Wednesday, November 11, 2009

VETERANS DAY


On this day set aside to honor our veterans, I'd like to express my heartfelt gratitude for the sacrifices they have made for us all. This includes both my grandfathers who served in the Army in WWI; my father who served in the Air Force in WWII; and my brother and sister who served in the Army in Vietnam. Thank you and God bless.

We have an adopt a soldier campaign going on here. Everyone is urged to donate items to send overseas to our military. Soldiers back from deployment say the smallest things like junk food and powered drink mixes are morale boosters and help them remember the folks back home are thinking of them. If you can, donate in your area and put a smile on the face of a service man far from home.


AUTUMN IN NORTHERN ILLINOIS



In a few brief days we go from the scene above to the one below.


The trees are bare, the leaves are on the ground. This Friday it was my mission to move them off the grass. I know it sounds foolish to rake leaves in a 30-mph wind, but I can't always pick my times. In the end there were leaves in my hair, leaves in my shoes and down the back of my neck, but the majority were on the gardens. It may not have been an efficient job of leaf removal but it felt good to be outside using my muscles and breathing the fresh air.

In fact I have a limitless need for leaves and often pick up bags set at the curb for the trash haulers. These bags go into one of the barns to save for mulch on next spring's gardens. It's hard to believe anyone would go to the trouble to neatly bag this lovely stuff and set it out to be hauled away.



This is my window tree.



Robert Frost wrote...

Tree at my window, window tree,
My sash is lowered when night comes on;
But let there never be curtain drawn
Between you and me.
Vague dream-head lifted out of the ground,
And thing next most diffuse to cloud,
Not all your light tongues talking aloud
Could be profound.
But tree, I have seen you taken and tossed,
And if you have seen me when I slept,
You have seen me when I was taken and swept
And all but lost.
That day she put our heads together,
Fate had her imagination about her,
Your head so much concerned with outer,
Mine with inner, weather.

Later I took a drive up to Janesville, Wisconsin to visit a scrapbooking store. Some scenes along the way...

My resident hawk surveys his domain from high atop a telephone post. Magnificent creature, but not welcome at my bird feeders.





The seed pods below are Euonymus atropurpurea growing in the hedgerows along my lane. A rather nondescript little tree until it produces these pretty pink pods.




Interesting non-native residents like this shaggy llama can be seen along the back roads around my farm. Actually, llamas originated here in North America about 40 million years ago and remained until fairly recently. Before the last ice age occured , many had migrated to South America. After the glaciers receded, none were left in North America.


These tiny black deer, which I can't identify, are diffinitley not natives. They are smaller than our white tails, even smaller than a goat. This photo was taken from a very long distance. Wish I could have gotten closer. If anybody knows anything about these deer, please tell me.



I hope you are enjoying beautiful autumn weather where ever you are. We are having a spell of indian summer here. No way of knowing how long it will last so making the most of these warm, sunny days.

41 comments:

Balisha said...

Hi Marnie..
What do I comment on first...Your tribute to family members who served or your beautiful pictures.
Here's hoping that many remember our military at Christmas this year.They are so deserving.

Your photos are beautiful...I always learn something in your posts.You have an "eye" for the natural world....You can find beauty in every season.
Balisha

Darla said...

This is a beautiful post from beginning to end!! Please email me your address so I can send you some ornamental pepper seeds... rusdar at hotmail dot com please put seeds in the subject line

Jann said...

Such a nice post Marnie. You have many Veterans to be proud of. I didn't know that about llamas...I see a few here too. I'm wondering if those 'deer' are elk? They do have the shape of elk.

tina said...

Such beauty along your drive Marnie. A most fitting tribute to veterans everywhere.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

You must live near my Grands. They live in Fort Atkinson, WI. I have been through Janesville several times on my way to see them. Sometimes I stay in a hotel there in Janesville.

Your country shots are so pretty. I have no idea what kind of deer those are. Are they running wild or are they in an enclosure? There are some exotic animals (deer/elk types) here in an enclosure. They look so forlorn.

JC said...

Lovely photos ...
I love a road with gorgeous colored trees and leaves ...
My weather is moist ...
I'm glad someone still has the yellow stuff ...

oldcrow61 said...

What gorgeous autumn colours you have around you. Beautiful photos.

Cheryl said...

Hi Marnie....your tribute to veterans near and far is beautiful. I have thought of many today including my own dear Grandfather who fought in the battle of the Somme, in WWI. He received many medals for his bravery. He never spoke a word of what had happened. God bless him. Yesterday five more of our young men were brought home in the wooden overcoats. There familys stood proud as they received them and I am humbled.....
Like you I think of them all.....

