You never know what you might see…

… when you step outside.  You might see a hot air balloon getting ready to land on the neighbor’s property.

Or a pair of caterpillars that will one day be monarch butterflies hanging around on a milkweed plant.

A grasshopper clinging to a blade of grass.

Flowers growing in the asparagus bed, where they really shouldn’t be but they were too pretty to pull with the rest of the weeds.  (Can someone please explain to me why the flowers that come up as “weeds” in the garden are so much prettier than the flowers we plant in the flowerbeds??)

(The last of the cherry tomatoes?)

As practice for the upcoming challenge, I wiggled my toes into my Vibrams yesterday morning and went outside for my walk/run.  Although we are in the midst of a warm-up, the morning was still cool with some of that fall wetness leftover from the morning fog.  Leaves were flying off the trees, dancing in the breeze like large, colorful snowflakes.  I went past fields of corn and soybeans, drying in the sun and the lateness of the season.  The meadows, seas of yellow from the goldenrod, are abuzz with bees.

I went out again in the afternoon to do some work in the garden.  It is a riot of flowers and grasses and seeds.  I got down on the ground, under the asparagus ferns, and pulled and pulled and pulled, enjoying the scent and feel of the earth.

After an hour or so I took a short walk around the pond just to loosen up a bit after all the kneeling and bending in the garden.  The leaves on the maple trees are starting to turn red.

You can get a glimpse of the fall colors in the reflections on the pond.

At the back of the pond the cattails look as though they are growing rabbit ears.  Perhaps they get better reception that way.

And near the woods these delicate and fragrant white flowers had popped up all over the place.  I’m not sure what they are.  They smell like lilies-of-the-valley but they don’t quite look like them.  Anyone have any ideas about what they might be?

(Last sunrise for the summer of 2010.)

I got up early this morning to say goodbye to summer and watch the sunrise.  With storms on their way and clouds moving in quickly, it didn’t last long.

(Sunflower greeting the sunrise.)

I’d forgotten how wonderful the light is at sunrise.  I’m going to make it a point (and a priority) to get outside at sunrise more often.