summer on a stick

I posted an image this summer of queen anne’s lace in all its expansive summer glory.  then i laid the stems on a table in my basement and forgot all about them until this week, when, rummaging for holiday decorations, i discovered a little bit of july preserved on stalks that were still green. green enough, anyway, to remind me that tonight’s -10° F temperatures are only temporary.

dried queen anne’s lace (wild carrot)

saint paul, minnesota

  • Joanne says:

    stunningly beautiful.

  • Melissa says:

    I was thinking Joanne’s exact words!! 8*)


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10 years old

there’s nothing like colorful stones when you’re a ten year old boy. there is a story behind each one of these, and i know because i’ve heard them all several times. some are longer than others. some are more likely to be true than others. if one ever wanted to understand the origins of the tall-tale tradition in american storytelling, one would need only listen to a 10 year old boy with a story to tell, who knows he has the floor.

collection of rocks and semi-precious stones

from beaches and museum gift shops across north america and europe

  • Tammi says:

    I was just showing your images to my 10 year old boy and he agreed with your sentiments above. 10 year old boys do like colorful stones. The purple and blue are his favorites.
    Thanks for the beauty you share here on this site.

    • What a delightful comment, Tammi, thank you for sharing!


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tapped out

planted a year ago in a terrarium that has since mostly been neglected, this agave (i think that’s what it is) appears to have spent the year offering a green, placid face to the world, while secretly rooting around with an exploratory finger, trying to find a way to escape.

agave (?)

from a terrarium in my living room, via a greenhouse in saint paul on a winter day when my kids were so bored we needed to find something for them to do, including, if necessary, planting a succulent garden in a terrarium.

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minnesota holly

we don’t grow holly here in lake wobegon, but if we did, it would look something like this. pretty but not too pretty. no aggressively thorny leaves. no showy red berries. above average, pretty much. ya know?

oak leaves and buckthorn berries from beside my son’s school

saint paul, minnesota

  • Kerry says:

    Just as pretty! In fact I like these colours more than holly of red and green!

  • Kate says:

    I think you made a wise choice. Holly, though pretty as it is from afar, is far too prickly for my taste.


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we find ourselves hoping that the former occupants of this nest fled successfully, like good minnesotans, to the gulf of mexico for the winter. we would not like to think that they fled, unsuccessfully, from the barred owl that left behind such an ominous looking feather in the branches above their nest.

on the other hand, we may never see those nestlings again, even if they are still alive and currently making a racket in a mangrove somewhere near fort myers. we will, however, have the comfort of the barred owl’s call in our woods all winter long. so who knows? maybe we won’t take sides in this particular dispute.

snow-filled bird’s nest (robin?)

beside my driveway, saint paul, mn

  • carol bristow says:

    Your images are a start to my day, everyday. Todays photo… your discovery of a cluster of bare, snow covered branches bracing an empty nest, a feather caught in this winter web…a moment captured. An unpredicted glance revealing a past history of time, place and occurrence. A wonderful mystery detected and shared through your lens and insight.
    I live in Burlington, Ontario on the shoreline of Lake Ontario, literally thirty feet to the crest of our break wall. The weather is very apparent and changing moment to moment on the water, the wildlife on and off the water abundant. We look towards Niagara Falls and on clear days can see the plumes of spray clouding a point on the horizon. When I am not working on my drawings (a full time artist who doesn’t utilise a web page, yet!) we are very involved with the Bruce Trail and as a family hike the Bruce, the Royal Botanical Gardens and the conservation areas regularly.
    Wishing you and your family peace and joy at Christmas and throughout the new year.


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