Monday, January 16, 2017

British Isles #20: Dunnottar Caslte

As you walk up to Dunnottar Castle you notice first that this fortress is staggering, strategic, built atop ancient craggy cliffs that drop off into the North Sea on the east coast of Scotland. In fact, Dunnottar means "fort on the shelving slope". The oldest parts of the castle were built during the 14th century though there is evidence of Pictish (a Scottish Tribe) presence from the 3rd century. There is a really interesting timeline HERE if you you'd like to know more castle history.  Most of the ruins remaining date from the 15th & 16th century. On a clear day the views out to the North Sea must be spectacular! But even on the foggy, misty and cold day that we visited this place is still amazing, atmospheric and little haunting. We took a steep but easy walk down to the pebble beach to the left of the castle after our visit. I love beach combing for pebbles and shells. Here we found a small cave and many different types of seaweed and mollusks. This is a must visit if you find yourself in Scotland anywhere near Aberdeenshire

Thursday, January 12, 2017

La Lune

New Telescope + Full Moon + Smartphone + Steady Hand = Moon Magic

Saturday, December 31, 2016

A New Year

Elk atop Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado in July!
Hoping your holidays were joyous & bright and that the New Year is full of wonder, good fortune, and the best kinds of adventures.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Emerald Posting...

It's not too late to order a Yuletide Edition of Emerald Post HERE which includes a festive print called "Gathering the Greens," a tribute to the Irish tradition of decking the halls with Holly, Ivy, & Mistletoe all nestled around a vibrant red trinity knot. You'll also find a mini notecard, a postcard, photo print, and bookmark in December's Emerald Post. If you'd like to send one as a gift, I can address and post it directly to the lucky recipient.  

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Winter Blooms

'Tis the season for these beautiful winter miracles. These are frost flowers, delicate naturally occurring ice ribbons formed when the air is freezing but the ground is not. The stem of the plant is still pulling water up from the ground but the freezing air causes the stems to crack and ice to form in extremely thin layers which is pushed out from the stems of plants in the most wonderful patterns, like Christmas ribbon candy. These are worth looking for on these cold mornings!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Gingerbread Dreams

Here are some recent feats of Gingineering, aided, in part, by my niece & nephew. A castle for the royalty and a wee cottage for the more humble village peasants (or a woodland witch, you never know).

LED candles illuminate melted hard candy windows

Saturday, December 3, 2016

The Cave State

It may be under appreciated just how many caves we have here in the Ozarks and throughout Missouri (especially since I've visited so few). So we have decided to start exploring these gems. Recently we visited both Cosmic Cavern near Berryville, Arkansas & Talking Rocks Cavern near Branson, Missouri. Both caves were really spectacular with guided tours lasting about an hour. Though I must say I enjoyed Cosmic Cavern more so due to an excellent guide, sometimes that makes all the difference. Here are some pictures from our subterranean explorations:

Cosmic Cavern - Berryville, AR

We were lucky to spot the tiny, elusive brown cave bat!

Talking Rocks Cavern - Branson, MO

A Winter Village

Mushroom Monday

Back in November I stumbled upon this purple-hued cluster of mushroom. The tops of them looked almost metallic taupe but underneath was purple indeed. I think they are Silvery Purple Corts, but not certain.