Penny the Traveling Clothespin Doll shares her adventures at home and abroad.

All posts in Our Farm

Hello Friends,

I’ve been missing here for a bit, but we are back! It is the beautiful autumn season here in Western New York, and I have some pictures to share.

Last week my parents made a visit to the splendor of Letchworth State Park and captured some glimpses of its colorful display.

Won’t you come along and see the falls with us?

We will head down this road to see what awaits….

These historic stone walls add such a loveliness to the view. Here is a grand old oak tree that has lived here for ages, overlooking these hillsides blanketed with color. I wonder what stories he could tell? Long ago this area belonged to the Seneca Indians. This park has a fascinating tribute to Mary Jemison who was captured by the Senecas when she was 12, and she chose to stay and adopt the Indian way of life, marry an Indian husband and raise her children here. This was her view back then.

This is often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of the East” with the Genesee River flowing down the 17 miles of its length.

Come this way and we will see the Middle Falls, one of three major waterfalls nearby.

Here at the Middle Falls is a lovely picnic spot and close to the edge is where the water flows over. See below, there on your left is the cliff drop.

The water drops over 100 feet from here into the gorge below.

This Middle Falls is the widest of the falls, at nearly 300 feet wide.

This shot gives you a view of the picnic area we were just looking at. Zoom in on this next picture and you will see my dad still sitting there on his bench. ūüôā

Notice the misty air that keeps these stones damp by the falls.

After soaking in the beauty here, let us hike up and see the Upper Falls.

Spanning the Upper Falls is a newly built arched trestle bridge. It replaces the previous bridges for the trains to cross over. This bridge is a total length of 963 feet across, and rests 235 feet above the River.

Let’s take a closer look.

These Upper Falls are so beautiful, its hard to guess that the drop here is only 70 feet.

These stone steps lead higher to the top of the Falls.

And here is where the water goes over. This Falls has such an interesting “S” shape, where you can see the top and the front of the falling water all at the same time.

And now for a close up view of the Trestle Bridge itself. And lest you think that is not very big, look close to see the “tiny” rail along the top.

As a farewell to the Letchworth Falls, here is one of the lovely little side falls, one among many that line this huge gorge.

“Someday when I grow up, I want to be a mighty waterfall too!!” says he.

Maybe this one is Penny’s favorite.

Here at home, Penny has a few autumn pictures of her own to share with you. The yellow leaves of our locust tree add a bit of bright beauty to this pile of dried leaves in our yard.

We have been busy with harvesting grapes and apples, raspberries and potatoes here on our farm.

Below she is riding the breezes in the branches of the tulip poplar tree, clinging to the seed pods left by the summer “tulip” blossoms. It was a windy day, I’m gad this shot is in clear focus. The cold winds are coming! Farewell to the glorious sunny autumn days, we have enjoyed you immensely!

On a rainy day, the dogs enjoyed a hike to the back fields. Just look at those happy smiles.

Ooo, running water to splash in! We love mud!!

Back indoors, we welcome this damp, chilly season with a steaming cup of hot tea. Here Penny is stirring sweet and creamy chocolate peppermint tea, yum, yum! Always surrounded by apples in this season. I love it!

Autumn days are celebrated with this autumn rag quilt I made years ago, so soft and warm, and my brand new pumpkin socks.

The cover photo of this post is of Penny on a big white pumpkin that I grew in our vegetable garden. Isn’t it beautiful?

Autumn is a season of abundance and gratitude. As Thanksgiving is just around the corner, lets get our “thanks – givers” warmed up. This is a great time to start a gratitude list, and keep adding snippets of things in your life that make it beautiful, and speak of God’s love to you in a thousand little ways.


 

The colorful autumn days have come and gone so quickly this year.¬† We are now coated in heavy white snow, but here is a collection of autumn pictures from Penny’s adventures in the last month or so.¬† It is so fun to be reviewing these now.¬† Happy, thankful days.

 

 

Today, I’ll take you on one of my walks with Gracie out behind the farm.¬† We walked down this path, along with a little mud and a lot of sunshine.¬†¬†We like to go exploring in the woods.¬† Anyone down inside this hollow log?¬† Hello??

 

 

A mossy log is so enchanting.  This is a good spot to sit, be quiet awhile, and think.

 

 

What a perfect shape and color of beauty.

