Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Postcards from the Lake: Not Quite the Last Hurrah

It's only mid-September, not quite the last hurrah at the lake. But you can feel it in the air. Days are cooler; nights are much cooler. Quite often, the mornings find the lake mirror-calm, reflecting the treeline on the other side and the quiet fishing boats, a far cry from the noisy jet skis of summer. Sometimes it is too cool or windy to paint on the porch, all the better to curl up with a book or needlefelting project, with an extra layer of fleece, hoping for an early visit from Harry North.

Harry, I have discovered, has a friend. Harriet, perhaps? I've yet to capture the two of them together but I have seen them flying in tandem on occasion. It's a striking sight. And now, I never know who I am photographing!


I had hoped for a long while to catch a photo of Harry (or Harriet) flying in the sunset. The other day I took a walk by neighbor Jim's and found my Big Bird standing alert on his dock.


I must have startled him, try as I may to creep a bit closer, for he took off, and rounded the point, heading straight into the sunset. 


They were rather magical moments and he was flying low enough not to disappear in the shadow of the trees across the lake.


Patience, they say, is a virtue. I didn't particularly feel all that virtuous, but I did feel incredibly grateful to be able to capture this sight -- not with the camera clarity it deserves but definitely within the heart.


Rick took a few days off the bike but took a long ride -- 85 miles -- on one of the rare days when the temperature was much warmer. He hopes to make a few more long rides before the snow comes, including a trip to Cleveland for my cousin Jeff's wedding.


Yes, there has been a little painting -- not so much as I would like, but that's OK. Earlier this summer, cousin Mark was up with his family, including Baby Ben. I think it was Sheri that said I should paint one of the photos I posted and I did. 

We decided to celebrate the end of what was a hard summer for us (Rick's kidney surgery and recovery, issues on the home front, odd weather) by a late summer Happy-Hour-Dinner at my favorite up-north restaurant. When your sharable plates are mussels, shrimp and risotto balls, you don't leave hungry, even if it's just appetizers! 

Rick and I welcomed friends Pat and Susan for dinner. They are former Lansing friends who moved north a few years ago and we missed seeing them last year in the Covid melee. It was good to catch up. 


 Earlier in the day I made loads of pasta sauce to freeze up for the winter. This is the first batch with a half-bushel of tomatoes,caramelized onions and mushrooms. I'll probably do another next week. Bet you can't guess what we had for dinner -- complete with Rick's fresh baked bread.


I leave you with another sunset. Sometimes they are just unbearably beautiful.

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61 comments:

Pamela said...

Your photos are gorgeous. I love the reflection in the water!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

Wow. What a place you have. Your bird visitors, your people visitors...plus that amazing painting...a wonderful place to enjoy life.

Joyful said...

It's lovely to see you still have wonderful days at the lake. Dinner sounds lovely as does the visit with friends and the sunsets are glorious.

ashok said...

Lovely photographs Jean

William Kendall said...

That late light of day is beautiful.

Valerie-Jael said...

Sunrise and sunset are my fave times, you did well to capture that flying heron, really beautiful. Glad you were able to catch up with friends. Have a great day, stay safe, hugs, Valerie

Iris Flavia said...

Beautiful first pic.
Harriet is as cute.
Wonderful painting!
And great your life gets back to normal. And the sunset, awww.

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie,

Your sky and lake views are just beautiful, love the first sunrise and the last colorful sunset. Great views of Harry North and Harriet. Meeting up with friends and family makes these Covid times feel a little more like normal times. Take care, enjoy your day!

David M. Gascoigne, said...

The fact that you enjoy the heron so much, Jeanie, and the sunset too, means that you have really discovered the essence of life, and the sheer simplicity of its meaning, which is at the same time profound. May you enjoy your cottage for many years to come.

Marilyn Miller said...

Harry flying is just lovely. What an amazing sunset too.
Yummm! The pasta sauce and meal with friends sounds most wonderful.
I can just picture you there in your cabin felting away or painting too. I love your summers at the lake.

La Table De Nana said...

Du plaisir!Kinda sad things are coming to an end:(Cutie watercolor!

Arti said...

Sounds so delicious, not only the food, the scenery as well. Love your painting! :)

Nancy said...

Beautiful pictures! That last one is my favorite!
We just had mussels at a restaurant a few days ago. We love them!
And Cleveland is not too far away for us... my boys live there!
Enjoy your week!

shoreacres said...