The poetry moved me greatly....I have not read this before, it is just so beautiful......

I had images of you with leaves in your hair and down your neck....it made me smile. I keep my leaves for mulch and like you collect any that others have bagged. Leaf mould is the best soil conditioner there is......

Carol said...

Marnie I too love the image you paint of yourself wearing a leafy cloak! At least the leaves are bagged in paper! I have never seen that ... I let the wind blow my leaves into the garden... Love all your animal shots... beautiful! Interesting too about the llamas... I did not know that. Lovely post! Carol

Gail said...

We are fortunate today Marnie~~It's 60 degrees, sunny and breezy! Fall is windy here so we are always raking against the wind. Aren't people funny about leaves; thank goodness, it's not big plastic bags!

We are fortunate, too, that young men and women continue to make sacrifices for all of us.

gail

BeadedTail said...

Beautiful post Marnie! Lovely tribute to our veterans and gorgeous photos. The bottom photo looks like baby elk in a way but I don't know if that's what they are. Our rains have started here in Oregon so it's dreary and cool here. Enjoy your indian summer!

sweet bay said...

Those autumn color pictures are splendid Marnie. It must be wonderful to look out on your window tree.

Dawn said...

It's been beautiful here in Maine also, a saunna almost.
I love the shot of your window tree, aren't they nice to have looking in on you? Thought provoking poem for sure.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Beautiful post today! We ALL do need to remember our Veterans today--and everyday. The do and have done so much to give us the freedom we enjoy.

We have a compost --which is where our leaves go (to make some wonderful dirt to use next spring).

Love your Autumn pictures ---and the pictures your took to the scrapbooking store. Interesting looking deer and llama.

Hugs,
Betsy

Hugs,
Betsy

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Don't you love the smell of fallen leaves? I don't mind having a few in my hair.
I'm thinking that those deer might be elk. The only elk I've seen around here are the ones in Busse Woods Forest Preserve in Elk Grove Village, but they look a lot like that. Great shot of the hawk, BTW.

Susie said...

This is such a nice post Marnie. Love the photos from the drive you took.

Unseen Rajasthan said...

I am speach less !! This is so beautiful !!

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Love the photos. And as I never have enough leaves in my own yard, I'm glad people go to the effort of bagging leaves and setting them at the curb,.... because I come along and swipe them! ;-)

Rose said...

A beautiful post, Marnie! I enjoyed seeing all the sights along your way to Janesville. One of the many things I enjoy about blogging is finding new poetry. Frost is one of my favorites, but this one is new to me--I love it!

Thank you to veterans like all your family members for the sacrifices they've made to maintain our freedom.

Racquel said...

What a lovely tribute to all the men & women who have served this country past & present. Fabulous photos of fall color in your area. Good idea on collecting those neatly bagged leaves from the curb. We don't bag ours here. We rake them out in piles and a truck (not me though) vacuums them up. They are taken to be composted at our city recycling center which makes wonderful compost & mulch. :)

Gayle @ Mountain Moma said...

Loved the pic of the tree lined road. Autumn is indeed slowly giving way to a new season.

Rosey Pollen said...

H Marnie,
first of all, thanks for the lovely tribute. It is no small thing, what these soldiers do!
I also wanted to say thanks for sharing the Frost poem, very touching.
And I love the bird of prey photo.
I snatch leaves as well. My kids always say, "Mom, do you really need another bag of leaves?" YES. I do.
Rosey

TC said...

I appreciate your Veteran's Day comments Ms. Marnie. I served in the US Navy from 1973 to 1979. I was on a nuclear submarine, sonar technician. Interesting to hear all the aquatic sounds, both animate and inanimate.

I think this is our second spell of Indian summer weather. And I "steal" curbside leaves too. ;~)

Nan and =^..^= said...

What a beautiful post in every aspect!
Oh, today I was raking leaves for compost...we take our neighbors leaves for the garden, too!

Cordwood Cabin said...

Beautiful fall foliage! The tips on the soldiers' gifts are a great reminder ... we've recently looked into a all-season care package program for soldiers for this holiday -- there are so many programs to choose from, but it's worth the time to remind the troops that we support them.

marmee said...

marnie, your first photo is so gorgeous...and the last one too...i love that you have that beauty outside your window.
abbey and i scrapbook too...usually when the weather is bad outside. we love it.
happy autumn.

garden girl said...

Beautiful photos Marnie!

