tonight i went to a dinner meeting for a local association. at the end of the evening, there was a raffle for a brand new iPad. the winning number was 9768826! not only did i lose by one number, it was the final number. the winner - my tablemate and good friend eric, who works with iPad-using students for a living. where's the justice, i ask you?
on a related note, in another raffle i did win something, just yesterday. it's a $25 gift certificate for the home heating oil - but i burn wood and gas.
tonight crawling up my window, i find this tiny frog, suction-ish feet firmly planted on the slick glass. if it's flies he's looking for, he's come to the right place. there's even a spider web out there for the insects. he's a determined creature, and i watch as he climbs to the top of the window. why he doesn't backslide on such a slippery, vertical surface, i do not know.
other years i've missed it, this changing of the seasons. i've looked up from my work or i've sped around a corner and been jolted to see that fall has come on so quickly while i was busy with other things. but this year, i've noticed. i've watched color creep in a bit at a time, each day a little less green and a little more vibrant. i've felt the subtle change in air, the cool northern undertones of the breeze. i've seen the morning light slanting at a new angle as it filters in through windows. i'm watching it happen.
today autumn thinks it's here. but i can tell it's still coming.
the full september moon, risen just after dusk. the harvest moon, it was called, since its radiance gave farmers extended hours of light to harvest their crops at the end of the growing season. moonlight floods the yard hours later as i type this. i swear i could see from my window anything that happened to be out there.
since it was dark from photography standards, this was a long exposure. and serendipity prevailed as a car happened to pass by while the shutter was open.
perhaps i just haven't had time to notice, but this is the first monarch butterfly i've seen this year. on this overcast, cool morning, he was lingering in the yard, flying clumsily from flower to flower, and i wondered if he had only recently emerged from his chrysalis. i watched him for a long while, striking orange against the green leaves and golden flowers, until he flitted upward and flew away.
glorious saturday weather inspired me not to go out, but to stay home and clean. streaming saturday morning radio and a whole pot of coffee helped me to tackle big areas that had been neglected for too long. it felt good to be productive, to see progress, and to be doing something non-work related. behold the messiest area of my house, a pantry area off the kitchen, now clean and organized. if i had that printer i talked about earlier this week, i'd frame this photo and put it center shelf to remind me to keep this area as orderly as it finally is now.
i never print my photos. oh sure, i take my memory card to the drugstore and print off pictures of the little girl to send to the relatives down south. but, other than that, i just don't print my photographs. they're on the web. why bother?
but this summer, i tried my hand at notecard making at the urging of a friend. today my online order finally arrived. i am astonished at the difference between the printed photos and the computer ones. there's a depth and clarity on paper that i just don't see on the screen. i feel like i'm seeing them all over again for the first time and it's almost mesmerizing.
why are they so different, i wonder? perhaps i need to go purchase a printer!
one of the perks of babysitting overnight is breakfast pancakes made by the little girl, apron and all. one of the down sides, however, is the hour at which this happens. sunday morning at 7 a.m. is my roll-over-and-go-back-to-sleep time, not a time to be blurry-eyed and groggy as i eat the best pancakes in the whole world.
for a few days now, i've been trying to identify these berries, which are scattered all over the driveway at work. elderberry, i guessed. a type of cherry, emailed my friend barry. i may never know their true identity, but it makes no difference. from now on, they will always be known here as "firecracker berries", due to the surprising, exploding sounds they made as my feet and my tires slowly crept over them in an effort to snap this photo. so loud was the sound, i didn't associate it with the berries right away. and it sounded so funny, i ran over them a few times more, just to hear it!
next year, buy established morning glory plants and forget the frugal notion of starting them from seed. however easy they are to grow, it's just not worth it to have to wait until september for the first flower to appear. even if the lovely blue is better late than never.
labor day traditionally marks the end of summer here. as much as i look forward to autumn's blaze of color and the chill and coziness of fall, i am sorry to see this summer end. there have been so many memorable moments with friends and family, so many instances of profound peace and stillness, that it's bittersweet to let it all go and move on.
one of those midsummer memories is depicted here...a twilight shot of candles glowing in a beach house window, taken under emerging stars while the muffled laughter of my family inside mingles with the sound of the waves on the beach. i hold that quiet moment in my mind and in my heart - until summer returns again.
for reasons i won't go into, i need a large amount of shiny pennies. now, pennies i have - and lots of them. but they are old and worn and grimy with age. the bank could not supply me with the shiny new coins i need. in desperation, i set about to clean my old penny collection. lemon juice and salt in a jar with the pennies, shaken a few times, and rinsed. and voilà! the smell emanating from the jar upon opening is no longer lemony and actually smells a lot like a bad egg. but look how shiny my pennies are now!
there are morning people and there are night people and i am the latter. i love the quiet of night, the stars, the finality and feeling of accomplishment that comes at the end of the day. but when i sleepily look up to sights like this one, first light filtering through leaves and magically illuminating spots far into the forest, i am in awe. and it makes me wish yet again that i could be a morning person.
i live & take pictures & attempt to write here in northern new england, usa. if the pictures are too small for you, just click on them and they'll show bigger. and if the writing is too cheesy or mundane for you, just move on and find yourself another blog to read. i won't mind. no hard feelings. truly.