The frost is on the pumpkin …

Pumpkin patch ready for annual festival in Half Moon Bay, California.

… and no, I’m not out of my gourd telling you that on the 18th of October!

A BRRisk walk.

We had a hard freeze in the wee hours of this morning.  Our weather folks had forewarned us that the blooms on our posies wouldn’t be perky after we dipped to the low 30s, and maybe even the 20s in the northern suburbs.  This is unusually cold for SE Michigan … after all, it’s only mid-October.  I’m not usually in the cedar closet digging out my woolen wear and Winter coat until late October/early November.  When I left the house this morning it was a mere 31 degrees.  I’m not into the whole Winter layers regimen yet and forgot a scarf and could have used one.  I hunched down into my coat collar and resembled a turtle as I wended my way down to the Park.  The lawns were covered with a light frosty glaze.  It looked like Mother Nature shook icing sugar on the grass and plants, and most of it was gone once the sun was high in the sky.

The squirrels were out, including Parker, who was running around the parking lot when I arrived, so I steered him toward the trail by making him follow at my heels until we were far enough away from any vehicles.

parker big

“Please don’t hang out in the parking lot – ever!” is what I told him, but of course it always falls on deaf ears.

parker 2.jpg

I finished up my walk, and there he was, in the parking lot again, so we repeated the exercise, and he got more peanuts from me.  Who can resist that sweet face?

parker3.jpg

The leaves are not only littering the walking path, but the Creek surface as well, looking like multi-colored dots floating on by.

leaves on creek.jpg

leaves on creek1jpg.jpg

Some people have strapped festive Fall wreaths to the memorial trees in the Park, like this one.

wreath.jpg

Yesterday I was a “two-timer” and proud to admit it.

I visited Council Point Park twice yesterday.  I slipped down there in the morning and then all afternoon I kept hearing about this big hard freeze advisory.  I turned off the outside water the day before, but got to feeling guilty about my hose, still on the reel, likely untouched since July when we had the drought.  We’ve had so much torrential rain that I didn’t need to water for months.

Now most people don’t have an affinity for their garden hose, but I bought this particular hose the first year I began gardening, around 1985.  The salesman at Johnny’s Nursery said “buy a Swan hose, they last forever ….”  Dominic was right.  So, I figured I’d better go out and put it away last night so it didn’t crack.  I had to pull the car out of the garage to put the hose in there.  So, I figured while I had the car out, I’d zip down to the Park for a quick walk.  So off I went for the second time in one day, thus I was a two-timer at the Park.

I’ve written before about going to Council Point Park in the evening.  It’s just not the same.  The angle of the sun is all wrong.  There are one or two walkers, sometimes none.  The biggest disappointment is the critters are never around.  I saw one squirrel and since I had peanuts with me, I shook the bag and he came scurrying over.  I’ll bet he was glad he didn’t go to bed early!

It’s always a little windy at the Park and yesterday the wind was racing at about 17 mph.  I had to hold onto my hat several times and since a few of my hats have gone airborne already, including a beret that whipped along in the wind and snagged on a branch over the Creek, I just called it quits after two miles and came home.

Then I had to deal with the hose, something I usually do when I’m raking leaves or doing other Fall outside chores.  I wrangled that cold and unbending rubber hose into two plastic tubs, a job that was akin to grabbing a python and winding it into a carrier.  I was grumbling the entire time.  Water stored in the hose from earlier in the Summer dribbled out onto my shoes and the hose snaked around a bit and got me all wet.  I was wondering why I didn’t do this last week when the hose was soft and pliable – after all, it was 86 degrees just a week ago.  Ahhh … because it was too hot – that’s why!

Reality has set in though … shorter days and scuffing through dead leaves.

The dramatic change in temperature may seem like the meteorologists were full of hops when they predicted an El Nino Winter, but I am buoyed by two more recent events telling us that Southeast Michigan may just remain unscathed from an abundance of snow and cold for the Winter of 2018-2019.

The first was seeing a post from Crosswinds Marsh Wetland Interpretive Preserve.  I’ve been following that site on Facebook along with other parks all Summer.  It was that site where I saw the post about the turtles hatching and reached out to Jennifer to ask about the turtle nest at the Park.  Yesterday Jennifer posted pictures of two Woolly Bear Caterpillars with this message below.