By Friday, everyone here may have their power back on, post-hurricane. I spent yesterday trimming a tree, checking out the water levels at the marinas (high) and taking some bottled Starbucks to a friend on the west end of Galveston who's still without power and wanted "real coffee." Different folks, different strokes! But it seems all the birds and squirrels are accounted for, although I haven't seen my possum yet.

Joanne Huffman said...

Great photos. You are so good at enjoying and sharing the golden moments life presents.

Sandi said...

We'll all be waiting for pictures of the baby herons!

The French Hutch said...

Fabulous photos of your big bird! Not so funny now that you don't know if it's the new guy or Harry. It would be sweet if someday you see a wee Harry or Harriet. You have had an up and down summer, hope it's all good heading into fall. Happy Wednesday......

Red Rose Alley said...

That is the cutest painting, Jeanie. I love it. Such a precious boy. It turned out so good! Those skies at the lake are incredible. And so glad you got to enjoy Harry (or Harriet). ; ) These are lovely and peaceful photos of the big bird. That's a cute picture of your friends, and glad you got to share dinner together at your favorite restaurant. Risotto balls sound Yummy, and Oh, that pasta!

~Sheri

Karen said...

Beautiful.
Did you get a whooper of a storm yesterday? I've been trying to contact my aunt and uncle at Lake Traverse without any luck so I think their signal must be out. It tracked through here late in the evening but mostly missed us.

bobbie said...

That last sunset is a GREAT capture!!! TFS ~

Divers and Sundry said...

Oh! Your bird and sunset photos! Gorgeous!

It must be nice to have such a great spot for hosting visitors for a meal.

Ricki Treleaven said...

I love your sunset photos, and they are indeed lovely! Your watercolor portrait is so cute...I love the little guy's swagger! Enjoy these last days of summer. I need to put up some good veggies for winter while I can still get them at the Farmers' Markets.

Linda @ Life and Linda said...

Such a cute painting. Harriet is great, a nice companion for Harry. So glad you go to entertain friends. Freezing your pasta sauce will be nice for winter.

Penny@The Comforts of Home & From Harvest To Table said...

What great sunset pictures! Love how you captured the heron in flight. What a sweet painting of the little one!

Victoria Zigler said...

I'm glad you finally got your Harry North sunset photo. Sounds like you're making the most of the last of the season. Nice you got to catch up with some of the people you care about.

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

Reading your words makes autumn more welcome. Lovely painting, you can imagine he's at the ready to skip rocks.

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I love the painting. Your photos are always wonderful…birds, the lake, sunsets, and friends. Freezing pasta sauce is a great idea!

Sandra Cox said...

Looking at those pictures is like stepping into paradise.
Love your painting. The red pops.

gigi-hawaii said...

You are blessed with a beautiful life, complete with good friends and a loving boyfriend. Love the thought of eating spaghetti with your special sauce.

Jenn Jilks said...

Aren't they wonderful?!

Cindy said...

Love those pictures with Harry (or Harriette) and the sunset. Just beautiful. And the painting of your grand son is really good! The deep blue color of his hat, the shadows of the dock, the various colors of the water... you're really talented!

Sandi Magle said...

Your time at the lake sounds lovely...and the photos are so gorgeous. We are hoping to get on our lake (2 blocks away) next week, it was too hot to even think about going out...but hopefully the temps will cool off by next week! Maybe the fish will actually bite! Love seeing Harry/Harriet...we often see a pair of Sandhills when we go to our favorite park and the are gorgeous on the ground and in flight. I really enjoyed your post, hugs, Sandi

My name is Erika. said...

I thought I posted a comment, but I guess not. I love that first sky photo. I'm glad your end of summer at the lake days are good ones. Its nice to wrap up this time of year doing those things you love at the lake. hugs-Erika

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

I'm so happy you captured Harry flying into the sunset - wonderful! I hope you have quite a few days left up north. Enjoy these times before winter hits.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

What a beautiful and warm post. I loved the photos pf the lake and the sunsets you experience. Harry or Harriet, put on a great show. Such lovely photos and heart touching, too. Stay safe, dear.

Anca said...

It's lovely to see the heron with his new friend. :) I love reading about your trips and visits with friends. Sending hugs xx

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Our Harry the Heron as we have also dubbed the one we see on the Nashua River below our apt has been flying solo most of the time, but every now and then there is a rare companion. This week, we spotted a pair of cormorants and at least a dozen ducks have returned to the river providing nice entertainment when they splash around. Your heron flight views were fun to see, Jeanne, nothing better than being able to connect with good friends with food and talk. And, a beautiful sunset is the best ending to a day!

thepaintedapron.com said...

