Tag Archives: outdoors

vacation in northern minnesota

We are amongst the many people that are lucky enough to have a family cabin in the woods in northern Minnesota.  We just had a nice vacation there and here is a brief synopsis of our time at 11th Crow Wing Lake.

We arrived around noon on a sunny summer day.  The lake was beautiful and as peaceful as ever.  Here’s our view from the deck:

This ginormous dragonfly was on the door.  Isn’t it beautiful?

And Lady of the Cakes will be so happy to see food in this post ;) We decided to cook our dinner in the camp fire the first night.  Here’s one of the fire builders at work:

Pretty soon we have a fire hot enough to cook corn.  First, we soaked it in water for about an hour.  Then wrapped it in foil and put them in the fire.  They took about 10-15 minutes.  We got our corn unwrapped, peeled, buttered and salted and then roasted our hot dogs.

And just look at how talented I am.  I can roast a weenie and take a picture at the same time!!

Ready, set, eat!!

Ready for more food?  I clipped a recipe in this week’s food section in the newspaper for a different kind of rhubarb crisp.  This was made with ginger snaps and “candied” ginger.  All the store in Walker had was crystallized ginger.  It was just a tad too gingery for me so I’m not going to make it again.  But it sure looks yummy doesn’t it? (if I do say so meself):

We always have beautiful sunsets over the lake.  Here’s a couple from our first night’s sunset:

Here’s one of my favorite photos this trip, the paddlers returning in the canoe:

Two more sunset photos from our last night there:

We are so fortunate to be able to enjoy this lovely spot.

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summer gardening fun

Well, that weatherman who said that summer was over was just plain wrong.  It’s back!! Not quite by popular demand.  We’re having another heat wave, back into the 90s for the next several days.  Thank goodness there is A/C!  Meanwhile,  I’ve taken a lot of photos of things growing in the last few weeks that I wanted to share.  I hope you enjoy.

To start, a short story of the squash/melon/pumpkins growing on our fence.  Hubby heard that we had melons on our fence.  But I thought our neighbor had planted squash.  It looked like squash, bloomed like squash.  So we thought we’d take the largest one off the vine and cook it, thinking it was summer squash and the person who told hubby these were melons was mistaken.  After it was cut we thought it sure looked like a pumpkin just not matured.  It’s the dark green gourd as well as the one cut open that you see in the gallery below.  We cooked it, tasted it and declared it an early, bland tasting pumpkin.  A few days later I asked my neighbor what he planted and he said it was different kinds of pumpkins.  He mentioned that his mother put the vines on the fence.  We were both thinking that was probably not the best idea. Here’s a gallery with some of the pumpkins growing on our fence.

Next, some other things growing in the garden.  These tomatoes are yummy:

My neighbor’s arugula, two views:

Some other things blooming right now:

a little bee action

Let me squeeze in another rudbeckia, black eyed Susans:

Balloon flowers.  The first is a singular blossom with a bud of Joe Pye Weed behind it.  I especially like the second one that shows one in bloom, one that has bloomed and another blossom on the way:

Next another little gallery of photos from the cabin this past week:

And just a few other photos.  A red day lily and morning glory in my yard and petunias in downtown St. Paul:

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Winter beautiful

Some people around here really bemoan winter.  And I have to admit that I sometimes do as well.  When I first moved to the frozen tundra of Minnesota I was all agog at the beauty and serenity that winter can produce.  But now that I’ve been here over 20 years I am finally starting to feel what many Minnesotans express each winter, having to deal with moving the snow, driving in the snow and the challenges that come with all of that.  But every so often a snowfall comes along that produces such loveliness like the one yesterday.

It was a bit foggy this morning and all the trees were covered in the snow that fell yesterday.  I was out running errands and decided to stop along the way and snap some photos to share here as it was so beautiful.  I stopped at the church where we vote and a woman was driving into the lot as I was snapping a photo.  When she saw what I was doing, she smiled broadly. Aha!  Another person who appreciates the beauty of fresh, white snow.  Then I went to the park and snapped a few more there.  I hope you enjoy these few photos of the beauty that winter can be if you just stop to notice.

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summer lilies a-mundo

I have a yard full of all kinds of lilies.  Here are but some that have bloomed or are blooming now.  I think I like the red one the best. Which one’s your favorite?

Red lilies, summer in Minnesota

Red lilies, summer in Minnesota

Yellow day lily

Yellow day lily

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Sunset – 11th Crow Wing Lake, Akeley, Minnesota

A near perfect weekend at the cabin in the woods in northern Minnesota.  It was made less perfect by yet another horrible drive out of town Friday afternoon.  I wrote about our first trip of the year to our cabin recently and we had hoped to avoid the traffic jam of last trip by taking a different route. Ah but the best laid plans of mice and men….a theme that comes up over and over in my life.  What normally takes just over three hours took nearly 4 1/2 hours to start off our nearly perfect weekend. So, that really was the worst of it unless you count the rain we woke up to Saturday morning. I kept saying it would clear up and it would be a nice day. Thankfully, I was correct!

We arrived exhausted from our long car ride but we decided the pain was worth it once we settled in, had some supper and then sat by the campfire watching the most gorgeous sunset.  We were rewarded in other ways as well during the weekend.  We got to see and hear much wildlife such as bats and fireflies Friday night.  While at our campfire Saturday night we saw two great blue herons duking it out over territory, or we presumed as much.  I spotted an eagle flying along the shore and then moments later, that same eagle flew right overhead with something in its claws and two smaller birds close on its heels squawking something fierce. We assumed that the eagle probably grabbed one of those birds’ family members :(  On our way to breakfast we witnessed a mother turkey with three (or four?) baby turkeys just walking along the road!  On our return trip the turkeys had left.  One last wildlife sighting happened just outside of town on our way home, a deer and two youngsters leaping across the road! I had to brake in case there were more.  I wish I could have gotten their pictures.  Instead here are some pics of the fabulous sunset we enjoyed Friday night.

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Reflections

We were up at the cabin this weekend and I got some cool shots of trees’ reflections in the lake.

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Here’s an actual tree:

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Here are two different reflections, one with part of the bottom of the tree in the pic and one without any of the tree (just its reflection) in the pic:

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Neighborhood egret

UPDATE: I originally posted this a year ago June.  It’s now July 2013. It was one of the posts that contained broken links so I’ve revived this post with photos of our egret of last year.  I thought of it because we have not seen its return this year. I’m glad I got the photos I did.

Such a beautiful bird and there’s one in our pond across the street.  It’s there frequently when hubby and I take our lunchtime walk around the pond.  I almost always bring my camera.  I hope to get a great close-up but for now, here are some pics of our neighborhood egret.

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