Crosswinds Pic

Today on WWJ, my radio station, they had the annual Winter prediction by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration).  I look forward to hearing their annual predictions, just like the “Old Farmer’s Almanac” rep’s thoughts on the Winter season when he calls in.  Well, his words were that an El Nino is on the way with a milder and less snowy Winter for both the Upper and Lower Peninsula.

Yes, they don’t know for sure, and are making an educated guess, based on charts, algorithms and scientific data.  The caterpillar … well that’s Mother Nature’s doing I guess.  Let’s revisit this post 100 days from today, on January 26th, and see how it all shakes out and who was the most accurate, shall we?

In the meantime a girl can dream!

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

55 Responses to The frost is on the pumpkin …

  1. Ann Marie stevens says:

    Dear Ms. “Two-timer”………………………………………I liked the pictures of the Woolly Bear caterpillars………………………………………..yes its like winter already…………………………..

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Ann Marie: I figured you’d get get a kick out of that Woolly Bear caterpillar since that is how we met and I just wrote about it recently. It was very cold this morning as you know. Tomorrow will be a little warmer and the weekend – back to November weather again.

      Like

  2. susieshy45 says:

    Dear Linda,
    The autumn wreath- so beautiful. I hope little Parker has a good home to stay in, during the winter. If the winter is truly mild, you might see him again before the summer.
    I enjoyed your hose battles- I am sure I would have done the same. I am glad you walked twice in the park- surely you are closer to your goal miles now.
    One of my friends who visited NY last winter during the new year season, bought a lot of winter clothing online- which is very modern and very lightweight she said- not bulky at all and gives superb protection.
    I hope the moth predication works and the weather holds for you.
    We had unseasonal heavy rains yesterday and it was after almost two years.
    Susie

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      That wreath was beautiful Susie and I tried to capture some tree colors behind it. The beautiful tree colors from last week … well, the winds knocked many leaves onto the ground and no more trees have turned, so no pics of the trees. I got very irritated with the hose especially when it “turned on me” … yup, I did. I had a hose reel for 25 years. Bought it with this hose. Wheeled it out into the front yard one morning, unrolled the hose and the reel part fell on my foot – I was sure I broke bones in the instep as it really fell hard, but it just got bruised. Ordered another hose reel online as I didn’t see any heavyweight ones here in the stores. It fell apart in about 4 years, It had pneumatic tires and they went flat on one side – it got a broken handle, so I just got one placed onto the wall. Not as easy though come Fall or Spring to deal with it. That’s a long time to go without rains. We had some real gulley-washers this Summer. It rained one day five times. This weather has been all “off” for a year. Last December 3rd we had weather in the mid-60s. People were putting out Christmas decorations in short-sleeves and it was gorgeous. I went for a long walk – hated to go inside. Five or six days later we had a big snowstorm and that was not normal either and weather’s been “off and wacky” since then.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Our leaves haven’t changed yet, but I walked through some crunchy ones on the ground.

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Mercifully it is 10 degrees warmer this morning. That cold and frosty morning yesterday was a real wake-up call that Winter is on the way. I must check out that horse chestnut tree to see how it looks these days and I want to take a stroll around the neighborhood, on Emmons Boulevard where the bigger houses are and get some photos of their Halloween decor. I’ve usually done this by early October. That street has been under construction for three months, a repaving project and they finally have removed the orange barrels and we can get near the street again. In some respects the hot and humid temps, then the endless dark or rainy days made the Summer/early Fall speed by and suddenly I’m here saying “how did we get to mid-October already?”

      Like

      • I remember some of the very showy decorations you shared last year. Those people went all out.

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        I know! The houses on Emmons Boulevard are old and stately and very beautifully landscaped. They have these fancy doors and at Christmastime, it seems they all have different and unusual wreaths. I did a post one time on nothing but Christmas wreaths. I ended up driving to the Park this morning because I bought some small pumpkins for the squirrels and they were heavier than I anticipated so I just drove. After I walked, I stopped over on Emmons to take pictures of one house – he is on a corner and must spent an entire day decorating for Halloween. He has a fake graveyard with bodies and tombstones everywhere, including skeletons of dogs, cats and birds. There are a lot of the inflatables as well, but they were collapsed. At Christmas, his inflatables are filled 24/7. So, I took a lot of pictures and will sort through them and make a Halloween post. I have never decorated for Halloween and I just took down my Summer wreath the other day when we had the freeze – if I don’t get the Fall wreath up soon, I might as well just wait and put up the Christmas wreath!

