Tuesday, November 30, 2010
These beauties are just one small section of a fallen log in the woods next to the house. About 30 feet long it is a veritable forest of fungus in many colors and sizes but all of this particular fan-shaped variety. At first they reminded of me of clam or mussel shells. The greenish ones are now making me think of leaves. What do you see?
Monday, November 29, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
For more R's and maybe a few more rainbows, please visit ABC Wednesday.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
I am well aware that not all share being fans of fungus, but I am fascinated by their popping up every now and then and their varied shapes and colors. So I will continue this week to share some recent new friends with you!
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Today for Sunday Bridges we are back up north on Miners River and looking at that plain and simple bridge from another angle. In the foreground, creating a "waterfall," is a Sea Lamprey barrier which prevents the spawning lamprey from proceeding upstream and into Lake Superior. This "waterfall" may lack the romance of natural falls but has helped to control the scourge these sea lamprey present to big fish in the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Fishery Commission, a cooperative US and Canadian endeavor, estimates that there has been a 90% reduction in the sea lamprey in the the lakes. For us UP travelers this work means that there are local fisheries where we can buy our fresh whitefish. Once in the Keweenaw Peninsula we watched the local Ojibwa/Chippewa fisherman filet it for us from his morning's catch. The best eating ever!
Remember click on the photo to enlarge it and see some of the reflections snaking through the river.
For more bridges from around the world, please visit Sunday Bridges from M. Louis la Vache.
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
"Then a severe frost succeeds which prepares it to receive the voluminous coat of snow which is soon to follow; though it is often preceded by a short interval of smoke and mildness, called the Indian Summer." (from The Phrase Finder)American historian Daniel Boorstin in The Americans: the Colonial Experience "speculates that the term originated from raids on European colonies by Indian war parties; these raids usually ended in autumn, hence the extension to summer-like weather in the fall as an Indian summer. Two of the three other known uses of the term in the 18th century are from accounts kept by two army officers leading retaliation expeditions against Indians for raids on settlers in Ohio and Indiana in 1790 and Pennsylvania, in 1794." But there is also the suggestion that is named for the traditional period when early Native Americans harvested squash and corn. (see Wikipedia article on Indian Summer)
In Western Europe this type of weather was called St. Martin's Summer from the feast of that saint on November 11, while Russians and East Europeans called it Old Ladies Summer. And Indian Summer is the name given to the Milwaukee ethnic festival held in September honoring Native Americans: Indian Summer Festival.
No matter what name you give it, we have been enjoying what the National Weather Service defines as, "a period of considerably above normal temperatures, accompanied by dry and hazy conditions ushered in on a south or southwesterly breeze." See the attempt by a weather historian to deal with the naming issue in the article, Just what is Indian Summer and did Indians really have anything to do with it?
If you are in the midst of Indian Summer, please enjoy it! And check out more skies on Skywatch Friday.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Midwest Energy's main office is in the Cass County right next door to St. Joseph County and we visited it to pick up free fluorescent light bulbs and an application for "interruptible electric service." Our new furnace has a heat pump making us eligible for a 50% reduction in the electric rate we pay if we agree that the Coop can interrupt our service at peak hours. We figure it is worth a try!
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
This quoin is part of the Grand Rapids Arch by British sculptor Andy Goldsworthy at the Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park.
For more explorations of the quirkiness of Q, visit ABC Wednesday.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Monday, November 8, 2010
Friday, November 5, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Muldoon's Pasties (their Facebook page). It is a complete meal in a crust, perfect for lunch at a roadside picnic table as you travel the UP. Pasties for lunch and whitefish for supper and we are the happiest UP travelers!
Pasties, originally brought here by Cornish miners, are "the" food of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We have tried the pasties from one end of the UP to the other and Muldoon's stand up with the best. Originally we would always get pasties at Dobber's in Escanaba and then it became Gramma T's in Negaunee, but two summers ago when at the Porkies we discovered The Pasty Corner in Iron River. It is now our #1 for flaky crust and delicious filling, however it is the farthest away from us. Perhaps the bottom line here is that we never pass up a pasty shop; we have tasted pasties from Suzy's in St. Ignace, Lehtos, Wildwood, and the AuTrain Cafe along the way, and Toni's in Laurium on the Keweenaw Peninsula. Visit Pasty Central for more not only on pasties but on the UP in general.
Here are the traditional ingredients of a UP pasty: diced potatoes, rutabagas, carrots, onions & ground or diced beef. But these days you can also buy a vegetarian or chicken pasty. If you would like to learn more about the origin and history of this Cornish cuisine, visit Wikipedia's article, Pasty. I am now so hungry I must complete this blog and search for a proper substitute for a pasty. Wish me luck!
For less edible but still fascinating words beginning with P, visit ABC Wednesday.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Explore the history of the Stormy Kromer cap and learn more about George "Stormy" Kromer who asked his wife Ida to modify a baseball cap for colder weather, the Stormy Kromer cap.
And for a more traditional place to buy your cap, you cannot beat the best department store in the Upper Peninsula, an old fashioned, traditional department store, Getzs in Marquette.