Friday, October 30, 2020

Weekend Wanderings!


This week I think I did so much over the weekend, that my body had enough, so I did a lot of resting. I also worked on finishing the quilting on my runner, which I did, but not in time to do the edging. I am doing a blanket stitch around the edge, then I think I will be finished.

We did get out over the weekend. We tried some places we had been before, but I wanted to get out and get photos and do some walking.

We went back to Savin lake to see if we could find some birds. Lots of birds, but they don't stay still, but I was able to get a few shots. I was surprised to see that I had gotten a variety of birds, once I enlarged them on the computer. 

My big surprise was getting Eastern Bluebirds, the first time I have gotten photos of them. I also found a lot of nests hidden in the area, so a good place to come back to.

I also spotted a young Cedar Waxwing.

And there were Mockingbirds in the area. I saw several others and found a hidden place hidden between two small ponds, with lots of activity, so now I know where to go for bird photos.

We enjoyed the foliage in the area and made a stop at a local cemetery so I could get a photo of a church I had seen before and wanted a close up for a future design idea. Then we stopped at Machimoodus and got a good hike in, although we took the wrong trail and did a few steep uphills to get back to the main trail.

More of the views from our hike and a couple we met along the way.

On Sunday we stopped back at Salmon River and walked along the covered bridge trail. It takes you up a hill with views of the river and the surrounding hills. The colors were coming out nicely in this area.

We took a new trail down a hill and found a spot along the river, wonderful place to relax and Bean loved playing in the water.

Afterwards we stopped by Machimoodus to check out the area by the boat launch. It was a beautiful area along the river with trails and grassy spots to park the RV, so a great spot to spend the day and bring the kayaks.

I hope you enjoyed traveling along with me. We had a bit of snow today, so I am not sure what tomorrow will bring. I know it will be cold, so maybe just an easy day to enjoy the sights and hopefully some new foliage.

Friday, October 23, 2020

Friday Finish and Fun!


This week I finished one item that I had been working on. I thought it was a bit plain with the solid blue background, so I added some words and extras and it makes a fun wall hanging for Christmas. The design is a free pattern I got from Heart to Hands. 

I also made up a batch of masks. It seems the 3D is the best and my DIL loves that style and the blue, floral bandana, so I made her 4 from what I had left. I also tried some fun fabric I had for Halloween. My brain wasn't working too well and I cut in the wrong direction and meant to place a pumpkin in the front, but they still look ok. I have a lot of yardage of this print, so I just used a piece from the cut end, the rest will go into a halloween quilt or backing for next year.

Last week my son called to say they wanted to go out with us, so we had a family day. They wanted some family photos, but I think they need to not wear hats and gear for family photos, so once I get better at using the new camera, I can do some nice ones for their Christmas card. I also got lucky and a Great Blue Heron flew by and landed in a tree. He was high up and I didn't have a good area to shoot from, but I was able to get a decent shot. One thing with the new camera is it is photoshop ready, so editing comes out much nicer.

On Sunday Bill and I took Bean out for a hike. We went to a new park in Connecticut called Day Pond. It had nice large parking areas and we got a nice hike through the forest to a beautiful cascading waterfall.

I also have been enjoying the birds that are visiting. These were all near the feeder and the birds do not sit still for long. A cardinal, Carolina wren, Tufted Titmouse and a White Breasted Nuthatch, are a few of the bird species that visit.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and enjoy a bit of nature and the outdoors in your area.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Friday finishes and Fun!

 I have been working on a couple of projects that I am still working on, so the only finish I did, was some more masks for the family. I made the glow in the dark ghosts for the boys, something fun they can play in  as well as practical. Then I made matching kitties for me and the boys and they flags for Bill. I like the box style, even though it is tough to do a nice job on the ends, but they fit much better and not only can I breath in them, I can talk in them. That is nice for the boys, as well, since they can talk in the classroom without removing them.

I added a photo, wearing it, to show. you how it stays away from the face. It looks more pronounced from the side, but looks fine from the front.

On Saturday I sent Bill to the store to get me a new camera body. I told him the two choices and a list of questions to ask. Well, the store had no one that knew cameras so he went with the expensive one. I really wish I had more time to think on it, It is a nice camera, but more for a professional than for what I need. I do like how it syncs up with photoshop, so my edits are getting better, but it does seem like the photos run on the darker side. I guess I will just have to learn how to use this one, lol. The good news is, today I was looking at their website before Bill went up to take in the old one and mine was on sale, so Bill was able to get the discount taken off of our price, so I saved money. 