        Like

      • Did you cut the pumpkins for the squirrels, or will they manage on their own?

        I will look forward to your Halloween post. We put three pumpkins on our porch, but that is the extent of our decorating.

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        No, I just left them whole as they can bite into them. I was worried they’d spoil or get dirty as well. I have seen them drag them off in the past by biting on the stem, the longer stem the better. I hope the pictures for everything came out well … I was going to do everything tomorrow, but they are calling for rain and didn’t pinpoint it very well. We have a big college football rivalry game tomorrow (U of M versus MSU) and all they are talking about is the game time weather, so I played it safe and got it done today. Our weather has been so iffy, that I have to seize the moment as who knows what it will do tomorrow?

        Like

      • Our temps are going down. At least it is comfortable to walk in this cooler weather. I could live without the extreme heat. Glad to know the squirrels are independent regarding pumpkins.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        It is just pouring out right now – if it stops tomorrow, I’ll have to go somewhere where it is not on a dirt path, likely Heritage Park. The squirrels will look for your three pumpkins after Halloween – I’ve got pics in the past of them inside the pumpkin. I prefer the colder weather too as long as no slick conditions for walking, but it’s been a long, hot Summer and Fall.

        Like

      • I think last year something gnawed on a pumpkin. Our squirrels seem satisfied with acorns from the big old tree in our yard.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Your squirrels are better behaved than our squirrels. Ours are into everything and though I may love those little squirrels at the Park, when we had them around the house they were pretty destructive. My father planted tulips the first year we lived here and the squirrels dug up all but one of them!

        Like

      • Probably teenagers!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I’m sure of it!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. ruthsoaper says:

    I am with you. Dreaming of a mild winter.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Laurie says:

    I had to smile when I read your comment about your weatherman saying that El Nino means a mild winter. Our weatherman said that El Nino meant a cold, snowy winter. I bet for the long range forecasts the Farmer’s Almanac is just about as accurate as the weatherman.

    We are currently visiting our son and his family in the mountains of Colorado. They had snow here already – enough for my grandson to bulldoze with his toy bulldozer! It has thankfully melted now, but it is almost winter here!

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      We might as well rely on the caterpillars then Laurie. We did have a bad Winter last year – snow until mid-April, 62 inches altogether, so I’m all for a milder Winter. I heard there was some snow had fallen in other states but didn’t hear where – your grandson is happy for it to play in.

      Like

  6. We had a frost this morning. Although not unusual to have one at this time, We too went from mid-80s last week to struggling to hit a high of 50 this week. Our trees have all their leaves and they haven’t started to change color yet so I’m hoping that any snow holds off. We had a really bad snowstorm on Oct. 30 a few years back and many trees were damaged as the weight of the wet snow on the leaves (which hadn’t fallen yet) brought down branches. Very weird weather year for sure.

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Did you lose your flowers from the frost?
      Our temps were 10 degrees higher this morning, but still cold – yesterday was quite frosty. I usually start layering up a little by mid-October, but not full-fledged Winter layers like yesterday. Even the lightweight gloves were not enough. It is raining right now. That’s unfortunate with the snow on October 30th. We had a snow on November 11th a few years ago and had similar tree damage as it was heavy snow. It was gone by the next day as it was not exceptionally cold. I can remember going trick-or-treating when I was living in Canada and having snow underfoot … galoshes and a big heavy Winter coat did not do much for the costume. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I had removed all my annual flowers about 2 weeks ago. I don’t like waiting until it gets too cold to do it.

