Baby it’s cold outside!


When I looked out on the screened-in porch this morning, I thought the thermometer had broken. It hadn’t.


This is where the wet weather creek runs into the pond. I took it last week, before the big snow. It was around 25 degrees.


This is what a passive solar heater looks like. Yep, it’s the whole house. Yesterday afternoon when I took this, it was 20 degrees outside and 75 degrees inside. The furnace, set on a wimpy 70,  had not come on for hours.  It was bright, warm and comfy inside. The passive solar only works on sunny days, but on cloudy days, it’s still very bright inside because of all the windows.

Things to do when you come to visit us


You can walk in the woods to this pretty wet weather creek.  (The pretty girl, our niece Beth,  may not be here to walk with you. Walking in the woods available from late September through mid April.)


If you visit from March through October, we can see Onondaga cave. This is the lily pad room – one of the best cave rooms anywhere, in one of the best caves. And it’s only 10 or so miles from our house.


You can hope that the shiitake mushrooms are fruiting.


You can eat some yummy local cheese made from the happy cows at Morningland Dairy.

And if you crave more excitement, you can visit the public art in Cuba, Mo. Here’s the website I did for Viva Cuba, describing all the art. Be sure to visit the blog to find out what’s happening in Cuba.

Snakes on a porch!

Well, it’s just one snake who lives in the rocks next to our back porch. He, or maybe she, is a black rat snake we call Samuel. She/he seems very happy here.

If you don’t like snakes, or even if you do, we have plenty of wildflowers and butterflies, too.


Remember springtime?

Good, because that’s when I took these photos.

Birds Nest
A tiny bird’s nest I saw hanging from a branch.

Birds Nest
Prairie violet.

Birds Nest
A wild american plum tree. It bloomed before the dogwoods.

Birds Nest
This turkey was in the backyard one morning. Gary took this from inside the house.

Birds Nest
The shiitake mushroom operation. Each log has been inoculated with shiitake spores. Next spring we should have shiitakes running out of our ears.

Porch Sweet Porch

Summer is finally here! Hooray! Here’s where we’re having lunch and dinner and hanging out after dinner. I’m even dragging an office chair out and working at the table during the day.