Friday, February 23, 2007

Road Trip!

It was a great day to escape, and make a quick trip to Indianapolis. A visit to the wonderful Trader Joe's to stock up on our favorite wine and cheeses, then a visit to the Indianapolis Museum of Art.

Who knew! I had always heard about what a terrific museum it was, but had no idea it was that great! It's one of the largest general art museums in North America, and hosts over 50,000 pieces of art. The best part is how they're exhibited. Things are arranged by period, with generous descriptions and explainations for each. So on one short wall, were three paintings by Monet, Gauguin, and Van Gogh. Amazing, and showed the way they explored their subjects, and obviously discussed their work and shared their thoughts.

What a terrific day, and we had a marvelous time, and came away with our heads filled, with new understandings of art. Now I want to paint! This is one object that captured my interest for quite a while. A little salt glazed pitcher, the simple graceful ornamentation just captured me for a long time. I'm thinking that I need to put this ivy on one of my scarves.........and soon.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Can that be Spring we smell in the air?

It's not really warm, but getting there. It got a little melty today, you could see it in the snow slowly sinking down into dirty mounds, the icicles growing skinnier and shorter, and around the base of each tree, a little bare ground.

Somehow it just smells a little different, and things are moving a little faster. The bees are active, sending little scouts out to see if anything is blooming yet, and the deer are moving around too.

Jim spotted 5 deer beds, all together in one spot in the back woods-like they'd gathered for a group campout. Maybe a deerish Jamboree?

We felt so hopeful, we scraped the snow off of the raised bed and erected a plastic cover over it. In a day or two it should warm enough to plant lettuces in that bed and get our delicious Spring salads started. Yummy.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrr! And it's Warmer!

When you see by the morning thermometer that it's 12 degrees out, and that's warm, you know it's been waaaaay too cold! So we put on all the layers and go out to see the fresh morning world, feed the cats, water the chickens, and check out the animal tracks left from last night's ramblings.

This space in Spring is a lush green row of blueberry bushes, in late summer a place to pick dark, delicious blueberries, in fall, a blazing red row of bright beauty. Now it's a stark row of bare twigs that the deer love to browse on. Notice the regular highway of deer tracks leading north.

Notice the long shadows? This was after 9am! That's how low in the sky the sun is this time of year. I shot my own shadow in this picture.

This thinking bench is a quiet place to rest and solve the world's problems in the warm months, but not now. With these temperatures, you just have to keep moving. This morning we found bobcat tracks in the snow, leading right past this bench. What fun to follow the tracks as it wandered through the trees, accelerated to a lope with prints 4 feet apart, leaped up into a tree, then dug for prey. All that drama, living out in our little woods.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Reading the Morning News-

Most people read the morning paper to find out what's going on in the world. Here in our little place in the country, we do it a little differently. This morning we put on warm clothes and boots and set out to see what was going on in our little world. We scarcely set out onto the path when we scared up a herd of 5 or 6 deer, who'd been bedded down and were snacking on tender twigs before heading back to the deeper woods.

We found where they had slept the night, and there was still no snow in their spots. We could clearly see where they had stepped when getting up and heading out for their breakfast.

Other tracks crisscrossed our usual path-rabbits scooting quickly out to nibble on some green shoots growing in a sheltered place before scurrying to safety under the brush pile.

The determined straight-line track of a fox, as he made his rounds, probably explained the blurred marks of the rabbit.

Before we headed back inside to stoke up the stove and warm up with a second cup of coffee, we stopped at the root cellar to bring in some onions and potatoes from our snug supply.

How about that? Morning news, a nature lesson, exercise and shopping for tonight's dinner, all without leaving home! Life is very good!