Sunday, October 6, 2019

Mosaic Monday #48: The (brief) Interval

On the last day of September, friends and family members from outside Montana were texting me.  Are you snowed in?  How much snow did you get? Apparently, erstwhile news outlets reported Montana with deep piles of the white stuff, an outcome of the September 29 storm.  To set the record straight - we woke to a dusting.  Areas east of us, such as Browning, had four feet of snow.  Those schools were closed on Monday and our Governor declared a state of emergency for certain localities - both rare events in a state that prides itself on making it to school and work and Costco no matter the weather.

Down by our lake
As I reflected on my pictures from September, I had to wonder - is that it?  Was that our Fall?  Was that THE INTERVAL between Summer and Winter?  The current forecast calls for highs in the 40s for the foreseeable future - yep, feels like Winter to me.  So I am grateful that I captured a few Fall photos while I had the chance! 

In September, plants featured berries and fresh technicolor coats.  Mushrooms sprang up, the birthright of bounteous precipitation.  Some insects seemed to slow down with cooler temperatures, such as this dragonfly that I encountered on the road during a run.
In honor of the changing seasons, I replaced the summery flag in front
of the house with the fall-themed Moose Lodge
I didn't know it at the time, but a kayak on the lake on September 22 with Dear Neighbor Friend may be the last of the season for me.
We attended the Celtic Festival in the middle of the month.  It was one of those days when you really don't know what to wear.  The morning started off brisk, but then the sun bore down and you wished for shade.  And just for good measure, we had a light rainstorm in the late afternoon!  We loved watching the athletic events, the dancers and the musical groups.  Nothing could match Amazing Grace on the bagpipes.  The video below does not present the performance in justice - one bagpiper started it off, and after the first verse, the rest joined in.  Stirs my heart every time. (And sorry it's sideways!)

Just for fun, I have included this video of the Sheaf Toss.  A bundle of straw weighing 20 pounds is tossed over a ever-rising bar, using a pitchfork.  The highest toss wins.

I haven't taken the opportunity to play the piano much this summer, but anticipating a smidgen of indoor time, I followed up with the Piano Man on the repair of the "action" on our upright piano.  I am pleased to report that the piano has now been restored and re-tuned as far as he could take it without breaking any strings.  Just look at the fresh new leather strips, and the unblemished felt hammers!

On a recent volunteering day in Whitefish, I found myself with extra time and I enjoyed a stroll around town as I used to do when we lived there.  It was quite nostalgic, and I might have even sucked up a tear or two!

With the onset of fall in Montana, it is critical to pick fruit that can be an attractant to bears.  With great joy we plucked apples from my Mom's Goodland tree for the second year (see first year story here and here.)  It was enough for an apple pie, and I can't put into words how I felt when I dove into it.  How do you express cinnamon and love, apple and childhood memory, butter and the miracle of the fall harvest?

As long as we are on the subject of food - Head Chef has turned to some of his fall favorites, and as always, I am glad I have a strong workout regime or my waistline would be expanding!
Upper left: Roast Beef, Yorkshire Puddings, Mushy Peas    Upper right: Pizza with home-made crust
Bottom: Zuppa Toscana with home-made bread
Inevitably, cooler temperatures inspire my inner craftsperson.  I have taken to sending hand-drawn and hand-written birthday cards.  Imagine!
I hosted my first Munch and Make session since April.  In Montana, summer is precious and most folks wouldn't be caught inside when the mountains are calling!  Now, with shorter days and questionable weather, crafty birds flock together.
April Munch and Make - my neighbor, who is a hula dancer, works on a raffia headband.  The hula group makes
every element of their costumes.
September Munch and Make: A friend brought hand-made ceramics and glued them to narrow wood pieces
Bottom pictures are the finished product on her bedroom wall
For my part, some new Christmas ornaments are underway.
Pinterest Ruffle Skirt
But I am most excited about the Christmas tree skirt.  I mentioned it in my last post about Josie, and now it is appropriate to tell you more.  Last year, we bunched up some burlap around the base of the tree, in keeping with our rustic theme.  But I wanted something a little more formal, and Pinterest came to my aid with a ruffle skirt design.  You would be so proud - I have been able to take the basics of the design and ADAPT it - not usually my strong suit!

