Our weather has been delightful.  No, it has been absolutely stellar!  This is the autumn weather that people love…..warm days filled with bright blue skies and puffy clouds. Days that are warm when the sun is shining (and it has been…a lot!)  but chilly as the darkness closes in.  Days that please those longing for summer to remain, and for those like me, longing for summer to come to an end!

We have been working a bit in the woods. Actually, it is the kids more than I, working with Mark.  Ben cut firewood and then worked on clearing trails in the woods.  Last year, we had an excavator come through the woods with his dozer to cut a new trail.  The dozer really made a bit of a mess, overturning trees and tangling saplings into piles almost impossible to drag out without cutting them.  Ben worked to cut the pieces so that Michelle can load them into the wagon and we can cart them off.  This work is so tiring!

Today, I talked Mark into going for a ride.  And what a ride!  We rode on roads (I use that term loosely!) that are somewhat precarious and discovered some awesome sights.  Well, I was enjoying the ride.  Poor Mark….I think the drive was unnerving.  But hey, we survived!

I always love seeing the Mennonite farms on the east side of Canandaigua Lake. These folks have been buying so much farmland and taking it from useless to looking like a million dollars! I have talked about the Mennonites here on my blog before, but I just love seeing their farms.  Talk about turning a pig’s ear into a silk purse! So many properties that were run down are now producing and not only have the homes been redone, but even the land itself looks different and new.  While the Amish tend to stick to themselves more, the Mennonites are more open to outsiders and even work alongside them, joining in volunteer fire companies.

We didn’t travel into the country much today, but I thought I would share a few photos regarding these blessed people!

This little cart was in front of us on a busy highway as we went to Penn Yan the other day.  As we passed it, it was two young Mennonite girls driving a pony cart.  The girls looked like preteens,  either delivering or picking up produce.

That day, we also passed by a vineyard of young Mennonite women working. The ladies were all smiling and talking as they worked, picking grapes amongst the vines.

My regret this day was that time was short. There was so much activity in the fields, I could have spent an entire day just photographing everything.

Today, we had to take a slight detour as we drove back to Canandaigua, and we passed through an area where Mennonite farms are located.  I caught a glimpse of one home that was so pretty against the blue sky.

As you can see, everything is in tip top shape and the setting….well, you be the judge!

The “horse and buggy” Mennonites are not supposed to use modern rubber tires on their tractors. Instead, they use metal tires. Some of the neighboring counties have outlawed the use of these tires on roads, as they dig them up. Here is a tractor sporting the non-rubber tires.

Once again, I could have spent the entire day wandering and taking a million photos.  But responsibilities call out my name and remind me my time isn’t necessarily my own.

But as you can see, one needn’t be a starry-eyed dreamer such as I to delight and bask….it was just that kind of day!

Autumn Scenes from the Finger Lakes

It occurred  to me today that one of the reasons that people love this time of the year is because of the gorgeous lighting. I never would have noticed this except that photography has helped me discover so many properties I would have missed! As the sun sets lower and lower in the sky, it really does turn into a warm golden-yellow glow that really accentuates all the colors of autumn. Unfortunately, between the price of gasoline and work that needs to be done around the house,  I am missing my little adventures to just take photos.

I do have some pictures to share, though, that I have taken recently…

And my favorite picture…

The story behind this photo is that Mark and I took a ride to Penn Yan one day so I could pick up some specialty bread flour. On our way home, we passed by a little restaurant that sells not only chicken and hotdogs and such, but also ice cream cones.  It wasn’t really a hot day, but it was warm.  I told Mark we should stop for a cone.  As we pulled into the parking lot, this dog was lying in the back of his “people’s” van.  They left the tailgate open so the dog wouldn’t overheat.  I was so amused by this sweet dog’s delight to just “hang out” while the humans ate!