We decided to go to Fort Getty to walk and take some photos. It was dismal out, but with a little editing, I was able to brighten them up.

A picture of the lighthouse on Dutch Island.

A close up of the lighthouse. The photos have a higher resolution, so I am able to crop in closer and still retain most of the details.

And on the beach, I thought this scene was quintessential New England.

The next day we had plans but the boys wanted to play again, so we took them back to the island. They loved playing on the beach and Nick found more treasures than I did.

And all the boys had fun, just being boys. The campground is closed, so we had the place to ourselves, just a few visitors who come to walk around.

It was a wonderful weekend and I always find my greatest joy when we take the boys with us. I had taken a photo of Alex while he was walking further away and cropped his face for a close up. I was not trying for a portrait, but love how it came out, so I will practice more with portraits. I think that is one of the benefits of this camera, it can do nice portraits, so something new to learn.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and find time to find your joys and happiness in these trying times.

Friday, October 9, 2020

Weekend Wanderings!


We have been keeping busy with drives and finding new places, as well as visiting old places. A lot of foliage is showing now, but I can never find a place to get good shots. Today I found some nice places and of all times, my camera has stopped focusing. I will have to take it in to see what is going on, hopefully not an expensive fix. I am looking at buying a new body to hold my zoom lens so I can just grab and shoot and maybe not miss shots, like I did this week.

Our first stop Thursday was a graveyard, always fun when I find a new one. Lots of old grave and we enjoyed walking around and reading some of them. To the side was this sign and small stones to mark the graves.

As we were walking on a hillside area, I looked down the hill and saw a grave, all by itself. Of course I had to see what was on it and why it was there. As you can see from the stone, he committed suicide after he murdered a Doctor's daughter. I read that they were lovers and the family didn't approve, so he killed her, then himself. Another says he loved her, but she didn't feel the same way, so it was unrequited love. 

Our next stop was a pond. As you can see in this photo, there are two hawks, battling it out. One zoomed by my face, one over my face and I grabbed this shot with a regular lens. Then an eagle flew over my head and before I could get my zoom set up, he was gone. The sky was full of crows, they were chasing the hawks and eagle.

We walked along the path to a big field and walked through that to old cornfields, but no eagle in sight. I did find a few wasp nests, and glad it was cold and windy. Definitely not a place to go to in the warm weather.

Our final stop was the fabric store. They have tons of fabric, but nothing that I was looking for. I did find a fun kitty print, to make a few masks for me and the boys. Then a rustic flag print for Bill and the ghosts glow in the dark, so the boys will love that.

Today I wanted an easy day, a ride to the quiet side of Connecticut to stop at a few places and the primitive store to get a new pump for my soap jar. We stopped at a dam first, that is when I went to use my camera. I think dropping it the other day didn't help, I did notice my photos were not the usual quality. Then we stopped at Roseland park to enjoy the views. It is a beautiful park and the colors were coming in nicely. The iPhone did a fairly nice job though.

Our last stop was Wolf's Den. I wanted to do the hike we couldn't do with the boys and I figured it was an easy 2 miles. I was wrong, we walked 7 1/2 miles, up and down steep hills, lol. My legs got tired and weak, but I made it to the Wolf's den and the other interesting sites. I seriously think I need a rest day tomorrow. It will be warmer, so sitting at the ocean for a few hours will be fine with me. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Vacation in the fall!


We were able to take a few more drives this week and enjoy seeing some new places. Our first stop was a pond in Connecticut. When we got there I saw plenty of parking and a dirt road so we parked there and noticed a lot of old cabins. I assume when the state took over the property, the cabins were part of an old camp.

When we got to the end of the road we found a wonderful park with plenty of parking and a beautiful spot to picnic and enjoy the views of the pond. We will have to bring the boys here some day, I think they would have fun, running around.

Our plans were to go to the Connecticut River for a walk along a bike path, but as usual, we got off the beaten path and found places along the way that we stopped to enjoy. We never did get to the river but we enjoyed a stop at a town, we were passing through.

There was a nice park where we enjoyed views of the town and the foliage lined hills, along the way.

