For the past two weekends, my husband and I have decided to spend some time getting out in nature and moving purposefully, for the benefit of both of us. As mother nature is gracing us with tremendously mild weather for the beginning of December, it is still lovely to be out walking on trails.
Two weekends ago, we walked along a lovely set of trails with just regular footwear and our winter coats and gloves. It was windy, but we were quite protected in the woods.
The water is not yet frozen and there is no snow covering the leafy floor.
Bracket fungus always makes me think of my sister. Yes, this is an odd statement. My sister was always far more crafty and artistic than I. When we were young, she had painted a rather large bracket fungus (taken off the tree) by coating each layer with a different colour. That fungus sat in our shared bedroom for years.
Who do you suppose lives here?
I love the sound of water running in little streams.
A couple of days later, it was time to make some comfort food. On the menu that night was leek and potato soup. Here are the ingredients ready to be cooked to a soft consistency and then blended with my hand blender. I loved my previous hand blender so much and used it until it died a noble death. My new one is great, too.
It made tons and I froze half of it. My husband and I had leftovers today for lunch.
Today's hike was even lovelier than the previous weekend. It was much more hilly and part of the route was called "Hardwood Highlands". The weather was wonderful. It is astounding to be snowless and seeing still-green lawns on December 3rd and I am very grateful. The walk helped us both physically and mentally. It is so nice to have this time together now that our kids are older and very independent. It's a great time to talk and solve life's problems.
This is how the trail started, on this beautiful path. We watched red squirrels chase each other through the trees. Red squirrels have very different temperaments than other types of squirrels. They are very cheeky and feisty.
This stump was covered in fungus (?) lichen (?).
Although most of the trail led us through a hardwood forest, there was an area at the end where beautiful, old cedar trees grew and the ground was spongy with their needles.
I love the texture of old cedar bark.
Yours truly in my very old, but well loved L. L. Bean coat and my fetching new hat ala Giant Tiger (a Canadian store). (sounds Canadian doesn't it??)
The trails we walked were part of a conservation area that also has beautiful ponds and rivers with ducks and geese and swans. There are also enclosures featuring interesting birds like various types of pheasants.
I thought this one looked like Phyllis Diller.