely fall day.

  9. It's definitely looking like fall in your world - makes me want to put on a sweater. :)
    Your deck is still filled with beauty and your gardens look so inviting for a walk.
    I'm not sure I'm ready for winter but I enjoyed looking at your snow.

  10. Great image series you show Karen. Can see that there is autumn with you and yours.
    Congratulations on your 41 year wedding anniversary.
    Here autumn also announced its foray. We had on Saturday the first frost - 0.2 degrees was measured in my local area ..... it's eight years since we last had frost so early.
    I ♥ autumn - the beautiful gylde colors, and really cozy inside. Wishing you and your a good Thursday / good weekend :) Hugs Hanne Bente ♥

  11. Happy anniversary! 41 years, that is a reason to celebrate in this day and age:)
    Your photos are lovely. I do enjoy fall and the slow down of garden chores. But it looks like you will stay busy with that broom!

  12. Beautiful post Karen...Fabulous photos...Congratulations on your Anniversary...Love the antics of your helpers.. I hope you son & partner are very happy in their new home together.... Thank you so much for sharing... Hugs May x x x

  13. Hi Karen,

    Happy Anniversary to you and your hubby! Lots of wonderful things happening at your place. So much greenery and beautiful scenery. I just love this time of year.

  14. Seeing the new stain on your deck gives me hope for my own. It needs it bad! I love all of the plants and flowers that surround your yard. Congrats to you sons' and Happy Anniversary to you and your hubby!

  15. Happy Anniversary to you and your sweetheart!

    What beautiful pictures! And Whitey - oh what a cutie! Lovin' those rescue pups. :)

  16. Dear Karen,

    Happy anniversary to you and your husband and congratulation on the birthday's and promotions of your family members! It looks like autumn really started in your part of the US. The mountains and the clouds look very impressive. I just showed it to my daughter....'imagine to have a view like this'....we look out over the roofs of houses and gardens :-)

    Happy day!

    Madelief x

    * your garden still looks beautiful!

  17. Wow Karen, where do I start? Firstly I send my love and congratulations to you and your family for the various celebrations that have been going on in your household. Then your great dogs... my dog does things like that and all I can think is that Whitie loves to keep bottoms dry! The autumnal colours and the snow on the mountain is beautiful. And your deck and garden are just perfect. Gorgeous post Karen. Chel x

  18. I do love October! My favorite thing about fall is all the beautiful colors. When the leaves start to change, I'm in heaven :)

    Dustin and Jen's new home looks beautiful! Congrats to them :)

  19. What a beautiful post, as always. When the leaves fall, I often think of something the British gardener Monty Don said, "Think of raking the leaves as harvesting" (for leaf mould). I think it's interesting how just when the days are closing in, nature gives us the colours of heat, light and energy: yellow, orange, red.
    And how funny is Whitey?!

  20. What a busy week you've had - so many wonderful things to celebrate. The deck looks great and your 'assistants' are adorable. As usual, your photos are beautiful. -- Jan

  21. Happy time with all the celebrations -- my Oh my - you sure have been busy.. You had me giggling about Whitey's sit-down time -- that is indeed unique -- I bet you giggle over it each time. Beautiful photos and update on your yard - I loved it all.. Scary, about the tornado - we gotten snow the last two days and our tree limb are hanging real low and some have broken off.. clean-up is in the near future.
    You deck before and after beautiful...

  22. These are beautiful photos, Karen - my favorite is the upward shot of the fir tree. Very dramatic! My favorite part of fall is the cool weather and pretty colors. We see 90-100 degrees for the better part of three or four months here, so autumn is always welcome. <3

  23. Gave good laughs too down-time - that is indeed unique - I bet you giggle over it each team. Beautiful photos, that happy time! A wonderful October for you my friend and a big kiss! beautiful week

  24. Karen your shots are so lovely. I really had to laugh when I saw that shot of Whitey sitting on your raked leaf pile. One of my dogs does exactly the same thing. Not sure what they are thinking , but it is pretty funny. Congratulations on your 41 years of marriage. Aren't you so grateful for having such a long term relationship. I am pretty close , having been married 34 years. Every day count my blessings for this. Your shots have really captured fall, and also the closeness of winter. Have a wonderful week! and enjoy that "chill in the air"! Hugs from Texas

  25. Oh, and also wanted to just say I understand about those nostalgic feellings , and sadness about your mother. Hard to let go of those that we have loved, and your parents are people that we never forget, and never really get over missing. I would give a large amount of money to spend just an hour again with my folks....

  26. I feel as though I have been in a magazine touring the beauty of another part of the country that is so unlike ours....Your yard is still producing lots of beautiful flowers and your deck with it's new stain looks so pretty....Congratulations on your anniversary and so glad you were able to get away with your girls....It's always wonderful when we can have some alone time with our kids.....

  27. What a lovely post, Karen...I have always thought you live in such a beautiful place! Sounds like life has been full of gatherings and family times lately! Congratulations on your anniversary! Our 41st is next month...we are of the same generation!
    Love seeing the photos of your cute dogs! Thanks so much for stopping by, Karen!

  28. This post makes me want to curl up in a blanket next to a warm fire....I loved it. This is my favorite time of the year, I just love the cooler temperatures and beautiful fall colors.

  29. Hi Karen, thank you for sharing your beautiful garden, your two rescued champions( how noble of you), your picture perfect views, your home and your massive backyard full of wonders. Hope you had a wonderful time celebrating anniversaries, birthdays and promotions. I'm looking forward to see your beautiful winter wonderland.

    Have a good weekend



Thank you for stopping by! Your comments are important to me and are very much appreciated. xx Karen

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