Sunday, August 26, 2012

Squeezing the last bit of Summer out of August

I finally bought the rest of the paint I needed to finish my interior painting projects. The back entry and basement are the last remaining spaces in need of new colors and it's no mystery that the 4 color palette I chose looks a lot like these photos from this weekend. I think I'll have one of these shots blown up to hang in the basement when I'm all done, a little piece of Up North downstairs.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Frogging Around on the St. Croix

At first I thought this frog was the most blobby frog I had ever seen, then I showed my husband who informed me that it was a toad. Then he petted it, because men just have to touch everything, and it jumped over the rail, and that's when the little blob made his athletic physique and Tree FROG skills known. But he's not a very good hider, granted it was early and he was there trying to warm up in a little patch of sunlight before we started bothering him!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Mossy, Melty Michigan

While hiking in the UP over the weekend I found a jackpot of mosses, and I am a big, big fan of moss and lichen. I fell in love with my first bit of lichen while hiking in Montana. It was the most beautiful and brilliant orange lichen on a shard of rock that had been coated in a natural canvas of calcite, nature knows best. As for moss, I've always been fond of it, when I was a kid we used to build our forest fort beds from moss that we would carefully dig up from a very fruitful moss patch we knew well. More recently, a few years ago or more, my dad decided to 'punch in' a road in a few acres of forest behind one of his fields. Having pushed through several low hills in the process he effectively brought the forest floor almost to eye level. Eye level from the Gator at least. The mix of mosses and fungus, once brought to my direct attention, was Gator stopping. I haven't stopped taking pictures since. The color and texture of mosses, lichen and fungus, especially mixed with other flora on the forest floor, is quite the composition. As I said earlier, nature really does it best.

Moss is a happy helper in decomposition. There were hundreds of trees down in different states of what I was calling melting, because that's what it looked like, but it really was amazing to see the tell tale sign of the completed process when we would come upon a moss patch in the shape of the log it once covered.

This tree has completely melted into the forest floor. In the detail below you can see the knots that where once branches in this now crumbled tree.