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Fall Fun – and a Sister’s Visit

Posted by mrssmythe on November 5, 2017 in Baking, Chickens, Crafting, Critters, Family, Garden, Seasons, Week in Review |

First off, I want to share this fun photo of CPT A, working on his computer in the backyard with the dogs.

Since this was taken, we’ve lost all of those colorful leaves in the back woods. A wild storm came through on Halloween and knocked everything down. Much of our town was without power for days afterward.

It was good that we weren’t without power. My sister was visiting at the time.

Here she is at the dining room table with the girls during one of the many card games that went on the week she was here.

We always have such a great time when she visits. I should have more photos to share, but honestly, I was having so much fun, I didn’t think to stop and take any.

I did manage to take a few shots of our visit to the Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. Here’s Ginger, with a butterfly that just crawled onto her hand. (Ginger was a butterfly magnet and had this happen several times during our visit.)

And here are the girls with a member of the Magic Wings staff and a reptile friend. Magic Wings has a variety of creatures in addition to the butterflies. It’s a fun place to visit.

Our overnight temperatures still haven’t gone low enough for a hard freeze. We keep having close calls, and each time, I dash out the night before to harvest the remaining zinnias flowers…only to have everything survive and look fine the following morning.

I’ve enjoyed the colorful bouquets very much, though, and it’s strengthened my resolve to have more zinnias in the yard for cutting next year.

We finally cut open the lone watermelon we managed to grow this year. It was pretty tiny.

It didn’t taste terrible, but it wasn’t that great, either, so I divided it up among the chickens, and they enjoyed it very much.

More tasty were the rice crispy pumpkin treats Ginger made for coffee hour at church.

These were so easy to make – just rice crispy treats with a little food coloring and a Tootsie Roll stuck on top. They disappeared fast. If you’re interested, you can find the recipe HERE.

As the foliage in the yard thins, we’re finding surprises. One of them was this chrysalis – long vacated – hanging in the ferns beside the front porch.

It hung literally a foot from my rocking chair all summer, and I never knew it was there. I wonder what other things I missed.

The girls didn’t trick-or-treat this past week, but they did attend a party at our church dressed as Pikachu (Ginger) and Professor Willow (Pepper).

As you can see, Pepper is in a cast right now – the result of a bicycle accident some weeks back. She’s on the mend though and doing very well, thankfully.

In knitting news, I’m at work on a new scarf. The pattern I’m using is the Lion Brand Aurora Scarf.

The pattern calls for two colorways of yarn. At first I tried to stick with just one color – and a very bright one at that. In the end, though, I picked out another skein to help break up the brights and make the scarf more sophisticated looking. It’s a subtle difference, but I’m really pleased with the result.

And, finally, in hopes of making CPT A a batch of candied almonds for his birthday, I tried a recipe I found on Pinterest. The instructions have you cook the almonds in a ton of sugar, some cinnamon, and an egg white in a crockpot over the course of four hours.

At the end, you have this…

…something more akin to almond brittle than candied almonds. While these tasted good, they weren’t exactly what I was aiming for. If anyone has a better recipe for candied almonds, please, feel free to share!

Well, that brings you up to date. Hope you’re enjoying a cozy afternoon today like I am. Time to make some tea!

From the dining room table, amazed at how dark it is already at just three in the afternoon (the downside of Daylight Savings Time),

Mrs. Smythe

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