Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Postcards from the Lake: Closed for the Season

That last weekend at the lake before closing is always bittersweet. It's usually relatively cool (or cold) and crisp. (Sometime a little too cold!) As we put away the porch furniture and put on the storms, we know we won't be coming back to this haven of ours for a good seven or eight months. And I miss it before I've even left.

It wasn't all work, though. There was a farmer's market visit -- end of season zinnias for the table, several small pumpkins to take home after they've done their weekend duty.

We enjoyed cozy fires every morning and evening in the the fireplace. That and the space heater are it! It's lovely to sit quietly with just the radio, reading or computing after dinner.

The mornings had an eerie "Mists of Avalon" quality to them.

I expected King Arthur to pop around the corner and throw Excalibur into the lake.

The foam made it look like whitecaps or big waves.

Dining? Of course! We had lovely dinners as we both used up the fridge and enjoyed some special treats. The gift of tomatoes from our at-home neighbor brought a most fabulous and super-fresh pasta sauce -- think about nine tomatoes, spicy sausage, capers, artichoke hearts, the last of the fresh basil and oregano, pepper flakes, a little vinegar. We had no garlic, usually a crime! But even without, it was one of the best sauces Rick ever made.

He rocked it with the pizza, too, when the Greg came by on his way back down state. It was so good to catch up with our favorite artist -- and with Rick's pizza, what wasn't to love about the day?

Once again, the birds were there -- Henry Heron, Docket the Duck and some new ducks. Can anyone tell me what these are? My bird book said something like Mussgoren but I didn't write it down and nothing's tracking on Google!

Well, they could be named anything -- they were just so darned beautiful.

We picked up a half-cord of wood, which should get us though the next two years, loading it into the trunk of the car, unloading and going back for the next batch.

I was able to paint a bit -- on the porch, too. It wasn't that cold once the sun came around! And of course, a walk around my area. There is only a bit of color out -- not much (surprisingly so, for this late).

But there were some beautiful wild sunflowers.

And the bees were loving them!

Even Lizzie (also known as Princess Pea) was lapping (and napping) it up. She loves the lake; it's the to-and-from that doesn't please her!

It was tough taking down our fairy lights from the porch, but we the fairies will keep it safe till next summer.

We left to come back to the real world after more or less of a media halt over the weekend. News of the Las Vegas shootings -- senseless violence and still we sell assault weapons; the continued challenges of Puerto Rico and the idiotic things said during Trump's visit. I wanted to turn around and go back to this spot where Lizzie snuggles under the quilt, the ducks meander peacefully in the water in front of the house and where Henry spreads his wings as he soars away.

Goodbye, Lake. We'll be back.

Thank you all for such good thoughts on my last post. I start the radiation on Monday for four weeks; thyroid biopsy right after. Not how I planned my fall but it could all be so much worse and for that, and your kind words, I am most grateful.

Sharing this post with Share Your Cup and Pink Saturday.


  1. A lovely farewell to your very special place.

  2. Are they merganser (merganser?) ducks? Oh, and can I have a slice of that pizza, please?? -Jenn

  3. *Sigh...I drool hearing about your cottage and seeing your photos. It all looks so very lovely. I'm sure though it is a bit cold you really enjoy the fireplace and candlelight as evening draws nigh. So romantic too, c'est non? :-) Rick sounds like a fabulous cook and though I'm not much of a pizza person that pizza looks absolutely scrumptious.

  4. p.s. I don't know much about ducks but I just googled and confirm they re merganser ducks. So cute, aren't they?

  5. Saying good-bye every year can be challenging, especially when you have new neighbors who don't seem to be able to respect you or the property around them. Seems like you didn't spend a lot of time there this year, but when you were there, you were always busy doing something.

    Please get better soon. I will worry about you until we hear from you again. And if the pain gets too much, you have my permission to crawl in bed with Lizzie and pull the covers over your head. Then you can snuggle with her and forget about everything but her warmth and unconditional love.

  6. You will surely miss your lake retreat, it's such a beautiful place. Those ducks with the punk hairdo are fabulous, never seen them before. That pizza looks most inviting, too. You have lots of wonderful memories to take home and keep you going through the winter! Look after yourself! Hugs, Valerie

  7. It's a shame that the season is over but you spent many wonderful days there this year. The pizza looks yummy, I should make one over the weekend, now that the temperatures allow to turn on the oven again. I checked for the pretty birds and they seem to be female goosander/merganser. I can imagine that sweet Lizzie doesn't like to travel but it's great that she enjoys spending time at the lake.
    xo Julia

  8. And wishing you all the best for the upcoming treatment!
    xoxo Julia

  9. Sigh! The respite to the lake before beginning treatment. How peaceful and beautiful. Love the picture of the upturned boat in the misty morning. That pizza looks so amazing. Take care, dear friend! My thoughts are with you as you walk through treatment and recovery.

