Wednesday, October 7, 2015

A Second Look--October 7, 2015

I'm a little late with this week's Second Look because I've been busy. Today was the first chance that I had to make it outside when it wasn't raining or dark. In the meantime, while there is not much color from the trees except the dogwoods, leaves are starting to litter the ground. The squirrels are still busy, hiding nuts and some of the ones I saw "hidden" last week have been moved. Also, I saw my first wooly bear of the season, so I know that fall is really here.

Here are somethings I saw this week 
during a Second Look.

These marigolds have been the workhorse of the flowers this year. They are still going strong (even though I haven't done much deadheading recently.)

This lone violet decided to bloom in the fall instead of the spring.

This wooly bear was maybe the biggest one I've seen. It was at least two inches long. As an added bonus, do you see the worm below it?

The recent rain has surfaced a lot of ant hills.

Another Black-eyed Susan bloomed this week. Right now they are on the one-at-a-time schedule.

See the little bee in the base of the balloon flower?

And speaking of little bees, this blanket flower had one all curled up in one of its petals. I wasn't sure if it was alive or not, so I gave it a little poke. It crawled out and went into the cup of another petal. I left it alone after that so it could get a good night's rest.

I'm not sure if this granddaddy long legs was going to have the other bug for a meal or not.

The dogwoods are the reddest trees in the yard right now. If you look carefully, you can see mostly green leaves from holly, oak, and maple trees behind it.

Can you find the squirrel's nest in the walnut tree?

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Thankful Sunday--October 4, 2015

I am thankful for 
clean gutters.

While we have several trees around, this oak fills up
the gutters faster than any of the others.
(See the gloomy skies. The rain is still lingering.)
We have been more fortunate than some because Hurricane Joaquin decided to go out to sea before it had much of an impact on us. However, we still have had very heavy rains for the last few days from another system. Because of this, one day last week at daybreak, Ward got on the roof and cleaned all of the gutters. Consequently, we had no water in the basement from the heavy rains. And for Ward and a dry basement, I am very thankful.

(Ward is researching gutter helmets as we speak.)

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

A Second Look--September 30, 2015

Things have been very busy around here for the last couple of months (you may have noticed I haven't been posting as much), and that has made me kind of stressed. But my walk around the yard for a Second Look yesterday worked its magic. For a little while, I was focused on the outdoors and the stress I was feeling melted. Nature can do it every time for me.

Here are a few things I saw this week
 during a Second Look.

Monarch butterfly. Even though we have milkweed (the monarch host plant) and I've seen monarch caterpillars, this is the first time I've seen a monarch butterfly in several years. This one was hanging onto a twig and only opening its wings when the breeze got strong.

Geranium, Roxanne. The rain we had last week brought out a few blooms on summer flowers that were just about done for the season. 

One more Black-eyed Susan

Sedum, Autumn Joy. The sedum is a fall flower and is in full bloom now.

Blanket flower

Verbena. This annual looked dead most of the summer, however, the cooler temperatures seemed to have revived it. It's supposed to happy in warm weather, so I'm not sure what was going on.

Another "hidden" walnut.

The leaves are just starting to turn and fall. It will be leaf raking time soon.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Thankful Sunday--September 28, 2015

I am thankful for simple fun.

I have a set of friends I get together with every month or so. The gatherings are simple with food from everyone and a lot of silly talking and laughing. Sometimes we play a game, sometimes we do a craft, and this time we sang and colored. Singing was not organized--just spontaneous singing of whatever golden oldie popped into someone's head. The coloring was also fun for everyone as they remembered another part of their past. For good friends and simple fun, I am thankful.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

A Second Look--September 23, 2015

This week had beautiful fall weather with cool mornings and warm, sunny afternoons. Even the day of rain was pleasant--maybe because it was much needed. The weather is signaling that fall officially began last night at sundown, but the changes are still subtle. No big change in the color of the leaves and no frost yet to turn some of the summer greens to brown. So, there was not much different to take pictures of this week when I did my Second Look. However, there were a few things that caught my eye.

Here are some things I saw this week 
during a Second Look.

Sternbergia latea. These bloom every September but I always forget about them until I see their bright yellow colors pop up among the dead lilies and overgrown irises. A pleasant surprise to say the least.

Something is starting to get ready for winter. See the hidden walnut in the fence post?

Resting moth/butterfly on marigold at the end of the day. This insect was not moving and it was either a moth waiting for dark to be active or a butterfly resting at the end of an active day. 

The moon was out early this night.