A Visit to Stone Gate Farm

I’ll be brief: my neighbors rock. They share conversations, lend us tools, help on patio renovations, plow the drive, and now they’ve even let me come over to photograph their red barns in the snow…and all I do is share baked goods as a thank you. They must think their neighbors do not rock. More treats must be in order.

The other night on Facebook, I unceremoniously invited myself over to their place. To Gary: “I meant to send you an email earlier about pics…as in, can I come over and take snowy photos of your barn?” His reply: “Any time Heather, no invitation is ever needed…!” See? They are awesome. I suited up at noon and walked over for lunch…which you might think would give road crews enough time to clear the road. Nope. Snow pants and boots were in order.


I traipsed down their driveway for a few shots, slogged out through the snow for some more, and then crossed into the pines on the edge of the property for a couple more. Satisfied, I waved to Jill (had I known she was home, I would’ve happily chatted), and returned home for a bite.

The day was so spectacular though, that I soon found myself back in my snow gear for the four miles around the block – this time having waited long enough for the plow. The surface wasn’t too bad, but I was regularly pelted by tufts of snow blowing out of the trees. As I crested the last rise, Gary pulled up beside me in his truck. When he asked if I had stopped by, I replied that I had, but that I’d be back since the light was better.

I stayed home for the rest of the day, finishing up the work I had left to go walking. After dinner we took a quick drive, but I wasn’t camera-compelled until sunset. Sunset! We had one! We’re seeing these more often now – perhaps spring is on the way…though it didn’t look much like it as I trudged through deep snow for the pictures. It was worth it ;)

Those Winter Blues

In northern Michigan, we don’t often have clear views of the sun in the winter. We have days when the sun makes breathtaking appearances in between lake effect bursts, and days when the sun coyly peaks out through foggy cloud drapes but never quite showing herself. And we seem to have countless days of gray skies, which are thankfully mitigated by a reflective carpet of snow on the ground.

Torch Lake gets eaten by lake effect snow:
Lake effect eats Torch Lake
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Baby It’s Cold Outside

The weather behaved a bit atypically on Thanksgiving Day. We enjoyed mid-sixties, albeit with quite a bit of wind – downright balmy by Up North standards. By the end of the day, though, things were cooling off, and the sky was dropping flakes by 9am Friday – about four hours earlier than predicted. Mom and Dad took a break in da U.P. from our renovation while the tile sets, and ended up in a blinding snow for their troubles. They’re back now, and Mom has taken over my kitchen, not following the soup recipe she has pulled up, but making dinner, so I am not complaining one bit. Continue reading