  10. I love that place..and one can read how much you do..a treasure for certain!

  11. Hello, what a lovely end to your time at the lake. The photos are lovely. The pizza looks delicious. I see above someone id your ducks, they are the Common Mergansers. I hope your Lizzie was ok with the traveling. I will keep you in my prayers and wish you all the best for you and the treatment. Happy Thursday, enjoy your day.

  12. Ah...serenity and simplicity.

    What is that red vine?

  13. Sounds like a wonderful final weekend of the season.

  14. I know your feeling well from bringing home our boat and closing up our screen porch. Its always sad in so many ways. But it looks like the perfect fall weekend before you left. I sometimes think its better in the fall, although chilly (but not for us this year too much yet), but its not all the passing through tourists and only the part-time locals. There's something beautiful about the quiet. Gorgeous photos today Jeanie. Hugs-Erika

  15. Another year, another set of fond memories. Beautiful pics, as always. The ducks are female Common Mergensers. I ID them by what I call their Lucille Ball hair style. :)

  16. Jeanie, what lovely photos from such a lovely place! I can only imagine all the memories that this special place holds for you and you made so many this season! What a beautiful end to your summer at the lake! Prayers as you start your radiation!

  17. Sad to say goodbye to the lake but thank you for the lovely photos and beautiful words. It was a mini respite from all the madness in the world. Lizzie and Annie look a little bit alike don't they. Those ducks are so pretty. Thinking of you. Hugs!

  18. Dearest Jeanie,
    I'm finally back and so overjoyed by finding myself here !
    Thank you for your so lovely postcard, even if it's filled with a little of melancholy, it's so, so beautiful !!!

    Wishing you a most lovely day, today,
    and wonderful days to come,
    with utmost gratitude

    XOXO Dany

  19. Jeanie, You took some great photos for this post. I love the fire! The pizza looks delicious. Might the birds be grebes? I pray good results with the treatments. Thanks for sharing. Sylvia D.

  20. Such a lovely post, and beautiful photos of a blissful weekend. An open fire is always so cosy. That pizza looks delicious. I like Lizzie, I hope she doesn't get too stressed with the journey. Good luck with your treatment Jeanie.

  21. First, good luck in the coming days and weeks. I know you'll miss your special place at the lake ... your readers will too!!!! Yes, I believe the duck is a Merganser ... funny little guys with their "hair cut". The pizza looks delicious!

  22. It all sounds so lovely. The good life.

  23. So serene. I know you're going to miss it.
    Sending good thoughts your way. Please keep us posted on how you're doing.

  24. Goodbyes are so bittersweet when you love the place where you are. I once saw a quote - another one of my 'good words' phrases - that said, "You never really leave a place you love. Part of it you take with you, leaving a part of you behind." Truer words were never spoken, I'm sure is your sentiment.

  25. Goodbye to the lake for another season. I like to visit with you there.

  26. Mergansers. I had never knowingly seen them until we were in Reno last year. I didn't know we had them here in The Mitten.

    I'm glad you had a lovely time up north, and that your cottage is safely wrapped up for the winter.

    Sending good thoughts that all of your medical errands go smoothly!

  27. Jeanie this looks like the most tranquil space. I LOVE the wild duck hairdos. :) Wish the computer had a taste button because that pizza looks out of this world!

  28. Hi Jeanie, Your lake home is such a beautiful spot for getting away, I understand why it's hard to put everything away for another season. The pizza looks as good as you describe, I would love a slice for dinner tonight! Hope all your medical treatments go well. Keeping you in thoughts and prayers..........hugs.

  29. Your ducks are common mergansers. I see Arti thinks they're females, but I think they're juvenile -- part of a clutch that's still cruising around together. In any case, they're absolutely delightful. We rarely see them down here, but I did see a pair a year ago.

    I can imagine how bittersweet leaving was. I hardly can believe that time is passing as quickly as it is. Of course, when you're stuck in an interminable summer, as we are, autumn does tend to sneak up. Every day is like the last until -- it isn't!

    I hope all goes well with your treatments, and that you feel just fine through them. This, too, shall pass -- and besides: there's Halloween, autumn, Thanksgiving, and Christmas to deal with now!

  30. Oh Jeanie, you had such a peaceful time on the lake. Yes, coming back and hearing the tragedy that happened in Las Vegas must have shocked you. It's so upsetting. Those are the funkiest ducks I've ever seen.....and so cute. This is a sweet picture of Lizzie. Your pasta sauce sounds wonderful, Jeanie. Spaghetti is one of my favorites. That is such a cool picture of the foam on the lake. There's always next summer. : )


  31. Hang on to these memories - Next summer will come soon, right after Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter and then............
    I fully agree with you on the shape of our country. it is up to each of us to make the corner where we live one of love and caring.
    Wonderful picture of Greg - and everything else. You are a great photographer.