The skirt is six feet across, with brown felt as the base.  Per the Pinterest design, I began cutting the burlap I had into three-inch strips, using conventional scissors.  After my hand nearly fell off, I invested in a rotary cutter and a cutting mat.
Using my superior math skills, I created my own pattern, assuming 13 rows of ruffles and utilizing the burlap on hand.  Here you can see Josie helping me measure the radius.  No problem. 
Not so fast!  I dramatically mis-calculated the amount of burlap required.  It's the pleats, you see.  A seven-foot piece of burlap becomes a 3-foot piece once it's pleated.  I need A LOT more burlap.  And does Hobby Lobby have the color I need?  Nope.  I can't really blame them; burlap dyeing is variable, to be sure.  So I went back to the drawing board and I believe I have a workable pattern that doesn't waste the burlap I have.  You are sure to hear more about this in a future post, whether you want to or not!  I might have been a little (!) frustrated, but Candy Corn helped me get through it!

By now you have forgotten (like me) that this post started with snow.  But one thing's for sure - my plants are not coming back.  While the snow may have been shallow, the temperatures were in the deep freeze, and shriveled fleshy plants.  
Left - Pink Poppy on September 27                                                       Right: Same plant on September 30

You might expect me to be outraged, or at least disappointed, about this.  As you know, animals who nibble my plants can have that impact.  But somehow, I am taking this in stride.  Maybe it's because we head out of the country in a week - I am not going to be here to enjoy the garden anyway.  Or perhaps I accept that this is a force I can't control with chicken wire or a spray.  Or possibly, just possibly, I am growing excited about the Winter - skiing, snowshoeing, the Christmas season - did I mention that both of the kids are coming for Christmas?  That's enough to tip me over the edge and past The Interval. 

Welcome to Mosaic Monday, a weekly meme where we get together to share our photo mosaics and collages.
Please include at least one photo mosaic/collage in your post.
The link will be open from 1 p.m. Sunday until 11 p.m. Monday (U.S. Mountain time).
Remember to add the link to your Mosaic Monday post and not the one to your blog.
Please link back to this post so that your readers will be able to visit and enjoy more wonderful mosaics; taking the MM blog button from my sidebar is an easy way to link back.
As host I will visit every participant and leave a comment so that you know I stopped by.
Please try and visit as many other blogs as you can, especially those that join in later, so that everyone's creativity can be appreciated fully.
Thank you for joining in today and sharing your mosaics with us.
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  1. An varied week, I think about.

    Of course, I love celtic activities... of course, I'm a great, great fan of Ireland. And love to read about, too.

    And the weather?! Indeed we have autumn here, but not yet snow. Chilly weather, we get in 7-8 weeks. Now it's cold and raining outside.

    Wish you a very good week.

    Happy MosaicMonday... greetings from Augsburg, Heidrun xxx

  2. There is always so many wonderful things to see out your way and thanks for sharing them with us!

  3. Your munch and make sessions sound like so much fun. I've been illustrating my journals, that's about all in the crafty/artistic realm for me. - Margy

    1. I finally got a blog post written and had the opportunity share with your readers. Thanks for hosting. - Margy

  4. ...September is way too early for snow!!! You sure are a busy, crafty lady. Thanks for hosting.

  5. I've missed my trips to Montana since Mom passed. My brother has moved to Colorado, but I have fond memories of Billings and the surrounding area! Hoping to return someday! It is finally cool here in IN and grateful for the rain we have gotten today! Have a wonderful week!

  6. Josie makes a very good su-purr-visor.

  7. Lovely post, boy the cold certainly hits your plants. Good to see Josie giving your project a good cat scan. Great looking meals made by the head chef. Love your cards.

  8. That is a lovely post. I am getting old and tired and I have to go back a reread to formulate my comments. sigh.
    I love your skirt project. My grandies aren't wearing skirts or dresses much. I would love to have a project, though. I can appreciate your helper!

    Oh, yes. I love the changes in season. I am ready. We had a hard frost, and a lot of things wilted. But that is the way of things.
    I envy you your group work (play!) but I cannot do groups anymore. I must see if I can do a mosaic. Thanks for the inspiration.

  9. Always Angie you share such lovely adventures and photos to go with them. Thank you for your 48th Mosaic Monday - always appreciated.

  10. Your words and pictures make me envy the “interval season” (especially if I conveniently forget that white stuff ) ... but I know you love it, so even snow is beautiful seen through your eyes! Fun to see the craft projects ... your cards especially inspire me! And speaking of inspiring .... those lovely cool weather meals! Now is really the only season for us to indulge in those old favorites ... I hope our efforts are half as delicious those of your special “private chef.”

