GREEN GREEN, IT’S GREEN THEY SAY – Marilyn Armstrong

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Green

Memories of summertime along the river. And now that autumn is ending, the next color will be white!

Green trees and reflections of green in the river

Quietly afloat down the river – Photo: Garry Armstrong

Summer by the Blackstone

A bright green day for the grazing cattle

Green by the bridge

Za’atar!

JAPANESE MAPLES TREES – Marilyn Armstrong

Japanese Maples – 09.04.19

On a sunny day in August, the Japanese Maple we raised from babyhood has come into its own.

What a beautiful tree it has become! It is tall and bright green all summer, but turns scarlet in autumn and stays scarlet when all other trees have lost their leaves.



Japanese maple in sunshine

Graphical view of Japanese Maple

CEE’S FUN FOTO CHALLENGE: UP IN THE TREES! – Marilyn Armstrong

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Trees

We’ve been away for a few days and I’m going to need a bit of time to get up to speed. I’ve got some interesting ideas, but it will take me a bit of time to write and edit them, so be a little patient. Didn’t take any pictures. It rained the entire time we were away, so there was no boating and mostly, Garry was trying to learn how to use a microphone and cut audio tracks — something with which I am NOT familiar, so I couldn’t be of much help.

Japanese maple in full leaf

My primary function seems to have been surrendering my Mac to Garry’s professional ambitions. I didn’t use it much anyway.

Meanwhile, I’ve got some trees!

Trees along the river and the pathway to the road

Sun through the trees

ON THE TREE OF LIFE – Marilyn Armstrong

FOWC with Fandango — Tree

On the tree of life, I am but a twig. A twig with a powerful desire to go back to bed and stay there until I feel better. I’m beginning to wonder what feeling better feels like. Would I recognize it if I bumped into it?

I am apparently becoming increasingly anemic. Maybe that’s the problem. To bee or not to bee, it’s a buzzing question.

MORE OF THE LAST AUTUMN TREE – Marilyn Armstrong

The Last Autumn Tree – FOTD – November 9, 2018


We had a second sunny day in a row. Unbelievable! But not to worry. It will rain tomorrow. Probably not until the evening. The rivers are full and they are expecting rivers to flood.

I am trying not to think about it, hoping the sump and the pump are up to the task. And our French drains are not clogged with leaves and the gutters are still viable. And the roof doesn’t leak.

The tree in all her glory

It has been raining  … major storms … several times each week and the rivers are cresting. And guess who lives in a river valley?

Amazing colors!

I went out and took more pictures of The Tree. Because after tomorrow’s storm, it won’t have any leaves left. Count on it.

I have save more pictures because I’m going to need them.

WITHOUT A PARTRIDGE IN SIGHT – Marilyn Armstrong

Pears of the Day – October 9, 2018

My vision isn’t as good as it used to be. I can see but only wearing exactly the right glasses which these days, is nigh unto impossible. I can get close, but never exactly right. I can read with no glass. Middle vision, I use computer glasses but right now, they are a bit too strong and I need a new checkup and new eyeglasses — for which I don’t have money.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

Without sharp middle vision,  I can’t clearly see the LCD on my camera. If I wear my distance glasses, I can’t even read the dials on my camera, let alone focus a lens.

Pear in a tree

So I am dependent on autofocus. Which, fortunately, is a lot better than it used to be — depending on the camera I’m using and of course, the lens.

So here’s the story of the pears.

More pears in the tree

Garry and I are at River Bend Park. It is part of a long string of parks surrounding the Blackstone River, all loosely titled “the Blackstone Valley Historic Corridor.” One step to the left of a national park.

All the parks are linked by the river or the adjacent canal, or one of the river’s many tributaries. Then there are the streams, swamps, other smaller (and sometimes nameless) rivers, lakes, and ponds. This particular section of the park includes a big barn build during the 1700s on land that was a farm. Hence the name River Bend Farm.

I’m looking at a big tall tree which, as far as I can tell, is full of big yellow flowers. And then, while I was trying to find the flowers, I heard a “thunk.”

Thunk? Flowers do not make a “thunk” when they fall. Flowers are inclined to float gently to the grass. This “flower” hit the ground solidly. Realizing that I wasn’t looking for yellow flowers, I pulled out a small camera with a really long lens and eventually realized that all those big yellow flowers were actually bright pears. It was … a pear tree.

I took pictures. I was not sure I got any sharp ones, but I shot anyway. It turns out, I got more than a few and they are pretty good.

Later on, Garry said that he knew it was a pear tree because he narrowly avoided getting bonked on the head by a falling pear.

Funny about it being a pear tree because I used to have a huge old pear tree in my backyard in Hempstead. That was at the first house I lived in as a married woman. The pear tree was a cross between a Bartlett and a Bosc and produced the best pears I’ve ever eaten. It produced tons of them.

The neighbors all came by with baskets to collect pears. I still had tons of them remaining. I made pear pies, pickled pears, gingered pears and of course, we ate them. Despite that, there were bushels of pears remaining.

Pears by the river

In the course of events, we all learned a great truth. Do not sit under the tree when the pears are full-grown. Because one of those big babies — completely unripe and hard — falling from the upper branches could knock your head in.

AUTUMN COMES TO NEW ENGLAND – #WRITEPHOTO – Marilyn Armstrong

Autumn Comes to New England – #writephoto

It is the end of September. Normally, we would be wrapped in the bright leaf colors for which New England is justly famous. Not so far.

We were at Manchaug a few days ago and everything was green.  We always look for the first color of the year along the water, but aside from some berries and a few yellow leaves, it was still deep summer green.

The dam at Manchaug was full this year. Lots of rain this spring and summer.

It seems to make the colors bright and show up sooner than anywhere else.

But it was green along the river on Tuesday. Today is Friday and it has been pouring for the past couple of days. Good news? The temperature is down and you can see bits and pieces of the season on its way.

Bad news? If it doesn’t stop raining soon, the leaves will turn yellow, then brown, then fall off the trees. Rain is just not the best thing for autumn colors.

Today, though I began to see — through the rain — the start of colors and even the occasional scarlet maple tree shining through the green. And finally, I saw a tree. Just one tree, mostly yellow with some red. I took pictures.

Considering how grim much of life has been, one bright tree made all the difference.