Saturday, January 07, 2017

first wander of the year; critters, mushrooms, & tears

 
We've had a bout of rainy weather which means the mushrooms are out, so of course we hied off in search of them. we hit the jackpot up in Cambria at one of our favorite wanders on the Fiscalini Ranch reserve where there is potential to wander for miles.
We wandered for about two hours but did not cover much distance as I spent most of the time hunting out mushrooms to photograph. Along the way we met up with happy pups, excited kiddos, and all sorts of squelchy mud!
At one point, I wandered of the path a little to capture a particularly stunning yellow specimen, as I carefully stepped along the flooded grass, I noticed something was a little tiny bit off. The grass appeared to be popping up from the ground. It was unusual and interesting enough to cause me to pause. I watched to motion in the grass and suddenly realized it was spiders! Hundreds of not-too tiny black and grey jumping spiders all traveling willy-nilly in the same direction! I crouched down lower to the ground to see if I could identify the creepy crawlies. They moved far too quickly for me to get a good look and far-far too quickly for a picture...perhaps they were camera shy? I was floored with the awesomeness of it all. How serendipitous to be in this spot and see this migration! The number of arachnids made us wonder if there was a hatching in the area but their size appeared to be too large for wee spideys and too small for tarantula spiderlings. Whatever the reasons, I stood there with the goofiest grin on my face....the stunning yellow specimen now off limits as I was afraid to get all stompy on the critters. Really, this has to be one of the cooler things we have come across. So cool!
After an appropriate amount of time with me saying "look at them!" over and over again, we returned to the path and our wander. Not far up the pathway from the spiderlings, we encountered another large number of critters, this time, monarchs! Not in the hundreds, mind you, but enough that our vision was filled with their spotty bodies and bold orange wings.
I stood there with the ocean to my back, a glorious assortment of mushrooms captured in my camera, the memory of the spiders still lingering, and the stunning sight of monarchs in their mating dance not two feet in front of us and my heart swelled, my breath caught, and the tears, oh the tears! I beamed so much my eyes got all squinty. I turned to the mister, a smiling sobbing mess of a jek and he reached over squeezed my should and said "you're such a nincompoop", and with that, he gave me a hug and a kiss and we stood there, holding hands in this really lovely embrace of nature.

Monday, December 26, 2016

good tidings and cheese

there was cheese. there is always cheese. good cheese, french cheese, german cheese, swedish cheese...stinky cheese. good golly we love the cheese. we also had the usual suspects...carrots and mushrooms and celery with dip...wavy-crinkly potato chips, asian pears and just washed grapes. this year there was a ham instead of the meatballs that never seem to diminish, and homemade macaroni and cheese that was perfectly perfect for a day that was as cold in the late afternoon as it was in the pink morning light when everything was powdered in frost.

i forgot to put holiday music on,but we were so loud and chatty i suppose we wouldn't have heard anything anyway...there were cookies, of course...but only two this year. there was pound cake too, but we filled up on so much cheese the pound cake went forgotten. there was nog...and southern comfort for the nog, and wine, cabernet, which went well with the cheese...i opted for whiskey with coke and ginger ale and the chocolate bitters that were snuggled down deep in my christmas stocking.

we played Clue..which took an unbelievable amount of time...so much time...the five adults playing the game opted to accuse (by the seats of our pants) just to get out of it...the boy won both by default, and a correct accusation. by the end of the game, it was past the mister's bedtime and so we scrambled to get in one round of exquisite corpse before everyone fled into the night...it is, after all, a family tradition.

and...in between, there was laughter, and chatter, and admiration for handmade gifts. so many handmade gifts! the sock monkey this year was astounding. there was a glittery bert and ernie shrine, wee journals with hand drawn covers and handwritten memories hidden inside for each of us; a lathed up wee wooden tree, pencil drawn campfires in frames, and a small cheery bit crafted from a wooden spool and vintage chenille stem that used to reside in a fabric covered box in an impromptu crafty shed camped out in the garden a-go-go.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

christmas eve eve...in pictures...

a new year, a new tree
kitsch-ing it up
new recipe...meh
crafting up some gifties
homemade lofthouse cookies
december bed

Sunday, December 18, 2016

winter beach wander...

and here we go...
frost on the boardwalk
standing
rolling
beach green
sand art
bird gang
textures
shadow play
too cold for beach going

Saturday, December 17, 2016

cookie fest 2016

We've been doing the Christmas Cookie Fest since we moved up here in 2010. The sister a-go-go makes up family recipe that uses nutmeg and buttermilk and while they are super tasty, the mister and I wanted to make some gingerbread cookies...we were not disappointed and I wish we made a double batch! Sooo good!

Friday, October 21, 2016

fall wander on the bird boardwalk

Up with the sun.
Walking feet.
The usual suspects.
Shadow play.
Trail pretty.
Man, I love this trail.
Back at the beginning.