Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Pumkins, Newts & Kittens

A week and a half has passed since Columbus weekend (Monday October 8th was Columbus Day, and a holiday for the US) when we were blessed with a visit from our son's family. Time sure flies when you're having fun :) Last week was a busy one and I didn't find time to post, so now I'm playing catch-up.

Soon after they arrived the boys headed for Grandpa's pumpkin patch to see what treasures they could find.

We took a few of the biggest pumpkins to them when we visited in September, but there are still plenty left. My husband planted several varieties of squash, pumpkins and gourds (123 hills to be exact...I think perhaps he got a little carried away :), and ended up with a very large harvest. Plenty to share!

If you click the photo to enlarge, you'll see the little one's expression here. I don't remember what made him giggle, but he was apparently tickled about something pretty funny.

A bit of pullin' and tuggin' was necessary to free this pumpkin.

Hmmm, I think this one is just right! Posted by Picasa

Here's one hiding under the grass!

I'd like this one please.

O.K., now what's next? Posted by Picasa

A trip to the woods is always fun, especially sitting on bales of hay in the back of the wagon pulled behind the little John Deer.

There's always plenty of interesting things to find, but the most exciting discovery was 3 little bright orange newts.

They look like tiny lizards, but are members of the same family as salamanders, which makes them ambhibians, like frogs and toads. They like the moist dampness of the woods. Posted by Picasa

There's not enough fall color in the trees to label this a spectacular fall foliage year, which is a bit disappointing, but the surrounding countryside is still very beautiful.
Coming out of the woods we have a wonderful view of our farm and the pretty valley we live in.
Fields of corn and oats Posted by Picasa
On Sunday afternoon this young man spied some previously undiscovered kittens hiding in a pile of cement blocks! Their mommy, or perhaps another mommy cat, had apparently just moved them there. We already had one batch of 4 in the barn, apparently belonging to Sheba (they all look like her and have extra toes on their front feet)......recently discovered in the hay mow.... that are approximately 5 weeks old.
Here's a cute little orange baby.
This latest batch appear to belong to Sophie, our long-haired gray calico mommy. She always hides them for at least the first 4 weeks and then may bring them into the barn if we're lucky.

This sweet little girl looks just like Sophie

You can well imagine the excitement of the boys...... Posted by Picasa

..........having all these kittens to play with!

Here are 3 of Sheba's.

But sweet Phoebe has taken over a good share of the mothering duties it seems.

You might think the story ends there, but not so. That night, after the kids had gone home, Ross and I found this little lady outside the back door when we arrived home from church....obviously the 4th of Sophie's litter. She's a very shy little kitten but we're working on changing that.

Along with Riley, Max and Ruby (the little long-haired calico), we now have 11 kittens, and a couple left from Sheba's spring litter. We have a few prospective homes, but will need to find more. Posted by Picasa

Today our weather is beautiful with temperatures around 70ºF (21ºC), but for the most part the past 2 weeks have been overcast, showery, and chilly, putting an end to our unusually warm fall, but giving us some much-needed rain.

We still have some flowers blooming in the gardens and containers, and tomatoes and squash being harvested in the veggie garden, but a frost is sure to hit before much longer. It's not often we go past the half-way mark in October without a frost. We've been very lucky to avoid one so long into the fall.....a blessing indeed, but sad to say, I know the cold must eventually come as the seasons change. Then I'll look forward to another spring!

Susan of Patchwork Reflections has very sweetly passed along another "Nice Matters" award to me. Thank you! Susan is the personification of nice and a wonderful writer. She never fails to make me smile. Speaking of which.....

I must also send a heartfelt thank you to dear Motherkitty for this "You Make Me Smile" award.

The feeling is mutual MK :)

What a pleasure it is to share daily life with these dear blog friends.

I hope you all have a wonderful week!


Isabelle said...[Reply]

Your life looks very very enviable. Beautiful countryside, lovely grandchildren and multiple kittens. What more could anyone want?

You write so well, too.

Susie said...[Reply]

Hi Kerri!
Bill and I laughed at the 123 hills of pumpkins! Goodness that's quite a few.. :)
Love the pictures of the boys in the garden giggling and riding behind the John Deere. What wonderful fun they must have! (and you too, of course!)
Those kitties!!
I wish I was closer, because they are irresistible..Of course, Mr Snooty Vincent might have a thing or two to say about it :)
We're having rain this afternoon and it's so damp and chilly.
Fall is truly here..
love and ((hugs))

jellyhead said...[Reply]

Kerri, your little blond grandsons look good enough to eat! How lovely that they could come and enjoy the farm with you and Ross. (Huge pumpkins, rides, discovering kittens - they must have been in kid heaven!)