 

 

Our dog, Gracie, loves to go for walks or fetch a ball.  Outdoors is her favorite place to be and her tail wags the entire time we are out walking.  So many things to explore and discover!

 

 

My brother grows lots of pumpkins, so we enjoy their cheery presence around the farm.

 

 

Here is one of the pallets where they sit for sale out by the road.

 

 

Rainy autumn days are delightful too, I like the character of the trunk of this maple tree contrasting with its golden leaves.

 

 

What is so fascinating about autumn puddles?  There is a restful stillness of leaves lying here.

 

 

Gentle rain patters on these red leaves.  Its almost like music to hear the rain fall.

 

 

Chilly days call for baking time; and so we’ll set about making pies.¬† Grab an apron, Penny!¬† Roll the dough!

 

 

This one is a cherry pie.  Dusty Penny stands back to survey her labors.  It is now ready for the oven.

 

 

The pumpkin pies will get an extra fancy touch of decoration this time, so we cut out leaves from the left over pie dough.  I must say, Penny, you are making quite a mess!

 

 

Oh, but isn’t it worth it?¬† Look at that beauty.

 

 

When all is finished and cleaned up, Penny gets to sample her very own mini piece of pumpkin pie.  Made from our very own pumpkins, I might add.  So yummy! (I ate some too.)

 

 

We celebrated Thanksgiving with so many things to be grateful for.¬† Our God is good.¬† I have enjoyed reviewing Ann Voskamp’s popular book, One Thousand Gifts, during this season.¬† Don’t we often get stuck on our disappointments and stresses and forget to take time to focus on God’s goodness?¬† ¬†When we accept whatever He sends with open arms, it transforms our thinking.¬† May His love shine in your heart and bring joy and freedom today.

 

 


 

One of the great joys of Spring is the music of the birds.  It is sweet to take time to listen in awe to the harmony of the many, many songs lifted in praise to their Maker.  I took these bird pictures all from our front porch one rainy day, thrilled to see so many birds in so short a time.  Then I thought of them again yesterday when I was reading in the book  Streams in the Desert, by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman.  Below are quotes from the reading dated May 30th describing how we are given a special song and trained to sing in a special way, so each of us can sing a song like no other.

 

 

“And no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.”¬† Revelation 14:3

 

“There are songs which can only be learned in the valley.¬† No art can teach them; no rules of voice can make them perfectly sung.¬† Their music is in the heart.¬† They are songs of memory, of personal experience….

 

 

“In Heaven there will be a song that can only be fully sung by the sons of earth…¬† Doubtless it is a song of triumph, a hymn of victory to the Christ who made us free.¬† But the sense of triumph must come from the memory of the chain.

 

 

“No angel, no archangel can sing it so sweetly as I can.¬† To sing it as I sing it, they must pass through my exile, and this they cannot do.¬† None can learn it but the children of the Cross.

 

 

“And so, my soul, thou art receiving a music lesson from thy Father.¬† Thou art being educated for the choir invisible…¬† There are chords too minor for the angels…¬† There are¬† depths which belong to thee, and can only be touched by thee.¬† Thy Father is training thee for the part the angels cannot sing; and the school is sorrow.

 

 

“In the night He is preparing Thy song.¬† In the valley He is tuning thy voice.¬† In the cloud He is deepening thy chords.¬† In the rain He is sweetening thy melody…¬† Despise not thy school of sorrow, O my soul; it will give thee a unique part in the universal song.

 

 

“Is the midnight closing round you?
Are the shadows dark and long?
Ask Him to come close beside you,
And He’ll give you a new, sweet song.
He’ll give it and sing it with you;
And when weakness lets it down,
He’ll take up the broken cadence,
And blend it with His own.

 

 

“And many a rapturous minstrel
Among those sons of light,
Will say of His sweetest music
‚ÄėI learned it in the night.‚Äô
And many a rolling anthem,
That fills the Father’s home,
Sobbed out its first rehearsal,
In the shade of a darkened room.‚ÄĚ

 

 

*******

 

 

 

 


 

Finally the snow and ice have melted and gone, and we find that spring is really here. The sunshine is warm at last. The breezes are gentle and refreshing.

 

 

I always love to get pictures of Penny with the first blooms because I am so eager to see color after the cold harsh winter.  What welcome cheer!

 

 

These mini daffodils are just her size.

