It was another of those days - the kind to be in the middle of...so we were. It was a day to name plants - sumac, goldenrod, milkweed, plantain - Eliza saying hello to Out.
We were reminded lately of a fun trick that doubles as a life-saving wilderness survival trick - making acorn-cap whistles. (A friend is studying in the local eco-tourism program, and heard the following story from a classmate: She was out riding an all-terrain vehicle, when the machine flipped, pinning her underneath it. She managed to call her parents on her cell phone, but they were unable to find her, until she remembered this trick, and whistled to enable them to follow the sound and rescue her.)
Find an acorn cap (not too difficult around here). Hold it like so, with the bowl towards you:
Place your lips around the knuckles of your thumbs, and send your air across the edge of the "bowl". It took a bit of practice for both of us, but we figured it out! A trick worth knowing...
On to our "yoga" place from last week's hike...time to soak toes and wonder at the dragonflies hunting across the surface of the lake...time to stretch a little...time to sing a song...sun on one cheek, shade on the other...that about sums up this season, doesn't it?
Have you noticed that the mushrooms start appearing as we enter the piney woods? We talked about how some fungus prefer certain trees, and these white pines are host to many varieties...We talked about how you can identify a white pine, which is also an edible plant, with five times the amount of vitamin C as a lemon! Look for clusters of five needles...and notice how the branches grow in rings?
We snacked and drew under the pines, still gazing at the lake. The girls fall into a game as soon as our car arrives in the parking lot of this park. They instantly become the brother and sister from a favorite book of ours, which we read two years ago - Louise Erdrich's Birchbark House. Amazing the flow that happens between them as the story unfolds...
...and I was visited by one of fall's last flutters - the Eastern Comma. I must have tasted good; it stayed with me, tasting my skin (oh, tickle!) for a long 15 minutes or so!