Saturday, October 30, 2010

First Frost

We had our first real frost last night.  Not terribly heavy, but heavy enough to do some damage.  So long impatiens, zinnias, basil.  The marigolds and Echinacea came through as well as most of the nasturtium which always seems so delicate.  According to Lavender and Rosebuds, last year's first frost came to Rebel Ridge on the night of October 18.  Also last year one picture told the story, this year you get six!

Friday, October 29, 2010

24 Weeks

 So many people this past week have made a comment along the lines of "Wow! You finally look pregnant!"  Indeed I do. Today marked 24 weeks, so I took a picture in my most revealing shirt for all to see.

Here's the episode I was going to post last night if I hadn't fallen asleep (in the toddler bed, all the lights on, sink full of dishes and turkey stock simmering away on the stove):
We had such a commotion over what the new bed time read aloud was going to be.  Tears, angry words, the whole nine yards.  We were all so tired, so very overtired, and I finally said something along the lines of, "Fine! If there's going to be this much arguing I just won't read!"  But with that I pulled My Side of the Mountain off the shelf and headed into the bedroom with a wailing parade behind me.
After the first page Gabriel was asleep and Ella and Joshua quietly listening in their beds.  After the first chapter, Joshua begged for more.  Towards the end of the second chapter  I read this, "Fortunately, the sun has a wonderfully glorious habit of rising every morning."
With that we all fell asleep, awaiting our fresh, new day.  What a beautiful day it turned out to be!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Scenes from New York

I have so many pictures from our trip to New York that I thought I'd post a few here and there when I get a chance.  Tucker already posted all the yummy food pics on his blog
Here on a block in Manhattan (down near Chinatown?) we came across these amazing crochet pieces.  Are they functional?  Are they art?  They certainly are intriguing and brilliantly crafted!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pumpkin Moonshines

       The pictures give away who carved which pumpkin, in case there was any question.  To me there is no mistaking which of my children designed which pumpkin!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

            Very happy to report that they had some success!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Remarkable trees?

 We took a detour heading home to Lexington from Charlottesville to visit this avenue of sugar maples featured in the Remarkable Trees of Virginia book.  Not exactly sure just when we were going to enter this splendid corridor, we had our eyes peeled for stunning colors, when it occurred to us that all these barren trees we were passing through were maples.  Indeed they were the very ones we were seeking!  We did however have a beautiful drive through the quaint towns of Raphine and Brownsburg, all along listening to the sounds of the wild, hungry, and generally needy children in the backseat

Friday, October 8, 2010

What have we found here?

What is everyone gazing at so intensely in this photograph?  A marvel of nature just as remarkable as our yellow buckeye, that I am identifying as a Rabid Wolf Spider.  Check out those pairs of eyes!  And do you realize what is covering its back?  Yes!  Babies!  Hundreds of spider babies!  Every few seconds one of these babies would jump off ready to be out in the big world by itself.  

According to our spider book, the spiderlings ride on the female's back until ready to disperse.  The species is harmless to people, but its bite is feared.  The yellow and black head stripes are what marks this spider as different from other wolf spiders .

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Yellow Buckeye National Champion

 I have been waiting for weeks to go see this tree!  Last night I even had a nightmare that it was raining and our car broke down and we weren't able to go.  However, the day was beautiful, and we all (me and my chickens and two other families) trekked out to see this tree.  Truth be told it wasn't much of a trek.  This National champion is minutes from Keely's house and a short walk down a gravel path.  I find it astounding that this is the largest yellow buckeye in the country!  Finding the fallen nuts in the surrounding grasses was like treasure hunting.  Most were still encased in their hull, which was soft and spongy and easy to open.  The hollow inside the tree was certainly impressive.  Regional legend has it that the inside of this tree was once used for a farmer's pigs. 

 Plenty of knobs for climbing and vines for swinging.  Lots of poison ivy too...hopefully we left that behind.

Our tree crew:
Maggie and Keely, Gabriel, Eli, Ben, Evan, Joshua (not looking!), Emma, Caitlin, Ella

Friday, October 1, 2010