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, by the end of September, the annuals aren’t too perky and looking leggy sometimes. I haven’t even raked leaves yet and that is why I marveled at having to shut off the water and put away the hose – these are chores done when I am out raking leaves … watch us have an Indian Summer now, though they say all those heat waves are gone ’til next Spring.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I always love seeing Parker! I think one day he’ll just follow you all the way home! He’s so sweet. Xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      He is sweet Heather and this morning I took him and the other squirrels mini pumpkins. I was hoping to get some cute pictures, like with the apples, because the last few times I gave them those little pumpkins, they ran off with them, holding the stem in their mouths. But this time a couple of guys who feed the squirrels beat me there and the squirrels were interested in eating peanuts and when I came along, they ran over as they know I’m “good for peanuts” … Parker was stepping on my shoes. They sniffed at the pumpkins but decided the peanuts were plentiful from everyone, so didn’t eat them. I’m sure once the peanuts were gone, they started hiding them or eating them. I will do a post about them tomorrow and I hope I got at least a few good pictures. I have no doubt one day he will try to follow me home to live in a nearby tree. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Aww, peanuts are obviously their favourite food, but I’m sure they did start eating the pumpkins afterwards. Mini pumpkins sound adorable! I’m not sure I’ve seen them before. How small are they? 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        According to the walkers at the Park that arrived there before me (ahem) (I was trying to decide what to do this morning due to the impending bad weather), they said all the pumpkins were gone. I don’t think kids would have taken them because yesterday was cold and blustery and kids would not have been at the Park. I think after the walkers left and there were no more peanuts being doled out that the squirrels went to the pumpkins. I will send you a picture of how they looked in the mesh bag. I took two photos of them, in the mesh bag they came in and then I put them into two brown bags like you can buy apples in. I didn’t like how the mesh bag picture looked. They are about the size of a big apple. People buy them for decorating their house inside mostly and you can buy them individually as well. I used to buy one every year and decorate it with a face and put it on my desk at work. I even took some leftover wool of my mom’s and braided it and gave it bangs and popped it on the stem. I kept it from year to year and even put earrings in the hair to make it look more like a girl. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hehe, I bet they came out for the pumpkins too when they realised the lack of peanuts available. 🙂 I am heading over to my emails now to have a little look. 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, they all about their peanuts Heather and they are funny because they’ll look at the pumpkins or the cookies for about a half-second and I can imagine them thinking on it “well, maybe I could take it with me – nah, I want peanuts now – I like them better.” I can see the indecision but peanuts always win out.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hehe, that sounds like me at times. But I always save what I like best till last. 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        That’s right – it is better to have something to look forward to, especially at the end of the day. {{{ }}}

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I am rather fond of our garden hose! We’ve had it many years — not sure how many — and it has been a dependable, old friend. The one blog that i did a couple of months ago, with ants running on it (looking like they were cars on a highway) show part of it. I leave it out in the winter and it never cracks or malfunctions. They don’t make things like that any longer; even the new Python aquarium hose that i recently ordered for the aquariums is of cheaper quality plastic that kinks. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      You’re like me; it cost a little more at the time, but it has never kinked up while using it – it was only difficult to unwind it the other day as it was too cold. I’ve done nothing for it – no leaks, not even new washers! I had a hose reel I bought for it when it was new and I had that for 25 years and one day I unwound the hose and the reel broke and fell down on my foot – thought I broke my foot, but just bruised. It had rusted clear through. I was bummed out and got a new one that I ordered online from Gardener’s Supply – it was a piece of junk to be honest. It had huge tires, two went flat and new tires were costly. The basket rusted through and the reel broke, so I got one on the wall. Not as convenient, but just make do. No, they don’t make things like they used to. Do you remember Montgomery Ward – it was like a Sears? Well my parents bought a small humidistat to hang on the wall to register humidity and heat … that was shortly after we moved here in 1966. It still works perfectly – that’s because it is not digital, and no bells and whistles. We didn’t have central air at the time so tried to monitor the humidity in the house for when to turn on the dehumidifier.

      Like

  9. WalkFrederick says:

    I see the frost has hit you, too. Last week we were still in summer at 80 degrees and now we had low 30’s. Since the kids JUST started wearing sweaters I couldn’t tell them to put on something heavier. C’est la vie!

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      We had the same crazy weather Michelle – hit a record last Wednesday of 86 (tied a record of 86) and then the bottom fell out bigtime! They say flurries today as I mentioned to you on Twitter – I hope they are wrong … these days you have to catch your walk in between weather events or suffer the consequences!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh yes a mild winter will be great! How cold does it get before you head inside to walk?

