Friday, October 17, 2008

It's Harvest Time!

Before we had a hard frost last week I spent the morning gathering the last of my garden produce. This basket of herbs made the kitchen smell sooooo good. By the time I'd picked the rosemary, thyme, basil and spearmint, my hands smelled like a mixture of all the herbs.
I put the herbs on screens for the dehydrator so I'll have them to use throughout the winter season until I have fresh herbs again next summer.

I also picked the grapes that were hanging on the pergola on the backyard patio. I didn't think I'd have that much but by the time I had picked all I could reach I had 5 gallons of grapes.

The sink was full of grapes as well as a couple of old ice cream buckets. It was a bountiful grape growing season.

And there are still plenty of grapes left on the pergola for the birds to feed on all winter.
I steamed the grapes and made juice which will be used later to make jelly, jams or just to be added to lemonaide for a good drink.
It's been a busy harvest time--gathering the garden produce and getting stocked up for a long winter season. It's a good feeling to be able to enjoy the produce from my gardens all year long.

Happy Fall Y'all

I put together a little fall display for my front porch. I gathered some pumpkins, gourds, squash and cornstalks from the garden--and added a not so scary scarecrow.

I love the rich oranges, reds and yellows and the cool crisp days you get to enjoy at this time of year.

Grab your camera, load up the kids, the dog--any or all who might enjoy it--but get out there and enjoy this gorgeous time of year. These colors don't last nearly long enough and you'll be sorry if you don't get out and enjoy them while you can. Don't miss the chance to walk through the fallen leaves and inhale the smells of autumn. Get out there and have a "HAPPY FALL Y'ALL" before Mother Nature changes to a all white color scheme!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Biking at Jackson

Last Friday morning (Oct. 3rd) we loaded our bikes, picked up Bob and Mauri and drove over to Jackson. The drive over the pass was beautiful because all the fall colors were at their peak. That's just the kind of drive I love to take--rolling hills, farmland and Mother Nature showing off her best display of October colors. You have to appreciate all that beauty while you can because it never lasts long enough.
The temperature was perfect, a few clouds in the sky and miles and miles of nice asphalt trails to ride on. We started our ride at Wilson where we parked the pickup. Then rode on towards Teton Village--about a 10 mile ride.
The colors were so pretty. . . with a nice dusting of gold leaves on the bike trail.

We stopped at Teton Village for a little while, then rode several miles more to Teton National Park. We rode into the Park a couple of miles where we were reminded to be aware of bears--and where food storage is required. Was that for us, or the bears?

Behind Mauri and I, the mountains were dotted with pockets of yellow aspens and red scub oak. Everywhere you looked were beautiful autumn colors. It was such a pretty day and a great day for a ride. We couldn't have picked a nicer day to be enjoying some of Jackson Hole's bike trails.
We stopped at a new golf course being built near Teton Village. It's called "Shooting Star". If you have enough money you can turn what was once a flat pasture into a beautiful golf course--and in a relatively short amount of time. Just behind those beautiful gold and orange aspens and over several rolling hills is where the golf course was located. Of course, Bob and Randy were wishing they could stop and play the course, but that was for another day--after they are both a lot richer!
By the time we got back to Wilson, we'd ridden a total of 23 miles. We drove into Jackson for lunch at Merry Piglets, a great little Mexican Resturant, and then back home by way of Palisades Resevoir. We had a great day biking together and enjoying some of Mother Nature's finest work.

Riding with Friends

I've been fortunate lately in being able to enjoy my favorite season . . . FALL! Over the past month or so, I've been able take Olivia to the hills on three different occasions and ride with other women who also love to enjoy some beautiful back country trails on horseback.

This was taken as we was riding along a trail near Upper Mesa Falls, not far from Ashton. Lyn Longhurst is leading the ride on her big quarter horse, "Amos". We started the ride at the Bear Gulch Trail Head, then rode about 5 miles along a high ridge overlooking both Upper and Lower Mesa Falls.
Here we are with some of the beautiful fall colors behind us. It was kind of a busy day with lots of other riders on the trail. Livy hasn't had all the trail experience the other two horses have but she does just fine. Sometimes after we've made the "turn for home"-- back to the trailer, she gets a little excited but she settles back down again. By the time we got back to the horse trailer we'd ridden about 8-10 miles over awesome trails.

This is Carol Polansky, a good friend and ridding partner of Lyn's. It's been a great experience to spend some time with these women, getting acquainted and seeing the countryside from the back of a nice horse.

I've had a wonderful time with Lyn and some of her riding friends. It's a great way to enjoy some scenic trails and spend time with others who enjoy their horses the way I do.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

The view from where I'm sitting . . . .just perfect!

What a way to spend a beautiful fall morning! Load up my horse, Annie and the carriage-- drive to Harriman State Park--so we could enjoy the morning driving together. The temperature was in the mid 70's, a clear blue sky, gorgeous fall colors--all the ingredients for a perfect day!

Randy took a day off on Tuesday so we decided to drive the 80 miles to Island Park. We had driven at Harriman State Park several years ago, (probably 8-10 years ago) so we decided it was time to try it again since the forecast was for a pretty fall day. Harriman (the other Herriman) is a great place to drive because there are miles and miles of roads that wind through the Park. Nice little roads just right for a horse and carriage with hardly a soul around except for a few fisherman on the river. Annie kind of matches the fall grasses, don't you think? She did great - - - just a nice little road trot as we drove along. She seemed to enjoy the drive almost as much as we did.

We drove out through the Ranch for about 10 miles just enjoying the beautiful countryside with horses and cattle grazing on the golden grasses and lots of wildlife on the river. A perfect setting for a drive!

We crossed an old bridge that spanned a pretty stretch of river. Randy got out and lead us across the bridge because it looked a little scary to Annie. The hollow sound of a bridge sometimes is a little frightening to a horse but she crossed it just fine without any problems. She's a fun horse to drive--always willing to try and not afraid of new things--just looks them over and goes on--just like she should.

These are some of the cabins that can be rented at the Park. I'm sure during the summer and weekends Harriman is a pretty busy place. But this late in the season, and on a weekday, things were pretty quite, which was just fine for us. The river that ran behind the cabins had a pair of swans and lots of duck and geese swimming on it.

The morning sun shining through the aspens made a perfect backdrop for a carriage drive. We couldn't have asked for a more perfect day. Doing something you love with someone you love in such a beautiful setting --how could it get any better than that?

I'm so fortunate to be able to enjoy such a beautiful day. I hope the good fall weather continues for a least another month so we can have more opportunities to be out and about. Fall is my favorite season because the colors are so spectacular and the temperatures are perfect. I'm trying to enjoy every moment because the season is so short--so I'm trying to soak it all in while I can. I'm making great memories so I can recall these days when the ground is covered with snow.