Thursday, September 29, 2011

OBN Photo Prompt: Goodbye Summer

A few words and pictures of this summer. A huge success. 

My first mountain brookie.  
Spectacular coastal sunsets.  
Crazy weather.
Green to gold
And summer is gone.
The tan line at my waist 
Remains, but fades, all the same.
Calluses from barefoot mornings
Will soften. 

So much hard work absorbing,
Steeping in the bay,
Arms, casually hanging out car windows,
Sunglasses, and coconut scented sunscreen
Will all exchange for wetted, sweet, rotten leaves,
Dirty jeans from selecting the perfect pumpkin,
Frosted car windows
And visible breath,
Whisping away in a cool breeze,
Replaced by winter. 
Replaced by spring.
Replaced by summer.
Always you. 
Always me.
An outdoor concert.

They tickle your hands.

New (crazy) friends.

OBN Photo Prompt. I don't need an excuse to post, but it is nice to have one.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Rest Easy, Friday Night: Vol 2

Tonight I bring to you the musical equivalent of Peanut Butter and Jelly.  Both are strong independently and deserve their own spotlight, but when combined, it is a fusion creating an entire new entity.

I came across the album "Raising Sand" by Allison Kraus and Robert Plant a litter over a year ago.

The eerie qualities of Led Zeppelin's front man are evened out by Kraus' perfect pitch. Oh, sooooo good.

Let's start slow with a song that has one of my favorite lines.... "Leaves were falling, just like embers. In colors red and gold, they set us on fire..."

Next we will pick up the pace with a cover that just plain rocks. I must have listened to this song 30 times. when I checked out the CD form the library.

We'll finish it up with this softer whisper of a song. "Stick with me Baby." Think of it as desert. A smooth chocolate mousse or the creamy, slow-churned pumpkin ice cream I picked up at the store tonight.

Enjoy the weekend everyone. Hope you get outside. We've got rain planned everyday.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Self Imposed OBN Writing Prompt: What Outdoor Activity I Look Forward to this Fall

I don't know about you, but I'm checking OBN compulsively these days. I suppose I've just gotten used to the enjoyable posts, blog highlights, photo and writing prompts, and giveaways. Joe and Rebecca have done such an awesome job with OBN. Consider that while also being able to continue with all of their other indoor and outdoor activities (moving, fishing, work, etc).

 Lately, I think the two of them have been busy, so I thought, as a member of the OBN community, I would pose a question to myself. My own OBN Writing Prompt. The question: what outdoor activity am I looking forward to this fall?

 Oh, this is easy. As a new resident of the east coast, I am looking forward to seeing the leaves change in the Shenandoah National Park. More specifically, I'm looking forward to seeing the leaves change while throwing a fly at some small mountain stream brookies. Sara and I are hoping to drive out for the day in one of these next few weeks. Hopefully we can plan it so, while we are there, the sun cuts through the crisp air and lights up those red, yellow and orange leaves like a kaleidoscope.

 So how about you all? What are you looking forward to this fall? Think of it as a writing or photo prompt if you like. Or NOT if you don't like:)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Shrimp Fest, Brown-noser, and Surf Fishing

A quick bit of surf fishing yesterday, then I tied some flies. I learned the shrimp pattern at my first Virginia Coastal Fly Angler's club meeting. It was a good time and I brought home a few materials to try tying the pattern on my own. I ran out for the third and had to make due, but I think it will be fine. I also added the pink hackle as opposed the white (how I was taught). Hopefully these will find me some speckled trout in the near future.

The shrimp eyes are beads melted onto mono-filament line. The body casing is created using epoxy. Shrimp swim backwards so that explains the orientation.

I also threw together my first clouser. I call him "The Brown-noser." I gave it a brown back and white belly with some flash and a small amount of red deer hair in between.

Here is a quick video showing the conditions on the surf. It was a lot of fun jumping in the waves and I caught my first black drum.... It was just a pup, but still :)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Rest Easy, Friday Night. Vol 1

I'm jumping on the band wagon. Friday night music. Several people (Lunker Hunt, River Damsel, and more)  out there have been spreading the musical love. What's one more?

Tonight, I bring you Regina Spektor. I discovered her one morning before work. A "new" music video on VH1 called "Fidelity."  That was probably her biggest hit, but she has put out so many good songs. Sara and I saw her live in Omaha at a small venue. She was spectacular. Enough words. Time for Regina.

Now that you've been introduced to her eccentricity, here is a cover of someone more familiar, John Lennon's "Real Love."

That song was a contender for our wedding song. I'll finish with one of her popular tunes. A beautiful song slower. If you want to finish on something more upbeat, look for "Fidelity". it won't disappoint.

Have a great weekend everyone. I'm hoping to tie a few shrimp this weekend. I'll get back to you with the results.

Monday, September 12, 2011

I'm Knowing You.

I'm Knowing You.

We've only known each other for a few months now.
I swam the warm season.
Watched the changes in your sloping shore
After the big storm.
I've sifted through the gifts washed up each morning
Like a browsing patron at an antique store.

I know we haven't known each other long,
But I feel closer to you today.
I anticipate the tidal changes.
I watch the schooling bait fish.
I can see this is growing into a great friendship.


