the trees have eyes

October 28, 2019

In the category of “do something that scares you,” I signed up for an online nature journaling and drawing class. I’m looking for ways to be more engaged with my birdwatching, and also to practice art — I haven’t really done anything with the visual arts since I was a teenager. So, I’m dipping my toes in.  It’s been a little frustrating and slow going — the class started in early October, the same month that I had trips/conventions for three weekends and I’m on deadline for a novel revision. And the weather turned utterly crappy, so I haven’t been able to get outside to actually, you know, nature journal.  But slow going is still going, and my backyard is pretty cool. The juncos are back at my feeder, so some time this week I hope to sit by the window with a cup of tea and my sketchbook and see what I can record.

One of the points of the class is that through observing, journaling, and sketching, you’ll notice things that you wouldn’t otherwise. By taking time to really observe, and really look at and record details, you’ll see things you wouldn’t by just taking a photo and moving on.

For example, I did a sketch of some of the aspen trees in my backyard. And discovered that my aspens have eyes. This whole time they’ve had them. I can’t not see it now.

 

autumn into winter

October 24, 2019

Here on the Colorado Front Range we had a hard freeze before the leaves really got a chance to change color. They just shriveled up and fell, like that. Total bummer. Last night we had our second snow of the season, and there’s one week left in October, which means if I’m going to knit holiday presents I really ought to get started. This year dragged so slowly, until right about now, when it seems to be on a hard burn for the end.

I’ve been badly oversleeping. I need Daylight Savings to end so the sun will hit my window earlier and I’ll actually haul myself out of bed. This is part of why I can never have a real job ever again.

I’m wrapping up a big rewrite of a novel I’ve been working on off and on for years. It’s under contract, this one will actually get a release date. I’m holding off on saying the title because we’re still working on that.

I’m already thinking about what I’m working on next, and then what I’m working on after that, which is probably more than my brain can really handle and I ought to just take a nap…. Argh, this time of year….

 

I just got back from a much-needed camping trip in Buena Vista, where I slept by a rushing creek, went rafting for the very first time, discovered a nice local whiskey, spotted a red-naped sapsucker nest, and got sunburned sitting in hot springs.

It all sounds lovely, and it was, except that my friends and I are also mourning the loss of one of our own. Our friend Andro passed away from leukemia a week ago. He was a good guy and way too young and I haven’t found a good way of talking about it so I’ve mostly been quiet.

It’s been a rough few weeks.

And now it’s time to get ready for the Ireland trip and Worldcon, which is in a month.  I’m looking forward to more travels and adventures. Will I see you there?

 

sky

May 24, 2019

This is a picture of the sky this morning.

I needed this so, so much. I came home from Winnipeg on Monday night to 4″ of snow on my car. It rained here the next three days. I bundled up in wool sweaters and turned on the fireplace. I spent most of yesterday crying. I’m solar powered, and I had nothing left.

This morning, finally, we got this. The Colorado blue sky. I frequently try to describe this blue in my books. The pictures can’t ever get the depth of it. This sky goes on forever.

I need this.

 

recent walk

April 8, 2019

I’m trying to get out and walk more. Here’s a scene from this weekend — you can just make out Long’s Peak, covered in snow. I like the way the light and sky and water all converge in this picture.

spring!

March 28, 2019

The crocus are here! The crocus are here!  They’re a bit late — I blame the giant blizzard we had two weeks ago. But now they’re here like gangbusters, and one of my clematis is sprouting, and the aspen have buds on them, and, and…

AT LAST.

I even went out in a T-shirt and no coat yesterday.

Of course, we’re supposed to have snow this weekend. But that’s okay. Spring is here. Can’t stop it now.

 

blizzard

March 15, 2019

We had a blizzard this week. Been a while since I’ve been in the middle of that much wind and snow, where all the fences were coated with it, where you worried that the trees were going to fall. I’m glad I could stay warm and safe inside.

There was a moment, at night, after the wind died down. The trees were encased in ice, and still swaying in the last little bit of the storm, which made the ice crack. So the night was filled with the most ominous crinkling, snapping noises. Nothing loud, nothing obvious. Just this strange crystalline murmur at the back of my hearing that went on and on. It was gorgeous.

It’s all melted now, that’s what Colorado blizzards are all about — a day of awful and then warm sun and water. A nearby pond is filled with pelicans. Maybe now, finally, we’ll get some spring.