Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Feathered Friend


Hootie arrived somewhere in the last couple of days or weeks, I noticed him on Saturday Evening. Hootie is an Eastern Screech Owl native to this area. He resides in this big Pine in the front yard. To our delight the hole he resides in faces the house and we can view him from the living room or the second story bedroom. He is usually in his hole early AM and then late afternoon until dusk. Sometimes he sings his Trilling like song. Sometimes when he is in his hole he has hi s eye open and watches us and the cat. Other times he clearly is sleeping. Unfortunately my camera cannot get a really clear shot of him. Yoda is studying Owls right now in Science and this is great fun. Sometimes we have had Great Horned Owl in some pines out back and occasionally in the summer we hear a Barn Owl- there sound is like no other. If you follow the links highlighted- you can listen to the owls and see better up close pictures of them.
We enjoy having him stay so close. He usually arrives this time of year and leaves around Valentines day when he goes off to find his mate per my reading. He has been consistent in his arrivals and departures over the last 3-4 years. This is one of the perks of living rurally.
It will be a splendid 70 + degree day today. For October 26th that is really something. I am hoping to get out and enjoy it!

The links for both Great horned and Barn work but I went in and re-did the eastern Screech owl and no luck. If you go to one of the ohter owls you can get to the Eastern screech from there.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Whole Truth Part 2

I always feel saner when . . . . . If I have had some creative time. If I am well rested, fed and have had a good a walk.

When I get discouraged . . . . . . I make sure I have had enough sleep. Try to look at all that is going well. This means I literally have to sit down and make a list sometimes.

I feel Healthy when . . . . .I eat well, get enough sleep and exercise. Get outside every day.

What I thought I'd be when I grew up . . . . . .teacher or hairdresser until maybe middle school, Then I had explored more and found my current Occupation of Occupational Therapy. Then I specialized in Hand rehabilitation. CHT- Certified hand therapist

Full Moon

Full Spooky, Hunters, Falling Leaves Moon 2010
We were at Genesee Country Museum for Spirits of the Past Tour last evening, we traveled among the living and the dead this spooky night and heard tales of long ago that happened on this then Pioneer Frontier. This was Yoda's first time at this event. All the stops were new this year. The village was magnificent in the evening of a Full Moon. We kept tight together as a group as you never know what lurks in the hedgerow or behind a tree. We were solicited to buy jewelery of the dead from some grave diggers. We enjoyed a few Hearth fires in some of the homes and heard a number of tales of Spooky times. When we had left this late 1800's Mansion after listening to a distraught mother about her young son who was there in the coffin, I turned around and wow the illumination of the full Moon behind this rather spooky looking Haunted house was breathtaking. Boo - whoo's out there tonight, it should be another great moon viewing night.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thoughtful Thursday

Be Amazing

It is up to you to Illuminate the World.

Phillipe Venier

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Whole Truth Part 1

There we go posting before anything is actually written.
Answer- less distraction when writing.

This will be a series of posts answering questions from a magazine page.

My favorite place in the world: I really love Jordan Pond on Mount Desert Island Acadia Maine.
By a lake or a Pond is also nice without it needing to be a specific place.

No one knows . . . . well not a lot of people, that I survived on an uninhabitable island in a small group for 7 days, I lost 10 pounds and ate snake we caught, crayfish and a lot of wild nettle or strawberry tea. I learned a lot about my self and about working in a group. I dreamed a lot about food and thought deeply about those who go without enough nourishment on a regular basis.

The lesson I keep learning over and over . . . . never judge a book by its cover, and LISTEN really well.

