Saturday, October 30, 2010

 Believe it or not, this is willow bark, spun and plied into cordage. I harvested it earlier this summer, separating the rough outer bark from the smooth inner bark, which I dried. To make the cord, I soaked the bark, then took long skinny strips, twisted them one way, and plied them together the other way. It's flexible and strong.

Friday, October 29, 2010

 This is pretty much what fall color looks like here - the Big Leaf Maples turn a little bit yellow, then brown. And then they fall off.
 This row of maples along Newman Road is a spectacular example of these great trees. Who knows how old they are, and they certainly appear to have been planted along the road. They have weathered the years, and show it. But they never fail to impress and delight.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

 Sorry I've missed the past couple of days - it's been cold, rainy and windy, and I just didn't feel like getting up and out - not much inspiration. So, when the sun came out today, I had no excuse! I went to the beach,
 where the water was so blue, with sunlight glinting off the waves. A cormorant perched on a buoy, while the Olympic Mtns peeked through the clouds.
The air was so clear that you could really see a lot of detail on the opposite shore of Puget Sound - usually it's more of a blur.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sunday, October 24, 2010

 Haven't been keeping track of the moon - it was full last night, and still in the sky after sunrise. A storm front is on the way, and the clouds were quickly tracking across the sky, playing peek-a-boo with the moon.
In the other direction, the sunrise painted pastel clouds.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

 We finished Cory's costume - the Black Mage from the video game Final Fantasy I. After making the robe the other night, we worked on the hat and mask. Cory got some felt, which we glued to a straw hat to make it the right color. We formed the peak, shaped it and glued it in place, too. It actually worked out great!
He had purchased a black pull-over mask which has fabric you can see through, then we cut out the eyes from yellow gauze and glued them in place. He can see through it all pretty well, at least well enough to get around! The fleece robe will live a second life as a warm, comfy snuggy!
This is how the Black Mage appears in the game.

Friday, October 22, 2010

 Signs of fall, indeed. Greg brought out one of his japanese maple bonsai trees for us to enjoy. It's sitting on a stool in our front garden, lighting up the greenery.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

 I helped Cory make his Hallowe'en costume: he is going as the Black Mage from the video game Final Fantasy 1. Above, he is showing how the Mage casts spells. For some reason, the Black Mage wears a blue cloak and has large yellow hands. Cory still needs to work on the hat, making it high and pointy. Also, the Mage has no face, rather a black void between the hat and cowl, with large yellow eyes. We'll just have to see what he comes up with to create that!
Tonight we sewed the cloak - we used fleece, so it is very warm and cozy, and we were both very pleased with the way it came out. And I only broke 2 needles in the sewing machine!

 Low fog morning over Useless Bay, with a glimmer of light in the east pushing a rainshower.
Low tide at Useless Bay Beach.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

 The spiders are certainly busy this time of year - I guess the flying insect population is waaay down. But I'm not sure just what kind of prey they hope to capture with all these webs - some lucky fly-by, maybe?
 Judging by the size of this spider, she's finding something to eat. Although this may also be due to procreation - I think this is the time of year for laying the eggs. At any rate, those eight-legged critters are busy, busy, busy!!
Pallo came out in the very wet grass to help me with my photos this morning!

Monday, October 18, 2010

 Always fun to see a finished project - in this case, a garage. Since it had to be uphill, and in front of the house, the challenge was to get as much space as possible without overwhelming the house. The contractors did a great job of matching the colors and finishes, and I think it works pretty well. The owners still have some landscaping and pathways to finish, which will help hide the long wall a bit. They are very pleased with the result! (so am I!)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

It's that fungus time of year, but I didn't find as much variety as I thought! Some little white ones, and the most common were the large grayish ones, which were mostly congregated around cedar trees.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

 Cory and I hiked up to the Ice Caves at Big Four Mountain - although it was sunny and clear, most of the trail is in the shadow of the mountain, where the sun doesn't shine. But that is what enables the ice caves to survive the summer.
 We clambered up a rocky slope for this view - there are actually people down there by the ice edge.
 The ice is pretty rotten, and Cory was able to chunk some of it off the edges.
 Big rocks and waterfalls.
The trail back to the parking lot goes through the swamp via boardwalk. You can see the sun shining on the far hills, but we're in the shade.

Friday, October 15, 2010

The old apple tree puts out fruit every year, but it's always spotty and stunted. The branches are covered with lichen and age. The birds love it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Another pretty day, with morning fog slowly lifting over the far ridge.

 At our monthly meeting of the Northwest Basketweavers, Eva Seidenfaden from Denmark gave a presentation of her work, and also of her cause; Baskets4Life. She brought some stars that the African ladies made to sell, and also brought some of her baskets to auction for that cause. The Guild members sprang into action, buying all three baskets, and all of the stars as well. Ann, at left, is modeling one of the baskets (she won that auction), while Vicki was the auctioneer. Eva stands on the right, behind another of her baskets.
Our 'show and tell' table is in the foreground, while members watch Ann display her win!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

We had our Book Club meeting tonight at Denice's house, where she had prepared a nice fire in her firepit overlooking Puget Sound. The moon was low on the western horizon, reflected in the water below.
 Here's David's newly painted truck. Still needs to get the plywood installed, and then it will be ready for the firewood onslaught! The color is a very dark green, almost black depending on the light, with sparkles deep inside.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Wet and rainy all night, but sunny and misty in the morning. Lots of spider webs, too - and what can be better than be-dewed webs, drips and some sun?
One of the vine maples has already lost it's leaves, and all that's left is the seed wings, glowing in the morning sun.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Well, it's always nice to be home. Look who is very excited to see me again! Well, this was a bit later - actually, he was very happy and purry, and spent time in my lap. In fact, he was so glad, he brought not one, but two live offerings: a Hermit Thrush, and a tiny mousie. I was glad to see he had gotten along well while I was gone.
Dad & Mom at the airport to see me off. 
 We flew with the Ocelot tonight!
Sunset over Akron-Canton airport.
Chasing the sun westward into the night.