Monday, February 25, 2013

Fog-et About It

We never had much fog in Indiana, so I was thrilled the other morning when I glanced up from my morning cereal and saw this:

I left my Raisin Bran to get soggy and rushed outside.

My understanding is that fog forms with rapid cooling and high humidity, but this was actually somehow the result of a cool night and rapidly warming temperatures.  Wait, is that the same thing?  :)

It was a great day.  I went outside and gathered up more flowers.

I'm so in love with Helleborus.

I made bouquets for the bedroom...

And, with the shorter flowers, a long piece of tape to give them stability, and a square, Crate and Barrel-knockoff vase I found at Goodwill, I made a little bouquet for the dining room.

I just love having bulbs on the table.  It makes every day feel more spring-like, even cold, windy ones like today.

Last year, I remember going to Eagle Creek with Todd and seeing something new every week.  First the undergrowth started greening up, then we started seeing early spring flowers like trilliums and mayapple stems, and then the Virginia Bluebells started coming up...well, we don't have a hiking place yet here, so I am making careful observations in our yard.

More bulbs!  This, I think, is a hyacinth.

The snowflake flowers are blooming endlessly.

The crocuses are coming up, too!

We have several azalea bushes, and a few of them are tentatively budding out.  Just one or two flowers can be seen so far.

I think we have several white azalea bushes, too, that look ready to go:

Suddenly, some sort of tiny sedum is growing around the low rock wall behind the house.

And,  a mystery groundcover is pushing up over the leaves.

I was very glad to find this in the front yard:

It's a wild turkey feather.  I used to see the turkeys almost daily in the fall, but have only seen them a handful of times since Christmas.  This feather tells me that they may be roosting in our trees at night, which they tend to do to avoid predators.  Just because we can't see them, doesn't mean that they aren't there!

I wasn't so happy to find this in the yard:

I'm nearly certain that this hole was made by a chipmunk, which can devastate a garden.  I'll have to keep an eye on this area.

This wide, flat rock shows me that probably a squirrel, or perhaps a chipmunk, was eating here recently.

I was pleased to see this puffball mushroom in the yard, too.  I think they're so pretty.

Supposedly most puffballs are safe to eat, depending on the color of their insides.  However, I'm much too afraid to risk it!

I've been hearing a lot of hooting lately, but was unable to catch a glimpse of the owl. 

Using online sources, I was able to narrow it down to either a Barred Owl or a Great Horned Owl.  The other evening I was out in the yard, and happened to look up.  I saw two owls in a tree above my head, mating!  I rushed to get my camera.  Alas, I just got a quick, blurry shot of one of them.

Actually, this was incredibly helpful in solving the owl identity mystery.  These owls had smooth, rounded heads, and Great Horned Owls have big tufts of feathers on either side of their head.  Mystery solved:  they're Barred Owls.

I love these little trips around my yard.  Each time, it seems like there's something new!

I've been working on a few projects indoors.  I'm knitting a pair of mittens that I've started many times, only to put away.  Using size 1 needles and worsted weight yarn makes my wrists ache, but if I can just get past the cuffs, I think it will be better.

A quick sewing project:  I found a pretty tea towel in the discount bin at IKEA for $2.

I folded it over, stitched around the edges, and stuffed it with some stuffing that I already had.  Two dollars for a cute and easy throw pillow?  Not bad!

I haven't done too much new baking, but I've been revisiting some old recipes.  I couldn't believe how long it's been since I made a pumpkin roll.

They're easy to make and this is a "healthy" version.  I blogged about it here, but I think this one is even better.  I left out the lemon juice...added 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, cardamon, and nutmeg, and 1/4 teaspoon of cloves and ginger, instead of the pumpkin pie spice...I used 8 oz. of neufchatel cheese and NO yogurt, sour cream, or crystallized ginger, and gave the filling a good dash of cinnamon.  Otherwise, it's the same.  Hey, I even used the same towel!  I hope you give it a try.  It was SUCH a nice treat this week.


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