How I live Green . . . . I hang my laundry outside, I use cloth bags at the grocery, I compost green material, recycle all that is possible, LED bulbs, refillable water bottles, buy local when able.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday Sampler

Actually this was the bounty from last Sunday when we took an adventure to a small Fingerlakes town nearby. On the way we stopped for the requisite Pumpkins and found these way to cool spooky
" Goosebumps" pumpkins. We got big ones and little ones, Maple Cotton Candy and then on to our next stop.
Next stop is Red Jacket Orchards with sampling of flavored Fruit juices and Cider. Here they have all things grown and made in the Fingerlakes. We selected these 3 local cheese and enjoyed them on the car ride to the next stop. It was a gorgeous day in the sky! Brilliant blue edge to edge and sun that warmed your very core. This was one of those special but in frequent times when we were all in the car together. Our destination goal is here: Dougs Fish
They make hands down the best breaded fish and fries, coleslaw around. It is well worth the drive. Lot's of visitors to Skaneatlas this day. Many fancy cars to the delight of the boys. Old MG's and such. Flowergirl and I are interested in the Artisian Galleries like Gallery 54, Imagine that, and Skaneateles Artisians .
I Can't say we bought much, a couple of ceramic bowls and mug but the sights were ever so inspirational. So many talented and creative souls reside in the Fingerlakes, it is a beautiful thing. We have been making this same trek in all kinds of weather for 16 years now. This year was one of the best weather years ever. Get out and enjoy the day and Fall, for it will soon be behind us and we best have some memories to fill those long dark, cold months.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thoughtful Thursday

Be Present

In Life there are no ordinary moments. Most of us never really recognize the most significant moments of our lives when they're happening.
~ Kathleen Magee

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Halloween a coming . . . .

What does Halloween Look like at your house?
Well here at Chestnut Hill, here are some of the comings and goings.
Decorations here and there, trying on masks, baking sweet Halloween treats. Looking through books and magazines for new fun ideas, both to make and to eat. Deciding on a costume and how to carve our pumpkins, scary, happy, abstract? We greet each Holiday with lots of enthusiasm!! Bring them on, we are ready. We need to decide where to Trick or treat as well. Living rurally we need to go to somewhere else to Trick or treat. Stay tuned for more Halloween!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Random Fall moments

Canoeing on a fall Night
Getting back into the Music Groove!

Monday, October 11, 2010


Traditions- What are they? Why are they important? Do they have a place or should everything always be new and different?

Simple Chestnut Hill traditions;
Family dinner grace, Birthday celebrations, Holiday or seasonal celebrations, vacation locations
Saturday AM Pancakes Sunday night Popcorn and movies, stomping on Horse Chestnuts out front, picking sweet violets in the spring, roasting corn on the campfire, picking lilacs, making Birthday hats, custom Pillowcases.

Below is what Wikipedia has to say on the subject.
  1. Beliefs or customs taught by one generation to the next, often orally. For example, we can speak of the tradition of sending birth announcements, and family traditions at Christmas.
  2. Beliefs, customs and practices maintained by social interaction, such as saying "thank you", sending birth announcements, greeting cards, etc.
  3. Beliefs, customs and practices maintained by societies and governments, such as Federal holidays in the United States.
  4. Beliefs, customs and practices maintained by religious denominations and church bodies that share history, customs, culture, and, to some extent, body of teachings. For example, one can speak of Islam's Sufi tradition or Christianity's Lutheran tradition.
  5. Beliefs, customs and practices that are Prehistoric or have lost/arcane origins, such as trade, the teaching of language and education in general.

Traditions serve to preserve a wide range of culturally significant ideas, specific practices and the various methods used by distinct cultures. The word tradition comes from the Latin traditionem which is the accusative case of traditio which means "handing over, passing on".

What tradtions do you hold on to and pass on ?
Are you a tradition lover or a change, have it all new lover?

I like to think I am a mix. I am probably heavier on tradition. I do not need it all new and different but I do like to mix it up a bit. I enjoy many of the things we do year to year, they can be like glue to bond us together. I wonder what things we do now that will be carried on in the future? What new things will become tradition? There is something comforting to the familar. that cup of hot cocoa upon bringing home the tree for Christmas. I think going new places is exciting but love doing the repeatable and seeing how it changes as we as a fmaily grows and changes.
Fall is fast fading . . . . we have been to pick Apples, get pumpkins, still ahve decorating halloween cookies and carving pumpkins. What will you do?

