Color Watch

Nothing Gold Can Stay

The leaves are falling fast now.  It's only a matter of days before the trees are bare and the landscape is bleak.  Enjoy some poetry . . . for a late fall day.

Nature's first green is gold


Her hardest hue to hold


Her early leaf's a flower


But only so an hour


Then leaf subsides to leaf.


So Eden sank to grief.


So dawn goes down to day.


Nothing gold can stay.

-- Robert Frost

Sky on Fire

The other day, as the sun rose, I glanced out my kitchen window . . . and it looked like the sky was on fire.


But it was just my neighbor's tree, shining in the sunrise and glowing over my backyard!


And from my front porch, I could see this view:


Glowing trees.


Sky on fire!**



** The colors here in lower, Western Michigan are at their peak right now.  But yesterday, the wind and the rains came and stayed.  And that's NOT a winning combination.

Virtual Visit

Because I just can't be finished with my glorious weekend, I invite you to come with me. . .


Join me . . .for a virtual walk in the woods. . . on a most pleasant afternoon in autumn. . . in Michigan.










And what happens at the end of the trail?  Well, you'll have to enjoy this virtually, too, I'm afraid!


Bottoms up!


First Time Ever

I was trying to calculate, the other day, just how long we've had our cottage up north.


We bought the lot when Erin was just beginning kindergarten.


And a year later, we started building the place.


We were actually able to spend the night inside (although it wasn't yet "finished") the summer after Erin finished second grade.


So, that would be. . . about 15 seasons now. . . that we've had the cottage.


And, in all that time, I've never once spent a lovely fall weekend up there!


Oh, I've spent some crappy fall weekends up there!  Weekends full of rain.  Weekends with already-bare trees.


But, mostly, I was driving a kid to hockey games all over the state on weekends in the fall.  (And winter.  And spring.  For that matter.)


So, imagine my delight, when we hit this weekend up at the cottage.


Perfect weather.  Perfect color.


For the first time ever!

Now With Awesome Color!

I take Jenny for a walk every afternoon. Rain or shine.  All seasons.  Two miles.  It is definitely the highlight of her day, and it's a great way for me to unwind and switch gears and check out what's happening in my neighborhood.


The fall colors in my neck of the woods are really quite amazing this year!  I think it's because we had a quick, cold spell. . . followed by a quick, hot spell. . . and no rain or storms.  So the leaves got a fast start at their color change, and they're hanging on.  Things are really brilliant.  So I thought I'd take you along. . . on my walk yesterday afternoon with Jenny.  Here we go!


Looking down. . . leaves are beginning to collect in the gutters.


Looking up. . . that's where the show really begins!


The colors are just exploding this year!







My favorite trees, though, are the ones where the leaves show the color changes in a more subtle way; the leaves where you can see the gradations of color.  Like this. . .


Or this. . .


Or this. . .


I'm not sure if Jenny appreciates the changing beauty of the fall around her. . . but she loves our fall walks anyway.  Besides. . . her good friends, The Squirrels, are everywhere! 


Yep, there's something for everyone on a walk in the fall!

Turn Out the Lights. . .

. . . The party's over. . .  End of the line. . .  Dead end. . .  Move along. . .  Nothing to see here. . . The fat lady is singing. . . Finito. . .  No mas. . .  That's a wrap. . .  Stick a fork in it. . .  We'll always have Paris. . .  It was fun while it lasted. . .

I'm afraid Color Watch 2009 has come to its natural end.  Here's the view from my front porch.

Color watch final 001 

And the view from my driveway.

Color watch final 003 

And the view out the slider near my computer.

Color watch final 004 

With a few exceptions -- those trees that hang on to their leaves a little longer than the rest -- we've reached the Bleak part of the year.  Bare trees.  Lots of grey-ish, brown-ish, tan-ish colors in the landscape.  There is a certain beauty in bare tree branches, but they're just bare for so dang long!

And so, I conclude Color Watch 2009. 

Happy Halloween to all of you!


Don't eat too much candy!

Watching the Colors Peak. . . and a Peek at Something Else

The colors in my neighborhood are pretty much at their peak right now.  The trees are just popping with color -- but the leaves are starting to pile up in lawns and on sidewalks and in the streets, so I know it won't last much longer.  Here's the view from my front porch. . .

