nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Archive for the ‘our summer place’ Category

blue jay on a fall day

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Our cabin is a great place for relaxing. Sometimes we have work to do, but sometimes we just sit back, read, watch birds or talk.

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Often the birds come to us. I have had a hummingbird hover in the open door, just to check out what is inside that peculiar box on the hillside. We often see waxwings in our big pine trees or catch a glimpse of a goldfinch sashaying by.

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This past week, a blue jay came to call. It perched on our grape arbour for a while and then examined our ATV trailer thoroughly. I don’t think he had a clue he was being watched and photographed.

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dark choke-cherries, scarlet keys of ash

hang, counterweight to summer

blue jays strip the branches, berry by berry

v-beaks and hollow throats

                         (from my up-coming book “in the shelter of the covered bridge”)

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

Wildflowers: Blue-eyed grass

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One of my favorite wildflowers in the fields around our cabin is Blue-eyed grass – Sisyrinchium montanum Greene.

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June, 2017

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Blue-eyed grass is not a grass at all, but a member of the iris family. It inhabits moist, open ground, fields and meadows, and blooms in late spring and summer. The plant is low and slender, with a deep blue flower and a bright yellow center, borne at the top of a straight, usually unbranched, stem. The stem is two-edged, flattened on the margins. The flowers are borne in the axil of a sharp, upheld bract called a spathe. In French, the plant is called Bermudienne. Montanum means ‘of the mountains’.

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June, 2017

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Blue-eyed Grass

Sisyrinchium montanum Greene

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I walk in grass

but it isn’t grass-

Sisyrinchium

it winks at me

with azure eyes

and I blink brown at them

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Blue-eyed Grass

stands straight and still

staunch Bermudienne

simple maid

with a watchful eye

and a sword above her head

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June, 2016

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

 

Written by jane tims

July 7, 2017 at 7:03 am

time at our cabin

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Although we have had our cabin at the lake for almost ten years, we have spent a long time getting it livable and comfortable.

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This spring, we finally had the cabin insulated and gyprocked. With the interior done, it seems much more comfortable.

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The time we spend at the cabin is very enjoyable. Mostly we walk around, watch the birds and work on clearing the trails. In the cabin I work at my writing and my husband and I whittle away at a book we read aloud.

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The book we are reading now is ‘Vineyard Chill’ by Philip R. Craig, part of his mystery/detective series — a Martha’s Vineyard Mystery. We read this author because his main character, J. W. Jackson, is so believable. My husband likes the detail about island life — digging clams, rod fishing and boating. I like the way Philip Craig repeats small snippets of J.W.’s experience in every book. I have read this series for years and feel like I know Martha’s Vineyard, although we have never been there. Each story has its own charm and moments of drama. To get started at this great set of mysteries, have a look here.

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

Written by jane tims

May 26, 2017 at 7:01 am

planting trees at our cabin

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Last weekend, we planted about 30 Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seedlings at our cabin property. There are lots of trees there already, but we are thinking ahead.

We bought our seedlings at the Irving Tree Nursery in Sussex, $.50 each. We planted them with the help of a metal dibble stick made especially for planting young trees.

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Here is a photo of our cabin, taken from far away, on the other side of the lake in early spring. Lots of tree there already, you say? You can never have too many trees!

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We still have more trees to plant, including some Red Pine and Eastern White Cedar. Great time spent outside where the black flies are never very bad!

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Copyright Jane Tims 2017

Written by jane tims

May 22, 2017 at 1:15 pm

something orange

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I love the colour orange. It must be so – it is one of the most used ‘tag’ words in my blog postings.

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This is a rather whimsical ‘side-view’ watercolour of an orange mushroom I saw recently in our cottage woods. I published the ‘top-view’ in an earlier post.

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November 22, 2015 ‘side-view of an orange mushroom’ Jane Tims

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November 5, 2015 'woodland floor' Jane Tims

November 5, 2015 ‘woodland floor’ Jane Tims

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Copyright 2105 Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

December 2, 2015 at 7:05 am

colour on the woodland floor

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Today, we went for a walk along the trails at our camp. My favorite path runs along the boundary, next to our zig-zag cedar fence and among young white pine, grey birch, red maple and balsam fir.

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The weather has been very damp, so I expected to find fungi along the way. But I was surprised to see a beautiful patch of bright orange toadstools, each with a distinct orange-red center. They stood out among the red-brown leaves and green mosses.

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I am not good at the identification of fungi, but I think this is Caesar’s mushroom (Amanita caesarea). It is easily confused with the poisonous Amanita muscaria, so no one should use my painting as an identification guide. Just a celebration of orange and red on a fall day.

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November 5, 2015 'woodland floor' Jane Tims

November 5, 2015 ‘woodland floor’ Jane Tims

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Copyright Jane Tims 2015

Written by jane tims

November 5, 2015 at 5:01 pm

summer spaces

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Occasionally in these posts, I talk about our cabin.  When I was a child, weekends were always spent at the cottage.  It was a special place, partly because my Dad involved me in its creation.  I still remember how proud I was to fill one of the foundation boxes with stones. It was a place where we could play in the woods and dabble in a brook.  So it is no surprise that as an adult, having a cabin get-away has always been a priority.

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a view of the lake at our cabin property

a view of the lake at our cabin property

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Our cabin today is built on a hill overlooking a lake.  Originally, the property was a field overflowing with blueberry bushes.

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our lake property in 2005

our lake property in 2005

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Today, it is a young woods, mostly of mountain birch and red maple.  We keep the paths mowed with a bush hog pulled behind our ATV.  The treed lane I once hoped for is now a reality.  I still have a few patches of blueberries and lots of blackberry bushes.

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one of our many paths through the birch and maple wood

 

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Originally, we intended to build a much bigger cottage – we even chose the plans.  But through the years the shed we built as a sort of garage has become our cabin.  It is small, only 19 feet long by 15 feet wide.  But it is big enough for my husband and I.

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building the cabin in 2010

building the cabin in 2010

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Earlier this summer, we hired a local company to finish the outside of the cabin.  We still have work to do inside, but having the exterior finished takes us a long way towards the time when our cabin will be a home away from home.

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our cabin, all the windows in and siding complete 2014

our cabin, all the windows in and siding complete, 2014

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We spent yesterday at the cabin.  We did some work on our entry gate, sat in the cabin and talked, and watched the dragonflies and blue jays.  Usually we also read, aloud, a couple of chapters of a book and have a picnic lunch. Life is fun!

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Do you have a cabin or a place to ‘get-away’?

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Copyright  2014  Jane Tims 

Written by jane tims

August 20, 2014 at 7:04 am

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