  11. wow girl... so much here. The burlap tree skirt is cute, and the food looks fab. Your own apples... congrats. I like the beer/bear sign. We are going from too hot to too cold... had the sprinklers blown out today anticipating 4 nights in the 20's. That is wintery. It was in 90's last week. Fall??? what's that? Well it's hot tomorrow, then here comes the changes. My flowers are so pretty, sad to say bye bye. The vege gave up a week ago except for the tomatoes that suddenly produced about 30 small green ones on the bush. Oy vey. I'm southern but I don't want to stand around frying tomatoes!

  12. winter is certainly a great time to be inside crafting or playing the piano. So is having a broken ankle like I have at the moment. I am enjoying my sits outside in the spring sunshine. Sounds like you are looking forward to winter and all it brings with it. Apple pie - yum - I can smell it from here. Have a fabulous week.

  13. So many wonderful photos and activities in this post. We are finally starting to cool off over here. Only in the high 90's today which might not sound cool to some but when summer temps are 120 F and above, it is definitely a welcome change. I wondered about snow in your area, too. Kit certainly got a lot more where she is. Weather this time of year sure is finicky. Nice to see that you are munching and making with friends again.

  14. Hello, This an action packed post, the Celtic festival sounds like fun. A beautiful day and lake views while kayaking. I love apples and cinnamon, yum! The burlap tree skirt is cute, great idea. We have a bear sighted around here the last view weeks! It is sad to see the flower season end, I do not look forward to winter. Wishing you a safe trip. Thanks for hosting. Enjoy your day, wishing you a happy new week!

  15. You have been VERY busy, Angie! As you head into Winter, we are enjoying Spring and our garden is blooming. Quite sad to see your flowers dying as a result of the snow you've had, but as you stoically imply, it's all part and parcel of the great cycle of seasons. Lovely photos, as always.

  16. Hi! It looks very cold. It was very hot this summer and autumn in our country. I hope flowers woud bloom soon sgain. youe Christmas tree skirt project looks very awesome. I am expecting you will finish it in a near future. Thanks for sharing.

  17. My flowers are all done too and composted. All my yard art is tucked away and we only have to cover our furniture. Supposed to have a little snow on Wed. I wonder if you'll get it up north. Enjoy your fall days! Love your tree skirt. Kit

  18. A dusting of snow always looks so pretty on the leaves and flowers. I know you enjoy every season so that's nice! Love the crafting you've been doing. It's starting to be better weather here so I'll be out more! It's fun to have lots of things to do though! Happy MM! Thanks!

  19. What an exciting post you put together. Love the tree skirt. I may follow your lead.

  20. How exciting that your kids are coming for Christmas. It will be a Winter Wonderland for all. So you are leaving the country for a while. I'll look forward to your posting on where you are headed. I do hope Fall comes back before Winter arrives in full force. We have an influx of visitors and all the kids are arriving this weekend for the start of hunting season. We also have a last minute wedding to attend at Spirit Lake in Idaho on Saturday. So much fun jammed into the next week. Hope your week is going well.

  21. Sounds like you have a good attitude. Love the lake photos.

  22. Wow Angie!
    Loved your post … full of good things to see and read about, including the fact that your kids are coming for Christmas :)

    The Celtic Festival sounds fun and I enjoyed the video clip.

    Have a great week.

    All the best Jan

  23. Seems you have lots to look forward to Angie. A trip across to England is quite a trek so make it a good one. And if you're in Lancashire, look me up. I know the best chippys (and the ones to avoid).

    And the kids coming for Christmas? Mmm - did I hear a little "not for too long I hope"?

  24. Celtic is special, I love your touch.

  25. Wonderful post ~ so many beautiful photos and you are busy with each season coming upon us ~ love that little kitty 'helping you.' ~ Be cozy and warm ^_^

    Happy Day to You,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  26. You sure packed a lot in to September. Great photos, nice crafts, a kitty supervisor making sure you get things done right. Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful day!

  27. Your autumn looks lovely! We had some sleet last week, and the north of Sweden got a lot of snow!

  28. We were away last week on an anniversary trip upstate to Steamboat Springs! It was wonderful! We returned home to welcome 6 inches of snow but in true Colorado style it all melted the next day when the temperatures reached 70 degrees again. The sad part was many pumpkin patches lost their pumpkins to the frost.
    Your husband is a wonderful cook! He's a keeper!


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