Color watch 102309 003 

When the sun shines, those trees light up in a bright, golden kind of way. The sun hasn't been shining much lately, though. 

Here's the view from my driveway. . .

Color watch 102309 006 

And the view out my back slider. . .

Color watch 102309 002 

Yep.  This view is definitely past its peak.  By next week, it'll be bare branches!

And here's the peek at something else. . .

Peaceful 039 

A finished sweater!  You can check it out on Ravelry here. . . and I'll be back on Monday to tell you more about it!

Big Color News

Oh - we've got some color to talk about now!

Here, in week 4 of the Stepping Away From the Edge Color Watch, we have the view from my front porch. . .

Color watch 4 002 

The view from my driveway. . .

Color watch 4 004 

And the view from the slider in my basement. . .

Color watch 4 006 

The changes are happening pretty quickly now. 

And, continuing with the color news. . . I got some color in my mailbox yesterday.  So I brewed up a cup of tea (immunity-building AND delicious!). . .

Tea and books 003 

. . . and sat back for a little eye-candy break!

Tea and books 007

I ordered Color by Kristin directly from Kristin on her website (you get it signed that way!).  What a terrific new book!  Not only is it filled with happy, bright Kristin Nicholas designs -- but it also features some pretty fabulous reference pages -- on color selection, fair isle technique, steeking, designing, embellishing and more.  PLUS it includes page after page of graphed designs you can incorporate into your own knits.  Very cool!  The layout is very. . . Kristin Nicholas. . . homey, charming, accessible -- with little tidbits about her life on the farm in Western Massachusetts.  I love it!

Have a colorful weekend!

PS -- Tomorrow is the Light the Night walk.  I thank so many of you for supporting me as I walk (with my family) to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  If you're interested in making a donation, it's not too late!  You can click on the Light the Night logo at the top of this page.  :-)

Color Watch - Week 3: Now with Bonus Footage!

Okay.  This seemed like such a great idea when I first began:  photo-documenting the weekly change in the leaves, as seen from my house.  Problem is. . . I started too early in the season.  Although leaves are changing color everywhere, the changes from my chosen views are just not that drastic.  Yet.

See?  Here's the view from my front porch.  Still mostly green.

Color Watch Week 3 007

And here's the view from my driveway.  Still mostly green.

Color Watch 0924 003

And here's the view from my basement sliding door.  Definitely the best of the views, but still not exploding with color. . . as I had hoped.

Color Watch Week 3 012 

Still, the colors around me are beautiful!  If I shift my view on the porch just slightly to the left, I can see this.

Color Watch Week 3 014 

And my neighbor's tree is practically glowing right now!

Color Watch Week 3 001 

And my own garden is showing some color.  Here is one of my dwarf fothergillas -- turning red on the leaf margins.

Color Watch Week 3 002 

The changes are coming.  Just . . . not quite yet.

So, as "bonus footage" to my rather lackluster color watch, I offer these fall shots from the Lake Michigan shore in Holland, Michigan.  Brian and I visited the Hope College campus yesterday (this one is looking promising -- it was his second visit!), and then stopped by the lake before driving home.  It was cold and windy and rainy, but always beautiful.

Holland beach 100809 004 

They must be getting ready to paint the lighthouse (named "Big Red"). . . because it's not usually scraped up that way.

Holland beach 100809 011

I love the lake and the beach - in all seasons and all types of weather.

Holland beach 100809 010 

The waves were up yesterday.  In fact, there were surfers!

Holland beach 100809 002

It was a nice little stop for a mom and her son. . . and their cameras!

Holland beach 100809 006

Have a great weekend!

On Color Watch, Week 2

Well.  It turned cold and breezy this week.  Fall has definitely arrived!  But the leaves haven't changed all that much yet.

The view from my front porch. . .

Color watch wk 2 100109 004 

The view from my driveway. . .

Color watch wk 2 100109 007 

The view from the slider door near my computer. . .

Copy of color watch wk 2 100109 003 

So.  Stay tuned.  The show hasn't really started yet!

And, remember, it's not too late to donate to my Light the Night walk for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society!  If you're interested in taking part, you can just click on the link on the upper left side of this page.

Enjoy the weekend.