Aren't you smart to make sauce for the winter! The sunset photos are lovely, and how nice that Harry has a new friend. Your painting of the little boy is adorable, and spending time with old friends is always the best! I'm so glad Rick is better and able to enjoy his bike rides~
Jenna

L said...

Time is flying isn’t it, I hope you and your family are well, Autumn has arrived in its coat of many colours here, I’m ready👍❤️

L said...

Time is flying isn’t it, I hope you and your family are well, Autumn has arrived in its coat of many colours here, I’m ready👍❤️

CeeCee said...

Great capture, looks beautiful

DUTA said...

Sunsets are sometimes 'unbearably beautiful!" How very true!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Jeanie, love the photos, but even more, the painting! Beautiful! Glad Rick recovered nicely from the surgery. I couldn't ride a bike 85 miles at any point in my life, let alone so soon after surgery!

Malindha Erba said...

Nice photos ^^

Carole @ From My Carolina Home said...

Fabulous sunset photos, and your herons are so beautiful.

Pam said...

I love watching the herrons take off and fly and it amazes me just how close they can fly to the water. To get an amazing pic of them flying together in the sunset with their reflections bouncing off the water....

Sandi said...

Just came back for a second visit to see those lovely lake scenes. 😊

Sandra at Maison De Jardin said...

Jeanie, I love the photos, especially the sunset. It is breathtaking. And your pasta looks scrumptious and I know your sauce is amazing.

Wishing you lovely end of summer days. Autumn is certainly on its way.

Prims By The Water said...

What beautiful pics and so glad you were able to share dinner with friends. Janice

Sandra Cox said...

That sunset picture is just breathtaking. I can see why you love being there so much.
Have a glorious weekend.

Carola Bartz said...

The sunsets at the lake are gorgeous - especially when Harry or Harriet are in the picture as well. Maybe a theme for another painting of yours? Those purple and magenta hues are fantastic and must be fun to capture with water colors. I have found that while our sunsets in the summer are wonderful, nothing beats the stunning winter sunsets with their rich colors (yes, I know it's not winter yet!)

Amy at Ms. Toody Goo Shoes said...

That last sunset picture is breath-taking! I can only imagine how it must look in person. Great pictures also of Harry/Harriet! Getting a picture of both of them would be the ultimate!

Danielle L Zecher said...

I love the sunset photo!

I can't imagine needing fleece this time of year! Even with our cooler (for us) weather it's still shorts and tshirts whenever possible. I don't think I'd survive in your climate.

Sami said...

I love pictures of sunsets and that last one is stunning!
The pictures of the herons are great too in that pink sunset glow.
So nice that you have been enjoying the company of friends and good food.
Enjoy the rest of the summer weather Jeanie.

eileeninmd said...

Hello Jeanie,
Love the Heron images, they are always a treat to see. Your sky images, first and last photos are gorgeous. Cute painting of Ben? I am glad Rick has recovered and I hope you are feeling well too.
Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Take care, have a great weekend!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

What beautiful colors over the lake and you always see some kind of bird near the water. You take such good photos. Hope this coming week is a good one!

Nikki - Notes of Life said...

Wonderful photos, I especially love that first one. What an amazing place :)

Shiju Sugunan said...

The painting is amazing. I liked your pictures too.

My latest post:
https://craniumbolts.blogspot.com/2021/09/birding-with-rohan.html

SingingRiverSoulSpa said...

There is something so satisfying about big water once the noisy, bright days of Summer end - like a benediction.
I couldn't keep up with the details of you these past months but sensed that life wasn't going swimmingly and am so grateful you have this change of seasons (and those gorgeous eggplant colored mussels) to mark the passing
of a chapter. Prayers for a new day feeling.
That painting of the little boy is music:)
Glad you got to sink into that lakeside rhythm a little
and now I'm hungry for pasta sauce in a big way.
Thinking of caramelizing onions now:)
Love and shelter,
Jennifer

Lowcarb team member said...

From your first to your last photograph, they are beautiful to see.
So good to see Harry/Harriet ...
I do like your painting.

Hope the week ahead is a good one, this month seems to be passing by so quickly.

All the best Jan

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Gorgeous photos. Those birds are a true sight to see! I feel lucky everytime I spot one!

We had highs near 90 on Sunday. I am sure those in the lake region were happy to get another day of summer. I was pretty miserable as I have a terrible cold and heat just makes me feel worse! But now it’s cooled off and the forecast looks very nice. I just hope for a long fall!!

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