Val said...[Reply]

That is such good reading! And the photos just add to the flavour. I enjoyed it all so much. There isnt much autumn colour here this year in England either, but never mind, it cant always be that way. We never have the bright reds of maples anyway! Our first frost is only a day or two away I think too, but then it doesnt get anywhere near as cold as you have it. Enjoy the autumn fun!

Pam/Digging said...[Reply]

You are creating some very sweet memories for your grandsons. Your farm life is a bucolic ideal. Love the pumpkin patch and kittens.

PEA said...[Reply]

Hello dear Kerri:-) Oh what fun the boys had while visiting you..imagine being able to pick their own pumpkins in your pumpkin field and then be able to play with all these kittens! They are all so adorable...makes you wish they stayed that age:-) Congratulations on the awards, certainly very well deserved!! Another beautiful post and pictures:-) xoxo

Barbara said...[Reply]

What a lovely post with your sweet grandchildren as they discover pumpkins and little cats! It must have been a real lucky day for them (and the grandparents too, I guess).
Regards from Switzerland where we will have frosty days this week (according to the weatherforecast).

Reflection Through The Seasons said...[Reply]

I’ve enjoyed every aspect of this post Kerri, seeing your beautiful grandchildren, your lovely countryside and the precious kittens. I’d like one please..... Can you reserve the little one that looks like Sophie, she is adorable. You are so lucky to have these babies around your farm. Pleased to hear you are having nice weather, its been so dull here and has rained every day for a week. Marion

Alice said...[Reply]

Great photos of the boys. Haven't they grown so much in the past 18 months (since we first saw photos of them)? I'm sure it's like a day in Heaven for them being able to wander around the farm. My kids still remember the fun times they had as children on their grandparents farm.

What do you do with all the pumpkins, Kerri, besides give them away...lol.

I guess you could always cooked them up for the myriad of tiny kittens in the barn ...lol.

That little orange newt is an amazing colour. We have lots of skinks about that size here but they are the usual grey/brown.

A blue tongue lizard lives in our letter box - the postman doesn't know it's there, and I won't collect the mail. However, the grandchildren have no such qualms and this afternoon they all took turns at nursing (holding) it after Marcel lifted it out. I have photos but Michelle will probably do a posting too.

Great to see you've 'stirred' yourself and posted those lovely photos, Kerri!!!!

Memories Catcher said...[Reply]

Great shots!
You are creating some very sweet memories for your grandsons.

Susan said...[Reply]

I agree that this trip to your house will long be in the boys' memories, so much going on to do and see. Enjoyed the visit!

Moi said...[Reply]

You make me smile too, Kerri ..always :)

The expression on little one's face was precious..giggling like that :)

Those pumpkins must add such dash of color around. It's a lovely view you have from the woods to your farm and a lovely view from the farm to the beautiful surroundings....in short, and idyllic surroundings... :)

Have a great week, Kerri...and thanks for playing catch up :)

Val said...[Reply]

What a paradise your place is for the grandkids: kittens, newts, beautiful forests and all those pumpkins. Your photos tell a fantastic story.

Apple said...[Reply]

I know how much you value your time with the boys and how they love the farm so I'm happy you had great weather to boot! I don't remember ever pumpkin picking as a kid when I could wear shorts. The leaves are finally starting to change here a bit and we've had a very mild frost. Even without vibrant colors your valley is beautiful.

Motherkitty said...[Reply]

How wonderful that you had such a delightful visit. Those little blond boys are gorgeous. I'll just bet you and Ross had so much fun with them and I'm sure you couldn't stop hugging and kissing them.

We had a mysterious plant come up all by itself this year by the front porch. We didn't know what it was at first but now we do because we just harvested two nice little pumpkins, just right for our two little granddaughters.

I just love your kitties. I wish I could have more but seven adults are all I can handle at this juncture of my life.

Kerri, your post made me smile all over because it was so heartwarming. I'm glad you had such a nice visit with your family. Maybe you will see them again during the upcoming holidays.

Robin's Nesting Place said...[Reply]

Kerri, autumn at your home must be absolutely wonderful. You have such a lovely view. Your grandsons are so cute. I'm sure they had a great time visiting you.

Inland Empire Girl said...[Reply]

What a glorious time with the grandsons, family, pumpkins, and of course the kittens. What else do you need? As always, your images tell a wonderful story. I love the picture of the boys with thier backs to the camera with pumpkins in hand. Priceless.

clairesgarden said...[Reply]

the pumpkin hunting looks like a fabulous way to spend time.
and the kittens are just beautiful.

Terri said...[Reply]

Those boys must think a trip to your house is like a trip to heaven!!! What a wonderful time!
God bless!

Cris said...[Reply]

Wonderful post Kerri, the boys carrying the pumpkins made my day! Is this a sign of a milder winter when many trees have not changed colors yet? Have a blessed day!

