Tuesday, November 18, 2014

First Snow!!

As some of you know, I love most anytime of year and can gush about the beauty of it; the first snow is no exception, in fact 
it might be one of my favorite times 
(hmmm....does that sound familiar?)!!!!  

I absolutely adore the first snow and look forward to it for weeks!  A week or so ago we had a few descending flakes of snow and I instantly wanted more!!  Yesterday my wish was granted and it is lovely--buckets and buckets of it accumulated overnight!!  And the snow continued to swirl and whirl into the early afternoon keeping it fresh, sparkling and clean all day! 
Well, this is my ode to winter and crystalized ice!!  

My favorite variety of snow is the kind that comes overnight, transforming the world into a winter fairyland. It's like a present when you look out your window in the morning. 

The snow caught the garden rather by surprise!  A few roses that were hanging onto the memory of summer had a snowy send-off.

My friend Miss Shirley has been preparing for the snow with her thick winter coat and watched it fall inquisitively from the doorway of her house...

There's something peaceful and contemplative about slowly working and doing chores in the barn while the weather 
blusters about outside.

I have a tradition of making my first pumpkin or squash pie of the season on the day of the first snow; it is a nice way to welcome the wintery weather while admiring in from the warmth of the kitchen. I used the recipe I shared with you last November, only this year I used some of our lovely volunteer pumpkins that decided to grow on our brush pile this summer.  We had fun making a wintery scene with them in the snow!

 "Do you want to build a snow man, c'mon out let's go and play......"  I'm sorry I don't know what just came over me, my mind must have been a little Frozen for a moment....

As I grow older I tend to spend less time frolicking in the snow and more time admiring it from warmer places....I found a lovely sunny spot in our new greenhouse, it was 
surprisingly warm, almost cozy!

The parsley shares a similar sentiment when it comes to snow so we forged a camaraderie while staying out of the biting wind......

"Sunshine is delicious,
 rain is refreshing, 
wind braces us up, 
snow is exhilarating;  
there is really no such thing as bad weather, 
only different kinds of good weather."
~~John Ruskin

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

"Falling" Out of October

I had a lovely post ready to share with you, when suddenly it disappeared, quite surprisingly and completely!!  You can't imagine how difficult it can be to navigate a 
keyboard with two small paws!  

Well, I will begin again: October is a wonderful time to enjoy the last golden days of autumn. Experiencing October is like taking a walk through a kaleidoscope; it's as if every bit of light is being filtered through a prism. I love the changing leaves and the crisp air with a hint of earthy decay, and I adore the crackling sound of leaves underfoot.  This October has been no exception, we have been enjoying a glorious Indian summer!!  Today I have a couple of favorite autumn poems and some joyous moments with a friend 
and a recipe idea to share.....   

Elsa Beskow

Golden, you are,
Golden sovereigns on your trees.
Golden guineas on your floor,
golden coins of leaves 
that fall 
for us to scuffle through
and rustle
and rattle
and hustle
and scrabble
and dabble
and paddle
as they fall
into an October carpet
which hides
our shoes.

~~Elsa Beskow~~

I have always loved playing, romping, frolicking and jumping in the autumn leaves!!  This year my sweet friend, Miss Bobo Kitty, decided to join me; we often go on walks together, and we are both avid fans of napping in the sun!  I must admit that in the 
past few years my leaf-romping has become a
 much more placid activity......

Here is a rare portrait of her.  She is usually very elusive around the camera, but as you can see, she is capable of being very theatrical......  

Do you ever have that feeling that perhaps you missed something.....?

Over the weekend I made some mini baked hot chocolates livened up with pumpkin spice.  They are the perfect Halloween treat for someone who doesn't want something too sweet!!  For those of you who have never enjoyed baked hot chocolate, it is a wonderful way to use your ramekins!  This delightful dessert has only four ingredients and goes together quite quickly...a grand addition to your recipe box for the coming winter months.  I made my classic baked hot chocolate with a teaspoon
 or so of pumpkin spice!

Kaarina Kaila

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry's cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.
The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I'll put a trinket on.

~~Emily Dickinson~~

Of course, where would we be without a 
lovely Renoir painting!?

See you next month!!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Welcoming Autumn

I am completely smitten with this time of year, when the days are warm and the nights are crisp, and the pumpkins are waiting in the tall grass to be discovered; their bright orange faces are so cheery as they meet you on your way to morning chores.  I love when the wildflowers bloom in the final hurrah of the growing season and grace the roadside ditches with their hues, 
parading to meet autumn.

"Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees, 
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
to swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With kernel sweet; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells."

~~John Keats 


Sunday, August 3, 2014

Contemplating Summer 

This summer has been a wonderful conglomeration of blueberries, playing with children, visiting neighbors, napping, growing and enjoying vegetables from the garden, sipping tea among the flowers, napping, and watching the sunrises 
reflect off the dew....... 

As I enjoy this cool Sunday morning, I am reflecting on all of the delightful times we had thus far this summer and the beautiful moments of nature and life I was a part of!  I will share with you the essence of these moments which I have endeavored to 
capture in photographs.....  

Moments among the flowers.....

Rebuilding a barn on the farm.....

An arbitrary rake..... 

You know how much I adore sunflowers...... 

Peeking out from in the shed......

Always remember to take time to smell the flowers and absorb the beauty around you!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Taking a Summer Break 

My personal designer and I are taking a petite summer respite.  We have been enjoying a little traveling, a little playing and lots of little walks.... in the sun.  Hope you all are 
having a pleasant summer!!!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day... 

with a Twist of Lime!

Whoever thought to put Father's Day in June was a very smart person!  It is a wonderful time for excursions and custard pies!  I have never known my canine father, but our little family has a very strong patriarch who has always been like my father.  So in our customary style, my personal designer and I baked him his absolute favorite pie: KEY LIME!  It is really a great little pie, easy to make and very delicious!  For my pie I use freshly-grated lime zest and Key West lime juice; it really makes all the difference.  I also prefer to use ginger snaps for the crust.  Those three things are the secret to my pie.....

For Father's Day, my personal designer took her father on an excursion to a beach on Lake Erie (who knew there are such authentic beaches in the pastoral midwest!?!).  It was a beautiful day and after their picnic they walked the mile-long beach (twice) at Headland State Park. There were many interesting things along the shore to discover and a wonderful breeze.  

They brought some beach finds home to share with us!

I love looking at the beach glass and shells; there is something a bit nostalgic and enthralling about them.  They remind me of the waves and beach no matter how long they've been sitting on a window ledge.  

Of course, I had to do something slightly absolutely radical for my new summer style!!  Thinking of Key Lime pie had me thinking tropical, and then I was just looking completely innocently at the food coloring, and well...it slipped! 

No matter how many Key Lime pies we would bake, it could never express just how thankful we are for our father.  We couldn't ask for a better match; he's unique, kind, loving, funny and understanding...well, I'm running out of room for all the things we're thankful for; it would take volumes! 
Thanks Dad!

Happy Father's Day


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

I'm a Morning Dog! 

 This week when I was looking for some poetry I came across the lovely poetry of Mary Oliver.  She is a wonderful poet and wrote a book of poetry called Dog Songs, as well as many other books.  I love the morning and watching the sun rise, so when I found her poem Why I Wake Early I decided to share it alongside some of my favorite morning views here on our farm!  I think that mornings and life in general are amazing in the month of May!  

Why I Wake Early

Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who made the morning
and spread it over the fields 
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories 
and into the windows of even, 
the miserable and the crotchety-
best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light-
good morning, good morning, good morning.
watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness. 
~~ Mary Oliver

Mary Oliver and Percy

Good Morning!!