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Actually I’ll walk all Winter, no matter how cold because I took the bus for years to Detroit and I have a lot of warm weather clothes and outerwear … it is the snow and ice that I worry about most Diane. As long as it is not icy on the sidewalks, I’ll walk all Winter. I don’t have a treadmill … not sure I could fit it in the basement which is kind of crowded and cluttered (maybe the better word). I will ride my exercise bike though to keep my legs strong over the Winter months. They say rain and snow flurries this afternoon – very strange weather!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I admire your dedication!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thank you – I need it right now because the weather forecasters often use Detroit Metro Airport as a gauge for weather-related events and it is 15 miles away. We had hail and sleet at Metro Airport this evening and parts of Michigan (the northern burbs) are getting snow. All this talk about El Nino Winter and then having weather like this today? Just incredible. Sometimes I think I should have quit while I was ahead last year – I only had to go 755 miles to beat the 2016 miles walked and I kept on going and going another 300 miles!!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Wow that is amazing! You are going to live to be 100! We had ice pellets and ice on the roads in Ohio last night too. Luckily it didn’t last long but it’s coming.

        Liked by 2 people

      • lindasschaub says:

        I hope it is helping to stay healthy … I was just at the dentist and they take your blood pressure and resting pulse and I was pronounced in excellent health … and no cavities to boot! I must be living right. 🙂

        Like

  11. Bryan Fagan says:

    Love your pictures and the stories that go with. You are so good at this.

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you very much for saying that Bryan. I do get a lot of enjoyment at this little nature nook and on my weekend excursions where I try to visit other parks as well. I try to take pictures of my excursions and am working on a post right now about the squirrels (a common theme) and treating them for Sweetest Day. We have had some bad weather earlier this afternoon so I was not on my computer except to upload the pictures (always too many and then I have to winnow them down) and now we are having sleet here in SE Michigan. The northern burbs are supposed to get flurries.

      Like

  12. Bryan Fagan says:

    I was watching the Wisconsin game this morning and for a little while they had snow. Be safe.

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you – I am not a fan of Winter or wintry-mix conditions at all. I am happy I now work from home after years of taking the bus to downtown Detroit. If it is icy or slick I won’t go to Council Point Park which is a mile from my house. I will walk two blocks over on either side (two different parks) and just walk on the grass. We had our big in-state rivalry college football game between University of Michigan and Michigan State today beginning at noon. They had to suspend it for lightning and also there were heavy sheets of rain, then sleet during the course of the game. I’m not sure if this season is going to be any more normal than the last three. I had hoped after dealing with snow until mid-April, a rainier than usual Spring and early Summer, wicked heat, then a lot of rain in the Fall thus far, we might catch a break. If we have snow in Fall, how do we hope to enjoy a mild Winter?

      Liked by 1 person

  13. sharonchyy says:

    Beautiful post as always

    Liked by 2 people

  14. There is something so beautiful about this time of year even though it is a little crispy out. On the plus side you have Parker by you side (or heel) to keep you company. ❤❤

    I will show the lovely pics from this post to my mother on the weekend (she is not online) as she absolutely fell in love with the pics and stories from some of your earlier posts. Thanks so much for sharing your adventures 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      I do love Autumn too Zena … the colors, the harvest decor, and it seems like you used to smell the burning leaves on weekends, but now people blow them into the streets with their leaf blowers, or just bag them, so that is something from the past I guess. I remember you said you mom was enjoying the posts, especially the nature and squirrels ones. Thank you for giving them to her since she’s not online. Those squirrels are cuties and every day there could be new pictures to take of them swirling around my feet or running behind me. If I stop to take a picture and don’t see them, they circle around or put their paws on my shoes to get my attention. They just make me smile. Today it was a beautiful sunny day and I think every squirrel was out at the Park and in the neighborhood … I may need a bigger allowance to buy more peanuts for them!

      Like

  15. Mackenzie says:

    Hope the meteorologist is right for you!!! And aww look at that fuzzy little guy moving right along. Always love your photos!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks … glad you like them. Mostly they are just sheer luck. That fuzzy guy hopefully is right, along with the meteorologist so I can walk my socks off this Winter. I’ve had a lot of stops and starts this Spring through Fall.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s