 

 

 

Welcoming joyful blooms!

 

 

Now I’ll take you back a few years to some happy hatchings.¬† I had this incubator set up to hatch some silkie chicks.¬† Silkies are a favorite bantam chicken of mine.¬† Their feathers are soft and hairy making them quite a novelty.¬† They are naturally gentle and friendly.

 

 

After 21 days in a warm, moist environment, the chicks can be heard making little peeping noises inside the shell.¬† Then cracks begin to appear where they are poking through with their beaks to come out.¬† Each one has a special “egg tooth” on the end of their beak as a tool to get through the shell.

 

 

These eggs are dirty, but its best not to wash them so that the natural coating will protect them inside.  Below is the chick at last appearing warm and wet, all perfectly formed and very tired! 

 

 

And here is the empty shell left over.¬† Isn’t it amazing that God makes them so carefully and delicately alive and functioning sealed inside that shell where we cannot see them?

 

 

As hatching day progresses it is a thrill to see shell after shell develop first a little peephole, then a larger crack, and finally open with another live chick emerging.

 

 

In the incubator they flop around a bit to try out their limbs and stretch free, then they take frequent naps to gain the energy to move around some more.  Once their feathers dry and fluff up, we move them to a large cardboard box with a towel and heat lamp to keep them warm.

 

 

Oh, warm and happy, they love to snooze in here.  Cozy.  Cozy.

 

 

The family is growing!

 

 

Penny sings a lullaby as they relax and rest together.

 

 

Each will grow up to become a big white pom-pom.  Here is a picture of the silkie rooster father.

 

 

Therefore if any man be in Christ,

he is a new creature:

old things are passed away;

behold, all things are become new.

II Corinthians 5:17

 

 


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We have had such a mild winter this year, the temperatures have often been above freezing, so we are sorry that we haven’t¬†seen much snow.¬† This past week we had such a mighty snowfall, all in one day, that Penny¬†begged to go out and play.¬† I donned my big boots and lots of layers and out I went to play with her.¬† I had to carry her through¬†the deep snow, glad for my¬†snow boots and wool socks.

 

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Pardon the snowflake that looks like¬†Penny’s mustache here, but it was snowing pretty heavily.¬† Too bad the camera doesn’t catch its movement.¬† Or the sound.¬† I love the quiet sound of snow falling.

 

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Penny was pretending she was a rabbit and digging a deep underground burrow.

 

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And now she is a bird in a tree.  She was fascinated by this cup of snow, formed by the remains of a tulip tree blossom.

 

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Wow, Penny, aren’t you getting cold out here in the snow?¬† Yes, she says, and might she just sit a spell inside my warm alpaca hat?¬† This is one¬†I spun and knit from the fleece shorn off my own alpaca, Snufflesworth.¬† It makes a very warm¬†hat for me, and a warm place to rest if you are a little bit of a person and a¬†little bit chilled.

 

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But please, she begs, don’t lets go inside yet, I’d like to ride my donkey over the snow banks for a while.

 

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We have a real live donkey named Dinklepuss on our farm, and this is Penny’s own¬†miniature Dinklepuss.¬† He has the same big ears and gentle eyes.¬† Only he is made of resin.¬† Isn’t he cute?

 

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The next morning, after our outside jaunt, I captured a picture of these ice flakes on our window.  What splendid miniature artwork!

 

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And two days later, such a glorious morning of sunshine, but alas, the snow is all melting today.

 

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The suet bird feeder on the porch has been a busy place. Here I only have shown sparrows, but we have also had juncos and woodpeckers regularly that are fun to watch as they peck away at the seed while swinging in the breeze.

 

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Oh, look!¬† Here are little birdie tracks, hop, hop, hopping along in the melting snow.¬†¬†¬† I’m glad we had our play day¬†out when the snow was cold and deep and fluffy.

 

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It is windy today, don’t you love how that horse tail is swooshing back in the breeze?¬† I like to see the little paths that the horses make through the snow in their pasture.¬† How do they decide which way to go?

 

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This last picture is rather pretty, though I think it is sad to watch the snow melt so soon.  The early sun was shining across the dimpled surface as more and more grass appeared.

 

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The End.¬† I’m glad that we could share these snow adventures with you, we are thankful to live in a place with such varied beauties outdoors.

What a wonder-filled world God has made.