Thursday, October 30, 2014

An Autumn Country Drive with Good Fences

We recently took a quiet country drive around 
the farmlands near our home
and thought you might want to come along! 

It was a beautiful October day
and Mt. Rainier shimmered above 
the Cascade Mountains
here in Washington State. 

 Many of the farms here were settled during the 
and have been passed down 
through the generations. 

Most were dairy and cattle farms,
but during the Food Security Act of 1985
most of the Dairy Farms here in this 
beautiful valley were shut down. 

I remember those sad days. 
Farmers couldn't make ends meet
and whole herds were sold off to slaughter. 


Many of these beautiful farms have fallen to ruin,
but many have been reclaimed and re-purposed
with the younger generation diversifying 
to include cattle, horse, sheep, goat
and crop farms. 

There are laws in place to protect this area
from development. 

Unfortunately, some areas have been re-zoned.
Fortunately, these are few.  

So let's enjoy the beautiful countryside
and the hard work that these new young farmers
have done to preserve this beautiful heritage. 

Here is a perfect example of a lovingly restored barn. 
Don't you love the color? 

This pretty farm is framed by tall, golden
 Big Leaf Maple, dwarfing the 
wonderful barns. 

Some neatly laid boundary fences along 
a gated entry. 

 A grouping of apple trees with some happy bovines
and a little surprise.....

A tree fort! In our younger days, my Mr. and I 
would have jumped the fence and peeked inside....

But - that might be a bull guarding the premises

From what I can see, there is a little balcony and 
a glassed in look-out on top. 

A child's dream. 

This beauty hugs a hillside with a 
berry patch nearby. 

I could live with this view every day! 

This Farmhouse style is prevalent here 
for older homes. 

I'm not sure what it is - Georgian? 
It is square with porches and a pyramid style roof. 
Anyone know? 

Many young farmers are putting up these expansive greenhouses. 
These look brand new - I wonder what they are going to grow?

Some pretty fencing to go with a very pretty horse farm. 

An old railroad trestle, now abandoned, 
at the edge of the farmlands. 

We turn around and head for home. 

As we travel towards our foothill home,
Mt. Rainier looms on the horizon. 

Our home is somewhere along the lower hills
to the far right.

As we get closer, 
the lovely autumn colors frame our view. 
Ancient Cottonwoods dwarf all other trees to the right. 

One last view as we turn to the right towards home. 

We skirt along the foothills. 

This beautiful maple caught my eye. 

Some fun on a farmhouse porch. 

More fun as we drive through town! 

I hope you enjoyed our country drive, Dear Friends! 

Thank you so much for coming along! 


Linking with:Good Fences

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Vintage Spools and Treasured Trims

On my recent trip to New England, my sweet Sis-in-law
gifted me with some special vintage gifts. 

Vintage Sewing Spools were some of the treasures. 

Aren't they great? I love the patina. 

I have no idea exactly what they were used for, 
but I know what I will use them for..... 
 but I will get to that....

The vintage basket was one of my very first 
antique purchases as a new bride. 

I have always loved baskets. 

Sweet Sis added this little star...
she knows I love to sew. 

I found these charming vintage photos
at a flea market recently. 

They are the same little girl and backed by 
heavy card.

I had ideas on how I would use these, too.....

Whenever I go thrifting, I am always on the look-out
for vintage calico fabrics.

These bring back sweet memories of my Grandmother's
dresses, aprons and quilts.

Vintage laces and trims are always on my list, too.

What to do with all this bounty?

Put it all to good use!

I have been looking for a project or two
to keep me busy during the long dark days ahead.

So I tore the calico fabric into 3/4 inch strips,
wrapped them around the spools,
and started crocheting.

I have wanted to make a crocheted basket
to keep my needlework in - something
soft and pretty and quick to work up.

I will share the finished basket in a future post.

The precious vintage photos are perfect
as 'lace holder cards'.

With Christmas just around the corner,
I foresee many happy hours of
rag crochet.

First on my list - my Sweet Sis-in-law.

Thanks Sis! I love the thoughtful gifts!

She also gave me this charming little message <3

Thank you, sweet friends, for all of your
kind Birthday wishes!

It made me feel very blessed!


Linking with: My Salvaged Treasures: Vintage Inspiration Party


Ivy and Elephants: What's It Wednesday

Thank you for hosting these great parties!

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Beautiful Day

I woke up to beautiful sunshine this morning, 
after a very stormy weekend. 

The wind and rain created a lovely carpet
of fallen needles for my morning walk. 

A golden carpet. 

A casualty of the storm....
My rose arbor.....
Luckily the roses survived with minimal damage. 
Another project for my sweet Ramblin' Man. 

There were also plenty of fallen branches 
for Champ to play with. 

I interrupt a game of 'tug'! 
Whitey Bear knows I have treats. 

We take our morning walk to feed the birds. 

A surprise along the path....

I  have never seen this variety growing here before,
aren't they beautiful?

Don't let their beauty fool you, though, 
these are the poisonous Amanita muscaria

I believe this subspecies is called Flavivolvata. 

You can see how large the opened cap is 
next to my hand. 

They are delightful to look at, 
just don't touch! 

I look around to see there is a little colony
hidden among the leaves. 

Tiny 'magic mushrooms' also reside close by! 

Nature is not to be feared, but respected. 
Each species serves a purpose in the delicate 
balance of life and needs to be protected. 

We leave behind the magic of the forest and head for home. 

We are in between storms and the sky is quite moody
despite the sunshine. 

I took this photo of dramatic skies over the weekend. 

But I had plenty of 'sunshine' over the weekend, 
as my sweet daughter, Heather and cousin Shawnee
stopped by for a visit! 

Heather made homemade lemon cookies :) 

We had a wonderful visit and stuffed ourselves
with homemade minestrone soup, slices of banana bread, 
and cookies for dessert! 

She gifted me with the charming cookie dish and this 
sweet bouquet of flowers
in the painted canning jar. 

In my favorite color, turquoise! 
(notice there are a few cookies missing :)

My Ramblin' Man bought me sunflowers...

You see, it was my birthday....

Today I am celebrating the first day in the last year
of my 5th decade. 

My goodness, where did the time go? 

But I am feeling so blessed on this beautiful morning. 

I have so many wonderful memories to look back upon...

And so many yet to come....
(including a shared birthday celebration
this coming weekend with my Dear Daughter-in-Law, Erica)

As I reflect upon the years of my life, 
and those yet to come, 
I am truly grateful for every moment- 
the struggles that gave me strength and clarity, 
patience, resilience, and courage...
and the sweet things that fill my life with 
joy, contentment, fulfillment and love. 

Yes, it is a beautiful morning - 
the first day of the rest of my life. 


Wishing you, Dear Friends, many lovely blessings 
for your 'first day', too! 

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