Sunday, October 31, 2010

... creepy lichen

lichen

happy halloween!

lichen

yesterday, in the spirit of the season (and in the spirit of joining c on an adventure) we went on a walk led by a uw phd to learn about lichens of seattle.

lichen

in a cemetery! creeeeeeeeeeepy lichens!

lichen

seriously, they were absolutely lovely, and even though i have appreciated lichens before, i didn't quite realize that they were everywhere.

lichen

and that they really like growing on headstones.

lichen

i admit, it was super rainy and insanely cold yesterday morning so i was slightly less than thrilled at being outside, but that just made the whole graveyard thing that much more atmospheric.

pumpkin cookies

today, i celebrated halloween in my favorite way by baking up some pumpkin cookies with brown butter icing. these are delicious, trust me. and you can get the recipe here.

pumpkin cookies

Thursday, October 21, 2010

... settling in to the season

fall trees

before our hike last weekend it honestly hadn't felt like autumn at all in seattle. and then, suddenly, wow! that one tree at the end of our street was all iridescent and golden/red and the leaves have been crunching so satisfyingly under the bike tires and the sun has been out in full-autumn-force yet still with that crispness and just this afternoon so much wind and rain rolled in to make for a cozy evening indoors.

croquet

last weekend we enjoyed our first croquet game of the season. sigh. my croquet gang this year kind of fell apart, what with work and travel and children and the like (oh yeah, and the not-so-summery weather). but most of us rallied on sunday for a last-minute gathering at the old croquet stomping grounds and braved the chilliness despite the sunshine. (c and i even biked there!) we warmed our insides with hot cider and snacks and caught some bits of sunshine where we could and caught up with each other's lives. truly the perfect fall day.

we are happy to serve you

and don't despair, i really have been sewing. (not that i imagine that anyone else is despairing over my lack of sewing, just more a note to self.) working on a little something. whilst drinking hot cocoa. from my favorite cocoa mug.

citrus quilt top

and also still in search of the perfect backing for this quilt top, which i finished quite a while ago. i have in my head some sort of perfect yellow or green flannel, but i have yet to find it. someday someday this will be finished and quilted and off to the young babe who might not be a young babe much longer.

Monday, October 18, 2010

... a bedside bouquet

bedside bouquet

lately, i am finding it incredibly important to have a bedside bouquet. there is nothing quite as nice as seeing fresh flowers right before going to sleep and first thing in the morning.

this little posy is from our garden, with some penstemon, coreopsis, zinnia, aster, plumbago and several varieties of salvia.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

... welcoming autumn

perry creek hike

my own personal bell rang out friday morning and we declared it to be the perfect mountain day. c and i filled a pack with some cookies, water and camera and drove north to perry creek.

we had done this hike several years ago and were both so delighted by it that we decided to give it another go. arthur kruckeberg, botanist and superhumanbeing, declared it a "fern-watcher's eldorado" when he mapped out this trail many, many years ago. who can resist a fern-watcher's eldorado?!

perry creek hike

the entrance has since been changed, and now for the better. instead of driving up an unmarked, rough gravel road for a mile to the tiny parking lot, you instead park off of the mountain loop highway and spend the first mile hiking through gorgeous shady forest with tall evergreens and dense northwest-ian underbrush. you eventually meet up with the former road and "parking lot" to start the hike that essentially traverses a rocky mountain side. you can hear perry creek below you in the valley, but don't get to see it until you meet up with the falls at what was the turn-around point on our hike.

perry creek hike

perry creek hike

all around on either side of this little canyon are waterfalls descending from high rocky cliffs, douglas maple, dogwood, big leaf maple, succulents, gooseberry and, of course, lots and lots of ferns. looking back from whence you came you can see mountain peaks still covered in snow from last season and the air is chilly enough to remind you that this is definitely possible.

perry creek hike

and after all the rocky hillside, you are super delighted to finally see the creek when you enter thick forest and see the falls. oh, so lovely!

perry creek hike

i recommend sitting here for a while and snacking on some cookies. if you are super motivated and aren't scared of slippery logs high over the creek, you can cross and go further up the trail to mount dickerman. we figured a roughly 7-mile hike was more than enough for the day and so, decided to turn around.

perry creek hike

sadly, there were no cider doughnuts to be had, but we did have some hot cocoa on returning home and got to enjoy some more amazing fall weather the rest of this weekend. autumn feels like it's finally arrived.

at last!

Friday, October 8, 2010

... the 24-hour read-a-thon!

Read-a-Thon Books!

ok, so today feels like christmas eve or something because tomorrow morning, at 5am sharp, i will be participating in dewey's 24-hour read-a-thon! which is exactly what it sounds like: i will (attempt to) stay up reading for 24 hours. i am seriously giddy about this, no joke. i have all my potential books stacked and at the ready. please do not judge me by these choices. i am going for books that fall under one--or many--of the following categories: light reading, short, ya fiction, chick lit, scary/suspense, or filled with pictures (aka graphic novels). it nearly killed me to hold off on reading the new love & rockets since i got it last week (complete with signed book plate, no less), but i was able to save it specifically for the occasion. yay!

sure, my sad old ass probably has no hope of staying awake the full 24 hours, but that won't stop me from trying. i have my stack of books lined up, i will have scones ready for baking first thing in the morning and snacks and meals prepared, and the weather gods are promising rain, which should make for a cozy booktastic day.

Chris's Read-a-Thon stack

c will also be joining me in this endeavor and, as you can see, has a much more intellectually stimulating stack than i. any of these books could put me to sleep in a matter of seconds. i honestly don't know how he does it.

and jenn, my awesome pal down the street, is also joining in for much of the day, so i'll have another compatriot in this endeavor. misery loves company, right?

anyhow, if you are so inclined, please pop on over to my book blog* sometime tomorrow to hear about my read-a-thon shenanigans and cheer me on. i will try to post there every hour or so with mini-reviews and grainy hipstamatic photos and status updates on my sanity. and if you could come by to bring me a cup of coffee at, say, 2am, i would love you for life.

*yes, i have a book blog! and hey, look, i am actually capable of using capital letters sometimes!