Before I met my husband he used to bag all that leafy goodness! It took a couple of years to convince him, but now he's a big advocate of using the leaves here. We have such an abundance that I don't need to 'import' them. We're both happy - the leaves make such lovely mulch for the gardens, and I loose fewer plants over the winter now. We save about $300 on bags and stickers every fall, and it's so much easier to leave the leaves where they fall on the garden. The ones in the lawn are mostly mulched where they fall. Even the ones that are picked up in the mower bag are deposited on the gardens and in the swale in the back. In the swale they add organic matter, increasing the soil's absorbency, and until they decompose, they help keep our dog's feet clean and dry so he doesn't track mud into the house. His doggy latrine is behind the swale, and it's a pain when the swale is wet and I have to wash his feet every time he goes out. My husband is now quite a fan of using the leaves as mulch. Over the fall season he used to put out a minimum of 60 bags of leaves!

I was very curious about the deer, and did some google searches. It seems there are a few species of small deer in Illinois and Wisconsin, and one or two are native. I wonder if these might be Sika, Fallow, or Mule deer. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources might be able to identify them.

missbreezysbox said...

The lovely photos make me miss Oregon. It's a desert where I'm at and not much blooming. I do miss my fruit trees and 8 bags of leaves. I didn't care for them like the previous owner. Thank you for your words on our Veterans and soldiers. They are ridiculed everyday for giving us our freedom. My father, who passed this spring was in WWII, Navy and my great, great Grandfather was a 4 star general. My father In-law was Navy, WWII as well. Have a wonderful weekend.

joey said...

A fine tribute and autumn post, Marnie ... I'm sighing looking at your photos ... this has been the loveliest November ever!

ShySongbird said...

A lovely tribute to the veterans Marnie. My late Mother's uncle died in the 1st world war when he was just eighteen, such a waste...My dear late Father was called up and served in the Royal Air Force for six years, he and my Mother had only been married for a few months and many times she heard nothing of him for months on end. He saw terrible things but rarely spoke of them...

This is a beautiful post, such a lovely photo of the Hawk. I had to look up the Euonymus as it looks so much like our native Spindleberry tree which grows in hedgerows and yes, they are related!

The weather here is appalling, driving rain and high winds with some areas having floods. The days are so short and dark.

walk2write said...

Thanks for the tribute to veterans, Marnie. We have several in our family, and we can't appreciate them enough for all they do. Love the poem. I've got a window tree too.

Msrobin said...

You are so lucky to have all those leaves. Here in the new neighborhood with baby trees, they are hard to come by. I've grown that passion vine for the flowers, they are wonderful. It's also a host plant for fritallary butterflies. But it's trying to take over!

Patsi's 'Garden Endeavors' said...

Nice tribute.
I agree using your muscles and breathing the fresh air is a good thing.
We use bags also and it's all recyclable !
Love the road with all the beautiful trees changing color.

ShySongbird said...

Hi again Marnie I just wanted to make it clear that my Dad served in the 2nd world war! I am not as old as I might have implied!! :)

:: flyingstars :: said...

simply beautifully captured shot...lovely colours of the season!

sinnlighet said...

Your blog = love love love & love!!

Footprints from the very very south part of Sweden, through....

Agneta

Kathleen said...

Nice Veteran's Day tribute Marnie. I'll have to look around and see if there's an adopt-a-soldier campaign locally. There is a long tradition of service in our family too so I'd love to support our service people.

Sorry all your leaves are on the ground. I hate when that happens. Those tree limbs seem to be bare for way too long afterwards.
I never like to see the hawks at my feeders either. I just had my first one in the yard last week.
So what did you get at the scrapbooking store?? That interests me since I do a lot of papercrafting! I hope it was a good trip? How is the jewelry class going too? Are you still enjoying it? I keep thinking we'll see more of your creations??

Kathleen said...

PS I forgot to say how pretty (and dainty looking) those pink seedpods are. I'd love to have them hanging around my yard somewhere. Have a good week.

CONEFLOWER said...

38 comments! WOW! Well, it's no wonder. Your posts are always so interesting.

Those deer really have my curiosity up. Yes, they look like elk, but "smaller than a goat"? I agree, check with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. If they don't know, tell them they need to find out. Let us know what you discover.

Always love your photos.

√ Abraham Lincoln said...

The city comes around once a week and sucks up all the leaves the people rake out. We try to use our oak leaves and most of them are allowed to stay where the wind puts them. Some we mow up to fertilize the ground under trees and some are sucked up and the pieces dumped up in flower beds or around delicate shrubs or new plantings.

Randy said...

Marnie, there wasn't alot of color down here this year, pretty much everything just turned brown and dropped off the trees. LOL