A train came by as we were walking in the park.

Since it was getting later, we headed back home and a spot I found on the map. It was a place called Eagleville pond, but no eagles. We did get to see a blue Heron.

Today, rain was predicted. I was almost out of apples so we headed to the orchards. We got two large bags full and since we had time, stopped at the hill to get a little upward hike in and a few views. I wasn't up to the full hike to the top, so maybe next weekend when more color comes in.

Tomorrow will be another day and I am not sure what we will do, it all depends on the weather. I hope you are all having a nice week and enjoyed following along with me as we explore new places in our area.

Monday, October 5, 2020

Weekend Fun!


I thought I would do extra posts since we are home and exploring new places. The weather has been nice but today we got rain, so we stayed home to get things done and I cooked up foods for the week. 

On Saturday we took the boys to a new park,  It is a large park in Connecticut called Masamoquet Brook State Park. I was happy to see that they had several parking areas and we found a nice big spot, facing. the river. The waters are still down, but there was enough flow to hear as it tumbled along the rocks.

There were several hiking trails but the one to the Wolf's Den was up a hill, so I was afraid the boys couldn't handle it. We walked around the lower trails and they had fun jumping on the bridge to hear the drumming sound.

Then we decided to take a side trail that went along the river. It was a nice trail, and a lot of beautiful old trees, with unique features. There are signs everywhere that Woodpeckers are around.

Alex was tired so Nick and I went for a hike up the hill to see how bad it was. It was steep but once we got to the top, it leveled out and was easier walking. I didn't want to go too far, but then Bill and Alex showed up so we hiked along a trail for awhile. We will go back and hike the main trails and points of interest by ourselves, next time. After our walk, the boys enjoyed ice cream and some play time before we went home.

Sunday was a day with Bean, he hates when we leave without him, but it is too much with the boys and him. We went back to the park we took the boys to, last week. This time we hiked the trails and got to enjoy the ponds and woodlands.

Our destination was the covered bridge. A nice trail and except for the main trails, no one was on the back trails, so we had the woods to ourselves.

 Lots of small streams, mostly dried out. We had a nice day, got a good 5 mile hike in and no stress. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and remember to step away from life's stressors and enjoy a moment of peace for yourself.

Friday, October 2, 2020

Friday Finishes and Fun!


This week I have been busy. I have finished a few things and one I want to work on more to make it better. I made a stitchery with one of Cheri Saffiote's designs and decided to make it into a pillow cover. This way, the person can put a pillow in or they can hang it, if they want, so more versatile and easier to ship.

Another thing I worked on was, more masks. I wanted to use up the halloween fabric and get those out, so the kids can enjoy them now. I know there are a lot of kids with bad masks, these are 3D so they are easier to breath and talk in. I will try and sell a few and the rest will be donated. I also made myself a couple and a few for our cat sitter. I do need to rethink the design, so I can sew it more neatly, have less bulk and that would be easier on my machine and my arm.

And of course, we had a weekend filled with adventure with the boys. On Saturday we took them to a new place. A beautiful park with a pond and waterfall and lots of hiking trails. And having large parking lots is always a plus, so we set up to have views and a spot to relax at. The bad thing was, the water levels were down and the falls weren''t flowing,  but it was still beautiful.

The boys had a full day, hiking, swimming and Nick found some painted rocks. I definitely want to go back and hike the trails, it is too much for the boys to do a full hike, even though they are moving non stop, most of the time.

And we had three friendly Mallard ducks, hang out with us.

I took several photos and this one shows how they have a nictitating eyelid, almost looks furry.

And on the way back, I got a shot of some early foliage. A lot of areas are turning fast now, due to the drought. 

On Sunday, I got up too late for a day trip, so we picked up the boys and took them to the boys camp. We lucked out and the gate was open, so we parked our camper in a lot next to a big grassy area.

The boys had fun at the beach areas.

And hiking along the pathways.

And while the guys were resting and playing at the camper, I snuck away and waited for some birds to sit still. I finally got one close enough and was surprised to see that it was a Yellow Shafted Northern Flicker.

This week, I had Bill take the week off. I am burnt out with everything that is going on and our last vacation was spent, with me sick. So I am hoping we can enjoy the week and get out to some places in Ct, that I have wanted to visit. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and find places that bring you joy and peace in these tumultuous times.