a ‘new’ Jersey Girl   living life in the Highlands of New Jersey

Monday, January 18, 2016

Cattail Ice Sculptures

They only happen under the most particular of circumstances: freezing temperatures (but not enough to freeze the water surface itself), wind-whipped waves, and cattails of course. From the first time I saw them form on Green Turtle Pond I have been intrigued and inspired. They cluster against the dam, frozen in a moment of time all unto themselves. Let's look a bit closer, shall we?

The Ballerina

 

The Three Musketeers

 

The Elf's Hat

 

En Garde!

 

Pretty Parasol

They never cease to delight. They are always in a state of flux, taking whatever form nature shapes them in. Each of them unique and beautiful.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Back in New Jersey

Not New Jersey

We are home in New Jersey as of Saturday late afternoon. My own house feels strange to me. I am in still in a Colorado state of mind and I'm finding it hard to adjust back to the noises of neighbors mowing their lawns and the annoying small planes that fly over the house on the way to the local airport. 

However, an incident last night reminded me of exactly where I was. We had our first bear of the season. I got up to close the curtains as it was getting dark. Out the window I saw our trash can toppled over and trash strewn in a wide swath across the front yard. Then I saw the big black bear. I stood on the front steps and clapped my hands and yelled at it. It took one last tasty piece of prime trash and retreated into the woods. 

Yep, we're back.

It pretty much either rained or was extremely overcast on our 3-day journey home. It seemed that the entire state of Nebraska was inundated with water. The Platte river was out of its banks and newly formed "lakes" appeared in so many fields. So. much. moisture. It was that way in Colorado too and it was nice to see it so green.

We listened to a very interesting book on the way home called "The Buried Giant." It was fantasy with a mix of King Arthur and The Hobbit, complete with ogres and dragons. It was so well read that the author's descriptive words and wonderful dialogue came to life. The story had a very interesting premise which kept us talking about it long after it was over. The 12 hours of CD time seemed to fly by as Lex's tires ate up the miles. Between that and podcasts of America's Test Kitchen we kept ourselves well entertained.

The pool is open and warmed up. However, it has mostly rain and stormed since we've been home. Rick did take advantage of a quick dip on Sunday, but since that afternoon we've had nothing but rain. I am not sure we even have fireflies since it's rained every night, and if they are here I'm sure they are all drowned. I did catch this little froggie on top of his "kin" upon opening the pool yesterday. Whenever it rains we get frogs in the pool. They are the devil to catch.

Most people ask if it's good to be "home" again. I would have to say, no, not really. I'm sure I will settle back into my normal New Jersey routine before too long, but right now I am not ready. We both become so immersed in cabin life that it's not easy to rewire ourselves. Plus, we kicked off a few things in preparation of living there full time while we there, such as next month we'll have new batteries installed and more solar panels. We found a great shed/small garage/storage barn that is going to be perfect for what we need. A neighbor is going to be clearing and leveling the spot for it this week (depending on the weather). 

Our yard was about to become a virtual garden with the promise of lupine, Wyoming paintbrush, fireweed, pink plume, blue flax and more. We won't see it in bloom. Neither will we see the fruits of our efforts to reseed the slash pile burn areas where we spread seed and native wildflower mix.

We're missing all the animals that come to our brand-new mineral and salt licks.

It takes a while to adjust to having moose, deer and elk visit vs. a bear getting into our garbage.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Where Have I Been?

 

I’m still here! I just didn’t have anything much to say. I’ve just been going from gray day to gray day, hoping for Spring to arrive in person and not just on the calendar. Saturday was pretty nice when it got up to 50 but the wind spoiled any chance of sitting outside, plus the sun was in and out. Today the sun is out nice and bright but it’s below freezing. Tomorrow we are expecting some (shhh! not too loud) snow. We still haven’t  completely gotten rid of our snow cover from the past two months yet, although it’s melting slowly and we have more clear patches of yard than we do snow.

