Saturday, October 10, 2009

Playing Catch Up

And here's some odds 'n ends photos taken these past few days that don't really have a theme but which I'd like to share anyway.
First, one day when I walking about the yard - still in the late afternoon - I found that Mom had already turned on the window lights. I walked close to the front window and took this shot showing a reflection of the soybean field across from us. We have these window lights in both first floor front windows. With the white lacy curtains in the background, I think it's a welcoming image. Every time I come home from a meeting at night, it is these two lights I first see. They produce in me a warm feeling.

Then, this maple by the barn is turning such a lovely orange right now that it's almost startling when it comes into view. Especially after the past few cloudy days, the tree is almost blindingly bright. Ah, but soon the leaves will turn dark and fall and I'll be left to rake them and clean the rain gutters. Neither are projects I much relish.

Another view of the same tree, this from the back porch with the flag fluttering. My National Weather Service 20" rain gauge is just off the left side of this picture.

Pokeweed! I find these substantial plants coming up in the most unlikely places! This one is north of the woodpile and near the henhouse. After researching the plant, I find that the seed won't germinate until it passes through the digestive tract of a bird. So that explains the randomness of the plants, planted ny nature herself.
As a child, I once picked a bucket of these berries, thinking them elderberries. Good thing I didn't use them in the planned wine. They are poisonous. Though the green leaves may be eaten (Poke Salet), they require great care in the preparation. I won't chance it and so I have never tasted the plant. I remember my Uncle Joe and Aunt Sally considered this a delicacy, but it's one I'll willingly fore go.

Then, walking back Sam's lane, I marveled the other day at the contrast between the drying soybeans - such a golden brown color! - and the light blue sky. Pinehaven is in the right side of this picture. Doesn't this explain what we love about the place?

And so, too, I am still collecting black walnuts on my walks back Sam's lane. With each wind and each rainy day, another harvest awaits my grasp. Yesterday, just after I had passed, a nut hit the lane with such force I thought it had been thrown. It had, I suppose, by gravity.
The nuts are laid out on newspaper on the garage bench, awaiting drying. Over the early winter, when they have turned black and have dried, I'll hammer the husk off, let them dry some more, crack the nuts in our vice and take them into Mom for shelling. We will have the bitter nutmeats for the next year. My applesauce raisin cupcakes (the recipe can be found on this blog) almost requires them.
And so the fall weather is upon us here at Pinehaven and we have scenes such as these to enjoy.