Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Fall daze


I know spring gets tremendous respect for all its new growth, so many plants emerging from slumber, and the world opening up in so many gorgeous ways. But, I think there is as much, if not more, to discover outside in the fall. It is truly a time of harvest and possibility - reaping nature's rewards. It helps to have my young granddaughters (Frog, 3 years old, and Bird, 1 year old) making keen observations about the world around them, noticing everything 

from the breeze 
to drooping flowers 
to birds eating on the lawn
to the moon outside in the daytime.
These two are truly budding scientists, who love to be outdoors as much as possible. 

I enjoy bringing home nature's treasures on my walks, and sharing them with Frog and Bird. On a recent walk, a girlfriend and I found tons of buckeyes - which I promptly put in a basket for the granddaughters to discover on their next day at our house.

Yes, we have had some fabulous fall days, and lots to do and see. Today was blustery and clear, much cooler than it has been. We loved it! We were out and about, walking the yard and the neighborhood. Everything must be touched - or looked at closely. My neighbor's lamb's ear is a popular pitstop, and is still flourishing soft in October. Frog declared this a "much touch" a couple years back, and now her little sister wants in on the fun.

For the past two days, I've been watching this praying mantis in my lavender. I first noticed it on Sunday, as it devoured a bee. Oh, nature!

When Frog arrived this morning, we went looking in the lavender to see if this 'friend' was still visiting. Instead - we discovered its gift of an egg sac, that's pretty cool! Imagine, as I read on Gardening Know How, "The adult female lays eggs before she dies with the first frosts." Should this egg sac survive the winter, there will be hundreds of new mantises right at my front doorstep this spring - woohoo!

Frog will learn something about hope and time, as we watch this egg sac over the winter. 

We are already watching a chrysalis, in another plant. Yes, a few weeks back, we discovered a black swallowtail caterpillar on my parsley...soon thereafter, the caterpillar formed a chrysalis. What was news to me, this caterpillar "winters" in a chrysalis ... if all goes well this winter, we'll have a beautiful butterfly in the spring.

So much to learn in the outdoors!

I'll close with a pumpkin photo...I heard on the radio that today is National Pumpkin Day, so it was only appropriate to take this photo of granddaughter Frog enjoying ours!


  1. I love fall and have come to realize it’s also my favorite time to travel. Your photos are wonderful, and that pumpkin photo in glowing orange is 🔥. Orange is so alive and appealing to me. I’m not good at seeing the little critters crawling around, so I concentrate on plants and, of course, falling leaves. Our days are crisp, too, and I’m here for it.

  2. Maureen, what a blessing to have the gift of granddaughters who are mesmerized by nature! My fennel plants were loaded with black swallowtails this summer - what a lovely reminder of the Hope in the praying mantis eggs! Children are captivated by fun things to observe!

  3. I just absolutely love all the nuggets of nature and sweet time together touching and exploring. Such a bounty!

  4. I love all the feels of fall and all the natural wonders! I have watched praying mantis cocoons erupt with hundreds of little ones. They were about 1/3" - so tiny! It's a wonder they survive and grow so big!

  5. Love this! My granddaughters are about the same age as yours and my favorite times with them are when we’re exploring a new place wherever we happen to be. I will start taking them on nature walks. Yes! So much to see.