Muum said...[Reply]

I enjoyed reading about your fall activities. The photo of your valley is beautiful, even w/ out fall color.

Lydia said...[Reply]

Hello Kerri, You have a very nice blog. I love gardening. I especially love pumpkin and winter squash, but have not had much luck growing them in the past. Congrats, for having a high yield of both pumpkins and squash this year.

Britt-Arnhild said...[Reply]

The two boys walking with the pumpkins is the most charming photo I've seen in a long time :-)

Zoey said...[Reply]

What a wonderful week it looks like you had with your grandsons. They are really growing up fast. I bet they do love to come to the farm!

I've never seen one of those orange newts before. Neat! I wouldn't want to touch one, though. :)

And just look at all those kitties! How do you ever find homes for them all? I guess you probably just keep most of them.

judypatooote said...[Reply]

Oh what darling little boys....what wonderful memories you have made for them....thank God for pictures, for you will also have those memories.... you certainly do have a pumpkin patch... I always love going to the pumpkin patch too....just to see the kids reaction....cute little kitties, and lots of them.. hopefully I can keep up blogging, for I have been lax for a while....the little orange newt sure won't be able to hide...wow he is really orange...perfect for this time of year......

Sandy said...[Reply]

Jimmy is so glad that we don't live any closer to you than we do because I love Sophie's 4th kitten and some of the others too.

The boys looked like they were having the time of their little lives choosing pumpkins and playing with all those sweet kittens. Ross did get carried away planting so many hills of pumpkins & squashes. Did he plant any cushaw squash? My MIL used to use it to make her pumpkin pies with instead of pumpkin and they were so good. Of course she called them cushaw pies.

You certainly deserved both of those awards and congratulations.

I did see just a wee bit of fall color beginning to appear in one of your pictures. We're just beginning to see a little color, but things here are still green despite lack of rain.

Hillside Garden said...[Reply]

Hi Kerri, just in the moment I call Mr. W, to see your wonderful photos. We take the red kitten! ;-)


LindaD said...[Reply]

Kerri, Your whole post was so heart touching.. There isn't much I could add to what everyone else has said.. makes me SO nostalgic for New england - grandbabies, barn kittens and "barn by-products' for my garden. LOL

TUFFENUF said...[Reply]

I love the photos of the boys, especially the one with them walking back to the barn. You can see in the photos how thrilled they were with the cute kittens! You sure have a handful of kitties now, what will you do? give them away or keep them?

LostRoses said...[Reply]

Your place must be a grandchild's paradise, so much to see and do and discover! Darling photos of the boys and the pumpkins, yes, you really were blessed with a visit!

JoAnn - NL "My digital eyes" :) said...[Reply]

Hi Kerri!

Hi wow girl (or woman haha) you deserve an award! My congrats yes!!!! Your blog always makes ME smile too, what a great photography again.....!!!

HI!:) Missed you/your blog too,
I am back from my short trip to South of Italy, thanks for 'not forgetting me' I posted an overview of pictures from my holiday , soon more... Have a great sunday!!!

Greetings JoAnn

Giddy said...[Reply]

While all your photos are priceless, the one with the boys walking back to the barn with their treasure of pumpkins is worthy of publishing to a magazine! It tell such a wonderful, heartwarming story. I hope you frame that one.

Naturegirl said...[Reply]

Kerri this post was filled with sweetness one that just warms my heart! Your little boys are the sweetest..grandchildren are such precious gifts!! Those kittens just melt my heart..oh if I only lived near by I certainly would take one myself!! Your home is located in such a beautiful location..I am in awe each time I visit. Thank you for sharing..hugs NG

Cathy said...[Reply]

Your little grandsons are both just adorable. I know they love visiting you. :o) The scenery there is lovely, and the little kittens are so cute! I enjoyed you post.

Cherdecor said...[Reply]

Kerri, I just found your blog. Your grandsons are handsome young men! I especially like the pictures of them walking back to the barn. I think you could sell that photo. LOL!

I want to spend some time reading your blog and catching up on your life in the beautiful state of NY.

I am a retired school teacher so your bio interested me. I will be stopping by again to read what is going on in your part of the world.

Diane J. said...[Reply]

Sweet pics of the kids, and of the kittens.


Thank you for the wonderful birthday wishes! I appreciate each and every one who took the time to drop by my blog and email me to wish me a Happy Birthday. :-)



Annie in Austin said...[Reply]

By now you may have had that frost, Kerri, but this beautiful photo essay captured everything at its peak - what an enchanting world you can offer those boys!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Kylee said...[Reply]

Oh my gosh, it's a good thing I don't live close to you because I'd run right over and steal that last kitten from you. It's ADORABLE!!!! Can you ship it to me? :-)