Penpals

Excerpts from a recent note to my penpal, Eileen…..

As I pause in writing you this note I look over at Greg who is watching me.    He has this funny smile on his face.   I say, “what?”   He says, “I was just watching you, typing away and then you stop and sigh”.     I tell him that I am writing you a long overdue note but I don’t have anything interesting to say because I haven’t done anything different lately.    He laughs and says, “tell her you’re staring at the four walls, it’s cold, it’s raining, it’s snowing…..ha, ha, ha”.

So, I will make up a story to entertain you…..maybe……here goes……thinking…….

Easter Sunday 2020.     This year due to…… a) a wicked virus, b) a travesty set in motion by evil sources to wreck the US and/or it’s governing body(ies) (conspiracy theory), c) God’s wake up call, d) all of the above……. we were unable to spend the holiday with our family and traditions.     Although we were disappointed and sad we realized we were still blessed and had the opportunity to be creative with how we would spend this Easter Sunday.

We headed out to the woods in search of morels.   What a beautiful way to visit with God, in nature.     Somewhat overcast, it was still a beautiful day.

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Early in the morning, between rain showers, we jumped on the four wheeler and skiddadled up the hill to our super secret spot known for a plentiful morel harvest in previous years.

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Me with my rubber wellies and Greg with his steel toed boots we entered nature’s portal with high hopes and determination.       The ground was moist and covered with a blanket of crunchy brown leaves and soft bright green moss.

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We slipped and slid, as we found our way over fallen logs, through spider webs stretched between bushes, down valleys, up hills.

We paused to appreciate the delicate flowers and plants pushing though to start their new journey of growth and beauty; dutchmen’s britches, jack in the pulpit, mayapples, ferns; to name a few.

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Overhead squirrels twittered their annoyance with our invasion and birds sang their beautiful wake up songs.    All else was quite.     Pausing for a moment I took my cell phone from my pocket to snap a few pictures…..for prosperity sake.    On hindsight I wish I would have left the cell phone at home; cherish the moment, maintain the memory.

The mossy hill called out to me; come rest here.

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The flowers lifted their heads; be strong, have faith.

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The wind blew gently; embracing my body.     The sun peeked out from behind a cloud; all is bright.

judy's treehouse

Yes, we did find a few morels

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but what we really found was the beauty of Life and a peak at the abundance of God’s gifts and many Blessings.      Not the traditional egg hunt and chocolate bunnies and church service.   No, something much deeper than that.     So next year, if we’re so blessed that Easter Sunday brings us the opportunity to spend it with family and friends in addition to the Easter baskets and family dinner I think we’ll add a new tradition and add a nature hike to our celebration of Life!……..(no phones/cameras allowed).      The end! (or maybe the beginning 😊 )

So, there you go, our Easter story 2020.     Funny, I was going to write a story about finding a village of fairies in the woods while mushroom hunting but I guess I’ll have to save that one for another day.

Pace Love Joy

Judy

Harvest 2017

Harvest has started a bit late this year.    Little rain and cooler temps over the summer months delayed grain readiness (I know, probably incorrect terminology but you get it).     And now that soybeans and corn are ready to be cut and picked the rain has started……sigh!    But, we will persevere and with God’s help we’ll get this harvest picked, cut, stored or to market before it’s time to plant next year’s crops 🙂   Safety first!

Here are some pics from my “tractor cam” so far this season!    Enjoy!

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Cutting Beans
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whoops!
Soybeans at ADM
Soybeans at ADM
Harvest Sunset
Harvest Sunset
Harvest Moon
Harvest Moon
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My yearly hitchhiker! Spidey. Our agreement…Stay where i can see you and you won’t get squished.
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My yearly harvest selfie before I decided to chop off my hair.
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My yearly harvest selfie after I chopped off my unruly hair. I like it!
My Hard Working Husband!   LOVE!
My Hard Working Husband! LOVE!
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Getting a load of corn from the hill behind our house
Glamour Shot!
Glamour Shot!
JudysTreehouse
Picking end rows
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Picking more corn on the hill
Waiting for a load of corn.   Beautiful view behind our homestead
Waiting for a load of corn. Beautiful view behind our homestead
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The pleasures of Harvest. Sights, sounds, smells……lovely ZEN moments

Harvest Love!    Thank God I’m a Country Girl!     Blessed!

Simple Pleasures Bring Great Joy

The weather here in Central Illinois has been almost fall like the past few weeks.

The A.C. has been turned off!

Open windows tease and tantalize all of my senses;  a cool breeze, fluttering curtains, fresh air, scents from my gardens, sunshine on my hardwood floors, shadow art, crickets, locust, and frog bands warming up for the night, dinner on the front porch with veggies and herbs from my garden…….. A few of life’s simple pleasures bring me such joy……..

