Wednesday, October 29, 2008

An Early Snow

We had our first snow today. It is exciting to me to see the first snow fly each winter. Unfortunatley, I have no photos to share. I was at school, heard it was snowing and ran down the hall to look out a window. I watched in silence for a moment before returning to my windowless room to get ready for parent conferences. It was still snowing when I left school this afternoon. I was surprised to see a little snow on the ground as I walked out the door. I was stunned to see my snow covered car in the parking lot!

Even though the snow melted quickly, I am NOT ready for this! There was no scrapper in my car and my old winter coat is still missing new buttons. Heck, I still have yard work to finish! I think I just wrote my weekend to-do-list. I will also be posting. I plan to introduce my fur child to the blog. Please stop by to meet Bliss.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Geese Overhead

Here is one more shot of geese to brighten your day. Enjoy!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Coming in for a Landing

Geese visited the hayfied behind Allhaven nearly every day since August.

They are gone now. I've not seen them for nearly two weeks. I miss watching them feed on the hill, but mostly I miss hearing the honking as they fly over the house in romantic, V-shaped formations. There is something heartwarming about geese overhead. They are endearing and enduring, like a 1940s black and white movie about everyone pitching in to help the U.S. war effort.

Here they come!

Geese fly with grace,

but landing is another story. Look out!

They remind me of popping corn. The hugh birds appear to bounce randomly in multiple directions.

There. It is time to settle in, relax and visit.

Until it is time to be head a little farther north.

God Speed, my friends.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Falling Leaves

The autumn leaf colors are past their peak. Sigh. It makes me sad to see this season coming to an end. The nights have been getting cold and the furnace is running again. There are a few garden chores to finish, but it is time to put everything to bed. I'm holding on to each bit of October beauty for as long as possible.

I hope you enjoy a few more photos of October glory taken in the last week.

The leaves crumble and float away.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Environmental Protection (Really?) Agency

Okay, enough about buttons, this is serious.

In Saturday's Pittsburgh Post Gazette a tiny side story on page A-5 caught my eye and made me gasp!

"EPA may ease mine rules"

What? No!

The proposal is to make is easier for coal companies to dump mountaintop mining waste near rivers and streams. The reality is these are HUGE dumps! How can anyone say this is a good idea?

GREED and the fear of a new administration which might actually care about environmental issues is behind this. The story states the rule change "has been under consideration for four years." Really? Maybe I'll also buy a bridge to nowhere. I don't think so!!!

I am far from an expert on this issue, but I do know the destruction of streams, rivers and habitat is not a good thing!

In my search for answers, I found a great website on my lunch break today:

Visit this site to learn more about mountaintop removal. The site also provides information about the Clean Water Protection Act, H.R. 2169. We need to take action to support this legislation NOW!

Please check it out and contact your representative today. If we all raise our voices we will be heard.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Button, button, who's got the button?"

I have visions of sewing, of creating beautiful clothes from gorgeous fabrics. My visions include trips to New York to buy fabric and buttons - dozens and dozens of unique buttons. Buttons are gorgeous and fun! I could design a suit around a button.

I have not, however, designed that suit, or anything else, for over twenty years. It has been that long since I made Arabian horse costumes. There are many other amazing things I want to pursue so I don't carve out the time to sew. What I will find the time for is to change the buttons on an old jacket. New buttons, exquisite and elegant, will spice things up a bit.

It was time for a trip to The Parker Button Company on Pittsburgh's South Side.

Walk into the store and you are greated by a wall of buttons.

All of the buttons are color coordinated and are stacked in lovely boxes.

There are simple buttons

and high-style buttons.

Visit Parker Button Company and you leave feeling very creative!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Road Trip

When my brother and I were young our family would often take Sunday drives. We road along in the backseat of the old Chrysler, eating cookies with pink icing, as Dad drove with no particular destination in mind. We all looked forward to drives in the country, dreaming about which farm we would buy if we had the money. I was always on the lookout for horses.

Even before the current surge in gas prices, driving for enjoyment had become unheard of for most Americans. Somehow we all became too busy and well, too driven, to take a ride to no place. We shifted to lives that move in fast forward rather than slow motion.

I am happy to drive less, to conserve energy and to do my part to cut down on green house gases. I've been combining trips and putting as few miles on the odometer as possible for too many years to know.

Today, however, was different. I took my mother on an outing, a road trip to enjoy the reds, golds and oranges of autumn. Mingo Creek Park in Washington County was our first destination. We then let the road and our desires tell us which way to turn. We had a great time! And, I took a lot of photos. Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, October 13, 2008

An October Evening

Today was one of those days I could hardly wait to leave work. My problem is not that I don't like my job. In fact, I love what I do. My problem is that my room has no windows. I ache to see the outdoors, to view the weather, to catch even a glimpse of the sun. I find it especially hard on perfect October days. Oh, I want, need to be outside!

Well, I was rewarded. I got home and ran outside with my camera. I went for a walk, watered the tree I planted yesterday, and before I new it - dusk surrounded me.

I was between an October moon rise on my left

and an amazing sunset on my right.

Instantly, all was right with the world. Life is good!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Remembering John Denver

Eleven years ago today, a beautiful, October Sunday, turned tragic when John Denver was killed in a plane crash. The earth lost one of her strongest voices.

We are blessed that John's spirit and inspiration live on in his music. To honor John today, I selected a 1995 video to share from YouTube. The title of the song is "It's About Time." It was written in 1983, but because our world is changing so quickly and because we are nearing the tipping point of an environmental evolution, I feel it especially appropriate. John was a great visionary who was always ahead of his time.

Listen to John today. And, plant a tree. I will do both.

God bless you, John. I miss you.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A walk around

My soul lives in southwestern Pennsylvania. I feel more connected to the earth here than anywhere else I have ever been. There is something special to me in this magical landscape of rolling hills. I especially love being here in October.

Today was a perfect October day. I had the day off work and was able to be outside ALL day. The sky was brilliant, the air fresh and the changing colors gorgeous.

It seems that I see more of life's tiny details when I take a walk with my camera.

These seed pods on a Bottlebrush Buckeye are about to burst.

The colors of the Redbud leaf, shaped like a heart, remind me of Aspen trees.

Some unknown critter drilled a perfect round hole into this Yucca seedpod.

The Pokeweed curves and twists like dancers in purple leotards.

The day was a gift.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Clean the Feeders- Please!

When was the last time you cleaned your bird feeders? Me? I'm embarrassed to admit that it has been a few months since I've scrubbed the seed feeders. It is critical to the health of birds to keep feeders clean and I let life and too-long, to-do-lists get in the way. Not anymore! The feeders are clean and the birds are happy!

I started by soaking and scrubbing feeders, containers, funnels and brushes.

Next, came the rinsing, A LOT of rinsing.

Then drying,



and waiting, not very long, for the birds.