Even though it was cold and there was a chilly wind blowing, I took myself out this morning for a long awaited walk at Long Pond Ironworks. This was the first time since the snow started to fly and pile up week by week that I’ve been there. I wasn’t even sure if my legs would carry me over uneven ground since I’ve only been walking on paved surfaces and grocery store aisles. And also because ever since I slipped and fell on the stupid ice a week ago when taking the girls to the groomers and banged up my knee pretty darned good, I haven’t been walking long distances because of the pain. It’s still swollen some just below the knee around the leg bone, but it’s better than it was. 

It was nice to get out in the fresh, but cold air. The snow had pretty much melted but there were lots of spots that were just pure ice and tried to walk around them. When the path became more ice than it was clear I turned around not wanting to chance falling again. I learn pretty quickly that way.

In other news, we are still looking at vehicle. We have decided against the Toyota Sequoia for now because the one we test drove I didn’t like very much. It felt very boxy yet rode like a luxury car. This vehicle, whatever we end up with, can’t be a namby-pamby sort of girl. She’s going to be a country girl. In all other respects the Sequoia ticked most of our boxes except for not having a seat position memory. We also looked at a Nissan Armada which did tick all the boxes except it does not measure up as well in user reviews in Consumer Reports. We did not drive the Armada yet as they did not have a new one available to test drive. But when I sat in the driver’s seat it felt more like our Surburban than looking out over that huge hood of the Sequoia. We will revisit the Ford Expedition since we have just found out that the salesman who showed us the last one we looked at did not know how the seats folded and we dismissed it because they did not fold flat, but I guess they really do.

In the meantime, our Suburban decided to show us just who’s who and test us on our love for it. While Rick was driving it last week the brakes went out! It figures, doesn’t it? Rusted clean through. So, Big Red is in the hospital getting new brake lines and Rick is driving a loaner car. Not really an expected expense, but what else can you do?

That pretty much sums up what’s been going on (or not) around here. 

 

Photos: old window latch; barn shadows

Sunday, March 09, 2014

New T@B Entries

Sorry, no new entries here right now. We’ve been in the midst of changing up servers for all our web sites over the past few days and we now think we have things in working order again. The only sad thing is that the comments that were added during that time period cannot be switched over and will be lost, so if you made a comment and it is no longer showing up, that’s what happened to it.

We’re having a thaw and the snow is slowly melting, melting, melting, and I can almost hear it saying “I’m melting …” just like the wicked witch. Soon, like her, it will just be a big puddle. Hooray! Although there is talk of a mid-week storm that could involve that nasty word we’ve all been avoiding saying — snow.

So, in the meantime while I come up with something to say here, have a look over on the T@B site. I’ve blogged about what we’ve purchased so far to outfit the tiny kitchen!

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Launched! and Snow (no!) Report

We’ve launched our new blog about our adventures and experiences with our T@B trailer. You can find it here. For now we are focusing on how we outfit it since we don’t actually have the trailer yet. 

I’m not sure the blog header will stay the same. I’ve been toying around with it. This is what I first came up with because I loved the blurb on the back of the T@B “I Go Where I Am Towed To” but it just wasn’t doing it for me.

I go where I m towed

Yesterday I worked on a different one and came up with this one which is the one I am currently using.

What is Cherry Red copy

What do you think? Any preferences anyone? Take a look on the actual blog site!

On the snow front we were lucky and the current storm swung way south of us and we didn’t get a single flake! It is however colder than-a-you-know-what out there. BRRRR! Maybe by Friday we’ll have a warmer day. I certainly hope so. This winter is dragging on and on!

 

 

 

About

Welcome, I'm Lynne. My blog captures my experiences of living in the way-out suburbs of New Jersey through my words and through my photography. I hope that reading my blog will change your perception of my newly adopted state.

© 2006-2013 'new' Jersey Girl All photography and text on this blog is copyright. For use or reproduction please ask me first.

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