They say mighty oaks from little acorns grow, but in this case it's a mighty Sugar Maple in our front yard. This beauty is stunning every fall, and it's finally big enough to be called a tree! It has a lovely, sweet history. My mother was born and raised in Indiana until she was a senior in high school. For many, many years she felt she was a "Hoosier," and that fact always made me a little nervous. I remember wanting my mother to be a Missourian like me and my dad. Finally, she is totally Missouri, but that process takes time.
This little tree was a gift from her dear Uncle Alta in Centerpoint, Indiana. We had visited him and his wife one year right about time to transplant trees, so Uncle Alta took that opportunity to dig up the scrawniest little sapling and tuck it into a coffee can of dirt. I recall Mom and Dad ceremoniously planting that little thing, watering it, putting a fence ring around it... Generally, the tree took forever to grow. Other maples in our yard and locusts were saplings from our woods, and they, acclimated to this territory, grew much faster than Mom's little sugar maple. However, at last she has claimed her rightful place in the yard, a bit too close to the house perhaps, but lovely and quite sturdy... The old locusts, all scraggly and needing a trim (even with the ground some would say), are losing limbs and have totally lost their leaves already.
This is a beautiful fall, although I believe it seems a bit short. The leaves turned vivid, then plummeted to the earth in short order. It already looks like early November in most directions--- that dull, brown, starkness against October blue skies. Spectacular in my mind. Our yard is filled with leaves that we rarely have ever raked. It seems too much with the amount of trees and no place to put them. They serve as a mulch and a protector for small critters (don't say bugs) through the chilly weather, mulch up in the first spring lawn mowings, and don't seem to require raking.
Here my little crows or vultures are having a fine Fall day in the midst of acorns and fall leaves.
They were a gift from a dear friend and are actually a little fountain. I think they remind me of that long ago cartoon of the fifties, Heckle and Jeckle.
My fairy awaits the first frost on the front porch. Sometimes she is out farther in the yard, but lately she has stayed close to the house in anticipation of winter, I think.
Another shot of the Sugar Maple when the sun isn't igniting its leaves in golden rushes of glory. Wouldn't I love to have been a little girl like my Gramma Minnie, trolling along with her older brothers and father as they gathered the sap from their trees in the spring, boiled it down, and made delicious Indiana Maple Syrup. I remember the scary story of the boiling sap spilling and covering her brother in major burns. The elder's remedy for such a burn was to take the leaves from three specific trees and cross them, lie them over the burn and cover loosely. The story goes that these leaves pulled the "fire" from the burns and dried up the wound. Evidently it worked in that case because my uncle was quite well and able to return to the "Sugaring Off" the next year.
Oops! I guess the frost got my pretty fall mum. I sent my son out to take pictures, and he didn't think to remove it... This year was a short season for my mums. I don't plant them, so it's hard to know when to buy.
I have not posted in a while, but there is really no good reason, other than the cozying in required to prepare for the shorter days and longer nights. Wish all my blog sisters could pop in this afternoon. The coffee is on, the cider is ready to mull, spice cupcakes await in my cozy fall motif... I'm ready for a visit!
I love these little seasonal cupcake liners, and I'm loving my ceramic Temptations cupcake bakers. Something about the ceramics makes them remove from the pan and also from the liner. Magic, I guess. My latest short cut (and I'm all about the short cuts at times) is to douse the top of the cupcakes with sprinkles in fall colors before baking. I put a good amount of sprinkle on there. Then after it bakes, they melt a bit and soak into the top layer of the cupcake. It's a hint of sweet but not that gooey icing thing that seems to overtake the cupcake entirely. These might be a cousin to a muffin this way, but it's a hit with Mom, so it's a hit with me.
It will be Saturday night before I know it, and the trick or treaters will have come and gone. We have a store of candy to create our treat sacks. Mom insists on ten little candy bars of different kinds in each sack because that's the way she and Daddy did it. Works for me, as long as there's some Reese's left over! HAHA..
Little Esmeralda from Marie Osmund was Mom's 90th birthday doll from me. She was ready to come out for the season, but usually she's in my Mom's room.
Have a lovely Halloweek. I will try to pop in with something new during the next few days. Enjoy every day.