View from my front porch...one of my favorite hangouts!
View from my front porch…one of my favorite hangouts!

Being outside on my porch.   Seeing the peaceful beauty of butterflies, bugs and hummingbirds (to name a few) as they flutter and fuss around my front yard garden.

Happy chics!
Happy chics!

Watching my chicks and fancy rooster waddle and cluck around the yard.   They are such a hoot!

One of my giant mums.....going to be spectacular this year!
One of my giant mums…..going to be spectacular this year!
My fall garden....Indian corn, sunflowers, pumpkins and gourds, oh my!
My fall garden….Indian corn, sunflowers, pumpkins and gourds, oh my!
Love Zinnias.......a must plant every year!
Love Zinnias…….a must plant every year!
Mums......must have for fall.   This one will showcase lovely purple blooms
Mums……must have for fall. This one will showcase lovely purple blooms

My gardens!    Ever changing and preparing for fall.    Mums, Indian Corn, Sunflowers, Gourds, and Pumpkins!     And my zinnias…….a must have every year!    Bursts of bright colors and the butterflies love them!

earthy treasure hunts.....tiny bird nest blown from a tree
earthy treasure hunts…..tiny bird nest blown from a tree
cool spider home
cool spider home

Amazing and intricate architecture in nature!    Like this little birds nest I found on the ground and cool (albeit creepy) spider webs!

Cool Halloween Decor!    Love to celebrate the seasons!
Cool Halloween Decor! Love to celebrate the seasons!

Magazines in the mail advertising cool stuff!      Especially for Halloween and Christmas!    Two favorites for decorating!

Shadow art and other eye catching creations from the sun streaming through my windows

glass jars and plants in a window create two beautiful displays!
glass jars and plants in a window create two beautiful displays!
Love the shadow art through my lace curtains
Love the shadow art through my lace curtains
Sunrise on the farm....in the boys room!
Sunrise on the farm….in the boys room!
shadow art.    Captured this pic a few weeks ago.   Angel!
shadow art. Captured this pic a few weeks ago. Angel!
A room full of rainbows.  A joint effort between Mother Nature and My Suncatchers!
A room full of rainbows. A joint effort between Mother Nature and My Suncatchers!
Otis......capturing a few rainbows!
Otis……capturing a few rainbows!

Dinner Al Fresco!    With someone I love!

Dinner Al Fresco!
Dinner Al Fresco!

Enjoying the fruits of my labor!

Garden bounty and gifts from my chicks
Garden bounty and gifts from my chicks
pickles every year!
pickles every year!
corn from gardens past.....
corn from gardens past…..
freezing and preserving and enjoying year round freshness
freezing and preserving and enjoying year round freshness
pickled tomatoes and green beans
pickled tomatoes and green beans

These are a few of my favorite things!

Every day we are blessed with the abundance that God has created for all of us to enjoy!   Life is full of simple pleasures!

Carpe’ Diem!

Peace, Love, Joy and Enjoy!

 

Awww Nuts!

Yosemite
Yosemite

This is Yosemite.    Yes, I’ve named him.    Doesn’t he look cute and cuddly?      Look at him chomping away on his little nut.

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Yosemite has set up camp in this very old hollow tree that has been on the farm for over 100 years.      Our daughter Mandi used to climb inside and play in this tree when she was but a wee lad.      Good thing she wasn’t afraid of snake and vermin back in the day.

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Yosemite has plenty to eat at his new pad.    The food just falls from the tree.   He couldn’t ask for a better local.      Even the neighbors (that would be us) have sent him a welcome to the neighborhood treat…..

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A little banana in this unique little welcome wagon basket.

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Although cute and cuddly he may appear, he is wreaking havoc on our yard as he builds his underground tunnels and renovates his new tree digs.

Yosemite must go.

But he has so far outsmarted the trap……

And, farmer Greg has little patience……

Caddy Shack at the farm is not so much fun…..

 

Buster Brown
Buster Brown

Never had a problem while good ole Buster was with us.     I miss this sweet dog so very much.    A great dog and protector of the farm.    No wild animal habitation while he was on duty, no sir.     Now he is happily roaming the fields and hills in Heaven.

This year has been a challenge with wildlife coming too close to the house.    Coyotes, Raccoons, Opossum, and now Yosemite the Ground Hog.

And, although, Buster can never be replaced, it is time for his doppelganger to stumble upon us, just like he stumbled upon the farm so many years ago, tired and hungry and just looking for love.     Well, he found it here that’s for sure and he gave love back to us in return.

So, in order to keep peace with the wildlife on the farm, so they can have their space and we can have ours, I’m sending this out to the Universe……..outside dog with sweet disposition towards people yet menacing wildlife nemesis needed at the farm.     Plenty of biscuits and love in return.