Cooler, drier weather has allowed us to venture into the woods for some of our walks. On a very still morning, parts of the lake looked like a reflecting pool.
We had a little taste of Fall last week, which I really did not mind, as the mosquitoes and deer fly were less active, allowing me to work outside in peace.
I often come across a toad in or near my barn, and the cats, fortunately do not seem to bother them. This fine specimen has to be the biggest one I have ever seen!
The numbers on the ruler don’t show up well in the photo, but he measured almost six inches long.
I was relaxing on my hammock in the shade of the Locust tree next to the house the other day. I don’t often see it from this angle, and realized what a nice photo this view would make. Hard to believe this tree traveled home from the nursery in the back of our old station wagon more than 40 years ago!
Storms in the area created some impressive clouds yesterday. Most of the storms passed us by again, but we have picked up an inch of rain so far today, and there could be more on the way.
The flowers on my back deck are putting on a lovely show. It takes a lot of watering to keep them happy, but it’s worth it!
Hot, humid weather or rain has kept me cooped up in the house for several days, but cooler, drier air has finally moved in and I have been able to catch up on some mowing, and snap a few photos.
My resident Barn Swallows have young in the nest and escort me when I mow, swooping around my head like miniature fighter planes, catching the bugs I stir up. I so enjoy their company!
I decided to see if I could grow some decorative gourds in a container next to the deck. To keep them from spreading all over the lawn, I trained them up the fence of an unused dog pen. It did not look promising at first, but now it looks like I will have at least a few to decorate my table in the Fall.
It used to annoy me that I no longer have the ability to sleep in. It seems I no sooner retired than I started waking even earlier than I did when I worked!
I have made peace with it now. Being an early riser does have its rewards, and this morning I was up in time to see mist forming as the sun came up. I have come to enjoy the peace of early mornings, and like having the barn chores done before 6:30, and the horses and barn cats enjoy an early breakfast!
These colorful flowers grow outside the guard hut in the State Park. Not sure what they are.
When I was in Lexington a few weeks ago, I came across some beautiful Irises growing right next to the road.
They are such an elegant and showy flower, but their season is all too short.
I had a fine crop of Daisies in my pastures this year. I read that they are a sign my soil is poor, but I enjoy them anyway!
I have been a little neglectful of my blog lately. Had to make the most of some cooler weather to complete some outside chores.
Managed to get my ancient tractor going so that I could brush hog the pastures, and did some cleaning and pitching of the storage area in the barn. It will take me days to get all the dust out of my sinuses, but it is very satisfying work!
Turtles are on the move. It must be time for them to lay their eggs. I spotted this one trying to do so in the middle of my front lawn. Seems the digging was a little too hard there and she made her way over to the side lawn. I left her in peace, so I’m not sure if she was successful over there or not.
Came across this Snapper in the Park the other day. Always careful to keep my distance from these big guys!
I found this one at the beach. Not sure if it was a snapper or not, but was careful not to get too close.
As May gives way to June, The Black Locust Trees are blossoming. The white blossoms show up particularly well against a clear blue sky.
Dame’s Rocket is also blooming now, and is putting on a colorful show in the woods and roadsides. Sometimes I am frustrated at how well they thrive without human assistance, while the flowers in my garden often struggle and die in spite of (or perhaps because of) my tender loving care!
There are at least three families of Canada Geese in the Park. Hard to get good photos as the parents are very protective and like to keep their distance.
Looks like my semi-wild apple trees will have a good crop this year. These trees must have been planted by the people who owned the land before we moved here, and I have never sprayed or given them any care. I just leave the apples for the deer to enjoy.
The weather gods smiled on us for most of the Memorial Day weekend. I was feeling a little down, so I decided to ignore the many outside chores awaiting me and drove out to Port Huron to enjoy the lake and the sunshine.
Took a pleasant stroll under the bridge, then found my way to the Fort Gratiot Lighthouse. It was built in 1829 and is the oldest operating lighthouse in Michigan. It was built to help guide ships through the entrance to the St. Clair River.
The lighthouse eventually required two keepers and the brick duplex was added around 1880 to house the keepers and their families.
By three o’clock, clouds started to move in threatening rain, so I headed home. The chores were still waiting, but I was glad I had taken some time to relax and enjoy the day.
My offering of grape jelly has attracted at least one pair of Orioles to my deck. They are quite wary and usually fly away as soon as I pick up the camera, but I managed to catch this one the other day. I have also seen a male Hummingbird at the feeder I put out a few days ago, and business should pick up once the young ones fledge.
We have had a lot of windy days lately, which makes wildflower photography quite difficult, but I managed to snap a couple of Trillium in the woods the other day.
Oak Trees are among the last to leaf out, and the tiny new leaves are bright red.
Young Pine cones are quite colorful too, and it looks like there will be a good crop this year.
It has been a sad and difficult week for me, and I was becoming quite depressed. But after complaining for so long about the nasty weather, I was determined not to waste a beautiful, sunny Saturday feeling down, so I set off for my favorite nursery to buy and photograph some flowers.
Coming upon an unexpected road closure and getting lost on the way there was just the way my week had been going, but I resisted the urge to simply give up and go home, and eventually found my way there by an alternate route.
The nursery was crazy busy as it always is the Saturday before Mother’s Day, but the colors and scents did help to lift my mood.