Friday, May 27, 2011

Luna !

I am on a roll here.... I either go for months on end without a single post, or I am finding inspiration and beauty every where I go. Take for instance yesterday when I went to see how the building of the woodshed was going. Hubby is in the process of building walls on top of a concrete box base -- on an inside wall, I found this little guy (?gal)

Hubby said he had not seen that one but had almost stepped on another that he moved outside the shed, and upon looking where he told me he had placed it, yup, still there, and a third one attached to the outside of the building. Now, around here, we may see 2 or 3 over the entire summer, so to see that many all in one place was very kewl. This morning hubby needed my help to hold a beam he was nailing in place so I looked around to see if they were still there -- they were, along with 2 more !

After I was done helping, I headed back to the house ...among other things to get to work, and also to find some info on the moths, or Actias luna. Apparently, these moths developed from caterpillars hatched from last fall's eggs (which over-wintered somewhere nearby). The adult moths only live for about a week, they do not eat (no mouth), their only purpose is to mate. Once they do that, they will die. The eggs will hatch, and the caterpillars will eat their way through several stages of development before finally spinning themselves into a cocoon (this silk is spinnable by people, I am given to understand, though it is not the strongest of silks to use for this purpose). These cocoons will hatch and the new moths begin their life cycle again, with this batch of eggs waiting until the spring to hatch.

I suppose I will need to look around the area a little closer this weekend...maybe I might get lucky enough to see one emerge -- now that would be way-kewl !

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Confirmed !

A month or so ago while on one of my rambles through the woods & trails, I spotted a gnarly-looking tree with the immediate thought being "hey! that's an apple tree!".....of course, with it being early spring full of mud and assorted snow covering much of the ground beneath the trees including any water-filled ditches, it was not possible to get closer to check it out. So I made a mental note to myself to come back when the landscape started to bud out. We had already found one old apple tree beside the trail several years back, and knew the deer frequented that spot as well -- for that matter, it is not unusual to see deer tracks through much of this trail, and several spots seem to be the main "runs" if you will. In any case, the rain finally let up long enough for the sun to emerge and dry things up a bit, so off I went down the trail....yes, I can still see a little ways into the woods, but not for much longer. The understory of the forest has come to life in a big way, such that a stream I could see from my kitchen window has already disappeared from view, and seeing much on the ground level is not easy either, so the eyes go up and see what the canopy and under-canopy have in them. My gnarly tree is all decked out in its white/pink glory of blossoms...yes! it is an apple tree !

I am thinking I may have to go a bit further afield and see if I can find any more such surprises...we know the house we live in has been here for quite some time -- my neighbor gave us a picture of it when it was a farmhouse at the turn of the century (1900), and with all the various moss-covered stone walls that are to be found in the middle of the woods it is easy to see how much things have changed. It would not have been an uncommon thing for a farm to have fruit trees, or for that matter that people or birds and or have probably done their share of dropping seeds over the years as well. So, my mission, should I choose to accept it, is to follow some of these stone wall boundaries and see if there are more apple trees to be found.......and, no, this will not self-destruct in 5 the next time, when this intrepid wanderer will say.............

Monday, May 16, 2011

Well hello ......seems I have been very remiss of late, too busy being too busy that I have forgotten to stop and smell the roses...well, a little early yet up here for roses, though my rose bushes are starting to leaf out so I will have some. Instead of roses though, this little beauty was found in the woods.

We almost didn't see them because it really wasn't the purpose of being near that stream, but still a nice surprise. Walking through the woods here is a never-ending treat -- depending on the time of year (time of day and/or weather conditions), you could easily miss something today that you are sure you saw the week before. I especially enjoy the early spring, late afternoons....looking through the wooods, you can see so far into the shadows where the old moss-covered stumps almost disappear....A month from now, it will be almost impossible to see so far into the wood as the small shrubby stuff will have come in and will get progressively fuller and will soon "hear" the skitterings through the undergrowth but not see it.

I have signed on to a new group with Ravelry, so expect to see some of my needlework projects in the coming months. Still have to decide what to do, where the patterns are from, what fibers to use, etc., so have some work to do on that list yet, but suffice to say they will be tagged...look for a YoPP designation, for Year of Projects Post.