Thursday, October 7, 2010


"It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more then our abilities"
Joanne Kathleen Rowling

Every day we are faced with oh so many choices . . . .. What time to get up, what to wear, what to eat, what roads to drive on to get where we need to go. What do we say . . . . How do we respond to different situations? How do we style our hair today . . . it is no wonder that we are stressed much of the time. What influences the choices we make? I believe that our values and beliefs influence our choices. If we are responsible, caring, loving of the out doors than our choices will be different than others who are not say responsible. If attention to detail is important - how will that influence our choices? If we love and value the outdoors what impact does that have? Growing up I was a Girl Scout, well I still am a GS but the Girl Scout Laws have heavily influenced Choices that I have made.
GSUSA- Girl Scout Law
I will do my best to be
honest and fair
Friendly and helpful
considerate and caring
Courageous and strong and
responsible for what i say and do,
and to
respect my self and others
respect authority
use resources wisely

make the world a better place
be a sister to every other girl scout.

This is what still guides me. I struggle with how to mange my time. Who and what gets my time? What is most important that guides how my time is spent?
The Girl Scout Law certainly influences the choices I make.
What/ Who influences your choices?

Monday, October 4, 2010


Summer has definitely slipped away. The house is getting cooler by the day, the wood stove is calling to be lighted. It seems that just yesterday we were basking in the Summer's heat, sun and glow. Gone are the summer afternoons of Ice Tea, Ice Cream cones and stretching out in the sun. The trees are putting on quite a show in their colorful splendor. The colors are very rich this year. Even though it is very early in the Fall season , I can see and feel hints of the Winter to come. Somehow I am not ready this year for the days on hunkering in, battling the snow and wind and cold to get out and about. I am still waiting for my Indian summer. These days we are not sure how to dress, short or long sleeve, wool? We are in that stage where you need it all. Feet that have been unclothed all summer now need to find socks and shoes again. Miday can still be gentle and warm but early AM and PM are getting cold and frosty. Gloves are even in the picture for early morning Dog walks. Seasons they tell us of the passing of time. They remind us to not be idle in our lives but to get out and enjoy all that life and nature have to offer for just as a passing season so are our life seasons passing. Be sure not to miss all of the splendor and the tiny everyday moments as we travel season to season.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Everyday

The everyday is so very special, I know I have talked about it often. It is the little things we do , say and see everyday that make up our whole. When we begin to not notice them - we are missing a big part of life. that is whay when outdoors camping we enjoy it so much as it is the everyday right there in front of us. I may not remember a special oufit as time goes on but I will remember all the plastic cups on my counter near the sink adn the shoes that are strewn everywhere and that I always am trying to grab a few moments at the sewing machine. the seasonal decorations at our home is a big thing. Less now that the kids are bigger and more active but they are there none the less to mark the passing of seasons and holidays. We all enjoy them and look forward to what comes next. Take Time to notice the everyday and make it our own. Celebrate the ordinary , it becomes the Extraordinary.

Friday, October 1, 2010

In progress . . .

In progress . . . . you could call that my life. There are always so many projects, homework, food, groups we are involved in that are "in progress" I suppose we are fortunate to be in that position, we are blessed with resources to make that happen and friends and family to cook for and be with and create for.
Cards are for a Creative group and Ronald Mc Donald group,

Soldiers for a Trade Fair at school for Yoda- he is making them himself. This is so they can experience the bartering system as part of Social studies.
Quilt top needs to be stitched then layered and quilted, a Christmas gift me thinks.

Fall is here as the days are shorter, shadows longer and earlier. I have a picture of my Horse Chestnut Tree in bloom right now though- what does that mean? Lots of mushrooms this fall it seems. Golden rod and roadside asters are fading gently as the leaves fall. The fall colors so far are splendid and hopefully if we get a sunny day I can go for a drive, Enjoy the weekend that is upon you!