I went for a jog today. I ran along the waters edge in our backyard. I began thinking how I've come to know this water. Like a friendship, it has grown since we've been in Virginia.  I thought that I should write something about that, but I think I forgot sometime between the end of the run and dinner. It wasn't until I came across Jay Zimmerman's  blog, Colorado Fly Fishing Report, that I remembered. You see, Jay Z.... ha... (I wrote that to differentiate from the other Jay I know, The Naturalist's Angle. I'll leave it) As I was saying, he wrote a post today proposing that we all "GET TO KNOW YOUR HOME WATER BETTER!" I agree and it prompted me to get my thoughts written down. So, thanks Jay Z. I appreciate it. I was going to post a video of a Jay Z and Radiohead mashup called Jaydiohead, but I will let you find those as they all seem to have explicit lyrics.  Try "No Karma," "Song and Cry," or "99 Anthems."

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Up Close and Personal with Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park had some glorious sweeping views. It also had a lot to find up close and personal.   I often find, the more I slow down, the more I notice fine details. It is in these details that I gain a greater connection and affection for a place. Click to enlarge and take a closer look.

Beauty and love.
All in the details.

The lichen covered rocks
And peeling birch bark
Are just as precious

As sweeping vistas
And blazing sunsets.

With a deep breath,
Hone in.

Zoom in.

Hit that macro button,
And find something small to appreciate
In a larger way.

Wild blueberry. Eat.

Wild Don't-know-Berry. Don't eat.

Down to the tidepools.

Blurry, but you get the idea.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Maine Snail Mail

I looked all over Maine. Really, I tried. I went to each post office to try and find the newest issue of Catch Magazine. But then I realized something. You can't find it at the post office because it is only available online :)

The Belfast, Maine Post Office
The Camden, Maine Post Office
The Bar Harbor, Maine Post Office

** on Sunday I'll post some more recaps of the trip. Thanks for following!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Maine: day 5

Here it is. The last full day. Maine was everything I hoped and more. We had very diverse experiences and I still think we only scratched the surface of what Maine has to offer.
Our last day was mostly spent at Acadia national park. Before we went, we picked up a muffin, scone, and a "puffy" (a pastry filled with chick peas, tomatoes, and feta) from the morning glory bakery. That was lunch for about $8. Not too shabby. We hiked a trail called Gorham trail to Gorham mountain. We followed the path to "The Bowl" and Beehive mountain. After considering a slippery and precarious decent from Beehive, we opted for the easier route down to the ocean path. We kept it pretty chill in the afternoon with reading, naps, and some pre-dinner wine. Tomorrow we will make our way home. Zeeba (our cat), this is your heads up so you can clean up the house from your kitty parties before we get back.

I will post several more Maine related posts and photos as the days go by. Thank you every one for following along. It is quite fun to share with all of you!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Maine: day 4

Day 4 brought us to Bar Harbour and Acadia National Park. Mount Cadillac in Acadia is the tallest peak on the United States Atlantic coast. There are beautiful forests, lakes, tidal pools, and rocky shoreline.

We drove all through the park stopping along the way to hike and check out points of interest. We tried to stay to watch the sunset but as it was a bit cloudy, we descended the mountain and found some dinner. I took several shots on my other camera and those will take a little more time to load. I figure I'll have a post trip post with a few highlight photos. Tomorrow is our last full day. It looks like it will be a big hiking day.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Maine: day 3

Waking up in Belfast was very nice. We had a cooling storm pass through the area that moved on by the time we left our room. A footbridge dedicated to the men of Belfast who faught in WWI crosses the harbor. It was a nice way to start the day. Next we drove south to Camden. We passed through the day before and it looks pretty happening. It was for sure. Very cute. We were hungry right away, and since we don't do well unless we are fed, that was the first goal. Unfortunately, when we get hungry, we get indecisive. This leaves us cranky with an otherwise easy decision. Luckily we stumbled upon a great find. The Old World Potato Company. Sara had a sweet potato seafood chowdah (insert eastern accent) and I had a vegetable chili with half sandwich. Peanut butter, banana, honey and (the kicker) bacon. Awesome. After that we explored the town on foot. Eventually we drove to Rockport to... Well... Do nothing really. Just walk around. It was great. We starting getting pretty exhausted. Day 3 must be the sleepy day of tourism because on our drive we found a small park by the water and fell asleep on the ground for an hour or so. I know, life is so hard. 

After a quick dinner, we decided to call it a night early. We are going to Bar Harbour tomorrow. Acadia, here we come. 

No smoking allowed. Very Punny :)
Enjoying an apple in Belfast.
Awesome. Bacon and Bananas.
Save the whales. Recycle the ropes!
Pretty cool.
Where we took a nap. 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Maine: day 2

Today we left Boothbay Harbour after a whale watching tour. We saw sunfish (the saltwater kind) and 2-3 fin whales (the second largest species). We made our way to Belfast by way of the Cellar Door Winery in Linconville (free wine and food pairings and great chocolate). Finally, we finished with dinner (Darby's, Sara had a chicken rosemary gorgonzola pasta and I had a beef and marsala mushroom pot pie) and a haunted historic tour in Belfast. this trip is getting expensive :) but that is why we are so frugal, so we can have fun from time to time.