  32. Like a lovely tribute! Great photos and your story told so eloquently through your lively captions!

  33. Oh, what a treat this last look was! Such a lovely image at the top of this post, Jeanie... it says so much about the abundance of your time at the lake and savoring every last drop of that goodness! It is a JOY to share it along with you!It really feels like we're along with you. So many other beautiful moments/images here too... What a blessing is this place and surroundings. Those whitecaps/waves almost look like mashed potatoes! LOL... Sorry, couldn't resist. ;) The gift of splendid. Nothing like a tomato in summer... *sigh*... I miss good tomatoes! That pizza looks sooo good!! Green olives... haven't done pizza with olives in a while, so much remedy. ;) Nice with the wood all in--ready for cozy fires next year!! Princess Pea--so cute a name--and fitting as she snoozing atop a-l-l those sweet! Think of the happy memories made this year at the lake as you start your radiation therapy next week.. Praying for you, my friend ((LOVE & HUGS))

  34. Dear, dear Jeanie, HELLO!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOW. What a whirlwind of a work place can a school be. I love my students, but the amount of time we spend at school is wild. I barely have time to see my emails or visit blogs. It's great to see you and to see how you are enjoying these last days of light and warmth. Our fall colors are barely starting here in the Twin Cities and it's going to be marvelous.


  35. It must be nice to leave this gorgeous place but at the same time nice to welcome a new season.

  36. I would hate to have close it up and wait that long to enjoy again.

  37. That gorgeous red leaved vine shimmying up the tree trunk might be woodbine. (Here's my backup:

    Do you remember the lovely beach towel you gave me two summers ago?
    I took it back to the Atlantic Ocean shore last week, carrying the memories of you with me. Great weather. Will send pix.

    This squamous cell / thyroid thing ... worrisome to all of us your friends. Try to feel our supportive, healing energy around you.

    MUCH love -
    Maryanne in SC

  38. Oh Jeanie... what a heavenly place! Love all your pics. And that pizza YES Please!!!! Have a wonderful weekend.

  39. Hello, I found you through rsrue.blogspot. I am popping ovr from

    Love the photos, my favorite is the boat
    Blessings, Renee

  40. Your lake experience takes my breath away...for the beauty and also for the serenity, the calm, the goodness of the world, the happiness. Your guiding principles in full bloom...

    Sending you best wishes for good healing...

  41. So bittersweet and I remember as a kid saying goodbye for the summer to my grandparent's cottage. I have longed to have one of my own since then. So cozy and lovely. Those duck/birds are so unique!

  42. What a lovely post. I love all your pictures!

  43. What a great blog! I came upon it today and we have a lot in common. We have a home on a Michigan lake, too. It's year round, though, so we enjoy some of the coldest winter months there! Brrrr... It is rather sad to see summer wind up though.

    Your photos are beautiful! i love those ducks, not sure what kind they are, but I love those fierce little faces!!

    Hope you are having a good weekend. Warm and rainy here in Chicago!


  44. What a lovely getaway, something you get to look forward to each year.
    Hope you're having a peaceful, healthy weekend.

  45. Dearest Jeanie,
    What a peaceful place to gather your thoughts, relax and enjoy life.
    The ducks are beautiful. I am not familiar with that particular one, but like you said, matters not, they are gorgeous.
    Let me at that food! Gosh, now I have to go find something to eat.

    Thank you so much for visiting Luna and your kind words. I am so happy you enjoyed.
    blessings, and take care of yourself.

  46. Such a beautiful place, Jeanie :)

  47. Oh, I would hate leaving the lake, too! What a cozy spot it is! I hope your re-entry holds joy and homey coziness. Yes, the horrible things that are going on. It's sad beyond sad.

  48. This evokes the lake most beautifully. What a wonderful place and no wonder you want to return. What is the foam? I am puzzling over that! :)

  49. Simply said . . .
    Beautiful . . .
    You paint with your words, thoughts, life . . .
    Such a beautiful post . . .

    Not the fall you had planned . . .
    Thoughts and caring Jeanie . . .
    Sail smoothly . . .

  50. The lake season always goes by so quickly. It seems like you were just opening the cottage for the season. The days are long, but the years are short, as they say. My parents can use their cabin year round, but it's very different to be up there during the winter and I know they are always sad when it's time to take the dock and boats out of the water.

    Your fall has definitely taken an unexpected turn. I am glad that your prognosis is great but it's still tough to go through treatments. I'll be thinking of you - and praying for good news from your thyroid biopsy!!

  51. It all sounds wonderful! I know you will miss it, but how fun to have it to look forward to as well! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  52. I am looking for my bird book - we shall see! I love your lake house, and my glimpses into the slice of heaven you have created. It will be waiting for you when you return.


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