Wonder tree!

Towering PineIMG_20150825_163950572[1]

A wonder tree!  She may not be in an ideal location, considering her 125 year old ‘twin’ that came down in a wind storm earlier this summer–and has now been rendered into rounds for splitting to keep the house warm!–


But she’s a wonder when it comes to long pine needles.  Hers are nearly a foot long! This is an ideal length for learning the art of pine needle basket making!


And that’s what I’ve been up to this week!

Oh, there was a hike too—a re-run to the Smallwood overlook to introduce Jim to the view.  This could become our new ‘Scout’ Mountain hike; it’s the closest to home.

It wasn’t raining this time.  The panoramic views were pretty spectacular, other than the smoke!P1180310P1180290P1180305

Forest fires to the South are keeping the lid on our sunshine these days.

Smoky Morning [Photo taken at 7:30 AM]

P1180314…all the better for staying indoors and finishing up my first basket!


And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food… [and baskets!]  Gen. 2:9

My New Backyard…

Winter is fast losing its grip.


White patches of snow still nest on shaded hillsides.  But the sun is warm and I’ve been out to inspect the slope out back.



It’s not exactly a yard, really more of a mecca for elk and deer. Their frequent passing has forged a narrow way for me to go along the slope in search of signs of spring.


Being drier here than the coast, pines are quite at home,



providing ample supplies of cones and needles—



—nice long needles that are perfect for the  weaving of handy little baskets.



(I have yet to attempt this art; this one was created by my dad-in-law.)

The slope is dry and warm (no wonder the elk like it!) and in a protected ravine I find what I was looking for–


Lo, green is springing up!

P3060137 P3060133

As I turn back to the house, these dear little handprints in the rockwork by the door remind me of long by-gone family visits to Grandad and Nani’s house.


Who’d have guessed then that one day when kids had flown and Nani had moved on to Heaven we’d move in to keep Grandad company!


And so we have, for now.


Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Ps.90:1